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had a mind much elevated by nature, nor am- | But her flit courser spared nere the more,
To beare her through the desart woods unseene plified by learning. His thoughts are such as a
Of her strong foes, that chased her through the liberal conversation and large acquaintance with
plaine, life would easily supply. They had however
And still pursued, but still pursued in vaine. then, perhaps, that grace of novelty, which they are now often supposed to want by those who,
II having already found them in later books, do
Like as the wearie hounds at last retire, not know or inquire who produced them first.
Windlesse, displeased, from the fruitlesse chace, This treatment is unjust. Let not the original When the slie beast Tapisht in bush and brire, author lose by his imitators.
No art por pains can rowse out of his place : Praise, however, should be due before it is The Christian kuights so full of shame and ire given. The author of Waller's Life ascribes to Returned backe, with faint and wearie pace!
Yet still the fearfull Dame fled, swift as winde, him the first practice of what Erythræus and
Nor euer staid, nor euer lookt behinde. some late critics call allileration, of using in the same verse many words beginning with the
III. same letter. But this knack, whatever be its value, was so frequent among early writers, Through thicke and thinne, all night, all day, she
driued, that Gascoigne, a writer of the sixteenth cen
Withouten comfort, companie, or guide, tury, warns the young poet against affecting it: Her plaints and teares with euery thought reuiued, Shakspeare, in the “ Midsummer Night's She heard and saw her greefes, but naught beside, Dream,” is supposed to ridicule it; and in But when the sunne his burning chariot diued another play the sonnet of Holofernes fully dis
In Thetis waue, and wearie teame vntide,
On Iordans sandie banks her course she staid, plays it.
At last, there downe she light, and downe she laial. He borrows too many of his sentiments and illustrations from the old mythology, for which
IV. it is vain to plead the example of ancient poets ; Her teares, ner drinke; her food, her sorrowings ; the deities which they introduced so frequently, This was her diet that vnhappy night: were considered as realities, so far as to be re But sleepe (that sweet repose and quiet brings) ceived by the imagination, whatever sober to ease the greefes of discontented wight, reason might even then determine. But of Spred foorth his tender, soft, and nimble wings, these images tiine has tarnished the splendour. In his dull armes foulding the virgin bright:
And loue, his mother, and the graces kept A fiction, not only detected but despised, can
Strong watch and warde, while this faire Ladie never afford a solid basis to any position, though
slept. sometimes it may furnish a transient allusion,
V. or slight illustration. No modern monarch can be much exalted by hearing that, as Hercules The birds awakte her with their morning song, had his club, he has bis navy.
Their warbling musicke pearst her tender care, But of the praise of Waller, though much The murmuring brookes and whistling windes may be taken away, much will remain ; for it
among cannot be denied, that he added something to
The ratling boughes, and leaues, their parts did
beare; our elegance of diction, and something to our Her eies yoclosed beheld the groues along, propriety of thought; and to him may be ap- of swaines and shepherd groomes that dwelling & plied what Tasso said, with equal spirit and weare ; justice, himself and Guarini, when, having And that sweet noise, birds, winds, and waters perused the “ Pastor Fido,” he cried out, “ If sent, he had not read • Aminta,' he had not excelled
Prouokt again the virgin to lament. it.”
VI. As Waller professed himself to have learned Her plaints were interrupted with a sound, the art of versification from Fairfax, it has been Some iolly shepherd sung a lustie round,
That seem'd from thickest bushes to proceed, thought proper to subjoin a specimen of his And to his voice had tuu'd his oaten reed; work, which, after Mr. Hoole's translation, Thither she went, an old man there she found will perhaps not be soon reprinted. By know- (At whose right hand his little flock did feed) ing the state in which Waller found our poetry, Sat making baskets, his three sonnes among the reader may judge how much he improved
That learn'd their father's art, and leain’d his song. it.
Erminia's steed (this while) his mistresse bore
Bebolding one in shining armes appeare
These dreadfull armes I beare no warfare bring But when my youth was spent, my hope was vaino
I gan my losse of lustie yeeres complaine,
And wisht I had enjoy'd the countries peace ;
I bod the court farewell, and with content Distroied are with sword, with fire and spoile,
My later age here have I quiet spent.
