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Frontispiece Facing page 4998
THE FORUM (ROME).
THE COLISEUM (ROME).
GLADSTONE AND GRANDCHILD
GOETHE HOUSE (FRANKFORT)
GOETHE IN FRANKFORT
GOETHE IN WEIMAR
VICAR OF WAKEFIELD AND WIFE .
VILLAGE SCHOOL MASTER
“ MY DEAR AND ONLY LOVE
STOKE POGES CHURCH
SHAKESPEARE AT COURT OF ELIZABETH
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John Gay, an English poet, born at Barnstaple, baptized Sept. 16, 1685; died in London, Dec. 4, 1732. He was apprenticed to a silk-mercer in London, but turned his attention to literary pursuits. In 1713 he published “Rural Sports,” a poem dedicated to Pope, which led to a close friendship between the two poets. This was followed by “ The Shepherd's Week,” a kind of parody on the “Pastorals” of Ambrose Philips. He subsequently wrote several comedies; and in 1727 brought out the “ Beggar's Opera," which produced fame and money. This was followed by the comic opera of “ Polly,” the representation of which was forbidden by the Lord Chamberlain. Other works are “ The What D’ye Call It," a farce (1715); “Poems," including “Black-Eyed Susan” and “The Captives," a tragedy (1724); “ Acis and Galatea” (1732). Gay lost nearly all of his considerable property in the “South Sea Bubble,” and during the later years of his life he was an inmate of the house of the Duke of Queensberry. Apart from the two comic operas, Gay's best works are “Trivia, or the Art of Walking the Street of London," and the “Fables," of which a very good edition was published in 1856.
THE HARE AND MANY FRIENDS.
(From the “Fables.")
FRIENDSHIP, like love, is but a name,
Unless to one you stint the flame.
The child whom many fathers share
Hath seldom known a father's care.
'Tis thus in friendships : who depend
On many, rarely find a friend.
A Hare who in a civil way
Complied with everything, like Gay,
Was known by all the bestial train
Who haunt the wood or graze the plain.
Her care was, never to offend,
And ev'ry creature was her friend.
As forth she went at early dawn
To taste the dew-besprinkled lawn,
Behind she hears the hunters' cries,
And from the deep-mouthed thunder flies.
She starts, she stops, she pants for breath;
She hears the near advance of death;
She doubles to mislead the hound,
And measures back her mazy round;
Till fainting in the public way,
Half dead with fear, she gasping lay.
What transport in her bosom grew,
When first the Horse appeared in view!
“Let me," says she, "your back ascend,
And owe my safety to a friend.
You know my feet betray my flight;
To friendship every burden's light.”
The Horse replied : “ Poor honest Puss,
It grieves my heart to see thee thus :
Be comforted, relief is near;
For all your friends are in the rear."
She next the stately Bull implored ;
And thus replied the mighty lord:-
“Since every beast alive can tell
That I sincerely wish you well,
I may, without offense, pretend
To take the freedom of a friend.
Love calls me hence; a favorite cow
Expects me near yon barley-mow:
And when a lady's in the case,
You know all other things give place.
To leave you thus might seem unkind;
But see, the Goat is just behind.”
The Goat remarked her pulse was high,
Her languid head, her heavy eye;
“My back," says he, “may do you harm :
The Sheep's at hand, and wool is warm."
The Sheep was feeble, and complained
His sides a load of wool sustained :
Said he was slow, confessed his fears ;
For hounds eat Sheep as well as Hares !
She now the trotting Calf addressed,
To save from death a friend distressed.
“Shall I,” says he, “ of tender age,
In this important care engage ?
Older and abler passed you by ;
How strong are those ! how weak am I!
Should I presume to bear you hence,
Those friends of mine may take offense.
Excuse me then. You know my heart:
But dearest friends, alas ! must part.
How shall we all lament! Adieu !
For see, the hounds are just in view."
THE SICK MAN AND THE ANGEL.
Is there no hope ? the Sick Man said.
The silent doctor shook his head,
And took his leave with signs of sorrow,
Despairing of his fee to-morrow.
When thus the Man with gasping breath:
I feel the chilling wound of death;
Since I must bid the world adieu,
Let me my former life review.
I grant, my bargains well were made,
But all men overreach in trade;
'Tis self-defense in each profession;
Sure, self-defense is no transgression.
The little portion in my hands,
By good security on lands,
Is well increased. If unawares,
My justice to myself and heirs
Hath let my debtor rot in jail,
For want of good sufficient bail ;
If I by writ, or bond, or deed,
Reduced a family to need, -
My will hath made the world amends;
My hope on charity depends.
When I am numbered with the dead,
And all my pious gifts are read,
By heaven and earth 'twill then be known,
My charities were amply shown.
An angel came. Ah, friend ! he cried,
No more in flattering hope confide.
Can thy good deeds in former times