Sidor som bilder

they are erased, and some of my own substituted in their stead; my only reason for this being that which I conceive would operate with any other person in

English Bards, etc. the same mauner,-a determination not to publish with my name any production, which was not entirely and exclusively my own composition.

With regard to the real talents of many of the STILL must hear? 4 – shall hoarse Fitzgerald 5 poetical persons whose performances are mentioned

bawl or alluded to in the following pages, it is presumed His crcaking couplets in a tavern hall, by the author that there can be little difference of | And I not sing, lest, haply, Scotch reviews opinion in the public at large; though, like other Should dub me scribbler, and denounce my muse ? sectaries, each has his separate tabernacle of prose- Prepare for rhyme - I'll publish, right or wrong: lytes, by whom his abilities are over-rated, his faults Fools are my theme, let satire be my song. overlooked, and his metrical canons received without scruple and without consideration. But the un- Oh! nature's noblest gift - my gray goosc-quill! questionable possession of considerable genius by Slave of my thoughts, obedient to iny will, several of the writers here censured renders their Torn from thy parent bird to form a pen, mental prostitution more to be regretted. Imbecility That mighty instrument of little men! may be pitied, or, at worst, laughed at and forgotten; The pen! foredoom'd to aid the mental throes perverted powers demand the most decided repre- Of brains that labour, big with verse or prose, hension. No one can wish more than the author | Though nymphs forsake, and critics may deride, that some known and able writer had undertaken The lover's solace, and the author's pride. their exposure; but Mr. Gifford has devoted himself What wits! what poets dost thou daily raise ! to Massinger, and, in the absence of the regular How frequent is thy use, how small thy praise ! physician, a country practitioner may, in cases of Condemn'd at length to be forgotten quite, absolute necessity, be allowed to prescribe his nos- With all the pages which 't was thine to write. trum to prevent the extension of so deplorable an But thou, at least, mine own especial pen! epidemic, provided there be no quackery in his Once laid aside, but now assumed again, treatment of the malady. A caustic is here offered ; Our task complete, like Hamet's 7 shall be free; as it is to be feared nothing short of actual cautery | Though spurn'd by others, yet beloved by me : can recover the numerous patients afflicted with the Then let us soar to-day; no common theme, present prevalent and distressing rabies for rhyming. No eastern vision, no distemper'd dream 8 - As to the Edinburgh Reviewers, it would indeed Inspires -- our path, though full of thorns, is plain ; require an Hercules to crush the Hydra; but if the Smooth be the verse, and easy be the strain. author succeeds in merely “ bruising one of the heads of the serpent,” though his own hand should

When Vice triumphant holds her sov'reign sway, suffer in the encounter, he will be amply satisfied. 3 Obey'd by all who nought beside obey ;

1 [Here the preface to the first edition commenced.] the long period of thirty-two years, this harmless poetaster

? ["I well recollect," said Lord Byron, in 1821, "the was an attendant at the anniversary dinners of the Literary effect which the critique of the Edinburgh Reviewers on my Fund, and constantly honoured the occasion with an ode, first poem, had upon me - it was rage and resistance, and

which he himself recited with most comical dignity of emredress; but not despondency nor despair. A savage review phasis. He was fortunate in having for his patron Viscount is hemlock to a sucking author, and the one on me (which Dudley and Ward, on whose death, without a will, his

benevolent intentions towards the bard were fulfilled by his produced the English Bards, &c.) knocked me down — but I got up again. That critique was a master piece of low wit, a son, the late Earl Dudley, who generously sent him a draft I remember there was a great deal

for 50002. Fitzgerald died in 1829. tissue of scurrilous abuse.

Or his numerous loyal of vulgar trash, about people being 'thankful for what they effusions only a single line has survived its author ; but the could get,' - not looking a gift horse in the mouth,' and such

characteristics of his style have been so happily hit off, in the stable expressions. But so far from their bullying me, or

REJECTED ADDRESSES" - (a work which Lord Byron has deterring me from writing, I was bent on falsifying their raven

pronounced to be " by far the best thing of the kind since the predictions, and determined to show them, croak as they Rolliad, ") - that we cannot resist the temptation of an

extract:would, that it was not the last time they should hear from me."]

