Hudibras, by Samuel Butler

Canto II.

The Argument

The Saints engage in fierce Contests

About their Carnal interests;

To share their sacrilegious Preys,

According to their Rates of Grace;

Their various Frenzies to reform,

When Cromwel left them in a Storm

Till, in th’ Effigy of Rumps, the Rabble

Burns all their Grandees of the Cabal.

THE learned write, an 1 insect breeze

Is but a mungrel prince of bees,

That falls before a storm on cows,

And stings the founders of his house;

From whose corrupted flesh that breed

Of vermin did at first proceed.

So e’re the storm of war broke out,

Religion spawn’d a various rout

Of petulant Capricious sects,

The maggots of corrupted texts,

That first run all religion down,

And after ev’ry swarm its own.

For as the Persian 2 Magi once

Upon their mothers got their sons,

That were incapable t’ enjoy

That empire any other way;

So PRESBYTER begot the other

Upon the good old Cause, his mother,

Then bore then like the Devil’s dam,

Whose son and husband are the same.

And yet no nat’ral tie of blood

Nor int’rest for the common good

Cou’d, when their profits interfer’d,

Get quarter for each other’s beard.

For when they thriv’d, they never fadg’d,

But only by the ears engag’d:

Like dogs that snarl about a bone,

And play together when they’ve none,

As by their truest characters,

Their constant actions, plainly appears.

Rebellion now began, for lack

Of zeal and plunders to grow slack;

The Cause and covenant to lessen,

And Providence to b’ out of season:

For now there was no more to purchase

O’ th’ King’s Revenue, and the Churches,

But all divided, shar’d, and gone,

That us’d to urge the Brethren on;

Which forc’d the stubborn’st for the Cause,

To cross the cudgels to the laws,

That what by breaking them th’ had gain’d.

By their support might be maintain’d;

Like thieves, that in a hemp-plot lie

Secur’d against the hue-and-cry;

For PRESBYTER and INDEPENDANT

Were now turn’d plaintiff and defendant;

Laid out their apostolic functions

On carnal orders and injunctions;

And all their precious Gifts and Graces

On outlawries and scire facias;

At 3 Michael’s term had many a trial,

Worse than the Dragon and St. Michael,

Where thousands fell, in shape of fees,

Into the bottomless abyss.

For when like brethren, and like friends,

They came to share their dividends,

And ev’ry partner to possess

His Church and State Joint–Purchases,

In which the ablest Saint, and best,

Was nam’d in trust by all the rest,

To pay their money; and, instead

Of ev’ry Brother, pass the deed;

He strait converted all his gifts

To pious frauds and holy shifts;

And settled all the other shares

Upon his outward man and’s heirs;

Held all they claim’d as forfeit lands,

Deliver’d up into his hands,

And pass’d upon his conscience,

By Pre-intail of Providence;

Impeach’d the rest for reprobates,

That had no titles to estates,

But by their spiritual attaints

Degraded from the right of Saints.

This b’ing reveal’d, they now begun

With law and conscience to fall on,

And laid about as hot and brain-sick

As th’ Utter Barrister of 4 SWANSWICK;

Engag’d with moneybags as bold

As men with sand bags did of old;

That brought the lawyers in more fees

Than all unsanctify’d Trustees;

Till he who had no more to show

I’ th’ case receiv’d the overthrow;

Or both sides having had the worst,

They parted as they met at first.

Poor PRESBYTER was now reduc’d,

Secluded, and cashier’d, and chous’d

Turn’d out, and excommunicate

From all affairs of Church and State;

Reform’d t’ a reformado Saint,

And glad to turn itinerant,

To stroll and teach from town to town,

And those he had taught up, teach down.

And make those uses serve agen

Against the new-enlighten’d men,

As fit as when at first they were

Reveal’d against the CAVALIER;

Damn ANABAPTIST and FANATIC,

As pat as Popish and Prelatic;

And with as little variation,

To serve for any Sect i’ th’ nation.

The Good Old Cause, which some believe

To be the Dev’l that tempted EVE

With Knowledge, and does still invite

The world to mischief with new Light,

Had store of money in her purse

When he took her for bett’r or worse;

But now was grown deform’d and poor,

And fit to be turn’d out of door.

The INDEPENDENTS (whose first station

Was in the rear of reformation,

A mungrel kind of church-dragoons,

That serv’d for horse and foot at once;

And in the saddle of one steed

The Saracen and Christian rid;

Were free of ev’ry spiritual order,

To preach, and fight, and pray, and murder)

No sooner got the start to lurch

Both disciplines, of War and Church

And Providence enough to run

The chief commanders of ’em down,

But carry’d on the war against

The common enemy o’ th’ Saints,

And in a while prevail’d so far,

To win of them the game of war,

And be at liberty once more

T’ attack themselves, as th’ had before.

For now there was no foe in arms,

T’ unite their factions with alarms,

But all reduc’d and overcome,

Except their worst, themselves at home,

Wh’ had compass’d all they pray’d, and swore,

And fought, and preach’d, and plunder’d for;

Subdu’d the Nation, Church, and State,

And all things, but their laws and hate:

But when they came to treat and transact,

And share the spoil of all th’ had ransackt,

To botch up what th’ had torn and rent,

Religion and the Government,

They met no sooner, but prepar’d

To pull down all the war had spar’d

Agreed in nothing, but t’ abolish,

Subvert, extirpate, and demolish.

For knaves and fools b’ing near of kin

As 5 Dutch Boors are t’ a Sooterkin,

Both parties join’d to do their best

To damn the publick interest,

And herded only in consults,

To put by one another’s bolts;

T’ out-cant the 6 Babylonian labourers,

At all their dialects of jabberers,

And tug at both ends of the saw,

To tear down Government and Law.

For as two cheats, that play one game,

Are both defeated of their aim;

So those who play a game of state,

And only cavil in debate,

Although there’s nothing lost or won,

The publick bus’ness is undone;

Which still the longer ’tis in doing,

Becomes the surer way to ruin.

This, when the ROYALISTS perceiv’d,

(Who to their faith as firmly cleav’d,

And own’d the right they had paid down

So dearly for, the Church and Crown,)

Th’ united constanter, and sided

The more, the more their foes divided.

For though out-number’d, overthrown

And by the fate of war run down)

Their duty never was defeated,

Nor from their oaths and faith retreated;

For loyalty is still the same,

Whether it win or lose the game;

True as the dial to the sun,

Although it be not shin’d upon.

But when these brethren in evil,

Their adversaries, and the Devil,

Began once more to shew them play,

And hopes, at least, to have a day,

They rally’d in parades of woods,

And unfrequented solitudes;

Conven’d at midnight in out-houses,

T’ appoint new-rising rendezvouzes,

And with a pertinacy unmatch’d,

For new recruits of danger watch’d.

No sooner was one blow diverted,

But up another party started;

And, as if nature too, in haste

To furnish out supplies as fast,

Before her time, had turn’d destruction

T’ a new and numerous production,

No sooner those were overcome,

But up rose others in their room,

That, like the Christian faith, increast

The more, the more they were supprest

Whom neither chains, nor transportation,

Proscription, sale, or confiscation,

Nor all the desperate events

Of former try’d experiments

Nor wounds cou’d terrify, nor mangling,

To leave off loyalty and dangling;

Nor death (with all his bones) affright

From vent’ring to maintain the right,

From staking life and fortune down

‘Gainst all together, for the Crown;

But kept the title of their cause

From forfeiture, like claims in laws

And prov’d no prosp’rous usurpation

Can ever settle in the nation;

Until, in spight of force and treason,

They put their loyalty in possession;

And by their constancy and faith,

Destroy ‘d the mighty men of Gath.

Toss’d in a furious hurricane,7

Did OLIVER give up his reign;

And was believ’d, as well by Saints,

As mortal men and miscreants,

To founder in the Stygian Ferry;

Until he was retriev’d by STERRY,

Who, in a faise erroneous dream,

Mistook the New Jerusalem

Prophanely for the apocryphal

False Heaven at the end o’ th’ Hall;8

Whither it was decreed by Fate

His precious reliques to translate.

So ROMULUS 9 was seen before

B’ as orthodox a Senator;

From whose divine illumination

He stole the Pagan revelation.

