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was in times of contest and turbulence steady to elegant, either keen or witty. They are trifles his party, and obtained that esteem which is written by idleness and published by vanity. always conferred upon firmness and consistency. But his prologues and epilogues have a just With those advantages, having learned the art claim to praise. of versifying, he declared himself a poet; and The " Progress of Beauty" seems one of his his claim to the laurel was allowed.
most elaborate pieces, and is not deficient in But by a critic of a later generation, who takes splendour and gayety; but the merit of original up his book without any favourable prejudices, thought is wanting. Its highest praise is the the praise already received will be thought suffi- spirit with which he celebrates King James's cient; for his works do not show him to have consort when she was a queen no longer. had much comprehension from nature or illumi The “Essay on unnatural Flights in Poetry” nation from learning. He seems to have had no is not inelegant nor injudicious, and has someambition above the imitation of Waller, of whom thing of vigour beyond most of his other perhe has copied the faults and very little more. formances : his precepts are just, and his cautions He is for ever amusing himself with puerilities of proper; they are indeed not new, but in a didacmythology: his King is Jupiter; who, if the tic poem novelty is to be expected only in the Queen brings no children, has a barren Juno, ornaments and illustrations. His poetical preThe Queen is compounded of Juno, Venus, and cepts are accompanied with agreeable and inMinerva. His poem on the Dutchess of Graf- structive notes. ton's law-suit, after having rattled awhile with The Mask of “Peleus and Thetis" has here Juno and Pallas, Mars and Alcides, Cassiope, and there a pretty line; but it is not always Niobe, and the Propetides, Hercules, Minos, and melodious, and the conclusion is wretched. Rhadamanthus, at last concludes its folly with In his “British Enchanters" he has bidden deprofaneness.
fiance to all chronology, by confounding the inHis verses to Mira, which are most frequently consistent manners of different ages; but the mentioned, have little in them of either art or dialogue has often the air of Dryden's rhyming nature, of the sentiments of a lover, or the lan- plays: and his songs are lively, though not very guage of a poet: there may be found, now and correct. This is, I think, far the best of his then, a happier effort; but they are commonly works; for, if it has many faults, it has likewise feeble and unaffecting, or forced and extravagant. passages which are at least pretty, though they
His little pieces are seldom either sprightly or do not rise to any high degree of excellence.
Thomas Yalden, the sixth son of Mr. John thought at first, yet did not forfeit the friendship Yalden, of Sussex, was born in the city of Exe- of Addison. ter, in 1671. Having been educated in the gram When Namur was taken by King William, mar school belonging to Magdalen College, in Yalden made an ode. There never was any Oxford, he was in 1690, at the age of nineteen, reign more celebrated by the poets than that of admitted commoner of Magdalen Hall, under William, who had very little regard for song the tuition of Josiah Pullen, a man whose name himself, but happened to employ ministers who is still remembered in the University. He be- pleased themselves with the praise of patroncame next year one of the scholars of Magdalen age. College, where he was distinguished by a lucky Of this ode mention is made in a humorous accident.
poem of that time, called “The Oxford LauIt was his turn, one day, to pronounce a de- reat:" in which, after many claims had been clamation: and Dr. Hough, the president, hap- made and rejected, Yalden is represented as depening to attend, thought the composition too manding the laures, and as being called to his good to be the speaker's. Some time after, the trial, instead of receiving a reward : Doctor finding him a little irregularly busy in the library, set him an exercise for punishment, His crime was for being a felon in verse, and, that he might not be deceived by any arti- The first was a trick not uncommon or scarce, fice, locked the door. Yalden, as it happened, But the last was an impudent thing; had been lately reading on the subject given, Yet what he had stolen was so little worth stealing, and produced with little difficulty a composi- Had he ta'en the whole ode, as he took it piecemealing, tion which so pleased the president, that he told They had fined him but len-pence at most. him his former suspicions, and promised to favour him.
