Spoken by Dapperwit
Now, my brisk brothers of the pit, you'll say
I'm come to speak a good word for the play.
But, gallants, let me perish if I do,
For I have wit, and judgement, just like you;
Wit never partial, judgement free and bold, 5 For fear or friendship never bought or sold, Nor by good nature e'er to be cajoled.
Good nature in a critic were a crime,
Like mercy in a judge, and renders him
Guilty of all those faults he does forgive. 10 Besides, if thief from gallows you reprieve, He'll cut your throat; so poet saved from shame,
In damned lampoon will murder your good name.
Yet in true spite to him, and to his play,
Good faith, you should not rail at 'em today; 15 But to be more his foe, seem most his friend, And so, maliciously, the play commend,
That he may be betrayed to writing on,
And poet let him be--to be undone.