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rant, in argument loquacious, and in narration tiresome.
His dićtion is certainly so far poetical as it is not prosaick, and so far valuable as it is not common. He is to be commended as having fewer artifices of disguft than most of his brethren of the blank song. He rarely either recalls old phrases or twists his metre into harsh inversions. The sense however of his words is strained; when be views the Ganges from Alpine heights; that is, from mountains like the Alps. And the pedant surely intrudes, but when was blank verse without pedantry? when he tells how Planet's absolve the fated round of Time,
It is generally known to the readers of poetry that he intended to revise and augment this work, but died before he had completed his design. The reformed work as he left it, and the addition which he had made, are very properly retained in this collection. He seems to have somewhat contracted his diffusion; but I know not whether he has gained in closeness what he has lost in splendor. In the additional book, the Tale of Solon is too long.
His other poems are now to be considered; but a short consideration will dispatch them. It is not easy to guess why he addicted himself so diligently to lyrick poetry, having neither the ease and airiness of the lighter, nor
the vehemence and elevation of the grander ode. When he lays his ill-fated hand upon his harp, his former powers seem to desert him; he has no longer his luxuriance of expression, nor variety of images. His thoughts are cold, and his words inelegant. Yet such was his love of lyricks, that, having written with great vigour and poignancy his Epistle to Curio, he transformed it afterwards into an ode disgraceful only to its author.
Of his odes nothing favourable can be faid; the sentiments commonly want force, nature, or novelty; the diction is sometimes harsh and uncouth, the stanzas ill-constructed and unpleasant, and the rhymes diffonant, or unskilfully dis
posed, pofed, too distant from each other, or arranged with too little regard to established use, and therefore perplexing to the ear, which in a short compofition has not time to grow fainiliar with an innovation.
To examine such compofitions fingly, cannot be required; they have doubtless brighter and darker parts': but when they are once found to be generally dull, all further labour may be spared; for to what use can the work be criticised that will not be read?