Next him his 10 Son and Heir Apparent

Succeeded, though a lame vicegerent;

Who first laid by the Parliament,

The only crutch on which he leant;

And then sunk underneath the State,

That rode him above horseman’s weight.

And now the Saints began their reign,

For which th’ had yearn’d so long in vain,

And felt such bowel-hankerings,

To see an empire all of Kings.

Deliver’d from the Egyptian awe

Of Justice, Government, and Law,

And free t’ erect what spiritual Cantons

Should be reveal’d, or Gospel Hans–Towns,

To edify upon the ruins

Of 11 JOHN of LEYDEN’S old Out-goings;

Who for a weather-cock hung up,

Upon the Mother Church’s top;

Was made a type, by Providence,

Of all their revelations since;

And now fulfill’d by his successors,

Who equally mistook their measures

For when they came to shape the model,

Not one could fit another’s noddle;

But found their Light and Gifts more wide

From fadging than th’ unsanctify’d;

While ev’ry individual brother

Strove hand to fist against another;

And still the maddest, and most crackt,

Were found the busiest to transact

For though most hands dispatch apace,

And make light work, (the proverb says,)

Yet many diff’rent intellects

Are found t’ have contrary effects;

And many heads t’ obstruct intrigues,

As slowest insects have most legs.

Some were for setting up a King;

But all the rest for no such thing,

Unless KING JESUS. Others tamper’d

For FLEETWOOD, DESBOROUGH, and LAMBERT;

Some for the Rump; and some, more crafty,

For Agitators, and the safety;

Some for the Gospel, and massacres

Of Spiritual Affidavit-makers,

That swore to any human regence,

Oaths of supremacy and allegiance;

Yea, though the ablest swearing Saint

That vouch’d the Bulls o’ th’ Covenant:

Others for pulling down th’ high-places

Of Synods and Provincial Classes,

That us’d to make such hostile inroads

Upon the Saints, like bloody NIMRODS

Some for fulfilling prophecies,

And th’ expiration of th’ excise

And some against th’ Egyptian bondage

Of holy-days, and paying poundage:

Some for the cutting down of groves,

And rectifying bakers’ loaves:

And some for finding out expedients

Against the slav’ry of obedience.

Some were for Gospel Ministers,

And some for Red-coat Seculars,

As men most fit t’ hold forth the word,

And wield the one and th’ other sword.

Some were for carrying on the work

Against the Pope, and some the Turk;

Some for engaging to suppress,

The Camisado of surplices,

That gifts and dispensations hinder’d,

And turn’d to th’ Outward Man the Inward;

More proper for the cloudy night

Of Popery than Gospel Light.

Others were for abolishing

That tool of matrimony, a ring,

With which th’ unsanctify’d bridegroom

Is marry’d only to a thumb;

(As wise as ringing of a pig,

That us’d to break up ground, and dig;)

The bride to nothing but her will,

That nulls the after-marriage still

Some were for th’ utter extirpation

Of linsey-woolsey in the nation;

And some against all idolizing

The Cross in shops-books, or Baptizing

Others to make all things recant

The Christian or Surname of Saint;

And force all churches, streets, and towns,

The holy title to renounce.

Some ‘gainst a Third Estate of Souls,

And bringing down the price of coals:

Some for abolishing black-pudding,

And eating nothing with the blood in;

To abrogate them roots and branches;

While others were for eating haunches

Of warriors, and now and then,

The flesh of Kings and mighty men

And some for breaking of their bones

With rods of ir’n, by secret ones:

For thrashing mountains, and with spells

For hallowing carriers’ packs and bells:

Things that the legend never heard of,

But made the wicked sore afear’d of.

The quacks of Government (who sate

At th’ unregarded helm of State,

And understood this wild confusion

Of fatal madness and delusion,

Must, sooner than a prodigy,

Portend destruction to be nigh)

Consider’d timely how t’ withdraw,

And save their wind-pipes from the law;

For one rencounter at the bar

Was worse than all th’ had ‘scap’d in war;

And therefore met in consultation

To cant and quack upon the nation;

Not for the sickly patient’s sake,

For what to give, but what to take;

To feel the pulses of their fees,

More wise than fumbling arteries:

Prolong the snuff of life in pain,

And from the grave recover — Gain.

‘Mong these there was a 12 politician

With more heads than a beast in vision,

And more intrigues in ev’ry one

Than all the whores of Babylon:

So politic, as if one eye

Upon the other were a spy,

That, to trepan the one to think

The other blind, both strove to blink;

And in his dark pragmatick way,

As busy as a child at play.

H’ had seen three Governments run down,

And had a hand in ev’ry one;

Was for ’em and against ’em all,

But barb’rous when they came to fall

For, by trepanning th’ old to ruin,

He made his int’rest with the new one

Play’d true and faithful, though against

His conscience, and was still advanc’d.

For by the witchcraft of rebellion

Transform’d t’ a feeble state-camelion,

By giving aim from side to side,

He never fail’d to save his tide,

But got the start of ev’ry state,

And at a change ne’er came too late;

Cou’d turn his word, and oath, and faith,

As many ways as in a lath;

By turning, wriggle, like a screw,

Int’ highest trust, and out, for new.

For when h’ had happily incurr’d,

Instead of hemp, to be preferr’d,

And pass’d upon a government,

He pay’d his trick, and out he went

But, being out, and out of hopes

To mount his ladder (more) of ropes,

Wou’d strive to raise himself upon

The publick ruin, and his own;

So little did he understand

The desp’rate feats he took in hand.

For when h’ had got himself a name

For fraud and tricks, he spoil’d his game;

Had forc’d his neck into a noose,

To shew his play at fast and loose;

And when he chanc’d t’ escape, mistook

For art and subtlety, his luck.

So right his judgment was cut fit,

And made a tally to his wit,

And both together most profound

At deeds of darkness under-ground;

As th’ earth is easiest undermin’d

By vermin impotent and blind.

By all these arts, and many more,

H’ had practis’d long and much before,

Our state artificer foresaw

Which way the world began to draw.

For as old sinners have all points

O’ th’ compass in their bones and joints,

Can by their pangs and aches find

All turns and changes of the wind,

And better than by 13 NAPIER’s bones

Feel in their own the age of moons;

So guilty sinners in a state

Can by their crimes prognosticate,

And in their consciences feel pain

Some days before a show’r of rain.

He therefore wisely cast about,

All ways he cou’d, t’ ensure his throat;

And hither came, t’ observe and smoke

What courses other riskers took

And to the utmost do his best

To save himself, and hang the rest.

To match this Saint, there was 14 another

As busy and perverse a Brother,

An haberdasher of small wares

In politicks and state affairs;

More Jew than Rabbi ACHITOPHEL,

And better gifted to rebel:

For when h’ had taught his tribe to ‘spouse

The Cause, aloft, upon one house,

He scorn’d to set his own in order,

But try’d another, and went further;

So suddenly addicted still

To’s only principle, his will,

That whatsoe’er it chanc’d to prove,

Nor force of argument cou’d move;

Nor law, nor cavalcade of Holborn,

Could render half a grain less stubborn.

For he at any time would hang

For th’ opportunity t’ harangue;

And rather on a gibbet dangle,

Than miss his dear delight, to wrangle;

In which his parts were so accomplisht,

That, right or wrong, he ne’er was non-plusht;

But still his tongue ran on, the less

Of weight it bore, with greater ease;

And with its everlasting clack

Set all men’s ears upon the rack.

No sooner cou’d a hint appear,

But up he started to picqueer,

And made the stoutest yield to mercy,

When he engag’d in controversy.

Not by the force of carnal reason,

But indefatigable teazing;

With vollies of eternal babble,

And clamour, more unanswerable.

For though his topics, frail and weak,

Cou’d ne’er amount above a freak,

He still maintain’d ’em, like his faults,

Against the desp’ratest assaults;

And back’d their feeble lack of sense,

With greater heat and confidence?

As bones of Hectors, when they differ,

The more they’re cudgel’d grow the stiffer.

Yet when his profit moderated,

The fury of his heat abated.

For nothing but his interest

Cou’d lay his Devil of Contest.

