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CONTENT S.

OF VOLUME II.

PAGE.

LIVES OF THE POETS

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* A view of the Controversy between Monsieur

REVIEWS AND CRITICISMS.

Crousaz and Mr. Warburton on the subject

of Mr. Pope's Essay on Man.

499 Du Halde's History of China

590

Preliminary Discourse to the London Chronicle 500 Account of the Conduct of the Dutchess of

Introduction to the “World Displayed”

501 Marlborough

591

Preface to the “ Preceptor : containing a General Memoirs of the Court of Augustus, by Thomas

Plan of Education"

508 Blackwell, J. U. D.

592

Rolt's Dictionary

513 Four Letters from Sir I. Newton to Dr. Bentley 595

the Translation of Father Lobo's Journal of Eight Days' Journey from Portsmouth

Voyage to Abyssinia.

to Kingston upon Thames, &c. To which

An Essay on Epitaphs

517 is added, An Essay on Tea. By Mr. H*** 596

Preface to“An Essay on Milton's use and imi Reply to a paper in the Gazetteer, May 26, 1757 599

tation of the Moderns in his Paradise Lost” 519 Essay on the Writings and Genius of Popo 601
Letter to the Rev. Mr. Douglas, occasioned by A Free Enquiry into the Nature and Origin of
his Vindication of Milton, &c. By Wit-

Evil

604

liam Lauder, A.M.

521 History of the Royal Society of London, by

Testimonies concerning Mr. Lauder

523 Thomas Birch, D. D.

613

An Account of an Attempt to ascertain the The General History of Polybius, translated by

Longitude

528 Mr. Hampton

613

Considerations on the plans offered for the Miscellanies on Moral and Religious Subjects,
Construction of Blackfriars Bridge 531 by Elizabeth Harrison

614

Some Thoughts on Agriculture, both Ancieni Historical and Critical Enquiry into Dr. Tytler's

and Modern; with an Account of the

"Evidence produced by the Earls of Moray

Honour due to an English Farmer

and Morton against Mary Queen of Scolsó 614

Further Thoughts on Agriculture

Considerations on the Corn Laws

536

JOURNEY TO THE WESTERN ISLANDS

OF SCOTLAND.

MISCELLANEOUS TRACTS, &c.

St. Andrew's

618

A complete Vindication of the Licensers of the Aberbrothic

619

Stage from the malicious and scandalous Montrose

Aspersions of Mr. Brooke .

539 Aberdeen

Preface to the Gentleman's Magazine, 1738 544 Slanes Castle. The Buller of Buchan

622

An Appeal to the Public. From the Gentleman's Bamff

Magazine, March, 1739

545 Elgin

ib.

Considerations on the Case of Dr. T[rapp]'s Fores. Calder. Fort George

Sermons abridged by Mr. Cave

547 Inverness

ib.

Letter on Fire-works

549 Lough Ness

625

Proposals for Printing by Subscription " Essays Fall of Fiers

626

in Verse and Prose, by Anna Williams" 549 Fort Augustus

627

A Project for the Employment of Authors . 550 Anoch

ib.
Preface to the Literary Magazine, 1756 553 Glensheals.

62

A Dissertation upon the Greek Comedy, trans The Highlands

lated from Brumoy.

554 Glenelg

631

General Conclusion on Brumoy's Greek Theatre 569 Sky. Armidel

ib.

Coriatachan in Sky.

633

Raasay

634

DEDICATIONS

574-579 | Dunvegan

637

Ulinish

639

Preface to Payne's New Tables of Interest . 579 Talisker in Sky

640

Thoughts on the Coronation of his present Ostig in Sky

641

Majesty King George the Third .

580 I Col

654

Preface to the Artists' Catalogue for 1762 583 | Grissipol in Col

655

Castle of Col.

ib.

Mull.

659

OPINIONS ON QUESTIONS OF LAW. Ulva

661

Inch Kenneth

ib.

On School Chastisement

584
On Vicious intromission

585

On Lay-Patronage in the Church of Scotland 586 PRAYERS AND MEDITATIONS, with

On Pulpit Censure

588 Preface by the Rev. George Strahan, D.D. 669

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LIVES OF THE ENGLISH POETS.

COWLEY.

