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parts and separations; but mingling, for explicating. At all events you as they best may, correct the malig- have no cause to triumph ; you have nity of any single predominance. not been proving the premises, but The analogy holds, I suppose, in refer for satisfaction therein to very the moral world. If all the good long and laborious works, which may people were to ship themselves off to well employ the sceptic a twelveTerra Incognitas, what, in humanity's month or two to digest, before he name, is to become of the refuse? If can possibly be ripe for your conthe persons, whom I have chiefly in clusion. When he has satisfied himview, have not pushed matters to self about the premises, he will conthis extremity yet, they carry them cede to you the inference, I dare as far as they can go. Instead of say, most readily. But your latter mixing with the infidel and the free- deduction, viz. that because 8 has thinker-in the room of opening a written a book concerning 9, therenegociation, to try at least to find out fore 10 and 11 was certainly his at which gate the error entered—they meaning, is one of the most extrahuddle close together, in a weak fear ordinary conclusions per sultum that of infection, like that pusillanimous I have had the good fortune to meet underling in Spenser
with. As far as 10 is verbally asThis is the wandering wood, this Error's serted in the writings, all sects must
agree with you; but you cannot be A monster vile, whom God and man does ignorant of the many various ways
in which the doctrine of the ********* Therefore, I reed, beware. Fly, fly, quoth has been understood, from a low then
figurative expression (with the UniThe fearful Dwarf.
tarians) up to the most mysterious and, if they be writers in orthodox actuality; in which highest sense journals-addressing themselves only alone you and your church take it. to the irritable passions of the un- And for 11, and that there is no other believer-they proceed in a safe possible conclusion—to hazard this in system of strengthening the strong the face of so many thousands of hands, and confirming the valiant Arians and Socinians, &c., who have knees; of converting the already con- drawn so opposite a one, is such a verted, and proselyting their own piece of theological hardihood, as, I party. I am the more convinced of think, warrants me in concluding this from a passage in the very Trea- that, when you sit down to pen theotise which occasioned this letter. It logy, you do not at all consider your is where, having recommended to the opponents; but have in your eye, doubter the writings of Michaelis merely and exclusively, readers of and Lardner, you ride triumphant the same way of thinking with yourover the necks of all infidels, scep- self, and therefore have no occasion tics, and dissenters, from this time to trouble yourself with the quality to the world's end, upon the wheels of the logic, to which you treat of two unanswerable deductions. I them. do not hold it meet to set down in Neither can I think, if you had a Miscellaneous Compilation like had the welfare of the poor child this, such religious words as you -over whose hopeless condition you have thought fit to introduce into whine so lamentably and (I must the pages of a petulant Literary think) unseasonably-seriously at Journal. I therefore beg leave to heart, that you could have taken the substitute numerals, and refer to the step of sticking him up by name Quarterly Review (for July) for fil)- T. H. is as good as naming him—to ing of them up. “Here," say you, perpetuate an outrage upon the pa“ as in the history of 7, if these books rental feelings, as long as the Quarare authentic, the events which they terly Review shall last.-Was it nerelate must be true; if they were cessary to specify an individual case, written by 8, 9 is 10 and 11.' Your and give to Christian compassion the first deduction, if it means honest- appearance of personal attack? Is ly, rests upon two identical propo- this the way to conciliate unbesitions; though I suspect an unfair- lievers, or not rather to widen the ness in one of the terms, which this breach irreparably? would not be quite the proper place I own I could never think so con
siderably of myself as to decline the the same condescending to a boyish society of an agreeable or worthy man sportiveness—in both your converupon difference of opinion only. The sations. His hand-writing is so impediments and the facilitations to much the same with your own, that a sound belief are various and in- I have opened more than one letter scrutable as the heart of man. Some of his, hoping, nay, not doubting, believe upon weak principles. Others but it was from you, and have been cannot feel the efficacy of the strong- disappointed (he will bear with my est. One of the most candid, most saying so) at the discovery of my upright, and single-meaning men, I error. L. H. is unfortunate in hold ever knew, was the late Thomas ing some loose and not very definite Holcroft. I believe he never said one speculations (for at times I think he thing and meant another, in his hardly knows whither his premises life; and, as near as I can guess, would carry him) on marriage—the he never acted otherwise than with tenets, I conceive, of the Political the most scrupulous attention to Justice, carried a little further. For conscience. Ought we to wish the any thing I could discover in his character false, for the sake of a practice, they have reference, like hollow compliment to Christianity? those, to some future possible con
Accident introduced me to the ac- dition of society, and not to the prequaintance of Mr. L. H.-and the sent times. But neither for these experience of his many friendly qua- obliquities of thinking (upon which lities confirmed a friendship between my own conclusions are as distant us. You, who have been misrepre- as the poles asunder)-nor for his sented yourself, I should hope, have political asperities and petulancies, not lent an idle ear to the calumnies which are wearing out with the heats which have been spread abroad and vanities of youth-did I select respecting this gentleman. I was him for a friend; but for qualities admitted to his household for some which fitted him for that relation. years, and do most solemnly aver I do not know whether I flatter mythat I believe him to be in his do- self with being the occasion, but mestic relations as correct as any certain it is, that, touched with some
He chose an ill-judged sub- misgivings for sundry harsh things ject for a poem ; the peccant
humours which he had written aforetime against of which have been visited on him our friend C.,-hefore he left this tenfold by the artful use, which his country he sought a reconciliation adversaries have made, of an equi- with that gentleman (himself being vocal term. The subject itself was his own introducer), and found it. started by Dante, but better because L. H. is now in Italy; on his debrieflier treated of. But the crime parture to which land with much reof the Lovers, in the Italian and the gret I took my leave of him and of English poet, with its aggravated his little family-seven of them, Sir, enormity of circumstance, is not of a with their mother and as kind a set kind (as the critics of the latter well of little people (T. H. and all), as knew) with those conjunctions, for affectionate children, as ever blessed which Nature herself has provided a parent. Had you seen them, Sir, no excuse, because no temptation. I think you could not have looked -It has nothing in common with upon them as so many little Jonases the black horrors, sung by Ford and – but rather as pledges of the vessel's Massinger. The familiarising of safety, that was to bear such a freight it in tale or fable may be for that of love. reason incidentally more contagious. I wish you would read Mr. H.'s In spite of Rimini, I must look upon lines to that same T. H. “ six years its author as a man of taste, and a old, during a sickness:"poet. He is better than so, he is one of the most cordial-minded men I ever
Sleep breaks at last from out thee,
My little patient boy knew, and matchless as a fire-side companion. I mean not to affront (they are to be found in the 47th or wound your feelings, when I say page of “ Foliage ")—and ask yourthat, in his more genial moods, he self how far they are out of the spirit has often reminded me of you. There of Christianity. I have a letter from is the same air of mild dogmatism - Italy, received but the other day
into which L. H. has put as much Sir, you were pleased (you know heart, and as many friendly yearn- where) to invite me to a compliance ings after old associates, and native with the wholesome forms and doccountry, as, I think, paper can well trines of the Church of England. I hold. It would do you no hurt to take your advice with as much kindgive that the perusal also.
ness, as it was meant. But I must From the other gentleman I nei- think the invitation rather more kind ther expect nor desire (as he is well than seasonable. I am a Dissenter. assured) any such concessions as The last sect, with which you can L. H. made to C. What hath soured reinember me to have made common him, and made him to suspect his profession, were the Unitarians. You friends of infidelity towards him, would think it not very pertinent, if when there was no such matter, 1 (fearing that all was not well with know not. I stood well with him you), I were gravely to invite you for fifteen years (the proudest of my (for a remedy) to attend with me a life), and have ever spoke my full course of Mr. Belsham's Lectures at mind of him to some, to whom his Hackney. Perhaps I have scruples panegyric must naturally be least to some of your forms and doctrines. tasteful. I never in thought swerved But if I come, am I secure of civil from him, I never betrayed him, I treatment?-The last time I was in never slackened in my admiration of any of your places of worship was him, I was the same to him (neither on Easter Sunday last. I had the better nor worse) though he could satisfaction of listening to a very not see it, as in the days when he sensible sermon of an argumentative thought fit to trust me. At this turn, delivered with great propriety, instant, he may be preparing for me by one of your bishops. The place some compliment, above my deserts, was Westminster Abbey. As such as he has sprinkled many such among religion, as I have, has always acted his admirable books, for which I on me more by way of sentiment rest his debtor;.or, for any thing I than argumentative process, I was know, or can guess to the contrary, not unwilling, after sermon ended, he may be about to read a lecture by no unbecoming transition, to pass on my weaknesses. He is welcome over to some serious feelings, imposto them (as he was to my humble sible to be disconnected from the hearth), if they can divert a spleen, sight of those old tombs, &c. But, or ventilate a fit of sullenness. Í by whose order I know not, I was wish he would not quarrel with the debarred that privilege even for so world at the rate he does; but the short a space as a few minutes; and reconciliation must be effected by turned, like a dog or some profane himself, and I despair of living to person, out into the common street; see that day. But, protesting against with feelings, which I could not much that he has written, and some help, but not very genial to the day things which he chooses to do ; judg- or the discourse. I do not know ing him by his conversation which that I shall ever venture myself I enjoyed so long, and relished so again into one of your Churches. deeply; or by his books, in those You had your education at Westplaces where no clouding passion in- minster; and doubtless among those tervenes—I should belie my own dim aisles and cloisters, you must conscience, if I said less, than that have gathered much of that devoI think W. H. to be, in his natural tional feeling in those young years, and healthy state, one of the wisest on which your purest mind feeds and finest spirits breathing. So far still—and may it feed! The antifrom being ashamed of that inti- quarian spirit, strong in you, and macy, which was betwixt us, it is gracefully blending ever with the remy boast that I was able for so ligious, may have been sown in you many years to have preserved it en- among those wrecks of splendid tire; and I think I shall go to my mortality. You owe it to the place grave without finding, or expecting of your education; you owe it to to find, such another companion. your learned fondness for the archiBut I forget my manners—you will tecture of your ancestors; you owe pardon me, Sir-I return to the core it to the venerableness of your ecclerespondence.
siastical establishment, which is daily
lessened and called in question late visit to the metropolis, presented through these practices to speak himself for admission to Saint Paul's. aloud your sense of them; never to At the same time a decently clothed desist raising your voice against man, with as decent a wife, and them, till they be totally done away child, were bargaining for the same with and abolished; till the doors of indulgence. The price was only Westminster Abbey be no longer two-pence each person. The poor closed against the decent, though but decent man hesitated, desirous low-in-purse, enthusiast, or blame- to go in; but there were three of less devotee, who must commit an them, and he turned away reluctinjury against his family economy, if antly. Perhaps he wished to have he would be indulged with a bare seen the tomb of Nelson. Perhaps admission within its walls. You the Interior of the Cathedral was his owe it to the decencies, which you object. But in the state of his fiwish to see maintained in its impres- nances, even sixpence might reasive services, that our Cathedral besonably seem too much. Tell the no longer an object of inspection to Aristocracy of the country (no man the poor at those times only, in can do it more impressively); inwhich they must rob from their at- struct them of what value these intendance on the worship every mi- significant pieces of money, these nute which they can bestow upon minims to their sight, may be to the fabrick. In vain the public their humbler brethren. Shame these prints have taken up this subject, in Sellers out of the Temple. Show yain such poor nameless writers as the poor, that you can sometimes myself express their indignation. A think of them in some other light word from you, Sir—a hint in your than as mutineers and mal-contents. Journal-would be sufficient to fling Conciliate them by such kind meopen the doors of the Beautiful thods to their superiors, civil and ecTemple again, as we can remember clesiastical. Stop the mouths of the them when we were boys. At that railers; and suffer your old friends, time of life, what would the imagi- upon the old terms, again to honour native faculty (such as it is) in both and admire you. Stifle not the sugof us, have suffered, if the entrance gestions of your better nature with to so much reflection had been ob- the stale evasi that an indiscristructed by the demand of so much minate admission would expose the silver !