1816 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Dr. Henry Harington

Anonymous, Obituary in Gentleman's Magazine 86 (February 1816) 185-86.



In his 89th year, Henry Harington, M.D. and alderman of Bath. Descended from an ancient and honourable family, who long possessed considerable influence in the neighbourhood, he had become identified in a manner with the town, and appeared a venerable yet graceful Antiquity amidst its modern refinements. The mildness and suavity of his address and deportment, his gentlemanly manners, his talents, his acquirements, and a large fund of anecdotal recollections, rendered him a companion at once delightful and instructive. His name in the musical world stands deservedly high as a composer; and, without being a performer on any instrument, he thoroughly understood the science of musick. His productions, whether humorous or grave, whether light or sacred, from the festive catch to the sublime "Eloi," alike display the refined taste of connoisseur, and the powerful conception of a master. Perfectly familiar with classical literature, Dr. H. was equalled by few as a general scholar; and his Latin compositions were distinguished by their purity and elegance. Some exquisite specimens in his native tongue prove that he possessed, in no mean degree, the requisites of a Poet. His passage through life exemplified the mild influence of the religion he professed; and his death, without pain and without a struggle, gave to his surviving friends a true spectacle of the Christian "Euthanasia." Dr. Harington did not appear much before the world as an author: but he edited, from his family papers, the very entertaining volumes of Nugae Antiquae. He also composed and published a Geometrical Demonstration of the Indivisibility of the Tri-Unity, under the title of Symbolon Triasgion; and a Treatise on the Use and Abuse of Musick.