Imágenes de páginas


less desirable than Virtue—Alme

rine and Shelimah; a fairy tale... Hawkes.

104. The Fairy Tale concluded

105. On the Fragments of Menander Waeton

106. Insensibility of Danger, when mis

taken for Courage Hawkes.

107- Different Opinions equally plausible, Johnson

108. The Uncertainty of human Things .

109. A Visit to Bedlam with Dean Swift;

a Vision Warton

110. Pity not an expression of strong Be

nevolence HAWKES.

111. The Pleasures and Advantages of In

dustry JoHNSoN

112. Ill Effects of general Familiarity and

wanton Rudeness Hawkes.

113. Observations on Shakspeare's King

Lear Warton

114. The Value of Life fixed by Hope and

Fear, and therefore dependent

upon the Will—an Eastern Story, Hawkes.

115. The Itch of Writing universal Johnson

116. Observations on King Lear continued Warton 117- Danger of assuming the Appearance

of Evil—the Story of Desdemona Hawkes.

118. The Story of Desdemona concluded.

119. The Folly of creating artificial Wants Johnson

120. The Miseries of Life

121. The Adventures of a Louse Hawkes.

122. Observations on King Lear concluded Warton

123. Fatal Effects of fashionable Levities

—the Story of Flavilla Hawkes.

124. The Story continued

125. The Story concluded

126. Solitude not eligible Johnson

127- In what Arts the Ancients excel the

Moderns , Warton


128. Men differently employed unjustly

censured by each other Johnson

129. Characters at Bath Warton

130. Danger of Relapse after Purposes of

Amendment Hawkes.

131. Singularity censured Johnson

132. Benevolence urged from the Misery

of Solitude; an Eastern Story .... Hawkes.

133. In what Arts the Moderns excel the

Ancients Warton

134. The Cruelty of deserting Natural

Children, and the Danger of slight
Breaches of Duty—Agamus's ac-
count of his daughter Hawkes.

135. Agamus's Account of his Daughter,

continued _____

136. Ditto concluded

137- Writers not a useless Generation ....johnson

138. Their Happiness and Infelicity

139. The Design of the critical Papers in

the Adventurer Warton

140. Account of the general Plan, and

Conclusion of the Work Hawkes.

[merged small][graphic][merged small]

Cum tabulU animum censorii sumet hanesli.

Iior. ErisT. ii. 2. 110.

Bold be the critic, zealous to his trust,
Like the firm judge inexorably just.


"In the papers of criticism which you have given to the public, I have remarked a spirit of candour and love of truth, equally remote from bigotry and captiousness; a just distribution of praise amongst the ancients and the moderns; a sober deference to reputation long established, without a blind adoration of antiquity; and a willingness to favour later performances, without a light or puerile fondness for novelty.

"I shall, therefore, venture to lay before you, such observations as have risen to my mind in the consideration of Virgil's Pastorals, without any inquiry how far my sentiments deviate from established rules or common opinions.

"If we survey the ten pastorals in a general view,


it will be found that Virgil can derive from them very little claim to the praise of an inventor. To search into the antiquity of this kind of poetry, is not my present purpose; that it has long subsisted in the East, the Sacred Writings sufficiently inform us; and we may conjecture, with great probability, that it was sometimes the devotion, and sometimes the entertainment of the first generations of mankind. Theocritus united elegance with simplicity; and taught his shepherds to sing with so much ease and harmonv, that his countrymen, despairing to excel, forbore to imitate him; and the Greeks, however vain or ambitious, left him in quiet possession of the garlands which the wood-nvmphs had bestowed upon him.

"Virgil, however, taking advantage of another language, ventured to copy or to rival the Sicilian bard: he has written with greater splendour of diction and elevation of sentiment: but as the magnificence of his performances was more, the simplicity was less: and, perhaps, where he excels Theocritus, he sometimes obtains his superiority by deviating from the pastoral character, and performing what Theocritus never attempted.

"Yet, though I would willingly pay to Theocritus the honour which is always due to an original author, I am far from intending to depreciate Virgil; of whom Horace justly declares, that the rural muses have appropriated to him their elegance and sweetness, and who, as he copied Theocritus in his design, has resembled him likewise in his success; for, if we except Calphurnius, an obscure author of the lower ages, I know not that a single pastoral was written after him by any poet, till the revival of literature.

"But though his general merit has been univer*

« AnteriorContinuar »