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I have some naked thoughts that rove about,
And loudly knock to have their passage out;
And, weary of their place, do only stay,
Till thou hast deck'd them in thy best array;
That so they may, without suspect or fears,
Fly swiftly to this fair assembly's ears:
Yet I had rather, if I were to chuse,
Thy service in some graver subject use,
Such as may make thee search thy coffers round,
Before thou clothe my fancy in fit sound:
Such where the deep transported mind may soar
Above the wheeling poles, and at Heaven's door
Look in, and see each blissful Deity,
How he before the thunderous throne doth lie,
Listening to what unshorn Apollo sings
To the touch of golden wires, while Hebe brings
Immortal nectar to her kingly sire:
Then passing through the spheres of watchful fire, 40
And misty regions of wide air next under,
And hills of snow, and lofts of piled thunder,
May tell at length how green-eyed Neptune raves,
In Heaven's defiance mustering all his waves;
Then sing of secret things that came to pass
When beldam Nature in her cradle was;
And last of kings, and queens, and heroes old,
Such as the wise Demodocus once told
In solemn songs at king Alcinous' feast,
While sad Ulysses' soul, and all the rest,
Are held, with his melodious harmony,
In willing chains and sweet captivity.
But fie, my wandering Muse, how thou dost stray!
Expectance calls thee now another way:
Thou know'st it must be now thy only bent
To keep in compass of thy predicament:
Then quick about thy purposed business come,

That to the next I may resign my room.
Then Ens is represented as father of the Predicaments, his two sons,

whereof the eldest stood for Substance with his canons, which Ess, tbus speaking, explains:

Good luck befriend thee, son; for, at thy birth,

The faery ladies danced upon the hearth; 29. Yt I had rather, &c. It appears, 37. Unshorn Apollo, an epithet by which by this address of Milton to his native he is distinguished in the Greek and language, that even in these green years Latin poets. he had the ambition to think of writing 48. Demodocus, the famous bard of the an epic poem; and it is worth the curious Odyssey, who, according to the fashion reader's attention to observe how much of the heroic ages, delighted the guests the ** Paralise Lost" corresponds in its of Alcinous, during their repa-t, hy singcircuinstances to the prophetic wish he ing about the feats of the Greeks at the now formed.—THYER.

siege of Troy, the woouien horse, &c. See llere are strong indications of a young 0u. viii. 44. mind anticipating the subject of the 59. Good luck, &c. Here the metaphy. " Paradise Lost," if we substitute Chris- sical or logical Eus is introduced as a pertion for pagan ideas. He was now deep son, and addressing his eldest son Sul in the Greek poets.-T. WARTON.

stance; afterwards the logical Quantity,


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Thy drowsy nurse hath sworn she did them spie
Come tripping to the room where thou didst líe;
And, sweetly singing round about thy bed,
Strow all thy blessings on thy sleeping head.
She heard them give thee this, that thou shouldst still
From eyes of mortals walk invisible:
Yet there is something that doth force my fear;
For once it was my dismal hap to hear
A sibyl old, bow-bent with crooked age,
That far events full wisely could presage,
And in time's long and dark prospective glass
Foresaw what future days should bring to pass;
Your son, said she, nor can you it prevent,
Shall subject be to many an Accident:
O’er all his brethren he shall reign as king,
Yet every one shall make him underling;
And those, that cannot live from him asunder,
Ungratefully shall strive to keep him under:
In worth and excellence he shall outgo them;
Yet, being above them, he shall be below them;
From others he shall stand in need of nothing,
Yet on his brothers shall depend for clothing:
To find a foe it shall not be his hap,
And Peace shall lull him in her flowery lap;
Yet shall he live in strife, and at his door
Devouring War shall never cease to roar;
Yea, it shall be his natural property
To harbour those that are at enmity.
What power, what force, what mighty spell, if not
Your learned hands, can loose this Gordian knot?



The next, QUANTITY and Quality, spake in prose; then RELATION was

called by his name.
Rivers, arise; whether thou be the son
Of utmost Tweed, or Oose, or gulphy Dun,

Quality, and Relntion, are personifierl, diraments are his brethren; of or to and speak. This affectation will appear which he is the Subjectum, although first more excusable in Milton, if we recolleet in excellence or order. that every thing, in the masks of this 78. Ungratefully, &c. They cannot exage, appeared in a bodily shape. Airy ist but as inherent in Substance. Nothing" had not only a "local habita- 81. From others, &c. He is still sub tion and a name," but a visible figure.-stince, with or without Accident. T. WARTOV.

