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Then leave, ye wise, the lyre's precarious chords
Or country Crispins, now grown somewhat stale,
There lives one druid, who prepares in time
May heaven forgive you, for he never can!
I beg Nathaniel's pardon; he is not a cobbler; it is a tailor, but begged Capel Lofft to sink the profession in his preface to two pair of pantapsha-of cantos, which be wished the public to try on; but the sieve of a patron let it out, and so far saved the expense of an advertisement to his country customers.-Merry's "Moorfield's whine" was nothing to all this. The "Della Cruscans" were people of some education, and no profession; but these Arcadians (“ Arcades ambo"-bumpkins both) send out their na tive nonsense without the smallest alloy, and leave all the shoes and smallclothes in the parish unrepaired, to patch up Elegies on Enclosures and Paans to Gunpowder. Sitting on a shopboard, they describe fields of battle, when the only blood they ever saw was shed from the finger; and an “Essay on War" is produced by the ninth part of a "peet."
"And own that nine such poets made a Tate."
Did Nathan ever read that line of Pope? and if he did, why not take it as his motto?
This well-meaning gentleman has spoiled some excellent shoe-makers, and been accessary to the poetical undoing of many of the industrious poor. Nathaniel Bloomfield and his brother Bobby have set all Somersetshire singing; nor has the malady confined itself to one county. Pratt too (who once was wiser) has caught the contagion of patronage, and decoyed a poor fellow named Blackett into poetry; but he died during the operation, leaving one child, and two volumes of "Remains utterly destitute. The girl, if she don't take a poetical twist, and come forth as a shoe-making Sappho, may do well; but the "tragedies" are as rickety as if they had been the offspring of an Earl or a Seatonian prize poet. The patrons of this poor lad are certainly answerable for his end, and it ought to be an indictable of fence. But this is the least they have done, for, by a refinement of barbarity, they have made the (late) man posthumously ridiculous, by printing what he would have had sense enough never to print himself. Ceries these rakers of Remains" come under the statute against "resurrection men." What does it signify whether a poor, dear, dead dunce is to be stuck up in Surgeons or in Stationers' Hall? Is it so bad to unearth his bones as his blunders? Is it not better to gibbet his body on a heath, than his soul in an octavo? "We know what we are, but we know not what we may be;" and it is to be hoped we never shall know, if a man who has passed through life with a sort of eclat is to find himself a mountebank on the other side of Styx, and made, like poor Joe Blackett, the laughing stock of purgatory. The plea of publication is to provide for the child; now, might not some of this Sutor ultra Crepidum's" friends and seducers have done a decent action without inveigling Pratt into biography? And then his inscription split into so many modicums-To the Dutchess of So-much, the Right Hon. So-and-So, and Mrs, and Miss Somebody, these volumes are, &c. &c."—why, this is doling out the "soft milk of dedication" in gills,-there is but a quart, and he divides it among a dozen. Why. Pratt, badst thou not a puff left? Dost thou think six families of distinction can share this in quiet?—There is a child, a book, and a dedication; send the girl to her grace, the volumes to the grocer, and the dedication to the devil.
t Here will Mr. Gifford allow me to introduce once more to his notice the sole survivor, the "ultimus Romanorum," the last of the "CruscanEdwin the "profound," by our Lady of Punishment! here he
Condemn the unlucky curate to recite
Ye who aspire to build the lofty rhyme,
Si carmina condes, Nunquam te fallant animi sub vulpe latentes. Quintilio si quid recitares, Corrige, sodes, Hoc (aiebat) et hoc: melius te posse negares, Bis terque expertum frustra, delere jubebat, Et male tornatos incudi reddere versus. Si defendere delictum quam vertere malles, Nullum ultra verbum, aut operam insumebat inanera Quin sine rivali teque et tua solus amares.
Fitzgerald had been the tail of poesy, but, alas! he is only the penult
"What reams of paper, floods of ink,"
Who novels read, and oft maintain'
ON SOME MODERN QUACKS AND REFORMISTS
Through all its various courses,
They meet no better with success.
Where some deserve th' applause they meet;
And others leave to their full bent,
I fear you will but little do,
Let each man to his post assign'd
*For such every man is who either appears to be what he is not, or str
Lively as in the days of "well said Bavíad the Correct." I though to be what he cannot."
