« VorigeDoorgaan »
poets who preceded the restoration. Yet sich, vorite stanza : it is true poetry, it is inspiration." however, is the case ; and I can only account for The stanza is well knownthe principle on which the selection would appear
"0, how canst thou renounce," to have been made, that it was meant as an antidotc to Percy's publication, or that Goldsmith (and and shares with a stanza in the Castle of Indolence, this is not unlikely) was perfectly unacquainted the applause of nations. with the poets of a period previous to Dryden and Mason, in 1771, put forth a new edition of his Pope.
Poems, and in a separate publication the same year Michael Bruce, a young and promising poet, the first book of his English Garden, To the Podied in the year 1767, at the too early age of ems he has made a few additions, but nothing so twenty-one. Some of his poeins--and they were beautiful as his epitaph on his wife, inscribed upon posthumously published, without the last touches her grave in Bristol cathedral. The lines are well of the author-possess unusual beauties. His known, but not so the circumstance, only recently Lochleren is called, by Coleridge, "a poem of published, that the last four lines were written by great merit;" and the same great critic directs Gray:attention to what he calls the following exquisitel.. Tell them
ning, exquisite " Tell them, though 't is an awful thing to die, passage, expressing the effects of a fine day on the IT
('T was e'en to thee,) yet the dread path once human heart:"
trod, “Fat on the plain and mountain's sunny side, Heaven lifts its everlasting portals high, Large droves of oxen, and the fleecy flocks, And bids 'the pure in heart behold their Feed undisturbed ; and fill the echoing air
God.'” With music grateful to the master's ear.
We learn from the same unquestionable quarter, The traveller stops, and gazes round and round O'er all the scenes that animate his heart
(the Reminiscences of the Rev. Norton Nicholls,) With mirth and music. Even the mendicant,
that Gray thought very little of what he had seen Bow bent with age, that on the old grey stone,
of the English Garden. “He mentioned the poem Sole sitting, suns him in the public way,
of the Garden with disapprobation, and said it Feels his heart leap, and to himself he sings."
should not be published if he could prevent it."
There are lines and passages, however, of true Another poet, whose song ceased before he had poetry throughout the poem, which form in thertime to do sull better things, was poor Falconer, selves an agreeable accession to our stock of favorwho perished at sea in the Aurora frigate, in the ite passages. How exquisite, for instance, is year 1769. He had sung his own catastrophe in this :his Shepirock only a few years before.
"Many a glade is found The poem of the year 1770 was The Deserted The
The haunt of wood-gods only; where, if art Village-n some respects a superior poem to The Eur
E'er dared to tread, 't was with upsandalled foot, Trarelle. It was immediately a favorite, and in po less than four months had run through five edi
Printless, as if the place were holy ground." tjons. Gray thought Goldsmith a genuine poet. The poem, however, made but a very slender "I was with him," says Nicholls," at Malvern, impression on the public mind, nor is it now much when he received the Deserted Village, which he read, save hy the student of pur poetry, to whom desired me to read to him; he listened with fixed it affords a lesson of importance. attention, and soon exclaimed, This man is a The only remembered publication in poetry of poet!'”
the year 1773 was The Heroic Epistle to Sir Wil, If The Deserted Village was, as it certainly is, liam Chambers--a caustic attack, replete with wit, an accession to our poetry, the death of Akenside humor, and invective, on the architect's Chinese and the far too premature removal of (hatterton eccentricities in the gardens at Kew. It was long were real losses in the very same year in which before Mason was suspected of the satire. Tom Goldsmith's great poem appeared. Akenside had, Warton was the first to attribute it to his pen; he no doubt, sang his song, but Chuterton was only said it was Walpole's buckramed up by Mason. in his eighteenth year. What a production for a But Walpole, from a letter to Mason only recently boy was the ballad of ** Sir Charles Bawdin!"published, would appear to have had nothing to do There is nothing nobler of the kind in the whole with it. I have read it," writes Walpole, "80 compass of our poetry. "Tassi alope," says very often, that I have got it by heart, and now I Campbell, ** can be compared to him as a juvenile am master of all its beauties. I confess I like it prodigy. No English poet ever equalled him at infinitely better than I did, though I liked it infthe same age."
