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Then with envenom'd jaws the vital blood My anxious mind; or sometimes mournful verse Drinks of reluctant foes, and to her cave Indite, and sing of graves and myrtle shades, Their bulky carcases triumphant drags. Or desp'rate lady near a purling stream,
So pass my days: but when nocturnal shades Or lover pendent on a willow tree. This world envelop, and th' inclement air Mean-while I labour with eternal drought, Persuades men to repel benumbing frosts And restless wish, and rave; my parched throat With pleasant wines and crackling blaze of Finds no relief, nor heavy eyes repose;
But if a slumber haply does invade Mè, lonely sitting, nor the glimm’ring light My weary limbs; my fancy's still awake Of makeweight candle, nor the joyous talk Thoughtful of drink, and eager, in a dream Of loving friend, delights: distress'd, forlorn, Tipples imaginary pots of ale, Amidst the horrors of the tedious night, In vain : awake I find the settled thirst Darkling I sigh, and feed with dismal thoughts still gnawing, and the pleasant phantom curse.
Thomas Parnell wurde 1679 in Dublin geboren, erhielt seine wissenschaftliche Bildung auf dem Trinity-College seiner Vaterstadt; trat dann in den geistlichen Stand und bekleidete nach einander mehrere Aemter, doch hielt er sich vorzugsweise in London auf, wo ihn der Umgang mit Pope, Swift, Gay, u. A. besonders anzog. Nachdem er seine politische Meinung gewechselt, jedoch ohne eines günstigen Erfolges sich rühmen zu können und seine Gattin verloren, ergab er sich dem Trunke, der seinen Tod beschleunigte, Er starb 1717 zu Chester auf der Reise nach Irland.
Parnell's Gedichte sind von Pope, London 1721 in 8. und von Goldsmith, London 1770 in 8. herausgegeben worden; ein Bändchen hinterlassener Poesieen erschienen 1758 zu Dublin. Bei Johnson finden sich seine Gedichte im 44., bei Bell im 67. und 78., bei Anderson im 7. Bde. Er war besonders glücklich in Liedern, Balladen und Erzählungen, durch anmuthig schaffende Phantasie, Eleganz und Correctheit, und sein unten mitgetheilter Hermit, wird noch jetzt von den Engländern sehr geschützt. Seine schwächsten Leistungen dagegen sind seine biblischen Gemälde.
So when a smooth expanse receives imprest Far in a wild, unknown to public view,
Calm Nature's image on its watery breast, From youth to age a reverend hermit grew;
Down bend the banks, the trees depending grow, The moss his bed, the cave his humble cell, And skies beneath with answering colours glow: His food the fruits, his drink the crystal well:
But if a stone the gentle sea divide, Remote from man, with God he pass'd his days Swift ruffling circles curl on every side Prayer all his business, all his pleasure praise. And glimmering fragments of a broken sun, A life so sacred, such serene repose,
Banks, trees, and skies, in thick disorder run. Seem'd heaven itself, till one suggestion rose
To clear this doubt, to know the world by That vice should triumph, virtue vice obey ;
sight, This sprung some doubt of Providence's sway: To find if books, or swains, report it right, His hopes no more a certain prospect boast, (For yet by swains alone the world he knew, And all the tenor of his soul is lost.
Whose feet came wandering o'er the nightly dew)
He quits his cell; the pilgrim-staff he bore, So seem'd the sire, when far upon the road, And fix'd the scallop in his hat before;
The shining spoil his wily partner show'd. Then with the sun a rising journey went, He stopp'd with silence, walk'd with trembling Sedate to think, and watching each event.
heart, The morn was wasted in the pathless grass And much he wish'd, but durst not ask to part: And long and lonesome was the wild to pass; Murmuring he lifts his eyes, and thinks it hard But when the southern sun had warm’d the day, That generous actions meet a base reward. A youth came posting o'er a crossing way; While thus they pass, the sun his glory His raiment decent, his complexion fair,
shrouds, And soft in graceful ringlets wav'd his hair. The changing skies hang out their sable clouds; Then near approaching, “Father, hail!” he cried; A sound in air presag'd approaching rain, And “Hail, my son!” the reverend sire replied; And beasts to covert scud across the plain. Words follow'd words, from question answer Warn’d by the signs, the wandering pair retreat,
To seek for shelter at a neighbouring seat. And talk of various kind deceiv'd the road; 'Twas built with turrets on a rising ground, Till each with other pleas'd, and loth to part, And strong, and large, and unimprov'd around; While in their age they differ, join in heart. Its owner's temper, tim'rous and severe, Thus stands an aged elm in ivy bound, Unkind and griping, caus'd a desert there. Thus youthful ivy clasps an elm around.