And, after fruitless efforts, you return Without amendment, and he answers, "Burn!" That instant throw your paper in the fire, Ask not his thoughts, or follow his desire; But if (true bard!) you scorn to condescend, And will not alter what you can't defend, If you will breed this bastard of your brains,*We'll have no words-I've only lost my pains. Yet, if you only prize your favourite thought As critics kindly do, and authors ought; If your cool friend annoy you now and then, And cross whole pages with his plaguy pen; No matter, throw your ornaments asideBetter let him than all the world deride. Give light to passages too much in shade, Nor let a doubt obscure one verse you've made; Your friend's "a Johnson," not to leave one word, However trifling, which inay seem absurd; Such erring trifles lead to serious ills, And furnish food for critics,† or their quills. As the Scotch fiddle, with its touching tone, Or the sad influence of the angry moon, All men avoid bad writers' ready tongues, As yawning waiters fly Fitzscribble's lungs; Yet on he mouths-ten minutes-tedious each As prelate's homily or placeman's speech; Long as the last years of a lingering lease, When riot pauses until rents increase. While such a minstrel, muttering fustian, strays O'er hedge and ditch, through unfrequented ways,
Vir bonus et prudens versus reprehendet inertes: Culpabit et duros; incomptis allinet atrum Transverso calamo signum; ambitiosa recidet Ornamenta; param claris lucem dare coget; Arguet ambigue dictum; mutanda notabit; Fiet Aristarchus: nec dicet, Cur ego amicum Offendam in nugis? hæ nuga seria ducent In mala derisum semel exceptumque sinistre. Ut mala quem scabies aut morbus regius urguet, Aut fanaticus error et iracunda Diana, Vesanum tetigisse timent fugiunque poetam, Qui sapiunt; agitant paeri, incautique sequuntur. Hic dum sublimes versus ructatur, et errat Si veluti merulis intentus decidit auceps In puteum, foveamve; licet, Succurrite, longum Clamet, lo cives! non sit qui tollere curet. Si quis curet opem ferre, et demittere funem, Qui seis an prudens huc se dejecerit, atque Servari nolit? Dicam: Siculique poetæ Narrabo interitum. Deus immortalis haberi Dum capit Empedocles, ardentem frigidus Ætnam Insiluit: sit jus liceatque perire poetis: Invitum qui servat, idem facit occidenti. Nec semel hoc fecit; nec, si retractus erit, jam Fiet homo, et ponet famosæ mortis amorem. Nec satis apparet cur versus factitet; utrum Minxerit in patrios cineres, an triste bidental Moverit incestus; certe farit, ac velut ursus,
Bastard of your brains.-Minerva being the first by Jupiter's head-piece, and a variety of equally unaccountable parturitions upon earth, such as Ma40c, &c. &c. &c.
"A crust for the crities."-Bayer, in the Rehearsal.
And the "waiters" are the only fortunate perple who can "fy" from them: all the rest, viz. the sad subscribers to the "Literary Fund," being compelled, by courtesy, tout the recitation without a hope of exclam az, "Sie" (that is, by nuaking Fitz, with bad wine or worse poetry) "me rvavit Apolio ""
If by some chance he walks into a well,
Budgell, a rogue and rhymester, for no good,
Small thanks from him who loathes the life he leaves;
Dosed with vile drams on Sunday he was found
Or got a child on consecrated ground!
And hence is haunted with a rhyming rage-
Fatal at once to simpleton or wit.
But him, unhappy! whom he seizes,-him
Probes to the quick where'er he makes his breach,
Objectos caveæ valuit si frangere clathros,
On his table were found these words: What Cato did and Addison ap proved cannot be wrong" But Add son did not approve ;" and if he had, it would not have mended the matter. He had invited his daughter on the same water party, but Mies Budgell, by some accident, escaped this last pa ternal attention. Thus fell the sycophant of "Atticus," and the enemy of Pope.
If done! with," e. be censured as low, I beg leave to refer to the original for something still lower; and if any reader will translate Minx. erit in patries cineres," &c. into a decent couplet, I will insert said couplet in lieu of the present.
