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Yet girt about; and nigla wise Henrie's hearse,
Old Chaucer got a marble for his verse.
So courteous is Death; Death poets brings
So high a pompe to lodge them with their kings ;
Yet still they mutiny."

“ If some please their patrons with hyperboles, or mysterious nonsense, and then complain, if they are not noticed, that the state neglects men of parts; and seem to think all other kinds of excellence unworthy of reputation, let us set so just a value on knowledge, that the world may trust the sentence of a poet.

I write to you, Sir, on this theame, because
Your soule is cleare, and you observe the lawes
Of poesie so justly, that I chuse
Yours onely the example to my muse.
And till my browner haire be mixt with grey,
Without a blush, Ile tread thie sportive way
My muse directs; a poet youth may be,
But age doth dote without philosophie.”

The 1st part closes at pp. 65–67, with a poem so simple, so chaste, so elegant, harmonious, and happy, as to exceed my powers of praise.

The Description of Castara.

“ Like the violet, which alone
Prospers in some happy shade,
My Castara lives unknowne,
To no looser eye betray'd,

For shee's to herselfe untrue,
Who delights i' th' publicke view.

Such hier beauty, as no arts
Have enricbt with borrowed grace,
Her high birth no pride imparts,
For she blushes in her place.

Folly boasts a glorious blood,
She is noblest, being good.

Cautious, she knew never yet,
What a wanton courtship meant:
Not speaks loud to boast her wit,
In her silence eloquent.

Of herselfe survey she takes,
But 'tweene men no difference makes.

She obeyes with speedy will
Her grave parents' wise coinmands.
And so innocent, that ill,
She nor acts, nor understands.

Women's feet runne still astray,
If once to ill they know the way.

She sailes by that rocke, the court,
Where oft honour splits her mast :
And retir’dnesse thinks the port,
Where her fame may anchor cast.

Vertue safely cannot sit,
Where vice is enthron'd for wit.

She holds that daye's pleasure best,
Where sinne waits not on delight;
Without Maske, or ball, or feast,
Sweetly spends a Winter's night.

O're that darknesse, whence is thrust,
Prayer and sleepe often governs lust.

She her throne makes reason climbe,
While wild passions captive lie;
And each article of time,
Her pure thoughts to heaven Hie:

All her vows religious be,
And her love she vowes to me."


No. LXV. Difference between thought and Action.

Elevated sentiments not to be tated with want of sincerity, nor as useless, because not always followed by practice.

“ Mens cujusque is est quisque.”


Every one is aware of the difference between thought and action. To conceive a plan, and to execute it, requires talents so dissimilar, that they but rarely concentre in the same person.

He whose mind is exercised in discriminating the varieties of the human character, will every day meet with men, who, without the power of reasoning, are capable of fixing upon a practical result not inconcordant at least with worldly wisdom. Many may call this an intuitive sagacity; and it sometimes deserves the name.

But its appearance of force often, I suspect, proceeds from the weight of its materiality; from its being addressed to the senses, rather than to the intellect.

Men of this cast judge of every thing only by its execution. “Act,” they cry," and do not talk; words are only wind !” Ideas they consider as

vapoury as the fantastic shapes of the clouds, and as liable to pass away: they judge of the visions of theory as of the imaginations of the insane. Nay, they deem that there is a kind of falsehood and deceit in the expression of sentiments and convictions, which are not instantly followed up by practice.

For the ordinary purposes of life, the gracious decrees of Providence have ordered that this low sort of understanding should be sufficient. As long as it keeps within its province, and does not aspire to insult or decry those of higher er dowments, it may be pitied, and now and then even approved. But when it ventures to despise “ the shadowy tribes of mind;” and to refuse all credit to the eloquence of the head, or the sensibilities of the heart, because action cannot always keep pace with the rapid travels of the soul, it must not complain if it draw down the indignation due to its groveling naturé.

It is almost inconceivable how little understanding is necessary to enable a man to preserve the appearance of a coarse rectitude of conduct through life. If he never venture to reason; if he keep a solemn reserve; and occasionally pronounce a decision on the pending topic in an oracular tone, and act with prudential caution, he will have the credit of possessing good sound common sense : while the most brilliant talents will be thought frothy and superficial, if they are sometimes too refined for the routine of vulgar business, and sometimes evaporate in speculation.

These narrow and illiberal censurers indeed go much further; they even suspect and accuse of want of integrity, those whose conceptions and expressions are sometimes too abundant, or too visionary for action. But what can be more ignorant, or more unjust than this stigma?

The contempt of stupidity is, it must be confessed, very provoking. Why should the dull suppose that nothing is good but according to their own model ? Why should they endeavour to lower us down to mere materialism?

It is among the evils which mix themselves in this world with all good, that the very superiority to which acute and highly-cultivated minds are raised, exposes them to many keen disgusts and mortifications, to which those of a coarser cast are insensible. The former are of a temperament too nice for the common intercourse of society. The rudeness and insults of the obtuse-headed and the hard-hearted, make too deep an impression on them. The finer mechanism of their internal emotions is deranged by rough and brutal behaviour. Otherwise, such pitiful and ill-founded animadversions would not for a moment give pain to a well-regulated intellect.

It is a mark of the divine part of our nature, to be constantly aspiring at some excellence beyond our practical reach ; and to indulge a thousand virtuous visions, which, if they have vanished with the clouds, have yet not flitted accross our fancies in vain!

Whoever is in the habitual practice of accusing the eloquent and richly-gifted, of an hypocritical want

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