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Methinks their very names shine still and bright;
Apart, like glow-worms on a summer night ;
Or lovely tapers when from far they fling
A guiding ray ; or seen, like stars on high,
Satellites burning in a lucid ring
Around meek Walton's heavenly memory.

(Ecclesiastical Sketches.)




While flowing rivers yield a blameless sport,
Shall live the name of Walton ;—sage benign !
Whose pen, the mysteries of rod and line
Unfolding, did not fruitlessly exhort
To reverend watching of each still report
That Nature utters from her rural shrine.
Meek, nobly versed in simple discipline,
He found the longest summer day too short,
To his loved pastime given by sedgy Lee,
Or down the tempting maze of Shawford brook !
Fairer than life itself in this sweet book,
The cowslip bank and shady willow tree,
And the fresh meads; where flowed from every nook
Of his full bosom, gladsome piety!


For deathless powers to verse belong,
And they like demi-gods are strong
On whom the muses smile;
But some their functions have disclaimed,
Best pleased with what is aptliest framed
To enervate and defile.

Not such the initiatory strains
Committed to the silent plains
In Britain's earliest dawn :
Trembled the groves, the stars grew pale,
While all too-daringly the veil
Of nature was withdrawn !

Nor such the spirit-stirring note
When the live chords Alcæus smote,
Inflamed by sense of wrong ;
Woe! woe to tyrants ! from the lyre
Broke threateningly, in sparkles dire
Of fierce vindictive song.

And not unhallowed was the page
By winged love inscribed, to assuage

The pangs of vain pursuit ;
Love listening while the Lesbian maid
With finest touch of passion swayed
Her own Æolian lute.

O ye who patiently explore
The wreck of Herculanean lore,
What rapture ! could ye seize
Some Theban fragment, or unrol
One precious, tender-hearted scroll


That were, indeed, a genuine birth
Of poesy; a bursting forth
Of genius from the dust :
What Horace gloried to behold,
What Maro loved, shall we enfold i
Can haughty time be just !

September, 1819.*

* The reader will doubtless be surprised that no passage has been given from Wordsworth’s “Prelude.” I regret that I have not been able to obtain permission to quote from that poem.



[Born, 1772. Educated at Christ's Hospital and Jesus College, Cambridge. “The Watchman,” and early Poems, published 1796; “ The Ancient Mariner,” in Lyrical Ballads, 1798; Christabel,” 1806; Translation of Schiller's Wallenstein," 1800; “ Biographia Literaria,” 1817; “Aids to Reflection,” 1825. Died, 1834. "Literary Remains," 1836.]



It is saying less than the truth to affirm that an excellent book (and the remark holds almost equally good of a Raphael as of a Milton) is like a well chosen and well tended fruit-tree. Its fruits are not of one season only. With the due and natural intervals, we may recur to it year


and it will supply the same nourishment and the same gratification, if only we ourselves return to it with the same healthful appetite.

(Literary Remains, v. 1, p. 63).

BOOKS THE BEST PERPETUATORS OF FAME. And in truth, deeply, O far more than words can

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express, as I venerate the Last Judgment and the Prophets of Michel Angelo Buonaroti, --yet the very pain which I repeatedly felt as I lost myself in gazing upon them, the painful consideration that their having been in fresco was the sole cause that they had not been abandoned to all the accidents of a dangerous transportation to a distant capital ; and that the same caprice which made the Neapolitan soldiery destroy all the exquisite masterpieces on the walls of the Trinitado Monte after the retreat of their antagonist barbarians, might as easily have made vanish the rooms and open gallery of Raffael, and the yet more unapproachable wonders of the sublime Florentine in the Sixtine Chapel, forced upon my mind the reflection : How grateful the human race ought to be that the works of Euclid, Newton, Plato, Milton, Shakspeare, are not subject to similar contingencies,—that they and their fellows, and the great, though inferior, peerage of undying intellect, are secured ;--secured even from a second irruption of Goths and Vandals, in addition to many other safeguards, by the vast empire of English language, laws, and religion founded in America,

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