As near the miser's heavy doors they drew, Now sunk the sun; the closing hour of day Fierce rising gusts with sudden fury blew; Came onward, mantled o'er with sober grey; The nimble lightning mix'd with showers began, Nature in silence bid the world repose;
And o'er their heads loud rolling thunders ran. When near the road a stately palace rose : Here long they knock, but knock or call in vain, There by the moon through ranks of trees they Driv'n by the wind, and batter'd by the rain.
At length some pity warm’d the master's breast, Whose verdure crown'd their sloping sides of ('Twas then his threshold first receiv'd a guest);
Slow creeking turns the door with jealous care, It chanc'd the noble master of the dome
And half he welcomes in the shivering pair; Still made his house the wandering stranger's One frugal fagot lights the naked walls,
And nature's fervour through their limbs recalls: Yet still the kindness, from a thirst of praise, Bread of the coarsest sort, with meagre wine, Prov'd the vain flourish of expensive ease. (Each hardly granted) serv'd them both to dine; The pair arrive: the livery'd servants wait; And when the tempest first appear'd to cease, Their lord receives them at the pompous gate. A ready warning bid them part in peace. The table groans with costly piles of food, With still remark the pondering hermit view'd, And all is more than hospitably good.
In one so rich, a life so poor and rude; Then, led to rest, the day's long toil they drown, “And why should such," within himself he Deep sunk in sleep, and silk, and heaps of down.
cried, At length 'tis morn, and at the dawn of day, “Lock the lost wealth a thousand want beside?” Along the wide canals the zephyrs play: But what new marks of wonder soon take place, Fresh o'er the gay parterres the breezes creep, In every settling feature of his face, And shake the neighbouring wood to banish When from his vest the young companion bore
That cup, the generous landlord own'd before, Up rise the guests, obedient to the call; And paid profusely with the precious bowl An early banquet deck'd the splendid hall; The stinted kindness of this churlish soul! Rich luscious wine a golden goblet grac'd,
But now the clouds in airy tumult fly; Which the kind master forc'd the guests to taste. The sun emerging opes an azure sky; Then pleas'd and thankful, from the porch A fresher green the smelling leaves display,
And, glittering as they tremble, cheer the day: And, but the landlord, none had cause of woe: The weather courts them from the poor retreat, His cup was vanish'd; for in secret guise And the glad master bolts the wary gate. The younger guest purloin'd the glittering prize. While hence they walk, the pilgrim's bosom As one who spies a serpent in his way,
wrought Glistening and basking in the summer ray, With all the traval of uncertain thought; Disorder'd stops to shun the danger near,
His partner's acts without their cause appear, Then walks with faintness on, and looks with 'Twas there a vice, and seem'd a madness here:
Detesting that, and pitying this, he goes,
Lost and confounded with the various shows. Wide at his back their gradual plumes display. Now night's dim shades again involve the The form ethereal burst upon his sight,
And moves in all the majesty of light. Again the wanderers want a place to lie;
Though loud at first the pilgrim's passion Again they search, and find a lodging nigh,
grew, The soil improv'd around, the mansion neat, Sudden he gaz'd, and wist not what to do And neither poorly low, nor idly great: Surprise in secret chains his words suspends, It seem'd to speak its master's turn of mind, And in a calm his settling temper ends. Content, and not to praise, but virtue kind. But silence here the beauteous angel broke
Hither the walkers turn with weary feet, (The voice of music ravish'd as he spoke.) Then bless the mansion, and the master greet: “Thy prayer, thy praise, thy life to vice unTheir greeting fair bestow'd with modest guise,
known, The courteous master hears, and thus replies: In sweet memorial rise before the throne:
"Without a vain, without a grudging heart, These charms success in our bright region find, To him who gives us all I yield a part; And force an angel down, to calm thy mind; From him you come, for him accept it here For this, commission'd, I forsook the sky; A frank and sober, more than costly cheer.” Nay, cease to kneel — thy fellow-servant I. He spoke, and bid the welcome table spread, "Then know the truth of government divine, Then talk'd of virtue till the time of bed, And let these scruples be no longer thine. When the grave household round his hall repair. "The Maker justly claims that world he made, Warn'd by a bell, and close the hours with In this the right of Providence is laid;
Its sacred majesty through all depends At length the world, renew'd by calm repose, On using second means to work his ends. Was strong for toil, the dappled morn arose; 'Tis thus, withdrawn in state from human eye, Before the pilgrims part, the younger crept The power exerts his attributes on high, Near the clos'd cradle where an infant slept, Your actions uses, nor controls your will, And writh'd his neck: the landlord's little pride, And bids the doubting sons of men be still. O strange return! grew black, and gasp'd, and “What strange events can strike with more died.
surprise, Horror of horrors! what! his only son?