nitely before. But what signifies what I think! The Deserted Village of the year 1770 was fol. All the world thinks the same. No sul has, I lowed in 1771 by the first book of The Minstrel, a have heard, guessed within a hundred miles. I poem which has given more delight to minds of a catched at Ansley's, and have, I believe, contricertain class, and that class a high one, than any buted to spread the notion. It has since been other poein in the English language. Since Beattie called Temple Lottrell's, and, to my infinite honor, composed his poem on which his fame relies, and se mine. But now that you have tapped this mine curely too for an hereafter, many poems of a far loftier of talent, and it runs so richly and easily, for and even a more original characier have been added Heaven's and for England's sake, do not let it to the now almost overgrown body of our poetry, rest." yet Beattie is still the poet for the young; and still The Heroic Epistle was followed, in 1774, by the in Edwin--that happy personification of the poetic Judah Restored, of Roberts," work," says temperament--young and enthusiastic readers de Campbell, “ of no common merit." Southey calls light and recognize a picture of themselves. Gray the author a poet of the same respectable class as lived to commend and to correct it--with the taste the author of Leonidas and the Athenaid, and adds of a true poet and the generosity of an unselfish in a note, “ Dr. Roberts' Judah Restored was one one. ** This of all others," he says, " is my fa- of the first books that I ever possessed. It was given me by a lady whom I must ever gratefully lof Gray, appeared two years later, (1781,) and, and affectionately remember as the kindest friend like the former portion of the work, was read with of iny boyhood. I read it often then, and canı sull deserved avidity. The effect was catching. The recur to it with satisfaction ; and perhaps I owe school of Dryden and Pope revived. Hayley soinething to the plain dignity of its style, which wrote his Triumphs of Temper in the verse recomis suited in the subject, and everywhere bears the mended by Johnson ; Crabbe composed his Library stamp of good sense and careful erudition. To and his Village in the same versification ; Couper acknowledge obligations of this kind is both a his Table Talk, and even Mason (though the last pleasure and a duty." * I have Southey's copy person in the world to admit it) his translation of of the Judah before me at this moment; on the fly- Du Fresnoy, in Johnson's only measure. leaf is inscribed, in the neat hand-writing of the But the rear of Dr. Johnson did not reach bepoet, “ Rohert Southey-given me by Mrs. Do- yond the grave, and when Cowper put forth his lignon, 1781." The poet of Kehama was born the Task in the spring of 1785, the great critic was no year in which the Judah appeared, and was only more. Nolihat Cowper was likely to be deterred ten years old when a copy of the poem was given froin blank verse by the criticisms of Johnson, for 10 him hy the lady he remembers so affectionately the Task was commenced in Johnson's lifetime, and as the kindest friend of his boyhowd." This one in the same structure of versification. That Johnbook may have had the same effect on Southey son could have hurt the sale for a lime by a savage that Spenser's works had upon the mind of Cow-remark at the table of Reynolds, no one acquajnied ley: “ I had read him all over," he says, " before with the literature of the period will for a moment I was twelve years old, and was thus made a poet doubt. That he could have kept the poem from as immediately as a child is made an eunuch." what it now possesses and deserves—a universal
On the 4th of April, 1774, died Oliver Gold- | admiration, it would be equally absurd to suppose smith, leaving unfortunately unfinished one of the for a single moment. best of his lighter pieces-his well-known and in-! When Cowper put forth his Task there was no imitable Retaliation. It was published a fortnight poet of any great ability or distinguished name in after his death, and became immediately a favor- ihe field. 'Hayley ambled over the course, 10 lise ile. A second posthumous publication of the same an expression of Southey, without a competitor. poet was The llaunch of Venison, a clever epistle But Hayley had done his besi, poor as that was, to Lord Clare, full of characteristic beauties pecu- though his day was hardly by. It was Cowper Tiar to its author. Both pieces owe something to who forced us from the fellers which Johnson had Anstev and his Guide-the suggestion certainly. forged for future poets, and Jayley had done his
In 1776 Mickle put forth his translation of the best to rivet and retain. Nor was Cowper without Luciad-free, flowery, and periphrastical, full of some assistance at this time. Evans old ballads spirit, and not devoid of beauties, but untrue to the did something to extend a taste for the early but majoelie simplicity of the great Portuguese. unknown masters of our poetry. Some of Mickle's
While Goldsmith was confining his selection imitations, in the same collection, were read by from our poets to a period 100 narrow to embrace younger minds with an influence of which we eninany of the nobler productions of the British joy the fruits to this day. Charlotte Smith put muse, Gray was annotating Lydgate, and the forth a volume of her sonnets, replete with touchyounger Wasion collecting materials for his Histo. ing sentiment, eminently characteristic of the softer ry of English Poctry. Our literature lies under graces of the female nind, and the late Sir Egerother obligations to the younger Warton--great ton Brydges, a volume of poems, containing one as that obligation is for his noble and unfinished noble sonnet (" Echo and Silence') which, though llistory. He was the first to explain and direct neglected at the time, will live as long as any atiention to many of the less obvious beauties of poein of its length in the English language.
