Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

the man

and in that year a Fourth Book of The Dunciad was published separately*.

You by whose care, in vain decry'd and curst,

Still Dunce the second reigns like Dunce the first.” To account for the change (or rather to disguise it) the Annotator thus comments, and signs the note“ Bentley."

“ It was expressly confessed in the Preface to the first Edition, that this poem was not published by the Author himself. It was printed originally in a foreign country. And what foreign country? Why, one notorious for blunders; where, finding blanks only instead of proper names, these blunderers filled them up at their pleasure. The very Hero of the Poem hath been mistaken to this hour; so that we are obliged to open our Notes with a discovery who he really was. We learn from the former Editor, that this Piece was presented by the hands of Sir Robert Walpole to King George II. Now the Author directly tells us, his Hero is

who brings The Smithfield Muses to the ear of Kings. And it is notorious who was the person on whom this Prince conferred the honour of the Laurel.-It appears as plainly, from the Apostrophe to the Great in the third verse, that Tibbald could not be the person, who was never an Author in fashion, or caressed by the Great ; whereas this single characteristic is sufficient to point out the true Hero; who, above all other Poets of his time, was the Peculiar Delight and Chosen Companion of the Nobility of England; and wrote, as he himself tells us, many of his Works at the earnest desire of Persons of Quality. -- Lastly, The sixth verse affords full proof; this Poet being the only one who was universally known to have had a Son so exactly like him, in his poetical, theatrical, political, and moral capacities, that it could justly be said of him, Still Dunce the second reign'd like Dunce the first. Bentley."

This alteration of the Hero produced a very spirited Letter from Mr. Cibber to Mr. Pope, inquiring into the Motives that might induce him in his Satirical Works to be so frequently fond of Mr. Cibter's Name," dated July 7, 1742; and it was followed, in August, by, 1.“A Letter to Mr. Cübber, on his Letter to Mr. Pope," 2. “ Homer preserved by Colley's brazen Face; or, the Twickenham Squire laid by the Heels ;" 3. Bayes; or, a new Lick at the Laureat;" 4.“ Blast upon Blast ; ør, a new Lesson for Mr. Pope.”

* “We apprehend it can be deemed no injury to the Author of the Three first Books of The Dunciad, that we publish this Fourth. It was found merely by accident, in taking a survey of the Library of a late eminent Nobleman ; but in so blotted a condition, and in so many deiached pieces, as plainly shewed it to be not only incorrect, but unfinished. That the Author of the Three first Books had a design to extend and complete his Poem in this manner, appears from the Dissertation prefixed to it, where it is said, that the design is inore extensive, and that we may

A Blast upon

ܪ

The first complete Edition of the whole Poem appeared in 1743, under the avowed superintendance of Mr. Warburton *.

After the intimacy commenced between Warburton and Pope, the learned Commentator presided over the counsels of the drowsy Goddess with despotic sway, deposing and creating Monarchs and erpect other episodes to complete it: And from the declaration in the Argument to the Third Book, that the accomplishment of the prophecies therein would be the theme hereafter of a greater Dunciad. But whether or no he be the Author of this, we declare ourselves ige norant. If he be, we are no more to be blamed for the publication of it, than Tucca and Varius for that of the last Six Books of the Æneid, though perhaps inferior to the former.-If any person be possessed of a more perfect copy of this work, or of any other fragments of it, and will communicate them to the Publisher, we shall make the next Edition more complete: in which we also promise to insert any Criticisms thatshall be published (if at all to the purpose) with the Names of the Authors; or any letters sept us (though not to the purpose) shall yet be printed under the title of Epistola Obscurorum Virorum; which, together with some others of the same kind formerly laid by for that end, may make no unpleasant addition to the future impressions of this Poem. Editor's Advertisement, prefired to Book IV.

This Book was added, by Mr. Pope, at the suggestion of Mr. Warburton; who, in a Letter to Mr. Bowyer, April 10, 1744, says, “ I am glad you have been printing for Mr. Pope. Don't mention to any, I beg of you, your suspicion about the Notes. Is it not a noble Poem? I I am glad The Dunciad has such a run. The Greek, I know, will be well printed in your Edition, notwithstanding the absence of Scriblerus."

