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Shakspeare, Milton .............
Books and Education in Charles Se
A Primitive Bishop...........
Mountain Children ......
Sketch of .....
The Mission of Christ.....
Politics Inseparable from Christianity.. 755
The Bible the Fountain of all Reforms.. 756
The True Dignity of Labor....... 757
Man over Men He made not Lord ....... 773
Happy Effects of Education........... 774
Railroads rersus War
Aptitude of Youth for Knowledge....... 776
Prospects of the Age-Sneerers at Edu-
The Schoolmaster and the Conqueror... 778
Is entering upon the subject of English Literature of the present century, it is gratifying to begin with the name of one who, to the character of a pleasing poet, a profound scholar, a tasteful and judicious critic, and a successful and venerated school-master, unites that of a pure Christian, in so eminent a degree as Joseph Warton. He was the son of the Rev. Thomas Warton, Professor of Poetry in Oxford University, and was born at Dunsfold, in the county of Surrey, in April, 1722. He was educated by his father until he was fourteen, when he entered Winchester school; and while there, so distinguished himself for his poetical talents, that he became a contributor to the poetry of the “Gentleman's Magazine." In 1740, he removed to Oxford University. How he spent his time there may be learned from the following interesting portion of a letter to his
To help me in some parts of my last collections from Longinus, I have read a good part of Dionysius Halicarnassus : so that I think by this time I ought fully to understand the structure of words and sentences. I shall read Longinus as long as I live: it is impossible not to catch fire and raptures from his glowing style. The noble causes he gives, at the conclusion, for the decay of the
In 1744, he took his degree of A. B., was immediately ordained, and officiated as his father's curate in the church of Basingstoke, in Hampshire, till February, 1746. In this year, he published a small volume of “Odes on Various Subjects.” They are seventeen in number, and, though decidedly inferior to those of Collins, published the same year, they are characterized by a fine taste and fancy, and much ease of versification. The odes “To Liberty," “ To Content,” and “To Fancy" are the best. “The latter abounds,” says Dr. Drake, “in a succession of strongly contrasted and high-wrought imagery, clothed in a versification of the sweetest cadence and most brilliant polish."!
The year after the publication of this volume of odes, he obtained the rectory of Wyoslade, and thereupon married a Miss Daman, to whom he had been long engaged. With her he enjoyed the highest domestic happiness, and devoted all his leisure hours to the translation of Virgil's Eclogues and Georgics, which were to be accompanied by Pitt's version of the Æneid, and the original Latin of the whole. In 1753, this elegant and valuable accession to classical literature was completed and published, accompanied by notes, dissertations, commentaries, and essays. The work was well received, and Warton's version of the Georgies and Eclogues was pronounced far superior to any that had preceded it. “To every classical reader, indeed,” remarks Mr. Wooll, “Warton's Virgil will afford the richest fund of instruction and amusement; and as a professional man I hesitate not to declare, that I scarcely know a work to the upper classes of schools so pregnant with the most valuable advantages; as it imparts information, without the encouragement of idleness, and crowns the exertions of necessary and laudable industry with the acquisition of a pure and unadulterated taste."
It was at this time that Dr. Johnson, in a letter dated March 8, 1753, applied to him, from Hawkesworth, to assist in the “Adventurer:” “ Being desired," says he, "to look out for another hand, my thoughts necessarily fixed upon you, whose fund of literature will enable you to assist them, with very little interruption of your studies, &c. : the province of criticism and literature they are very desirous to assign to the commentator on Virgil."3 His first paper is No. 49, dated April 24, 1753, containing a “ Parallel between Ancient and Modern Learning." His communications are among the very best of the whole work, and are written "with an extent of erudition, and a purity, elegance, and vigor of language, which demand very high praise."4
In the year 1755, Warton was chosen second master of Winchester school, for which high office he was peculiarly qualified by his talents and character, as he united to his great learning a peculiar aptness to impart instruction, and the rare art of exciting in his scholars an enthusiasm for literature, and a love and respect