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To thee from Latian realms this verse is writ,
Inspir'd by memory of ancient Wit;
For now no more these climes their influence boast,
Fall'n is their glory, and their virtue lost;
I'rom Tyrants, and from Priests, the Muses fly,
Daughters of Reason and of Liberty.
Nor Baiæ now, nor Umbria's plain they love,
Nor on the banks of Nar, or Mincia rove;
To Thames's flow'ry borders they retire,

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And kindle in thy breast the Roman fire.
So in the shades, where cheer'd with summer rays
Melodious linnets warbled sprightly lays,
Soon as the faded, falling leaves complain
Of gloomy Winter's unauspicious reign,

20 No tuneful voice is heard of joy or love, But mournful filence faddens all the grove.

Unhappy Italy ! whose alter'd state Has felt the worst severity of Fate: Not that Barbarian hands her Fasces broke, 25 And bow'd her haughty neck beneath their yoke ; Nor that her palaces to earth are thrown, Her Cities desert, and her fields unfown; But that her ancient fpirit is decay'd, That facred Wisdom from her bounds is fled, 30 That there the source of Science flows no more, Whence its rich streams fupply'd the world before.

Illustrious Names! that once in Latium shin'd, Born to instruct, and to command Mankind; Chiefs, by whose Virtue mighty Rome was rais'd, 35 And Poets, who those Chiefs sublimely prais'd ! Oft I the traces you have left explore, Your alhes visit, and your urns adore ; Oft kiss, with lips devout, some mouldring stone, With Ivy's venerable shade o'ergrown; Those hallow'd ruins better pleas’d to see Than all the pomp of modern Luxury.

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As late on Virgil's tomb fresh flow'rs I ftrow'd,
While with th' inspiring Muse my bosom glow'd,
Crown'd with eternal bays my ravish'd eyes 4;
Beheld the Poet's awful Form arise :
Stranger, he said, whose pious hand has paid
These grateful rites to my attentive fhade,
When thou shalt breathe thy happy native air,
To Pope this message from his Master bear :

Great Bard, whose numbers I myself inspire,
To whom I gave my own harmonious tyre,
If high exalted on the Throne of Wit,
Near me and Homer thou aspire to fit,
No more let meaner Satire dim the rays

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That flow majestic from thy nobler Bays;
In all the flow'ry paths of Pindus ftray,
But fhun that thorny, that unpleafing way;
Nor, when each soft engaging Muse is thine,
Address the least attractive of the Nine.

Of thee more worthy were the talk, to raise
A lasting Column to thy Country's Praise,
Tosing the land, which yet alone can boast
That Liberty corrupted Rome has lost;
Where Science in the arms of Peace is laid,

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$ And plants her Palm beneath the Olive's shade.
Such was the Theme for which my lyre I strung,
Such was the People whose exploits I sung ;
Brave, yet refin'd, for Arms and Arts renown'd,
With diff'rent bays by Mars and Phoebus crown'd, 70
Dauntless opposers of Tyrannic Sway,
Bat pleas'd, a mild AUGUSTUS to obey.

If these commands submissive thou receive, Immortal and unblam'd thy name shall live; Envy to black Cocytus shall retire,

75 And howl with Furies in tormenting fire ; Approving Time shall consecrate thy Lays, And join the Patriot's to the Poet's Praise.

GEORGE LYTTELTON.

PASTORALS,

WITH A

Discourse on PASTORAL.

Written in the Year MDCCIY.

Rura mihi et rigui placeant in vallibus amnes,
Flumina amem, fylvasque, inglorius!

VIRG.

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DISCOURSE

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PASTORAL POETRY:.

.

T

HERE are not, I believe, a greater number of

any sort of verses than of those which are called Pastorals; nor a smaller, than of those which are truly fo. It therefore seem's necessary to give some account of this kind of Poem, and it is my design to comprize in this fort paper the substance of those numerous dissertations the Critics have made on the subject, without omitting any of their roles in my own favour. You will also find some points reconciled, about which they seem to differ, and a few remarks, which, I think, have escaped their observation.

The original of Poetry is ascribed to that Age which succeeded the creation of the world : and as the keeping of Alocks seems to have been the first employment of mankind, the most ancient sort of poetry was probably paftoral. It is natural to imagine, that the leisure of those ancient Shepherds admitting and inviting some diversion, none was so proper to that solitary and sedentary life as singing; and that in their songs they took occasion to celebrate their own felicity. From hence a Poem was invented, and afterwards improved to a perfect image of that happy time; which,

Written at fixteen years of age. b Fontenelle's Disc, on Pastorals,

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