It was his choice, or chance; or curse,

T’ espouse the Cause for bett’r or worse,

And with his worldly goods and wit,

And soul and body, worship’d it:

But when he found the sullen trapes

Possess’d with th’ Devil, worms, and claps;

The 15 Trojan mare, in foal with Greeks,

Not half so full of jadish tricks;

Though squeamish in her outward woman,

As loose and rampant as Dol Common;

He still resolv’d to mend the matter,

T’ adhere and cleave the obstinater;

And still the skittisher and looser

Her freaks appear’d, to sit the closer.

For fools are stubborn in their way,

As coins are harden’d by th’ allay:

And obstinacy’s ne’er so stiff

As when ’tis in a wrong belief.

These two, with others, being met,

And close in consultation set,

After a discontented pause,

And not without sufficient cause,

The orator we nam’d of late,

Less troubled with the pangs of State

Than with his own impatience,

To give himself first audience,

After he had a while look’d wise,

At last broke silence, and the ice.

Quoth he, There’s nothing makes me doubt

Our last out-goings brought about,

More than to see the characters

Of real jealousies and fears

Not feign’d, as once, but, sadly horrid,

Scor’d upon ev’ry Member’s forehead;

Who, ‘cause the clouds are drawn together,

And threaten sudden change of weather,

Feel pangs and aches of state-turns,

And revolutions in their corns;

And, since our workings-out are cross’d,

Throw up the Cause before ’tis lost.

Was it to run away we meant,

When, taking of the Covenant,

The lamest cripples of the brothers

Took oaths to run before all others;

But in their own sense only swore

To strive to run away before;

And now would prove, that words and oath

Engage us to renounce them both?

’Tis true, the Cause is in the lurch,

Between a Right and Mungrel–Church;

The Presbyter and Independent,

That stickle which shall make an end on’t;

As ’twas made out to us the last

Expedient — ( I mean 16 Marg’ret’s Fast,)

When Providence had been suborn’d,

What answer was to be return’d.

Else why should tumults fright us now,

We have so many times come through?

And understand as well to tame,

As when they serve our turns t’inflame:

Have prov’d how inconsiderable

Are all engagements of the rabble,

Whose frenzies must be reconcil’d

With drums and rattles, like a child;

But never prov’d so prosperous

As when they were led on by us

For all our scourging of religion

Began with tumult and sedition;

When hurricanes of fierce commotion

Became strong motives to devotion;

(As carnal seamen, in a storm,

Turn pious converts, and reform;)

When rusty weapons, with chalk’d edges,

Maintain’d our feeble privileges;

And brown-bills levy’d in the City,

Made bills to pass the Grand Committee;

When zeal, with aged clubs and gleaves,

Gave chace to rochets and white sleeves,

And made the Church, and State, and Laws,

Submit t’ old iron and the Cause.

And as we thriv’d by tumults then,

So might we better now agen,

If we knew how, as then we did,

To use them rightly in our need:

Tumults, by which the mutinous

Betray themselves instead of us.

The hollow-hearted, disaffected,

And close malignant are detected,

Who lay their lives and fortunes down

For pledges to secure our own;

And freely sacrifice their ears

T’ appease our jealousies and fears;

And yet, for all these providences

W’ are offer’d, if we had our senses;

We idly sit like stupid blockheads,

Our hands committed to our pockets;

And nothing but our tongues at large,

To get the wretches a discharge:

Like men condemn’d to thunder-bolts,

Who, ere the blow, become mere dolts;

Or fools besotted with their crimes,

That know not how to shift betimes,

And neither have the hearts to stay,

Nor wit enough to run away;

Who, if we cou’d resolve on either,

Might stand or fall at least together;

No mean or trivial solace

To partners in extreme distress;

Who us’d to lessen their despairs,

By parting them int’ equal shares;

As if the more they were to bear,

They felt the weight the easier;

And ev’ry one the gentler hung,

The more he took his turn among.

But ’tis not come to that, as yet,

If we had courage left, or wit;

Who, when our fate can be no worse,

Are fitted for the bravest course;

Have time to rally, and prepare

Our last and best defence, despair;

Despair, by which the gallant’st feats

Have been atchiev’d in greatest straits,

And horrid’st danger safely wav’d,

By being courageously out-brav’d;

As wounds by wider wounds are heal’d,

And poisons by themselves expell’d:

And so they might be now agen,

If we were, what we shou’d be, men;

And not so dully desperate,

To side against ourselves with Fate;

As criminals, condemn’d to suffer,

Are blinded first, and then turn’d over.

This comes of breaking Covenants,

And setting up Exauns of Saints,

That fine, like aldermen, for grace,

To be excus’d the efficace.

For Spiritual men are too transcendent,

That mount their banks for Independent,

To hang like 17 MAHOMET in th’ air,

Or St. IGNATIUS at his prayer,

By pure geometry, and hate

Dependence upon Church or State;

Disdain the pedantry o’ th’ letter;

And since obedience is better

(The Scripture says) than sacrifice,

Presume the less on’t will suffice;

And scorn to have the moderat’st stints

Prescrib’d their peremptory hints,

Or any opinion, true or false,

Declar’d as such, in doctrinals

But left at large to make their best on,

Without b’ing call’d t’ account or question,

Interpret all the spleen reveals;

As WHITTINGTON explain’d the bells;

And bid themselves turn back agen

Lord May’rs of New Jerusalem;

But look so big and over-grown,

They scorn their edifiers t’ own,

Who taught them all their sprinkling lessons,

Their tones, and sanctified expressions

Bestow’d their Gifts upon a Saint,

Like Charity on those that want;

And learn’d th’ apocryphal bigots

T’ inspire themselves with short-hand notes;

For which they scorn and hate them worse

Than dogs and cats do sow-gelders.

For who first bred them up to pray,

And teach, the House of Commons Way?

Where had they all their gifted phrases,

But from our CALAMYS and CASES?

Without whose sprinkling and sowing,

Who e’er had heard of NYE or OWEN?

Their dispensations had been stifled,

But for our ADONIRAM BYFIELD;

And had they not begun the war,

Th’ had ne’er been sainted, as they are:

For Saints in peace degenerate,

And dwindle down to reprobate;

Their zeal corrupts, like standing water,

In th’ intervals of war and slaughter;

Abates the sharpness of its edge,

Without the power of sacrilege.

And though they’ve tricks to cast their sins

As easy as 18 serpents do their skins,

That in a while grow out agen,

In peace they turn mere carnal men,

And from the most refin’d of saints,

As naturally grow miscreants,

As 19 barnacles turn SOLAND geese

In th’ Islands of the ORCADES.

Their dispensation’s but a ticket,

For their conforming to the wicked;

With whom the greatest difference

Lies more in words, and shew, than sense.

For as the Pope, that keeps the gate

Of Heaven, wears three crowns of state;

So he that keeps the gate of Hell,

Proud 20 CERBERUS, wears three heads as well;

And if the world has any troth

Some have been canoniz’d in both.

But that which does them greatest harm,

Their spiritual gizzards are too warm,

Which puts the over-heated sots

In fevers still, like other goats.

For though the Whore bends Hereticks

With flames of fire, like crooked sticks,

Our Schismaticks so vastly differ,

Th’ hotter th’ are, they grow the stiffer;

Still setting off their spiritual goods

With fierce and pertinacious feuds.

For zeal’s a dreadful termagant,

That teaches Saints to tear and rant,

And Independents to profess

The doctrine of dependences:

Turns meek, and secret, sneaking ones,

To raw-heads fierce and bloody-bones:

And, not content with endless quarrels

Against the wicked, and their morals,

The 21 GIBELLINES, for want of GUELPHS,

Divert their rage upon themselves.

For now the war is not between

The Brethren and the Men of Sin,

But Saint and Saint, to spill the blood

Of one another’s brotherhood;

Where neither side can lay pretence

To liberty of conscience,

Or zealous suff’ring for the cause,

To gain one groat’s-worth of applause;

For though endur’d with resolution,

’Twill ne’er amount to persecution.

Shall precious Saints, and secret ones,

Break one another’s outward bones,

And eat the flesh of Brethren,

Instead of Kings and mighty men?

When fiends agree among themselves,

Shall they be found the greatest elves?

