Imágenes de páginas

(ad and forry merchandise. The great power of them, “ a parcel of poor wretches, so many filly these goddesses acting in alliance (whereof as the “ Aics (i):” but adds, our author's wic is remarka one is the mother of industry, so is the other of ably “ more bare and barten, whenever it would plodding) was to be exemplified in some one great “ fall foul on Cibber, than upon any other person and remarkable adion : (8) and none could be « whatever.” mare fo than that which our poet hath chosen, vix. The descriptions are fingular; the comparifono the restoration of the reign of Chaos and Night, very quaint; the narration various, yet of one by the ministry of Dulness their daughter, in the colour: the purity and chastity of di&tion is so removal of her inperial feat from the city to the preserved, that in the places most suspicious, nog polite world; as the action of the Æneid is the the words, but only the images have been censurrefloration of the empire of Troy, by the removal ed; and yet are those images no other than have of the race from thence to Latium. But as Homer been fanctified by ancient and classical authority fingeth only the wrath of Achilles, yet includes in (though, as was the manner of those good times, his poem the whole history of the Trojan war; in not so curiously wrapped up), yea, and comment, like manner, our author hath drawn into this lined upon by the most grave doctors, and approve gle action the whole history of Dulness, and her od critics. children.

As it beareth the name of epic, it is thereby A person must next be fixed upon to support subject to such fevere indispensible rules as are this adion. This phantom in the poet's mind must laid on all neoterics, a strict'imitation of the ang have a name (b): he finds it to be : and ciento; infomuch

that any deviation, accompanied be becomes of course the hero of the poem. with whatever poetic beauties, hath always been

The fable being thus, according to the best ex- censured by the sound critic. How exad that lin ample, one and entire, as contained in the propo- mitation hath been in this picce, appeareth not ona sition; the machinery is a continued chain of al- ly by its general structure, but by particular illi: legories, setting forth the whole power, ministry, Lions infinite, many whereof have escaped both the and empire of Dulness, extended through her sub-cocomentator and poet himself; yea divers, by his adinate instruments, in all her various operations. exceeding diligence, are so altered and interwov.

This is branched into episodes ; each of which en with the rest, that several have already beeng kath its moral apart, though all conducive to the and more will be, by the ignorant, abused as al main end. The crowd affembled in the second together and originally his own. book, demonftrates the design to be more extenfive In a word, the whole poem proveth itself to be than to bad poets only; and that we may expect the work of our author, when his faculties were ether episodes of the patrons, encouragers, or pay in full vigour and perfection; at that exact time masters of such authors, as occasion fhall bring them when years have ripened the judgment, without fazerehAnd the third book, if well confidered, diminishing the imagination which, by good feemeth to embrace the whole world. Each of critics, is held to be pun&ually at forty. For at the games relateth to some or other vile class of that season it was that Virgil finished his Geor's writers: the first concerneth the plagiary, to whom gics; and Sir Richard Blackmore at the like age ke giveth the name of Moore; the second, the li- composing his Arthurs; declared the same to be bellous novelist, whom he ftyleth Eliza; the third, the very acme and pitch of life for epic poesy : the flattering dedicator; the fourth, the bawling though since he hath altered it to fixty, the year critic, or soily poet; the fifth, the dark and dirty in which he publifhed his Alfred (4). True it is, party-writer; and so of the rest : afligning to each that the talents for criticism, namely smartness, Lome proper name or other, such as he could find. quick cenfure, vivacity of remark, certainty of af

As for the characters, the public hath already severation, indeed all but acerbity, seem rather the acknowledged how jufly they are drawn: the gifts of youth, than of riper age: but it is for franners are so depi&ed, and the sentiment so pe otherwise in poetry; witnels the works of Mr. culiar to those to whon applied, that surely to Rymer and Mr. Dennis; who beginning with critransfer them to any other or wifer personage, ticism, became afterwards such poets as no age would be exceeding difficult : and certain it is, hach paralleled. With good reason, therefore, did that every person concerned, being confulted apart, our author choofe to write his essay on that subm hath readily owned the resemblance of every por-ject at twenty, and reserve for his maturer years trait, his own excepted. So Mr. Cibber calls this great and wonderful work of the Dunciad. () Ibid. cbap vii. viii.

i) Cibber's letter to Mr. P. P. 9, 12, 41. ) Befu, chap, viä. Vide Arift. Poet, cap. ix. () See bis Esays.