While thus he spake, Erminia husht and still
His wise discourses heard, with great attention, This wilderness doth vs in saftie keepe,
His speeches graue those idle fancies kill, No thundering drum, no trumpet breakes our
Which in her troubled soule bred such dissention ; sleepe.
After much thought reformed was her will,
Within those woods to dwell, was her intention,
Till fortune should occasion new afford,
To turne her home to her desired Lord.
proue, Nor ever greedie soldier was entised
Yet lieust now in this contented state, By pouertie, neglected and despised.
Let my mishap thy thoughts to pitie moue,
To entertaine me as a willing mate
In shepherds life, which I admire and lone ;
Within these pleasant grones perchance my hart Dearer to me than wealth or kingly crowne!
Of her discomforts, may vnload some part.
If gold or wealth of most esteemed deare,
If iewels rich, thou diddest hold in prise, These little flocks of sheepe and tender goates
Such store thereof, such plentie haue 1 seen,
As to a greedie minde might well suffice :
With that downe trickled many a siluer teare,
Two christall streames fell from her watrie eies; We little wish, we need but little wealth,
Part of her sad misfortunes than she told, From cold and hunger vs to cloath and feed;
And wept, and with her wept that shepherd old. Theso are my gonnes, their care preserues from stealth
With speeches kinde, he gan the virgin deare
Towards his cottage gently home to guide; How they are fed, in forrest, spring and lake,
His aged wife there made her homely cheare, And their contentment for ensample take.
Yet welcomde her, and plast her by her side,
The Princesse dond a poore pastoraes geare,
A kerchiefe course vpon her head she tide ;
But yet her gestures and her lookes (I gesse) Time was (for each one hath his doating time,
Were such, as ill beseem'd a shepherdesse.
Not those rude garments could obscure, and hide
Nor was her princely ofspring damnifide, Yet could I marke abuses, see aud heare.
Or ought disparag'de, by those labours bace;
Her little flocks to pasture would she guide,
And milk her goates, and in their folds them place, Entised on with hope of future gaine,
Both cheese and butter could she make, and frame I suffered long what did my soule displease;
Her selfe to please the shepherd and his dame.
Of Mr. John Pomfret nothing is known but fatal consequence : the delay constrained his atfrom a slight and confused account prefixed to tendance in London, where he caught the smallhis poems by a nameless friend; who relates, pox, and died in 1703, in the thirty-sixth year of that he was son of the Rev. Mr. Pomfret, rec his age. tor of Luton, in Bedfordshire; that he was He published his poems in 1699; and has bred at Cambridge ;* entered into orders, and been always the favourite of that class of readwas rector of Malden, in Bedfordshire; anders, who, without vanity or criticism, seek only might have risen in the church; but that, when their own amusement. he applied to Dr. Compton, bishop of London, His “ Choice” exhibits a system of life adaptfor institution to a living of considerable value, ed to common notions and equal to common exto which he had been presented, he found a pectations; such a state as affords plenty and troublesome obstruction raised by a malicious tranquillity, without exclusion of intellectual interpretation of some passage in his “ Choice;" pleasures. Perhaps no composition in our lanfrom which it was inferred, that he considered guage has been oftener perused than Pomfret's happiness as more likely to be found in the “ Choice.” company of a mistress than of a wife.
In his other poems there is an easy volubility, This reproach was easily obliterated; for it the pleasure of smooth metre is afforded to the had happened to Pomfret as to almost all other ear, and the mind is not oppressed with pondermen who plan schemes of life; he had departed ous or entangled with intricate sentiment. He from his purpose, and was then married. pleases many; and he who pleases many must
The malice of his enemies had however a very I have some species of merito
Of the EARL of DORSET the character has been men of high rank, who aspired to be thought drawn so largciy and so elegantly by Prior, to wits, at that time imagined themselves entitled whom he was familiarly known, that nothing to indulge. can be added by a casual hand; and, as its au One of these frolics has, by the industry of thor is so generally read, it would be useless of- Wood, come down to posterity. Sackville, who ficiousness to transcribe it.
