1795 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Rev. Thomas Parnell

Robert Anderson, in Works of the British Poets (1795) 7:vi-vii.



Considered as a poet, Parnell is not distinguished for strength of intellect or fertility of invention. His taste was delicate, and refined by a careful perusal of the ancient classics. His admiration of those models of fine writing, led to an imitation so close, as often to preclude originality. There is little of novelty in the thoughts, the imagery, of the sentiments of Parnell. But the thoughts are just; the images, though not great, are beautiful, well selected, and happily applied; the sentiments, though not bold or impassioned, are natural and agreeable. The moral tendency is excellent, the versification is sweet and harmonious, and the language pure, proper, and correct.