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PART II. Ver. 203, etc.

Caufes hindering a true Judgment. 1. Pride, v. 208. 2. Imperfect Learning, v. 215. 3. Judging by parts, and not by the whole, v. 233 to 288. Critics in Wit, Language, Verfification, only, v. 288. 305. 339, etc. 4. Being too hard to pleafe, or too apt to admire, v. 384. 5. Partiality-too much Love to a Sect,-to the Ancients or Moderns, v. 394. 6. Prejudice or Prevention, v. 408, 7. Singularity, v. 424. 8. Inconftancy, v. 430: 9. Party Spirit, v. 452, etc. 10. Envy, v. 466. Against Envy, and in praife of Good-nature, v. 508, When Severity is chiefly to be used by Critics,


v. 526, etc.

PART III. Ver. 560, etc.

Rules for the Conduct of Manners in a Critic. 1. Candour, v. 563. Modefty, v. 566. Good-breeding, v. 572. Sincerity, and Freedom of advice, v. 578. 2. When one's Counsel is to be reftrained, v. 584. Character of an incorrigible Poet, v. 600. And of an impertinent Critic, v. 610, etc. Character of a good Critic, v. 629. The Hiftory of Criticifm, and Character of the best Critics, Ariftotle, v. 645. Horace, v. 653. Dionyfius, v. 665. Petronius, v. 667. Quintilian, v. 670. Longinus, v. 675. Of the Decay of Criticism, and its Revival. Erafmus, v. 693. Vida, v. 705. Boileau, v. 714. Lord Rofcommon, etc. v. 725. Conclufion.







IS hard to fay, if greater want of skill
Appear in writing or in judging ill;
But, of the two, lefs dang'rous is th' offence
To tire our patience, than mislead our sense.
Some few in that, but numbers err in this,
Ten cenfure wrong, for one who writes amifs;
A fool might once himself alone expose,
Now one in verfe makes many more in profe.

'Tis with our judgments as our watches, none Go juft alike, yet each believes his own.

In Poets as true genius is but rare,

True Taste as feldom is the Critic's fhare;
Both muft alike from Heav'n derive their light,
These born to judge, as well as those to write.




Let fuch teach others who themselves excel,
And cenfure freely who have written well.
Authors are partial to their wit, 'tis true,
But are not Critics to their judgment too?

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Yet if we look more closely, we shall find
Moft have the feeds of judgment in their mind: 20
Nature affords at least a glimm'ring light;

The lines, tho' touch'd but faintly, are drawn right.
But as the flightest sketch, if justly trac❜d,
Is by ill-colouring but the more disgrac'd,
So by falfe learning is good fenfe defac'd:
Some are bewilder'd in the maze of schools,
And fome made coxcombs Nature meant but fools.
In fearch of wit these lose their common sense,
And then turn Critics in their own defence:



VER. 15. Let fuch teach others.] Qui fcribit artificiofe, ab aliis commode fcripta facile intelligere poterit. Cic. ad Herenn. lib. 4. De pictore, fculptore, ficlore, nifi artifex, judicare non poteft. Pliny. P.

VER. 20. Moft have the feeds] Omnes tacito quodam fenfu, fine ulla arte, aut ratione, quæ fint in artibus ac rationibus recta et prava dijudicant. Cic. de Orat. lib. iii. P.

VER. 25. So by falfe learning] Plus fine doctrina prudentia, quam fine prudentia valet doctrina. Quint. P.


Between v. 25 and 26 were thefe lines, fince omitted by the author:

Many are spoil'd by that pedantic throng,

Who with great pains teach youth to reason wrong.
Tutors, like Virtuofo's, oft inclin'd

By Arange transfufion to improve the mind,
Draw off the fense we have, to pour in new;
Which yet, with all their skill, they ne'er could do. P.

Each burns alike, who can, or cannot write,
Or with a Rival's, or an Eunuch's spite.
All fools have ftill an itching to deride,
And fain would be upon the laughing fide.
If Mævius fcribble in Apollo's fpight,


There are, who judge still worse than he can write.
Some have at first for Wits, then Poets paft, 36
Turn'd Critics next, and prov'd plain fools at last.
Some neither can for Wits nor Critics pass,
As heavy mules are neither horse nor ass.
Thofe half-learn'd witlings, num'rous in our ifle,
As half-form'd infects on the banks of Nile;
Unfinish'd things, one knows not what to call,
Their geoeration's fo equivocal;

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To tell 'em, would a hundred tongues require,
Or one vain wit's, that might a hundred tire.
But you who seek to give and merit fame,
And juftly bear a Critic's noble name,
Be sure yourself and your own reach to know,
How far your genius, taste, and learning go;



Launch not beyond your depth, but be discreet, 50 And mark that point where sense and dullness meet. Nature to all things fix'd the limits fit,


And wifely curb'd proud man's pretending wit.


VER. 51. And mark that paint where fenfe and dullness meet.] This precept cautions us against going on, when our Ideas begin to grow obfcure; as we are apt to do, tho' that obfcurity is a monition that we should leave off; for it arises either thro' our small acquaintance with the fubject, or the incomprehenfibility of its nature. In which circumstances a genius will always write as heavily as a dunce. An obfervation well worth the attention of all profound writers.




As on the land while here the ocean gains,
In other parts it leaves wide fandy plains;
Thus in the foul while memory prevails,
The folid pow'r of understanding fails;
Where beams of warm imagination play,
The memory's foft figures melt away.
One science only will one genius fit ;
So vaft is art, fo narrow human wit :
Not only bounded to peculiar arts,
But oft' in those confin'd to fingle parts.
Like Kings we lose the conquefts gain'd before,
By vain ambition still to make them more;
Each might his fev'ral province well command,
Would all but stoop to what they understand.
First follow Nature, and your judgment frame
By her juft ftandard, which is ftill the fame:
Unerring NATURE, ftill divinely bright,
One clear, unchang'd, and univerfal light,
Life, force, and beauty, must to all impart,
At once the fource, and end, and test of Art.
Art from that fund each juft fupply provides,
Works without fhow, and without pomp prefides:
In fome fair body thus th' informing foul
With fpirits feeds, with vigour fills the whole,
Each motion guides, and ev'ry nerve sustains;
Itself unseen, but in th' effects, remains.




VER. 67. Would all but stoop to what they understand.] The expreffion is delicate, and implies what is very true, that most men think it a degradation of their genius to employ it in cultivating what lies level to their comprehenfion, but had rather exercise their ambition in fubduing what is placed above it.


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