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Myself, my sepulchre, - a moving grave! See Note in this Vol. p. 139. Remarks on Spenser, B. II. C. VIII. St. 16.
That fault I take not on me, but transfer
Milton certainly intended to reproach his countrymen indirectly, and as plainly as he dared, with the restoration of Charles II. which he accounted the restoration of Slavery; and with the execution of the Regicides. He pursues the same fubject again, ver. 678 to 700.
I wonder how the licensers of those days let it pass.
To their abyss and horrid pains confin'd.
In crude old age.
This “ crude old age,” in Virgil, and in other writers, is strong and robust. Thus, Æn..VI. 304. Jam Senior ; sed cruda Deo viridisque senectus.
Theb. IX. 391.
But Milton uses crude here for premature, or coming before its time; as cruda funera in Statius,
- quo jam nec cruda nepotis Funera, nec noftri valeant perrumpere planctus ?
Old age brought on by poverty, and by lick, ness; as Hesiod says, Epy. I. 93.
"Αιψα γαρ έν κακότητι βρολοι καλαγηράσκισι.
Yet on the moves, now stands, and eyes thee fix'd,
Like Ismene, in Sophocl. Antigone, ver. 536.
Και μην αρο πυλών ήδ'Ισμήνη.
Fame, if not double-fac'd, is double-mouth'd,
I think Fame has passed for a Goddess ever since Hefiod deified her : Eyp. II. 381.
Φήμη δ' αύτις σάμπαν απόλλυται, ήντινα πολλοί
Fama vero nulla prorsus perit, quam quidem multi Populi divulgant. Quippe dea quædam est et ipfa,
Milton makes her a God; I know not why, unless fecundum eos, qui dicunt utriusque fexus participationem habere numina. So in his Lycidas (unless it be a false print) he says, v. 19.
So may some gentle Muse
And bid fair peace be to my fable shroud. , Where Muse, in the masculine, for a poet, is very bold. Perhaps the last line fhould be,
Bears greatest names in his wide aerie flight. What Milton says of Fame's bearing great names on his wings, seems to be partly from Horace, Lib. II. Od. II.
Illum aget pennâ metuente solvị
But as an eagle
In the Ajax of Sophocles it is said, that his enemies, if they saw him appear, would be terrified, like birds at the appearance of the vulture, or eagle. Ver. 16.
'Αλλ' ότε γαρ δη το σον όμμ’ απέδράν,
Μέγαν αιγυπιον υποδείσανlες: . The Greek verses I think are faulty; and, as I remember, are corrected, not amiss, by Dawes in his Miscellanea Critica.
POEMS ON SEVERAL OCCASIONS.
ON THE DEATH OF A FAIR INFANT.
S T A N Z.
A word of two fyllables is wanting, to fill up
the measure of the verse. It is easy to find such a word, but imposible to deterinine what word Milton would have inserted. He uses Youth, in the feminine gender, as the Latins sometimes use Juvenis; and by this “ fair youth” he probably means the Goddess Hebe, who was also called Juventas, or Juventa.
He at their invoking came,
But with a scarce well-lighted flame.
Adfuit ille quidem; sed nec folemnia verba,
IL PENSE ROSO,
Or the Tale of Troy divine,
It is called sacred Troy, in Homer, Il. 2. 448.
*Egoflar muap, or du sol caman "Inc épni