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Nay, quoth he, on his swooning bed out-stretch'd,
* Among Archbishop San. Coll. MSS. Tann. 465. see pp. croft's transcripts of poetry made 235, 237. T. Warton. by him at Cambridge, now in I wonder Milton should suffer the Bodleian Library, is an these two things on Hobson to anonymous poem on the death appear in his edition of 1645. of Hobson. It was perhaps a He, who at the age of nineteen common subject for the wits of had so just a contempt for Cambridge. I take this opportunity of observing, that in the
Those new-fangled toys, and trim
ming slight, same bundle is a poem on Mil
Which take our new fantastics with ton's friend Lycidas, Mr. King, delight. by Mr. Booth, of Corpus Christi,
Hurd. not in the published Collection.
L'Allegro. HENCE loathed Melancholy,
Of Cerberus and blackest Midnight born, In Stygian cave forlorn
'Mongst horrid shapes, and shrieks, and sights unholy,
* This and the following poem is somewhat like the beginning are exquisitely beautiful in them- of Kal. Décembre Saturnales of selves, but appear much more Statius, Sylvarum, lib. i. beautiful, when they are con Et Phoebus pater, et severa Pallas, sidered, as they were written, in Et Musæ procul ite feriata: contrast to each other. There is Jani vos revocabimus Kalendis,
Saturnus mihi compede exoluta, a great variety of pleasing images
Et multo gravidus mero December, in each of them; and it is re.
Et ridens jocus, ct sales protervi markable, that the poet repre Adsint, dum refero diem beatam sents several of the same objects Læti Cæsaris, ebriamque partem. as exciting both mirth and me 1. Milton was too universal a lancholy, and affecting us differ- scholar to be unacquainted with ently according to the different this mythology. In his Prodispositions and affections of the lusions, or declamatory preame soul. This is nature and expe- bles to philosophical questions rience. He derives the title of discussed in the schools at Camboth poems from the Italian, bridge, he says, Cæterum nec which language was then princi. desunt qui Æthera et Diem iti. pally in vogue. L'Allegro is the dem Erebo noctem peperisse tracheerful merry man; and in this dunt. Prose Works, vol. ii. 585. poem he describes the course of See also his Latin ode on the inirth in the country and in the death of Felton, Bp. of Ely, v. city from morning till noon, and 31. and In quintum Novembris, from noon till night; and possi- v. 69. But as Melancholy is here bly he might have this in his the creature of Milton's imaginthoughts, when he said after- ation, he had a right to give her
- there be delights, there be re- Observations on Spenser's F. Q. “ creations and jolly pastimes i. 73. " that will fetch the day about Milton in this exordium had « from sun to sun, and rock the an eye on some elegant lines of “ tedious year as in a delightful Marston, Scourge of Villanie, b. “ dream." Vol. i. p. 154, 155. iii. s. 10. ed. 1598. edit. 1738.
Sleepe, grim Reproof! My jocund 1. Hence loathed Melancholy,
muse doth sing &c.] The beginning of this poem In other keyes to nimble fingering;
Find out some uncouth cell,
Where brooding darkness spreads his jealous wings, And the night-raven sings;
There under ebon shades, and low-brow'd rocks, As ragged as thy locks,
In dark Cimmerian desert ever dwell.
Dull-sprighted Melancholie, leave my Deor. iii. 17.-eorumque fratres braine,
et sorores, qui a genealogis antiTo hell, Cimmerian Night. In lively
quis sic nominantur, Metus. vaine I strive to paint : then hence all darke
Labor, Invidentia, Tenebræ, intent,
Miseria, Querela, &c. quos omnes And sullen frownes. Come sporting Erebo et Nocte natos ferunt. I Merriment,
find Mr. Upton in his letter to Cheeke-dimpling Laughter, crowne
Mr. West on Spenser's Faery my verie soule With jouisance.
Queen has proposed the same See Observat. on Spenser's F. Q. conjecture i. 60. T. Warlon.
4. 'Mongst horrid shapes, &c.] 2. Of Cerberus and blackest He has this passage of Virgil in Midnight born,] The poet in
his eye, Æn. vi. 285–289. making Melancholy the daughter
Multaque præterea variarum mon. of Cerberus might perhaps intend
stra ferarum, &c. to insinuate, that she has some.
Warburton. thing of the cynic, as well as some
6. Where brooding darkness) thing monstrous and unnatural, in
Called so because darkness sets her composition : but if this
the imagination on work, to
thes; poem had not undergone two
create ideal forms and beings. impressions in Milton's life-time, -jealous] Alluding to the and one of them before he lost watch which fowl keep when his sight, I should have imagined
they are sitting. Warburton.
# that he had wrote Erebus, instead
9. As ragged] In Titus Andron. of Cerberus, as being more
a. ii. 3. 4. “ The ragged entrails agreeable to heathen mythology.
of this pit." Ragged is not unErebus and Night are often joined
common in old writers, applied together, as in Hesiod, Theog: to rock. T. Warton. ver, 123.
