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Title: Anti-Achitophel (1682) - Three Verse Replies to Absalom and Achitophel by John Dryden
Author: Settle, Elkanah, 1648-1724, Pordage, Samuel, 1633-1691
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

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  [Transcriber's Note:
  Typographical errors are listed separately at the end of the Editor's
  Introduction and each poem.]


               _Anti-Achitophel_

                     (1682)

             THREE VERSE REPLIES TO

    _Absalom and Achitophel_ by JOHN DRYDEN

      _Absalom Senior_ by Elkanah Settle
      _Poetical Reflections_ by Anonymous
      _Azaria and Hushai_ by Samuel Pordage



            Facsimile Reproductions

          Edited with an Introduction
                       by
             HAROLD WHITMORE JONES

              Gainesville, Florida
        Scholars' Facsimiles & Reprints
                      1961



SCHOLARS' FACSIMILES & REPRINTS
118 N.W. 26th Street
Gainesville, Florida
Harry R. Warfel, General Editor

Reproduced from Copies in
BRITISH MUSEUM
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA LIBRARY

L. C. Catalog Card Number: 60-6430

Manufactured in the U.S.A.
Letterpress by J. N. Anzel, Inc.
Photolithography by Edwards Brothers
Binding by Universal-Dixie Bindery


       *       *       *       *       *

INTRODUCTION


English verse allegory, humorous or serious, political or moral, has
deep roots; a reprint such as the present is clearly no place for a
discussion of the subject at large:[1] it need only be recalled here
that to the age that produced _The Pilgrim's Progress_ the art form was
not new. Throughout his life Dryden had his enemies, Prior and Montague
in their satire of _The Hind and the Panther_, for example. The general
circumstances under which Dryden wrote _Absalom and Achitophel_,
familiar enough and easily accessible, are therefore recalled only
briefly below. Information is likewise readily available on his use of
Biblical allegory.[2]

    [Footnote 1: Cf. E. D. Leyburn, _Satiric Allegory, Mirror of Man_
    (New Haven, 1956).]

    [Footnote 2: e.g., _Absalom's Conspiracy_, a tract tracing how the
    Bible story came to be used for allegorical purposes. See _The
    Harleian Miscellany_ (1811), VIII, 478-479; and R. F. Jones, "The
    Originality of 'Absalom and Achitophel,'" _Modern Language Notes_,
    XLVI (April, 1931) 211-218.]

We are here concerned with three representative replies to _Absalom
and Achitophel_: their form, their authors, and details of their
publication. Settle's poem was reprinted with one slight alteration
a year after its first appearance; the _Reflections_ has since been
reprinted in part, Pordage's poem not at all. _Absalom Senior_ has been
chosen because, of the many verse pieces directed against Dryden's poem,
it is of the greatest intrinsic merit and shows the reverse side of the
medal, as it were, to that piece; the second is given, not for any
literary merit it may possess--indeed, from its first appearance it has
been dismissed as of small worth--but rather as a poem representative of
much of the versifying that followed hard on the Popish Plot and as one
that has inspired great speculation as to its author; the third, in
addition to throwing light on the others, is a typical specimen of the
lesser work produced in the Absalom dispute.

The author and precise publication date of the _Reflections_ remain
unidentified. Ascription of the poem to Buckingham rests ultimately on
the authority of Wood's _Athenae Oxonienses_ and on Wood alone, and we
do not know on what evidence he thought it to be Buckingham's; we do
know, however, that Wood was often mistaken over such matters. Sir
Walter Scott in his collected edition of Dryden (1808; IX, 272-5) also
accepted Buckingham as the author, but cited no authority; he printed
extracts, yet the shortcomings of his edition, whatever its convenience,
are well known. The poem has not appeared in any subsequent edition of
Dryden's poems, the latest being the four volume set (Oxford, 1958);
the volume of the California Dryden[A] relevant to _Absalom_ is still
awaited. Internal evidence is even more scanty. Only one passage of the
_Reflections_ (sig. D2) may bear on the matter. Perhaps the "Three-fold
Might" (p. 7, line 11) refers, not to the poet's "tripartite design"
(p. 7, line 10) or to the Triple Alliance of England, Holland, and
Sweden against France (1677/8, as in _Absalom and Achitophel_, line
175) but either to a treatise which had occasioned some stir in the
scientific world some twenty years previously: "the Delphic problem"
proposed by Hobbes to the Royal Society on the duplication of the cube,
which might have come to the ears of Buckingham as well as to those of
the court,[3] or perhaps to the triple confederacy of Essex, Halifax,
and Sunderland.[4] But to the Restoration reader the phrase "Three-fold
Might" would rather have suggested the Triple Alliance, to which Dryden
reverts in _The Medal_ (lines 65-68) when he claims that Shaftesbury,
"thus fram'd for ill, ... loos'd our Triple Hold" on Europe.[5]

    [Transcriber's Footnote (A):
    This Introduction was written in 1959. Volume II of the California
    Edition (_The Works of John Dryden_) was published in 1972.]

    [Footnote 3: Hobbes, _English Works_ (1845), ed. by Molesworth, VII,
    59-68.]

    [Footnote 4: H. C. Foxcroft, _A Character of the Trimmer_
    (Cambridge, England, 1946), p. 70. This book is an abridged
    version of the same author's _Life and Works of Halifax_ (1897).]

    [Footnote 5: Cf. the phrase "Twofold might" in _Absalom and
    Achitophel_, I, 175.]

Evidence against Buckingham's authorship, on the other hand, is
comparatively strong. The piece does not appear in his collected _Works_
(1704-5). It surely would have been included even though he had at first
wished to claim any credit from its publication and later have wished to
disown it. Little connection, furthermore, will be found between the
_Reflections_ and the rest of his published verse or with the plays,
including _The Rehearsal_, if the latter be his alone, which is
doubtful.

_Poetical Reflections_ has been ascribed to Edward Howard. W. Thomas
Lowndes in his _Bibliographer's Manual_ (1864; II, 126) assigned to this
minor writer, on the authority of an auction note, the little collection
_Poems and Essays, with a Paraphrase on Cicero's Laelius, or, Of
Friendship ... By a Gentleman_ (1674), and G. Thorn-Drury, on the
equally debatable evidence of an anonymous manuscript ascription on
the title page of his own copy, ascribed the _Poetical Reflections_ to
Howard.[6] An examination of the _Poems and Essays_, however, reveals no
point of resemblance with our poem. How, then, does Howard fit into the
picture? He was in the rival camp to Dryden and was a friend of Martin
Clifford[7] and of Thomas Sprat, then Buckingham's chaplain: these three
have been thought to be jointly responsible for _The Rehearsal_. Sprat
had published a poem of congratulation to Howard on Howard's _The
British Princes_ (1669), the latter a long pseudo-epic of the Blackmore
style in dreary couplets which, again, provides no parallel with the
_Reflections_. And what of Howard's plays? Many of these were written
in the 1660's during his poetic apprenticeship; none seems akin to our
poem. Whereas, as shown in the Table of Allusions below, two independent
readers often agreed over the identities of many characters in Settle's
poem, Restoration readers at large were reticent over the authorship
of the _Reflections_. Hugh Macdonald, in his useful _John Dryden: a
Bibliography_ (1939), was wise to follow their example, and it seems
rash, therefore, to propose any new candidate in the face of such
negative evidence. The poem exists in two states, apparently differing
only in the title page.

    [Footnote 6: _Review of English Studies_, I (1925) 82-83.]

    [Footnote 7: In his _Notes upon Mr. Dryden's Poems in Four Letters_
    (1687) Clifford, in 16 pages, accuses Dryden of plagiarism,
    especially in _Almanzor_.]

Evidence of Settle's authorship of _Absalom Senior_, on the other hand,
is neither wanting nor disputed. We have had to wait until our own
century for the pioneer work on this writer, since he cannot have been
considered a sufficiently major poet by Samuel Johnson's sponsors, and
Langbaine's account is sketchy. In a periodical paper[8] Macdonald
summarized supplementary evidence on the dates of composition of
Settle's poem; he was working on it in January 1681/2, and it was
published on the following April 6. Lockyer, Dean of Peterborough,
asserted to Joseph Spence, who includes the rumor in _Anecdotes_, that
Settle was assisted by Clifford and Sprat and by "several best hands of
those times";[9] but Spence is notoriously unreliable. In the lack of
other evidence, then, it seems best to take the poem as wholly Settle's.
It needs only to add a few words on its textual states. The First
Edition, here reproduced, seems to exist in a single impression, and
likewise the Second Edition of the Settle (1682, in quarto) seems to
have been struck off in a single textual state. Of its individual
variants from the First Edition only the following seem of any
significance and, since there is no reason to suppose that it was
printed from any copy other than the First, they may be merely the
result of carelessness.

  FIRST EDITION                     SECOND EDITION

  p. 3, line 4, enthron'd, with     inthron'd with
     3       8, Arts ... steps      Art's ... step's
    11      10, Rods;               Rods?
    13      26, to Descend          do Descend
    14      17, couch,              couch
    29       9, Cedar               Cedars
    31      21, Temples             Temple

    [Footnote 8: "The Attacks on John Dryden," _Essays and Studies by
    Members of the English Association_, XXI, 41-74.]

    [Footnote 9: Joseph Spence, _Anecdotes ... of Books and Men_ (1858),
    p. 51.]

For "No Link ... night" (p. 35, lines 19-24), the Second Edition
substitutes, for an undetermined reason, the following:

  No less the Lordly Zelecks Glory sound
  For courage and for Constancy renoun'd:
  Though once in naught but borrow'd plumes adorn'd,
  So much all servile Flattery he scorn'd;
  That though he held his Being and Support,
  By that weak Thread the Favour of a Court,
  In Sanhedrims unbrib'd, he firmly bold
  Durst Truth and Israels Right unmov'd uphold;
  In spight of Fortune, still to Honour wed,
  By Justice steer'd, though by Dependence fed.

Very little can be said of Pordage's poem, beyond its date of
publication (January 17, 1681/2)[10] and the fact that no parallel has
been found with his earlier work. As no detailed study on him, published
or unpublished, has been traced, we can only have recourse to the
standard works on the period; data thus easily accessible are not
therefore reproduced here. A so-called second edition (MacDonald 205b)
is identical with the first.

    [Footnote 10: _Modern Philology_, XXV (1928) 409-416.]

In conclusion a few comments may be made on the general situation into
which the poems fit. It will be remembered that _Absalom and Achitophel_
appeared after the Exclusion Bill, the purpose of which was to debar
James Duke of York from the Protestant succession, had been rejected by
the House of Lords, mainly through the efforts of Halifax. Dryden's poem
was advertised on November 17, 1681, and we may safely assume that it
was published only a short time before Settle and our other authors
were hired by the Whigs to answer it. Full details have not survived;
one suspects Shaftesbury's Green Ribbon Club. That such replies were
considered necessary testifies both to the popularity of _Absalom and
Achitophel_ with the layman in politics and to the Whigs' fear of its
harming their cause. Settle's was of course a mercenary pen, and it is
amusing to note that after ridiculing Halifax here he was quite prepared
to publish, fourteen years later, _Sacellum Apollinare: a Funeral Poem
to the Memory of that Great Statesman, George Late Marquiss of Halifax_,
and on this count his place among Pope's Dunces seems merited. In
tracing his quarrel with Dryden up to the publication of _Absalom
Senior_, critics have tended to overlook the fact that by 1680 there
was already hostility between the two;[11] less has been said about
the effect on Dryden of the poets themselves. The spleen of his
contributions to the Second Part of _Absalom and Achitophel_ is
essentially a manufactured one and for the public entertainment;
personally he was comparatively unmoved--the Og portrait, for example,
is less representative than his words in "The Epistle to the Whigs"
prefixed to _The Medal_. Here, as in _Mac Flecknoe_, he appears to have
been able to write vituperation to order. "I have only one favor to
desire of you at parting," he says, and it is "that when you think of
answering this poem, you would employ the same pens against it, who have
combated with so much success against _Absalom and Achitophel_; for then
you may assure yourselves of a clear victory, without the least reply."
Is it for the best that this forecast proved the right one?

    [Footnote 11: e.g., over _The Empress of Morocco_; see Scott's
    _Dryden_, XV, 397-413.]

For permission to reproduce their copies of texts comprising the present
reprint thanks are expressed to the University of Florida Library
(_Absalom Senior_) and to the Trustees of the British Museum (the other
two poems). The University of Leeds and the City of Manchester Public
Library are also thanked for leave to use contemporary marginalia in
each's copy of Settle's poem. The provenance of the latter two copies
of this piece is unknown; the first, now in the Brotherton Collection,
bears the name William Crisp on its last blank leaf and, in abbreviated
form, identifies some characters; the second, of unidentified ownership,
is fuller.

                        HAROLD WHITMORE JONES

  _Liverpool, England

    November_, 1959



TABLE OF ALLUSIONS


NAMES

The persons and places referred to in the allegories are identified
in the following lists of names. M indicates the ascription in the
Manchester copy; B, that in the Leeds University copy. Within the list
for each poem, names similarly used in _Absalom and Achitophel_ are
omitted; those used with a different meaning are marked with an
asterisk.

ABSALOM SENIOR

  *_Absalom_, Duke of York
  *_Achitophel_, Halifax
  *_Adriel_, Earl of Huntington
   _Amasai_, Earl of Macclesfield (M, B)
   _Amnon_, Godfrey
  *_Amiel_, Buckingham (B)
   _Amram_, Sir William Jones
   _Arabia_, Portugal
   _Ashur_, Fourth Lord Herbert of Cherbury (M)
   _Babylon_, Rome
   _Barak_, Drake
  *_Barzillai_, Shaftesbury (B)
  *_Caleb_, Laurence Hyde, son of Clarendon (B)
   _Camries_, Third Lord Howard of Escrick (M)
  *_Corah_, Sir Edward Seymour (B)
   _Deborah_, Queen Elizabeth
   _Endor_, Oxford (B)
   _Geshur_, Ireland
   _Hanaan_, Lord Nottingham
   _Hazor_, Spain
  *_Helon_, First Duke of Bedford
  *_Hothriel_, Slingsby Bethell
  *_Hushai_, Earl of Argyll
   _Ithream_, Monmouth
   _Jabin_, Philip II
  *_Jonas_, ?Sir William Gregory (M glosses as Seymour; _see Corah_)
  *_Jotham_, Earl of Essex
   _Laura_, Anne Reeve
   _Levitick chiefs_, English bishops (B)
   _Micah_, Sir William Williams, Speaker of the Commons
  *_Nadab_, Lauderdale
  *_Shimei_, Jeffreys (B)
   _Sidon_, Denmark
   _Sisera_, Medina Sidonia
   _Zeleck_, unidentified

POETICAL REFLECTIONS

  *_Amiel_, ?Finch, Lord Chancellor
  *_Bathsheba_, ?Queen Catherine
   _Nimrod_, Cromwell
   _Tory Roger_, L'Estrange

AZARIA AND HUSHAI

   _Abidon_, unidentified
   _Amalack_, ?Henry Hyde, son of Clarendon
   _Amazia_, Charles II
   _Aminadab, Ashur_, unidentified; _see_ Ashur _above_.
   _Athalia_, Mary Queen of Scots
   _Azaria_, Monmouth
   _Azyad_, Sir Edmundbury Godfrey
   _Bibbai_, L'Estrange
   _Canaanites, Chemarim_, Papists
   _Doeg_, Danby
   _Edomites_, Irish
   _Elam_, Lawrence Hyde, Earl of Rochester
   _Eliab_, Lord Russell
   _Eliakim_, Duke of York
   _Elishama_, ?Macclesfield
   _Elizur, Enan_, unidentified
   _Essens_, nonconformists
   _Gamaliel_, unidentified
   _Gedaliah_, Edward Coleman
   _Gibbar_, ?Lord Clifford
   _Harim_, ?Lord Wharton
   _Helon_, Bedford
  *_Hushai_, Shaftesbury
   _Jehosaphat_, Henry VII
   _Jeptha_, see Settle, p. 21
   _Jerusha_, Anne, Countess of Buccleuch
   _Joash_, Charles I
   _Jocoliah_, Lucy Walters
  *_Jotham_, ?Halifax
   _Libni_, Oates
   _Muppim_, ?Lauderdale
   _Nashai_, Essex
   _Pagiel_, unidentified
   _Pharisee_, high churchman
   _Rehoboam_, unidentified
  *_Shimei_, Dryden
   _Zabed_, Cromwell
   _Zattue_, unidentified


REFERENCES

Biblical parallels and parallels with _Absalom and Achitophel_ are
omitted. The _Dedications_ of the poems can be compared with Dryden's
in _Absalom and Achitophel_.

ABSALOM SENIOR

Page

  3: _Barak_. The only borrowing in the poem from a popular seventeenth
    century jest book, _Wits Recreations_ (1640), "Epigrams," no. 46,
    "On Sir Fr. Drake": "The sun itself cannot forget/His fellow
    traveller."

  11: a _Jewish_ Renegade. Cardinal Philip Thomas Howard (B).

  13: a Breaden God. Either a reference to transubstantiation (see also
    II Kings 2-3 and II Chron. 34) or an allusion to the Meal Tub Plot
    (1679).

  16: a Cake of _Shew-bread_. In addition to the Biblical allusion,
    perhaps a reference to the poisoning of the Holy Roman Emperor
    Henry VII by the communion wafer.

  17: in Possession. As this legal term is opposed to "reversion"
    emendation is unnecessary.

  19: to bear. There was a belief that Jeffreys was connected with
    the Duchess of Portsmouth (B). The "Golden Prize" was perhaps
    protestantism, to be suppressed under a secret provision of the
    Treaty of Dover (1670).

  19: Court-Drugster. Sir George Wakeman.

  25: beautifyed. _OED_ notices this catachrestic form of "beatified"

  32: All-be-devill'd Paper. Presumably that accusing Shaftsbury of
    high treason.

  34: A Cell. Eton.

  37: Midnight Bawd. Mrs. Cellier.

POETICAL REFLECTIONS

  4: Ignoramus. the jury's verdict at Shaftesbury's trial.

  5: the Joyner. Stephen Colledge.

  9: motly Sight, read "Spight"?

AZARIA AND HUSHAI

  10: Power on _Amazia_. Read "of _Amazia_"?

  19: allay'd. Read "ally'd"?

  28: to board. Read "hoard"?

  38: swifty back. So in all copies seen.


[Erratum:

  4: Ignoramus. The jury's verdict at Shaftesbury's trial.
    _text reads "the jury's"_]

       *       *       *       *       *

                Absalom Senior:
                      or,
                  ACHITOPHEL
                  TRANSPROS'D.

                       A
                     POEM.

         _Si Populus vult decipi_, &c.

  [Illustration: Publisher's Device:
  IL VOSTRO MALIGNARE NON GIOVA NVLLA]


                    LONDON:

Printed for _S. E._ and Sold by _Langley Curtis_,
    at the Sign of Sir _Edmondbury Godfrey_,
           near _Fleetbridge_. 1682.



To the TORIES.

_Gentlemen_, for so you all write your selves; and indeed you are your
own Heralds, and Blazon all your Coats with _Honour_ and _Loyalty_ for
your _Supporters_; nay, and you are so unconscionable too in that point,
that you will allow neither of them in any other _Scutcheons_ but
your own. But who has 'em, or has 'em not, is not my present business;
onely as you profess your selves Gentlemen, to conjure you to give an
Adversary fair play; and that if any person whatsoever shall pretend
to be aggrieved by this POEM, or any part of it, that he would bear
it patiently; since the Licentiousness of the first _Absolom_ and
_Achitophel_ has been the sole occasion of the Liberty of This, I
having only taken the Measure of My Weapon, from the Length of his;
which by the Rules of Honour ought not to offend you; especially,
since the boldness of that Ingenious Piece, was wholly taken from the
Encouragement you gave the Author; and 'tis from that Boldness only that
this POEM takes its Birth: for had not his daring Pen brought that Piece
into the World, I had been so far from troubling my self in any Subject
on this kind, that I may justly say in one sence, the Writer of that
_Absolom_, is the Author of this. This favour, as in Justice due,
obtain'd from you, I shall not trouble you with a long Preface, like
a tedious Compliment at the Door, but desire you to look in for your
Entertainment. Onely I cannot forbear telling you, that one thing I
am a little concern'd for you, _Tories_, that your _Absoloms_ and
_Achitophels_, and the rest of your Grinning Satyres against the
_Whiggs_, have this one unpardonable Fault, That the Lash is more
against a _David_, than an _Achitophel_; whilst the running down of the
PLOT at so extravagant a rate, savours of very little less (pardon the
Expression) than ridiculing of Majesty it self, and turning all those
several Royal Speeches to the Parliament on that Subject, onely into
those double-tongu'd Oracles that sounded one thing, and meant another.
Besides, after this unmannerly Boldness, of not onely branding the
publick Justice of the Nation, but affronting even the Throne it self,
to push the humour a little farther, you run into ten times a greater
Vice, (and in the same strain too) than what you so severely inveigh
against: and whilst a POPISH PLOT through want of sufficient
Circumstances, and credible Witnesses, miscarries with you, a PROTESTANT
PLOT without either Witness or Circumstance at all, goes currant. Nay
you are so far now from your former niceties and scruples, and disparing
about raising of Armies, and not one Commission found, that you can
swallow the raising of a whole Protestant ARMY, without either
Commission, or Commission-Officer; Nay, the very When, Where, and How,
are no part of your Consideration. 'Tis true, the great Cry amongst you,
is, The Nations Eyes are open'd; but I am afraid, in most of you, 'tis
onely to look where you like best: and to help your lewd Eye-sight, you
have got a damnable trick of turning the Perspective upon occasion, and
magnifying or diminishing at pleasure. But alas, all talking to you is
but impertinent, and fending and proving signifie just nothing; for
after all Arguments, both Parties are so irreconcileable, that as the
Author of _Absolom_ wisely observed, they'll be Fools or Knaves to each
other to the end of the Chapter. And therefore I am so reasonable in
this point, that should be very glad to divide 'em between 'em, and give
the Fool to the _Tory_, and the Knave to the _Whigg_. For the _Tories_
that will believe no POPISH PLOT, may as justly come under that
denomination, as They, that _David_ tells us, _said in their Hearts
there was no God_. And then let the _Whiggs_ that do believe a _Popish
Plot_ be the Knaves, for daring to endeavour to hinder the Effects of a
_Popish Plot_, when the _Tories_ are resolved to the contrary. But to
draw near a conclusion, I have one favour more to beg of you, that
you'll give me the freedom of clapping but about a score of years
extraordinary on the back of my _Absolom_. Neither is it altogether so
unpardonable a Poetical License, since we find as great slips from the
Author of your own _Absolom_, where we see him bring in a _Zimri_ into
the Court of _David_, who in the Scripture-story dyed by the Hand of
_Phineas_ in the days of _Moses_. Nay, in the other extream, we find him
in another place talking of the Martyrdome of _Stephen_, so many Ages
after. And if so famous an Author can forget his own Rules of Unity,
Time, and Place, I hope you'll give a Minor Poet some grains of
Allowance, and he shall ever acknowledge himself

    Your Humble Servant.