82. Yet on his brothers: By whom he is 61. Fuery ladies, &c. This is the first clothed, superinduced, modified, &e. But and last time that the system of the he is still the same.-T. WARTON. fairies was ever introluced to illustrate 88. Those that are at enmity. His Accithe doctrine of Aristotle's ten categories dents. It may be remarked that they both were 91. Rirers, arise, &c. Milton is sup in fushion, and both exploded, at the posed, in the invocation and assemblage same time.-T. WARTOY.

of these rivers, to have had an eye on 62. Come tripping, &c. So barren, un. Spenser's Episode of the Suptials of poetical, and abxtracted a subjert could Thaines and Melway, ** Frerie Queene," not have been worned with finer touchos iv. xj. I rather think he consulted Dray. of fancy.-T. Wartoy,

ton's "Polyolbion." It is hard to say, in 74. To many an Accident. A pun on what sense, or in what manner, this inthe logical Accidens.--T. WARTON,

troduction of the rivers was to be applied 76. O'er all his brethren, &c. The Pre- to the subject. -T. WARTON.


Or Trent, who, like some Earth-born giant, spreads
His thirty arms along the indented meads;
Or sullen Mole, that runneth underneath;
Or Severn swift, guilty of maiden's death;
Or rocky Avon, or of sedgy Lee,
Or coaly Tine, or ancient hallow'd Dee;
Or Humber loud, that keeps the Scythian's name;
Or Medway smooth, or royal-tower'd Thame.

[The rest was prose.]




What needs my Shakspeare, for his honour'd bones,
The labour of an age in piled stones?
Or that his hallow'd reliques should be hid
Under a star-ypointing pyramid?
Dear Son of Memory, great heir of fame,
What need’st thou such weak witness of thy name?
Thou, in our wonder and astonishment,
Hast built thyself a live-long monument.
For whilst, to the shame of slow-endeavouring art,
Thy easy numbers flow; and that each heart
Hath, from the leaves of thy unvalued book,
Those Delphick lines with deep impression took,
Then thou, our fancy of itself bereaving,
Dost make us marble with too much conceiving;
And, so sepulchred, in such pomp dost lie,
That kings, for such a tomb, would wish to die.



* As to the “ Epitaph on Shakspeare," Hurd despises it too much. It is true that it is neither equal to the grand cast of Milton's poeins, nor worthy of the subject; but still it would honour most poets, except the last four lines, which are a poor conceit.- BRYDOES.

There first appeared among other recommendatory verses, prefixed to the folio edition of Shakspeare's plays in 1632; but without Milton's name or initials.

It is therefore the first of Milton's pieces that was published. I may here remark that it was with great difficulty and reluctance that Milton first appeared as an author Ile could not be prevailed upon to put his name to * Comus," his first performance of any length that was printed, notwithstanding the singular approbation with which it has been previously received in a long and extensive course of private cirrulation. “Lycidas,” in the Cambridge collection, is only subscribed with his initial, while most of the other contributors have left their names at full length.-T. WARTOX.

03. Or Ty nt. It is said that there were 96. Maiden's death. The maid is Sathirty sorts of fish in this river, and brina. See “ ('omus," 827. thirty religious houses on it- banks. 99. Humber loud. Humber, a Scythian These traditions, on which Milton has king, landed in Britain three hundred raised a noble imare, are a rebus on the years before the Roman invasion, and name of Trent.-T. WARTOS.

was drowned in this river by Locrine, 95. Or sullen Mole, &c. At Micklebam. after conquering king Albanaci.-T. WARnear Dorking in Surrey, the river Mole

TON, during the summer, except in heavy 100. Royal torer'd Thame, allurling to rains, sinke through its sandy beul into the royal towers of Windsor Castle upon & subterraneous and invisible channel. its banks. In winter it constantly keeps its cur- 5. Dear Son of Memory. He honours rent.-T. WARTOM.

his favourite Shakspeare with the same

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Who sickened in the time of his vacancy, being forbid to go to London

by reason of the plague.
HERE lies old Hobson; Death hath broke his girt,
And here, alas! hath laid him in the dirt;
Or else, the ways being foul, twenty to one,
He's here stuck in a slough, and overthrown.
'Twas such a shifter, that, if truth were known,
Death was half glad when he had got him down:
For he had, any time this ten years full,
Dodged with him betwixt Cambridge and the Bull:
And surely Death could never have prevail’d,
Had not his weekly course of carriage fail'd;
But lately finding him so long at home,
And thinking now his journey's end was come,
And that he had ta'en up his latest inn;
In the kind office of a chamberlin
Show'd him his room where he must lodge that night,
Pull’d off his boots, and took away the light:
If any ask for him, it shall be sed,
Hobson has supp'd, and's newly gone to bed.



