"None of this ages iron-hearted wretches, / That rather part with God, then Gold, or riches."

— Paterson, Ninian (fl.1678-1696)

"None of this ages iron-hearted wretches, / That rather part with God, then Gold, or riches."
Metaphor in Context
Like as an aged lofty-fronted Oak,
Whose Verdure, Boughs, and Shelter, might provock,
The proudest in the Dodonean Grove,
Which Superstition did devout to Jove,
Hath many blasts, and many Sun-shines known,
At last unto the dreadful Axe falls down,
So Dies this Lady, whom the Age did find,
Perfections Zenith to all Woman-kind.
But as when thorow crouds we make our way,
It falls, that each mans haste, the whole doth stay,
So fares it in this Subject; that I doubt
So much would pass, that nothing can get out.
For as Her Birth was honourable, and hie,
Come of the greatest of Nobility.
Her Brother, the Great Rothes, nothing under
His Princes Darling, and the Ages wonder,
Whose Worth, and Wit, such hight of Honours won,
That made him Vice Roy, to the Imperial Throne.
Her self by Heaven, and Earth so honoured
She heir'd three Earldoms with Her nuptial Bed
In all the which, either for Wife, or Mother,
Scotland shall never parallel another:
She in the Floods of Wealth, practis'd Austerity,
And in a throng of Hypocrites, Sincerity.
When crost (by Pious Patience) she was able
To make misfortunes look most amiable.
That her Familiars concluded all,
Dam Nature, had forgot to give her gall.
Her Humors so well poised all did see,
In stead of gall, she got Geometrie.
So stedfast still, to her was all one matter
If smiles, or smoak, did cause the eyes to water.
Of Fortunes both, she still such measures had,
The hottest Sun casts still the blackest shade.
Where honesty is fixed, there no wind
Can blow't away, or glittering look it blind.
She knew that the just Heavens oftimes decree,
For joyes uncertain, certain miserie.
That glorious nothing, guilded emptiness,
Honour; did Her great Soul the more depress.
So humble always, that Her very glance
Put pride imperious out of countenance.
She did abhor the world, tho lodg'd therein,
As fish continue flesh, in seas of brin.
In midst of Delicats she was content,
To make her Feasts, but hungers banishment,
To Reason alwayes she did sense submit,
And made it bridle ranging appetit.
She neither was too bashful, nor too bold;
Patern to young, and Patron to the old.
Her Charitie, made her be like the Sun,
Extending Light and Heat to every one;
That with the rest she had this divine qualitie,
That most resembleth Heaven, Liberality.
She of all, wherewith God had her endued,
Her self a Stuard, more than owne shewed.
None of this ages iron-hearted wretches,
That rather part with
God, then Gold, or riches.
Who to Eternity, will feell the knell.
Wealth was the bridge that past them post to Hell.
So debonair and complaisant was She,
Her Mind and Mouth had still a Sympathie.
Nor with these peevish Dams, could she complie,
Who what they covet most, do most deny
Truth rides in Triumph, when Fig-leaves do fail,
Hypocrisie it is but Vertues Vail.
But She excelled in a high degree,
Both in Devotion, and in Charitie.
The great Examplar of all Good, beneath
Wee'll say She Liv'd, while others only Breath.
She Liv'd, and Died, a Lady most compleat,
And which is wonderful, as Good, as Great.
To Ages all, then Lady Weems here lyes
Justly sir nam'd the Pious, Good, and Wise,
Searching "iron" and "heart" in HDIS (Poetry)
Date of Entry

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