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equally an original. Gray and Collins aimed at the dazzling imagery and magnificence of lyrical poetry - the direct antipodes of Pope. Akenside descanted on the operations of the mind, and the associated charms of taste and genius, in a strain of melodious and original blank verse. Goldsmith blended morality and philosophy with a beautiful simplicity of expression and numbers, pathetic imagery, and natural description. Beattie portrayed the romantic hopes and aspirations of youthful genius in a style formed from imitation of Spenser and Thomson. And the best of the secondary poets, as Shenstone, Dyer, and Mason, had each a distinct and independent poetical character. Johnson alone, of all the eminent authors of this period, seems to have directly copied the style of Pope and Dryden. The publication of Percy's Reliques, and Warton's History of Poetry, may be here adverted to, as directing public attention to the early writers, and to the powerful effects which could be produced by simple narrative and natural emotion in verse. It is true that few or none of the poets we have named had much immediate influence on literature: Gray was ridiculed, and Collins was neglected, because both public taste and criticism had been vitiated and reduced to a low ebb. The spirit of true poetry, however, was not broken; the seed was sown, and in the next generation, Cowper completed what Thomson had begun. The conventional style was destined to fall, leaving only that taste for correct language and versification which was established by the example of Pope, and found to be quite compatible with the utmost freedom and originality of conception and expression. -Chalmers.
No writer of the last century occupied a larger space in the public mind, or exercised a greater influence probably on public opinion, than Dr. Samuel Johnson. It is, however, chiefly as a writer of prose, that he is distinguished. The poetry which he did write was after the manner of Pope and Dryden, and was characterized by strong sense, and great fulness of expression. He was born in 1709, and died in 1784.
CHARLES XII. OF SWEDEN.
(From the Vanity of Human Wishes.)
On what foundations stands the warrior's pride,
The vanquished hero leaves his broken bands,
LENGTH OF DAYS NOT ALWAYS DESIRABLE.
(From the same.)
Enlarge my life with multitude of days,
Approach, ye minstrels, try the soothing strain,
Unnumbered maladies his joints invade,
THE TRUE SOURCE OF HUMAN HAPPINESS.
(From the same.)
Where, then, shall hope and fear their objects find ? Must dull suspense corrupt the stagnant mind? Must helpless man, in ignorance sedate, Roll darkling down the torrent of his fate ? Must no dislike alarm, no wishes rise, No cries invoke the mercies of the skies ? Inquirer, cease; petitions yet remain, Which Heaven may hear, nor deem religion vain. Still raise for good the supplicating voice, But leave to Heaven the measure and the choice. Safe in his power, whose eyes discern afar The secret ambush of a specious prayer, Implore his aid, in his decisions rest, Secure whate'er he gives, he gives the best. Yet when the sense of sacred presence fires, And strong devotion to the skies aspires, Pour forth thy fervours for a healthful mind, Obedient passions, and a will resigned ; For love, which scarce collective man can fill; For patience, sovereign o'er transmuted ill; For faith, that, panting for a happier seat,
Counts death kind nature's signal of retreat:
These goods he grants, who grants the power to gain;