1 Though Artemisia talks, by fits,
Of councils, classics, fathers, wits;
Reads Malebranche, Boyle, and Locke:
Yet in some things methinks she fails--
'Twere well if she would pare her nails,
And wear a cleaner smock.
2 Haughty and huge as High-Dutch bride,
Such nastiness, and so much pride
Are oddly join'd by fate:
On her large squab you find her spread,
Like a fat corpse upon a bed,
That lies and stinks in state.
3 She wears no colours (sign of grace)
On any part except her face;
All white and black beside:
Dauntless her look, her gesture proud,
Her voice theatrically loud,
And masculine her stride.
4 So have I seen, in black and white
A prating thing, a magpie height,
A stately, worthless animal,
That plies the tongue, and wags the tail,
All flutter, pride, and talk.
1 Phryne had talents for mankind,
Open she was, and unconfined,
Like some free port of trade:
Merchants unloaded here their freight,
And agents from each foreign state
Here first their entry made.
2 Her learning and good breeding such,
Whether the Italian or the Dutch,
Spaniards or French came to her:
To all obliging she'd appear,
'Twas 'Si, Signor,' 'twas 'Yaw, Mynheer,'
'Twas 'S' il vous plait, Monsieur.'
3 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.
4 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.