"We'll think she brings with her Estate a Mind, / Pure as her Sterling, from it's Dross Refin'd."

— Sedley, Sir Charles (1639-1701)

Place of Publication
J. Nutt
"We'll think she brings with her Estate a Mind, / Pure as her Sterling, from it's Dross Refin'd."
Metaphor in Context
This must be then the issue, where our Love,
Does not together with our Nuptials move.
Possessions can't for fickle Joy provide.
When Love the end of Living, is Destroy'd.
Alas! we're all mistaken in the Kind,
A happy Man is measur'd by the Mind.
Suppose him born to all the Pomp of Life;
Admit he's match'd to Beauty in a Wife,
These are but Pageants, which a while may please,
They may Divert him, but procure no Ease.
That Grandeur is no compound of our Bliss,
The rugged Bosoms of the Great confess.
The gilded Monarch's Sable stands within,
His Glory to his Troubles, but a Shrine:
His Cares, his Jealousies, Nocturnal Frights,
Imbitter all his Joys and false Delights.
His toiling Head with Grief a Crown must bear,
Whilst he still starts and grasps, to hold it there.
And thus all Princes to this Hell we trace,
They Reign without, and are but Kings by Place.
But lest ambitious Maids in Scorn relate,
This is the utmost Tyranny of Fate;
That such Seditious disagreeing Pairs,
Are scarcely known in Centuries of Years.
We'll grant, (which yet no less Misfortune breeds)
The Woman loves the Golden Man she Weds.
We'll think she brings with her Estate a Mind,
Pure as her Sterling, from it's Dross Refin'd.

Yet this is so unlikely to succeed,
It Murders what it first design'd to Feed.
He strait concludes her Passion a Pretence,
Condemns her Soul, and lays the Crime on Sense.
Argues, she only chose to be his Bride,
To serve and gratify her costly Pride.
But still we'll give this Topick larger Law,
We'll say an equal Passion both does draw.
We will suppose them both enclin'd to Love.
We'll call her Venus, and we'll stile him Jove;
Yet through the Tides of Business in his Head,
He must neglect, and at length slight her Bed.
His peeping Passion, like a feeble Sun,
Mingled with Show'rs of Rain, will soon be gone.
And if perhaps there's left some poor Remains,
Like Northern Gold, 'tis in penurious Veins.
Diffus'd and scatter'd o'er the barren Land,
Amidst vast heaps of Lead and worthless Sand.
This must be then a sad Reward of Love,
When he thus senseless of her Choice do's prove.
Her Am'rous Courage ne'er can long be bold,
That finds herself out-rival'd by her Gold.
Both their Affections to the Deep are sent,
He sinks through Weight, and she through Discontent.
Their Riches then shew their defect of Pow'r,
That can't create what Want do's oft procure.
In thought of Wealth, he can't Intomb his Smart,
When sullen Love preys on his stubborn Heart.
If crouded Chests and glutted Coffers can
Restore Contentment to the anxious Man;
Possess'd of those, if he from Pain is free,
A troubled, may be call'd a quiet Sea:
Because there's Pearl and Amber on the Shoars,
And thus it's strangely Silenc'd when it Roars.
Searching "mind" and "sterling" in HDIS (Poetry)
Sedley, Sir Charles. The Miscellaneous Works of the honourable Sir Charles Sedley, Bart.. London: J. Nutt, 1702.
Date of Entry

The Mind is a Metaphor is authored by Brad Pasanek, Assistant Professor of English, University of Virginia.