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forded any indication of that genius by which he was afterwards so highly distinguished. .
Of his school performances we only know, that he translated the third satire of Persius, for a Thursday-night's exercise imposed by his Master, whose high opinion of his talents is strongly evinced by prescribing such a task; and he has himself told us,' that he believed it and many other exercises of this nature were in 1693 in the hands of Dr. Busby; but whither they have since wandered, I have not been able to learn.
“ Enliven'd by these sparks divine, their rayes
“ J. DRYDEN of Trin. C.” s In his translation of Persius, fol. 1693. Sat. iii.
It has long been a tradition at Westminster, that
The only notice I have been able to recover concerning his early college days, is the following order, which was made about two years after his admission :
“ July 19, 1652. Agreed, then, that Dryden be put out of Comons, for a forthnight at least, and that he goe not out of the colledg, during the time aforesaid, excepting to sermons, without express leave from the Master or Vice-Master; and that at the end of the forthnight he read a confession of his crime in the hall at dinner-time at the three +++ fellowes tables.
“ His crime was, his disobedience to the Vicemaster, and his contumacy in taking his punishment inflicted by him.6"
What degree of reputation he obtained in his academick course, it is now extremely difficult, if not impossible to ascertain. It has been mentioned as extraordinary, that his name is not found in any of the Cambridge Verses composed in his time on
verses on our Saviour's miracle in turning water into wine, being prescribed as an exercise, Dryden brought up the following single line:
.“ Lympha pudica Deum vidit, et erubuit.” But he certainly has no title to this pentameter; for it is found, with a slight variation, in an epigram on this subject, by Richard Crashaw, published in his EPIGRAMMATA Sacra, 8vo. 1634. See Boswell's Life of John. son, third edit. vol. iii. p. 326.
Conclusion-Book in the Archives of Trinity College, p. 221.
publick occasions ; that he took no degree in the University ; and that he did not obtain a fellowship in his College.-From whatever cause it may have proceeded, he certainly was not a fellow :? but one of the other subjects of surprise has not been accurately stated; for he took the degree of Bachelor at the regular time, in January 1653-4,8 and in 1657 was made Master of Arts, though in See App.
7 Our author's cousin, Jonathan, (son probably of that Jonathan Dryden, to whom in 1646, were consigned the profits of the vicarage of Goodrich, in Herefordshire, of which Swift's grandfather was incumbent,) was elected from Westminster School into Trinity College, in Cambridge, in 1656, and was chosen a Fellow of that College in 1662 ; which has occasioned some confusion on this subject. The poet never was a Fellow.-In the British Museum (MSS. Birch. 4291) is a Latin letter addressed to Dr. Busby, 31 Jan. 1659-60, and signed Fon. Dryden, in which way this person subscribed his Christian name; which in the printed catalogue is erroneously attributed to our author. The poems in the Cambridge Verses published in 1661, on the death of Henry, Duke of Glocester, and Mary, Princess of Orange, and in 1662, on the marriage of Charles II. which have been ascribed to our author, were written by this Jonathan ; who was in such straitened circumstances, that when he took his first degree in arts, the following order was made concerning him :
" Jan. 13, 1659. “ It was concluded, that Dryden and three others, in regard of their povertie, should each have 205. of their commencement-money abated on taken their batchellor of arts degree.”-Conclusion-Book in the Archives of Trinity College, p. 259.
8 Regr. Acad. Cant.
the University Register, owing perhaps to the irregularity of that turbulent time, his name is unaccountably omitted.
The only general Collection of either gay or lugubrious verse, that was issued out by the University of Cambridge during the unfortunate and disgraceful period of Dryden's being a member of it, appeared in 1654, under the title of OLIVA Pacis,' &c. in honour of the peace concluded
9 In the patent creating him Poet Laureate, he is expressly styled Master of Arts ; a title which he certainly would not have assumed, if he had not a right to it, as his pretensions to this distinction could at that time have been easily refuted. The Rev. Mr. Borlase, Registrar of the University of Cambridge, who obligingly, at my request, examined the list of Graduates of that University, is of opinion, that if our author ever was a Master of Arts, that degree must have been conferred on him by some other University. At Oxford, however, though once denominated by him " the Athens of his riper age,” it is very improbable that he should have taken this degree, no notice of it being found in the Faste of the accurate Wood. '! "I The full title is-Oliva Pacis ad Illustrissimum Celsissimumque OLIVERUM, Reipub. Angliæ, Franciæ, et Hiberniæ Dominum Protectorem, de Pace cum fæderatis Belgis feliciter sancita, Carmen Cantabrigiense. 4to. 1654. On the death of the Usurper, the Cantabrigians hailed his son, Richard, in a second Collection, (now extremely scarce,) entitled — MUSARUM CANTABRIGIENSIUM Luctus et Gratulatio: ille in funere OLIVERI Angliæ, Scotiæ, et Hiberniæ, Protectoris ; hæc de Ri. CARDI successione felicissima ad eundem. 4to. 1658.-As
between England and Holland on the 15th of April, and ratified May 2d of that year. To this volume he might naturally be expected to have been a contributor, being then of four years' stand
an adopted son, I am proud to add, that the University
Ille sago factụs clarior, ille togâ ;
Hie quod sit mundi victor, et ille quies.
Major es; ipse orbem vincis, et ipse regis.
Sic poteras binos qui superare deos!