1705 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Ambrose Philips

Joseph Addison to Ambrose Philips, 10 March 1705; Works, ed. Bohn (1911) 5:380-81.



Your two Pastorals, with the translation of an Ode out of Horace by myself, did not come soon enough to be inserted in Tonson's last Miscellany, which was published some time before I left England. Your first pastoral is very much esteemed by all I have shown it to, though the best judges are of opinion you should only imitate Spenser in his beauties, and never in the rhyme of the verse, for there they think it looks more like a bodge than an imitation, as in that line, "Since chang'd to heaviness is all my Glee." I am wonderfully pleas'd with you little Essay of Pastoral in your last, and think you very just in the theory as well as in the practical part. Our poetry in England at present runs all into lampoon, which has seldom anything of true satire in it besides rhyme and ill-nature.