1 When foes with cruel hate beset me round,
My fame when impious tongues with slander wound,
Quite destitute of aid, to thee I fly,
To thee, dread father, and thou hear'st my cry.
2 O thou, who art to simple truth a friend,
And dost the honest, guileless heart defend.
From sland'rous lips and undermining tongues
Relieve my soul, and chase away her wrongs.
3 Ye villain-herd, who thus assault my fame,
Your tongues more fatal than devouring flame,
Who wound more deep with your invenom'd words,
Than pointed arrows, or than keenest swords;
What sudden vengeance shall your souls await;
What dreadful judgments shall I deprecate?
5 Alas! the fatal miseries I feel,
Amid the hostile croud constrain'd to dwell,
With men, who to humanity are lost;
And all their cruelties for virtues boast!
6 For blood they thirst, and wars and rapines please,
Nor have they joy in the delights of peace;
7 Fair peace they hate; from her embrace they fly;
War fills their thought, and furnishes their joy.