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Addrefs to Great Britain.
Creative fancy, and infpection keen
Through the deep windings of the human heart,
Is not wild Shakspeare thine and Nature's boaft?
Is not each great, each amiable, Mufe
Of claffick ages in thy MILTON met?
A genius, univerfal as his theme;
Aftonishing as Chaos; as the bloom
Of blowing Eden fair; as Heaven fublime!
SAY, Goddefs, can the feftal board, young Olympia's form ador'd;
Say, can the pomp of promis'd fame
Relume thy faint, thy dying, flame?
Or have melodious airs the power
To give one free poetick hour?
Or, from amid the Elysian train,
The foul of MILTON fhall I gain,
To win thee back with fome celeftial ftrain?
O powerful strain! O facred foul!
His numbers every fenfe controul:
And now again my bofom burns;
The Mufe, the Mufe herself, returns!
OUR ftedfaft bard, to his own genius true,
Still bade his Mufe, "fit audience find, though few."
Scorning the judgement of a trifling age,
To choicer spirits he bequeath'd his page.
He too was fcorn'd; and, to Britannia's fhame,
She fcarce for half an age knew MILTON's name.
But now, his fame by every trumpet blown,
We on his deathlefs trophies raise our own.
Nor art nor nature did his genius bound;
Heaven, Hell, Earth, Chaos, he furvey'd around;
All things his eye, through wit's bright empire thrown,
Beheld; and made, what it beheld, his own.
Such MILTON was: 'Tis ours to bring him forth;
And yours to vindicate neglected worth.
Such heaven-taught numbers fhould be more than read,
More wide the manna through the nation spread.
Like fome blefs'd fpirit he to-night defcends,
Mankind he vifits, and their steps befriends;
Through mazy errour's dark perplexing wood,
Points out the path of true and real good;
Warns erring youth, and guards the fpotlefs maid
From fpell of magick vice, by reafon's aid.-
Dr. DALTON'S Prologue to Comus, 1735.
YE patriot crowds, who burn for England's fame, Ye nymphs, whose bosoms beat at MILTON's name, Whofe generous zeal, unbought by flattering rhymes, Shames the mean penfions of Auguftan times; Immortal patrons of fucceeding days, Attend this prelude of perpetual praife! Let Wit, condemn'd the feeble war to wage With clofe malevolence, or publick rage;
Let Study, worn with virtue's fruitless lore,
Behold this Theatre, and grieve no more.
This night, distinguish'd by your fimiles, shall tell,
That never Britain can in vain excell;
The flighted arts futurity fhall truft,
And rifing ages hasten to be just.
At length our mighty bard's victorious lays
Fill the loud voice of univerfal praise;
And baffled Spite, with hopeless anguifh dumb,
Yields to renown the centuries to come;
With ardent hafte each candidate of fame,
Ambitious, catches at his towering name:
He fees, and pitying fees, vain wealth bestow
Those pageant honours which he fcorn'd below,
While crowds aloft the laureat buft behold,
Or trace his form on circulating gold.
Unknown,-unheeded, long his offspring lay,
And want hung threatening o'er her flow decay.
What though the fhine with no Miltonian fire,
No favouring Muse her morning dreams infpire;
Yet fofter claims the melting heart engage,
Her youth laborious, and her blameless age;
Hers the mild merits of domeftick life,
The patient fufferer, and the faithful wife.
Thus grac'd with humble virtue's native charms,
Her grandfire leaves her in Britannia's arms;
Secure with peace, with competence, to dwell,
While tutelary nations guard her cell.
Yours is the charge, ye fair, ye wife, ye brave!
"Tis yours to crown defert-beyond the grave.
Dr. JOHNSON's Prologue to the Mask of Comus,
acted at Drury-Lane Theatre, April 5, 1750,
for the Benefit of Milton's grand-daughter.
NOR fecond HE that rode fublime Upon the feraph-wings of ecftafy;
The fecrets of the abyss to spy,
He pafs'd the flaming bounds of place and time:
The living throne, the fapphire blaze,
Where Angels tremble while they gaze,
He faw; but, blafted with excess of light,
in endless night.
GRAY'S Progrefs of Poefy.
Ode on the Poetical Character.
HIGH on fome cliff, to Heaven up-pil'd,
Of rude accefs, of profpect wild,
Where tangled round the jealous steep
Strange fhades o'erbrow the vallies deep,
And holy Genii guard the rock,
Its glooms embrown, its fprings unlock,
While on its rich ambitious head
An Eden, like HIS OWN, lies fpread;
I view that oak the fancied glades among,
By which as MILTON lay, his evening ear,
From many a cloud that dropp'd ethereal dew,
Nigh fpher'd in Heaven, its native strains could hear,
On which that ancient trump he reach'd was hung
Thither oft his glory greeting,
From Waller's myrtle fhades retreating,
With many a vow from Hope's afpiring tongue
My trembling feet his guiding fteps pursue;
In vain :-Such blifs to one alone
Of all the fons of Soul was known;
And Heaven and Fancy, kindred Powers, Have now o'erturn'd the infpiring bowers, Or curtain'd clofe fuch fcene from every future view,
RISE, hallow'd MILTON! rife, and fay,
How, at thy gloomy close of day;
How, when "deprefs'd by age, befet with wrongs;"
When "fallen on evil days and evil tongues ;"
When Darkness, brooding on thy fight,
Exil'd the fov'reign lamp of light:
Say, what could then one cheering hope diffuse?
What friends were thine, fave Memory and the Muse?
Hence the rich fpoils, thy ftudious youth
Caught from the ftores of ancient Truth: Hence all thy bufy eye could pleas'd explore, When Rapture led thee to the Latian shore; Each scene, that Tiber's bank fupplied; Each grace, that play'd on Arno's fide; The tepid gales, through Tuscan glades that fly; The blue ferene, that fpreads Hefperia's fky; Were still thine own: Thy ample mind Each charm receiv'd, retain'd, combin'd. And thence "the nightly Vifitant," that came To touch thy bofom with her facred flame, Recall'd the long-loft beams of grace; That whilom fhot from Nature's face, When God, in Eden, o'er her youthful breast Spread with his own right hand Perfection's gorgeous