The Fairie Qucene, and, in conjunction with Ed- The Task was followed by a volume of poems wards, the first to revive the sonnet among us, a from a provincial press full of the very finesi poefavorite form of verse with our Elizabethan poets, try, and one that has stood its test, and will stand with Shakspeare and with Milion, but entirely forever. The author of the Task was of noble exabandoned by the poels who came after them. traction, and counted kin with lord chancellors and The first volume of Wartun's History was pub-learls. His fellow author was a poor Scoitish lished in 1774; his Poems containing his sonnets peasant, nameless and unknown when his poems in 1777. The effect produced by their publica- were put forth, but known, and deservedly known, tion was more immediate ihan has hitherto been wherever the language of his country has been thought. We owe the sonnets of Bampfylde (410. heard. This poet was Robert Burns. Cowper and 1778) to the example of the younger Warton. Burns were far too nobly constituted to think disNor is the popil unworthy of the master, or unwil- couragingly of one another. “Is not the Task," ling 10 own his obligation. Some of the Sixteen says Burns, “ a glorious poem?" The religion of Sonnels of Bampfylde (for such is the title of his the Task, bating a few scraps of " Calvinistic dithin onpretending quario) are " beautiful exceed- vinily, is the religion of God and nature; the reingly," and in one (the tenth) Warton is addressed ligion that exalis and ennobles man." "I have in a way which he could well appreciate.
read Burns' poems," says Ci wper, “and have The good effects of Percy's Reliques, Warton's read them twice; and though they be written in a volume of History, and Warton's Poems, received language that is new to me, and many of them on a temporary check in the year 1779, by the publi- subjecis much inferior to the anthor's ability, I cation of the first part of Johnson's well-known think them on the whole a very extraordinary proLives of the Poets, containing his celebrated criti- duction. He is, I believe, the only poet these cism on the Lycidas of Milton, and his noble para)- kingdoms have produced in the lower rank of life lel between Dryden and Pope. The concluding save Shakspeare, (I should rather say save Prior,) portion of the Lives, containing his famous abuse who need not be indebled for any part of his praise
to a charitable consideration of his origin, and the * Southey's Cowper, vol. iii., p. 32. disadvantages under which he has labored. It will be pity if no should not hereafter divest himself of child in his mother's or his nurse's arms. While barbarism, and content himself with writing pure they were yet hardly a year before the public, the English, in which he appears perfectly qualified to younger Warton was buried in the chapel of his excel. He who can command admiration dishon- college at Oxford amid the tears of many who ors himself if he aims no higher than to raise a knew the frank, confiding disposition of his nature. laugh." This, let it be remembered, was written at the time when the poet's reputation was as yet “ For though not sweeter his own Homer sang, unconfirmed. But the praise is ample, and such Yet was his life the more endearing song." as Burns would have loved to have heard from Cowper's lips. "Poor Burns!” he writes in an Other poems.of consequence followed at interother letter, "loses much of his deserved praise invals, not very remote. In 1791 Cowper put forth this country through our ignorance of his lan- his translation of the Iliad into English blank guage. I despair of meeting with any Englishman verse, and Darwin his Botanic Garden, a poem in who will take the pains that I have taken to un- two parts, written in the measure of Pope, bot derstand him. His candle is bright, but shut up polished till little remained save glitter and fine in a dark lantern. I lent him to a very sensible words. neighbor of mine : but his uncouth dialect spoiled The only poem of repote of the year 1792 that all; and before he had half read him through, he has reached our time, or seems likely to revive, and was quite ramseezled." The word to which Cow- acquire an hereafter, is The Pleasures of Memory. per alludes occurs in the “ Epistle to Lapraik;' This is a poem which Goldsmith would have read the meaning was somewhat difficult at the time, with pleasure, for it is much in his manner. few will need to be told it now. The study of “There is no such thing," says Byron, * as a vulgar Burns is very general in England, and in Ireland line in the book." The versification is very finished, he is almost as much understoud and appreciated but not in Darwin's manner to too great a nieety, as in his own country.