                Absalom Senior:

                      or,

            ACHITOPHEL TRANSPROS'D.


In Gloomy Times, when Priestcraft bore the sway,
And made Heav'ns Gate a Lock to their own Key:
When ignorant Devotes did blindly bow,
And groaping to be sav'd they knew not now:
Whilst this _Egyptian_ darkness did orewhelm,
The Priest sate Pilot even at Empires Helm.
Then Royal Necks were yok'd, and Monarchs still
Hold but their Crowns at his Almighty Will.
And to defend this high Prerogative,
Falsely from Heaven he did that powr derive:
By a Commission forg'd i'th' hand of God,
Turn'd _Aarons_ blooming wand, to _Moses_ snaky Rod.
Whilst Princes little Scepters overpowr'd,
Made but that prey his wider Gorge devour'd.
Now to find Wealth might his vast pomp supply,
(For costly Roofs befit a Lord so high)
No Arts were spar'd his Luster to support,
But all Mines searcht t'enrich his shining Court.
Then Heav'n was bought, Religion but a Trade;
And Temples Murder's Sanctuary made.
By _Phineas_ Spear no bleeding _Cozbies_ groan'd,
If _Cozbies_ Gold for _Cozbies_ Crimes aton'd.
With these wise Arts, (for Humane Policy
As well as Heav'nly Truth, mounts Priests so high)
'Twixt gentle Penance, lazy Penitence,
A Faith that gratifies both Soul and Sense;
With easie steps to everlasting Bliss,
He paves the rugged way to Paradice.
Thus almost all the Proselyte-World he drives,
Whilst th'universal Drones buz to his Hives.
Implicite Faith Religion thus convey'd
Through little pipes to his great Channel laid,
Till Piety through such dark Conduits led,
Was poyson'd by the Spring on which it fed.
Here blind Obedience to a blinder Guide,
Nurst that Blind Zeal that rais'd the Priestly pride;
Whilst to make Kings the Sovereign Prelate own,
Their Reason he enslav'd, and then their Throne.
The Mitre thus above the Diadem soar'd,
Gods humble servant He, but Mans proud Lord.
It was in such Church-light blind-zeal was bred,
By Faiths infatuating Meteor led;
Blind Zeal, that can even Contradictions joyn;
A Saint in Faith, in Life a Libertine;
Makes Greatness though in Luxury worn down,
Bigotted even to th' Hazard of a Crown;
Ty'd to the Girdle of a Priest so fast,
And yet Religious only to the wast.
But Constancy atoning Constancy,
Where that once raigns, Devotion may lye by.
T'espouse the Churches Cause lyes in Heav'ns road,
More than obeying of the Churches God.
And he dares fight, for Faith is more renown'd
A Zealot Militant, than Martyr crown'd.
Here the Arch-Priest to that Ambition blown,
Pull'd down Gods Altars, to erect his own:
For not content to publish Heav'ns command,
The Sacred Law penn'd by th'Almighty Hand,
And _Moses_-like 'twixt God and _Israel_ go,
Thought _Sinai_'s Mount a Pinacle too low.
So charming sweet were Incense fragrant Fumes, }
So pleas'd his Nostrils, till th'Aspirer comes }
From offering, to receiving Hecatombs;         }
And ceasing to adore, to be ador'd.
So fell Faiths guide: so loftily he towr'd,
Till like th'Ambitious _Lucifer_ accurst,
Swell'd to a God, into a Fiend he burst.

  But as great _Lucifer_ by falling gain'd
Dominion, and ever in Damnation reign'd;
And though from Lights blest Orb for ever driven,   }
Yet Prince o'th'Air, h'had that vast Scepter giv'n, }
T'have Subjects far more numerous than Heav'n.      }
And thus enthron'd, with an infernal spight,
The genuine Malice of the Realms of night,
The Paradise he lost blasphemes, abhors,
And against Heav'n proclaims Eternal Wars;
No Arts untry'd, no hostile steps untrod,
Both against Truths Adorers, and Truths God.

  So Faiths faln Guide, now _Baals_ great Champion raign'd;
Wide was his Sway, and Mighty his Command:
Whilst with implacable revenge he burn'd,
And all his Rage against Gods _Israel_ turn'd.
Here his invenom'd Souls black gall he flings,
Spots all his Snakes, and points his Scorpions stings:
Omits no Force, or Treacherous Designe,
Blest _Israel_ to assault, or undermine.
But the first Sword did his keen Malice draw,
Was aim'd against the God-like _Deborah.
Deborah_, the matchless pride of _Judah_'s Crown,
Whose Female hand _Baal's_ impious Groves cut down,
His banisht Wizards from her _Israel_ thrust,
And pounded all their Idols into dust.
Her Life with indefatigable pain,
By Daggers long, and poysons fought in vain:
At length they angry _Jabins_ Rage enflam'd,
_Hazors_ proud King, for Iron Chariots fam'd;
A Warriour powerful, whose most dreadful Hoast
Proclaim'd Invincible, (were humane Boast
Infallible) by haughty _Sisera_ led,
'Gainst _Deborah_ their bloody Banners spread.
Here _Deborah_ her _Barak_ calls to War;
_Barak_, the Suns fam'd fellow-traveller,
Who wandring o're the Earths surrounded Frame,
Had travelled far as his great Mistress Fame.
Here _Barak_ did with _Deborah's_ vengeance fly,
And to that swift prodigious Victory,
So much by Humane Praises undefin'd,
That Fame wants Breath, and Wonder lags behind.
To Heav'ns high Arch her sounding Glories rung,
Whilst thus great _Deborah_ and _Barak_ sung.

_Hear, oh ye Princes, oh ye Kings give Ear,
And _Israels_ great Avengers honour hear.
When God of Hosts, thou _Israels_ Spear and Shield,
Wentst out of _Seir_, and marched'st from _Edoms_ field,
Earth trembled, the Heaven's drop'd, the Clouds all pour'd;
The Mountains melted from before the Lord;
Even thy own _Sinai_ melted into streams,
At _Israels_ dazling Gods refulgent Beams.
In _Shamgar_ and in _Jael's_ former days,
The wandring Traveller walked through by-ways.
They chose new Gods. No Spear nor Sword was found,
To have Idolatry depos'd, Truth Crown'd,
Till I alone, against _Jehovahs_ Foes;
I _Deborah_, I _Israels_ Mother rose.
Wake _Deborah_, wake, raise thy exalted Head;
Rise _Barak_, and Captivity Captive lead.
For to blest _Deborah_, belov'd of Heav'n,
Over the Mighty is Dominion given.
Great _Barak_ leads, and _Israels_ Courage warms;
_Ephraim_ and _Benjamin_ march down in Arms:
_Zebulon_ and _Nepthali_ my Thunder bore,
_Dan_ from her Ship, and _Asher_ on the Shore.
Behold _Megiddoes_ waves, and from afar,
See the fierce _Jabins_ threatning storm of War.
But Heav'n 'gainst _Sisera_ fought, and the kind Stars
Kindl'd their embattel'd Fires for _Deborah's_ Wars,
Shot down their Vengeance that miraculous day,
When _Kishons_ Torrants swept their Hosts away.
But curse ye _Meroz_, curse 'em from on high.
Did the denouncing voice of Angels cry;
Accurst be they that went not out t'oppose
The Mighty _Deborah's_, God's, and _Israel's_ Foes.
Victorious _Judah!_ Oh my Soul, th'hast trod,
Trod down their strengths. So fall the Foes of God.
But they who in his Sacred Laws delight,
Be as the Sun when he sets out in might._

Thus sung, they conquer'd _Deborah_; thus fell
Hers, and Heav'ns Foes. But no Defeat tames Hell.
By Conquest overthrown, but not dismay'd,
'Gainst _Israel_ still their private Engines play'd.
And their dire Machinations to fulfil,
Their stings torn out, they kept their poyson still.
And now too weak in open force to joyn,
In close Cabals they hatcht a damn'd Design,
To light that Mine as should the world amaze,
And set the ruin'd _Israel_ in a blaze.

  When _Judahs_ Monarch with his Princes round,
Amidst his glorious Sanedrim sate Crown'd,
Beneath his Throne a Cavern low, and dark
As their black Souls, for the great Work they mark.
In this lone Cell their Midnight-Hands bestow'd
A _Stygian_ Compound, a combustive load
Of Mixture wondrous, Execution dire,
Ready the Touch of their Infernal Fire.
Have you not seen in yon æthereal Road,
How at the Rage of th'angry driving God,
Beneath the pressure of his furious wheels
The Heav'ns all rattle, and the Globe all reels?
So does this Thunder's Ape its lightning play,
Keen as Heav'ns Fires, and scarce less swift than they.
A short-liv'd glaring Murderer it flies,                   }
In Times least pulse, a Moments wing'd surprize;           }
'Tis born, looks big, talks lowd, breaths death, and dies. }
This Mixture was th'Invention of a Priest;
The Sulphurous Ingredients all the best
Of Hells own growth: for to dire Compounds still
Hell finds the Minerals, and the Priest the Skill.

  From this curst Mine they had that blow decreed,
A Moments dismal blast, as should exceed
All the Storms, Battles, Murders, Massacres,
And all the strokes of Daggers, Swords, or Spears,
Since first _Cain's_ hand at _Abels_ Head was lift:
A Blow more swift than Pestilence, more swift
Than ever a destroying Angel rod,
To pour the Vial of an angry God.

  The Train was laid, the very Signal giv'n;
But here th'all-seeing, _Israels_ Guardian, Heav'n
Could hold no longer; and to stop their way,
With a kind Beam from th'Empyræan Day,
Disclos'd their hammering Thunder at the Forge;
And made their Cyclops Cave their Bolts disgorge.

  Discover'd thus, thus lost, betray'd, undone,
Yet still untir'd, the Restless Cause goes on;
And to retrieve a yet auspicious day,
A glowing spark even in their Ashes lay,
Which thus burst out in flames. In _Geshur_ Land,
The utmost Bound of _Israels_ Command,
Where _Judah's_ planted Faith but slowly grew,
A Brutal Race that _Israels_ God n'er knew:
A Nation by the Conquerors Mercy grac'd,
Their Gods preserv'd, and Temples undefac'd;
Yet not content with all the Sweets of Peace,
Free their Estates, and free their Consciences;
'Gainst _Israel_ those confederate Swords they drew,
Which with that vast Assassination flew
Two hundred thousand Butcher'd Victims shar'd
One common doom: No Sex nor Age was spar'd:
Not kneeling Beauties Tears, not Virgins Cries,
Nor Infants Smiles: No prey so small but dies.
Alas, the hard-mouth'd Blood-hound, Zeal, bites through;
Religion hunts, and hungry Jaws pursue.
To what strange Rage is Superstition driven,
That Man can outdo Hell to fight for Heav'n!
So Rebel _Geshur_ fought: so drown'd in gore,
Even Mother Earth blusht at the Sons she bore;
And still asham'd of her old staining Brand,
Her Head shrinks down and Quagmires half their Land.
Yet not this blow _Baals_ Empire could enlarge
For _Israel_ still was Heav'ns peculiar charge:
Unshaken still in all this Scene of Blood,
Truths Temple firm on Golden Columns stood.
Whilst _Sauls_ Revenging Arm proud _Geshur_ scourg'd,
From their rank soyl their _Hydra's_ poyson purg'd.

  Yet does not here their vanquish'd spleen give o're,
But as untir'd, and restless as before,
Still through whole waiting Ages they outdo
At once the Chimists pains and patience too.
Who though he sees his bursting Limbecks crack,
And at one blast, one fatal Minutes wrack,
The forward Hopes of sweating years expire;
With sad, yet painful hand new lights his Fire:
Pale, lean, and wan, does Health, Wealth, all consume;
Yet for the great Elixir still to come,
Toyls and hopes on. No less their Plottings cease;
So hope, so toyl, the foes of _Israels_ peace.

  When lo, a long expected day appears,
Sought for above a hundred rowling years;
A day i'th' register of Doom set down,
Presents 'em with an Heir of _Israels_ Crown.
Here their vast hopes of the rich _Israels_ spoils,
Requites the pains of their long Ages Toyls.
_Baals_ Banners now i'th' face of day shall march,
With Heav'ns bright Roof for his Triumphal Arch.
His lurking Missioners shall now no more
From Forreign Schools in borrow'd shapes come o're;
Convert by Moon-light, and their Mystick Rites
Preach to poor Female half-Soul'd Proselytes.
An all-commanding Dragon now shall soar,
Where the poor Serpents onely crawl'd before.
_Baals_ Restoration, that most blest Design, }
Now the great work of Majesty, shall shine,  }
Made by his consecrating hand Divine.        }
He shall new plant their Groves with each blest Tree,
A graft of an Imperial Nursery.
In the kind Air of this new _Eden_ blest,
Percht on each bough, and Palaces their nest;
No more by frighting Laws forc'd t'obscure flight,
And gloomy walks, like obscene Birds of Night;
Their warbling Notes like _Philomel_ shall sing,
And like the Bird of _Paradise_ their wing.
Thus _Israels_ Heir their ravisht Souls all fired;
For all things to their ardent hopes conspired.

  His very youth a Bigot Mother bred,
And tainted even the Milk on which he fed.
Him onely of her Sons design'd for _Baals_
Great Champion 'gainst _Jerusalems_ proud Walls;
Him dipt in _Stygian_ Lake, by timely craft,
Invulnerable made against Truths pointed shaft.
But to confirm his early poyson'd Faith,
'Twas in the cursed Forreign Tents of _Gath_,
'Twas there that he was lost. There _Absolon_
By _Davids_ fatal Banishment undone,
Saw their false Gods till in their Fires he burn'd,
Truths Manna, for _Egyptian_ Fleshpots, scorn'd.
Not _David_ so; for he Faiths Champion Lord,
Their Altars loath'd, and prophane Rites abhorr'd:
Whilst his firm Soul on wings of _Cherubs_ rod,
And tun'd his Lyre to nought but _Abrahams_ God.
Thus the gay _Israel_ her long Tears quite dry'd,
Her restor'd _David_ met in all her Pride,
Three Brothers saw by Miracle brought back,
Like _Noahs_ Sons sav'd from the worlds great wrack;
An unbelieving _Ham_ graced on each hand,
'Twixt God-like _Shem_, and pious _Japhet_ stand.

  'Tis true, when _David_, all his storms blown o're,
Wafted by Prodigies to _Jordans_ shore,
(So swift a Revolution, yet so calm)
Had cur'd an Ages wounds with one days Balm;
Here the returning _Absolon_ his vows
With _Israel_ joyns, and at their Altars bows.
Perhaps surpriz'd at such strange blessings showr'd,
Such wonders shewn both t'_Israels_ Faith, and Lord,
His Restoration-Miracle he thought
Could by no less than _Israels_ God be wrought.
Whilst the enlightened _Absolon_ thus kneels,
Thus dancing to the sound of _Aarons_ Bells,
What dazling Rays did _Israels_ Heir adorn,
So bright his Sun in his unclouded Morn!
'Twas then his leading hand in Battle drew
That Sword that _Davids_ fam'd ten thousand slew:
_Davids_ the Cause, but _Absolons_ the Arm.
Then he could win all Hearts, all Tongues could charm:
Whilst with his praise the ecchoing plains all rung,
A thousand Timbrels play'd, a thousand Virgins sung;
And in the zeal of every jocund Soul,
_Absolons_ Health with _Davids_ crown'd one Bowl.

  Had he fixt here, yes, Fate, had he fixt here,
To Man so Sacred, and to Heav'n so dear,
What could he want that Hands, Hearts, Lives could pay,
Or Tributary Worlds beneath his feet could lay?
What Knees, what Necks to mount him to his Throne;
What Gems, what Stars to sparkle in his Crown?
So pleas'd, so charm'd, had _Israels_ Genius smil'd;
But oh the Pow'rs, by treacherous snakes beguil'd,
Into a more than _Adams_ Curse he run,
Tasting that Fruit has _Israels_ World undone.
Nay, wretched even below his falling state,
Wants _Adams_ Eyes to see his _Adams_ Fate.
In vain was _Davids_ Harp and _Israels_ Quire;
For his Conversion all in vain conspire:
For though their influence a while retires,
His own false Planets were th'Ascendant Fires.
Heav'n had no lasting Miracle design'd;
It did a while his fatal Torrent bind.
As _Joshua's_ Wand did _Jordan's_ streams divide,
And rang'd the watry Mountains on each side.
But when the marching _Israel_ once got o're,    }
Down crack the Chrystal Walls the Billows pow'r, }
And in their old impetuous Channel roar.         }

  At this last stroke thus totally o'rethrown,
Apostasie now seal'd him all her own.
Here ope'd that gaping Breach, that fatal door,
Which now let in a thousand Ruines more.
All the bright Virtues, and each dazling Grace,
Which his rich Veins drew from a God-like Race;
The Mercy, and the Clemency Divine,
Those Sacred Beams which in mild _David_ shine;
Those Royal Sparks, his Native Seeds of Light,
Were all put out, and left a Starless Night.
A long farewel to all that's Great and Brave:
Not Cataracts more headstrong; as the Grave
Inexorable; Sullen and Untun'd
As Pride depos'd; scarce _Lucifer_ dethron'd
More Unforgiving; his enchanted Soul
Had drank so deep of the bewitching Bowl,
Till he whose hand, with _Judahs_ Standart, bore
Her Martial Thunder to the _Tyrian_ shore,
Arm'd in her Wars, and in her Laurels crown'd;
Now all forgotten at one stagg'ring wound,
Falling from _Israels_ Faith; from _Israels_ Cause,
Peace, Honour, Int'rest, all at once withdraws:
Nor is he deaf t'a Kingdoms Groans alone,
But could behold ev'n _Davids_ shaking Throne;
_David_, whose Bounty rais'd his glittering Pride,
The Basis of his Glories Pyramide.
But Duty, Gratitude, all ruin'd fall:
Zeal blazes, and Oblivion swallows all.
So _Sodom_ did both burnt and drown'd expire;
A poyson'd Lake succeeds a Pile of Fire.

  On this Foundation _Baals_ last Hope was built,
The sure Retreat for all their Sallying Guilt:
A Royal Harbour, where the rowling Pride
Of _Israels_ Foes might safe at Anchor ride;
Defie all Dangers, and even Tempests scorn,
Though _Judahs_ God should Thunder in the Storm.

  Here _Israels_ Laws, the dull Levitick Rolls,
At once a clog to Empire, and to Souls,
Are the first Martyrs to the Fire they doom,
To make great _Baals_ Triumphant Legends room.
But ere their hands this glorious work can Crown,
Their long-known Foe the Sanedrin must down;
Sanedrins the Free-born _Israels_ Sacred Right,
That God-like Ballance of Imperial Might;
Where Subjects are from Tyrant-Lords set free,
_From that wild Thing unbounded man would be_;
Where Pow'r and Clemency are poys'd so even,
A Constitution that resembles Heav'n.
So in th'united great THREE-ONE we find
A Saving with a Dooming Godhead joyn'd.
(But why, oh why! if such restraining pow'r
Can bind Omnipotence, should Kings wish more?)
A Constitution, so Divinely mixt,
Not Natures bounded Elements more fixt.
Thus Earths vast Frame with firm and solid ground, }
Stands in a foaming Ocean circled round;           }
Yet This not overflowing, That not drown'd.        }
But to rebuild their Altars, and enstal
Their Moulten Gods, the Sanedrin must fall;
That Constellation of the Jewish Pow'r,
All blotted from its Orb must shine no more;
Or stampt in _Pharoahs_ darling Mould, must quit
Their Native Beams, for a new-model'd Light;
Like _Egypts_ Sanedrins, their influence gone,
Flash but like empty Meteors round the Throne:
That that new Lord may _Judahs_ Scepter weild,
To whom th'old Brickill Taskmasters must yield;
Who, to erect new Temples for his Gods,
Shall th'enslav'd _Israel_ drive with Iron Rods;
If they want Bricks for his new Walls t'aspire,
To their sad cost, he'll find 'em Straw and Fire.

  All this t'effect, and their new Fabrick build,
Both close Cabals and Forreign Leagues are held:
To _Babylon_ and _Egypt_ they send o're,
And both their Conduct and their Gold implore.
By such Abettors the sly Game was plaid;
One of their Chiefs a Jewish Renegade,
High-born in _Israel_, one _Michals_ Priest,
But now in _Babylons_ proud Scarlet drest.
'Tis to his Hands the Plotting Mandats come
Subscrib'd by the Apostate _Absolom_.
Nay, and to keep themselves all danger-proof,
That none might track the _Belial_ by his Hoof,
Their Correspondence veil'd from prying Eyes,
In Hieroglyphick Figures they disguise.
Husht as the Night, in which their Plots combin'd,
And silent as the Graves they had design'd,
Their Ripening Mischiefs to perfection sprung.
But oh! the much-loath'd _David_ lives too long.
Their Vultures cannot mount but from his Tomb;
And with too hungry ravenous Gorges come,
To be by airy Expectation fed.
No Prey, no Spoil, before they see Him Dead.
Yes, Dead; the Royal Sands too slowly pass,
And therefore they're resolved to break the Glass:
And to ensure Times tardy dubious Call,
Decree their Daggers should his Sythe forestall.
For th'execrable Deed a Hireling Crew
Their Hell and They pick out; whom to make true,
An Oath of Force so exquisite they frame,
Sworn in the Blood of _Israels_ Paschal Lamb.
If false, the Vengeance of that Sword that slew
_Egypts_ First-born, their perjur'd Heads pursue.
Strong was the Oath, the Imprecation dire;
And for a Viand, lest their Guilt should tire,
With promis'd Paradice they cheer their way;
And bold's the Souldier who has Heav'n his pay.

  But the ne'r-sleeping Providence that stands
With jealous Eyes o're Truths up-lifted Hands;
That still in its Lord _Israel_ takes delight,
Their Cloud by Day, and Guardian Fire by Night;
A Ray from out its Fiery Pillar cast,
That overlook'd their driving _Jehu_'s hast.
All's ruin'd and betray'd: their own false Slaves            }
Detect the Plot, and dig their Masters Graves:               }
Not Oaths nor Bribes shall bind, when great _Jehovah_ saves. }
The frighted _Israelites_ take the Alarm,
Resolve the Traitors Sorceries t'uncharm:
Till cursing, raving, mad, and drunk with Rage,
In _Amnons_ Blood their frantick Hands engage.