THE Life of Cowler, notwithstanding the pen- time, that his teachers never could bring it to reury of English biography, has been written by tain the ordinary rules of grammar.". Dr. Sprat, an author whose pregnancy of imagin This is an instance of the natural desire of man ation and elegance of language have deservedly to propagate a wonder. It is surely very difficult set him high in the ranks of literature ; but his to tell any thing as it was heard, when Sprat zeal of friendship, or ambition of eloquence, has could not refrain from amplifying a commodious produced a funeral oration rather than a history : incident, though the book to which he prefixhe has given the character, not the life, of Cowed his narrative contained his confutation. A ley; for he writes with so little detail

, that scarcely memory admitting some things, and rejecting any thing is distinctly known, but all is shown others, an intellectual digestion that concocted confused and enlarged through the mist of pane- the pulp of learning, but refused the husks, had gyric.

the appearance of an instinctive elegance, of a ABRAHAM COWLEY was born in the year one particular provision made by Nature for literary thousand six hundred and eighteen. His father was politeness. But in the author's own honest rela

grocer, whose condition Dr. Sprat conceals un- tion, the marvel vanishes : he was, he says, such der the general appellation of a citizen; and, what an enemy to all constraint, that his master would probably not have been less carefully sup- never could prevail on him to learn the rules pressed the omission of his name in the register without book.” He does not tell that he could of St. Dunstan's parish gives reason to suspect not learn the rules; but that, being able to perthat his father was a sectary. Whoever he was, form his exercises without them, and being an he died before the birth of his son, and conse enemy to constraint,” he spared himself the quently left him to the care of his mother; whom labour. Wood represents as struggling earnestly to pro Among the English poets, Cowley, Milton, and cure him a literary education, and who, as she Pope, might be said “to lisp in numberg," and lived to the age of eighty, had her solicitude re- have given such early proofs, not only of powers warded by secing her son eminent, and I hope, by of language, but of comprehension of things, as seeing him fortunate, and partaking his prosperity. to more tardy minds seem scarcely credible. But We know, at least, from Sprat's account, that of the learned puerilities of Cowley there is no he always acknowledged her care, and justly paid doubt, since a volume of his poems was not only the dues of filial gratitude.

written, but printed in his thirteenth year;* conIn the window of his mother's apartment lay taining, with other poetical compositions, “The Spenser's Fairy Queen; in which he very early tragical History of Pyramus and Thisbe,” writtook delight to read, till, by feeling the charms often when he was ten years old ; and “Constantia verse, he became, as he relates, irrecoverably a and Philetus," written two years after. poet. Such are the accidents which, sometimes While he was yet at school he produced a coremembered, and perhaps sometimes forgotten, medy called "Love's Riddle,” though it was not produce that particular designation of mind, and published till he had been some time at Campropensity for some certain science or employ- bridge. This comedy is of the pastoral kind, ment, which is commonly called genius. The which requires no acquaintance with the living true genius is a mind of large general powers, world, and therefore the time at which it was accidentally determined to some particular direc-. composed adds little to the wonders of Cowley's tion. Sir Joshua Reynolds, the great painter of minority. the present age, had the first fondness for his art excited by the perusal of Richardson's treatise.

By his mother's solicitation he was admitted * This volume was not published before 1633, when into Westminster School, where he was soon dis- Cowley was fifteen years old. Dr. Johnson, as well as tinguished. He was wont, says Sprat, to relate, portrait or Cowley' being by mistake marked with the u That he had this defect in his memory at that I age of thirteen years.-R.

In 1636, he was removed to Cambridge,* where , homage to his Laura, refined the manners of the he continued his studies with great intenseness : lettered world, and filled Europe with love and for he is said to have written, while he was yet a poetry. But the basis of all excellence is truth; young student, the greater part of his “Davideis;" he that professes love ought to feel its power. a work, of which the materials could not have Petrarch was a real lover, and Laura doubtless been collected without the study of many years, deserved his tenderness. Of Cowley, we are but by a mind of the greatest vigour and activity. told by Barnes, who had means enough of in

Two years after his settlement at Cambridge formation, that, whatever he may talk of his own he published “ Love's Riddle,” with a poetical inflammability, and the variety of characters by dedication to Sir Kenelm Digby ; of whose ac- which his heart was divided, he in reality was quaintance all nis contemporaries seem to have in love but once, and then never 'aad resolution been ambitious; and “Naufragium Joculare," to tell his passion. a comedy written in Latin, but without due at This consideration cannot but abate, in some tention io the ancient models; for it was not measure, the reader's esteem for the work and loose verse, but mere prose. It was printed, with the author. To love excellence, is natural; it is a dedication in verse to Dr. Comber, master of natural likewise for the lover to solicit reciprocal the college ; but, having neither the facility of a regard by an elaborate display of his own qualificapopular nor the accuracy of a learned work, it tions. The desire of pleasing has in different men seems to be now universally neglected.

