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no very patriotic style. Speaking of himself he begs the famous Manso not to undervalue his muse, though she had been starved by the frosts of the pole:
“ Nec tu longinquam bonus aspernabere Musam,
XXXI. . “ Fit vessel, fittest imp of fraud.” B. 9. L. 89.
“ Fittest stock,” says Hume, 6 to graft his devilish fraud upon. Imp, of the Saxon impan—to put into, to graft upon.” The commentator was not perhaps aware that Spencer had made a verb of it and used it in the same way.
“ The headlesse tyrant's tronke, he reard from grounde
To star or sun light," &c. B. 9. 1. 1088.
“ Nulli penetrabilis astro Lucus iners." Theb. L. 10. l. 86. XXXIII. « I shall not lag behind, nor err
The way, thou leading." B. 10.1. 266. This," as Newton observes, “ is a remarkable expression;” but it will lose its singularity, which is all it now has to recommend it, if the two commas be expunged, and the pause placed at the end of the line. XXXIV.
« With joy And tidings fraught, to hell he now return'd.” B. 10. 1. 346. Meaning simply, with joyful tidings, like Porotata xdi ogxial FLOTH (3. II. I. 94.) for the solemn vows of friendship.
XXXV.“ To me, who with eternal famine pine,
Alike is hell, or paradise, or heaven;
Where here, though plenteous, all too little seems." B. 10. L 600. There can be little doubt but which should be substituted for where.
XXXVI.“ A long day's dying to augment our pain,
And to our seed (O hapless seed!) deriv'd. B. 10. 1. 965. And in another place:
“ That I may mitigate their doom
On me deriod." B. 10. 1. 77. Derive in this sense is best defined by Donatus. 156 Derivatio dicitur inflexio criminis ab eo ad quem pertinebat, ad eum ad quem non pertinet.” It is thus used by Terence:
“ Quid vis? nisi uti maneat Phanium; atque ex crimine hoc Antiphonem eripiam, atque in me omnem iram derivem senis?”
Phorm: Ac: 2. sc. I. l. 9.
XXXVII. In that glowing description of the descent of Michael, which Addison* has so happily praised and illustrated, we have the following inquiry from Adam, who had observed the sudden eclipse of the rising sun, and now saw indistinctly the band of angels descending in the West through the preternatural darkness:
• Why in the east
B. 11. 1. 207. Orient, in this sentence, must have either its primary signification, rising, or its secondary one, eastern. In each case, it is absurd to give it the force of a comparative. More, therefore, may be presumed to be a bad reading, and the series of events described will probably lead us to the word dictated by Milton. “ Morning light” had suddenly disappeared, and before Adam could recover from his astonishment at this mi. raculous phenomenon he witnessed another in the appearance of a mild light in the opposite quarter of the heaven, which
* Addison, when citing this passage, says, “ The whole theatre of nature is darkened, that this glorious machine may appear with all its lustre and magnificence.” Spec. 363. I must confess,” says Melmoth, “ I
m at a loss which to admire most upon this occasion, the poet or the critic." Fitzos. Let. 24.
he at first mistook for another dawn. His first impression therefore was that among the dreadful révolutions occasioned by the fall, and before described,* the course of the sun was about to be changed, and that he was thereafter to rise in the West. Should we not then read:
“ And morning light Made orient in yon Western cloud?" &c. XXXVIII.“ Man is not whom to warn.” B. 11.1.777. This is a remarkable instance of what the Messieurs de Port Royal call “ the preceding and following case both understood.” It is probably an elegant form of expression in Latin, for it is found twice in the first Ode of Horace; but it does not harmonize with the English idiom.
“ Sunt quos curriculo,” etc. 1. 3.
Gaz'd hot, and of the fresh wave largely drew.” B. 11. 1. 845. This singular use of gaze is taken from Shakspeare:
“ At length the sun gazing upon the earth,
Com. of Errors. Act. 1. sc. 1.
