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butes much to the increase of pleasure :: we are entertained at once with twox imitations, of nature in the sentiments, of the original author in the stile, and between them the mind is kept in pere petual employment.
The general recommendation of Shenstone is easiness and fimplicity;. his general defect is want of comprehenfion and variety. Had his mind been better stored with knowledge, whether he could have been great, I know not; he could certainly have been agreeable.
M ARK AKENSIDE was born on
M the ninth of November, 1721, at Newcastle upon Tyne. His father, Mark, was a butcher of the Presbyterian sect; his mother's name was Mary Lumsden. He received the first part of his education at the grammar-school of Newcastle; and was afterwards instructed by Mr. Wilson, who kept a private academy.
At the age of eighteen he was sent to Edinburgh, that he might qualify himself for the office of a difsenting minifter, and received some assistance froin the fund which the Dissenters employ in educating young men of scanty fortune. But a wider view of the world opened other scenes, and prompted other hopes : he determined to study physic, and repaid that contribution, which, being received for a different purpose, he justly thought it dishonourable to retain.
Whether, when he resolved not to be a difsenting minister, he ceased to be a Diffenter, I know not. He certainly retained an unnecessary and outrageous zeal for what he called and thought liberty; a zeal which sometimes disguises from the world, and not rarely from the mind which it poffeffes,
an envious desire of plundering wealth or degrading greatness; and of which the immediate tendency is innovation and anarchy, an impetuous eagerness to subvert and confound, with very little care what shall be established.
Akenside was one of those poets who have felt very early the motions of genius, and one of those students who have very early stored their memories, with sentiments and images. Many of his performances were produced in his youth; and his greatest work, The Pleasures of Imagination, appeared in 1744. I have heard Dodsley, by whom it was published, relate, that when the copy was offered him, the price demanded for it, which was an A 2 ?
hundred and twenty pounds, being such as he was not inclined to give precipitately, he carried the work to Pope, who, having looked into it, advised him not to make a niggardly offer; for this was no every-day writer. · In 1741 he went to. Leyden, in pur. suit of medical knowledge; and three years afterwards (May 16, 1744) became doctor of phyfick, having, according to the custom of the Dutch Universities, published a thesis, or dissertation. The subject which he chose was the Original and Growth of the Human Fætus; in which he is said to have departed, with great judgement, from the opinion then established, and to have
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