1723 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Rev. Thomas Warton the Elder

Thomas Hearne, 12 July 1723; in Reliquae Hearniae, ed. Bliss (1869) 2:168-69.



Yesterday, at one one clock, was a convocation about a poetry reader, or professor, who is to be elected every five years, but the same person cannot have it above ten. Mr. Trap, therefore, when five years were expired, was elected without opposition, but now there was a struggle. For Mr. Warton of Magdalen college's five years being expired, Dr. Gardiner, of All Souls college, and the constitution club, and many others, were resolved, if possible, to hinder his re-election; and accordingly Mr. Randolph, fellow of All Souls college, who hath written and published some time agoe a poem in Latin, printed at the Theater, about the South sea, was put up, which Mr. Warton's enemies thought might do, because this Randolph was formerly of Christ Church, which might be likely to gain all Christ Church for him. But when they came to vote, several of Christ Church were for Mr. Warton, and several of Christ Church did not appear at all, insomuch that Randolph lost it by 36, Mr. Warton having 215, and Mr. Randolph 179 votes, at which honest men are pleased, Mr. Warton having the character of a very honest, ingenious, and good-natured man; and nobody looks upon Mr. Randolph's being put up to be any thing else besides spight.