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Like an ill-judging beauty, his colours he spread, Then what was his failing ? come, tell it, and burn And beplaster'd with rouge his own natural red.
ye, — On the stage he was natural, simple, affecting ; He was, could he help it? a special attorney. 'T was only that when he was off he was acting. Here Reynolds is laid, and, to tell you my mind, With no reason on earth to go out of his way, He has not left a wiser or better behind : He turn'd and he varied full ten times a day : His pencil was striking, resistless, and grand, Though secure of our hearts, yet confoundedly sick His manners were gentle, complying, and bland; If they were not his own by finessing and trick : Still born to improve us in every part, He cast off his friends, as a huntsman his pack, His pencil our faces, his manners our heart: For he knew when he pleas'd he could whistle them To coxcombs averse, yet most civilly steering, back.
When they judg'd without skill he was still lard of Of praise a mere glutton, he swallow'd what came,
(and stuff, And the puff of a dunce he mistook it for fame; When they talk'd of their Raphaels, Correggio, Till his relish grown callous, almost to disease, He shifted his trumpet t, and only took snuff. Who pepper'd the highest was surest to please. But let us be candid, and speak out our mind, If dunces applauded, he paid them in kind. Ye Kenricks, ye Kellys ", and Woodfalls + so
STANZAS ON WOMAN. grave, What a commerce was yours, while you got and
FROM THE VICAR OF WAKEFIELD. you gave!
When lovely woman stoops to folly, How did Grub-street re-echo the shouts that you And finds too late that men betray, rais'd,
(prais'd! What charm can soothe her melancholy, While he was be-Roscius'd, and you were be- What art can wash her guilt away? But peace to his spirit, wherever it flies, To act as an angel and nix with the skies :
The only art her guilt to cover, Those poets who owe their best fame to his skill
To hide her shame from ev'ry eye, Shall still be his flatterers, go where he will: love,
To give repentance to her lover,
And wring his bosom - is, to die.
Still importunate and vain,
To former joys recurring ever,
And turning all the past to pain ;
Thou, like the world, th' opprest oppressing, And so was too foolishly honest ? Ah, no!
Thy smiles increase the wretch's woe!
And he who wants each other blessing, * Mr. Hugh Kelly, author of False Delicacy, In thee must ever find a foe. A Word to the Wise, Clementina, School for Wives, &c. &c.
Sir Joshua Reynolds was so remarkably deaf + Mr. W. Woodfall, printer of the Morning as to be under the necessity of using an ear-trum. Chronicle.
pet in company.
SAMUEL Johnson, a writer of great eminence, was ran thirteen nights, but has never since appeared born in 1709 at Litchfield, in which city his father on the theatre : Johnson, in fact, found that he was was a petty bookseller. After a desultory course not formed to excel on the stage, and made no of school-education, it was proposed to him, by further trials. Mr. Corbet, a neighbouring gentleman, that he His periodical paper, entitled “ The Rambler," should accompany his own son to Oxford as his appeared in March 1750, and was continued till companion ; accordingly, in his nineteenth year, he March 1752. The solemnity of this paper prewas elected a commoner of Pembroke college. vented it at first from attaining an extensive cirFrom young Corbet's departure, he was left to culation ; but after it was collected into volumes, it struggle with penury till he had completed a re- continually rose in the public esteem, and the author sidence of three years, when he quitted Oxford had the satisfaction of seeing a tenth edition. The without taking a degree. His father died, in very “ Adventurer," conducted by Dr. Hawkesworth, narrow circumstances, soon after his return from the succeeded the Rambler, and Johnson contributed university; and for some time he attempted to gain several papers of his own writing. In 1755, the a maintenance by some literary projects. At length, first edition of his “ Dictionary" made its appearin 1735, he thought proper to marry a widow twice ance. It was received by the public with general his own age, and far from attractive, either in her applause, and its author was ranked among the person or manners. By the aid of her fortune he greatest benefactors of his native tongue. Modern was enabled to set up a school for instruction in Latin accuracy, however, has given an insight into its and Greek, but the plan did not succeed ; and after defects; and though it still stands as the capital a year's experiment, he resolved to try his fortune work of the kind in the language, its authority as a in the great metropolis. Garrick, afterwards the standard is somewhat depreciated. Upon the last celebrated actor, had been one of his ils, accom- illness of his aged mother, in 1759, for the purpose panied by whom he arrived in London ; Johnson of paying her a visit, and defraying the expense of having in his pocket his unfinished tragedy of Irene. her funeral, he wrote his romance of “ Rasselas,
