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good Shakespear himself is not so frequently cired in this Collection, as he would otherwise deserve to be.

I have endeavour'd to give the Passages as' naked and stript of Superfluities and foreign Matter, as possibly I could: but often found my self oblig'd for the sake of the Connexion of the Sense, which else would have been interrupted, and consequently obscure, to insert some of them under Heads, to which every Part or Line of them may be thought not properly to belong : Nay, I sometimes even found it difficult to chuse under what Head to place several of the best Thoughts but the Reader may be 'assur’d, that if he find them not where he expects, he will nor wholly lose his. Labour; for

The Search it self rewards bis Pains ;
And if like Chymisis bis great End be miss,

Yet things well worth his Toil he gains ;

And does bis Charge and Labour pay
With good unfought Experiments by the way. Cowley.

That the Reader may judge of every Paffage with due Deference for each Au. chor, he will find their Names at the End of the last Line; and as the late Versions

of

on Love, where I have given the different Sentiments which Mankind, according to their several Temperaments, ever had, and ever will have of it'; fuch may

obe serve, that I have strictly avoided all manner of Obscenity throughout the whole Collection: And tho here and there a Thought may perhaps have a Cast of Wantonness, yet the cleanly Metaphors palliate the Broadness of the Meaning, and the Chaftness of the Words qualifies the Lasciviousness of the Images they represent. And let them farther know, that I have not always chosen what I most approv'd, but what carries with it the belt Strokes for Imitation : For, upon the whole matter, it was not my Business to judge any farther, than of the Vigour and Force of Thought, of the Purity of Language, of the Aptness and Propriety of Expression ; and above all, of the Beauty of Colouring, in which the Poet's Art chiefly consists. Nor, in short, would I take upon me to determine what things should have been said; but have shewn only what are said, and in what manner.

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ly in Passages that are purely Satirical, where some Allowance must be given : For Satire may be fine and true Satire, tho’ it be not directly and according to the Letter, true : 'tis enough that it carry with it a Probability or Semblance of Truth. Let it not here be objected, that I have from the Translators of the Greek and Roman Poets, taken some Descriptions meerly fabulous : for the well-invented Fables of the Antients were design'd only to inculcate the Truth with more Delight, and to make it shine with greater Splendour.

Rien n'est beau que le Vrai. Le Vrai seul est Aimable :
Il doit regner par tout; do meme dans la Fable :
De toute Fi&tion ladroite Fausseté
Ne tend qu à faire aux yeuz briller la Verité. Boileau.

I have upon every Subject given both Pro and Con whenever I met with them, or that I judg’d them worth giving : and if both are not always found, let none imagine that I wilfully fuppress’d ei ther; or that what is here uncontradicted must be unanswerable. If any

take Offence at the Loosness of some of the Thoughts, as particularly up

on

on Love, where I have given the different Sentiments which Mankind, according to their several Temperaments, ever had, and ever will have of it'; such may

observe, that I have strictly avoided all manner of Obscenity throughout the whole Collection: And tho here and there a Thought may perhaps have a Cast of Wantonness, yet the cleanly Metaphors palliate the Broadness of the Meaning, and the Chaftness of the Words qualifies the Lasciviousness of the Images they represent. And let them farther know, that I have not always chosen what I most approv'd, but what carries with it the best Strokes for Imitation : For, upon the whole matter, it was not my Business to judge any

farther, than of the Vigour and Force of Thought, of the Purity of Language, of the Aptness and Propriety of Expression ; and above all, of the Beauty of Colouring, in which the Poet's Art chiefly consists. Nor, in short, would I take upon me to determine what things should have been said; but have shewn only what are said, and in what manner.

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ENGLISH VERSE.

I
N the English Versification there are two Things chiefly to

be consider'd; 1. The Verses. 2. The several Sorts of Poetris, or Compositions in Verse.

But because in the Verses there are allo cwo Things to be obsery'd, The Structure of the Verse, and the Rhyme; this Treatise shall be divided into three Chapters;

I. Of the Structure of English Verses.
II. Of Rhyme.
III. Of the several Sorts of Poems, or Compositions in Verse:

CH A P. I.

T

Of the Structure of English Verses.
He Structure of our Verses, whether Blank, or ini Rhyme;

consists in a certain Number of Syllablés ; noc in Feet compos'd of long and short Syllables, as the Verses of the Greeks and Romans. And though some ingenious Persons formerly puzzled themselves in prescribing Rules for the Quan: tity of English Syllables, and, in Imitation of the Latins, com pos'd Verses by the measure of Spondees, Dactyls, &c. yet the Success of their Undertaking has fully evinc'd the Vainness of their Attempt, and given ground to suspect they had nog throughly weigh'd what the Genius of our Language would bear ; nor reflected that each Tongue has its peculiar Beauo ties, and that what is agreeable and natural to one, is very often disagreeable, nay, inconsistent with another. But that Design being tow wholly exploded, it is sufficient to have mention'd is.

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