Prefaces, Biographical and Critical, to the Works of the English Poets: Young. Dyer. Mallet. Shenstone. Akenside. Lyttelton. West. Gray

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J. Nichols, 1781
 

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Page 18 - Alas ! from the day that we met What hope of an end to my woes ? When I cannot endure to forget The glance that undid my repose. Yet time may diminish the pain : The flower, and the shrub, and the tree, Which I rear'd for her pleasure in vain, In time may have comfort for me.
Page 17 - Tis his with mock passion to glow ! Tis his in smooth tales to unfold, How her face is as bright as the snow, And her bosom, be sure, is as cold ; How the nightingales labour the strain, With the notes of his charmer to vie ; How they vary their accents in vain, Repine at her triumphs and die.
Page 19 - ... always to mean more than he said. Would you have any more reasons? An interval of above forty years has pretty well destroyed the charm. A dead lord ranks with commoners; vanity is no longer interested in the matter ; for a new road has become an old one.
Page 35 - In the character of his Elegy I rejoice to concur with the common reader; for by the common sense of readers uncorrupted with literary prejudices, after all the refinements of subtilty and the dogmatism of learning, must be finally decided all claim to poetical honours.
Page 8 - The pleasure of Shenstone was all in his eye ; he valued what he valued merely for its looks; nothing raised his indignation more than to ask if there were any fishes in his water.
Page 26 - An epithet or metaphor drawn from Nature ennobles Art: an epithet or metaphor drawn from Art degrades Nature.
Page 107 - In his Night Thoughts he has exhibited a very wide display of original poetry, variegated with deep reflections and striking allusions, a wilderness of thought in which the fertility of fancy scatters flowers of every hue and of every odour. This is one of the few poems in which blank verse could not be changed for rhyme but with disadvantage.
Page 6 - Mallet, without any imaginable reason of preference which the eye or ear can discover. What other proofs he gave of disrespect to his native country, I know not ; but it was remarked of him, that he was the only Scot whom Scotchmen did not commend.
Page 16 - I priz'd every hour that went by, Beyond all that had pleas'd me before; But now they are past, and I sigh; And I grieve that I priz'd them no more.
Page 30 - To select a singular event, and swell it to a giant's bulk by fabulous appendages of spectres and predictions, has little difficulty ; for he that forsakes the probable may always find the marvellous. And it has little use ; we are affected only as we believe ; we are improved only as we find something to be imitated or declined. I do not see that " The Bard" promotes any truth, moral or political.

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