while there are passages here and there which Mr. Rogers appeared as a poet in the same year take silent possession of the heart, a sure sign of with Burns. But his Ode to Superstition was litile unusual excellence. read at the time, and his fame rests now on a Wordsworth's first poem, An Evening Walk, wide and a secure foundation. Another poet of the an epistle in verse, addressed to a young lady from saine year was Henry Headley, a young and the Lakes of the North of England, appeared the proinising writer, imbued with a line and cultivated year after The Pleasures of Memory, and was foltaste, of which his two volumes of selections from lowed the same year by a volume of Descriptive our early poets, poblished in the following year, Sketches, in verse, taken during a Pedestrian Tour is still an enduring testimony. If Goldsmith had in the Italian Grisons, Swiss, and Saroyard Alps. lived to have seen these selections published, Every line in The Erening Walk bears the mark culled by a boy of barely twenty-one, he surely of a keen observer for himself; there is not a borwould have blushed to have looked upon his own. rowed image in the poem, though the pervading
There were other candidates for distinction at character ihroughout reminds one too closely perthis time, imbued with the same tastes and fostered haps of The Nocturnal Reverie of the Countess of in the same quarter, the cloisters of Trinity col-, Winchelsea, a wonderful poem, to which Wordslege, Oxford, and the wards of Winchester school. / worth was the first to direct attention. Here is a The first was Thomas Russell, prematurely picture from Wordsworth's first volume, somesnatched away (1788) in his twenty-sixth year, thing between a Hobbima and a Hondekoeter :leaving a few sonnets and poems behind him, which his friends judged worthy of knowing here- “ Sweet are the sounds that mingle from afar, after. That he had intended his poems for publi- Heard by calm lakes as peeps the folding star, cation was somewhat oncertain; that he was gifted Where the duck dabbles 'mid the rustling sedge, with no ordinary genius, the magnificent sonnet And feeding pike starts from the water's edge, supposed to be written at Lemnos has put beyond Or the swan stirs the reeds, his neck and bill the pale of cavil or suspicion. The second candi- Wetting, that drip upon the waters still; date for distinction was William Lisle Bowles, And heron, as resounds the trodden shore, whose fourteen sonnets appeared in 1789, while he Shoots upward, darling his long neck before." was yet an undergraduate at Oxford. The younger Warton lived long enough to foretell the future One feels that our poetry is enriched by a pardistinction of the boy his brother had brought up; sage of this description that the poet who could Coleridge, to thank him in a sonnet for poetic ob- write in this way was likely to make what Addiligations :
son calls additions to Nature, and this Mr. Words.
worth has done in a preeminent degree. "My heart has thank'd thee, Bowles, for those i Southey, in 1795, made his first public appearsoft strains,
ance as a poet in a thin duodecimo volume, printed Whose sadness soothes me like the murmuring at Bath, on the poor pale blue paper of the perind. Of wild bees in the sunny showers of spring;" This was a kind of Lara and Jacquelme affair.
