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There may I, master of a little flock,
Feed my poor lambs, and often change their fare;
Whose love and look shall speak their father plain;
The beech shall yield a cool safe canopy,
While down I sit, and chant to th' echoing wood; Oh, singing might I live, and singing die ! So by fair Thames, or silver Medway's flood,
The dying swan, when years her temples pierce,
In music's strains breathes out her life and verse; And chanting her own dirge rides on her wat'ry hearse.
Invoking then no patron but the great Prince of
An isle I fain would sing, an island fair;
Which we by leaving find, by seeking lost;
A foreign home, a strange, though native.coast; Most obvious to all, yet most unknown to most,
Yet this fair isle, scited so nearly near,
That from our sides nor place nor time may sever, Though to yourselves, yourselves are not more dear,
Yet with strange carelessness you travel never:
Then, while yourselves, and native home forgetting,
sweating, You never find yourselves , so lose ye more by getting.
Having mentioned the general plan of the Poem, and selected much for future extracts, we must decline entering into an analysis of the scientific portion of the work; but we cannot forbear to remark that when we consider the early age at which he wrote, and the imperfect state of medical knowledge, as well as of general science, at that day, the information he has displayed does him great credit, and proves him to have been no unworthy son of bis alma mater, and that had he invoked Apollo in both capacities, and attached himself to the art of healing, he would have excelled ir physic as in song.
After describing the “new-born earth,” and the formation of man, in a style much more ingenious and metaphysical than entertaining to modern readers, be concludes his first canto in the true spirit of devotional feeling for the great act of redemption, and with another affectionate reference to his brother's work, O thou deep well of life, wide stream of love;
More deep, more wide, than widest, deepest seas, Who dying, death to endless death did 'st prove, To work this wilful rebel island's ease;
Thy love no time began, no time decays;
But still increaseth with decreasing days; Where then may we begin, where may we end thy
praise? My callow wing that newly left the nest,
How can it make so high a towering flight? A depth without a depth ! in humble breast With praises I admire so wond'rous height :
But thou, my sister muse * may’st well go higher, • See a book called “ Christ's Victory and Triumph.”
.... And end thy flight; ne'er may thy pinions tire: Thereto may he his grace, and gentle heat inspire.
Our panting flocks retire into the shade.
The shepherds having sheltered their charge from the heat of noon, we find at the opening of the second canto,
-Thirsil on a gentle rising hill
Sat down, and circled with a lovely crew
The anatomical view of the human frame, is continued through this, and the four succeeding cantos, and although we do not expect the reader would find much entertainment from an entire perusal of these, there are many passages of peculiar character, as well for close painting of rural scenery and pastoral habits, (the identity of the shepherd-minstrel being all along preserved,) as for correct and sweetly flowing versification, for which indeed these brother bards remarkably distinguished. The opening and closing stanzas of each canto are of this description, and there are also interspersed throughout admirable siinilies, sentiments, metaphors, and allusions, many of which it would be very delightful to extract. Perhaps, however, we shall do our author injustice not to admit a specimen of the dexterity with which he manages, for the most part, his equally delicate and intricate subject, He divides his “Isle of Man” into three parts, or
regiments," as in the following stanzas, from the second canto, to which we will add those that conclude: the fifth ; the first of these demonstrating the nature and offices of the skin; and the latter giving due
praise and honor to all the powers and faculties of that wondrous and important organ of good and ill-the tongue. In this conclusion of the first part of his subject, he appears rejoiced to escape, (as the reader will be,) as it were, from the theatre of the anatomist, to enjoy the recollection of his earlier studies, and to have an opportunity of culling again some of the choicest flowers that delighted his studious rambles in the classic garden of Eton. The few and short notes annexed to the descriptive stanzas, may perhaps excite a smile from our professional readers, but these will prove that our author wrote only according to matter of fact, as it was held in his days, when medical science had not been enlightened by the result of those enquiries which that great honour to our county, DR, WILLIAM HARVEY, soon after this period commenced in the Circulation of the Blood ; a result of far greater advantage to mankind than the discovery of the new world. The whole Isle, parted in three regiments, *
By three metropolis's jointly sway'd; Ordering in peace and war their governments, , With loving concord, and with mutual aid :
The lowest has the worst but largest see;
The middle less of greater dignity; The highest least, but holds the greatest sov'reignty. Deep in a vale doth that first province lie,
With many a city grac'd, and fairly town'd; And for a fence from foreign enmity,
With five strong builded walls encompass'd round;t
* The whole body may be parted into three regions, the lowest, or Belly; the middle, or Breast; the highest, or Head; in the lowest the Liver is sovereign, whose regiment is the widest, but meanest; in the middle the Heart reigns, most necessary; the Brain obtains the highest place, and is, as the least in compass, so the highest in dignity.
+ The parts of the lower region are either the contained, or the containing ; the containing either common or proper; the common are the skin, the fleshy panicle, 'and the fat; the proper are the muscles, or the inner rim of the belly.
Which my rude pencil will in limning stain :
A work more curious than, which prets feign Neptune and Phæbus built, and pulled down again.
The first of these is that round spreading fence,
Which like a sea girts th’ Isle in every part;
Of middle temper, outwardest of all,
befall; The same a fence and spy,—a watchman and a wall. His native beauty is a lilly white; †
Which still some other coloured stream infecteth,
If white, it argues wit; if purple, fire;
If black, a heavy cheer, and fix'd desire ; Youthful and blithe, if suited in a rosy tire.
It cover'd stands with silken flourishing, I
Which, as it oft decays, returns again, The others' sense and beauty perfecting;
* The skin is a membrane of all the rest, the most large and thick, formed of a mixture of the most nourishing fluids of the body;--the covering and ornament of parts that are under it; the temper moderate, the proper organ of outward tonching (say physicians.)
† The native colour of the skin is white, but (as Hippocrates,) changed into the same colour which is brought by the bumour predominant: when melancholy abounds, it is swarthy; when phlegm, it is white and pale ; when choler reigns, it is red and fiery; but in the sanguine, of a rosy colour.
# The skin is covered with the cuticle, or flourishing of the skin; it is the nreans of touching, withont which we feel, but with pain : it polislieth the skin, which many times is changed, and, (as it is with snakes,) put off, and a new and more amiable brought in,