  Here let the Ghost of strangl'd _Amnon_ come,
A Specter that will strike Amazement dumb;
_Amnon_ the Proto-Martyr of the Plot,
The Murder'd _Amnon_, their Eternal Blot;
Whose too bold zeal stood like a _Pharos_ Light,
_Israel_ to warn, and track their Deeds of Night.
Till the sly Foe his unseen Game to play,
Put out the Beacon to secure his way.
_Baals_ Cabinet-Intrigues he open spread,
The Ravisht _Tamar_ for whose sake he bled.
T'unveil their Temple and expose their Gods,
Deserv'd their vengeances severest Rods:
Wrath he deserv'd, and had the Vial full,
To lay those Devils had possest his Soul.
His silenc'd Fiends from his wrung Neck they twist;
Whilst his kind Murd'rer's but his Exorcist.
Here draw, bold Painter, (if thy Pencil dare
Unshaking write, what _Israel_ quak'd to hear,)
A Royal Altar pregnant with a Load
Of Humane Bones beneath a Breaden God.
Altars so rich not _Molocks_ Temples show;
'Twas Heaven above, and _Golgotha_ below.
Yet are not all the Mystick Rites yet done:
Their pious Fury does not stop so soon.
But to pursue the loud-tongu'd Wounds they gave,
Resolves to stab his Fame beyond the Grave,
And in Eternal Infamy to brand
With _Amnons_ Murder, _Amnons_ righteous Hand.
Here with a Bloodless wound, by Hellish Art,
With his own Sword they goar his Lifeless Heart.
Thus in a Ditch the butcher'd _Amnon_ lay,
A Deed of Night enough to have kept back the Day.
Had not the Sun in Sacred vengeance rose,
Asham'd to see, but prouder to disclose,
Warm'd with new Fires, with all his posting speed,
Brought Heav'ns bright Lamp to shew th'Infernal Deed.

  What art thou, Church! when Faith to propagate,
And crush all Bars that stop thy growing state,
Thou break'st through Natures, Gods, and Humane Laws,
Whilst Murder's Merit in a Churches Cause.
How much thy Ladder _Jacobs_ does excel:
Whose Top's in Heaven like His, but Foot in Hell;
Thy Causes bloody Champions to befriend,
For Fiends to Mount, as Angels to Descend.

  This was the stroke did th'alarm'd World surprize,
And even to infidelity lent Eyes:
Whilst sweating _Absolon_ in _Israel_ pent,
For fresher Air was to bleak _Hebron_ sent.
Cold _Hebron_ warm'd by his approaching sight,
Flusht with his Gold, and glow'd with new delight.
Till Sacred all-converting Interest
To Loyalty, their almost unknown Guest,
Oped a broad Gate, from whence forth-issuing come,
Decrees, Tests, Oaths, for well-sooth'd _Absolom_.
Spight of that Guilt that made even Angels fall,
An unbarr'd Heir shall Reign: In spight of all
Apostacy from Heav'n, or Natures tyes,
Though for his Throne a _Cain_-built Palace rise.
No wonder _Hebron_ such Devotion bears
T'Imperial Dignity, and Royal Heirs;
For they, whom Chronicle so high renowns
For selling Kings, should know the price of Crowns.

  Here, Glorious _Hushai_, let me mourn thy Fate,
Thou once great Pillar of the _Hebron_ State:
Yet now to Dungeons sent, and doom'd t'a Grave.
But Chains are no new Sufferings to the Brave.
Witness thy pains in six years Bonds endur'd,
For _Israels_ Faith, and _Davids_ Cause immur'd.
Death too thou oft for _Judahs_ Crown hast stood,
So bravely fac'd in several Fields of Blood.
But from Fames Pinnacle now headlong cast,
Life, Honour, all are ruin'd at a Blast.
For _Absolons_ great LAW thou durst explain;
Where but to pry, bold Lord, was to prophane:
A Law that did his Mystick God-head couch,
Like th'Ark of God, and no less Death to touch.
Forgot are now thy Honourable Scars,
Thy Loyal Toyls, and Wounds in _Judahs_ Wars.
Had thy pil'd Trophies _Babel_-high, reacht Heav'n,
Yet by one stroke from _Absolons_ Thunder given,
Thy towring Glorie's levell'd to the ground;    }
A stroke does all thy Tongues of Fame confound, }
And, Traitor, now is all the Voice they sound.  }
True, thou hadst Law; that even thy Foes allow;
But to thy Advocates, as damn'd as Thou,
'Twas Death to plead it. Artless _Absolon_
The Bloody Banner to display so soon:
Such killing Beams from thy young Day-break shot;
What will the Noon be, if the Morn's so hot?
Yes, dreadful Heir, the Coward _Hebron_ awe.
So the young Lion tries his tender Paw.
At a poor Herd of feeble Heifers flies,
Ere the rough Bear, tusk'd Boar, or spotted Leopard dies.
Thus flusht, great Sir, thy strength in _Israel_ try:
When their Cow'd Sanedrims shall prostrate lye,
And to thy feet their slavish Necks shall yield;
Then raign the Princely Savage of the Field.

  Yes, _Israels_ Sanedrin, 'twas they alone
That set too high a Value on a Throne;
Thought they had a God was Worthy to be serv'd;
A Faith maintain'd, and Liberty preserv'd.
And therefore judg'd, for Safety and Renown
Of _Israels_ People, Altars, Laws and Crown,
Th'Anointing Drops on Royal Temples shed
Too precious Showrs for an Apostates Head.
Then was that great Deliberate Councel giv'n,
An Act of Justice both to Man and Heav'n,
_Israels_ conspiring Foes to overthrow,
That _Absolon_ should th'Hopes of Crowns forego.
Debarr'd Succession! oh that dismal sound!
A sound, at which _Baal_ stagger'd, and Hell groan'd;
A sound that with such dreadful Thunder falls,
'Twas heard even to _Semiramis_ trembling Walls.

  But hold! is this the Plots last Murd'ring Blow,
The dire divorce of Soul and Body? No.
The mangled Snake, yet warm, to Life they'll bring,
And each disjoynted Limb together cling.
Then thus _Baals_ wise consulting Prophets cheer'd
Their pensive Sons, and call'd the scatter'd Herd.

  Are we quite ruin'd! No, mistaken Doom,
Still the great Day, yes that great Day shall come,
(Oh, rouse our fainting Sons, and droop no more.)
A Day, whose Luster, our long Clouds blown o're,
Not all the Rage of _Israel_ shall annoy,
No, nor denouncing Sanedrims destroy.
See yon North-Pole, and mark _Boötes Carr_:
Oh! we have those Influencing Aspects there,
Those Friendly pow'rs that drive in that bright _Wain_,
Shall redeem All, and our lost Ground regain.
Whilst to our Glory their kind Aid stands fast,
But one Plot more, our Greatest and our Last.

  Now for a Product of that subtle kind,
As far above their former Births refin'd,
As Firmamental Fires t'a Tapers ray,
Or Prodigies to Natures common Clay.
Empires in Blood, or Cities in a Flame,
Are work for vulgar Hands, scarce worth a Name.
A Cake of _Shew-bread_ from an Altar ta'ne,
Mixt but with some Levitical King-bane,
Has sent a Martyr'd Monarch to his Grave.
Nay, a poor Mendicant Church-Rake-hell slave
Has stab'd Crown'd Heads; slight Work to hands well-skill'd,
Slight as the Pebble that _Goliah_ kill'd.
But to make Plots no Plots, to clear all Taints,
Traitors transform to Innocents, Fiends to Saints,
Reason to Nonsence, Truth to Perjury;
Nay, make their own attesting Records lye,
And even the gaping Wounds of Murder whole:
If this last Masterpiece requires a Soul.
Guilt to unmake, and Plots annihilate,
Is much a greater work than to create.
Nay both at once to be, and not to be,
Is such a Task would pose a Deity.
Let _Baal_ do this, and be a God indeed:
Yes, this Immortal Honour 'tis decreed,
His Sanguine Robe though dipt in reeking Gore,
With purity and Innocence all o're,
Shall dry, and spotless from the purple hue,
The Miracle of _Gideons_ Fleece outdo.
Yes, they're resolv'd, in all their foes despight,
To wash their more than _Ethiop_ Treason White.

  But now for Heads to manage the Design,
Fit Engineers to labour in this Mine.
For their own hands 'twere fatal to employ:
Should _Baal_ appear, it would _Baals_ Cause destroy.
Alas, should onely their own Trumpets sound
Their Innocence, the jealous Ears around
All Infidels would the loath'd Charmer fly,
And through the Angels voice the Fiend descry.
No, this last game wants a new plotting Set,
And _Israel_ only now can _Israel_ cheat.
In this Machine their profest Foes must move,
Whilst _Baal_ absconding sits in Clouds above,
From whence unseen he guides their bidden way:
For he may prompt, although he must not play.
This to effect a sort of Tools they find,
Devotion-Rovers, an Amphibious Kind,
Of no Religion, yet like Walls of Steel
Strong for the Altars where their Princes kneel.
Imperial not Celestial is their Test,
The Uppermost, indisputably Best.
They always in the golden Chariot rod,
Honour their Heav'n, and Interest their God.

  Of these then subtil _Caleb_ none more Great,
_Caleb_ who shines where his lost Father set;
Got by that sire, who not content alone,    }
To shade the brightest Jewel in a Crown,    }
Preaching Ingratitude t'a Court and Throne; }
But made his Politicks the baneful Root
From whence the springing Woes of _Israel_ shoot,
When his Great Masters fatal _Gordian_ tyed,
He lai'd the barren _Michal_ by his side;
That the ador'd _Absolons_ immortal Line
Might on _Judeas_ Throne for ever shine.
_Caleb_, who does that hardy Pilot make,  }
Steering in that Hereditary Track,        }
Blind to the Sea-Mark of a Fathers Wrack. }

  Next _Jonas_ stands bull-fac'd, but chicken-soul'd,
Who once the silver Sanedrin Controul'd,
Their Gold-tip'd Tongue; Gold his great Councels Bawd:
Till by succeeding Sanedrins outlaw'd,
He was prefer'd to guard the sacred Store:
There Lordly rowling in whole Mines of Oar;
To Diceing Lords, a Cully-Favourite,
He prostitutes whole _Cargoes_ in a Night.
Here to the Top of his Ambition come,
Fills all his Sayls for hopeful _Absolom._
For his Religion's as the Season calls,
Gods in Possession, in Reversion _Baals._
He bears himself a Dove to Mortal Race,
And though not Man, he can look Heav'n i'th' Face.
Never was Compound of more different Stuff,
A Heart in Lambskin, and a Conscience Buff.

  Let not that Hideous Bulk of Honour scape,
_Nadab_ that sets the gazing Crowd agape:
That old Kirk-founder, whose course Croak could sing
The Saints, the Cause, no Bishop, and no King:
When Greatness clear'd his Throat, and scowr'd his Maw,
Roard out Succession, and the Penal Law.
Not so of old: another sound went forth,
When in the Region from _Judea_ North,
By the Triumphant _Saul_ he was employ'd,
A huge fang Tusk to goar poor _Davids_ side.
Like a Proboscis in the Tyrants Jaw,
To rend and root through Government and Law.
His hand that Hell-penn'd League of _Belial_ drew, }
That Swore down Kings, Religion overthrew,         }
Great _David_ banisht, and Gods Prophets slew.     }
Nor does the Courts long Sun so powerful shine,
T'exhale his Vapours, or his Dross refine;
Nor is the Metal mended by the stamp.
With his rank oyl he feeds the Royal Lamp.
To Sanedrins an everlasting Foe,
Resolv'd his Mighty Hunters overthrow.
And true to Tyranny, as th'only Jem,
That truly sparkles in a Diadem;
To _Absalons_ side does his old _Covenant_ bring,
With _State_ raz'd out, and interlin'd with KING.
But _Nadabs_ Zeal has too severe a Doom;
Whilst serving an ungrateful _Absalom_,
His strength all spent his Greatness to create,
He's now laid by a cast-out Drone of State.
He rowz'd that Game by which he is undone,
By fleeter Coursers now so far outrun,
That fiercer Mightier _Nimrod_ in the Chace,
Till quite thrown out, and lost he quits the Race.

  Of Low-born Tools we bawling _Shimei_ saw,
_Jerusalems_ late loud-tongu'd MOUTH of Law.
By Blessings from Almighty Bounty given,
_Shimei_ no common Favorite of Heaven.
Whom, lest Posterity should loose the Breed,
In five short Moons indulgent Heav'n rais'd Seed;
Made happy in an Early teeming Bride,
And laid a lovely Heiress by her side.
Whilst the glad Father's so divinely blest,    }
That like the Stag proud of his Brow so drest, }
He brandishes his lofty City-Crest.            }
'Twas in _Jerusalem_ was _Shimei_ nurst,
_Jerusalem_ by _Baals_ Prophets ever curst,
The greatest Block that stops 'em in their way,
For which she once in Dust and Ashes lay.
Here to the Bar this whiffling Lurcher came,
And barkt to rowze the nobler Hunters Game.
But _Shimei's_ Lungs might well be stretcht so far;
For steering by a Court-Ascendant Star,
For daily Oracles he does address,
To the _Egyptian_ Beauteous Sorceress.
For _Pharoah_ when he wisely did essay
To bear the long-sought Golden Prize away,
That fair Enchantress sent, whose Magick Skill
Should keep great _Israels_ sleeping Dragon still.
Thus by her powerful inspirations fed,            }
To bite their Heels this City-Snake was bred,     }
Till _Absalon_ got strength to bruise their Head. }
Of all the Heroes since the world began,
To _Shimei Joshuah_ was the bravest Man.
To Him his Tutelar Saint he prays, and oh,
That great _Jerusalem_ were like _Jericoh_!
Then bellowing lowd for _Joshuahs_ Spirit calls,
Because his Rams-horn blew down City-Walls.

  In the same Roll have we grave _Corah_ seen,
_Corah_, the late chief Scarlet _Abbethdin_.
_Corah_, who luckily i'th' Bench was got,
To loo the Bloodhounds off to save the Plot.
_Corah_, who once against _Baals_ Impious Cause,
Stood strong for _Israels_ Faith and _Davids_ Laws.
He poys'd his Scales, and shook his ponderous Sword,
Lowd as his Fathers _Basan_-Bulls he roar'd;
Till by a Dose of Forreign _Ophir_ drencht,
The Feavour of his Burning Zeal was Quencht.
_Ophir_, that rescu'd the Court-Drugsters Fate,
Sent in the Nick to gild his Pills of State.
Whilst the kind Skill of our Law-Emperick,
Sublim'd his Mercury to save his Neck.
In Law, they say, he had but a slender Mite,
And Sense he had less: for as Historians write,
The _Arabian_ Legate laid a Snare so gay,
As Spirited his little Wits away.
Of the Records of Law he fancied none
Like the Commandment Tables graved in Stone.
And wish'd the _Talmude_ such, that Soveraign sway
When once displeased might th'angry _Moses_ play.
Onely his Law was Brittle i'th' wrong place:
For had our _Corah_ been in _Moses_ Case,
The Fury of his Zeal had been employ'd
To build that Calf which th'others Rage destroy'd.
Thus _Corah, Baals_ true Fayry Changeling made,
He Bleated onely as the _Pharisees_ pray'd,
All to advance that future Tyrant pow'r,
Should Widows Houses gorge, and Orphans Tears devour.

  Nor are these all their Instruments; to prop
Their Mighty Cause, and _Israels_ Murmurs stop;
They find a sort of Academick Tools;
Who by the Politick Doctrine of their Schools,
Betwixt Reward, Pride, Avarice, Hope and Fear,
Prizing their Heav'n too cheap, the World too dear,
Stand bold and strong for _Absolons_ Defence:
Interest the Thing, but Conscience the Pretence.
These to ensure him for their _Sions_ King,
A Right Divine quite down from _Adam_ bring,
That old Levitick Engine of Renown,
That makes no Taint of Souls a bar t'a Crown.
'Tis true, Religions constant Champion vow'd,
Each open-mouth'd, with Pulpit-Thunder lowd,
Against false Gods, and Idol Temples bawls;
Yet lays the very Stones that raise their Walls.
They preach up Hell to those that _Baal_ adore,
Yet make't Damnation to oppose his pow'r.
So far this Paradox of Conscience run,
Till _Israels_ Faith pulls _Israels_ Altars down.
Grant Heav'n they don't to _Baal_ so far make way,
Those fatal _Wands_ before their Sheepfolds lay.
Such Motley Principles amongst them thrown,
Shall nurse that Py-ball'd Flock that's half his own.
Nor may they say, when _Molocks_ Hands draw nigher,
We built the Pile, whilst _Baal_ but gives it fire.

  If Monarchy in _Adam_ first begun,
When the Worlds Monarch dug, and his Queen spun,
His Fig-leaves his first Coronation-Robe,
His Spade his Scepter, and her Wheel his Globe;
And Royal Birthright, as their Schools assert,
Not Kings themselves with Conscience can divert;
How came the World possest by _Adams_ Sons,
Such various Principalities, Powres, Thrones?
When each went out and chose what Lands he pleas'd,
Whilst a new Family new Kingdoms rais'd?
His Sons assuming what he could not give,          }
Their Soveraign Sires right Heir they did deprive; }
And from Rebellion all their pow'r derive:         }
For were there an original Majesty          }
Upheld by Right Divine, the World should be }
Onely one Universal Monarchy.               }
O cruel Right Divine, more full of Fate,
Then th' Angels flaming Sword at _Edens_ Gate,
Such early Treason through Mankind convey'd,
And at the door of Infant-Nature layd.
For Right Divine in _Esau's_ just defence,
Why don't they quarrel with Omnipotence,
The first-born _Esau's_ Right to _Jacob_ giv'n,
And Gods gift too, Injustice charge on Heav'n.
Nay, let Heav'n answer this one Fact alone,
Mounting a Bastard _Jephtha_ on a Throne.
If Kings and Sanedrims those Laws could make,
Which from offending Heirs their Heads can take;
And a First-born can forfeit Life and Throne,
And all by Law: why not a Crown alone?
Strange-bounded Law-makers! whose pow'r can throw
The deadlier Bolt, can't give the weaker Blow.
A Treasonous Act; nay, but a Treasonous Breath
Against offended Majesty is Death.
But, oh! the wondrous Church-distinction given
Between the Majesty of Kings and Heav'n!
The venial sinner here, he that intreagues
With _Egypt, Babylon_; Cabals, Plots, Leagues
With _Israels_ Foes her Altars to destroy,
A Hair untouch'd, shall Health, Peace, Crowns enjoy.

  Truths Temple thus the Exhalations bred
From her own Bowels, to obscure her Head.
And _Absolom_ already had subdu'd
Whole Crowds of the unthinking Multitude.
But through these Wiles too weak to catch the Wise,
Thin as their Ephod-Lawn, a Cobweb Net for Flyes,
The searching Sanedrim saw; and to dispel
Th'ingendring Mists that threatned _Israel_,
They still resolv'd their Plotting Foes defeat,
By barring _Absolon_ th'Imperial Seat.

  But here's his greatest Tug; could he but make
Th'encluding Sanedrims Resolves once shake;
Nay, make the smallest Breach, or clashing Jar,
In their great Councel, push but home so far,
And the great Point's secur'd.----And, lo! among
The Princely Heads of that Illustrious Throng,
He saw rich Veins with Noble Blood new fill'd;
Others who Honour from Dependance held.
Some with exhausted Fortunes, to support
Their Greatness, propt with Crutches from a Court.
These for their Countries Right their Votes still pass,
Mov'd like the Water in a Weather-glass,
Higher or lower, as the powerful Charm
O'th' Soveraign Hand is either cool or warm.
Here must th'Attacque be made: for well we know,
Reason and Titles from one Fountain flow:
Whilst Favour Men no less than Fortunes builds,
And Honour ever Moulds as well as Guilds.
Honour that still does even new Souls inspire;
Honour more powerful than the Heav'n-stoln Fire.
These must be wrought to _Absolons_ Defence.
For though to baffle the whole Sanedrims Sence,
T'attempt Impossibles would be in vain,
Yet 'tis enough but to _Divide_ and _Raign_.

  Here though small Force such easie Converts draws,
Yet 'tis thought fit in glory to their Cause,
Some learned Champion of prodigious Sense,
With Mighty and long studyed Eloquence,
Should with a kind of Inspiration rise,
And the unguarded Sanedrim surprize,
And such resistless conquering Reasons press,         }
To charm their vanquisht Souls, that the Success      }
Might look like Conscience, though 'tis nothing less. }

  For this Design no Head nor Tongue so well,
As that of the profound _Achitophel_.
How, great _Achitophel_! his Hand, his Tongue!
_Babylons_ Mortal Foe; he who so long
With haughty Sullenness, and scornful Lowr,
Had loath'd false Gods, and Arbitrary pow'r.
'Gainst _Baal_ no Combatant more fierce than he;
For _Israels_ asserted Liberty,
No Man more bold; with generous Rage enflam'd,
Against the old ensnaring Test declaim'd.
Beside, he bore a most peculiar Hate
To sleeping Pilots, all Earth-clods of State.
None more abhorr'd the Sycophant Buffoon,
And Parasite, th'excrescence of a Throne;
Creatures who their creating Sun disgrace,
A Brood more abject than _Niles_ Slime-born Race.
Such was the Brave _Achitophel_; a Mind,
(If but the Heart and Face were of a kind)
So far from being by one base Thought deprav'd,
That sure half ten such Souls had _Sodom_ sav'd.
Here _Baals_ Cabal _Achitophel_ survey'd,
And dasht with wonder, half despairing said,
Is this the Hand that _Absolon_ must Crown,
The Founder of his Temples, Palace, Throne?
This, This the mighty Convert we must make?
Gods, h'has a Soul not all our Arts can shake.

  At this a nicer graver Head stept out,
And with this Language chid their groundless Doubt:
For shame, no more; what is't that frights you thus?
Is it his Hatred of our God, and us,
Makes him so formidable in your Eye?
Or is't his Wit, Sense, Honour, Bravery?
Give him a thousand Virtues more, and plant
Them round him like a Wall of Adamant,
Strong as the Gates of Heaven; we'll reach his Heart:
Cheer, cheer, my Friends, I've found one Mortal part.
For he has _Pride_, a vast insatiate _Pride_,
Kind Stark, he's vulnerable on that side.
Pride that made Angels fall, and pride that hurl'd
Entayl'd Destruction through a ruin'd World.
_Adam_ from Pride to Disobedience ran:
To be like Gods, made a lost wretched Man.
There, there, my Sons, let our pour'd strength all fly:
For some bold Tempter now to rap him high,
From Pinnacles to Mountain Top, and show
The gaudy Glories of the World below.

  At which the Consult came to this Design,
To work him by a kind of Touch Divine.
To raise some holy Spright to do the Feat.
Nothing like Dreams and Visions to the Great.
Did not a little Witch of _Endor_ bring
A Visionary Seer t'a cheated King?
And shall their greater Magick want Success,
Their more Illustrious Sorceries do less!

  This final Resolution made, at last
Some Mystick words, and invocations past,
They call'd the Spirit of a late Court-Scribe;
Once a true Servant of the Plotting Tribe:
When both with Forreign and Domestick Cost,
He plaid the feasted Sanedrims kind Host.
H'had scribbled much, and like a Patriot bold,
Bid high for _Israels_ Peace with _Egypts_ Gold.
But since a Martyr. (Why! as Writers think,
His Masters Hand had over-gall'd his Ink.)
And by protesting _Absoloms_ wise care,
Popt into Brimstone ere he was aware.
Him from the Grave they rais'd, in ample kind,
His sever'd Head to his seer Quarters joyn'd;
Then cas'd his Chin in a false Beard so well,
As made him pass for Father _Samuel_.
Him thus equipt in a Religious Cloak,
They thus his new-made Reverence bespoke.

