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EXERCISING THE INFORMATION GIVEN IN LESSON 83.
221. Exercises in Iambic Verse of four feet or eight syllables. Each line forms one verse, and the two lines of each couplet must rhyme with each other.
1. We raise the choral song to thee,
Through winter's snow and summer's heat.
And cheer thy gloom with divine light.
222. Exercises in Iambic Verse of fire feet or ten syllables:
4. While the shepherd, free from passion, thus sleeps, A monarch might see his state with envy.
5. Seek not thou, with vain endeavour, to find The secret counsels of almighty mind,
The great decree lies involv'd in darkness;
7. Oh! in some heaven-protected isle place me,
223. In the following Exercises, supply the ellipses to suit the sense and metre:
Say, who the various nations can declare,
These dip their
Some bathe their
plumage in the floods;
Some fly to man, his household gods
And gather round his
Wait the known call, and find — there,
- tyrants of the air.
The eagle seats his callow brood
High on the -, and feasts his with blood. On Snowdon's
Whose beetling-o'erhang the western main, bird his lonely kingdom forms, Amidst the clouds, and sullen-,
THE DIFFERENT SPECIES OF POETRY.
224. PASTORAL POETRY. Pastoral Poetry is a description of rural objects and scenes of Nature. The scene, which is always laid in the country, must be distinctly exhibited. The characters will consist of persons wholly engaged in rural occupations. The subject will comprise such adventures as may occur to persons so occupied, and calculated to display their disposition and temper; the scenes of domestic felicity or disquiet; the attachment of friends and relatives; the rivalship and competitions of lovers, and the unexpected successes or misfortunes of families.
225. LYRIC POETRY took its rise from religious gratitude; it was first employed to express thanks for the blessings bestowed on man by his Creator; hence the harvest hymns, and other compositions of a similar nature. The Psalms of David exhibit this species of poetry in the highest degree of perfection. Among the ancients, Lyrics were appropriated, 1. To religious subjects; 2. to the celebration of heroes; 3. to moral and philosophical subjects; 4. to festive pleasure and amusement.
226. There are in English several Lyric compositions of considerable merit; among which are Milton's Allegro and Penseroso, the two rival odes of Pope and Dryden on St. Cecilia's day; Gray's Bard, Progress of Poetry, and his Ode on Eton
College; together with several odes by Collins, Akenside, Gay, Cowper, and Coleridge.
227. ELEGIAC. The Elegy was first employed in bewailing the death of a friend, afterwards it was employed to express the complaints of lovers, or any melancholy subject. The passions of grief, despair, or resentment, generally, predominate in poems of this kind. But funeral lamentations and disappointed love seem most congenial to its character, as may be instanced in David's lamentation over Jonathan. Gray's Elegy in a country churchyard is a beautiful specimen of this species of composition.
228. DIDACTIC Poetry is intended to convey instruction either in the arts, in morals, or in philosophy. The fundamental qualities of excellence in this kind of composition consist in sound thought, just principles, and apposite illustrations. — The principal Didactic compositions in English are Pope's Essay on Criticism, his Essay on Man, Young's Night Thoughts, Akenside's Pleasures of the Imagination, Armstrong on Health, and Pollok's Course of Time.
229. DESCRIPTIVE Poetry is intended to exhibit beautiful pictures of nature or art so as to communicate all the information and pleasure which the reader could receive from an actual survey of the objects. Examples. Thomson's Seasons, Pope's Windsor Forest, Goldsmith's Traveller and Deserted Village, Rogers's Pleasures of Memory, Denham's Cooper's Hill, Campbell's Pleasures of
Hope, and several of Cowper's and Sir Walter Scott's Poems.
230. SATIRICAL Poetry is a species of the Didactic, and professes to have in view the reformation of morals and manners, by censuring what is wrong, and exposing what is foolish. There are two sorts of satire; the one, by painting vice in its native deformity, endeavours to inflict upon the vicious deserved censure; the other, by exposing the whims, the oddities, the absurdities, and the crimes of men, seeks to improve or reclaim. Examples.-Pope's Dunciad and Satirical Epistles, Young's Love of Fame, Johnson's London, Cowper's Table Talk and Progress of Error.
231. POETICAL EPISTLES are commonly intended as observations on authors, or on life and characters; in delivering which, the poet does not purpose to compose a formal treatise, or to confine himself strictly to regular method; but gives scope to his ability on some particular theme which prompted him to write.
232. EPIC POETRY is the most dignified but the most difficult of execution of any species of poetic composition, concentrating all that is sublime in action, description, or sentiment. It may be defined, a poetical narration of an illustrious enterprise, completed by supernatural agency. The fable should be founded in fact, and fiction should only complete that outline which has been traced by the finger of truth. The machinery should be subject to the main design, and the action be simple and