Who burnt (confound his soul !) the houses twain,

of Covent Garden and of Drury Lane ? [“ The severity of the criticism," as Sir Egerton Brydges

Who, while the British squadron lay off Cork, has well observed,“ touched Lord Byron in the point where

(God bless the Regent and the Duke of York 1) his original strength lay: it wounded his pride, and roused his bitter indignation. He published ‘English Bards and

With a foul earthquake ravaged the Caraccas,

And raised the price of dry goods and tobaccos ? Scotch Reviewers,' and bowed down those who had hitherto held a despotic victory over the public mind.

There was,

Who makes the quartern loat and Luddites rise ?

Who fills the butchers' shops with large blue flies ? after all, more in the boldness of the enterprise, in the fearless

Who thought in tlames St. James's court to pinch ? ness of the attack, than in its intrinsic force. But the moral

Who burnt the wardrobe of poor Lady Finch? etfect of the gallantry of the assault, and of the justice of the

Why he, who forging for this isle a yoke, cause, made it victorious and triumphant. This was one of

Reminds me of a line I lately spoke those lucky developements which cannot often occur; and

· The tree of freedom is the British Oak.' which fixed Lord Byron's fame. From that day be engaged

Bless every man possessid of aught to give ! the public notice as a writer of undoubted talent and energy both of intellect and temper."]

Long may Long Tilney Wellesley Long Pole live!

God bless the army, bless their coats of scarlet ! 4 IMIT.

God bless the navy, bless the Princess Charlotte ! “ Semper ego auditor tantum ? nunquamne reponam,

God bless the Guards, though worsted Gallia scoff! Vexatus toties rauci Theseide Codri ?" --Juv. Sat. I.

God bless their pig-tails, though they 're now cut off! 5 [Hoarse Fitzgerald.—" Right enough; but why no

And oh! in Downing Street should Old Nick revel, tice such a mountebank." - Byron, 1816.)

England's prime minister, then bless the Devil!"] 6 Mr. Fitzgerald, facetiously termed by Cobbett the 7 Cid Hamet Benengeli promises repose to his pen, in the * Small Beer Poet," intlicts his annual tribute of verse on the last chapter of Don Quixote. Oh! that our voluminous Literary Fund: not content with writing, he spouts in gentry would follow the example of Cid Hamet Benengeli. person, after the company have imbibed a reasonable quantiis 8_[“ This must have been written in the spirit of prophecy." of bad port, to enable them to sustain the operation. - (For - B. 1816.)


Fear not to lie, 't will seem a sharper hit; Shrink not from blasphemy, 't will pass for wit. Care not for feeling — pass your proper jest. And stand a critic, hated yet caress'd.

When Folly, frequent harbinger of crime,
Bedecks ler cap with bells of every clime;
When knaves and fools combined o'er all prevail,
And weigh their justice in a golden scale ;
E'en then the boldest start from public sneers,
Afraid of shame, unknown to other fears,
More darkly sin, by satire kept in awe,
And shrink from ridicule, though not from law.

Such is the force of wit! but not belong
To me the arrows of satiric song;
The royal vices of our age demand
A keener weapon, and a mightier hand.
Still there are follies, e'en for me to chase,
And yield at least amusement in the race:
Laugh when I laugh, I seck no other fame;
The cry is up, and scribblers are my game.
Speed, Pegasus ! -

- ye strains of great and small,
Ouc, epic, elegy, have at you all !
I too can scrawl, and once upon a time
I pour'd along the town a flood of rhyme,
A schoolboy freak, unworthy praise or blame;
I printed - older children do the same.
'T is pleasant, sure, to see one's name in print;
A book 's a book, although there's nothing in 't,
Not that a title's sounding charm can save
Or scrawl or scribbler from an equal grave :
This Lambe must own, since his patrician name
Fail'd to preserve the spurious farcc from shame. !
No matter, George continues still to write,
Though now the name is veil'd from public sight.
Moved by the great example, I pursue
The self-same road, but make my own review :
Not seek great Jeffrey's, yet like him, will be
Self-constituted judge of poesy.

