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ever, that these hopes were of another kind than it was in his lordship's power to gratify', and it is certain that he substituted a method of serving Moore, which was not only successful for a considerable time, but must have been agreeable to the feelings of a delicate and independent mind. About the years 17.51-2 periodical writing began to revive in its most pleasing form, but had hitherto been executed by men of learning only. Lord Lyttelton projected a paper, in concert with Dodsley, which should unite the talents of certain men of rank, and receive such a tone and consequence from that circumstance, as mere scholars can seldom hope to command or attain. Such was the origin of The World, for every paper of which Dodsley stipulated to pay Moore three guineas, whether the papers were written by him, or by the volunteer contributors. Lord Lyttelton, to render this bargain more productive to the editor, solicited and obtained the assistance of the earls of Chesterfield, Bath, and Corke, and of Messrs. Walpole, Cambridge, Jenyns, and other men of rank and taste, who gave their assistance, some with great regularity, and all so effectually, as to render The World far more popular than any of its contemporaries.
In this work, Moore wrote sixty-one papers, in a style easy and unaffected, and treated the whims and follies of the day with genuine humour. His thoughts are often original, and his ludicrous combinations argue a copious fancy. Some of his papers, ideed, are mere playful exercises, which have no direct object in view, but in general in bis essays, as well as in all his works, he shows himself the friend of morality and public decency. In the last number, the conclusion of the work is made to depend on a fictitious accident which had occasioned the author's death. When the papers were collected into volumes for a second edition, Moore superintended the publication, and actually died while this last number was in the press: a circumstance which induces the wish that death may be less frequently included among the topics of wit.
During the publication of The World, and probably before, Moore wrote some lighter pieces and songs for the public gardens. What his other literary labours were, or whether he contributed regularly to any publications, is not known. A very few weeks before his death lie projected a magazine, in which Gataker, and some other of his colleagues in The World, were to be engaged. His acknowledged works are not numerous, consisting only of the poems here reprinted, and of his three plays. These were published by him, in a handsome quarto volume, in 1756, by subscription, dedicated to the duke of Newcastle, brother to his deceased patron Mr. Pelbam. The subscribers were very numerous, and included many persons of the highest rank and talents, but be did not long enjoy the advantages of their liberality. He died, February 28, 1757, at his house at Lambeth, of an inflammation on his lungs, the consequence of a fever improperly treated.
In the year 1750, he married Miss Hamilton, daughter of Mr. Charles Hamilton, table-decker to the princesses : a lady who had herself a poetical turn. During their courtship, she addressed some lines to a female friend, of which Mr. Moore's name, by
3 Of this Moore was not always sensible. On one occasion, when lord Lyttelton bestowed a small place on Bower, to which our poet thought he had a higher claim, he behaved in such a manner to his patron as to occasion a coolness. Horace Walpole undertook to reconcile them. Moore did not know that Walpole had written the Letters to the Whigs, which, in his zeal for Lyttelton, he had nndertaken to answer. Horace, however, kept his own secret, and performed the office of mediator. Walpoie's Letters, in Works, vol. v.
a small change to More, not uncommon in pronunciation, was the burihen. The last stanza runs thus :
You will wonder, my girl, who this dear one can be,
The whole may be perused in the Gentleman's Magazine for 1749.
By this lady, who in 1758 obtained the place of necessary-woman to the queen's apartments, which she held until her death in 1804, he had a son Edward, who died in the naval service in 1773.
Moore's personal character appears to have been unexceptionable, and his pleasing manners and bumble demeanour rendered his society acceptable to a very numerous class of friends. His productions were those of a genius somewhat above the common order, unassisted by learning. His professed exclusion of Greek and Latin mottos from the papers of The World (although they were not rejected when sent) induces me to think that he had little acquaintance with the classics, and there is indeed nothing in any of his works that indicates the study of a particular branch of science. When lie projected the magazine above-mentioned, he told the Wartons, in confidence, “ that he wanted a dull plodding fellow of one of the universities, who understood Latin and Greek 4."
Of his poetry, simplicity and smoothness appear to be the leading features : hence he is easily intelligible, and consequently instructive, and his Fables have always been popular. All lis pieces are of the light kind, produced with little effort, and to answer temporary purposes. We find no where indications that he could have succeeded in the higher species of poetry. His songs have much originality of thought, but sometimes a looseness of expression which would not now be tolerated. His Nun might be excluded from the collection, without injury to bis memory. The Trial of Selim is an ingenious and elegant panegyric, but it ought to have sufficed to have once verified the forms of law. The Trial of Sarah alias Slim Sal, has too much the air of a copy. He ranks but low as a writer of odes, yet The Discovery, addressed to Mr. Pelham, has many beauties, and among those the two last stanzas may be safely enumerated.
4 Wooll's Life of Warton, vol. i. p. 245.
TO HIS GRACE,
DUKE OF NEWCASTLE.
Had I the honour of being personally known to your grace, I had not thus presumptuously addressed you, without previous solicitation for so great an indulgence. But, that your grace may neither be surprised nor offended at the liberty I am taking, my plea is, that the great and good man, whose name is prefixed to the first of these poems, was a friend and benefactor to me. The favours I have received at his hands, and the kind assurances he was pleased to give me of their continuance, which his death only prevented, have left me to lament my own private loss amidst the general concern. It is from these favours and assurances that I Aatter myself with having a kind of privilege to address your grace upon this occasion, and to entreat your patronage of the following sheets. I pretended to no merit with Mr. Pelham, except that of honouring his virtues, and wishing to have been serviceable to them : I pretend to no other with your grace. My hopes are, that while you are fulfilling every generous intention of the brother whom you loved, your grace will not think me unworthy of some small share of that notice, with which he'was once pleased to honour me.
I will not detain your grace to echo back the voice of a whole people in favour of your just and prudent administration of public affairs. That the salutary measures you are pursuing may be as productive of tranquillity and honour to your grace, as they are of happiness to these kingdoms, is the sincere wish of,
Tolly's Head, Pall-Mall,
Feb. 26, 1756.
TO THE EDITION OF MOORE'S POEMS AND PLAYS,
PUBLISHED IN 1756, QUARTO.
Most of the following poems have already made their appearance in detached pieces; but as many of them were printed without a name, I was advised by some particular friends to collect them into a volume, and publish them by subscription. The painful task of soliciting such a subscription was chiefly ur dertaken by those friends, and with such spirit and zeal, that I should be greatly wanting in gratitude, if I neglected any opportunity, either public or private, of making them my most sincere acknowledgments. I am also obliged to a very valuable friend in Ireland for a considerable number of subscribers in that kingdom, a list of whose names I have not been favoured with, and for which I was desired not to delay publication. I mention this seeming neglect, that my friends on that side the water may not accuse me of any disrespect.
Such as the work now is, I submit it to the public. Defects in it there are many, which I have wanted both time and abilities to amend as I could wish. Its merit (if it has any, and allowed to name it) is its being natural and unaffected, and tending to promote virtue and goodbamour. Those parts of it that have been published singly had the good fortune to please; those that are now added will, I hope, be no discredit to them. Upon the whole, I have sent this my offspring into the world in as decent a dress as I was able : a legitimate one I am sure it is; and if it should be thought defective in strength, spirit, or vigour, let it be considered, that its father's marriage with the Muses, like most other marriages into that noble family, was more fron necessity than inclination.