Or the pature of Dunciad in general, whence de-1" For contrary objects mul either excite contrary sived, and on what authority founded, as well as " affections, or no affections at all. So that he who of the art and conduở of this our Poem in parti- “ loveth good men, mult at the same time hate the çular, the learned and laborious Scriblerus hath, : bad; and he who hateth got bad men, cannot love according to his manner, and with tolerable share the good; because to love good men proceedeth of judgment, difertated. But when he cometh to " from an aversion to evil, and to have evil men Ipeak of the person of the hero fitted for such“ from á tenderness to the good." From (bis des poem, in truth he miserably halts and hallucinateg. licacy of the muse arose the little epic (more lively for, miled by one Monsieur Bossu, a Gallic critic, and choleric than her elder sister, whose bulk and he prateth of I cannot tell what phantom of a be- complexion incline her to the phlegmatic): and Jo, only raised'up'o support the fable. A putrid for this, fome notorious vehicle of vice and folly conceit! As if Homer and Virgil, like modern was sought out, to make thereof an example. As undertakers, who first build their house and then early instance of which (nor could it escape the ac, seek out for a renant, had contrived the story of a curare Scriblerus) the father of epic poem himself war and a wandering, before they once thought afforderh us. From him the practice descended to either of Achilles or Æneas. We hall therefore the Greek dramatic poets, his offspring; who, in fct our good brother and the world also righe in the composition of their Tetralogy, or set of four this particular, by affuring them, that, in the pieces, were wont to make the latt a satiric tragedy. greater opic, the prime intention of the muse, is Happily, one of these ancient Dupciads) as we may to exalt heroic virtue, in order to propagate the well term it) is come down unto us, amongst the love of it among the children of men; and con- tragedies of the poet Euripides. And what doth fequently that the poet's first thought must needs the reader suppose may be the subject thereof he turned upon a real fubje& meet for laud and Why in truth, and it is worthy observation, the celebration; not one whom he is to make, bịt one unequal contest of an old, dull, debauched buffoon whom he may find, truly illustrious. This is the Cyclops, with the heaven-dire&ed favourite of primum mobile of his poetic world, whence every Minerva; who, after having quietly borne all the ahing is to receive life and motion. For, this sub- monster's obscenc and impious ribaldry, endeth the jed being found, he is immediately ordaiped, or farce in punishing him with the mark of an indea Father acknowledged, an hero, and put upon such lible brand in his foret.cad. May we not then be a aion as befitteth the dignity of his character. excused, if, for the future, we consider the epics of

But the muse ceaseth not here her eagle-flight. For Homer, Virgil, and Milton, together with this our sometimes, satiated with the contemplation of these poem, as a complete Tetralogy ; in which the last tons of glory, she turneth downward on her wing, worthily holdeth the place or tation of the satiric and darts with Jove's lightning on the goofe and piece ?. Serpent kind. For we inay apply to the muse in Proceed we therefore in our fubje&t. It hath her various moods, what an ancient master of wis- been long, and alas for pity! still remaineth a com affirmeth of the Gods in general: "Şi Di question, whether the 'hero of the greater epic * non irafcuntur impiis et injuftis, nec pios utique should be an honest man; or as the French critics • jultosque ciiligunt. In rebus enim diverfis

, aut in express it, un honnête homme (a): but it never in utramque partem moveri neceffe eft, aut in admitted of a doubt, but that the hero of the little "neutram. Itaque qui bonos diligit, et malos odit; epic fhould be just the contrary, 'Hence, to the et qui malos non odit, nec bonos diligit

. Quia advantage of our Dunciad, we may observe, how " et diligere bonos ex odio malorum venit ; et ma- much juster the moral of that poem mult needs be, “ los odiffe ex bonorum caritate defcendit." Whichi in our vernacular idiom may be thus interpreted! (a) Si un Heres Poëtique doit 'tre un bonnit homme. * If the Gods be not provoked at evil mén, nei- Bolu, di Pesme Epique, liv. v. ch. S. *ther are they delightep with the good and just . !


