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How could you say my face was fair,
And yet that face forsake ?
Yet leave that heart to break !
And made the scarlet pale?
Believe the flattering tale?
Those lips no longer red :
And every charm is filed.
This winding-sheet I wear:
Till that last morn appear.
A long and last adieu !
Who died for love of you.
With beams of rosy red :
And raving left his bed.
Where Margaret's body lay;
That wrapt her breathless clay.
And thrice he wept full sore;
And word spake never more!
His sister, who, like envy formed,
Like her in mischief joyed, To work them harm, with wicked skill,
Each darker art employed. The father too, a sordid man,
Who love nor pity knew, Was all unfeeling as the clod
From whence his riches grew. Long had he seen their secret flame,
And seen it long unmoved; Then with a father's frown at last
llad sternly disapproved. In Edwin's gentle heart, a war
Of differing passions strove: His heart, that durst not disobey,
Yet could not cease to love.
The spreading hawthorn crept,
Where Emma walked and wept.
Oft, too, on Stanmore's wintry waste,
Beneath the moonlight shade,
The midnight mourner strayed.
A deadly pale o'ercast;
Before the northern blast.
The parents now, with late remorse,
Hung o'er his dying bed ;
And fruitless sorrows shed.
Sweet mercy yet can move,
What they must ever love!
And bathed with many a tear:
So morning dews appear.
A cruel sister she !
• My Edwin, live for me!'
The churchyard path along,
Her lover's funeral song.
Her startling fancy found
His groan in every sound.
The visionary vale-
Sad sounding in the gale!
Her aged mother's door :
That angel-face no more,
Beat high against my side!
She shivered, sighed, and died.
Edwin and Emma.
Fast by a sheltering wood,
A humble cottage stood.
Beneath a mother's eye;
To see her blest, and die.
Gave colour to her cheek;
When vernal mornings break. Nor let the pride of great ones scorn
This charmer of the plains : That sun, who bids their diamonds blaze,
To paint our lily deigns.
Each maiden with despair;
Yet knew not she was fair:
A soul devoid of art ;
Shone forth the feeling heart.
Was quickly too revealed;
That virtue keeps concealed.
Did love on both bestow!
Where fortune proves a foe.
the fall of one of his father's cleavers, or hatchets, The Birks of Invernay.
on his foot-rendered him lame for life, and perThe smiling morn, the breathing spring,
petuated the recollection of his lowly birth. The Invite the tunefu’ birds to sing;
Society of Dissenters advanced a sum for the eduAnd, while they warble from the spray,
cation of the poet as a clergyman, and he repaired Love melts the universal lay.
to Edinburgh for this purpose in his eighteenth Let us, Amanda, timely wise,
year. He afterwards repented of this destination, Like them, improve the hour that flies;
and, returning the money, entered himself as a stuAnd in soft raptures waste the day,
dent of medicine. He was then a poet, and in his Among the birks of Invermay.
Hymn to Science, written in Edinburgh, we see at For soon the winter of the year,
once the formation of his classic taste, and the And age, life's winter, will appear;
dignity of his personal character :At this thy living bloom will fade,
That last best effort of thy skill, As that will strip the verdant shade.
To form the life and rule the will, Our taste of pleasure then is o'er,
Propitious Power ! impart; The feathered songsters are no more;
Teach me to cool my passion's fires, And when they drop and we decay,
Make me the judge of my desires, Adieu the birks of Invermay!
The master of my heart. Some additional stanzas were added to the above
Raise me above the vulgaris breath, by Dr Bryce, Kirknewton. Invermay is in Perth
Pursuit of fortune, fear of death,
And all in life that's mean; shire, the native county of Mallet, and is situated near the termination of a little picturesque stream
Still true to reason be my plan, called the May. The birk' or birch-tree is abun
Still let my actions speak the man, dant, adding grace and beauty to rock and stream.
Through every various scene. Though a Celt by birth and language, Mallet had | A youth animated by such sentiments, promised a none of the imaginative wildness or superstition of
erstition of manhood of honour and integrity. After three his native country. Macpherson, on the other hand, years spent in Edinburgh, Akenside removed to seems to have been completely imbued with it.
