1780 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Edmund Burke

Hampden, "Instructions for County Meetings, 1780" London Evening Post (30 March 1780).



Mr. Burke on the 20th of March said in the House, — "I think it best to give up all further pursuit of my bill."

And "so think I" — How vain the expression!
A Chiel "corrupt!" should wish to save a nation;
Shall he — who basely can forsake for his "friends,"
And link with hated "foes," for damned ends?
Shall he — who gains from "prostituted throats,"
"Dead," ruinous "majorities of votes?"
Shall he — who rent th' imperial realm asunder
By tax! bribe! pension! — "every scene of plunder?"
Shall he — who ruins commerce! drains our purses,
And gives us "daggers!" while we give him —?
Shall he — all varnish, sham, hypocrisy,
His "turban doff" — to Scum? — Democracy!!!—
Sooner shall Yankey tale forget to tell,
How brave Montgomery, Waring, Arnold fell!
Sooner the dead shall wake, and strain their gullets,
And spew his "statue" — whilom cast in "bullets:"
Then how to save a nation? that's the question!
Britons beware!!! strike home! mark each suggestion!
Impending on a "thread!" behold your fate!
Nor words, nor parchments, now can save the state!!!