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which would infallibly cure from a wild unbroke horse deserves him of the poetic itch. To me it ap- notice as an instance how different the pears extremely probable that Treba- potions of propriety and decorum are tius was a lover both of bathing in in different ages and with different nathe Tiber, and of old wine, and that tions. It would ill become a modern the poet jocosely alludes to both. poet to use it, notwithstanding J.Mat. Many such particular touches, which thias Gesperthinks that kingsarefond derive all their facetia from local and of being compared to horses. This personal circumstances, are undoubt- whole passage, from the twelfth to edly couched in this and several other the twentieth line, may be alleged, in pieces, which to us are as good as lost. my opinion, as a very striking proof
Cupidum, pater optine, vires, &c.] af thelittle inclination and disposition, This excuse which Horace so frequent- Horace had to recommend himself to ly avails himself of, I think I have Octavianus by the arts of adulation placed in its proper point of view, in since even on this so gratifying an the introduction to the epistle to Au- occasion (for Trebatius probably acts gustus. Here we cannot fail to ob. here only as the spokesman of the pubserve the particular ingenuity, with lic) he could not bring himself to say which (for the purpose of avoiding any thing obliging, so far from flatthe bad appearance of a bare evasion) tering, even but incidentally, to one he as it were forces himself into the who, with all his authority and power, dilemma, by putting this objection acted so equivocal a part in the Rointo the mouth of Trebatius: “If then man government, thou hast po talent for heroic poesy, Votivå tabella.] The votive tab. what binders thee from celebrating lets, with which we still see in our the great qualities which Cæsar dis- days, the Roman Catholic churches plays in peace?" – To such an ob- garnished, especially in petty towns jection no other salvo remained but and villages, are best adapted to give that whicb he gives in reply : I should us an idea of these tabula votiva, which pot be backward in so doing, when in the times of paganism, superstithe proper time and opportunity ar tious persons who attributed their derive. The fact was, the Romans be- liverance from any imminent danger gan with some reason to expect, that to the immediate assistance of some Cæsar Octavianus, by a mild and wise particular deity whom they had iuadministration in peace, would efface voked in the hour of their distress, the remembrance of what he had been were wont to testify their gratitude. during the triumvirate. But that re The
poor blind heathens had likewise membrance was still too fresh, and their consecrated places, and miracuthat hope too fallacious to excite a lous images; they made vows to them vehement passion in the breast of any when groaning under affliction, which howest Roman to praise and extol the they paid on being relieved from it, successful usurperas fortem et justum, by votive tablets, waxen, silver or that is, precisely for those virtues, in golden arms, legs, eyes, breasts, &c. diametrical opposition to which he As these votive paintings, with which had been manifestly acting but a few principally the temples and chapels of years before. All in good time. Oc- the marine deities were richly hung, tavianus must first have learnt to play were mostly put up by common peowith greater ease and propriety, the ple, and daubed by wretched painters, new part, which Mæcenas and Agrip at a moderate price: it is no wonder, pa were tutoring him to perform. At that, together with other errors present such panegyrics would wear against good taste, they transgressed too much the appearance of flattery the rule of the unity of the subject for being really flattering to him; and represented. Frequently, therefore from whose mouth would such straips on the same tablet was to be secs at sound more suspicious, than from one one end of the fore-ground the creduwho, six or seven years ago had borne lous votary going on shipboard ; in arms against him. At that circum- the middle ground buffeting the bilstance the poet seems to give a gentle lows in a violent storm; on another hint in the words, nisi dextro tempore plan suffering shipwreck; on another Flacci verba, &c.
again upon the top of a prodigious recalcitrat undiqae tutus.] wave, with uplifted hands making This metaphorical expression taken vows to Neptuue, and lastly, at the
BOOK IV. - CANTO IV.
other end of the picture, happily preserved and scramblinle 02 sbore.
This pa sage unquestionably bears
In out the commentary of Messrs. Theothis multiplicity of events, which, as bald and Malone: but it is to be un
in a succession of scenes one general derstood, that though it may, on acplot, was represented on these votive count of its acid quality, be denomipaintings, the teriium comparationis nated Vinegar, it would have been Jay between them, and the satires of more accordant to have described it Lucilius might be regarded, referably as a chemical preparation corrosive to the familiar garrulity with which and destructive. This explanation he talks in them about himself, as in will manifest that some peril is attensome sort a journal of his daily life. dant upon the different trials, to which
Penusinus.] Horace was born at Lueries is challenged, beyond “ drink. Venusia.
ing up Vinegar," --- a beverage that Quod Appulu gens seu quod Luca many young ladies highly esteem, nia bellum, &c.] He seems here in when the preservation of a shape is bis bantering way, to copy Lucilius's the object, and no per.on scarcely can own loquacity and negligence in style. feel a revo't ai. And I beg, in conGreai Ormond-Street. W. T. firmation of what is advanced, to sub
join the following extract from Sir PASSAGE IN HAMLET.
