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In Imitation of VIRGIL'S POLLIO.

E Nymphs of Solyma! begin the fong:


To heav'nly themes fublimer strains belong.
The mofly fountains, and the fylvan fhades,
The dreams of Pindus and th'Aonian maids,
Delight no more---O thou my voice inspire
Who touch'd Ifaiah's hallow'd lips with fire!

Rapt into future times, the Bard begun:
A Virgin fhall conceive, a Virgin bear a Son!


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VER. 8. A Virgin fhall conceive-All crimes fhall cease, etc.] VIRG. E. iv. ✯ 6.

Jam redit et Virgo, redeunt Saturnia regna;
Jam nova progenies calo demittitur alto.
Te duce, fi qua manent fceleris vestigia noftri,
Irrita perpetua folvent formidine terras


Pacatumque reget patriis virtutibus orbem.

"Now the Virgin returns, now the kingdom of Saturn re"turns, now a new progeny is fent down from high heaven. By "means of thee, whatever reliques of our crimes remain, fhalt "be wiped away, and free the world from perpetual fears. He "shall govern the earth in peace, with the virtues of his Father. ISAIAH, Ch. vii. 14. "Behold a Virgin fhall conceive and "bear a Son. · Chap. ix. 6, 7. Unto us a Child is born, unto "us a Son is given; the Prince of Peace: of the increase of his

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Whose sacred flow'r with fragrance fills the skies:
Th' Ætherial spirit o'er its leaves fhall move,
And on its top descends the mystic Dove.
Ye' Heav'ns! from high the dewy nectar pour,
And in foft filence fhed the kindly fhow'r!
The fick and weak the healing plant shall aid,
From ftorms a shelter, and from heat a fhade.
All crimes fhall cease, and ancient fraud fhall fail;
Returning Justice lift aloft her scale;


66 government, and of his peace, there shall be no end: Upon "the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order and to "stablish it, with judgment, and with justice, for ever and ❝ever. P.


VER. 13. Ye Heav'ns! from high the dewy nectar pour, And in foft filence fhed the kindly fhow'r !] His Original fays, "Drop

down, ye heavens, from above, and let the fkies pour down "righteoufnefs: let the earth open, and let them bring forth "falvation, and let righteoufnefs fpring up together."---This is a very noble defcription of divine grace fhed abroad in the hearts of the faithful under the Gospel difpenfation. And the poet understood all its force, as appears from the two lines preceding thefe,--- Th' Ætherial Spirit, etc. The prophet describes this under the image of rain, which chiefly fits the first age of the Gofpel: The poet, under the idea of dew, which extends it to every age. And it was his purpose it should be fo understood, as appears from his expreffion of foft filence, which agrees with the common, not the extraordinary effufions of the Holy Spirit. The figurative term is wonderfully happy. He who would moralize the antient Mythology in the manner of Bacon, must say, that by the poetical nectar, is meant theological grace.

VER. 17. ancient fraud.] i. e. the fraud of the Serpent

a Ifai. xi. 1. Ch. xlv. 8. Ch. xxv. 4. Ch. ix. 7.

Peace o'er the world her olive wand extend, And white-rob'd Innocence from heav'n defcend. Swift fly the years, and rise th'expected morn! 2 1 Oh spring to light, aufpicious Babe, be born! See Nature haftes her earliest wreaths to bring, With all the incense of the breathing spring: See lofty Lebanon his head advance, See nodding forefts on the mountains dance: See fpicy clouds from lowly Saron rise, And Carmel's flow'ry top perfumes the skies! Hark! a glad voice the lonely defert chears; Prepare the way! a God, a God

IMITATIONS. VER. 23. See Nature haftes, etc.]

VIRG. E. iv.

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At tibi prima, puer, nullo munufcula cultu,
Errantes hederas paffim cum baccare tellus,
Mixtaque ridenti colocafia fundet acantho
Ipfa tibi blandos fundent cunabula flores.



"For thee, O Child, fhall the earth, without being tilled, produce her early offerings; winding ivy, mixed with Baccar, "and Colocafia with fmiling Acanthus. Thy cradle fhall pour "forth pleafing flowers about thee.

ISAIAH, Ch. Xxxv. † 1. "The wilderness and the folitary place fhall be glad, and the desert shall rejoice and bloffom as "the rofe." Ch. Ix. 13. "The glory of Lebanon fhall come "unto thee, the fir-tree, the pine-tree, and the box together, "to beautify the place of thy fanctuary. P.

VER. 29. Hark, a glad Voice, etc.]

VIRG. E. iv. 46.

Aggredere ô magnos, aderit jam tempus, honores,
Cara deûm foboles, magnum Jovis incrementum---

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Ch. xxxv. ✈ 2.

Ch. xl. 3, 4

A God, a God! the vocal hills reply,
The rocks proclaim th' approaching Deity.
Lo, earth receives him from the bending skies!
Sink down, ye mountains, and, ye valleys, rife;
With heads declin'd, ye cedars, homage pay; 35
Be smooth, ye rocks; ye rapid floods, give way!
The Saviour comes! by ancient bards foretold:
Hear him, ye deaf, and, all ye blind, behold!
He from thick films fhall purge the visual ray,
And on the fightlefs eye-ball pour the day: 40


Ipfi lætitia voces ad fydera jactant

Intonfi montes, ipfæ jam carmina rupes,

Ipfa fonant arbufta, Deus, deus ille Menalca! E. v. 62. "Oh come and receive the mighty honours: the time draws "nigh, O beloved offspring of the Gods, O great encrease of "Jove! The uncultivated mountains fend fhouts of joy to the "ftars, the very rocks fing in verfe, the very fhrubs cry out, A "God, a God!

ISAIAH, Ch. xl. 3, 4. "The voice of him that cryeth in "the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord! make strait "in the defert a high way for our God! Every valley shall be "exalted, and every mountain and hill fhall be made low, " and the crooked fhall be made firait, and the rough places. plain." Ch. iv. 23. "Break forth into finging, ye mountains! "O foreft, and every tree therein! for the Lord hath redeemed "Ifrael. P.



VER. 39. He from thick films fhall purge the vifual ray,] The fenfe and language fhew, that, by vifual ray, the poet meant the fight, or, as Milton calls it, indeed, fomething lefs boldly, the vifual nerve. And no critic would quarrel with the figure which calls the inftrument of vifion by the name of the caufe. But tho' the term be juft, nay noble, and even fublime, yet the exCh. xlii, 18. Ch. xxxv. 5, 6.

'Tis he th'obstructed paths of found fhall clear,
And bid new mufic charm th' unfolding ear:
The dumb fhall fing, the lame his crutch forego,
And leap exulting like the bounding roe.

No figh, no murmur the wide world fhall hear, 45
From ev'ry face he wipes off ev'ry tear.
Inhadamantine chains fhall Death be bound,
And Hell's grim tyrant feel th' eternal wound.
As the good 'fhepherd tends his fleecy care,
Seeks freshest pafture and the purest air,
Explores the loft, the wand'ring fheep directs,
By day o'erfees them, and by night protects,
The tender lambs he raises in his arms,


Feeds from his hand, and in his bofom warms;
Thus fhall mankind his guardian care engage, 55
The promis'd father of the future age.

No more shall 'nation against nation rise,
Nor ardent warriours meet with hateful eyes,
Nor fields with gleaming steel be cover'd o'er,
The brazen trumpets kindle rage no more;



preffion of thick films is faulty; and he fell into it by a common neglect of the following rule of good writing, "That when a "figurative word is ufed, whatfoever is predicated of it ought "not only to agree in terms to the thing to which the figure is "applied, but likewife to that from which the figure is taken." Thick films agree only with the thing to which it is applied, namely to the fight or eye; and not to that from which it is taken, Ch. xxv. 8. Ch. xl. 1. *Ch. ix, 6. Ch. ii. † 4.

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