Westminster Hall on the First Day of Term

Mr Vignoles

 As Holes where thieves have lurk’d all day
 Emit at night, upon the lay,
Their darkness loving race,
 So now each inn about the town
 Lets out its tribes with wig and gown
To haunt this Gothic place.
 What heights of sable sweep along
 What groves of curls and what a throng
Of little dangling tails!
 It is no wonder such a sight 1
 Should oft put justice in a fright
And make her drop her scales
 ’Tis said from paradice when hurl’d,
 That Satan visited this world:
And, to begin our woes,
 He sow’d a hellish seed called strife,
 Which vegetated into life —
When up a lawyer rose!

 He lodg’d him in a spacious place:
 That it might wear a holy trace
He call’d the spot “The Temple”:
 And rather than a wolf for sign,
 Plac’d on the door a lamb divine 2
As of his trade a sample.

 When thus set up, he thought a wife
 Would much assist his rise in life
And soon he found a prize —
 A Mrs Falshood, who before
 Had large host of children bore —
Call’d by the vulgar “Lies.”

 These he adopted — brought up all:
 And, I am told, within this Hall
They first were put to school:
 He taught them quibbling as they grew
 And from the dam: ’tis very true
They learned to over-rule.

 They cheated, prosper’d, and increas’d;
 Nor has their population ceas’d,
As you may here descry:
 And, as the issue has not fail’d,
 I fear the curse will be entail’d
On all posterity!

 But still to them some praise is due
 With filial duty they pursue
The origin of evil
 And labour still with hand & tongue
 To prove the Sion where they sprung
Was planted by the Devil.


  1. I thought Justice was blind  

  2. Society of the Temple.