The poet whom he was charged with robbing Among his contemporaries in the College was Congreve. were Addison and Sacheverell, men who were He wrote another poem, on the death of the in those times friends, and who both adopted Duke of Gloucester. Yalden to their intimacy, Yalden continued, In 1700 he became fellow of the College; and throughout his life, to think as probably he next year, entering into orders, was presented
by the society, with a living in Warwickshire, * | papers, and no evidence arising against him, he consistent with his fellowship, and chosen lec- was set at liberty. turer of moral philosophy, a very honourable It will not be supposed that a man of this office.
character attained high dignities in the church; On the accession of Queen Anne he wrote but he still retained the friendship and freanother poem ;
and is said, by the author of the quented the conversation of a very numerous “Biographia," to have declared himself of the and splendid set of acquaintance. He died July party who had the honourable distinction of 16, 1736, in the 66th year of his age. High-churchmen.
poems, many are of that irregular kind In 1706 he was received into the family of the which, when he formed his poetical character, Duke of Beaufort. Next year he became doctor was supposed to be Pindaric. Having fixed his in divinity, and soon after resigned his fellow- attention on Cowley as a model, he has attempted ship and lecture, and, as a token of his gratitude, in some sort to rival him, and has written a gave the College a picture of their founder. “Hymn to Darkness,” evidently as a counter
He was made rector of Chalton and Clean- part to Cowley's “Hymn to Light.” ville,t two adjoining towns and benefices in This Hymn seems to be his best performance, Hertfordshire; and had the prebends, or sine- and is, for the most part, imagined with great cures, of Deans, Hains, and Pendles, in Devon- vigour and expressed with great propriety. I shire. He had beforef been chosen, in 1698, will not transcribe it. The seven first stanzas preacher of Bridewell Hospital, upon the resig- are good; but the third, fourth, and seventh, nation of Dr. Atterbury.
are the best; the eighth seems to involve a conFrom this time he seems to have led a quiet tradiction ; the tenth is exquisitely beautiful ; and inoffensive life, till the clamour was raised the thirteenth, fourteenth, and fifteenth, are about Atterbury's plot. Every loyal eye was partly mythological and partly religious, and on the watch fór abettors or partakers of the iherefore not suitable to each other: he might horrid conspiracy; and Dr. Yalden, having better have made the whole merely philosophie some acquaintance with the bishop, and being cal. familiarly conversant with Kelly, his secre There are two stanzas in this poem where tary, fell under suspicion, and was taken into Yalden may be suspected, though hardly concustody.
victed, of having consulted the "Hymnus ad Upon his examination he was char with a Umbram” of Wowerus, in the sixth stanza, dangerous correspondence with Kelly. The cor- which answers in some sort to these lines : respondence he acknowledged ; but maintained that it had no treasonable tendency. His papers
Illa suo præest nocturnis numine sacris
Perque vias errare novis dat spectra figuris, were seized; but nothing was found that could
Manesque excitos medios ululare per agros fix a crime upon him, except two words in his Sub noctem, el questu nutos complere penates. pocket-book, thorough-paced doctrine. This expression the imagination of his examiners had And again, at the conclusion : impregnated with treason, and the Doctor was Illa suo senium secludit corpore toto enjoined to explain them. Thus pressed, he Haud numerans jugi fugientia secula lapsu, told them that the words had lain unheeded in Ergo ubi postremum mundi compage soluta
Hanc rerum molem suprema absumpserit hora his pocket-book from the time of Queen Anne,
Ipsa leves cineres nube amplectetur opacâ, and that he was ashamed to give an account of Et prisco imperio rursus dominabitur umbra. them; but the truth was, that he had gratified his curiosity one day, by hearing Daniel Burgess His “Hymn to Light” is not equal to the other. in the pulpit, and those words were a memorial He seems to think that there is an cast absoluto hint of a remarkable sentence by which he and positive where the morning rises, warned his congregation to “beware of thorough In the last stanza, having mentioned the sudpaced doctrine, that doctrine which, coming in at den irruption of new-created light, he says, one ear, passes through the head, and goes out at the other.”
Awhile the Almighty wondering stood. Nothing worse than this appearing in his
He ought to have remembered that infinite
knowledge can never wonder. All wonder is * The vicarage of Willoughby, which he resigned in the effect of novelty upon ignorance. 1708.-N.
Of his other poems it is sufficient to say, that | This preserment was given him by the Duke of Beaufort.-N.
they deserve perusal, though they are not always Not long after.
exactly polished, though the rhymes are somcDr. Atterbury retained the office of preacher at times very ill sorted, and though his faults scem Bride well till his promotion to the bishopric of Roches rather the omissions of idleness than the negli
Dr. Yaiden succeeded him as preacher, in June, 1713.-N.
gences of enthusiasm.
