Poetical recreations consisting of original poems, songs, odes, &c. with several new translations : in two parts
Barker, Jane.
Page  242

TO Mr P. Berault UPON HIS FRENCH GRAMMAR.

WHat equal Thanks? what Gratitude is due,
Industrious Friend from all this Isle to you?
For all your Labour, all your Toil, and Care,
In bringing us, from France, their Language here:
Their Language, which is sure their richest store,
And each Wise man do's prize, and value more,
Than all the Goods that came from thence before.
Their Language, which do's more the Wit reine,
Than all their Modes, than all their sparkling Wine
And this thou do'st in such a Method teach,
As ev'n the least Capacity may reach.
Page  243By such plain rules, and axiom thou dost show
The Pronunciation, none could better know,
Did they to France for their Instruction go.
To us, thou mak'st, by this, their Learning known,
And in th' Original 'tis all our own:
Translators oft unfaithfull, and unjust,
At second-hand we need no longer trust;
But in their prim'tive Beauty we may see
The famous Boileau, and Sieur Scudery;
Now those two mighty Wits we may caress
In their own Elegant, and Native Dress,
And learn from them, bright Ladies how to praise,
In softest Language, and in smoothest Phrase:
For French alone so easie is, and free;
So sweetly gentle, that it seems to be
At irst design'd for, and contriv'd by Love,
As th' only Charm, a scornfull Nymph to move.
Now sur our rambling Youth will stay at home,
Nor wantonly so oft to Paris roam,
Under pretext to learn the Language there,
Since you instruct them so much better here.
Page  244They need no more tempt the unfaithfull Seas,
For what your Grammar teaches (if they please)
With much less charge at home, & much more ease.
This, therefore, from thy care we hope to gain,
That thy Endeavours may those Sparks detain,
Whose roving Minds lead them to France from hence,
Meerly (forsooth, under the slight pretence
Of Courtly Breeding, Carriage, Wit, and Sence,)
To learn the Affectation of the Proud,
The noise, and nonsence of the Vain, and Loud;
Foisting upon some easie Coxcombs here,
Those cast of Vices which they pickt up there.