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Was freely hers; and, to supply the rest,
Too lady like a long fatigue to bear,
And rough inclemencies of raw nocturnal air. †
The Panther, though she lent a listening ear, Had more of lion in her than to fear; Yet wisely weighing, since she had to deal With many foes. their numbers might prevail, Returned her all the thanks she could afford, And took her friendly hostess at her word; Who, entering first her lowly roof, a shed With hoary moss and winding ivy spread, Honest enough to hide an humble hermit's head, Thus graciously bespoke her welcome guest: So might these walls, with your fair presence blest, Become your dwelling-place of everlasting rest; Not for a night, or quick revolving year, Welcome an owner, not a sojourner. This peaceful seat my poverty secures; War seldom enters but where wealth allures: Nor yet despise it; for this poor abode, Has oft received, and yet receives a God; A God, victorious of a Stygian race, Here laid his sacred limbs, and sanctified the place.
* King James.
+ Note XIII.
This mean retreat did mighty Pan* contain;
And pacified her tail, and licked her frothy jaws.
* Our Saviour.
+ Ut ventum ad sedes: Hæc, inquit, limina victor
Æneid. Lib. VIII.
THE HIND AND THE PANTHER.
Dame, said the Panther, times are mended well,
The toils were pitched, a spacious tract of ground,
In these spirited lines, Dryden describes the dangers in which the English Catholics were involved by the Popish Plot, which rendered them so obnoxious for two years, that even Charles himself, much as he was inclined to favour them, durst not attempt to prevent the most severe measures from being adopted towards them. It is somewhat curious, that the very same metaphor of hounds and huntsmen is employed by one of the most warm advocates for the plot. "Had this plot been a forged contrivance of their own, (i. e. the Papists,) they would at the very first discovery of it have had half a dozen, or half a score, crafty fellows, ready to have attested all the same things; whereas, on the contrary, notwithstanding we are now on a burning scent, we were fain till here of late to pick out, by little and little, all upon a cold scent, and that stained too by the tricks and malice of our enemies. So that had we not had some such good huntsmen as the Right Noble Earl of Shaftesbury, to manage the chase for us, our hounds must needs have been baffled, and the game lost."Appeal from the Country to the City. State Tracts, p. 407.
As I remember, said the sober Hind,
Those toils were for your own dear self designed,
(Forgive the slanderous tongues that called you so.)
Then ran you down for your rank loyalty.— P. 162.
The country party, during the 1679, and the succeeding years, were as much incensed against the divines of the high church of England as against the Papists. The furious pamphlet, quoted in the last note, divides the enemies of this country into four classes; officers, courtiers, over-hot churchmen, and papists. “Over-hot churchmen," it continues," are bribed to wish well to popery, by the hopes, if not of a cardinal's cap, yet at least by a command over some abbey, priory, or other ecclesiasti al preterment, whereof the Romish church hath so great plenty. These are the men, who exclaim against our parliament's proceedings, in relation to the plot, as too violent, calling these times by no other name than that of forty or forty-one; * when, to amuse as well his sacred majesty as his good people, they again threaten us with another fortyeight; and all this is done to vindicate underhand the Catholic party, by throwing a suspicion on the fanatics. These are the gentlemen who so magnify the principles of Bishop Laud, and so much extol the writings of that same late spirited prelate Dr Heylin, who hath made more Papists by his books than Christians by his sermons. These are those episcopal Tantivies, who can make even the very scriptures pimp for the court, who out of Urim and Thummim can extort a sermon, to prove the not paying of tithes and taxes to be the sin against the Holy Ghost; and had rather see the kingdom run down with blood, than part with the least hem of a sanctified frock, which they themselves made haly.”— Appeal, &c. State Tracts, p. 403. In a very violent tract, written expressly against the influence of the clergy, † they are charged with being the principal instruments of the court in corrupting elections. "I find," says the author, when talking of the approaching general election, "all persons very forward to countenance this public work, except the high-flown ritualists and ceremony-mongers of the clergy, who, being in the conspiracy against the people, lay themselves out to accommodate their masters with
The great civil war broke out in 1641-2, and the king was dethroned in "The Freeholder's Choice, or a Letter of Advice concerning Elections."
the veriest villains that can be picked up in all the country, that so we may fall into the hands again of as treacherous and lewd a parliament, as the wisdom of God and folly of man has most miraculously dissolved. To which end they traduce all worthy men for fanatics, schismatics, or favourers of them. Nay, do but pitch upon a gentleman, who believes it his duty to serve his God, his king, and country, faithfully, they cry him down as a person dangerous and disaffected to the government; thinking thereby to scare the people from the freedom of their choice, and then impose their hair-brained journeymen and half-witted fops upon them." In Shadwell's Whig play, called "The Lancashire Witches," he has introduced an high-flying chaplain, as the expression then run, and an Irish priest, who are described as very ready to accommodate each other in all religious tenets, since they agree in disbelieving the popish plot, and in believing that ascribed to the fanatics. These, out of a thousand instances, may serve to show, how closely the country party in the time of Charles II. were disposed to identify the interests of Rome, and of the high church of England. Dryden is therefore well authorised to say, that both communions were aimed at by that cabal, which pushed on the investigation of the supposed plot.
The test, it seems, at last hus loosed your tongue.-P. 162.
If there was any ambiguity in the church of England's doctrine concerning the eucharist, it was fully explained by the memorable Test Act, passed in 1678, during the heat of the Popish Plot, by which all persons holding public offices were required, under pain of disqualification, to disown the doctrine of transubstantiation, in the most explicit terms, as also that of image worship. This bill was pressed forwards with great violence by the country party. "I would not," said one of their orators, "have a popishman, or a popish woman, remain here; not a popish dog, or a popish bitch; not so much as a popish cat, to pur and mew about the king." Many of the church of England party opposed this test, from an idea that it was prejudicial to the interests of the
I then affirm, that this unfailing guide
Both lawful, both combined; what one decrees
By numerous votes, the other ratifies ;
On this undoubted sense the church relies. -P. 164.
Dryden does not plead the cause of infallibility so high as to