The Tragi-Comedy of Titus Oates

What all your wits and antidote your eyes
Before you hazard here to play this prize,
Or gaze like eagles on a show so rare,
No time brought forth an object yet so fair.
Lo, here's the bugbear rampant of the Plot,
Which Whig on Tory in a sham begot,
Here a la mode the guardian of the land
In a new-fashioned pulpit now doth stand.
The tub's o'erwhelmed and all the hoops are flung,
And depute-Jack he peeps out through the bung.
Bar-Cochab's here, the star of England's sky.
Deciphered now the son of Perjury,
Th'Egyptian cow, the oaten-blasted blade,
Which hath these several years eat up our trade,
The state's anatomist, the church confusion,
Who dreamed a plot and swore it was a vision;
A doctor who degree did ne'er commence,
A rhetorician that spoke never sense:
Like Proteus he still changeth to the time,
His pulse and temper suits with any clime.
His birth's equivocal, by generation
Sedition's by-blow, loyalty's privation,
A linsey woolsey emp'ric of the state
That hugs the church and knocks it o'er the pate.
He stands in state and well becomes his station,
Using a truckling-stool for recreation.
Now should he, in contempt of Peter's chair,
Leap from the pillory to the three-legged mare
And, with Empedocles, desire to be
But canonized an oaten-deity,
He would spring up, but that he is a sot,
A mandrake to conceive another plot.
His crime no man can balance with a curse,
For still the Hydra doth deserve a worse.
Then let him live a Minotaur of men,
Like Hircocervus couchant in his den,
The monument of mischief and of sin,
To spread no farther than the sooterkin
Of old sedition, set before our eye
As buoy and beacon unto loyalty.
Yet at the wheels of fortune let him dance
A jig of penance that can make him Prance,
Resenting all his errors though in vain
With fruitless wishes calling time again.
His face is brass, his breech no rod will feel,
And who knows but his back is made of steel.
His soul is proof, perhaps his body may
Be made of metal harder than the clay.
Then put him to the touch, make Titus roar;
The chase is turned now he's son of a whore.
Then conjure him with eggs and kennel dirt
And contradictions that his mouth did squirt.
To tell his name we'll Christian him once yet
And mold an agnoun which can with him sit.
He is no doctor, for by horrid lies
He cures sedition only tinker-wise.
He is no Papist, for he ne'er had merit;
Nor yet a Quaker, for he hath no spirit;
He is no Protestant, for want of grace
To keep him from a falsifying face.
He is no Turk for always, like a swine,
He loved to wallow in a tub of wine.
No name can fit him, therefore, let him be
The grumbling ghost of old Presbytery.
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