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Grace Henrietta, Duchess of Marlborough,' was reprinted for the Percy Society-under the care of Mr. Peter Cunningham-as a genuine though unacknowledged production of Thomson, first published in 1729. We have no doubt of the genuineness of this poem as the work of Thomson. It possesses all the characteristics of his style.

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We subjoin a few of the detached pictures and descriptions in the Seasons,' and part of the Castle of Indolence.'

Showers in Spring.

The north-east spends his rage; he now shut up
Within his iron cave, the effusive south

Warms the wide air, and o'er the void of heaven
Breathes the big clouds with vernal showers distent.
At first, a dusky wreath they seem to rise,
Scarce staining ether, but by fast degrees,
In heaps on heaps the doubling vapour sails
Along the loaded sky, and, mingling deep,
Sits on the horizon round, a settled gloom;
Not such as wintry storms on mortals shed,
Oppressing life; but lovely, gentle, kind,
And full of every hope, of every joy,
The wish of nature. Gradual sinks the breeze
Into a perfect calm, that not a breath

Is heard to quiver through the closing woods,
Or rustling turn the many-twinkling leaves
Of aspen tall. The uncurling floods, diffused
In glassy breadth, seem, through delusive lapse,
Forgetful of their course. 'Tis silence all,
And pleasing expectation. Herds and flocks
Drop the dry sprig, and, mute-imploring, eye
The falling verdure. Hushed in short suspense,
The plumy people streak their wings with oil,
To throw the lucid moisture trickling off,
And wait the approaching sign, to strike at once
Into the general choir. Even mountains, vales,
And forests seem impatient to demand
The promised sweetness. Man superior walks
Amid the glad creation, musing praise,
And looking lively gratitude. At last,
The clouds consign their treasures to the fields,
And, softly shaking on the dimpled pool
Prelusive drops, let all their moisture flow
In large effusion o'er the freshened world.
The stealing shower is scarce to patter heard
By such as wander through the forest walks,
Beneath the umbrageous multitude of leaves.

Birds Pairing in Spring.

To the deep woods
They haste away, all as their fancy leads,
Pleasure, or food, or secret safety prompts;
That nature's great command may be obeyed:
Nor all the sweet sensations they perceive
Indulged in vain. Some to the holly hedge
Nestling repair, and to the thicket some;
Some to the rude protection of the thorn
Commit their feeble offspring; the cleft tree
Offers its kind concealment to a few,

Their food its insects, and its moss their nests:
Others apart, far in the grassy dale

Or roughening waste their humble texture weave:
But most in woodland solitudes delight,
In unfrequented glooms or shaggy banks,
Steep, and divided by a babbling brook,
Whose murmurs soothe them all the livelong day,
When by kind duty fixed. Among the roots
Of hazel pendent o'er the plaintive stream,
They frame the first foundation of their domes,
Dry sprigs of trees, in artful fabric laid,
And bound with clay together. Now 'tis naught
But restless hurry through the busy air,

Beat by unnumbered wings. The swallow sweeps
The slimy pool, to build his hanging house
Intent and often from the careless back
Of herds and flocks a thousand tugging bills
Pluck hair and wool; and oft, when unobserved,
Steal from the barn a straw; till soft and warm,
Clean and complete, their habitation grows.

As thus the patient dam assiduous sits,
Not to be tempted from her tender task
Or by sharp hunger or by smooth delight,

Though the whole loosened Spring around her blows,
Her sympathising lover takes his stand

High on the opponent bank, and ceaseless sings
The tedious time away; or else supplies

Her place a moment, while she sudden flits
To pick the scanty meal. The appointed time
With pious toil fulfilled, the callow young,
Warmed and expanded into perfect life,
Their brittle bondage break, and come to light;
A helpless family, demanding food

With constant clamour: O what passions then,
What melting sentiments of kindly care,
On the new parents seize! away they fly
Affectionate, and, undesiring, bear

The most delicious morsel to their young,
Which equally distributed, again

The search begins. Even so a gentle pair,

By fortune sunk, but formed of generous mould,
And charmed with cares beyond the vulgar breast,
In some lone cot amid the distant woods,
Sustained alone by providential heaven,

Oft as they, weeping, eye their infant train,
Check their own appetites, and give them all.

Summer Evening.

Low walks the sun, and broadens by degrees,
Just o'er the verge of day. The shifting clouds
Assembled gay, a richly gorgeous train,
In all their pomp attend his setting throne.
Air, earth, and ocean smile immense. And now,
And if his weary chariot sought the bowers
Of Amphitrite, and her tending nymphs-
So Grecian fable sung-he dips his orb;
Now half immersed; and now a golden curve
Gives one bright glance, then total disappears.
Confessed from yonder slow-extinguished clouds,
All ether softening, sober evening takes
Her wonted station in the middle air;



A thousand shadows at her beck. First this
She sends on earth; then that of deeper dye
Steals soft behind; and then a deeper still,
In circle following circle, gathers round,
To close the face of things. A fresher gale
Begins to wave the wood, and stir the stream,
Sweeping with shadowy gust the fields of corn:
While the quail clamours for his running mate.
Wide o'er the thistly lawn, as swells the breeze,
A whitening shower of vegetable down
Amusive floats. The kind impartial care
Of nature nought disdains: thoughtful to feed
Her lowest sons, and clothe the coming year,
From field to field the feathered seeds she wings.
His folded flock secure, the shepherd home
Hies merry-hearted; and by turns relieves
The ruddy milkmaid of her brimming pail ;
The beauty whom perhaps his witless heart-
Unknowing what the joy-mixed anguish means-
Sincerely loves, by that best language shewn
Of cordial glances, and obliging deeds.
Onward they pass o'er many a panting height,
And valley sunk, and unfrequented; where
At fall of eve the fairy people throng,
In various game and revelry, to pass
The summer night, as village stories tell.
But far about they wander from the grave
Of him whom his ungentle fortune urged
Against his own sad breast to lift the hand
Of impious violence. The lonely tower

Is also shunned; whose mournful chambers hold→→
So night-struck fancy dreams-the yelling ghost.
Among the crooked lanes, on every hedge,

The glowworm lights his gem; and through the dark
A moving radiance twinkles. Evening yields
The world to night: not in her winter robe
Of massy Stygian woof, but loose arrayed
In mantle dun. A faint erroneous ray,
Glanced from the imperfect surfaces of things,
Flings half an image on the straining eye;
While wavering woods, and villages, and streams,
And rocks, and mountain-tops, that long retained
The ascending gleam, are all one swimming scene,
Uncertain if beheld. Sudden to heaven

Thence weary vision turns; where, leading soft
The silent hours of love, with purest ray
Sweet Venus shines; and from her genial rise,
When daylight sickens till it springs afresh,
Unrivalled reigns, the fairest lamp of night.


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