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ON THE CHOICE OF A WIFE:

SILVIO AND STREPHON.

'If thou hadst liberty to choose For life, dear Stripling! let thy Muse,'

, Thus Silvio, to his STREPHON said, 'Give me a picture of the Maid, With whom you'd live! for whom could die!' Thus gentle STREPHON made reply.

*Were I, my friend! to choose a Wife,
A dear companion for my life;
A Nymph, my happiest choice should be,
From artifice and falsehood free.
Her education, birth, estate,
Neither too humble, nor too great.

*Wealth should not my affections move. The treasure I require is Love! For, surely, riches in excess Are not the means to happiness! Yet may kind Heaven sufficient give, With comfort and with ease to live!

Beauty alone, I would despise;
Vermilion cheeks and sparkling eyes.
A set of features will decay,
And moulder to their parent-clay:

Yet may the Graces charms impart,
To soothe my eye, and warm my heart!
Charms that may my affections tie,
Till Time himself grow old, and die!

'She should, devout in constant prayer, Religion make her chiefest care ! And, next to Heaven, me learn to please, Crowning my happy days with ease! Still kind, and kind to me alone! Her years proportioned to my own. Her humour of a piece with mine. Her dress genteelly neat, not fine. Her temper amiably mild; With constancy and sweetness filled.

'She should not want the foreign aid Of silk, embroid'ry, or brocade; In native innocence arrayed. Should be with wit and sense endowed, Yet not of those endowments proud; Nor stiffly dumb, nor pertly loud. To decent cheerfulness inclined; And of the softest mould her mind. With such a Nymph contented I Could live! for such a Nymph could die!'

• Whate'er we meet with in Romances, Or dreaming Lovers' airy fancies;

Surely, such Nymph on British ground,
Quoth Silvio smiling, 'ne'er was found !

Had you

'O, Silvio!' STREPHON sighing said, O, did you know the charming Maid!

the fair ELIZA viewed,
So chaste, so amiably good,
She's more (with wonder you'd confess!)
Than you can think; or I express!

· Prudence does o'er her wit preside;
And Reason, all her Passions guide.
Modesty dwells upon her cheek.
The Graces, in her language speak.
Beauty sits on her face confest.
Virtue, with no ill thoughts opprest,
Serenes her brow, and calms her breast.

‘How shall my feeble pencil paint
Her charms, where all description 's faint!
O, she has charms enough to move
A hermit's frozen heart to love!
She is adorned with sweetness, ease,
Good nature, every art to please!
From prud'ry, or coquetry, free;
All Man could wish, or Woman be!

'If I'm indulged to choose a Wife, A dear companion for my life; Bless me, kind Heaven! with such a Dame! And yet not such—but O, the same!'

THE WHEEDLER.

In vain, dear Cloe! you suggest,
That I, inconstant, have possest

Or loved a fairer She!
Would you, with ease, at once be cured
Of all the ills you've long endured;

Consult your Glass and me!

;

If then, you think that I can find
A Nymph more fair, or one more kind

You've reason for your fears!
But if impartial you

will

prove To your own beauty and my love;

How needless are your tears!

If, in my way, I should, by chance,
Receive, or give, a wanton glance;

I like but while I view !
How slight the glance, how faint the kiss,
Compared to that substantial bliss

Which I receive from you!

With wanton flight, the curious bee
From flower to flower still wanders free;

And, where each blossom blows,
Extracts the juice of all he meets :
But for his quintessence of sweets,

He ravishes the rose !

So, my fond fancy to employ
On each variety of joy,

From Nymph to Nymph I roam;
Perhaps, see fifty in a day!
Those are but visits which I pay;

For Cloe is my home!

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