  Go, awful Spright, hast to _Achitophel_,
Rouze his great Soul, use every Art, Charm, Spell:
For _Absolom_ thy utmost Rhetorick try,
Preach him Succession, roar'd Succession cry,
Succession drest in all her glorious pride,
Succession Worshipt, Sainted, Deify'd.
Conjure him by Divine and Humane Pow'rs,
Convince, Convert, Confound, make him but ours,
That _Absolon_ may mount on _Judahs_ Throne,
Whilst all the World before us is our own.

  The forward Spright but few Instructions lackt,
Strait by the Moons pale light away he packt,
And in a trice, his Curtains open'd wide,
He sate him by _Achitophels_ Bed-side.
And in this style his artful Accents ran.

  Hear _Israels_ Hope, thou more than happy Man,
Beloved on high, witness this Honour done
By Father _Samuel_, and believe me, Son,
'Tis by no common Mandate of a God,
A Soul beatifyed, the blest Abode
Thus low deserting, quits Immortal Thrones,
And from his Grave resumes his sleeping Bones.
But Heavn's the Guide, and wondrous is the way,
Divine the Embassie: hear, and obey.
How long, _Achitophel_, and how profound
A Mist of Hell has thy lost Reason drown'd?
Can the Apostacy from _Israels_ Faith,
In _Israels_ Heir, deserve a murmuring Breath?
Or to preserve Religion, Liberty,
Peace, Nations, Souls, is that a Cause so high,
As the Right Heir from Empire to debar?
Forbid it Heav'n, and guard him every Star.
Alas, what if an Heir of Royal Race,
Gods Glory and his Temples will deface,
And make a prey of your Estates, Lives, Laws;
Nay, give your Sons to _Molocks_ burning paws;
Shall you exclude him? hold that Impious Hand.
As _Abraham_ gave his Son at Gods Command,
Think still he does by _Divine Right_ succeed:
God bids Him Reign, and you should bid Them Bleed.
'Tis true, as Heav'ns Elected Flock, you may
For his Conversion, and your Safety _pray_
But Pray'rs are all. To Disinherit him,
The very Thought, nay, Word it self's a Crime.
For that's the MEANS of Safety: but forbear,
For Means are Impious in the Sons of Pray'r.
To Miracles alone your Safety owe;
And _Abrahams_ Angel wait to stop the Blow.
Yes, what if his polluted Throne be strowd
With Sacriledge, Idolatry, and Blood;
And 'tis you mount him there; you're innocent still:
For he's a King, and Kings can do no ill.
Oh Royal Birthright, 'tis a Sacred Name:
Rowze then _Achitophel_, rowze up for shame:
Let not this Lethargy thy Soul benum;
But wake, and save the Godlike _Absolom_.
And to reward thee for a Deed so great
Glut thy Desires, thy full-crown'd wishes meet,
Be with accumulated Honours blest,
And grasp a STAR t'adorn thy shining Crest.

  _Achitophel_ before his Eyes could ope,
Dreamt of an Ephod, Mitre, and a Cope.
Those visionary Robes t'his Eyes appear'd:
For Priestly all was the great Sense he heard.
But Priest or Prophet, Right Divine, or all
Together; 'twas not at their feebler call,
'Twas at the _Star_ he wak'd; the _Star_ but nam'd,
Flasht in his Eyes, and his rowz'd Soul enflam'd.
A _Star_, whose Influence had more powerful Light,
Then that Miraculous Wanderer of the Night,
Decreed to guide the Eastern Sages way:
Their's to adore a God, his to betray.

  Here the new Convert more than half inspir'd,
Strait to his Closet and his Books retir'd.
There for all needful Arts in this extreme,
For knotty Sophistry t'a limber Theme,
Long brooding ere the Mass to Shape was brought,
And after many a tugging heaving Thought,
Together a well-orderd Speech he draws,
With ponderous Sounds for his much-labour'd Cause.
Then the astonisht Sanedrim he storm'd,
And with such doughty strength the Tug perform'd:
Fate did the Work with so much Conquest bless,
Wondrous the Champion, Glorious the Success.
So powerful Eloquence, so strong was Wit;
And with such Force the easie Wind-falls hit.

  But the entirest Hearts his Cause could steal,
Were the Levitick Chiefs of _Israel_.
None with more Rage the Impious Thought run down
Of barring _Absolon_, Pow'r, Wishes, Crown.
With so much vehemence, such fiery Zeal!
Oh, poor unhappy Church of _Israel!_
Thou feelst the Fate of the Arch-angels Wars,
The Dragons Tayl sweeps down thy Falling Stars.
Nay, the black Vote 'gainst _Absolon_ appear'd
So monstrous, that they damn'd it ere 'twas heard.
For Prelates ne'r in Sanedrims debate,
They argue in the Church, but not i'th' State;
And when their Thoughts aslant towards Heav'n they turn,
They weigh each Grain of Incense that they burn,
But t'Heavens Vice-gerents, Soul, Sense, Reason, all,
Or right or wrong, like Hecatombs must fall.
And when State-business calls their Thoughts below,
Then like their own Church-Organ-Pipes they go.
Not _Davids_ Lyre could more his Touch obey:
For as their Princes breathe and strike, they play.
'Gainst Royal Will they never can dispute, }
But by a strange _Tarantula_ strook mute,  }
Dance to no other Tune but _Absolute_.     }
All Acts of Supreme Power they still admire:
'Tis Sacred, though to set the World on Fire,
Though Church-Infallibility they explode,
As making Humane knowledge equal God;
Infallible in a new name goes down,
Not in the Mitre lodged, but in the Crown.
'Tis true, blest _Deborahs_ Laws they could forget:
(But want of Memory commends their Wit.)
Where 'twas enacted Treason, not to own
Hers and her Sanedrins right to place the Crown.
But her weak Heads oth' Church, mistaken fools,
Wanted the Light of their sublimer Schools:
For Divine Right could no such Forces bring. }
But Wisdom now expands her wider Wing,       }
And Streams are ever deeper than the Spring. }
Besides, they've sense of Honour; and who knows
How far the Gratitude of Priest-craft goes?
And what if now like old _Elisha_ fed,
To praise the Sooty Bird that brought 'em Bread,
In pure acknowledgment, though in despight
Of their own sense, they paint the Raven White.

  _Achitophel_ charm'd with kind Fortunes Smiles,
Flusht with Success, now glows for bolder Toyls.
Great Wits perverted greatest Mischiefs hold,
As poysonous Vapors spring from Mines of Gold.
And proud to see himself with Triumph blest,
Thus to great _Absolom_ himself addrest.

  Illustrious Terrour of the World, all hayle:
For ever like your Conquering Self prevaile.
In spight of Malice in full Luster shine;
Be your each Action, Word, and Look Divine,
Nay, though our Altars you've so long forborne;
To your derided Foes Defeat, and Scorne,
For your Renown we have those Trumpets found,
Shall ev'n this Deed your highest Glory sound.
That spight of the ill-judging Worlds mistake,
Your Soul still owns those Temples you forsake:
Onely by all-commanding Honour driven,
This self-denial you have made with Heav'n:
Quitting our Altars, cause the Insolence
Of prophane Sanedrims has driven you thence.
A Prince his Faith to such low Slaves reveal!
'Twas Treason though to God to bid You kneel.
And what though senseless barking Murmurers scold, }
And with a Rage too blasphemously bold,            }
Say _Israels_ Crown's for _Esau_'s Pottage sold.   }
Let 'em rayl on; and to strike Envy dumb;
May the Slaves live till that great Day shall come,
When their husht Rage shall your keen Vengeance fly,
And silenc'd with your Royal Thunder dye.
Nay, to outsoar your weak Fore-fathers Wings,
And to be all that Nature first meant Kings;
Damn'd be the Law that Majesty confines,
But doubly damn'd accursed Sanedrins,
Invented onely to eclipse a Crown.
Oh throw that dull Mosaick Land-mark down.
The making Sanedrims a part of Pow'r,
Nurst but those Vipers which its Sire devour.
Lodg'd in the Pallace tow'rds the Throne they press,
For Pow'rs Enjoyment does its Lust increase.
Allegiance onely is in Chains held fast;
Make Men ne're thirst, is ne're to let 'em tast.
Then, Royal Sir, be Sanedrims no more,
Lop off that rank Luxurious Branch of pow'r:
Those hungry _Scions_ from the _Cedar_ root,
That its Imperial Head towards Heav'n may shoot.
When Lordly Sanedrims with Kings give Law,
And thus in yokes like Mules together draw;
From _Judahs_ Arms the Royal Lyon raze,
And _Issachars_ dull Ass supply the place.
If Kings o're common Mankind have this odds,
Are Gods Vicegerents; let 'em act like Gods.
As Man is Heav'ns own clay, which it may mould
For Honour or Dishonour, uncontrould,
And Monarchy is mov'd by Heav'nly Springs;
Why is not Humane Fate i'th' Breath of Kings?
Then, Sir, from Heav'n your great Example take,
And be th'unbounded Lord a King should make:
Resume what bold Invading Slaves engrost,
And onely Pow'rs Effeminacy lost.

  To this kind _Absolom_ but little spoke;
Onely return'd a Nod, and gracious Look.
For though recorded Fame with pride has told,
Of his great Actings, Wonders manifold;
And his great Thinkings most Diviners guess;
Yet his great Speakings no Records express.

  All things thus safe; and now for one last blow,
To give his Foes a total Overthrow;
A Blow not in Hells Legends match'd before,
The remov'd Plot's laid at the Enemies door.
The old Plot forg'd against the Saints of _Baal_,
Cheat, Perjury, and Subornation all,
Whilst with a more damn'd Treason of their own,
Like working Moles they're digging round the Throne;
_Baal_, _Baal_, the cry, and _Absolom_ the Name,
But _Davids_ glory, Life and Crown the Aim.
Nay, if but a Petition peep abroad,
Though for the Glory both of Church and God,
And to preserve even their yet unborn Heirs;
There's Blood and Treason in their very Prayers.
This unexampled Impudence upheld;
The Governments best Friends, the Crowns best Sheild,
The Great and Brave with equal Treason brands.
Faith, Honour, and Allegiance strongest Bands
All broken like the Cords of _Sampson_ fall,
Whilst th'universal Leprosie taints all.
These poysonous shafts with greater spleen they draw,
Than the Outragious Wife of _Potypha_.
So the chast _Joseph_ unseduc'd to her
Adult'ries, was pronounc'd a Ravisher.

  This hellish Ethnick Plot the Court alarms;
The Traytors seventy thousand strong in Arms,
Near _Endor_ Town lay ready at a Call,
And garrison'd in Airy Castles all.
These Warriours on a sort of Coursers rid,
Ne'r log'd in Stables, or by Man bestrid.
What though the steele with which the Rebels fought,
No Forge e're felt, or Anvile ever wrought?
Yet this Magnetick Plot, for black Designs,
Can raise cold Iron from the very Mines.
To this were twenty Under-plots, contriv'd
By Malice, and by Ignorance believ'd,
Till Shamms met Shamms, and Plots with Plots so crost,
That the True Plot amongst the False was lost.

  Of all the much-wrong'd Worthies of the Land
Whom this Contagious Infamy profan'd,
In the first Rank the youthful _Ithream_ stood,
His Princely Veins fill'd with great _Davids_ Blood.
With so much Manly Beauty in his Face,
Scarce his High Birth could lend a Nobler Grace.
And for a Mind fit for this shrine of Gold
Heaven cast his Soul in the same Beauteous Mould;
With all the sweets of Prideless Greatness blest,
As Affable as _Abrahams_ Angel-Guest.
But when in Wars his glittering Steel he drew,
No Chief more Bold with fiercer Lightning flew:
Witness his tryal of an Arm Divine,
Passing the Ordeal of a _Burning Mine_:
Such forward Courage did his Bosome fill,
Starting from nothing, but from doing ill.
Still with such Heat in Honours Race he run, }
Such Wonders by his early Valour done,       }
Enough to charm a second _Joshua's_ Sun.     }
But he has Foes; his fatal Enemies            }
To a strange Monster his Fair Truth disguise; }
And shew the Gorgon even to Royal Eyes.       }
To their false perspectives his Fate he owes,
The spots i'th' Glass, not in the Star it shows.
Yet when by the Imperial Sentence doom'd,
The Royal Hand the Princely Youth unplum'd,
He his hard Fate without a Murmur took,
And stood with that Calm, Duteous, Humble look.
Of all his shining Honours unarray'd,
Like _Isaac's_ Head on _Abrahams_ Altar lay'd.
Yes, _Absolom_, thou hast him in the Toyl,
Rifled, and lost; now Triumph in the Spoyl.
His Zeal too high for _Israels_ Temples soar'd,
His God-like Youth by prostrate Hearts ador'd,
Till thy Revenge from Spight and Fear began,
And too near Heaven took Care to make him Man.
Though _Israels_ King, God, Laws, share all his Soul,
Adorn'd with all that Heroes can enrol,
Yet Vow'd Successions cruel Sacrifice,
Great _Judah_'s Son like _Jeptha_'s Daughter dies.
Yes, like a Monument of Wrath he stands;
Such Ruine _Absolons_ Revenge demands;
His Curiosity his Doom assign'd:
For 'twas a Crime of as destructive Kind,
To pry how _Babylons_ Burning Zeal aspires,
As to look back on Sodoms blazing Fires.
But spoyl'd, and rob'd, his drossier Glories gone,
His Virtue and his Truth are still his own.
No rifling Hands can that bright Treasure take,
Nor all his Foes that Royal Charter shake.

  The dreadful'st Foe their Engines must subdue,
The strongest Rock through which their Arts must hew,
Was great _Barzillai_: could they reach his Head,
Their Fears all husht, they had strook Danger dead.
That second _Moses_-Guide resolv'd to free
Our _Israel_ from her threatning Slavery,
Idolatry and Chains; both from the Rods
Of _Pharoh_-Masters, and _Egyptian_ Gods:
And from that Wilderness of Errour freed,
Where Dogstars scorch, and killing Serpents breed:
That _Israels_ Liberty and Truth may grow,
The _Canaan_ whence our Milk and Honey flow.
Such our _Barzillai_; but _Barzillai_ too,
With _Moses_ Fate does _Moses_ Zeal pursue:
Leads to that Bliss which his own Silver Hairs
Shall never reach, Rich onely to his Heirs.
Kind Patriot, who to plant us Banks of Flow'rs,
With purling Streams, cool Shades, and Summer Bow'rs,
His Ages needful Rest away does fling,
Exhausts his Autumn to adorn our Spring:
Whilst his last hours in Toyls and Storms are hurl'd,
And onely to enrich th'inheriting World.
Thus prodigally throws his Lifes short span,
To play his Countries generous Pelican.
But oh, that all-be-devill'd Paper, fram'd
No doubt, in Hell; that Mass of Treason damn'd;
By _Esau_'s Hands, and _Jacobs_ Voice disclos'd;
And timely to th' Abhorring World expos'd.
Nay, what's more wondrous, this wast-paper Tool,
A nameless, unsubscrib'd, and useless scrowl,
Was, by a Politician great in Fame,
(His Chains foreseen a Month before they came)
Preserv'd on purpose, by his prudent care,
To brand his Soul, and ev'n his Life ensnare.
But then the Geshuritish Troop, well-Oath'd,
And for the sprucer Face, well-fed, and Cloath'd.
These to the Bar Obedient Swearers go,
With all the Wind their manag'd Lungs can blow.
So have I seen from Bellows brazen Snout,
The Breath drawn in, and by th'same Hand squeez'd out.
But helping Oaths may innocently fly,
When in a Faith where dying Vows can lye.
Were Treason and Democracie his Ends,
Why was't not prov'd by his Revolting Friends?
Why did not th'Oaths of his once-great Colleagues,
_Achitophel_ and the rest prove his Intreagues?
Why at the Bar appear'd such sordid scum,
And all those Nobler Tongues of Honour dumb?
Could he his Plots t'his great Allies conceal,
He durst to leaky Starving Wretches tell;
Such Ignorant Princes, and such knowing Slaves;
His _Babel_ building Tools from such poor Knaves.
Were he that Monster his new Foes would make
Th'unreasoning World beleive, his Soul so black,
That they in Conscience did his Side forego,
Knowing him guilty they could prove him so.
Then 'twas not Conscience made 'em change their side.
Or if they knew, yet did his Treasons hide;
In not exposing his detested Crime,
They're greater Monsters than they dare think Him.
Are these the Proselites renown'd so high,
Converts to Duty, Honour, Loyalty?
Poorly they change, who in their change stand mute:
Converts to Truth ought Falsehood to confute.
To conquering Truth, they but small glory give,
Who turn to God, yet let the Dagon live.

  But who can _Amiels_ charming Wit withstand,
The great State-pillar of the Muses Land.
For lawless and ungovern'd, had the Age
The Nine wild Sisters seen run mad with Rage,
Debaucht to Savages, till his keen Pen
Brought their long banisht Reason back again,
Driven by his Satyres into Natures Fence,
And lasht the idle Rovers into Sense.
Nay, his sly Muse, in Style Prophetick, wrot
The whole Intrigue of _Israels_ Ethnick Plot;
Form'd strange Battalions, in stupendious-wise,
Whole Camps in Masquerade, and Armies in disguise.
_Amiel_, whose generous Gallantry, whilst Fame
Shall have a Tongue, shall never want a Name.
Who, whilst his Pomp his lavish Gold consumes,
Moulted his Wings to lend a Throne his Plumes,
Whilst an Ungrateful Court he did attend,
Too poor to pay, what it had pride to spend.

  But, _Amiel_ has, alas, the fate to hear,
An angry Poet play his Chronicler;
A Poet rais'd above Oblivions Shade,
By his Recorded Verse Immortal made.
But, Sir, his livelier Figure to engrave,
With Branches added to the _Bays_ you gave:
No Muse could more Heroick Feats rehearse,
Had with an equal all-applauding Verse,
Great _Davids_ Scepter, and _Sauls_ Javelin prais'd:
A Pyramide to his Saint, _Interest_, rais'd.
For which Religiously no Change he mist,                    }
From Common-wealths-man up to Royalist:                     }
Nay, would have been his own loath'd thing call'd _Priest_. }
Priest, whom with so much Gall he does describe,
'Cause once unworthy thought of _Levies_ Tribe.
Near those bright Tow'rs where Art has Wonders done, }
Where _Davids_ sight glads the blest Summers Sun;    }
And at his feet proud _Jordans_ Waters run;          }
A Cell there stands by Pious Founders rais'd,
Both for its Wealth and Learned _Rabbins_ prais'd:
To this did an Ambitious Bard aspire,
To be no less than Lord of that blest Quire:
Till Wisdom deem'd so Sacred a Command,
A Prize too great for his unhallow'd Hand.
Besides, lewd Fame had told his plighted Vow,
To _Laura's_ cooing Love percht on a dropping Bough
_Laura_ in faithful Constancy confin'd
To _Ethiops_ Envoy, and to all Mankind.
_Laura_ though Rotten, yet of Mold Divine;
He had all her Cl--ps, and She had all his Coine.
Her Wit so far his Purse and Sense could drain,
Till every P--x was sweetn'd to a Strain.
And if at last his Nature can reform,
A weary grown of Loves tumultuous storm,
'Tis Ages Fault, not His; of pow'r bereft,
He left not Whoring, but of that was left.

  But wandring Muse bear up thy flagging Wing:
To thy more glorious Theme return, and sing
Brave _Jothams_ Worth, Impartial, Great, and Just,
Of unbrib'd Faith, and of unshaken Trust:
Once _Geshurs_ Lord, their Throne so nobly fill'd,
As if to th'borrow'd Scepter that he held,
Th'inspiring _David_ yet more generous grew,
And lent him his Imperial _Genius_ too.
Nor has he worn the Royal Image more
In _Israels_ Viceroy, than Embassador:
Witness his Gallantry that resolute hour,
When to uphold the Sacred Pride of Pow'r,
His stubborn Flags from the _Sydonian_ shore,
The angry storms of Thundring Castles bore.
But these are Virtues Fame must less admire,
Because deriv'd from that Heroick Sire,
Who on a Block a dauntless Martyr dy'd,
With all the Sweetness of a Smiling Bride;
Charm'd with the Thought of Honours Starry Pole,
With Joy laid down a Head to mount a Soul.

  Of all the Champions rich in Honours Scarrs,
Whose Loyalty through _Davids_ ancient Wars,
(In spight of the triumphant Tyrants pride,)
Was to his lowest Ebb of Fortune ty'd;
No Link more strong in all that Chain of Gold,
Then _Amasai_, the Constant, and the Bold.
That Warlike General whose avenging Sword,
Through all the Battles of his Royal Lord,
Pour'd all the Fires that Loyal Zeal could light,
No brighter Star in the lost _Davids_ night.

  No less with Laurels _Ashurs_ Brows adorn,
That mangled Brave who with _Tyres_ Thunder torn,
Brought a dismember'd Load of Honour home,
And lives to make both th'Earth and Seas his Tomb.

  With Reverence the Religious _Helon_ treat,
Refin'd from all the looseness of the Great.
_Helon_ who sees his Line of Virtues run }
Beyond the Center of his Grave, his own  }
Unfinisht Luster sparkling in his Son.   }
A Son so high in Sanedrims renown'd,
In _Israels_ Intrest strong, in Sense profound.
Under one Roof here Truth a Goddess dwells,    }
The Pious Father builds her Shrines and Cells, }
And in the Son she speaks her Oracles.         }

  In the same list young _Adriels_ praise record,
_Adriel_ the Academick Neighbour Lord;
_Adriel_ ennobled by a Grandfather,
And Unkle, both those Glorious Sons of War:
Both Generals, and both Exiles with their Lord;
Till with the Royal Wanderer restored,
They lived to see his Coronation Pride;
Then surfeiting on too much Transport dy'd.
O're _Adriels_ Head these Heroes Spirits shine,
His Soul with so much Loyal Blood fenc'd in;
Such Native Virtues his great Mind adorn,
Whilst under their congenial Influence born.

  In this Record let _Camries_ Name appear,
The Great _Barzillai_'s Fellow Sufferer;
From unknown Hands, of unknown Crimes accus'd,
Till th'hunted Shadow lost, his Chains unloos'd.

  Now to the Sweet-tongu'd _Amrams_ praise be just,
Once the _State-Advocate_, that Wealthy Trust,
Till Flattery the price of dear-bought Gold,
His Innocence for Pallaces unfold,
To Naked Truths more shining Beauties true,
Th'Embroiderd Mantle from his Neck he threw.

  Next _Hothriel_ write, _Baals_ watchful Foe, and late
_Jerusalems_ protecting Magistrate;
Who, when false Jurors were to Frenzy Charm'd,
And against Innocence even Tribunals arm'd,
Saw deprav'd Justice ope her Ravenous Jaw,
And timely broke her Canine Teeth of Law.

  Amongst th'Asserters of his Countries Cause,
Give the bold _Micah_ his deserv'd Applause,
The Grateful Sanedrims repeated Choice,
Of Two Great Councels the Successive Voice.
Of that old hardy Tribe of _Israel_ borne,
Fear their Disdain, and Flattery their Scorne,
Too proud to truckle, and too Tough to bend.

