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Oh! how I love with thee to walk, And listen to thy whisper'd talk, Which innocence and truth imparts, And melts the most obdurate hearts.
A thousand shapes you wear with ease,
Of that sweet passion in your face;
Thine is the balmy breath of morn,
Descending angels bless thy train,
Oh, let me pierce thy secret cell!
REV. MR. MURDOCH,
RECTOR OF STRADDISHALL, IN SUFFOLK, 1738. THUS safely low, my friend, thou canst not fall: Here reigns a deep tranquillity o'er all; No noise, no care, no vanity, no strife; Men, woods, and fields, all breathe untroubled life Then keep each passion down, however dear; Trust me the tender are the most severe. Guard, while 'tis thine, thy philosophic ease, And ask no joy but that of virtuous peace; That bids defiance to the storms of Fate, High bliss is only for a higher state.
AMBROSE PHILIPS, a poet and miscellaneous who found his own juvenile pastorals undervalued, writer, was born in 1671, claiming his descent from sent to the same paper a comparison between his an ancient Leicestershire family. He received his and those of Philips, in which he ironically gave education at St. John's College, Cambridge; and, the preference to the latter. The irony was not attaching himself to the Whig party, he published, detected till it encountered the critical eye of Adin 1700, an epitome of Hacket's life of Archbishop dison; and the consequence was, that it ruined the Williams, by which he obtained an introduction to reputation of Philips as a composer of pastoral. Addison and Steele. Soon after, he made an at- When the accession of George I. brought the tempt in pastoral poetry, which, for a time, brought Whigs again into power, Philips was made a Westhim into celebrity. In 1709, being then at Copen- minster justice, and, soon after, a commissioner for hagen, he addressed to the earl of Dorset some the lottery. In 1718, he was the editor of a periverses, descriptive of that capital, which are re- odical paper, called "The Freethinker." In 1724, garded as his best performance; and these, together he accompanied to Ireland his friend Dr. Boulter, with two translations from Sappho's writings, created archbishop of Armagh, to whom he acted stand pre-eminent in his works of this class. In as secretary. He afterwards represented the county 1712 he made his appearance as a dramatic writer, of Armagh in parliament; and the places of secrein the tragedy of "The Distrest Mother," acted at tary to the Lord Chancellor, and Judge of the PreDrury-lane with great applause, and still considered rogative Court, were also conferred upon him. He as a stock play. It cannot, indeed, claim the merit returned to England in 1748, and died in the folof originality, being closely copied from Racine's lowing year, at the age of seventy-eight. "Andromacque;" but it is well written, and skilfully adapted to the English stage.
Th verses which he composed, not only to young ladies in the nursery, but to Walpole when A storm now fell upon him relatively to his pas- Minister of State, and which became known by the torals, owing to an exaggerated compliment from ludicrous appellation of namby-pamby, are easy and Tickell, who, in a paper of the Guardian, had made sprightly, but with a kind of infantile air, which the true pastoral pipe descend in succession from fixed upon them the above name. Theocritus to Virgil, Spenser, and Philips. Pope,|
TO THE EARL OF DORSET.
Copenhagen, March 9, 1709.
