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But yet, so near all modern worthies run, O’erTaste awhile these pseudo-bards prevail: 'Tis doubtful whom to seek, or whom to Each country-book-club bows the knee to shun;
Baal, Nor know we when to spare, or where to And, hurling lawful genius from the throne,
Erects a shrine and idol of its own; Our bards and censors are so much alike. Some leaden calf – but whom it matters not,
From soaring SOUTHEY down to groveling
Stott. Then should you ask me, why I venture
o'er The path which Pops and GIPFORD trod Behold! in various throngs the scribbbefore;
ling crew, If not yet sicken'd, you can still proceed; For notice eager, pass in long review: Go on; my rhyme will tell you as you read. Each spnrs his jaded Pegasus apace,
And rhyme and blank maintain an equal race,
Sonnets on sonnets crowd, and ode on ode; Time was, ere yet in these degenerate days And tales of terror jostle on the road; Ignoble themes obtain'd mistaken praise, Immeasurable measures move along; When Sense and Wit with Poesy allied, For simpering Folly loves a varied soog. No fabled Graces, flourish'd side by side, To strange mysterious Dalness still the From the same fount their inspiration drew,
friend, And, rear'd by Taste, bloom'd fairer as Admires the strain she cannot comprehend.
Thus Lays of Minstrels - may they be the Then, in this happy isle, a Pope's pure strain
last! Sought the rapt soul to charm, nor sought On half-strung harps whine mournful to in vain;
the blast, A polish'd nation's praise aspired to claim, While mountain-spirits prate to river sprites, And raised the people's, as the poet's fame. That dames may listen to their sound at Like him great DRYDEN pour'd the tide of
nights! song ;
And goblin-brats, of Gilpin Horner's brood, In stream less smooth, indeed, yet doubly Decoy young border-nobles through the strong;
wood, Then CONGREVE's scenes could cheer, or And skip at every step,Lord knows how bigh.
OTWAY's melt- And frighten foolish babes, the Lord know For nature then an English audience felt.
why; But why these names, or greater still, While high-born ladies in their magic cell
Forbidding knights to read who cannot spell. When all to feebler bards resign their place? Despatch a courier to a wizard's grave, Yet to such times our lingering looks are And fight with honest men to shield a knare.
cast, When taste and reason with those times
Next view in state, proud prancing en Now look around,and turn each trifling page,
his roan, Survey the precious works that please the The golden-crested haughty Marmion,
Now forging scrolls, now foremost in the This truth at least let Satire's self allow,
fight, No dearth of bards can be complain’d of now: Not quite a felon, yet but half a knight, The loaded press beneath her labour groans, | The gibbet or the field prepared to graceAnd printers’devils shake their weary bones; A mighty mixture of the great and base. While SOUTHEY's epics cram the creaking And thinkst thou, Scott! by vain conceit shelves,
perchance, And LITTLE's lyrics shine in hot-press' On public taste to foist thy stale romance,
To yield thy muse just half-a-crown per line! Thus saith the Preacher, “nought beneath No! when the sons of song descend to trade,
Their bays are sear,their former laurels fade. Is new;" yet still from change to change Let such forego the poet's sacred name,
Who rack their brains for lucre,not for fame: What varied wonders tempt us as they pass! Low may they sink to merited contempt The cow-pox, tractors, galvanism, and gas And Scorn remunerate the mean attempt! In turns appear, to make the vulgar stare, Such be their mecd,such still the just reward Till the swoln bubble bursts—and all is air. Of prostituted muse and hireling bard! Nor less new schools of poetry arise, For this we spurn Apollo's venal son, Where dull pretenders grapple for the prize:1 And bid a long “good night to Marmion."
These are the themes that claim our | If still in Berkley Ballads, most uncivil,
Thou wilt devote old women to the devil, These are the bards to whom the muse The babe unborn thy dread intent may rue :
must bow: "God help thee," SOUTHEY, and thy readers While Milton, DRYDEN, Pope, alike forgot,
too. Resign their hallow'd bays to WALTER SCOTT.
