[Page 137]

For the Better.

Imitated from Sir Roger L'Estrange.

1 A Quack, to no true Skill in Physick bred,
2 With frequent Visits curs'd his Patient's Bed;
3 Enquiring, how he did his Broths digest,
4 How chim'd his Pulse, and how he took his Rest:
5 If shudd'ring Cold by Burnings was pursu'd,
6 And at what time the Aguish Fit renew'd.
7 The waining Wretch, each day become more faint,
8 In like proportion doubles his Complaint;
9 Now swooning Sweats he begs him to allay,
10 Now give his Lungs more liberty to play,
11 And take from empty'd Veins these scorching Heats away:
12 Or if he saw the Danger did increase,
13 To warn him fair, and let him part in Peace.
14 My Life for yours, no Hazard in your Case
15 The Quack replies; your Voice, your Pulse, your Face,
[Page 138]
16 Good Signs afford, and what you seem to feel
17 Proceeds from Vapours, which we'll help with Steel.
18 With kindled Rage, more than Distemper, burns
19 The suff'ring Man, who thus in haste returns:
20 No more of Vapours, your belov'd Disease,
21 Your Ignorance's Skreen, your What-you-please,
22 With which you cheat poor Females of their Lives,
23 Whilst Men dispute not, so it rid their Wives.
24 For me, I'll speak free as I've paid my Fees;
25 My Flesh consumes, I perish by degrees:
26 And as thro' weary Nights I count my Pains,
27 No Rest is left me, and no Strength remains.
28 All for the Better, Sir, the Quack rejoins:
29 Exceeding promising are all these Signs.
30 Falling-away, your Nurses can confirm,
31 Was ne'er in Sickness thought a Mark of Harm.
32 The want of Strength is for the Better still;
33 Since Men of Vigour Fevers soonest kill.
34 Ev'n with this Gust of Passion I am pleas'd;
35 For they're most Patient who the most are seiz'd.
[Page 139]
36 But let me see! here's that which all repels:
37 Then shakes, as he some formal Story tells,
38 The Treacle-water, mixt with powder'd Shells.
39 My Stomach's gone (what d'you infer from thence?)
40 Nor will with the least Sustenance dispense.
41 The Better; for, where Appetite endures,
42 Meats intermingle, and no Med'cine cures.
43 The Stomach, you must know, Sir, is a Part
44 But, sure, I feel Death's Pangs about my Heart.
45 Nay then Farewel! I need no more attend
46 The Quack replies. A sad approaching Friend
47 Questions the Sick, why he retires so fast;
48 Who says, because of Fees I've paid the Last,
49 And, whilst all Symptoms tow'rds my Cure agree,
50 Am, for the Better, Dying as you see.


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About this text

Title (in Source Edition): For the Better. Imitated from Sir Roger L'Estrange.
Genres: heroic couplet; imitation

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Source edition

Miscellany poems, on several occasions: Written by the Right Honble Anne, Countess of Winchilsea. London: printed for J. B. and sold by Benj. Tooke, William Taylor, and James Round, 1713, pp. 137-139. [8],390p. ; 8⁰. (ESTC T94539; Foxon pp. 274-5; OTA K076314.000)

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 Anne Finch (née Kingsmill), countess of Winchilsea