« AnteriorContinuar »
to the EngHJh Heroick of five Peer, and to the French Alexandrine of Six. But the Ear must preside, and direct the Judgment to the choice of Numbers: Without the nicety of this, the Harmony of Pindarique Verse can never be compleat; the Cadency of one Line must be a Rule to that of the next; and the Sound of the former must slide gently into that which follows; without leaping from one Extream into another. It must be done like the Shadowings of a Picture^ which fall by de
frees into a darker Colour. I shall e glad, if I have so explain'd my self as to be understood; but if I have not, quod nequeo dicere & sentio .tautum, must be my Excuse. There remains much more to be said on this Subject; but, to avoid Envy, I will be silent. What I have said is the general Opinion of the best Judges, and in a manner has been fore'd from me, by seeing a noble sort of Poetry so happily restor'd by one Man, and so grofly copied, by almost all the rest; A musical Ear*. and a great'Genius, if another Mr. Co'wley cou'd arise, in another Age may bring it to Perfection. In the mean time,
•— Fungar vice cotis acutum Redden qua ferrum valets expers ipfa secandi.
I hope it will-not be expected from me, that I fhou'd fay any thing of my Fellow-undertakers in this Miscellany. Some of them are too nearly related to me, to be commended without Suspicion of Partiality: Others it an> sure need it not j and the rest I have not perus'd. To conclude, I am sensible that I have written this too hastily and too loosly i, I fear I hate beeq tedious,, and which is worse, it comes out from the first Draught, and uncorrected. This I grant is no Excuse j for it may be reasonably urg'dj why did he not write with more leisure, or, is he had it not, (which was certainly my cafe) why did he attempt to write on.so nice a Subject? The Objection is unanswerable, but, ia part of Recampenee, let me a!IJure the Reader, that in hasty Productions, he is sure to meet with an Author's present Sense, which cooler Thoughts wou'd possjbly have disguis'd. There is undoubredly more of Spirit,though not of Judgment, in these uncorrect Essays, and consequently though my Hazard be. the grearer, yet the Reader's Pleasure is not the lefe.