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that purpose, otherwise his ornariented and may well admit of a question ; but upon rhetorical stile would have better qualified the whole I give the palm to the Fair Pe. him for the Epic walk. He is the nitent. very poet of eloquence. His ver6 fca Shore certainly is, what Calista perhaps tion is particularly noble and hai monious. is not, a real penitent. Real penitence, He portefies, bowever, no nice discrimi. especially when the crime was furrounded nation of passions, or accurate knowledge with all temptation's magic, has the of the human heart. He always en). strongest claim pon our compassion. trenches hintef in generals. He contin And the meek repentance of Shore, pult nually facrifices pallion and character to into the harmonious versification of this a beautiful fimile or extraneous embeililh- writer, infallibly draws tears from every ment. While description sweeps along eye. in all the pomp of words, nature and life Dr. Johnson, the monarch of the critic Herp. But these faulis are chicfly con- rezim, has told us, that Alicia is a cha{picuous in his meaner performances. In racter of empty noise, without either naTamerlane, a tragedy that has had its day, tural passion, or real madness. This they are particularly dilguting. In his is surely to push the matter too far. It two most admired productions, if he does is to concentrate the characteriitic defect not always shake thein off, he rises above of this poet into a charge againit a fingle them, and we lote light of them in a picture. A thousand times in the course constellation of the mot vigorous beau- of the tragedy, dramatic exceilence is ties,

made to give place to epic defcription, They are particulariy excellent as be- and more than epic amplification. In ing founded upon the ttory of private the mean time, were I 10 point out that and domestic wees, and so being equally perfonage of the di ama in whose mouth directed to the heart of every ipectator. are the greatest number of admirable para The mind of mere fenfibility is tired with fages, I know not but it would be the the continual repetition of llie diftreffes very personage that has fallen fo leverely of kings and emperors, and loves to come under the critic lall. No personage ever home io thole fcenes that are common to gave greater scope to the performer; and every class of humanity. For this rea. it is laid, that the nobleft reputation of fon the Fair Penitent is a tragedy equally the immortal Cihher was founded upon if not mcre universally relished then any this bafis, her Alica. The great defect of those of the English Theatre. It has of this poem is its want of itory. It been complained or as a misorer; and never iacks the speciator with fupence. certain it is that Calista exci:es but little It never agilates with any fudden change. comparatively of our piry: lier charac. of fortune. And the end is alınost cele ter, however, is drawn with confiderable tainly forefeen from the beginning. The warinth of conceruun. And indeed ihe misfortunes of maternal tenderils or of leading personages in general of this virt1101s love, in the hands of a skilful piece are painted with a niuch bolder painter, will agitate the 10:11 even pencil than Roive in any other instance phrenzy. In every difirefs, to be truly would feem in bare been cap..hile of. poetical, there should be a mixture of the Lothario and Horauo are so much the sublime and ilic ditinte:cited. In pitying characters of real life, that they seem fuchs 1 we, we are faciled and elevated even to entrench upon the higher fpecies in the very muixent in which we are meltof comedy. The tenderness of the cd. But the ditt:els of Shore is entitly mont has juftly been conjured by the perfonai, which tends exceedingly to cominon voice as part:king of the pirito weaken iis pailios. And then the litreis leis and the witcl. The pathos of the of t:mine is pure sinking and milery, play reits enti:ely with Sciolo. Perhaps without orc pin by which tor the ful this personage may not be of ille file to recover lisesti siiv; 2:24 border: 100

But lienembit to have been so much upon the sumple sesions of pain, 10 much truck with it, in the performance be a proper suspect for poely. The of that mailer of every tender emotion of writer pronally reli toinething of this, the foul, the incomparable Mir. Lary, and has thercior: condenvoured to complis that I am fatistied I obal never be able cate and expand the intereit by introducoolly to decide respecting it; or pertailycing :he character of the hufand. But 10 separate the inerit of the poet and he takes too little room in the canvas io the actor. Jane Shore is utally conti- be able to continuie much to remove the died as the chef d'oeuvre of Roite. Ii obiccion.