Leyden to complete his studies; and in 1744 he was admitted to the degree of M.D. He next esta
blished himself as a physician in London. In HolMARK AKENSIDE.
land he had (at the age of twenty-three) writThe author of The Pleasures of Imagination, one ten his 'Pleasures of Imagination,' which he now of the most pure and noble-minded poems of the offered to Dodsley, demanding £120 for the copyage, was of humble origin. His parents were dis- right. The bookseller consulted Pope, who told senters, and the Puritanism imbibed in his early him to make no niggardly offer, since this was no years seems, as in the case of Milton, to have given every-day writer.' The poem attracted much ata gravity and earnestness to his character, and a tention, and was afterwards translated into French love of freedom to his thoughts and imagination, and Italian. Akenside established himself as a MARK AKENSIDE was the son of a respectable physician in Northampton, where he remained a
year and a-half, but did not succeed. The latter part of his life was spent in London. At Leyden he had formed an intimacy with a young Englishman of fortune, Jeremiah Dyson, Esq., which ripened into a friendship of the most close and enthusiastic description; and Mr Dyson (who was afterwards clerk of the House of Commons, a lord of the treasury, &c.) had the generosity to allow the poet £300 a-year. After writing a few Odes, and attempting a total alteration of his great poem (in which he was far from successful), Akenside made no further efforts at composition. His society was courted for his taste, knowledge, and eloquence; but his solemn sententiousness of manner, his romantic ideas of liberty, and his unbounded admiration of the ancients, exposed him occasionally to ridicule. The physician in Peregrine Pickle, who gives a feast in the manner of the ancients, is supposed to have been a caricature of Akenside. The description, for rich humour and grotesque combinations of learning and folly, has not been excelled by Smollett; but it was unworthy his talents to cast ridicule on a man of high character and splendid genius. Akenside died suddenly of a putrid sore throat, on the 23d of June 1770, in his 49th year, and was buried in St James's church. With a feeling common to poets, as to more ordinary mortals, Akenside, in his latter days, reverted with delight to his native landscape on the banks of the Tyne. In his fragment of a fourth book of The Pleasures of Imagination,' written in the last year of his life, there is the following beau
tiful passage : House in which Akenside was born.
Oye dales batcher at Newcastle-upon-Tyne, where he was born, Of Tyne, and ye most ancient woodlands; where November 9, 1721. An accident in his early years-7 Oft as the giant flood obliquely strides,
And his banks open and his lawns extend,
learned poet, perhaps superior. His knowledge was Stops short the pleased traveller to view,
better digested. But Gray had not the romantic Presiding o'er the scene, some rustic tower
enthusiasm of character, tinged with pedantry, which Founded by Norman or by Saxon hands :
naturally belonged to Akenside. He had also the O ye Northumbrian shades, which overlook
experience of mature years. The genius of AkenThe rocky pavement and the mossy falls
side was early developed, and his diffuse and florid Of solitary Wensbeck’s limpid stream!
descriptions seem the natural product-marvellous How gladly I recall your well-known seats
of its kind-of youthful exuberance. He was afterBeloved of old, and that delightful time
wards conscious of the defects of his poem. He saw When all alone, for many a summer's day,
that there was too much leaf for the fruit; but in I wandered through your calm recesses, led
cutting off these luxuriances, he sacrificed some of In silence by some powerful hand unseen.
the finest blossoms. Posterity has been more just Nor will I e'er forget you; nor shall e'er
to his fame, by almost wholly disregarding this The graver tasks of manhood, or the advice
second copy of his philosophical poem. In his youthOf vulgar wisdom, move me to disclaim
ful aspirations after moral and intellectual greatThose studies which possessed me in the dawn
ness and beauty, he seems, like Jeremy Taylor in Of life, and fixed the colour of my mind
the pulpit, an angel newly descended from the For every future year: whence even now
visions of glory. In advanced years, he is the proFrom sleep I rescue the clear hours of morn,
fessor in his robes; still free from stain, but stately, And, while the world around lies overwhelmed
formal, and severe. The blank verse of 'The PleaIn idle darkness, am alive to thoughts
sures of Imagination' is free and well-modulated, and Of honourable fame, of truth divine
seems to be distinctively his own. Though apt to Or moral, and of minds to virtue won
run into too long periods, it has more compactness By the sweet magic of harmonious verse.