When BELL’s at union with the DRAGON,

And BAAL-PEOR friends with DAGON,

When savage bears agree with bears,

Shall secret ones lug Saints by th’ ears,

And not atone their fatal wrath,

When common danger threatens both?

Shall mastiffs, by the coller pull’d,

Engag’d with bulls, let go their hold,

And Saints, whose necks are pawn’d at stake,

No notice of the danger take?

But though no pow’r of Heav’n or Hell

Can pacify phanatick zeal,

Who wou’d not guess there might be hopes,

The fear of gallowses and ropes,

Before their eyes, might reconcile

Their animosities a while;

At least until th’ had a clear stage,

And equal freedom to engage,

Without the danger of surprize

By both our common enemies?

This none but we alone cou’d doubt,

Who understand their workings out;

And know them, both in soul and conscience,

Giv’n up t’ as reprobate a nonsense

As spiritual out-laws, whom the pow’r

Of miracle can ne’er restore

We, whom at first they set up under,

In revelation only of plunder,

Who since have had so many trials

Of their encroaching self-denials,

That rook’d upon us with design

To out-reform, and undermine;

Took all our interest and commands

Perfidiously out of our hands;

Involv’d us in the guilt of blood

Without the motive gains allow’d,

And made us serve as ministerial,

Like younger Sons of Father BELIAL;

And yet, for all th’ inhuman wrong

Th’ had done us and the Cause so long,

We never fail to carry on

The work still as we had begun;

But true and faithfully obey’d

And neither preach’d them hurt, nor pray’d;

Nor troubled them to crop our ears,

Nor hang us like the cavaliers;

Nor put them to the charge of gaols,

To find us pill’ries and cart’s-tails,

Or hangman’s wages, which the State

Was forc’d (before them) to be at,

That cut, like tallies, to the stumps,

Our ears for keeping true accompts,

And burnt our vessels, like a new

Seal’d peck, or bushel, for b’ing true;

But hand in hand, like faithful brothers,

Held for the Cause against all others,

Disdaining equally to yield

One syllable of what we held,

And though we differ’d now and then

‘Bout outward things, and outward men,

Our inward men, and constant frame

Of spirit, still were near the same;

And till they first began to cant

And sprinkle down the Covenant,

We ne’er had call in any place,

Nor dream’d of teaching down free grace,

But join’d our gifts perpetually

Against the common enemy.

Although ’twas ours and their opinion,

Each other’s Church was but a RIMMON;

And yet, for all this gospel-union,

And outward shew of Church-communion,

They’ll ne’er admit us to our shares

Of ruling Church or State affairs;

Nor give us leave t’ absolve, or sentence

T’ our own conditions of repentance;

But shar’d our dividend o’ th’ Crown,

We had so painfully preach’d down;

And forc’d us, though against the grain,

T’ have calls to teach it up again:

For ’twas but justice to restore

The wrongs we had receiv’d before;

And when ’twas held forth in our way,

W’ had been ungrateful not to pay;

Who, for the right w’ have done the nation,

Have earn’d our temporal salvation;

And put our vessels in a way

Once more to come again in play.

For if the turning of us out

Has brought this Providence about,

And that our only suffering

Is able to bring in the King,

What would our actions not have done,

Had we been suffer’d to go on?

And therefore may pretend t’ a share,

At least; in carrying on th’ affair.

But whether that be so, or not,

W’ have done enough to have it thought;

And that’s as good as if w’ had done’t,

And easier pass’t upon account:

For if it be but half deny’d,

’Tis half as good as justifi’d.

The world is nat’rally averse

To all the truth it sees or hears

But swallows nonsense, and a lie,

With greediness and gluttony

And though it have the pique, and long,

’Tis still for something in the wrong;

As women long, when they’re with child,

For things extravagant and wild;

For meats ridiculous and fulsome,

But seldom any thing that’s wholesome;

And, like the world, men’s jobbernoles

Turn round upon their ears, the poles;

And what they’re confidently told,

By no sense else can be control’d.

And this, perhaps, may prove time means

Once more to hedge-in Providence,

For as relapses make diseases

More desp’rate than their first accesses,

If we but get again in pow’r,

Our work is easier than before

And we more ready and expert

I’ th’ mystery to do our part.

We, who did rather undertake

The first war to create than make,

And when of nothing ’twas begun,

Rais’d funds as strange to carry ‘t on;

Trepann’d the State, and fac’d it down

With plots and projects of our own;

And if we did such feats at first,

What can we now we’re better vers’d?

Who have a freer latitude,

Than sinners give themselves, allow’d,

And therefore likeliest to bring in,

On fairest terms, our discipline;

To which it was reveal’d long since,

We were ordain’d by Providence;

When 22 three Saints Ears, our predecessors,

The Cause’s primitive Confessors,

B’ing crucify’d, the nation stood

In just so many years of blood;

That, multiply’d by six, exprest

The perfect number of the beast,

And prov’d that we must be the men

To bring this work about agen;

And those who laid the first foundation,

Compleat the thorough Reformation:

For who have gifts to carry on

So great a work, but we alone?

What churches have such able pastors,

And precious, powerful, preaching masters?

Possess’d with absolute dominions

O’er brethren’s purses and opinions?

And trusted with the double keys

Of Heaven and their warehouses;

Who, when the Cause is in distress,

Can furnish out what sums they please,

That brooding lie in bankers’ hands,

To be dispos’d at their commands;

And daily increase and multiply,

With doctrine, use, and usury:

Can fetch in parties (as in war

All other heads of cattle are)

From th’ enemy of all religions,

As well as high and low conditions,

And share them, from blue ribbands, down

To all blue aprons in the town;

From ladies hurried in calleches,

With cor’nets at their footmens’ breeches,

To bawds as fat as Mother Nab;

All guts and belly, like a crab.

Our party’s great, and better ty’d

With oaths and trade than any side,

Has one considerable improvement,

To double fortify the Cov’nant:

I mean our Covenant to purchase

Delinquents titles, and the Churches;

That pass in sale, from hand to hand,

Among ourselves, for current land;

And rise or fall, like Indian actions,

According to the rate of factions

Our best reserve for Reformation,

When new out-goings give occasion;

That keeps the loins of Brethren girt

The Covenant (their creed) t’ assert;

And when th’ have pack’d a Parliament,

Will once more try th’ expedient:

Who can already muster friends,

To serve for members, to our ends,

That represent no part o’ th’ nation,

But 23 Fisher’s-Folly Congregation;

Are only tools to our intrigues,

And sit like geese to hatch our eggs;

Who, by their precedents of wit,

T’ out-fast, out-loiter, and out-sit,

Can order matters underhand,

To put all bus’ness to a stand;

Lay publick bills aside for private,

And make ’em one another drive out;

Divert the great and necessary,

With trifles to contest and vary;

And make the Ration represent,

And serve for us, in Parliament

Cut out more work than can be done.

In 24 PLATO’S year, but finish none;

Unless it be the Bulls of LENTHAL,

That always pass’d for fundamental;

Can set up grandee against grandee,

To squander time away, and bandy;

Make Lords and Commoners lay sieges

To one another’s privileges,

And, rather than compound the quarrel,

Engage to th’ inevitable peril

Of both their ruins; th’ only scope

And consolation of our hope;

Who though we do not play the game,

Assist as much by giving aim:

Can introduce our ancient arts,

For heads of factions t’ act their parts;

Know what a leading voice is worth,

A seconding, a third, or fourth

How much a casting voice comes to,

That turns up trump, of ay, or no;

And, by adjusting all at th’ end,

Share ev’ry one his dividend

An art that so much study cost,

And now’s in danger to be lost,

Unless our ancient virtuosos,

That found it out, get into th’ Houses.

These are the courses that we took

To carry things by hook or crook;

And practis’d down from forty-four,

Until they turn’d us out of door

Besides the herds of Boutefeus

We set on work without the House;

When ev’ry knight and citizen

Kept legislative journeymen,

To bring them in intelligence

From all points of the rabble’s sense,

And fill the lobbies of both Houses

With politick important buzzes:

Set committees of cabals,

To pack designs without the walls;

Examine, and draw up all news,

And fit it to our present use.