Next comes the dull disciple of thy school, The time has been, when yet the muse That mild apostate from poetic rule,
was young, The simple WORDSWORTH, framer of a lay When HOMER swept the lyre and Maro sung, As soft as evening in his favourite May; An epic scarce ten centuries could claim, Who warns his friend to shake off toil While awe-struck nations hail'd the magic
And quit his books, for fear of growing The work of each immortal bard appears
double;" The single wonder of a thousand years. Who, both by precept and example, shows Empires have moulder'd from the face of That prose is verse and verse is merely prose,
Convincing all, by demonstration plain, Tongues have expired with those who gave Poetic souls delight in prose insane;
them birth, And Christmas-stories, tortured into rhyme, Without the glory such a strain can give, Contain the essence of the true sublime: As even in ruin bids the language live. Thus when he tells the tale of Betty Foy, Not so with us, though minor bards, content, The idiot mother of “an idiot boy;" On one great work a life of labour spent: A moon-struck silly lad who lost his way, With eagle-pinion soaring to the skies, And, like his bard, confounded night with Behold the ballad-monger SOUTHEY rise;
day, To him let Camoens, Milton, Tasso, yield, So close on each pathetic part he dwells, Whose annual strains, like armies, take And each adventure so sublimely tells,
That all who view the “idiot in his glory," First in the ranks see Joan of Arc advance, Conceive the Bard the hero of the story. The scourge of England, and the boast of
France ! Though burnt by wicked Bedford for a Shall gentle COLERIDGB pass unnoticed witch,
here, Behold her statue placed in Glory's niche; To turgid ode and tumid stanza dear? Her fetters burst, and just released from Though themes of innocence amuse him best,
Yet still obscurity's a welcome guest. A virgin Phænix from her ashes risen. If Inspiration should her aid refuse Next see tremendous Thalaba come on, To him who takes a Pixy for a Muse, Arabia's monstrous, wild, and wonderous son; Yet none in lofty numbers can surpass Domdaniel's dread destroyer, who o’erthrew The bard who soars to elegize an ass. More mad magicians than the world e'er How well the subject suits his noble mind!
“A fellow-feeling makes us wondrous kind." Immortal Hero! all thy foes o'ercome, For ever reign--the rival of Tom Thumb! Since startled metre fled before thy face, Oh! wonder-working Lew 18! Monk, or Well wert thou doom'd the last of all thy
Bard, race !
Who fain wouldst make Parnassus a churchWell might triumphant Genii bear thee
yard ! hence,
Lo! wreaths of yew, not laurel, bind thy Illustrious conqueror of common sense !
brow, Now, last and greatest, Madoc spreads his Thy Muse a sprite, Apollo's sexton thou !
Whether on ancient tombs thou tak'st thy Cacique in Mexico, and Prince in Wales;
stand, Tells us strange tales as other travellers do, By gibb’ring spectres hail'd, thy kindred More old than Mandeville's, and not so true.
band; Oh! SOUTHEY, SOUTHEY! cease thy varied Or tracest chaste descriptions on thy page,
To please the females of our modest age, A Bard may chaunt too often and too long: All hail, M. P.! from whose infernal brain As thou art strong in verse, in mercy spare ! Thin sheeted phantoms glide, a grisly train; A fourth, alas! were more than we could At whose command, "grim women” throng bear.
in crowds, But if, in spite of all the world can say, And kings of fire, of water, and of clouds. Thon still wilt verscward plod thy weary With "einall grey men,” — “wild yægers," way;
and what not,
To crown with honour thee and WALTER | Sepulchral GRAHAM, pours his notes sublime
In mangled prose, nor e'en aspires to rhyme, Again all hail! Iftales like thine may please, Breaks into blank the Gospel of St. Luke, St. Luke alone can vanquish the disease ; And boldly pilfers from the Pentateuch; Even Satan's self with thee might dread to And, undisturb’d by conscientious qualuns,
Perverts the Prophets, and purloins the And in thy skull discern a deeper hell.
Who, in soft guise, surrounded by a choir Hail Sympathy! thy soft idea brings Of virgins melting, not to Vesta's fire, A thousand visions of a thousand things, With sparkling eyes, and cheek by passion And shows, dissolved in thine own melting flushid,
tears, Strikes his wild lyre, whilst listening dames Themaudlin Prince of mournful sonneteers.
are hush'd ? And art thou not their Prince, harmonious 'Tis LITTLE! young Catullus of his day,
Bowles! As sweet, but as immoral in his lay! Thou first, great oracle of tender souls ! Grieved to condemn, the Muse must still Whether in sighing winds thou seekst reliel,
Or consolation in a yellow leaf; Nor spare melodious advocates of lust. Whether thy muse most lamentably telle 1 Pure is the flame which o'er her altar burns; What merry sounds proceed from Oxford From grosser incense with disgust she turns:
bells, Yet, kind to youth, this expiation o’er, Or, still in bells delighting, finds a friend, She bids thee, “mend thy line and sin no In every chime that jingled from Ostend?
Ah! how much juster were thy Muse's hap,
Delightful Bowles! still blessing and still For thee, translator of the tinsel song,
blest, To whom such glittering ornaments belong: All love thy strain, but children like it best. Hibernian STRANGFORD! with thine eyes of 'Tis thine, with gentle Little's moral song,
To soothe the mania of the amorous throng! And boasted locks of red, or auburn hue, With thee our nursery-damsels shed their Whose plaintive strain each love-sick Miss
Ere Miss as yet completes her infant year: And o'er harmonious fustian half expires, But in her teens thy whining powers are vain: Learn, if thou canst, to yield thine author's She quits poor Bowles, for Little's parer sense,
strain. Nor vend thy sonnets on a false pretence. Now to soft themes thou scornest to confine Thinkst thou to gain thy verse a higher The lofty numbers of a harp like thine :
"Awake a louder and a loftier strain," By dressing Camoens in a suit of lace ? Such as none heard before, or will again; Mend, STRANGFORD! mend thy morals and Where all discoveries jumbled from the thy taste;
flood, Be warm,but pure; be amorous, but be chaste: Since first the leaky ark reposed in mnd, Cease to deceive; thy pilfer'd harp restore, By more or less, are sung in every book, Nor teach the Lusian bard to copy Moore. From Captain Noar down to Captain Cook
Nor this alone, but pausing on the road,
The Bard sighs forth a gentle episode; In many marble-covered volumes view And gravely tells — attend each beauteous Hayley, in vain attempting something new :
Miss! Whether he spin his comedies in rhyme, When first Madeira trembled to a kiss. Or scrawl, as Wood and Barclay walk, Bowles!in thy memory let this precept dwell,
'gainst time, Stick to thy Šonnets, man! at least they sell. His style in youth or age is still the same, But if some new-born whim, or larger bribe, For ever feeble and for ever tame.
Prompt thy crude brain, and claim thee Triumphant first see "Temper's Triumphs"
for a scribe; shine!
If chance some bard, though once by dunces At least I'm sure they triumph'd over mine.