THOMAS TICKELL, the son of the Reverend that time with so much favour, that six editions Richard Tickell, was born in 1686, at Bride- were sold. kirk, in Cumberland ; and in April, 1701, be At the arrival of King George he sung “The came a member of Queen's College, in Oxford ; Royal Progress;" which being inserted in the in 1708 he was made master of arts; and, two “Spectator” is well known; and of which it is years afterwards, was chosen fellow; for which, | just to say, that it is neither high nor low. as he did not comply with the statutes by taking The poetical incident of most importance in orders, he obtained a dispensation from the Tickell's life was his publication of the first book
He held his fellowship till 1726, and of the “Iliad," as translated by himself, an apo then vacated it, by marrying, in that year, at parent opposition to Pope's “Homer,” of which Dublin.
the first part made its entrance into the world at Tickell was not one of those scholars who the same time. wear away their lives in closets; he entered Addison declared that the rival versions were early into the world, and was long busy in both good, but that Tickell's was the best that public affairs, in which he was initiated under ever was made; and with Addison, the wits, the patronage of Addison, whose notice he is his adherents and followers, were certain to consaid to have gained by his verses in praise of cur. Pope does not appear to have been much «Rosamond.”
dismayed; "for,” says he, “I have the town, To those verses it would not have been just to that is the mob, on my side.” But he remarks, deny regard, for they contain some of the most that “it is common for the smaller party to elegant encomiastic strains; and, among the make up in diligence what they want in numinnumerable poems of the same kind, it will be bers; he appeals to the people as his proper hard to find one with which they need to fear a judges; and, if they are not inclined to condemn comparison. It may deserve observation, that, him, he is in little care about the highflyers at when Pope wrote long afterwards in praise of Button's.” Addison, he has copied, at least has resembled, Pope did not long think Addison an impartia) Tickell :
judge; for he considered him as the writer of Let joy salute fair Rosamonda's shade,
Tickell's version. The reasons for his suspiAnd leaves of myrtle crown the lovely majd.
cion I will literally transcribe from Mr. Spence's While now perhaps with Dido's ghost she roves, Collection. And hears and tells the story of their loves :
“There had been a coldness (said Mr. Pope) Alike they mourn, alike they bless their fate, Since love, which made them wretched, 'made them between Mr. Addison and me for some tinie; great ;
and we had not been in company together for a Nor longer that relentless doom bemoan,
good while, any where but at Button's CoffeeWhich gain'd a Virgil and an Addison.
Tickell. house, where I used to see him almost every
day:--On his meeting me there one day in parThen future ages with delight shall seo How Plato's, Bacon's, Newton's, looks agree;
ticular, he took me aside, and said he should be Or in fair series laurell'd bards be shown,
glad to dine with me, at such a tavern, if I A Virgil there, and here an Addison.
stayed till those people were gone, (Budgell and
Pope. Philips.) We went accordingly, and after He produced another piece of the same kind dinner Mr. Addison said, “That he had wanted at the appearance of “Cato,” with equal skill, for some time to talk with me; that his friend but not equal happiness.
Tickell had formerly, whilst at Oxford, transWhen the ministers of Queen Anne were ne-lated the first book of the “Iliad;" that he degotiating with France, Tickell published “The signed to print it, and had desired him to look Prospect of Peace," a poem, of which the ten- it over; that he must therefore beg that I would dency was to reclaim the nation from the pride not desire him to look over my first book, beof conquest to the pleasures of tranquillity. cause, if he did, it would have the air of doubleHow far Tickell, whom Swift afterwards men dealing. I assured him that I did not at all tioned as Whiggissimus, had then connected him- take it ill of Mr. Tickell that he was going to self with any party, I know not; this poem cer- publish his translation ; that he certainly had as tainly did not flatter the practices or promote much right to translate any author as myself ; the opinions of the men by whom he was after and that publishing both was entering on a fair wards befriended.
