1774 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Hannah More

Anonymous, "To the celebrated Bristol Poetess, Miss Hannah More, Author of The Search after Happiness, and the Inflexible Captive" St. James's Chronicle (28 April 1774).



Desire ardente di lodar ch'il merta,
In quale laberinto m'hai menato!
Per te, le forze, ed il mio averso fato
Non veggio, e la rupe, ch'e scabra e erta!
Cosi dicendo (oh! spettacolo) aperta
Vidi la porta dell' Oriente amato,
E Febo poi con nove bell' a lato.
Io — Grazia per la mia mente coperta?
E il padre a me — Se illuminato avrai
Tu l'intelletto, di chi vuoi cantare?
D'Anna (sclamai) che si chiama More.
Ond'ei, con il celeste coro, i rai
Ver me volgendo, disse, no richiare,
Che siglie mie son essa, e le sue supre.

[An ardent Wish to give to Merit Praise,
Hath, in this Labyrinth, involv'd my Ways;
Led on by that, and by my adverse Fate,
I see the steep and rugged Path too late!
So saying (oh, what Spectacle divine!)
I saw Apollo with the sacred Nine;
Forth from the East they came; I bending low,
Implor'd their Favour that they would bestow
On me some Portion of celestial Fire.
To me Apollo — Say, should we inspire,
Whom wouldst thou sing? of whom? of Anna fair?
Of Anna, I exclaim'd — Rash Youth, forbear,
The God reply'd: Know that the Maid divine
Is our own Daughter, Sister to the Nine.
April 20.
—St. James's Chronicle (11 June 1774).]