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the seventh volume of that publication. The Esay and thTranslation are accompanied with the Notes of a third persone age, and an anonymous one, who passes for the Editor of the wholė, and who seems to be a hopeful apprentice to the manufacturers of the New Philosophy. This skulker appears to be employed chiefly to throw dirt (and that of the most fetid quality) upon shining reputations which stand in the way of the Parisian philosophers; and as the yet unpublished Memoirs of the late famous J. J. Rouffeau are supposed to contain a great number of secret anecdotes, that reflect the highest dishonour on these Sages, our Editor loads the memory of the Citizen of Geneva with invectives and reproaches which surpass, in acrimony and vindictive bitterness and fury, any thing we have seen of the kind. A living dog (says Solomon) has the advantage over a dead lion:
As to the Essay of M. DIDEROT, it contains, like the other writings of that Author, a glaring mixture of good and bad : of brilliant thoughts and obscure reasonings-of sentences that dart from the imagination with the energy of lightning, and cloudy periods of metaphysical rhetoric that convey either no ideas or false ones.
But the most reprehenfible part of this performance is the moral sophistry with which Mr. D. apologizes for the vices of Seneca, which were neither few in number, nor of a kind that deserved indulgence. If it should even be allowed that Suilius, Dion Cassius, Xiphilinus, and St. Evremond, have been chargeable with exaggeration in their censures of the character and conduct of Seneca, yet we cannot approve of our Eslayilt's manner of refuting these censures, by calling the first a profligate loaded with crimes; the second, a madman; the third a wretched Monk; and the last, an ignorant epicu
We are still less edified when we hear the Philosopher of Paris alleviating Seneca's adulterous connexion with Julia the daughter of Germanicus, by telling us forsooth, that the Philosopher had his moment of vanity—his day of weakness; and, indeed, we think that the various accusations brought against the ftoic philosopher are answered with the same corrupt levity. Though it should not be true, that Seneca was an accomplice with Nero, in the aflaffination of his mother Agrippina, though it were even falle, that, knowing the design, he did not do what was in his power to prevent it, yet it is certainly true, that, after the abominable deed was done, he employed all his dexterity and art to excuse it, in a letter which he was base enough to write to the senate by the Emperor's order ; and when the Philofopher of Paris tells us that Seneca took this step to prevent farther enormities from the tumults and confiracies which the nur der of Agrippina was likely to produce, we wonder at his fimplicity; as if any methods of art or prudence could prevent
tumults and conspiracies when such an outrageous monster as Nero held the helm of government; as if any thing but the extinction of the monster could have given a moment of tranquillity, or real security to the Roman people,
For APRIL, 1779
POETICA L. Art. 11. The Carmen Seculare of Horace, translated into English
Verse. By the Rev. W. Tasker, A. B. Author of the Ode to che Warlike Genius of Britain,-Elegy, on Garrick, &c. 4to. Dodfley, Becket, &c. 1779.
"HOUGH the learned have, in general, found Sanadon’s ar
Carmen Seculare,' to be more ingenious than folid, yet it is not wonderful that Sig. Baretti and Monf. Philidor, whose chief object was to present the Public with a new musical entertainment, should have adopted the idea of Sanadon, which, by comprehending additional matter, gave more scope to the composer, and afforded at least a longer, if not more rational, amusement to the auditor :- nor is it wonderful, conlidered in that light, that the Rev. Mr. Taker should inform us that it is Mr. Baretti's edition, without any variation, that is here attempted to be translated.' He has, accordingly, fol. lowed that edition down to the Epilogus Bareiti, as Mr. Tasker calls it, but rather (as we are told it should be styled), the-Epilogus JOHNSONIANUS,
It is lamentable, however, to fee genius run to feed; and as Mr. Tasker certainly has discovered some poetical talent in his other lyric pieces, we are sorry to find him ever chasing the new-blown bubble of the day,” and availing himself of little semporary expedients, which, we fear, will ultimately be attended with as little profit as reputation. As to the
present. version, it is not, in our opinion, cals culated to afford instruction or entertainment either to the learned or unlearned reader, Art. 12. Verses to the Memory of David Garrick. Spoken as A Monody,, at the Theatre Royal in Drury-Lane.
400. Evans, &c.
1779. Of this elegant and affecting tribute, deservedly paid by the theatre to the memory of the deceased Rolcius, the following lines may serve as a small specimen :
• The Grace of Action--the adapted MIEN
As light from gems, affumes a brighter ray
Its fragrance charms the sense, and blends with air.'
which is added, Charity, a Paraphrase on the Thirteenth Chapter of the Firf Epistle of St. Paul to the Corinthians.-Poems written for the Vase at Bath Easton. By William Meyler. 4to. IS. Brown.
The verses on the death of Mr. Garrick are not the worst, nor the beft, of the various poetic performances that have appeared on the same subject. The versification of St. Paul's encomium on Charity are on a par with the generality of the Bath Easton poetry. Art. 14: A Monody to the Memory of David Garrick, Esq. 8vo.
6 d. Harrison. A well-meant attempt; but the Author does not completely porfess the art
at once to give and merit praise.' Art. 15. Ode to the Naval Officers of Great Britain. Written,
immediately after the Trial of Admiral Keppel, Feb. 11, 1779. By W. Mason, M. A. 4to, 6 d. Cadell.