stage. I then added, that I would not desire Mr. Addison, however he hated the men then him to look over my first book of the 'Iliad,'bein power, suffered his friendship to prevail over cause he had looked over Mr. Tickell's; but his public spirit, and gave in the “Spectator” could wish to have the benefit of his observasuch praises of Tickell's poem, that when, after tions on the second, which I had then finished, having long wished to peruse it, I laid hold on and which Mr. Tickell had not touched upon. it at last, I thought it unequal to the honours Accordingly I sent him the second book the which it had received, and found it a piece to next morning; and Mr. Addison a few days be approved rather than admired. But the hope after returned it, with very high commendations. excited by a work of genius being general and Soon after it was generally known that Mr. indefinite, is rarely gratified. It was read at | Tickell was publishing the first book of the
*Tiad,' I met Dr. Young in the street; and, He was now intimately united to Mr. Addi. upon our falling into that subject, the Doctor son, who, when he went into Ireland as secreexpressed a great deal of surprise at Tickell's tary to the Lord Sunderland, took him thither having had such a translation so long by him, and employed him in public business; and He said, that it was inconceivable to him, and when (1717) afterwards he rose to be secretary that there must be some mistake in the matter; of state, made him under-secretary, Their that each used to communicate to the other friendship seems to have continued without whatever verses they wrote, even to the least abatement; for when Addison died, he left him things; that Tickell could not have been busied the charge of publishing his works, with a in so long a work there without his knowing solemn recommendation to the patronage of something of the matter ; and that he had never Craggs. heard a single word of it till on this occasion. To these works he prefixed an Elegy on the The surprise of Dr. Young, together with what Author, which could owe none of its beauties to Steele has said against Tickell, in relation to the assistance which might be suspected to have this affair, make it highly probable that there strengthened or embellished his earlier compowas some underhand dealing in that business; sitions; but neither he nor Addison ever proand indeed Tickell hiinself, who is a very fair duced nobler lines than are contained in the worthy man, has since in a manner as good as third and fourth paragraphs; nor is a more subowned it to me. When it was introduced into lime or more elegant funeral poem to be found a conversation between Mr. Tickell and Mr. in the whole compass of English literature. Pope, by a third person, Tickell did not deny He was afterwards (about 1725) made secreit; which, considering his honour and zeal for tary to the Lords Justices of Ireland, a place of his departed friend, was the same as owning it.” great honour; in which he continued till 1740,
Upon these suspicions, with which Dr. War- when he died on the 23d of April, at Bath. burton hints that other circumstances con Of the poems yet unmentioned the longest is curred, Pope always in his “ Art of Sinking” “Kensington Gardens,” of which the versificaquotes this book as the work of Addison. tion is smooth and elegant, but the fiction un
To compare the two translations would be skilfully compounded of Grecian deities, and tedious; the palm is now given universally to Gothic fairies. Neither species of those exPope ; but I think the first lines of Tickell's ploded beings could have done much ; and were rather to be preferred; and Pope seems to when they are brought together they only make have since borrowed something from them in each other contemptible. To Tickell, however, the correction of his own.
cannot be refused a high place among the minor When the Hanover succession was disputed, poets ; nor should it be forgotten that he was Tickell gave what assistance his pen would one of the contributors to the “Spectator.” supply. His “Letter to Avignon” stands high With respect to his personal character, he is among party poems; it expresses contempt said to have been a man of gay conversation, without coarseness, and superiority without in- at least a temperate lover of wine and comsolence. It had the success which it deserved, pany, and in his domestic relations without cenbeing five times printed.
Of Mr. HAMMOND, though he be well remem son of a Turkey merchant, and had some ofhce bered as a man esteemed and caressed by the at the Prince of Wales's court, till love of a elegant and the great, I was at first able to lady, whose name was Dashwood, for a time obtain no other memorials than such as are disordered his understanding. He was unex. supplied by a book called “Cibber's Lives of tinguishably amorous, and his mistress inexorathe Poets;" of which I take this opportunity to bly cruel. testify, that it was not written, nor, I believe, Of this narrative, part is true and part false. ever seen,
by either of the Cibbers: but was the He was the second son of Anthony Hammond, work of Robert Shiels, a native of Scotland, a a man of note among the wits, poets, and parman of very acute understanding, though with liamentary orators, in the beginning of this cenlittle scholastic education, who, not long after tury, who was allied to Sir Robert Walpole by the publication of his work, died in London of marrying his sister.* He was born about 1710, a consumption. His life was virtuous, and his and educated at Westminster school; but it end was pious. Theophilus Cibber, then a does not appear that he was of any university.f prisoner for debt, imparted, as I was told, his name for ten guineas. The manuscript of Shiels * This account is still erroneous. James Hammond, is now in my possession.
our Author, was of a different family, the second son of I have since found that Mr. Shiels, though Anthony Hammond, of Somersham.place, in the county he was no negligent inquirer, had been misled of Huntingdon, Esq. See Gent. Mag.rol. lvii. p. 786 by false accounts; for he relates that James
+ Mr. Cole gives him to Cambridge. MSS. Athena Hammond, the Author of the Elegies, was the Cantab. in Mus. Brit.-C.
