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heat, whether amorous or warlike, glow in Amanzor by a kind of concentration. He is above all laws; he is exempt from all restraints ; he ranges the world at will, and governs wherever he appears. He fights without enquiring the cause, and loves in spight of the obligations of justice, of rejection by his mistress, and of prohibition from the dead. Yet the scenes are, for the most part, delightful; they exhibit a kind of illustrious depravity, and majestic mnadness : such as, if it is sometimes despised, is often reverenced, and in which the ridiculous is mingled with the astonishing.
In the Epilogue to the second part of the Conquest of Granada, Dryden indulges his favourite pleasure of discrediting his predecessors; and this Epilogue he has defended by a long poftfcript. He had promised a second dialogue, in which he should more fully treat of the virtues and faults of the English poets, who have written in the dramatick, epick, or lyrick way, This. promise was never formally performed; but, with respect to the dramatick writers, he has given us in his prefaces, and in this postscript, something equivalent ; but his purpose being to exalt himself by the comparison, he thews faults distinctly, and only praises excellence in general terms.
A play thus written, in professed defiance of probability, naturally drew upon itself the vultures of the theatre. One of the criticks that attacked it was Martin Clifford, to whona Sprat addressed the Life of Cowley, with such yeneration of his critical powers as might naturally excite great expectations of instruction from his remarks, But let honeft credulity beware of receiving characters from contemporary writers. Clifford's remarks, by the favour of Dr. Percy,
were at last obtained, and that no man may ever want them more, I will extract enough to satisfy all reasonable desire.
In the first Letter his observation is only general ; “ You do live," says he, “ in as much ignorance and “ darkness as you did in the womb : your writings are “ like a Jack-of-all trades thop; they have a variery, “ but nothing of value ; and if thou art not the dullest
plant-animal that ever the earth produced, all that “ I have conversed with are strangely mistaken in “ thee."
In the second he tells him that Almanzor is not more copieil from Achilles than from Ancient Pistol, “ But I am," says he, “ strangely mistaken if I have “ not seen this very Almanzor of yours in some dif“ guise about this town, and paffing under another
name. Pr’ythee tell me true, was not this Huffcap
once the Indian Emperor, and at another time did “ he not call himself Maximin? Was not Lyndaraxa “ once called Almeira? I mean under Montezuma the “ Indian Emperor. I protest and vow they are either 6 the faine, or fo alike that I cannot, for my heart, “ diftinguish one from the other. You are therefore a “ strange unconscionable thief; thou art not content " to steal from others, but dost rob thy poor wretched “ feif roo,"
Now was Setile's tiine to take his revenge. He wrote a vindication of his own lines; and, if he is forced to yield any thing, nakes reprisals upon his enemy. To say that his answer is equal to the cenfir“, is no high commendation, To expose Dryden's Icelod of analysing his expressions, he tries the same experiment upon the fame description of the ships in
the Indian Emperor, of which however he does not deny the excellence; but intends to shew, that by ftudied misconstruction every thing may be equally represented as ridiculous. After so much of Dryden's elegant animadversions, justice requires that fomething of Settle's should be exhibited. The following observations are therefore extracted from a quarto pamphlet of ninety-five pages :
“ Fate after him below with pain did move,
“ And victory could scarce keep pace above. " These two lines, if he can fhew me any sense or
thought in, or any thing but bombast and noise, he " thall make me believe every word in his observa« tions on Morocco sense. “ In the Empress of Morocco were these lines :
- I'll travel then to some remoter sphere,
« Till I find out new worlds, and crown you there. “ On which Dryden made this remark:
" I believe our learned author takes a sphere for a “ country; the sphere of Morocco, as if Morocco were the
globe of carih and water ; but a globe is no spbere nei" ther, by his leave," &c. So fphere must not be sense, * unless it relate to a circular motion about a globe, “ in which sense the astronomers use it. I would dcfire “ him to expound those lines in Granada :
- I'll to the turrets of the palace go,
(Far be the omen tho’) my Love l'ii guide.
** I won
“ I wonder, if he be so strict, how he dares make fo “ bold with sphere himself, and be fo critical in other “ men's writings. Fortune is fancied standing on a
globe, not on a sphere, as he told us in the first Act.
“ Because Elkanab's Similies are the most unlike things “ to what they are compared in the world, I'll venture to “ start a simile in his Annus Mirabilis: he gives this poetical description of the fhip called the London :
“ The goodly London in her gallant trim,
And fanguine streamers seem'd the flood to fire :
6. She seems a sea-wasp flying on the waves. “ What a wonderful pother is here, to make all these “ poetical beautifications of a ship! that is, a phenix “ in the first stanza, and but a wasp in the last : nay, “ to make his humble comparison of a wasp more ri“ diculous, he does not say it flies upon the waves as “ nimbly as a wasp, or the like, but it seemed a 4 wasp. But our author at the writing of this was “ not in his altitudes, to compare ships to floating
jalaces; a comparison to the purpose, was a per“ fection he did not arrive to, till his Indian Emperor's “ days. But perhaps his fimilitude has more in it “ than we imagine; this ihip had a great many guns “ in lier, and they, put all together, made the sting " in the wasp's tail : for this is all the reason I can
“ guess, why it seem'd a wasp. But, because we will “ allow him all we can to help out, let it be a phenix
sea-wafp, and the rarity of such an animal, may « do much towards heightening the fancy.
“ It had been much more to his purpose, if he had
designed to render the senseless play little, to have “ searched for some such pedantry as this :
“ Two ifs scarce make one possibility.
Justice, methinks, is not distributive.
" Rather than take your life, I will not live. “ Observe, how prettily our author chops logick - in heroick verse. Three such fustian canting words
as distributive, alternative, and two ifs, no man but “ himself would have come within the noise of. But “ he's a man of general learning, and all comes into
“ his play.
“ "Twould have done well too, if he could have s met with a rant or two, worth the observation :
r6 such as,
“ Move swiftly, Sun, and fly a lover's pace,
“ But surely the Sun, whether he flies a lover's or “ not a lover's pace, leaves weeks and months, nay
years too, behind him in his race.
“ Poor Robin, or any other of the Philomathe“ maticks, would have given him satisfaction in the " point.
“ If I could kill thee now, thy fate's fo low,