Agree upon the plot o’ th’ farce,

And ev’ry one his part rehearse,

Make Q’s of answers, to way-lay

What th’ other pasties like to say

What repartees, and smart reflections,

Shall be return’d to all objections;

And who shall break the master-jest,

And what, and how, upon the rest

Held pamphlets out, with safe editions,

Of proper slanders and seditions;

And treason for a token send,

By Letter to a Country Friend;

Disperse lampoons, the only wit

That men, like burglary, commit;

Wit falser than a padder’s face,

That all its owner does betrays;

Who therefore dares not trust it when

He’s in his calling to be seen;

Disperse the dung on barren earth,

To bring new weeds of discord forth;

Be sure to keep up congregations,

In spight of laws and proclamations:

For Charlatans can do no good

Until they’re mounted in a crowd;

And when they’re punish’d, all the hurt

Is but to fare the better for’t;

As long as confessors are sure

Of double pay for all th’ endure;

And what they earn in persecution,

Are paid t’ a groat in contribution.

Whence some Tub–Holders-forth have made

In powd’ring-tubs their richest trade;

And while they kept their shops in prison,

Have found their prices strangely risen.

Disdain to own the least regret

For all the Christian blood w’ have let;

’Twill save our credit, and maintain

Our title to do so again;

That needs not cost one dram of sense,

But pertinacious impudence.

Our constancy t’ our principles,

In time will wear out all things else;

Like marble statues rubb’d in pieces

With gallantry of pilgrims’ kisses;

While those who turn and wind their oaths,

Have swell’d and sunk, like other froths;

Prevail’d a while, but ’twas not long

Before from world to world they swung:

As they had turn’d from side to side,

And as the changelings liv’d, they dy’d.

This said, th’ impatient States-monger

Could now contain himself no longer;

Who had not spar’d to shew his piques

Against th’ haranguer’s politicks,

With smart remarks of leering faces,

And annotations of grimaces.

After h’ had administer’d a dose

Of snuff-mundungus to his nose,

And powder’d th’ inside of his skull,

Instead of th’ outward jobbernol,

He shook it with a scornful look

On th’ adversary, and thus he spoke:

In dressing a calves head, although

The tongue and brains together go,

Both keep so great a distance here,

’Tis strange if ever they come near;

For who did ever play his gambols

With such insufferable rambles

To make the bringing in the KING,

And keeping of him out, one thing?

Which none could do, but those that swore

T’ as point-plank nonsense heretofore:

That to defend, was to invade;

And to assassinate, to aid

Unless, because you drove him out,

(And that was never made a doubt,)

No pow’r is able to restore,

And bring him in, but on your score

A spiritual doctrine, that conduces

Most properly to all your uses.

’Tis true, a scorpions oil is said

To cure the wounds the vermine made;

And weapons, drest with salves, restore

And heal the hurts they gave before;

But whether Presbyterians have

So much good nature as the salve,

Or virtue in them as the vermine,

Those who have try’d them can determine.

Indeed, ‘th pity you should miss

Th’ arrears of all your services,

And for th’ eternal obligation

Y’ have laid upon th’ ungrateful nation,

Be us’d so unconscionably hard,

As not to find a just reward,

For letting rapine loose, and murther,

To rage just so far, but no further;

And setting all the land on fire,

To burn’t to a scantling, but no higher;

For vent’ring to assassinate,

And cut the throats, of Church and State,

And not be allow’d the fittest men

To take the charge of both agen:

Especially, that have the grace

Of self-denying, gifted face;

Who when your projects have miscarry’d,

Can lay them, with undaunted forehead,

On those you painfully trepann’d,

And sprinkled in at second hand;

As we have been, to share the guilt

Of Christian Blood, devoutly spilt;

For so our ignorance was flamm’d

To damn ourselves, t’ avoid being damn’d;

Till finding your old foe, the hangman,

Was like to lurch you at back-gammon

And win your necks upon the set,

As well as ours, who did but bet,

(For he had drawn your ears before,

And nick’d them on the self-same score,)

We threw the box and dice away,

Before y’ had lost us, at foul play;

And brought you down to rook, and lie,

And fancy only, on the by;

Redeem’d your forfeit jobbernoles

From perching upon lofty poles;

And rescu’d all your outward traitors

From hanging up like aligators;

For which ingeniously y’ have shew’d

Your Presbyterian gratitude:

Would freely have paid us home in kind,

And not have been one rope behind.

Those were your motives to divide,

And scruple, on the other side.

To turn your zealous frauds, and force,

To fits of conscience and remorse;

To be convinc’d they were in vain,

And face about for new again;

For truth no more unveil’d your eyes,

Than maggots are convinc’d to flies

And therefore all your lights and calls

Are but apocryphal and false,

To charge us with the consequences

Of all your native insolences,

That to your own imperious wills

Laid Law and Gospel neck and heels;

Corrupted the Old Testament,

To serve the New for precedent

T’ amend its errors, and defects,

With murther, and rebellion texts;

Of which there is not any one

In all the Book to sow upon

And therefore (from your tribe) the Jews

Held Christian doctrine forth, and use;

As Mahomet (your chief) began

To mix them in the Alchoran:

Denounc’d and pray’d, with fierce devotion,

And bended elbows on the cushion;

Stole from the beggars all your tones,

And gifted mortifying groans;

Had Lights where better eyes were blind,

As pigs are said to see the wind

Fill’d Bedlam with predestination,

And Knights-bridge with illumination:

Made children, with your tones, to run for’t,

As bad as bloody-bones, or LUNSFORD:

While women, great with child, miscarry’d,

For being to malignants marry’d

Transform’d all wives to DALILAHS

Whose husbands were not for the Cause;

And turn’d the men to ten horn’d cattle,

Because they came not out to battle

Made taylors’ prentices turn heroes,

For fear of being transform’d to MEROZ:

And rather forfeit their indentures,

Than not espouse the Saints’ adventures.

Could transubstantiate, metamorphose,

And charm whole herds of beasts, like Orpheus;

Inchant the King’s and Churches lands

T’ obey and follow your commands;

And settle on a new freehold,

As MARCLY-HILL had done of old:

Could turn the Covenant, and translate

The gospel into spoons and plate:

Expound upon all merchants’ cashes,

And open th’ intricatest places

Could catechize a money-box,

And prove all powches orthodox;

Until the Cause became a DAMON,

And PYTHIAS the wicked Mammon.

And yet, in spight of all your charms

To conjure legion up in arms,

And raise more devils in the rout

Than e’er y’ were able to cast out,

Y’ have been reduc’d, and by those fools

Bred up (you say) in your own schools;

Who, though but gifted at your feet,

Have made it plain, they have more wit;

By whom y’ have been so oft trepann’d,

And held forth out of all command,

Out-gifted, out-impuls’d, out-done,

And out-reveal’d at carryings-on;

Of all your dispensations worm’d,

Out–Providenc’d, and out-reform’d;

Ejected out of Church and State,

And all things, but the peoples’ hate;

And spirited out of th’ enjoyments

Of precious, edifying employments,

By those who lodg’d their Gifts and Graces,

Like better bowlers, in your places;

All which you bore with resolution,

Charg’d on th’ accompt of persecution;

And though most righteously opprest,

Against your wills, still acquiesc’d;

And never hum’d and hah’d sedition,

Nor snuffled treason, nor misprision.

That is, because you never durst;

For had you preach’d and pray’d your worst,

Alas! you were no longer able

To raise your posse of the rabble:

One single red-coat centinel

Out-charm’d the magick of the spell;

And, with his squirt-fire, could disperse

Whole troops with chapter rais’d and verse.

We knew too well those tricks of yours,

To leave it ever in your powers;

Or trust our safeties, or undoings,

To your disposing of out-goings;

Or to your ordering Providence,

One farthing’s-worth of consequence.

For had you pow’r to undermine,

Or wit to carry a design,

Or correspondence to trepan,

Inveigle, or betray one man,

There’s nothing else that intervenes,

And bars your zeal to use the means

And therefore wond’rous like, no doubt,

To bring in Kings, or keep them out.

Brave undertakers to restore,

That cou’d not keep yourselves in pow’r;

T’ advance the int’rests of the Crown,

That wanted wit to keep your own.

