ページの画像
PDF
ePub

(Loose his beard, and hoary hair 1 Stream'd, like a meteor me to the troubled air)[13] And with a Master's hand, and Prophet's fire, Struck the deep sorrows of his lyre. “ Hark, how each giant-oak, and desert-cave,

“ Sighs to the torrent's awful voice beneath ! “O’er thee, oh King ! their hundred arms they

« wave, “ Revenge on thee in hoarser murmurs breathe; “ Vocal no more, since Cambria's fatal day, “ To high-born Hoel's harp, or soft Llewellyn's lay.

I. 3. “ Cold is Cadwallo's tongue, “ That hush'd the stormy main :

I Loose his beard, and hoary hair. The image was taken from a well-known picture of Raphael, representing the Supreme Being in the vision of Ezekiel. There are two of these paintings, both believed original, one at Florence, the other at Paris.

m Stream'd, like a meteor, to the troubled air. Shone, like a meteor, streaming to the wind.

Milton's Paradise Lost. [13] Moses breaking the tables of the law, by Parmegiano, was a figure which Mr. Gray used to say came still nearer to his meaning than the picture of Raphael.

“ Brave Urien sleeps upon his craggy bed:

“ Mountains, ye mourn in vain

“ Modred, whose magic song “ Made huge Plinlimmon bow his cloud-topp'd head.'

« On dreary Arvon's shore n they lie, “ Smear'd with gore, and ghasty pale: “ Far, far aloof th’affrighted ravens sail ;

“ The famish’d Eagle sereams, and passes by 0.
“ Dear lost companions of my tuneful art,
“ Dear as the light that visits these sad eyes p,

n On dreary Arvon's shore-
The shores of Caernarvonshire opposite to the

isle of Anglesey. o The famish'd Eagle screams, and passes by. Camden and others observe, that eagles used annually to build their ærie among the rocks of Snowdon, which from thence (as some think) were named by the Welsh Craigianeryri, or the crags of the eagles. At this day (I am told) the highest point of Snowdon is called the Eagle's nest. That bird is certainly no stranger to this island, as the Scots, and the people of Cumberland, Westmoreland, &c. can testify : it even has built its nest in the Peak of Derbyshire. (See Willoughby's Ornithol. published by Ray.)

p Dear as the light that visits these sad eyes.

As dear to me as are the ruddy drops
That visit my sad heart-

"Shakespeare's Jul. Cæsar.
Mr. Gray might also recollect these linès :

“ Dear as the ruddy drops that warm my heart,

“ Ye died amidst your dying country's cries“ No more I weep (14]. They do not sleep.

“ On yonder cliffs, a grisly band, “ I see them sit, they linger yet,

“ Avengers of their native land : “ With me in dreadful harmony they join, And weave with bloody hands the tissue of thy

“ line q.

Dear as the vital warmth that feeds my life,
Dear as these eyes that weep in fondness o'er thee.

Otway.

[14] Here (says an anonymous Critic) a vision of triumphant revenge is judiciously made to ensue, after the pathetic lamentation which precedes it. Breaks double rhymes an appropriated cadence and an exalted ferocity of language forcibly picture to us the uncontrollable tumultuous workings of the prophet's stimulated bosom.

And weave with bloody hands the tissue of thy

line. See the Norwegian ode [The fatal Sisters] hereaf

ter,

II, 1.
“Weave the warp, and weave the woof(15),
“ The winding-sheet of Edwards race[16].

[15] The Critic before-mentioned asks, “ Can there be an image more just, apposite, and nobly “imagined than this tremendous tragical winding“ sheet?In the rest of this stanza the wildness of thought, expression and cadence, are admirably adapted to the character and situation of the speaker, and of the bloody spectres his assistants. It is not indeed peculiar to it alone, but a beauty that runs throughout the whole composition, that the historical events are briefly sketched out by a few striking circumstances in which the Poet's office of rather exciting and directing, than satisfying the reader's imagination, is perfectly observed. Such abrupt hints, resembling the several fragments of a vast ruin, suffer not the mind to be raised to the utmost pitch, by one image of horror, but that instantaneously a second and a third are presented to it, and the affection is

still uniformly supported. E. "[16] Dr. Johnson, in his spleen against our Poet,

descends to a mean witticism : “ Gray (says he has i “made weavers of slaughtered bards. They are

“ then called upon to weave the warp, and weave “ the woof,' perhaps with no great propriety; for it " is by crossing the woof with the warn that men 6 weave the web or piece.” We know not where Johnson acquired his knowledge of the weaving trade; but if our information be correct, the Critic has made a mistake, for it is by the woof's being thrown across the warh, that the manufacture is formed.

« Give ample room, and verge enough « The characters of hell to trace. “ Mark the year, and mark the night, “ When Severn shall re-echo with affright “ The shrieks of death, thro’Berkley's roof that ring, “ Shrieks of an agonizing King r!

“ She-wolf of France 8, with unrelenting fangs, “ That tear'st the bowels of thy mangled Mate,

“ From thee be born t, who o'er thy country hangs « The scourge of Heaven. What Terrors round him

o wait! “ Amazement in his van, with Flight combin'd, “ And Sorrow's faded form, and Solitude behind.

II. 2. “ Mighty Victor, mighty Lord, “ Low on his funeral couch he lies u!

r Shrieks of an agonizing King! Edward the Second, cruelly butchered in Berkleycastle.

8 She-wolf of France Isabel of France, Edward the Second's adulterous Queen.

*t From thee be born, &c. Triumphs of Edward the Third in France.

u Low on his funeral couch he lies. Death of that king, abandoned by his children, and even robbed in his last moments by his courtiers and his mistress.

« 前へ次へ »