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A POEM for the Birth-day of the Right Honble the Lady CATHARINE TUFTON.
[ed.] Lady Catharine Tufton ("Serena"), daughter of Thomas Tufton, 6th earl of Thanet, and Lady Catharine, countess of Thanet ("Arminda"). (AH)

Occasion'd by sight of some Verses upon that Subject for the preceding Year, compos'd by no Eminent Hand.

1 TIS fit SERENA shou'd be sung.
2 High-born SERENA, Fair and Young,
3 Shou'd be of ev'ry Muse and Voice
4 The pleasing, and applauded Choice.
5 But as the Meanest of the Show
6 Do First in all Processions go:
7 So, let my Steps pursue that Swain
8 The humblest of th' inspired Train;
9 Whose well-meant Verse did just appear,
10 To lead on the preceding Year:
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11 So let my Pen, the next in Fame,
12 Now wait on fair SERENA's Name;
13 The second Tribute gladly pay,
14 And hail this blest returning Day.
15 But let it not attempt to raise
16 Or rightly speak SERENA's Praise:
17 Since with more ease we might declare
18 How Great her Predecessors were;
19 How Great that more distinguish'd Peer,
20 To whom she owes her Being here;
21 In whom our Britain lets us see
22 What once they were, and still shou'd be;
23 As, when the earliest Race was drown'd,
24 Some Patterns, from amongst them found,
25 Were kept to shew succeeding Times
26 Their Excellence without their Crimes:
27 More easily we might express
28 What Vertues do her Mother dress;
29 What does her Form and Mind adorn,
30 Of whom th' engaging Nymph was born;
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31 What Piety, what generous Love,
32 Does the enlarged Bosom move
33 Of
* The Lady Coventry.
Her, whose Fav'rite she appears,
34 Who more than as a Niece endears.
35 Such full Perfections obvious lie,
36 And strike, at first, a Poet's Eye.
37 Deep Lines of Honour all can hit,
38 Or mark out a superior Wit;
39 Consummate Goodness all can show,
40 And where such Graces shine below:
41 But the more tender Strokes to trace,
42 T' express the Promise of a Face,
43 When but the Dawnings of the Mind
44 We from an Air unripen'd find;
45 Which alt'ring, as new Moments rise,
46 The Pen or Pencil's Art defies;
47 When Flesh and Blood in Youth appears,
48 Polish'd like what our Marble wears;
49 Fresh as that Shade of op'ning Green,
50 Which first upon our Groves is seen;
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51 Enliven'd by a harmless Fire,
52 And brighten'd by each gay Desire;
53 These nicer Touches wou'd demand
54 A Cowley's or a Waller's Hand,
55 T' explain, with undisputed Art,
56 What 'tis affects th' enlighten'd Heart,
57 When ev'ry darker Thought gives way,
58 Whilst blooming Beauty we survey;
59 To shew how All, that's soft and sweet,
60 Does in the fair SERENA meet;
61 To tell us, with a sure Presage,
62 The Charms of her maturer Age.
63 When Hothfeild shall (as heretofore
64 From its far-sought and virtuous Store
65 It Families of great Renown
66 Did with illustrious Hymens crown)
67 When Hothfeild shall such Treasure know,
68 As fair SERENA to bestow:
69 Then shou'd some Muse of loftier Wing
70 The Triumphs of that Season sing;
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71 Describe the Pains, the Hopes, the Fears
72 Of noble Youths, th' ambitious Cares
73 Of Fathers, the long-fram'd Design,
74 To add such Splendour to their Line,
75 Whilst all shall strive for such a Bride
76 So Educated, and Ally'd.

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About this text

Title (in Source Edition): A POEM for the Birth-day of the Right Honble the Lady CATHARINE TUFTON. Occasion'd by sight of some Verses upon that Subject for the preceding Year, compos'd by no Eminent Hand.
Themes: birthday
Genres: occasional poem

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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. 141-145. [8],390p. ; 8⁰. (ESTC T94539; Foxon pp. 274-5; OTA K076314.000)

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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