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Butler And Buckingham








Of Butler, the author of Hudibras--which Dr. Johnson terms "one of
those productions of which a nation may justly boast"--little further is
known than that his genius was not sufficient to rescue him from its
too frequent attendant, poverty; he lived in obscurity, and died in
want. Wycherley often represented to the Duke of Buckingham how well
Butler had deserved of the royal family by writing his inimitable
Hudibras, and that it was a disgrace to the Court that a person of his
loyalty and genius should remain in obscurity and suffer the wants which
he did. The Duke, thus pressed, promised to recommend Butler to his
Majesty; and Wycherley, in hopes to keep his Grace steady to his word,
prevailed on him to fix a day when he might introduce the modest and
unfortunate poet to his new patron. The place of meeting fixed upon was
the "Roebuck." Butler and his friend attended punctually; the Duke
joined them, when, unluckily, the door of the room being open, his Grace
observed one of his acquaintances pass by with two ladies; on which he
immediately quitted his engagement, and from that time to the day of his
death poor Butler never derived the least benefit from his promise.

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