1813 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Richard Cumberland

S. Hughes, "To the Memory of Richard Cumberland, Esq. inscribed to his eldest Daughter, Lady Edward Bentinck, 1813" Imperial Magazine 4 (November 1822) 1025.



Embalm'd in tears, that from affection flow,
The energetic eloquence of woe!
Beneath this stone, to hallow'd earth consign'd,
The mortal part reposes: — unconfin'd
The virtuous soul, flown to its native skies,
Views this low world with undesiring eyes:
Too early lost, though bless'd with length of days,
Thy genius blaz'd with undiminish'd rays!
Though silver honours did thy head adorn,
The hand of Time had spar'd thy august form;
It nought avails that we to talents pay
The homage due, — for thou art snatch'd away!
Ah! what avail the honours of thy line,
Or the bright virtues of such souls as thine?
Of what avail thy duteous offspring's care,
For thou wast borne upon the fun'ral bier;
No pow'r averts th' irrevocable doom,
The great, the good, are swallow'd by the tomb!
Does it avail that genius early shone
In thee, and Wisdom chose thee for her own?
Nurtur'd by her, thy talents were display'd,
To cherish virtue, and make vice afraid.
Was merit hidden in obscurity?
It 'scap'd not long thy penetrating eye;
The uninform'd from thee instruction gain'd,
The wise, of knowledge an increase obtain'd!
Thy bosom own'd religion's holy flame,
And genuine piety records thy name.

Ne'er can a grateful Muse omit to pay
To her lost friend the elegiac lay:
A pensive mourning muse cannot forbear
The frequent sigh, the sympathetic tear,
With those who still an honour'd parent mourn,
And bathe with filial dew his sacred urn.