*“ I have long had a design of giving some sort of Notes on the Works of this Poet. Before I had the happiness of his acquaintance, I had written a Commentary on his Essay on Man, and have since finished another on the Essay on Criticism. There was one already on The Dunciad, which had met with general approbation : but I still thought some additions were want. ing (of a more serious kind) to the humourous Notes of ScribleTus, and even to those written by Mr. Cleland, Dr. Irbuthnot, and others. I had lately the pleasure to pass some months with the. Author in the country, where I prevailed upon him to do what I had long desired, and favour me with his explanation of several passages in his Works. It happened, that just at that juncture was published a ridiculous book against him, full of Personal Reflections, which furnished him with a lucky opportunity of improving This Poem, by giving it the only thing it wanted, a more considerable Hero. He was always sensible of its defect in that particular, and owned he had let it pass with the

Hero har

Princes with as much sang froid as Napoleon Buonaparte himself in the height of his inaddest frenzy. He had the game in his own hands; and hurled his vengeance with relentless fury.

In 1749, a neat Edition in 12mo was published, with the title of “ The Dunciad, complete, in Four Books, according to Mr. Pope's last Improvements. With several Additions now first printed *, and the Hero it had, purely for want of a better; not entertaining the least expectation that such an one was reserved for this post, as has since obtained the Laurel: but since that had happened, he could no longer deny this justice either to him or The Dunciad.

- And yet I will venture to say, there was another motive which had still more weight with our Author: this person was one, who from every Folly (not to say Vice) of which another would be ashamed, has constantly derived a Vanity; and therefore was the man in the world that would least be hurt by it. W. W. 1743."

* In this Edition the amiable Dr. John Burton was thus gibbeted in a Note on Book IV. ver. 443 : “ These two lines stood originally thus:

“ And most but find that Centinel of God,

A drowsy Watchman in the land of Nod. But to this there were two objections, the pleasantry was too low for the Poet, and a deal too good for the Goddess. For though (as he told us before) Gentle Dulness ever loves a joke (II. 34.), and (as this species of mirth arises from a mal-entendit) we may well suppose it to be much to her taste, yet this above is not genuine, but a mere counterfeit of wit, as we shall see by placing by the side of it one of her own jokes, which we find in the Reverend Mr. Burton's late Satire upon Bath t, in the following words: Virum, quem non ego sanè doctissimum, at certè omnium, quotquot ferè uspiam, Literatissimum appellare ausim. And look, the more respectable the subject, the more grateful to our Goddess is the offering. Scribl."—At the request of Bp. Hayter the note was reluctantly withdrawn f.

The Commentator had afterwards an intention of placing also the learned Editor of Lysias and Demosthenes in an elevated situation among the Dunces.

- As Cibber," he says, “ supplied the place of Tibbald, so shall Taylor take place of Webster, though I will tell you my thoughts sincerely, I do not think he has so good an understanding as Webster. But it requires an infinitely better than either of them has, to understand the plainest of truths, that the most learned Dunce, when, or wherever he exists, remains still the same Dunce in which he came into the world." Letter to Mr. Hurd, Jan. 12, 1757.

The following note on Book II. 137, appeared in some copies of the Edition of 1751, but was afterwards removed by a cancel. po "Iter Bathoniense, a Poem, 1748," folio. See vol. I. p. 766. See the “ Literary Anecdotes," vol. V. p. 587.

[ocr errors][merged small]

Dissertations on the Poem and the Hero, and Notes
Variorum. Published by Mr. Warburton *."

To this Edition is prefixed a Frontispiece (designed by N. Blakey, and engraved by C.Grignion), exhibiting the LAURELED Cibber seated on a Throne; and at the bottom the motto from The Dunciad.

All my Commands are easy, short, and fuil :

My Sons! be proud, be selfish, and be dull.” “In verity (saith Scriblerus) a very bungling trick. How much better might our worthy Brethren of Grub-street be taught (as in many things they have already been) by the modern professors of Modern Theology, who, when they make free with their neighbour's property, seize upon his good works rather than his good name; as knowing that those will produce a name of their own ; so that, while the Poetaster gives his Works in another man's name, the Theologaster more wisely gives his name to another man's Works. Thus Waterland transferred the reasoning and learning of Bishop Bull into his Defences of the Orthodox Faith: And Jackson, inferior to his adversary both in sense and letters, went beyond him in this, that he took to himself the entire Answers of Dr. Clarke ; and by that means gained, what he only aimed at, the reputation of the better disputant — with the good faith, and, I make no doubt, with the same self-complacency of that illustrious seller of brooms, who, when a neighbour of the trade told him he was under some surprize at his affording brooms cheaper than himself; for, to tell you a secret, brother, says he, I steul my materials,' replied, ‘Go, you fool, I can tell you a greater; I steal mine ready made.'