of structure than Thomson's ordinary composition. The spirit of Milton seems to speak in this strain of
Its occasional want of perspicuity probably arises lofty egotism!
from the fineness of his distinctions, and the diffiThe Pleasures of Imagination' is a poem seldom
culty attending mental analysis in verse. He might read continuously, though its finer passages, by fre
also wish to avoid all vulgar and common expresquent quotation, particularly in works of criticism
sions, and thus err from excessive refinement. A
redundancy of ornament undoubtedly, in some pas. and moral philosophy, are well known. Gray censured the mixture of spurious philosophy—the spe
sages, takes off from the clearness and prominence culations of Hutcheson and Shaftesbury—which the
of his conceptions. His highest flights, however-work contains. Plato, Lucretius, and even the papers
as in the allusion to the death of Cæsar, and his by Addison in the Spectator, were also laid under | exquisitely-wrought parallel between art and na. contribution by the studious author. He gathered
ture—have a flow and energy of expression, with sparks of enthusiasm from kindred minds, but the
appropriate imagery, which mark the great poet. train was in his own. The pleasures which his poem
His style is chaste, yet elevated and musical. He professes to treat of, 'proceed,' he says, “either from
never compromised his dignity, though he blended natural objects, as from a flourishing grove, a clear
sweetness with its expression. and murmuring fountain, a calm sea by moonlight, or from works of art, such as a noble edifice, a mu
[Aspirations after the Infinite.] sical tune, a statue, a picture, a poem.' These, with Say, why was man so eminently raised the moral and intellectual objects arising from them, I Amid the vast creation : why ordained furnish abundant topics for illustration ; but Aken- | Through life and death to dart his piercing eye, side dealt chiefly with abstract subjects, pertaining | With thoughts beyond the limit of his frame; more to philosophy than to poetry. He did not | But that the Omnipotent might send him forth seek to graft upon them human interests and pas. | In sight of mortal and immortal powers, sions. In tracing the final causes of our emotions, As on a boundless theatre, to run he could have described their exercise and effects in | The great career of justice; to exalt scenes of ordinary pain or pleasure in the walks His generous aim to all diviner deeds : of real life. This does not seem, however, to have To chase each partial purpose from his breast; been the purpose of the poet, and hence his work is And through the mists of passion and of sense, deficient in interest. He seldom stoops from the And through the tossing tide of chance and pain, heights of philosophy and classic taste. He con- | To hold his course unfaltering, while the voice sidered that physical science improved the charms of Of Truth and Virtue, up the steep ascent nature. Contrary to the feeling of an accomplished Of Nature, calls him to his high reward, living poet, who repudiates these cold material | The applauding smile of Heaven? Else wherefore burns laws,' he viewed the rainbow with additional plea- | In mortal bosoms this unquenched hope, sure after he had studied the Newtonian theory of That breathes from day to day sublimer things, lights and colours.
And mocks possession wherefore darts the mind Nor ever yet
With such resistless ardour to embrace The melting rainbow's vernal tinctured hues
Majestic forms; impatient to be free, To me have shone so pleasing, as when first
Spurning the gross control of wilful might; The hand of Science pointed out the path
Proud of the strong contention of her toils; In which the sunbeams gleaming from the west
Proud to be daring? who but rather turns Fall on the watery cloud, whose darksome veil
To Heaven's broad fire his unconstrained view, Involves the orient.
Than to the glimmering of a waxen flame!
