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And all their echoes mourn.
Where were ye, nymphs, when the remorseless deep
in a beautiful description of the H xara IInyuw xala rijria, 1 lar:
Πινδα ; growth of the vine, says, that it spreads itself abroad "multiplici
Ου γαρ δη σοταμοιο μεγαν ριον Αχισ' '
Avars, lapsu et erratico." De Senect.
Ουδ Αισνας σκοπιαν, ουδ' Ακεδος ιερου T. Warton.
üdwe. 45. As killing as the canker to 50. But see also Spenser's the rose,] Shakespeare is fond Astrophel, st. 22. of this image, and, from his very
Ah where were ye the while his frequent repetitions of it, seems
shepherd Peares, &c. to have suggested it to Milton.
T. Warton. T. Warton.
-the steep, 47. Or frost to flow'rs, that
Where your old Bards, the their gay wardrobe wear,] Milton famous Druids, lie, &c.] had first written, their gay buttons Mr. Richardson's conjecture upon wear; but corrected it in the this passage, I think, is the best Manuscript.
I have seen, that this sleep, 50. Where were ye, Nymphs, where the Druids lie, is a place &c.] He imitates Virgil, Ecl. x. called Kerig y Druidion in the 9.
mountains of Denbighshire, or Quæ nemora, aut qui vos saltus Druids' stones, because of the habuere puellæ
stonechests or coffins, and other Naiades, indigno cum Gallus amore
monuments there in abundance, periret ? Nam neque Parnassi vobis juga, supposed to have been of the nam neque Pindi
Druids. See Camden. Mona Ulla moram fecere, neque Aonia is the isle of Anglesey, or the Aganippe.
shady island as it was called by as Virgil had before imitated the ancient Britons. And Deva Theocritus, Idyl. i. 66.
is the river Dee, the meaning of Πο ποπ' αρ' ησθ' οκα Δαφνης ιτακετο;
which word Deva is by some xx xox yukфа ; ;
supposed to be divine water.
Where your old Bards, the famous Druids, lie,
yet where Deva spreads her wizard stream:
See Camden's Cheshire. And citing her own history; where for the same reason that it is she mentions her thick and dark here called wizard stream, it has groves as the favourite residence the name of ancient hallow'd Dee of the Druids. in our author's Vacation Exercise;
Sometimes within my shades, in and Spenser thus introduces it
many an ancient wood, among his rivers, Faery Queen, Whose often-twined tops great Phe. b. iv. cant. 11. st. 59.
bus fires withstood,
The fearlesse British priests, under -And Dee, which Britons long an aged oake, &c.
ygone Did call divine, that doth by Chester Where, says Selden,” the British tend,
« Druids tooke this isle of AnAnd Drayton in his Polyolbion,
glesey, then well-stored with
« thicke woods and religious Song x.
groves, in so much that it was A brooke it was, suppos'd much “ then called Inis dowil, The
bus'ness to have seen, Which had an ancient bound 'twixt
“ dark isle, for their chiefe resiWales and England been, “ dence, &c." s. ix. vol. iii
. p. And noted was by both to be an 837, 839. Here are Milton's auominous flood,
thorities. For the Druid-sepulThat changing of his foards, the chres, at Kerig y Druidion, he
future ill or good Of either country told, of either's
consulted Camden. T. Warton. war or peace,
54. —shaggy top] So P. L. The sickness or the health, the dearth vi. 645. The angels uplift the or the increase &c.
hills, These places all look toward -By their shaggy tops. Ireland, and were famous for
T. Warton. the residence of the Bards and 55. Nor yet where Deva spreads Druids, who are distinguished her wizard stream:] In Spenser, by most authors, but Milton the river Dee is the haunt of speaks of them as the same, and
as the same, and magicians. Faery Queen, i. ix. 4. probably as priests they were The Dee has been made the Druids, and as poets they were of a variety of ancient Bards. For Cæsar, who has British traditions. The city of given us the best and most Chester was called by the Britons authentic account of the ancient the Fortress upon Dee; which Druids, says, that among other was feigned to have been founded things they learn a great number by the giant Leon, and to have of verses. Magnum ibi nume- been the place of King Arthur's rum versuum ediscere dicuntur. magnificent coronation. De Bel. Gall. lib. vi. c. 13.
But there is another and per54. Nor on the shaggy top of haps a better reason, why Deva's Mona high,] In Drayton's Poly- is a wizard stream. In Drayton, olbion, Mona is introduced re- this river is styled the hallowed,
Aye me! I fondly dream
and the holy, and the ominous But to return to the text im
In the flood. Polyolb. s. x. vol. iii. p. mediately before us. 848. s. ix. vol. iii. p. 287. s. iv. midst of this wild imagery, the vol. ii. p. 781. Again, “ holy tombs of the Druids, dispersed “ Dee," Heroicall Epist. vol. i. over the solitary mountains of p. 293. And in his Ideas, vol. Denbighshire, the shaggy sumiv. p. 1271. And Browne, in mits of Mona, and the wizard his Britannia's Pastorals, b.ii. s. waters of Deva, Milton was in v. p. 117. edit. 1616.
his favourite track of poetry. He Never more let holy Dee
delighted in the old British traOre other rivers brave, &c.
ditions and fabulous histories.
