Page images
PDF
EPUB

tleman's Magazine, vol. lxviii. GALILEO, and his history, are too well known to require a note in this place.

The VANE, who told, “what ills from beauty spring,” was not Lady Vane, the subject of Smollett's memoirs, in Peregrine Pickle, but, according to Mr. Malone, she was Anne Vane, mistress to Frederick prince of Wales, and died in 1736, not long before Johnson settled in London. Some account of her was published, under the title of the Secret History of Vanella, 8vo. 1732, and in other similar works, referred to in Boswell, i. 173. In Mr. Boswell's Tour to the Hebrides, we find lord Hailes objecting to the instances of unfortunate beauties selected by Johnson, and suggesting, in place of Vane and Sedley, the names of Shore and Valière.

CATHERINE SEDLEY was daughter of sir Charles Sedley, mistress of king James the second, who created her countess of Dorchester. She was a woman of a sprightly and agreeable wit, which could charm without the aid of beauty, and longer maintain its power. She had been the king's mistress before he ascended the throne, and soon after (January 2, 1685-6) was created countess of Dorchester. Sir C. Sedley, her father, looked on this title, as a splendid indignity, purchased at the expense of his daughter's honour; and when he was very active against the king, about the time of the revolution, he said, that, in gratitude, he should do his utmost to make his majesty's daughter a queen, as the king had made his own a countess. The king continued to visit her, which gave great uneasiness to the queen, who employed her friends, particularly the priests, to persuade him to break off the correspondence. They remonstrated with him on the guilt of the commerce, and the reproach it would bring on the catholic religion ; she, on the contrary, employed the whole force of her ridicule against the priests and their counsels. They, at length, prevailed, and he is said to have sent her word to retire to France, or that her pension of 4,0001. a year should be withdrawn. She then, probably, repented of having been the royal mistress, and “cursed the form that pleased the king.”

ODLE

5 APR 1962

[blocks in formation]

London ......

The Vanity of Human Wishes .....

Prologue, spoken by Mr. Garrick, at the opening of the theatre-royal,

Drury lane ......

Prefatory Notice to the tragedy of Irene ...

Prologue .........

Irene ............

Epilogue, by sir William Yonge ....

.. 114

Prologue to the masque of Comus ......

Prologue to the comedy of the Good-natured Man....

... 116

Prologue to the comedy of a Word to the Wise .....

.......... 117

Spring ...

... 118

Midsummer .......

... 119

Autumn.........................

. 120

W inter ................................................

The Winter's Walk ........

122

To Miss *****, on her giving the author a gold and silk network purse,

of her own weaving .........

To Miss *****, on her playing upon the harpsichord, in a room hung

with flower-pieces of her own painting .....

Evening ; an ode ...

To the same ..........

126

To a friend....

Stella in mourning ......

To Stella ...............

Verses, written at the request of a gentleman, to whom a lady had given a

sprig of myrile ......

To lady Firebrace, at Bury assizes ..

To Lyce, an elderly lady ...........

On the death of Mr. Robert Levet .........

Epitaph on Claude Phillips ....

Epitaphium in Thomam Hanmer, baronettum ..

Paraphrase of the above, by Dr. Johnson ........

To Miss Hickman, playing on the spinet ......

Paraphrase of Proverbs, chap. vi. verses 6–11...

.. ib.

Horace, lib. iv. ode vii, translated ..........

.... 137

Anacreon, ode ix. ........

.. 138

Lines written in ridicule of certain poems published in 1777 ...........

[ocr errors]

127

. 128

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

... 134

... 136

:

145

PAGE

Parody of a translation from the Medea of Euripides ........

140

Translation from the Medea of Euripides ...

......... ib.

Translation of the two first stanzas of the song “Rio Verde, Rio Verde".. 142

Imitation of the style of ****

Burlesque of some lines of Lopez de Vega ...........

a ..........................

Translation of some lines at the end of Baretti's Easy Phraseology ......

Improviso translation of a distich on the duke of Modena's running away

from the comet in 1742 or 1743 .........

............

Improviso translation of some lines of M. Benserade à son Lit ..........

Epitaph for Mr. Hogarth .......... ...........................

Translation of some lines, written under a print representing persons

skating ...........

..........

Impromptu translation of the same ...

To Mrs. Thrale, on her completing her thirty-fifth year. ...............

Impromptu translation of an air in the Clemenza di Tito of Metastasio ... 146

Translation of a speech of Aquileio in the Adriano of Metastasio.

ib.

Burlesque of the modern versifications of ancient legendary tales .......

. 147

Friendship; an ode .......

.. ib.

On seeing a bust of Mrs. Montague ......

Improviso on a young heir's coming of age

.. 149

Epitaphs-on his father ...

.... 150

- his wife .....

. ib.

-- Mrs. Bell.

Mrs. Salusbury ......

152

- Dr. Goldsmith....

- Mr. Thrale ...........

153

POEMATA .....................................

Prefatory observations to the history of Rasselas .....

. 195

Rasselas, prince of Abissinia

[ocr errors]

.

..

....

..

b.

[ocr errors]
[merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors]

PREFATORY OBSERVATIONS

TO THE IMITATIONS OF THE

THIRD AND TENTH SATIRES OF JUVENAL.

We will not examine here Johnson's poetical merits, since that discussion will more properly introduce his Lives of the Poets, but merely offer some few biographical remarks. In the poem of London, Mr. Boswell was of opinion, that Johnson did not allude to Savage, under the name of Thales, and adds, for his reason, that Johnson was not so much as acquainted with Savage when he wrote his London. About a month, however, before he published this poem, he addressed the following lines to him, through the Gentleman's Magazine, for April, 1738.

AD RICARDUM SAVAGE.

Humani studium generis cui pectore fervet
• O colat humanum te, foveatque, genus !

We cannot certainly infer, from this, an intimacy with Savage, but it is more probable, that these lines flowed from a feeling of private friendship, than mere admiration of an author, in a public point of view; and they, at any rate, give credibility to the general opinion, that, under the name of Thales, the poet referred to the author of the Wanderer, who was, at this time, preparing for his retreat to Wales, whither he actually went in the ensuing year.

The names of Lydiat, Vane, and Sedley, which are brought forward in the poem on the Vanity of Human Wishes, as examples of inefficiency of either learning or beauty, to shield their

« PreviousContinue »