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sea, and the innumerable islands which constitute the site of this extraordinary city.

The very Cloaca of Tarquin at Rome are as poetical as Richmond Hill; many will think more so. Take away Rome, and leave the Tiber and the seven hills, in the nature of Evander's time; let Mr. Bowles, or Mr. Wordsworth, or Mr. Southey, or any of the other "naturals," make a poem upon them, and then see which is most poetical, their production, or the commonest guide-book which tells you the road from St. Peter's to the Coliseum, and informs you what you will see by the way. The ground interests in Virgil, because it will be Rome, and not because it is Evander's rural domain.

ship was bulged upon them. There are a thousand rocks and capes, far more picturesque than those of the Acropolis and Cape Sunium in themselves; what are they to a thousand scenes in the wilder parts of Greece, of Asia Minor, Switzerland, or even of Cintra in Portugal, or to many scenes of Italy, and the Sierras of Spain? But it is the "art," the columns, the temples, the wrecked vessel, which give them their antique and their modern poetry, and not the spots themselves. Without them, the spots of earth would be unnoticed and unknown; buried, like Babylon and Nineveh, in indistinct confusion, without poetry, as without existence: but to whatever spot of earth these ruins were transported, if they were capable of transportation, like the obelisk, and the sphinx, and the Memnon's Mr. Bowles then proceeds to press Homer into his head, there they would still exist in the perfection of service, in answer to a remark of Mr. Campbell's, that their beauty, and in the pride of their poetry. I opposed," Homer was a great describer of works of art." Mr. and will ever oppose, the robbery of ruins from Athens, to instruct the English in sculpture; but why did I so? The ruins are as poetical in Piccadilly as they were in the Parthenon; but the Parthenon and its rock are less so without them. Such is the poetry of art.

Bowles contends, that all his great power, even in this, depends upon their connexion with nature. The "shield of Achilles derives its poetical interest from the subjects described on it." And from what does the spear of Achilles derive its interest? and the helmet and the mail worn by Patroclus, and the celestial armour, and the very brazen greaves of the well-booted Greeks? Is it solely from the legs, and the back, and the breast, and the human body, which they inclose? In that case, it would have been more poetical to have made them fight naked; and Gulley and Gregson, as being nearer to a state of nature, are more poetical, boxing in a pair of drawers, than Hector and Achilles in radiant armour, and with heroic weapons.

Mr. Bowles contends, again, that the pyramids of Egypt are poetical, because of "the association with boundless deserts," and that a "pyramid of the same dimensions" would not be sublime in "Lincoln's Inn Fields;" not so poetical, certainly; but take away the "pyramids," and what is the "desert?" Take away Stone-henge from Salisbury plain, and it is nothing more than Hounslow Heath, or any other uninclosed down. It appears to me that St. Peter's, the Coliseum, the Pantheon, the Palatine, the Apollo, the Laocoon, Instead of the clash of helmets, and the rushing of the Venus di Medicis, the Hercules, the dying Gladiator, chariots, and the whizzing of spears, and the glancing the Moses of Michel Angelo, and all the higher works of swords, and the cleaving of shields, and the piercing of Canova (I have already spoken of those of ancient of breast-plates, why not represent the Greeks and Greece, still extant in that country, or transported to Trojans like two savage tribes, tugging and tearing, and England), are as poetical as Mont Blanc or Mount Etna, kicking, and biting, and gnashing, foaming, grinning, and perhaps still more so, as they are direct manifestations gouging, in all the poetry of martial nature, unencumof mind, and presuppose poetry in their very concep-bered with gross, prosaic, artificial arms, an equal sution; and have, moreover, as being such, a something perfluity to the natural warrior, and his natural poet? of actual life, which cannot belong to any part of inani- Is there any thing unpoetical in Ulysses striking the mate nature, unless we adopt the system of Spinosa, horses of Rhesus with his bow (having forgotten his that the world is the deity. There can be nothing more thong), or would Mr. Bowles have had him kick them poetica' in its aspect than the city of Venice: does this with his foot, or smack them with his hand, as being depend upon the sea, or the canals ?— more unsophisticated?

