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EPISTLE III.

TO

ALLEN LORD BATHURST.

ARGUMENT.

Of the Use of RICHES

THAT it is known to ferv, most falling into one of the extremes,

Avarice or Profusion, ver. I, &c. The point discussed, whether the invention of money has been more commodious, or pernicious to mankind, ver. 21 to 77. Thal Riches either to the Avaricious or the Prodigal, cannot afford happiness, scarcely necessaries, ver. 89 to 166. That Avarice is an absolute frenzy, without an end or purpose, ver. 113, &c. 152. Conjectures about the motives of avaricious men, ver. 121 to 153. That the conduct of men with respect to Riches, can only be accounted for by the ORDER OF Providence, 'which works the general good out of extremes, and brings all to its great end by perpetual revolutions, ver. 161 to 178. How a Miser acts upon principles which appear to bim reasonable, ver. 179. How a Prodigal does the same, ver. 199. The due medium, and true use of Riches, ver. 219. The Man of Ross, ver. 250. The fate of the Profuse and the Covetous, in two examples; both miserable in life and in death, ver. 300, &co The Story of Sir Balaam, ver. 339 to the end.

EPISTLE III.

P. WHO shall decide when doctors disagree,

And soundest casuists doubt, like you and me?
You hold the word, from Jove to Momus giv'n,
That man was made the standing jest of heav'n;
And gold but sent to keep the fools in play, 5
For some to heap, and some to throw away.

But I, who think more highly of our kind,
(And surely, heav'n and I are of a mind)
Opine, that nature, as in duty bound,
Deep hid the shining mischief under ground:
But when by man's audacious labour won,
Flam'd forth this rival to its sire, the sun,
Then careful heav'n supply'd two sorts of men,
To squander these, and those to hide agen.

Like

IO

EPISTLE III.] This Epistle was written after a violent outcry against our Author, on suspicion that he had ridiculed a worthy nobleman merely for his wrong taste. He justified himself upon that article in a letter to the Earl of Burlington; at the end of which are these words : “ I have learnt that there are some who would rather be wicked than ridiculous; and therefore it may be safer to attack vices than follies. I will therefore leave my better s in the quiet possession of their idols, their groves, and their high places, and change my subject from their pride to their meanness, from their vanities to their miseries; and as the only certain way to avoid misconstructions, to lessen offence, and not to multiply illnatured applications, I may probably, in my next, make use of real names instead of fictitious ones.

Like doctors thus, when much dispute has past, We find our tenets just the same at last.

16 Both fairly owning, riches, in effect, No grace of heav'n, or token of th' elect; Giv'n to the fool, the mad, the vain, the evil, To Ward, to Waters, Chartres, and the Devil.

20

B. What

VER. 20. John Ward of Hackney, Esq. Member of Parliament, being prosecuted by the Duchess of Buckingham, and convicted of forgery, was first expelled the House, and then stood on the pillory on the 17th of March, 1727. He was suspected of joining in a conveyance with Sir John Blunt, to secrete fifty thousand pounds of thai Director's estate, forfeited to the South Sea Company by Act of Parliament. The Company recovered the fifty thousand pounds against Ward; but he set up prior convey, ances of his real estate to his brother and son, and concealed all his personal, which was computed to be one hundred and fifty thousand pounds. These conveyances being also set aside by a bill in Chancery, Ward was imprisoned, and hazarded the forfeiture of his life, by not giving in his effects till the last day, which was that of his examination. During his confinement, his amusement was to give poison to dogs and cats, and see them expire by slower or quicker torments. To sum up the worth of this gentleman, at the several æras of his life: At his standing in the pillory, he was worth above two hundred thousand pounds ; at his commitment to prison, he was worth one bundred and fifty thousand; but has been since so far diminished in his reputation, as to be thought a worse man hy fifty or sixty thousand.

Fr. Chartres, a man infamous for all manner of vices. When he was an ensign in the army, he was drummed oul of the regiment for a cheat; he was next banished Brussels, and drummed out of Ghent, on the same account. After a hundred tricks at the gaming-tables, he took to lending of money at exorbitant in terest and on great penalties, accumulating premium, interest, and capital into a new capital, and seizing to a minute when the ments became due; in a word, by a constant attention to the vices, wants, and follies of mankind, he acquired an immense fortune. His house was a perpetual bawdy-house. He was twice con demned for rapes, and pardoned; but the last time not without in prisonment in Newgate, and large confiscations. He died in Scotland

paya Blest

B. What nature wants, commodious gold bestows,

'Tis thus we eat the bread another sows. P. But how unequal it bestows, observe,

'Tis thus we riot, while, who sow it, starve :
What nature wants (a phrase I much distrust) 25
Extends to luxury, extends to lust :
Useful, I grant, it serves what life requires,

But dreadful too, the dark assassin hires.
B. Trade it may help, society extend.
P. But lures the pirate, and corrupts the friend. 30
B. It raises armies in a nation's aid.
P. But bribes a senate, and the land's betray’d.

In vain may heroes fight, and patriots rave ;
If secret gold sap on from knave to knave.
Once, we confess, beneath the patriot's cloak, 35
From the crack’d bag the dropping guinea spoke,
And gingling down the back-stairs, told the crew,
« Old Cato is as great a rogue as you.”

ju 1731, aged 62. The populace at his funeral raised a great riot, almost tore the body out of the coffin, and cast dead dogs, &c. into the grave along with it.

VER. 20. Waters,] The Waters here mentioned is the same person who is introduced under the character of “ Wise Peter;" whose name was “ Walter,” though sometimes called Waters.

VER. 32. But bribes a senate, &c.] Evidently levelled at Sir Robert Walpole's administration, and the supposed corrupt mode by which he maintained his influence and superiority in Parliament. VER. 35. beneath the patriot's cloak,] This is a true story,

which happened in the reign of William III. to an unsuspected old patriot, who coming out at the back-door from having been closeted by the King, where he had received a large bag of guineas, the bursting of the bag discovered his business there.

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