The first notice which he drew from the judges Prince of Abyssinia,” one of his most splendid perof literary merit, was by the publication of “ London, formances, elegant in language, rich in imagery, a Poem,” in imitation of Juvenal's third satire and weighty in sentiment. Its views of human life The manly vigour, and strong painting of this are, indeed, deeply tinged with the gloom that overperformance, placed it high among works of its kind, shadowed the author's mind; nor can it be praised though it must be allowed, that its censure is coarse for moral effect. and exaggerated, and that it ranks rather as a party, Soon after the accession of the late king, a than as a moral poem. It was published in 1738. grant of a pension of 300l. per annum was made For some years Johnson is chiefly to be traced in him by His Majesty during the ministry of Lord the pages of the Gentleman's Magazine, then con- Bute. A short struggle of repugnance to accept a ducted by Cave; and it was for this work that he favour from the House of Hanover was overcome gratified the public with some extraordinary pieces by a sense of the honour and substantial benefit of eloquence which he composed under the disguise conferred by it, and he became that character, a of debates in the senate of Liliput, meaning the pensioner, on which he had bestowed a sarcastic British parliament. He likewise wrote various definition in his Dictionary. Much obloquy atbiographical articles for the same miscellany, of tended this circumstance of his life, which was enwhich the principal and most admired was « The hanced when he published in several of his producLife of Savage.
tions, arguments which seemed directly to oppose The plan of his English Dictionary was laid the rising spirit of liberty. before the public in a letter addressed to Lord A long-promised edition of Shakspeare appeared Chesterfield in 1747. In the same year he furnished in 1765; but though ushered in by a preface writGarrick with a prologue on the opening of Drury- ten with all the powers of his masterly pen, the lane theatre, which in sense and poetry has not a edition itself disappointed those who expected much competitor among compositions of this class, except from his ability to elucidate the obscurities of the ing Pope's prologue to Cato. Another imitation great dramatist. A tour to the Western Islands of of Juvenal, entitled “ The Vanity of Human Scotland in 1773, in which he was attended by his Wishes,” was printed in 1749, and may be said to enthusiastic admirer and obsequious friend, James reach the sublime of ethical poetry, and to stand at Boswell, Esq. was a remarkable incident of his life, the head of classical imitations. The same year, considering that a strong antipathy to the natives of under the auspices of Garrick, brought on the that country had long been conspicuous in his constage of Drury-lane his tragedy of “ Irene." It versation. But when, two years afterwards, le
published the account of his tour, under the title of symptoms, followed; and such was the tenacity with “ A Journey to the Western Islands of Scotland,” which he clung to life, that he expressed a great more candour and impartiality were found in it, desire to seek for amendment in the climate of than had been expected. In 1775, he was gratified, Italy. Still unable to reconcile himself to the through the interest of Lord North, with the degree thought of dying, he said to the surgeon who was of Doctor of Laws, from the University of Oxford. making slight scarifications in his swollen legs
, He had some years before received the same honour “ Deeper ! deeper! I want length of life, and you from Dublin, but did not then choose to assume the are afraid of giving me pain, which I do not title. His last literary undertaking was the con- value.” The closing scene took place on Decem. sequence of a request from the London booksellers, ber 13. 1785, in the 76th year of his age. His who had engaged in an edition of the principal remains, attended by a respectable concourse of English poets, and wished to prefix to each a bio friends, were interred in Westminster Abbey ;
and: graphical and critical preface from his hand. This monumental statue has since been placed to his he undertook; and though he will generally be memory in St. Paul's cathedral. His works were thought to have laboured under strong prejudices published collectively in eleven volumes, 8vo, with in composing the work, its style will be found, in a copious life of the author, by Sir John Hawkinsky great measure, free from the stiffness and turgidity A new edition, in twelve volumes
, with a life, ws which marked his earlier compositions.
given by Arthur Murphy. Of the conversations, The concluding portion of Dr. Johnson's life and oral dictates of Johnson, a most copious cabo was saddened by a progressive decline of health, lection has been published in the very entertaining and by the prospect of approaching death, which volumes of Mr. Boswell. Upon the whole
, it may neither his religion nor his philosophy had taught him be said, that at the time of his death, he was unto bear with even decent composure. A paralytic doubtedly the most conspicuous literary character stroke first gave the alarm; asthma, and dropsical of his country.
