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And call forth fresh delight to Fancy's view,
The heroic muse employ'd her Tasso's art !

How have I trembled, when, at Tancred's stroke, Its gushing blood the gaping cypress pour'd! 194

When each live plant with mortal accents spoke, And the wild blast upheaved the vanish'd sword !

How have I sat, when piped the pensive wind, To hear his harp by British Fairfax strung!

Prevailing poet! whose undoubting mind Believed the magic wonders which he sung!

Hence, at each sound, imagination glows ! Hence, at each picture, vivid life starts here !

Hence his warm lay with softest sweetness flows! Melting it flows, pure, murmuring, strong, and

clear, And fills the impassion'd heart, and wins the

harmonious ear!

200

205

VARIATIONS.

Ver. 193. How have I trembled, when, at Tancred's side,

Like him I stalk'd, and all his passions felt; When charm’d by Ismen, through the forest wide,

Bark'd in each plant a talking spirit dwelt! 201. Hence, sure to charm, his early numbers flow,

Though strong, yet sweet-
Though faithful, sweet; though strong, of simple

kind.
Hence, with each theme, he bids the bosom glow,
While his warm lays an easy passage find,
Pour'd through each inmost nerve, and lull the

harmonious ear. 204. Melting it flows, pure, numerous, strong, and clear,

XIII.

All hail, ye scenes that o'er

my

soul prevail ! Ye splendid friths and lakes, which, far away,

Are by smooth Annan' fill’d or pastoral Tay,' Or Don’sP romantic springs, at distance hail ! 209 The time shall come, when I, perhaps, may tread Your lowly glens, o’erhung with spreading

broom; Or, o'er your stretching heaths, by Fancy led;

Or o'er your mountains creep, in awful gloom ! Then will I dress once more the faded bower, 214

Where Jonson "sat in Drummond's classic shade; Or crop, from Tiviotdale, each lyric flower, And mourn, on Yarrow's banks, where Willy's

laid ! Meantime, ye powers that on the plains which bore

The cordial youth, on Lothian's plains,' attend !Where'er Home dwells, on hill, or lowly moor, 220

To him I lose, your kind protection lend, And, touch'd with love like mine, preserve my

absent friend !

VARIATION.

Ver. 220. Where'er he dwell, on hill, or lowly muir,

p Three rivers in Scotland. 9 Valleys.

? Ben Jonson paid a visit on foot, in 1619, to the Scotch poet Drummond, at his seat of Hawthornden, within four miles of Edinburgh.

• Barrow, it seems, was at the Edinburgh University, which is in the county of Lothian.

AN EPISTLE, ADDRESSED TO SIR THOMAS HANMER, ON HIS EDITION OF

SHAKESPEARE'S WORKS.

SIR, While, born to bring the Muse's happier days A patriot's hand protects a poet's lays, While nursed by you she sees her myrtles bloom, Green and unwither'd o'er his honour'd tomb; Excuse her doubts, if yet she fears to tell What secret transports in her bosom swell : With conscious awe she hears the critic's fame, And blushing hides her wreath at Shakespeare's

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name.

Hard was the lot those injured strains endured, Unown'd by Science, and by years obscured : 10

VARIATIONS.

Ver. 1. While, own'd by you, with smiles the Muse surveys

The expected triumph of her sweetest lays :
While, stretch'd at ease, she boasts your guardian

aid,
Secure, and happy in her sylvan shade :
Excuse her fears, who scarce a verse bestows,
In just remembrance of the debt she owes ;

With conscious, &c.
9. Long slighted Fancy with a mother's care

Wept o'er his works, and felt the last despair :
Torn from her head, she saw the roses fall,
By all deserted, though admired by all :

Fair Fancy wept; and echoing sighs confess'd
A fix'd despair in every tuneful breast.
Not with more grief the afflicted swains appear,
When wintry winds deform the plenteous year;
When lingering frosts the ruin’d seats invade
Where Peace resorted, and the Graces play'd.

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19

Each rising art by just gradation moves, Toil builds on toil, and age on age improves : The Muse alone unequal dealt her rage, And graced with noblest pomp her earliest stage. Preserved through time, the speaking scenes impart Each changeful wish of Phædra's tortured heart;

VARIATION.

And “Oh!” she cried, “shall Science still resign
Whate'er is Nature's, and whate'er is mine?
Shall Taste and Art but show a cold regard,
And scornful Pride reject the unletter'd bard ?
Ye myrtled nymphs, who own my gentle reign,
Tune the sweet lyre, and grace my airy train,
If, where ye rove, your searching eyes have known
One perfect mind, which judgment calls its own;
There
every

breast its fondest hopes must bend, And every Muse with tears await her friend.” 'Twas then fair Isis from her stream arose, In kind compassion of her sister's woes. 'Twas then she promised to the mourning maid The immortal honours which thy hands have paid : “My best loved son,” she said, “ shall yet restore Thy ruin'd sweets, and fancy weep no more.” Each rising art by slow gradation moves ; Toil builds, &c.

Or paint the curse that mark'd the Theban's a reign,
A bed incestuous, and a father slain.
With kind concern our pitying eyes o'erflow,
Trace the sad tale, and own another's woe.

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30

To Rome removed, with wit secure to please, The comic Sisters kept their native ease : With jealous fear, declining Greece beheld Her own Menander's art almost excell'd; But every Muse essay'd to raise in vain Some labour'd rival of her tragic strain : Ilissus' laurels, though transferr'd with toil, Droop'd their fair leaves, nor knew the unfriendly

soil. As Arts expired, resistless Dulness rose; Goths, Priests, or Vandals,—all were Learning's

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foes.

VARIATIONS.

Ver. 25. Line after line our pitying eyes o’erflow,

27. To Rome removed, with equal power to please,
35. When Rome herself, her envied glories dead,

No more imperial, stoop'd her conquer'd head;
Luxuriant Florence chose a softer theme,
While all was peace, by Arno's silver stream.
With sweeter notes the Etrurian vales complain'd,
And arts reviving told a Cosmo reign'd.
Their wanton lyres the bards of Provence strung,
Sweet flow'd the lays, but love was all they sung.
The gay, &c.

a The Edipus of Sophocles.

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