"Difficile est proprie communia dicere."-Mde. Dacier, Mde. de Sevigne, Boileau, and others,ve left their dispute on the meaning of this passage in a tract considerably longer than the poem of Horace. It is printed at the close of the eleventh volume of Madame de Sevigne's Letters, edited by Grovelle, Paris, 1-05. Presuming that all who can construe may venture an opinion on such subjects, particularly as so many who can not have taken the same liberty. I should have held my "farthing candle" as awk wardly as another, had not my respect for the wits of Louis the Fourteenth's Augustan siecie induced me to subjoin these illustrious authorities. 1st, Boileau: "Il est difficile de traiter des sujets qui sont a la portee de tout le monde d'une maniere qui vous les rende propres, ce qui s'appelle s'approprier un sujet par le tour qu' on y donne." 2dly, Batteux: Mais il est tien difficile de donner des traits propres et individuels aux etres purement possibles." 3dly, Dacier: "Il est difficile de traiter convenablement ces caracteres que tout le monde peut inventer." Mde. de Sevigne's opinion and translation, consisting of some thirty pages. Tomit, particularly as M. Grauvelle observes La chose est bien remarquable, aucune de ces diverses interpretations or parait etre la veritable. But, by way of comfort, it seems, fifty years afterwards, Le lumineux Dumarsais" made his appearance to set Horace on his legs again, "dissiper tous les nuages, et concilier tous les dissentimens ;" and, some fifty years herce, somebody, still more luminous, will doubless start up and demolish Dumarsais and his system on this weighty affair, as if he were no better than Ptolemy and Tycho, or comments of no more enequence than astronomical calculations on the present comet. I am happy to say, "la longueur de la dissertation" of M. D. pre verts M. G. from saying any more on the matter. A better poet than Boilean, and at least as good a scholar as Sevigne, has said,
"A little learning is a dangerous thing." And by this comparison of comments it may be perceived how a good dea may be rendered as perilous to the proprietors.
Additions to the Hours of Edleness.
[There were several editions of the Hours of Idleness published in England; but no one of them, until that of 1832, contained all the pieces which properly belonged to that collection The following, when added to those in front of the book, make up the complete number.]
LINES WRITTEN IN "LETTERS OF AN ITALIAN
"Away, away! your flattering arts
NSWER TO THE FOREGOING, ADDRESSED TO MISS
Dear, simple girl, those flattering arts,
Mere phantoms of thine own creation;
Then he who tells thee of thy beauty,
Ah! fly not from the candid youth;
No specious splendour of this stone Endears it to my memory ever;
With lustre only once it shone,
And blushes modest as the giver.
Some, who can sneer at friendship's ties, Have for my weakness oft reproved me; Yet still the simple gift I prize,
For I am sure the giver loved me.
3. He offer'd it with downcast look,
As fearful that I might refuse it; I told him when the gift I took, My only fear should be to lose it.
This pledge attentively I view'd,
And sparkling as I held it near, Methought one drop the stone bedew'd,' And ever since I've loved a tear.
Still, to adorn his humble youth,
Nor wealth nor birth their treasures yield; But he who seeks the flowers of truth, Must quit the garden for the field.
Tis not the plant uprear'd in sloth,
Which beauty shows, and sheds perfume;
Had Fortune aided Nature's care,
But had the goddess clearly seen,
His form had fix'd her fickle breast;
fler countless hoards would his have been, And none remain'd to give the rest.
ON THE DEATH OF A YOUNG LADY Cousin to the Author, and very dear to him.
Hush'd are the winds, and still the evening glow Not e'en a zephyr, wanders through the grove, Whilst I return to view my Margaret's tomb, And scatter flowers on the dust I love.
Within this narrow cell reclines her clay,
Oh! could that King of Terrors pity feel,
Or Heaven reverse the dread decrees of fate! Not here the mourner would his grief reveal, Nor here the Muse her virtues would relate.
But wherefore weep? her matchless spirit soars Beyond where splendid shines the orb of day; And weeping angels lead her to those bowers Where endless pleasures virtue's deeds repay.
And shall presumptuous mortals heaven arraign,
Yet is remembrance of those virtues dear,
Yet fresh the memory of that beauteous face; Still they call forth my warm affection's tear, Still in my heart retain their wonted place.
TO EMMA. 1.
Since now the hour is come at last,
When you must quit your anxious lover; Since now our dream of bliss is past, One pang, my girl, and all is over.
Alas! that pang will be severe,
Which bids us part to meet no more, Which tears me far from one so dear, Departing for a distant shore.
Well we have pass'd some happy hours, And joy will mingle with our tears; When thinking on these ancient towers, The shelter of our infant years;
Where from the gothic casement's height, We view'd the lake, the park, the dale, And still, though tears obstruct our sight, We lingering look a last farewell.
O'er fields through which we used to run, And spend the hours in childish play; O'er shades where, when our race was done. Reposing on my breast you lay;
Whilst I, admiring, too remiss,
Yet envied every fly the kiss
It dared to give your slumbering eyes: