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Seen, Greenwich, from thy lovely heights, declare
The noiseless tide of Time, all bearing down
But who can number up his labours? who
What wonder thence that his devotion swellid Responsive to his knowledge! For could he, Whose piercing mental eye diffusive saw The finish'd university of things, In all its order, magnitude, and parts, Forbear incessant to adore that Power Who fills, sustains, and actuates the whole?
Say, ye who best can tell, ye happy few, Who saw him in the softest lights of life, All unwithheld, indulging to his friends The vast unborrow'd treasures of his mind, Oh speak the wondrous man! how mild, how calm, How greatly humble, how divinely good; How firm establish'd on eternal truth; Fervent in doing well, with every nerve Still pressing on, forgetful of the past, And panting for perfection: far above Those little cares, and visionary joys, That so perplex the fond impassion'd heart Of ever-cheated, ever-trusting man.
And you, ye hopeless gloomy-minded tribe,
But hark! methinks I hear a warning voice,
sure's full; And I resign my charge.- -Ye mouldering stones, That build the towering pyramid, the proud Triumphal arch, the monument effac'd By ruthless ruin, and whate'er supports The worshipp'd name of hoar antiquity, Down to the dust! what grandeur can ye boast While Newton lifts his column to the skies, Beyond the waste of time. Let no weak drop Be shed for him. The virgin in her bloom Cut off, the joyous youth, and darling child, These are the tombs that claim the tender tear, And elegiac song. But Newton calls For other notes of gratulation high, That now he wanders through those endless worlds He here so well descried, and wondering talks, And hymns their author with his glad compeers. O Britain's boast! whether with angels thou Sittest in dread discourse, or fellow-blest, Who joy to see the honour of their kind; Or whether, mounted on cherubic wing, Thy swift career is with the whirling orbs,
ON THE DEATH OF MR. AIKMAN.
203 Comparing things with things, in rapture lost, And grateful adoration, for that light So plenteous ray'd into thy mind below, From Light himself; Oh look with pity down On human-kind, a frail erroneous race! Exalt the spirit of a downward world! O’er thy dejected Country chief preside, And be her Genius calld! her studies raise, Correct her manners, and inspire her youth. For, though deprav'd and sunk, she brought thee And glories in thy name; she points thee out [forth, To all her sons, and bids them eye thy star: While in expectance of the second life, When time shall be no more, thy sacred dust Sleeps with her kings, and dignifies the scene.
DEATH OF MR. AIKMAN'.
Oh, could I draw, my friend, thy genuine mind,
1 Mr. Aikman was born in Scotland, and designed for the profession of the law: but travelled to Italy, and returned a painter. He was patronised in Scotland by the Duke of Argyle, and afterwards met with encouragement to settle in London: but falling into a long and languishing disease, he died at his house in Leicester-fields, June, 1731, aged 50. Boyse wrote a panegyric upon him, and Mallet an epitaphi. See Walpole's Anecdotes, vol. iv. p. 41.
204 ON THE DEATH OF MR. AIKMAN.
Unhappy he who latest feels the blow,
RIGHT HON. LORD TALBOT,
LATE CHANCELLOR OF GREAT BRITAIN.
Addressed to His Son. WHILE, with the public, you, my Lord, lament A friend and father lost; permit the Muse, The Muse assign’d of old a double theme, To praise dead worth and humble living pride, Whose generous task begins where int’rest ends, Permit her on a Talbot's tomb to lay This cordial' verse sincere, by truth inspir’d, Which means not to bestow but borrow fame. Yes, she may sing his matchless virtues nowUnhappy that she may.--But where begin? How from the diamond single out cach ray, Where all, though trembling with ten thousand hues, Effuse one dazzling undivided light?
Let the low-minded of these narrow days No more presume to deem the lofty tale Of ancient times, in pity to their own, Romance. In Talbot we united saw The piercing eye, the quick enlighten'd soul, The graceful ease, the flowing tongue of Greece,