feared, Of “Music's Triumphs" all who read may Now, prone in dust, can only be revered;
If Pope, whose fame and genius from the first That luckless Music never triumph'd there. Have foil'd the best of critics, needs the worst,
Do thou essay; each fault, each failing scan: Moravians,rise! bestow some meet reward Rake from each ancient dunghill every
The first of poets was, alas! but man! On dull Devotion – lo! the Sabbath-Bard,
Consult Lord FANNY, and confide in CURL;| Though fair they rose and might have vet all the scandals of a former age
bloom'd at last, Perch on thy pen and flutter o'er thy page; His hopes have perish'd by the northern Atlect a candour which thou canst not feel,
blast: Clothe envy in the garb of honest zeal; Nipp'd in the bud by Caledonian gales, Write as if St. John's soul could still inspire, His blossoms wither as the blast prevails! And do from hate what Mallet did for hire. O'er his lost works let classicSAEFFIELD weep; Oh! hadst thou lived in that congenial time, May no rude hand disturb their early sleep! To rave with DENNIS, and with Ralph to
rhyme, Throng'd with the rest around his living Yet say! why should the Bard at once head,
resign Not raised thy hoof against the lion dead, His claim to favour from the sacred Nine? A meet reward had crown'd thy glorious For ever startled by the mingled howl
Of northern wolves, that still in darkness And link'd thee to the Dunciad for thy pains.
prowl: A coward brood, which mangle as they prey,
By hellish instinct, all that cross their way: Another Epic! who inflicts again Aged or young, the living or the dead, More books of blank upon the sons of men? No mercy find-these harpies must be fed. Baotian Cottle, rich Bristowa's boast, Why do the injured unresisting yield Imports old stories from the Cambrian coast, The calm possession of their native field ? And sends his goods to market-all alive! Why tamely thus before their fangs retreat, Lines forty thousand, Cantos twenty-five! Nor hunt the bloodhounds back to ABTHUR'S Fresh fish from Helicon! who'll buy? who'll
Seat ? buy? The precions bargain's cheap-in faith not I. Too much in turtle Bristol's sons delight, Health to immortal JEFFREY!once, in name, Too much o'er bowls of Rack prolong the England could boast a judge almost the same:
In soul so like, so merciful, yet just, If Commerce fills the purse, she clogs the Some think that Satan has resign’d his trust,
And given the Spirit to the world again, And Amos Cottle strikes the Lyre in vain. To sentence letters as he sentenced men ; In him an author's luckless lot behold! With hand less mighty, but with heart as Condemn'd to make the books which once
black, he sold.
With voice as willing to decree the rack; Oh! Anos CoTTLE! Phæbus !- what a name Bred in the courts betimes, though all that To fill the speaking trump of future fame!
law Oh! Anos Cottle! for a moment think As yet hath taught him is to find a flaw; What meagre profits spring from pen and ink! Since, well instructed in the patriot school When thus devoted to poetic dreams, To rail at party, though a party-tool, Who will peruse thy prostituted reams ? Who knows, if chance his patrons should Oh! pen perverted ! paper misapplied !
restore Had Cortle still adorn'd the counter's side, Back to the sway they forfeited before, Bent o'er the desk, or, born to useful toils, His scribbling toils some recompense may Been taught to make the paper which he soils,
meet, Plough d, delved, or plied the oar with And raise this Daniel to the Judgment-seat?
lusty limb, Let Jeffries' shade indulge the pious hope, He had not sung of Wales, nor I of him. And greeting thus, present him with a rope:
“Heir to my virtues ! man of equal mind!
Skill'd to condemn as to traduce mankind, As Sisyphus against the infernal steep This cord receive-for thee reserved with Rolls the huge rock, whose motions ne'er
care, may sleep, To yield in judgment, and at length to wear." So up thy hill, ambrosial Richmond! heaves Dull MAURICE all his granite - weight of
Health to great JEFFREY! Heaven preSmooth, solid monuments of mental pain!
serve his life, The petrifactions of a plodding brain, To flourish on the fertile shores of Fife, That ere they reach the top fall lumbering And guard it sacred in his future wars, back again. Since authors sometimes seek the field of
Can none remember that eventful day, With broken lyre and cheek serenely palo That ever glorious, almost fatal fray, Lo! sad Alcævs wanders down the vale! When LITTLE's leadless pistol inet bis eye, And Bow-street myrmidons stood laugh- | Known be thy name, unbounded be thy sway!
