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the priest stands at his door in the warm midnight, and lights his pipe with a common burning glass.
I trust that these remarks will not be deemed irrelevant to the poem, but will lead to a clearer understanding of it. The translation is literal, perhaps to a fault. In no instance have I done the author a wrong, by introducing into his work any supposed improvements or embellishments of my own. I have preserved even the measure ; that inexorable hexameter, in which, it must be confessed, the motions of the English Muse are not unlike those of a prisoner dancing to the music of his chains; and perhaps, as Dr. Johnson said of the dancing dog, “the wonder is not that she should do it so well, but that she should do it at all.”
Esaias Tegnér, the author of this poem, was born in the parish of By in Wärmland, in the year 1782. In 1799 he entered the University of Lund, as a student; and in 1812 was appointed Professor of Greek in that institution. In 1824 he became Bishop of Wexiö, which office he still holds. He stands first among all the poets of Sweden, living or dead. His principal work is Frithiofs Saga; one of the most remarkable poems of the age. This modern Scald has written his name in immortal runes. He is the glory and boast of Sweden; a prophet, honored in his own country, and adding one more to the list of great names, that adorn her history.