« 上一頁繼續 »
Quantis, et quam funestis concurritur iris,
Dum ferus hic stellas protegit, ille rapit!
Et non mortali desuper igne pluunt:
Et metuit pugnæ non superesse suæ.
Et currus animes, armaque digna Deo,
Erumpunt torvis fulgura luminibus,
Admistis flammis insonuere polo:
Et cassis dextris irrita tela cadunt;
Infernis certant condere se tenebris.
fama recens vel celebrávit anus. Hæc quicunque leget tantum cecinisse putabit Mæonidem ranas, Virgilium culices.
SAMUEL BARROW, M. D.
WHEN I beheld the Poet blind, yet bold,
Yet as I read, still growing less severe,
Or if a work so infinite he spann'd,
Pardon me, mighty Poet, nor despise
Thou hast not miss'd one thought that could be fit,
That majesty which through thy work doth reign,
Where could'st thou words of such a compass find? Whence furnish such a vast expense of mind? Just Heav'n thee like Tiresias to requite Rewards with prophecy thy loss of sight.
Well might'st thou scorn thy readers to allure With tinkling rhyme, of thy own sense secure; While the Town-Bays writes all the while and spells, And like a pack-horse tires without his bells: Their fancies like our bushy-points appear, The poets tag them, we for fashion wear. I too transported by the mode offend, And while I meant to praise thee must commend. Thy verse created like thy theme sublime, In number, weight, and measure, needs not rhyme.
THE measure is English heroic verse without rhyme, as that of Homer in Greek, and of Virgil in Latin; rhyme being no necessary adjunct or true ornament of poem or good verse, in longer works especially, but the invention of a barbarous age, to set off wretched matter and lame metre; graced indeed since by the use of some famous modern poets, carried away by custom, but much to their own vexation, hindrance, and constraint to express many things otherwise, and for the most part worse than else they would have expressed them. Not without cause therefore some both Italian and Spanish poets of prime note have rejected rhyme both in longer and shorter works, as have also long since our best English tragedies, as a thing of itself, to all judicious ears, trivial and of no true musical delight; which consists only in apt numbers, fit quantity of syllables, and the sense variously drawn out from one verse into another, not in the jingling sound of like endings, a fault avoided by the learned ancients both in poetry and all good oratory. This neglect then of rhyme so little is to be taken for a defect, though it may seem so perhaps to vulgar readers, that it rather is to be esteemed an example set, the first in English, of ancient liberty recovered to heroic poem, from the troublesome and modern bondage of rhyming".
• The Earl of Surrey bad trans Rather, says Mr. Hayley, from lated two books of Virgil's Æneid Tasso,“ who wrote a poem withwithout rhyme; and, beside our out rhyme on the Creation, and Tragedies, a few short poems had “is celebrated by his friend and appeared in blank verse, parti- “ biographer, the Marquis of cularly one tending to reconcile “Villa, for the introduction of the nation to Raleigh's wild at “ blank verse into the Italian tempt upon Guiana, and pro- “poetry; so little was even then bably written by Raleigh himself. " thought of Trissino's heavy perThese petty performances, how « formance." See however the ever, cannot be supposed to have remarks on this subject in Rolli's much influenced Milton, who Life of Milton, in which several more probably took his hint from Italian writers of blank verse are Trissino's Italia Liberata. John- noticed and commended between
Trissino and Tasso. E. VOL. I.