1823 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Samuel Rogers

Rev. Charles Burton, in The Bardiad; a Poem (1823) pp. 23, 142-43n.



So too, instructive ROGERS, to the gale
Auspicious, yielding Memory's faithful sail,
While up the stream the bark glides smoothly by,
Paints every scene that meets the ranging eye.

Among the classic productions of our country, "the Pleasures of Memory," and "the Pleasures of Hope," will always retain a distinguished place. Unlike the ephemeral oblations of Genius, or the results of impotent thought tortured to the last "dregs and squeezings of the brain," these elegant tablets of mentality are now to be found in every select cabinet of taste. They exhibit concentration of sentiment, delectable thought, and exquisite expression. If once perused, they will always be read again with increasing satisfaction. Of that class, in which, in the main, the elegance of taste predominates over the sublimity of genius, (as may be observed in the kindred productions of Goldsmith, Pope, and Gray,) they will never fail to be quoted by the sentimental, and admired by all. In his first production Mr. Rogers has been the most successful. Some of his smaller pieces are admirable; particularly the verses, "On a Tear;" "The Sailor;" "To the Gnat;" "To the Butterfly;" and "To a Friend on his Marriage."