1744 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Alexander Pope

T. C., "To the Author of an Epitaph on Mr. Pope in the General Advertiser of June 22" Westminster Journal 14 July 1744).



Who not foresaw, when POPE'S sad End drew nigh,
The gen'ral Triumph of the Dunciad Fry?
As the first Stone the biggest Harlot flings,
The biggest Dunce the first Obloquy brings.

Dar'st thou prophane the Mem'ry of the Just,
And with thy mould'ring Hands disturb his Dust?
With thy foul Tongue lick off the Filth thou'st thrown,
Nor tax his Morals — but ammend thy own.

What tho' his Worth you aukwardly admit,
Dispensing Fame as Arbiter of Wit;
Your forc'd Assent will ne'er for Candour pass:
No Lion's Skin can hide th' assuming Ass.

Ere thou presum'st to scrawl sepulchral Stone,
Think what sad Sentence must inscribe thy own;
Like this beneath, will Church-yard Saunt'rers view:
Read it, whilst yet you read, and own 'tis true.

AN EPITAPH ON THE EPITAPH WRITER.
"Here lies th' ungrateful Man, a Son of Blame,
Who stab'd (when dead) the Author of his Fame:
Full threescore Years he liv'd 'mongst Droles and Gamblers;
Wrote all those Years for Pastry-cooks and Chandlers:
Whoever lays four Farthings out in Fruit,
Four Pages of his Caesar gets to boot:
His Odes no more Reader or sees or handles,
Save those who Rashers buy, or Farthing Candles;
Yet shall his Name (the Pride of mortal Hopes)
When dead in his own Writings, live in POPE'S."