1797 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

William Congreve

Joseph Warton, in Works of Alexander Pope, ed. Warton (1797) 9:119-20n.



He was certainly one of the most polite, pleasing, and well-bred men of all his contemporaries. And it might have been said of him, as of Cowley, "You would not, from his conversation, have known him to be a Wit and a Poet, it was so unassuming and courteous." Swift had always a great regard and affection for him; and introduced him, though a strenuous Whig, to the favour of Lord Oxford. It is remarkable, that on its first publication, Congreve thought the Tale of a Tub gross and insipid.