"The dirt and sea-weed whence proud Venice rose !" Is it the canal which runs between the palace and the prison, or the "Bridge of Sighs" which connects them, that render it poetical? Is it the "Canal Grande," or the Rialto which arches it, the churches which tower over it, the palaces which line, and the gondolas which glide over the waters, that render this city more poetical than Rome itself? Mr. Bowles will say, perhaps, that the Rialto is but marble, the palaces and churches only stone, and the gondolas a "coarse" black cloth, thrown over some planks of carved wood, with a shining bit of fantastically-formed iron at the prow, "without" the

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In Gray's Elegy, is there an image more striking than his "shapeless sculpture ?" Of sculpture in general, it may be observed, that it is more poetical than nature itself, inasmuch as it represents and bodies forth that ideal beauty and sublimity which is never to be found in actual nature. This at least is the general opinion but, always excepting the Venus di Medicis, I differ from that opinion, at least as far as regards female beauty, for the head of Lady Charlemont (when I first saw her, nine years ago) seemed to possess all that sculpture could require for its ideal. I recollect seeing something of the same kind in the head of an Albanian girl, who was actually employed in mending a road in the mountains, and in some Greek, and one or two Italian faces. But of sublimity, I have never seen any thing in human nature at all to approach the expression of sculpture, either in the Apollo, the Moses, or other of the sterner works of ancient or modern art.

Let us examine a little further this "habble of green fields," and of bare nature in general, as superior to artificial imagery, for the poetical purposes of the fine


length, but of its symmetry; and, making allowance for eastern hyperbole and the difficulty of finding a discreet image for a female nose in nature, it is perhaps as good a figure as any other.

In landscape painting, the great artist does not give you a literal copy of a country, but he invents and composes one. Nature, in her actual aspect, does not furnish him with such existing scenes as he requires. Even where he presents you with some famous city, or Art is not inferior to nature for poetical purposes. celebrated scene from mountain or other nature, it What makes a regiment of soldiers a more noble objec must be taken from some particular point of view, and of view than the same mass of mob? Their arms, thei with such light, and shade, and distance, etc. as serve dresses, their banners, and the art and artificial sym not only to heighten its beauties, but to shadow its de-metry of their position and movements. A Highland formities. The poetry of nature alone, exactly as she appears, is not sufficient to bear him out. The very sky of his painting is not the portrait of the sky of nature; it is a composition of different skies, observed at different times, and not the whole copied from any particuLar day. And why? Because Nature is not lavish of her beauties; they are widely scattered, and occasionally displayed, to be selected with care, and gathered with difficulty.

Of sculpture I have just spoken. It is the great scope of the sculptor to heighten nature into heroic beauty. i. e. in plain English, to surpass his model. When Canova forms a statue, he takes a limb from one, a hand from another, a feature from a third, and a shape, it may be, from a fourth, probably at the same time improving upon all, as the Greek of old did in embodying his Venus.

Ask a portrait painter to describe his agonies in accommodating the faces with which Nature and his sitters have crowded his painting-room to the principles of his art; with the exception of perhaps ten faces in as many millions, there is not one which he can venture to give without shading much and adding more. Nature, exactly, simply, barely nature, will make no great artist of any kind, and least of all a poet-the most artificial, perhaps, of all artists in his very essence. With regard to natural imagery, the poets are obliged to take some of their best illustrations from art. You say that "a fountain is as clear or clearer than glass," to express its beauty

"O fons Bandusiæ, splendidior vitro!"

er's plaid, a Mussulman's turban, and a Roman toga are more poetical than the tattooed or untattooed buttocks of a New-Sandwich savage, although they were described by William Wordsworth himself like the "idiot in his glory."

