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Receding now, the dying numbers ring

Fainter and fainter down the rugged dell, And now the mountain breezes scarcely bring

A wandering witch-note of the distant spellAnd now, 'tis silent all !- Enchantress, fare thee

well! 1

1 ["On a comparison of the merits of this poem with the two former productions of the same unquestioned genius, we are inclined to bestow on it a very decided preference over both. It would perhaps be difficult to select any one passage of such genuine inspiration, as one or two that might be pointed out in The Lay of the Last Minstrel-and, perhaps, in strength and discrimination of character, it may fall short of Marmion; although we are loath to resign either the rude and savage generosity of Roderick, the romantic chivalry of James, or the playful simplicity, the affectionate tenderness, the modest courage of Ellen Douglas, to the claims of any competitors in the last-mentioned poem. But, for interest and artificial management in the story, for general ease and grace of versification, and correctness of language, The Lady of the Lake must be universally allowed, we think, to excel, and very far excel, either of her predecessors.”Critical Review.]

[" There is nothing, in Mr. Scott, of the severe and majestic style of Milton-or of the terse and fine composition of Pope-or of the elaborate elegance and melody of Camp

,-or even of the flowing and redundant diction of Sou they,—but there is a medley of bright images and glowing, set carelessly and loosely together—a diction tinged successively with the careless richness of Shakspeare, the harshness and antique simplicity of the old romances, the homeliness of vulgar ballads and anecdotes, and the sentimental glitter of the most modern poetry—passing from the borders of the ludicrous to those of the sublime-alternately minute and energetic--sometimes artificial, and frequently negligent, but always full of spirit and vivacity-abounding in images, that are striking at first sight to minds of every contextureand never expressing a sentiment which it can cost the most ordinary reader any exertion to comprehend. Upon the whole, we are inclined to think more highly of The Lady of the Lake than of either of its author's former publications. We are more sure, however, that it has fewer faults, than that it has greater beauties; and as its beauties bear a strong resemblance to those with which the public has been already made familiar in these celebrated works, we should not be surprised if its popularity were less splendid and remarkable. For our own parts, however, we are of opinion, that it will be oftener read hereafter than either of them; and that if it had appeared first in the series, their reception would have been less favourable than that which it has experienced. It is more polished in its diction, and more regular in its versitication; the story is constructed with infinitely more skill and address; there is a greater proportion of pleasing and tender passages, with much less antiquarian detail: and, upon the whole, a larger variety of characters, more artfully and judiciously contrasted. There is nothing so fine, perhaps, as the battle in Marmion—or so picturesque as some of the scattered sketches in the Lay; but there is a richness and a spirit in the whole piece, which does not pervade either of these poems—a profusion of incident, and a shifting brilliancy of colouring, that reminds us of the witchery of Ariosto —and a constant elasticity, and occasional energy, which seem to belong more peculiarly to the author now before us.”—JEFFREY.]


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