One half of the volume was by Southey, the other and Soutbey, to express in prose his gratitude for half by Lovell, the poems of the former being dissimilar obligations. The Vicar of Bremhill (now ringuished by the signature of Bion," of the latin his eighty-fourth year) has reason to be proud ter by that of ** Moschus." The poems are not of such testimonies in his favor. It would be idle , very many in number, nor are they very good, yet assertwn to call them undeserved ; his sonnets are the little volume is not without its interest in the very beautiful, full of soothing sadness, and a pleas. history of a great mind, feeling its way to a proud ing love and reverence for nature, animate and in- position in our letters. animate.
The joint publication of Southey and Lovell, in Wben Bowles was seeing his sonnets through 1795, was followed the next year by a similar kind the press, his old antagonist, Lord Byron, was a of publication, between Coleridge and his school
fellow Lamb. The name of Coleridge appears is still read, though the works it satirizes have been alone upon the title-page, which is thus described, forgotten long ago. Poems on Various Subject by S. T. Coleridge, late When Wordsworth, in the following year, of Jesus College, Cambridge. Lamb's contribu-(1798,) produced his two duodecimo volumes of tions are distinguished by his initials, and the vol- Lyrical Ballads, few read, liked, or understood ume is remarkable in more ways than one. Cole-them; ridge calls his sonnets Effusions-Effusion 1; Ef
“And some him frantic deem'd, and fusion 2. This appellation he removed in a second
Some him deem'd a wit." edition, and called them, what in reality they were, and what, when they were written, he intended Every shaft of ridicule was turned against him, and they should be,“ Sonnets, attempted in the man
with such success that his “audience” was, inner of Mr. Bowles." Here is his sonnet of grati-deed, but « few." The principle on which his tude to the vicar of Brenuhill, a mistaken attack on
poems are composed was as yet unrecognized ; Rogers, subsequently withdrawn, and the follow-land if the wits, who should have known much beting bold panegyric upon Wordsworth: “The ex- ter, were blind to the several excellencies of his pression green radiance is borrowed,” he writes, verse, he had little to look for from the bulk of " from Mr. Wordsworth, a poet, whose versifica- readers. It was long, very long, therefore, before tion is occasionally harsh and his diction too fre- he had any ascertained and admitted position in quently obscure, but whom I deem unrivalled the catalogue of English poets. Every description among the writers of the present day in manly sen- of circumstance seemed to go against him. Rogtiment, novel imagery, and vivid coloring.'
crs put forth his Epistle to a Friend in the autumn “ 'Tis certainly mysterious that the name
of the same year, and Campbell his Pleasures of Of prophet and of poet is the same."
Hope in the following spring.
The effect was all but instantaneous. Two such One sees the prophetic eye of taste in the printed noble examples of the school and poetry of Pope judgment of Coleridge on this occasion.
revived a predilection for a form of poetry in which Burns is said to have foretold the future fame of so many great efforts had been achieved; and the Sir Walter Scott: " This boy will be heard of Lyrical Ballads of Wordsworth were overlooked in yet.” But the great poet of Scotland was cold in the fresh triumph of a former favorite, and the first his grave before Scott became a candidate for lite production of a new and successful writer. erary distinction. He died the very year of Scott's A third publication of the year 1798 was an ocfirst publication. The Chase, and William and tavo volume, since very much enlarged, and entiHelen; two Ballads from the German of Gottfried tled, Plays on the Passions. This was Joanna Augustus Bürger. Edinburgh, 1796. Men who Baillie's first publication, and is likely to see an love to trace the hereditary descent of genius, fore- hereafter, not so much from the exaggerated see a mysterious something in this seeming trans- praises of Scott and Southey, for these can effect migration. Be this as it may, there is little of but little where the substance itself is poor, but Burns in Scott's early publication, little of his own from the intrinsic excellence of the work itself, afier-excellence, and, in short, very little to ad- and the fact that it is by far the noblest offspring mire.
