1801 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

George Hardinge

Andrew Caldwell to Thomas Percy, 4 March 1801; Nichols, Illustrations of the Literary History of the XVIII Century (1817-58) 8:32.



I have been much gratified with Malone's curious Life of Dryden; it is a most remarkable instance of diligence and accuracy; the numerous anecdotes, and the accounts of noted persons and families interspersed, are highly interesting. History would be much more valuable and authentic, if authors took equal pains for information with Malone, and he proves what can be accomplished by industry. This, I apprehend, has given mortal offence; it is a dangerous example to your writers for gain, and leaves them without excuse. Mr. Hardinge's imitation of the Canons of Criticism [by Thomas Edwards] is but feeble; and especially if you look into Dryden's Life at the same time; there may be two or three comical hits, and one of the best is the name, "Minutius Felix."