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Formosæ, cultæ, ingeniosæ, piæ ;
secundis, SAMUELIS JOHNSON,
Hoc lapide contexit.
A. D. MDCCLIII.
IN WATFORD CHURCH.
In the vault below are deposited the remains of
who, in the fifty-third year of her age,
surrounded with many worldly blessings, heard, with fortitude and composure truly great, the horrible malady, which had, for some time, begun to
afflict her, pronounced incurable ;
and for more than three years, endured with patience, and concealed with decency,
the daily tortures of gradual death; continued to divide the hours not allotted to devotion, between the cares of her family, and the converse of
and acknowledged the offices of affection ; and, while she endeavoured to alleviate by cheerfulness
her husband's sufferings and sorrows, increased them by her gratitude for his care,
and her solicitude for his quiet.
To the testimony of these virtues, more highly honoured, as more familiarly known,
this monument is erected by
b She died in October, 1771.
IN STRETHAM CHURCH.
JUXTA sepulta est HESTERA MARIA, Thomæ Cotton de Combermere, baronetti Cestriensis,
Forma felix, felix ingenio;
Linguis artibusque ita exculta,
Ut loquenti nunquam deessent
Modum servandi adeo perita,
Multis illi multos annos precantibus
e terris, meliora sperans, emigravit.
IN WESTMINSTER ABBEY..
Poetæ, Physici, Historici,
Elfiniæ, in Hibernia, natus MDCCXXIX.
Eblanæ literis institutus :
IN STRETHAM CHURCH.
Hic conditur quod reliquum est
Ut vitam illi longiorem multi optarent;
Ut quam brevem esset habiturus præscire videretur ;
Simplex, apertus, sibique semper similis,
Domi, inter mille mercaturæ negotia,
€ This is the epitaph, that drew from Gibbon, sir J. Reynolds, Sheridan, Joseph Warton, &c. the celebrated Round Robin, composed by Burke, intreating Jolinson to write an English epitaph on an English author. His reply was, in the genuine spirit of an old scholar, “ he would never consent to disgrace the walls of Westminster abbey with an English inscription.” One of his arguments, in favour of a common learned language, was ludicrously cogent: “Consider, sir, how you should feel, were you to find, at Rotterdam, an epitaph, upon Erasmus, in Dutch !" Boswell, iii. He would, however, undoubtedly have written a better epitaph in English, than in Latin. His compositions in that language are not of first rate excellence, either in prose or verse. The epitaph, in Stretham church, on Mr. Thrale, abounds with inaccuracies; and those who are fond of detecting little blunders in great men, may be amply gratified in the perusal of a review of Thrale's epitaph in the Classical Journal, xii. 6. His Greek epitaph on Goldsmith, is not remarkable in itself, but we will subjoin it, in this place, as a literary curiosity.
Τον τάφον εισoράας τον ΘΛΙΒΑΡΟΙΟ, κονίην
'Αφρoσι μή σεμνήν, Ξείνε, πόδεσσι πάτει.
Consiliis, auctoritate, muneribus, adfuit.
Tam facili fuit morum suavitate
Tam felici sermonis libertate,
Natus 1724. Obijt 1781.
Æternitatem cogita !
Ρ Ο Ε Μ Α Τ Α.
Ex alieno ingenio poeta, ex suo tantum versificator.
Immatura calens rapitur per secula vates
• This translation has been severely criticised by Dr. Warton, in his edition of Pope, vol. i. p. 105, 8vo. 1797. It certainly contains some expressions that are not classical. Let it be remembered, however, that it was a college exercise, performed with great rapidity, and was, at first, praised, beyond all suspicion of defect.—This translation was first published in a Miscellany of Poems by several hands. Published by J. Husbands, A. M. fellow of Pembroke college, Oxon. 8vo. Oxford, 1731. Of Johnson's production, Mr. Husbands says, in his preface, “ The translation of Mr. Pope's Messiah was delivered to his tutor as a college exercise, by Mr. Johnson, a commoner of Pembroke college in Oxford, and 'tis hoped will be no discredit to the excellent original.” Mr. Husbands died in the following year.