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"IF one turns to the authors of the laft age for the character of this Lord, one meets with nothing but encomiums on his wit and good-nature. He was the finest gentleman in the voluptuous court of Charles the Second, and in the gloomy one of King William. He had as much wit as his firft mafter, or his cotemporaries, Tuckingham and Rochefter; without the royal want of feeling, the Duke's want of principles, or the Earl's want of thought. The latter faid, with astonishment, "That he did not know how it was, but Lord Dorfet might do any thing, and yet was never to blame!" It was not that he was free from the failings of humanity, but he had the tenderness of it too, which made every body excuse whom every body loved; for even the afperity of his verfes feems to have been forgiven to
"The best-good man, with the worft-natured mufe.”
"This line is not more familiar than Lord Dorfet's own poems to all who have a tafte for the beauties of natural and eafy verse, or than his Lordship's own bon-mots, of which I camot help repeating one of fingular humour: Lord Craven was a proverb for officious whispers to men in power. On Lord Dorset's promotion, King Charles having feen Lord Craven pay his ufual tribute to him, asked the former what the latter had been saying? The Earl replied gravely, "Sir, my Lord Craven did me the honour to whisper, but I did not think it good manners to listen.” When he was dying, Congreve, who had been to vifit him, being afked how he had left him, replied, "Faith, he flabbers more wit than other people have in their best health.”
"His Lordship and Waller are faid to have affifted Mrs. Catherine Philips in her tranflation of Corneille's Pompey."
Walpole, vol. ii. p. 95.
E. OF DORSET,
THO' Artemifia talks, by fits,
Of councils, claffics, fathers, wits;
Haughty and huge as High-Dutch bride,
Are oddly join'd by fate:
On her large fquab you find her spread,
That lies and ftinks in state.
VER. 1. Tho' Artemifia] By Artemifia, Pope has been thought to have meant Queen Caroline. It certainly bears in many points a refemblance, but coloured by spleen. She became corpulent; and Mr. Coxe obferves, "Her levees were a strange picture of the motley character and manners of a Queen and learned woman. She received company while at her toilette-learned men and divines were intermixed with courtiers and ladies of the household. The converfation turned upon metaphyfical subjects, blended with the tittle-tattle of the drawing-room." Coxe's Memoirs.
It ought not to be omitted, that notwithstanding Pope's general farcafms, fhe was a moft exemplary, fenfible, prudent, and amiable woman, as is clearly proved by Mr. Çoxe.
She wears no colours (fign of grace)
All white and black befide:
And masculine her stride.
So have I feen, in black and white
A stately, worthless animal,
PHRYNE had talents for mankind,
Her learning and good-breeding fuch,
Spaniards or French came to her: To all obliging she'd appear: "Twas Si Signior, 'twas Yaw Mynbeer, 'Twas S'il vous plaist, Monfieur.
Obfcure by birth, renown'd by crimes,
So have I known thofe Infects fair
DR. SWIF T.
Dr WARTON obferves, that the point of the likeness in this Imitation confifts in defcribing the objects as they really exift in life, like Hogarth's paintings, without heightening or enlarging them by any imaginary circumstances. He adds, that in this way of writing, Swift excelled; witnefs his defeription of a Morning in the City, of a City Shower, of the Houfe of Baucis and Philemon, and the Verses on his own Death. But furely this is paying a poor compliment to Hogarth's inimitable genius. Perhaps the very reverse of what Dr. Warton advances, is true; for, though his pictures are not fublime, wherein does the Painter's fancy and invention and fatire confift, but in the heightening" circumftances? These are as much required with refpect to "burlesque," as they are in those delineations that are of a more serious and elevated character. If characters are painted merely as they exift, where are we to fearch for humour and wit? It is the fame in all fatirical writings.