1730 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Rev. Jonathan Swift

Freeman, "To Dean S—t" The Daily Journal (2 May 1730).



SIR,
There is a certain Dean who gives the World more Diversion from the Press, than Instruction from the Pulpit; and who seems to be better pleased with the Character of a Man of Wit, and of Virtue. To Him the following Epistle is addressed, as a proper Caveat, as well as a just Reprehension. If you are so good as to give it a Place in your Journal, you will oblige all the Admirers of the late Sir RICHARD STEELE, and particularly,
SIR,
You most Humble Servant,
FREEMAN.

To Dean S—t, occasion'd by the following Lines in his Satire on Dr. D—y.
"Thus STEELE, who own'd what others writ,
And flourish'd by imputed Wit,
From Perils of an hundred Gaols,
Withdrew, to starve and die in Wales."

Granting he did, Unchristian Priest,
Should STEELE'S Misfortunes prove a Jest?
Suffic'd it not, to hate his Merit,
While yet he liv'd — but, with vile Spirit,
Thou'dst persecute his honour'd Shade,
And blast his Memory when dead?
Repent, retract, thro' conscious Shame,
And from like Usage save thy Name.
The World well knows thy Birth and Breeding,
Thy Rise from Impudence proceeding;
Thy Pride how great, thy Grace how little,
The Basis of thy Fame how brittle!
Methinks, some Bard of future Times
Retaliates thus thy sland'rous Rhymes—

"The S—t, a Dean by O—d made,
A Burlesque on his Holy Trade,
From highest Summit of Buffoonry, fell,
(Loaded with the Contempt he merits well)
For Ribbald Wit, to the profounded Hell."