“To Atlas” by St. George Tucker (June 5, 1793)


In “To Atlas,” published in the National Gazette in Philadelphia on June 5, 1793, St. George Tucker satires Alexander Hamilton, then the U.S. secretary of the treasury. Tucker’s poem was the second in a series of fourteen poems known as “The Probationary Odes of Jonathan Pindar, Esq.” that skewered Federalist politicians.


Jonathan, turned Speculator, in behalf of the whole corps addresseth their great benefactor and patron.

Ingreditor folo, et caput inter nubile condit,


—Nunquam dimoveas!


Whilst you, great Atlas! prop the State,

Nor totter underneath a weight,

That would a giant crush;

Let pigmy wights, in Congress Hall,

Set sparrow traps to work your fall,

Regard them not a rush!


A lion should a spaniel bay,

The king of beasts would keep his way

Nor heed the babbler’s throat;

Then deign not, Atlas, to look down

Or punish with a single frown

The angry snarler’s note.


Whilst on your paper throne you sit

With solid gold beneath your feet

Fear not a regicide!

Your faithful Janizaries all

Shall muster thick in Congress Hall

To guard their leader’s side.

Go on, great chief, to make us all,

Not from your shoulders cast the ball,

Lest we, like worms, should drop,

Who on a golden pippin prey,

Till haply on some stormy day

‘Tis shaken from the top.



“Parody” by St. George Tucker (March 20, 1781) “To Sleep” by St. George Tucker (January 24, 1788) “Resignation” by St. George Tucker (March 21, 1807)

APA Citation:
Tucker, St. George. “To Atlas” by St. George Tucker (June 5, 1793). (2020, December 07). In Encyclopedia Virginia.
MLA Citation:
Tucker, St. George. "“To Atlas” by St. George Tucker (June 5, 1793)" Encyclopedia Virginia. Virginia Humanities, (07 Dec. 2020). Web. 15 Jul. 2024
Last updated: 2020, December 07
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