IN IMITATION OF THE THIRD SATIRE OF JUVENAL.
Behold her cross triumphant on the main,
The guard of commerce, and the dread of Spain,
A transient calm the happy scenes bestow,
At length awaking, with contemptuous frown,
Indignant Thales eyes the neighb'ring town. Tam patiens urbis, tam ferreus ut teneat se? Juv. Since worth, he cries, in these degenerate days
Wants even the cheap reward of empty praise ;
And every moment leaves my little less;
And life still vig'rous revels in my veins ; And fix'd on Cambria's solitary shore,
Grant me, kind Heaven, to find some happier place, Give to St. David one true Briton more.
Where honesty and sense are no disgrace; For who would leave, unbrib’d, Hibernia's land, Some pleasing bank where verdant osiers play, Or change the rocks of Scotland for the Strand ? Some peaceful vale with Nature's paintings gay; There none are swept by sudden fate away, Where once the harass'd Briton found repose, But all, whom hunger spares, with age decay: And safe in poverty defy'd his foes; Here malice, rapine, accident, conspire,
Some secret cell, ye pow'rs, indulgent give, And now a rabble rages, now a fire ;
Let — live here, for — has learn'd to live. Their ambush here relentless ruffians lay,
Here let those reign, whom pensions can incite And here the fell attorney prowls for prey;
To vote a patriot black, a courtier white, Here falling houses thunder on your head, Explain their country's dear-bought rights away, And here a female atheist talks you dead.
And plead for pirates in the face of day;
And lend a lie the confidence of truth.
And lull to servitude a thoughtless age.
Heroes, proceed! what bounds your pride stal And call Britannia's glories back to view ; What check restrain your thirst of pow'r and grade?
Behold rebellious virtue quite o'erthrown, Queen Elizabeth, born at Greenwich. Behold our fame, our wealth, our lives your oma
To such, the plunder of a land is giv'n,
Well may they verture on the mimic's arts When public crimes inflame the wrath of Heaven : Who play from morn to night a borrow'd part; But what, my friend, what hope remains for me, Practis'd their master's notions to embrace, Who start at theft, and blush at perjury ?
Repeat his maxims, and reflect his face;
And view each object with another's eye;
To shake with laughter ere the jest they hear, And dare to slumber o'er the Gazetteer ;
To pour at will the counterfeited tear; Despise a fool in half his pension dress'd,
And, as their patron hints the cold or heat, And strive in vain to laugh at Clodio's jest. To shake in dog-days, in December sweat. Others with softer smiles, and subtle art,
How, when competitors like these contend, Can sap the principles, or taint the heart ;
Can surly virtue hope to fix a friend ; With more address a lover's note convey,
Slaves that with serious impudence beguile, Or bribe a virgin's innocence away :
And lie without a blush, without a smile: Well may they rise, while I, whose rustic tongue Exalt each trifle, ev'ry vice adore, Ne'er knew to puzzle right, or varnish wrong, Your taste in snuff, your judgment in a whore; Spurn'd as a beggar, dreaded as a spy,
Can Balbo's eloquence applaud, and swear Live unregarded, unlamented die.
He gropes his breeches with a monarch's air. For what but social guilt the friend endears? For arts like these preferr'd, admir'd, caress'd, Who shares Orgilio's crimes, his fortune shares. They first invade your table, then your breast ; But thou, should tempting villany present
Explore your secrets with insidious art, All Marlb'rough hoarded, or all Villiers spent, Watch the weak hour, and ransack all the heart; Turn from the glittering bribe thy scornful eye, Then soon your ill-plac'd confidence repay, Nor sell for gold, what gold could never buy, Commence your lords, and govern or betray. The peaceful slumber, self-approving day,
By numbers here from shame or censure free, Unsullied fame, and conscience ever gay.
