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Fastly greater than it is, and is the prime motive of of those good times, not so curiously wrapped up, their setting up in this sad and sorry merchandise. yea, and commented upon by the most grave doctors, The great power of these goddesses acting in alli- and approved critics. ance (whereof as the one is the mother of industry, As it beareth the name of epic, it is thereby sub50 is the other of plodding) was to be exemplified in jected to such severe indispensable rules as are laid someone great and remarkable action; and none could on all neoterics, a strict imitation of the ancients ; inbe more so than that which our poet hath chosen,' viz. somuch that any deviation, accompanied with what. the restoration of the reign of Chaos and Night, by ever poetic beauties, hath always been censured by the ministry of Dulness, their daughter, in the removal the sound critic. llow exact that limitation hath of her imperial seat from the city to the polite world, been in this piece, appeareth not only by its general as the action of the Eneid is the restoration of the structure, but by particular allusions infinite, many empire of Troy, by the removal of the race from whereof have escaped both the commentator and thence to Latium. But as Ilomer singeth only the poet himself, yea, divers by his exceeding diligence wrath of Achilles, yet includes in his poem the whole are so altered and interwoven with the rest, that sehistory of the Trojan war, in like manner our author veral have already been, and more will be, by the ighath drawn into this single action the whole history norant abused, as altogether and originally his own. of Dulness and her children.
In a word, the whole poem proveth itself to be the A person must next be fixed upon to support this work of our author, when his faculties were in full action. This phantom in the poet's mind must have vigour and perfection; at that exact time when years a name,? he finds it to be ; and he becomes have ripened the judgment, without diminishing the of course the hero of the poem.
imagination: which, by good critics, is held to be The fable being thus, according to the best exam- punctually at forty. For at that season it was that ple, one and entire, as contained in the proposition ; Virgil finished his Georgics; and sir Richard Blackthe machinery is a continued chain of allegories, more, at the like age, composing his Arthurs, declared selling forth the whole power, ministry, and empire, the same to be the very acme and pitch of life for of Dulness, extended through her subordinate instru- epic poesy: though since he hath altered it to sixty, ments, in all her various operations.
year in which he published his Alfred.' True it This is branched into episodes, each of which hath is, that the talents for criticism, namely, smartness, its moral apart, though all conducive to the main end. quick censure, vivacity of remark, certainty of asseveThe crowd assembled in the second book, demon- ration, indeed all but acerbity, seem rather the gifts strates the design to be more extensive than to bad of youth than of riper age: but it is far otherwise in poets only, and that we may expect other episodes poetry; witness the works of Mr. Rymer and Mr. of the pulrons, encouragers, or paymasters of such Dennis, who, beginning with criticism, became after. authors, as occasion shall bring them forth. And the wards such poets as no age hath paralleled. With third book, if well considered, seemeth to embrace good reason, therefore, did our author choose to write the whole world. Each of the games relateth to his essay on that subject at twenty, and reserve for some or other vile class of writers: the first concern- his maturer years this great and wonderful work of eth the plagiary, to whom he giveth the name of the Dunciad. Dicore; the second, the libellous novelist, whom he styleth Eliza; the third, the flattering dictator ; the fourth, the brawling critic, or noisy poet; the fifth, the dark and dirty party writer: and so of the rest :
RICARDUS ARISTARCHUS. assigning to each some proper name or other, such
Of the Hero of the Poem. as he could find.
As for the characters, the public hath already ac- Of the nature of Dunciad in general, whence de knowledged how justly they are drawn; the manners rived, and on what authority founded, as well as of are so depicted, and the sentiment so peculiar to the art and conduct of this our poem in particular, those to whom applied, that surely to transfer them the learned and laborious Scriblerus hath, according to any other or wiser personages, would be exceed- to his manner, and with tolerable share of judgment, ing difficult: and certain it is, that every person con- dissertated. But when he cometh to speak of the cerned, being consulted apart, hath readily owned person of the hero fitted for such poem, in truth he the resemblance of every portrait, his own excepted. miserably halts and hallucinates : for, misled by one So Jr. Cibber calls them ‘a parcel of poor wretches, Monsieur Bossu, a Gallic critic, he prateth of I can. so many silly flies :'3 but adds, 'our author's wit is not tell what phantom of a hero, only raised up to remarkably more bare and barren, whenever it would support the fable. A putid conceit! as if Homer fall foul on Cibber, than upon any other person what- and Virgil, like modern undertakers, who first build ever.'
