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HUDIBRAS.

THE ARGUMENT

OF THE EIGHTH CANTO.

The Knight and Squire's prodigious flight
To quit thenchanted bow'r by night.
He plods to turn his amorous suit
T" a plea in law, and prosecute :
Repairs to counsel, to advise
'Bout managing the enterprise;
But first resolves to try by letter,
And one more fair address, to get her.

CANTO VIII. W.

10 would believe what strange bugbears Mankind creates itself, of fears That spring like fern, that insect weed, Equivocally, without seed;

HUDIBRAS.

SUJET

DU HUITIÈME CHANT. (1)

HUDIBRAS avec Ralpho fuit
Du logis enchanté, de nuit:
Au lieu d’amoureuse poursuite ,
De faire un procès il médite :
Un avocat il va trouver,
Son affaire pour

consulter : Mais avant veut faire remettre A sa dame encore une lettre.

CHANT VIII.

Q

ui pourrait croire les fantômes Que par crainte se font les hommes, Qui naissent on ne sait comment , Et sans visible fondement,

And have no possible foundation,
But merely in th' imagination;
And yet can do more dreadful feats
Than hags, with all their imps and teats;
Make more bewitch and haunt themselves
Than all their nurseries of elves.
For fear does things so like a witch,
'Tis hard t' unriddle which is which:
Sets up communities of senses,
To chop and change intelligences;
As Rosicrucian virtuosos
Can see with ears,

and hear with noses;
And when they neither see nor hear,
Have more than both supply'd by fear;
That makes 'em in the dark see visions,
And hag themselves with apparitions;
And when their eyes discover least,
Discern the subtlest objects best :
Do things, not contrary, alone,
To th' course of nature, but its own;
The
courage

of the bravest daunt, And turn poltroons as yaliant: For men as resolute appear With too much as too little fear; And when they're out of hopes of flying,

Comme sans graine la fougère (2)
Prend croissance et couvre la terre ?
Etres d'imagination,
Qui font pourtant telle action,
Dont sorcières sont incapables
Avec leurs tettes et leurs diables. (3)
Soi-même on se lutine pis
Que ne feraient un cent d'esprits;
Car la crainte agit en sorcière
A s'y méprendre d'ordinaire ;
Renversant les sens de façon
Qu'ils troquent tous de fonction,
Comme Rosecroix

par

merveille (4) Entend du nez, voit de l'oreille : (5) Et quand on ne voit ni n'entend, La crainte y supplée amplement. La nuit des visions fait naître, Ou des spectres affreux paraître, ( Car quand on ne voit rien des yeux C'est alors qu'on distingue mieux.) Fait chose contraire au systéme De la nature et d'elle-même; Au brave elle ôte la valeur Et redonne au poltron du cour; Trop ou trop peu de crainte cause Sur le courage même chose; Car qui perd tout espoir de fuir, Fuyant de la mort, peut mourir,

Will run away from death by dying;
Or turn again to stand it out,
And those they fled, like lions, rout.

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This Hudibras liad prov'd too true,
Who, by the furies left perdue,
And haunted with detachments, sent
From Marshal Legion's regiment,
Was by a fiend, as counterfeit,
Reliev'd and rescu'd with a cheat;
When nothing but himself, and fear,
Was both the imps and conjurer;
As, by the rules o'th' virtuosi,
It follows in due form of poesy.

Disguis'd in all the masks of night,
We left our champion on his flight,
At blindman's buff, to grope

his

way,
In equal fear of night and day;
Who took his dark and desp'rate course,
He knew no better than his horse;
And, by an unknown devil led,
(He knew as little whither fled.
He never was in greater need,
Nor less capacity, of speed;
Disabled, both in man and beast,
To fly and run away, his best;

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