  Of the same Tribe was _Hanan, Ithreams_ Friend,
From that fam'd Sire, the Long Robes Glory, sprung,
In Sanedrims his Countries Pillar long;
Long had he fadom'd all the Depths of State;           }
Could with that strength, that ponderous Sense debate, }
As turn'd the Scale of Nations with the weight:        }
Till subtley made by Spightful Honour Great,
Prefer'd to _Israels_ Chief Tribunal Seat,
Made in a higher Orb his Beams dispense,
To hush his Formidable Eloquence.

  But _Israels_ numerous Worthies are too long
And Great a Theam for one continued Song.
Yet These by bold flagitious Tongues run down,
Made all Conspirers against _Davids_ Crown.

  Nay, and there was a Time, had Hell prevail'd,
Nor Perjury and Subornation fail'd,
When a long List of Names, for Treason doom'd,
Had _Israels_ Patriots in one Grave entomb'd:
A List, with such fair Loyal Colours laid,
Even to no less than Royal Hands convey'd.
And the great Mover in this pious Fraud,
A Dungeon Slave redeem'd by'a Midnight Bawd:
Then made by Art a Swearer of Renown,
Nurst and embrac'd by th'Heir of _Judahs_ Crown:
Encourag'd too by Pension for Reward,
With his forg'd Scrowls for Guiltless Blood prepared.
Poor Engine for a greatness so sublime:           }
But oh, a Cause by which their _Baal_ must climb, }
Ennobles both the Actor and the Crime.            }

  Yet This, and all Things else now quite blown o're,
And _Absolom_, his _Israels_ Fear no more:
Luster and Pride shall hem his radiant Brow;
All Knees shall fall, and prostrate Nations bow.
By Heav'ns, he is, he will, he must, he shall
Be _Israels_ Heroe, Friend, Saint, Idol, all.
What though provok'd with all the crying sins
Of Murmuring Slaves, excluding Sanedrins:
By profane Crowds in dirt his Prophets spurn'd,
And ev'n his Gods in mock Processions burn'd:
Himself from _Israel_ into _Hebron_ sent,
And doom'd to little less than Banishment.
In spight of all his Scrowls to _Babylon_;           }
And all the promis'd Wonders to be done,             }
When _Egypts_ Frogs should croak on _Judahs_ Throne. }
Though of a Faith that propagates in Blood;
Of Passions unforgiving, less withstood
Then Seas and Tempests, and as Deaf as they.   }
Yet all Divine shall be his Godlike Sway,      }
And his calm Reign but one long _Halcyon_ Day. }
And this Great Truth he's damn'd that dares deny; }
'Gainst _Absolom_ even Oracles would lye,         }
Though Sense and Reason Preach 'tis Blasphemy.    }
Then let out dull Mistaken Terrour cease,
When even our Comets speak all Health and Peace.

_FINIS._


ERRATA.

  [Transcriber's Note:

  The author's Errata list was printed at the bottom of the page in a
  single block of small type, heavily smudged and not always legible.
  In at least one case, the requested change appears to be what the text
  already says. For these reasons, changes listed have _not_ been made.
  The text of each complete line is given in brackets.]

  The Reader is desired to Correct these following Mistakes.

  Page 1. line 12. for _Hold_, read _Held_.
      [Hold but their Crowns at his Almighty Will.]
  p. 4. l. 22. r. _Ships_;
      [_Dan_ from her Ship, and _Asher_ on the Shore.]
    ibid. l. 26. for _Kindl'd_ r. _Bank'd_;
      [Kindl'd their embattel'd Fires for _Deborah's_ Wars,]
    ibid. l. 32. r. _the Mighty_;
      [The Mighty _Deborah's_, God's, and _Israel's_ Foes.]
    ibid. l. 37 for _they_ r. _thus_;
      [Thus sung, they conquer'd _Deborah_; thus fell]
  p. 7. l. 18. for _poor_, r. _weak_;
      [Preach to poor Female half-Soul'd Proselytes.]
  p. 9. l. 3. & 4. for _his_ r. _a_;
      [What Knees, what Necks to mount him to his Throne;
       What Gems, what Stars to sparkle in his Crown?]
    l. 6. for _the_, r. _ye_;
      [But oh the Pow'rs, by treacherous snakes beguil'd,]
    ibid. l. 20. r. _Walls; the Billows pour_;
      [Down crack the Chrystal Walls the Billows pow'r,]
  p. 12. l. 11. r. _lov'd Israel_;
      [That still in its Lord _Israel_ takes delight,]
  p. 19. l. 27. for _loo_ r. _race_ [illegible, possibly "rate"]
      [To loo the Bloodhounds off to save the Plot.]
  p. 22. l. 10. r. _Excluding_.
      [Th'encluding Sanedrims Resolves once shake;]

  [Additional errors and anomalies noted by transcriber:

  (Title, after dedication)
  Absalom Senior
    _catchword on previous page has "Abso-"_
  Whilst th'universal Drones buz to his Hives.
    _apostrophe missing_
  If this last Masterpiece requires a Soul.
    _"f" ("If") invisible_
  The Uppermost, indisputably Best.
    _text reads "indsputably"_
  This final Resolution made, at last
    _line printed after break, but not indented_
  But t'Heavens Vice-gerents, Soul, Sense, Reason, all,
    _the word "vice-gerent" occurs twice_
  Why did not th'Oaths of his once-great Colleagues,
    _apostrophe missing_
  Th'Embroiderd Mantle from his Neck he threw.
    _apostrophe missing_
  By profane Crowds in dirt his Prophets spurn'd,
    _apostrophe invisible_ ]


       *       *       *       *       *

              Poetical Reflections
                   on a Late

                      POEM

                   Entituled,
            Absalom and Achitophel.

           _By a Person of Honour._


                  [Decoration]

                   _LONDON:_
      Printed for _Richard Janeway_. 1681.



TO THE READER.

If ever anything, call'd a _Poem_, deserv'd a severe Reflection, that
of _Absalom_ and _Achitophel_ may justly contract it. For tho' Lines
can never be purg'd from the dross and filth they would throw on others
(there being no retraction that can expiate the conveying of persons to
an unjust and publick reproach); yet the cleansing of their fames from a
design'd pollution, may well become a more ingenious Pen than the Author
of these few reflections will presume to challenge.

To epitomize which scandalous Phamphlet (unworthy the denomination of
_Poesy_) no eye can inspect it without a prodigious amazement; the
abuses being so gross and deliberate, that it seems rather a Capital
or National Libel, than personal exposures, in order to an infamous
detraction. For how does he character the King, but as a broad figure
of scandalous inclinations, or contriv'd unto such irregularities,
as renders him rather the property of Parasites and Vice, than suitable
to the accomplishment of so excellent a Prince? Nay, he forces on King
_David_ such a Royal resemblance, that he darkens his sanctity in spite
of illuminations from Holy Writ.

Next (to take as near our King as he could) he calumniates the Duke
of _Monmouth_ with that height of impudence, that his Sense is far
blacker than his Ink, exposing him to all the censures that a Murderer,
a Traytor, or what a Subject of most ambitious evil can possibly
comprehend: and it is some wonder, that his Lines also had not hang'd
him on a Tree, to make the intended _Absalom_ more compleat.

As to my Lord _Shaftsbury_ (in his collusive _Achitophel_), what does he
other than exceed Malice it self? or that the more prudent deserts of
that Peer were to be so impeach'd before hand by his impious Poem, as
that he might be granted more emphatically condign of the Hangman's Ax;
And which his Muse does in effect take upon her to hasten.

And if the season be well observ'd, when this Adulterate Poem was
spread, it will be found purposely divulg'd near the time when this
Lord, with his other Noble Partner, were to be brought to their Tryals.
And I suppose this Poet thought himself enough assur'd of their
condemnation; at least, that his _Genius_ had not otherwise ventur'd
to have trampled on persons of such eminent Abilities, and Interest in
the Nation. A consideration, I confess, incited my Pen (its preceding
respect being paid to the Duke of _Monmouth_) to vindicate their
Reputations where I thought it due.

And some are not a little mistaken in their judgments of persons, if any
Kingdom has at this time Two men of their Dignity, of more extraordinary
Understandings: Which may (if well consider'd) be some inducement to
their future preservation and esteem. As I have endeavour'd chiefly to
clear their abuse, so I have pass'd divers considerable persons, under
as malign inclinations of this Author's; conceiving, that what I have
said for the Principals, may remove such smaller prejudices as are on
the value of others on the same concern.

His most select and pecuniary Favourites, I have but barely touch'd,
in respect his praise includes a concomitant reprehension, if well
apprehended. Besides, I was unwilling to discourage any, that for the
future may desire to be admir'd by him according to their liberality.
A method, that perhaps may in time set up some Merchants of _Parnassus_,
where the _Indies_ of Fame seem lately discover'd, and may be purchas'd
_per Centum_, according to modern example.

As to the Character of _Amiel_, I confess my Lines are something
pointed, the one reason being, that it alludes much to a manner of
expression of this Writer's, as may be seen by the marginal Notes; and a
second will be soon allowed. The figure of _Amiel_ has been so squeez'd
into Paint, that his soul is seen in spite of the Varnish.

And none will deny, but it is as easie to send Truth backward, as it is
to spur Falsities egregiously forward, and might have caus'd any Asse,
as knowing as _Balaam_'s, to have rebuk'd such a Poet as will needs
prophecy against the sense of Heaven and Men. But I have enough of this
_Amiell_, as well as of his Muse, unless that by his means it occasions
a further account. And for what is mine here, It will at worst contract
censure, in respect it is a brief reflection on a very large Libel. And
tho' I believe it did not cost (tho' that be not offer'd for an excuse)
the tenth part of the time of the other. As to my Preface, I was willing
that he should find, that this smaller work has some Nose.--Tho' I am no
more bound to have my Face known by it, than he is willing to obscure
his by a Nameless Preamble.



  [Asterisks used as side/footnote references are from the original
  text.]

              Poetical Reflections
                   ON A POEM,

                     CALLED
             Absolon and Achitophel.


When late Protectorship was Canon-Proof,
And _Cap-a-pe_ had seiz'd on _Whitehall_-Roof,
And next, on _Israelites_ durst look so big,
That _Tory-like_, it lov'd not much the _Whigg_:
A Poet there starts up, of wondrous Fame;
Whether _Scribe_ or _Pharisee_, his Race doth name,
Or more t'intrigue the Metaphor of Man,
Got on a Muse by _Father-Publican_:
    [Sidenote: A Committee-Man.]
For 'tis not harder much, if we tax Nature,
That Lines should give a Poet such a Feature;
Than that his Verse a _Hero_ should us show,
    [Sidenote: _Sir Denzill Hollis_ seeks _annum mirabilis_.]
Produc'd by such a Feat, as famous too.
His Mingle such, what Man presumes to think,
But he can Figures daub with Pen and Ink.
A Grace our mighty _Nimrod_ late beheld,
When he within the Royal Palace dwell'd,
And saw 'twas of import if Lines could bring
His Greatness from _Usurper_, to be King:
    [Sidenote: See his Poem on _Cromwel_.]
Or varnish so his Praise, that little odds
Should seem 'twixt him, and such called Earthly Gods.
And tho no Wit can Royal Blood infuse,
No more than melt a Mother to a Muse:
Yet much a certain Poet undertook,
That Men and Manners deals in without-Book.
And might not more to Gospel-Truth belong,
Than he (if Christened) does by name of _John._
This Poet, who that time much squanderd thought,
Of which some might bring Coyn, whilst some none brought,
As Men that hold their Brains of powerful sense,
Will least on Poet's Tales bestow their pence,
Tho he such Dispensations to endear,
Had notch'd his Sconce just level with his Ear.
An Emblem in these days of much import,
When Crop-ear'd Wits had such a Modish Court.
Tho some from after-deeds much fear the Fate,
That such a Muse may for its Lugs create.
As Stars may without Pillories dispence,
To slit some Ears for Forgeries of sense,
Which Princes, Nobles, and the Fame of Men,
Sought to bespatter by a worthless Pen.
But leaving this to Circumstances fit,
With what thence spreads this Renegado-wit.
We'll tell you how his Court he now doth make,     }
And what choice Things and Persons he doth take,   }
That Lines for Guinnys might more liquorish speak. }
To heigten which we'll to his Muse advance,
Which late discover'd its _Judaick_ Trance:
Where _Absalon_'s in _English_ Colours di'd,
That in a Duke, a Traitor might be spi'd.
Or Heaven on him did Graces so bestow,
As only could confer their Pageant Show;
Giving his Glories no more fast Renown,
Than with more Honour to be taken down:
Like Victimes by some Sacrificers drest,
Must fall adorn'd, which then they pity least.
But fear not _Monmouth_, if a Libel's quill,
Would dregs of Venom on thy Vertue spill;
Since no desert so smoothly is convey'd,
As next it's Fame, no canker'd Patch is laid;
Thou didst no Honour seek, but what's thy due,
And such Heaven bids thee not relinquish too.
Whilst it's Impressions so oblig'd thy Task,
As leave from Earth thy Soul declin'd to ask.
If this thy Error were, what Influ'nce can
Excuse the Duty of more wilfull Man;
With such whose Figures shew that squinting Paint,
Whence peeps a Mungril _Babylonish Saint_.
Thy Soul's Religion's Prop, and Native Grace,
_Rome_, (fears its onsets) looking on the place;
What Altitude can more exalt thy Praise,
Tho best Devotion should thy Trophies raise,
And 'tis perhaps from thy Diviner Bliss,
That some may fear their Souls are seen amiss.
As what so high does Emulation mount,
As Greatness when surpass'd on Heaven's Account;
And if th' Ambition would in this excel,
'Twas but to be more great in doing well;
And must rebate the worst that Fates intend,
Whilst Heaven and _England_ is at once thy Friend.
This just _Encomium_, tho too brief it be
To represent thy least Epitome;
And but unto thy larger Figure joyn'd,
As small proportions are from great design'd;
Tho where a line one worth of thine can speak,
It does alone, a Poem's Greatness make;
Leaving this _Hero_ to his spotless Fame,
(As who besides this Wretch will it blaspheme)
Or in a Libels Allegorick Way,
Men falsely figur'd, to the world convey,
Libels the enormous Forgery of sense,
Stamp'd on the brow of human Impudence;
The blackest wound of Merit, and the Dart,
That secret Envy points against Desert.
The lust of Hatred pander'd to the Eye
T'allure the World's debauching by a Lie.
Th'rancrous Favourite's masquerading Guilt,
Imbitt'ring venom where he'd have it spilt.
The Courts depression in a fulsom Praise;
A Test it's _Ignoramus_ worst conveys,
A lump of Falshood's Malice does disperse,
Or Toad when crawling on the Feet of Verse.
Fame's impious Hireling and mean Reward,
The Knave that in his Lines turns up his Card,
Who, tho no Rabby, thought in Hebrew wit,
He forc'd Allusions can closly fit.
To _Jews_ or _English_, much unknown before,
He made a _Talmud_ on his Muses score;
Though hop'd few Criticks will its _Genius_ carp,
So purely Metaphors King _David_'s Harp,
And by a soft Encomium, near at hand,
Shews _Bathsheba_ Embrac'd throughout the Land.
But this Judaick Paraphrastick Sport
We'll leave unto the ridling Smile of Court.
Good Heav'n! What timeful Pains can Rhymers take,
When they'd for Crowds of Men much Pen-plot make?
Which long-Beak'd Tales and filch'd Allusions brings,
As much like Truth, as 'tis the Woodcock sings.
What else could move this Poet to purloin
So many _Jews_, to please the _English_ Swine?
Or was it that his Brains might next dispense
To adapt himself a Royal Evidence?
Or that he'd find for _Dugdale_'s Wash some Spell,
In stead of once more dipp'd in _Winifred_'s Well;
And ope his Budget, like _Pandora_'s Box,
Whence Overt-acts more _Protestants_ should Pox,
Which might the Joyner's Ghost provoke to rise,
And fright such Tales with other _Popish_ Lies?
But _Starr's_ or _Ignoramus_'s may not give
Those Swearers longer swinge by Oaths to live.
A Providence much _English_ Good protects,
And sends Testees to Trade for new Effects;
Which none of the Long-Robe, 'tis hop'd, can aid,
So well by Oaths the Devil's already paid;
And most suppose, if e're both Plots can die,
Or eat up one anothers Perjury,
'Twou'd _Pluto_ strangely pose to find a Third,
Sould he in his a _Popish_ Legion Lard.
A Policy some Poems much embrace,
As is discern'd in _Shaftsbury_'s Great Case;
Where Verse so vile an Obloquy betray,
As for a Statist-_Jew_ they'd him convey.
Tho hard it is to understand what Spell
Can conjure up in him _Achitophel_,
Or tax this Peer with an Abused Sense
Of his so deep and apt Intelligence:
A Promptitude by which the Nation's shown
To be in Thought concurrent with his own.
_Shaftsbury_! A Soul that Nature did impart
To raise her Wonder in a Brain and Heart;
Or that in him produc'd, the World might know,
She others did with drooping Thought bestow.
As in Mans most perspicuous Soul, we find
The nearest Draught of her Internal Mind,
Tho it appears her highest Act of State,
When Human Conducts she does most compleat,
And place them so, for Mankinds good, that they
Are fit to Guide, where others miss their Way;
It being in Worldly Politiques less Great
To be a Law-maker, than Preserve a State.
In Publick Dangers Laws are unsecure,
As strongest Anchors can't all Winds endure;
Though 'tis in Exigents the wisest Ease
To know who best can ply when Storms encrease;
Whilst other Prospects, by mistaking Fate,
Through wrong Preventions, more its Bad dilate.
Whence some their Counter-Politicks extend,
To ruine such can Evils best amend.
A Thwarting _Genius_, which our Nation more
Than all its head-strong Evils does deplore;
And shews what violent Movements such inform,
That where a Calm should be, they force a Storm;
As if their Safety chiefly they must prize
In being rid of Men esteem'd more Wise.
To this Great, Little Man, we'll T'other joyn,
Held Sufferers by one Tripartite Design.
As from a Cubick Power, or Three-fold Might,
Roots much expand, as Authors prove aright;
But of such Managements we'll little say,
Or shamm'd Intrigues, for Fame left to convey;
Which may by peeping through a Gown-mans Sleeve,
Tell such grave Tales, Men cannot well believe:
With what for Plots and Trials has been done,
As Whores depos'd, before away they run;
All which was well discern'd by numerous Sense,
Before the Doctors py'd Intelligence,
Who, with some Motley Lawyers, took much care
To gain the _Caput_ of this Knowing Peer;
When after so much Noise, and nothing prov'd,
Heaven thank'd, to Freedom he's at last remov'd,
Leaving a Low-Bridge _Cerberus_ to try
In what Clerks Pate his monstrous Fee does lie;
Or by the help of _Tory-Roger_ tell
How Sacred Gain-Prerogativ'd should spell.
But these are Thoughts may fit some Pensive Skulls,
Or Men concern'd to bait their several Bulls;
Whilst on this Peer we must some Lines bestow,
Tho more he merits than best Verse can show:
Great in his Name, but greater in his Parts,
Judgment sublim'd, with all its strong Deserts;
A Sense above Occasions quick surprize,
That he no Study needs to make him Wise,
Or labour'd Thoughts, that trains of Sinews knit,
His Judgment always twin'd unto his Wit;
That from his clear Discussions Men may know
He does to wonder other Brains out-do.
Whilst they for Notions search they can't compact,
His _Genius_ fitly stands prepar'd to act.
Admir'd of Man, that in thy Sense alone
So ready dost exalt high Reason's Throne;
That Men abate Resentments to expect
Thou mayst rise Greater, having past Neglect.
A Sacred Method Kings receive from Heaven,
That still does Cherish, when it has Forgiven;
Which from our Princes Soul so largely flows,
That Mercy's Channel with his Greatness goes.
No Arbitrary Whispers him can guide
To swell his Rule beyond its genuine Tide:
Whilst other Kings their rugged Scepters see
Eclips'd in his more soft Felicity;
Whose Goodness can all Stress of State remove,
So fitly own'd the Subjects Fear and Love.
My Verse might here discharge its hasty Flight, }
As Pencils that attempt Immortal Heighth        }
Droop in the Colours should convey its Light,   }
Did not this Poet's Lines upon me call
For some Reflexions on a Lower Fall;
Where he by Rhyming, a _Judaick_ Sham,
Obtrudes for _Israelites_ some Seeds of _Cham_.
And this Inspexion needs no further go
Than where his Pen does most Indulgent show:
And 'tis no wonder if his _Types_ of Sense
Should stroke such _Figures_ as give down their Pence;
A Crime for which some Poets Lines so stretch,
As on themselves they Metaphor _Jack Ketch_.
Tho small the Varnish is to Humane Name,
Where Cogging Measures rob the truth of Fame.
And more to do his skew'd _Encomiums_ right,
Some Persons speak by him their motly Sight:
Or much like _Hudibras_, on Wits pretence,
Some Lines for Rhyme, and some to gingle Sense.
Who else would _Adriel_, _Jotham_, _Hushai_, fit,
With loathed _Amiell_, for a Court of Wit?
For, as Men Squares of Circles hardly find,
Some think these Measures are as odly joyn'd.
What else could _Adriell_'s sharpness more abuse,
Than headlong dubb'd, to own himself a Muse,
Unless to spread Poetick Honours so
As should a Muse give each St. _George_'s Show?
A Mode of Glory might _Parnassus_ fit,
Tho our Sage Prince knows few he'd Knight for Wit.
And thus this Freak is left upon the File,
Or as 'tis written in this Poet's Stile.
Next, as in Course, to _Jotham_ we'll descend,
Thoughtful it seems which Side he'll next befriend,
As thinking Brains can caper to and fro,
Before they jump into the Box they'd go.
And 'tis a moody Age, as many guess,
When some with busie Fears still forward press;
As 'tis Ambitions oft-deluding Cheat
To tempt Mens aims, secureless of defeat.
_Hushai_ the Compass of th'_Exchequer_ guides,
Propense enough unto the North besides:
As what can steady Stations more allure,
Than such, a Princely Bed does first secure?
Whose Part none are so ignorant to ask,
And does no less employ his Ends and Task.
But quitting these, we must for Prospect pass
To gaping _Amiell_, as reflects our Glass.
The _Him_ indeed of his own *Western Dome,
    [Sidenote: _See his_, p. 27.]
So near his praiseful Poet Sense may come:
For *_Amiell_, _Amiell_, who cannot endite
    [Sidenote: _See his_, p. 28.]
Of his _Thin_ Value won't disdain to write?
The very _Him_ with Gown and Mace did rule
The _Sanedrim_, when guided by a Fool.
The _Him_ that did both Sense and Reason shift,
That he to gainful Place himself might lift.
The very _Him_ that did adjust the Seed
Of such as did their Votes for Money breed.
The Mighty _Him_ that frothy Notions vents,
In hope to turn them into Presidents.
The _Him_ of _Hims_, although in Judgment small,
That fain would be the biggest at _Whitehall_.
The He that does for Justice Coin postpone,
As on Account may be hereafter shown.
If this plain _English_ be, 'tis far from Trick,
Though some Lines gall, where others fawning lick;
Which fits thy Poet, _Amiell_, for thy Smiles,
If once more paid to blaze thy hated Toils.
Of Things and Persons might be added more,
Without Intelligence from Forreign Shore,
Or what Designs Ambassadors contrive,
Or how the Faithless _French_ their Compass guide:
But Lines the busie World too much supply,
Besides th'Effects of evil Poetry,
Which much to _Tory_-Writers some ascribe,
Though hop'd no Furies of the _Whiggish_ Tribe
Will on their Backs such Lines or Shapes convey,
To burn with Pope, on Great _November_'s Day.