their house, and then seek out for a tenant, had conThe descriptions are singular, the comparisons very trived the story of a war and a wandering, before quaint, the narration various, yet of one colour; the they once thought either of Achilles or Æneas. We purity and chastity of diction is so preserved, that, in shall therefore set our good brother and the world the places most suspicious, not the words but only also right in this particular, by assuring them, that, in the images have been censured, and yet are those the greater epic, the prime intention of the muse is to images no other than have been sanctified by ancient exalt heroic virtue, in order to propagate the love of and classical authority (though, as was the manner it among the children of men; and consequently that
the poet's first thought must needs be turned upon a 1 Ibid. chap. vii. viii.
real subject meet for laud and celebration; not one 2 bits, chap. viii. Vide Aristot. Poet. chap. ix. 3 Cibuer's Letter to Mr. P. p. 9, 12, 41.
1 See his Essays.
whom he is to make, but one whom he may find, But then it is not every knave, nor (let me add! truly illustrious. This is the prinum modele of his every fool, that is a fit subject for a Dunciad. There poetic world, whence every thing is to receive life must still exist some analogy, if not resemblance of and motion. For, this subject being found, he is im- qualities, between the heroes of the two poems; and mediately ordained, or rather acknowledged, a hero, this, in order to admit what neoteric critics call and put upon such action as befitteth the dignity of the parody, one of the liveliest graces of the little his character.
epic. Thus it being agreed that the constituent But the muse ceaseth not here her eagle-flight. qualities of the great epic hero, are wisdom, bravery, For sometimes, satiated with the contemplation of and love, from whence springeth heroic virtue; it these suns of glory, she turneth downward on her followeth, that those of the lesser epic hero should wing, and darts with Jove's lightning on the goose be vanity, assurance, and debauchery, from which and serpent kind. For we may apply to the muse in happy assemblage resulteth heroic dulness, the neverher various moods what an ancient master of wisdom dying subject of this our poem. affirmeth of the gods in general: Si Dii non iras- This being settled, come we now to particulars. It cuntur impiis et injustis, nec pios utique justosque dili is the character of true wisdom to seek its chief sup. gunt. In rebus enim diversis, aut in utramque partem port and contidence within itself; and to place that moveri necesse est, aut in neutram. Itaque qui bonos support in the resources which proceed from a condiligit, et malos odit; et qui malos non odit, nec bonos scious rectitude of will.- And are the advantages of diligit. Quia el diligere bonos ex odio malorum venit; vanity, when arising to the heroic standard, at all et malos olisse er bonorum raritate descendit. Which short of this self-complacence? nay, are they not, in in our vernacular idiom may be thus interpreted: “If the opinion of the enamoured owner, far beyond it? the gods he not provoked at evil men, neither are they “Let the world,' will such an one say, 'impute to ine delighted with the good and just. For contrary ob- what folly or weakness they please : but till wisdom jects must either excite contrary affections, or no af- can give me something that will make me more sections at all. So that he who loveth good men, heartily happy, I am content to be gazed at." This, must, at the same time, hate the bad; and he who we see, is vanity according to the heroic gage or hateth not bad men, cannot love the good : because measure; not that low and ignoble species which to love good proceedeth from an aversion to evil, and pretendeth to virtues we have not; but the laudable to hate evil men from a tenderness to the good.' ambition of being gazed at for glorying in those vices From this delicacy of the muse arose the lule epic, which every body knows we have. "The world (more lively and choleric than her elder sister, whose may ask,' says he, 'why I make my follies public? bulk and complexion incline her to the phlegmatic:) Why not? I have passed my life very pleasantly with and for this, some notorious vehicle of vice and folly them.'? In short, there is no sort of vanity such a was sought out, to make thereof an example. An hero would scruple, but that which might go near to early instance of which (nor could it escape the ac- degrade him from his high station in this our Duncuracy of Scriblerus) the father of epic poem him-ciad; namely, 'whether it would not be vanity in him, self affordeth us. From him the practice descended to take shame to himself, for not being a wise man ?' to the Greek dramatic poets, his offspring; who, in Rravery, the second attribute of the true hero, is the composition of their tetralogy, or set of four courage manifesting itself in every limb; while its pieces, were wont to make the last a satiric tragedy. correspondent virtue, in the mock hero, is that same Happily, one of these ancient Dunciads (as we may courage all collected into the face. And as power, well term it) is come down unto us, amongst the tra- when drawn together, must needs have more force gedies of the poet Euripides. And what doth the and spirit than when dispersed, we generally find this reader suppose may be the subject thereof? Why, kind