Thy HOLLAND's banquets shall each toil Oh day disastrous ! on her firm set rock,
repay; Dunedin's castle felt a secret shock; While grateful Britain yields the praise Dark roll'd the sympathetic waves of Forth,
she oves Low groan'd the startled whirlwinds of the To HOLLAND's hirelings, and to Learning's north;
foes, TWBED ruffled half his wave to form a tear, Yet mark one caution, ere thy next Review The other half pursued its calm career; Spread its light wings of saffron and of blue, Arthur's steep summit nodded to its base; Beware lest blundering BROUGHAM destroy The surly Tolbooth scarcely kept her place?
the sale, The Tolbooth felt-for marble sometimes Turn beef to bannocks, cauliflowers to kail*
Thus having said, the kilted Goddess list On such occasions, feel as much as man- Her son, and vanish'd in a Scottish mist. The Tolbooth felt defrauded of his charms Illustrious HOLLAND! hard would be his lot, If JEPFREY died, except within her arms : His birelings mention'd and himself forgot! Nay, last not least, on that portentous morn HOLLAND, with Henry Petty at his back, The sixteenth story, where himself was The whipper-in and huntsman of the pack
Blest be the banquets spread at HollandHis patrimonial garret fell to ground,
House, And pale Edina shudder'd at the sound : Where Scotchmen feed, and critics may Strew'd were the streets around with milk
carouse! white reams,
Long, long beneath that hospitable roof Flow'd all the Canongate with inky streams; Shall Grub-street dine, while duns are kept This of his candour seem'd the sable dew,
aloof. That of his valour shew'd the bloodless hue, See honest Hallam lay aside his fork, And all with justice deem'd the two combined Resume his pen, review his Lordship's work, The mingled emblems of his mighty mind. And, grateful to the founder of the feast. But Caledonia's Goddess hover'd o'er Declare his landlord can translate, at least! The field, and saved him from the wrath Dunedin! view thy children with delight,
of MOORE; They write for food, and feed because they From either pistol snatch'd the vengeful lead,
write, And straight restored it to her favourite's And lest, when heated with th' unusual head;
grape, 'That head, with greater than magnetic Some glowing thoughts should to the press power,
escape, Caught it, as Danaė the golden shower, And tinge with red the female reader's cheek, And, though the thickening dross will My lady skims the cream of each critique
scarce refine, Breathes o'er the page her purity of soul, Augments its ore, and is itself a mine. Reforms each error and refines the whole “My son," she cried, “ne'er thirst for gore
again, Resign the pistol and resume the pen; Now to the Drama turn. Oh,motley sight! O’er politics and poesy preside,
What precious scenes the wondering eyes Boast of thy country, and Britannia's guide!
invite ! For, long as Albion's heedless sons submit, Puns, and a prince within a barrel pent. Or Scottish taste decides on English wit, And Dibdin's nonsense yield complete So long shall last thine unmolested reign,
content. Nor any dare to take thy name in vain. Though now, thank Heaven! the RoscioBehold a chosen band shall aid thy plan,
mania's o'er, And own thee chieftain of the critic clan. And full-grown actors are endured once First in the ranks illustrious shall be seen
more; The travellid Thane! Athenian ABERDEEN. Yet what avail their vain attempts to please, HERBERT shall wield Taor's hammer, and While British critics suffer scenes like these!
sometimes, While REYNOLDS vents his “dammes, poohs, In gratitude, thou'lt praise his rugged
and zounds, rhymes.
And common - place, and common - sense Smug SYDNEY too thy bitter page shall seek,
confound: ? And classic HALLAM, much renown'd for While KENNY's World, just suffer'd to Greek.
proceed, Scort may perchance his name and influ- Proclaims the audience very kind indeed?
ence lend, And Beaumont's pilfer'd Caratach affords And paltry Pillans shall traduce his friend ; A tragedy complete in all but words? While gay Thalia's luckless votary, LAMB, Who but must mourn while these are all As he himself was damn'd,shall try to dumn.