1795 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Rev. Joseph Warton

Samuel Rogers, Commonplace book entry, 1795; P. W. Clayden, The Early Life of Samuel Rogers (1887) 304.



[Asked] Is he an important man, Warton [answered] "I never knew anything in an important man."

Collins's first performance at school contained this line — "And every grammar clapt its leathern wings." Warton admired Sheridan's parliamentary speeches, not his "School for Scandal," first written in two acts — a number of people met together, unconnected, and not aiding the plot. Johnson always abused "Paradise Lost," and said, "None of you can read it;" afterwards did not dare to attack the public opinion. "Comus" perhaps his finest piece. Fuseli thought the passage, "And from his horrid hair shakes pestilence and war" worth all "Comus." Warton thought Johnson's criticisms would soon lose all weight. Talked with great affection and good humour of his brother (dead). Thought the philosopher Dyer wrote "Junius," and Mason certainly wrote the "Heroic Epistle." February 1795.

Collins, says Warton, is very fine in "Who shall wake the Spartan Fife?" Armstrong thought little of him, as he complained to Warton. Not generally admired.