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The Philosopher, the Young Man, and his Statue

The Philosopher, the Young Man, and his Statue

A Fond Athenian Mother brought
A Sculptor to indulge her Thought,
And carve her Only Son;
Who to such strange perfection wrought,
That every Eye the Statue caught
Nor ought was left undone.

A youthful Smile adorn’d the Face,
The polish gave that Smile a Grace;
And through the Marble reigns
(Which well the Artist’s Skill cou’d trace,
And in their due Positions place)
A Thread of purple Veins.

The Parasites about it came,
(Whose Praises were too large to name)
And to each other said;
The Man so well had reach’d his Aim,
Th’ Original cou’d o’er it claim
Only a native Red.

Mean while a Sage, amidst the Croud,
Thus, with a Precept wise and loud,
Check’d the Vain-glorious Boy;
By telling him, who now grew proud,
That tho’ with Beauty ’twas endow’d,
The Figure was a Toy:

Of no Advantage to the State,
‘Twou’d neither combate, nor debate,
But idly stand alone;
Bids him beware, whilst Men create
In Stone thus his Resemblance great,
He proves not like the Stone.



Poem The Philosopher, the Young Man, and his Statue - Anne Kingsmill Finch