To a LADY of QUALITY,
Fitting up her LIBRARY, 1738.
1 AH! what is Science, what is Art,
2 Or what the pleasure these impart?
3 Ye trophies which the Learn'd pursue
4 Through endless fruitless toils, adieu!
5 What can the tedious tomes bestow,
6 To soothe the miseries they show?
7 What, like the bliss for him decreed,
8 Who tends his flock, and tunes his reed!
9 Say, wretched Fancy! thus refin'd
10 From all that glads the simplest hind,
11 How rare that object, which supplies
12 A charm for too discerning eyes!
13 The polish'd bard, of genius vain,
14 Endures a deeper sense of pain:
15 As each invading blast devours
16 The richest fruits, the fairest flow'rs.
17 Sages, with irksome waste of time,
18 The steep ascent of Knowledge climb:
19 Then, from the tow'ring heights they scale,
20 Behold Contentment range — the vale.
21 Yet why, Asteria, tell us why
22 We scorn the crowd, when you are nigh:
23 Why then does reason seem so fair,
24 Why learning then, deserve our care?
25 Who can unpleas'd your shelves behold,
26 While you so fair a proof unfold
27 What force the brightest genius draws
28 From polish'd Wisdom's written laws?
29 Where are our humbler tenets flown?
30 What strange perfection bids us own
31 That Bliss with toilsome Science dwells,
32 And happiest he, who most excels?
About this text
Title (in Source Edition): To a LADY of QUALITY, Fitting up her LIBRARY, 1738.
Author: William Shenstone
Themes: books; science
References: DMI 27225
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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 William Shenstone
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- The CEREMONIAL. ()
- CLOE to LYSANDER. ()
- The DYING KID. ()
- The EVER-GREEN. ()
- The EXTENT of COOKERY. ()
- In a shady Valley, near a running Water. ()
- Inscription near a Sheep-cote. 1745. ()
- An irregular ODE after SICKNESS, 1749. ()
- LYSANDER to CLOE. ()
- NANCY of the VALE. A BALLAD. ()
- ODE to a Young Lady, Somewhat too sollicitous about her Manner of Expression. ()
- ODE to HEALTH, 1730. ()
- ODE to INDOLENCE, 1750. ()
- ODE to MEMORY. 1748. ()
- ODE. Written 1739. ()
- On a ROOT-HOUSE. ()
- On a small Building in the Gothick Taste. ()
- A Pastoral BALLAD, in Four Parts. Written 1743. ()
- The PRICE of an EQUIPAGE. ()
- The Princess ELIZABETH: A Ballad, alluding to a Story recorded of her, when she was a Prisoner at Woodstock, 1554. ()
- The Progress of ADVICE. A common Case. ()
- The Rape of the TRAP, a BALLAD; written at College, 1736. ()
- RURAL ELEGANCE: An ODE to the late Duchess of SOMERSET. Written 1750. ()
- THE SCHOOL-MISTRESS. A POEM, In Imitation of Spenser. ()
- A SIMILE. ()
- SLENDER's GHOST. ()
- [Song] I. ()
- [Song] II. DAPHNE'S Visit. ()
- [Song] III. The ROSE-BUD. ()
- [Song] IV. Written in a Collection of Bacchanalian Songs. ()
- [Song] V. Imitated from the FRENCH. ()
- SONG I. ()
- SONG II. The LANDSKIP. ()
- SONG III. ()
- SONG IV. The SKY-LARK. ()
- SONG V. ()
- SONG VI. The Attribute of VENUS. ()
- To the Memory of an agreeable LADY bury'd in Marriage to a Person undeserving her. ()
- UPON A VISIT to the same in Winter, 1748. ()
- Upon RIDDLES. ()
- VERSES to a FRIEND. ()
- VERSES written towards the close of the Year 1748, to WILLIAM LYTTELTON, Esq; ()
- Written at an INN on a particular Occasion. ()