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same indeed all over Europe. Voltaire, who agreeably to the genius of the French stage discovered

may here give an amusing instance. In the third book of the Faerie Queene, Canto 1. St. 14., is the following passage :

At length they came into a forest wyde,
Whose hideous horror and sad trembling sound
Full griesly seem'd:—therein they long did ryde,
Yet tract of living creature none they found,
Save beares, lyops, and buls, which romed them around.

This last verse, says Warton, “ would be improved in it's harmony by reading,

Save lyons, beares, and buls, &c. as would the following also, Book 5. Canto 2. St. 30.

Yet was admired much of fooles, women, and boys, if we were to read

Yet was admired much of women, fooles, and boys.

But these corrections are made by the critic, upon a supposition that his author must have infallibly written what was best.The reader will recollect, that these lines are in the course of a very long poem; yet so little had Warton's ear profited by his acquaintance with the Greek and stalian writers as well as those of his own country, that he had obtained no perception of what is musical beyond that of mere smoothness. Upon this 'note Mr. Upton very justly observes, that “ as nothing is so tiresome as verse in the same unvaried measure and cadence, so the best poets, as Homer and Virgil among the ancients, Spenser and Milton among the moderns,

Addison to be our greatest dramatic writer, could not fail also, agreeably to the spirit of French verse in general, to pronounce that Pope was the most harmonious of our poets:«the Italians repeated the story, most likely from that want of information, with which critics are too 'apt to be satisfied, when they speak of the literature of other na tions ;—and every where; in the writings of the last hundred years, we meet with nothing but the music and harmony of Pope,- in versifiers, in critics, in philosophers, in historians, in small men and great, in the Mallets, the Hayleys, the Masons, the Johnsons, the Wartons, Adam Smiths, and the Humes. The latter description of writers, and indeed most

often vary, not only in the pause of the yerse, but likewise in the accent of the word. Hence our poet does not write , o . Save lyons, beares, and buls, but "... Save beares, lyons, and buls.

The reader may observe several of like sort, where the accent is varied and cadence changed, lest the ear should be tired with one unvaried sameness of measure, like a ring of bells without any changes.

' . i inne

of those who do not particularly cultivate a taste for poetry, as well as persons of every kind who are engaged in the busier pursuits of society, will most likely, for a long time to come, adhere to their love of Pope's versification, from the very principle which it wants,--that of contrast ;--they take up a poet for relaxation after their toils, are naturally guided to Pope by the tone of society which is mingled with his more poetical character, and finding their ear at it's ease in common with the rest of their faculties, are content with the indolence it enjoys, and care not to enquire why it is satisfied. Besides, it is to be remembered, that the rhetoricians as well as reasoners of the last century have in general formed their taste upon that of the French.

If the attention, however, of more poetical readers is once roused to this point, they will find our author not merely deficient on the score of harmony, but to a degree apparently so obvious and at the same time so surprising, that they will be inclined to wonder how they could have endured so utter a want of variety, and will not be willing, in future, to listen to a poet

of any pretensions, who shall come before them without a new stop or two to his lyre.—To come to particulars. - Let the reader take any dozen or twenty lines from Pope at a hazard, or if he pleases, from his best and most elaborate passages, and he will find that they have scarcely any other pauses than at the fourth or fifth syllable, and both with little variation of accent. Upon these the poet is eternally dropping his voice, line after line, sometimes upon only one of them for eight or ten lines together; so that when Voltaire praised him for bringing down the harsh wranglings of the English trumpet to the soft tones of the flute*, he should have added, that he made a point of stopping every instant

> * Dictionnaire Philosophique, Art. Pope. The reader will allow me to deprecate any application of these remarks on versification to the Feast of the Poets. 'she unambitious ballad-measure in which it is written, has not only had a particular time and tune annexed to it from time immemorial, so as to be led off like a kind of dance, but as the couplets are really made up of four lines thrown into two, may be allowed to appeal to it's own laws. This however is a trifle not worth the settling. The chief merit which is expected in verses of this description is idiomatical easiness :

upon one or two particular notes. See, for instance, the first twenty lines of Windsor Forest, the two first paragraphs of Eloisa to Abelard, and that gorgeous misrepresentation of the exquisite moonlight picture in Homer. The last may well be quoted :

As when the moon-refulgent lamp of night,
O'er Heav'ns clear azure-spreads her sacred light,
When not a breath—disturbs the deep serene,
And not a cloud_o'ercasts the solemn scene;
Around her throne—the vivid planets roll,
And stars unnumber'd-gild the glowing pole,
O'er the dark trees-a yellower verdure shed,
And tip with silver-evry mountain's head ;-
Then shine the vales—the rocks in prospect rise,
A flood of glory—bursts from all the skies:
The conscious swains rejoicing in the sight,
Eye the blue vaultand bless the useful light,

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. Yet this is variety to the celebrated picture of Be. linda in the Rape of the Lock:

Not with more glories in th' ethereal plain .. .
The sun first rises-o'er the purpled main,
Than issuing forth-the rival of his beams,
Launch'd on the bosom-of the silver Thames.
Fair nymphs and well-dress’d youths around her shone,
But ev'ry eye-was fix'd on her alone.

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