I have seen as many mountains as most men, and more fleets than the generality of landsmen: and, to my mind, a large convoy, with a few sail of the line to conduct them, is as noble and as poetical a prospect as all that inanimate nature can produce. I prefer the "mast of some great ammiral," with all its tackle, to the Scotch fir or the Alpine tannen: and think that more poetry has been made out of it. In what does the infinite superiority of "Falconer's Shipwreck," over all other shipwrecks, consist? In his admirable application of the terms of his art; in a poet-sailor's description of the sailor's fate. These very terms, by his application, make the strength and reality of his poem. Why? because he was a poet, and in the hands of a poet art will not be found less ornamental than nature. It is precisely in general nature, and in stepping out of his element, that Falconer fails; where he digresses to speak of ancient Greece, and "such branches of learning."

In Dyer's Grongar Hill, upon which his fame rests, the very appearance of Nature herself is moralized into an artificial image:

"Thus is Nature's vesture wrought,
To instruct our wandering thought;
Thus she dresses green and gay,
To disperse our cares away.'

And here also we have the telescope, the misuse of which, from Milton, has rendered Mr. Bowles so ri

In the speech of Mark Antony, the body of Cæsar is unphant over Mr. Campbell: displayed, but so also is his mantle

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"So we mistake the future's face,
Eyed through Hope's deluding glass."

And here a word, en passant, to Mr. Campbell.
"As yon summits, soft and fair,
Clad in colours of the air,
Which, to those who journey near,
Barren, brown, and rough appear,
Still we tread the same coarse way-
The present's still a cloudy day."

dagger is more poetical than any natural hand without it. Is not this the original of the far-famed

In the sublime of sacred poetry, "Who is this that cometh from Edom? with dyed garments from Bozrah?" Would "the comer" be poetical without his "dyed garments?” which strike and startle the spectator, and identify the approaching object.

The mother of Sisera is represented listening for the "wheels of his chariot." Solomon, in his Song, compares the nose of his beloved to a "tower," which to us appears an eastern exaggeration. If he had said, that her statue was like that of "a tower," it would have een as poetical as if he had compared her to a tree.

"The virtuous Marcia towers above her sex," is an instance of an artificial image to express a moral superiority. But Solomon, it is probable, did not compare his beloved's nose to a "tower" on account of its

"Tis distance lends enchantment to the view,
And robes the mountain in its azure hue?"

To return once more to the sea. Let any one look on the long wall of Malamocco, which curbs the Adriatic, and pronounce between the sea and its master. Surely that Roman work (I mean Roman in conception and performance), which says to the ocean, "thus far shalt thou come, and no further," and is obeyed, is not less sublime and poetical than the angry waves which vainly break beneath it.

Mr. Bowles makes the chief part of a ship's poesy depend on the "wind:" then why is a ship under sail more poetical than a hog in a high wind? The hog is all nature, the ship is all art, "coarse canvas,' "" blue bunting," and "tall poles;" both are violently acted

upon by the wind, tossed here and there, to and fro; and yet nothing but excess of hunger could make me look upon the pig as the more poetical of the two, and then only in the shape of a griskin.

Will Mr. Bowles tell us that the poetry of an aqueduct consists in the water which it conveys? Let him look on that of Justinian, on those of Rome, Constantinople, Lisbon, and Elvas, or even at the remains of that in Attica.

est, whatever his department, and will ever be so rated in the world's esteem.

Had Gray written nothing but his Elegy, high as he stands, I am not sure that he would not stand higher; it is the corner-stone of his glory; without it, his odes would be insufficient for his fame. The depreciation of Pope is partly founded upon a false idea of the dignity of his order of poetry, to which he has partly contributed by the ingenuous boast,

"That not in fancy's maze he wander'd long.
But stoop'd to truth, and moralized his song."