But his imagination seems to Much superstition was founded
have been on the circumstance of its being warmed, and perhaps directed the ancient boundary between
to these objects, by reading DrayEngland and Wales: see Dray: ton; who in the Ninth and ton, s. X. See also s. iii. vol. ii. Tenth Songs of his Polyolbion p. 711. s. xii
. vol. iii. p. 901. has very copiously enlarged, and But in the Eleventh Song, Dray, almost at one view, on this scenton calls the Weever, a river of ery. It is, however, with great Cheshire, " The wizard river," force and felicity of fancy, that and immediately subjoins, that Milton, in transferring the clasin prophetick Skill it vies with sical seats of the Muses to Brithe Dee, $. xi. vol. iii. p. 861. tain, has substituted places of the Here we seem to have the origin most romantic kind, inhabited and the precise meaning of Mil- by Druids, and consecrated by ton's appellation. In Comus, the visions of British bards. And Wizard also signifies a Diviner it has been justly remarked, how where it is applied to Proteus, coldly and unpoetically Pope, in V. 872.
very correct pastorals, has on By the Carpathian wizard's hook.
the same occasion selected only Milton appears to have taken the fair fields of Isis, and the a particular pleasure in mention- winding vales of Cam. ing this venerable river. In the But at the same time there is beginning of his first Elegy, he an immediate propriety in the almost goes out of his way to substitution of these places. They specify his friend's residence on are in the vicinity of the Irish the banks of the Dee; which he seas, where Lycidas was shipdescribes with the picturesque wrecked. It is thus Theocritus and real circumstance of its asks the Nymphs, how it came tumbling headlong over rocks to pass, that when Daphnis died, and precipices into the Irish sea. they were not in the delicious El. i. 1.
vales of Peneus, or on the banks Occidua Devæ Cestrensis ab ora,
of the great torrent Anapus, the Vergivium prono qua petit amne
sacred water of Acis, or on the salum.
summits of mount Etna: because
What could the Muse herself that Orpheus bore,
all these were the haunts or the And the two last of these editions habitation of the shepherd Daph- were printed under Milton's eye. nis. These rivers and rocks have Hence Mr. Warton reads, a real connection with the poet's
Aye me! I fondly dream! subject. T. Warlon.
Had ye been there, &c. 56. Aye me! I fondly dream Had ye been there, for what and he thus explains the pascould that have done ?]
sage, “ Ah me! I am fondly We have here followed the point
“ dreaming! I will suppose you ing of Milton's manuscript in
“ had been there but why should preference to all the editions: " I suppose it, for what would and the meaning plainly is, I
« that have availed ?" The words fondly dream of your having in Italics supplying the ellipsis. been there, for what would that
E. have signified ? Mr. Thyer con
58. What could the Muse &c.] jectured that the passage should Milton had first written thus, be so pointed, and Milton has so What could the golden hair'd Calliope pointed it, though he does not For her inchanting son ! often observe the stops in his
When she beheld (the Gods far-sighted
be) Manuscript. Mr. Jortin likewise
His goary scalp roll down the Thra-. perceived this to be the sense; cian lee : and asks whether this transposition would not be better than but in his Manuscript he altered the common reading.
these lines with judgment. And
afterwards his goary visage was Had ye been there-Aye me, I fondly
a correction from his divine visage. dream For what could that have done ?
58. P. L. vii. 37. Of Orpheus What could the Muse &c.
torn in pieces by the Bacchana
lians. 56. Perhaps the passage may be understood thus, “ I fondly
-Nor could the Muse defend
Her son. “ dream of your assistance if ye “ had been there, for what could And his murderers are called " your presence have availed?
“ that wild rout," v. 34. Calliope “What could the Muse herself, was the mother of Orpheus.
Lycidas, as a poet, is here tacitly The printed copies of 1638, compared with Orpheus. T. 1645, and 1673, have it,
60. -Universal nature. So Aye me, I fondly dream! Had ye been there for what could
“ universal Pan,” P. L. iv. 266. that have done?
Down the swift Hebrus to the Lesbian shore ?
Alas! what boots it with incessant care
63. Down the swift Hebrus to otium ingrato
otium ingrato labori prætulerat. the Lesbian shore.] In calling Virg. Æn. vii. 425. Hebrus swift, Milton, who is avaricious of classical authority,
I nunc, ingratis offer te, irrise, peri
clis. appears to have followed a verse in the Æneid, i. 321.
69. To sport with Amaryllis in -Volucremque fuga prævertitur He.
the shade, brum.
Or with the tangles of Neara's
hair ?] But Milton was misled by a wrong, although a very ancient, ocritus and Virgil. Neæra, Æ
Amaryllis, a country lass in Thereading. Even Servius blames his author for attributing this gon's mistress in Virgil's third epithet to Hebrus, “ Nam quietis
Eclogue. Peck. « simus est, etiam cum per hye
But Mr. Warton shews, that in mem crescit.” [See Burman's
all probability Milton is here Virgil, vol. i. p. 95. col. i. edit. glancing at Buchanan, whose ad
dresses to Amaryllis and Neera 1746. 4to.] Besides, what was the merit of the amazon huntress
were well known at the time.
See note at the end of the Elegies. Harpalyce to outstrip a river,
E. even if uncommonly rapid ? The genuine reading might have been so corrected in the Manuscript
69. Or with the tangles &c.] Eurum, as Rutgersius proposed.
from Hid in the tangles &c. -Volucremque fuga prævertitur Eu.
70. Fame is the spur &c.] The T. Warton.
reader may see the same senti
ment inlarged upon in the Para66. And strictly meditate the dise Regained, iii. 25. and conthankless Muse?] Meditate the firmed in the notes by numerous Muse, Virg. Ecl. i. 2. Musam quotations from the heathen phimeditaris. The thankless Muse, losophers. that earns
no thanks, is not 71. That last infirmity of noble thanked by the ungrateful world: mind.] Abate Grillo, in his Letas ingratus in Latin is used in a tere, has called “ questa sete di passive as well as active signifi-“fama et gloria, ordinaria infircation. Sallust, Cat. xxxviii. “ mita degli animi generosi."