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On Britain's isle propitiously he shines,
With joy descends, and labors in her mines.
Or whether, urg'd by subterraneous flames,
The earth ferments, and flows in liquid streams;
Purg'd from their dross, the nobler parts refine,
Receive new forms, and with fresh beauties shine.
Thus fluid parts, unknowing how to burn,
With cold congeal'd, to solid metals turn :
For metals only from devouring flame
Preserve their beauty, and return the same;
Both art and force the well-wrought mass disdains,
And 'midst the fire its native form retains.
Or whether by creation first they sprung,
When yet unpois'd the world's great fabric hung:
Metals the basis of the earth were made,
The bars on which its fix'd foundation's laid:
All second causes they disdain to own,
And from th' Almighty's Fiat sprung alone.
Nature in spacious beds preserves her store, And keeps unmix'd the well-compacted ore; The spreading root a numerous race maintains Of branching limbs, and far-extended veins : Thus, from its watery store, a spring supplies The lesser streams that round its fountain rise; Which bounding out in fair meanders play, And o'er the meads in different currents stray.
Methinks I see the rounded metal spread, To be ennobled with our monarch's head:
About the globe th' admired coin shall run,
And make the circle of its parent sun.
How are thy realms, triumphant Britain, blest! Enrich'd with more than all the distant west. Thy sons, no more betray'd with hopes of gain, Shall tempt the dangers of a faithless main, Traffic no more abroad for foreign spoil, Supplied with richer from their native soil. To Dovey's flood shall numerous traders come, Employ'd to fetch the British bullion home, To pay their tributes to its bounteous shore, Returning laden with the Cambrian ore. Her absent fleet Potosi's race shall mourn, And wish in vain to see our sails return; Like misers heaping up their useless store, Starv'd with their wealth, amidst their riches poor. Where'er the British banners are display'd, The suppliant nations shall implore our aid: Till thus compell'd, the greater worlds confess Themselves oblig'd, and succour'd by the less.
How Cambria's mines were to her offspring known,
Thus sacred verse transmits the story down:
Merlin, a bard of the inspired train,
With mystic numbers charm'd the British plain;
Belov'd by Phoebus, and the tuneful nine,
His song was sacred, and his art divine:
As on Sabrina's fruitful banks he stood,
His wonderous verse restrain'd the listening flood;
The stream's bright Goddess rais'd her awful head,
And to her cave the artful shepherd led.
Her swift-descending steps the youth pursues,
And rich in ore the spacious mountain views.
In beds distinct the well-rang'd metals lay,
Dispersing rays, and counterfeiting day.
The silver, shedding beams of orient light,
Struck with too fierce a glare his aching sight;
Like rising flames the ruddy copper show'd,
And spread its blushes o'er the dark abode :
Profuse of rays, and with unrivall'd beams,
The liquid silver flow'd in restless streams:
Nor India's sparkling gems are half so bright,
Nor waves above, that shine with heavenly light;
When thus the Goddess spake; harmonious youth,
Rever'd for numbers fraught with sacred truth I
Belov'd by Heaven! attend while I relate
The fix'd decree, and dark events of fate.
Conceal'd these treasures lie in nature's womb,
For future times, and ages yet to come.
When many long revolving years are run,
A hero shall ascend the British throne,
Whose numerous triumphs shall Augusta grace,
In arms renown'd, ador'd for plenteous peace.
Beneath his sway a generous youth shall rise,
With virtues blest, in happy councils wise;
Rich with the spoils of learning's various store,
Commanding arts, yet still acquiring more.
He, with success, shall enter this abode,
And nature trace in paths before untrod;
The smiling offspring from her womb remove,
And with her entrails glad the realms above,
O youth, reserv'd by more auspicious fate, With fam'd improvements to oblige the state! By wars impoverish'd, Albion mourns no more, Thy well-wrought mines forbid her to be poor: The earth, thy great exchequer, ready lies, Which all defect of failing funds supplies; Thou shalt a nation's pressing wants relieve, Nor war can lavish more than thou canst give.
This, Mackworth, fixes thy immortal name, The muse's darling, and the boast of fame; No greater virtues on record shall stand,
Than thus with arts to grace, with wealth enrich the land.
AT THEIR RETURN FROM VIEWING THE MINES NEAR
WELCOME to light, advent'rous pair!
Thrice welcome to the balmy air
From sulph'rous damps in caverns deep,
Where subterranean thunders sleep,
Or, wak'd with dire Aetnean sound
Bellow the trembling mountain round,
Till to the frighted realms of day
Thro' flaming mouths they force their way;
From bursting streams, and burning rocks,
From nature's fierce intestine shocks;
From the dark mansions of despair,
Welcome once more to light and air!
But why explore that world of night Conceal'd till then from female sight? Such grace and beauty why confine One moment to a dreary mine?