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character from Celtic traditions : it was long the boundary of Briton and English. These places are introduced, as being near the scene of the shipwreck. Orpheus (l. 14) was torn to pieces by Thracian women. Amaryllis and Neaera (1. 24, 25) names used here for the love-idols of poets : as Damoetas previously for a shepherd. L. 31 the blind Fury: Atropos, fabled to
cut the thread of life. 71 89 Arethuse (1. 1) and Mincius : Sicilian and Italian
waters here alluded to as representing the pastoral
PAGE NO. 73 89 1. 6 ore : rays of golden light. Deric lay (1. 25)
Sicilian, pastoral. 75 93 The russault was an attack on London expected in
1642, when the troops of Charles I. reached Brent-
168 Ed. Dindorf) and the result ascribed to them.
written by thoughtful men who practised this Art but little. Jeremy Taylor, Bishop Berkeley, Dr. Johnson, Lord Macaulay, have left similar speci.
mens. 78 98 These beautiful verses should be compared with
Wordsworth's great Ode on Immortality : and a copy of Vaughan's very rare little volume appears in the list of Wordsworth's library.-In imaginative intensity, Vaughan stands beside his contemporary
Marvell. 79 99 Favonius: the spring wind. 80 100 Themis : the goddess of justice.
Skinner was grandson by his mother to Sir E. Coke :-hence, as pointed out by Mr. Keightley, Milton's allusion to the bench. L. 8: Sweden was then at war with
Poland, and France with the Spanish Netherlands. 82 103 1. 28 Sidneian showers : either in allusion to the
conversations in the 'Arcadia,' or to Sidney himself
as a model of 'gentleness' in spirit and demeanour. 85 105 Delicate humour, delightfully united to thought, at
once simple and subtle. It is full of conceit and paradox, but these are imaginative, not as with most
of our Seventeenth Century poets, intellectual only. 88 110 Elizabeth of Bohemia : Daughter to James I, and
ancestor of Sophia of Hanover. These lines are a
fine specimen of gallant and courtly compliment. 89 111 Lady M. Ley was daughter to Sir J Ley, afterwards
Earl of Marlborough, who died March, 1629, coincidently with the dissolution of the third Parliament of Charles' reign. Hence Milton poetically compares his death to that of the Orator Isocrates of Athens,
after Philip's victory in 328 B.C. 93 118 A masterpiece of humour, grace, and gentle feeling
all, with Herrick's unfailing art, kept precisely within the peculiar key which he chose, -or Nature for him,-in his Pastorals. L. 2 the god unshorn.
Imberbis Apollo. St. 2 beals : prayers. 96 123 With better taste, and less diffuseness, Quarles
might (one would think) have retained more of that high place which he held in popular estimate among
his contemporaries. 99 127 From Prison : to which his active support of Charles
I twice brought the high-spirited writer. L. 7 Gods : thus in the original ; Lovelace, in his fanciful way, making here a mythological allusion. Birds, commonly substituted, is without authority. St. 3,
1. 1 committed ; to prison. 100 128 St. 2 1. 4 blue-god : Neptune. 104 133 Waly waly : an exclamation of sorrow, the root and
the pronunciation of which are preserved in the word caterwaul. Brae, hillside: burn, brook : busk, adorn. Saint Anton's Well : below Arthur's Seat
by Edinburgh. Cramasie, crimson. 105 134 This beautiful example of early simplicity is found
in a Song-book of 1620. 106 135 burd, maiden. 107 136 corbies, crows : fail, turf: hause, neck; theek, thatch.
