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Of Quin;

“ In whate'er cast his character was laid,

Self still, like oil, upon the surface played ”. Of Foote;

“ By turns transformed into all kinds of shapes,

Constant to none, Foote laughs, cries, struts, and scrapes”. And, as in almost all his satires, he could not keep out reference to himself; he ever tried to anticipate the natural retort on his own broad face and ugly features by selfcriticism ;

“Even I, whom nature cast in hideous mould,
Whom, having made, she trembled to behold,
Beneath the load of mimicry may groan,

And find that nature's errors are my own”. His portrait of Garrick was one of the best and most generous in the satire. The actor met it with a sneer. And the satirist flung it back in his Apology to the Critical Reviewers;

“Forgetful of himself he rears his head,

And scorns the dunghill where he first was bred ;
On this great stage, the world, no monarch e'er

Was half so haughty as a monarch player.” The little actor replied by a feeble satire he called The Fribbleriad. But Churchill had enough to do to meet his other enemies that he had brought round his head like a swarm of mosquitoes. Foote wrote a satiric dialogue against him; and pamphlets innumerable in reply to The Rosciad came out; The Churchilliad, The Anti-Rosciad, The Farthing Candle, are three out of the crowd. He reserved himself for the larger quarry; Smollett had attacked the satire in his journal The Critical Review. And in An Apology to the Critical Reviewers (1761), after acknowledging the novelist's talent as second only to Fielding's (having "hailed the honours of thy matchless name "), he takes his other work to pieces; Smollett had himself written satires, Advice (1746), and Reproof (1747), attempted a History of England (1757), and a tragedy The Regicide (1749). Churchill laughs at him for these, but especially for the last;

“Others for plots and under-plots may call,

IIere's the right method-have no plot at all." His success made him abandon his clerical dress and appear

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in “blue and gold.” Dean Pearce and his parishioners remonstrated; he resigned, and threw himself completely into a life of literary bohemianism and dissipation ; he was free to sneer at both religion and morality. Yet in the same year (1761), we have signs of repentance and bitterness, as well as of rakishness, in his poetical epistle to Robert Lloyd, entitled “Night,” which The Critical Review called "cold, long, dark, and dirty.” In it he professes to flout the world and to turn the flank of its criticisms by defending open vice and contrasting with it the hypocritical virtue so common. He assumes the rôle of the manly man about town who is not ashamed of his peccadilloes, and of the manly poet and satirist who is proud of outraging poetical convention and rules of art. He delights in the freedom of his life and work ;

“ By custom safe, the poet's numbers flow

Free as the light and air some years ago ; (referring to the window-tax recently re-imposed);

“No statesman e'er will find it worth his pains

To tax our labours and excise our brains. The poem was inspired by Armstrong's Epistle to John Wilkes, a poem called Day. And it is from this time we must date the influence of the great demagogue upon the satirist. The rebellious genius of the two brought them together as the poet and the orator of the new revolutionism. The friends of Lord Bute had begun a newspaper called The Briton ; the two new allies started another called, in travesty of it, The North Briton, intended to attack the prime minister and the king who favoured him. The two chief points of attack were their nationality; the one was a Scotchman, the other was a German, by descent; and they were therefore incapable of ruling Englishmen and must be tyrants. Johnson and Junius from different camps showed the same intolerance of Scottish influence, as Swift had shown it before them. The Union had brought down to London a number of poets and place-hunters, critics and physicians to seek fortune ; just as the accession of James the First had done. Ireland, Wales, North England, and

, the other sections of Britain had already been in the habit of contributing their best talent to the literature, politics, and professions of the great metropolis. Only the second or

third rate ability emigrated from Scotland at that time ; for it had vigorous literary and professional centres of its own, in which men, like Hume and Adam Smith, Burns and Scott, found appreciative audiences. It was natural then that this hostility to Scotchmen should become a commonplace of satire in London, where so many of them seemed to succeed without much ability. Bute's influence over the king concentrated the gall. And The North Briton spent its best energies in giving it expression. Churchill devoted himself to articles in the paper; but preferred rhyme. One article on the favourite theme he recast at the last minute into verse, and issued it early in 1763 under the name of “The Prophecy of Famine; a Scottish Pastoral.” His admirers thought it surpassed both Dryden and Pope ; and perhaps it does approach to The Rosciad in ability ; but it had its chief vogue from the popular hatred of Bute and the fear of another Jacobite rising in Scotland ; some of the couplets are good ;-Jockey

“ With mickle art could on the bagpipes play,

E'en from the rising to the setting day ;
Sawney as long without remorse could bawl
Home's madrigals and ditties from Fingal.”
“The plague of locusts they secure defy;

For in three hours a grasshopper must die.
No living thing, whate'er its food, feasts there,
But the chameleon who can feast on air."