_FINIS._


  [Erratum:

  And such Heaven bids thee not relinquish too.
    _text reads "relinqnish"_ ]


       *       *       *       *       *

                    AZARIA
                      AND
                    HUSHAI,

                       A
                     POEM.

       _Quod cuique visum est sentiant._

                   _LONDON,_
           Printed for _Charles Lee_,
                 An. Dom. 1682.



TO THE READER.

I shall not go about, either to excuse, or justifie the Publishing of
this Poem; for that would be much more an harder Task than the Writing
of it: But however, I shall say, in the words of the Author of the
incomparable _Absalom_ and _Achitophel_, _That I am sure the Design is
honest_. If Wit and Fool be the Consequence of _Whig_ and _Tory_, no
doubt, but Knave and Ass may be Epithets plentifully bestowed upon me by
the one party, whilst the other may grant me more favourable ones, than
perhaps I do deserve. But as very few are Judges of Wit, so I think,
much fewer of honesty; since Interest and Faction on either side,
prejudices and blinds the Judgment; and the violence of Passion makes
neither discernible in an Adversary. I know not whether my Poem has a
_Genius_ to force its way against prejudice: Opinion sways much in the
World, and he that has once gained it writes securely. I speak not this
any ways to lessen the merits of an Author, whose Wit has deservedly
gained the Bays; but in this I have the advantage, since, as I desire
not Glory or vain applause, I can securely wrap my self in my own Cloud,
and remain unknown, whilest he is exposed through his great Lustre.
I shall never envy what I desire not, nor am I altogether so doting, as
to believe the Issues of my own Brain to exceed all others, and to be so
very fond of them, (as most Authors, especially Poets, are) as to think
them without fault, or be so blinded as not to see their blemishes, and
that they are excelled by others; yet since Poems are like Children,
it may be allowed me to be naturally inclined to have some good Opinion
of my own, and not to believe this Poem altogether despicable or
ridiculous. The Ancients say, that every thing hath two handles, I have
laid hold of that opposite to the Author of _Absalom_: As to Truth, who
has the better hold, let the World judge; and it is no new thing, for
the same Persons, to be ill or well represented, by several parties.
I hope then, I may be excused as well as another, since I have told my
Dreams with the same Liberty, for the fancies of Poets are no more than
waking Dreams, and never imposed as dogmatical precepts, which are more
agreeable to truth or falshood, or according to the Poets Language,
which proceed from the Horny or Ivory Port, will be sentenced according
to the Humour and Interest of several Parties who in spite of our Teeth
will be our judges. Where I have been satyrical, 'tis without Malice or
Revenge; and though I brag not of my Talent therein, I could have said
much worse, of some Enemies to our _Jewish_ Heroe. He that will lash
others, ought not to be angry if the like be returned to himself: _Lex
talionis_ is a general and natural Law. I call not this an Answer to
_Absalom_, I have nothing to do with him, he was a Rebel to his Father;
my _Azaria_ a good Son, influenced by a worthy and Loyal Counsellor, and
_Achitophel_ and _Hushai_ were men of contrary Opinions, and different
Principles: And if Poets (as it is often brought for their excuse, when
they vary from known History) ought to represent Persons as they ought
to be, I have not transcurred the Precepts of Poetry, and _Absalom_ is
not so good a Poem, because his Character is not so agreeable to the
virtue of an Heroe, as this of _Azaria_ is: But certainly when Poetry
and Truth are joyned together, and that the persons are truly what they
are represented, and liv'd their Character, the glory is double, both to
the Heroe and the Poet: And I could wish, that the same Hand, that drew
the Rebellious Son, with so much Ingenuity and Skill, would out do mine,
in shewing the virtues of an obedient Son and loyal Counsellor, since
he may have as much Truth for a Foundation to build upon, the Artful
Structure of the Heroes Glory, with his own Fame and Immortality.



               AZARIA AND HUSHAI,

                    A POEM.


In Impious Times, when Priest-craft was at height,
And all the Deadly Sins esteemed light;
When that Religion only was a Stale,
And some bow'd down to God, and some to _Baal_;
When Perjury was scarce esteem'd a Sin,
And Vice, like flowing Tides, came rowling in;
When Luxury, Debauch, and Concubine,
The sad Effects of Women and of Wine,
Rag'd in _Judea_ and _Jerusalem_,
Good _Amazia_ of great _David_'s Stem,
God-like and great in Peace did rule that Land,
And all the _Jews_ stoop'd to his just Command.
Long now in _Sion_ had he Peace enjoy'd,
After that Civil Broils the Land destroy'd:
Plenty and Peace attended on his Reign,
And _Solomon_'s Golden days return'd again;
When the Old _Canaanites_, who there did lurk,
Began to find both God and King new Work:
For _Amazia_, tho' he God did love,
Had not cast out _Baal_'s Priests, and cut down every Grove.
Too oft Religion's made pretence for Sin,
About it in all Ages Strife has been;
But Int'rest, which at bottom doth remain,
Which still converts all Godliness to Gain,
What e'er Pretence is made, is the true Cause,
That moves the Priest, and like the Load-stone draws.
The _Canaanites_ of Old that Land possess'd,
And long therein Idolatry profess'd;
Till Sins of Priests, and of the Common Rout,
Caus'd God and his good Kings to cast them out.
Their Idols were pull'd down, their Groves destroy'd,
Strict Laws against them, and their Worship made.
The Heathen Priests were banish'd from the Land
Of _Baal_, no Temple suffer'd was to stand;
And all Succeeding Kings made it their Care,
They should no more rear up their Altars there.
If some mild Kings did wink at their Abode,
They to the _Jews_ still prov'd a Pricking-goad:
Growing more bold, they penal Laws defy'd,
And like tormenting Thorns, stuck in their Side.
The busy Priests had lost their gainful Trade,
Revenge and Malice do then Hearts invade;
And since by Force they can't themselves restore,
Nor gain the Sway they in _Judea_ bore,
With Hell they Joyn their secret Plots to bring
Destruction to _Judea_ and its King.

  The _Chemerarims_, the learnedst Priests, of all
The numerous Swarms which did belong to _Baal_,
Bred up in subtil Arts, to _Jews_ well known,
And fear'd for Bloody Morals of their own;
Who in the Cause of _Baal_ no one would spare,
But for his sake on all Mankind make War,
Counting it lawful Sacred Kings to smite,
Who favor'd not their God, or was no _Baalite_,
These were the Idol's known, and great Support,
Who in Disguise creep into every Court,
Where they soon Faction raise, and by their Arts,
Insinuate into the Princes Hearts:
Wriggle themselves into Intreagues of State,
Sweet Peace destroy, and Bloody Wars create.
Unwearied still, they deep Designs pursue;
What can't a _Chemarim_, and _Belzeebub_ do?
For cunning Plot, Trepan, for Oaths and Sham,
The Devil must give place to _Chemarim_.
These subtil Priests, in Habit black and grave;
Each man a Saint in shew, in Heart a Knave,
Did in _Judea_ swarm, grew great withall,
And like th' _Egyptian Frogs_ to Court they crawl:
Where, like them too, they never are at rest;
But Bed and Board of Kings, with Filth infest.
To every Shape they could themselves transform,
Angels could seem, but still their Aim was Harm.
They all the Sects among the _Jews_ could ape,
And went about disguiss'd in every Shape.
One imitates the _Zealous Pharisee,_
The _Essens_ this, the dammee _Sadduce_ he;
And such their ready, and their subtil Wit,
For every Trade, and every Science fit:
They Credit got, and stole into the Heart,
And from their God, did many Souls pervert,
Who seeming _Jews_, or what they were before,
In Secret did the Idol _Baal_ adore;
Whole false Religion was but loose, and few
Could bear the Righteous Strictness of the true.

  Thus these Disciples of the hellish Brood,
Disguis'd, among the _Jews_, themselves intrude,
And with the purer Wheat, their Tares they sow,
Saw their bad Crop near to an Harvest grow,
And hop'd that they again should rule the State:
For e'er the days of good _Jehosaphat_,
Through all the Land _Baal_'s Worship was allow'd,
And King and People to gross Idols bow'd.
The Priests, like Bloody Tyrants did command;
They and their Gods, did wholly rule the Land;
And every one who would not bow to _Baal_,
Fled thence, or else by Fire, or Sword did fall:
But that good King a Reformation made,
Their Idols, and their Groves he quite destroy'd;
In every place their Altars overthrew,
And _Chemarims_ he banished or slew.
Since when (except in _Athaliah_'s Reign,
Who for a space, set Idols up again,
Tormenting those to Death who would not turn,
And did the _Jewish Rabbins_ slay or burn)
These crafty Priests, by Plots did never cease,
To spoil the Beauty of _Judea's_ Peace.
Whilst _Joash_ reign'd, by sly and subtil Arts,
They first estrang'd from him his Peoples Hearts.
Saw Faction's Sparks, and unseen blew the Fire,
Till Rebells 'gainst that good King did conspire:
Then Cursed _Zabed_ of proud _Ammon_'s Line,
And _Moabitish Jehozabad_ joyn,
And to their Side some _Pharisees_ they drew,
(_Joash_ did to their Sect no Favor shew)
And th' _Essens_, who then daily numerous grew,
Rebell, and their good King, like Murtherers, slew.
Then _Amazia_ over _Jordan_ fled,
Till God had struck the Tyrant _Zabed_ dead;
When all his Subjects, who his Fate did moan,
With joyful Hearts, restor'd him to his Throne;
Who then his Father's Murtherers destroy'd,
And a long, happy, peaceful Reign enjoy'd.
Belov'd of all, for merciful was He,
Like God, in the Superlative Degree.
The _Jewish_ Sects he did not seek to quell,
Yet Laws he made they might no more rebell:
Wisely about them made of Laws a Fence,
Yet kind, would not oppress their Conscience.
The _Pharisee_, a very numerous Sect,
Above the rest were in their Worship strict:
In their own _Synagogues_ he let them pray,
And worship God after their stricter way.
In Peace all liv'd, and former strife forgot,
The _Chemarims_ and Hell had hatch'd a Plot:
A Plot form'd in the deep Abyss below,
Law and Religion both to overthrow.
The King was by their Bloody Swords to fall,
That all _Judea_ might submit _to Baal_.
Great were their Hopes, and deep was their Design.
The Train already laid to spring their Mine;
Not dreaming Heav'n could their Plots betray,
They only waited an auspicious day.
Nor fail'd their Plot for want of Common Sence,
As some endeavor'd to persuade the Prince:
For with much Art, great Industry and Care,
They all things for their black Design prepare.
Not hatch'd by Common Brains, or men of Earth,
Nor was't the Issue of a suddain Birth;
But long designing, and well laid it seems,
By _Baal_'s _Arch-priests_, and subtil _Chemarins_.
The _Canaanites_ dispersed through the Land,
O'er whom _Baal_'s Priests had absolute Command,
Were bound with Oaths, the Priests Religious Charms,
To Secresie, and furnished with Arms.
Heads they had got, as well as Hands to fight,
Some zealous Princes of the _Canaanites_,
Who ready were to guide the Common Rout,
So soon as their Conspiracy broke out.
_Ægypt_ of Warlike _Jews_ was still afraid,   }
Lest as of Old, they should that Land invade, }
To further this Design had promis'd Aid.      }
Thus on a firm Foundation they had wrought
Their great Design, well built to Humane thought:
Tho' nothing that weak Mortals e'er design'd,
But Folly seems to the Eternal Mind,
Who blasting man's vain Projects, lets him know,
He sits above, sees and rules all below.
This wicked Plot, the Nations Bain and Curse,
So bad no man can represent it worse:
Want only _Amazia_ to destroy,
But that they might the Rites of _Baal_ enjoy:
For the good _Amazia_ being gone,
They had design'd a _Baalite_ for the Throne.
Of all their Hopes and Plots, here lay the Store:
For what Encouragement could they have more,
When they beheld the King's own Brother fall,
From his Religion, and to worship _Baal_?
The Priest well knew what Pow'r, and what Controul
He had usurp'd o're ev'ry _Baalite_'s Soul,
That such a Prince must their God's Cause pursue,
And do whatever they would have him do;
Else from his Throne he should be curs'd and damn'd:
For _Baal_'s High-Priest, a Right t' all Crowns had claim'd.
An Article 'tis of a _Baalite_'s Faith,
That o're Crown'd Heads a Sovereignty he hath.

  Thus on a sure Foundation, as they thought,
They had their Structure to Perfection wrought
When God, who shews regard to Sacred Kings, }
The Plot and Plotters to Confusion brings,  }
And in a moment down their _Babel_ flings.  }
A _Levite_, who had _Baalite_ turn'd, and bin
One of the Order of the _Chemarim_,
Who in the Plot had deeply been concern'd,
And all their horrid Practices had learn'd;
Smote in his Conscience with a true Remorse,
From King and Land diverts the threat'ning Curse.
_Libni_, I think they call'd the _Levite_'s Name,
Which in _Judea_ still will be of Fame;
Since following Heaven's Impulse and high Command,
He prov'd a Glorious Saviour of the Land.
By him the deep Conspiracy's o'rethrown,
The Treason, and the Traytors all made known:
For which from _Baalites_ he had Curses store;
But by the _Jews_ loaded with Blessings more.
The Hellish Plotters were then seiz'd upon,
And into Goals and Iron Fetters thrown;
From whence to Lawful Tryals they were born,
Condemn'd for Traytors, and hang'd up with Scorn:
Yet _Chemarims_ with matchless Impudence,
With dying Breath avow'd their Innocence:
So careful of their Order they still were,
Lest Treason in them Scandal should appear,
That Treason they with Perjury pursue,
Having their Arch-priest's Licence so to do.
They fear'd not to go perjur'd to the Grave,
Believing their Arch-priest their Souls could save:
For all God's Power they do on him bestow,
And call him their Almighty God below.
To whom they say three powerful Keys are given,
Of Hell, of Purgatory, and of Heav'n.
No wonder then if _Baalites_ this believe,
They should, with their false Oaths try to deceive,
And gull the People with their Dying Breath,
Denying all their Treason at their Death.
This made Impression on some easie Minds,
Whom or good Nature, or false Pity blinds;
Mov'd their Compassion, and stirr'd up their Grief,
And of their dying Oaths caus'd a Belief.
This did effect what the curs'd Traytors sought,
The Plots Belief into Discredit brought,
Of it at first, some Doubts they only rais'd,
And with their Impudence the World amaz'd:
Tho' _Azyad_'s Murder did the _Jews_ convince,
Who was a man most Loyal to his Prince,
And by the Bloody _Chemarims_ did fall,
Because he seiz'd the Trayt'rous Priests of _Baal_:
Tho' _Gedaliah_'s Letters made all plain,
Who was their Scribe, and of a ready Brain:
A _Levite's_ Son, but turn'd a _Baalite_,
Who for the King's own Brother then did write,
And Correspondence kept i'th' _Egyptian_ Court,
To whom the Traytors for Advice resort;
Who like a zealous, trayt'rous _Baalite_ dy'd,
And at the Fatal Tree the Plot deny'd.
Tho' _Amazia_ did at first believe,
And to the Hellish Plot did Credit give;
Tho' the Great Council of the _Sanhedrim_,
Among the _Jews_ always of great Esteem,
Declar'd to all the World this Plot to be,
An Hellish, and a curs'd Conspiracy,
To kill the King, Religion to o'rethrow,
And cause the _Jews_ their Righteous Laws forgoe;
To make the People to dumb Idols fall,
And in the place of God, to set up _Baal_:
Tho' all the People saw it, and believ'd;
Tho' Courts of Justice, hard to be deceiv'd,
Had added to the rest their Evidence,
Yet with a strange unheard of Impudence,
The _Baalites_ all so stoutly had deny'd        }
Their Hellish Plot, with Vows and Oaths beside, }
And with such Diligence themselves apply'd.     }
They at the last, their sought for point had got,
And artfully in doubt had brought their Plot.
A thousand cunning Shams and Tricks they us'd,
Whereby the simple Vulgar were abus'd;
And some o'th' _Edomitish_ Evidence,
Who _Mammon_ worship'd, were brought off with pence.
_Libni_, for whom, before their Harps they strung, }
Who was the Subject of each _Hebrew_'s Song,       }
Was villify'd by every Rascall's Tongue.           }
In Secret, and inglorious did remain,
And the Plot thought the Project of his Brain.

  The _Baalites_ thus encourag'd by Success,
Increase their Hopes, and their black Projects bless:
Like the bold _Titans_, Plot on Plot they lay,
And Heav'n it self with impious Arms essay.
A new Invention wrought in Hell below,
The _Jews_, and their Religion to o'erthrow;
They bring to light, with this their Hopes they raise,
And for dire Plots, think they deserve the Bays.
This Engine stronger than th' old _Roman_ Ram
For Battery, by a new name call'd Sham,
With well learn'd, and successful Arts they use
To overthrow the _Syn'gogues_ of the _Jews_,
Their Worship and Religion to confound.
And lay their Glorious Temple on the Ground.
With this new Engine, they a Breach had made,
By which they hop'd the Loyal _Jews_ t' invade.
With Troops of Treasons, and Rebellious Plots,
Led on by Villains, perjur'd Rogues and Sots;
And with such Arms, in Hells black Work-house form'd,
The peaceful _Jews_ they violently storm'd;
Who 'gainst the _Ba'lites_ Plots had no defence,
But God, their Laws, and their own Innocence.

  Among the Princes of the _Jewish_ Race,
For Wisdom, _Hushai_ had the Chiefest Place,
Prudent in Speech, and in his Actions close,
Admir'd by all, and feared by his Foes;
Well skill'd, and knowing in the _Jewish_ Laws,
Able to plead, and to defend a Cause,
Of piercing Judgment, and of pregnant Wit,
Did once Chief Judge of all _Judea_ sit;
Was then esteem'd the Honor of the Gown,        }
And with his Vertues sought to serve the Crown, }
Till Foes procur'd him _Amazia_'s Frown.        }
Then he descended from the hight of Place,
Without a Blemish, and without Disgrace;
Yet inly griev'd; for he could well divine
The Issue of the _Baalites_ curs'd Design,
To see Religion, and God's Righteous Cause,
The Ancient Government, the Nation's Laws,
Unpropping, and all ready strait to fall,
And the whole Race of _Jews_ made Slaves to _Baal_:
With Zeal inspired, boldly up he 'rose,
To wrestle with the King's, and Nation's Foes;
And tho' he was with Wealth and Honor blest,
He scorn'd to give his Age its needful Rest:
He learn'd, that man was not born for himself,
To get great Titles, Names, or sordid Pelf,
To wear a lazy Life, himself to please,
With Idleness, and with luxurious Ease:
When he beheld his Country in distress,
And none the Danger able to redress,
He did resolve, tho' not affecting Fame,
Or to obtain a Patriot's Glorious Name,
His Rest, his Life, his Fortune to expose,
Rather than see his Countrey's dangerous Foes
Run on uncheck'd, till they had brought the Land,
To their, and to a _Baalite_ King's Command.
He could not therefore so himself forget,
To see the Barques of Government o'erset;
But with his Skill he help'd the Boat to trim,
And boldly did oppose _Eliakim_.
_Eliakim_ was Brother to the King,
From the same Loins, and Royal _Seed_ did spring;
Of Courage bold, and of a daring mind,             }
To whom the King, ev'n to Excess was kind;         }
And tho' he had a Son, for him the Crown design'd. }
Sweet _Azaria_, like the beauteous Morn,
Whence all Sweets flow, did once that Court adorn,
A budding Rose, whose Beauty's newly blown,
Or like a Cedar on Mount _Lebanon_:
He in his Father's Grace, and Favor grew,
And towards him the People's Eyes he drew.
He was by most belov'd, admir'd by all,
For's Zeal to God, and's Hatred unto _Baal_:
But ah! this mov'd the cursed _Baalite_'s Hate,
Disturb'd his Peace, and Troubles did create.
What can't Design and Hellish Malice do?
With Lyes they close this Noble Prince pursue.
They think his Father too indulgent grown,
Whose Love had many Blessings on him thrown,
But what exceeded all the rest beside,
He chose the sweet _Jerusha_ for his Bride:
A Blessing he esteemed far above
The Crown, and all things but his Father's Love:
For that he still above his Life did prize,
Dear as his Fame, and dearer than his Eyes.
Below his Feet, for that he all things trod,
Adoreing nothing more except his God.
Young as he was, he had acquired Fame,
His Breast infired with a Warlike Flame,
In Foreign Wars, his Courage he had shown,
Had Lawrels won, and brought home fair Renown:
Happy, most happy, till with wondrous Art,
His Foes had wrought him from his Father's Heart;
And so much Power on _Amazia_ won,
He by Degrees, grew jealous of his Son.
And who for this can _Amazia_ blame,
If that the King the Father overcame?
For Crowns by Kings esteemed are more near,
Than Children, or than Sons, belov'd more dear.
His Foes, _Baal_'s Friends, had laid their artful Snairs,
Hight'ned his Father's Jealousies and Fears,
And made each innocent Action of the Prince,
To give his Jealous Father an Offence.
If with wise _Hushai_ they the Prince did see,
They call'd their Meeting a Conspiracy,
And cry, that he was going to rebell:
Him _Absalom_ they name, _Hushai_ _Achitophel_.
With Slander thus the Prince they did pursue,
Aiming at's Life, and the wise _Hushai_'s too.
When they much pleased, and triumphing saw,
The King his Royal Favors to withdraw,
Which like a Spring on him before did flow,
And from him, all on others to bestow:
Defenceless left, naked, almost forlorn,
Subject to every trifling Rhimers Scorn,
And beyond _Jordan_ by their malice drove,
No Succor left him but the People's Love;
(For he was still their Darling and Delight,
Because they saw he was no _Baalite_,)
Their Hopes now almost at their Height did seem,
To place the Crown upon _Eliakim_.

