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« Si quid novisti rectius iftis, “ Candidus imperti; fi non, his utere mecum.”

HOR.

* Mr. Pope told me himself, that the “ Essay on « Criticism” was indeed written in 1707, though said 1709 by mistake.

J. RICHARDSON. The Poem is in one book, but divided into three prin

cipal parts or members. The first (to ver. 201.] gives rules for the Study of the Art of Criticism; the fecond [from tience to ver. 560.] exposes the Causes of wrong judgment; and the third [froin thence to the end) anarks out the Morals of the Critic. When the Reader hath well considered the whole, and hath observed the regularity of the plan, the masterly conduet of the several parts, the penetration into Nature, and the compass of learning so conspicuous throughout, he shculd then be told that it was the work of an Author who had not attained the twentieth year of his age.--A very learned Critic has shewn, that Horace had the same attention to inethod in his Art of Poetry

1

C Ο Ν Τ Ε Ν

N IS

OF

THE

ESSAY ON CRITICISM.

I

PART 1.
NTRODUCTION. That 'tis as great a fault to judge

ill, as to write ill, and a more dangerous one to the
public, ver. 1.
That a true Taste is as rare to be found as a true Ge-

nius, ver. 9 to 18. That most men are born with some Taste, but spoild

by false Education, ver. 19 to 25. The multitude of Critics and causes of them, ver. 26

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to 45.

That we are to study our own Taste, and know the limits

of it, ver. 46 to 67.
Nature the best guide of judgment, ver. 68 to 87.
Improved by Art and Rules, which are but methodized

Nature, ver. 88.
Rules derived from the practice of the Ancient Poets,

ver. 88. to ITO.
That therefore the Ancients are necessary to be studied

by a Critic, particularly Homer and Virgil, ver. 120

to 138.

Of Licences, and the use of them by the Ancients, ver.

140 to 18o. Reverence due to the Ancients, and praise of them, &c.

PART

ver. 181,

1

AN

E S S

AY

ON

CRITICIS M. 'TA

IS hard to say, if greater want of skill

Appear in writing or in judging ill;
But of the two, less dangerous is th' offence
To tire our patience, than mislead our sense,
Some few in that, but numbers err in this,

s
Ten censure wrong for one who writes amiss ;
A fool might once himself alone expose,
Now one in verse makes many more in prose.

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

10
In Poets as true genius is but rare,
True taste as seldom is the Critic's share,
Both must alike from Heaven derive their light,
These born to judge, as well as those to write.
Le such teach others who themselves excel, 15
And censure freely who have written well.
Authors are partial to their wit, 'tis true,
But are not Critics to their judgment too?

Yet, if we look more closely, we shall find
Moft have the seeds of judgment in their mind :

Nature

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20

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