And shall we own such judgment ? no- as soon Seek roses in December - ice in June; Hope constancy in wind, or corn in chaff; Believe a woman or an epitaph, Or any other thing that 's false, before You trust in critics, who themselves are sore; Or yield one single thought to be misled By Jeffrey's heart, or Lambe's Bæotian head. 3 To these young tyrants“, by themselves misplaced, Combined usurpers on the throne of taste; To these, when authors bend in humble awe, And hail their voice as truth, their word as lawWhile these are censors, 't would be sin to spare ; While such are critics, why should I forbear ? But yet, so near all modern worthies run, 'Tis doubtful whom to seek, or whom to shun; Nor know we when to spare, or where to strike, Our bards and censors are so much alike.

Then should you ask me 5, why I venture o'er The path which Pope and Gifford trod before; If not yet sicken'd, you can still proceed : Go on; my rhyme will tell you as you read. “ But hold !" exclaims a friend, - “ here's some

neglect : This that -and t'other line seem incorrect.” What then ? the self-same blunder Pope has got, And careless Dryden —" Ay, but Pye has not : Indeed !- 't is granted, faith !- but what care I ? Better to err with Pope, than shine with Pye.

A man must serve his time to ev'ry trade Save censure — critics all are ready made. Take hackney'd jokes from Miller, got by rote, With just enough of learning to misquote ; A mind well skill'd to find or forge a fault; A turn for punning, call it Attic salt; To Jeffrey go, be silent and discreet, His pay is just ten sterling pounds per sheet:

Time was, ere yet in these degenerate days 6 Ignoble themes obtain'd mistaken praise, When sense and wit with poesy allied, No fabled graces, flourish'd side by side ; From the same fount their inspiration drew, And, rear'd by taste, bloom'd fairer as they grew. Then, in this happy isle, a Pope's ? pure strain Sought the rapt soul to chari, nor sought in vain ;

1 TL ingenuous youth is mentioned more particularly, with his production, in another place.

In the Edinburgh Review. – [" He's a very good fellow; and, except his mother and sister, the best of the set, to my mind." — B. 1816.)

3 Messrs. Jeffrey and Lambe are the alpha and omega, the first and the last of the Edinburgh Review ; the others are Inentioned hereafter. - [* This was not just. Neither the heart nor the head of these gentlemen are at all what they are here represented. At the time this was written, I was personally unacquainted with either." - B. 1816.) 4 IMIT. * Stulta est Clementia, cum tot ubique occurras perituræ parcere chartæ."

Juu. Sat. I.
Imut. “ Cur tamen hoc libeat potius decurrere campo

Per quem magnus equos Auruncæ fiexit alumnus :
Si vacat, et placidi rationem admittitis, edam."

Juv. Sat. L. 6 [The first edition of the Satire opened with this line; and Lord Byron's original intention was to prefix the following

· ARGUMENT. * The poet considereth times rast, and their poesy - makes a sudden transition to times present - is incensed against bonk-nakers - revileth Walter Scott for cupidity and balladmongering, with notable remarks on Master Southey — complaineth that Master Southey hath indicted three poems, epic

and otherwise, on the public — inveigheth against William Wordsworth, but laudeth Mister Coleridge and his elegy on a young ass - is disposed to vituperate Mr. Lewis - and greatly rebuketh Thomas Little (the late) and the Lord Strangford recommendeth Mr. Hayley to turn his attention to prose and exhorteth the Moravians to glorify Mr. Grahame sympathiseth with the Rev. William Bowles-and deploreth the melancholy fate of James Montgomery – breaketh out into invective against the Edinburgh Reviewers - calleth them hard names, harpies and the like – apostrophiseth Jeffrey, and prophesieth. - Episode of Jeffrey and Moore, their jeopardy and deliverance; portents on the morn of the combat; the Tweed, Tolbooth, Frith of Forth, severally shocked ; descent of a goddess to save Jeffrey ; incorporation of the bullets with his sinciput and occiput. - Edinburgh Reviews en masse. - Lord Aberdeen, Herbert, Scott, Hallam, Pillans, Lambe, Sydney Smith, Brougham, &c.- The Lord Holland applauded for dinners and translations.- The Drama ; Sketfington, Hook, Reynolds, Kenney, Cherry, &c. - Sheridan, Colman, and Cumberland called upon to write. — Return to poesy -- scribblers of all sorts-lords sometimes rhyme ; much better not - Hafiz, Rosa Matilda, and X Y. 2. – Rogers, Campbell, Gifford, &c. true poets - Translators of the Greek Anthology -- Crabbe – Darwin's style - Cambridge - Seatonian Prize - Smythe — Hodgson - Oxford - Richards Poeta loquitur – Conclusion."]

; [When Lord Byron, in the autumn of 1808, was occupied upon this Satire, he deroted a considerable portion of his time to a deep study of the writings of Pope : and from that period may be dated his enthusiastic admiration of this great poet.)

A polish'd nation's praise aspired to claim,
And raised the people's, as the poet's fame.
Like him great Dryden pour'd the tide of song,
In streim less smooth, indeed, yet doubly strong.
Then Congreve's scenes could cheer, or Otway's melt-
For nature then an English audience felt.
But why these names, or greater still, retrace,
When all to feebler bards resign their place ?
Yet to such times our lingering looks are cast,
When taste and reason with those times are past.
Now look around, and turn each triding page,
Survey the precious works that please the age ;
This truth at least let satire's self allow,
No dearth of bards can be complain'd of now.'
The loaded press beneath her labour groans,
And printer's devils shake their weary bones;
While Southey's epics cram the creaking shelves,
And Little's lyrics shine in hot-press'd twelves.
Thus saith the preacher : “ Nought beneath the sun
Is new ; " yet still from change to change we run :
What varied wonders tempt us as they pass !
The cow-pox, tractors, galvanism, and gas,
In turns appear, to make the vulgar stare,
Till the swoln bubble bursts and all is air !
Nor less new schools of Poetry arise,
Where dull pretenders grapple for the prize :
O'er taste awhile these pseudo-bards prevail ;
Each country book-club bows the knee to Baal,
And, hurling lawful genius from the throne,
Erects a shrine and idol of its own ; ?
Some leaden calf — but whom it matters not,
From soaring Southey down to grovelling Stott. 3

Sonnets on sonnets crowd, and ode on ode;
And tales of terror jostle on the road ;
Immeasurable measures move along;
For simpering folly loves a varied song,
To strange mysterious dulness still the friend,
Admires the strain she cannot comprehend.
Thus Lays of Minstrels + may they be the last ! -
On half-strung harps whine mournful to the

While mountain spirits prate to river sprites,
That dames may listen to the sound at nights;
And goblin brats, of Gilpin Horner's brood,
Decoy young border-nobles through the wood,
And skip at every step, Lord knows how high,
And frighten foolish babes, the Lord knows why ;
While high-born ladies in their magic cell,
Forbidding knights to read who cannot spell,
Despatch a courier to a wizard's grave,
And fight with honest men to shield a knave.

Next view in state, proud prancing on his roan,
The golden-crested haughty Marmion,
Now forging scrolls, now foremost in the fight,
Not quite a felon, yet but half a knight,
The gibbet or the field prepared to grace ;
A mighty mixture of the great and base.
And think'st thou, Scott 15 by vain conceit per.

On public taste to foist thy stale romance,
Though Murray with his Miller may combine
To yield thy muse just half-a-crown per line ?
No! when the sons of song descend to trade,
Their bays are sear, their former laurels fade.
Let such forego the poet's sacred name,
Who rack their brains for lucre 6, not for fame :
Still for stern Mammon may they toil in vain !
And sadly gaze on gold they cannot gain !

Behold! in various throngs the scribbling crew,
For notice eager, pass in long review :
Each spurs his jaded Pegasus apace,
And rhyme and blank maintain an equal race;

? (" One of my notions is, that the present is not a high age videlicet, a happy compound of poacher, sheep-stealer, and of English poetry. There are more poets (soi disant) than highwayman. The propriety of his magical lady's injunction ever there were, and proportionably less poetry.

