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phic ode.

The song

Of Lyric

HE variety of subjects, which are allowed the lyric Longinus has preserved a fragment of Sappho, an an- of Lyric Poetry.

Poetry. poet, makes it necessary to consider this species of cient Greek poetess, which is in great reputation amongst poetry under the following heads, viz. the sublime ode, the critics, and bas been so happily translated by Mr the lesser ode, and the song. We shall begin with the Philips as to give the English reader a just idea of the

The Saplowest, and proceed to that which is more eminent. spirit, ease, and elegance of that admired author ; and

I. Songs are little poetical compositions, usually set show how exactly she copied nature. To enter into the
to a tune, and frequently sung in company by way of beauties of this ode, we must suppose a lover sitting by
entertainment and diversion. Of these we have in our his mistress, and thus expressing his passion :
language a great number; but, considering that num-

Blest as th’ immortal gods is he,
ber, not many which are excellent ; for, as the duke of

The youth who fondly sits by thee,
Buckingham observes,

And sees and hears thee all the while
Though nothing seems more easy, yet no part

Softly speak, and sweetly smile.
Of poetry requires a nicer art.

'Twas this depriv'd my soul of rest,

And rais'd such tumults in my breast; The song admits of almost any subject ; but the For while I gaz'd, in transport tost, greatest part of them turn either upon love, contentment,

My breath was gone, my voice was lost. or the pleasures of a country life, and drinking. Be the

My bosom glow'd, the subtle flame subject, however, what it will, the verses should be easy, Ran quick through all my vital frame: natural, and flowing, and contain a certain harmony, so O'er


dim eyes a darkness hung; that poetry and music may be agreeably united. In these

My ears with hollow murmurs rung. compositions, as in all others, obscene and profane ex

In dewy damps my limbs were chill'd, pressions should be carefully avoided, and indeed every My blood with gentle horrors thrillid; thing that tends to take off that respect which is due

My feeble pulse forgot to play; to religion and virtue, and to encourage vice and im. I fainted, sunk, and dy'd away. morality. As the best songs in our language are al

After this instance of the Sapphic ode, it may not The Ana. ready in every band, it would seem superfluous to insert examples. For further precepts, however, as well

be improper to speak of that sort of ode which is called crcontic as select examples, in this species of composition, we

Anacreontic; being written in the manner and taste of ode. may refer the reader to the elegant Essay on Song wit, and the exquisite, yet easy and natural, turn of liis

Anacreon, a Greck poet, famous or the delicacy of his
Writing, by Mr Aikio.
The distin II. The lesser ode. The distinguishing character of poesy. We have several of his odes still extant, and
guishing this is sweetness; and as the pleasure we receive from

many modern ones in imitation of him, which are most-
of the lesser affecting the passions, great regard should be paid to the
och lite flesser this sort of poem arises principally from its soothing and ly composed in verses of seven syllables, or three feet

and half. language as well as to the thoughts and numbers.

We shall give the young student one or two examples

of his manner from Mr Fawkes's excellent translation.
Th’ expression should be easy, fancy high;

The following ode on the power of gold, which had
Yet that not seem to creep, nor this to fly:

been often attempted but with little success, this gentle-
No words transpos’d, but in such order all,

man has translated very happily.
As, though hard wrought, may seem by chance to fall.

Love's a pain that works our wo;

Not to love is painful too :
The style, indeed, should be easy: but it may be also

But, alas ! the greatest pain
florid and figurative. It solicits delicacy, but disdains Waits the love that meets disdain.
affectation. The thoughts should be natural, chaste, and

What avails ingenuous worth,
elegant; and the numbers various, smooth, and harmo.

Sprightly wit, or noble birth?
nious. A few examples will sufficiently explain what All these virtues useless prove ;
we mean.

Gold alone engages love.
Vol. XVII. Part I.





of Lyric Poetry.

I 24

May he be completely curst,
• Think, O think! what cruel pains

Or Luric
Who the sleeping mischief first

• He that's stung by thee sustains.'

Wak'd to life, and, vile before,

Among the most successful of this poet's English imi-
Stamp'd with worth the sordid ore.

tators may be reckoned Dr Johnson and Mr Prior. The Imitation Gold creates in brethren strife;

following ode on Evening by the former of these writers of AnacreGold destroys the parent's life;

0:1 and
has, if we mistake not, the very spirit and air of Anacreon.
Gold produces civil jars,

Evening now from purple wings
Murders, massacres, and wars ;

Sheds the grateful gifts she brings ;
But the worst effect of gold,

Brilliant drops bedeck the mead ;
Love, alas! is bought and sold.

