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When on his couch he sinks at length to rest,
But the day is spent; And stars are kindling in the firmament, To us how silent-though like ours perchance Busy and full of life and circumstance; Where some the paths of Wealth and Power pursue, Of Pleasure some, of Happiness a few; And, as the sun goes round-a sun not ours While from her lap another Nature showers Gifts of her own, some from the crowd retire, Think on themselves, within, without inquire; At distance dwell on all that passes there, All that their world reveals of good and fair; And, as they wander, picturing things, like me, Not as they are, but as they ought to be, Trace out the Journey through their little Day, And fondly dream an idle hour away.
Note 1, page 11, col. 2.
Our pathway leads but to a precipice.
See Bossuet, Sermon sur la Résurrection.
Note 2, page 11, col. 2.
We fly; no resting for the foot we find.
Note 3, page 11, col. 2.
Fancy can hardly forbear to conjecture with what temper Milton surveyed the silent progress of his work, and marked his reputation stealing its way in a kind of subterraneous current through fear and silence. I cannot but conceive him calm and confident, little disappointed, not at all dejected, relying on his own merit with steady consciousness, and waiting, without impatience, the vicissitudes of opinion, and the impartiality of a future generation.-JOHNSON.
After line 57, col. 2, in the MS.
O'er place and time we triumph; on we go,
Note 4, page 12, col. 1.
-like the stone That sheds awhile a lustre all its own.
See "Observations on a diamond that shines in the dark."-BOYLE's Works, i, 789.
Note 5, page 12, col. 1.
Schooled and trained up to Wisdom from his birth. Cicero, in his Essay De Senectute, has drawn his images from the better walks of life; and Shakspeare, in his Seven Ages, has done so too. But Shakspeare treats his subject satirically; Cicero as a Philosopher. In the venerable portrait of Cato we discover no traces of "the lean and slippered pantaloon."
Every object has a bright and a dark side; and I have endeavored to look at things as Cicero has done. By some however I may be thought to have followed too much my own dream of happiness; and in such a dream indeed I have often passed a solitary hour. It was castle-building once; now it is no longer so. But whoever would try to realize it, would not perhaps repent of his endeavor.
Note 6, page 12, col. 1.
The hour arrives, the moment wished and feared. A Persian Poet has left us a beautiful thought on this subject, which the reader, if he has not met with it, will be glad to know, and, if he has, to remember.
Thee on thy mother's knees, a new-born child,
Smiles may be thine, when all around thee weep.
"I have considered," says Solomon, "all the works that are under the sun; and behold, all is vanity and vexation of spirit." But who believes it, till Death tells
it us? It is Death alone that can suddenly make man to Sir William Jones.
The brow engraven with the Thoughts of Years. This is a law of Nature. Age was anciently synonymous with power; and we may always observe that the old are held in more or less honor as men are more or less virtuous. "Shame," says Homer, "bids the youth beware how he accosts the man of many years." "Thou shalt rise up before the hoary head, and honor the face of an old man."-Leviticus.
Xenophon has left us a delightful instance of con
Among us, says a philosophical historian, and wherever birth and possessions give rank and au-jugal affection. The king of Armenia not fulfilling his engagement, thority, the young and the profligate are seen continually above the old and the worthy: there Age can never Cyrus entered the country, and, having taken him find its due respect. But among many of the ancient and all his family prisoners, ordered them instantly nations it was otherwise; and they reaped the benefit before him. Armenian, said he, you are free; for you of it. "Rien ne maintient plus les mœurs qu'une are now sensible of your error. And what will you extrême subordination des jeunes gens envers les give me, if I restore your wife to you?-All that I am vieillards. Les uns et les autres seront contenus, ceux-able. What, if I restore your children?-All that I là par le respect qu'ils auront pour les vieillards, et am able. And you, Tigranes, said he, turning to the ceux-ci par le respect qu'ils auront pour eux-mêmes." son, What would you do, to save your wife from MONTESQUIEU. servitude? Now Tigranes was but lately married, and had a great love for his wife. Cyrus, he replied, Note 10, page 12, col. 2. to save her from servitude, I would willingly lay down my life.
Like Her most gentle, most unfortunate.
Before I went into Germany, I came to Brodegate in Leicestershire, to take my leave of that noble Lady Jane Grey, to whom I was exceeding much beholding. Her parents, the Duke and Duchess, with all the Household, Gentlemen and Gentlewomen, were hunting in the park. I found her in her chamber, reading Phædo Platonis in Greek, and that with as much delight as some Gentlemen would read a merry tale in Boccace. After salutation and duty done, with some other talk, I asked her, why she would lose such pastime in the park? Smiling, she answered me, “I wist, all their sport in the park is but a shadow to that pleasure that I find in Plato."-ROGER ASCHAM.