THE first writer that deserves our no ters chiefly presented by this writer and tice, or indeed whose attempts in the his contemporaries, Beaumont ant Fletcomic line are almost at all remembered cher, are lo truly fingular, and so much by us, is the immortal Shakespeare. Tre out of the road of our present manners, attention of this eagle genius was princi- that, though in general very faintly pally directed to the serious drama, and sketched, it is yet frequently possible for it is not by his comedies that his reputa an actor of a vigorous conception, and tion is to be estimated. His happiest pro great art of representation, to make them duction in ibis kind, the As You Like highly entertaining. Hence it is that It, is almost entirely pastoral, and there- many pieces which appear inimitably lêfore, though it certainly does not yield in dious and dull in the closet, are great fa. beauty to any poein in the world, it does vourites upon the theatre. They refemble not properly fall under our present consi a heap of dead bodies, the light of which deration. His cornic fame in its itricteft in ihemlelves yields litile more than fimfense must indeed be wholly refted upon ple pain and disgust. But a man who, thele two perforniances, The Merry like Fadialla's dervise in the Arabian Wives of Windsor, and the Much Ado Nights, poflefies the secret of injecting About Nothing. The former of these his soul into them, can make thein rile contains several excellent characters, and upon their feet, and go hither and thither, many strokes of the truest humour ; but to the amusement and furprise of every its plot is cold and uninteresting. The spectator. The Silent Woman, however, idea of founding a drama upon the pranks must be excepted from this charge, and hy which a lecherous old man is punished does indeed contain a very considerable for fo preposterous a taste, is in itself tut. portion of the vis comica. ficiently barren ; and it is rendered still But the firit writer in this country less interesting by the regular decienfun who has entitled himself to a confiderable of the pranks in point of spirit and in- ' degree of reputation, merely by the piovention. The affair of the buck-basket, duction of comedies, is Wicherley. He though it cannot boast much of what the is indeed far from thaking off entirely French require under the term bienfonce, the vestigia ruris ; and partly from the is infinitely ridiculous, and is very highly time in which he lived, and parily from painted. But the Fairy scheme, with his personal disposition, his characters are which the piece is concluded, is furely universally market with a particular barlaone of the most iniserable conceits that neis and aggravation of feature. His ever entered into the mind of man. The Plain Dealer has certainly, however, great character of Falstaff is certainly one of merit, and is superior io almost all the the happiest pictures that ever graced the comedies that had been produced in the comic scene. But it is generally allowed English language before his time. As a to have been written with much more wit prouf of its exiensive reputation, it may and spirit than here, in the piece in which be observed, that Voltaire has paid it the it was originally introduced, the First Part compliment of translating it for the French of King Henry IV.

theatre. Tlie Much Ado, &c. is a moft excel But the writer who has carried this spelent and extraordinary perfon nce. Co-cies of compofition to the highest perfecmedy, and especially genteel comedy, is tion it has yet reached among us, is Con. justly considered as, of all the different greve. His genius is rich and inexspecies of poetry, that whose production haustible. In the mean time, his comedies is latest to be expected. It is very long are disfigured by a uniform obicurity and ere the manners of any people a: e carried complication of plot. llis wit is scattered to their liigheit pitch of rifinement. And pon us with unlimited profulon, and it till that iime arrives, there are a houland is too often put indiscriminately into the delicacies incident to this species of com. mouth of any of his personages, without polition, of which it is scarcely possible a fuiticient regard to the truti of chafor the puet to have any idea. In the racter. What Lord Dorfet is reported to mean time we may challenge the world have said of Love for Love, may be to produce a more ipirited picture of high adopted as well for blame as praise, That life than is contained in this comedy. his pieces generally contain wit enough

The reputation of Ben Jonson has for seven comedies. The character, howbeen very great, and has, in my opinion, ever, of Sir Sampson Legend will not mlich exceedeu his merits. The charac, probably yield to any comic picture that


was ever produced. His last production, existed. I need not say that I mean Mr. the Way of the World, is more chaite Sheridan. The Suspicious Husband of in this respect than any of the rest. And Hurdley is equal in merit to any comedy in spite of a few errois that cold pene. in the language ; but linfortunately for trition might discover in it, the more it bis country, its author never produced js reall, and the oftener it is teen, the another. Muít we learn to tremble left more will it be admired.

this example should be repeated among I he iketches of Farquhar have much us? I have nothing to do with Mr. vigour and spuit; but he le ms to have Sheridan's political pursuits. May their been of two indoient a turn ever to have success be equal to the greatness of his produced a finished work.

abilities and the iniegrity of his views ! The same remark may with fome ac but I could wish him to remember one commodation be applied to Mr. Focte, thing. The obstacles are innumerable, who was one of the happiest geniuses in it indeed they can at all be surmounted, this line, that the

elent age

in th: way of his making a principal duced.

figure in the political world. In the line Thus far an impartial critic must ac that he first chaiked out to himself he may knowledge that we have produced no reign without a rival. And I remember writer fo accomplished as Moliere among Cżiar oblervcd,

he passed among a the French. But there is an author, now few scattered cottages in Gaul, “ I had living, who seems not to yield in point " rather be the firit man in this village, of abilities to any comic writer that ever “ than the second man in Rome." T.

has pro


P. 27.

SIR, If the following Remarks, which occurred on a perusai of Mrs. Prozzi's" Anecdotes

of the late Di. Samuel Johnson," are worth your acceptance, you are heartily wel come to them. I

" Sive cum libris novitate pascit mother, though I loved

s“ Sedua mentem." her : and one day, when in anger sne These ideas occur in Ovid de Trilticalled me a puppy, I asked her if the bus, 111. 7. knew what they called a puppy's mo

Aut illim invenies dulci cum inatre ther."

feleniem, This thought appears to have been Awinter libros, Pieridasque fuas. adopted from Shakespeare's Timon of Dr. Johnion, however, seems indebied Athens, Act I. Sc. I.

to Milton s amplification of the lame Poet. You are a dog.

image', in his fourth elegy: Apem. Thy mother's of my genera Invenies vulci cum conjuge forte etion: What's the, if I be a dog?


Mviceniem gremio pignora parva P. 63. “ I have read that the Siamese sent ambasadors to Louis Quatorze, but Forsitan aut veterum prælarga voluI never heard that the King of France thought it worth his while to send am, Verfintem, aut veri biblia sacra Dei. b”fiariors from his court to that of Siam."

" When Mrs. Montagie Dr. Robertson might have humbled thewed him fomc China plares, which had his antagonit, hy informing him, thai in once belonged to Queen Elizabeth, he the year 1685 Louis XIV. actually did told her, " that they had no reason to be send the Chevalier de Chaumont and the alhamed of their present postePor, who Abbé de Choily as his ambaladors to was so liitle inferior to their firit." the King of Siain ; and that the lat. This compliment is only a paraphrase ter, and the Chevalier de Forbin, pub- on Vi: 1, Æn. VI. v. 170. Milenus had lished relations of the voyag«, &c. attended on Hector, and afterwards be:

longed to Æncas; Non inferiora fecuP. 163. “ Seu viri curas pia nupla

mu'cet, * Seu fovet mater fobolem benigna, P. 203. “ Mr. Thomas Tyers said,


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mina patron

P. 205.


P. 265.


he was like the ghosts, who never speak the dramas of a Poet who caught his till they are spoken to."

ideas from a living world, and exhibited This comparison was borrowed from crly what he faw hefore him.'' Fielding's Tom Jones, Book XI. Chap And yet, per aps, a third of the Plays ter 2. — The other who, like a ghoit, of Shakciptare impose a fiat negative on only wanted to be spoke to, readily an this lait ailertion of their eclitor. fwered, &c." The chara&ter of Tom Restles in the

Walking in a wood when it Idier, No. 48, was meant by Di. John- rained, was, I think, the only rural fon tor Tom Tyers.

image he pleased his tancy wiih.”

Ris partiality for this circumstance “ We must not ridicule a perhaps was occafioned by a pullage in pallion (Love]. which he who never felt Milion, which is thus p raphrated in his was never happy, and he who laughs at observations on the Penforoso of that delerves to feel ;-a passion which has great poet. -- When the morning caused the change of empires, and the comes, a morning gloomy with wind and loss of worlds ;--a paflion which has in- rain, he [the penhve man) walks into thie {pired heroiim, and subdued avarice." dark trackless woods."--Who, that was

Surely there is some contradiction be intimate with Di. Jolinfon, can exprels 1ween this sentiment and arother of the surprize on tinding iniin adopt an amusefame author, in his Preface to Shake. ment appropriated by Milton to Il Pen. speare, p. 6. Mr. Reed's edition.

forofo ? " Love is only one of the many pa'

I am, Sir, fons; and as it has no greai iniluence on


humble servant, &c. the sum of life, it has little operation in


SIR, THE infatuation fo prevalent of late, of those wars among the natires ; (PT

i'tfpecting the Slave Trade, and the the cause is removed, I should presume many arguments which have been used the effcet muli likewile ceale) but will to make it appear in the most oulious righi, any que afirm iris seriously? Let ine aik, have induced me io hit a fe:v remarks, Why do the European powers make war that fetm to have escaped the generality with each other? We are endowed with of its numerous enemies, who, led away a greater poruon of reason--we profess by a mistaken humanity, would facrifice the Christian religion - we have no marevery thing to a blindi impulle, without kit for our prisoners—and yet we may once conticic: ing the fa:al confequences mangle and butcher each other in bloody that might roo probably enlue on its jup- and contimed wars, And would it not preslion. They have certainly carried in be unjust that the native of Africa, who Their endeavours with every degree of re 2's under the immediate impulse of his Solution and perseverance; and had they passions, (uncurbed by either Reason or chole a propcrer object, would have been Religion) should le debarred from the entitled io much praise : inu: their huma- faine privilege ? Coulider the extent of nity has no cause to be baulked. If they countıy.--:be many tribes that inhabit will look around them, they will find it; and if in the sma!! island of Otaheite calamities and distrefies sufficient to ex two p: wers are continually at variance, ercile their bounty upon ; and those lums is it reaconable to fuppote, that where they have gathered for the purpose of car. they are io numcrous, they are likely to rying on their favourite project, will be live on amicable terms? Their wars much more bencficially employed in le. would be more bloody, as all prisoners lies Jig the walls of the holci, thie abo - would be undoubtedly facrificed; but I rious poor of our own country. But lo will be bold enough to affirm that they priceed to the briveis. The Slaves would not be lets frequent. The Cappurchased by ile Copains of vefsels on tains of thips have been said (as another 1:e Coast of Gunta, are perfons who argumerit) to ircat the Slaves, while in hive forfeiied their lives to ibe laws of their polenion, with the greatett barbaritheir country, or elle captives that are ta. ty. Tales of this fort, we may know from ken in their wars. In either case the experience, never lose anything by the Dite of the visim is preferved. But it is way:

But let it be reinembered (as an argued, that the Slaye Trade is the caule Antwer to abis) that it is by no means

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