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Busy, curious, thirsty fly,
Drink with me, and drink as I ;
Freely welcome to my cup,
Could'st thou sip and sip it up.
Make the most of life you may,
Life is short, and wears away.

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Both alike are mine and thine,
Hastening quick to their decline :
Thine's a summer, mine no more,
Though repeated to threescore;
Threescore summers, when they're gone,
Will appear as short as one,

[Yet this difference we may see
'Twixt the life of man and thee :
Thou art for this life alone,
Man seeks another when 'tis gone ;
And though allow'd its joys to share,
'Tis Virtue here hopes Pleasure there.]t

* 'Made extempore by a gentleman, occasioned by a fly drinking out of his cup of ale.'

+ [This moral finale was added by the Rev. Mr. Plamptre. - See his. Collection of Songs,' vol. i. p. 257 ; where a third verse appears to the original composition, which was probably omitted by Ritson, from its incongruity of metaphor.]




When I drain the rosy bowl,
Joy exhilarates my soul ;
To the Nine I raise my song,
Ever fair and ever young.
When full cups my cares expel,
Sober counsels then farewel ;
Let the winds, that murmur, sweep
All my sorrows to the deep.

When I drink dull time away,
Jolly Bacchus, ever gay,
Leads me to delightful bowers,
Full of fragrance, full of flowers.
When I quaff the sparkling wine,

locks with roses twine, Then I praise life’s rural scene, Sweet, sequester’d, and serene.

When I sink the bowl profound, Richest fragrance flowing round, And some lovely nymph detain, Venus then inspires the strain. When from goblets deep and wide, I exhaust the generous tide,


All my soul unbends—I play,
Gamesome, with the young and gay.*


MORTALS, learn your lives to measure,
Not by length of time, but pleasure;
Now the hours invite, comply ;
Whilst you idly pause, they fly :
Blest, a nimble pace they keep ;
But in torment, then they creep.

Mortals, learn your lives to measure,
Not by length of time, but pleasure;
Soon your spring must have a fall;
Losing youth, is losing all :
Then you'll ask, but none will give ;
And may linger, but not live.


Old Chiron thus preach'd to his pupil Achilles :
I'll tell you, young gentleman, what the Fates will is ;

You, my boy,

Must go

(The gods will have it so) To the siege of Troy ;

* Mr. Fawkes's translation contains the following additional lines, necessarily omitted when it was converted into a songs

When the foaming bowl I drain,
Real blessings are my gain ;
Blessings which my own I call:
Death is common to us all.

Thence never to return to Greece again,
But before those walls to be slain.
Ne'er let your noble courage be cast down;
But, all the while you lie before the town,
Drink, and drive care away, drink and be merry;
You'll ne'er go the sooner to the Stygian ferry.

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Let's be jovial, fill our glasses,

Madness 'tis for us to think-
How the world is rul’d by asses,

And the wise are sway'd by chink.

Then never let vain cares oppress us ;

Riches are to them a snare ;
We're ev'ry one as rich as Crosus,

While our bottle drowns our care.

Wine will make us red as roses,

And our sorrows quite forget ;
Come let's fuddle all our noses,

Drink ourselves quite out of debt.

When grim Death comes looking for us,

We are toping off our bowls ;
Bacchus joining in the chorus,

Death, begone, here's none but souls.

Godlike Bacchus thus commanding,

Trembling Death away shall fly ;
Ever after understanding,

Drinking souls can never die,


Every man take a glass in his hand,

And drink a good health to the king ; Many years may he rule o'er this land,

May his laurels for ever fresh spring ! Let wrangling and jangling straightway cease, Let every man strive for his country's peace ;

Neither tory nor whig,

With their parties, look big : Here's a health to all honest men.

'Tis not owning a whimsical name

That proves a man loyal and just; Let him fight for his country's fame,

Be impartial at home, if in trust : 'Tis this that proves him an honest soul, His health we'll drink in a brimful bowl :

Then let's leave off debate,

No confusion create ;
Here's a health to all honest men.

When a company's honestly met,

With intent to be merry and gay, Their drooping spirits to whet,

And drown the fatigues of the day; What madness is it thus to dispute, When neither side can his man confute ?

When you've said what you dare,

You're but just where you were, Here's a health to all honest men.

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