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VII.

PARALLEL

OF THE

CHARACTERS

OF

Mr. DRYDEN and Mr. POPE,

As drawn by certain of their Contemporaries.

Mr. DRYDEN,

His Politics, RELIGION, MORALS.

MR. DRYDEN is a mere renegado from monarchy,

poetry, and good sense a. A true republican son of monarchical church 6. A republican atheist, Dryden was from the beginning an αλλοπρόσαλλΘ», and I doubt not will continue so to the last d.

In the poem called Absalom and Achitophel are notoriously traduced, the King, the QUEEN, the LORDS, and GENTLEMEN, not only their honourable persons

· Milbourn on Dryden's Virgil, 8vo. 1698. p. 6.

Page 38. Ś Page 192. - Page 8

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Mr. POPE,
His Politics, RELIGION, MORALS.

M R. Pope is an open and mortal enemy to his

country, and the commonwealth of learning a. Some call him a popish whig, which is directly inconsistent b. Pope, as a papist, must be a tory and high flyer. He is both a whig and tory d.

He hath made it his custom to cackle to more than one party in their own sentiments .

a Dennis Rem. on the Rape of the Lock, pref. p. xii. • Dunciad dissected. c Pref. to Gulliveriana. d Dennis, Character of Mr.P. • Theobald, Letter in Mist's Journal, June 22, 1728.

exposed, but the whole Nation and its REPRESENTATIVES notoriously libelled. It is scandalum mag. natum, yea of MAJESTY itself e.

He looks upon God's gospel as a foolish fable, like the Pope, to whom he is a pitiful purveyor f. His very Christianity may be questioned 8. He ought to expect more severity than other men, as he is most unmerciful in his reflections on others h. With as good a right as his Holiness, he sets up for poetical infallibility i.

Mr. DRYDEN only a Versifier. His whole libel is all bad matter, beautify'd (which is all that can be said of it) with good metre k. Mr. Dryden's genius did not appear in any thing more than his versification, and whether he is to be ennobled for that only, is a question!

Mr. DRYDEN'S VIRGIL. Tonson calls it Dryden's Virgil, to shew that this is not that Virgil so admired in the Augustean age ; but a Virgil of another stamp, a silly, impertinent, nonsensical writer m. None but a Bavius, a Mævius, or a Bathyllus, carped at Virgil ; and none but such unthinking vermin admire his translator ". It is true, soft and easy lines might become Ovid's Epistles or Art of Love But Virgil, who is all great and majestic, &c. requires strength of lines, weight of words, and closeness of expression; not an ambling muse

e Whip and Key, 4to. printed for R. Janeway, 1682. Pref. & Milbourn, p. 9.

Ibid. p. 175.

k Whip and Key, Pret. 1 Oldmixon, Essay on Criticism, p. 84. m Milbourn, p. 2.

* Page 35.

f Ibid. i Page 39.

I 2

In his miscellanies the persons abused are, the King, the QUEEN, His late MAJESTY, both Houses of PARLIAMENT, the Privy-Council, the Bench of BISHOPS, the Established CHURCH, the present MINISTRY, &c. To make sense of some passages, they must be construed into ROYAL SCANDAL.

He is a Popish rhymester, bred up with a contempt of the sacred writings 8. His religion allows him to destroy heretics, not only with his pen, but with fire and sword; and such were all those unhappy wits whom he sacrificed to his accursed Popish principlesh. It deserved vengeance to suggest, that Mr. Pope had less infallibility than his namesake at Rome i.

Mr. POPE only a Versifier. The smooth numbers of the Dunciad are all that recommend it, nor has it any other merit k. It must be owned that he hath got a notable knack of rhyming and writing smooth verse l.

Mr. POPE'S HOMER. The Homer which Lintot prints, does not talk like Homer, but like Pope ; and he who translated him, one would swear, had a hill in Tipperary for his Par. nassus, and a puddle in some bog for his Hippocrene. He has no admirers among those that can distinguish, discern, and judge n.

He hath a knack at smooth verse, but without either genius or good sense, or any tolerable know

f List at the end of a Collection of Verscs, Letters, Advertisements, 8vo. Printed for A. More, 1928, and the Preface to it, p.6.

8 Dennis's Rem. on Homer, p. 27. n Preface to Gulliveriana, p. II, i Dedication to the Collection of Verses, Letters, &c. p. 9. k Mist's Journal of June 8,1728. | Character of Mr. P. and Dennis on Hom. m Dennis Rem. on Pope's Homer, p. 12. Ibid. p. 14.

running on carpet-ground, and shod as lightly as a Newmarket racer. He has numberless faults in his author's meaning, and in propriety of expression o

Mr. DRYDEN understood no Greek nor Latin.

Mr. Dryden was once, I have heard, at Westminster-school : Dr. Busby would have whipt him for so childish a paraphrase P. The meanest pedant in England would whip a lubber of twelve for construing so absurdly 9. The translator is mad, every line betrays his stupidity". The faults are innumerable, and con. vince me that Mr. Dryden did not, or would not understand his authors. This shews how fit Mr. D. may be to translate Homer! A mistake in a single letter might fall on the printer well enough, but exo wie for ixwe must be the error of the author : nor had he art enough to correct it at the press Mr. Dryden writes for the court ladies- He writes for the ladies, and not for use u.

The translator puts in a little burlesque now and then into Virgil, for a ragout to his cheated subscribers w.

Mr. DRYDEN tricked his Subscribers. I wonder that any man, who could not but be conscious of his own unfitness for it, should go to amuse the learned world with such an undertaking! A man ought to value his reputation more than money; and not to hope that those who can read for themselves, will be imposed upon, merely by a partially and unseasonably celebrated name *. Poetis quidlibet audendi

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