was then Lord Buckhurst, with Sir Charles
Sedley and Sir Thomas Ogle, got drunk at the CHARLES SACKVILLE was born January 24, Cock, in Bow-street, by Covent-garden, and, 1637. Having been educated under a private going into the balcony, exposed themselves to tutor, he travelled into Italy, and returned a the populace in very indecent postures. At last, little before the Restoration. He was chosen as they grew warmer, Sedley stood forth naked, into the first parliament that was called, for and harangued the populace in such profane East Grinstead, in Sussex, and soon became a language, that the public indignation was afavourite of Charles the Second; but undertook wakened; the crowd attempted to force the no public employment, being too eager of the door, and, being repulsed, drove in the perriotous and licentious pleasures which young formers with stones, and broke the windows of
For this misdemeanour they were indicted, * He was of Queen's College there, and, by the University register, appears to have taken bis ba- and Sedley was fined five hundred pounds : chelor's degree in 1884, and his master's, 1998. H. what was the sentence of the others is not His father was of Triuity.-C.
known. Sedley employed Killigrew and ano
ther to procure a remission from the King; but every day in council to preserve the public peace, (mark the friendship of the dissolute!) they beg. after the King's departure ; and, what is not ged the fine for themselves, and exacted it to the the most illustrious action of his life, was emaast groat.
ployed to conduct the Princess Anne to NottingIn 1665, Lord Buckhurst attended the Duke ham with a guard, such as might alarm the poof York as a volunteer in the Dutch war; and pulace as they passed, with false apprehensions was in the battle of June 3, when eighteen great of her danger. Whatever end may be designed, Dutch ships were taken, fourteen others were there is always something despicable in a trick. destroyed, and Opdam, the admiral, who en He became, as may be easily supposed, a fagaged the Duke, was blown up beside him, with vourite of King William, who, the day after his all his crew.
accession, made him lord-chamberlain of the On the day before the battle, he is said to have household, and gave him afterwards the garter. composed the celebrated song, “ To all you la- | He happened to be among those that were tosdies now at land,” with equal tranquillity of sed with the King in an open boat sixteen hours, mind and promptitude of wit. Seldom any in very rough and cold weather, on the coast of splendid story is wholly true. I have heard, Holland. His health afterwards declined; and, from the late Earl of Orrery, who was likely on January 19, 1705-6, he died at Bath. to have good hereditary intelligence, that Lord He was a man whose elegance and judgment Buckhurst had been a week employed upon it, were universally confessed, and whose bounty and only retouched or finished it on the memor to the learned and witty was generally known. able evening. “But even this, whatever it may To the indulgent affection of the public, Lord subtract from his facility, leaves him his cour Rochester bore ample testimony in this remarkage.
“ I know not how it is, but Lord Buckhurst He was soon after made a gentleman of the may do what he will, yet is never in the wrong.” bed-chamber, and sent on short embassies to If such a man attempted poetry, we cannot France.
wonder that his works were praised. Dryden, In 1674, the estate of his uncle James Cran- whom, if Prior tells truth, he distinguished by field, Earl of Middlesex, came to him by its his beneficence, and who lavished his blandishowner's death, and the title was conferred on ments on those who are not known to have so him the year after. In 1677, he became, by the well deserved them, undertaking to produce au. death of his father, Earl of Dorset, and inherit- thors of our own country superior to those of ed the estate of his family.
antiquity, says, “ I would instance your LordIn 1684, having buried his first wife of the fa- ship in satire, and Shakspeare in tragedy.” mily of Bagot, who left him no child, he mar Would it be imagined that, of this rival to antiried a daughter of the Earl of Northampton, quity, all the satires were little personal inveccelebrated both for beauty and understanding. tives, and that his longest composition was a
He received some favourable notice from King song of eleven stanzas? James; but soon found it necessary to oppose
The blame, however, of this exaggerated the violence of his innovations, and, with some praise falls on the encomiast, not upon the auother lords, appeared in Westminster Hall to thor; whose performances are, what they precountenance the bishops at their trial.
tend to be, the effusions of a man of wit; gay, As enormities grew every day less support- vigorous, and airy. His verses to Howard show able, he found it necessary to concur in the Re- great fertility of mind; and his Dorinda has volution. He was one of those lords who sat | been imitated by Pope.
