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B. i. c. i. f. xlii.
A fit false dream that can delude the feepers' sent.
Mr. Upton proposes to read sleepers SHENT, i. e. fleepers ill-treated or abufed. But I rather think, that we should preserve the common reading, SENT, which is the proper and original spelling of scent. Sent, says Skinner, which we falsely write scent, is derived a sentiendo *. Thus the meaning of this verse is, “ A false dream that could deceive or impose upon " the sleeper's priception.” So that fent, if we consider its radix, fentio, is here plainly made to signify perception in general. Scent is often thus spelt in our author. At sent of stranger-guest.
4. 6. 41.
Through his perfect sent.
3. 7. 22.
Of sundry sent and hewe.
7. 7. 10.
Scent is often thus written by Milton, in the genuine editions; and, as Dr. Newton observes, with great propriety.
The season prime for sweetest sents and airs f.
* Thus E. K, in the EPISTLE prefixed to our author's Paftorals. “ So Marot, Sanazzari, and also diverse other excellent both italian and & french poets, whose footing this author every where followeth : yet « so as few, but they be well SENTED, can follow him.” + Paradise Lost, 9. 200.
Such a SENT I drew
Of carnage t.
With sent of living carcasses I.
I confess that sent is somewhat harsh in this sense : but what will not rhyme oblige the poet to say?
B. i. c. ii. s. xix.
And at his haughtie helmet making mark,
Mr. Upton would alter alive, in the third verse, to BILIVE, i. e. immediately: for, says he, did he tumble down alive after his head was cleft asunder 5 ? With-' out entering into an anatomical disquisition concern
* Par. Loft. 9. 537. + Ibid. 10. 267. | Ibid. 10. 277. § Such a question reminds one of Burmannus's note on the GEMITU
« Illustrat bunc of the dying Turnus, in the last verse of the Æneid.
GEMITUM R. Titius ; et de illo sono, et RAUCO MURMURI quod ex occlusa vocali arteria editur, explicat." Vol. II.
ing the possibility of living after such a blow; we may remark, that the poet himself intimates to us, that he fell down alive, and did not die till after his fall, in these lines,
His grudging ghost did ftriue
The same commentator would enforce and confirm the juftness of this correction, by remarking, that the poet, in these verses, copied from Virgil,
Procubuit MORIENS, et HUMUM femel ore MOMORDIT.
Where the word moriens doth not imply, that the man who fell down, was dead. I must confess that alive is superfluous; but Spenser has run into
other superfluities, on account of his repetition of the fame rhyme. Mr. Upton proposes likewise to write Earth [his mother Earth] with an initial capital, supposing it a Person; however, we had, perhaps, better suppose it a THING : for if we underftand it to be a PERSON, what an absurd mixture arises ?
His mother Earth did kiss,
Grave cannot be referred to Earth as a PERSON, but very properly to Earth as a THING. However, it must
be confessed, that this is such an absurd mixture as Spenser was very likely to have fallen into; and we have numberless instances of this fault, in his account of the rivers which attended the marriage of Thames and Medway, 4. 11. 'where god and river, that is, person and thing, are often indiscriminately put, the one for the other.
Horace in one line, affords a concise and apposite exemplification of the fault here imputed to Spenser.
Sic tauriformis voLVITUR Aufidus.
Ovid in the speech of the Earth, forgets the personification, and makes her talk of being PLOUGHED, RAKED, and HARROWED.
Adunci vulnera aratri,
B. xxiii. c. iy. f. i.
And a dry DROPSIE through his flesh did flow.
How can a Dropsy flow, says Mr. Upton, if it be dry? He proposes to remove this contradiction by reading dire Dropsy, the dirus Hpdrops of Horace. But it is plain, that dry Dropsie is the species of the Dropsy
* Metam. 2. ver. 286.
so called, the dry Dropsy or Tympanites ; which Spenser has inaccurately confounded with the other species of the Dropsy, and which may not improperly be said to flow through the flesh; not considering the inconsistency of making a dry thing flow. As to Mr. Upton's correction dire, I cannot perceive how DIRE could be easily mistaken by the compositors for DRY. Mr. Upton might, with equal propriety, have objected to the following words, Dry Drops.
And with DRY DROPs congealed in her eye. 2. 1. 49.
By the way, it will be difficult also to determine what Spenser means by congealed, which occurs again in the same sense, and on the same occasion,
In whose faire eye
But upon supposition that the tears were actually frozen in her eye, we should think dry a very odd epithet for ice.
To return: By DRY Dropsie, may not the poet also mean, a Dropsie, which is the CAUSE of thirf?
B. i. c. iv, f. xlii.
Him little answer'd th’angry elfin knight.