Than those which lately struck thy wondering How look'd our hermit when the fact was done!
eyes ? Not hell, though hell's black jaws in sunder part, Yet, taught by these, confess th’ Almighty just, And breathe blue fire, could more assault his And where you can't unriddle, learn to trust!
“The great vain man, who far'd on costly food, Confus'd and struck with silence at the deed, Whose life was too luxurious to be good; He flies, but trembling, fails to fly with speed. Who made his ivory stands with goblets shine, His steps the youth pursues; the country lay And forc'd his guests to morning draughts of Perplex'd with roads, a servant show'd the way:
wine, A river cross'd the path; the passage o'er Has, with the cup, the graceless custom lost, Was nice to find; the servant trod before; And still he welcomes, but with less of cost. Long arms of oaks an open bridge supplied, "The mean, suspicious wretch, whose bolted And deep the waves beneath the bending glide.
door The youth, who seem'd to watch a time to sin, Ne'er mov'd in duty to the wandering poor; Approach'd the careless guide, and thrust him in; With him I left the cup, to teach his mind Plunging he falls, and rising lifts his head, That Heaven can bless, if mortals will be kind Then flashing turns, and sinks among the dead. Conscious of wanting worth, he views the bowl, Wild sparkling rage inflames the father's And feels compassion touch his grateful soul.
Thus artists melt the sullen ore of lead, He bursts the bands of fear, and inadly cries, With heaping coals of fire upon its head; "Detested wretch!” But scarce his speech In the kind warmth the metal learns to glow,
And loose from dross the silver runs below. When the strange partner seem'd no longer man: "Long had our pious friend in virtue trod, His youthful face grew more serenely sweet; But now the child half-wean'd his heart from His robe turn'd white, and flow'd upon his feet;
God; Fair rounds of radiant points invest his hair; (Child of his age) for him he liv'd in pain, Celestial odours breathe through purpled air; And measur'd back his steps to earth again. And wings, whose colours glitter'd on the day, To what excesses had his dotage run?
But God to save the father, took the son.
Song. To all but thee, in fits he seem'd to go, (And 'twas my ministry to deal the blow,)
When thy beauty appears The poor fond parent, humbled in the dust,
In its graces and airs, Now owns in tears the punishment was just.
All bright as an angel new dropt from the sky, “But now had all his fortune felt a wrack,
At distance I gaze, and am aw'd by my fears, Had that false servant sped in safety back;
So strangely you dazzle my eye!
On sounding pinions here the youth withdrew, When your love runs in blushes through every The sage stood wondering as the seraph flew.
vein; Thus look'd Elisha when, to mount on high, When it darts from your eyes, when it pants in His master took the chariot of the sky;
your heart, The fiery pomp ascending left to view;
Then I know you're a woman again.
"There's a passion and pride "Lord! as in heaven, on earth thy will be done."
"'In our sex (she replied) Then gladly turning sought his ancient place,
“And thus (might I gratify both) I would do And pass'd a life of piety and peace.
“Still an angel appear to each lover beside,
Edward Young ward im Juni 1681 zu Upham bei Winchester geboren, wo sein Vater, der
Namen führte, als Geistlicher lebte. Er erhielt seine Bildung auf der hohen Schule zu Winchester und studirte dann zu Oxford, wo er 1719 Doctor der Rechte wurde. Hierauf lebte er eine Zeitlang als Erzieher des Lord Burleigh im Hause des Grafen von Exeter und ging dann nach London, wo er sich mit poetischen Arbeiten beschäftigte und um einen Sitz im Unterhause bewarb, aber nicht gewählt wurde. So erreichte er sein funfzigstes Jahr und trat nun in den geistlichen Stand über. Georg II. machte ihn zu seinem Hofcaplan; ein Bisthum auf das er sicher rechnete, ward ihm aber nicht zu Theil. Häusliche Leiden trübten den Rest seines Lebens, waren jedoch die Quelle seiner berühmtesten Dichtung, der Nachtgedanken, dem er nur noch ein grösseres Gedicht, Resignation betitelt, folgen liess. Er starb im April 1765.