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But as usual with Churchill there is more invective than wit, more personal abuse than satire. In this very poem he confesses that " no judgment tempers” him, he “boasts no merit but mere knack of rhyme," "short gleams of sense and satire out of time”; whilst “ taste with contempt beholds” him "uncouth.” Falconer replied by The Demagogue, not published till 1765, too late for Churchill to answer; it is as overdrawn a piece of abuse of Pitt and his champions in heroic verse; it rails at every principle that the progressive and revolutionary party respected, and joins Pitt with Wilkes as a "bellowing demagogue," who "disembogues" "expressions of immeasurable length,”

, “splay-footed words that hector, bounce, and swagger.” What enrages him most is “England shall rule America no more"; Howl on, ye ruffians ! ‘Liberty and Wilkes.'

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He talks of Churchill's “clumsy club” and his “feeble meteor-ray." But before the satire could be issued Churchill had died of fever at Boulogne ; he had gone to join his exiled friend Wilkes in France in October 1764.

3. Hogarth had also replied to his satire in his first print of The Times caricaturing Pitt and other Whigs. Churchill retaliated in The North Briton. On Wilkes's trial for the attack on the king in the 45th number Hogarth caricatured the demagogue. The satirist defended his friend in his Epistle to William Hogarth (1763), acknowledging the painter's talents, but attacking his opinions and weak

It brought out from the artist the print of the poet as a bear in canonicals with a beer-pot in one paw and a cudgel in the other. Churchill said he was kept from retaliation by "the woman whom he loved,” his last romance of vice. In The Conference (1763) he attempted to defend his character, and in one passage rises almost to pathos in the expression of remorse;

“'Tis not the babbling of a busy world,
Where praise and censure are at random hurl’d,
Which can the meanest of my thoughts control,
Or shake one settled purpose of my soul.
Free and at large might their wild courses roam,
If all, if all alas ! were well at home.

No, 'tis the tale which angry Conscience tells.” He had evidently drawn swarms of enemies around him and in the turmoil he had begun to appeal for pity. But he continued his crusades ; The Duellist appeared in the same year (1763), satirising a social custom that still survived times of constant warfare. He had already in 1762 attempted to laugh down a superstition, that was as hard to kill, in The Ghost, his longest poem, and in the style of Swift's octosyllabics; in this he gave a portrait of Johnson who never forgave him for it; for it was near enough to fact to strike home;

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“ Pomposo, insolent and loud,
Vain idol of a scribbling crowd,
Whose every name inspires an awe,
Whose every word is sense and law ;”
"Who, cursing flattery, is the tool

Of every fawning, flattering fool ;
" Who makes each sentence current pass,
With 'puppy', 'coxcomb', 'scoundrel',

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“Who, to increase his native strength,

Draws words six syllables in length”. The year in which he died was his busiest; during it he issued no less than six satires, each of some length, The Candidate, The Author, Gotham, The Farewell, The Times, and Independence. Cowper, his old schoolfellow at Westminster and his life-long defender, considered Gotham, which was a picture of the true “patriot-king”, as his best, “a noble and beautiful poem”. The Author is the most personal, The Times most repulsive, The Farewell almost prophetic in its appeal against the desecration of his grave, Independence most interesting as somewhat autobiographical ; in this last he paints his own portrait and that not a flattering one ; late in life

“He started up a fop, and, fond of show,

Looked like another Hercules turn'd beau ". This comet of a season”, as Byron calls him, in his elegy over Churchill's grave, blazed out and fell into oblivion almost as soon as the earth was over him. Devoted though he was to Wilkes, (Hogarth calls him "Wilkes's toad-echo"), the revolutionary "patriot” forgot his last wishes to write his biography, and save his memory from desecration. Lloyd, his friend, died of grief at his death, and his fiancée, Churchill's sister, died with the double shock of bereavement. The only friend that cherished his memory long was the gentle Cowper, who spoke of him as "the great Churchill”, and, as late as 1782, inserted in his Table Talk a panegyric and analysis of his genius, closing thus ;

“The laurel seemed to wait on his command,
He snatched it rudely from the Muses' hand”.

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Section 12. I. But his satires continued to inspire most satiric attempts from the side of the Opposition during the rest of the century. We can see a close study of his style in the personal abuse and invective of the Letters of Junius (17691772), though they were in prose. His influence is apparent in the satires that Chatterton attempted. This “marvellous boy” began to write poetry when he was at school in Bristol, his native place. He sent several of his productions to Felix Farley's Bristol Journal. Many of them are

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