ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION
S. J. [not Samuel Johnson], "Verses from Doctor Johnson to Doctor Goldsmith, occasioned by the new Comedy, intitled, The Mistakes of a Night" London Chronicle (1 April 1773) 313.
1759: William Shenstone
1766: Rev. Joseph Warton
1768: Frances Burney
1768: William Kenrick
1770: Corbyn Morris
1770 ca.: D. G.
1770: W. Willis
1773: T. S.
1773: Richard Fenton
1773: S. J.
1773: A. B.
1773: P. H. M. D.
1773: Rev. Percival Stockdale
1773: B. G.
1774: Horace Walpole
1774: William Woty
1774: John Tait
1774: Samuel Jackson Pratt
1774: Miss L.
1774: Richard Cumberland
1774: David Garrick
1775: Robert Hill
1775: W. P.
1776 ca.: Joshua Reynolds
1778: M. Macgreggor, Esq.
1780: Thomas Davies
1787: A Clergyman of Ireland
1788: James Beattie
1790: Robert Burns
1791: James Boswell
1795: Dr. Robert Anderson
1796: A Gentleman of Canada
1800: Thomas Dermody
1805: Charles Brockden Brown
1806: Dr. John Aikin
1807: Robert Southey
1807: Sir Samuel Egerton Brydges
1809: Dr. Nathan Drake
1811: Richard Cumberland
1812: William Henry Ireland
1813: Rev. William Cameron
1818: Rev. Francis Hodgson
1820: Lord Byron
1820: Rev. John Graham
1821: Thomas Stott
1822: William Cook
1822: Tobias Oldschool
1824: William Hazlitt
1824: Bryan Waller Procter
1825 ca.: Joseph Cradock
1826: Richard Ryan
1827: William Goodhugh
1829: Anna Brownell Jameson
1830 ca.: William Roscoe
1830: Rev. George Barrell Cheever
1831: John Wilson Croker
1832: John Taylor Esq.
1850: Leigh Hunt
1880: Edward Dowden
1882: Epes Sargent
1773: Oliver Goldsmith
1824: William Cowper
No wonder the Via Comica is scarce,
Bad taste had banish'd Comedy and Farce,
Fetter'd the Drama's sons, their genius dampt
Their native, manly, sterling humour crampt;
No flights permitted, as in days of yore,
'Twas dangerous alike to sink or soar:
With some pert Fools who call'd themselves THE TOWN,
WIT was a PEDANT, Humour was a Clown;
Nor one nor t' other must a Play-wright show,
Wit was too HIGH, and Humour was too low:
The Playhouse Bard, who wanted cloaths and fuel,
Must bring a piece harmless as water-gruel,
In order to secure his Houses full,
Be chastely moral, and genteelly dull,
And if he hoped to live his nine Nights out
Must give no Bill-of-Rights-man cause to pout;
To sentimental Dialogue must keep
Whilst the tame Audience yawn, admire and weep.—
Too much of Sentiment, in Humour's stead;
Too many tears the comic Muse hath shed,
Old saws too long have charm'd the slumb'ring Pit,
And musty proverbs in default of Wit.—
But now with joy I tell the Drama's friends,
Now a new progeny from Heaven descends;
THALIA long, too long from Britain stray'd,
Appears again in all her charms array'd;
Say not, that Wit and Humour now are scarce;
Say not, we've no new COMEDY or Farce;
The arduous task a modern Bard has done,
Restoring Farce and COMEDY in one.