’Tis true, you have (for I’d be loth

To wrong ye) done your parts in both,

To keep him out, and bring him in,

As grace is introduc’d by sin;

For ’twas your zealous want of sense,

And sanctify’d impertinence,

Your carrying business in a huddle,

That forc’d our rulers to new-model;

Oblig’d the State to tack about,

And turn you, root and branch, all out;

To reformado, one and all,

T’ your great 25 Croysado General.

Your greedy slav’ring to devour,

Before ’twas in your clutches, pow’r,

That sprung the game you were to set,

Before y’ had time to draw the net;

Your spight to see the Churches’ lands

Divided into other hands,

And all your sacrilegious ventures

Laid out in tickets and debentures;

Your envy to he sprinkled down,

By Under–Churches in the town;

And no course us’d to stop their mouths,

Nor th’ Independents’ spreading growths

All which consider’d, ’tis most true

None bring him in so much as you

Who have prevail’d beyond their plots,

Their midnight juntos, and seal’d knots

That thrive more by your zealous piques,

Than all their own rash politicks

And you this way may claim a share

In carrying (as you brag) th’ affair;

Else frogs and toads, that croak’d the Jews

From PHARAOH and his brick-kilns loose,

And flies and mange, that set them free

From task-masters and slavery,

Were likelier to do the feat,

In any indiff’rent man’s conceit

For who e’er heard of restoration

Until your thorough Reformation?

That is, the King’s and Churches’ land

Were sequester’d int’ other hands:

For only then, and not before,

Your eyes were open’d to restore.

And when the work was carrying on,

Who cross’d it, but yourselves alone?

As by a world of hints appears,

All plain and extant as your ears.

But first, o’ th’ first: The Isle of WIGHT

Will rise up, if you should deny’t;

Where HENDERSON, and th’ other masses,

Were sent to cap texts, and put cases;

To pass for deep and learned scholars,

Although but paltry 26 Ob and Sollers:

As if th’ unseasonable fools

Had been a coursing in the schools;

Until th’ had prov’d the Devil author

O’ th’ Covenant, and the Cause his daughter,

For when they charg’d him with the guilt

Of all the blood that had been spilt,

They did not mean he wrought th’ effusion,

In person, like 27 Sir PRIDE, or HUGHSON,

But only those who first begun

The quarrel were by him set on;

And who could those be but the Saints,

Those Reformation Termagants?

But e’er this pass’d, the wise debate

Spent so much time, it grew too late;

For OLIVER had gotten ground,

T’ inclose him with his warriors round

Had brought his Providence about,

And turn’d th’ untimely sophists out,

Nor had the UXBRIDGE bus’ness less

Of nonsense in’t, or sottishness,

When from a scoundrel Holder-forth,

The scum as well as son o’ th’ earth,

Your mighty Senators took law;

At his command, were forc’d t’ withdraw,

And sacrifice the peace o’ th’ nation

To doctrine, use and application.

So when the SCOTS, your constant cronies,

Th’ espousers of your Cause and monies,

Who had so often, in your aid,

So many ways been soundly paid,

Came in at last for better ends,

To prove themselves your trusty friends,

You basely left them, and the Church

They train’d you up to, in the lurch,

And suffer’d your own tribe of Christians

To fall before, as true Philistines.

This shews what utensils y’ have been,

To bring the King’s concernments in;

Which is so far from being true,

That none but he can bring in you:

And if he take you into trust,

Will find you most exactly just:

Such as will punctually repay

With double interest, and betray.

Not that I think those pantomimes,

Who vary action with the times,

Are less ingenious in their art,

Than those who dully act one part;

Or those who turn from side to side,

More guilty than the wind and tide.

All countries are a wise man’s home,

And so are governments to some,

Who change them for the same intrigues

That statesmen use in breaking leagues;

While others, in old faiths and troths,

Look odd as out-of-fashion’d cloths;

And nastier in an old opinion,

Than those who never shift their linnen.

For true and faithful’s sure to lose,

Which way soever the game goes;

And whether parties lose or win,

Is always nick’d, or else hedg’d in:

While pow’r usurp’d, like stol’n delight,

Is more bewitching than the right;

And when the times begin to alter,

None rise so high as from the halter.

And so may we, if w’ have but sense

To use the necessary means;

And not your usual stratagems

On one another, Lights and Dreams

To stand on terms as positive,

As if we did not take, but give:

Set up the Covenant on crutches,

‘Gainst those who have us in their clutches,

And dream of pulling churches down,

Before w’ are sure to prop our own:

Your constant method of proceeding,

Without the carnal mans of heeding;

Who ‘twixt your inward sense and outward,

Are worse, than if y’ had none, accoutred.

I grant, all courses are in vain,

Unless we can get in again;

The only way that’s left us now;

But all the difficulty’s, How?

’Tis true, w’ have money, th’ only pow ‘r

That all mankind falls down before;

Money, that, like the swords of kings,

Is the last reason of all things;

And therefore need not doubt our play

Has all advantages that way;

As long as men have faith to sell,

And meet with those that can pay well;

Whose half-starv’d pride, and avarice,

One Church and State will not suffice

T’ expose to sale, beside the wages

Of storing plagues to after-ages.

Nor is our money less our own,

Than ’twas before we laid it down;

For ’twill return, and turn t’ account,

If we are brought, in play upon’t:

Or but, by casting knaves, get in,

What pow ‘r can hinder us to win?

We know the arts we us’d before,

In peace and war, and something more;

And by th’ unfortunate events,

Can mend our next experiments:

For when w’ are taken into trust,

How easy are the wisest choust?

Who see but th’ outsides of our feats,

And not their secret springs and weights;

And while they’re busy at their ease,

Can carry what designs we please.

How easy is it to serve for agents,

To prosecute our old engagements?

To keep the Good Old Cause on foot,

And present power from taking root?

Inflame them both with false alarms

Of plots and parties taking arms;

To keep the Nation’s wounds too wide

From healing up of side to side;

Profess the passionat’st concerns

For both their interests by turns;

The only way to improve our own,

By dealing faithfully with none;

(As bowls run true, by being made

On purpose false, and to be sway’d:)

For if we should be true to either,

‘Twould turn us out of both together;

And therefore have no other means

To stand upon our own defence,

But keeping up our ancient party

In vigour, confident and hearty:

To reconcile our late dissenters,

Our brethren, though by other venters;

Unite them, and their different maggots,

As long and short sticks are in faggots,

And make them join again as close

As when they first began t’ espouse;

Erect them into separate

New Jewish tribes, in Church and State;

To join in marriage and commerce,

And only among themselves converse;

And all that are not of their mind,

Make enemies to all mankind:

Take all religions in and stickle

From Conclave down to Conventicle;

Agreeing still, or disagreeing,

According to the Light in being.

Sometimes for liberty of conscience,

And spiritual mis-rule, in one sense;

But in another quite contrary,

As dispensations chance to vary;

And stand for, as the times will bear it,

All contradictions of the Spirit:

Protect their emissaries, empower’d

To preach sedition and the word;

And when they’re hamper’d by the laws,

Release the lab’rers for the Cause,

And turn the persecution back

On those that made the first attack;

To keep them equally in awe,

From breaking or maintaining law:

And when they have their fits too soon,

Before the full-tides of the moon,

Put off their zeal t’ a fitter season

For sowing faction in and treason;

And keep them hooded, and their Churches,

Like hawks from baiting on their perches,

That, when the blessed time shall come

Of quitting BABYLON and ROME,

They may be ready to restore

Their own Fifth Monarchy once more.

Meanwhile be better arm’d to fence

Against revolts of Providence.

By watching narrowly, and snapping

All blind sides of it, they happen

For if success could make us Saints,

Or ruin turn’d us miscreants:

A scandal that wou’d fall too hard

Upon a few, and. unprepar’d.

