The Works of the Rev. Jonathan Swift/Volume 8/Verses Left With a Silver Standish

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VERSES LEFT WITH A SILVER STANDISH ON THE DEAN OF ST. PATRICK'S DESK, ON HIS BIRTHDAY.



HITHER from Mexico I came,
To serve a proud Iernian dame:
Was long submitted to her will;
At length she lost me at quadrille.
Through various shapes I often pass'd,
Still hoping to have rest at last;
And still ambitious to obtain
Admittance to the patriot dean;
And sometimes got within his door,
But soon turn'd out to serve the poor[1];
Not strolling Idleness to aid,
But honest Industry decay'd.
At length an artist purchas'd me,
And wrought me to the shape you see.
This done, to Hermes I apply'd;
"O Hermes! gratify my pride;
Be it my fate to serve a sage,
The greatest genius of his age;
That matchless pen let me supply,
Whose living lines will never die!"
"I grant your suit;" the God replied.
And here he left me to reside.


  1. Alluding to five hundred pounds lent by the dean, without interest, to poor tradesmen.