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HYMN TO IGNORANCE.
Supposed to have been written about 1742, when the
Author returned to Cambridge.
Hail, horrors, hail! ye ever gloomy bowers,
With damp, cold touch forbid it to aspire,
Oh say--she hears me not, but careless grown,
Oh! sacred age ! Oh! times for ever lost! (The schoolman's glory, and the churchman's
High on her car, behold the grandam ride
a team of harness'd monarch's bend
EDUCATION AND GOVERNMENT.
“ Instead of compiling tables of Chronology and
natural history, why did not Mr Gray apply the powers of his genius to finish the philosophic poem of which he has left such an exquisite specimen?”
ESSAY I. • Ποταγ’ & γαθέ ταν
άοιδας Ουτι πω εις Αίδαν γε τον εκλελάθοντα φυγαξεις. .
THEOCRITUS, ID. 1. 63. As sickly plants betray a niggard earth, Whose barren bosom starves her generous birth, Nor genial warmth, nor genial juice retains, Their roots to feed, and fill their verdant veins : And as in climes, where Winter holds his reign, The soil, though fertile, will not teem in vain, Forbids her gems to swell, her shades to rise, Nor trust her blossoms to the churlish skies :
So draw mankind in vain the vital airs, Unform’d, unfriended, by those kindly cares, Tbat health and vigour to the soul impart, Spread the young thought, and warm the open
ing heart : So fond instruction on the growing powers Of nature idly lavishes her stores, If equal justice with unclouded face Smile not indulgent on the rising race, And scatter with a free, though frugal hand, Light golden showers of plenty o'er the land : But tyrandy has fix'd her empire there, To check their tender hopes with chilling fear, And blast the blooming promise of the year.
The spacious animated scene survey,
Say, then, through ages by what fate confined, To different climes seem different souls assign'd? Here measured laws and philosophic ease Fix, and improve the polish'd arts of peace ; There industry and gain the vigils keep, Command the winds and tame the unwilling
deep : Here force and hardy deeds of blood prevail ; There languid pleasures sigh in every gale. Oft o'er the trembling nations from afar Has Scythia breathed the living cloud of war ; And, where the deluge burst, with sweepy sway Their arms, their kings, their gods, were rollid
away. As oft have issued, host impelling host, The blue-eyed myriads from the Baltic coast. The prostrate south to the destroyer yields Her boasted titles, and her golden fields : With grim delight the brood of winter view A brighter day, and beavens of azure hue; Scent the new fragrance of the breathing rose, And quaff the pendent vintage as it grows. Proud of the yoke, and pliant to the rod, Why yet does Asia dread a monarch's nod, While European freedom still withstands Tho' encroaching tide that drowns her lessen
ing lands? And sees far off, with an indignant groan, Her native plains, and empires once her own! Can opener skies and suns of fiercer flame O’erpower the fire that animates our frame;