Here lieth one, who did must truly prove
That he could never die while he could move;
So hung his destiny, never to rot
While he might still jog on and keep his trot,
Made of sphere-metal, never to decay
Until his revolution was at stay.
Time numbers motion; yet, without a crime
'Gainst old truth, motion number'd out his time;


* The two strange “Epitaphs on Hobson the Carrier," are unworthy of the author.--BRYDGES.

relation as the Muses themselves, who “Mr. Tobias Hobson, from whom we are called by the old poets “the daugh- have the expression, was a very honourters of Memory."-NEWTON.

able man, for I shall ever call the man 11, Unzulued, invaluable.

so who gets an estate honestly. Mr. To 8. Hobson's inn at London was the bins Hobson was a carrier; and, being a “Bull” in Bishop-rate street, where his man of great abilities and invention, and figure in fresco, with an inscription, was one that saw where there might good lately to be seen.-T. WARTON. The fol-profit arise, though the dulier med overlowing account of the origin of the looked it. this ingenious man was the pbrase “ Ilobson's choire," is to be found first in this island who let out hackneyin No. 509 of the Spectator:-“I shall horses. Ile lived in Cambridge: and, conclude this discourse with an explanas observing that the scholars rid hard, his tion of a proverb, which by vulgar manner was to keep a large stable of error is taken and used when a manis horses, with boots, bridles, and whips, to reduced to an extremity, whereas the furnish the gentlemen at once, without propriety of the maxim is to use it when going from college to college to borrow, you would say there is plenty, but you as they have done since the death of this biust make much a choice as not to hurt worthy man. I say, Mr. Holson kept another who is to come after you.

a stable of forty good cattle always 10


And, like an engine moved with wheel and weight,
His principles being ceased, he ended straight.
Rest, that gives all men life, gave him his death,
And too much breathing put him out of breath;
Nor were it contradiction to affirm,
Too long vacation hasten’d on his term.
Merely to drive the time away, he sicken’d,
Fainted, and died, nor would with ale be quicken'd;
Nay, quoth he, ou his swooning bed outstretch'd,
If Í

n't carry, sure I'll ne'er be fetch'd;
But vow, though the cross doctors all stood hearers,
For one carrier put down to make six bearers.
Ease was his chief disease; and, to judge right,
He died for. heaviness that his cart went light:
His leisure told him that his time was come,
And lack of load made his life burdensome,
That ev'n to his last breath, there be that say't,
As he were press’d to death, he cried, More weight;
But, had his doings lasted as they were,
He had been an immortal carrier.
Obedient to the moon, he spent his date
In course reciprocal, and had his fate
Link'd to the mutual flowing of the seas;
Yet, strange to think, his wain was his increase:
His letters are deliver'd all and gone;
Only remains this superscription.




Because you have thrown off your Prelate Lord,

And with stiff vows renounced his Liturgy,
To seize the widow'd whore Plurality

From them whose sin ye envied, not abhorr’d;
Dare ye for this adjure the civil sword

To force our consciences that Christ set free,


ready and fit for travelling: hut, when which every man is to be his own priest. a man came for a horse, he was led into When these verses were written, which the stable, where there was great choice; form an irregular sonnet, presbyterianbut he obligel bim to take the horse ism was triumphant; and the independwhich stood next to the stable door; ents and the churchmen joined in one so that every customer was alike well common complaint against a want of Servei according to his chance, and every toleration. The church of Calvin had horse ridden with the same justice; from now its heretics. Milton's haughty trmwhence it became a proverb, when what per brooked no human control: even the ought to be your election was forced parliamentary hierarchy was too coercive upon you, to say, “ Hobson's choice." for one who acknowledged only king

1. Because, &c. In railing at estahlish. Jesus. His frowarl and refining philo ments, Milton condemned not episcopacy sophy was contented with no species of only: he thought even the simple insti. | carnal policy: conformity of all sorts tutions of the new Reformation too rigid was slavery. He was persua led that the and arbitrary for the natural freedom modern presbyter was as much calcuof conscience: he contended for that sort lated for persecution and oppression as of individual or personal religion, by the ancient bishop.-T Warton.

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