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wholly retired himself from all the avocations and pleasures of the world, to attend diligently to its correction and perfection; and six years more he intended to bestow upon it, as it should seem by this verse of Statius, which was cited at the head of his manuscript,
O mihi bissenos multum vigilata per annos, Duncia !* Hence also we learn the true title of the poem; which with the same certainty as we call that of Homer the Iliad, of Virgil the Æneid, of Camoëns the Lusiad,f we may pronounce, could have been, and can be no other than
The DUNCIAD It is styled Heroic, as being doubly so; not only with respect to its nature, which, according to the
seriously believed by divers gentlemen of the Dunciad. J. Ralph, pref. to Sawney: “ We are told it was the labour of six years, with the utinost assiduity and application. It is no great compliment to the author's sense, to have employed so large a part of his life,” &c. So also Ward, pref. to Durgen : “ The Dunciad, as the publisher very wisely confesses, cost the author six years retirement from all the pleasures of life; though it is somewhat difficult to conceive, from either its bulk or beauty, that it could be so long in hatching, &c. But the length of time and closeness of application were mentioned to prepossess the reader with a good opinion of it.” They just as well understood what Scriblerus said of the poem.
P. * The prefacer to Curl's Key, p. 3. took this word to be really in Statius : “ By a quibble on the word Duncia, the Dunciad is formed.” Mr. Ward also follows him in the same opinion. P.
of In the edition of 1729 was here inserted, “ of Voltaire VOL. IV.
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best rules of the ancients, and strictest ideas of the moderns, is critically such ; but also with regard to the heroical disposition and high courage of the writer, who dared to stir up such a formidable, irritable, and implacable race of mortals.
There may arise some obscurity in chronology from the Names in the poem, by the inevitable removal of some authors, and insertion of others in their niches. For whoever will consider the unity of the whole design, will be sensible, that the poem was not made for these authors, but these authors for the poem. I should judge that they were clapped in as they rose, fresh and fresh, and changed from day to day; in like manner as when the old boughs wither, we thrust new ones into a chimney.
I would not have the reader too much troubled or anxious if he cannot decypher them; since when he shall have found them out, he will probably know no more of the persons than before.
Yet we judged it better to preserve them as they are, than to change them for fictitious names; by which the satire would only be multiplied, and applied to many instead of one. Had the Hero, for instance, been called Codrus, how many would have affirmed him to have been Mr. T. Mr. E. Sir R. B. &c. but now all that unjust scandal is saved, by calling him by a name, which by good luck happens to be that of a real person. the Henriad," and in a note was added, “ The French poem of Mons. Voltaire, entitled La Henriade, had been published at London the year before;" but this was afterwards omitted.
A List of Books, PAPERS, and VERSES, in which
our Author was abused, before the Publication · of the DUNCIAD; with the true Names of the
REFLECTIONS critical and satirical, on a late Rhapsody, called An Essay on Criticism. By Mr. Dennis; printed by B. Lintot, price 6d.
A new Rehearsal, or Bays the younger; containing an Examen of Mr. Rowe's Plays, and a word or two on Mr. Pope's Rape of the Lock. Anon. [By Charles Gildon.] Printed for J. Roberts, 1714, price 1s.
Homerides, or a Letter to Mr. Pope, occasioned by his intended translation of Homer. By Sir Iliad Doggrel [Tho. Burnet and G. Ducket, Esquires). Printed for W. Wilkins, 1715, price 9d.
Æsop at the Bear-garden; a vision, in imitation of the Temple of Fame, by Mr. Preston. Sold by John Morphew, 1715, price 6d.
The Catholic Poet, or Protestant Barnaby's Sorrowful Lamentation; a Ballad about Homer's Iliad. By Mrs. Centlivre, and others, 1715, price 1d...
An Epilogue to a Puppet-shew at Bath, concerning the said Iliad. By George Ducket, Esq. Printed by E. Curl.
A complete Key to the What d'ye call it. Anon. [By Griffin, a player, supervised by Mr. Th- ) Printed by J. Roberts, 1715.
A true Character of Mr. P. and his Writings, in a letter to a friend. Anon. (Dennis, Printed for S. Popping, 1716, price 3d.
The Confederates, a Farce. By Joseph Gay. [J. D. Breval] Printed for R. Burleigh, 1717, price 1s.
Remarks upon Mr. Pope's translation of Homer; with two letters concerning the Windsor Forest, and the Temple of Fame. By Mr. Dennis, printed for E. Curl, 1717, price 1s. 6d.
Satires on the translators of Homer, Mr. P. and Mr. T. Anon. (Bez. Morris] 1717, price 6d.
The Triumvirate; or, a Letter from Palæmon to Celia at Bath. Anon. [Leonard Welsted] 1711, folio, price 1s.
The Battle of Poets; an heroic poem. By Tho. Cooke, printed for J. Roberts, folio, 1725.
Memoirs of Lilliput. Anon. (Eliz. Haywood] octavo, printed in 1727.
An Essay on Criticism, in prose. By the Author of the Critical History of England (J. Oldmixon] octavo, printed 1728.
Gulliveriana and Alexandriana; with an ample preface and critique on Swift and Pope's Miscellanies. By Jonathan Smedley, printed by J. Roberts, octavo, 1728.
Characters of the Times; or, an account of the writings, characters, &c. of several gentlemen libelled by S- and P—, in a late Miscellany, octavo, 1728.
Remarks on Mr. Pope's Rape of the Lock, in letters to a friend. By Mr. Dennis; written in 1724, though not printed till 1728, octavo.
VERSES, LETTERS, Essays, or ADVERTISEMENTS,
in the PUBLIC PRINTS.
British Journal, Nov. 25, 1727. A Letter on Swift and Pope's Miscellanies. (Writ by M. Concanen.]
Daily Journal, March 18, 1728. A Letter by Philomauri. James Moore Smith.
Id. March 29. A Letter about Thersites; accusing the Author of disaffection to the Government. By James Moore Smith.
Mist's Weekly Journal, March 30. An Essay on the Arts of a Poet's sinking in reputation; or, a Supplement to the Art of Sinking in Poetry. [Supposed by Mr. Theobald.]
Daily Journal, April 3. A Letter under the name of Philo-ditto. By James Moore Smith.
Flying-Post, April 4. A Letter against Gulliver and Mr. P. [By Mr. Oldmixon.]
Daily Journal, April 5. An Auction of Goods at Twickenham. By James Moore Smith.
The Flying-Post, April 6. A Fragment of a Treatise upon Swift and Pope. By Mr. Oldmixon.