Front Page Titles (by Subject) A POEM on the foregoing WORK. - In Praise of Folly
A POEM on the foregoing WORK. - Desiderius Erasmus, In Praise of Folly 
Erasmus in Praise of Folly, illustrated with many curious cuts, designed, drawn, and etched by Hans Holbein, with portrait, life of Erasmus, and his epistle to Sir Thomas More (London: Reeves & Turner, 1876).
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A POEM on the foregoing WORK.
- THERE’S ne’er a blade of honour in the town,
- But if you chance to term him fool and clown,
- Straight satisfaction cries, and then with speed
- The time, the place, and rapier’s length’s decreed.
- Prodigious fops, I’ll swear, which can’t agree
- To be call’d what’s their happiness to be:
- Blest Idiots!
- That in an humble sphere securely move,
- And there the sweets of a safe dulness prove,
- Nor envy the proud heights of those who range above.
- Folly, sure friend of a misguided will,
- Affords a kind excuse for doing ill;
- And Socrates, that prudent, thinking tool,
- Had the gods lik’d him would have prov’d a fool.
- Methinks our author, when without a flaw,
- The graces of his mistress he does draw,
- Wishes (if Metempsychosis be true,
- And souls do change their case, and act anew),
- In his next life he only might aspire
- To the few brains of some soft country squire,
- Whose head with such like rudiments is fraught,
- As in his youth his careful grannum taught.
- And now (dear friend) how shall we to thy brow
- Pay all those laurels which we justly owe?
- For thou fresh honours to the work dost bring,
- And to the theme: nor seems that pleasing thing,
- Which he so well in Latin has express’d,
- Less comical in English garments dress’d;
- Thy sentences are all so clearly wrought,
- And so exactly plac’d in every thought,
- That, which is more oblig’d we scarce can see
- The subject by thine author, or himself by thee.