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where so important a question is pçeviously decid- , and his language to confit of what we must aled.

low to be the most daring figure of speech, that Bat then it is not every knave, nor (Ice me add). which is taken from the name of God every fool, that is a fit subject for a Dunciad. Gentle love, the next ingredient in the true There mult Aill exist fome analogy, if not relem-, hero's composition, is a mere bird of passage, or blance of qualities between the heroes of the cwo (as Shakspeare calls it) summer-teeming luft, poems; and this, to admit of what ncoteric critics and evaporates in the heat of youth; doubtless by cal the parody, one of the liveliest graces of the that refinement it suffers in pafling through thołe birtle epic. Thus it being agreed that the consti- certain strainers which our poet fomewhere fpeaktuent qualities of the greater epic hero, are wis- eth of. Bur when it is let alone to work upon the com, bravery, and love, from whence springeth lees, it acquireth strength by old age; and becometh heroic virtue ; it followeth, that those of the lefler a lasting ornament to the little epic. It is true, epic bero fhould be vanity, assurance, and de- indeed, there is one objection to its firness for fuch bauchery, from which assemblage resultech heroican use: for not only the ignorant may think it dulness, the never-dying subject of this our poem. common, but it is admitted to be so, even by him

This being fettled, come we now to particulars. who best knoweth its value. “ Dont you think k is the character of true wildum, to seek its chief " (argueth he), to say • only a man 'has his fupport and confidence within itself; and to place “ whore (d); " ought to go for little or nothing? that support in the resources which proceed from " Because defendit numerus ; take the first ten thoua conscious reditude of will.–And are the ad. “sand men you meet, and, I believe, you would vantages of vanity, when arising to the heroic “ be no loser if you betted ten to one, that every tandard, at all short of this self-complacence ? Nay, single finner of them, one with another, has are they not, in the opinion of the enamoured “ been guilty of the fame frailty (e)." But here owner, far beyond it? "Let the world (will such he seemeth not to have done justice to himself : • an one fay) impute to me what folly or weakness the man is fure enough a hero, who hath his lady

they please ; but till wisdom can give me some. at fourscore. How doth his modesty herein lessen * thing that will make me more heartily happy, the merit of a whole well-spent life : not taking * I am content to be GAZED AT (6).” This, we fee, to himself the comniendation (which Hurace acis vanity according to the heroic gage or measure; counted the greatest in a theatrical character) of Dot thac low and ignoble species which pretendeth continuing to the very dregs thc fame be was to virtues we have not; but the laudable ambition from the beginning, of being gazed at for glorying in those vices, which

-Servetur ad IMUM every body knows we have. “ The world may alk "(says he) why I make my follies public? Why

“ Qualis ab incepto procefferat, " not? I have passed my life very pleasantly with But here, in justice both to the poet and the "them” In hort, there is no sort of vanity such hero, let us farther remark, that the calling her his a hero would scruple, but that which might go whore, implied she was his own, and not his near to degrade him from his high station in this neighbour's Truly a commendable continence ! our Dunciad ; namely," whether it would not be

apd such as Scipio himself must have applauded. "vanity in him, to take shame to himself for not for how much self-denial was necessary not to " being a wise man?"

covet his neighbour's whore ? and what disorders Bravery, the second attribute of the true hero, mult the covering her have occasioned in that fois courage manifeking itself in every limb; while ciety, where (according to this political calculator) its correspondent virtue in the mock hero, is, that nine in ten of all ages have their concubincs : fame courage all collected into the face. And as

We have now, as briefly as we could advise, power, when drawn together, muft needs have more force and spirit than when dispersed, we ge

gone through the three confituent qualities of ei.

ther hero. But it is not in any, or in all of these nerally find this kind of courage in so high and that heroism properly or essentially resideth. It is heroic a degree, that it insults not only men, but

a lucky result rather from the collision of these Gods. Mezentius is, without doubt, the bravelt lively qualities against one another: Thus, as character in all the Æncis: but how? His bravery, from wisdom, bravery, and love, ariseth magna, we know, was an high courage of blasphemy. nimity, the object of admiration, which is the aim And can we say less of this brave man’s, who of the greater epic; fo from vanity, assurance, and having told us that he placed his “ summum debauchery, springeth buffoonry, the source of ri. "bonum in those follies, which he was not con"tene barely to posless, but would likewise glory termeth it (f), of the little epic.

dicule, that “ laughing ornament," as he well "in," adds,' “ If I anu misguided, 'Tis NATURE'S "FAULT, and I follow HER ()." Nor can we be miftaken in making this happy quality a species of

(4) Alluding to tbefe lines in the Epif. to Dr. Are

butbuot : courage, when we conGder those illuftrious marks of is, which made his FACE " more known ( as he “ And has not Colly fill bis lord and wbore, "juftly boasteth) than most in the kingdom;" His butcbers Henley, bis free-mafons Meoro?", (b) Ded. lo the Life of C. G.

(c) Letter to Mr. P. p. 46. () Life of C. C. 8. 23. 0f7: cdik.