Cooling breezes shake the reed;
His ode on the vanity of riches is of a piece with the Shake the recd and curl the stream
above, and conveys a good lesson to those who are over Silver'd o'er with Cynthia's beam;
anxious for wealth.

Near the chequer'd lonely grove

Hears, and keeps thy secrets, Love.
If the treasur'd gold could give

Stella, thither let us stray !
Man a longer term to live,

Lightly o'er the dewy way.
I'd employ my utmost care

Phæbus drives his burning car
Still to keep, and still to spare ;

Hence, my lovely Stella, far:
And, when death approach'd, would say,

In bis stead the queen of night
• Take thy fee, and walk away.'

Round us pours a lambent light;
But since riches cannot save

Light that seems but just to show
Mortals from the gloomy grave,

Breasts that beat, and cheeks that glow :
Why should I myself deceive,

Let us now, in whisper'd joy,
Vainly sigh, and vainly grieve ?

Evening's silent hours employ;
Death will surely be my lot,

Silence best, and conscious shades,
Whether I am rich or not.

Please the hearts that love invades :
Give me freely while I live

Other pleasures give them pain;
Generous wines, in plenty give

Lovers all but love disdain.
Soothing joys my life to cheer,

But of all the imitations of the playful bard of Greece
Beauty kind, and friends sincere ;
Happy! could I ever find

that we have ever met with, the most perfect is the fol-
Friends sincere, and beauty kind.

lowing Anacreontic by the regent duke of Orleans.

1. But two of the most admired, and perhaps the most

Je suis né pour les plaisirs ;

Bien fou que s'en passe :
imitated, of Anacreon's odes, are that of Mars wounded
by one of the darts of Love, and Cupid stung by a

Je ne veux pas les choisir;

Souvent le choix m'embarrasse :
Bee; both which are wrought up with fancy and deli-
cacy, and are translated with elegance and spirit.--Take

Aime t'on ? J'aime soudain;

Bois t'on ? J'ai la verre à la main ;
that of Cupid stung by a bee.

Je tiens par tout ma place.
Once as Cupid, tir'd with play,

On a bed of roses lay,

Dormir est un temps perdu;
A rude bee, that slept unseen,

Faut il qu'on s'y livre ?
The sweet breathing buds between,

Sommeil, prends ce qui t'est du;
Stung bis finger, cruel chance!

Mais attends que je sois yere :
With its little pointed lance.

Saisis moi dans cet instant ;
Straight he fills the air with cries,

Fais moi dormir promptement ;
Weeps, and sobs, and runs, and flies ;

Je suis pressé de vivre.
'Till the god to Venus came,

Lovely, laughter-loviog dame :

Mais si quelque objet charmant,
Then he thus began to plain ;

Dans un songe aimable,
“ Oh! undone I die with pain-

Vient d'un plaisir seduisant “ Dear mamma, a serpent small,

M'offrir l'image agréable ; “ Which a bee the ploughman call,

Sommeil, allons doucement; Imp'd with wings, and arm'd with dart,

L'erreur est en ce moment
“ Ob !-has stung me to the heart."

Un bonheur veritable.
Venus thus reply'd, and smild :
• Dry those tears for shame! my child;

Translation of the Regent's Anacrcontic (E).
• If a bee can wound so deep,

Frolic and free, for pleasure born, • Causing Cupid thus to weep,

The self-denying fool I scorn.


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(E) We give this translation, both because of its excellence, and because it is said to have been the production of no less a man than the late Lord Chatham.

of Lyric
The proller'd joy I ne'er refuse;
Thy breath to Eliza's no fragrance hath in't,

Of Lyric l'oetry. "Tis oft-times troublesome to chuse.

And but dull is thy bloom to ber cheek's blushing tint. Poctry. Lov'st thou, my friend ? I love at sight:

Yet, alas!


fair flow'r, that bloom will decay,
Drink'st thou ? this bumper does thee right. And all thy lov'd beauties soon wither away;
At random with the stream I flow,

Tho' pluck'd by her hand, to whose touch we must own,
And play my part where'er I go.

Harsh and rough is the cygnet's most delicate down :">
Great God of Sleep, since we must be

Thou too, snowy hand; nay, I mean not to preach ;

But the rose, lovely moralist, suffer to teach.
Oblig'd to give some hours to thee,
Invade me not till the full bowl

“ Extol not, fair maiden, thy beauties o'er mine;
Glows in my cheek, and warms my soul.

