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under the name of the Just, to become universal umpire of the people in all cases, even to the neglect of the legal ways and orders of the commonwealth, approached so much to the prince, that the Athenians, doing Aristides no wrọng, did their government no more than right in removing him; which therefore is not so probable to have come to pass, as Plutarch presumes, through the envy of Themistocles, seeing Aristides was far more popular than Themistocles, who soon after took the same walk upon a worse occasion.
The Oceana was dedicated to Oliver Cromwell, who after perusing it, said, “The gentleman would like to trepan me out of my power ; but what I have got by the sword, I will not quit for a little paper shot."
Harrington was the author of several other compositions, all of a political nature; but as the whole of his works have been collected in one volume 4to. by Mr. Toland, and are consequently accessible to most readers, it were needless to specify them.
John CLEIVELAND, poet and royalist, was born in 1613, at Loughborough, in Leicestershire. In 1627, he entered at Christ's College, Cambridge, where, in 1631, he took the degree of bachelor of arts. About three
years after, he was elected fellow of St. John's College, in the same university, and, in 1635, proceeded master of arts. He was both tutor and rhetoric reader in his college.
On the breaking out of the civil wars, he is said to have been the first champion in verse for the royal cause, in which he exerted all his influence and interest. He was at length seized at Norwich, 1655, as “a person of great abilities,"adverse and dangerous to the reigning government, and sent prisoner to Yarmouth; but on sending a humble petition to the lord protector, he was again set at liberty. Hc afterwards became member of a club of wits and royalists in London, of which Butler, the wellknown author of Hudibras, was a member. He died in 1658.
Cleiveland is most remembered as a witty poét; he is mentioned, in conjunction with Donne, by Johnson, in his Life of Cowley, as being at the head of what he calls the metaphysical poets. His prose consists only of two or three small pieces, of which the most amusing is the character of a Diurnal-maker. A
of it will furnish an adequate specimen of his man. ner; it abounds in the quaintest wit, such as distinguishes his poetry. The Diurnals were news-papers of the parliament side, resembling modern court-gazettes.
The Character of a Diurnal-maker.
A diurnal-maker is the sub-almoner of history, Queen Mab's Register ; one whom, by the same figure that a north-country pedlar is a merchant-man, you may style an author : it is the like over-reach of language, where every thin tinder-cloaked quack is doctor; when a clumsy cobler usurps the attribute of our English peers, and is vamped a translator; list him a'writer, and you sinother Geoffrey in swabberslops ; the very name of dabbler oversets him; he is swat lowed up in the praise, like sir Samuel Luke in a great saddle, nothing to be seen but the giddy feather in his crown. They call him a Mercury, but he becomes the epithet like the little negro mounted on the elephant, just such another blot-rampant. He has not stuffings sufficient for the reproach of a scribble, but it hangs about him like an old wife's skin, when the flesh hath forsaken her, lank and loose. He defames a good title, as well as most of our modern noblemen, those veins of greatness, the body politic's most peccant humours, blistered into lords. He hath so raw-boned a being, that however you render him, he rubs it out, and makes rags of the expression. The silly countryman (who seeing an ape in a scarlet coat, blest his young worship, and gave his landlord joy of the hopes of his house) did not slander his compliment with worse application than he that names this shred an historian. To call him an historian is to knight a mandrake; it is to view him through a perspective, and, by that gross hyperbole, to give the reputation of an engineer to a maker of mouse-trap. Such an historian would hardly pass muster with a Scotch stationer in a sieve fall of ballads and godly beuks. He would not serve for the breast-plate of a begging Grecian. The most cramped compendiumi that the age hath seen since all learning was torn into ends, outstrips him by the head. I have heard of
puppets that could prattle in a play, but never saw of their writings before. There goes a report of the, Ilolland women, that, together with their children, they are delivered of a sooterkin, not unlike to a rat, which some imagine to be the offspring of the stoves. I know not what ignis fatuus adulterates the press, but it seems much after that fashion, else how could this vermin think to be a twin to a legitimate writer ? When those weekly fragments shall pass for history,
, let the poor man's box be entitled the exchequer, and the alms-basket a magazine. Not a worm that gnaws on the dull scalp of voluminous Hollinshed, but at every meal devoured more chronicle than his tribe amounts. A marginal note of William Prinne would serve for winding sheet for that man's works, like thick-skinned fruits are all rind, fit for nothing but the author's fate, to be pared in a pillory.
Methinks the Turk should license Diurnals, because he prohibits learning and books. A library of Diurnals is a wardrobe of frippery; it is a just idea of the limbo of infants. I saw one once that could write with his toes; by the same token, I could have wished he had worn his copies for socks; it is he, without doubt, from whom the Diurnals derive their pedigree, and they have a birth-right accordingly, being shuffled out at the bed's-feet of History. To what infinite numbers an historian would multiply, should he crumble into elves of this profession! Lea