1882 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Thomas Tickell

Epes Sargent, in Harper's Cyclopaedia of British and American Poetry (1882) 141.



Poet and essayist, Tickell (1686-1740) was born near Carlisle, and educated at Oxford. Through the friendship of Addison, he became Under-secretary of State, and was afterward appointed Secretary to the Lord-justices of Ireland. He wrote the ballad of Colin and Lucy, one stanza of which is still often quoted:

I hear a voice you cannot hear,
Which says I must not stay:
I see a hand you cannot see,
Which beckons me away.

He wrote an allegorical poem, called Kensington Gardens, besides many papers in the Spectator and the Guardian. His lines on the death of Addison are the best of his poems. Gray calls him "a poor, short-winded imitator of Addison."