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Seventeenth Century

Eighteenth Century



Pieter de Hooch. The Empty Glass, 1653-4.
Pieter de Hooch. The Empty Glass, 1653-4.

The Complaint of the Poor Cavaliers.

Give me the man that's hollow
Since he is the only fellow,
For honesty's out of date;
And he's the only gallant
That shew'd himself so valiant,
To cut off his master's pate.
These—these be the men that flaunt,
As if they were Sons of Gaunt,
And ev'ry knave
Is fine and brave,
While the poor Cavalier's in want.

The man that chang'd his note,
And he who has turn'd his coat,
Shall now have a good reward;
He's either made a knight,
Or else by this good light,
A very Reverend Lord:
And let him be so for me,
I'm as gay and as good as he.

Hang sorrow, why should we repine,
We'll drive down our grief with good wine,
Not caring for those that rise;
For had they been but true men,
They never had been new men,
And we had ne'er been wise.
The blockhead that merits most,
That has all his fortune lost,
Must now be turn'd out
And a new-found rout,
Of courtiers rule the roast.

British Women Poets, 1660-1800: An Anthology. Joyce Fullard, ed.
Troy, NY: Whitston Publishing Company, 1990. 360.

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