Youngs sämmtliche Werke erschienen zuerst London 1757 in 4. und öfterer; eine sehr gute Ausgabe derselben ist die von 1760 (London 6 Bde. in 8.). Sie enthalten ausser den Nachtgedanken und der Resignation noch sieben Satyren auf die Ruhmsucht, mehrere Tragödien, lyrische Poesieen u. A. m. Ausser den Night Thoughts hat sich seine Tragödie Revenge am Längsten im Andenken erhalten.
Gedankenfülle und Tiefe, Reichthum der Anschauung von Welt und Leben, Kraft und Herrschaft über Sprache und Form sind die vorzüglichsten Eigenschaften dieses bedeutenden Dichters,
welche am Wirksamsten und Glänzendsten in seinen Nachtgedanken hervortreten; aber er ist nicht immer frei von Gesuchtheit und Künsteln, von Einseitigkeit und Unverständlichkeit. Seine Zeit und die nächstfolgende haben ihn überschätzt, was vorzüglich aus dem Gegensatz sich entwickelte, den seine poetischen Klagen zu der damals vorwaltenden leichtern Auffassung und Behandlung des Lebens bildeten. Seine Poesie ist trotz allen ihren grossen Vorzügen doch nur ein Gemisch von wirklich dichterischen Elementen, abstracten in das Gebiet der Philosophie gehörenden Reflectionen und rhetorischem Schmuck. Die meiste Anlage hatte er unbedingt für die Satyre.
Wake all to reason;
· let her reign alone; from the Complaint; or Night Thoughts. Then, in thy soul's deep silence, and the depth
Of Nature's silence, midnight, thus inquire, Procrastination is the thief of time;
As I have done; and shall inquire no more. Year after year it steals, till all are fled, In Nature's channel, thus the questions run: And to the mercies of a moment leaves
“What am I? and from whence? I nothing The vast concerns of an eternal scene.
know If not so frequent, would not this be strange? But that I am; and, since I am, conclude That 'tis so frequent, this is stranger still. Something eternal: had there e'er been nought,
Of man's miraculous mistakes, this bears Nought still had been; eternal there must be. The palm, “That all men are about to live," But what eternal ? Why not human race? For ever on the brink of being born.
And Adam's ancestors without an end ? All pay themselves the compliment to think That's hard to be conceiv’d, since every link They one day shall not drivel: and their pride Of that long-chain'd succession is so frail. On this reversion takes up ready praise; Can every part depend, and not the whole ? At least, their own; their future selves applaud: Yet grant it true; new difficulties rise; How excellent that life they ne'er will lead ! I'm still quite out at sea; nor see the shore. Time lodg’d in their own hands in folly's vails; Whence Earth, and these bright orbs ? EterThat lodg'd in fate's, to wisdom they consign;
nal too? The thing they can't but purpose, they post-Grant matter was eternal; still these orbs
Would want some other father; much design 'Tis not in folly, not to scorn a fool;
Is seen in all their motions, all their makes; And scarce in human wisdom, to do more. Design implies intelligence, and art; All promise is poor dilatory man,
That can't be from themselves - or man: that art And that through every stage; when young, Man scarce can comprehend, could man bestow ?
And nothing greater yet allow'd than man. In full content we, sometimes, nobly rest, Who, motion, foreign to the smallest grain, Unanxious for ourselves; and only wish, Shot through vast masses of enormous weight ? As duteous sons, our fathers were more wise. Who bid brute matter's restive lump assume At thirty man suspects himself a fool;
Such various forms, and gave it wings to fly?
Asserting its indisputable right
Has matter none? Then whence these glorious Resolves; and re-solves; then dies the same.
forms And why? Because he thinks himself im- And boundless flights, from shapeless, and re
mortal. All men think all men mortal, but themselves; Has matter more than motion ? has it thought, Themselves, when some alarming shock of fate Judgment, and genius ? is it deeply learn'd Strikes through their wounded hearts the sudden In mathematics ? Has it fram'd such laws,
Which but to guess, a Newton made immortal ? But their hearts wounded, like the wounded air, If so, how each sage atom laughs at me, Soon close; where, past the shaft, no trace is Who think a clod inferior to a man!
If art, to form; and counsel, to conduct; Retire; the world shut out; thy thoughts call And that with greater far than human skill,
Resides not in each block; a Godhead reigns. Imagination's airy wing repress;
Our dying friends come o’er us like a cloud, Lock up thy senses ; let no passion stir; To damp our brainless ardours; and abate