of courage in so high and heroic a degree, that in truth, and it is worthy observation, the unequal it insults not only men, but gods. Mezentius is, contest of an old, dull, debauched buffoon Cyclops, without doubt, the bravest character in all the Eneis : with the heaven-directed favourite of Minerva ; who, but how? His bravery, we know, was a high couafter having quietly borne all the monster's obscene rage of blasphemy. And can we say less of this and impious ribaldry, endeth the farce in punishing brave man's ? who, having told us that he placed his him with the mark of an indelible brand in his fore-“summum bonum in those follies which he was not head. May we not then be excused, is, for the future, content barely to possess, but would likewise glory we consider the epics of Ilomer, Virgil, and Milton, in,' adds, “if I am misguided, 'tis nature's fault, and I together with this our poem, as a complete tetralogy ; follow her.?4 Nor can we be mistaken in making in which the last worthily holdeth the place or sta- this happy quality a species of courage, when we tion of the satiric piece ?
consider those illustrious marks of it, which made his Proceed we, therefore, in our subject. It hath face .more known (as he justly boasteth) than most been long, and, alas for pity! still remaineth a ques in the kingdom;' and his anguage to consist of what lion, whether the hero of the greater epic should be we must allow to be the most daring figure of speech, an honest man; or, as the French critics express it, that which is taken from the name of God. un honnete homme :' but it never admitted of a doubt, Gentle love, the next ingredient of the true hero's but that the hero of the little epic should be just the composition, is a mere bird of passage, or (as Shakcontrary. Hence, to the advantage of our Dunciad, speare calls it) 'summer-teeming lust,' and evaporates we may observe, how much juster the moral of that in the heat of youth; doubtless by that refinement it poem must needs be where so important a question suffers in passing through those certain strainers is previously decided.
which our poet somewhere speaketh of. But when
1 Si un heros poëtique doit être un honnête homme. Boosu, du Poème Epique, liv. v. ch. 5.
1 Ded. to the Life of C. C. 2 Life, p. 2, Svo. edit. 3 Ibid,
4 Ibid. p. 23.
it is let alone to work upon the lees, it acquirethance of the gods; for the subversion and erection of strength by old age; and becometh a lasting orna- empires have never been adjudged the work of man. ment to the little epic. It is true, indeed, there is How greatly soever then we may esteem of his high one objection to its fitness for such a use : for not talents, we can hardly conceive his personal prowess only the ignorant may think it common, but it is ad- salone sufficient to restore the decayed empire of dulmited to be so, even by him who best knoweth its ness, So weighty an achievement must require the value. •Don't you think,' argueth he, 'to say only particular favour and protection of the great; who a man has his whore,' ought to go for little or being the natural patrons and supporters of letters, as nothing? because difendit numerus. Take the first the ancient gods were of Troy, must first be drawn ten thousand men you meet, and, I believe, you would off and engaged in another interest, before the total be no loser if you betted ten to one that every single subversion of them can be accomplished. To sursinner of them, one with another, had been guilty of mount, therefore, this last and greatest difficulty, we the same frailty. But here he seemeth not to have have, in this excellent man, a professed favourite and done justice to himself: the man is sure enough a intimado of the great. And look, of what force anhero who hath his lady at fourscore. flow doth his cient piety was to draw the gods into the party of modesty herein lessen the merit of a whole well. Æneas, that, and much stronger, is modern incense, spent life! not taking to himself the commendation to engage the great in the party of dulness. which llorace accounted the greatest in a theatrical Thus have we essayed to portray or shadow out character) of continuing to the very dregs the sam this noble imp of fame. But not the impatient reader he was from the beginning,
will be apt to say, “If so many and various graces go Servetur ad imum
to the making up a hero, what mortal shall suffice to Qualis ab incepto processerat
bear his character ? Ill hath he read who seeth not, But here, in justice both to the poet and the hero, in every trace of this picture, that individual, all-aclet us farther remark, that the calling her his whore, complished person, in whom these rare virtues and implied she was his own, and not his neighbour's. lucky circumstances have agreed to meet and conTruly a commendable continence! and such as Scipio centre with the strongest lustre and fullest harmony. himself must have applauded. For how much self
The good Scriblerus indeed, nay, the world itsel; denial was necessary not to covet his neighbour's might be imposed on, in the late spurious editions, by whore! and what disorders must the coveting her I can't tell what sham-hero or phantom; but it was have occasioned in that society, where (according to not so easy to impose on him whom this egregious this political calculator) nine in ten of all ages have error most of all concerned. For no sooner had the their concubines!