William D'Avenant's Gondibert, in
which Esil is adverted to for its poHamletą" Zounds, shew me what thou
wilt do: (woul't tear thyself? tency, as if it were as searching as Woult weep? -- woul't fight? --woul't fast? aqua fortis. Woul't drink up Esil ? ---- eat a crocodile ?"
"GONdibeRT. Mr. URBAN,
(The Edition in 12mo. printed 1651.) T has been observed by THEOBALD, Victorious King! Abroad your subjects through all the Editions, that the
(free! word Esil has been distinguished by Like Legars safe, at home like altars Italic characters, as if it were the pro- Ev'n by your fame they conquer as by per name of a river ; and, although be
(be, rejects that application, he very com
And by your laws safe from each other prehensively mentions the Yssel in the A King you are o'er Subjects, so as wise provioce of Overysel. He, however, And noble Husbands seen o'er loyal properly decides, towards the close of
Wives; bis note, that by Esil is to be under. Who claim not, yet confess their liberties, stood Vinegar; and he adds, that And brag to strangers of their happy “s the lowness of the idea is in some
lives. measure removed by the uncommon To Foes a winter storm; whilst your term.”
[ty's load; Mr. STEEVENS, the most powerful of Like summer trees, beneath your boun, all Shakspeare's commentators, rejects To me (next him whom your great self,
with low this construction; saying, “ that the challenge is not very magnificent,
And cheerful duty serves) a giving God. which only provokes an adversary to Since this is you, and Rhodalind (the light a fit of the heart-burn, or the colick.” By which her sex fled virtue find) is And he remarks that “the Yssell yours ; would serve Hamlet's turn, or his
Your Diamond, which tests of jcałous sight, own;" and farther, that “the Poet
The stroke, and fire, and OISEL's juice
endures. might have written Weisel, which falls in the Baltic ocean, and could not I trust this elucidation
be be unknown to any Prince of Den ceptable to your readers. mark."
Yours, &c. Mr. MALONE advocates the eluci. dation of Theobald of Esil, or Eisel, ON FRENCH VERSIFICATION. being Vinegar; and quotes Sir Thomas More, as follows:
Bristol, Dec. T.
WHILE we appear to acknowledge If thou pain thy tast, rernember there. the elegance and precision of withal
French prose, we seem little affected How Christ for thee tasted Eisil and gall.” by the melody of French verse; or
rather, we are unwilling to admit that ture. It is more the flexibility of it possesses any melody whatever. It style and expression, than the syllabic is however certain, that one nation arrangement, that produces the seemcan very imperfectly judge of those ing correspoudence of the verse with rules of harmony which govern the the subject. The celebrated author language of another, unless that lan- of “ Hints for the Education of a Pringuage has become, by insensible adop- cess" is therefore wholly mistaken, tion, equally familiar with its own; as when she infers the impropriety of is the case with the French tongue the French Epic measure, from its generally on the Continent. Laharpe, supposed resemblance to after quoting. Voltaire's witty sar «A Cobler there was, and he liv'd in a stall;' casm, that "the English gained two which, as connected with a ludicrous hours a day on their neighbours, by association, cannot be admitted as a eating half their words,” and after ob- fair instance of comparison, and of serving that our inarticulateness, as to which the rhythm, considered abvowels especially, seemed to shock stractedly from the sense, has, pero the very principles of articulation, haps, necessarily, no essential properfinishes, by informing his readers, that ty of light and joyous movement. The “the English too, pretend to a har- resemblance, moreover, is so commony of their own, no less than their pletely chimerical, that, if the followneighbours; and, doubtless, they must
ing verse, be believed ; provided, he pertly adds, Dans le recueillement son âme est absorbée, they admit in their turn, that the harniony exists but for themselves." It
were pronounced with correspondent would indeed be difficult to make a
stress of emphasis to the verse of the foreigner perfectly acquainted with English ballad, it would be absolute the interior structure of our metrical jargon. That partial emphasis which
forms the peculiarity of English proharmony: especially in blank verse; of which, the music chiefly depends
nunciation, added to our close, comon the different arrangement of the pressed method of articulating, so conpauses in different successive lines ;
trary to the open articulation of the but Laharpe is no more justified in French, has led to this error in the insinuating that this is a mere harmo. reading of French verse. The French ny of agreement which has no positive tic importance which he gives to one
detect an Englishman by the emphakuowledge of the French language is syllable
, more than another; which, usually limited to the reading and concurring with his close and often writing it, can reasonably be excused sibilant articulation, cuts short the in retorting on French rhythra a si- time of a word. In French verse, as milar observation. What has contri
in French prose, the emphasis for the buted to this disdain of French verse, heroic measure is not marked by
most part is evenly distributed ; the I allude more particularly to the heroic verse, is the very general preju- tic cadence like the Euglish, but by
quantity like the Latin, nor by emphadice, that its cadence is anapæstic: a measure usually employed by us on
time alone. Tlie French Epic verse
has twelve times: it exactly correlight subjects, and, therefore, from peculiar association, regarded as un
sponds to the Alexandrine or twelve. suitable to subjects of dignity, Sup- which has nothing incompatible with
syllable verse of Drayton's Polyolbion, posing this idea of the French rhythm- Epic dignity of flow, and is less on: ical cadence accurate, the objection, wieldy than the measure in whichi arising from babits of pational taste, Chapman translated the Iliad. would be altogether frivolous; but And as each one is prais’d for her peculiar the notion of a certain appropriate
things, ness in particular metres to particular So only she is rich in mountains, meres,and
[springs; subjects, is in great measure arbitra And holds herself as great in her superflury. The lines in Beattie's Hermit,
(grac'd. But when shallSpring visit the mouldering As others by their towns and stately tillage urn ?