) Letter to Mr. P. p. 34,

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He is not ashamed (God forbid he ever should | ing there represented as fast alleep; fo misbeseen. be ashamed!) of this character ; who deemeth, that ing the eye of empire, which, like that of Provinot reason but risibility distinguisheth the human dence, should never doze nor Number. “ Hah! fpecies from the brutal. “ As nacure (saith this “ (faith he), fast afleep, it seems that's a little " profound philosopher) distinguisheth our species" too strong. Pert and dull at least you might " from the mule creation by our risibility, her “ have allowed me, but as feldom asleep as any. " defign must have been by that faculty as evi." fool (1)." However, the injured hero may “ dently to raise our HAPPINESS, as by our Os comfort himself with this reflection, that though "fublime (OUR ERECTED FACES) to lift the dignity it be a fleep, yet it is not the fleep of death, but

of OUR FORM above them (i)." All this consi of immortality. Here he will (m) live at least, dered, how complete a hero muft he be, as well as though not awake; and in no worfe condition how happy a man, whose risibility lieth, not than many an enchanted warrior before him. barely in his muscles, as in the common sort, but The famous Durandante, for instance, was, like (as himself informach ua) in his very spirits ? and him, cast into a long flumber by Merlin the British whose Os fublime is not simply an ere& face, but a bard and necromancer; and his example for fubbrazen head; as should seem by his preferring it mitting to it with a good grace, might be of use to one of iron, said to belong to the late king of to our hero. For that disastrous knight being sorely Sweden ?

pressed or driven to make his answer by several But whatever personal qualities a hero may have, persons of quality, only replied with a ligh, Patithe examples of Achilles and Æneas show us, that ence, and shuffle the cards (»). all those are of small avail, without the constant But now, as nothing in this world, no got the allistance of the Gods: for the subversion and most sacred and perleå things, either of religion eredion of empires have never been adjudged the or government, can escape the fting of envy, me. work of man. How greatly foever then we may thinks I already hear theie carpers obje&ing to the elleem of his high talents, we can hardly conceive clearness of our hero's title. his personal prowess alone fufficient to restore the It would never (say they) have been esteemed decayed empire of Dulness. So weighty an at- fufficient to make an hero for the Iliad or Æneis, chievement must require the particular favour and that Achilles was brave enough to overturn one prote&tion of the GREAT; who being the natural empire, or Æneas pious enough to raise another, patsong and supporters of letters, as the ancient had they not been goddefs-born, and princes bred. Gods were of Troy, must first be drawn off and What then did this author mean, by erocting a engaged in another interest, before the total sub player instead of one of his patrons (a person, version of them can be accomplished. To fur- never a hero even on the ltage," to this digmount, therefore, this last and greatest difficulty, nity of colleague in the empire of dulness, and atwe have, in this excellent man, a professed favour chiever of a work that neither old Omar, Attila, ite and intimado of the great. And look, of what nor John of Leyden, could entirely bring to pass. force ancient piety was to draw the gods into the To all this we have, as we conceive, a sufficient party of Æneas, chat, and much stronger is mo answer from the Roman historian, “ Fabrum esse dern incense, to engage the great in the party of “ fuæ quemque fortunæ :" that every man is the dulness.

smith of his own fortune. The politic Florentine, Thus have we ellayed to pourtray or shadow Nicholas Machiavel, goeth Atill further, and affirmout, this noble imp of fame. But now the impa eth that a man needeth but to believe himself a tient reader will be apt to say, If so many and va hero to be one of the worthiest. Let him (faith tious graces go to the making up a hero, what "he) but fancy himself capable of the highest mortal shall suffice to bear his character ? Il hath " things, and he will of course be able to atchicve he read, who seeth not, in every trace of this pic- " them.” From this principle it follows, that noture, that individual, a LL-ACCOMPLISHED PERSON, thing can exceed our hero's prowess; as nothing in whom these rare virtues and lucky circumstan ever equalled the greatness of his conceptions. ces have agreed to meet and concentre with the Hear how he constantly paragons himself; at one Itrongest lustre and fullest harmony.

tinie to Alexander the Great, and Charles the XII. The good Scriblerus indeed, nay the world it of Sweden for the excess and delicacy of his amself, might be imposed on, in the late spurious edi bition; to Henry the IV. of France, for honest tions, by I can't tell what tham bero or phantom: policy; to the first Brutus, for love of liberty ; but it was not so easy, to impose on uim whom and to Sir Robert Walpole, for good government this egregious error most of all concerned. For no while in power : at another time, to the godsuoner had the fourth book laid open the high and like Socrates for his diversions and amusements : (welling scene, but he recognized his own heroic to Horace, Montaigne, and Sir William Temple, acs : and when he came to the words,

for an elegant vanity that maketh them for ever “ Soft on her lap her laurcat fon reclines," read and admired; to two Lord Chancellors, (though laureat imply no more than one crowned for law, from whom, when confederate again with laurel, as befitteth any affociate or confort in him at the bar, he carried away the prize of clo. empire), he loudly refenceth this dignity to vioJared majely. Indeed, pot without caule, he be (1) Lettor, p. 53.

(m) Letter, p. 1. 6) Letter, p. $.

(9) Don Quixote, part ü, book ij. ob. 22.

quence ; and, to say all in a word, to the right “ surely much lels can any one, till then, be proreverend the Lord Bishop of London himself, in " nounced a hero : this species of men being far be art of writing paftoral letters.

more subject than others to the caprices of forNor did his actions fall short of the sublimity of" tune and humour." But to this also we have his conceit. In his early youth he met the revo- an answer, that will (we hope) be deemed decilution face co face in Nottingham; at a time live. It cometh from himself; who, co cut this when his betters contented themselves with fol- matter short, hath solemnly protested that he will lowing her. It was here he got acquainted with never change or amend. old battle-array, of whom he hath made to ho With regard to his vanity, he declareth that nourable mention in one of his immortal odes. nothing hall ever part them. “ Nature (faith Bue he thone in courts as well as in camps : he was he) “ hath amply supplied me in vanity; a pleacalled op when the nation fell in labour of this " sure which neither the pertness of wit, nor the revolution ; and was a gossip at her christening, “ gravity of wisdom, will ever persuade me to with the bishop and the ladies.

" part with.". Our poet had charitably endeaAs to his birth, it is true he pretendeth no re-voured to administer à cure to it: but he telleth lation either to Heathen god or goddess; but, what us plainly, “ My superiors perhaps may be mend, is as good, he was descended from a maker of " ed by him; but for my part I own myself inboth (0). And that he did not pass himself on the corrigible. I look upon my follies as the best world for a hero, as well by birth as education, part of my fortune." And with good reason; was his own fault : for his lineage he bringech we see to what they have brought him! into his life as an anecdote, and is sensible he had Secondly, as to buffoonry, "Is it (faith he) a it in his power to be thought nobody's son at all ; " time of day for me to leave off these foolerics, and what is that but coming into the world a “ and set up a new character? I can no more hero?

put off my follies than my kin; I have often But be it, (the pun&ilious laws of epic poesy" tried, but they fick too close to me: gor fo requiring) that a hero of more than mortal“ am I sure my friends are displeased with them, birth mult needs be had : even for this we have a " for in this light I afford them frequent matter semedy. We can calily derive our hero's pedi- “ of mirth, &c." Having then fo publicly degree from a goddess of no small power and autho-clared himself incorrigible, he is become dead in ority amongt men; and legitimate and inftal him law (I mean the law Epopæian) and devolveth after the right clasical and authentic fashion: upon the poet as his property; who mag make him, for, like as the ancient sages found a son of and deal with him as if he had been dead as long Mars in a mighty warrior; a son of Neptune as an old Egyptian hero; that is to say, embowel in a skilful feamen; a son of Phæbus in a har- and embalm him, for pofterity." monious poet; fo have we here, if need be, a son Nothing therefore (we conceive) remaineth to of Fortune in an artful gamester. And who fitter hinder his own prophecy of himself from taking than the offspring of Chance, to aslift in restoring immediate effe&. A rare felicity! and what few the empire of Night and Chaos ?

prophets have had the satisfaction to sec, alive! There is in cruth another objection of greater Nor can we conclude better than with that extraweight, namely, “That this hero till existeth, ordinary one of his, which is conceived in these

and hath not yet finished his earthly course. - oraculous words, My dulness will find fomebody to do * For if Solon laid well,

is rigbt. -ultima semper

“ Tandem Phæbus adelt, morfusque inferre pae Expe&anda dies homini: dicique beatus

“ rantcm Ante obitum nemo supremaque funera debet! « Congelat, et patulos, ut erunt, induat hia if no man can be called happy till his death,

“ tus." (a) ) 4 Statuary.

(Ovid, of the ferpent biting at Orpbeur's beans

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