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'HE Towns of Seftus and Abidus stood
As near to one another as they cou'd;
For spightefull Hellefpont still 'tween them ran,
Of whose outragiousness you'l hear anon:
Yet that they still communicated, note,
By floating Bridge, now call'd a Ferry-boat,
Which if this Year lay on Abidus's side,
The next to Seftian Dock was to be ty'd:
For Senates fage of both Towns cou'd agree
By turns, to be the Masters of the Sea:
But always when Abidus had the Boat,
The State, and It, had but the same Pylot;
A shrewd old Swabber with a Neck atight,
And evermore inclined to the right;
His fellow Burgers fage remark, and cause
Why he was chosen fisher of the Laws
Besides the scituation of his Ears
They saw was such, no trayt'rous Whisperers
Could easily approach them, one was still
Prickt up to Heaven to receive her Will,
T'other did Earthward lop, good Man, with pain
To hear the needy, and oppress'd complain.
But when you know his Education, you'l
Allow the Man in all points fit to rule.
He was brought up to danger, and to rapin,
Dabbled i'th'sea, and with a line, and a pin,
Which the young Urchin cunningly would crook,
With Ay, or worm disguise it then, and rook
The Ocean of her fish; for e're a Swabber,
He was a Sprat-catcher, or good Eele-bobber.
Alcides, when a whuleing piss-abed,
By Poets (if you'l trust 'em) hath been sed
Over a thumping Adder to prevail;
This little Rogue cou'd hold an Eele by th'tail:
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And when with strength his art increas’d, was able
Soon well to steer a Skiff, and grasp a Cable,
Cou'd Tack about, shift Sails, wheadle the Wind,
And make it come before him, or behind:
Knew where the Rocks did lie, & sneaking Shelves,
And places where bold Men might drown themselves;
Kenn'd Storms far off, knew whether they had more
A mind to come to Sea, or stay ashore:
But to be short, and plain, he knew as well
The Sea, as Beggar doth his Dish, cou'd tell
What the least Cockle did in's Shell, and guess
How many Arms length where 'twas bottomless;
Such was the Man for sway, you'l think him now
Worthy, as Roman newly ta'ne from Plow:
Yet know his Praises I have not begun,
Fine Gentleman Leander was his Son,
With whose most gen'rous inclination he
To's cost (few Fathers doe so) did agree,
And bound him, Prentice to a worthy Barber,
The best, not such another in the Harbour.
He was so handy, nimble, tight, so neat
In's Person, and his Implements compleat:
His Towels, like his Skin, were white and fine,
Nought but his Face his Bason could out-shine:
So pickt, so washt his Combes of Ivory,
Unless his Teeth their whiteness nought came nigh;
With others that were made of Horn, or Box,
He often wou'd compare his golden Locks;
With whom (if none had too much Beard) he'd play,
And innocently sport out half the Day;
But when you did sit down, with such a grace
Handled your Throat, your Ears, your Nose, your Face. .
Tickled where others pain; Maids who did eye
Wish'd themselves Satyrs to be trimmed by him:
He'd dive into the Channels of your Brain,
And with a feat dexterity make plain
The Passage, though before 'twas nere so rough,
Yet with less pain to you, than taking Snuff;
For he wore Nails as long as Bill of Bittern,
For what? to scrape Teeth, and to play on Cittern;
Nay, he had all good qualities; cou'd tye
A Cuff-string, or Crevat so jantyly:
With all, had Conscience, and for copper Spanker
Would make Sea-faring Beard look like an Anchor.
For mettle, and agility, with which
Writers are bound their Heroes to inrich;
I must confess I can't say much, but know
For certain he could crindge, and bow full low.
For throwing of the Bar he never car'd,
Cudgels, not wrestling, that I ever heard,
Or any brutish Sports, which make Men wrangle;
On Holy-days he went alone to angle;
Lov'd swimming well, and swam like any Duck,
But where moft Skill there ever is least Luck;
And Arts, like Women, after a long wooing,
Oft shame our Industry, and prove undoing.
