1. Rochester is a materialist: his understanding is premised on proofs and elements that are tangible to him – he resists metaphysical presumption (unlike his poetic forebears, who I have recently discussed at length in this blog)--Rochester arrives in the Fruitful Restauration of Charles II.
2. This lack of metaphysical presumption even surfaces as a contempt for metaphysical conceits. He distrusts abstractions (and therefore discredits the capacity REASON has to apprehend)
Cf. “A Satyre against Reason and Mankind,” 37-42: wit is a whore, fatal to admiring fools; 62-81: the creative flights of fancy, beyond Material sense, makes a mite think he’s the image of the infinite—“And tis this very Reason I despise;”
3. Having dismissed metaphysic, his business is articulating pleasure of life. His intellectual understanding is conscientiously focused on material with the intent to elicit GREATER PLEASURE from his activities –intellectual or otherwise ('Satyre')
Cf. “A Satyre…” 92ff: “And we have modern Colystred Coxcombs, who/ Retire to think, ‘cause they have nought to do:/ But Thoughts are given for Actions government,/ Where Action ceases, Thought’s impertinent./ Our sphere of Action is Lifes happiness, And he who thinks beyond, thinks like an Asse; 104-05: Your Reason hinders, mine helps to enjoy, Renewing appetites yours would destroy. My reason is my friend, yours is a cheat, Hunger calls out, my Reason bids me eat…
4. HE IS NOT, HOWEVER, outside his time: He asserts responsibility and role of the citizenry to organize government and the material purpose of a sovereign’s rule—that is to protect the citizenry and promote greater appreciation of life (as Rochester understands it—drink and fuck) among his citizenry ('Sodom, or the Quintessence of Debauchery')
Cf. “To the Reader” Rochester is no anarchist: 17: To be lawless is true vassalage; 71: Lawless liberty is the Lowest slavery; “To the Reader:” 38: The certain way to reigne is to protect; “Sodom” 1ff: Bolloxinian: Thus in the Zenith of the lust I reigne:/ I eat to swive and Swive to eat againe./ Let other Monarchs who with their Scepters beare to keepe their subjects less in love [than] feare/ Bee slaves to Crownes, my nation shall be free… FURTHERMORE the central premise of the drama is that Bolloxinian is expected to fuck and his wife and all his mistresses and boys (read subjects)
5. SO THE RULER IS STILL A FOUNTAINHEAD from which the LIFEFORCE of the nation courses--the first and the last cock to cum in any political structure
Cf. as in Sodom, when the Prince ceases to trickle down power (semen and sex) the structure disintegrates and Cuntigratia is compelled to find others to fuck her Act II, Scene 2, 14-15 Lady Officinia: That day of marriage you may JUSTLY rue/ Since he will neither Swive nor suffer you
6. The complication is that, if Rochester is promoting an Enlightened Despot, he does not seem to bother suggesting that this despot necessarily must promote didacticism or knowledge—-promotion of pleasure and protection of welfare alone are the virtues he assigns as the DESPOT’S duties (this becomes problematic when Bolloxinian, his prince, can’t fuck everybody)
Cf. 'Sodom:' Scene B2: 100: Where Pintle cannot gain new breath/ the resureccons wors than Death
7. Rochester seems a good case for examining the reality of a frame inspired by Hobbes taken to its most extreme conclusion: if ruler does not care to advance his people except to licentiousness of body and living—should a body politic still be obliged to follow? Cuntigratia does not. Charles the II could not either and basically gave up on trying
8. Would Rochester say that such is necessarily a BAD thing? Compared to intolerance or violence? Can we presume that Rochester did not understand or perceive his disassociation with the PURITAN flavor of his time (of course not)—-he instead chose a more perpetual tendencies, i.e. the body, sexuality and lawful liberty in love (in doing so associated such with the court of Charles II, as anodyne to the convulsions of the Commonwealth)
Cf. Evident by his invective against the savagery of man: Satyre… 129ff: You see how far Man’s wisdome extends… Birds feed on birds, Beasts on each other prey, But savage Man alone does man betray: Prest by necessity they kill for food, Man undoes Man to do himself no good; Sodom: The Phallic sovereign: Act 4, Scene 5, 31: Damn silly dildoes—had I but the blisse/ of once enjoyeing sucha a prick as this,/ I would his will eternally obey, / and every minute Cunt should tribute pay; 41: A God to rule and keep our sex in awe!; Vide 'Artimizia to Chloe;' The destruction of Sodom by Sexually Transmitted Disease only occurred when the Prince swayed from the organization of sexuality—there is no invective against liberal sex as such, only against the Prince not having fucked the necessary amount of cunts to keep his kingdom functioning (Fuckadilla’s Epilogue)
End note: Rochester is verse already on its way down to, or out to, or toward, pure song in the English language. Rather than an architectizing rhetorician, Rochester was something like the outgrowth of a return to boggier lands.