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A new life gives to others' joys,
Whilst that I
With any sweet
Hear, O hear!
And waters fall
Whilst to me,
Was born at Alveston, in Gloucestershire ; entered of Edm.
Hall, Oxford, in 1663, aged 15; “ continued there,” says Wood,"about 10 terms ;-went to the great city, lived after “ the manner of poets, in a debauched way, and wrote “partly for the use of his idle and vain companions, but “ more to gain money to carry on the trade of folly." Among other things he was author of “ New Court-Songs “ and Poems,” 8vo. 1672. He seems to have been an easy versifier, though without much originality,
Vanity of worldly Happin ess.
How eager are our vain pursuits
Of pleasure, and of worldly joys! And yet, how empty are the fruits !
How full of trouble, grief, and noise ! We to our ancestors new follies add, Proving ourselves less happy, and more mad.
What, but a tempest, is the world,
Whereon this bark of ours is tost? Which, by ambition wildly hurld,
Is split against a rock, and lost ! TOL. III.
The safer vulgar this with wonder see,
With costly silks we do adorn
These stalking pageants, made of clay,
But emblems are of our decay:
Frailty of beauty. As poor Aurelia sat alone,
Hard by a river's flowery side,
Envious at Nature's new-born pride, Her slighted self thus she reflected on.
Alas! that Nature should revive
These flowers, which after winter's snow
Spring fresh again and brisker show; And for our brighter sex so ill contrive !
Beauty, like them, a short-liv'd thing,
On us in vain she did bestow;
Beauty, that only once can grow,
See how the feather'd blossoms through the air
Traverse a thousand various paths, to find On the impurer earth a place that's fair,
Courting the conduct of each faithless wind!
See how they seem to hover near their end,
Nicely supported on their doubtful wings, Yet all by an impulse of fate descend,
On dunghills some, some on the courts of kings.
Of warmest vapours, which the sun exhales,
All are compos’d; and in a short-liv'd hour Their dazzling pride and coyest beauty falls,
Dissolv’d by Phæbus, or a weeping shower.
All, of one matter form’d, to one return :
Their fall is greatest who are plac'd most high: Let not the proud presume, or poorest mourn:
Their fate's decreed, and every one must die.
Boast not of endless wealth, or noble birth;
JOHN WILMOT, EARL OF ROCHESTER,
Was born in 1648, and died in 1680. The anecdotes of his
life are too numerous for abridgment, and too well known to require insertion in this place.
INSULTING beauty, you mis-spend
Those frowns upon your slave;
From all the charms you have.
Your conquering eyes so partial are,
Or mankind is so dull,
To wish you merciful.