« PreviousContinue »
DAVID GARRICK, Esq.
entertain a more humble opinion of the following little Production, than she who pre. fents it to you. It is a trifle which, she con. fesses, has but a very slender claim to your protection; but the confiders that will be an ornament to her Book, as your Friendship has been an honour to its Author.
Where merit is incontestible, and characters are decided by the concurring fuffrage of mankind, praise becomes almost impertinent. It is absurd to be industrious in proving truths so self-evident, that no one ever thought of controverting them.
I may be accused of advancing a startling proposition, when I declare that you are an enemy to the Muses; but if it be allowed that description and invention are the very foul of Poetry I shall be justified by the world
in general, who constantly behold you displaying talents which cannot be described, and exhibiting excellences which leave nothing to be imagined.
Whatever reason I may find to regret my having ventured these little Poems into the world, I shall at least have no common plea. fure in recollecting one circumstance attend. ing them, since they furnish me with an occa. fion of assuring you with what esteem and admiration
I am, SIR,
Your most obedient,
SIR ELDRED OF
LEGENDARY TAL E.
Sir Eldred was his name,
The rank of knighthood claim.
Where gliding Tay her stream sends forth,
To feed the neighbouring wood, The ancient glory of the North,
SiR ELDRED's castle stood.
The youth was rich as youth might be
In patrimonial dower ;
He did not think, as some have thought,
Whom honour never crown'd, The fame a father dearly bought,
Cou'd make the son renown'd.
He better thought, a noble fire,
Who gallant deeds had done, To deeds of hardihood shou'd fire
A brave and gallant fon.
The fairest ancestry on carth
Without desert is poor ;
Is but a.claim for more.
Şir ELDRED's heart was good and kine
Alive to Pity's call ;
He lor'd, and felt for all.
When merit raised the sufferer's name,
He shower'd his bounty then ; And those who could not prove that claim,
He succour'd still as men.
But sacred truth the Muse compels
His errors to impart ;
The fault of ELDRED's heart :
Tho' kind and gentle as the dove,
As free from guile and art, And mild, and soft as infant love
The feelings of his heart.
Yet if the paffions storm'd his soul,
By jealousy led on;
And bore his virtues down.