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her, with so much impudence, under the common denomination of We; that is, WE Queen and Tories are cyphers. Nos numerus fumus is a scrap of Latin more impudent than Cardinal Woolsey's Ege et Rex meus.
We find the same particle WE, used with great emphasis and significancy in the eighth page of this Letter ; But, nothing decisive, nothing which had the appearance of earnest, has bien so much as attempted, except that wife expedition to Thoulon, which W E suffered to be defeated before it began. Whoever did, God forgive them: tliere were indeed several stories of discoveries made, by letters and messengers that were sent to France.
Having done with the Author's party and principles, we shall now consider his performance, under the three heads of Wit, Language, and Argument. The first lash of his Satyr falls upon the Cenfor of Great Britain, who, says he, resembles the famous Censor of Rome, in nothing but espousing the cause of the vanquished. Our Letter-writer here alludes to that known verse in Lucan,
Victrix caufa Diis placuit, fed victa Catoni. The Gods espoused the cause of the conquerors,
but Cato espoused the cause of the vanquished. The misfortune is, that this verse was not written of Cato the Cenfor, but of Cato of Utica. How Mr. Bickerstaff, who has written in favour of a party that is not vanquished, resembles the younger Cato, who was not a Raman Cenfor, I do not well conceive, unless it be in struggling for the liberty of his country. To say therefore, that the Cenfor of Great Britain resembles that famous Cenfor of
Rome in nothing but espousing the cause of the vanquished ; is just the same as if one should say, in regard to the many obscure truths and secret histories that are brought to light in this Letter, that the Author of these new revelations, resembles the ancient Author of the Revelations in nothing but venturing his head. Besides that there would be no ground for such a resemblance, would not a man be laughed at by every common Reader, should he thus mistake one St. John for another, and apply that to St. John the Evangelist which relates to St. John the Baptist, who died many years before him
Another smart touch of the Author we meet with in the fifth page, where, without any preparation, he breaks out all on a sudden into a vein of poetry; and instead of writing a letter to the Examiner, gives advice to a painter in these strong, lines : Paint, Sir, with that force which you are master of, the present state of the war abroad; and expose to the publick view those principles upon which, of late, it has been carried on, so different from those upon which it was originally entered into. Collect some few of the indignities' which have been this year offered to Her Majesty, and of those unnatural Aruggles which have betrayed the weakness of a Shattered conftitution. By the way, a man may be said to paint a battle, or if you please, a war ; but I do not see how it is possible to paint the present state of a war. So a man may be said to describe or to collect accounts of indignities and unnatural struggles; but to collect the things themfelves, is a figure which this Gentleman has introduced into our English. prose. Well, but what will be the use of this picture of a state NS
of the war? ard this collection of indignities and struggles ? It seems the chief design of them is to make a dead 'man' blush, as we' may see in those inimitable lines which immediately follow : And when this is done, D----n mall blush in his grave among the dead, W----le among the living, and even Vol---- hall feel some remorse. Was there ever any thing, I will not say so stiff and so unnatural, but so brutal and so filly! this is downright hacking and hewing in Satyr. But we see a masterpiece of this kind of writing in the twelfth page; where, without any respect to a Dutchess of Great-Britain, a Princess of the Empire, and one who was a bosom-friend of her Royal Mistress, he calls a great Lady an insolent woman, the 'worst of her fex, a fury, an executioner of divine vengeance, a plague'; and applies to her a line which Virgil writ originally upon Alecto. One would think this foul-mouthed writer must have Teceived some particular injuries, either from this great Lady or from her husband ; and these the world shall be foon acquainted with, by a book which is now in the press, entitled, An' Esay towards proving that gratitude is no virtue. This Author is full of Satyr, and is so angry with every one that is pleased with the Duke of Marlboyough's victories, that he goes out of his way to abufe one of the Queen's singing-men, who it feems did his best to celebrate a thanksgiving day in an Anthem; as you may see in that passage : Towns have been taken, and battels have been won; the mob has huzza'd round bonefires, the Stentor of the chapple has strained his throat in the gallery, and the Sientor of S----m has deafned his audience from the pulpii. Thus you see how like a true son of
the High-Church, he falls upon a learned and reverend Prelate, and for no other crime, but for preaching with an audible voice. If a man lifts up his voice like a trumpet to preach fedition, he is received by some men as a Confessor ; but if he cries aloud, and spares not, to animate people with devotion and gratitude, for the greatest publick blessings that ever were bestowed on a sinful nation, is reviled as a Stentor.
I promised in the next place to consider the Language of this excellent Author, who I find takes himself for an Orator. In the first page he censures several for the poison which they profusely scatter through the nation ; that is, in plain English, for Squandering away their poison. In the second he talks of carrying probability through the thread of a fable ; and in the third, of laying an odium at a man's door. In the fourth he rises in his expressions ; where he speaks of those who would persuade the people, that the G----l, the quondam T----r, and the Y----to, are the only objects of the confidence of the Allies, and of the fears of the enemies. I would advise this Author to try the beauty of this expression. Suppose a foreign Minister should address Her Majesty in the following manner, (for certainly it is Her Majesty only to whom the sense of the compliment ought to be paid) Madam, you are the object of the confidence of the Allies; or, Madam, your Majesty is the only object of the fears of the enemies. Would a man think that he bad learned English? I would have the Author try, by the same rule, some of his other phrases, as Page 7. where he tells us, That the ballance of power in Europe would be still precarious. What would a tradesman think, if one Nould tell him in
a paffion, that his fcales were precarious; and mean
Not only London ecchoes with thy fame,