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this work, but died before he had completed his design. The reformed work as he left it, and the additions which he had made, are very properly retained in the late collection. Fie seems to have somewhat contracted his diffusion ; but I know not whether he has gained in closeness what he has lost in splendour. In the additional book, the Tale of Solon is too long.
One great defect of bis poem is very properly censured by Mr. Walker, unless it may be said, in his defence, that what he has onitted was not properly in his plan. “ His picture of man is grand and beautiful, but unfinished. The immortality of the soul, which is the natural consequence of the appetites and powers she is invested with, is scarcely once hinted throughout the poem. This deficiency is amply supplied by the masterly pencil of Dr. Young; who, like a good philosopher, has invincibly proved the immortality of man, from the grandeur of his conceptions, and the meanness and misery of his state; for this reason, a few passages are selected from the Night Thoughts, which, with those from Akenside, seem to form a complete view of the powers, situation, and end of man.” Exercises for Improvement in Elocution, p. 66.
His other poems are now to be considered; but a short consideration will dispatch them. It is not easy to guess why he addicted himself so diligently to lyric poetry, having neither the case and airiness of the lighter, nor the vehemence and elevation of the grander ode. When he lays his ill-fated hand upon his harp, his former powers seem to desert him; he has no longer his luxuriance of expression, nor variety of images. His thoughts are cold, and his words inelegant. Yet such was his love of lyrics, that having written with great vigour and poignancy his Epistle to Curio, he transformed it afterwards into an ode disgraceful only to its author.
Of his odes nothing favourable can be said ; the sentiments commonly want force, nature, or novelty; the diction is sometimes harsh and uncouth; the stanzas ill-constructed and unpleasant, and the rhymes dissonant, or unskilfully disposed, too distant from each other, or arranged with too little regard to established use, and therefore perplexing to the ear, which in a short composition has not time to grow familiar with an innovation.
To examine such compositions singly cannot be required; they have doubtless brighter and darker parts : but, when they are once found to be generally dull, all further labour may be spared ; for to what use can the work be, criticised that will not be read?
Tuis volume contains a complete collection of the poems of the late Dr. Akenside, either reprinted from the original editions, or faithfully published from copies which had been prepared by himself for publication.
That the principal poem should appear in so disadvantageous a state, may require some explanation. The first pnblication of it was at a very early part of the author's life. That it wanted revision and correction, he was sufficiently sensible; but so quick was the demand for several successive republications, that in any of the intervals to have completed the whole of his corrections was utterly impossible; and yet to have gone on from time to time making further improvements in every new edition, would (he thought) have had the appearance at least of abusing the favour of the public. He chose therefore to continue for some time reprinting it withont alteration, and to forbear publishing any corrections or improvements until he should be able at once to give them to the public complete. And with this view he went on for several years to review and correct the poem at his leisure ; till at length he found the task grow so much upon his bands, that, despairing of ever being able to execute it sufficiently to bis owo satisfaction, he abandoned the purpose of correcting, and resolved to write the poem over a-new upon a somewhat different and an enlarged plan. And in the execution of this design he had made a considerable progress. What reason there may be to regret that he did not live to execute the whole of it, will best appear from the perusal of the plan itself, as stated in the general argument, and of the parts which he had executed, and which are here published. For the person', to whom he intrusted the disposal of his papers, would have thought himself wanting as well to the service of the public, as to the fame of his friend, if he bad not produced as much of the work as appeared to have been prepared for prblication. In this light he considered the entire first and second books, of which a few copies had been printed for the use only of the author and certain friends : also a very considerable part of the third book, which had been transcribed in order to its being printed in the same manner: and to these is added the introduction to a subsequent book, which in the manuscript is called the fourth, and which appears to have been composed at the time when the author intended to comprise the whole in four books; but which, as he had afterwards determined to distribute the poem into more books, might perhaps more properly be called the last book. And this is all that is executed of the new work, which, although it appeared to the editor too valuable, even in its imperfect state, to be withholden from the public, yet (he conceives) takes in by much too small a purt of the original poem to supply its place, and to supersede the re-publication of it. For which reason both the poems are inserted in this collection.
Of odes the anthor bad designed to make up two books, consisting of twenty odes each, in. cluding the several odes which he had before published at different times.
· The right honourable Jeremiah Dyson; by whom this advertisement was written.