s grave? Oh! when shall it dawn on the night of the
It appears then that the movement
of the French heroic is grave and state never, I believe, suggested to any ly; and that its recitation, so far from body associations of a misthful na- dancing trippingly over the tongue,
is usually slow and distinct; a cesura English anapæstic verse bears no sort
Extended Space. D'où l'eil découvre au loin l'air, la terre, et les flots. To pronounce the last verse glibly stichs, is the distinguishing pause of and rapidly, would baffle the most French versification ; but they someflexible organs.
times adopt an arbitrary cesura, which, French verse has been accused of a like our own, does not fall invariably want of variety, perhaps without due in the centre, but rests, as the sense consideration. 'T'he cesurà that di may exact, near the beginning of a vides the line into two exact hemi.
verse, or towards its close.
Je l'ai vu tout couvert d'une affreuse poussière,
Conservait sous la cendre encor le même orgueil. In the French couplet the sense is not necessarily bounded by the close of the second line. The verses often flow easily into each other.
Que dis-je ? ah! libre enfin des chaines de la ville
+ The English reader will accept a hasty translation of the passages quoted.
Beneath redoubled blows the benches ring;
I have beheld bim grim with dust, and clad
but still his eye
Why may I not in solitary calm
It seems probable, from the com own language. The practice of the positions of the earlier French Poets, old Poeis will, at least, demonstrate that the metrical language of France the practicability of running one verse might bave attained a far greater de into another, which the French call gree of strength and freedom, had it enjambemeni, and even of combining got been retined down and restrained words in the manner of the Greek by the care of successive improvers. epithels; a usage to which the lan. The modern Freucl critics, indeed, ob
guage is commonly thought inade, ject to the obsolete style in question, quaie. The following passage deas barbarous; and it inust be consessed serves to be cited at length, from its that they are the best judges of their quaint ingenuity.
Trois fois cinquante jours le general naufrage
Montra la terre aù ciel et le ciel à la terre*. DUBARTAS. While I am on the subject of French verse, I shall observe that their lyric measure has great sweetness; witness these stapzas of Malherbe :
Le malheur de ta-fille aù tombeau descendue
Par un commun trépas ;
Ne se rétrouve pas ?
Ont le pire destin :
L'espace d'un matint. The fall from a long verse to a short one, has in that language an effect spirited and pleasing.
Ont-ils perdu l'esprit ? ce n'est plus que poussière
Dont l'éclat orgueilleux étonnait l'anivers ;
Pont encore les vaines
Ils sont mangés des versi.
cause they are less understood. Tu ployed on themes of pleasure and gal. order to appreciate the metre of the lantry, it is unnecessary to speak; its French Poets, we must become intiease and sprightliness of flow are ge- mately versed in the living language; nerally acknowledged: my object has we must hear it declaimed by the best been to insist on the higher merits of French tragedians; to discern its powe French versification ; which, I am ers, we must understand its principles. persuaded, are only less relished, be Yours, &c. RHYTHMUS.
* Thrice fifty days the universal flood Seems it then a gloomy maze Devastated the globe: but touch'd at length Where thy reason wilder'd strays? With such drear havock, scarce th’ Eternal Creature of this world was she: bade
(wave Fairest things the frailest be:
I Could those haughty spirits die ? forth
That fierce, vaunting majesty, Their slimy boughs ; increasing earth
Whose pompous glare a universe dismay'd, On the decreasing waters; the sole hand
Is now but ashes and a shade. Of the dread. thunder-darting God reveals
And in those tombs of massive state, The earth unto the heaven, the heaven to
Where still their souls affect the great, earth.
On each majestic furm f Ah! thy daughter's hapless doom
Riots the ravening worm. Sunk within the common tomb;