« PreviousContinue »
From the Rev. Thomas Warton's Addrefs to the prefent Queen on her Marriage.
LO! this the land, whence MILTON'S Muse of fire High foar'd to steal from Heaven a Seraph's lyre; And told the golden ties of wedded love
In facred Eden's amarantine grove.
From the description of night in the fame Author's
Pleafures of Melancholy.
NOR then let dreams, of wanton folly born,
My fenfes lead through flowery paths of joy;
But let the facred Genius of the night
Such mystick vifions fend, as Spenser faw,
When through bewildering Fancy's magick maze,
To the fell house of Bufyrane, he led
The unfhaken Britomart; or MILTON knew,
When in abftracted thought he first conceiv'd
All Heaven in tumult, and the Seraphim
Came towering, arm'd in adamant and gold.
APART, and on a facred hill retir'd,
Beyond all mortal inspiration fir'd,
The mighty MILTON fits:-An hoft around
Of liftening Angels guard the holy ground;
Amaz'd they fee a human form afpire
To grafp with daring hand a Seraph's lyre,
Inly irradiate with celeftial beams,
Attempt those high, thofe foul-fubduing themes,
(Which humbler denizens of Heaven decline,)
And celebrate, with fanctity divine,
The starry field from warring Angels won,
And God triumphant in his Victor Son.
Nor lefs the wonder, and the fweet delight,
His milder fcenes and fofter notes excite,
When, at his bidding, Eden's blooming grove
Breathes the rich fweets of Innocence and Love.
With fuch pure joy as our Forefather knew
When Raphael, heavenly guest, first met his view,
And our glad Sire, within his blifsful bower,
Drank the pure converse of the ætherial Power,
Round the bleft Bard his raptur'd audience throng,
And feel their fouls imparadis'd in song.
HAYLEY'S Effay on Epick Poetry, Epift. iii.
AGES elaps'd ere Homer's lamp appear'd,
And ages ere the Mantuan fwan was heard:
To carry Nature lengths unknown before,
To give a MILTON birth, ask'd ages more.
Thus Genius rofe and fet at order'd times,
And fhot a day-fpring into diftant climes,
Ennobling every region that he chofe;
He funk in Greece, in Italy he rose;
And, tedious years of Gothick darkness pafs'd,
Emerg'd all fplendour in our ifle at last.
Thus lovely halcyons dive into the main,
Then thow far off their fhining plumes again.
From the fame Author's Tafk, B. iii.
In the pure fountain of eternal love,
Has eyes indeed; and, viewing all she sees
As meant to indicate a God to man,
Gives Him his praife, and forfeits not her own.
Learning has borne fuch fruit in other days
On all her branches: Piety has found
Friends in the friends of fcience, and true prayer
Has flow'd from lips wet with Cafialian dews.
Such was thy wifdom, Newton, childlike fage!
Sagacious reader of the works of God,
And in his word fagacious. Such too thine,
MILTON, whofe genius had angelick wings,
And fed on manna. And fuch thine, in whom
Our British Themis gloried with juft caufe,
Immortal Hale! for deep difcernment prais'd,
And found integrity, not more than fam'd
For fanctity of manners undefil'd.
AND THOU, with age opprefs'd, befet with wrongs, And "fallen on evil days and evil tongues,
In darkness and with dangers compafs'd round," What stars of joy thy night of anguith crown'd? What breath of vernal airs, or found of rill, Or haunt by Siloa's brook, or Sion's hill, Or light of Cherubim, the empyreal throne, The effulgent car, and inexpreffive One? Alas, not thine the foretafte of thy praife; A dull oblivion wrapt thy mighty lays.
A while thy glory funk, in dread repofe;
Then, with fresh vigour, like a giant rose,
And ftrode fublime, and pafs'd, with generous rage, The feeble minions of a puny age.
From the Poetical Works of William
Prefton, Efq. Dublin, 1793.
SEE! where the BRITISH HOMER leads
The Epick choir of modern days;
Blind as the Grecian bard, he speeds
To realms unknown to Pagan lays:
He fings no mortal war:-his strains
Defcribe no hero's amorous pains;
He chaunts the birth-day of the world,
The conflict of Angelick Powers,
The joys of Eden's peaceful bowers,
When fled the Infernal Hoft, to thundering Chaos hurl'd.
Yet, as this deathlefs fong he breath'd,
He bath'd it with Affliction's tear;
And to Pofterity bequeath'd
The cherish'd hope to Nature dear. No grateful praise his labours cheer'd, No beam beneficent appear'd
To penetrate the chilling gloom ;-— Ah! what avails that Britain now
With fculptur'd laurel deck his brow,
And hangs the votive verfe on his unconfcious tomb! From Poems and Plays by Mrs. Weft, 1799.