Apollo to the Company at Harrowgate

by John Cunningham

John Cunningham


From my critical court, at a quarterly meeting;
To my Harrowgate subjects this embassy greeting:
Whereas, from the veteran poets, complaint is —
Their works are no longer consider'd as damties;
And Shakspeare, and Congreve, Farquhar, and others,
The tragical — comical — fareical brothers,
Petition us oft' for some gents and some ladies,
(Our subjects, no doubt, since dramatic their trade is.)
We govern their stational stage by direction,
And send them to you for your friendly protection;
'Tis Apollo invites, with some ladies, (the Muses,)
We denounce him immensely ill-bred that refuses.
Be it known, by the bye, from our Helicon fountain,
Enrich'd by the soil of Parnassus's mountain,
Your Harrowgate water directly proceeding,
Produces fine sense, with true taste and good breeding.
Talk of Taste — none but Heathens will call it in question:
Yet some insolent wits might advance a suggestion,
While our deputies daily invite all the neighbours,
But find no Maecenas to smile on their labours.
Thus far we've proceeded your favour to curry,
And could tell ye much more, but we write in a hurry.

Last updated September 05, 2017