All crimes are safe but hated poverty.
The sober trader at a tatter'd cloak
With brisker air the silken courtiers gaze,
And turn the varied taunt a thousand ways.
Sure the most bitter is a scornful jest ; Illustrious Edward! from the realms of day, Fate never wounds more deep the gen'rous heart, The land of heroes and of saints survey;
Than when a blockhead's insult points the dart. Nor hope the British lineaments to trace,
Has Heaven reserv’d, in pity to the poor, The rustic grandeur, or the surly grace;
No pathless waste, or undiscovered shore ? But, lost in thoughtless ease and empty show, No secret island in the boundless main ? Bebold the warrior dwindled to a beau ;
No peaceful desert yet unclaim'd by Spain ? Sense, freedom, piety, refin'd away,
Quick let us rise, the happy seats explore, Of France the mimic, and of Spain the prey. And bear oppression's insolence no more.
All that at home no more can beg or steal, This mournful truth is every where confessid, Or like a gibbet better than a wheel :
Slow rises worth by poverty depressid : Hiss'd from the stage, or hooted from the court, But here more slow, where all are slaves to gold, Their air, their dress, their politics, import; Where looks are merchandise, and smiles are sold : Obsequious, artful, voluble, and gay,
Where won by bribes, by flatteries implor'd, On Britain's fond credulity they prey.
The groom retails the favours of his lord. (cries No gainful trade their industry can ’scape,
But hark! th' affrighted crowd's tumultuous They sing, they dance, clean shoes, or cure a Roll through the streets, and thunder to the skies : clap:
Rais'd from some pleasing dream of wealth and All sciences a fasting Monsieur knows,
pow'r, And, bid him go to Hell, to Hell he goes.
Some pompous palace or some blissful bower, Ah! what avails it, that, from slav'ry far, Aghast you start, and scarce with aching sight I drew the breath of life in English air;
Sustain th' approaching fire's tremendous light; Was early taught a Briton's right to prize, Swift from pursuing horrours take your way, And lisp the tale of Henry's victories;
And leave your little all to flames a prey ; If the gull'd conqueror receives the chain,
Then thro' the world a wretched vagrant roam, And flattery prevails when arms are vain ?
For where can starving merit find a home? Studious to please, and ready to submit; In vain your mournful narrative disclose, The supple Gaul was born a parasite :
While all neglect, and most insult your woes. Still to his int'rest true, where'er he goes,
Should Heaven's just bolts Orgilio's wealth Wit, brav'ry, worth, his lavish tongue bestows:
confound, In ev'ry face a thousand graces shine,
And spread his flaming palace on the ground, From ev'ry tongue flows harmony divine.
Swift o'er the land the dismal rumour flies, These arts in vain our rugged natives try,
And public mournings pacify the skies ; Strain out with fault'ring diffidence a lie,
The laureat tribe in venal verse relate, And get a kick for awkward flattery.
How virtue wars with persecuting fate; Besides, with justice, this discerning age With well-feign'd gratitude the pension'd band Admires their wond'rous talents for the stage : Refund the plunder of the beggar'd land.
IN IMITATION OF THE TEXTH SATIRE OP JUVENAL
See! while he builds, the gaudy vassals come,
THE VANITY OF HUMAN WISHES
Let observation with extensive view, And hopes from angry Heav'n another fire.
