1720 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Rev. Laurence Eusden

Giles Jacob, in Historical Account of the Lives and Writings of our most considerable English Poets (1720) 51-53.



This Gentleman succeeded the late Ingenious Mr. Rowe. He is Descended from a good Family in the Kingdom of Ireland, but was Educated at Trinity College in Cambridge. He was Honoured with the Encouragement of that great Patron and Poet, the late Earl of Halifax, to whom in one of his Pieces, he tells us, he paid the first Products of his Muse. His present Patron is the Duke of New-Castle, who preferred him to the Bays. The chief of his Poetical Writings are the following, (viz.)

I. To the Lord HALIFAX. Occasioned by Translating into Latin, His Lordship's Poem on the Battle of the Boyne.

II. On the Duke of MARLBOROUGH'S Victory at Audenard.

III. On the King's Accession to the Throne.

IV. To the Reverend Dr. BENTLEY, on the opening of Trinity College Chappel Cambridge.

V. On a Lady who is the most Beautiful and Witty when she is Angry. This Poem begins with these Lines,

Long had I known the soft, inchanting Wiles,
Which Cupid Practis'd in Aurelia's Smiles.
'Till by Degrees, like the famed Asian taught,
Safely I drank the sweet, tho' Poy'snous Draught.
Love vexed to see his Favours vainly shown,
The peevish Urchin Murthered with a Frown.

VI. The Court of VENUS. From Claudian.
VII. The Speech of PLUTO to PROSERPINE.
VIII. HERO and LEANDER. Translated from the Greek of MUSAEUS. This piece is well done. It begins thus,

Sing, Muse, the conscious Torch, whose Nightly Flame,
(The shining Signal of a brighter Dame)
Thro' trackless Waves the bold Leander led,
To taste the Dangerous Joys of Hero's Bed:
Sing the stol'n Bliss in gloomy Shades concealed,
And never to the blushing Morn revealed.

IX. On the Marriage of the Duke of New-Castle with the Lady GODOLPHIN. This Poem procured him the Place of Laureat.

X. The Lord ROSCOMMON'S ESSAY on Translated Verse. Done into Latin.