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NOTES ON ODES
THIRD AND FOURTH CLASS.
NOTES ON ODES OF THE THIRD CLASS.
and two essays
Page 10. Mr. Say was the son of an ejected mi. nister of Southampton, and after having been some years Pastor of a dissenting congregation at Ipswich, in 1723, succeeded Dr. Calamy in that which belongs at present to Dr. Kippis. Soon after Mr. Say's death, which happened April 12, 1743, at the age of 68, several of his poems,
prose, were published in one volume in quarto, by subscription. The latter, “ On the Harmony, Variety, and Power of « Numbers in general,” and, “ On those of Paradise “ Lost in particular,'' have been much admired by persons of taste and judgment. His only daughter married Mr. Toms, a dissenting teacher at Hadleigh in Suffolk.
ODE XXVII. Page 42. The writer of this Ode was daughter of the Reverend Mr. Pennington, Rector of Huntingdon. She died in 1759, at the age of 25. Mr. Duncombe has celebrated her in “The Feminiad,” for her “ Cop“ per Farthing.''
ODES OF THE FOURTH CLASS.
Page 61. Mr. William Collins was born at Chichester in Sussex, in the year 1721: in which city his father was a reputable tradesman. He was admitted a scholar of Winchester college, Feb. 23, 1733, where he spent seven years under the care of Dr. Burton. In the year 1740, in consideration of his merit, he was placed first in the list of those scholars who are elected from Winchester college to New college, Oxford : but no vacancy happening at the latter, he entered, the same year, a commoner of Queen's, and July 29, 1741, was elected a demy, or scholar, of Magdalen college in the same university. At school he began to study poetry and criticism, particularly the latter. The following epigram, written by him while at Winchester-school, discovers a genius, and turn of expression, very rarely to be met with in juvenile compositions.
MISS AURELIA C-R,
ON HER WEEPING AT HER SISTER'S WEDDING.
Cease, fair Aurelia, cease to mourn ;
Lament not Hannah's happy state ;
And seize the treasure you regret.
With Love united Hymen stands,
And softly whispers to your charms; • Meet but your lover in my bands,
• You'll find your sister in his arms.'
His Latin exercises were never so much admired as his English.–At Oxford he wrote the epistle to Sir Thomas Hanmer, and Oriental eclogues, which were first published in 1742, under the title of Persian eclogues. About the year 1743, he left Oxford. Having taken the degree of bachelor of arts, and being weary of the confinement and uniformity of an academical life, through a fond imagination that a man of parts was sure of making his fortune in London, and being struck with the name of author and poet, he without consulting his friends was induced to remove to town, rashly resolving to live by his pen, without undertaking the drudgery of any profession. Here he soon dissipated his small fortune, to compensate for which, he projected the history of the revival of learning in Italy, under the pontificates of Julius II. and Leo X. His subscription for this work not answering his expectations, he engaged with a bookseller, to translate Aristotle's Poetics, and to illustrate it with à large and regular comment. This scheme also being laid aside, he turned his thoughts to dramatic poetry, and being intimately acquainted with the ma. nager, resolved to write a tragedy, which however he never executed. In the year 1746 he published his Odes; and shortly after went abroad to our army in Flanders, to attend his uncle, colonel Martin, who, dying soon after his arrival, left him a considerable fortune; which however he did not live long to enjoy, for he fell into a nervous disorder, which continued, with but short intervals till his death, in 1756, and with which disorder his head and intellects were at times affected.
For a man of so elevated a genius, Mr. Collins has written but little : his time was chiefly taken up in laying extensive projects, and vast designs, which he never even begun to put in execution.
Of our Poet, Dr. Johnson, who well knew him, soon after his death, communicated this account.
Mr. Collins was a man of extensive literature, and of vigorous faculties. He was acquainted not only with the learned tongues, but with the Italian, French, and Spanish languages. He had employed his mind chiefly upon works of fiction, and subjects of fancy; and, by indulging some peculiar habits of thought,