T'his occasional Pindaric is meant to deliver the political creed of its Author, at whose call the Genius of the Atlantic rises from the deep, and expoftulates with his fifter sovereign of the wave,' Britannia : counselling her to withdraw her fleets from America, and to send them, under the full command of Keppel, against France. The following lines are the most pathetic part of the Atlantic deity's invocation to his kindred goddefs:
Queen of the isles! with empire crownd,
Wide as my waves could waft thy name,
Refuse that blelling to impart;
Why rush, through my indignant tide,
-Ah, answer not the strain !
Thy half repentant embaflys
Art. 16. The Patriot Divine to the Female Historian; an Elegiac
Epiftle. To which is added, The Lady's Reply; or, a modest Plea for the Rights of Widows. 4to. 2 s. Fielding and Walker. 1779.
More * pleasantry, at the expence of the Rev. Dr. Wilson and the celebrated Female Hitlorian, on the lady's second marriage. The epiftle here written for the venerable Divine, is an imitation of Ovid's Oenone to Paris ; and is executed with spirit and elegance. The Lady's Reply is entitled, The Female Historian to the Patriot Divine ; a Didattic Epistle ;-and is equally ingenious and satirical, with the elegiac poem which is supposed to have occasioned it.-But, are not these young graceless sons of Apollo (for juvenile blades we muft fuppose them) taking freedoms with living characters, which ought no more to be allowed in a copy of verses than in a dramatic exhibition? Art. 17. The Female Patriot : An Epistle from C-t-e M-C
-y to the Rev. Dr. W-l-n, on her late Marriage. With Critical, Historical, and Philosophical Notes and Illustra1 s. 6 d. Bew.
1779. More yet !-Still more poetic impertinence !-"Ye vile pack of vagabonds ! what do ye mean?” Art. 18. A Pocket of Profe and Verse; being a Selection of the
Literary Productions of Alexander Kellet, Esq. 8vo. 38. Dilly. 1778.
Mr. Ke!let's miscellany will afford an agreeable amusement to readers who can be satisfied with a mediocrity of abilities in the Writer. Perbaps the genius of the present Author will entitle him to rank as a poet of the second rate. In his prose compositions he manifefts a considerable thare of good sense and literary improvement. Art. 19. Delineation, a Poem. -4to. Is. 6 d. Kearsly. 1779. A rhiming invective againft
' some well-known political characters among the Great; particularly the gentlemen in opposition. The Bard seems to have found an old pen of Sir Richard Blackmore's but he should have mended it. Art. 20. Nereus's Prophecy : a Sea-piece, sketched off Ulhant,
on the memorable Morning of the 28th of July, 1778. 410. I s. 6d. Bew.
This invective piece of poetry seems (from similitude of Ayle) to come from that violent son of Opposition [a Court Reviewer would say Faction] to whom the Public are indebted for those ungracious performances, Royal Perfeverance, Tyranny the worst Taxation, Epifle #W_ ME- of M-f-d, Capt. Parolles at Minden, &c. all which we have censured, purely from our averfion to literary intemperance, and personal invective, which only tend to breed ill-bumour, foment discord, inflame malignity, and render bad men callous ;-and which were never known to produce REFORMATION :-the only end a moral writer ought to have in view,
See the 28th Article of our Catalogue for February, and the 19th in that for March.
Art. 21. The Se’er; or, the American Prophecy. A Poem. 8vor
6 d. Harrison. 1779. The American Se'er is full brother to Nereus, the old Sea-boy who figures in the preceding Article. Art. 22. The Female Congress; or, the Temple of Cotytto: A
Mock Heroic Poem, in Four Cantos. 460.. 25. 6. Davies. 1779.
In an advertisement prefixed to this poem, as an apology for the subject and the manner in which it is treated, are the following paragraphs:
"Where the manners happen to be very scandalous, and the prevailing vices of the age of a very impure die, satire must often rise discoloured from its subject, and seem to border nearly on licentious: nefs. Juvenal, with the best intentions in the world, has let fall many things shocking enoagh to a modeft ear. In condemning fatire for its freedom, people are too apt to forger its end, and the persons to whom it is addrest; and, at the very moment when it is reflecting the image of deformity, they are angry that the figure is indecent, or ungraceful. Satire is not intended for the innocent and spotless, but the vicious and contaminated, to whom pictures of depravity are no novely; were it always to preserve such decorum and chastity as not to disgust the former, it might want force and poignancy to strike the latter; and so facrifice the reformation of those to whom it is neceffary, to the fear of displeasing those to whom it is unnecessary. Should the chalte virgin at any time meet with ex. pressions or images in the works of the satirist, that wound her delicacy, let her recollect, that the painting was not designed for her in. spection, and that it is exhibited only as an object of detestation and contempt.
The following sheets are the produce of an idle week, solen from serious occupations, and were at first writen merely for my own amusement; buo all our literary amusements, at least, should be directed to some useful purpose ; and I hope I may be allowed, without vanity, to assert that, in the following lines, I sincerely meant to serve the cause of virtue and religion, by exposing to ridicule, the parade of profligacy, and more culpable fimulation of godliness.”
From these extracts the Reader may poslibly expect a more indelicate work than that now before us. It is, however, too truly reprehensible in that respect; and, from that circumstance alone, were its poetical merit superior, muft (like the Times of Churchill) fall into obscurity. The fable and characters of the Female Congress are not conceived or expreffed in that happy vein of fancy and ridicule, that diftinguishes our most popular pieces of mock-heroic poetry; but the numbers are, in general, above mediocrity, and the Author appears to be a sound claffical scholar.
DRAMA TI C.
formed, with the Approbation, and under the joint Inspection,
The managers of the two theatres royal of Drury Lane and Covent-