of the female mind this country has to exhibit, and A third publication of the year 1796 was the worth five hundred such Sacred Dramas as HanJoan of Arc of Southey, the production of a boy nah More inflicted on the public for a long succesof two-and-twenty, and the first of a series of epics sion of years, now happily at an end. remarkable for the even level of their fight, and The last century closed with Campbell's Plea. the wide difference of opinion they are known to sures of Hope, and the new one opened with have occasioned. The new epic, however, had its Bloomfield's Farmer's Boy, and Moore's first own little phalanx of admirers; and when a vol-work, his translation of Anacreon. Cowper and ume of smaller poems from the same pen was pub- the elder Warton were removed in 1800 by death lished a short time after, the poet of Joan of Arc from witnessing the full effects of the example had a second accession of admirers. His noble In- they had set us, for the agreeable Essay on Popc scriptions acquired him not a few ; and all who had its influence certainly in hastening the changes were blind to the nobler portions of his epic conld completed by the Task. Beattie was suffering from comprehend the beauties of a story in verse like paralysis and age, and Lewis, with his Monk and “ Mary the Maid of the Inn."
his Tales of Wonder, engrossed the attention of a Our poetry was infested at this time with the un- London public. The living Parnassus was as yet poetie invectives of Wolcot, and the puerile inani- without its full complement of tenants, but candities of the Della Cruscan school. Verse and poc-dates came forward before long to fill the vacant try were too commonly confounded, ease and places. Hogg published, in 1801, a litile volume smoothness were mistaken for higher powers, and of Scottish Pastoral Poems, Songs, fc., written in the rough impudence of Wolcot for the keen, the Dialect of the South; Leigh Hunt, the same caustic irony of the muse of Satire. It was time year, a collection of poems entitled Juvenilia ; to put an end to such pretensions and to sing-song Bloomfield, in 1802, his Rural Tales, Ballads and pretiinesses with nothing in the world to recommend Songs; Sir Walter Scott, his Glen finlas and Ere them. The opportunity was great, nor was there of St. John, more like polished tales than hapisy a poet wanting, or, better still, one unwilling to imitations of the early ballad, but truly wonderful sid our literature of the weeds and vermin that in- when viewed in connexion with his after writings; fested it. The poet who came forward was Wild Leyden, in 1803, his Scottish Descriptive Poems; liam Gifford, and the poem he produced, his Ba- Kirke White, his Clifton Grove ; Campbell, his riad and Mæviad-a clever, well constructed satire, Lochiel and Hohenlinden ; and Southey, a second more in Churchill's annihilating manner than the epic, his Thalaba, in an irregular measure of his keen, razor-edged satire of Pope or Young. The own inventing. triumph was complete, and the Baviad and Mæviad | On the 18th of April, 1802, died Dr. Darwin,
cxv. LIVING AGE. VOL. X.
and on the following 14th of August L. E. L. was judgment and discretion, and not by another Aler. born. In 1803 died Hoole, whose veneer-like ander Chalmers. translation of Tasso was preferred by Johnson to “The corruption of a poet is the generation of a the glowing and substantial beauties of Fairfax. critic." This, however, like many other popolar In the same year Lord Strangford put forward his sayings, admits of some exceptions ; for the wrie translation from Camoens, and thus was Darwin ters who originated the Edinburgh Rerieur, Jefperpetuated in the gems, and flowers, and odors of frey, Brougham, Mackintosh, Sydney Smith, HalL. E. L., and Hoole in the polished refinements lam, and Horner, belonged either to the law or of the noble viscount.
the church, and put forward no pretensions of The critic was a wise one who, when he re- their own to a grain of ground upon Parnassus. viewed the Minstrelsy of the Scottish Border, in They sat in judgment, however, on the production the year 1803, foresaw a score of metrical romances of the new race of poets with a stern and forbidin the materials of three octavo volumes. No ding countenance "Hard words and hanging," better ® preparatory schools for a part of Scott's was the doom of all new candidates for the laurel: particular genius could have well been found than so that Hogg's translation of their motto, " Judex the course of study which he had formed for him-damnatur absolvitur illis,"_* I 'll be d d if self in bringing the materials of the Minstrelsy you escape," was true, at least to the spirit in together. His mind was thoroughly impregnated which the journal was conducted. Young men with the spirit of the past, as much as it would in of the present generation can form from the known all possibility have been had he lived in the times character of the Review for the last eight-andhe describes so truly. His powers of observation twenty years but a very slender idea of its influwere keen and scrutinizing ; his love of books and ence for the first fifteen years of its existence. nature an increasing kind of appetite ; and he was Nor is this loss of influence to be attributed to any only in want of a metre to suit the stories he had falling off in the quality and value of its articles, floating before him, when a friend recited to him for the Edinburgh Review, that can show a paper from memory some of the striking passages of Cole- by Macaulay, or an article like the "Churchill," ridge's Christabel then unpublished, and then as from the pen of Mr. Forster, may rank in real now, unfortunately a fragment. The rhythmical worth and importance with the best number of the run of the verse was catching ; and a story over Reriew in the most palmy days of its existence. which he had long brooded was commenced imme- We are to attribute a decay of influence to another diately, in the wild metre of the poem thus oppor- canse, to an abuse of its own power, the reversal tunely brought beneath his notice.
