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Thomas Warton, younger brother of the pre- | lamented the death of George II., in some libe & ceding, a distinguished poet, and an historian of dressed to Mr. Pitt, he continued the courtly atzo poetry, was born at Basingstoke in 1728. He was in poems on the marriage of George III., and a educated under his father till 1743, when he was birth of the Prince of Wales, both printed in *** admitted a commoner of Trinity College, Oxford. University collection. In 1770 he gare anecas Ilere he exercised his poetical talent to so much ad-in two volumes 4to., of the Greek met Toro vantage, that, on the appearance of Mason's Elegy which gave him celebrity in other countries bestion of Isis, which severely reflected on the disloyalty his own. At what time he first employed him of Oxford at that period, he was encouraged by Dr. with the History of English Poetry, we are me Huddesford, President of his College, to vindicate formed; but in 1774 he had so far proceeded at the cause of his University. This task he performed work as to publish the first volume in 4to. He is with great applause, by writing, in his twenty-first wards printed a second in 1778, and a ibird in 12 year, “ The Triumph of Isis," a piece of much but his labor now became tiresome to himself spirit and fancy, in which he retaliated upon the the great compass which he had allotted to his bard of Cam, by satirizing the courtly venality then was so irksome, that an unfinished fourth to malé supposed to distinguish the rival University. His was all that he added to it. " Progress of Discontent," published in 1750, ex. The place of Camden professor of history, vaze hibited to great advantage his powers in the familiar by the resignation of Sir William Scott, mis style, and his talent for humor, with a knowledge close of his professional exertions; but some & of human life, extraordinary at his early age, espe- another engagement required his attention cially if composed, as it is said, for a college exer- His Majesty's express desire, the post of per cise in 1746. In 1750 he took the degree of M. A., laureate was offered to him, and accepted, and to and in the following year became a fellow of his determined to use his best endeavors for rendera College.
lit respectable. Varying the monotony of armite His spirited satire, entitled “Newmarket," and sary court compliment by topics better adaptec v pointed against the ruinous passion for the turf; his poetical description, he improved the strle of age "Ode for Music;" and his “ Verses on the Death laureate odes, though his lyric strains under a of the Prince of Wales," were written about this some ridicule on that account. time; and, in 1753, he was the editor of a small! His concluding publication was an edition of the collection of poems, under the title of “The juvenile poems of Milion, of which the first ro: Union," which was printed at Edinburgh, and con- made its appearance in 1785, and the second tained several of his own performances. In 1754 1790, a short time before his death. His et he made himself known by Observations on tion now began to give way. In bis sitleseum Spenser's Faery Queen, in one volume, afterwards year an attack of the gout shattered his frame, Ik enlarged to two; a work well received by the pub- was succeeded in May, 1790, by a paralytic stre lic, and which made a considerable addition to his which carried him off, at his lodgings in Ombut literary reputation. So high was his character in His remains were interred, with every academic the University, that in 1757 he was elected to the honor, in the chapel of Trinity College. office of its poetry-professor, which he held for the The pieces of Thomas Warton are very van usual period of ten years, and rendered respectable in subject, and none of them long, whence be by the erudition and taste displayed in his lectures. I only rank among the minor poets; but scarcer
It does not appear necessary in this place to par- of that tribe has noted with finer observato ticularize all the prose compositions which, whether minute circumstances in rural nature that ai. grave or humorous, fell at this time from his pen; I pleasure in description, or has derived from but it may be mentioned that verse continued occa-regions of fiction more animated and pictures sionally to occupy his thoughts and that having scenery.
ODE TO THE FIRST OF APRIL.
Witu dalliance rude young Zephyr wooes
Mindful of disaster past,
Scant along the ridgy land
The swallow, for a moment seen,
Fraught with a transient, frozen shower,
Where in venerable rows
Musing through the lawny park,
Tinge the tall groups of various trees;
Towers distinguish'd from the rest,
Within some whispering osier isle,
O'er the broad downs, a novel race,
His free-born vigor yet unbroke
Yet, in these presages rude,
BOUND for holy Palestine,
“Syrian virgins, wail and weep,
* The Glym is a small river in Oxfordshire, flowing through Warton's parish of Kiddington, or Cuddington, and dividing it into upper and lower town. It is described by bimself in his account of Cuddington, as a deep but narrow stream, winding through willowed meadowe and abounding in trouts, pikes, and wild-fowl. It gives name to the village of Glymton, which adjoins to Kid. dington.
The radiant range of shield and lance
We bid the spectre-shapes avaunt, Down Damascus' hills advance :
Ashtaroth, and Termagaunt! From Sion's turrets as afar
With many a demon, pale of hue, Ye ken the march of Europe's war!
Doom'd to drink the bitter dew, Saladin, thou paynim king,
That drops from Macon's sooty tree, From Albion's isle revenge we bring !
'Mid the dread grove of ebony. On Acon's spiry citadel,
Nor magic charms, nor fiends of Hell, Though to the gale thy banners swell,
The Christian's holy courage quell. Pictur'd with the silver Moon ;
Salem, in ancient majesty England shall end thy glory soon!
