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The Works of the Rev. Jonathan Swift/Volume 7/Dean Swift at Sir Arthur Acheson's

DEAN SWIFT AT SIR ARTHUR ACHESON'S,

IN THE NORTH OF IRELAND.


THE dean would visit Market-hill,
Our invitation was but slight;
I said — Why let him, if he will:
And so I bade sir Arthur write.

His manners would not let him wait,
Lest we should think ourselves neglected
And so we saw him at our gate,
Three days before he was expected.

After a week, a month, a quarter,
And day succeeding after day,
Says not a word of his departure,
Though not a soul would have him stay.

I've said enough to make him blush,
Methinks, or else the Devil's in't;
But he cares not for it a rush,
Nor for my life will take the hint.

But you, my dear, may let him know,
In civil language, if he stays,
How deep and foul the roads may grow,
And that he may command the chaise.

Or you may say — My wife intends,
Though I should be exceeding proud,
This winter to invite some friends,
And, sir, I know, you hate a crowd.

Or, Mr. dean — I should with joy
Beg you would here continue still,
But we must go to Aghnecloy[1];
Or, Mr. Moore will take it ill.

The house accounts are daily rising;
So much his stay doth swell the bills;
My dearest life, it is surprising,
How much he eats, how much he swills.

His brace of puppies how they stuff!
And they must have three meals a day,
Yet never think they get enough;
His horses too eat all our hay.

O! if I could, how I would maul
His tallow face and wainscot paws,
His beetle brows, and eyes of wall,
And make him soon give up the cause!

Must I be every moment chid
With[2] Skinnybonia, Snipe, and Lean?
O! that I could but once be rid
Of this insulting tyrant dean!


  1. The seat of Acheson Moore, esq., in the county of Tyrone, Aug. 20, 1721.
  2. The dean used to call lady Acheson by those names.