Leaden Gilbert, Book IV. of 1749, 608, was softened in 1731 into leaden G--;" and the following note withdrawn: “ A reflection upon the Age the Goddess had just then restoreri, not on the Person to whom the agnomen is given, according to the sublime custom of the Easterns, in calling new-born Princes after some great and recent event."

* Who says, in an Advertisement, “This Edition of The Deine ciad is published for the same reason that the Editor, some time ago, published the Essay on Man, to prevent surreptitious and pirated Editions, to the injury both of the Proprietor and the Purchaser. As these two Works are, in their several kinds, complete, and independent on any other, they will (for the purpose above-mentioned) be always separately continued in sale."

-“ There is a little Edition of The Dunciad published for the market. I did not think it worth sending to you, because therr is a better in reserve, which I intended for you. In this there is a noted Dunce or two that came in my way. But I shall have one general reckoning with them (which I hope you will not think unsuitable to my character), and then adieu to the Punces for ever." Letter to Mr. Hurd, Feb. 10, 1749-50.

[merged small][ocr errors]

LETTERS

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

Letters to Dr. STUKELEY, from the Marquis of

LINDSEY, Lord Harley, the Earls of WINCHELSEA, HARTFORD, PEMBROKE, OXFORD, DERBY, and WESTMORELAND, Abp. WAKE, and the Duke of MONTAGU *.

London, Aug. 7, 1715. “I find by yours that you have now finished the draught of the Church and Steeple at Boston t, which you design to dedicate to me. If you please to send your Engraver to me, he may see my Arms, and receive what directions you

think

proper. “I am your humble servant,

LINDSEYI." “ Sir,

W'impole, Nov. 21, 1721. " I received a Letter from you of November 16, in which you desire I would allow Mr. Wanley to stay in town till the Election for a Secretary to the Royal Society be over $. I have wrote to Mr. Wanley this post, to let him know that, if he pleases, I give my consent very freely for his staying in town. I heartily wish you success in your undertaking; and am, Sir, "" Your humble servant,

HARLEY 11."

Eastuell, Oct. 20, 1722. Nothing could so much atone for your leaving us so soon, as letting me hear from you. I was extremely pleased to learn, by your very obliging, entertaining, and instructive Letter, thai, after a long penance here, by what you saw and observed in your way, the journey inust have been very agreeable to you; and that you are, after all your toils, arrived in good health, and are in safe harbour before the rough season of the year comes in, and where I hope very soon to wait on you. I set out from hence next Tuesday; shall dig for urns, &c. next day, and view the Kit-Coty-house ; which, by the help of your observations, I shall see to much greater advantage than I could otherwise have done. Your account of it seems very just, and, I am sure, is very curious. I am glad you have prevailed with Mr. Taylor to let a section be made in this grave; perhaps I shall get it done, but I doubt whether it can be while I am present, for want of time. I am glad you think this work strengthens my conjectures concerning Julabury's grave. You encourage me to study

* For the greater part of this Correspondence, 1 am indebted to the Rev. J. F. St. John (see before, p. 1).—The other Letters are transcribed from the Originals in the British Museum,

+ A good South View of Boston Church was drawn and published by Dr. Stukeley; who dedicated the Plate to “Peregrine Marquis of Lindsey, and Lord Willoughby of Eresby, eldest son of Robert first Duke of Ancas. ter,” with a brief history of it annexed. A smaller View is inseried in his Itinerarium Curiosum, Plate XIX.

I Peregrine Bertie, asterwards second Duke of Ancaster, and Lord Great Chamberlain. He died in January 1711.

The vacancy was occasioned by the resignation of Dr. Edward Hailey. Dr. James Jurin was the successful Candidate.

|| Edward Lord Harley, afterwards second Earl of Oxford ; see p. 725. VOL, II. 3 D

that

« ZurückWeiter »