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Picturesque Poetry. Confiling of Parmi, Odes, and Elegies, on

various Subje-:s. By the rev. 1. Teasdale. 890. 25. 68. Robinson.

These poems are chiefly descriptive. The images, though seldom new, are delineated in a pleating manner; and the reflections, though fometimes trite, are in general joit, and well applied. A performance entitled DAY, confisting of three parts, MORNING, Voon, and EVENING, pleales us

as well as any in the collection, of which the conciuding section may ferve as a specimen. There is, however, one impropriety in it; the describing flowers as expanding, and erecting themfelves at the approach of night; when the reverse is a wellknown fact.

Now, when ev'ning's sober ray
Gradual marks the parting day;
And when long and length’ning shades
Croud the landscape, as it fades :
Let the Muse, with steady eye
Catch the objects, as they fiy ;
Objects, 'yet fo fair and bright,
Haftning to impervious night!

• As the sun, that smiles invest,
Slopes to the remcteit welt,
Living streaks the skies'enfold,
Streaming purple, fring’d with gold ;
Silver, and æthereal blue,
Mildly beaming to the view.

Now again the eddying breeze
Gently waves the leafy trees,
Stealing fragrance, as it goes,
From each op’ning bud that blows ;
And imparting pillag'd sweets
To each travelling cloud it meets.

• Low its cadence, smooth its tides,
Soft the murm'ring riv'let glides,
Winding, with its limping Hood,
By the firts of yonder wood ;
Where the fylvan fongsters meet,
Chirping, chaunting vespers sweet;
And, in many an untaught lay,
Chorusing from spray to spray.

• Now the flow'rs, that sweets exhale,
Wide expanding to the gale,
Rise erect, in rival rows,
And their varying tints disclose.

· All the blossom'd furze is gay, Where the wanton kidlings play; VOL. LX. Aug. 1785.

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And in yonder peopled mead,
Hark! the shepherd tunes his reed;
While the village troops advance,
And begin their ev'ning dance.

• Let us join the mirehful throng,
Skimming now fo light along ;
Till the night, on footy wings,
Groupes of thick-wrought shadows brings,
And the vap'ry legions, all,

Take their Atacions, at her call.'
Johnson's Laarel, or Contest of the Poets. 410. 15. Hooper.

• Johnson no more each bard attunes his lays,
To grieve his exit, and to fing his praise.
All writers write, and some who scarce can read;
To poems poems, lives to lives succeed,
The theme alike, yet diff'rent is their aim ;

As fome for pudding, ochers write for fame." We allow this passage to be a little hyperbolical, but have found to oar forrow coo much truth in it. The panegyrists of Dr. Johnson brave been exceedingly numerous ;---peace to his manes ! we trust their doleful elegies will never wound his ears, nor that of posterity. Whether pudding or fame was held in view, of the generality we speak, the objects have furely been equally unattainable. The present author informs us that,

• All bards GREAT Johnson's wreath (the laurel) claim, and they accordingly repair to Parnassus to affert their respeco tive rights. Surely, considered merely as a poet, Johnson's merit is not of fu super-eminent à nature as to entitle him to this high compliment.

First Pract began, in accents meek and mild, Seft as the whispers of a pukeing child!" As pukeing gives no idea of meekness or mildness, we would substitute puling for it, which, fignifying to whimper in a gentle manner, is more analogous to some of Mr. Pratt's writ. jogs. PUKEING conveys an indelicate idea, ungenial to his Atyle and fentiment..

« Next Whitehead came, his worth - a pinch of snuff,

But, for a laureat, he was well enough.' This is too sévére on a very decent author; for to write birthday odes with success

, is evidently no easy task. We no less disapprove of the following character.

« And Mason now, whose nambers nice by arty
Play in the ear, bat never reach the heart.
Tho' fimilies he crams in ev'ry line,
And metaphors in ev'ry couplet shine,
Still in his verse there's something of divine.

Though

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Though some of Mr. Mason's poems are too highly ornament.
ed, whoever has read his Elfrida and Caractacus must have felé
that his numbers will reach the heart: He should not have been
represented as a candidate for Johnson's laurel, whose own is of
so superior a verdure.
The Prous Incendiaries: or, Fanaticism Displayed, a Poem. B9

a Lady. 4to. 55. Hooper:
We doubt not of the good intentions of the fait author, in
this performance, and cannot but approve the diffidence she ex-
preffes, and seems to feel in offering it to the public. The poem
is written in the Ityle and manner of Hudibras. A well known,
we may add, a too well known character, is the principal ob-
ject of the fatire it contains. To imitate Hudibras an ardu.
ous undertaking; and if the public should decide that this lady,
has not succeeded in her attempt, she may juftly console herself
with the reflection, that he has only failed in an enterprize
where few would have conie off with honour.-Magnis excidit
aufis !
The Adventures of Telemachus, the Son of Ulyses. In English Verse.

8vo... 35. 6d. Jewed. Becket. The encomiums bestowed on the French Telemachus are in general just: towards the conclusion our author observes that,

• Notwithstanding the indisputable merit of Monf. Fenelon's performance in the original fto which the numerous translations in our own tongue are fufäcient vouchers) a poetical version seemis still wanting, to accommodate the taste of an Eng. lith reader with one of its usual gratifications in an Epic Poem, which title juftly belongs to these volumes, though devoid of an ornament not susceptible of dignity in the French language.'