This thesis not to read can only be equalled by his candid acknowledgment I have maintained for some years; but, strange to say: of his independence of the trammels of spelling, although, to meeteth not with favour from my brethren of the shell. use his own elegant phrase, “ 't was his neck.verse at Harri. B. Diary, 1821.]

bee,” i.e the gallows. – The biography of Gilpin Horner, and ? (" With regard to poetry in general, I am convinced that the marvellous pedestrian page, who travelled twice as fast as we are all upon a wrong revolutionary poetical system, not

his master's horse, without the aid of seven-leagued boots, are worth a damn in itself, and from which none but Rogers and

chefs-d'æuvre in the improvement of taste. For incident we Crabbe are free. I am the more confirmed in this by having

have the invisible, but by no means sparing box on the ear lately gone over some of our classics, particularly Pope, whom bestowed on the page, and the entrance of a knight and charger I tried in this way :- I took Moore's poems, and my own,

into the castle, under the very natural disguise of a wain of and some others, and went over them side by side with Pose's, hay. Marmion, the hero of the latter romance, is exactly and I was really astonished and mortified at the inetrable

what William of Deloraine would have been, had he been able distance, in point of sense, learning, effect, and even imagin

to read and write. The poem was manufactured for Messrs. ation, passion, and invention, between the little Queen Anne's

Constable, Murray, and Miller, worshipful booksellers, in man, and us of the Lower Empire. Depend upon it, it is all

consideration of the receipt of a sum of money ; and truly, Hurace then, and Claudian dow, among us ; and if I had to considering the inspiration, it is a very creditable production. begin again, I would mould myself accordingly." B. Diary,

If Mr. Scott will write for hire, let him do his best for his 1817.)

pay-masters, but not disgrace his geniuş, which is undoubtedly 3 Stott, better known in the " Morning Post" by the name

great, by a repetition of black-letter ballad imitations. of Hatiz. This personage is at present the most profound

3 [" When Lord Byron wrote his famous satire, I had my explorer of the bathos. I reinember, when the reigning

share of flagellation among my hetters. My crime was having family left Portugal, a special Ode of Master Stott's, beginning

written a poem for a thousand pounds; which was no other.

Now, thus :- (Stott loquitur quoad Hibernia.)

wise true, than that I sold the copyright for that sum. “ Princely offspring of Braganza,

not to mention that an author can hardly be censured for Erin greets thee with a stanza," &c.

accepting such a sum as the booksellers are willing to give

him, especially as the gentlemen of the trade made no com. Also a Sonnet to Rats, well worthy of the subject, and a most plaints of their bargain, I thought the interference with my thundering Ode, commencing as follows:

private affairs was rather beyond the limits of literary satire. " Oh ! for a Lay, loud as the surge

I was, however, so far from having any thing to do with the That lashes Lapland's sounding shore."

offensive criticism in the Edinburgh, that I remonstrated Lord have mercy on us ! the “ Lay of the Last Minstrel " was

against it with the editor, because I thought the " Hours of nothing to this.

Idleness" treated with undue severity. They were written, * See the “ Lay of the Last Minstrel," passim. Never was

like all juvenile poetry, rather from the recollection of what any plan so incongruous and absurd as the groundwork of by his own imagination; but, nevertheless, I thought they

had pieased the author in others, than what had been suggested this prouiuction. The entrance of Thunder and Lightning,

contained passages of noble promise."- Sir Walter Scott.] prologuising to Bayes' tragediy, unfortunately takes away the merit of originality from the dialogue between Messieurs the 6 [Lord Byron, as is well known, set out with the determin: Spirits of Flood and Fell in the first canto. Then we have ation never to receive money for his writings. For the liberty the amiable William of Deloraine, " a stark moss-trooper," to republish this satire, he refused four hundred guineas ; and

Such be their meed, such still the just reward
Of prostituted muse and hireling bard !
For this we spurn Apollo's venal son,
And bid a long “ good night to Marmion."!

These are the themes that claim our plaudits now; These are the bards to whom the muse must bow; While Milton, Dryden, Pope, alike forgot, Resign their hallow'd bays to Walter Scott.

The time has been, when yet the muse was young, When Homer swept the lyre, and Maro sung, An epic scarce ten centuries could claim, While awe-struck nations hail'd the magic name; The work of each immortal bard appears The single wonder of a thousand years. 2 Empires have moulder'd from the face of earth, Tongues have expired with those who gave them birth, Without the glory such a strain can give, As even in ruin bids the language live. Not so with us, though minor bards content, On one great work a life of labour spent: With eagle pinion soaring to the skies, Behold the ballad-monger Southey rise ! To him let Camoens, Milton, Tasso yield, Whose annual strains, like armies, take the field. First in the ranks see Joan of Arc advance, The scourge of England and the boast of France !

