1763 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Rev. Charles Churchill

Anonymous, "The Clock-Maker's Address to Mr. Churchill, on reading his Poem on Night" London Chronicle (17 September 1763) 270.



When Tristram Shandy, laughing priest,
Had made our trade a standing jest,
"The clock's forgot, my love, pray mind it."
(Tristram, Vol. I. you'll find it)
Link'd one idea so t' another,
That think of one, you thought of t' other,
The courtizans, when they came near,
Cry'd, "pray wind up my watch, my dear;"
And demi-reps wou'd look a squint,
At pendulums, to give a hint,
'Till ev'ry nymph of any grace
Thought clocks and watches a disgrace.
Churchill, the same who erst read prayers,
The scourge of painters, ghosts, and players,
Churchill, whose soul disdains to fear,
Or ruling priest, or ruling peer,
And laughs at snarling Pug and Bear.
If hungry Scotchmen grow uncivil,
Writes the whole nation to the devil,
And kicks a Minister down stairs
If he's a dunce in state affairs;
For freedom yet, and friendship warm,
(Happy as Kings, at his fire-side,
See Rupert sits, and honest Lloyd:)
To worth in want, his All would lend,
Ev'n sell his coat to serve his friend.
Churchill, th' Apollo of our days,
Whom all but Hogarth still will praise:
In his immortal strains on Night,
Has made our clocks again go right,
Where vary'd couplets sweet, yet strong,
And manly sense adorn the song;
Where Horace, Juvenal, combine
To form one sat'rist all divine,
To wind up watches hence no more,
Shall mean a widow, maid, or whore,
But take your glass, enjoy your friend,
And drink my health, at the World's End.