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But All subsists by elemental strife; And passions are the elements of life.The general Order, since the whole began, Is kept in Nature, and is kept in Man.
And who but wishes to invert the laws Of order, sins against th'Eternal Cause.
Epistle I, Verse V Seas roll to waft me, suns to light me rise; My footstool earth, my canopy the skies.
Feels at each thread, and lives along the line: In the nice bee, what sense so subtly true, From poisonous herbs extracts the healing dew?
How instinct varies in the grovelling swine, Compared, half-reasoning elephant, with thine! which from God began; Natures ethereal, human, angel, man, From Nature's chain whatever link you strike, Tenth, or ten thousandth, breaks the chain alike.
The poem was dedicated to Lord Bolingbroke, a political figure with whom Pope had many philosophical conversations and who likely helped Pope come to believe in many of the ideas he presents in An Essay on Man.
An Essay on Man consists of four epistles, which is a term that is historically used to describe formal letters directed to a specific person.Pope lived from 1688 to 1744 and was considered one of the most definitive and influential voices of the first half of the 18th century.His work was part of the Neoclassical movement that reflected the ideals of the Enlightenment era.The bliss of man, could pride that blessing find, Is not to act or think beyond mankind; Why has not man a microscopic eye? Who finds not Providence all good and wise, Alike in what it gives and what denies?Epistle I, Verse VII The spider's touch, how exquisitely fine!Epistle I, Verse I Is the great chain, that draws all to agree, And drawn supports, upheld by God or thee? the reason wouldst thou find, Why form'd so weak, so little, and so blind?Then in the scale of reasoning life 'tis plain There must be, somewhere, such a rank as Man: And all the question (wrangle e'er so long) Is only this, if God has placed him wrong?Plus, get practice tests, quizzes, and personalized coaching to help you succeed.Try it risk-free 'Hope springs eternal in the human breast' (I.95) writes Alexander Pope in his famous poem An Essay on Man.2, by Abraham Mills Alexander Pope: Selected Letters by Alexander Pope, Howard Erskine-Hill The Imaginative World of Alexander Pope (1987) by Leopold Damrosch Pope Essay On Man Epistles I.-Iv. As a member, you'll also get unlimited access to over 79,000 lessons in math, English, science, history, and more.