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<<That it is a wretched rhapsody, impudently writ in emulation of the Cooper's Hill of Sir "John Denham: the author of it is obscure, is "ambiguous, is affected, is temerarious, is barba❝rous."

But the author of the Dispensary,


in the Preface to his poem of Claremont f, differs from this opinion: "Those who have seen these "two excellent poems of Cooper's Hill and Wind

sor Forest, the one written by Sir John Denham, "the other by Mr. Pope, will shew a great deal of "candour if they approve of this."

Of the Epistle of Eloisa, we are told by the obscure writer of a poem called Sawney, "That "because Prior's Henry and Emma charmed the "finest tastes, our Author writ his Eloise in op86 position to it, but forgot innocence and virtue: "if you take away her tender thoughts, and her "fierce desires, all the rest is of no value." In which, methinks, his judgment resembleth that of a French tailor on a villa and gardens by the Thames: "All this is very fine; but take away the river, and it is good for nothing."

But very contrary hereunto was the opinion of


himself, saying in his Alma ‡,

* Letter to B. B. at the end of the Remarks on Pope's Homer, 1717. † Printed 1728, p. 12.

Aima, canto z.

"O Abelard! Ill fated youth,
"Thy tale will justify this truth:
"But well I weet the cruel wrong
"Adorns a nobler pcet's song:

"Dan Pope, for thy misfortune griev'd,
❝ With kind concern and skill has wear'd

"A silken web; and ne'er shail fade

"Its colours: gently has he laid

"The mantle o'er thy sad distress,

"And Venus shall the texture bless," &c.

Come we now to his Translation of the Iliad, celebrated by numerous pens; yet shall it suffice to mention the indefatigable


who (though otherwise a severe censurer of our Author) yet styleth this "A laudable Translation*." That ready writer,


in his fore-mentioned Essay, frequently commends the same. And the painful


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thus extols itt: "The spirit of Homer breathes all through this Translation.---I am in doubt whe"ther I should most admire the justness to the Original, or the force and beauty of the language, or the sounding variety of the Numbers; "but when I find all these meet, it puts me "in mind of what the poet says of one of his he 64 roes, that he alone raised and slung with ease a weighty stone that two common men could not


* In his Essays, vol. I. printed for E. Curl.

+ Censor, vol. II. No. 33.

Volume IV.



lift from the ground; just so one single person "has performed, in this Translation, what I once despaired to have seen done by the force of se"veral masterly hands." Indeed the same gentleman appears to have changed his sentiment in his Essays on the Art of Sinking in Reputation, (printed in MIST'S JOURNAL, March 30, 1728,) where he says thus: In order to sink in reputation, let "him take it into his head to descend into Homer, "let the world wonder, as it will, how the devil "he got there) and pretend to do him into Eng"lish, so his version denotes his neglect of the "manner how." Strange variation! We are told in


"That this Translation of the Iliad was not in all "respects conformable to the fine taste of his friend "Mr. Addison; insomuch that he employed a

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younger Muse in an undertaking of this kind, "which he supervised himself." Whether Mr. Addison did find it conformable to his taste or not, best appears from his own testimony the year following its publication, in these words;


When I consider myself as a British Freeholder, "I am in a particular manner pleased with the "labours of those who have improved our lanst Iguage with the translations of old Greek and "Latin authors.---We have already most of their

historians in our own tongue, and, what is more "for the honour of our language, it hath been

taught to express with elegance the greatest of "their poets in each nation. The illiterate among


our own countrymen may learn to judge from Dry"den's Virgil of the most perfect epic performance; "and those parts of Homer which have been pub"lished already by Mr. Pope, give us reason to think "that the Iliad will appear in English with as little disadvantage to that immortal poem."


As to the rest, there is a slight mistake; for this younger muse was an elder: nor was the gentleman (who is a friend of our Author) employed by Mr. Addison to translate it after him, since he saith himself that he did it before*. Contrariwise, that Mr. Addison engaged our Author in this work, appeareth by declaration thereof in the Preface to the Iliad, printed some time before his death, and by his own letters of October 26, and November 2, 1713, where he declares, it is his opinion, that no other person was equal to it.

Next comes his Shakespeare on the stage: "him" (quoth one, whom I take to be


MR. THEOBALD, MIST'S JOURNAL, June 8, 1728,) "publish such an author as he has least studied, and forget to discharge even the dull duty of an

* Vide Preface to Mr. Tickel's translation of the First Book of the Iliad, 4to.

"editor. In this project let him lend the book"seller his name (for a competent sum of money) "to promote the credit of an exorbitant subscrip"tion." Gentle Reader, be pleased to cast thine eye on the proposal below quoted, and on what follows (some months after the former assertion) in the same Journals of June 8. "The bookseller proposed the "book by subscription, and raised some thousands "of pounds for the same: I believe the gentleman "did not share in the profits of this extravagant sub"scription."

"After the Iliad, he undertook (saith

MIST'S JOURNAL, June 8, 1728,)

"the sequel of that work, the Odyssey; and having "secured the success by a numerous subscription, "he employed some underlings to perform what, ac"cording to his Proposals, should come from his own "hands." To which heavy charge we can in truth oppose nothing but the words of


(printed by J. WATTS, Jan. 10, 1724.)

"I take this occasion to declare, that the sub"scription for Shakespeare belongs wholly to Mr. "Tonson: and that the benefit of this Proposal is not "solely for my own use, but for that of two "of my friends, who have assisted me in this "work." But these very gentlemen are extolled above our Poet himself in another of Misr's JOURNALS, March 30, 1728, saying, "That he "would not advise Mr. Pope to try the expe

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