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“ vice, I would have you omit that, and “ the oration on Codrington. I think the “ collection will fell better without “ thein.”
There are who relate, that, when first Young' found himself independent, and his own master at All-fouls, he was not the ornament to religion and morality which he afterwards became. The authority of his father, indeed, had ceased by his death in 1705; and Young was certainly not ashamed to be patronized by the infamous Wharton. But Wharton befriended in Youngperhaps, the poet, and particularly the tragedian. If virtuous authors must be patronized only by virtuous peers, who shall point them out?
Yet Pope is said by Ruffhead to have told Warburton, that “ Young had much of a sublime genius, though without common sense ; so that his genius, having no guide, was perpetually liable to degenerate into bombast. This made him, pass a foolish youth, the sport of peers and poets : but his having a very good heart enabled him to support the clerical character when he assumed it, first with decency, and afterwards with honour.”
They who think ill of Young's mora lity in the early part of his life, may perhaps be wrong, but Tindal could not err in his opinion of Young's warmth and abiolity in the cause of religion. Tindal used.
to spend much of his time at All-fouls. “ The other boy's,” said the atheist, “ I « can always answer, because I always “ know whence they have their argu~ ments, which I have read an hundred "times; but that fellow Young is con“ tinually pestering me with something ~ of his own.” After all, Tindal and the censurers of Young may be reconcileable. Young might, for two or three years, have tried that kind of life, in which his natural principles would not suffer him to wallow long. If this were so, he has left behind him not only his evidence in favour of virtue, but the potent testimony of experience against vice.
Young perhaps ascribed the good fortune of Addison to the Poem to his Ma. jesty, presented, with a copy of verses, to Somers; and hoped that he also might foar to wealth and honours on wings of the same kind. His first poetical flight was when Queen Anne called up to the House of Lords the sons of the Earls of Northampton and Aylesbury; and added, in one day, ten others to the number of Peers. In order to reconcile the people to one at least of the new Lords, he published in 1712 An Epistle to the Right Honourable George Lord Lansdowne. In this composition the poet pours out his panegyrick with the extravagance of a young man, who thinks his present
ftock of wealth will never be exhausted.
The poem seems intended also to reconcile the publick to the late peace. This is endeavoured to be done by shewing that men are Nain in war, and that in peace harvests wave and commerce fwells her fail. If this be humanity, it is not politicks. Another purpose of this epistle appears to have been to prepare the publick for the reception of some tragedy of his own. His Lordship's patronage, he says, will not let him repent his passion for the stage ;-—and the particular praise bestowed on Othello and Oroonoko seems to fhew that some such character as Zanga was even then