Page images
PDF
EPUB

Character of Father PAUL. From the fame.

CARPI, bleft name! from every foible clear, '.
U Not more to Science than to Virtue dear.
Thy pen, thy life, of equal praise fecure!
Both wisely bold, and both sublimely pure!
That Freedom' bids me on thy merits dwell,
Whose radiant form illum'd thy letter'd cell;
Who to thy band the nobleft talk aflign'd,
That earth can offer to a heavenly mind:
With Reason's arms to guard invaded laws,
And guide the pen of Truth in Freedom's cause.
Too firm of heart at Danger's cry to ltoop,
Nor Lucre's flave, nor vain Ambition's dupe,
Thro' length of days invariably the same,
Thy country's liberty thy conttant aim!
For this thy spirit dard ih' Affafin's knife,
That with repeated guilt pursu'd thy life;
For this thy fervent and unweary'd care
Form'd, ev'n in death, thy patriotic prayer,
And, while his lhadows on thine eye lids hung,
Be it immortal!" trembled on thy tongue.

[ocr errors]

Charakter of VOLTAIRE. From the same. · ,

THO' Pontiffs execrate, and Kings betray,

Let nat this fate your generous warmth allay,
Ye kindred Worthies! who ftill dare to wield
Reason's keen sword, and Toleration's shield,
In climes where Periecution's iron mace
Is rais'd to mailacre the human race!
The heart of Nature will your virtue feel,
And her immortal voice reward your zeal,
First in her praise her fearless champions live,
Crown'd with the noblest palms that earth can give.
Firm in this band, who to her aid advance,
And high amid th' Historic fons of France,
Delighted Nature faw, with partial care,
The lively vigour of the gay VOLTAIRE;
And tondly gave him, with ANACREON's fire :
To throw the hand of Age across the lyre:
But mute that vary'd voice, which pleas'd ro long!
Th' Historian's tale is clos'd, the Poet's song!
Within the narrow tomb behold him lie,
Who fill'd lo large a space in Learning's eye!

P 3

Thou

Thou Mind unweary'd! thy long toils are o'er ;
Censure and Praise can touch thy ear no more :
Still let me breathe with just regret thy name,
Lament thy foibles, and thy powers proclaim!

On the wide fea of Letters 'twas thy boast
- To croud each fail, and touch at every coaft:

From that rich deep how often haft thou brought
The pure and precious pearls of splendid Thought!
How didst thou triumph on that subject-tide,
Till Vanity's wild gult, and stormy Pride,
Drove thy strong bark, in evil hour, to split
Upon the fatal rock of impious Wit!
But be thy failings cover'd by thy tomb!
And guardian laurels o'er thy a thes bloom !

From the long anpals of the world thy art,
With chemic process, drew the richer part;
To Hift'ry gave a philofophic air,
And made the interest of mankipd her care ;
Pleas'd her grave brow with garlands to adorn,
And from the role of Knowledge strip the thorn.--

Thy lively Eloquence, in prose, in verse,
Still keeply bright, and elegantly terle,
Flames with bold spirit; yet is idly rash :
Thy promis'd light is oft a dazzling fath;
Thy wisdom verges to sarcastic sport,
Satire thy joy! and ridicule thy fort!
But the gay Genius of the Gallic soil,
Shrinking from solemn tasks of serious toil,
Thro' every scene his playful air maintains,
And in the light Memoir unrival'd reigns.
Thy Wits, O France! (as e'en thy Critics own)
Support not History's majestic tone;
They, like thy Soldiers, want, in feats of length,
The persevering foul of British strength,

Characters of CAMDEN, RAWLEIGH, CLARENDON, BURNET, RAPIN,

HUME, LYTTELTON. From the fame.
L AIL to thee, Britain! hail! delightful land I
IT I spring with filial joy to reach thy ftrand;
And thou! bleft nourisher of Souls, sublime
As e'er immortaliz'd their native clime,
Rich in Poetic treasures, yet excuse
The trivial offering of an humble Muse,
Who pants to add, with fears by love o'ercome,
Her mite of Glory to thy countless sum!'
With vary'd colours, of the richest die,
Fame's brilliant bangers o'er thy Offspring #y:

In native Vigour bold, by Freedom led, No path of honour have they fail'd to tread: But while they wisely plan, and bravely dare, Their own atchievements are their latelt care. Tho' CAMDEN, rich in Learning's various store, Sought in Tradition's mine Truth's genuine ore, The waste of Hift'ry lay in lifeless shade, Tho' RAWLEIGH's piercing eye that world survey'd.' Tho' mightier names there cast a casual glance, They seem'd to faunter round the field by chance, Till CLARENDON arose, and in the hour When civil Discord wak'd each mental Power, With brave desire to reach this distant goal, Strain'd all the vigour of his manly soul. Nor Truth, nor Freedom's injur'd Powers, allow A wreath unspotted to his haughty brow : Friendship's firm spirit ftill his fame exalts, With sweet atonement for his lesser faults. His pomp of phrase, his period of a mile, And all the maze of his bewilder'd style, Illum'd by warmth of heart, no more oftend: What cannot Tafte forgive, in FALKLAND's friend? Nor flow his praises from this fingle fource; One province of his art displays his force: His Portraits boast, with features strongly like, The soft precision of the clear VANDYKE: Tho', like the Painter, his faint talents yield, And fink embarrass'd in the Epic field, Yet fhall his labours long adorn our ifle, Like the proud glories of fome Gothic pile : They, tho' constructed by a Bigot's hand, Nor nicely finish’d, por correctly plan'd, .' With solemn Majesty, and pious Gloom, An awful influence o'er the mind assume; And from the alien eyes of every sect Attra&t observance, and command respect.

