For were great Jove himself to give his nod,
Your feasts and revels would defeat the god.
You sigh for wealth, the frequent ox is slain,
And bribes are offer'd to the god of gain.
For Alocks and herds to household gods you cry;
Why then, you fool, do daily victims die?
Yet does this man the wearied gods assail,
And thinks by dint of offerings to prevail :
Now 'tis the field, and now the fold which teems,
Hope rests on hope, and schemes are built on schemes;
Until at length, deserted and alone,
In the deep chest the last sad farthing groan.
If to you e'er a present richly wrought,
If silver cups and golden gifts I brought,
Your eager hand would grasp at the decoy,
And your light heart would dance with hope and joy.
Hence, to the shrine with splendid bribes you run,
In triumph carried, but by rapine won.
And now each brazen brother's power you know,
In bringing fortune, and averting woe.
He, who hath promised most, is most revered,
And wears, in proof of skill, a golden beard.
Now gold hath banish’d Numa's simple vase,
And the plain brass of Saturn's frugal days.
Now do we see to precious goblets turn
The Tuscan pitcher, and the vestal urn.
Ogrovelling souls, which still to earth incline,
From niortal nature judging of divine !
Must man's corruption to the skies be spread,
And godhead be by human passions led?