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Alexander Pope (1688–1744). Complete Poetical Works. 1903.

Early Poems: Imitations of English Poets

Earl of Dorset: Phryne

PHRYNE had talents for mankind;

Open she was and unconfin’d,

Like some free port of trade:

Merchants unloaded here their freight,

And agents from each foreign state

Here first their entry made.

Her learning and good breeding such,

Whether th’ Italian or the Dutch,

Spaniards or French, came to her,

To all obliging she ’d appear;

’T was Si Signior, ’t was Yaw Mynheer,

’T was S’il vous plait, Monsieur.

Obscure by birth, renown’d by crimes,

Still changing names, religions, climes,

At length she turns a bride:

In diamonds, pearls, and rich brocades,

She shines the first of batter’d jades,

And flutters in her pride.

So have I known those insects fair

(Which curious Germans hold so rare)

Still vary shapes and dyes;

Still gain new titles with new forms;

First grubs obscene, then wriggling worms,

Then painted butterflies.