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diction, a spirit unextinguished by correctness and rhyme, to be found in Mr. POPE's Effay on Man, that will ever render it the honour of our nation and language. And it is not my province at present to determine, what some are apt to difpute, Whether or no this poem (in the words of Dr. Warburton) " hath a precifion, force, and "clofenefs of connection, rarely to be met with even "in the most formal treatises of philosophy ?"

The PLEASURES OF IMAGINATION are, in their very nature, a moft proper and pregnant fubject for a didactic poem. The amiable author who happily fixt on these as his fubject, it must be allowed by the fevereft critic, hath done them ample juftice; whether we confider his glowing and animated ftyle, his lively and picturefque images; the graceful and harmonious flow of his numbers; or the noble spirit of poetical enthusiasm, which breathes through his whole work. But that I may not lose myself in a wide field of panegyric, I will produce the following three paffages, in which images of Greatness, Wonderfulness, and Beauty (from the perception of which all the pleasures of poetry and the imagination principally flow) are thus nobly exemplify'd.


The high-born foul

Difdains to reft his heav'n aspiring wing
Beneath its native quarry. Tir'd of earth
And this diurnal fcene, fhe fprings aloft
Through fields of air; purfues the flying ftorm;


burlefque images with ferious doctrines: fuch is that line (taken from Charron, Book 1. on Wisdom)

"See man for mine, replies a pamper'd goofe."

+ See particularly the defcription of PLEASURE, VIRTUE, and PAIN, Book ii. 409, &c. of a folemn wood, and particularly ver. 290. B. iii. and of a poet at the time of his first conceiving fome great defign, B. iii. ver. 373.

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Rides on the volley'd lightning thro' the heav'ns;
Or yok'd with whirlwinds and the northern blaft,
Sweeps the long tract of day. Then high she soars
The blue profound, and hov'ring o'er the fun
Beholds him pouring the redundant stream
Of light; beholds his unrelenting sway
Bend the reluctant planets and abfolve
The fated rounds of time. Thence far effus'd
She darts her swiftness up the long career
Of devious comets; through its burning signs
Exulting circles the perennial wheel
Of nature, and looks back on all the stars,
Whofe blended light, as with a milky zone,
Invests the orient. Now amaz'd fhe views
Th' empyreal waste, where happy spirits hold,
Beyond this concave heav'n, their calm abode;
And fields of radiance, whofe unfading light
Has travell'd the profound fix thousand years,
Nor yet arrives in fight of mortal things;
Ev'n on the barriers of the world untir'd
She meditates th' eternal depth below;

Till, half recoiling, down the headlong steep
She plunges; foon o'erwhelm'd and swallow'd up
In that immense of being. There her hopes
Reft at the fated goal.-


What need words

To paint its power? For this, the daring youth
Breaks from his weeping mother's anxious arms,
In foreign climes to rove: the penfive fage
Heedlefs of fleep, or midnight's harmful damp,
Hangs o'er the fickly taper; and untir'd
The virgin follows, with inchanted step,
The mazes of fome wild and wond'rous tale


From morn to eve; unmindful of her form,
Unmindful of the happy drefs that stole
The wishes of the youth, when every maid
With envy pin'd. Hence finally, by night
The village-matron, round the blazing hearth,
Sufpends the infant-audience with her tales,
Breathing aftonishment! of witching rhymes,
And evil fpirits of the death-bed call
To him who robb'd the widow and devour'd
The orphan's portion; of unquiet fouls
Ris'n from the grave to ease the heavy guilt
Of deeds in life conceal'd; of shapes that walk
At dead of night, and clank their chains, and wave
The torch of hell about the murd'rer's bed.

At ev'ry folemn paufe the croud recoil
Gazing each other speechlefs, and congeal'd
With fhiv'ring fighs: till eager for th' event,
Around the beldame all erect they hang,
Each trembling heart with grateful terrors quell'd.


Brighteft progeny of heav'n I
How fhall I trace thy features? where select
The rofeate hues to emulate thy bloom?
Hafte then, my fong, thro' nature's wide expanfe,
Hafte then and gather all her comelieft wealth,
Whate'er bright fpoils the florid earth contains,
Whate'er the waters, or the liquid air,
To deck thy lovely labour. Wilt thou fly
With laughing Autumn to th' Atlantic ifles
And range with him th' Hefperian field and fea,
Where'er his fingers touch the fruitful grove,
The branches fhoot with gold; where'er his ftep
Marks the glad foil, the tender clusters glow
With purple ripenefs, and inveft each hill

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As with the blufhes of an evening sky?
Or wilt thou rather stoop thy vagrant plume,
Where, gliding thro' his daughter's honour'd shade,
The fmooth Penéus from his glaffy flood
Reflects purpureal Tempe's pleasant scene?
Fair Tempe haunt belov'd of fylvan pow'rs,
Of nymphs and fauns; where in the golden age
They play'd in fecret on the fhady brink
With ancient Pan, while round their choral steps
Young hours and genial gales with conftant hand,
Shower'd bloffoms, odours, fhower'd ambrofial dews,
And Spring's Elyfian bloom.

I must beg the reader's leave to lay before him one paffage more, with which I shall conclude, both because it is a proper inftance of our author's genius, and because it contains a ftrong and feafonable exhortation to the ftudy of the Grecian literature, which is at present so ftrangely neglected among us, that persons are not wanting who fet up for scholars and critics, without even pretending ever to have perused the Greek claffics.

Genius of ancient Greece! whofe faithful steps
Well-pleas'd I follow thro' the facred paths
Of nature and of fcience; nurse divine
Of all heroic deeds and fair defires!
O! let the breath of thy extended praise
Inspire my kindling bofom to the height

Of this untempted theme. Nor be my thoughts
Prefumptuous counted, if, amid the calm
That foothes this vernal evening into smiles,
I fteal impatient from the fordid haunts
Of ftrife and low ambition to attend
Thy facred prefence in the fylvan shade,
By their malignant footsteps ne'er profan'd.
Defcend, propitious! to my favour'd eye;
Such in thy mien, thy warm, exalted air,

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As when the Perfian tyrant, foil'd and ftung
With fhame and desperation, gnafh'd his teeth
To fee thee rend the pageants of his throne;
And at the lightning of thy lifted spear
Crouch'd like a flave. Bring all thy martial spoils,
Thy palms, thy laurels, thy triumphant fongs,
Thy fmiling band of arts, thy godlike fires
Of civil wisdom, thy heroic youth
Warm from the schools of glory. Guide my way
Thro' fair Lyceum's walk, the green retreats
Of Academus, and the thymy vale,

Where oft enchanted with Socratic founds,
Iliffus pure devolv'd his tuneful ftream
In gentler murmurs. From the blooming store
Of thefe aufpicious fields, may I unblam'd
Transplant fome living bloffoms, to adorn
My native clime: while far above the flight
Of fancy's plume afpiring, I unlock

The springs of ancient wisdom; while I join
Thy name, thrice honour'd! with th' immortal praise
Of nature; while to my compatriot youth

I point the high example of thy fons,
And tune to Attic themes the British lyre.

Book i. ver. 567.

APR 2 6 1918

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