[Page 213]



1 OLD Care with Industry and Art,
2 At length so well had play'd his Part;
3 He heap'd up such an ample store,
4 That Av'rice cou'd not sigh for more:
5 Ten thousand flocks his shepherd told,
6 His coffers overflow'd with Gold;
7 The land all round him was his own,
8 With corn his crouded granaries groan.
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9 In short so vast his charge and gain,
10 That to possess them was a pain;
11 With happiness oppress'd he lies,
12 And much too prudent to be wise.
13 Near him there liv'd a beauteous maid,
14 With all the charms of youth array'd;
15 Good, amiable, sincere and free,
16 Her name was Generosity.
17 'Twas hers the largess to bestow
18 On rich and poor, on friend and foe.
19 Her doors to all were open'd wide,
20 The pilgrim there might safe abide:
21 For th' hungry and the thirsty crew,
22 The bread she broke, the drink she drew;
23 There Sickness laid her aching head,
24 And there Distress cou'd find a bed.
25 Each hour with an all-bounteous hand,
26 Diffused she blessings round the land:
27 Her gifts and glory lasted long,
28 And numerous was th' accepting throng.
29 At length pale Penury seiz'd the dame,
30 And Fortune fled, and Ruin came,
31 She found her riches at an end,
32 And that she had not made one friend.
33 All cursed her for not giving more,
34 Nor thought on what she'd done before;
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35 She wept, she rav'd, she tore her hair,
36 When lo! to comfort her came Care.
37 And cry'd, my dear, if you will join,
38 Your hand in nuptial bonds with mine;
39 All will be well you shall have store,
40 And I be plagu'd with Wealth no more.
41 Tho' I restrain your bounteous heart,
42 You still shall act the generous part.
43 The Bridal came great was the feast,
44 And good the pudding and the priest;
45 The bride in nine moons brought him forth
46 A little maid of matchless worth:
47 Her face was mix'd of Care and Glee,
48 They christen'd her Oeconomy;
49 And styled her fair Discretion's Queen,
50 The mistress of the golden mean.
51 Now Generosity confin'd,
52 Is perfect easy in her mind;
53 She loves to give, yet knows to spare,
54 Nor wishes to be free from Care.


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About this text

Title (in Source Edition): CARE and GENEROSITY. A FABLE.
Themes: marriage
Genres: fable

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Source edition

Poems on several occasions: By Christopher Smart, A. M. Fellow of Pembroke-Hall, Cambridge. London: printed for the author, by W. Strahan; and sold by J. Newbery, at the Bible and Sun, in St. Paul’s Church-Yard, MDCCLII., 1752, pp. 213-215. [16],230p.,plates; 4⁰. (ESTC T42626; OTA K041581.000)

Editorial principles

The text has been typographically modernized, but without any silent modernization of spelling, capitalization, or punctuation. The source of the text is given and all editorial interventions have been recorded in textual notes. Based on the electronic text originally produced by the ECCO-TCP project, this ECPA text has been edited to conform to the recommendations found in Level 5 of the Best Practices for TEI in Libraries version 3.0.

Other works by Christopher Smart