In following years, when thy great name, NASSAU ! Stampt the bleft deed of Liberty and Law; When clear, and guiltless of Oppreffion's rage, There rose in Britain an Augustan age, And cluster'd Wits, by emulation bright, Diffus'd o'er Anwa's reign their mental light; That conttellation seemd, cho' strong its flame, To want the splendor of Hiftoric fame: Yet Burnet's page may lasting glory hope, Howe'er insulted by the Spleen of Popg. Tho' his rough language hafte and warmth denote, With ardent Honefty of foul he wrote ;

Tho' critic cenfures on his work may shower,' ;
Like faith, his freedom has a faving power,

Nor shalt thou want, RAPIN! thy well-earn'd praisc,
The sage POLYBIUS thou of modern days ! »
Thy sword, thy pen, have both thy name endear'd;
This join'd our arms, and that our story clear'd: '10
Thy foreign hand discharg'd th' Historian's trust,
Untway'd by Party, and to Freedom jutt. is
To letter'd Fame we own thy fair pretence, ...
Fron. patient Labour, and froin candid Sente.
Yet public. Favour, ever hard to fix, . .
Flew from thy page, as heavy and prolix.
For soon, emerging from the Sophift's school,
With Spirit eager, yet with Judgment cool,
With rübtle ikill to steal upon applause, i
And give falle vigour to the weaker cause;.
To paint a fpecious scene with nicest art, '
Retouch the whole, and varpith every part;
Graceful in Style, in Argument acute;
Master of every trick in keen Dispute!
With these strong powers to form a winning tale,
And hide Deceit in Moderation's veil, men
High on the pinnacle of Fashion plac'd, :
Hume shone the idol of Historic Taste. .
Already, pierc'd by Freedoin's searching rays,
The waxen fabric of his fame decays. --
Think not, keen Spirit ! that there hands presume.
To tear each leaf of laurel from thy tomb!
Thele hands! which, if a heart of human frame
Could Itoop to harbour that ungenerous aim,
Would shield thy grave, and give, with guardian care,
Each type of Eloquence to flourish there!
But public Love commands'the painful talk,
I'rom the pretended Sage to lirip the matk, in
When his false tongue, averle to Freedom's cause,
Profanes the 1pirit of her ancient laws.
As Aga's soothing opiate drugs, by fealth, as
Shake every flackend nerve, and lap the health;: ..
Thy writings thus, with noxious charms retin'd,
Seeming to soothe its ills, unnerve the mind,
While the keen cunning of thy hand pretends :
To strike alone at Party's 'abject ends, 'q . ..
Our hearts more free from l'action's weeds we feel''
But they have lost the flower of Patriot zeal.. :
Wild as thy feeble Metaphysic page,
Thy Hift'ry rambles into Sceptic rage;
Wbole giddy and fantastic dreams abuse
A Hampden's Virtue, and a SHAKESPEARE's Muse,

With purer spirit, free from party strife,
To fooibe bis evening hour of honour'd life,
See candid LYTTELTON at lengih unfold
The deeds of liberty in days of old !
Fond of the theme, and narrative with age,
He winds the lengthen'd tale thro' many a page;
But there the beams of Patriot Virtue (hine;
There Truth and Freedom fanctity the line,
And laurels, due to Civil Wisdom, thield
This noble Nettor of th' Historic field.

The living names, who there display their power,
And give its glory to the pref-ot hour,
I pass with mule regard ; in fear to fail,

Weighing their worth in a suspected scale: i Thy right, Pofterity! I facred hold,

im. To fis ihe ftamp on literary gold; .: Bleft! if this lighter ore, which I prepare 7" For thy supreme Affay, with anxious care, : Thy current sanction unimpeach'd enjoy,

As only tinctur'd with a slight alloy!

RONDEAU. Sung by Mirs. Barthelemon, at Ranelagh.

MTIGHT and day the anxious lover
IV Is attentive to the fair,
Till the doubtful courtship's over:
! Is the then lo much his care?

Warm as Summer his addresles,

Hope and ardour's in his eyes;
Cool as Winter his earetles,

When the yields his captive prize.

Now the owner of her beauty,

Sees no more aii Angel face;
Ilalf is love, the rest is duty :

Pleafure sure is in the chace.

ACCOUNT

« PreviousContinue »