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XXI. Spring. An Ode to Neriffa. By Stephen Cæsar Lemaiftre. "Folio, 6d. Cooper.
The spring has always been a favourite topic with the poets. That thofe of Greece, Sicilly, Italy and Provence should be so rapturous in their approbation of that prime season, is no ways surprizing, if we consider the happiness of their climates ; but that we, who, inftead of being fanned with soft genial breezes, are shuddering with the bleak north-eeft; who, instead of being regaled in February with all the breathing infants of the spring, have scarce a leląc blowing in April ;-that we should be so fond of that season is really aftonishing. The fact, indeed, is, that most of our poets who invoke
the soft zephyrs through a broken pane, have borrowed all their rural images from the Antient and Provençal Bards. They know no more of the country than those describe ; and the consequence is, that they represent not a Britỉsh, but a classic spring ; not nature, but fancy. But tho' most of our eminent poets have been guilty of this impropriety, we fee something like a British spring in Mr. Lemaistre's poem (a).
Warm with the praises of a sylvan life, so enthusiastically de. fcribed by the bards of Greece and Italy, our poetical folks are apt to imagine, that those who inhabit the country, must, from that circumitance, be happy. But one must look very little abroad, not to discover, that misery more frequently resides in the hutt, than in the palace; and that care as commonly haunts the labourer, as the citizen. Ask the husbandman, when fatigued with the toils of the day, if he feels (6) Pleasures unknown to Pa. laces and Kings, be will answer, No. Ask him, if he does not envy the 'Squire, he will reply, Yes. Besides, as no contemptible poet philosophically expresses it,
The heart can ne'er a transport know,
Thac never feels a pain. However, as our Aathor wanted his mistress to come to the coun. gry, we cannot blame him for painting the life led there, in every attractive colour.
The ode consists of fourteen regular ftanzas, each of ten lines; and discovers the feeds of a poetical imagination ; which more years, and the smiles of Neriffa, may probably ripen to the production of no unpleasing fruit. As a specimen of the poem, take the following stanza.
But see yon moffy tow'rs through age decay,
That softly whisp'ring forward seems to say,
Come quick, my fair, for all must waste,
And time that stately tow'rs can blast
With equal rigour strikes the faireft maid. XXII. Hymn to the Supreme Being,'on recovery from a dangerous fit of illness. By Christopher Smart, M. A. 4to. 6d. Newbery
As this poem seems to have been the genuine effusion of gratitude, it would be cruel, and invidious, to make it the subject of criticism ; tho', otherwise, not the least exceptionable of this gentleinan's performances. It is an instance, however, of the goodness of his heart, if not of the fidelity of his muse.
XXIII. Turncoat. A parody of the tragedy of Athelstan. In one act. 8vo. 1s. Vaillant.
This is a very trifling parody of a very indifferent play. XXIV. A Poem, on the Countess of Pomfret's Benefaction to the University of Oxford. 4to. 6d. Rivington.
We are informed in an advertisement, that this poem was wrote with the view of being spoken in the theatre, at the late commemoration. It was well for the auditors that it was not spoken, as it must have been then, what it still is, unintelligible; and we could have wished, for the honour of the University, that so stiff, ob cure, and out-of-the-way a poem had never been published. We shall not therefore perpetuate its fame by a specimen. It consists of 197 lines, Sed in tam magno corpore non. una mica Salis.
XXV. Elays Pastoral and Elegiac. Containing, Morning; or, the Complaint. Noon; or the Contest. Evening; or the Exclamation. Night; or the Wanderer. Addressed to the Right Hon. the Earl of Chesterfield. By a Gentleman late of the Inner-Temble. 8vo. Is. Cooper. ;
As these paftorals are but essays (to use the Author's own expression) we shall not enter into a minute discussion of them but only observe, that the numbers are in general inharmonious, and the language often mean and incorrect; that there is a vicious mixture of antient and British ideas; the pieces being neither Arcadian nor English; that they give us few rural images, and scarce any of the Author's own invention : yet are not these pieces, so very contemptible as some have repre
sented them; the following extract from the Contest will prove this :
One Morn (now some Moons past) by custom led
Adown the steep descent, with swiftness run,
When from my sling a pond'rous stone I threw,
Now whether aided by unusual force,
She could not stop; or whether loft to sense,
And in the stream her lovely body threw;
Upon the whole, as the Poet has neither copied the best paftoral or elegiac models, nor given us better of his own in their stead, we may conclude with the words of S. J. Esq; in his famous' epistle from the country, to Lord Lovelace in town.