Though burnt by wicked Bedford for a witch,
Behold her statue placed in glory's niche;
Her fetters burst, and just released from prison,
A virgin phenix from her ashes risen.
Next see tremendous Thalaba come on, 3
Arabia's monstrous, wild, and wond'rous son ; -
Domdaniel's dread destroyer, who o'erthrew
More mad magicians than the world e'er knew.
Immortal hero! all thy foes o'ercome,
For ever reign -- the rival of Tom Thumb !
Since startled metre fled before thy face,
Well wert thou doom'd the last of all thy race !
Well might triumphant genii bear thee hence,
Illustrious conqueror of common sense !
Now, last and greatest, Madoc spreads his sails,
Cacique in Mexico, and prince in Wales;
Tells us strange tales, as other travellers do,
More old than Mandeville's, and not so true.
Oh, Southey! Southey 5! cease thy varied song!
A bard may chant too often and too long :
As thou art strong in verse, in mercy, spare !
A fourth, alas ! were more than we could bear.
But if, in spite of all the world can say,
Thou still wilt verseward plod thy weary way;
If still in Berkley ballads most uncivil,
Thou wilt devote old women to the devil, 6
'The babe unborn thy dread intent may rue:
“ God help thee," Southey?, and thy readers too. 8

the money paid for the copyright of the first and second cantos of Childe Harold, and of the Corsair, he presented to Mr. Dallas. In 1816, to a letter enclosing a draft of 1000 guineas, offered by Mr. Murray for the Siege of Corinth and Parisina,

the noble poet sent this answer : " Your offer is liberal in -the extreme, and much more than the two poems can possibly

be worth - but I cannot accept it, nor will not. You are most welcome to them, as additions to the collected volumes, without any demand or expectation on my part whatever. I have enclosed your dratt torn, for fear of accidents by the way. I wish you would not throw temptation in mine; it is not from a disdain of the universal idol - nor from a present superfluity of his treasures- I can assure you, that I refuse to worship him, but what is right is right, and inust not yield to circumstances." The poet was afterwards induced, at Mr. Murray's earnest persuasion, to accept the thousand guincas. The subjoined statement of the sums paid by him at various times to Lord Byron for copyright may be considered a bibliopolic curiosity:Childe Harold, I. II.

£ 600 III.

1575 IV.

2100 Giaour

525 Bride of Abydos

525 Corsair

525 Lara

700 Siege of Corinth

525 Parisina

525 Lament of Tasso

315 Manfred

315 Beppo

525 Don Juan, I. II.

1525 III. IV. V.

1525 Doge of Venice

1050 Sardanapalus, Cain, and Foscari

1100 Mazeppa

525 Prisoner of Chillon

525 Sundries


? Reviewers, Hints from Horace, Werner, De- 3,885

formed Transtormed, Heaven and Earth, &c. Life by Thomas Moore


standard efforts; since neither the “ Jerusalem Conquered of the Italian, nor the " Paradise Regained" of the English bard, obtained a proportionate celebrity to their former poems Query: Which of Mr. Southey's will survive ?

3“ Thalaba," Mr. Southey's second poem, is written in open defiance of precedent and poetry. Mr.S. wished to pro duce something novel, and succeeded to a miracle. “Joan of Arc," was marvellous enough, but " Thalaba," was one of those poems “which," in the words of Porson, “ will be read when Homer and Virgil are forgotten, but — not till then.”

" ("Of Thalaba, the wild and wondrous song." – Madoc.)

5 We beg Mr. Southey's pardon: “ Madoc disdains the de grading title of epic." See his preface. Why is epic degraded ? and by whom? Certainly the late romaunts of Masters Cottle, Laureat Pye, Ogilvy, Hole, and gentle Mistress Cowley, hare not exalted the epic muse; but as Mr. Southey's poem “disdains the appellation," allow us to ask — has he substituted any thing better in its stead ? or must he be content to rivai Sir Richard Blackmore in the quantity as well as quality of his verse ?

6 See “ The Old Woman of Berkley," a ballad, by Mr. Southey, wherein an aged gentlewoman is carried away by Beelzebub, on a "high-trotting horse."