Survey mankind from China to Peru; Could'st thou resign the park and play content,
Remark each anxious toil, each eager strife, For the fair banks of Severn or of Trent;
And watch the busy scenes of crowded life; There might'st thou find some elegant retreat,
Then say how hope and fear, desire and hate, Some hireling senator's deserted seat;
O'erspread with snares the clouded maze of fate, And stretch thy prospects o'er the smiling land,
Where wav’ring man, betray'd hy vent'rous pride For less than rent the dungeons of the Strand;
To chase the dreary paths without a guide, There prune thy walk, support thy drooping As treach'rous phantoms in the mist delude, flowers,
Shuns fancied ills, or chases airy good; Direct thy rivulets, and twine thy bowers;
How rarely reason guides the stubborn choice, And, while thy grounds a cheap repast afford,
Rules the bold hand, or prompts the supplian: Despise the dainties of a venal lord:
voice; There ev'ry bush with Nature's music rings,
How nations sink by darling schemes oppressid, There ev'ry breeze bears health upon its wings;
When vengeance listens to the fool's request. On all thy hours security shall smile,
Fate wings with ev'ry wish th' afflictive dart, And bless thine evening walk and morning toil.
Each gift of nature and each grace of art; Prepare for death if here at night you roam,
With fatal heat impetuous courage glows, And sign your will before you sup from home.
With fatal sweetness elocution flows, Some fiery fop, with new commission vain,
Impeachment stops the speaker's pow'rful breath, Who sleeps on brambles till he kills his man ; And restless fire precipitates on death. Some frolic drunkard, reeling from a feast,
But, scarce observ'd, the knowing and the bold Provokes a broil, and stabs you for a jest.
Fall in the gen'ral massacre of gold; Yet ev'n these heroes, mischievously gay;
Wide wasting pest! that rages unconfin'd, Lords of the street and terrours of the way;
And crowds with crimes the records of mankind: Flush'd as they are with folly, youth, and wine,
For gold his sword the hireling ruffian draws, Their prudent insults to the poor confine;
For gold the hireling judge distorts the laws; Afar they mark the flambeau's bright approach,
Wealth heap'd on wealth, nor truth nor safety buys, And shun the shining train, and golden coach.
The dangers gather as the treasures rise. In vain, these dangers past, your doors you close,
Let hist'ry tell where rival kings command, And hope the balmy blessings of repose;
And dubious title shakes the madded land, Cruel with guilt, and daring with despair,
When statutes glean the refuse of the sword, The midnight murd'rer bursts the faithless bar; How much more safe the vassal than the lord; Invades the sacred hour of silent rest,
Low sculks the hind beneath the rage of power, And leaves, unseen, a dagger in your breast. And leaves the wealthy traitor in the Tower, Scarce can our fields, such crowds at Tyburn dic,
Untouch'd his cottage, and his slumbers sound, With hemp the gallows and the fleet supply.
Tho' confiscation's vultures hover round. Propose your schemes, ye senatorian band,
The needy traveller, serene and gay, Whose ways and means support the sinking land,
Walks the wild heath and sings his toil away. Lest ropes be wanting in the tempting spring,
Does envy seize thee? crush th' upbraiding joy, To rig another convoy for the king.
Increase his riches, and his peace destroy ; A single jail, in ALFRED's golden reign,
Now fears in dire vicissitude invade, Could half the nation's criminals contain;
The rustling brake alarms, and quiv'ring shade, Fair Justice, then, without constraint ador'd, Nor light nor darkness bring his pain relief, Held high the steady scale, but sheath'd the sword; One shows the plunder, and one hides the thief. No spies were paid, no special juries known,
Yet still one gen'ral cry the skies assails, Blest age! but ah! how diff'rent from our own! And gain and grandeur load the tainted gales; Much could I add,- but see the boat at hand,
Few know the toiling statesman's fear or care, The tide retiring calls me from the land : [spent, Th' insidious rival and the gaping heir. Farewell !— When youth, and health, and fortune Once more, Democritus, arise on Earth, Thou Ay'st for refuge to the wilds of Kent ; With cheerful wisdom and instructive mirth, And, tir'd like me with follies and with crimes, See motley life in modern trappings dressid, In angry numbers warns't succeeding times; And feed with varied fools th' eternal jest : Then shall thy friend, nor thou refuse his aid, Thou who could'st laugh, where want enchaina Still foe to vice, forsake his Cambrian shade;
caprice, In virtue's cause once more exert his rage,
Toil crush'd conceit, and man was of a piece; Thy satire point, and animate thy page.
Where wealth unlov'd without a mourner dy'd;
How would'st thou shake at Britain's modist tribe. 1 Dart the quick taunt, and edge the piercing gibe?