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Correctly great, she melts each flinty heart
Ridiculous as this opinion is, it should be remembered that Voltaire and other French critics fell into the same error. The cold marble of Cato' was preferred by them to the living and breathing creations of the myriadminded' magician.
'The Chase,' his great work, Somerville produced in mature age, 'when his ear,' in the language of Johnson, was improved to the approbation of blank verse.' To this poem a certain degree of praise must be awarded. It is allowed, by sportsmen, to exhibit the subject in a very intelligent manner, and to create all the interest that the theme is capable of The author was, however, unfortunate in choosing blank verse as his measure; for every intelligent reader must be satisfied that rhyme would have been much more appropriate for so light and airy a subject. The following is an animated sketch of a morning in Autumn :
Hail, gentle Dawn! mild, blushing goddess, hail!
The toilet placed shall urge thee to perform
The friendship of Addison shed a reflected light on some of his contemporaries, and elevated them, in their own day, to very considerable importance. Tickell, perhaps, shared these advantages to a greater extent than any other.
THOMAS TICKELL was the son of Reverend Richard Tickell, and was born at Bridekirk, Cumberland, in 1686. In 1701, he became a member of Queen's College, Oxford; and in 1708, he was made master of arts, and two years after chosen to a fellowship, to retain which, as he did not enter into holy orders, he obtained a dispensation from the crown. When Addison went to Ireland as secretary, Tickell accompanied him, and was there employed in public business. After his return to London he published a translation of the first book of Homer's Iliad,' which Addison, and Tickell's other friends pronounced to be better than the translation of Pope, which immediately followed. This circumstance led to a breach of friendship between Addison and Pope, which was never afterwards healed. Addison continued to patronize Tickell, made him his under secretary of state, and left him the charge of publishing his works. In 1725, Tickell was made secretary to the Lords Justices of Ireland, a place of great honor and trust, and which he continued to hold till his death, which occurred at Bath, on the twenty-third of April, 1740.
As a poet, Tickell possessed great elegance, and tenderness, but he was deficient in variety and force. His Elegy on the death of Addison is considered, by Johnson, one of the most elegant and sublime funeral poems in the language. Steele, however, regarded it as merely prose in rhyme.' In our judgment his ballad of Colin and Lucy is worth all his other works together. It possesses the simplicity and pathos of the elder lyrics, without their too frequent coarseness and abrupt transitions. It is with great pleasure, therefore, that we here give it a place :—
COLIN AND LUCY.
Of Leinster, famed for maidens fair
Bright Lucy was the grace,
Nor ne'er did Liffy's limpid stream
Till luckless love and pining care
Her coral lips and damask cheeks,
Oh! have you seen a lily pale
So drooped the slow-consuming maid,
By Lucy warned, of flattering swains
Of vengeance due to broken vows,
Three times all in the dead of night
Too well the love-lorn maiden knew
'I hear a voice you can not hear,
By a false heart and broken vows
Was I to blame because his bride
Ah Colin! give not her thy vows,
Nor thou, fond maid! receive his kiss,
To-morrow in the church to wed,
Impatient both prepare;
But know, fond maid! and know, false man! That Lucy will be there.
Then bear my corse, my comrades! bear,
This bridegroom blithe to meet;
He in his wedding trim so gay,
I in my winding sheet.'
She spoke; she died. Her corpse was borne The bridegroom blithe to meet;
He in his wedding trim so gay,
She in her winding sheet.
Then what were perjured Colin's thoughts?
The bridesmen flocked round Lucy dead,
Confusion, shame, remorse, despair,
The damps of death bedewed his brow;
From the vain bride, ah! bride no more!
When stretched before her rival's corpse
Then to his Lucy's new-made grave
Oft at this grave the constant hind
But, swain foresworn! whoe'er thou art,
Remember Colin's dreadful fate,
And fear to meet him there.
From the 'Elegy' we extract the following lines, which we consider the best it contains:
Oft let me range the gloomy aisles alone,
In what new region to the just assigned,
That awful form, which, so the Heavens decree,
Or roused by Fancy, meets my waking eyes.
If business calls, or crowded courts invite,
The unblemished statesman seems to strike my sight;
If in the stage I seek to soothe my care,
I meet his soul, which breathes in Cato there;
If pensive to the rural shades I rove,
'T was there of just and good he reasoned strong,
There taught us how to live, and (oh! too high
Thou hill! whose brow the antique structures grace,