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Oh, whether was kythit1 there true love or none?
The Merle said, “Why put God so great beauty
The Nightingale said, “Not to that behoof
O Nightingale! it were a story nice,
The Nightingale said, “Bird, why does thou rave? Man may take in his lady such delight,
Kythit:' shewn.—2 ‘Frustir:' in vain.—3 «Spleen :' from the heart.
Him to forget that her such virtue gave,
The Merle said, 'Love is cause of honour aye,
The Nightingale said, "True is the contrary;
Then said the Merle, · Mine error I confess :
'Redomite:' bound, encircled.—3 «Sweir:' slothful.—3 Well beseen:' of good appearance.—4 Tone;' taken.
Then sang they both with voices loud and clear,
Then flew these birds over the boughis sheen,
This eminent prelate was a younger son of Archibald, the fifth Earl of Angus. He was born in Brechin about the year 1474. He studied at the University of Paris. He became a churchman, and yet united with attention to the duties of his calling great proficiency in polite learning. In 1513 he finished a translation, into Scottish verse, of Virgil's ' Æneid,' which, considering the age, is an extraordinary performance. It occupied him only sixteen months. The multitude of obsolete terms, however, in which it abounds, renders it now, as a whole, illegible. After passing through various subordinate offices, such as the 'Provostship’ of St Giles's, Edinburgh, and the 'Abbotship’ of Arbroath, he was at length appointed Bishop of Dunkeld. Dunkeld was not then the paradise it has become, but Birnam hill and the other mountains then, as now, stood round about it, the old Cathedral rose up in medieval majesty, and the broad, smooth Tay flowed onward to the ocean. And, doubtless, Douglas felt the poetic inspiration from it quite as warmly as did Thomas Brown, when, three centuries afterwards, he set up the staff of his summer rest at the beautiful Invar inn, and thence delighted to diverge to the hundred scenes of enchantment which stretch around. The good Bishop was an ardent politician as well as a poet, and was driven, by his share in the troubles of the times, to flee from his native land, and take refuge in the Court of Henry VIII. The King received him kindly, and treated him with much liberality. In 1522 he died at London of the plague, and was interred in the Savoy Church. He was, according to Buchanan, about to proceed to Rome to vindicate himself before the Pope against certain charges brought by his enemies. Besides the translation of the • Æneid,' Douglas is the author of a long poem entitled the 'Palace of Honour;' it is an allegory, describing a large company making a pilgrimage to Honour's Palace. It bears considerable resemblance to the Pilgrim's Progress, and some suppose that Bunyan had seen it before composing his allegory. 'King Hart ’ is another production of our poet's, of considerable length and merit. It gives, metaphorically, a view of human life. Perhaps his best pieces are his 'Prologues,' affixed to each book of the Æneid.' From them we have selected ‘Morning in May' as a specimen. The closing lines are fine.
1.Whose eidant plead yet made my thoughtis grein:' whose close disputation made my thoughts yearn.
“Welcome the lord of light, and lamp of day,
Welcome comfort of all kind fruit and grain,' &c. Douglas must not be named with Dunbar in strength and grandeur of genius. His power is more in expression than in conception, and hence he has shone so much in translation. His version of the 'Æneid' is the first made of any classic into a British tongue, and is the worthy progenitor of such minor miracles of poetical talent—all somewhat more mechanical than inspired, and yet giving a real, though subordinate glory to our literature—as Fairfax's "Tasso,' Dryden's 'Virgil,' and Pope's, Cowper's, and Sotheby's 'Homer.' The fire in Douglas' original verses is occasionally lost in smoke, and the meaning buried in flowery verbiage. Still he was an honour alike to the Episcopal bench and the Muse of Scotland. He was of amiable manners, gentle temperament, and a noble and commanding appearance.
MORNING IN MAY.
As fresh Aurore, to mighty Tithon spouse,
purpour spraings,' with gold and azure ment;4