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THE BARDIAD.

CANTO I.

SUMMARY.

INVOCATION. The origin, nature, and perfection of the poetic art.— The various sources of poetry.-Silence, Solitude; Young-Dodd-Hervey—— Ossian. Melancholy; Kirk White-Chatterton-Warton-Smith.— Grief; Shaw-Mason-Gray.-Love; examples-youth—Ovid-Tibullus-Anacreon -Moore-Troubadours.-Wit, comic and satiric poetry; Butler-SyntaxLucilius-Juvenal-Horace-Boileau-Rochester-Prior-Gay-Swift-Rabelais.—Nature, pastoral and picturesque poetry, &c.; Theocritus-—Virgil— Gessner-Thomson-Burns - Scott-Hogg-Falconer - Goldsmith — Crubbe —Bloomfield — Gisborne —Shenstone —Denham—Somerville—Wordsworth— Montgomery. Mind; intellectual poetry; Beattie - Rogers - Campbell — Akenside-Collins.-History; epic poetry; Homer—Virgil-Milton—Lucan -Le Trissin-Camouens-Tasso-(Ariosto)—Voltaire.

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Canto E

GERM of enthusiast Nature, POESY!
Spirit of verse! my fervid soul, to thee
Symphonious, warm'd with thy ethereal glow,
Welcomes thy inspiration; and, with flow
Of earthly sounds and humblest melody,
Echoes the thought it but receives from thee.
O! heavenly Patroness! extend thy wings,
The Bard to shelter who thine honour sings!

Thy sources, num'rous as thy varied laws,
From which each Poet inspiration draws;
Who Thee have honour'd in the golden line,

And who disgrac'd the influence divine,
Thoughtful, we trace.-How man, with fond desire
Inflam'd, or kindled by resistless fire,

C

'Gan first to try the "imitative” strain,*
Religious rites, high gods, and heroes slain
To celebrate, in "metre and harmonious verse,"
We now enquire not. Nor, shall we rehearse
What ORPHEUS chanted on Apollo's lyre,
To raise Eurydice from realms of fire;
By what strange melodies he overcame
Mortals, more difficult than beasts to tame;
What LINUS Sang, in rude inceptive lays;
Or HESIOD taught us in his "works and days."
Nor, shall we trace the brightening course along
From Dithyrambic verse and Phallic song,
When first, with pastoral flute and Doric reed,
They sang or shepherd's love or monarch's deed,
Till rose the Art, from casual melody,

To finish'd Ode and splendid Epopee.

Is thy sweet power a "taint of madness" hight? So thought sage Plato and the Stagyrite:†

*See Aristotle's Poetics.

+ See Aristotle's Poetics.

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