We are asked "what makes the venerable towers of Westminster Abbey more poetical, as objecís, than the tower for the manufactory of patent shot, surrounded He should have written "rose to truth." In my mind, by the same scenery?" I will answer-the architecture. the highest of all poetry is ethical poetry, as the high Turn Westminster Abbey, or Saint Paul's, into a powder est of all earthly objects must be moral truth. Religion magazine, their poetry, as objects, remains the same; does not make a part of my subject; is something the Parthenon was actually converted into one by the beyond human powers, and has failed in all human Turks, during Morosini's Venetian siege, and part of it hands except Milton's and Dante's, and even Dante's destroyed in consequence. Cromwell's dragoons stalled powers are involved in the delineation of human pastheir steeds in Worcester cathedral; was it less poeti- sions, though in supernatural circumstances. cal, as an object, than before? Ask a foreigner on his ap-made Socrates the greatest of men? His moral truthproach to London, what strikes him as the most poetical his ethics. What proved Jesus Christ the Son of God of the towers before him; he will point out St. Paul's and Westminster Abbey, without, perhaps, knowing the names or associations of either, and pass over the "tower for patent shot," not that, for any thing he knows to the contrary, it might not be the mausoleum of a monarch, or a Waterloo column, or a Trafalgar monument, but because its architecture is obviously inferior.

hardly less than his miracles? His moral precepts. And if ethics have made a philosopher the first of men, and have not been disdained as an adjunct to his gospel by the Deity himself, are we to be told that ethical poetry, or didactic poetry, or by whatever name you term it, whose object is to make men better and wiser, is not the very first order of poetry? and are we to be To the question," whether the description of a game told this too by one of the priesthood? It requires of cards be as poetical, supposing the execution of the more mind, more wisdom, more power, than all the artists equal, as a description of a walk in a forest?" "forests" that ever were "walked" for their descripit may be answered, that the materials are certainly tion," and all the epics that ever were founded upon not equal; but that "the artist," who has rendered fields of battle. The Georgics are indisputably, and, game of cards poetical," is by far the greater of I believe, undisputedly, even a finer poem than the the two. But all this "ordering" of poets is purely ar-Æneid. Virgil knew this; he did not order them to be bitrary on the part of Mr. Bowles. There may or may not be, in fact, different "orders" of poetry, but the poet is always ranked according to his execution, and not according to his branch of the art.

the "


"The proper study of mankind is man." It is the fashion of the day to lay great stress upon what they call "imagination" and "invention," the two Tragedy is one of the highest presumed orders. commonest of qualities: an Irish peasant, with a little Hughes has written a tragedy, and a very successful one; whiskey in his head, will imagine and invent more Fenton another; and Pope none. Did any man, how-than would furnish forth a modern poem. If Lucretius ever, will even Mr. Bowles himself rank Hughes and had not been spoiled by the Epicurean system, we Fenton as poets above Pope? Was even Addison (the should have had a far superior poem to any now in author of Cato), or Rowe (one of the higher order of existence. As mere poetry, it is the first of Latin dramatists, as far as success goes), or Young, or even poems. What then has ruined it? His ethics. Pope Otway and Southerne, ever raised for a moment to the has not this defect; his moral is as pure as his poetry same rank with Pope in the estimation of the reader is glorious. In speaking of artificial objects, I have or the critic, before his death or since? If Mr. Bowles omitted to touch upon one which I will now mention. will contend for classifications of this kind, let him re- Cannon may be presumed to be as highly poetical as collect that descriptive poetry has been ranked as among art can make her objects. Mr. Bowles will, perhaps, the lowest branches of the art, and description as a mere tell me that this is because they resemble that grand ornament, but which should never form "the subject" natural article of sound in heaven, and simile upon of a poem. The Italians, with the most poetical lan-earth-thunder. I shall be told triumphantly, that guage, and the most fastidious taste in Europe, possess Milton made sad work with his artillery, when he armed now five great poets, they say, Dante, Petrarch, Ariosto, his devils therewithal. He did so; and this artificial Tasso, and lastly Alfieri; and whom do they esteem one object must have had much of the sublime to attract of the highest of these, and some of them the very his attention for such a conflict. He has made an highest? Petrarcn, the sonnetteer; it is true that some of absurd use of it; but the absurdity consists not in his Canzoni are not less esteemed, but not more; who using cannon against the angels of God, but any ever dreams of his Latin Africa? material weapon. The thunder of the clouds would