  The _Jews_, God's People and peculiar Care,
For their true Worship still most zealous were;
That Jewel seem'd most pretious in their Eyes,
And it above all Humane things they prize.
No Torments could make them their Faith deny,
They willingly for their Religion die:
Their Liberties were also dear to them,
Sprung from a free, and not a slavish Stem,
Th' _Egyptian_ Bondage for their Souls unfit,
They never in _Judea_ would permit;
Their own known Laws, they willingly obey,
Hate Tyranny and Arbitrary Sway:
Nor did they many Priviledges want,
Kept from the Time they first the Land did plant;
For which to Death they lawfully would strive,
If injur'd by their King's Prerogative:
For some of them have try'd to break the Bound,
And did like _Ethnick_ Kings, their People's Freedom wound,
So _Rehoboam_ caus'd them to rebell,
And lost at once ten Tribes of _Israel_.
No people were more ready to obey
Their Kings, who rul'd them by a gentle Sway,
Who never sought their Consciences to curb,
Their Freedom or Religion to disturb.
To such they always open-hearted were,
For them, they neither Coin, nor Blood would spare.
Such Kings might their Prerogatives improve,
And rule the _Jews_, ev'n as they pleas'd with Love;
But stiff indeed they were, and moody grew,      }
When Tyrants did with cruel Stripes pursue       }
Them sore oppress'd, and sometimes murmur'd too. }
Kings they had try'd of ev'ry sort and size.
Best govern'd by the Warlike and the wise.
Tho' Kings they lov'd, and for them Reverence had,
They never would adore them as a God.
God's Worship, and their Laws they did prefer,
They knew, them men might by bad Councils Err.
Tho' Loyal, yet oppress'd, they did not fear
To make their heavy Grievances appear.
This was indeed the Humor of the _Jew_,
The People by Complaints their Griefs would shew;
And never would, in truth, contented seem,
Untill redress'd by their wise _Sanhedrim_.
Thus now the _Jews_, tho' free from ill Design,
In their Religious Cause together joyn:
They cast their Eyes on _Amazia_'s Son,
Who, without Arts the People's Love had won:
Full of tormenting Jealousies and Fears,
_Eliakim_ a dangerous man appears:
The sober part of the whole _Sanhedrim_,
Desire to keep _Judea's_ Crown from him:
For they foresaw if he should wear the Crown,
_Baal_'s Worship he'd set up, and God's cast down:
That all the Nations must be Slaves to _Baal_,
Suffer in Flames, fly, or 'fore Idolls fall.
Great were their Fears, but yet they did abhor
The very Thought of a dishonest War:
For they had seen the Kingdom's many Scarrs,
Th' unseemly Marks of former Civil Wars.
They _Amazia_ lov'd and wish'd him well,
Resolve to suffer rather than rebell;
Yet openly declare free from all Stain,
How much they hate a _Baalite_ should Reign;
And for this Cause, and for this Cause alone,
_Eliakim_ they'd put by from the Throne.

  _Eliakim_ at Court had many Friends,
By whom in Secret he could work his Ends;
So that no Accusation could remove
Him, deeply rooted in his Brother's Love.
But since the _Jews_ to him shew'd open Hate,
Lest that his presence should embroil the State;
And that the _Jews_ might have no cause to sin,
He's sent to rule the Tribe of _Benjamin_.
Thus two great Factions in _Judea_ rose,              }
So hotly each the other did oppose,                   }
'Twas fear'd they'd fall at last from Words to Blows. }
Each side most zealous for the King appears,
Each full of Jealousies and disturbing Fears,
Each pleads for _Amazia_ and the Laws,
God and Religion both do make their Cause:
Both Loyalty profess, both opposite,            }
Both would persuade that each was in the right, }
Tho' both contrary shew as day and night.       }
Sweet _Azaria_ with these Troubles mov'd,
On that side hated, and by this belov'd;
Fearing th' inveterate Malice of his Foes,
Which he sought to avoid, not to oppose,
And lest they should their sought Occasion find, }
To tax him of an ill ambitious mind,             }
By seeing all the _Jews_ to him so kind;         }
Lest he should grow i'th' King's Opinion worse,
He seeks for Council how to steer his Course,
That he might to the Court give no Offence,
But live wrapt up in his own fair Innocence,
The wise and thoughtful _Hushai_ he doth find,
And thus to him he breaks his troubled Mind,
Great Councellor, and Favorite of Heav'n,
To whom the Blessing of true Wisdom's giv'n,
Which by no Mortal can possessed be,
Whose Thoughts are not inform'd by Loyalty.
I know Reproaches upon you are thrown;
But judge your Innocency by my own.
I am accused Sir, as well as you,
And the same Foe doth both our Lives pursue.
He fears your Wisdom, may his Hindrance prove,
And me, because I have the People's Love:
His Creatures therefore throw on you and me,
The Scandal of a curs'd Conspiracy,
Against our King and Father to rebell:
Me _Absalom_, and you _Achitophel_
They name; bad Councellor, and worser Son,
Who Traytors, durst into Rebellion run.
My Father governs with so equal Sway,
That all both love him, and his Laws obey:
He seems Heav'n's Care, who set him in the Throne,
Preserved by his wondrous Power alone.
Oh may on him no Blemish fall or stain,
But all live happy in his peaceful Reign:
May he be happy still as he is good,
Like God in Mercy, not inclin'd to Blood.
This is the Prayer that I daily make; }
For Piety shall never me forsake,     }
Tho' I his Royal Favor ne'er partake. }
And tho' my Foes have with their subtil Art
Banish'd me from my Royal Father's Heart,
Which is the Source of all my Grief and Woe,
My just Obedience I will ne'er forgoe.
Nor has Disgrace, nor my hot Passions wrought,
Within my Breast one bad disloyal Thought.
I ne'er believ'd my Father would betray
His People, or sought Arbitrary Sway:
Or tho' his People did his Wrath provoke,
He meant to curb them with an Iron Yoak.
Yet do I think, nay more than think, the Cause
(But here his passion made some little pause,
Till sighing, at the last he thus went on)
Why my Great Father does disown his Son;
They say I am but of a spurious Brood,
My Mother being of Ignoble Blood:
For _Jocoliah_ was but mean by Birth,
Tho' with the King she mix'd her baser Earth.
I was begotten in my Father's Flight,
E'er to the Crown he had obtain'd his Right:
And since I from his Favor did decline,
He has declar'd her but his Concubine.
This has the Hopes rais'd of _Eliakim_,
And _Amaziah_'s Crown design'd for him;
My Hopes are lost, and I do think it fit,
I should to God, Right, and the King submit;
But yet, wise _Hushai_ know, I still do find,
My Birth has not so much debas'd my mind,
To make me stoop to low or mean desires;
I feel my Father's Royal Blood inspires
My depress'd Soul, wipes off th' ignoble Stain,
Renders me apt, or not unfit to reign.
Of _David_'s Royal Blood, my self I own,
And with it never can disgrace the Throne.
Tho' my bold Spirits, mounting thus, do fly
Towards the Noble hight of Sovereignty,
And that I feel my Father's Blood to rowl
Through every Vein and animate my Soul;
Yet so much Loyalty is sown within
My Breast, I would not Empire gain with Sin:
For when my ambitious Thoughts begin to roam,
Their Forces, I with that soon overcome.
Tho' to God's Laws, and to the King's I yield,
To my known Foes I would not leave the Field.
I'd not be trampl'd on by sordid Feet,
Nor take Affronts from ev'ry one I meet:
I'd give no Cause they should my Courage doubt,
Nor to Rebellion push the vulgar Rout,
I to my Father would give no Offence,
Nor while he lives, lay to the Crown Pretence;
But since Life's sweet, by Wisdom I'd keep mine,
From _Baalites_ Hate, and _Eliakim_'s Design:
This my wise Friend, is my chief Business now,
To take some Sage and good Advice from you.

  _Hushai_ in Silence heard the Prince, and weigh'd
Each word he spake, then to him thus reply'd;
Great Prince, th' Almighty has to you been kind, }
Stamp'd Graces on your Body and your mind,       }
As if he for your Head a Crown design'd.         }
We shall not search into Fates Secret Womb,
God alone knows the things that are to come;
But should you never sit on _David_'s Throne,
'Tis better to deserve than wear a Crown.
Of Royal Blood, and of great Birth you are,
Born under some benign auspicious Star,
Lov'd by the best, and prais'd by every Tongue,
The glorious Subject of each worthy Song:
The young man's Wish, Joy of each Warlike Wight,
The People's Darling, and the World's Delight.
A Crowd of Vertues fill your Princely Breast, }
And what appears more glorious than the rest, }
You are of Truth and Loyalty possest.         }
That I would cherish in you, that would raise
To an admired height, that I would chiefly praise.
Let Fools and subtil Politicians scorn
Fair Vertue, which doth best a Prince adorn:
Whilst you her bright and shining Robes put on,
You will appear more great than _Solomon_.
Let not Great Prince, the Fumes of Vulgar Praise,
Your bolder Spirits to Ambition raise.
We cannot see into the Mist of Fate,
Till time brings forth, you must expecting wait;
But Fortune, rather Providence, not Chance,
The constant, stout, and wise doth still advance.
Let your quick Eye be to her Motions ty'd;
But still let Noble Vertue be your Guide:
For when that God and Vertue points the way,
There can be then no danger to obey.
But here in Wisdom's School we ought to learn,
How we 'twixt Good and Evil may discern,
For, noble Prince, you must true difference make,
Lest for the one the other you mistake.
You must not think you may your self advance,
By laying hold on every proffer'd chance.
Tho Fortune seems to smile, and egg you on,
Let Vertue be your Rule and Guide alone.
Thus _David_ for his Guide his Vertue took;
Nor was by Fortune's proffer'd Kindness shook.
His Vertue and his Loyalty did save
King _Saul_, when Fortune brought him to his Cave,
And if that I may to you Counsel give,
You should without a Crown for ever live,
Rather than get it by the Peoples Lust,
Or purchase it by ways that are unjust.
_David_ your Ancestor, from whom you spring,
Would never by Rebellion be made King;
But long in _Gath_ a Warring Exile stay'd,
Till for him God a lawful way had made.
In _Hebron_, full of Glory and Renown,
He gain'd, at last, and not usurpt the Crown.
By full Consent he did the same obtain,
And Heav'n's anointing Oyl was not in vain.
I once did seem to _Amazia_ dear,
Who me above m'ambitious hopes did rear;
I serv'd him then according to my skill,
And bow'd my Mind unto my Soveraign's Will.
Too neer the Soveraign Image then I stood,
To think that every Line and Stroke was good.
Some Daubers I endeavour'd to remove,
And to amend their artless Errours strove.
My Skill in secret these with slander wound;
With every Line I drew still faults were found;
Till wearied, I at last my Work gave o're. }
And _Amazia_ (I shall say no more)         }
Did me to my lov'd Privacy restore.        }
For this they think I must my Vertue change,
For Envy, Malice, and for sweet Revenge.
Me by themselves they judge, who would do so,
And cause the King suspect me for his Foe.
But by th'advice I give, you best will find
Th'Integrity and Plainness of my Mind;
And that I harbour not that vile intent
Their Poets and their Malice do invent.
Far be't from me, to be like Cursed _Cham_;
A good Son strives to hide his Father's shame.
A King, the Father of his Country is;
His shame is every Act he doth amiss.
Good and just Kings God's Image bear; but when
Their Frailties let us see they are but Men,
We cannot every Action so applaud,
As if it came from an unerring God.
Kings have their Passions, and deceiv'd may be,
When b'others Ears and Eyes they hear and see:
For Sycophants, of Courts the Bane and Curse,
Make all things better than they are, or worse.
To Evil prone, to Mischief ever bent,        }
Th'all Objects with false colours represent; }
The Guilty clear, condemn the Innocent.      }
Thus, noble Prince, they you and me accuse
With all the Venome Malice can infuse.
_Baal_'s Priests, Hell, and our Foes, new Arts have got,
The filthy Reliques of their former Plot;
Whereby they would our Lives in danger bring,
And make us cursed Traytors to the King.
What mayn't these cunning men hope to atchieve,
When by their Arts few men their Plot believe?
When b'horrid ways, not known to _Jews_ before,
Their Plot's transform'd, and laid now at our door?
But fear not, Sir, we have a sure Defence,
The Peoples Love, God, Law, and Innocence.
Keep fast your Vertue, and you shall be blest,
And let alone to God and Time the rest.
  The Noble Youth, with Vertues Robes arrai'd,
Consider'd well what the wise _Hushai_ said.
Desire of Power, though of Celestial Birth,
Below, is ever intermixt with Earth:
And all who do to hight of Place aspire,
Have earthly Smoak mixt with their mounting Fire.
Praise may debauch, and strong Ambition blind,
Where heav'nly Vertue does not guard the Mind.
But _Azaria_ so well understood,
He left the Evil, and embrac'd the Good:
Tho in his breast aspiring thoughts he found,
Yet Loyalty still kept them within bound.
And tho he might have Empire in his Eye,
When to it by his bloud allay'd so nigh,
Yet in his Soul such Virtue did remain,
He by Rebellion would not Empire gain.
Through every Vein his Loyal Bloud did run,
Yet Royal too, as _Amazia_'s Son.
About his noble Heart he felt it spring;
Which let him know his Father was a King.
If that to _Azaria_ were a Blot,
His Father made it when he him begot:
But Heav'n such Virtue moulded with his Soul,
That his aspiring Lust it did controul.
Thus to wise _Hushai_ he repli'd: I finde
Your Counsel is agreeing with my Minde.
And tho my Foes me an ill man do make,
My Loyalty I never will forsake:
Yet, prudent _Hushai_, do not Nature blame, }
If I cannot, unmov'd, appear so tame        }
As not to shew Resentment at my Shame.      }
Oh, would to Heav'n I ne'er had been begot!
Or never had been born a Royal Blot!
My Father's Bloud runs thorow every Vein;         }
He form'd those Spirits which desire to reign,    }
Mount t'wards a Throne, and sordid Earth disdain. }
In Glory, Fame, Crowns, Empire, they delight,
And to all these they would assert my Right.
And my great Thoughts do whisper there is none
Can be more neer a Father, than his Son.
This prompts me to oppose _Eliakim_,
And never yield my Father's Crown to him.
But then one groveling thought strait pulls me down,
And throws me at a distance from The Crown.
Oh, would to God------And here he stopt and sigh'd,
Whilst _Hushai_ thus to the griev'd Prince repli'd.

  Indeed, great Prince, it seemeth wondrous strange
To all the World, to see your Father's change;
To find the happy Love he us'd to show'r,
Like fruitful Rain, on you, to fall no more:
To see a Son, the Father's dear Delight,
His pleasing Joy, now banish'd from his sight.
Nature must in the Father deeply groan,
When from his Heart is rent so dear a Son.
Nor can I think, tho he from you should part,
A Brother e'er can lie so near his Heart.
To work this Change, your Foes much Art do use, }
Their venom'd Tongues your Fathers Ears abuse,  }
And you of an aspiring mind accuse.             }
Justice in _Amazia_ bears such sway,
That even Nature must to it give way;
H'ad rather Nature force, and part with you,
Than seem to rob another of his due.
He holds it just, and as a thing divine,
To keep unbroken still the Royal Line.
Such an Example we can hardly find,
A King to's Brother so exceeding kind;
When by it he doth such great hazard run,
Losing at once his People and his Son.
Grieve not, great Prince, at your unhappy Fate; }
Let not your Birth your Vertue to abate;        }
It was not you that could your self create.     }
I should great folly shew, should I repine
At what I could not help, and was no fault of mine.
Tho by your Mothers side your Birth was mean,
And tho your Mother no declared Queen,
If Heaven and your Father please, you may
By lawful Right, _Judea_'s Scepter sway,
After that he is number'd with the Dead,
And his great Soul to _Abraham_'s Bosom fled.
Possession of a Crown clears every Stain;
No blot of Birth to you can then remain.
What Pow'r on Earth, by Right, dares question you?
Or what your Father and _Sanhedrim_ do?
Nor is your Birth to Heaven any let;
God _Jepthtah_ once did o're _Judea_ set.
He was a Conquerour of a mighty Name,
And's Mother no ways did eclipse his Fame,
Nor bar'd him from the Title of a King,
Nor those who after from his Loins did spring.
Nature may yet make your great Father kind;
And who can tell but he may change his mind,
When your Succession shall be understood
To be the Peoples Choice, and for the Nations Good?
But let us leave what is to come, to Fate;
Yours Father's pleasure and God's will await.
Long may it be ere the King's life doth end;
On it our Peace and Happiness depend.
Like Wheat full ripe, with many years bow'd down,
Let him leave this for an immortal Crown.
And who can tell Heav'n's will? it may be too,
_Eliakim_ may die before the King or you.
Think of no Titles while your Father lives;
Take not what an unjust Occasion gives.
For to take Arms you can have no pretence,
Tho it should be e'en in your own defence.
It better were without the Crown to die,
Than quit your Vertue and blest Loyaltie.
You with the numerous Peoples Love are blest,
Not of the Vulgars onely, but the Best.
I would not have you their kind Love repel,
Nor give encouragement for to rebel:
For their Affection which they wildly shew,
Is rendred, by your Foes, a Crime in you.
Here you your Course must even steer and strait, }
That you may not your Father's fears create;     }
Keep the _Jews_ Love, and not increase his Hate. }
Leave for a while the Citie and the Court,
Go and divert your self with Country-sport;
Perhaps your Foes may then abate their spight,
And you may be forgot, when out of sight.
By your Retirement, you will let them see
You'd take away all cause of Jealousie.
That you, like _Absalom_, will never prove,
To court the head-strong Peoples factious Love.
Nor will I ever prove _Achitophel_,
To give you wicked Counsel to rebel.
Continue still your Loyalty, be just;
And for the Crown, God and your Vertue trust.
Endeavour not to take what may be giv'n;
Deserve it first, and then receive't from Heav'n.

  He said, And this Advice above the rest,
Suited with _Azaria_'s Vertue best.
He was not stain'd with Cruelty or Pride;
A thousand Graces he possest beside.
To Vertue he was naturally inclin'd,
And Goodness clothed his heroick Mind.
His Kingly Vertues made him fit to reign,
Yet scorn'd by evil Arts the Crown to gain.
And tho he Empire to desire did seem,
His Loyalty was still more dear to him:
Therefore he did not court the Peoples Love,
Nor us'd their Pow'r his Rival to remove.
From's Father he fought not their Hearts to steal,
Nor head a Faction mov'd by blinding Zeal;
But like a vertuous and a pious Son,
Sought all occasions of Offence to shun.
In private like a common man sat down,
His Peace his Rule, his Loyalty his Crown.

  Thus humble, vertuous, loyal, void of Pride,
Most of the _Jews_ he gained to his side.
Not factious Sects, the Rabble, or the rude
Erring, unthinking, vulgar Multitude:
But the chief Tribes and Princes of the Land,
Who durst for _Moses_'s ancient Statutes stand.
The pious, just, religious, and the good,
Men of great Riches, and of greater Bloud,
Did, as one man, themselves together joyn
To stop the _Baalites_, and Hell's curst design.
Not wicked, or seduc'd by impious Arts,
But Loyal all, and Patriots in their Hearts.
For they beheld the _Baalites_ foul intent,
Religion to o'rethrow and Government.
These at the Monarch's Power did not grutch,
Since bound by Laws, he could not have too much.
What Laws prescribe, they thought he well might have,
How could he else his Realm in danger save?
But _Baal_'s or _Egypt_'s Yoke they would refuse,
Not fitting for the Necks of free-born _Jews_.
They all resolve the King not to oppose,
Yet to defend the Nation from its Foes.
And were it not for those great Worthy men,
The _Jews_ distress'd and wretched soon had been.
Among the Rout perhaps there some might blend,
Whose int'rest made them Publick Good pretend;
Weary of Peace, new Troubles would create,
And for their private Gain, embroyl the State.
And some perhaps there were, who thought a King
To be of Charge, and but an useless thing.
Some idle Fops, who publickly debate
To shew their Parts, the deep Intrigues of State;
These and some others, for a Commonwealth,
Among the Herd, unseen, might hide by stealth:
But it would strange to common Justice seem,
For some few bad, the sound Flock to condemn.
Like Goats among the Sheep, well known these bleat,
And are like Darnel 'mong the purest Wheat.
These not as Friends, but Enemies to the Throne,
Good Patriots and good Subjects did disown.
And _Azaria_, tho they us'd his name,
Disdain'd their Friendship with a loyal shame.

  But he beheld appearing on his side,
Princes, whose Faith and Loyalty were try'd;
Such as no base or sordid ends could move,
Who did his Father and their Country love.
In the first rank of these did _Nashon_ stand,
None nobler or more loyal in the Land.
Under the King he once did _Edom_ sway,
And taught that Land the _Jews_ good Laws t'obey.
True to his Word, and of unspotted Fame;
Great both in Parts, in Vertue, and in Name.
His Faith ne'r touch'd, his Loyalty well known,
A Friend both to his Country and the Throne.
Base ends his great and noble Soul did scorn,
Of loyal, high, and noble Parents born.
His Father with renown and great Applause,
For _Joash_ di'd, and suffer'd for his Cause.
Of great _Aminadab_ who would not sing,
Whose glory shin'd next to the martyr'd King?
From him his Son true Loyalty understood,
Imprest on's Soul, seal'd with his Father's Bloud.
The grave, religious, wife, rich _Helon_ too, }
Much honoured by every zealous _Jew_,         }
Appear'd a Patriot, to his Country true.      }
In the _Jews_ Laws, and strict Religion bred,
And _Baal_'s curst Rites did much abhor and dread.
His Son _Eliab_, in the _Sanhedrim_,
With courage had oppos'd _Eliakim_:
A man whose many Vertues, and his Parts,
Had won upon the sober Peoples Hearts.
From every Faction, and from Envy free;     }
Lov'd well the King, but hated Flatterie;   }
Kept _Moses_'s Laws, yet was no _Pharisee_. }
He went not to their _Synagogues_ to pray,
But to the Holy Temple every day.
With piercing Judgment saw the Lands Disease,
And labour'd onely for the Kingdoms Peace:
Loyal and honest was esteem'd by all,
Excepting those who strove to set up _Baal_.
For an ill Action he ne'r stood reprov'd;
But's King, his Country, and Religion lov'd.
No Taint ere fell upon _Eliab_'s name,
Nor Hell it self found cause to spot his Fame.
_Pagiel_ with honour loaded, and with years,
Among this Loyal Princely Train appears.
None _Pagiel_ tax'd, for no one ever knew
That he to _Amazia_ was untrue.
A Fame unspotted he might truly boast;
Yet he had Foes, and his gain'd Favours lost.
_Zuar_, a sober and a vertuous Prince,
Who never gave least cause of an offence.
_Elishama_, at once both sage and young,       }
From noble and from loyal Fathers sprung,      }
Shone bright among this sober Princely throng. }
_Enan_, a Prince of very worthie Fame;
Great in deserved Title, Bloud, and Name.
_Elizur_ too, who number'd with the best
In Vertue, scorn'd to lag behind the rest.
_Abidon_ and _Gamaliel_ had some sway;
Both loyal, and both zealous in their way.
And now once more I will invoke my Muse,
To sing brave _Ashur_'s praise who can refuse?
Sprung from an ancient and a noble Race,
With Courage stampt upon his manly face;
Young, active, loyal; had through Dangers run,
And with his Sword abroad had Honours won:
Well-spoken, bold, free, generous, and kind,
And of a noble and discerning mind.
Great ones he scorn'd to court, nor fools would please,
But thought it better for to trust the Seas.
He thought himself far safer in a Storm,
And should receive from raging Seas less harm,
Than from those dangerous men, who could create
A Storm at Land, with Envie and with Hate.
And now got free from all their Trains and Wiles, }
He at their hateful Plots and Malice smiles,      }
Plowing the Ocean for new Honour toils.           }
These were the chief; a good and faithful Band }
Of Princes, who against those men durst stand  }
Whose Counsel sought to ruine all the Land.    }
With grief they saw the cursed _Baalites_ bent
To batter down the _Jewish_ Government;
To pull their Rights and true Religion down,
By setting up a _Baalite_ on the Throne.
These wisely did with the _Sanhedrim_ joyn;
Which Council by the _Jews_ was thought divine.
The next Successour would remove, 'tis true,
Onely because he was a _Baalite_ Jew.
Ills they foresaw, and the great danger found, }
Which to the King (as by their Dutie bound)    }
They shew'd, and open laid the bleeding Wound. }
But such who had possest his Royal Ear,
Had made the King his Loyal Subjects fear;
Did their good Prince with causeless terrour fright,
As if these meant to rob him of his Right.
Said, They with other Rebels did combine,
And had against his Crown some ill designe:
That the wise _Hushai_ laid a wicked Train,
And _Azaria_ sought in's stead to reign:
That the old Plot to ruine Church and State,
Was born from _Hushai_'s and the _Levite_'s Pate:
That _Pharisees_ were bold and numerous grown,
And sought to place their Elders in his Throne.
No wonder then if _Amazia_ thought
These Loyal Worthies did not as they ought;
That they did Duty and Obedience want,
And no Concessions from the Throne would grant.

