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DEAR SIR, I can have no expećtations in an address of this kind, either to add to your reputation, or to establish my own.

You can gain nothing from my admiration, as I am ignorant of that Art in which you are said to excel; and I may lose much by the severity of your judgment, as few have a juster taste in Poetry than you. Setting interest therefore afde, to which I never paid much attention, I must be indulged at present in following my affections. The only Dedication I ever made, was to my brother, because I loved him better than most other men. He is fince dead-Permit me to infcribe this poem to you.

How far you may be pleased with the versification and mere mechanical parts of this attempt, I do not pretend to enquire; but I know you will object (and indeed several of our best and wisef friends concur in the opinion) that the depopulation it deplores is

no where to be seen, and the disorders it laments are only to be found in the Poet's own imagination. To this I can scarce make any other answer than that I fincerely believe what I have written; that I have taken all posħble pains, in my country excurfions, for these four or five years past, to be certain of what I alledge, and that all my views and enquiries have led me to believe those miferies real, which I here attempt to display. But this is not the place to enter into an enquiry whether the country be depopulating or not: the discussion would take up much room, and I should prove myself, at best, an indifferent politician, to tire the reader with a long preface, when I want his unfatigued attention to a long Poem.

In regretting the depopulation of the country, 1 inveigh against the increase of our luxuries; and here also I expect the shout of modern politicians against me. For twenty or thirty years past, it

has been the fashion to consider luxury as one of the great national advantages; and all the wisdom of antiquity in that particular, as erroneous. Still, however, I must remain a professed ancient on that head, and continue to think those luxuries prejudicial to fates, by which so many vices are introduced, and so many kingdoms have been undone, Indeed, so much has been poured out of late on the other side of the question, that, merely for the sake of novelty and variety, one would sometimes wish to be in the right.

I am, dear Sir,
Your fincere friend, and ardent admirer,


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[The Author writes this Poem in the character of a na.

tive of a country village, to which he gives the name of AUBURN-He proceeds to contrast the innocence and happiness of a simple and natural state, with the miseries and vices that have been introduced by por lished life-The beautiful description of the Parish Priest, was probably intended for a picture of his bro. ther Henry, to whom he dedicates The TravellerThe rest of the Poem confifts of the character of the Village Schoolmaster; a description of the Village Alehouse; a descant on the mischiefs of Luxury and Wealth; the variety of Artificial Pleasures; and the miseries of those who, for want of employment at home, are driven to settle new colonies abroad.]

Sweet Auburn, loveliest village of the plain,
Where health and plenty cheer'd the labouring swain;
Where smiling spring its earliest visit paid,
And parting summer's ling’ring blooms delay'd:
Dear lovely bowers of innocence and ease,
Seats of my youth, when every sport could please,
How often have I loiter'd o'er thy green,
Where humble happiness endear'd each scene:
How often have I paus’d on every charm
The felter'd cot, the cultivated farm,

The never-failing brook, the busy mill,
The decent church that topt the neighbouring hill,
The hawthorn bull, with seats beneath the shade,
For talking age and whispåring lovers made
How often have I blest the coming day,
When toil remitting lent its turn to play,
And all the village train, from labour free,
Led up their sports beneath the spreading tree;
While many a pastime circled in the shade,
The young contending as the old survey'd;
And many a gambol frolick'd o'er the ground,
And Neights of art, and feats of strength went round;
And still as each repeated pleasure tir’d,
Succeeding sports the mirthful band inspir'd;
The dancing pair that simply fought renown
By holding out to tire each other down;
The swain mistrustless of his smutted face,
While secret laughter titter'd round the place;
The bashful virgin's side-long looks of love,
The matron’s glance that would those looks reprove-
These were thy charms, sweet village; sports like these,
With sweet succession, taught even toil to please;
These round thy bow'rs their cheerful influence thed,
These were thy charms but all these charms are fled.

Sweet smiling village, loveliest of the lawn,
Thy sports are fled, and all thy charms withdrawn;
Amidst thy bowers the tyrant's hand is seen,
And desolation faddens all thy green;
One only master grasps the whole domain,
And half a tillage stints thy smiling plain;
No more thy glassy brook reflects the day,
But, choak’d with sedges, works its weedy way;

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