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Address to Great Britain.
- For lofty sense, Creative fancy, and inspection keen Through the deep windings of the human heart, Is not wild Shakspeare thine and Nature's boast? Is not each great, each amiable, Muse Of classick ages in thy Milton met ? A genius, universal as his theme; Astonishing as Chaos; as the bloom Of blowing Eden fair; as Heaven sublime !
Ode to the Muse.
The foul of Milton shall I gain,
O powerful strain! O sacred soul !
OCR ftcofast hard, to his own genius true, Still bare his Muse, “fit audience find, though few.” Scorning the judgement of a tritling age, To choicer spirits he bequeath'd his page. He too was scorn d; and, to Britannia's shame, She scarce for half an age knew Milton's name. But now, his fame by every trumpet blown, We on his deathless trophies raise our own. Nor art nor nature did his genius bound; Heaven, Ilcil, Earth, Chaos, he survey'd around; All things his eye, through wit's bright empire thrown, Bcheld; and made, what it beheld, his own. Such Mutox was : 'Tis ours to bring him forth; And yours to vindicate neglected worth. Such heaven-taught nunibers should be more than read, More wide the manna through the nation spread. Like some bless d spirit he to-night descends, Mankind he visits, and their steps befriends; Through mazy errour's dark perplexing wood, Points out the path of true and real good; Warns erring youth, and guards the spotless maid Eroin spell of magick vicc, by reason's aid. —
Dr. Dalton's Prologue to Comus, 1735.
YE patriot crowds, who burn for England's fame, Ye nymphs, whose bosoms beat at Milton's name, Whofe generous zeal, unbought by flattering rhymes, Shames the mean pensions of Augustan times; Immortal patrons of succeeding days, Attend this prelude of perpetual praise ! Let Wit, condemn’d the feeble war to wage With closc malevolence, or publick rage;
Let Study, worn with virtue's fruitless lore,
At length our mighty bard's victorious lays
Dr. Johnson's Prologue to the Mask of Comus,
acted at Drury-Lane Theatre, April 5, 1750, for the Benefit of Milton's grand-daughter.
NOR second he that rode sublime
Gray's Progress of Poesy.
Ode on the Poetical Character.
On which that ancient trump he reach'd was hungs
With many a vow from Hope's aspiring tongue · My trembling feet his guiding fteps pursue;
In vain :--Such bliss to one alone
And Heaven and Fancy, kindred Powers,
Have now o’erturn’d the inspiring bowers, Or curtain'd close such scene from every future view,
Ode to Memory.
How, at thy gloomy close of day;
When Darkness, brooding on thy light,
Exild the fov’reign lamp of light: Say, what could then one cheering hope diffuse? What friends were thine, save Memory and the Muse?
Hence the rich spoils, thy ftudious youth
Caught from the stores of ancient Truth: Hence all thy busy eye could pleas'd explore, When Rapture led thee to the Latian fhore;
Each scene, that Tiber's bank supplied;
Each grace, that play'd on Arno's side;
Were still thine own: Thy ample mind
Each charm receiv’d, retain’d, combin’d. And thence “the nightly Visitant,” that came To touch thy bosom with her sacred flame, Recall'd the long-lost beams of grace;
That whilom shot from Nature's face, When God, in Eden, o'er her youthful breast Spread with his own right hand Perfection's gorgeous vest