Were Petrarch to be ranked according to the "order" have been as ridiculous and vain in the hands of the of his compositions, where would the best of sonnets devils, as the "villanous saltpetre:" the angels were as place him? with Dante and the others? No: but, as I impervious to the one as to the other. The thundernave before said, the poet who executes best is the high-bolts became sublime in the hands of the Almighty, not

lation of Homer. Now, with all the great, and manifest, and manifold, and reproved, and acknowledged, and uncontroverted faults of Pope's translation, and all the scholarship, and pains, and time, and trouble, and blank verse of the other, who can ever read Cowper? and who will ever lay down Pope, unless for the original? Pope's was "not Homer, it was Spondanus ;" but Cowper's is not Homer, either, it is not even Cowper. As a child I first read Pope's Homer with a rapture which no subsequent work could ever afford; and

As a man

as such, but because he deigns to use them as a means tation of Milton's style, as burlesque as the "Splendid of repelling the rebel spirits; but no one can attribute Shilling." These two writers (for Cowper is no poet) their defeat to this grand piece of natural electricity: come into comparison in one great work-the transthe Almighty willed, and they fell; his word would have been enough; and Milton is as absurd (and in fact, blasphemous) in putting material lightnings into the hands of the Godhead as in giving him hands at all. The artillery of the demons was but the first step of his mistake, the thunder the next, and it is a step lower. It would have been fit for Jove, but not for Jehovah. The subject altogether was essentially unpoetical; he has made more of it than another could, but it is beyond him and all men. In a portion of his reply, Mr. Bowles asserts that children are not the worst judges of their own lanPope "envied Phillips" because he quizzed his pastorals guage. As a boy I read Homer in the original, as we in the Guardian in that most admirable model of have all done, some of us by force, and a few by irony, his paper on the subject. If there was any favour; under which description I come is nothing to thing enviable about Phillips, it could hardly be his the purpose, it is enough that I read him. Dastorals. They were despicable, and Pope expressed I have tried to read Cowper's version, and I found it his contempt. If Mr. Fitzgerald published a volume of impossible. Has any human reader ever succeeded? sonnets, or a "Spirit of Discovery," or a " Missionary," And now that we have heard the Catholic reproached and Mr. Bowles wrote in any periodical journal an with envy, duplicity, licentiousness, avarice-what was ironical paper upon them, would this be "envy?" The the Calvinist? He attempted the most atrocious of authors of the "Rejected Addresses" have ridiculed the crimes in the Christian code, viz. suicide-and why? sixteen or twenty "first living poets" of the day; but Because he was to be examined whether he was fit for do they "envy" them? "Envy" writhes, it don't laugh. an office which he seems to wish to have made a sineThe authors of the "Rejected Addresses" may despise cure. His connexion with Mrs. Unwin was pure enough, some, but they can hardly "envy" any of the persons for the old lady was devout, and he was deranged; but whom they have parodied; and Pope could have no why then is the infirm and then elderly Pope to be remore envied Phillips than he did Welsted, or Theobalds, proved for his connexion with Martha Blount? Cowor Smedley, or any other given hero of the Dunciad. per was the almoner of Mrs. Throgmorton; but Pope's He could not have envied him, even had he himself not charities were his own, and they were noble and exbeen the greatest poet of his age. Did Mr. Ings "envy" tensive, far beyond his fortune's warrant. Pope was Mr. Phillips, when he asked him, "how came your Pyrrhus to drive oxen, and say, I am goaded on by love?" This question silenced poor Phillips; but it no more proceeded from "envy" than did Pope's ridicule. Did he envy Swift? Did he envy Bolingbroke? Did he envy Gay the unparalleled success of his "Beggar's Opera?" We may be answered that these were his friends-true; but does friendship prevent envy? Study the first woman you meet with, or the first scrib-me of a saying of Sheridan's. Soon after the "Rejected Adbler, let Mr. Bowles himself (whom I acquit fully of dress" scene, in 1812, I met Sheridan. In the course of dinsuch an odious quality) study some of his own poetical ner, he said, "Lord Byron, did you know that amongst the intimates: the most envious man I ever heard of is a by an inquiry of what sort of an address he had made. "Of poet, and a high one; besides it is an universal passion. that," replied Sheridan, "I remember little, except that there Goldsmith envied not only the puppets for their danc- was a phenix in it." "A phoenix!! Well, how did he describe it?" "Like a poulterer," answered Sheridan "it was ing, and broke his shins in the attempt at rivalry, but green, and yellow, and red, and blue: he did not let us off was seriously angry because two pretty women re- for a single feather." And just such as this poulterer's acceived more attention than he did. This is envy; but count of a phoenix, is Cowper's stick-picker's detail of a wood, where does Pope show a sign of the passion? In that with all its petty minutiae of this, that, and the other. case, Dryden envied the hero of his Mac Flecknoe. Mr. its superiority over nature, in poetry, and I have done :-the Bowles compares, when and where he can, Pope with bust of Antinous! Is there any thing in nature like this Cowper (the same Cowper whom, in his edition of Pope, marble, excepting the Venus? Can there be more poetry gathered into existence than in that wonderful creation of perne laughs at for his attachment to an old woman, Mrs. fect beauty? But the poetry of this bust is in no respect deUnwin: search and you will find it; I remember the rived from nature, nor from any association of moral exaltedpassage, though not the page); in particular he re-ness; for what is there in common with moral nature and the quotes Cowper's Dutch delineation of a wood, drawn like a seedsman's catalogue,' with an affected imi


1 I will submit to Mr. Bowles's own judgment a passage from another poem of Cowper's, to be compared with the same writer's Sylvan Sampler. In the .ines to Mary,

"Thy needles, once a shining store,
For my sake restless heretofore,
Now rust disused, and shine no more,
My Mary,"

contain a simple, household, "indoor," artificial, and ordi nary image. I refer Mr. Bowles to the stanza, and ask if theso three lines about "needles" are not worth all the boasted twaddling about trees, so triumphantly re-quoted? and yet in fact what do they convey? A homely collection of images and ideas associated with the darning of stockings, and the hemming of shirts, and the mending of breeches; but will any one deny that they are eminently poetical and pathetic as addressed by Cowper to his nurse? The trash of trees reminds

writers of addresses was Whitbread himself?" I answered

One more poetical instance of the power of art, and even

male minion of Adrian? The very execution is not natural, but super-natural, or rather super-artificial, for nature has never done so much.

Away, then, with this cant about nature and "invariable principles of poetry!" A great artist will make a block of stone as sublime as a mountain, and a good poet can imbue a pack of cards with more poetry than inhabits the forests of America. It is the business and the proof of a poet to givə the lie to the proverb, and sometimes to "make a silken purse out of a sow's ear;" and to conclude with another homely proverb, a good workman will not find fault with his tools

the tolerant yet steady adherent of the most bigoted of will not. You, sir, know how far I am sincere, and sects; and Cowper the most bigoted and despondent whether my opinion, not only in the short work msectary that ever anticipated damnation to himself or tended for publication, and in private letters which others. Is this harsh? I know it is, and I do not assert can never be published, has or has not been the same. it as my opinion of Cowper personally, but to show I look upon this as the declining age of English poetry; what might be said, with just as great an appearance of no regard for others, no selfish feeling, can prevent me truth and candour, as all the odium which has been from seeing this, and expressing the truth. There can accumulated upon Pope in similar speculations. Cow-be no worse sign for the taste of the times than the per was a good man, and lived at a fortunate time for depreciation of Pope. It would be better to receive for his works. proof Mr. Cobbet's rough but strong attack upon