“ A combrous train « Of Alocks and herds and numerous servitude." B. 12. 1. 132. 4 The abstract for the concrete," a mode of speech very common with the Roman prose writers. “ Solicitantur Allobroges -servitia excitantur.” 4. cont. Cat. sec. 2. “ Hic ad evertenda fundamenta reipublicæ, Gallos arcessivit-servitia coneitavit Catalinam evocavit." Ib. sec. 6. XLI. He ceas'd, discerning Adam with such joy
Surcharg'd as had like grief been dew'd in tears
B. 12. 1. 374. Then follows Adam's exclamation. Would it not be better to pead" which thus he breath'd?"
* In B. x. l. 650.715.
XLII. In the twelfth book the angel prophecies to Ad. am, and accompanies each prediction with an exhibition of that part of the earth in which it is to be accomplished. From this it seems that although Milton had independence enough to reject the orthodox mysticism of the Canticles,* yet he had implicit faith enough to receive the literal interpretation of Matthew 4. 1. 1–11. He has, however, managed his machinery pretty adroitly. In B. 11. 1. 406, he avoids by a very ingenious contrivance, the manifest absurdity of seeing two hemispheres se soypen xoors, in the same instant of time, but still he supposes throughout both thė last books, that Adam and the angel, standing on the “mount of Paradise,” could see at least one half of the globe with their natural organs of vision, and perhaps, in spirit," the other. As a point of biblical criticism, we hope this question has been put at rest by Farmer, and Cappe, and Jones, and it would be well if the practical application of it as a branch of poetical prerogative could be restrained to more narrow limits. If no other reason could be given, the ridiculous confusion it has introduced into modern poetry would alone be sufficient. Nothing can be more absurd than the visions in Ariosto, (Orl: Fur: cant: 33.) in Camoens (Luis: cant: 5 and 10.) and even in Tasso (Gier: Lib: cant: 17.) They all seem to have taken their model from the sixth Æneid; but have fallen into innumerable ex. travagancies, in which, no doubt, they imagined themselves to be warranted by the third temptation in the wilderness.
The preceding remarks may, perhaps, afford some eluci. dation of Milton's phraseology, and contain a few parallel passages which have not been before collated. It is not probable, that all the alterations in the text will be deemed just and necessary, or that all the resemblances will be acknowl.
* When comparing Eden to all the famous gardens recorded in his. tory, he takes some pains to say that he has not embraced the popular creed respecting Solomon's:
“ Or that not mystick, where the sapient king
Held dalliance with his fair Egyptian spouse." B. 9. 1. 443.
edged to have been intentional imitations; but it is presumed most of them will awaken, if they do not satisfy curiosity.
The commentators on Milton have done much; but they have also left much for their successors. In many passages the meaning is still doubtful or unknown, and in others, where the meaning is obvious, the form of expression is so singular and mystical, that it is but justice to presume they contain a classical allusion, which has not yet been detected. After all it seems probable that many years will elapse before the means of thoroughly understanding the Paradise Lost will be furnished, and that, with every facility and inducement which learning can offer, it will continue to be a book, which all will admire, but few understand.
To the Editor of the General Repository. SIR, The following article was published at Paris a few years ago, and I de
not recollect having seen it in any publication in the English language. If you think it will be interesting to your readers (to whom, I trust, nothing relative to literature can be wholly destitute of interest) it will afford me a degree of gratification which will fully repay the trouble of translating it.
“Votice des Ouvrages élémentaires manuscrits, sur la langue
Chinoise, que possède la Bibliothèque Nationale; par Le
Langlès, conservateur des manuscrits Orientaux;" or, Notices of the Manuscript elementary works on the Chinese
language, which belong to the National Library Cat Paris]; by L. Langlès, keeper of the ORIENTAL MANUSCRIPTS.
[Paris, about 1800, pp. 13.] Some of these elementary works form a part of the invalua-. ble additions made to the National Library within ten years past; the rest of them were formerly placed among the other Chinese books in the library: But I have thought it best ta