produced actions of heroism, and effusions of wit; At the beginning of the civil war, as the Prince but it seems as reasonable to appear the champion passed through Cambridge in his way to York, as the poet of an “airy nothing,” and to quarrel he was entertained with a representation of the as to write for what Cowley might have learned “Guardian,” a comedy which Cowley says was from his master Pindar to call the dream of a neither written nor acted, but rough-drawn by shadow.” him, and repeated by the scholars. That this It is surely not difficult in the solitude of a colcomedy was printed during his absence from his lege, or in the bustle of the world, to find useful country, he appears to have considered as injuri- studies and serious employment. No man needs ous to his reputation; though during the sup- to be so burdened with lite as to squander it in pression of the theatres, it was sometimes pri- voluntary dreams of fictitious occurrences. The vately acted with sufficient approbation. man that sits down to suppose himself charged

In 1643, being now master of arts, he was, by with treason or peculation, and heats his mind to the prevalence of the parliament, ejected from an elaborate purgation of his character from Cambridge, and sheltered himself af St. John's crimes which he was never within the possibility College, in Oxford; where, as is said by Wood, of committing, differs only by the infrequency of he published a satire, called “The Puritan and his folly from him who praises beauty which he Papist,” which was only inserted in the last col- never saw; complains of jealousy which he never lection of his Works;t and so distinguished felt; supposes himself sometimes invited, and himself by the warmth of his loyalty and the ele- sometimes forsaken; fatigues his fancy, and rangance of his conversation, that he gained the sacks his memory, for images which may exhibit kindness and confidence of those who attended the gayety of hope, or the gloominess of despair, the king, and amongst others of Lord Falkland, and dresses his imaginary Chloris or Phyllis, whose notice cast a lustre on all to whom it was sometimes in flowers fading as her beauty, and extended.

sometimes in gems lasting as her virtues. About the time when Oxford was surrendered At Paris, as secretary to Lord Jermyn, he was to the parliament, he followed the queen to Paris, engaged in transacting things of real importance where he became secretary to the Lord Jermyn, with real men and real women, and at that time afterwards Earl of S. Albán's, and was employ- did not much employ his thoughts upon phaned in such correspondence as the royal cause toms of gallantry. Some of his letters to Mr. required, and particularly in cyphering and de- Bennett, afterwards Earl of Arlington, from cyphering the letters that passed between the April to December, in 1650, are preserved in king and queen ; an employment of the highest “Miscellanea Aulica,” a collection of papers confidence and honour.“ So wide was his pro- published by Brown. These letters, being writvince of intelligence, that, for several years, it ten like those of other men whose minds are more filled all his days and two or three nights in the on things than words, contribute no otherwise to week.

his reputation than as they show him to have In the year 1647, his “Mistress” was publish- been above the affectation of unseasonable eleed; for he imagined, as he declared in his pre- gance, and to have known that the business of a face to a subsequent edition, that "poets are statesman can be litue forwarded by flowers of scarcely thought freemen of their company with rhetoric. out paying some duties, or obliging themselves

One passage, however, seems not unworthy of to be true to Love."

some notice. Speaking of the Scotch treaty then This obligation to amorous ditties owes, I be in agitation : lieve, its original to the fame of Petrarch, who, in “The Scotch treaty," says he, “is the only an age rude and uncultivated, by his tuneful thing now in which we are vitally concerned: I

am one of the last hopers, and yet cannot now * He was a candidate this year at Westminster School abstain from believing, that an agreement will be for election to Trinity College, but proved unsuccessful. made; all people upon the place incline to that

of union. In the first edition of this Life, Dr. Johnson wrote of the rigour of their demands; the mutual ne

The Scotch will moderate something " which was never inserted in any collection of his works;"' but he altered the expression when the Lives were collected into volumes. The satire was added to Cowley's Works by the particular direction of Dr. John

Barnesii Anacreontem.-Dr. J.

--N.

son.-N.

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