fourth book laid open the high and swelling scene, We have now, as briefly as we could devise, gone
but he recognized his own heroic acts: and when he through the three constituent qualities of either hero. came to the words, But it is not in any, or in all of these, that heroism
* Soft on her lap her laureat son reclines,' properly or essentially resideth. It is a lucky result (though laureat imply no more than one crowned rather from the collision of these lively qualities with laurel, as befitteth any associate or consort in against one another. Thus, as from wisdom, bravery, empire,) he loudly resented this indignity to violated and love, ariseth magnanimity, the object of admira- Majesty. Indeed, not without cause, he being there tion, which is the aim of the greater epic; so from represented as fast asleep; so misbeseeming the eye vanity, assurance, and debauchery, springeth buf- of empire, which, like that of Providence, should foonery, the source of ridicule, that “laughing orna- never doze nor slumber. 'Hah!' saith he, fast asleep, ment,' as he well termeth it, of the little epic. it seems ! that's a little too strong. Pert and dull at
He is not ashamed (God forbid he ever should be least you might have allowed me, but as seldom ashamed!) of this character, who deemeth that not asleep as any fool." However, the injured hero may reason but risibility distinguisheth the human species comfort himself with this reflection, that though it be from the brutal. As nature,' saith this profound phi- a sleep, yet it is not the sleep of death, but of immorlosopher, “distinguished our species from the mute tality. Here he will2 live at least, though not awake; creation by our risibility, her design must have been and in no worse condition than many an enchanted by that faculty as evidently to raise our happiness, as warrior before him. The famous Durandante, for in. by our or sublime (our erected faces) to lift the dig- stance, was, like him, cast into a long slumber by nity of our form above them.': All this considered, Merlin the British bard and necromancer; and his how complete a hero must he be, as well as how example for submitting to it with a good grace, right happy a man, whose risibility lieth not barely in his be of use to our hero. For that disastrous knight be. muscles, as in the common sort, but (as himself in- ing sorely pressed or driven to make his answer by formeth us) in his very spirits ? and whose os sublime several persons of quality, only replied with a sigh, is not simply an erect face, but a brazen head; as Patience, and shufile the cards.'? should seem by his preferring it to one of iron, said But now, as nothing in this world, no not the most to belong to the late king of Sweden ?5
sacred and perfect things, either of religion or goBut whatever personal qualities a hero may have, vernment, can escape the sting of envy, methinks I the examples of Achilles and Æneas show us, ihat all already hear these carpers objecting to the clearness those are of small avail, without the constant ass st- of our hero's title.
“It would never,' say they, ‘have been esteemed 1 Alluding to these lines in the epistle to Dr. Arbuth sufficient to make a hero for the Iliad or Æneis; that
* And has not Colly still his lord and whore, Achilles was brave enough to overturn one empire,
His bitch'ss Henley, his free masons Moore? 2 Letter to Mr. P. p. 16. 3 Ibil p 31.