He was equerry to the Prince of Wales, and fiction, there is no passion; he that describes seems to have come very early into public no- himself as a shepherd and his Neæra or Delia tice, and to have been distinguished by those as a shepherdess, and talks of goats and lambs, whose friendships prejudiced mankind at that feels no passion. He that courts his mistress time in favour of the man on whom they were with Roman imagery deserves to lose her: for bestowed; for he was the companion of Cob- she may with good reason suspect his sincerity. ham, Lyttelton, and Chesterfield. He is said Hammond has few sentiments drawn from nato have divided his life between pleasure and ture, and few images from modern life. He books; in his retirement forgetting the town, produces nothing but frigid pedantry. It would and in his gayety losing the student. Of his be hard to find in all his productions three literary hours all the effects are here exhibited, stanzas that deserve to be remembered. of which the Elegies were written very early, Like other lovers, he threatens the lady with and the prologue not long before his death. dying; and what then shall follow ? In 1741, he was chosen into parliament for
Wilt thou in tears thy lover's corse attend ? Truro, in Cornwall, probably one of those who
With eyes averted light the solemn pyre: were elected by the Prince's influence; and died Till all around the doleful flames ascend, next year, in June, at Stowe, the famous seat of Then, slowly sinking, by degrees expire ? Lord Cobham. His mistress long outlived him,
To sooth the hov'ring soul be thine the care, and in 1779 died unmarried. The character With plaintive cries to lead the mournful band; which her lover bequeathed her was, indeed, not
In sable weeds the golden vase tu bear, likely to attract courtship.
And cull my ashes with thy trembling hand. The Elegies were published after his death ; Panchaia's odours be their costly feast, and while the writer's name was remembered And all the pride of Asia's fragrant year;
Give them the treasures of the farthest east; with fondness, they were read with a resolution
And, what is still more precious, give thy tear. to admire them.
The recommendatory preface of the editor, Surely no blame can fall upon a nymph who who was then believed, and is now affirmed, by rejected a swain of so little meaning. Dr. Maty, to be the Earl of Chesterfield, raised His verses are not rugged, but they have no strong prejudices in their favour.
sweetness; they never glide in a stream of But of the prefacer, whoever he was, it may melody. Why Hammond or other writers have be reasonably suspected that he never read the thought the quatrain of ten syllables elegiac, it poems; for he professes to value them for a very is difficult to tell. The character of the Elegy high species of excellence, and recommends them is gentleness and tenuity; but this stanza bas as the genuine effusions of the mind, which ex- been pronounced by Dryden, whose knowledge press a real passion in the language of nature. of English metre was not inconsiderable, to be But the truth is, these Elegies have neither the most magnificent of all measures which our passion, nature, nor manners. Where there is I language affords.
Of Mr. * SOMERVILLE's life I am not able to smyself on this occasion.-Sublatum quærimus. I say any thing that can satisfy curiosity. can now excuse all his foibles; impute them to
He was a gentleman whose estate was in age, and to distress of circumstances; the last of Warwickshire: his house, where he was born in these considerations wrings my, very soul 10 1692, is called Edston, a seat inherited from a think on. For a man of high spirit, conscious of long line of ancestors; for he was said to be of having, (at least in one production) generally the first family in his county. He tells of him- pleased the world, to be plagued and threatened self that he was born near the Avon's banks. by wretches that are low in every sense ; to be He was bred at Winchester-school, and was forced to drink himself into pains of the body, elected fellow of New College. It does not ap- in order to get rid of the pains of the mind, is a pear that in the places of his education he ex- misery." hibited any uncommon proofs of genius or litera He died July 19, 1742, and was buried at ture. His powers were first displayed in the Wotton, near Henley on Arden. country, where he was distinguished as a poet, His distresses need not be much pitied; his esa gentleman, and a skilful and useful justice of tate is said to have been fifteen hundred a year,
which by his death devolved to Lord Somerville Of the close of his life, those whom his poems of Scotland. His mother, indeed, who lived till have delighted will read with pain the following ninety, had a jointure of six hundred. account, copied from the letters of his friend It is with regret that I find myself not better Shenstone, by whom he was too much resembled. enabled to exhibit memorials of a writer who at
"-Our old friend Somerville is dead! I did least must be allowed to have set a good exnot imagine I could have been so sorry as I find ample to men of his own class, by devoting part
of his time to elegant knowledge ; and who has shown, by the subjects which his poetry has