The Hymn to the Naiads is reprinted from the sixth volume of Dodsley's Miscellanies, with a few corrections and the addition of some notes. To the inscriptions taken from the same volume three new inscriptions are added; the last of which is the only instance wherein liberty has been taken of inserting any thing in this collection, which did 'not appear to have been intended by the author for publication ~; among whose papers no copy of this was found, but it is printed from a copy, which he had many years since given to the editor.
The author of these poems was born at Newcastle upon Tyne, on the 9th day of November, 1721. He was educated at the grammar school at Newcastle, and at the universities of Edinburgh and Leyden, at the latter of which he took his degree of doctor in physic. He was afterwards admitted by mandamus to the degree of doctor in physic in the university of Cambridge ; elected a fellow of the royal college of physicians, and one of the physicians of St. Thomas's Hospital : and upon the establishment of the queen's household, appointed one of the physicians to her majesty. He died of a putrid fever, on the 23d day of June, 1770, and is buried in the parish church of St. James's Westminster.
* In the present edition, a few pieces are added, which are known to be genuine, and which certainly are no discredit to their author. But these are all placed at the end of the volume.
IN THREE BOOKS.
YUBLISHED IN THE YEAR M.DCC.XLIV.
Yet, as their intention was only to express the objects of imagination, and as they still abound
chiefly in ideas of that class, they of course retain PLEASURES OF IMAGINATION.
their original character; and all the different pleaA POEM.
sures which they excite, are termed, in general, Pleasures of Imagination.
The design of the following poem is to give a
view of these in the largest acceptation of the 'Ασεμέν έσιν άνθρωπε τάς σαρει τα θεα χάρθας
term; so that whatever our imagination feels from ατιμάζειν.
the agreeable appearances of nature, and all the vuEpict. apud Arrian. II. I3.
rious entertainment we meet with either in poetry, painting, music, or any of the elegant arts, might be deducible from one or other of those principles in the constitution of the human mind, which are here esta
blished and explained. THE DESIGN.
In executing this general plan, it was necessary
first of all to distinguish the imagination from our Teere are certain powers in human nature which other faculties; and in the next place to characeen to hold a middle place between the organs of terize those original forms or properties of being, bodily sense and the faculties of moral perception: about which it is conversant, and which are by hey have been called by a very general name, Nature adapted to it as light is to the eyes, or The Powers of Imagination. Like the external truth to the understanding. These properties Mr. enses, they relate to matter and motion; and at Addison had reduced to the three general classes he same time, give the mind ideas analogous to of greatness, novelty, and beauty; and into these hose of moral approbation and dislike. As they we may analyse every object, however complex, re the inlets of some of the most exquisite plea- which, properly speaking, is delightful to the ures with which we are acquainted, it has natu- imagination. But such an object may also inally happened, that men of warm and sensible clude many other sources of pleasure; and its en pers have sought means to recall the delight- beanty, or novelty, or grandeur, will make a al perceptions which they afford, independent of stronger impression by reason of this concurrence. ne object which originally produced them. This Besides which, the imitative arts, especially poetry, are rise to the imitative or designing arts; some owe much of their effect to a similar exhibition of
which, as, painting and sculpture, directly copy properties quite foreign to the imagination, insoe external appearances which were admired in much that in every line of the most applauded eture; others, as music and poetry, bring them poems, we meet with either ideas drawn from the ack to remembrance by signs universally esta external senses, or truths discovered to the underished and understood.
standing, or illustrations of contrivance and final But these arts, as they grew more correct and causes, or above all the rest, with circumstances liberate, were of course led to extend their imi- proper to awaken and engage the passions. It tion beyond the peculiar objects of the imagina- was therefore necessary to enumerate and exemplify
e powers: especially poetry, which, making these different species of pleasure; especially that e of language as the instrument by which it from the passions, which, as it is supreme in the itates, it consequently becomes an unlimited noblest work of human genius, so being in some presentative of every species and mode of being. I particulars yot a little surprising, gave an oppor
tunity to enliven the didactic turn of the poem, civil life. It is on this account that he is so care. by introducing an allegory to account for the ap-ful to point out the benevolent intention of the pearance.