-If not in their origin, in their present form this, with the preceding poem and 133, appear due to the Seventeenth Century, and have therefore been placed
in Book II. 108 137 The poetical and the prosaic, after Cowley's fashion,
blend curiously in this deeply-felt elegy. 112 141 Perhaps no poem in this collection is more delicately
fancied, more exquisitely finished. By placing his description of the Fawn in a young girl's mouth, Marvell has, as it were, legitimated that abundance of 'imaginative hyperbole' to which he is always partial : he makes us feel it natural that a maiden's favourite should be whiter than milk, sweeter than sugar-lilies without, roses within.' The poet's imagination is justified in its seeming extravagance by the intensity and unity with which it invests his
picture. 113 142 The remark quoted in the note to No. 65 applies
equally to these truly wonderful verses. Marvell here
Alma Quies, teneo te! et te, germana Quietis,
L'Allégro and Il Penseroso. It is a striking proof of
Psyche, 1637. 116 144 The mountain-nymph ; compare Wordsworth's Sonnet,
No. 254. L. 38 is in apposition to the preceding, by
a syntactical license not uncommon with Milton. 118
1. 14 Cynosure; the Pole Star. Corydon, Thyrsis, &c. : Shepherd names from the old Idylls. Rebeck
(1. 28) an elementary form of violin. 119 ì. 24 Jonson's learned sock : His comedies are deeply
coloured by classical study. L. 28 Lydian airs : used here to express a light and festive style of ancient music, The 'Lydian Mode,' one of the seven original Greek Scales, is nearly identical with
our Major.' 120 145 1.3 bestead : avail. L. 19 starr'd Ethiop queen :
Cassiopeia, the legendary Queen of Ethiopia, and
thence translated amongst the constellations. 121 Cynthia: the Moon: Milton seems here to have
transferred to her chariot the dragons anciently
assigned to Demeter and to Medea. 122 Hermes, called Trismegistus, a mystical writer of the
Neo-Platonist school. L. 27 Thebes, &c. : subjects of Athenian Tragedy. Buskin'd (1. 30) tragic, in opposition to sock above. L. 32 Musaeus: a poet in Mythology. L. 37 him that left half-told : Chaucer
in his incomplete 'Squire's Tale.' 123 great bards : Ariosto, Tasso, and Spenser, are here
presumably intended. L. 9 frounced: curled. The
Attic Boy (l. 10) Cephalus. 124 146 Emigrants supposed to be driven towards America
by the government of Charles I. 125 1. 9, 10. But apples, &c. A fine example of Marvell's
imaginative hyperbole. - 147 1. 6 concent: harmony. 128 149 A lyric of a strange, fanciful, yet solemn beauty :
Cowley's style intensified by the mysticism of Henry
More.-St. 2 monument: the World. 129 151 Entitled ' A Song in Honour of St. Cecilia's Day
Summary of Book Third.
It is more difficult to charactorize the English Poetry of tho Eighteenth century than that of any other. For it was an age not only of spontaneous transition, but of bo!l experiment: it includes not only such absolute contrasts as distinguish the ‘Rape of the Lock' from the ‘Parish Register,' but such vast contemporaneous differences as lie between Pope and Collins, Burns and Cowper. Yet we may clearly trace three leading moods or tendencies :--the aspects of courtly or educated life represented by Pope and carried to es haustion by his followers; the poetry of Nature and of Man, viewed through a cultivated, and at the same time an impassioned frame of mind by Collins and Gray :-lastly, the study of vivid and simple narrative, including natural description, begun by Gay and Thomson, pursued by Burns and others in the north, and established in England by Goldsmith, Percy, Crabbe, and Cowper Great varieties in style accompanied these diversities in aim: poets could not always distinguish the manner suitable for subjects so far apart: and "he union of conventional and of common language, exhibited most con. spicuously by Burns, has given a tone to the poetry of that century which is better explained by reference to its historical origin than by naming it artificial. There is, again, a nobleness of thought, a courageous aim at high and, in a strict sense manly, excellence in many of the writers :-nor can that period he justly termed tame and wanting in originality, which produced poems such as Pope's Satires, Gray's Odes and Elegy, the ballads of Gay and Carey, the songs of Burns and Cowper. In truth Poetry at this, as at all times, was a more or less unconscious mirror of the genius of the age : and the many complex causes which made the Eighteenth century the turning-time in modern European civilization are also more or less reficcted in its verse An intelligent reader will find the influence of Newton as markedly in the poems of Pope, as of Elizabeth in the plays of Shakespeare. On this great subject, however, these indications must here be sufficient.
PAGE NO. 134 153 We have no poet more marked by rapture, by the
ecstasy which Plato held the note of genuine inspiration, than Collins. Yet but twice or thrice do his lyrics reach that simplicity, that sinceram sermonis Attici gratiam to which this ode testifies his enthusiastic devotion. His style, as his friend Dr. Johnson truly remarks, was obscure ; his diction often harsh and unskilfully laboured; he struggles nobly against the narrow, artificial manner of his age, but his too scanty years did not allow him to reach perfect mastery.