They too are short-liv'd, and they too must decline ;

And small, in conclusion, the diff'rence appears,
Be that the only time to snore,

In the bloom of few days, or the bloom of few years !
When I can love and drink no more :

But remember a virtue the rose bath to boast,
Short, very short, then be thy reign ;
For I'm in baste to live again.
Its fragrance remains when its beauties are lost!"

1 26 But 0! if melting in my arms,

We come now to those odes of the more florid and Odes more figurative kind, of which we bave many in our language

forid and In some soft dream, with all her charms,

that deserve particular commendation. Mr Warton's figurative.
The nymph belov'd should then surprise,
And grant what waking she denies;

Ode to Fancy has been justly admired by the best judges;
Then prithee, gentle Slumber, stay ;

for though it has a distant resemblance of Milton's

l'Allegro and Il Penseroso, yet the work is original; the
Slowly, ah slowly, bring the day :

thoughts are mostly new and various, and the language
Let no rude noise my bliss destroy ;
Such sweet delusion's real joy.

and numbers elegant, expressive, and harmonious.

O parent of each lovely muse, 125 Sappho.

We have mentioned Prior as an imitator of Anacreon; Thy spirit o'er my soul diffuse ! but the reader has by this time had a sufficient specimen O’er all my artless songs preside, of Anacreontics. The following Answer to Cloe jealous, My footsteps to thiy temple guide! which was written when Prior was sick, has much of

To offer at thy turf-built shrine the elegant tenderness of Sappho.

In golden cups no costly wine,

No murder'd fatling of the flock,
Yes, fairest proof of beauty's power,

But flow'rs and honey from the rock.
Dear idol of my panting heart,

O nymph, with loosely flowing hair,
Nature points this my fatal hour :

With buskin'd leg, and bosom bare ;
And I have liv'd : and we must part.

Thy waist with myrtle-girdle bound,
While now I take my last adieu,

Thy brows with Indian feathers crown'd;
Heave thou no sigh, nor shed a tear ;

Waving in thy snowy hand
Lest yet my half-clos'd eye may view

An all-commanding magic wand,
On earth an object worth its care.

Of pow'r to bid fresh gardens blow
From jealousy's tormenting strife

'Mid cheerless Lapland's barren snow :
For ever be thy bosom freed ;

Whose rapid wings thy flight convey,
That nothing may disturb thy life,

Through air, and over earth and sea ;
Content I hasten to the dead.

While the vast various landscape lies
Yet when come better-fated youth

Conspicuous to thy piercing eyes.
Shall with his am'rous parly move thee,

O lover of the desert, hail !
Reflect one moment on his truth

Say, in what deep and pathleso vale,
Who, dying, thus persists to love thee.

Or on what hoary mountain's side,

Midst falls of water, you reside ;
There is much of the softness of Sappho, and the

Midst broken rocks, a rugged scene,
sweetness of Anacreon and Prior, in the following ude,


dales between ;
which is ascribed to the unfortunate Dr Dodd; and

'Midst forests dark of aged oak, was written in compliment to a lady, who, being sick,

Ne’er echoing with the woodman's stroke; had sent the author a moss rose-bud, instead of making

Where never human art appear’d, his family a visit. This piece is particularly to be

Nor ev'n one straw-roof'd cott was rear'd; esteemed for the just and striking moral with which it

Where Nature seems to sit alone,
is pointed.

Majestic on a craggy throne.
The slightest of favours bestow'd by the fair,

Tell me the path, sweet wand'rer! tell,
With rapture we take, and with triumph we wear;

To tliy unknown sequester'd cell,
But a moss-woven rose-bud, Eliza, from thee,

Where woodbines cluster round the door,
A well-pleasing gift to a monarch would be.

Where shells and moss o'erlay the floor,
-Ah! that illnėss, too cruel, forbidding should stand, And on whose top an hawthorn blows,
And refuse me the gift from thy own lovely hand!

Amid whose thickly-woven boughs
With joy I receive it, with pleasure will view,

Some nightingale still builds her nest,
Reminded of thee, by its odour and hue :

Each ev'ning warbling thee to rest.
“Sweet rose, let me tell thee, though charming thy bloom, Then lay me by the haunted stream,
Tho' thy fragrance excels Seba's richest perfume ;

Wrapt in some wild poetic dream ;
A 2


and grassy

Of Lyric

Iu converse while methinks I rove

When young ey'd Spring profusely throws of Lyric With Spenser through a fairy grove ;

From her green lap the pink and rose ;

Till suddenly awak d, I hear

When the soft turtle of the dale
Strange whisper'd music in my ear;

To Summer tells her tender tale ;
And my glad soul in bliss is drown'd

When Autumn cooling caverns seeks,
By the sweetly soothing sound !