7 The last line, “ God help thee," is an evident plagiarism from the Anti-jacobin to Mr. Southey, on his Dactylics. (Lord Byron here alludes to Mr. Gifford's parody on Mr. Southey's Dactylics, which ends thus: “ Ne'er talk of ears again I look at thy spelling-book ;

Dilworth and Dyche are both mad at thy quantities Dactylics, call'st thou 'em ? - God help thee, silly one.'"]

8 (Lord Byron, on being introduced to Mr. Southey in 1813, at Holland House, describes him " as the best-looking bard he had seen for a long time." -" To have that poet's head and shoulders, I would," he says, “almost have written his Sapphics. He is certainly a prepossessing person to look op, and a man of talent, and all that, and there is his eulogy." In his Journal, of the same year, he says —" Southey I have not seen much of. His appearance is epic, and he is the only existing entire man of letters. All the others have some pursuit annexed to their authorship. His manners are mild, but not those of a mar of the world, and his talents of the first order. His prose is perfect. Or his poetry there are various opinions : there is, perhaps, too much of it for the present generation - posterity will probably select.

He has passages equal to any thing. At present, he has a party, but no public -- except for his prose writings. His Life of Nelson is beauti. ful." Elsewhere, and later, Lord Byron pronounces Southey's Don Roderick, " the first poem of our time.")


! " Good night to Marmion" - the pathetic and also pro phetic exclamation of Henry Blount, Esquire, on the death of honest Marmion.

1 As the Odysser is so closely connected with the story of the Iliad, they may almost be classed as one grand historical poem. In alluding to Milton and Tasso, we consider the . Paradise Lost," and " Gierusalemme Liberata,' as their

Next comes the dull disciple of thy school, That mild apostate from poetic rule, The simple Wordsworth, framer of a lay As soft as evening in his favourite May,' Who warns his friend “ to shake off toil and trouble, And quit his books, for fear of growing double;" 2 Who, both by precept and example, shows That prose is verse, and verse is merely prose; Convincing all, by demonstration plain, Poetic souls delight in prose insane; And Christmas stories tortured into rhyme Contain the essence of the true sublime. Thus, when he tells the tale of Betty Foy, The idiot mother of “ an idiot boy ;" A moon-struck, silly lad, who lost his way, And, like his bard, confounded night with day; S So close on each pathetic part he dwells, And each adventure so sublimely tells, That all who view the “ idiot in his glory," Conceive the bard the hero of the story.

Whether on ancient tombs thou tak'st thy stand,
By gibb'ring spectres hail'd, thy kindred band;
Or tracest chaste descriptions on thy page,
To please the females of our modest age;
All hail, M. P. 8! from whose infernal brain
Thin sheeted phantoms glide, a grisly train;
At whose command "grim women" throng in crowds,
And kings of fire, of water, and of clouds,
With “small gray men,” “ wild yagers," and what not,
To crown with honour thee and Walter Scott;
Again all hail! If tales like thine may plcase,
St. Luke alone can vanquish the discase :
Even Satan's self with thce might dread to dwell,
And in thy skull discern a deeper hell.

Who in soft guise, surrounded by a choir Of virgins melting, not to Vesta's fire, With sparkling eyes, and cheek by passion flush'd, Strikes his wild lyre, whilst listening dames are bush'd ? 'Tis Little ! young Catullus of his day, As sweet, but as immoral, in his lay! Grieved to condemn", the muse must still be just, Nor spare melodious advocates of lust. Pure is the flame which o'er her altar burns; From grosser incense with disgust she turns : Yet kind to youth, this expiation o'er, She bids thee “ mend thy line, and sin no more.” 10

Shall gentle Coleridge pass unnoticed here, To turgid ode and tumid stanza dear ? Though themes of innocence amuse him best, Yet still obscurity 's a welcome guest. If Inspiration should her aid refuse To him who takes a pixy for a muse, 4 Yet none in lofty numbers can surpass The bard who soars to elegise an ass. So well the subject suits his noble mind, He brays 5, the laureat of the long-ear'd kind. 6

For thee, translator of the tinsel song, To whom such glittering ornaments belong, Hibernian Strangford ! with thine eyes of blue, 11. And boasted locks of red or auburn hue, Whose plaintive strain each love-sick miss admires, And o'er harmonious fustian half expires, Learn, if thou canst, to yield thine author's sense, Nor vend thy sonnets on a false pretence.