Now towe me, Muse! o'er to the other side, Where most egregious Hero did abide; You, sacred Dame! I mean, who once did steer The prosp'rous Praise of great Magnanos dear; If you have any time, help me ashore With Heros commendation, and though poor, I am, in Socket trimm'd with Bayes, I swear, I'll tall Rushcandle to thy Glory rear; Which likewise may as Pharo serve to light Your groaping Orators, when it is night, Throughout Parnassus; come 'tis as folks say, Who'd have his business done, must bribe, not pray. What do you pause at now? I know as Muse To scorn good wages was your simple use; With me hang not an Arse: Hero then was A bonny, buxom, bounsing Seftian Lass, Of all the Grecian Girls the very Flower, Liv'd at the Townsend at the Sign of Tower, With her own Mother, a largehearted Woman, Whose House to merry Greeks was alway common; A comely Widow, and had long been so; The oldest in the Town did never know The Father of fine Hero; whence Disputes, That some Sea-god, disguis'd in Fishing-boots, Did catch her on the Shore, & there did strand her, And so contriv'd a Mistress for Leander. But whether so, or no, or how it was, She grew too great for Mortal to embrace, And haughtily did stave off many proffers,
Resolv'd to keep the Keys of her own Coffers,
And scorn'd to be with any a Yokefellow,
Or to admit Competitor of Pillow:
But kept the Empire of her Bed to cough,
Snore, belch, break wind, and no one shou'd cry
So howl'ere Love and Lover did contrive it,
The cunning willful Widow did not wive it,
Unless she practis'd secret Matrimony,
For Licence but for Wine she had not any.
But what of that? I warrant she was wise
Enough to keep her self from Church Excise.
Was Hero not, in spight of all the Clerg'in
Seftus, and what they all cou'd do, a Virgin?
And to her Mother was but young, yet cou'd
Some say as much as she, nay much more did
Within-doors, and long of her complaisance
It was, her mothers liquor had good utterance.
For she was still in motion, now i'th'Garret,
And strait down in the Cellar drawing Claret;
Hafty as Lightning she wou'd shoot the Stairs,
If no one did oppose her unawares;
Wou'd bolt into the Room like startled Cunny,
But still dropt at the Door due Ceremony;
Then mumpt out, Gentlemen, what do
lack When strait she's answer'd with a bob, or smack: But some one rising, in her Ear doth tell her, She answers him aloud, the best i'th'Cellar: He follows down, and broaches where he will, But with a gentle caution, not to spill. She made, and unmade beds most nimblely, Not like her Dammes, hers was a slim-belly: And now and then, with her sweet Company Cou'd satisfy gay Guest for lodging high; His rageing Bowels Supper should not miss, For she cou'd stay a Stomack with a Kiss: At coming in and out cou'd complement The Guests, and give 'um marvellous content. For truly she well-spoken Damsel was, Like fav’rite Advocate brought all to pass, And not as foolish Maids with Nature nice, But boldly us'd her own good qualities Not only for her self, but other foke, Cou'd break mad ranting Girls to th’marriage-yoke.
To bashful, or dumb Lovers she was common,
And publick mouth, or as we say Spokes-woman:
In other terms a Maidenhead-ensurer,
A Wife, or as it were a Wife-procurer:
For in old Grecian Writ it manifeft is,
Hero had Orders, and was Venus Priestess.
At once she drew, and answer'd Lovers pleas,
'Tween them she made, and carry'd messages,
Hagler of chere entier, and did supply,
For modest Gain, human Necessity;
But needy Folks for nothing wou'd relieve,
And still of her own store was free to give.
She was, I vow and swear, as good a Creature
As ever wore bright Symptome of good Nature, ,
Loves Cobweb, or his Net, or golden Fleece,
As Poets say, who can choose Mistresses,
And they their meanest Heroe will not bed,
With any thing whose Hair is not Fox-red.
Her Brows soft Fur was of a paler Dye,
Conformable to that which prettily
Peep'd on her Upper Lip, and cowardly
Made fhew of Heroine Virility,
Day in her large Cow-Eyes was broad awake,
No heavy sleepy Morn' there seem'd to break.
Sir Phæbus, given as you know, to flatter
With his own Lustre did her Face bespatter:
Her Lips—but stay, was not Pigmalion won
With a senseless Description of his own?
Let it suffice then all who are concern'd,
That in her Face 'twas openly discern'd
How near she was to Venus in her place;
And by her Stature seen her heavenly Race:
For she not only streight, but tall as Mast;
Beauty's whole World, in all Perfection vast.
Yearly at Seftus Town for Venus sake, Mother of Wakes, was kept a jolly Wake: But Greeks say 'twas a customary howling For her Adonis, or Annual Condoling. Their Goddesses and Countries active Drudge, Who keenly carry'd on their mortal Grudge Against a certain Outlaw, who i'th' Woods Reign'd Lord, and King, and liv'd on true mens Goods: