Page images

higher merit, and imparts a far higher gratification. The chief delight of poetry consists, not so much in what it directly supplies to the imagination, as in what it enables it to supply to itself;—not in warming the heart by its passing brightness, but in kindling its own latent stores of light and heat ;—not in hurrying the fancy along by a foreign and accidental impulse, but in setting it agoing, by touching its internal springs and principles of activity. Now, this highest and most delightful effect can only be produced by the poet's striking a note to which the heart and the affections naturally vibrate in unison ;—by rousing one of a large family of kindred impressions ;— by dropping the rich seed of his fancy upon the fertile and sheltered places of the imagination. But it is evident, that the emotions connected with common and familiar objects—with objects which fill every man's memory, and are necessarily associated with all that he has ever really felt or fancied, are of all others the most likely to answer this description, and to produce, where they can be raised to a sufficient height, this great effect in its utmost perfection. It is for this reason that the images and affections that belong to our universo/ nature, are always, if tolerably represented, infinitely more captivating, in spite of their apparent commonness and simplicity, than those that are peculiar to certain situations, however they may come recommended by novelty or grandeur. The familiar feeling of maternal tenderness and anxiety, which is every day before our eyes, even m the brute creation—and the enchantment of youthful love, which is nearly the same in all characters, ranks, and situations—still contribute far more to the beauty and interest of poetry than all the misfortunes of princes, the jealousies of heroes, and the feats of giants, magicians, or ladies in armour. Every one can enter into the former set of feelings; and but a few into the latter. The one calls up a thousand familiar and long-remembered emotions— which are answered and reflected on every side by the kindred impressions which experience or observation have traced upon every memory: while the other lights up but a transient and unfruitful blaze, and passes away without perpetuating itself in any kindred and native sensation.

Now, the delineation of all that concerns the lower and most numerous classes of society, is, in this respect, on a footing with the pictures of our primary affections—that their originals are necessarily familiar to all men, and are inseparably associated with their own most interesting impressions. Whatever may be our own condition, we all live surrounded with the poor, from infancy to age ;—we hear daily of their sufferings and misfortunes;— and their toils, their crimes, or their pastimes, are our hourly spectacle. Many diligent readers of poetry know little, by their own experience, of palaces, castles, or campe; and still less of tyrants, warriors, and banditti ;— but every one understands about cottages, streets, and villages; and conceives, pretty correctly, the character and condition of sail

ors, ploughmen, and artificer». If the po*: can contrive, therefore, to create a suffice-:.: interest in subjects like these, they will ш;^ • libly sink deeper into the mind, and be more prolific of kindred trains of emotion, than swljects of greater dignity. Nor is the difficuJ:; of exciting such an interest by any теал? ^ great as is generally imagined. For it и common human nature, and common hunifeelings, after all, that form the true sourtc of interest in poetry of every description :— and the splendour and the marvels by wh.i-j it is sometimes surrounded, serve no other purpose than to fix our attention on those workings of the heart, and those energies of the understanding, which alone command a¿. the genuine sympathies of потаи beitg*— and which may be found as abundantly in the breasts of cottagers as of kings. Wherever there are human beings, therefore, with ie*.ings and characters to be represented, our a:tention may be fixed by the art of the peelby his judicious selection of circumstances— by the force and vivacity of his style, aiw it.-.clearness and brevity of his representation«.

In point of fact, we are all touched more deeply, as well as more frequently, in real life, with the sufferings of peasants thai, princes; and sympathise much oftener. a: more heartily, with the successes of the {<:•.'. than of the rich and distinguished. The occasions of such feelings are indeed fo man. and so common, that they do not oftee le»w any very permanent traces behind them. If. pass away, and are effaced by the very rap.-ii :;. of their succession. The business and lie cares, and the pride of the world, obstrue: ;:.-• development of the emotions to which :Lrv would naturally give rise; and press so t\i.-f and thick upon the mind, as to shut it. at пк~ seasons, against the reflections that are [•:• petually seeking for admission. When v^ have leisure, however, to look quietly into it: hearts, we shall find in them an infinite multitude of little fragments of sympathy wiii our brethren in humble life—abortive movfments of compassion, and embryos of kindm-? and concern, which had once fairly bt-fftn; live and germinate within them, though w tiered and broken off by the selfish bustle a: ¡ fever of our daily occupations. Now. all ibete may be revived and carried on to maturity br the art of the poet ;—and, therefore, a powerful effort to interest us in the feelings of ¿í humble and obscure, will usually call ic-ri more deep; more numerous, and more permanent emotions, than can ever be excitui ;•) the fate of princesses and heroes. Indtгчгdent of the circumstances to which we Ь»те already alluded, there are causes which iriak» us at all times more ready to enter into ih-1 feelings of the humble, than of the exai:. . part of our species. Our sympathy with ihiv enjoyments is enhanced by a certain гтМчг.of pity for their general condition, which. l\ purifying it from that taint of envy which almost always adheres to our admiration o: i; •• great, renders it more welcome and s»iis:ai-tory to our bosoms; while our concern for tVI: sufferings is at once softened and endeared to s, bjr the recollection of our own exemption

am them, and by the feeling, that \ve freUHitly have it in our power to relieve them. From these, and from other causes, it ap»•arf to ns to be certain, that where subjects, iken from humble life, can be made euffiiently interesting to overcome the distaste iM the prejudices with which the usages of loh'Aed society too generally lead us to reran! them, the interest which they excite will •ommonly be more profound and more lasting ian aiiv that can be raised upon loftier líeme«; and the poet of the Village and the Ингчагп be offener, and longer read, than the »et of the Court 'or the Camp. The most »polar passages of Shakespeare and Cowper, re think, are of this description: and there is mich, both in the volume before us, and in Иг. Crabbe's former publications, to which re might now venture to refer, as proofs of he same doctrine. When such représentais« have once made an impression on the majpnation. they are remembered daily, and or erer. We can neither look around, nor •i'.hüi us, without being reminded of their iath and their importance; and, while the ''..'No brilliant effusions of romantic fancy are walled only at long intervals, and in rare situation«, we feel that \ve cannot walk a step I'm our own doors, nor cast a glance back on r;r departed years, without being indebted to the poet of vulgar life for some striking image 'touching reflection, of which the occasions '• ••No always before ue, but—till he taught us :'i* to improve them—were almost always »Ureed to escape.

Hk-h. we conceive, are some of the advan

'••"'s of the subjects which Mr. Crabbe has

a ereat measure introduced itito modern

poetry;—and such the grounds upon which

»e Tentare to predict the durability of the

''.'nation which he is in the course of ac

::':ti2. That they have their disadvantages

-1 .- obvious; and it is no less obvious, that

'i- \n these we must ascribe the greater part

''I* brails and deformities with which this

':|!'"г is fairly chargeable. The two great

•••nirsinto which he has fallen, are—that he

'" bribed many things not worth describ

:? —and that he has frequently excited dis

<' instead of pity or indignation, in the

•'"'Ms of his readers. These faults are ob

'roiiE—and. we believe, are popularly laid to

h« charge: Yet there is, in so far ns we have

*.tii). a degree of misconception as to the

''•".'rounds and limits of the charge, which

*e think it worth while to take this opportu

"i* of «meeting.

Tbe poet of humble life must describe a

Hwtdcal—and must even describe, minutely,

^'Г|У things which possess in themselves no

••.o;\ or grandeur. The reader's fancy must

"raked—and the power of his own pencil

cupUyed:—a distinct locality and imaginary

^"yraost be given to his characters and

'Cuto: and the ground colour of their com

rondition must be laid in, before his pe

•••v and selected groups can be presented

*;'l> any effect or advantage. In the same

*T] be must study characters with a minute

and anatomical precision; ana must make both himself and his readers familiar with the ordinary trails and general family features of the beings among whom they are to move, before they can either understand, or take much interest in the individuals who are to engross their attention. Thus far, there is no excès» or unnecessary minuteness. But this faculty of observation, and this power of description, hold out great temptations to go further. There is a pride and a delight in the exercise of all peculiar power; and the poet, who has learned to describe external objects exquisitely, with a view to heighten the effect of his moral designs, and to draw characters with accuracy, to help forward the interest or the pathos of the picture, will be in great danger of describing scenes, and drawing characters, for no other purpose, but to indulge his taste, and to display his talents. It cannot be denied, we think, that Mr. Crabbe has, on many occasions, yielded to this temptation. He is led away, every now and then, by his lively conception of external objects, and by his nice and sagacious observation of human character; and wantons and luxuriates in descriptions and moral portrait painting, while his readers are left to wonder to what end so much industry has been exerted.

His chief fault, however, is his frequent lapse Into disgusting representations; and this, we will confess, is an error for w hich we find it far more difficult either to account or to apologise. We are not, however, of the opinion which we have often heard stated, that he has represented human nature under too unfavourable an aspect; or that the distaste which his poetry sometimes produces, is owing merely to the painful nature of the scenes and subjects with which it abounds. On the contrary, we think he has given a juster, as well as a more striking picture, of the true character and situation of the lower orders of this country, than any other writer, whether in verse or in prose; and that he has made no more use of painful emotions lhan was necessary to the production of a pathetic effect.

All powerful and pathetic poetry, it is obvious, abounds in images ot distress. The delight -which it bestows partakes strongly of pain; and, by a sort of contradiction, which has long engaged the attention of the reflecting, the compositions that attract us most powerfully, and detain us the longest, are those that produce in us most of the effects of actual suffering and wretchedness. The solution of this paradox is to be found, we think, in the simple fact, that pain is a far stronger sensation than pleasure; in human existence; and that the cardinal virtue of all things that are intended to delight the mind, is to produce a strong sensation. Life itself appears to consist in sensation; and the universal passion of all beings that have life, seems to be. that they should be made intensely conscious of it, by a succession of powerful and engrossing emotions. All the mere gratifications or natural pleasures that are in the power even of the most fortunate, are quite insufficient to fill this

vast ;raving for eensatipn: And accordingly, we see every day, that a more violent stimulus is sought for by those who have attained the vulgar heights of life, in the pains and dangers of war—the agonies of gaming—or the feverish toils of ambition. To those who have tasted of those potent cups, where the bitter, however, so obviously predominates, the security, the comforts, and what are called the enjoyments of common life, are intol, erably insipid and disgusting. Nay, we think we have observed, that even those who, without any effort or exertion, have experienced unusual misery, frequently appear, in like manner, to acquire a sort of taste or craving for it; and come to look on the tranquillity of ordinary life with a kind of indifference not unmingled with contempt. It is certain, at least, that they dwell with most apparent satisfaction on the memory of those days, which have been marked by the deepest and most agonising sorrows; and derive a certain delight from the recollections of those overwhelming sensations which once occasioned so fierce a throb in the languishing pulse of their existence.

If any thing of this kind, however, can be traced in real life—if the passion for emotion be so strong as to carry us, not in imagination, but in reality, over the rough edge of present pain—it will not be difficult to explain, why it should be so attractive in the copies and fictions of poetry. There, as in real life, the great demand is for emotion; while the pain with which it may be attended, can scarcely, by any possibility, exceed the limits of endurance. The recollection, that it is but a copy and a fiction, is quite sufficient to keep it down to a moderate temperature, and to make it welcome as the sign or the harbinger of that agitation of which the soul is avaricious. It is not, then, from any peculiar quality in painful emotions that they become capable of affording the delight which attends them in tragic or pathetic poetry—but merely from the circumstance of their being more intense and powerful than any other emotions of which the mind is susceptible. If it was the constitution of our nature to feel joy as keenly, or to sympathise with it as heartily as we do with sorrow, we have no doubt that no other sensation would ever be intentionally excited by the artists that minister to delight. But the fact is. that the pleasures of which we are capable are slight and feeble compared with the pains that we may endure; and that, feeble as they are, the svmpathy which they excite falls much more short of the original emotion. When the object, therefore, is to obtain sensation, there can be no doubt to which of the two fountains we should repair; and if there be but few pains in real life which are not, in some measure, endeared to us by the emotions with which they are attended, we may be pretty sure, that the more distress we introduce into poetry, the more we shall rivet the attention and attract the admiration of the reader.

There is but one exception to this rule— and it brings us back from the apology of Mr.

Crabbe, to his condemnation. Етегу£огшо( distress, whether it proceed from paeeioo я from fortune, and whether it fall upon vice v; virtue, adds to the interest and the charme* poetry—except only that which is connerte* with ideas of Disgust—the least taint of whica disenchants the whole scene, and puts ы both to delight and sympathy. Bot what iit, it may be asked, that is the propf-run of disgust? and what is the precise !>••»•:..lion of things which we think Mr. Crabbe u inexcusable for admitting? It is nut easy '••> define a term at once so simple and so sigutcant: but it may not be without its ose. to indicate, in a general way, our conception c: its true force and comprehension.

It is needless, we suppose, to explain »hü are the objects of disgust in physical ora/.:nal existences. These are sufficiently plainuu unequivocal; and it is universally admitlcJ. that all mention of them must be carefully ncluded from every poetical description. ^.. regard, again, to human character, action, aid feeling, we should be inclined to tenu n-:, thing disgusting, which represented m¡>.--; without making any appeal to our Jove, rapect, or admiration. If the suffering ретяо be amiable, the delightful feeling of mea»! affection tempers the pain which the conteBplation of suffering has a tendency to eu.:and enhances it into the stronger, and thenfore more attractive, sensation of pity. If there be great power or energy, boweter. united to guilt or wretchedness, the шахч of admiration exalts the emotion into satething that is sublime and pleasing: and rv: in cases of mean and atrocious, but t-n\•.-:: guilt, our sympathy with the victime upa whom it ispractised, and our active indignaba and desire of vengeance, reconcile us '.»:• humiliating display, and make a comi-ithat, upon the whole, is productive of pleas.''

The only sufferers, then, upon whom we cannot bear to look, are those that exciu> :by their wretchedness, while they are Uvt praved to be the objects of affection. 4:¿ '•••• weak and insignificant to be the causemisery to others, or, consequently, oí imicN lion to the spectators. Such are the deprav. abject, diseased, and neglected poor—c:>-tures in whom every thing amiable or '•pectable has been extinguished by sonb: !•>• sions or brutal debauchery :—who hare tfl means of doing the mischief of wlm.''' • are capable—whom every one despirff-a:; no one can either love or fear. On the с:*:acters, the miseries, and the rices or л beings, we look with disgust merely: it<¡, though it may perhaps serve some morel FL pose, occasionally to set before us this U::.-liating spectacle of human nature soil' utter worthlessness and insieniiicantr. ¡t -altogether in vain to think of exciting eiihft pity or horror, by the truest ai:d roost Kti'.:representations of their sufferings or Ion/ enormities. They have no hold upon ам" the feelings that U ad us to take an intent our fellow-creatures;—we rum away d "n them, therefore, w ith loathing and dispassionate aversion ;—we feel our imagination» po>hted by the intrusion of any images coni.i.-cted with them; and are offended and diïgusted when we are forced to look closely upon those festering heaps of moral filth and corruption.

It is with concern we add, that we know no writer who has sinned so deeply in this respect as Mr. Crabbe—\vlio has so often preM'; us with spectacles which it is purely painful and degrading to contemplate, and bostuwed such powers of conception and expression in giving us distinct ideas of what we must ever abhor to remember. If Mr. Crabbe had been a person of ordinary talents, we might have accounted for his error, in some degree, by supposing, that his frequent success in treating of subjects which had been usually rejected by other poets, had at length led him to disregard, altogether, the common impressions of mankind as to what was allowable and what inadmissible in poetry; and to reckon the unalterable laws by which nature has regulated our sympathies, among the prejudices by which they were shackled and unpaired. It is difficult, however, to conceive how a writer of his quick and exact observation should have failed to perceive, tliat there is not a single instance of a serious interest being excited by an object of disgust: and thai Shakespeare himself, who has ventured every thing, has never ventured to shock our feelings with the crimes or the sufferings of beings absolutely without power or principle. Independent of universal practice, too, it is »till more difficult to conceive how he should hare overlooked the reason on which this practice is founded; for though it be generally true, that poetical representations of suffering and of guilt produce emotion, and con«eqaentlv delight, yet it certainly did not require the penetration of Mr. Crabbe to discover, that there is a degree of depravity which counteracts our sympathy with suffering, and a degree of insignificance which extinguishes our interest in guilt. We abstain from giving any extracts in support of this accusation; but those who have perused the volume before us, will have already recollected the story of Frederic Thompson, of Abel Keene, of Blaney, of Benbow, and a good part of those of Grimes and Ellen Orford —besides many shorter passages. It is now time, however, to give the reader a more particular account of the work which contains them.

The Borough of Mr. Crabbe, then, is a detailed and minute account of an ancient English sea-port town, of the middling order; containing a series of pictures of its scenery, awl of the different classes and occupations of it» inhabitants. It is thrown into the form 'i' loiters, though without any attempt at the epistolary character; and treats of the vicar and córale—the sectaries—the attornies—the •'ipothecaries; and the inns, clubs, and strolls-players, that make a figure in the place: -but more particularly of the poor, and their "hiracters and treatment; and of almshouses, priaone, and schools. There is, of course, no ttuity or method in the poem—which consists

altogether of a succession of unconnected descriptions, and is still more miscellaneous in reality, than would be conjectured from the titles of its twenty-four separate compartments. As it does not admit of analysis, therefore, or even of a much more particular description, we can only give our readers a just idea of its execution, by extracting a few of the passages that appear to us most characteristic in each of the many styles it exhibits.

One of the first that strikes us, is the following very touching and beautiful picture of innocent love, misfortune and resignationall of them taking a tinge of additional sweetness and tenderness from the humble condition of the parties; and thus affording a striking illustration of the remarks we have ventured to make on the advantages of such subjects. The passage occurs in the second letter, where the author has been surveying, with a glance half pensive and half sarcastical, the monuments erected in the churchyard. He then proceeds :—

"Yes! there are real Mourners—I have seen A foir sad Girl, mild, suffering, and serene; Attention (through ihe day) her duties cluini'd, And to be useful as resign'd she aim'd; Neatly she dress'd, nor vainly seem'd i' expect Pity for grief, or pardon for neglect; But when her wearied Parents sunk to sleep, She sought this place to meditate and weep; Then to her mind was all the past display'd. That faithful Memory brings to Sorrow's nid: For then she thought on one regretted Youth, lier tender trust, ¡ind his unquestion'd truth; In ev'ry place she wander'd, where they'd been, And sadly-sacred held the parting-scene Where lost for sea he look hie leave ;—that place With double interest would she nightly trace," &.c.

"Happy he sail'd; and great the care she took, That he should softly sleep, and smartly look; White was his better linen, and his check Was made more trim than any on ihe deck; And every comfort Men at Sea can know, Was hers to buy, to make, and to bestow: For he to Greenland sail'd, and much she told. How he should guard against the climate's cold; Yet saw not danger; dangers he'd withstood, Nor could she trace the Fever in his blood: His Messmates smil'd at flushings in his cheek, And he too smiPd, but seldom would he speak; For now he found the danger, fell the pain, With grievous symptoms he could not explain.

"He call'd his friend, and prefac'd with a sigh A Lover's message—' T/iomai! I must die '. Would I could see my Satly.' and could rest My throbbing temples on her faithful breast, And gazing go!—if not, this trifle take, And sny till death, I wore it for her sake: Yes! I must die! blow on, sweet breeze, blow on! Give me one look, before my life be gone, Oh! cive me that! and lei me nol despair— One last fond look !—and now repeal ihe prayer."

"He had his wish; had more; I will not paint The Lover's meeting: she beheld him faint— With lender fears, she look a nearer view, Her terrors doubling as her hopes withdrew; He tried to smile, and, half succeeding, said, 4 Yes! I must die ;—and hope for ever fled!

"Still long she nura'd him; lender ihouphti


Were interchang'd, and hopes and views sublime.
To her he came to die; and every day
She look some portion of the dread away!
Wilh him sho pray'd, to him his Bible read,
Sooth'd the faint heurt, and held the aching head:
She came with smiles the hour of pain to cheer;
Apart she sigh'd; alone, she shed the tear;
Then, as if breaking from a cloud, she gave
Fresh light, and gilt the prospect of the grave.
“One day he lighter seem’d, and they forgot
The care, the dread, the anguish of their lot;
They spoke with cheerfulness, and seem'd to think,
Yet said not so—“perhaps he will not sink."
A sudden brightness in his look appear'd,
A sudden vigour in his voice was heard;
She had been reading in the Book of Prayer,
And led him forth, and plac'd him in his chair;
Lively he seem’d, and spoke of all he knew,
The friendly many, and the favourite few;
Nor one that day did he to mind recall,
But she has treasur'd, and she loves them all;
When in her way she meets them, they appear
Peculiar people-death has made them dear!
He nam'd his friend, but then his hand she prest,
And fondly whisper'd, “Thou must go to rest."
‘I go!" he said; but, as he spoke, she found
His hand more cold, and flutt'ring was the sound;
Then gaz'd affrighten’d; but she caught at last
A dying look ..". all was past !-
“She plac'd a decent stone his grave above,
Neatly engrav’d—an offering of her Love;
For that she wrought, for that forsook her bed,
Awake alike to duty and the dead;
She would have griev'd, had friends presum'd to
The least assistance—'twas her proper care.
"Here will she come, and on the grave will sit,
Folding her arms, in long abstracted fit;
But if observer pass, will take her round,
And careless seem, for she would not be found ;
Then come again, and thus her hour employ,
While visions please her, and while woes destroy.”
pp. 23–27.