No gentle breathing breeze prepares the
The starving wolves along the main sea prowl,
And yet but lately have I seen, ev'n here,
Ere yet the clouds let fall the treasur'd snow,
And brighten'd every object to my eyes:
WILLIAM COLLINS, a distinguished modern poet, of disorder in his mind, perceptible to any but himwas born at Chichester, in 1720 or 1721, where his self. He was reading the New Testament. ** I father exercised the trade of a hatter. He received have but one book," said he, “but it is the best." his education at Winchester College, whence he en-He was finally consigned to the care of his sister, in tered as a commoner of Queen's College, Oxford. whose arms he finished his short and melancholy In 1741, he procured his election into Magdalen course, in the year 1756. college as a demy; and it was here that he wrote It is from his Odes, that Collins derives his chief his poetical "Epistle to Sir Thomas Hanmer," poetical fame; and in compensation for the neglect and his Oriental Eclogues;" of both which with which they were treated at their first appearpieces the success was but moderate. In 1744, he ance, they are now almost universally regarded as came to London as a literary adventurer, and va- the first productions of the kind in our language, rious were the projects which he formed in this with respect to vigor of conception, boldness and capacity. In 1746, however, he ventured to lay variety of personification, and genuine warmth of before the public a volume of "Odes, Descriptive feeling. They are well characterized in an essay and Allegorical;" but so callous was the national prefixed to his works, in an ornamented edition pubtaste at this time, that their sale did not pay for the lished by Cadell and Davies, with which we shall printing. Collins, whose spirit was high, returned conclude this article. "He will be acknowledged to the bookseller his copy-money, burnt all the un-(says the author) to possess imagination, sweetness, sold copies, and as soon as it lay in his power, in- bold and figurative language. His numbers dwell demnified him for his small loss; yet among these on the ear, and easily fix themselves in the memory. odes, were many pieces which now rank among the His vein of sentiment is by turns tender and lofty, finest lyric compositions in the language. After always tinged with a degree of melancholy, but not this mortification, he obtained from the booksellers possessing any claim to originality. His originality a small sum for an intended translation of Aristotle's consists in his manner, in the highly figurative garb Poetics, and paid a visit to an uncle, Lieutenant-in which he clothes abstract ideas, in the felicity of Colonel Martin, then with the army in Germany. his expressions, and his skill in embodying ideal The Colonel dying soon after, left Collins a legacy creations. He had much of the mysticism of poetry, of 2000, a sum which raised him to temporary and sometimes became obscure by aiming at imopulence; but he now soon became incapable of pressions stronger than he had clear and well-defin'd every mental exertion. Dreadful depression of ideas to support. Had his life been prolonged, and spirits was an occasional attendant on his malady, with life had he enjoyed that ease which is necessary for which he had no remedy but the bottle. It was for the undisturbed exercise of the faculties, he about this time, that it was thought proper to con- would probably have risen far above most of his fine him in a receptacle of lunatics. Dr. Johnson contemporaries." paid him a visit at Islington, when there was nothing
Come, Pity, come, by Fancy's aid,
There Picture's toil shall well relate,
The buskin'd Muse shall near her stand,
There let me oft, retir'd by day,
Allow'd with thee to dwell:
To hear a British shell!
ODE TO FEAR.
THOU, to whom the world unknown With all its shadowy shapes is shown; Who see'st appall'd th' unreal scene, While Fancy lifts the veil between:
Ah, Fear! ah, frantic Fear!
I know thy hurried step, thy haggard eye!
But who is he, whom later garlands grace,
In earliest Greece, to thee, with partial choice
Silent and pale, in wild amazement hung.
Yet he, the bard* who first invok'd thy name,
But reach'd from Virtue's hand the patriot's steel.
Wrapt in thy cloudy veil th' incestuous queen,t Sigh'd the sad call her son and husband heard, When once alone it broke the silent scene,
And he the wretch of Thebes no more appear'd
O Fear! I know thee by my throbbing heart,
Thy withering power inspir'd each mournful line; Though gentle Pity claim her mingled part,
Yet all the thunders of the scene are thine.
Thou who such weary lengths hast past, Where wilt thou rest, mad nymph, at last? Say, wilt thou shroud in haunted cell, Where gloomy Rape and Murder dwell? Or in some hollow'd seat,
'Gainst which the big waves beat,
Hear drowning seamen's cries in tempests brought! Dark power, with shuddering meek submitted
Be mine, to read the visions old, Which thy awakening bards have told.
And, lest thou meet my blasted view, Hold each strange tale devoutly true; Ne'er be I found, by thee o'er-aw'd, In that thrice-hallow'd eve abroad, When ghosts, as cottage-maids believe, Their pebbled beds permitted leave, And goblins haunt from fire, or fen, Or mine, or flood, the walks of men!
O thou, whose spirit most possest The sacred seat of Shakspeare's breast! By all that from thy prophet broke, In thy divine emotions spoke! Hither again thy fury deal, Teach me but once like him to feel: His cypress wreath my meed decree, And I, O Fear, will dwell with thee!
WRITTEN IN THE YEAR 1746. How sleep the brave, who sink to rest, By all their country's wishes blest! When Spring, with dewy fingers cold, Returns to deck their hallow'd mould, She there shall dress a sweeter sod, Than Fancy's feet have ever trod.
By Fairy hands their knell is rung,