And stains with wine his jolly cheeks ;
Me, goddess, by the right-hand lead,

When Winter, like poor pilgrim old,
Sometimes through the yellow mead;

Shakes his silver beard with cold;
Where Joy and white-rob’d Peace resort,

At ev'ry season let my ear
And Venus keeps her festive court ;

Thy solemn whispers, Fancy, hear.
Where Mirth and Youth each ev’ning meet,

O warm enthusiastic maid !
And lightly trip with nimble feet,

Without thy powerful, vital aid,
Nodding their lily-crowned heads,

That breathes an energy divine,
Where Laughter rose-lip'd Hebe leads;

That gives a soul to ev'ry line,
Where Echo walks steep hills among,

Ne'er may I strive with lips profane,
List’ning to the shepherd's song.

To utter an unballow'd strain ;
Yet not these flow'ry fields of joy

Nor dare to touch the sacred string,
Can long my pensive mind employ;

Save when with smiles thou bid'st me sing.
Haste, Fancy, from the scenes of Folly,

O hear our pray’r, 0 hither come
To meet the matron Melancholy !

From thy lamented Shakespeare's tomb,
Goddess of the tearful eye,

On which thou lov'st to sit at eve,
That loves to fold her arms and sigh.

Musing o'er thy darling's grave.
Let us with silent footsteps go


queen of numbers, once again
To charnels, and the house of wo;

Animate some chosen swain,
To Gothic churches, vaults, and tombs,

Who, fill'd with unexhausted fire,
Where each sad night some virgin comes,

May boldly smite the sounding lyre ;
With throbbing breast and faded cheek,

Who with some new, unequall'd song,
Her promisd bridegroom's urn to seek :

May rise above the rhyming throng :
Or to some abbey's mould’ring tow'rs,

O'er all our list’ning passions reign,
Where, to avoid cold wint'ry show'rs,

O’erwhelm our souls with joy and pain ;
The naked beggar shivering lies,

With terror shake, with pity move,
While whistling tempests round her rise,

Rouze with revenge, or melt with love.
And trembles lest the tott’ring wall

O deign t'attend his evening walk,
Should on ber sleeping infants fall.

With him in groves and grottoes talk ;
Now let us louder strike the lyre,

Teach him to scorn, with frigid art,
For my heart glows with martial fire ;

Feebly to touch th' enraptur'd heart;
I feel, I feel, with sudden heat,

Like lightning, let his mighty verse
My big tumultuous bosom beat;

The bosom's inmost foldings pierce ;
The trumpet's clangors pierce my ear,

With native beauties win applause,
A thousand widows sbrieks I hear :

Beyond cold critics studied laws :
Give me another horse, I cry ;

O let each muse's fame increase !
Lo, the base Gallic squadrons fly!

O bid Britannia rival Greece!
Whence is this rage


spirit, say, To battle burriez me away

The following ode, written by Mr Smart on the 5th ?

of December (being the birth-day of a beautiful young 'Tis Fancy, in her fiery car,

lady), is much to be admired for the variety and harTransports me to the thickest war ;

mony of the numbers, as well as for the beauty of the There whirls me o'er the hills of slain,

thoughts, and the elegance and delicacy of the compliWhere tumult and destruction reign ;

ment. It has great fire, and yet great sweetness, and is
Where, mad with pain, the wounded steed,

the happy issue of genius and judgment united.
Tramples the dying and the dead;
Where giant Terror stalks around,

. Ilail eldest of the monthly train,
With sullen joy surveys the ground,

Sire of the winter drear,
And, pointing to th’ ensanguin'd field,

December! in whose iron reign
Shakes his dreadful

Expires the chequer'd year.
shield !

O guide me from this horrid scene

Hush all the blust'ring blasts that blow,
To high arch'd walks and alleys green,

And proudly plum’d in silver snow,
Which lovely Laura seeks, to shun

Smile gladly on this blest of days ;
The fervors of the mid-day sun.

The livery'd clouds shall on thee wait,

And Phoebus shine in all his state
The pangs of absence, O remove,
For thou can’st place me near my love ;

With more than summer rays.
Can'st fold in visionary bliss,

Though jocund June may justly boast
And let me think I steal a kiss ;

Long days and happy hours;
While her ruby lips dispense

Though August be Pomona's host,
Luscious.nectar’s quintessence!

And May be crown’d with flow'rs :


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