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The Battle Between The Rats And The Weazles

Anne Kingsmill Finch 1661 – 1720 (Westminster)

In dire Contest the Rats and Weazles met,
And Foot to Foot, and Point to Point was set:
An ancient Quarrel had such Hatred wrought,
That for Revenge, as for Renown, they fought.
Now bloody was the Day, and hard the Strife,
Wherein bold Warriors lost neglected Life;
But as, some Errors still we must commit,
Nor Valour always ballanc'd is by Wit;
Among the Rats some Officers appear'd,
With lofty Plumage on their Foreheads rear'd,
Unthinking they, and ruin'd by their Pride:
For when the Weazles prov'd the stronger Side,
A gen'ral Rout befell, and a Retreat,
Was by the Vanquish'd now implor'd of Fate;
To slender Crannies all repair'd in haste,
Where easily the undress'd Vulgar past:
But when the Rats of Figure wou'd have fled,
So wide those branching Marks of Honour spread,
The Feather in the Cap was fatal to the Head.

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

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Anne Kingsmill Finch

Anne Finch, Countess of Winchilsea (née Kingsmill), was an English poet and courtier. Finch's works often express a desire for respect as a female poet, lamenting her difficult position as a woman in the literary establishment and the court, while writing of "political ideology, religious orientation, and aesthetic sensibility". Her works also allude to other female authors of the time, such as Aphra Behn and Katherine Phillips. Through her commentary on the mental and spiritual equality of the genders and the importance of women fulfilling their potential as a moral duty to themselves and to society, she is regarded as one of the integral female poets of the Restoration Era. Finch died in Westminster in 1720 and was buried at her home at Eastwell, Kent.  more…

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