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True Witney (a) broad-cloth, with its shag un.
shorn, Unpierced is in the lasting tempest worn : Be this the horseman's fence, for who would wear Amid the town the spoils of Russia's bear ? Within the roquelaure's clasp thy hands are pent, Hands, that, stretch'd forth, invading harms pre
vent. Let the loop'd bavaroy the fop embrace, Or his deep cloak bespatter'd o'er with lace. That garment best the winter's rage defends, Whose ample form without one plait depends ; By various names (6) in various counties known, Yet held in all the true surtout alone; Be thine of kersey firm, though small the cost, Then brave unwet the rain, unchill’d the frost.
If the strong cane support thy walking hand, Chairmen no longer shall the wall command ; Even sturdy carmen shall thy nod obey, And rattling coaches stop to make thee way : This shall direct thy cautious tread aright, Though not one glaring lamp enliven night. Let beaux their canes, with amber tipt, produce ; Be theirs for empty show, but thine for use. In gilded chariots while they loll at ease, And lazily ensure a life's disease ; While softer chairs the tawdry load convey To court, to White's(c), assemblies, or the play ; Rosy-complexion’d Health thy steps attends, And exercise thy lasting youth defends.
(a) A town in Oxfordshire.
Imprudent men Heaven's choicest gifts profane :
SWEET woman is like the fair flower in its lustre,
Which in the garden enamels the ground ; Near it the bees, in play, flutter and cluster,
And gaudy butterflies frolic around;
But when once pluck’d, 'tis no longer alluring,
To Covent-Garden 'tis sent (as yet sweet), There fades, and shrinks, and grows past all en
during, Rots, stinks, and dies, and is trod under feet.
BORN 1714-DIED 1763.
SHENSTONE was born at the place his fine taste has since
made so celebrated, the Leasowes in Hales-Owen. His first instructress was an old dame, the prototype of his village schoolmistress. Shenstone discovered an early taste for reading, and while at Oxford published a small poetical miscellany. His father died while he was still very young; and on quitting college, and coming to his small patrimony, instead of engaging in any active profession, he led a sauntering life of elegant poetic indolence, going about from one fashionable watering-place to another, composing elegies and celebrating Phillis, whom he liked better to praise than marry; as, Johnson says, he might have obtained the lady if he had chosen. In this manner life glided away, and satiety and ennui crept on the solitary poetical dreamer. Shenstone's ruling passion was the embellishment of his estate, to which, by involv. ing his fortune, he sacrificed his domestic comfort and ease of mind. It is not a little curious to see how the rural poetical bachelor is estimated by another of the same species, whose life was chiefly spent in collegesthe poet Gray. “ Poor man!” says Gray, “ he was al. ways wishing for money, for fame, and other distinctions; and his whole philosophy consisted in living against his will in retirement, and in a place which his taste had adorned, but which he only enjoyed when people of note came to commend it: his correspondence is about nothing else but this place and his own writings, with two or three neighbouring clergymen, who wrote
verses too." His lyrics are generally pleasing ; his ballad of Jemmy Daw
son is an agreeable imitation of the old ballad of Gilderoy, and some of his strains even reach true natural pathos. Every young reader has been delighted with the pastoral ballad. The Schoolmistress is a beautiful unique.
IN IMITATION OF SPENSER.
Au me! full sorely is my heart forlorn,
Such as I oft have chaunced to espy,
In every village mark'd with little spire,
And oft-times, on vagaries idly bent,
And all in sight doth rise a birchen tree,
And as they look'd they found their horror
grew, And shaped it into rods, and tingled at the view.
So have I seen (who has not may conceive),
Ne superstition clog his dance of joy, Ne vision empty, vain, his native bliss destroy.
Near to this dome is found a patch so green,
found, And eyes her fairy throng, and turns her wheel
Her cap, far whiter than the driven snow, Emblem right meet of decency does yield : Her apron dyed in grain, as blue, I trowe, As is the hare-bell that adorns the field : And in her hand, for sceptre, she does wield