1 Letter to Mr. P. p. 53.
2 Letter, p. 1. 4 Life, p. 23, 21.
5 Letter to Mr. P. p. 8. 3 Don Quixote, part ii. book ii. ch.
or Eneas pious enough to raise another, had they not in an artful gamester. And who fitter than the offbern goddess born, and princes bred. What then spring of Chance, to assist in restoring the empire of did this author mean, by erecting a player instead of Night and Chaos ? one of his patrons (a person, “never a hero even on There is, in truth, another objection of greater the stage,”!) to this dignity of colleague in the empire weight, namely, "That this hero still existeth, and of dulness, and achiever of a work that neither old hath not yet finished his earthly course. For if SoOmır, Attila, nor John of Leyden could entirely lon said well, bring to pass ?"
ultima semper To all this we have, as we conceive, a sufficient Expectanda dies homini: dicique beatus answer from the Roman historian, fabrum esse suce Ante obitum nemo supremaque funera debet! quemque fortunæ : 'that every man is the smith of his ir no man be called happy till his death, surely much own fortune.' Tire politic Florentine, Nicholas less can any one, till then, be pronounced a hero: this Machiavel, goeth still further, and affirmeth that a
species of men being far more subject than others to man needeth but to believe himself a hero to be one the caprices of fortune and humour.' But to this also of the worthiest. Let him,' saith he, “but fancy we have an answer, that will (we hope) be deemed himself capable of the highest things, and he will of
decisive. It cometh from himself; who, to cut this course be able to achieve them.' From this principle it follows, that nothing can exceed our hero's prow-never change or amend.
matter short, hath solemnly protested that he will ess, as nothing ever equalled the greatness of his con
With regard to his vanity, he declareth that nothing ceptions. Hear how he constantly paragons himself, shall ever part them. “Nature,' said he, “ hath amply at one time to Alexander the Great and Charles XII.
supplied me in vanity; a pleasure which neither the of Sweden, for the excess and delicacy of his ambition ;2 to llenry IV. of France, for honest policy;s pertness of wit, nor the gravity of wisdom, will ever to the first Brutus, for love of liberty ;' and to sir endeavoured to administer a cure to it: but he telleth
persuade me to part with.'l Our poet had charitably Robert Walpole, for good government while in pow. us plainly, ' My superiors perhaps may be mended by er: at another time, to the godlike Socrates, for his him; but for my part I own myself incorrigible. ! diversions and amusements ;$ to Horace, Montaigne, look upon my follies as the best part of my fortune"? and sir William Temple, for an elegant vanity that And with good reason; we see to what they have maketh them for ever read and admired:7 to two lord
brought him! chancellors, for law, from whom, when confederate
Secondly; as to buffoonery. 'Is it,' saith he, 'a against him, at the bar, he carried away the prize of
time of day for me to leave off these fooleries, and eloquence;$ and, to say all in a word, to the right reverend the lord bishop of London himself, in the follies than my skin; I have osien tried, but they stick
set up a new character? I can no more put off my art of writing pastoral letters.9
too close to me: nor am I sure my friends are disNor did his actions fall short of the sublimity of his
pleased with them, for in this light I afford them (reconceit. In his early youth he met the Revolution face to face in Nottingham, at a time when bis bet- publicly declared himself incorrigibie, he is become
quent matter of mirth, &c. &c.'3 Having then so ters contented themselves with following her. It dead in law (I mean the law epopejan) and devolvwas here he got acquainted with Old Battle-array, of eth upon the poet as his property; who may take whom he hath made so honourable mention in one him, and deal with him as if he had been dead as long of his immortal odes. But he shone in courts as well as in camps ; he was called up when the nation fell embalm him for posterity.
as an old Egyptian hero: that is to say, embowel and in labour of this Revolution ;!! and was a gossip at her
Nothing, therefore (we conceive) remaineth to hin. christening, with the bishop and the ladies.!2 As to his birth, it is true he pretendeth no relation diate effect. 'A rare felicity! and what few prophets
der his own prophecy of himself from taking immeeither to heathen god or goddess; but, what is as have had the satisfaction to see, alive! Nor can we good, he was descended from a maker of both.13 And conclude better than with that extraordinary one of that he did not pass himself on the world for a hero, his, which is conceived in these oraculous words, as well by birth as education, was his own fault: for his lineage he bringeth into his life as an anecdote," my dulness will find somebody to do it right.4
* Tandem Phæbus adest, morsusque inferre paran. and is sensible he had it in his power to be thought tem Congelat, et patulos, ut erant, indurat hiatus.'' nobody's son at all:14 and what is that but coming into the world a hero?
