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In Imitation of Dr. Swift : The Happy Life of a Country Parson

Alexander Pope 1688 (London) – 1744 (Twickenham)

Parson, these things in thy possessing
Are better than the Bishop's blessing.
A Wife that makes conserves; a Steed
That carries double when there's need:
October store, and best Virginia,
Tithe-Pig, and mortuary Guinea:
Gazettes sent gratis down, and frank'd,
For which thy Patron's weekly thank'd;
A large Concordance, bound long since:
Sermons to Charles the First, when Prince;
A Chronicle of ancient standing;
A Chrysostom to smooth thy band in.
The Polygot - three parts, - my text,
Howbeit, - likewise - now to my next.
Lo here the Septuagint, - and Paul,
To sum the whole, - the close of all.
He that has these, may pass his life,
Drink with the 'Squire, and kiss his wife;
On Sundays preach, and eat his fill;
And fast on Fridays - if he will;
Toast Church and Queen, explain the News,
Talk with Church-Wardens about Pews,
Pray heartily for some new Gift,
And shake his head at Doctor S-t.

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

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Alexander Pope

Alexander Pope (1688-1744) is regarded as one of the greatest English poets, and the foremost poet of the early eighteenth century. He is best known for his satirical and discursive poetry, including The Rape of the Lock, The Dunciad, and An Essay on Criticism, as well as for his translation of Homer. more…

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