Notes and Queries, Number 30, May 25, 1850 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 53 pages of information about Notes and Queries, Number 30, May 25, 1850.


Dr. Johnson and Dr. Warton.

Amongst the poems of the Rev. Thos.  Warton, vicar of Basingstoke, who is best remembered as the father of two celebrated sons, is one entitled The Universal Love of Pleasure, commencing—­

  “All human race, from China to Peru,
  Pleasure, howe’er disguised by art, pursue.”
  &c. &c.

Warton died in 1745, and his Poems were published in 1748.

Johnson’s Vanity of Human Wishes appeared in 1749; but Boswell believes that it was composed in the preceding year.  That Poem, as we well remember, commences thus tamely:—­

  “Let observation with extensive view,
  Survey Mankind from China to Peru.”

Though so immeasurably inferior to his own, Johnson may have noticed these verses of Warton’s with some little attention, and unfortunately borrowed the only prosaic lines in his poem.  Besides the imitation before quoted, both writers allude to Charles of Sweden.  Thus Warton says,—­

  “’Twas hence rough Charles rush’d forth to ruthless war.”

Johnson, in his highly finished picture of the same monarch, says,—­

  “War sounds the trump, he rushes to the field.”

J.H.  Markland.


* * * * *

Spenser’s monument.

In the Lives of English Poets, by William Winstanley (London, printed by H. Clark for Samuel Manship, 1687), in his account of Spenser, p. 92., he says, “he died anno 1598, and was honourably buried at the sole charge of Robert, first of that name, Earl of Essex, on whose monument is written this epitaph:—­

“Edmundus Spenser, Londinensis, Anglicorum poetarum nostri seculi fuit princeps, quod ejus Poemata, faventibus Musis, et victuro genio conscripa comprobant.  Obiit immatura morte, anno salutis 1598, et prope Galfredum Chaucerum conditur, qui foelicisime Poesin Anglicis literis primus illustravit.  In quem haec scripta sunt Epitaphia.

      “Hic prope Chaucerum situs est Spenserius, illi
        Prominens ingenio, proximum ut tumulo
      Hic prope Chaucerum Spensere poeta poetam
        Conderis, et versud quam tumulo proprior,
      Anglica te vivo vixit, plausitque l’oesis;
        Nunc moritura timet, te moriente mori.”

I have also a folio copy of Spenser, printed by Henry Hills for Jonathan Edwin, London, 1679.  In a short life therein printed, it says that he was buried near Chaucer, 1596; and the frontispiece is an engraving of his tomb, by E. White, which bears this epitaph:—­

“Heare lyes (expecting the second comminge of our Saviour, Christ Jesus) the body of Edmond Spenser, the Prince of Poets in his tyme, whose Divine spirit needs noe othir witness than the works which he left behind {482} him.  He was borne in London in the yeare 1510, and died in the yeare 1596.”

Beneath are these lines:—­

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Notes and Queries, Number 30, May 25, 1850 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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