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Thus States were form'd; the name of King un


'Till common int'reft plac'd the fway in one. 210 'Twas VIRTUE ONLY (or in arts or arms,

Diffusing bleffings, or averting harms)

The fame which in a Sire the Sons obey'd,
A Prince the Father of a People made.

VI. 'Till then, by Nature crown'd, each Patriarch fate,


King, priest, and parent of his growing state;
On him, their fecond Providence, they hung,
Their law his eye, their oracle his tongue.
He from the wond'ring furrow call'd the food,
Taught to command the fire, controul the flood, 220
Draw forth the monsters of th'abyss profound,
Or fetch th'aerial eagle to the ground.
'Till drooping, fick'ning, dying they began
Whom they rever'd as God to mourn as Man:


VER. 219. He from the wond ring furrow,&c.]i.e. He fubdued the intractabi

VER. 211. 'Twas Virtue \ τῶν ἀπὸ τῆς ἀρεθῆς, ἡ καθ ̓ ὑπερο only, &c.] Our author hath xv tolétu yévus. good authority, for his account of the origin of king. fhip. Ariftotle affures us of this truth, that it was Vir-lity of all the four elements, tue only, or in arts or arms: and made them fubfervient Καθίςαλαι Βασιλεὺς ἐκ τῶν ἐπιεικῶν | to the ufe of Man.

καθ ̓ ὑπεροχὴν ἀρετῆς, ἢ πράξεων

Then, looking up from fire to fire, explor'd
One great firft father, and that firft ador❜d.
Or plain tradition that this All begun,
Convey'd unbroken faith from fire to fon;
The worker from the work diftinct was known,
And fimple Reason never fought but one:
E'er Wit oblique had broke that steddy light,
Man, like his Maker, faw that all was right;
To Virtue, in the paths of Pleasure, trod,
And own'd a Father when he own'd a God.



Love all the faith, and all th' allegiance then; 235

For Nature knew no right divine in Men,
No ill could fear in God; and understood

A fov'reign being but a fov'reign good.


VER. 225. Then, looking | during the former ftate, they up, &c.] The poet here refted in fecond caufes, the maketh their more ferious immediate authors of their attention to Religion to have bleffings, whom they revered

arifen, not from their graas God; but that, in the titude amidst abundance,

other, they reasoned up to

but from their helpleffnefs the Firft:

in diftrefs; by fhewing that,

Then, looking up from fire to fire, &c.

This, I am afraid, is but too trae a representation of hu

man nature.

VER 231. E'er Wit

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oblique, &c.] A beautiful allufion to the effects of the prifmatic glafs on the rays of light.

True faith, true policy, united ran,

That was but love of God, and this of Man. 240
Who first taught fouls enflav'd, and realms undone,
Th' enormous faith of many made for one;

That proud exception to all Nature's laws,
T'invert the world, and counter-work its Cause?
Force first made Conqueft, and that conqueft, Law;
'Till Superftition taught the tyrant awe,


'Then shar'd the Tyranny, then lent it aid, And Gods of Conqu'rors, Slaves of Subjects made: She 'midft the light'ning's blaze, and thunder's found,

When rock'd the mountains, and when groan'd the


She taught the weak to bend, the proud to pray,
To Pow'r unfeen, and mightier far than they :
She, from the rending earth and bursting skies,
Saw Gods defcend, and fiends infernal rise:

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δ' ὁ ΒΑΣΙΛΕΥΣ εἶναι φύλαξ, ὅπως

μὲν κεκλημένοι τὰς ἐσίας μηθὲν ἄδικον πάσχωσιν, ὁ δὲ δῆμος μὴ ὑβρίζηται μηθέν· ἡ δὲ ΤΥΡΑΝΝΙΣ | πρὸς ἐδὲν ἀποβλέπει κοινὸν, εἰ μὴ τῆς ἰδίας ὠφελείας χάριν. Pol. lib. v. cap. 10.

Here fix'd the dreadful, there the bleft abodes; 255
Fear made her Devils, and weak Hope her Gods;
Gods partial, changeful, paffionate, unjust,
Whose attributes were Rage, Revenge, or Luft;
Such as the fouls of cowards might conceive,
And, form'd like tyrants, tyrants would believe. 266
Zeal then, not charity, became the guide;
And hell was built on spite, and heav'n on pride.
Then facred feem'd th'etherial vault no more;
Altars grew marble then, and reek'd with gore :
Then first the Flamen tafted living food;
Next his grim idol smear'd with human blood;
With Heav'n's own thunders fhook the world below,
And play'd the God an engine on his foe.


So drives Self-love, thro' just and thro' unjust,
To one Man's pow'r, ambition, lucre, luft:
The fame Self-love, in all, becomes the cause
Of what reftrains him, Government and Laws.
For, what one likes if others like as well,
What serves one will, when many wills rebel?


VER. 262.-and heav'n on pride.] This might be very well faid of those times, when no one was content



to go to heaven without being received there on the footing of a God.


How shall he keep, what, fleeping or awake,

A weaker may surprise, a stronger take?
His fafety muft his liberty reftrain:
All join to guard what each defires to gain.
Forc'd into virtue thus by Self-defence,
Ev❜n Kings learn'd justice and benevolence:
Self-love forfook the path it first purfu'd,
And found the private in the public good.


'Twas then, the ftudious head or gen'rous mind, Follow'r of God or friend of human-kind,

Poet or Patriot, rofe but to restore


The Faith and Moral, Nature gave before;
Re-lum'd her ancient light, not kindled new ;
If not God's image, yet his fhadow drew:
Taught Pow'r's due use to People and to Kings,
Taught nor to flack, nor strain its tender ftrings,
The less, or greater, set so justly true,

That touching one must strike the other too;
'Till jarring int'refts, of themfelves create
Th'according mufic of a well-mix'd State.


VER. 283. 'Twas then, &c.] The poet feemeth here to mean the polite and flourishing age of Greece; and thofe benefactors to Mankind, which

he had principally in view, were Socrates and Ariftotle who, of all the pagan world, fpoke beft of God, and wrote best of Government.

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