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epigram. It consists, first, of an argument in prose; next follows a motto from Roscommon. Then comes the epigram; and lastly, notes serving to explain the epigram; but you shall have it with all its decorations.
ADDRESSED TO THE GENTLEMEN REFLECTED ON IN THE
Worried with debts, and past all hopes of bail,
Let not the hungry Bavius' angry stroke
The last lines are certainly executed in a very masterly manner; it. is of that species of augmentation, called the perplexing. It effectually flings the antagonist into a mist; there's no answering it: the laugh is raised against him, while he is endeavouring to find out the jest. At once he shows
2 Settled at one shilling, the price of the poem.
that the author has a kennel, and that this kennel is putrid, and that this putrid kennel overflows. But why does it overflow 1 It overflows, because the author happens to have low pockets.
There was also another new attempt in this way, a prosaic epigram, which came out upon this occasion. This is so full of matter, that a critic might split it into fifteen epigrams, each properly fitted with its string. You shall see it.
TO G. C. AND R. L.
'twas you, or I, or he, or all together,
There, there is a perplex! I could have wished to have made it quite perfect; the author, as in the case before, had added notes. Almost every word admits a scholium, and a long one too. I, YOU, HE. Suppose a stranger should ask, and who are you 1 Here are three obscure persons spoken of, that may in a short time be utterly forgotten. Their names should consequently have been written in notes at the bottom; but when the reader comes to the words great and small, the maze is inextricable. Here the stranger may dive for a mystery, without ever reaching the bottom. Let him know then that small is a word poorly introduced to make good rhyme, and great was a very proper word to keep small company.
This was denoted against the triumvirate of friends, Churchill, Colman, and Lloyd.
(v. Cit. of the World, ii. 208.) Even in the sultry wilds of Southern America the lover is not satisfied with possessing his mistress's person, without having her mind.
In all my Emma's beauties blest,
Amidst profusion still I pine;
Its panting tenant is not mine.
TRANSLATION OF THE SOUTH AMERICAN ODE.
The following translations occur in Goldsmith's Essays (ed. 1821). When he has adopted a translation, he has affixed the name of the author; I conclude, therefore, that those without a name are his own.
The critic who, with nice discernment, knows
Suppose a painter to a human head
The tragic bard, a goat his humble prize, Bade satyrs naked and uncouth arise;His muse severe, secure, and undismay'd, The rustic joke in solemn strain convey'd, For novelty alone he knew could charm A lawless crowd, with wine and feasting warm.
Thespis, inventor of dramatic art, Convey'd his vagrant actors in a cart, High o'er the crowd the mimic tribe appear'd, And play'd and sung,with lees of wine besmear'd.
Then .dEschylus, a decent vizard used,
The comic poets, in its earliest age, Who form'd the manners of the Grecian stage— Was there a villain who might justly claim A better right of being damn'd to fame, Rake, cut-throat, thief, whatever was his crime, They boldly stigmatiz'd the wretch in rhyme.
With passions not my own who fires my heart,
Who with unreal terrors fills my breast,
As with a magic influence possess'd. Hor.
But God and man, and letter'd post denies
Poets would profit, or delight mankind,
And with the amusing show the instructive join'd.
Profit and pleasure, mingled thus with art,
At ease reclin'd beneath the verdant shade,
These on the mountain billows hung: to those The yawning waves the yellow sand disclose.