George STEPNEY, descended from the Stepneys | ceived the first part of his education at Westof Pendigrast, in Pembrokeshire, was born at minster, where he passed six years in the ColWestminster, in 1663. Of his father's condition or fortune I have no account. * Having re
Stepney, the first baroniet of that family. See Gran.
ger's History, vol. ii. p. 396, edit. 8vo. 1775. Mr. Cole • It has been conjectured that our Poet was either says, the Poet's father was a grocer. Cole's MSS. in son or grandson of Charles, third son of Sir John Brit. Mus.-C.
lege, he went at nineteen to Cambridge, * where
Post longum honorum Curfum he continued a friendship begun at school with
Brevi Temporis Spatio confectum, Mr. Montague, afterwards Earl of Halifax.
Cum Naturæ parum, Famæ satis vixerat,
Animam ad altiora aspirantem placide efflavit. They came to London together, and are said to have been invited into public life by the Earl of
On the left hand. Dorset.
G. S. His qualifications recommended him to many
Ex Equestri Familia Stepneiorum, foreign employments, so that his time seems to
De Pendegrast, in Comitatu have been spent in negociations. In 1692, he
Pembrochiensi oriundus, was sent envoy to the Elector of Brandenburgh ; Westmonasterii natus est, A. D. 1663. in 1693, to the Imperial Court; in 1694, to the
Electus in Collegium Elector of Saxony; in 1696, to the Electors of
Sancti Petri Westmonast. A. 1676.
Sancti Trinitatis Cantab. 1682. Mentz and Cologne, and the Congress at Franc
Consiliariorum quibus Commercü in 1698, a second time to Brandenburgh;
Cura commissa est 1697. in 1699, to the King of Poland; in 1701, again
Chelseiæ mortuus, et, comitante to the Emperor; and in 1706, to the States
Magnà Procerum general. In 1697, he was made one of the com
Frequentia, huc elatus, 1707. missioners of trade. His life was busy, and not long. He died in 1707 ; and is buried in West It is reported that the juvenile compositions minster Abbey, with this epitaph, which Jacob of Stepney made grey authors blush. I know transcribed :
not whether his poems will appear such wonders to the present age.
One cannot always H.S. E.
easily find the reason for which the world has Georgius STePNETUS, Armiger,
sometimes conspired to squander praise. It is Vir
not very unlikely that he wrote very early as Ob logenii acumen,
well as he ever wrote; and the performances of Literarum Scientiam,
youth have many favourers, because the authors Morum Suavitatem,
yet lay no claim to public honours, and are Rerum Usum,
therefore not considered as rivals by the distriVirorum Amplissimorum Consuetudinem,
hutors of fame. Linguæ, Styli, ac Vitæ Elegantiam, Præclara Officia cum Britanniæ tum Europa
He apparently professed himself a poet, and præstita,
added his name to those of the other wits in the Suå ætate multum celebratus,
version of Juvenal; but he is a very licentious Apud posteros semper celebrandus; translator, and does not recompense his neglect Plurimas Legationes obiit of the author by beauties of his own.
In Ea Fide, Diligentiâ, ac Felicitate,
his original poems, now and then, a happy Ut Augustissimorum Principum
line may perhaps be found, and now and then Gulielmi et Annæ Spem in illo repositam
a short composition may give pleasure. But Nunquam fefellerit,
there is, in the whole, little either of the grace Haud rard superaverit.
of wit, or the vigour of nature.
John PHILIPS was born on the 30th of Decem- told by Dr. Sewel, his biographer, he was soon ber, 1676, at Bampton, in Oxfordshire; of distinguished by the superiority of his exercises ; which place his father, Dr. Stephen Philips, and what is less easily to be credited, so much archdeacon of Salop, was minister. The first endeared himself to his schoolfellows, by his part of his education was domestic; after which civility and good-nature, that they, without he was sent to Winchester, where, as we are murmur or ill-will, saw him indulged by the
master with particular immunities. It is re
lated, that when he was at school, he seldom * He was entered of Trinity College, and took his mingled in play with the other boys, but retired master's degree in 1689.-H.
to his chamber ; where his sovereign pleasure