These are the courses we must run,

Spight of our hearts, or be undone;

And not to stand on terms and freaks,

Before we have secur’d our necks;

But do our work, as out of sight,

As stars by day, and suns by night;

All licence of the people own,

In opposition to the Crown;

And for the Crown as fiercely side,

The head and body to divide;

The end of all we first design’d,

And all that yet remains behind

Be sure to spare no publick rapine,

On all emergencies, that happen;

For ’tis as easy to supplant

Authority as men in want;

As some of us, in trusts, have made

The one hand with the other trade;

Gain’d vastly by their joint endeavour;

The right a thief; the left receiver;

And what the one, by tricks, forestall’d,

The other, by as sly, retail’d.

For gain has wonderful effects

T’ improve the Factory of Sects;

The rule of faith in all professions.

And great DIANA of the EPHESIANS;

Whence turning of Religion’s made

The means to turn and wind a trade:

And though some change it for the worse,

They put themselves into a course;

And draw in store of customers,

To thrive the better in commerce:

For all Religions flock together,

Like tame and wild fowl of a feather;

To nab the itches of their sects,

As jades do one another’s necks.

Hence ’tis, Hypocrisy as well

Will serve t’ improve a Church as ZEAL:

As Persecution or Promotion,

Do equally advance Devotion.

Let business, like ill watches, go

Sometime too fast, sometime too slow;

For things in order are put out

So easy, Ease itself will do’t;

But when the feat’s design’d and meant,

What miracle can bar th’ event?

For ’tis more easy to betray,

Than ruin any other way.

All possible occasions start

The weighty’st matters to divert;

Obstruct, perplex, distract, intangle,

And lay perpetual trains to wrangle.

But in affairs of less import,

That neither do us good nor hurt,

And they receive as little by,

Out-fawn as much, and out-comply;

And seem as scrupulously just,

To bait our hooks for greater trust;

But still be careful to cry down

All publick actions, though our own:

The least miscarriage aggravate,

And charge it all upon the Sate;

Express the horrid’st detestation,

And pity the distracted nation

Tell stories scandalous and false,

I’ th’ proper language of cabals,

Where all a subtle statesman says,

Is half in words, and half in face;

(As Spaniards talk in dialogues

Of heads and shoulders, nods and shrugs:)

Entrust it under solemn vows

Of mum, and silence, and the rose,

To be retail’d again in whispers,

For th’ easy credulous to disperse.

Thus far the Statesman — When a shout,

Heard at a distance, put him out;

And straight another, all aghast,

Rush’d in with equal fear and haste;

Who star’d about, as pale as death,

And, for a while, as out of breath;

Till having gather’d up his wits,

He thus began his tale by fits.

That 28 beastly rabble — that came down

From all the garrets — in the town,

And stalls, and shop-boards — in vast swarms,

With new-chalk’d bills — and rusty arms,

To cry the Cause — up, heretofore,

And bawl the BISHOPS— out of door,

Are now drawn up — in greater shoals,

To roast — and broil us on the coals,

And all the Grandees — of our Members

Are carbonading — on the embers;

Knights, Citizens, and Burgesses —

Held forth by Rumps — of Pigs and Geese,

That serve for Characters — and Badges.

To represent their Personages:

Each bonfire is a funeral pile,

In which they roast, and scorch, and broil,

And ev’ry representative

Have vow’d to roast — and broil alive:

And ’tis a miracle, we are not

Already sacrific’ d incarnate.

For while we wrangle here, and jar,

W’ are grilly’d all at TEMPLE-BAR:

Some on the sign-post of an ale-house,

Hang in effigy, on the gallows;

Made up of rags, to personate

Respective Officers of State;

That henceforth they may stand reputed,

Proscrib’d in law, and executed;

And while the Work is carrying on

Be ready listed under 29 DON,

That worthy patriot, once the bellows,

And tinder-box, of all his fellows;

The activ’st Member of the Five,

As well as the most primitive;

Who, for his faithful service then

Is chosen for a Fifth agen:

(For since the State has made a Quint

Of Generals, he’s listed in’t.)

This worthy, as the world will say,

Is paid in specie, his own way;

For, moulded to the life in clouts,

Th’ have pick’d from dung-hills hereabouts,

He’s mounted on a hazel bavin,

A cropp’d malignant baker gave ‘m;

And to the largest bone-fire riding,

They’ve roasted 30 COOK already and PRIDE in;

On whom in equipage and state,

His scarecrow fellow-members wait,

And march in order, two and two,

As at thanksgivings th’ us’d to do;

Each in a tatter’d talisman,

Like vermin in effigie slain.

But (what’s more dreadful than the rest)

Those Rumps are but the tail o’ th’ Beast,

Set up by Popish engineers,

As by the crackers plainly appears;

For none but Jesuits have a mission

To preach the faith with ammunition,

And propagate the Church with powder:

Their founder was a blown-up 31 Soldier.

These spiritual pioneers o’ th’ Whore’s,

That have the charge of all her stores,

Since first they fail’d in their designs,

To take in Heav’n by springing mines,

And with unanswerable barrels

Of gunpowder dispute their quarrels,

Now take a course more practicable,

By laying trains to fire the rabble,

And blow us up in th’ open streets,

Disguis’d in Rumps, like Sambenites;

More like to ruin, and confound,

Than all the doctrines under ground.

Nor have they chosen Rumps amiss

For symbols of State-mysteries;

Though some suppose ’twas but to shew

How much they scorn’d the Saints, the few;

Who, ‘cause they’re wasted to the stumps,

Are represented best by Rumps.

But Jesuits have deeper reaches

In all their politick far-fetches,

And from the Coptick Priest, 32 Kircherus,

Found out this mystick way to jeer us.

For, as th’ 33 Egyptians us’d by bees

T’ express their antick PTOLOMIES;

And by their stings, the swords they wore,

Held forth authority and power;

Because these subtil animals

Bear all their int’rests in their tails;

And when they’re once impar’d in that,

Are banish’d their well-order’d state;

They thought all governments were best

By Hieroglyphick Rumps exprest.

For, as in bodies natural,

The rump’s the fundament of all;

So, in a commonwealth, or realm,

The government is call’d the helm;

With which, like vessels under sail,

They’re turn’d and winded by the tail;

The tail, which birds and fishes steer

Their courses with through sea and air;

To whom the rudder of the rump is

The same thing with the stern and compass.

This shews how perfectly the Rump

And Commonwealth in nature jump.

For as a fly, that goes to bed,

Rests with his tail above his head,

So in this mungrel state of ours;

The rabble are the supreme powers;

That hors’d us on their backs, to show us

A jadish trick at last, and throw us.

The learned Rabbins of the Jews

Write there’s a bone, which they call leuz,

I’ th’ rump of man, of such a virtue,

No force in nature can do hurt to;

And therefore at the last great day,

All th’ other members shall, they say,

Spring out of this, as from a seed

All sorts of vegetals proceed;

From whence the learned sons of art

Os Sacrum justly stile that part.

Then what can better represent

Than this Rump Bone the Parliament;

That, alter several rude ejections,

And as prodigious resurrections,

With new reversions of nine lives,

Starts up, and like a cat revives?

But now, alas! they’re all expir’d,

And th’ House, as well as Members, fir’d;

Consum’d in kennels by the rout,

With which they other fires put out:

Condemn’d t’ ungoverning distress,

And paultry, private wretchedness;

Worse than the Devil, to privation,

Beyond all hopes of restoration;

And parted, like the body and soul,

From all dominion and controul.

We, who cou’d lately with a look

Enact, establish, or revoke;

Whose arbitrary nods gave law,

And frowns kept multitudes in awe;

Before the bluster of whose huff,

All hats, as in a storm, flew off;

Ador’d and bowed to by the great,

Down to the footman and valet;

Had more bent knees than chapel-mats,

And prayers than the crowns of hats;

Shall now be scorn’d as wretchedly;

For ruin’s just as low as high;

Which might be suffer’d, were it all

The horror that attends our fall:

For some of us have scores more large

Than heads and quarters can discharge;

And others, who, by restless scraping,

With publick frauds, and private rapine,

Have mighty heaps of wealth amass’d,

Would gladly lay down all at last;

And to be but undone, entail

Their vessels on perpetual jail;

And bless the Dev’l to let them farms

Of forfeit souls on no worse terms.