But be it (the punctilious laws of epic poesy so requiring) that a hero of more than mortal birth must
BY AUTHORITY. needs be had; even for this we have a remedy. We
By virtue of the authority in us vested by the act can easily derive our hero's pedigree from a goddess for subjecting poets to the power of a licenser, we nt' no small power and authority amongst men; and
have revised this piece ; where, tinding the style and legitimate and instal him after the right classical and authentic fashion : for, like as the ancient sages found
appellation of King to have been given to a certain a son of Mars in a mighty warrior; a son of Neptune Tibbald; and apprehending the same may be deemed
pretender, pseudo-poct, or phantom, of the name of in a skilful scaman; a son of Phæbus in a harmonious in some sort a reflection on majesty, or at least an in. poet; so have we here, if need be, a son of Fortune!
sult on that legal authority wlich has bestowed on 1 See Life, p. 148.
another person the crown of poesy: We have ordered 2 p. 149. 3 p. 424. 4 p. 366. 5 p. 157.
6 p. 18. 7 p. 425. 8 p. 436, 137. 9 p. 52. 10 Sec Life, p. 47. 1 See Life, p 424. 9 p. 19. 3 p. 17. I! p. 57. 12 p. 58, 59. 13 A statuary.
4 See Lite, p. 243, 8vo. edit. 14 Life, p 6.
5 Ovid, ofilie serpent biting at Orpheus's beod.
the said pretender, pseudo-poet, or phantom, utterly You, by whose care, in vain decried and cursed, to Fanish and evaporatę out of this work; and do Sull Dunce the second reigns like Dunce the first; declare the said throne of poesy from henceforth to Say, how the goddess bade Britannia sleep, be abdicated and vacant, unless duly and lawfully And pour’d her spirit o'er the land and deep. supplied by the laureate himself. And it is hereby enacted that no other person do presume to fill the same.
marble; where (as may be seen on comparing the tomb with CC. CH. the book) in the space of five lines, two words and a whole
verse are changed, and it is to be hoped will there stand, and vutlast whatever hath been Intherto dono in paper; its for the future, our learned sister university (the other eye of England) is taking care to perpetuate a total new Shake speare at the Clarendon press.
Bentl. THE DUNCIAD.
It is to be noted that this great critic also has omitted ono
circumstance; which is, that the inscription with the same TO DR. JONATHAN SWIFT.
of Shakespeare was intended to be placed on the marble scroll to which be points with his hand ; instead of which it is now placed behind his back, and that specimen of an
edition is put on the scroll, which indeed Shakespeare hath BOOK THE FIRST. great reason to point at.
Anon. Though I have as just a value for the letter E, as any ARGUMENT.
grammarian living, and the same atlection for the name of l'he proposition, the invocation, and the inscription. induce me to agree with those who would add yet another
this poem as any crilic for that of his author; yet cannot it Then the original of the great empire of Dulness, and e to it
, and call it the Dunceinde: which being a l'rench cause of the continuance thereof. The college of the and foreign termination, is no way proper to a word entirely goddess in the city, with her private academy for poets English, and vernacular. One e iherefore in this case is in pirticular: the governors of it, and i he four cardi- right, and two ce's wrong. Yet upon the whole, I shall folnal virtues. Then the prem bastes into the midst of thereto by authority (at all times, with critics, equal, if not
low the manuscript, and print it without any e at ail; moved things, presenting her, on the evening of a lord-mayor's superior io reason.) In which method of proceeding, I can tay, revolving the long succession of her sons, and the never enough praise my good friend the exact Mr. Thomas Ciury plat and to come. She fixes her eyes on Bays to learne; who, if any word occur, which to himn and all be the instrument of that great event which is the mankind is evidently wrong, yet keeps he it in the text with subject of the poem. Ile is describedl pensive among like manner we shall nut amend this error in the title itself,
due reverence, and only remarks in the margin, Sic MS. In tuis books, giving up the catise, and apprehending the but only note it obiter, to evince to the learned that it was prict of her empire. After debating whether to be- not our fault, nor any ellect of our ignorance or inattention. uke himself to the church, or to gaming, or to party.