of many of its own decrees in its own pages; and The metre found, the work went on at about the the simple circumstance, that merit will buoy op rate he tells us, of a canto per week; and was at last, for malice and wit, thongh they may cause finally published in January, 1805, in a quarto an incalculable deal of mischief for a time—it can volume, price twenty-five shillings! Few will be but for a time. Dryden's contempt for Shirley require to be told that Scott's first poem was The has not prevented what was due to him, the publiLay of the Last Minstrel, that the success of the cation of a collected edition of his work ; and all work exceeded the fondest day dreams of its the wit that was shot against Wither has failed in author, and at once decided that literature should keeping him from the place he deserves to hold in form the main business of his life. "The favor the catalogue of British poets. which it at once attained," says Lockhart, “ had When the Edinburgh Reric was in the full first not been equalled in the case of any one poem of swing of its power and patronage, James Montconsiderable length during at least two genera- gomery published his Wanderer in Suitzerland; tions; it certainly had not been approached in the Cary, the first part of his well-sustained translation case of any narrative poem since the days of Dry- of Dante; Hogg, his Mountain Bard; Crabbe. den." The work, brought out on the usual terms after a sild.ce of twenty years, The Parish Regis. of division of profits between the author and pub-ter; Tannahill, a volume of Songs ; Moore, his lishers, was not long after purchased by them Little's Poems; Scott, his Marmion; and Byron, for 5001, to which Messrs. Longman and Co. his Hours of Idleness. Crabbe alone was a favorafterwards added 1001. in their own unsolicited ite with the Review ; Montgomery met with a kindness, in consequence of the uncommon success severe handling; the Review of Lattle occasioned of the work.
a hostile meeting at Chalk Farm ; the critique on The year introduced by The Lay, closed with Marmion, the Quarterly Review ; and the bitter Madoc and The Sabbath. Madoc, a new epic by and uncalled-for notice of the Hours of Idleness, Southey : The Sabbath, a didactic poem by James the swingeing satire, rough and vigorous, of Enge Grahame--the sepulchral Grahame of the satire of lish Bards and Scotch Reviewers." The poetry
Lord Byron. Madoc found few admirers at the of this young lord," says the Rericu, " belongs to * time, nor has it many now, or the number it the class which neither gods nor men are said to deserves to bave; and The Sabbath of Grahame, permit; and our counsel is," it adds, ** that he do though fall of fine thoughts, and well sustained forthwith abandon poetry and turn his talents throughout, made but little way with poets, or which are considerable, and his opportunities with the public:
which are great, to better account." ** Why, authors, all this scrawl and scribbling
The Edinburgh Reviru may be forgiven all its
injurious and unjust decrees in criticism, for the sore! To lose the present, gain the future age,
entertaining addition it made to our literature in Praised to be when you can hear no more,
the satire of Lord Byron. Not that the satire And much enrich'd with fame when useless
itself is a very noble specimen of Byron's muse, or
of the school of poetry of which it forms a part ; worldly store."
but it is a fine, fearless piece of writing, with a But Mador and The Sabbath are sure of being strain of noble inveclive at times amidst its more included in the bulk of our British poetry, when prosaic passages and its mere calling of names. ever that large body is reëdited by a poet of true The Review, moreover, had this good effect, it