Page:Poets of John Company.djvu/31

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Yet even this deed by himself was excell'd
In describing the countries he never beheld;
To be sure, his descriptions were vastly admir'd,
The whole was his own, for his tongue was inspir'd
With knowledge divine he expos'd to our view
The religion of Hindoos, and Mussalmans too.
And he said Junghez Khan only seized their dominions,
But that Hastings wag'd war with the people's opinions.
Here the orator blustered, at least for an hour,
About Warren Hastings, and absolute power,
Who, according to Burke, has been forming a plan
To map geographical morals for man.
Who to shew us his great geometrical art,
Fit climates for virtues has drawn on a chart;
That virtues and vices, that duties and crimes.
May change with the latitudes, countries, and climes.
Here Edmund committed his honour and word
To prove moral geography vastly absurd;
And by way of a secret, their Lordships were told
That truth's not affected by heat or by cold;
"Far better," says he, "when the English went thither,
"Had they call'd the inhabitant natives together;
"And instead of subduing, or them over-reaching,
"Had busy'd themselves with evangelic preaching.
"No converts made they to the Christian religion,
"But pluck'd the rich blacks like the wing of a pigeon.
"For there was the Company's government built
"Upon plunder, and rapine, and all kinds of guilt;
"In a system like this, 'tis no matter of wonder,
"If all were inspired by the spirit of plunder.
"There was not a captain, nor scarce a seapoy,
"But a Prince would depose, or a Bramin destroy;"

Here the Hero digressed, and related some tales
Of a prince to be slain, as he thought, by three seals.
How Nabobs, and Ministers had been opprest.
And the innocent natives with famine distrest.