10. In dark Cimmerian desert] Εκ Χατος και Ερεβος τι μελαινα σε Νυξ The Cimmerians were a people
e who lived in caves under ground,
and never saw the light of the YEYOUTO, Ous rsxs, iure cepesun Eps6s pidornti sun. See Homer, Odyss. xi. 14. fesyurl.
and Tibullus iv. i. 65. And several of their children, 10. Cimmeriæ tenebræ were anenumerated by Cicero, are much ciently proverbial. But Cimmeof the same nature and com- rian darkness and desolation were plexion as Melancholy. De Nat. a common allusion in the poetry
But come thou Goddess fair and free,
that was now written and studied. As in Syr Eglamour. We have See Fletcher's False One, act v. also free alone, ibid. See also s. 4. Titus Andronicus, act ii. s. 3. Chaucer, March. t. v. 1655. Urr. Spenser's Teares of the Muses, And Jonson, Epigram. lxxvi. and his Virgil's Gnat. But our T. Warton. Author might have had perhaps. 12. In heav'n ycleap'd Euphroan immediate allusion to the cave syne,] Cleaped is called, named; of sleep in Ovid, Met. xi. 592. or Spenser, Faery Queen, b. iii. to Homer, whom Ovid copies, cant. xii. st. 19. Odyss. xi. 14. See also Statius, The other cleaped Cruelty by name. Theb. x. 84. And Chaucer, H.
The letter y is sometimes preFame, v. 70. p. 458. Urr. And
fixed to lengthen it a syllable. to all or most of these authors Sylvester has been indebted in
B. iii. cant. v. st. 8.
D his prolix description of the cave . And is ycleaped Florimel the fair. of sleep. Du Bart. p. 816. ed. Euphrosyne is the name of one of fol. 1621. And in that descrip- the three Graces mentioned by tion we trace Milton, both here Hesiod, Theog. 909. and in the opening of Il Pens.
Agraïmo, xa Eupcorviny, Olsun' spaMr. Bowle compares this line
ory: of the text with a passage in Sydney's Arcadia, b. ii. * Let and by Spenser, Faery Queen, « Cimmerian darkness be my b. vi. cant. X. st. 22. “ only habitation." The execra- The first of them hight mild Euphrotion in the text is indeed a trans
syne, lation of a passage in one of his Next fair Aglaia, last Thalia merry. own Academic Prolusions, Dig-' The poet, in saying that she was nus qui Cimmeriis occlusus tene- called Euphrosyne in heaven, and bris longam et perosam vitam Mirth by men, imitates Homer's transigat. Pr. W. vol. ii. 587. manner of speaking, where the T. Warton.
names in use among the learned 11. But come thou goddess fair are ascribed to the gods, and and free.] Compare Drayton, Ed. those in vulgar use are attributed iv. vol. 4. p. 1401.
to men. See Paradise Lost, v. A daughter cleped Dowsabell, 761. and the note there. A maiden fair and free.
14. Whom lovely Venus at a In the metrical romances these birth &c.] The more ancient two words thus paired together opinion, as we find it in Hesiod's are a common epithet for a lady. Theogony, was that the Graces
Or whether (as some sager sing) The frolic wind that breathes the spring, Zephyr with Aurora playing, As he met her once a Maying, There on beds of violets blue, And fresh-blown roses wash'd in dew, were the daughters of Jupiter His pretence of authority in the and Eurynome, and this Spenser parenthesis (as some suger sing) adopts in his Faery Queen, b. vi. is introduced, in my opinion, cant. x. st. 22.
only to give a more venerable They are the daughters of sky-ruling authoritative air to his poem : Jove,
and I have often suspected, that By him begot of fair Eurynome.
that passage in the tenth book But Milton with great judgment of Paradise Lost, where the evil and a very allowable liberty fol- angels are described turned into lows the account of their being serpents, and as the poet adds, sprung from Bacchus and Venus, ver. 575. because the mythology of it suited
Yearly injoin'd, some say, to undergo the nature of his subject better.
This annual humbling certain numThyer.
ber'd days, 17. Or whether, &c.] Compare
is an instance of the same sort. Sophocles, Ed. Tyr. 1098.
Thyer. τις σε, τιανο», τις σ' ετιασε
· As some sager sing. It is sages TWV Margalaw; ague : Πανος ορεσσιβασα σου
in Mr. Fenton's edition, but the sportidarbuo', nos y
old editions have sager. Both TIS duyarng, doğsow; *. c. a.
these genealogies were probably and not. ibid. Schaeferi de Eurip. of the poet's own invention, but E.
he rather favours the latter. 17. Or whether (as some sager 19. Zephyr with Aurora playsing) &c.] No mythologist either ancient or modern that I can As he met her once a Maying.) meet with gives this account of The rhymes and imagery are the birth of Euphrosyne ; never- from Jonson, in the Maske at theless we must do Milton the Sir William Cornwalleis's house justice to own, that he could not at Highgate, 1604. Works, ed. possibly have invented better ala fol. 1616. p. 881. legorical parents for her than ·
See who here is come a Maying ? Zephyrus and Aurora, or the "Why left we off our playing. gentle western gales of a fine morning in the spring, which,
This song is sung by Zephyrus, to use his own words in his Pa and Aurora, and Flora. T. Warradise Lost, iv. 154.
ton, to the heart inspire
22. And fresh-blown soses wash'd Vernal delight and joy, able to drive
with dew.) So Shakespeare, Tam, All sadness but despair.
Shr, act ii. s. 1.