  They who in _Amazia_'s favour grew,
Themselves obnoxious to the People knew.
Some were accused by the _Sanhedrim_,
Most Friends and Allies to _Eliakim_:
For his Succession eagerly they strove,
And him, the rising Sun, adore and love.
When _Doeg_, who with _Egypt_ did combine,
And to enslave _Judea_ did designe,
Accus'd of Treason by the _Sanhedrim_,
Kept in the Tower of _Jerusalem_;
The Object prov'd of fickle Fortunes sport,
And lost the Honours he possest at Court.
_Elam_ in favour grew, out stript by none,
And seem'd a Prop to _Amazia_'s Throne.
He had in foreign parts been sent to School,
And did in _Doeg_'s place the Kings thin Treasure rule.
He to _Eliakim_ was neer alli'd;
What greater parts could he possess beside?
For the wise _Jews_ believ'd the King did run
Some hazard, if he prov'd his Father's Son.
But now, alas! th' Exchequer was grown poor,
The Coffers empty, which did once run o're.
The bounteous King had been so very kind,
That little Treasure he had left behind.
_Elam_ had gotten with the empty Purse,
For his dead Father's sake the Peoples Curse:
For they believ'd that no great good could spring
From one false to his Country and his King.
_Jotham_ the fickle Shuttle-cock of Wit,
Was bandied several ways to be made fit:
Unconstant, he always for Honour tri'd,
At last laid hold upon the rising side.
If Wit he had, 'twas thought, by not a few,
He a better thing did want, and Wisdom too.
Then _Amiel_ would scarce give place to him,
Who once the chief was of the _Sanhedrim_.
He then appeared for the Crowns defence;
But spoke his own, and not the Nations sense.
And tho he praised was by _Shimei_'s Muse,
The _Jews_ of many Crimes did him accuse.
_Harim_, a man like a bow'd Ninepence bent,
Had tried all the ways of Government:
Was once a Rebel, and knew how to cant;
Then turn'd a very Devil of a Saint:
Peevish, morose, and some say, prov'd a fool,
When o're the _Edomites_ he went to rule.
When to his bent the King he could not bring,
He fairly then went over to the King.
Old _Amalack_, a man of cunning head,
Once in the cursed School of Rebels bred;
From thence his Maximes and his Knowledge drew,
Of old known Arts how to enslave the _Jew_.
For pardon'd Treason, thus sought to atone,
Had wrong'd the Father, would misguide the Son.
Once in Religion a strict _Pharisee_,
To _Baal_'s then turn'd, or else of none was he.
He long before seem'd to approve their Rites,
Marrying his issue to the _Baalites_.
A constant hunter after sordid Pelf;
Was never just to any but himself:
A very _Proteus_ in all shapes had been,
And constant onely, and grown old in sin.
To speak the best of _Amalack_ we can,
A cunning Devil in the shape of Man.
_Muppim_, a man of an huge working Pate,
Not how to heal, but to embroil the State;
Knew how to take the wrong, and leave the right;
Was once himself a Rebel _Benjamite_.
To that stiff Tribe he did a while give Law,
And with his iron Yokes kept them in aw.
The Tyrant _Zabed_ less did them provoke,
And laid upon their necks a gentler Yoke.
Amongst that Tribe he left an hated Name,
And to _Jerusalem_ from thence he came,
Where he tyrannick Arts sought to intrude, }
To learn which, _Amazia_ was too good,     }
And better the _Jews_ temper understood.   }
Refus'd, the Serpent did with Woman joyn,
And Counsels gave th'_Egyptian_ Concubine.
_Adam_, first Monarch, fell between these two;
What can't the Serpent and a Woman do?
These with some more of the like size and sort,
In _Sion_ made up _Amazia_'s Court:
Whilst his best friends became these Rulers scorn,
Saw how they drove, and did in silence mourn.
_Sion_ did then no Sacrifice afford;
_Gibbar_ had taught the frugal King to board.
Void were its Cellars, Kitchins never hot,
And all the Feasts of _Solomon_ forgot.
Others there were, whose Names I shan't repeat;
_Eliakim_ had friends both small and great:
And many, who then for his Favour strove,
With their hot heads, like furious _Jehu_, drove.
Some Wits, some Witless, Warriors, Rich and Poor,
Some who rich Clothes and empty Titles wore;
Some who knew how to rail, some to accuse,
And some who haunted Taverns and the Stews.
Some roaring Bullies, who ran th'row the Town
Crying, God damn 'um, they'd support the Crown:
Whose wicked Oaths, and whose blasphemous Rant,
Had quite put down the holy zealous Cant.
Some were for War, and some on Mischief bent;
And some who could, for gain, new Plots invent.
Some Priests and Levites too among the rest,
Such as knew how to blow the Trumpet best:
Who with loud noise and cackling, cri'd like Geese,
For Rites, for Temple, and for dearer Fleece.
'Twixt God and _Baal_, these Priests divided were; }
Which did prevail, these greatly did not care;     }
But headlong drove, without or wit or fear.        }
The _Pharasees_ they curse, as Sons of _Cham,_
And all dissenting _Jews_ to Hell they damn.
_Shimei_ the Poet Laureate of that Age,
The falling Glory of the _Jewish_ Stage,
Who scourg'd the Priest, and ridicul'd the Plot,
Like common men must not be quite forgot.
Sweet was the Muse that did his wit inspire,
Had he not let his hackney Muse to hire:
But variously his knowing Muse could sing,
Could _Doeg_ praise, and could blaspheme the King:
The bad make good, good bad, and bad make worse,
Bless in Heroicks, and in Satyrs curse.
_Shimei_ to _Zabed_'s praise could tune his Muse,
And Princely _Azaria_ could abuse.
_Zimri_ we know he had no cause to praise,
Because he dub'd him with the name of _Bays_.
Revenge on him did bitter Venome shed,
Because he tore the Lawrel from his head;
Because he durst with his proud Wit engage,
And brought his Follies on the publick Stage.
Tell me, _Apollo_, for I can't divine,
Why Wives he curs'd, and prais'd the Concubine;
Unless it were that he had led his life
With a teeming Matron ere _she_ was a Wife:
Or that it best with his dear Muse did sute,
Who was for hire a very Prostitute.
The rising Sun this Poets God did seem,
Which made him tune's old Harp to praise _Eliakim_.
_Bibbai_, whose name won't in Oblivion rot,
For his great pains to hide the _Baalites_ Plot,
Must be remembred here: A Scribe was he,
Who daily damn'd in Prose the _Pharisee_.
With the Sectarian _Jews_ he kept great stir;
Did almost all, but his dear self, abhor.
What his Religion was, no one could tell;
And it was thought he knew himself not well:
Yet Conscience did pretend, and did abuse,
Under the notion of Sectarian _Jews_,
All that he thought, or all that did but seem
Foes to _Baal_'s Rites, _Eliakim_, and him.
He was a man of a pernicious Wit
For railing, biting, and for mischief fit:
He never slept, yet ever in a Dream;
Religion, Law, and State, was all his Theam.
On these he wrote in _Earnest_ and in _Jeast_,
Till he grew mad, and turn'd into a Beast,
_Zattue_ his Zanie was, Buffoon, and Fool,
Who turn'd Religion into Ridicule:
Jeer'd at the Plot, did _Sanhedrims_ abuse,
Mock'd Magistrates, damn'd all Sects of the _Jews_.
Of little Manners, and of lesser Brains;
Yet to embroil the State, took wondrous pains.
In jeasting still his little Talent lay;
At _Hushai_ scoft in's witless grinning way.

  These with the rest, of every size and sort,      }
Strove to be thought Friends to the King and Court, }
With lyes and railing, would the Crown support.     }
Then in a Pageant shew a Plot was made,
And Law it self made War in Masquerade.
But fools they were, not warn'd by former ill,
By their own selves were circumvented still.
They thought by Bloud to give the Kingdom ease;
Physick'd the _Jews_ when they had no Disease.
Contingent mischiefs these did not foresee,
Against their Conscience fought, and God's Decree.
What shall we think, when such, pretending good,
Would build the Nations Peace on Innocent Blood?
These would expose the People to the Sword
Of each unbounded Arbitrary Lord.
But their good Laws, by which they Right enjoy,
The King nor could, nor ever would destroy.
And tho he Judge be of what's fit and just,
He own'd from Heaven, and from Man a Trust.
Tho Laws to Kingly Power be a Band,
They are not Slaves to those whom they command.
The Power that God at first to _Adam_ gave,
Was different far from what all Kings now have:
He had no Law but Will; but all Kings now
Are bound by Laws, as all Examples show.
By Laws Kings first were made, and with intent
Men to defend, by Heav'n's and Man's consent.
God to the Crown the Regal Power did bring,
And by Consent at first, Men chose their King.
If Kings usurp'd a Power, by force did sway,
The People by no Law were bound t'obey.
This does not in the People place a Right
To dissolve Soveraign sway by force or might.
To Kings, by long succession, there is giv'n
A native Right unto the Throne, by Heav'n:
Who may not be run down by common Cry,
For Vice, Oppression, and for Tyranny.
But if that Kings the tyes of Laws do break,
The People, without fault, have leave to speak;
To shew their Grievances, and seek redress
By lawful means, when Kings and Lords oppress.
Tho they can't give and take, whene'r they please,
And Kings allow'd to be God's Images.
The Government you Tyranny must call,
Where Subjects have no Right, and Kings have all.
But if reciprocal a Right there be,
Derived down unto Posteritie,
That side's in fault, who th'other doth invade,
By which soe'r at first the breach is made:
For Innovation is a dangerous thing,
Whether it comes from People or from King.
To change Foundations which long Ages stood,
Which have prov'd firm, unshaken, sound, and good,
To pull all down, and cast the Frame anew,
Is work for Rebels, and for Tyrants too.

  Now what relief could _Amazia_ bring,
Fatal indeed to be too good a King?
Friends he had many, but them did not know,
Or else made to believe they were not so:
For all that did ill Ministers oppose,
Were represented to him as his Foes.
Yet there were many thousands in those days,
Who _Amazia_ did both love and praise;
Who for him daily pray'd, and wish'd his good,
And for him would have spent both Coin and Bloud.
Yet these, tho the more numerous, and the best,
Were call'd but murmuring Traytors by the rest:
By such who strain'd till they had crackt the string
Of Government; lov'd Pow'r, and not the King
These daily hightned _Amazia_'s fears,
And thus they whisper'd to his Royal Ears:

  Sir, it is time you now take up the Sword,
And let your Subjects know you are their Lord.
Goodness by Rebels won't be understood,
And you are much too wonderful and good.
The _Jews_, a moody, murmuring, stubborn Race,
Grow worse by Favours, and rebel with Grace.
Pamper'd they are, grown rich and fat with ease,
Whom no good Monarch long could ever please.
Freedom and Liberty pretend to want;
That's still the cry, where they're on Mischief bent.
Freedom is their Disease; and had they less,
They would not be so ready to transgress.
Give them but Liberty, let them alone,
They shall not onely you, but God dethrone.
Remember, Sir, how your good Father fell;
It was his goodness made them first rebel.
And now the very self-same tract they tread,
To reach your Crown, and then take off your head.
A senseless Plot they stumbl'd on, or made,
To make you of th'old _Canaanites_ afraid.
Still when they mean the Nation to enthral,
With heavie Clamour they cry out on _Baal_.
But these hot Zealots who _Baal_'s Idols curse,
Bow to their own more ugly far and worse.
_Baal_ would but rob some Jewels from your Crown,
But these would Monarchy itself pull down:
Both Church and State they'l not reform by Halves,
Pull down the Temple, and set up their Calves.
You, and your Priests, they would turn out to Graze,
Nor would they let you smell a Sacrifize,
Those pious Offerings which Priests lasie made,
To Rebels, should, instead of God be paid.
How to the Prey these factious _Jews_ do run!
From you by art they have debauch'd your Son;
That little subtle Instrument of Hell,
Worse than to _David_ was _Achitophel_,
The young Man tutors, sends him through the Land,
That he the peoples minds may understand;
That he, with winning Charms, might court the _Jew_,
And draw your fickle Subjects hearts from you.
Alas! already they of you Complain.
And are grown sick of your too peaceful Reign,
Their Lusts grown high, they are debauch'd with Grace,
And like unfrozen Snakes fly in your Face.
These men who now pretend to give you Law,
Stood of the Tyrant _Zabed_'s power in awe;
He made them crouch who scorn'd a Prince's sway,
And forc'd them, like dull slaves, his power obey.
Of _Israel_, and of _Juda_'s Tribe you spring,
A Lion is the Ensign of a King,
Rouse up your self, in mildness sleep no more,
And make them tremble at your princely roar:
Appear like _Jove_ with Thunder in your hand,
And let the Slaves your power understand;
Strike but the sinning Princes Down to Hell,
The rest will worship you, and ne'r rebel.

  Thus these rash Men with their bad Counsels strove,
To turn to hate good _Amazia_'s Love.
A Prince to Mercy naturally inclin'd,         }
Not apt to fear, nor of a Jealous Mind,       }
Thought no Man e'r against his Life design'd, }
But these with Art did dangers represent,
And Plots they fram'd the People never meant.
Each Mole hill they a Mountain did create,
And sought to fright him with his Fathers Fate.
_Hushai_ at last was to a Prison sent,
As a false Traitor to the Government.
Loud murmurs then possest the troubled _Jews_,
Who were surprised at the fatal News;
His Wisdom they believed their chief support,
Against the evil Instruments at Court;
Nor, by his Actions, did they ever find,
He bore a Trait'rous, or a factious Mind:
And now they thought themselves expos'd to all
The Arts, and Plots of the hid friends to _Baal_.
Troubled, and discontented, at the last,
Their Eyes upon the noble Prince they cast.
Who fearing lest their discontent and rage,
Should them, to some rebellious Crime ingage,
Both for his Fathers, and his Countries sake,
The murmuring People sought more calm to make.
With a sweet Air, and with a graceful look,
He did command their silence, e'er he spoke.
Then thus he said, and though his words were few,
They fell like Manna, or the Hony Dew;

  My Country-men, Let not your discontent
Draw you to actions you will soon repent,
What e'er your fears and jealousies may be,
Let them not break the bonds of Loyalty.
I dare, and you may too, my Father trust,
For he's so merciful, so good, so just,
That he of no mans Life will make a Prey,
Or take it in an Arbitrary way,
To Heav'n, and to the King submit your cause,
Who never will infringe your ancient Laws;
But if he should an evil Action do,
To run to Arms, 'tis no pretence for you.
The King is Judge of what is just and fit,
And if he judge amiss you must submit,
Tho griev'd you must your constant duty pay,
And your Redress seek in a lawful way.
_Hushai_ tho he of Treason be accus'd,
Such loyal precepts in my soul infus'd,
That I the hazard of my life will run,
Rather than prove my self a Rebel Son.
Our Foes, have sought to' infect my Father's mind,
To think, you to Rebellion are inclin'd:
To stir you to Rebellion is their aim,
And they are mad, to see you justly tame.
Upon your Heads, they fain would lay their sin,
'Tis War they seek, but would have you begin:
Pretence they want, who for the King do seem,
To bring in, and set up _Eliakim_.
I am afraid the _Baalites_ cursed Plot,
By many laught at, and by most forgot,
Is carried on still, in their hidden Mine,
I fear, but dare not, the event, divine.
May Heav'n defend my Father's Life, and late,
Full ripe with Age, in peace, may he'yield to Fate.
I know, my Friends, for Him's your chiefest Care,
For him, as much as for your selves, you fear,
Upon his Life our happiness depends,
With it the peace of all _Judea_ ends,
Be vigilant, your foes Designs prevent,
Let not loud murmures shew your discontent:
Your Loyal Duty to your Soveraign pay,
Your Griefs present him in a Lawful way:
Be not too anxious for our common Friend,
God, and his Innocence will him defend:
Sit down in quiet, murmure not, but pray,
Submit to Heaven, your King, and Laws obey.
Youth, Beauty, and the Grace wherewith he spoke,
The Eyes, Ears, Hearts, of all the people took,
Their murmures then to joyful shouts were turn'd,
And they rejoyc'd, who lately murmuring mourn'd:
With Loyalty he did their Breasts inflame,
And they with shouts blest _Azaria_'s name.
The joyful Cry th'row all the City flew,
God save the King, and _Azaria_ too.
To him the Princes, his best Friends resort,
Resolv'd as Suppliants, to repair to Court;
In humble wise, to shew the King their Grief,
And on their bended Knees to seek Relief.
They 'approach'd the Throne, to it their homage paid,
Then to the King, the Loyal _Nashon_ said.
Great Sir, whom all good Subjects truly Love,
Tho all things that you do they can't approve,
We, whom the Throne has with high Honours blest,
Present you here the prayers of the rest;
Our bended Knees, as low as Earth we bow,
And humbly prostrate supplicate you now:
The blessing of your Love to us restore,
And raise us to your Favour, Sir, once more.
Where is the Joy, the Peace, and Quiet flown,
All had, when first you did ascend the Throne;
Now murmuring discontents assault our Ears,
And loud Complaints of jealousies, and fears:
Bad instruments help to blow up this Fire,
And with ill minds, their own worse Arts admire,
Whilst, by their means, you think your Friends your Foes,
For your best friends, your Enemies suppose;
Suspect your Loyal Subjects, and believe
The _Sanhedrim_ would you of Rights bereive.
Your people, who do love your gentle Sway,
And willingly their God, and you obey,
Who for Religion ever zealous were,
For that, for you, and for themselves do fear.
Clear as the Sun, by sad effects they find,
A _Baalite_ to succeed you is design'd:
Sir, they would not dispute with you, his right,
But they can n're indure a _Baalite_:
Tho whilst you live, they are secure and blest,
Yet are they with a thousand fears opprest,
Think your Life still in danger of the Plot,
Which now is laugh'd at, and almost forgot.
They see the _Baalites_ Hellish Plot run down,
And on the _Pharisees_ a false one thrown;
Your zealous faithful _Jews_ all Rebels made,
Their ruine hatch'd, you, and themselves betray'd.
Oh! Sir, before things to extreams do run,
Remember, at the least, you have a Son,
Let the _Sanhedrim_ with your wisdom joyn,
To keep unbroken still the Royal line;
And to secure our fears, that after you,
None shall succeed but a believing _Jew_.
Sir, this is all your Loyal Subjects Crave,
On you, as on a God, they cry to save.
Kings are like Gods on Earth, when they redress,
Their peoples Griefs, and save them in distress.
With loads of careful thoughts, the King opprest,
And long revolving in his Royal Breast,
Th' event of Things-----at last he silence broke,
And, with an awful Majesty, he spoke.
I've long in Peace _Judeas_ Scepter swaid,
None can Complain, I Justice have delay'd:
My Clemency, and Mercy has been shown,
Blood, and Revenge did ne'r pollute my Throne;
I and my People happy, kindly strove,
Which should exceed, my Mercy or their Love:
Who, till of late, more ready were to give
Supplies to me, than I was to receive.
Oh! happy days, and oh! unhappy change;
That makes my _Sanhedrims_, and my people strange,
And now, when I am in the Throne grown old,
With grief I see my Subjects Love prove cold.
They fear not my known Mercy to offend,
And with my awful Justice dare contend;
But yet their Crimes my mercy shan't asswage,
I'm ready to forgive th' offending Age,
And though they should my Kingly power slight,
I'le still keep for them my forgiving right.
I feel a tenderness within me spring,
I am my Peoples Father, and their King,
And tho I think, they may have done me wrong.
I can't remember their offences long.
Nature is mov'd, and sues for a Reprieve,
They are my Children, and I must forgive.
My many jealous fears I shan't repeat,
My Heart with a strong pulse of Love doth beat;
Nature I feel has made a sudden start,
And a fresh source springs from the Father's heart.
A stubborn Bow, drawn by the force of men,
The force remov'd, flies swifty back agen.
'Tis hard a Fathers nature to o'ercome,
How easily does she her force assume!
Sh' has o'er my Soul an easie Conquest won,
And I remember now I have a Son,
Whose Youth had long been my paternal Care,
Rais'd to the height his noble frame could bear,
And Heav'n has seem'd to give his Soul a turn,
As if ordain'd by Fate for Empire born.
By our known Laws I have the Scepter sway'd,
By them I govern'd, them my Rule I made.
To them I sought to frame my soveraign Will,
By them my Subjects I will govern still:
They, not the People, shall proclaim my Heir, }
Yet I will hearken to my Subjects Prayer,     }
And of a _Baalite_ will remove their fear.    }
From hence I'le banish every Priest of _Baal_,
And the wise _Sanhedrim_ together call:
That Body with the Kingly Head shall join,
Their Counsel and their Wisdom mix with mine,
All former strife betwixt us be forgot,
And in Oblivion buried every Plot.
We'l try to live in Love and Peace again,
As when I first began my happy Reign.
Before our Trait'rous Foes with secret toil
Did fair _Judea_'s blessed Peace embroil.
May all my latter days excel my first,
And he who then disturbs our Peace be curst.

  He said: Th' Almighty heard, and from on high
Spoke his Consent, in Thunder through the Skie:
The Augurie was noted by the Croud,
Who joyful shouts return'd almost as loud:
Then _Amazia_ was once more restor'd,
He lov'd his People, they obey'd their Lord.

_FINIS._


[Errata:

  an Author, whose Wit has deservedly / gained the Bays;
    _"Bays" unclear_
  the Horny or Ivory Port
    _so in original: "Part"?_

  'Twas fear'd they'd fall at last from Words to Blows.
    _invisible apostrophe_
  He fears your Wisdom, may his Hindrance prove,
    _text reads "Hndrance"_
  Religion to o'rethrow and Government.
    _text reads "Governmenr"_
  And _Azaria_, tho they us'd his name,
    _text reads "tehy"_
  From you by art they have debauch'd your Son;
    _text reads "debauch,d"_
  Full ripe with Age, in peace, may he'yield to Fate.
    _so in original: "he yield" or (metrical) "h'yield"?_
  The force remov'd, flies swifty back agen.
    _see Editor's Introduction, References, for "swifty"_ ]





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