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But haste thee straight to do me once a pleasure,
And from thy wardrobe bring thy chiefest treasure,
Not those new-fangled toys, and trimming slight
Which takes our late fantastics with delight;
But cull those richest robes, and gay'st attire,
Which deepest spirit, and choicest wits desire.
I have some naked thoughts that rove about,
And loudly knock to bave their passage out;
And weary of their place, do only stay
Till thou hast deck'd them in thy best array;
That so they may, without suspect or fears,
Fly swiftly to this fair assembly's ears;
Yet I had rather, if I were to chuse,
Thy service in some graver subject use,
Such as may make thee search thy coffers round,
Before thou clothe my fancy in fit sound:
Such where the deep transported mind may soar
Above the wheeling poles, and at Bleav'n's door
Look in, and see each blissful Deity
How he before the thunderous throne doth lie,
List'ning to what unshorn Apollo sing's
To th' touch of golden wires, while Hebe brings
Immortal nectar to her kingly sire :
Then passing through the spheres of watchful fire,
And misty regions of wide air next under,
And hills of snow, and lofts of piled thunder,
May tell at length how green-ey'd Neptune raves,
In Heav'n's defiance mustering all his waves;
Then sing of secret things that came to pass
When beldam Nature in her cradle was;
And last of kings, and queens, and heroes old,
Such as the wise Demodocus once told
In solemn songs at king Alcinous' feast,

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While sad Ulysses' soul, and all the rest,
Are held with his melodions harmony
In willing chains, and sweet captivity.
But fie, my wand'ring Mnse, how thou dost stray!
Expectance calls thee now another way ;
Thou know'st it must be now thy only bent
To keep in compass of thy predicament :
Then quick about thy purpos'd business come,
That to the next I may resign my room.

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Then Ens is represented as father of the Predicaments his two

sons, whereof the eldest stood for Șubstance with his can. nons, which Ens, thus speaking, explains.

6D

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GOOD luck befriend thee, Son; for, at thy birth,
The fairy ladies danc'd upon the hearth;
Thy drousy nurse hath sworn she did them spy
Come tripping to the room where thou didst lie,
And, sweetly singing round aboạt thy bed,
Strew all their blessings on thy sleeping head.
She heard them give thee this that thou shonldst still
From eyes of mortals walk invisible :
Yet there is something that doth force my fear;
For once it was my dismal hap to hear
A Sibyl old, bow-bent with crooked age,
That far events full wisely could presage,
And in time's long and dark prospective glass
Foresaw what future days should bring to pass ;
“ Your son,” said she, ( nor can you it prevent,
Shall subject be to many an Accident.
O'er all bis brethren he shall reign as king,
Yet every one shall make him underling ;
And those that cannot live from him asunder,

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Ungratefully shall strive to keep him under ;
In worth and excellence he shall out-go them,
Yet, being above them, he shall be below theni;
From others he shall stand in need of nothing,
Yet on his brothers shall depend for clothing.
To find a foe it shall not be his har ;
And peace shall lull him in her flow'ry lap;
Yet shall he live in strife, and at his door
Devoaring war shall never cease to roar;
Yea, it shall be his natural property
To harbor those that are at enmity.
What pow'r, what force, what mighty spell, if not
Your learned hands, can loose this Gordian knot ?"

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The next Quantity and Quality spoke in prose, then Relatiop

was called by his name.

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RIVERS, arise; whether thou be the son
Of utmost Tweed, or Oose, or Gulphy Dun,
Or Trent, who, like some carth-born giant, spreads
His thirty arms along th' indented meads;
Or sullen Mole, that runneth underneath;
Or Severn swift, guilty of maideu's death ;
Or rocky Avon, or of sedgy Lee,
Or coaly Tine, or ancient hallow'ol Dee;
Or Humber loud, that keeps the Scythian's nanie;
Or medway smooth, or royal-tow'red Thame.

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{The rest was prose.]

III.

ON THE MORNING.

OP

CHRIST'S NATIVITY.

Composed 1629.

I.

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THIS is the month, and this the happy morn,
Wherein the Son of Hear'n's eternal King,
Of wedded Maid and Virgin Mother horn,
Our great redemption from above did bring ;
For so the holy sages once did sing,

That he our deadly forfeit should release,
And with his father work us a perpetual peace.

II.
That glorious form, that light unsufferable,
And that far-beaming blaze of majesty,
Wherewith he wont at Heav'n's high council-table
To sit the midst of Trinal Unity,
He laid aside; and, here with us to be,

Forsook the courts of everlasting day,
And chose with us a darksome house of mortal clay.

III.
Say, heav'nly Muse, shall not thy sacred vein
Afford a present to the infant God?
Hast thou no verse, no hymn, or solemn strain,
To welcome him to this his new abode,
Now while the heav'n, by the sun's team untrod,

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Hath took no print of the approaching light, 20 And all the spangled hosts keep watch in squadrons bright?

IV.
See, how from far, upon the eastern road,
The star-led wizards haste with odours sweet:
O run, prevent them with thy humble ode,
And lay it lowly at his blessed feet;

23 Have thou the honour first thy lord to greet,

Aud joiy thy voice unto the angel quire,
From out bis secret altar touch'd with hallow'd fire,

THE HYMN.

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I.
IT was the winter wild,
While the Heav'n-born child

All meanly wrapt in the rude manger lies;
Nature, in awe to him,
Had doft'd ber gaudy trim

With her great Master so to sympathise;
It was no seasop then for her
To wanton with the sun, her lusty paramour.

II.
Only with speeches fair
She wooes the gentle air

To hide her guilty front with innocent snow;
And on her naked shame,
Pollute with sinful blame,

The saintly veil of maiden white to throw;
Confounded, that her Maker's eyes
Should look so near upon her foul deformities.

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