1791 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

William Huggins

James Boswell, in Life of Johnson, 1791; ed. G. B. Hill (1891) 4:7-8.



Huggins, the translator of Ariosto, and Mr. Thomas Warton, in the early part of his literary life, had a dispute concerning that poet, of whom Mr. Warton in his Observations on Spenser's Fairy Queen, gave some account, which Huggins attempted to answer with violence, and said, "I will militate no longer against his nescience." Huggins was master of the subject, but wanted expression. Mr. Warton's knowledge of it was then imperfect, but his manner lively and elegant. Johnson said, "It appears to me, that Huggins has ball without powder, and Warton powder without ball."