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A Collection of Emblemes

Ancient and Moderne: Quickened VVith Metricall Illvstrations, both Morall and Divine: And disposed into Lotteries, That Instruction, and Good Counsell, may bee furthered by an Honest and Pleasant Recreation. By George Wither

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Illvstr. XXXIX.
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Illvstr. XXXIX.

[The big-bon'd Oxe, in pace is very slow]

They, who but slowly-paced are,
By plodding on, may travaile farre.

The big-bon'd Oxe, in pace is very slow,
And, in his travaile, step by step, doth goe,
So leisurely, as if he tir'd had bin,
Before his painfull Iourney did beginne;
Yet, all the day, he stifly ploddeth on,
Vntill the labour of the day be done:
And, seemes as fresh (though he his taske hath wrought)
As when to worke, he first of all was brought.
Meane-while, the Palfray, which more swiftnesse had,
Hath lost his breath, or proves a Resty-jade.
This Emblem, therefore, maketh it appeare,
How much it profiteth, to persevere;
And, what a little Industry will doe,
If wee continue constant thereunto.
For, meanest Faculties, discreetly us'd,
May get the start, of nobler Gifts, abus'd.
This, may obserued be in many a one:
For (when their course of life was first begunne)
Some, whose refined wits, aspi'rd as high,
As if above the Sphæres, they were to flie:
By Sloth, or Pride, or over-trusting to
Their owne Sufficiencies, themselves undoe.
Yea, and those forward-wits, have liv'd to see
Themselves inferiours, unto those, to be,
Whom, they did in their jollity, contemne,
As blocks, or dunces, in respect of them.
Then, learne, Great-wits, this folly to prevent:
Let Meane-wits, take from hence, incouragement:
And, let us all, in our Affaires proceed,
With timely leisure, and with comely speed.