Mr. Bowles, apparently not relying entirely upon his Shakspeare and Milton, than to allow this smooth and own arguments, has, in person or by proxy, brought "candid" undermining of the reputation of the most forward the names of Southey and Moore. Mr. Southey perfect of our poets and the purest of our moralists. agrees entirely with Mr. Bowles in his invariable Of his power in the passions, in description, in the principles of poetry." The least that Mr. Bowles can mock-heroic, I leave others to descant. I take him on do in return is to approve the "invariable principles of his strong ground, as an ethical poet: in the former Mr. Southey." I should have thought that the word none excel, in the mock-heroic and the ethical none “invariable” might have stuck in Southey's throat, like equal him; and, in my mind, the latter is the highest Macbeth's "Amen!" I am sure it did in mine, and I of all poetry, because it does that in verse, which the am not the least consistent of the two, at least as a greatest of men have wished to accomplish in prose. voter. Moore (et tu Brute !) also approves, and a Mr. If the essence of poetry must be a lie, throw it to the J. Scott. There is a letter also of two lines from a dogs, or banish it from your republic, as Plato would gentleman in asterisks, who, it seems, is a poet of "the have done. He who can reconcile poetry with truth highest rank "who can this be? not my friend, Sir and wisdom, is the only true "poet" in its real sense; Walter, surely. Campbell it can't be; Rogers it won't "the maker,” “the creator"—why must this mean the be. "liar," the "feigner," "the tale-teller?" A man may make and create better things than these.

"You have hit the nail in the head, and **** [Pope, I presume] on the head also."

I remain, yours, affectionately,

(Four Asterisks.)

And in asterisks let him remain. Whoever this person may be, he deserves, for such a judgment of Midas, that "the nail" which Mr. Bowles has hit in the head should be driven through his own ears; I am sure that they are long enough.

I shall not presume to say that Pope is as high a poet as Shakspeare and Milton, though his enemy, Warton, places him immediately under them. I would no more say this than I would assert in the mosque (once St. Sophia's), that Socrates was a greater man than Mahomet. But if I say that he is very near them, it is no more than has been asserted of Burns, who s supposed

"To rival all but Shakspeare's name below."


The attention of the poetical populace of the present day to obtain an ostracism against Pope is as easily ac-I say nothing against this opinion. But of what " order," counted for as the Athenian's shell against Aristides; according to the poetical aristocracy, are Burns's poems? they are tired of hearing him always called "the Just." These are his opus magnum, “ Tam O'Shanter," a tale; They are also fighting for life; for if he maintains his the "Cotter's Saturday Night," a descriptive sketch; station, they will reach their own falling. They have some others in the same style; the rest are songs. raised a mosque by the side of a Grecian temple of the much for the rank of his productions; the rank of Of Pope I have expurest architecture; and, more barbarous than the Burns is the very first of his art. barbarians from whose practice I have borrowed the pressed my opinion elsewhere, as also of the effect figure, they are not contented with their own grotesque which the present attempts at poetry have had upon edifice, unless they destroy the prior and purely beauti- our literature. If any great national or natural conful fabric which preceded, and which shames them and vulsion could or should overwhelm your country, in theirs for ever and ever. I shall be told that amongst such sort as to sweep Great Britain from the kingdoms those I have been (or it may be still am) conspicuous of the earth, and leave only that, after all the most true, and I am ashamed of it. I have been amongst living of human things, a dead language, to be studied the builders of this Babel, attended by a confusion of and read, and imitated, by the wise of future and far tongues, but never amongst the envious destroyers of generations upon foreign shores; if your literature the classic temple of our predecessor. I have loved should become the learning of mankind, divested of and honoured the fame and name of that illustrious party cabals, temporary fashions, and national pride and unrivalled man, far more than my own paltry and prejudice; an Englishman, anxious that the posrenown, and the trashy jingle of the crowd of terity of strangers should know that there had been "schools" and upstarts, who pretend to rival, or even such a thing as a British Epic and Tragedy, might wish surpass him. Sooner than a single leaf should be for the preservation of Shakspeare and Milton; but torn from his laurel, it were better that all which these the surviving world would snatch Pope from the wreck, men, and that I, as one of their set, have ever written, and let the rest sink with the people. He is the moral poet of all civilization, and, as such, let us hope that he will one day be the national poet of mankind. He is the only poet that never shocks; the only poet whose faultlessness has been made his reproach. Cast your There are those who will believe this, and those who eye over his productions; consider their extent, and


"Line trunks, clothe spice, or, fluttering in a row, Befringe the rails of Bedlam or Soho!"

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