English poet and libertine
, famous for his satirical wit.
According to Samuel Johnson
In a course of drunken gaiety and gross
sensuality, with intervals of study perhaps yet more criminal, with an avowed
contempt of decency and order, a total disregard to every moral, and a resolute
denial of every religious observation, he lived worthless and useless, and blazed out
his youth and health in lavish voluptuousness.
A favourite of King Charles II
he spent the years after the Restoration
in dissolute company at Court in London
. On one notable occasion he was banished from Court after his 'Satyre on Charles II' fell into the hands of the King:
In th' isle of Britain, long since famous grown
For breeding the best cunts in Christendom,
There reigns, and oh! long may he reign and thrive,
The easiest King and best bred man alive.
Him no ambition moves to get reknown
Like the French fool, that wanders up and down
Starving his people, hazarding his crown.
Peace is his aim, his gentleness is such,
And love he loves, for he loves fucking much.
Nor are his high desires above his strength:
His scepter and his prick are of a length;
And she may sway the one who plays with th' other,
And make him little wiser than his brother.
Poor Prince! thy prick, like thy buffoons at court,
Will govern thee because it makes thee sport.
'Tis sure the sauciest prick that e'er did swive,
The proudest, peremptoriest prick alive.
Though safety, law, religion, life lay on 't,
'Twould break through all to make its way to cunt.
Restless he rolls about from whore to whore,
A merry monarch, scandalous and poor.
To Carwell, the most dear of all his dears,
The best relief of his declining years,
Oft he bewails his fortune, and her fate:
To love so well, and be beloved so late.
Yet his dull, graceless bollocks hang an arse.
This you'd believe, had I but time to tell ye
The pains it costs to poor, laborious Nelly,
Whilst she employs hands, fingers, mouth, and thighs,
Ere she can raise the member she enjoys.
All monarchs I hate, and the thrones they sit on,
From the hector of France to the cully of Britain.
This and other poems such as 'Signor Dildo', 'The Disabled Debauchee' and 'By All Love's Soft, Yet Mighty Powers
' won him a reputation as a scurrilous but biting satirist, a forerunner of Defoe
. He wrote more serious pieces too, notably 'Upon Nothing'.
He died at the age of 33, probably from syphillis, and on his deathbed is supposed to have confessed and recanted his evil ways (probably under the influence of his mother).
Love a woman? You're an ass!
'Tis a most insipid passion
To choose out for your happiness
The silliest part of God's creation.
Let the porter and the groom,
Things designed for dirty slaves,
Drudge in fair Aurelia's womb
To get supplies for age and graves.
Farewell, woman! I intend
Henceforth every night to sit
With my lewd, well-natured friend,
Drinking to engender wit.
Then give me health, wealth, mirth, and wine,
And, if busy love entrenches,
There's a sweet, soft page of mine
Does the trick worth forty wenches.