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66 When first I dar'd by soft surprise”, (p. 275.) may be considered as free from objection in a moral view.
6 I never knew a sprightly fair”, (p. 277.) contains the sentiment, “ I do not more incline to one Than I incline to all”, which one does not wish to become general.
In “ Ah! cruel maid, how hast thou chang’d”, (p. 279.) the poet might have spared the curs'd in the 5th verse; and certainly he concludes with a very reprehensible encouragement to the indulgence of hatred.
The Song “ Ask’st thou “ how long my love shall stay,” (p. 280.) consists of the two last verses of the one before noticed, beginning “ Dried be that tear my gentlest love”. See
Sally in our Alley”,-“ Of all the girls that are so smart,”(p. 282.) is a vulgar, and, in some respects, coarse song, to a very beautiful tune. The late ingenious Collins, author of The Evening Brush, wrote a Parody upon this, which shall be given under the Class Ingenious and Humourous Songs, it begins with “ The Bard who glows with Grub-street fire, in Sally's praise profuse is.”
“ To all you ladies now at land,” (p. 291.) contains some “ Muses" and “ Neptune" and
some extravagant sentiment. It is a favourite, and might, by curtailing and a few other small alterations, be made suitable for a collection.
“ You tell me I'm handsome,” (p. 294.) is given in my second volume.
66 Hark! hark ! 'tis a voice from the tomb!” (p. 295.) may be classed with the songs censured in the Postscript to Letter ii. (p. 58, &c.) and is liable also to the objection of dying for love.
In " A chieftain to the Highlands bound”, (p. 297.) we have a water-wraith.
The Songs “ Come, live with me and be my love," by Marlow, (p. 302.) and “ If all the world and love were young," by Sir Walter Raleigh, (p. 203.) are introduced in that delightful work The COMPLETE ANGLER, by ISAAC WALTON, as being sung by The Milk Maid and her mother. (chap. iv.) Sir John Hawkins, in his edition of that work, says that the first of these songs, “though a beautiful one, is not so purely pastoral, as it is generally thought to be; buckles of gold, coral clasps and amber studs, silver dishes and ivory tables, are luxuries; and consist not with the parsimony and simplicity of rural life and manners.” I introduced these songs, with some alterations, into my third volume.
" A nymph of ev'ry charm possess'd,”
(p. 307.) is, in the third verse, too warm. The word adore in the 4th verse had better be read admire. Here again we have dying for love.
“ I ne'er could any lustre see
In eyes that would not look on me;" (P. 312.) shews a passion wholly selfish.
“6 Dear Chloe what means this disdain," (p. 314.) is coarse and profligate.
“How yonder Ivy courts the Oak,” (p. 318.) is a good lesson against an attachment to a harlot.
66 When Damon languish'd at my feet, (p. 319.) from the Tragedy of the Gamester, is a beautiful Song. The word may had better be substituted for shall in the last line.
“ From anxious zeal and factious strife," (p. 320.) is not a bad song. It had been better had the slighted lover had recourse to the Sacred Volume rather than to “ Newton's tempting page”. Neither of them, however, accord with his - idly trifle life away”.
Ins Why heaves my fond bosom?” (p. 321.) there is perhaps a little extravagance, in the lover's saying he is enslav'd by her mind. There is more, in speaking in so easy a manner of dying for love. Otherwise the song appears good; as describing well some effects of love, and as giving to the mind a decided superiority over the charins of the face.
" Ask if yon damask rose be sweet,' (p. 226.) from the Oratorio of Susanna, is a beautiful and tender air,
« Would you taste the noontide air”, by Milton, (p. 327.) is too warm. A Parody on this “ Would you taste the morning air," was given in my second volume.
“ Blue-eyed Mary,”-“ In a cottage embosom'd within a deep shade,” (p. 335.) is a good moral lesson, but is told in language, perhaps, rather coarse.
“ My temples with clusters of grapes I'll entwine,” (p. 339.) is downright Bacchanalian.
Says Plato, Why should man be vain," (p. 340.) is introduced into the second volume of my Collection with some alterations, it begins there, “ Ah! why, my friend, should man be vain”.
“ Sweet maid, if thou would'st charm my sight,” (p. 342.) is too voluptuous. And the passage which mentions the frowning Zealots and their Eden is in danger of becoming profane, from being applied by voluptuaries here to the Eden of our Bible.
Boy ! let yon liquid ruby flow,
The calling the wife of Potiphar (Genesis xxxix.) by the name of the chaste Egyptian dame, I conceive to be a great perversion of terms.
66 Tell me no more of pointed darts," (p. 345.) is good.
" 'I envy not the proud their wealth," (p. 346.) is given in my second volume, the words “ Ye powers divine" in the last verse being altered to “O Power Divine”.-A Friend suggests to me that it seems to cast a needless general censure on kings.
66 Cruel invader of my rest,” (p. 350.) is full of extravagance and despair.
« Oh! how vain is ev'ry blessing," &c. " But when love its time employs”, (p. 351.) requires the limitations before mentioned. See p. 234.
“Encompass'd in an angel's frame,” (p. 351.) from The Lord of the Manor, by General Burgoyne, goes too far in the first verse, and in the second seems to require to be corrected by the sentiment mentioned in my remarks on a former song.
With great respect,