Watlington hill; a poem

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Page 44 - Where the great sun begins his state, Robed in flames, and amber light, The clouds in thousand liveries dight: While the ploughman near at hand, Whistles o'er the furrow'd land, And the milkmaid singeth blithe, And the mower whets his scythe, And every shepherd tells his tale Under the hawthorn in the dale.
Page 44 - And every shepherd tells his tale Under the hawthorn in the dale. Straight mine eye hath caught new pleasures Whilst the landscape round it measures; Russet lawns, and fallows gray, Where the nibbling flocks do stray; Mountains, on whose barren breast The labouring clouds do often rest ; Meadows trim with daisies pied, Shallow brooks, and rivers wide: Towers and battlements it sees Bosom'd high in tufted trees, Where perhaps some Beauty lies, The Cynosure of neighbouring eyes.
Page 45 - As we ascended the hill, the variety of beautiful objects, the agreeable stillness and natural simplicity of the whole scene, gave us the highest pleasure. We at length reached the spot, whence Milton undoubtedly took most of his images ; it is on the top of the hill, from which there is a most extensive prospect on all sides : the distant mountains that seemed to support the...
Page 26 - Then to come in spite of sorrow, And at my window bid good morrow, Through the Sweet-Briar, or the Vine, Or the twisted Eglantine...
Page 45 - From betwixt two aged oaks, &c. It was neither the proper season of the year, nor time of the day, to hear all the rural sounds, and see all the objects mentioned in this description ; but, by a pleasing concurrence of circumstances, we were saluted, on our approach to the village, with the music of the mower and his scythe ; we saw the ploughman intent upon his labor, and the milkmaid returning from her country employment.
Page 47 - The poet's house was close to the church ; the greatest part of it has been pulled down, and what remains belongs to an adjacent farm. I am informed, that several papers in Milton's own hand were found by the gentleman who was last in possession of the estate. The tradition of his having lived there is current among the villagers : one of them showed us a ruinous wall, that made part of his chamber ; and I was much pleased with another, who had forgotten the name of Milton, but recollected him by...
Page 46 - ... description, but that it was a most exact and lively representation of nature. Thus will this fine passage, which has always been admired for its elegance, receive an additional beauty from its exactness. After we had walked, with a kind of poetical enthusiasm, over this enchanted ground, we returned to -the village.
Page 43 - The necessary trouble of correcting the first printed sheets of my history, prevented me to-day from paying a proper respect to the memory of Shakespeare, by attending his jubilee. But I was resolved to do all the honour in my power to as great a poet, and set out in the morning, in company with a friend, to visit a place, where Milton spent some part of his life, and where, in all probability, he composed several of his earliest productions.
Page 44 - I was resolved to do all the honor in my power to as great a poet, and set out in the morning, in company with a friend, to visit a place where Milton spent some part of his life, and where, in all probability, he composed several of his earliest productions. It is a small village, situated on a pleasant hill, about three miles from Oxford, and called Forest-Hill, because it formerly lay contiguous to a forest, which has since been cut down.
Page 48 - Thro' the sweet-briar, or the vine, Or the twisted eglantine; for it is evident, that he meant a sort of honey-suckle by the eglantine; though that word is commonly used for the sweet-briar, which he could not mention twice in the same couplet. " If I ever pass a month or six weeks at Oxford in the summer, I shall be inclined to hire and repair...

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