This said, a near and louder shout

Put all th’ assembly to the rout,

Who now begun t’ out-run their fear,

As horses do from whom they bear;

But crowded on with so mach haste,

Until th’ had block’d the passage fast,

And barricado’d it with haunches

Of outward men, and bulks, and paunches,

That with their shoulders strove to squeeze,

And rather save a crippled piece

Of all their crush’d and broken members,

Than have them grilled on the embers;

Still pressing on with heavy packs

Of one another on their backs:

The van-guard could no longer hear

The charges of the forlorn rear,

But, born down headlong by the rout,

Were trampled sorely under foot:

Yet nothing prov’d so formidable

As the horrid cookery of the rabble;

And fear, that keeps all feeling out,

As lesser pains are by the gout,

Reliev’d ’em with a fresh supply

Of rallied force enough to fly,

And beat a Tuscan running-horse,

Whose jockey-rider is all spurs.

1 The Learned write, &c.] An insect breeze. Breezes often bring along with them great quantities of insects, which some are of opinion, are generated from viscous exhalations in the air; but our Author makes them proceed from a cow’s dung, and afterwards become a plague to that whence it received its original.

2 For as the Persian, &c.] The Magi were priests and philosophers among the Persians, intrusted with the government both civil and ecclesiastick, much addicted to the observation of the stars. Zoroaster is reported to be their first author. They had this custom amongst them, to preserve and continue their families by incestuous copulation with their own mothers. Some are of opinion, that the three wise men that came out of the East to worship our Saviour were some of these.

3 At Michael’s Term, &c.] St. Michael, an archangel; mentioned in St. Jude’s Epistle, Verse 9.

4 And laid about, &c.] William Prynne, of Lincoln’s-Inn, Esq. born at Swanswick, who stiled himself Utter Barrister, a very warm person, and voluminous writer; and after the Restoration, keeper of the records in the Tower.

5 As Dutch Boors, &c.] It is reported of the Dutch women, that making so great use of stoves, and often putting them under their petticoats, they engender a kind of ugly monster, which is called a Sooterkin.

6 T’ out-cant the Babylonian, &c.] At the building of the Tower of Babel, when God made the confusion of languages.

7 Toss’d in a furious Hurricane, &c.] At Oliver’s death was a most furious tempest, such as had not been known in the memory of man, or hardly ever recorded to have been in this nation. This Sterry reported something ridiculously fabulous concerning Oliver, not unlike what Proculus did of Romulus.

8 False Heaven, &c.] After the Restoration, Oliver’s body was dug up, and his head set at the farther end of Westminster-hall, near which place there is an house of entertainment, which is commonly known by the name of Heaven.

9 So Romulus, &c.] A Roman Senator, whose name was Proculus, and much beloved by Romulus, made oath before the Senate, that this prince appeared to him after his death, and predicted the future grandeur of that city, promising to be protector of it; and expressly charged him, that he should be adored there under the name of Quirinus; and he had his temple on Mount Quirinale.

10 Next his Son, &c.] Oliver’s eldest son Richard was, by him before his death, declared his successor; and, by order of privy-council, proclaimed Lord Protector, and received the compliments of congratulation and condolence, at the same time, from the Lord Mayor and Court of Aldermen: and addresses were presented to him from all parts of the nation, promising to stand by him with their lives and fortunes. He summoned a Parliament to meet at Westminster, which recognized him Lord Protector: yet, notwithstanding, Fleetwood, Desborough, and their partizans, managed affairs so, that he was obliged to resign.

11 To edify upon the Ruins, &c.] John of Leyden, whose name was Buckhold, was a butcher of the same place, but a crafty, eloquent, and seditious fellow and one of those called Anabaptists. He went and set up at Munster, where, with Knipperdoling, and others of the same faction, they spread their abominable errors, and run about the streets in enthusiastical raptures, crying, Repent and be baptized, pronouncing dismal woes against all those that would not embrace their tenets. About the year 1533 they broke out into an open insurrection, and seized the palace and magazines, and grew so formidable that it was very dangerous for those who were not of their persuasion to dwell in Munster; but at length he and his associates being subdued and taken, he was executed at Munster, had his flesh pulled off by two executioners with red-hot pincers for the space of an hour, and then run through with a sword.

12 ‘Mong these there was a Politician, &c.] This was the famous E. of S. who was endued with a particular faculty of undermining and subverting all sorts of government.

13 and better than by Napier’s Bones, &c.] The famous Lord Napier, of Scotland, the first inventor of logarithms, contrived also a set of square pieces, with numbers on them, made generally of ivory, (which perform arithmetical and geometrical calculations,) and are commonly called Napier’s Bones.

14 To match this Saint, &c.] The great colonel John Lilbourn, whose trial is so remarkable, and well known at this time.

15 The Trojan Mare, &c.] After the Grecians had spent ten years in the siege of Troy, without the least prospect of success, they bethought of a stratagem, and made a wooden horse capable of containing a considerable number of armed men: this they filled with the choicest of their army, and then pretended to raise the siege; upon which the credulous Trojans made a breach in the walls of the city to bring in this fatal plunder; but when it was brought in, the inclosed heroes soon appeared, and surprizing the city, the rest entered in at the breach.

16 (I mean Margaret’s Fast) &c.] That Parliament used to have publick fasts kept in St. Margaret’s church, Westminster, as is done to this present time.

17 To hang like Mahomet, &c.] It is reported of Mahomet the great impostor, that having built a mosque, the roof whereof was of loadstone, and ordering his corpse, when he was dead, to be put into an iron coffin, and brought into that place, the loadstone soon attracted it near the top, where it still hangs in the air.

No less fabulous is what the legend says of Ignatius Loyola, that his zeal and devotion transported him so, that at his prayers he has been seen to be raised from the ground for some considerable time together.

18 As easy as Serpents, &c.] Naturalists report, that Snakes, Serpents, &c. cast their skins every year.

19 As Barnacles turn Soland Geese, &c.] It is said that in the Islands of the Orcades, in Scotland, there are trees which bear those barnacles, which dropping off into the water, receive life, and become those birds called soland geese.

20 So he that keeps the Gate of Hell, &c.] The poets feign the dog Cerberus, that is the porter of hell, to have three heads.

21 The GIBELLINES, &c.] Two great factions in Italy, distinguished by those names, miserably distracted and wasted it about the year 1130.

22 When three Saints Ears, &c.] Burton, Prynn, and Bastwick, three notorious ringleaders of the factious, just at the beginning of the late horrid rebellion.

23 But Fisher’s Folly, &c.] Fisher’s Folly, was where Devonshire–Square now stands, and was a great place of consultation in those days.

24 Cut out more Work, &c.] Plato’s year, or the grand revolution of the intire machine of the world, was accounted 4000 years.

25 T’ your great Croysado General, &c.] General Fairfax, who was soon laid aside after he had done some of their drudgery for them.

26 To pass for deep and learned Scholars, &c.] Two ridiculous scribblers, that were often pestering the world with nonsense.

27 Like Sir Pride, &c.] The one a brewer, the other a shoemaker, and both colonels in the rebels’ army.

28 The beastly Rabble that came down, &c.] This is an accurate description of the mob’s burning rumps upon the admission of the secluded Members, on contempt of the Rump–Parliament.

29 Be ready listed under DON] The hangman’s name at that time was Don.

30 They’ve roasted COOK already and PRIDE in.] Cook acted as solicitor-general against King Charles the First at his trial; and afterwards received his just reward for the same. Pride, a colonel in the Parliament’s army.

31 Their Founder was a blown up Soldier.] Ignatius Loyola, the founder of the society of the Jesuits, was a gentleman of Biscay, in Spain, and bred a soldier; was at Pampelune when it was besieged by the French in the year 1521, and was so very lame in both feet, by the damage he sustained there, that he was forced to keep his bed.

32 And from their Coptick Priests, Kircherus.] Athanasius Kircher, a Jesuit, hath wrote largely on the AEgyptian mystical learning.

33 For, as the AEgyptians us’d by Bees, &c.] The AEgyptians represented their kings, (many of whose names were Ptolemy) under the hieroglyphick of a bee, dispensing honey to the good and virtuous, and having a sting for the wicked and dissolute.

http://ebooks.adelaide.edu.au/b/butler/samuel_1612-1680/hudibras/canto8.html

Last updated Wednesday, March 12, 2014 at 13:31