1795 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Robert Dodsley

Robert Anderson, in Works of the British Poets (1795) 11:81.



His character was very amiable and respectable. As a tradesman, he preserved the greatest integrity; as a writer, the most becoming humility. Mindful of the early encouragement which his own talents met with, he was ever ready to give the same opportunity of advancement to those of others; and on many occasions he was not only the publisher, but the patron of genius. There was no circumstance by which he was more distinguished, than by the grateful remembrance which he gained, and always expressed towards the memory of those to whom he owed the obligation of being first taken notice of in life. Modest, sensible, and humane; he retained the virtues which first brought him into notice, after he had obtained wealth sufficient to satisfy every wish which could arise from the possession of it. He was a generous friend, an encourager of men of genius, and acquired the esteem and respect of all who were acquainted with him. It was his happiness to pass the greatest part of his life in an intimacy with men of the brightest abilities, whose names will be revered by posterity; by most of whom he was loved as much for the virtues of his heart, as he was admired on account of his writings. As an author, he is entitled to considerable praise. His works are recommended by an ease and elegance, which are sometimes more pleasing than a more laboured and ornamented manner of writing.