-If we had scraped it up to Tombs to violation. Remember your gain an occasional admission (as we boy-days. Did you ever see, or hear, certainly should have done) would of a mob in the Abbey, while it was the sight of those old tombs have free to all ? Do the rabble come been as impressive to us (while we there, or trouble their heads about had been weighing anxiously pru- such speculations ? It is all that you dence against sentiment) as when can do to drive them into your the gates stood open, as those of churches ; they do not voluntarily the adjacent Park; when we could offer themselves. They have, alas! walk in at any time, as the mood no passion for antiquities ; for tomb brought us, for a shorter or longer of king or prelate, sage or poet. If time, as that lasted ? Is the being they had, they would be no longer shown over a place the same as si- the rabble. lently for ourselves detecting the For forty years that I have known genius of it? In no part of our be- the Fabrick, the only well-attested loved Abbey now can a person find charge of violation adduced, has entrance (out of service time) under been-a ridiculous dismemberment the sum of two shillings. The rich committed upon the effigy of that and the great will smile at the anti- amiable spy, Major Andrè. And is climax, presumed to lie in these two it for this—the wanton mischief of short words. But you can tell them, some school-boy, fired perhaps with Sir, how much quiet worth, how raw notions of Transatlantic Freemuch capacity for enlarged feeling, dom-or the remote possibility of how much taste and genius, may co- such a mischief occurring again, so exist, especially in youth, with a easily to be prevented by stationing purse incompetent to this demand. a constable within the walls, if the A respected friend of ours, during his vergers are incompetent to the duty
-is it upon such wretched pre- can you help us in this emergeney to
I am, Sir,
Your humble servant, thing about the unfortunate relic?
A FOURTH LETTER TO THE DRAMATISTS OF THE DAY.
Neither have all Poets a taste of Tragedy; and this is the rock on which
they are daily splitting. Dryden, Preface to All for Love. GENTLEMEN, - Complaints of the severe reprehension. For my own degeneracy which distinguishes Mo- part, I beg off (perhaps with superdern Drama, and renders it, as it Tuous anxiety) the appellation of a were, a different species of composi- Critic. I have as profound a contion from the ancient Mirror of Na- tempt for that ephemeral tribe of liture, are common amongst the essay- terary atomies, as if I were a trageists of the present day. Indeed, from dist myself ; I profess as unutterable the frequency and vehemence of their a scorn for the whole race of genuine critical animadversions, we are al- critics, the progeny of Grub-street most led to think these persons oc- wherever they are to be found, as if cupy the subject more as a diversion I had the honour of their hatred, or for their spleen, or as a rallying-point were sufficiently illustrious to have of vituperation against cotemporary ensured me the favour of their avergenius, than that they have really at sion. Yet I cannot help, now, addheart the interests of the stage. ing my voice to theirs, in your conWhere lamentation is outrageous and demnation. They now speak the sorrow declamatory, we are probably sense of the nation, and however we justified in supposing them affected; may despise the judgment which it and the grief of our critics hath gratifies these tit-wits to pass upon lately become so vociferous, that our works, when we have good reamany people begin to doubt whether son to suspect that it closes with something besides a pure family con- public opinion, we should on that accern for the death of Tragedy a- count respect it. Now, as in every mongst us, i. e. in plain words, whe- case where they are right, the senther lucre, or the love of noise, the tence of the critics is only the juice practice of impudence, or the exer- of public opinion oozing through cise of hypocrisy, have not had some their quills, so in the present instance, share in convoking the rout of scrib- the gall with which they so plentifulblers to howl at Melpomene's funerally bespatter your tragedies, is but -and at the same time, to revile you the effusion of popular animadveras her murderers. But whatever sion coloured (as usual) with their may have been the true motive of all own venom, and imbued with their the obloquy and abuse which have own deleterious bitterness of spirit. been lavished so munificently upon Public opinion is certainly against you, it must be acknowledged that you, Gentlemen ; for, let' but one you have afforded the critics but too critic open his mouth in your abuse, many legitimate opportunities for a and as the successive rings of a trumdisplay of their function ; nor is it pet magnify sound, so the spreading absolutely necessary to resort to their circles of society will invigorate the malice or venality, when a sufficient shout of derision against you. This proof is to be drawn from your own must be attended to, Gentlemen ; works, that you deserve general and though you might hear unconcerned