Scribl. triting, he raises an altar of proper books, and (mak.
This poem was written in the year 1726. Io tho next ing tirst his solemn prayer and declaration) purposes printed at London in twelves; another at Dublin, and
year an imperfect edition was published at Dublin, and rethereon to sacrifice all his unsuccessful writings. As another at London, in octavo; and three others in twelves the pile is kindled, the goddess beholding the flame the same year. But there was no perfect edition before fresing her seat, flies and puts it out, by casting upon it that of London, in quanto; which was attended with notes. the pem of Thule. She forthwith reveals herself to
We are willing to acquaint posterity, that this poem was him, transports him to her temple, unfolds her arts, hands of Sir Robert Walpole, on the 12th of March, 1728 9.
presented to King George the Second und his queen, by the and initiates him into her mysteries; then announcing
Schol. Vet. ilje drath of Eisden, the pet laureate, anoints him, It was expressly confessed in the preface to the first carries him to court, and proclaims him successor. edition, that ihis poem was not published by the author bim
self. It was printed oniginally in a foreign country: and
what foreign country? Why, one notorious for blunders ; BOOK I.
where finding blanks only instead of proper names, these
blunderers filled them up at their pleasure. Tle mighty mother, and her son, who brings
The very hero of the poem huth been mistaken to this The Smithfield muses to the ear of kings,
hour; so that we were obliged to open cur notes with a dis
covery who he really was. We learn from the former editor, I ing. Say you, her instruments, the great! that this piece was presented by the hands of sir Robert Cild to this work Dulness, Jove, and Fate;
Walpole to King George II. Now the author directly tella us, his hero is the man
The Smithfield muses to the ear of kings. The Drineind, sic MS.] It may well be disputed whe-And it is notorious who was the person on whom this
bis bar at right reading. Ought it not rather be spelled prince conferred the honour of the laurel. 1.steiad, as the etymology evidently demands? Dunce It appears as plainly from the apostrophe to the great in wth an e, therefore Duncead with an e. That accurate the third verse, that Tibbald could not be the person, who 2011 pretual man of letters, the restorer of Shakespear, was never an author in fashion, or curessed by the great; Directly observes the prescrvation of this very letter e, whereas this single characteristic is rutlicient to point out 1'1 pelling the name of his beloved author, and not like bis the true hero: who, above all other poets of his time, was cordon careless editors, with the omission of one, nay, the peculiar delight and chosen companion of the nobility sortieties of two ee's (aš Slakspear,) which is utterly un- of England; and wroto, as he himelt tells us, certain of his purdonable. “Nor is the beglece of a single letter so trivial works at the carnest desire of persons of quality. **! Bome it may appear; the alteration whereof in a learn- Lastly, the sixth verse afforiis full proof; this poet being language is an achievement that brings honour to the the only one who was universally known to have had a son Tenho advances it; and Dr. Bentley will be remembered so exactly like him, in his poetical, theatrical, political, and 3.1 Disterity for his performances of this soit, as long as the moral capacities, that it could justly bo said of him, 150r!! shall have any esteem for the remains of Menander at Pailemon.'
"Suill Dunce the second reigns like Dunce the first.' Theobald.
Bentl. This is surely a slip in the learned anthor of the foregoing Ver. 1. The mighty mother, and her son, &c.] The 90'e; there having been since produced by an accurato an- reader ought here to be cautioned, that the mother, and not fuary, an autograph of Shakespeare himself, whereby it the son, is the principal agent of this poem, the latter of
mar: that he wpelled his own name without the first e. them is only chosen as her colleague (as wag anciently the and upon this authority it was, that those most critical custom in Rome before some great expedition,) the main Platators of his monument in Westminster Abbey erased the action of the poem being by no means the coronation of the former wrong reading, and restored the true spelling on a laureate, which is performed in the very first book, but the h* piece of old Ægyptian granite. Nor for this only do restoration of the empire of Dulness in Britain, which is not they deserve our thanks, but for exhibiting on the same accomplished till the last. monument the first specimen of an edition of an author inl Ver. 2. The Smithfield Muses. ] Smithfield is the place