Let each have his own again, said Cyrus; and when he was departed, one spoke of his clemency; and another of his valor; and another of his beauty, and the graces of his person. Upon which, Tigranes asked his wife, if she thought him handsome. Really, said she, I did not look at him.-At whom then did you look ?—At him who said he would lay down his life for me.- -Cyropædia, 1. iii.
Who does not wish that Dante and Dryden could have known the value of the homage that was paid them, and foreseen the greatness of their young
Note 16, page 13, col. 2.
And feeling hearts-touch them but rightly-pour
Note 17, page 14, col. 2.
He goes, and Night comes as it never came!
Note 11, page 12, col. 2.
Dante in his old age was pointed out to Petrarch Many generations have passed away since our countrywomen saw the smoke of an enemy's camp. when a boy; and Dryden to Pope.
But the same passions are always at work every. where, and their effects are always nearly the same; though the circumstances that attend them are infinitely various.
Note 12, page 13, col. 1.
Scenes such as Milton sought, but sought in vain.
Note 18, page 15, col. 1.
That House with many a funeral-garland hung. A custom in some of our country-churches.
Note 19, page 15, col. 1.
Soon through the gadding vine, etc.
An English breakfast; which may well excite in others what in Rousseau continued through life, un goût vif pour les déjeunés. C'est le tems de la jour-it-State Trials, ii.
née où nous sommes les plus tranquilles, où nous causons le plus à notre aise.
The luxuries here mentioned, familiar to us as they now are, were almost unknown before the Revolution.
Note 20, page 15, col. 2.
Like Hampden struggling in his Country's cause. Zeuxis is said to have drawn his Helen from an assemblage of the most beautiful women; and many a writer of fiction, in forming a life to his mind, has recourse to the brightest moments in the lives of others.
I may be suspected of having done so here, and of having designed, as it were, from living models; but by making an allusion now and then to those who have really lived, I thought I should give Something of interest to the picture, as well as better illustrate my meaning.
Note 22, page 15, col. 2.
This very slight sketch of Civil Dissension is taken from our own annals; but, for an obvious reason, not from those of our own Age.
The persons here immediately alluded to lived more than a hundred years ago, in a reign which Blackstone has justly represented as wicked, sanguinary, and turbulent; but such times have always afforded the most signal instances of heroic courage and ardent affection.
Great reverses, like theirs, lay open the human heart. They occur indeed but seldom; yet all men are liable to them; all, when they occur to others, make them more or less their own; and, were we to describe our condition to an inhabitant of some other planet, could we omit what forms so striking a circumstance in human life?
Note 23, page 15, col. 2.
In the reign of William the Third, the law was altered. A prisoner, prosecuted for high treason, may now make his full defence by counsel.
Note 24, page 15, col. 2.
Like that sweet Saint who sate by Russel's side
Mr. Attorney-General. Yes, a Servant.
Note 25, page 15, col. 2.
Her glory now, as ever her delight.
Note 21, page 15, col. 2.
Traitor's gate, the water-gate in the Tower of memorate the event.
Epaminondas, after his victory at Leuctra, rejoiced most of all at the pleasure which it would give his father and mother; and who would not have envied them their feelings?
Cornelia was called at Rome the Mother-in-law of Scipio. "When," said she to her sons, "shall I be called the mother of the Gracchi?"
Note 26, page 16, col. 1.
Lo, on his back a Son brings in his Sire.
An act of filial piety represented on the coins of Catana, a Greek city, some remains of which are still to be seen at the foot of mount Etna. The story is told of two brothers, who in this manner saved both their parents. The place from which they escaped was long called the field of the pious; and public games were annually held there to com
Note 27, page 16, col. 2.
Oh thou, all-eloquent, whose mighty mind.
Cicero. It is remarkable that, among the comforts of Old Age, he has not mentioned those arising from the society of women and children. Perhaps the husband of Terentia and "the father of Marcus felt something on the subject, of which he was willing to spare himself the recollection."
BEFORE I conclude, I would say something in favor of the old-fashioned triplet, which I have here ventured to use so often. Dryden seems to have delighted in it, and in many of his most admired poems has used it much oftener than I have done, as for instance in the Hind and Panther,' and in Theodore and Honoria, where he introduces it three, four, and even five times in succession.
If I have erred anywhere in the structure of my verse from a desire to follow yet earlier and higher examples, I rely on the forgiveness of those in whose ear the music of our old versification is still sounding.