There is a passage in the same tone, in the letter on Prisons. It describes the dream of a felon under sentence of death; and though the exquisite accuracy and beauty of the landscape painting are such as must have recommended it to notice in poetry of any order, it seems to us to derive an uspeakable charm from the lowly simplicity and humble content of the characters—at least we cannot conceive any walk of ladies and gentlemen that should furnish out so sweet a picture as terminates the following extract. It is only doing Mr. Crabbe justice to present along with it a part of the dark foreground which he has drawn, in the waking existence of the poor dreamer.

“When first I came Within his view, I fancied there was shame, I judg’d Resentment; 1 mistook the airThese fainter passions live not with Despair; Or but exist and die:-Hope, Fear and Love, Joy, Doubt, and Hate, may other spirits move, But touch not his, who every waking hour Has one fix’d dread, and always feels its power. He takes his tasteless food; and, when 'tis done, Counts up his meals, now lessen'd by that one; For Expectation is on Time intent, Whether he brings us Joy or Punishment.

“Yes! e'en in sleep th’ impressions all remain;
He hears the sentence, and he feels the chain;
He seems the place for that sad act to see,
And dreams the very thirst which then will be:
A priest attends-it seems the one he knew
In his best days, beneath whose care he grew.
“At this his terrors take a sudden flight—

He sees his native village with delight;
The house, the chamber, where he once array'd
His youthful person; where he knelt and pray'd :
Then too the comforts he enjoy'd at home,
The days of joy; the joys themselves are come;—

[ocr errors]

The hours of innocence;—the timid look
Of his lov'd maid, when first her hand he took
And told his hope; her trembling joy appears,
Her forc'd reserve, and his retreating fears.
“Yes! all are with him now, and all the while
Life's early prospects and his Fanny smile;
Then come #. sister and his village friend,
And he will now the sweetest moments spend
Life has to yield:-No! never will he find
Again on earth such pleasure in his mind. (among
He goes through shrubby walks these friends
Love in their looks and pleasure on the tongue.
Pierc’d by no crime, and urg'd by no desire
For more than true and honest hearts require,
They feel the calm delight, and thus proceed
Through the green lane,—then linger in the mead, -
Stray o'er the heath in all its purple bloom,
And pluck the blossom where the wild-bees hum;
Then through the broomy bound with ease they
And press the sandy sheep-walk's slender grass,
Where dwarfish flowers among the gorse are spread.
And the lamb brouzes by the linnet's bed? [way
Then 'cross the bounding brook they make their
O'er its rough bridge—and there behold the bay!-
The ocean smiling to the fervid sun-
The waves that faintly fall and slowly run-
The ships at distance, and the boats at hand:
And now they walk upon the sea-side sand,
Counting the number, and what kind they be,
Ships softly sinking in the sleepy sea:
Now arm in arm, now parted, they behold
The glitt'ring waters on the i. roll'd:
The timid girls, half dreading their design,
Dip the small foot in the retarded brine,
And search for crimson weeds, which spreading
Or lie like pictures on the sand below; [flow,
With all those bright red pebbles, that the sun
Through the ... waves so softly shines upon ;
And those live lucid jellies which the eye
Delights to trace as they swim glitt'ring by:
Pearl-shells and rubied star-fish they admire,
And will arrange above the parlour fire—
Tokens of bliss"—pp. 323–326.

If these extracts do not make the reader feel how deep and peculiar an interest may be excited by humble subjects, we should almost despair of bringing him over to our opinion, even by Mr. {.. inimitable description and pathetic pleading for the parish poor. The subject is one of those, which to many will appear repulsive, and, to some fastidious natures perhaps, disgusting. Yet if the most admirable painting of stema objects—the most minute and thorough knowo: of human character—and that warm glow of active and rational benevolence which lends a guiding light to observation, and an enchanting colour to eloquence, can entitle a poet to praise, as they do entitle him to more substantial rewards, we are persuaded that the following passage will not be speedily forgotten.

“Your plan I love not :-with a number you Have plac'd your poor, your pitiable few; There, in one house, for all their lives to be, The pauper-palace, which they hate to see ' That giant building, that high bounding wall, Those bare-worn walks, that lofty thund'ring hall' That of: loud clock, which tolls each dreaded


Those gates and locks, and all those signs of power;
It is a prison, with a milder name,
Which few inhabit without dread or shame."-

“Alas! their sorrows in their bosoms dwell,
They've much to suffer, but have nought to tel
They have no evil in the place to state,
And Čare not say, it is the house they hate:

« PreviousContinue »