The Appeal.

Public Advertiser (29 March 1768).


Eight anapestic quatrains, written in response to M. K.'s The Enquiry, published in the Public Advertiser on 4 March 1768. The lines, not signed, are dated "March 4, 1768." Few newspaper correspondences were quite so operatic as this bitter exchange.

Headnote: "Sir, As you have been so obliging as to admit some Verses from a young Lady in your Paper two or three different times, signed M. K. I hope you will not refuse to insert the following Appeal in answer to your Fair Correspondent.

Ye Nymphs and ye Swains of the Grove,
To whom the Fair Celia indites,
Explain me the Meaning of Love;
Unriddle the Passion she writes.

Young Damon, she says, is unkind;
Her Passion he treats with Disdain;
But strange — how revers'd will you find
The Matter when he shall explain.

'Tis true — he oft' heard from the Fair,
And seem'd not to heed what she said,
Not chusing his Mind to declare
Till he knew the Incognito Maid.

And for this can you think him to blame?
To you, ye kind Swains, I appeal,
When 'tis common to find such a Flame
The Pen of a H—t reveal.

Howe'er, he at length did request,
In a Note she'd appoint where to meet;
So left it alone in her Breast
To act just as she might think fit.

What Cause then has she to complain
What Doubts can she have how to act?
He appeals to each Nymph and each Swain,
As this is the Matter of Fact.

So, Celia, no more — he intreats,
No longer the Woman disgrace;
For nothing so much Damon hates
As a curs'd hypocritical Face.

Were it true what half you've profest,
Long since might you've spoke to the Swain;
Lay then your fair Hand to your Breast,
And say who's most Cause to complain.