1 Pope used to mention this poem as the most correct specimen of Dryden's versification. It was indeed written when he had completely formed his manner, and may be supposed to
Lord Russel. May I have somebody to write, to exhibit, negligence excepted, his deliberate and ultimate scheme sist my memory?
An Epistle to a Friend.
et pauper agelle,
Me tibi, et hos unâ mecum, et quos semper amavi,
Point out the green lane rough with fern and flowers, The shelter'd gate that opens to my field, EVERY reader turns with pleasure to those pas- And the white front through mingling elms reveal'd sages of Horace, and Pope, and Boileau, which de- In vain, alas, a village-friend invites scribe how they lived and where they dwelt; and To simple comforts, and domestic rites, which, being interspersed among their satirical writ- When the gay months of Carnival resume ings, derive a secret and irresistible grace from the Their annual round of glitter and perfume; contrast, and are admirable examples of what in When London hails thee to its splendid mart, Painting is termed repose. Its hives of sweets, and cabinets of art; And, lo, majestic as thy manly song, Flows the full tide of human life along.
We have admittance to Horace at all hours. We enjoy the company and conversation at his table; and his suppers, like Plato's, "non solum in præsentia, sed etiam postero die jucundæ sunt." But when we look round as we sit there, we find ourselves in a Sabine farm, and not in a Roman villa. His windows have every charm of prospect; but his furniture might have descended from Cincinnatus; and gems, and pictures, and old marbles, are mentioned by him more than once with a seeming indifference.
Still must my partial pencil love to dwell
His English Imitator thought and felt, perhaps, more Oft o'er the mead, at pleasing distance, pass (1) correctly on the subject; and embellished his garden Browsing the hedge by fits the pannier'd ass; and grotto with great industry and success. But to The idling shepherd-boy, with rude delight, these alone he solicits our notice. On the ornaments Whistling his dog to mark the pebble's flight; of his house he is silent; and he appears to have re- And in her kerchief blue the cottage-maid, served all the minuter touches of his pencil for the With brimming pitcher from the shadowy glade. library, the chapel, and the banqueting-room of Far to the south a mountain-vale retires, Timon. "Le savoir de notre siècle," says Rousseau, Rich in its groves, and glens, and village-spires: "tend beaucoup plus à détruire qu'à édifier. On cen- Its upland-lawns, and cliffs with foliage hung, sure d'un ton de maitre; pour proposer, il en faut Its wizard-stream, nor nameless nor unsung: prendre un autre." And through the various year, the various day, (2) What scenes of glory burst, and melt away!
When April-verdure springs in Grosvenor-square, And the furr'd Beauty comes to winter there,
It is the design of this Epistle to illustrate the virtue of True Taste; and to show how little she requires to secure, not only the comforts, but even the elegancies of life. True Taste is an excellent Economist. She She bids old Nature mar the plan no more; confines her choice to few objects, and delights in Yet still the seasons circle as before. producing great effects by small means: while False Ah, still as soon the young Aurora plays, Taste is for ever sighing after the new and the rare; Though moons and flambeaux trail their broadest blaze, and reminds us, in her works, of the Scholar of As soon the sky-lark pours his matin-song, Apelles, who, not being able to paint his Helen Though evening lingers at the mask so long. beautiful, determined to make her fine.
There let her strike with momentary ray,
And lisp of fashions with unmeaning stare.
Here no state-chambers in long line unfold,
An invitation-The approach to a Villa described-Its situation-Its few apartments-furnished with casts from the Antique, etc. The dining-room-The library-A cold-bath-A winter-walk-A summer-walk-The invitation renewed-Conclusion.
WHEN, with a Reaumur's skill, thy curious mind
Small change of scene, small space his home re- When from his classic dreams the student steals, '
Who leads a life of satisfied desires.
Amid the buzz of crowds, the whirl of wheels,
What though no marble breathes, no canvas glows,
Soon as the morning-dream my pillow flies,
But could thine erring friend so long forget
Selected shelves shall claim thy studious hours;
2 Postea verò quàm Tyrannio mihi libros disposuit, mens addita videtur meis ædibus.-Cic.
O come, and, rich in intellectual wealth,
No tuneful echoes, ambush'd at my gate,
When Christmas revels in a world of snow,
To range the murmuring market-place, and view
When Spring bursts forth in blossoms through the
Nor boast, O Choisy! seat of soft delight,
1 Ingenium, sibi quod vacuas desumsit Athenas,
2 Fallacem circum, vespertinumque pererro
3 Tantôt un livre en main, errant dans les prairies-