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[THOUGH the following Ossianade does not immediately come under the description of a Probationary Ode, yet, as it appertains to the nomination of the Laureat, we class it under the same head. We must at the same time compliment Mr. Macpherson for his spirited address to Lord Salisbury on the subject. The following is a copy of his letter:]
I TAKE the liberty to address myself immediately to your Lordship, in vindication of my poetical character, which, I am informed, is most illiberally attacked by the Foreign Gentleman, whom your Lordship has thought proper to select as an assessor on the present scrutiny for the office of Poet Laureat to His Majesty. Signor Delpini is certainly below my notice: but I understand his objections to my Probationary Ode are two;--first, its conciseness; and next, its being in prose. For the present, I shall wave all discussion of these frivolous re
marks; begging leave, however, to solicit your Lordship's protection to the following Supplemental Ode, which, I hope, both from its quantity and its style, will most effectually do away the paltry, insidious attack of an uninformed reviler, who is equally ignorant of British Poetry and of British Language.
I have the honour to be,
Your Lordship's most obedient,
and faithful servant,
SONG OF SCRUTINA,
By MR. MACPHERSON.
HARK! "Tis the dismal sound that echoes on thy roofs, O Cornwall!-Hail! double-face sage! thou worthy son of the chair-borne Fletcher! The Great Council is met to fix the seats of the chosen Chiefs; their. voices resound in the gloomy hall of Rufus, like the roaring winds of the cavern.-Loud were the cries for Rays, but thy voice, O Foxan, rended the walls like the torrent that gusheth from the Mountain-side. Cornwall leaped from his throne, and screamed-the friends of Gwelfo hung their heads-How were the mighty fallen! Lift up thy face, Dundasso, like the brazen shield of thy chieftain! Thou art bold to confront disgrace, and shame is unknown to thy brow-but tender is the youth of thy leader; who droopeth his head like a faded lily-leave not Pitto in the day of defeat, when the Chiefs of the Counties fly from him like the herd from the galled Deer.-The friends of Pitto are fled. He is alone-he layeth himself down in despair, and sleep knitteth up his brow.-Soft were his dreams on the green bench-Lo! the spirit of Jenky arose, pale as the mist of the morn-twisted was his long lank form-his eyes winked as he whispered to the child in the cradle. Rise, he sayeth-arise, bright babe of the dark closet! the shadow of the Throne shall cover thee, like the wings of a hen, sweet chicken of the Back-stair brood! Heed not the Thanes of the Counties; they have fled from thee, like Cackling Geese from the hard-bitten Fox: but will
they not rally and return to the charge? Let the host of the King be numbered; they are as the sands of the barren shore. There is Powno, who followeth his mighty leader, and chaseth the stall-fed stag all day on the dusty road.— There is Howard, great in arms, with the beaming star on his spreading breast.-Red is the scarf that waves over his ample shoulders-Gigantic are his strides on the terrace, in pursuit of the Royal footsteps of lofty Georgio.
No more will I number the flitting shades of Jenky; for behold the potent spirit of the black-browed Jacko,'Tis the Ratten Robinso, who worketh the works of darkness! Hither I come, said Ratten-Like the mole of the earth, deep caverns have been my resting-place; the ground Rats are my food.-Secret minion of the Crown, raise thy soul! Droop not at the spirit of Foxan. Great are thy foes in the sight of the many-tongued war.-Shake not thy knees, like the leaves of the aspen on the misty hill-the doors of the stairs in the postern are locked; the voice of thy foes is as the wind, which whistleth through the vale; it passeth away like the swift cloud of the night.
The breath of Gwelfo stilleth the stormy seas. Whilst thou breathest the breath of his nostrils, thou shalt live for ever. Firm standeth thy heel in the Hall of thy Lord. Mighty art thou in the sight of Gwelfo, illustrious leader of the friends of Gwelfo! great art thou, O lovely imp of the interior closet! O lovely Guardian of the Royal Junto!
MR. MASON having laid aside the more noble subject for a Probationary Ode, viz, the Parliamentary Reform, upon finding that the Rev. Mr. Wyvill had already made a considerable progress in it, has adopted the following. The argument is simple and interesting, adapted either to the harp of Pindar, or the reed of Theocritus, and as proper for the 4th of June, as any day of the year.
It is almost needless to inform the public that the University of Oxford has earnestly longed for a visit from their Sovereign, and, in order to obtain this honour without the fatigue of forms and ceremonies, they have privately desired the Master of the Staghounds, upon turning the stag out of the cart, to set his head in as straight a line as possible, by the map, towards Oxford:which probably, on some auspicious day, will bring the Royal Hunt to the walls of that city. This expedient, conceived in so much wisdom, as well as loyalty, makes the subject of the following