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JOSEPH ADDISON (1672–1719) was born in Wiltshire. He was one of the most elegant of our prose-writers, and gained a high reputation by his poems. He became Secretary of State in 1717. Chief works: The Campaign, a poem celebrating Marlborough's victory of Blenheim (1704); essays to the Tatler, Spectator, and Guardian, on which his fame chiefly rests; and Cato, a tragedy written in 1713.
How are Thy servants blest, O Lord !
How sure is their defence !
Their help Omnipotence.
Realms, kingdoms, Remote, far away, distant.
Tainted, corrupt, poisonous,
Hoary Alpine hills,
Confusion, not knowing what to do.
Pilot, one who conducts vessels in and out of harbour, or along a dangerous coast.
In foreign realms* and lands remote,*
Supported by Thy care,
And breathed in tainted * air.
Made every region please ;
And smoothed the Tyrrhene seas. *
How with affrighted * eyes,
In all its horrors rise.
And fear on every heart;
Thy mercy set me free ;
My soul took hold on Thee.
High on the broken wave,
Nor impotent * to save.
At Thy command was still.
Thy goodness I'll adore;'
And humbly hope for more.
Thy sacrifice * shall be ;
Shall join my soul to Thee.
Impotent, unable, powerless,
Sacrifice, offering to
THE INCHCAPE ROCK.*—Southey.
No stir in the air, no stir in the sea,
Keel, the bottom of a
Abbot, head of an
Surge, the swell of
the sea. The mariners * heard the warning bell ;
Mariner, a seaman 15 And then they knew the perilous * rock,
or sailor. And blest the Abbot of Aberbrothok.
Perilous, very dan
The sea-birds scream'd as they wheel'd around, 20 And there was joyance * in the sound.
Deck, the floor or cov
ering of a ship.
It made him whistle, it made him sing;
pirate, a wanderer.
Plague, to tease or
annoy, to vex.
* The Inchcape, or Bell Rock, is fourteen miles east of the entrance to the Firth of Tay, and is the site of a celebrated lighthouse.
Gurgling, making an irregular sound, as water does when flowing from a bottle,
Scour, to travel from
Gale, a strong stormy wind.
The boat is lower'd, the boatmen row,
Dawn, the light given before the moon itself appears. Breakers, waves dashing against the rocks and breaking into spray and foam.
de Bell »
Swell, waves following one another in some general direction. Drift, the force of the waves driving the ship onward.
LUCY GRAY.— Wordsworth.
WILLIAM WORDSWORTH (1770-1850), a great English poet, was born at Cockermouth in Cumberland. He was educated at Cambridge. On the death of Southey in 1843, he was made Poet-Laureate. Chief poems : The Excursion, Lyrical Ballads, White Doe of Rylstone, and a very fine collection of Sonnets.