Who that, from Alpine heights, his labouring eye Akenside's Hymn to the Naiads has the true classical | Shoots round the wide horizon, to survey spirit. He had caught the manner and feeling, the Nilus or Ganges, rolling his bright wave varied pause and harmony, of the Greek poets, with
Through mountains, plains, through empires black such felicity, that Lloyd considered his Hymn as with shade, fitted to give a better idea of that form of compo- | And continents of sand, will turn his gaze sition, than could be conveyed by any translation | To mark the windings of a scanty rill pf Homer or Callimachus. Gray was an equally | That murmurs at his feet? The high-born soul
Disdains to rest her heaven-aspiring wing
Of atoms moving with incessant change
The unadorned condition of her birth;
[Intellectual Beauty-Patriotism.] Mind, mind alone (bear witness earth and heaven!) The living fountains in itself contains Of beauteous and sublime: here hand in hand Sit paramount the Graces; here enthroned, Celestial Venus, with divinest airs, Invites the soul to never-fading joy. Look, then, abroad through Nature, to the range Of planets, suns, and adamantine spheres, Wbeeling unshaken through the void immense ; And speak, oh man! does this capacious scene With half that kindling majesty dilate Thy strong conception, as when Brutus rose Refulgent from the stroke of Cæsar's fate, Amid the crowd of patriots; and his arm Aloft extending, like eternal Jove When guilt brings down the thunder, called aloud On Tully's name, and shook his crimson steel, and bade the father of his country, hail ! For lo! the tyrant prostrate on the dust, And Rome again is free! Is aught so fair In all the dewy landscapes of the spring, In the bright eye of Hesper, or the morn, In Nature's faireat forms, is aught so fair As virtuous friendship? as the candid blush Of him who strives with fortune to be just ? The graceful tear that streams for others' woes, Or the mild majesty of private life, Where Peace, with ever-blooming olive, crowns The gate; where Honour's liberal hands effuse Unenvied treasures, and the snowy wings Of Innocence and Love protect the scene ! Once more search, undismayed, the dark profound Where nature works in secret ; view the beds Of mineral treasure, and the eternal vault That bounds the hoary ocean ; trace the forms
[Operations of the Mind in the Production of Worics
The various forms of being, to present | Before the curious eye of mimic art
Their largest choice: like spring's unfolded blooms
The seal of nature. There alone, unchanged
There breathe perennial sweets: the trembling chord
Emerges. Coloury mingle, features join,
The fairer eminent in light advance; And every image on its neighbour smiles. Awhile he stands, and with a father's joy Contemplates. Then with Promethean art Into its proper vehicle he breathes The fair conception; which, embodied thus, And permanent, becomes to eyes or ears An object ascertained: while thus inforined, The various objects of his mimic skill, The consonance of sounds, the featured rock, The shadowy picture, and impassioned verse, Beyond their proper powers attract the soul By that expressive semblance, while in sight Of nature's great original we scan The lively child of art; while line by line, And feature after feature, we refer To that divine exemplar whence it stole Those animating charms. Thus beauty's palm Betwixt them wavering hangs : applauding love Doubts where to choose ; and mortal man aspires To tempt creative praise. As when a cloud Of gathering hail with limpid crusts of ice Enclosed, and obvious to the beaming sun, Collects his large effulgence; straight the heavens With equal flames present on either hand The radiant visage : Persia stands at gaze, Appalled ; and on the brink of Ganges doubts The snowy.vested seer, in Mithra's name, To which the fragrance of the south shall burn, To which his warbled orisons ascend.
in species? This, nor gems nor stores of gold,
O blest of heaven! whom not the languid songs Of luxury, the siren! not the bribes Of sordid wealth, nor all the gaudy spoils Of pageant honour, can seduce to leave Those ever-blooming sweets, which from the store Of nature fair imagination culls To charm the enlivened soul! What though not all Of mortal offspring can attain the heights Of envied life; though only few possess Patrician treasures or imperial state; Yet nature's care, to all her children just, With richer treasures and an ampler state, Endows at large whatever happy man Will deign to use them. His the city's pomp, The rural honours his. Whate'er adorns The princely dome, the column and the arch, The breathing marbles and the sculptured gold, Beyond the proud possessor's narrow claim, His tuneful breast enjoys. For him the spring Distils her dews, and from the silken gem Its lucid leaves unfolds : for him the hand Of autumn tinges every fertile branch With blooming gold and blushes like the morn. Each passing hour sheds tribute from her wings; And still new beauties meet his lonely walk, And loves unfelt attract him. Not a breeze Flies o'er the meadow, not a cloud imbibes The setting sun's effulgence, not a strain
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