Oh! wonder-working Lewis 7! monk, or bard, Who fain wouldst make Parnassus a church-yard ! Lo! wreaths of yow, not laurel, bind thy brow, Thy muse a sprite, Apollo's sexton thou! .

! (“Unjust.” – B. 1816.) ? Lyrical Ballads, p. 4.-" The Tables Turned." Stanza l.

Up, up, my friend, and clear your looks;

Why all'this toil and trouble?
Up, up, my friend, and quit your books,

Or surely you 'll grow double." 3 Mr. W. in his preface labours hard to prove, that prose and verse are much the same ; and certainly his precepts and practice are strictly conformable: -

“ And thus to Betty's questions he

Made answer, like a traveller bold.
The cock did crow, to-whoo, to-whoo,

And the sun did shine so cold," &c. &c., p. 129. • Coleridge's Poems, p. 11., Songs of the Pixies, i. e. De vonshire fairies ; p. 42. we have, “Lines to a young Lady ;" and, p. 52., “ Lines to a young Ass."

$ (Thus altered by Lord Byron, in his last revision of the satire. In all former editions the line stood,

" A fellow-feeling makes us wond'rous kind.") 6 (" Unjust,"' B. 1816.-lo a letter to Mr. Coleridge, written in 1815, Lord Byron says, “ You mention my .Satire,' lampoon, or whatever you or others please to call'it. I can only say, that it was written when I was very young and very angry, and has been a thorn in my side ever since: more particularly as almost all the persons animadverted upon became subse. quently my acquaintances, and some of them my friends; which is 'heaping fire upon an enemy's head,' and forgiving me too readily to permit me to forgive myself. The part applied to you is pert, and petulant, and shallow enough; but, although I have long done every thing in my power to suppress the circulation of the whole thing, I shall always regret the wantonness or generality of many of its attempted attacks.")

1 (Matthew Gregory Lewis, M. P. for Hindon, never distinguished himself in Parliament, but, mainly in consequence of the clever use he made of his knowledge of the German language, then a rare accomplishment, attracted much notice in the literary work, at a very early period of his life. His Tales of Terror ; the drama of the Castle Spectre; and the romance called the Bravo of Venice (which is, however, little more than a version from the Swiss Zschocke); but above all, the libidinous and impious norel of Thc Monk, invested the

name of Lewis with an extraordinary degree of celebrity, during the poor period which intervened between the obscuration of Cowper, and the full display of Sir Walter Scott's talents in the Lay of the Last Minstrel," - a period which is sufficiently characterised by the fact, that Hayley then passed for a poet. Next to that solemn coxcomb, Lewis was for several years the fashionable versifier of his time ; but his plagiarisms, perhaps more audacious than had ever before been resorted to by a man of real talents, were by degrees unveiled, and writers of greater original genius, as well as of purer taste and morals, successively emerging, Monk Lewis, dying young, had already outlived his reputation. In society he was to the last a favourite ; and Lord Byron, who had be. come well acquainted with him during his experience of London life, thus notices his death, which occurred at sea in 1818:-“ Lewis was a good inan, a clever man, but a bore. My only revenge or consolation used to be setting him by the ears with some vivacious person who hated bores especially, - Madame de Staël or Hobhouse, for example. But I liked Lewis ; he was the jewel of a man, had he been better set ;I don't mean personally, but less tiresome, for he was tedious, as well as contradictory to every thing and every body. Poor fellow ! he died a martyr to his new riches -- of a second visit to Jamaica :

" I'd give the lands of Deloraine,

Dark Musgrave were alive again!" That is,

"I would give many a sugar cane,

Mat Lewis were alive again!”] # " For every one knows little Matt 's an M. P."- See a poem to Mr. Lewis, in “ The Statesman," supposed to be written by Mr. Jekyll.

9 (In very early life, “Little's Poems" were Lord Byron's favourite study. " Heigho!” he exclaims, in 1820, in a letter to Moore, “I believe all the mischief I have ever done, or sung, has been owing to that confounded book of yours.")

10 (Originally, “mend thy life, and sin no more."]

11 The reader, who may wish for an explanation of this, may refer to " Strangford's Carnoëns," p. 127. note to p. 56., or lo the last page of the Edinburgh Review of Strangford's Cab moins.

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