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womankind, as he contemptuously calls the fair sex. He says, that she was a Grace for a beauty, and a Muse for a wit; and that there must have been more true history than compliment in our author's ode, since otherwise the lady's father would not have permitted it to go to press.-Athene, Vol. II. p. 1036.

This ode, which singularly exhibits the strong grasp and comprehensive range of Dryden's fancy, as well as the harmony of his numbers, seems to have been a great favourite of Dr Johnson, who, in one place, does not hesitate to compare it to the famous ode on St Cecilia ; and, in another, calls it undoubtedly the noblest ode that our language ever has produced. Although it is probable that few will subscribe to the judgment of that great critic in the present instance, yet the verses can never be read with indifference by any admirer of poetry. We are, it is true, sometimes affronted by a pun, or chilled by a conceit; but the general power of thought and expression resumes its sway, in despite of the interruption given by such instances of bad taste. In its arrangement, the ode is what the seventeenth century called pindaric; freed, namely, from the usual rules of order and arrangement. This license, which led most poets, who exercised it, to extravagance and absurdity, only gave Dryden a wider scope for the exercise of his wonderful power of combining and uniting the most dissimilar ideas, in a manner as ingenious as his numbers are harmonious. Images and scenes, the richest, though most inconsistent with each other, are swept together by the flood of song: we neither see whence they arise, nor whither they are going : but are contented to admire the richness and luxuriance in which the poet has arrayed them. The opening of the poem has been highly praised by Dr Johnson.

“ The first part,” says that critic, “ flows with a torrent of enthusiasm-Fervet immersusque ruit. All the stanzas, indeed, are not equal. An imperial crown cannot be one continued diadem ; the gems must be held together by some less valuable matter."

The stanzas, which appear to the editor peculiarly to exhibit the spirit of the pindaric ode, are the first, second, fourth, and fifth. Of the others, the third is too metaphysical for the occasion; the description of the landscapes in the sixth is beautiful, and presents our imagination with the scenery and groups of Claude Lorraine; and that of the royal portraits, in the seventh, has some fine lines and turns of expression : But I cannot admire, with many critics, the comparison of the progress of genius to the explosion of a sky-rocket; and still less the flat and familiar conclusion,

What next she had design'd, heaven only knows. The eighth stanza is disgraced by antitheses and conceit ; and though the beginning of the ninth be beautiful and affecting, our emotion is quelled by the nature of the consolations administered to a sea captain, that his sister is turned into a star. The last stanza excites ideas perhaps too solemn for poetry; and what is worse, they are couched in poetry too fantastic to be solemn; but the account of the resurrection of the “ sacred poets,” is, in the highest degree, elegant and beautiful.

Anne Killigrew was the subject of several other poetical lamentations, one or two of which are in the Luttrell Collection.











Thou youngest virgin-daughter of the skies,

Made in the last promotion of the blest; Whose palms, new pluck'd from paradise, In spreading branches more sublimely rise,

Rich with immortal green above the rest : Whether, adopted to some neighbouring star, Thou roll'st above us, in thy wandering

race, Or, in procession fix'd and regular, Movist with the heavens' majestic pace ;

Or, call'd to more superior bliss, Thou tread'st with seraphims the vast abyss :

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song a little

Whatever happy region is thy place,
Cease thy celestial

Thou wilt have time enough for hymns divine,

Since heaven's eternal year is thine.
Hear, then, a mortal muse thy praise rehearse,

In no ignoble verse ;
But such as thy own voice did practise here,
When thy first fruits of poesy were given,
To make thyself a welcome inmate there;

While yet a young probationer,

And candidate of heaven.

If by traduction came thy mind,

Our wonder is the less to find
A soul so charming from a stock so good;
Thy father was transfused into thy blood :
So wert thou born into a tuneful strain,
An early, rich, and inexhausted vein.*

But if thy pre-existing soul

Was formed, at first, with myriads more, It did through all the mighty poets roll,

Who Greek or Latin laurels wore, And was that Sappho last, which once it was before.

If so, then cease thy flight, О heaven-born mind Thou hast no dross to purge from thy rich ore : Nor can thy soul a fairer mansion find,

Than was the beauteous frame she left behind : Return to fill or mend the choir of thy celestial


* Henry Killigrew, D. D., the young lady's father, was himself a poet. He wrote “The Conspiracy,” a tragedy much praised by Ben Jonson and the amiable Lord Falkland, publishedin 163 +, This edition being pirated and spurious, the author altered the play, and changed the title to “ Pallantus and Eudora,” published in 1652.-See Wood's Alhence Oxon. Vol. II. p.



May we presume to say, that, at thy birth,
New joy was sprung in heaven, as well as here on

For sure the milder planets did combine
On thy auspicious horoscope to shine,
And e'en the most malicious were in trine.
Thy brother-angels at thy birth

Strung each his lyre, and tuned it high,

That all the people of the sky
Might know a poetess was born on

And then, if ever, mortal ears
Had heard the music of the spheres.
And if no clustering swarm of bees
On thy sweet mouth distilld their golden dew,

'Twas that such vulgar miracles

Heaven had not leisure to renew :
For all thy blest fraternity of love
Solemnized there thy birth, and kept thy holiday


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O gracious God! how far have we
Prophaned thy heavenly gift of poesy !
Made prostitute and profligate the muse,
Debased to each obscene and impious use,
Whose harmony was first ordaind above
For tongues of angels, and for hymns of love!
O wretched we! why were we hurried down

This lubrique and adulterate age,
(Nay, added fat pollutions of our own)

T'increase the steaming ordures of the stage ?
What can we say t'excuse our second fall ?
Let this thy vestal, heaven, atone for all :
Her Arethusian stream remains unsoild,

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