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A little cupola, more neat than solemn,
column : The time must come, when both alike decay'd,
The chieftain's trophy, and the poet's volume, Will sink where lie the songs and wars of earth, Before Pelides' death, or Homer's birth.
With human blood that column was cemented,
With human filth that column is defiled, As if the peasant's coarse contempt were vented
To show his loathing of the spot he soild:(3) Thus is the trophy used, and thus lamented
Should ever be those blood-hounds, from whose wild Instinct of
gore and glory earth has known Those sufferings Dante saw in hell alone.(4)
(1) [MS. –“ Protects his tomb, but greater care is paid.”]
(2) [Dante was buried (“ in sacra minorum æde") at Ravenna, in a handsome tomb, which was erected by his protector, Guido da Polenta, restored by Bernardo Bembo in 1483, again restored by Cardinal Corsi, in 1692, and replaced by a more magnificent sepulchre in 1780, at the expense of the Cardinal Luigi Valent Gonzaga. The Florentines having in vain and frequently attempted to recover his body, crowned his image in a church, and his picture is still one of the idols of their cathedral. HOBHOUSE.] (3) [MS. - “ With human ordure is it now defiled,
As if the peasant's scorn this mode invented
To show his loathing of the thing he soil'd.”] (4) [MS. — “ Those sufferings once reserved for Hell alone." VOL. XVI.
Yet there will still be bards: though fame is smoke,
Its fumes are frankincense to human thought; And the unquiet feelings, which first woke
Song in the world will seek what then they sought;(') As on the beach the waves at last are broke,
Thus to their extreme verge the passions brought Dash into poetry,(?) which is but passion, Or at least was so ere it grew a fashion.
At once adventurous and contemplative,
Acquire the deep and bitter power to give(3) Their images again as in a glass,
And in such colours that they seem to live; You may do right forbidding them to show 'em, But spoil (I think) a very pretty poem.
CVIII. Oh! ye,
who make the fortunes of all books ! Benign Ceruleans of the second sex! Who advertise new poems by your looks,
Your “ imprimatur” will ye not annex ?
(1) [MS. – “ Its fumes are frankincense; and were there nought
Even of this vapour, still the chilling yoke
Of silence would not long be borne by Thought.”] (2) [“ The Bride of Abydos” was written in four nights, to distract my dreams from ... Were it not thus, it had never been composed; and had I not done something at that time, I must have gone mad, by eating my own heart-bitter diet!" - B. Diary, 1813.] (3) (MS. "I have drunk deep of passions as they pass,
And dearly bought the bitter power to give."]
What! must I go to the oblivious cooks ? (')
Those Cornish plunderers of Parnassian wrecks? Ah! must I then the only minstrel be, Proscribed from tasting your Castalian tea!()
CIX. What! can I prove
lion” then no more? A ball-room bard, a foolscap, hot-press darling ? To bear the compliments of many a bore,
And sigh, “ I can't get out,” like Yorick's starling; Why then I'll swear, as poet Wordy swore, [ing) (3)
(Because the world won't read him, always snarlThat taste is gone, that fame is but a lottery, Drawn by the blue-coat misses of a coterie.(4)
Oh! “ darkly, deeply, beautifully blue,”
As some one somewhere sings about the sky,
you; [why, They say your stockings are so—(Heaven knows
(1) [“ To pastry-cooks and moths, and there an end.'” GIFFORD.] (2) [MS. — “ What! must I go with Wordy to the cooks ?
Read — were it but your Grandmother's to vex -
Cut off from tasting your Castalian tea."]
Because the world won't read her," &c.] (4) (“ Away, then, with the senseless iteration of the word popularity! In every thing which is to send the soul into herself, to be admonished of her weakness, or to be made conscious of her strength; wherever life and nature are described as operated upon by the creative or abstracting virtue of the imagination; wherever the instinctive wisdom of antiquity, and her heroic passions, uniting, in the heart of the Poet, with the meditative wisdom of later ages, have produced that accord of sublimated humanity, which is at once a history of the remote past, and a prophetic announce. ment of the remotest future - there, the Poet must reconcile himself for a season to few and scattered hearers." - WORDSWORTH'S Second Preface.]
I have examined few pair of that hue);
Blue as the garters which serenely lie Round the Patrician left-legs, which adorn The festal midnight, and the levee morn. (4)
Yet some of you are most seraphic creatures
But times are alter'd since, a rhyming lover, You read my stanzas, and I read your features :
And—but no matter, all those things are over; Still I have no dislike to learned natures,
For sometimes such a world of virtues cover;
Humboldt, “ the first of travellers,” but not
The last, if late accounts be accurate, Invented, by some name I have forgot, .
As well as the sublime discovery's date,
To ascertain the atmospheric state,
(1) [MS. — “ Not having look'd at many of that hue,
Nor garters - save those of the honi soit' - which lie Round the Patrician legs which walk about,
The ornaments of levee and of rout.”] (2) [The cyanometer - an instrument invented for ascertaining the in. tensity of the blue colour of the sky. On the summit of high mountains, elevated above the grosser portions of the atmosphere, it might be curious to compare experiments with those made with the same kind of instrument by M. Saussure on the Alps; but it is mere ostentation to talk, as M. de Humboldt does, of such experiments made at sea with a view of being useful to navigation. We prefer, as more simple and more correct, that
With slaves to sell off in the capital,
At anchor under the seraglio wall;
Were landed in the market, (1) one and all,
natural diaphanometer, which for ages has regulated the prognostics of mariners —“a great paleness of the setting sun, a wan colour, an extraordinary disfiguration of its disc;” though we should be cautious in admitting that these meteorological phenomena are the unequivocal signs of a tempest. The marine barometer is far more important to the ma. riner than hygrometers or cyanometers. By this instrument a change of weather never fails to be indicated by the least rising or falling of the mercury in the tube; the descent, in tropical latitudes, of an eighth of an inch, when at a distance from the land, is the unequivocal indication of an approaching storm. Many a ship has been saved from destruction by the timely notice given by this instrument to prepare for a storm; and no ship should be permitted to go to sea without one. - BARROW.]
(3) [MS. “I'll back a London · Bas' against Peru.”
“ I'll bet some pair of stockings beat Peru."
“ And so, old Sotheby, we'll measure you."] (4) [“ The slave-market is a quadrangle, surrounded by a covered gal. lery, and ranges of small and separate apartments.
Here the poor wretches sit in a melancholy posture. Before they cheapen them, they turn them about from this side to that, survey them from top to bottom, put them to exercise whatever they have learned, and this several times a day, without coming to any agreement. Such of them, both men and women, to whom dame Nature has been niggardly of her charms, are set apart for the vilest purposes; but such girls as have youth and beauty, pass their time well enough. The retailers of this human ware are the Jews, who take good care of their slaves' education, that they may sell the better : their choicest they keep at home, and there you must go, if you would have better than ordinary; for it is here, as in markets for horses, the handsomest do not always appear, but are kept within doors.” — TOURNEFORT.]