Arise, and lift thee to the sky! In vain, to break our firm array,
Soon on thy battlements divine Thy brazen drums hoarse discord bray:
Shall wave the badge of Constantine. Those sounds our rising fury fan:
Ye barons, to the Sun unfold English Richard in the van,
Our cross with crimson wove and gold."
Blondel led the tuneful band,
PROGRESS OF DISCONTENT.
WHEN now mature in classic knowledge, That gave a murder'd Savior birth;
The joyful youth is sent to College, Then with ardor fresh endu’d,
His father comes, a vicar plain,
At Oxford bred-in Anna's reign, Thus the solemn song renew'd. "Lo, the toilsome voyage past,
And thus, in form of humble suitor, Heaven's favor'd hills appear at last!
Bowing accosts a reverend tutor :
“Sir, I'm a Glo'stershire divine, Object of our holy vow, We tread the Tyrian valleys now.
And this my eldest son of nine; From Carmel's almond-shaded steep
My wife's ambition and my own We feel the cheering fragrance creep:
Was that this child should wear a gown: O'er Engaddi's shrubs of balm
I'll warrant that his good behavior Waves the date-empurpled palm :
Will justify your future favor; See Lebanon's aspiring head
And, for his parts, to tell the truth, Wide his immortal umbrage spread !
My son 's a very forward youth ; Hail, Calvary, thou mountain hoar,
Has Horace all by heart—you'd wonderWet with our Redeemer's gore!
And mouths out Homer's Greek like thunder
If you'd examine—and admit him,
A scholarship would nicely fit him;
That he succeeds 'tis ten to one ; Fearless we climb this hostile shore !
Your vote and interest, sir!"— Tis done. And thou, the sepulchre of God;
Our pupil's hopes, though twice defeated, By mocking Pagans rudely trod,
Are with a scholarship completed: Bereft of every awful rite,
A scholarship but hall maintains, And quench'd thy lamps that beam'd so bright;
And college-rules are heavy chains: For thee, from Britain's distant coast,
In garret dark he smokes and pans, Lo, Richard leads his faithful host!
A prey to discipline and duns; Aloft in his heroic hand,
And now, intent on new designs, Blazing like the beacon's brand,
Sighs for a fellowship—and fines. O'er the far-affrighted fields,
When nine full tedions winters past, Resistless Kaliburn* he wields.
That utmost wish is crown'd at last :
But the rich prize no sooner got,
Again he quarrels with his lot:
“ These fellowships are pretty things In vain thy gloomy castles frown:
We live indeed like petty kings :
But who can bear to waste his whole age In vain our steel-clad steeds defy;
Amid the dullness of a college, And, rolling in terrific state,
Debarr'd the common joys of life, On giant-wheels harsh thunders grate.
And that prime bliss-a loving wife! When eve has hush'd the buzzing camp,
0! what's a table richly spread, Amid the moonlight vapors damp,
Without a woman at its head?
† Ashtaroth is mentioned by Milton as a general
of the Syrian deities: Par. Lost, i. 422. And Terrades * Kaliburn is the sword of king Arthur: which, as the is the name given in the old romance to monkish historians say, came into the possession of Rich. Saracens. See Percy's Relics, vol. i. p. 74.
rd I., and was given by that monarch, in the Crusades, i The scholars of Trinity are superannuata to Tancred king or Sicily, as a royal present of inestima. I do not succeed to fellowships in nine year ble value, about the year 1190.
election to scholarships.
romance to the god of a
Dive years after their
“Why did I sell my college life,”
Oh! trilling head, and fickle heart!
INSCRIPTION IN A HERMITAGE,
AT ANSLEY HALL, IN WARWICKSHIRE.
Would some snug benefice but fall,
Too fond of freedom and of ease
Continuing this fantastic farce on,
Thus fixt, content he taps his barrel,
But ah! too soon his thoughtless breast
BENEATH this stony roof reclin'd,
Within my limits lone and still,
At morn I take my custom'd round,
At eve, within yon studious nook,
While such pure joys my bliss create, Who but would smile al guilty state ?
ODE SENT TO A FRIEND,
Who but would wish his holy lot
WRITTEN IN WHICHWOOD FOREST.
The hinds how blest, who ne'er beguil'd
When morning's twilight-tinctur'd beam
'Midst gloomy glades, in warbles clear,
For them the Moon with cloudless ray
Their little sons, who spread the bloom
Their humble porch with honied flow'rs
ON HIS LEAVING A FAVORITE VILLAGE DE
Who now shall indolently stray
For lo! the Bard who rapture found In every rural sight or sound; Whose genius warm, and judgment chasle, No charm of genuine nature pass'd; Who felt the Muse's purest fires, Far from thy favor'd haunt retires; Who peopled all thy vocal bowers With shadowy shapes, and airy powers.
Behold, a dread repose resumes, As erst, thy sad sequester'd glooms! From the deep dell, where shaggy roots Fringe the rough brink with wreathed shois. Th' unwilling genius flies forlorn, His primrose chaplet rudely torn. With hollow shriek the nymphs forsake The pathless copse and hedge-row brake: Where the delvid mountains headlong side Its chalky entrails opens wide, On the green summit, ambush'd high, No longer Echo loves to lie. No pearl-crown'd maids with wily look, Rise beckoning from the reedy brook.
* Grey clothing, from the Latin verb amicio, to clothe.