Author of Nature in every principle of the human After these parts of the subject which hold constitution here insisted on; and also to unite chiefly of admiration, or naturally warm and in the moral excellencies of life in the same point of terest the mind, a pleasure of a very different na- view with the mere external objects of good taste; ture, that which arises from ridicule, came next thus recommending them in common to our natuto be considered. As this is the foundation of the ral propensity for admiring what is beautiful and comic manner in all the arts, and has been but lovely. The same views have also led him to invery imperfectly treated by moral writers, it was troduce some sentiments which may perhaps be thought proper to give it a particular illustration, looked upon as not quite direct to the subject; but, and to distinguish the general sources from which since they bear an obvious relation to it, the authe ridicule of characters is derived. Here too a thority of Virgil, the faultless model of didactic change of style became necessary; such a one as poetry, will best support him in this particular. might yet be consistent, if possible, with the gene-For the sentiments themselves, he makes no aporal taste of composition in the serious parts of the logy. subject: nor is it an easy task to give any tolerable force to images of this kind, without running either into the gigantic expressions of the mock heroic, or the familiar and poetical raillery of professed satire; neither of which would have been PLEASURES OF LMAGINATION proper here.
BOOK I. The materials of all imitation being thus laid open, nothing now remained but to illustrate some particular pleasures, which arise either from the relations of different objects one to another, or from the nature of imitation itself. Of the first kind is that various and complicated resemblance The subject proposed. Difficulty of treating it existing between several parts of the material and poetically. The ideas of the divine mind, the immaterial worlds, which is the foundation of me
origin of every quality pleasing to the imagina. taphor and wit. As it seems in a great measure
tion. The natural variety of constitution in the to depend on the early association of our ideas,
minds of men; with its final cause. The idea and as this habit of associating is the source of
of a fine imagination, and the state of the mind many pleasures and pains in life, and on that ac
in the enjoyment of those pleasures which it count bears a great share in the influence of poetry
affords. All the primary pleasures of the imaand the other arts, it is therefore mentioned here,
gination result from the perception of greatness, and its effects described. Then follows a general
or wonderfulness, or beauty in objects. The account of the production of these elegant arts,
pleasure froin greatness, with its final cause. and of the secondary pleasure, as it is called,
Pleasure from novelty or wonderfulness, with its
final cause. arising from the resemblance of their imitations to
Pleasure from beauty, with its
final cause. the original appearances of Nature. After which,
The connection of beauty with the work concludes with some reflections on the truth and good, applied to the conduct of life. general conduct of the powers of imagination, and
Invitation to the study of moral philosophy. on their natural and moral usefulness in life.
The different degrees of beauty in different species Concerning the manner or turn of composition
of objects: colour; shape; natural concretes; which prevails in this piece, little can be said with
vegetables; animals; the mind. The sublime, propriety by the author. He had two models;
the fair, the wonderful of the mind. The conthat ancient and simple one of the first Grecian
nection of the imagination and the moral faculty. poets, as it is refined by Virgil in the Georgics, and
Conclusion. the familiar epistolary way of Horace. This latter bas several advantages. It admits of a greater variety of style; it more readily engages the
With what attractive charms this goodly frame nerality of readers, as partaking more of the air of Nature touches the consenting hearts of conversation ; and, especially with the assist- of mortal men; and what the pleasing stores ance of rhyme, leads to a closer and more concise which beauteous imitation thence derives expression. Add to this the example of the most To deck the poet's, or the painter's toil; perfect of modern poets, who has so happily ap- My verse unfolds. Attend, ye gentle powers plied this manner to the noblest parts of philoso- of musical delight! and while I sing phy, that the public taste is in a great measure Your gifts, your honours, dance arour, 1 ms strainformed to it alone. Yet, after all, the subject Thou, smiling queen of every tupeful breast, before us, tending almost constantly to admiration Indulgent Fancy! from the fruitful banks and enthusiasm, seemed rather to demand a more Of Avon, whence thy rosy fingers cull open, pathetic, and figured style. This too ap- Fresh flowers and dews to sprinkle on the turf peared more natural, as the author's aim was not Where Sbakspeare lies, be present: and with the so much to give formal precepts, or enter into the Let Fiction come, upon her vagrant wings way of direct argumentation, as, by exhibiting Wafting ten thousand colours through the air, the most engaging prospects of Nature, to enlarge Which, by the glances of her magic eye, and harmonize the imagination, and by that means She blends and shifts at will, through countless form insensibly dispose the minds of men to a similar Her wild creation. Goddess of the lyre, taste and babit of thinking in religion, morals, and which rules the accents of the moving sphere,