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96

RICHMOND HILL.

accustomed exertions, he sunk under a fever fourteen weeks after his enlargement. The expectation of immortality by the Christian covenant, and the remembrance of his conscientious life, enabled him to meet death with complacency. His loss, irreparable to his wife and children, was deeply regretted by all his friends and relatives.

“ Thomas Wakefield, B. A., the minister of this parish, erects this memorial of his brother's desert and his own affection."

I had the pleasure of knowing and esteeming this ercellent man. Be these pages sacred to his me

mory !

Richmond Hill is a subject in which prose and poetry have exhausted their energies for its celebra. tion. Indeed the spot is so truly enchanting as almost to set exaggeration at defiance. I shall not attempt the description of it, but content myself with introducing two delineations; the first written upwards of half a century ago; the other of modern date; both of singular beauty:

Say, shall we ascend
Thy Hill, delightful Sheen ?

Here let us sweep
The boundless landscape: now the raptur'd eye
Exulting swift to huge Augusta send,
Now to the sister-bills* that skirt her plain;
To lofty Harrow now, and now to where
Majestic Windsor lifts his princely brow
In lovely contrast to this glorious view,

• Highgate and Hampstead.

RICHMOND HILL.

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Calmly magnificent: then will we turn
To where the silver Thames first rural grows;
There let the feasted eye unwearied stray :
Luxurious there rove thro' the pendent woods
That nodding hang o'er Harrington's retreat ; +
And stooping thence to Ham's | embowering walks,
Here let us trace the matchless vale of Thames,
Far winding up to where the Muses haunt,
To Twit'nam's bowers; to royal Hampton's pile;
To Claremont's terraced height and Esher's groves.
Enchanting vale! beyond what e'er the muse
Has of Achaia or Hesperia sung :
O vale of bliss! O softly swelling hills !
On which the power of cultivation lies,
And joys to see the wonders of his toil.
Heav'ns! what a goodly prospect spreads around
Of hills and dales, and woods and lawns, and spires,
And glittering towns, and gilded streams, till all
The stretching landscape into smoke decays!

Thomsox,

Loveliest of Hills that rise in glory round,
With swelling domes and glittering villas crown'd,
For loftier tho' majestic Windsor tower,
The richer landscape's thine, the nobler bower.
Imperial seat of ancient grandeur hail!
Rich diamond ! sparkling in a golden vale,
Or vivid emerald! whose serener rays
Beam mildly forth with mitigated blaze,
And ’mid the splendours of an ardent sky
With floods of verdant light refresh the eye :
RICHMOND! still welcome to my longing sight
Of a long race of kings the proud delight!

+ Petersham Ludge.

| Ham House.

F

98

RICHMOND HILL.

Oj old the sainted saġe thy groves admir’d,
When with Devotion's hallow'd transports fir'd,
From Sheen's monastic gloom thy brow he sought
And on its summit paus’d in raptur'd thought,
Stretch'd to the horizon's bound his ardent gaze,
And hymn'd aloud the great Creator's praise.

MAURICE,

The poet is not content withi landing its beauties by a reference to its own history, but ascends still higher and revels in all the profusion of classical miythology:

Not that fam'd mount within whose hallow'd bounds
The lyre of GREECE pour'd förth celestial sounds,
Sublime Parnassús! nor th' unmeasur'd height
Of vast Olympus, thundering Jore's delight!
Nor hoary Ida, from wliose pine-clad brow
A thousand gushing springs salubrious flow,
Thou fair Parnassus of the British ÍSLES!
Where Freedom still ’mid crumbling empires smiles,
Not these, though bigh in classic song they soar,
And glory wafts their fame round every shore;
Not these, sweet Hill! thy proud renown excel,
Where noblest bards have smote the deep-ton'd shell;
Sovereigns, like Jove, the world's bright sceptre sway'd,
And many a goddess haunts the Elysian shade.
Thy beauteous vale their boasted temple shames,
A nobler Peneus glides thy winding Thames;
Thro' lovelier pastures rolls his fostering wave,
And nourishes a ráce more nobly brave!

MAURICE

The poet, immediately afterwards, alluding to the several bards who had preceded bim in such panegy

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rical strains, relative to the merits of this spot and those of the adjoining districts, particularly Denhamn, Pope, Thomson, Collins and Gray, breaks out into this spirited apostrophe :

Rise awful shadows! rise iminortal throng!
Burst Death's dark confines and attest my song;
0! crown'd with bays that shall for ever blooin
Amid your favour'd haunts the lyre resume,
The stream along whose beauteous banks ye rov'd,
The shrubs you planted and the bow'rs you lov'd,
The hallow'd grottos where the Muse inspir'd,
The solemn vistas where the soul was fir’d,
The welcome well-known sounds rejoic'd shall bail,
And Echo waft them dowu the gladden'd vale!

Elegant mansions meet the eye in every direction. It is impossible to pass unnoticed those of the Duke of Clarence, the Duke of Buccleugh, Lady Diana Beauclerk, Earl of Leicester, Sir Lionell Darell, Bart., &c.

The lover of the beautiful must, from RICHMOND HILL, possess a high gratification ; but should his taste extend to the sublime, he must visit the lakes of Cumberland, or traverse the mountains of the principality of Wales. Indeed, in Transatlantic regions alone is the sublime enjoyed in its highest perfection. The Andes of South, and the Allegany Mountains of North America, excite profound astonishment. Dr. Waterhouse, an American physician, writing to the patriotic Lettsom, thus expresses himself on the subject : exploring the interior of the American conti.

100

SUBLIMITY OF THOUGHT.

nent, he says, “ I went nearly three hundred miles from the sea coast, and was about ten weeks travelling what may be called a magnificent country, yet very different, little big, men, who inbabit palaces and haunt courts, would consider as worthy of that epithet. I passed one mountain that was twenty-eight miles over; it has four or five towns on it. At its summit, where great Nature dwells in awful solitude, the surrounding prospect was pleasing, far beyond my powers of description. When afterwards ) rode along the spacious Hudson, and saw this vast current winding majestically between enormous mountains, with here and there a stupendous cataract, I more clearly comprehended the cause of that elevation of thought manifested by a common soldier in our army during the war. While the army was encamped on the banks of this river a private soldier one day, when off duty,

amused himself with climbing one of these huge moun,tains. When he had reached the pinnacle his mind was so sublimely affected with the amazing height he found himself from the surface of the water, and the vast extent his eye reached, that he stretched forth his right arm and gave the following words of command : - Attention the Universe! By Kingdoms to the right wheel. March! This anecdote I had from General Lincoln, and serves, I think, to shew that situations affect the human mind more than writers on education are aware of. It is probable that the sons of the mountains conceive sublimer ideas from their habit of looking down on the world.”

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