Pagina-afbeeldingen
PDF
ePub

detract from Buchanan's poetical'n conin compliance with Lauder's furiousmes. in favour of Johnston's Latin tranlal atof David's Psalms, to which Lauder gait; the preference.

In hiş alliance with Dr. Johnson, con mented by their mutual antipathy to Milton's principles of civil and religious, government, he found a paternal indul. gence of his splenetic animofity. · Milton was a Whig, and therefore must be a Plagiary; accordingly. when the time came that Lauder's strictures in. the Gentleman's Magazine had swelled into the fize of a pamphlet of 160 pages, it was ushered into public by a preface, and finished by a postscript, from the il lustrious hand of Dr. Samuel Johnson.

[ocr errors]

[q Whon occasion of these head and tail. : his chees the ingenious Dr, Douglas, the ral ate&tor of Lauder's forgeries, writes ed us : ; ;::. . 1:16'Tis to be hopèd, nay, 'tis expected, 196 that the elegant and nervous writer, is whose judicious sentiments and iniini

table stile point out the author of Lau. * der’s Prefacé and Postscript, will' no < longer allow oné to plume himself with * bis feathers, who appears so little to * have deferved his affittance; an aflif« tanee which, I am persuaded, would * never have been communicated, had

there been the least fufpicion of those 6 facts which I have been the instrument “ of conveying to the world *”

* Milton vindicated from the charge of Plagiariin, &c. by John Deuglas, M. A. for lile las, 1751, P: 77....

[8] - This favourable prefumption was ille founded and premature. It appeared. afterwards, by the confession of Lauder. himself, that “in Johnson's friendship “ he placed the most implicit and unliai “mited confidence *.” :: Dr. Johnson had faid for his friend, at the end of the Essay, that". Lauder's mom “tives were, a strict regard to truth " alone, &c. and none of them takein “ from any difference of country, or of * fentiments in political or religious “ matters t.” This Lauder, in his pamphlet of 1754, expressly contradictedy and avowed motives of party and preme. ditated deception 1. Here the cat leaped -> * King Charles I. vindicated, p. 3, 4. + Eflay, p. 163.

King Charles la vindicated from the charge of Plagiaritm, brought against him by Milton. Printed for Owen, 1754, p. 1st.

out

out of the bag. It was now notorious that the fable had been inverted. The Lion roared in the Afs's Skin; and if the Lion had not the whole afinine plan com. municated to him à priori, Lauder's con fidence in his friend Johnson was neither implicit nor unlimited. : Dr.Johnson, indeed, it is to be fufpected, took upon him the patronage of Lauder's project from the beginning; and bore his part in the controversy retailed in the Gentlem.an's Magazine for the year 1747. There is at least a high degree OF PREPOLLENT PROBABILITY, that the Letter in that Magazine for the month of August, page 363, 364, signed wil. LIAM. LAUDER, came from the amicable hand of Mr. Samuel Johnson.

In the year 1751 was published Lau: der's penitential letter * to Dr. Douglas, containing a full and free confeffion of his roguery : the merit of which was tos tally overthrown by a contradictory poft fcript; which is thus accounted for by Lauder himself, after informing his readers, that his eonfidential friend advised an unreserved disclosure of his impofi ture.

« With this expedient," says Lauder)

I then chearfully complied, when that " gentleman wrote for me that letter that was publifhed in my name to Mr. Doug"las, in which he committed one error « that proved fatal to me, and at the “ same time injurious to the public. For * Quarto, printed for Owen, 1751.

2

« VorigeDoorgaan »