Alliet us not, ye Gods, tho" finners,
POLITICAL. XXVI. A seasonable Call upon all English Sailors, by an enquiry into the causes of our naval miscarriages. With some thoughts on the interest of the nation, as to a naval war, and of the only true way of manning the fleet. Dedicated to the parliament of Great Britain. From the second edition in quarto, printed in 1707. Now reprinted at this important crisis, for the candid perusal of all true lovers of their country. 8vo. Is. Robinson.
This reprinted tract hath also been lately advertised under the title of, • An Enquiry into the causes of our Naval Miscarriager, fa) Vide the title : Morning, Noon, &c.
• &c.' leaving out the words, ' A seasonable call upon all English • Sailors.' We mention this circumstance for the sake of our country readers, to satisfy them, that if they send for it under either title, they will have the intended pamphlet, tho' the title: page and the advertisement may be somewhat different.
MEDICA L. XXVII. The Use of Sea Voyages in Medicine. By Ebenezer Gilchrist, M. D. 8vo.
Millar. The exuberance of the Materia Medica,and a too great attention to thelucrative improvements of pharmacy, it is apprehended, has been a principal occafion of the little regard the moderns seem to have paid to some of the most useful remedies employed by the primitive physicians : Pharmacopæias have been added to Pharmacopæias, and there is scarce a disease that, at present, has not its pretended fpecific. But Ihould it be asked, whether the health of the patient has been of late better cured, or the honour of the profeifion hereby further promoted ? it is much to be feared, that candour would answer in the negative. Hence we cannot help applauding Dr. Gilchrift for his endeavours to reinftate failing in the class of medicines.
This exercise has been much recommended by the antients, for many falutary purposes. Our Author, indeed, has not confidered his fubject merely as an exercise, but is also at some pains to shew, that the sea air is endaed with fanative qualities, not common to that we breathe on shore. However, he does not rely only on reasoning. If experience is the best recommendation of any medicine, he instances twenty-two histories, mostly confumprive, and some far advanced in the disease, whereby the utility of this practice appears incontestible. He points out other disorders, in which he judges it useful; obviates the objections to it; and shews its particular accommodations to the distempers of Great Britain and this in a ftyle, which, tho' far from elegant, is plain to almost every comprehension. He has subjoined an Appendix, containing some intances that serve to demonstrate the advantages accruing from the use of warm baths in critical diseases; another practice likewise familiar with the antients, the revival of which has also been attempted by some modern physicians, particularly the late Dr. Clifton,* and the ingenious Dr. Glass,t of Exeter. Upon the whole, we cannot but think, the delicate Valetudinarian will
, in many cases, find benefit from the directions in this treatise.
* In his State of Phyfic.
+ See Review, vol. VI. p. 319.
An Esay on Waters. In three Parts. Treating, 1. Of Simple
Waters.--2. Of Cold, Medicated Waters.-3. Of Natural Baths. By C. Lucas, M. D. 8vo. 3 Volumes. 1os. 6d. fewed. Millar.
F industry may be admitted any part of a Writer's merit,
Dr. Lucas seems to have a fair claim to the favour of the public. The subject, whether considered for its oeconomical or medical uses, is particularly interesting; and is here treated, tho' diffusely, with accuracy equal to its importance. Our Author generally supports his opinions by authorities and experiments; and in the number of the latter few have exceeded him. A separate volume is appropriated to each separate part : in the first, the nature, properties, combinations, and affinities of Salts, acid, alcaline, and neutral, are treated of; the elementary and accidental qualities of Simple Water, in all its various modes of existence, are minutely described and distinguished; the particular Waters generally employed in this metropolis for domestic purposes, as the Thames, New-River, Hampstead, Rathbone-Place, St. Paul's and the Savoy Pumps, Crowder's Well, and Lamb's Conduit, are severally analysed, and their proportionate degree of utility assigned to each : the medicinal efficacy of common Water, used either internally or externally, is fully and clearly explained, and some judicious observations are added, relative to cold and warm bathing, as they were occasionally made use of by the ancient Physicians.
In his second volume, our Author enquires into the contents of those Waters commonly termed saline or mineral: wherein, after some remarks on salt Waters in general, he proceeds to an examen of particulars. Of these, the first that comes under his consideration is Sea-Water ; to which near fifty pages are devoted : the Doctor's principal design is to thew, that Sea-Water is impregnated with only a calcarious earth, a muriatic falt, bittern, and the oily matter common to all Waters;, without any sulphur, bitumen, nitre, or unctious substance, ascribed to it by other Writers, particularly by Dr. Russel *, upon whom are bestowed several sharp censures, which, with some as high compliments to the proprietors of the Harwich and Liverpool baths, and an attempt to shew the futility of the endeavours that have
* See Review, vol. IX. p. 188.