Abbildungen der Seite

Now under hanging mountains,
Beside the fall of fountains,
Or where Hebras wanders,
Rolling in meanders,

All alone,
Unheard, unknown,
He makes his moan;

And calls her ghost,
For ever, ever, ever lost !
Now with furies surrounded,
Despairing, confounded,
He trembles, he glows,

Amidst Rhodope's snows :
See, wild as the winds, o'er the desert he flies;
Hark! Hæmus resounds with the Bacchanals' cries-

Ah see, he dies !
Yet e'en in death Eurydice he sung ;
Eurydice still trembled on his tongue ;

Eurydice the woods,

Eurydice the floods,
Eurydice the rocks and hollow mountains rung.

Music the fiercest grief can charm,
And fate's severest rage disarm;
Music can soften pain to ease,
And make despair and madness please:
Our joys below it can improve,

And antedate the bliss above.
This the divine Cecilia found,
And to her Maker's praise confined the sound.
When the full organ joins the tuneful quire,

The immortal powers incline their ear:
Borne on the swelling notes our souls aspire,
While solemn airs improve the sacred fire ;

And angels lean from heaven to hear. Of Orpheus now no more let poets tell; To bright Cecilia greater power is given : His mumbers raised a shade from hell,

Hers lift the soul to heaven,



TO THE TRAGEDY OF BRUTUS. Altered from Shakspeare by the Duke of Buckingham, at whose desire these two Choruses were composed, to supply as many, wanting in his Play. They were set many years afterward by the famous Bononcini, and performed at Buckingham-house.


Strophe 1.
YB shades, where sacred truth is sought;"

Groves, where immortal sages taught;
Where heavenly visions Plato fired,
And Epicurus lay inspired !
In vain your guiltless laurels stood

Unspotted long with human blood.
War, horrid war, your thoughtful walks invades,
And steel now glitters in the muses’ shades.

Antistrophe 1.
Oh heaven-born sisters! source of art!
Who charm the sense, or mend the heart;
Who lead fair virtue's train along,
Moral truth and mystic song!
To what new clime, what distant sky,

Forsaken, friendless, shall ye fly?
Say, will ye bless the bleak Atlantic shore?
Or bid the furious Gaul be rude no more?

Strophe 2.
When Athens sinks by fates unjust,
When wild barbarians spurn her dust;
Perhaps e'en Britain's utmost shore
Shall cease to blush with stranger's gore ;
See arts her savage sons control,

And Athens rising near the pole!
Till some new tyrant lifts his purple hand,
And civil madness tears them from the land.

Antistrophe 2.
Ye gods! what justice rules the ball!
Freedom and arts together fall;
Fools grant wl.ate'er ambition craves,
And men, once ignorant, are slaves.

O cursed effects of civil hate,

In every age, in every state! Still, when the lust of tyrant power succeeds, Some Athens perishes, some Tully bleeds.


On tyrant Love! hast thou possess'd
The prudent, learn'd, and virtuous breast ?

Wisdom and wit in vain reclaim,
And arts but soften us to feel thy flame.

Love, soft intruder, enters here,
But, entering, learns to be sincere.
Marcus with blushes owns he loves,
And Brutus tenderly reproves.
Why, virtue, dost thou blame desire,

Which nature hath impress'd ?
Why, nature, dost thou soonest fire
The mild and generous breast ?

Love's purer flames the guds approve;

The gods and Brutus bend to love :
Brutus for absent Porcia sigbs,
And sterner Cassius melts at Junia's eyes.
What is loose love? a transient gust,
Spent in a sudden storm of lust;
A vapour fed from wild desire ;
A wand'ring, self-consuming fire,
But Hymen's kinder flames unite,

And burn for ever one;
Chaste as cold Cyntha's virgin light,

Productive as the sun.

Oh source of every social tie,
United wish and mutual joy!.

What various joys on one attend,
As son, as father, brother, husband, friend!

Whether his hoary sire he spies,
While thousand grateful thoughts arise ;

Or meets his spouse's fonder eye;
Or views his smiling progeny;
What tender passions take their turns,

What home-felt raptures move!
His heart now melts, now leaps, now burns,
With reverence, hope, and love.

Hence, guilty joys, distastes, surmises ;
Hence, false tears, deceits, disguises,
Dangers, doubts, delays, surprises,

Fires that scorch, yet dare not shine :
Purest love's unwasting treasure,
Constant faith, fair hope, long leisure ;
Days of ease, and nights of pleasure,

Sacred Hymen ! these are thine.


HAPPY the man, whose wish and care

A few paternal acres bound, Content to breath his native air

In his own ground. Whose herds with milk, whose fields with bread,

Whose flocks supply him with attire ; Whose trees in summer yield him shade,

In winter fire. Bless'd, who can unconcern'dly find

Hours, days, and years, slide soft away, In health of body, peace of mind,

Quiet by day, Sound sleep by night; study and ease

Together mix'd ; sweet recreation, And innocence, which most does please

With meditation.
Thus let me live, unseen, unknown;

Thus unlamented let me die,
Steal from the world, and not a stone

Tell where I lie.

VITAL spark of heavenly flame!

Quit, oh quit this mortal frame:
Trembling, hoping, lingering, flying-
Oh the pain, the bliss of dying !
Cease, fond Nature, cease thy strife,
And let me languish into life.

Hark! they whisper; angels say,
Sister spirit, come away.
What is this absorbs me quite,

Steals my senses, shuts my sight,
Drowns my spirits, draws my breath?
Tell me, my soul, can this be death?
The world recedes; it disappears!
Heaven opens on my eyes ! my ears

With sounds seraphic ring :
Lend, lend your wings ! I mount! I fly!
Oh grave! where is thy victory?

Oh death! where is thy sting?

Written in the Year 1709.

PART I. Introduction. That it is as great a fault to judge ill, as to write ill, and a more dangerous one to the public, ver. 1. That a true taste is as rare to be found as a true genius, ver. 9 to 18. That most men are born with some taste, but spoiled by false education, ver. 10 to 25. The multitude of critics, and causes of them, ver. 26 to 45. That we are to study our own taste, and know the limits of it, ver. 46 to 67. Nature the best guide of judgment, ver. 68 to 87. Improved by art and rules, which are but methodized nature, ver. 88. Rules derived from the practice of ancient poets, ver88 to 110. That therefore the ancients are necessary to be studied by a critic, particularly Homer and Virgil, ver. 120 to 138. Of licences, and the use of them by the ancients, ver. 140 to 180. Reverence due to the ancients, and praise of them, ver. 181, &c. 'Tis hard to say, if greater want of skill Appear in writing or in judging ill ; But of the two, less dangerous is the offence To tire our patience, than mislead our sense.

« ZurückWeiter »