We will allow that French verse is ill-adapted to an epic composition, and that in many effential points, verse excepted, Telemachus is entitled to that appellation ; yet still we cannot see the utility of its being versified in our language. The suc-. cess of numerous profe-translators vouch for the propriety of that method. The original, even when literally rendered, ftrikes naturally into our language in periods easy and harmonious. What more have we to expect? The time of an able writer would surely be mispent, in endeavouring to improve by rhyme what appears to the urmost advantage in flowing profe; and the labours of an inferior one would undoubtedly be excelled by the most literal version. The style of the present author in his advertisement is, though sometimes a litile inclining to the bounbat, easy and spirited; had he attempo. ed the original in that manner, we do not think he would have proved unsuccessful; but his poetry is flat, diffuse, and some times ridiculous. In a form, raised by Neptune to fink Telemachus's veffel, he gives the following account of Mentor's behaviour. Les 2

• 'He

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• He takes an axe, and cuts the breaking malt,
Which by it's weight the dip had fidelong cait.
Then, 'mid the billowy war, on it alights,
And me, by name, to follow him invites.
Like a tall tree that furious blaits contend,
Deep-rooted as it grows, in vain to rend,
Not the ficrce north wind in th' attack prevails,
The leaves but tremble as with whispering gales :
So Mentor valiant, firm, serene, and gay,
Appear’d the boisterous borin and deep to sway.
I follow'd my encourager, and who,
By him invited, had not follow'd too?
The floating maft alor.g the waves we steerd,
And to it's surface as a leat adher'd.
Without thus refting, had we cleav'd the tide,
Our strength within us must have quickly died.
But oft the storm turn'd this huge timber round,
And for an interval we both were drown'd.
We drank the briny surge, till backward fent,

From noitrils, inouth, and ears, it gain'd a vent.' An unsuccessful attempt of the same kind was made by a Mr. Bagnal, in the year 17;6. From the title we were led to expect an entire tranllation of Telemachus: this performance however only confits of the first fix books, and here we suppose the undertaking will end. Poems on several Occasions. By Ann Yearsley, a Milk-woman

of Brifiol. 4to. 6s. Cadell. These poems are ushered into the world by a prefatory letter from Miss Hannah More to Mis. Montague, giving some account of this felf-inftructed votary of the Muses. It resembles the well-drawn relation of Stephen Duck, written by Mr. Spence, and prefixed to his poems. A parallel might indeed be drawn between him and the present writer, but not much to the advantage of the former, Stephen was merely a rhymer: the protection he obtained proceeded from the peculiarity of a thresher's writing verses, not on account of the verses themselves. As Pope fays of straw and grubs in amber,

• We know these things are neither rich nor rare,

But wonder how the devil they came tjere.' The poems before us are entitled to a superior degree of praise; there are evident traces to be found in them of a strong and fervid inagination, as the following paffage will suficiently testify.

L'My soul is out of tune,
No harmony reigns here, 'tis discord all.
be dumb, sweet choristers, I heed you not ;
Then why thus swell your liquid throats, to cheer
A weich undone, for ever loit to joy,
And mark'd for ruin? Seek yon leafy grove,
Indulgent Llits there waits you; hun this spot

D.ear,

Drear, joyless, vacant, as my wasted soul,
Difrob’d of all her bliss: here heave, my heart,
Here sigh thy woes away; unheard the groan,
Unseen the falling tear; in this lone wild
No busy fool invades thy hoarded griefs,
And smiles in ignorance at what he feels not.
Yet, yet indulge not, liftning winds may catch
Coherent sighs, and waft them far away,
Where levity holds high the senseless roar
Of laughter, and pale woe, abafha, retires.
Or, should my woes be to the winds diffus’d,
No longer mine, once past the guiv’ring lip;
Like flying atoms in the fightless air,
Some might descend on the gay, grinning herd;
But few, how few, would reach the feeling mind !

Officious Truth! unwelcome guest to most,
Yet I will own thee, and bid Hope good night,
Ford, soothing flatterer! Nineteen ycars are past,
Since first I listen’d to her pleasing lore;
Ah, me! how bright Me painted future scenes,
And sweetly spoke of blessings yet unborn !
Now, fond Deceiver, where's the promis'd good ?
But, Oh! thou'rt lovely, and I'll ne'er accuse

Or hate thee, tho' we never meet again.' Correctness and precision cannot be expected from one who does not know a single rule of grammar, and who has never even seen a dictionary,' but we can assure the reader many parfages, in no respect inferior to the preceding, might be selected. We will not anticipate his curiosiy any farther, but recommend to him the book itself. He will receive the double fatisfaction of being amused by its perufal, and contributing to the relief of depressed genius. A large list of subscribers is annexed; which does honour to the author's protectress, by whose means, we apprehend, so many respectable names were procured for promoting her benevolent intention. More Lyric Odes to the Royal Academicians. By a difiant Relation

to the Poet of Thebes, and Laureate to the Academy. 4to. Hookham.

This is a very successful imitator of the same humorous, ingenious gentleman, who has twice before had a stroke at - the Royal Academicians. It is as impossible to prevent laughing at his oddity, as being offended at his grofiness: nothing but the brilliancy of his genius could bear him through the abuse he so liberally bestows on the late exhibitions.

• The want of ev'ry lib'ral grace
Hath mark'd you an unpolish'd race,

Disgrace to the art, a vulgar crew-
Artist! Heav'ns, that a name so fair
Shouid be synonimous to bear!
Ye may be gentlemen and painters too.'

IS.

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