1800 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

George Hardinge

John Taylor Esq., "To George Hardinge, on being desired to read his Pamphlet entitled The Essence of Malone" 1800; Taylor, Poems on Various Subjects (1827) 1:266-67.



Think not, good Sir, that I'm so dull,
Of such a thick incurious scull,
As not ere now to read with glee,
Your very pleasant jeu d'esprit.
Yes, Sir, to all men be it known,
I've read the "Essence of Malone."
Along his page you nimbly skim,
Compressing all with wit and whim;
Now here, now there, alert and airy,
Light as the footsteps of a fairy.
Touching all points with skill and luck,
With all the playfulness of PUCK.
Yes, Sir, you're with your pen as handy,
As sportive YORICK with his SHANDY.
You bid me secret keep your name,
Alas dear Sir, you've lost your aim;
There has already been a hint,
A pretty strong one too in print,
And howsoe'er you fret and frown,
GEORGE HARDINGE rings through all the town.
As to the praises you bestow
On the Old Butler's rhymes, they shew
"Your goodness more than my desert,"
I held those versed cheap as dirt;
But now I must not be so vain,
As to behold them with disdain,
For prais'd by such a man as thou,
They must be good, by GEORGE, I vow.
Still may your Muse and you jog gaily
Through this strange medley world, so Vale.

P.S.
I lately met in Stratford Place
A lady mark'd by placid grace,
With manners gentle, accents sweet,
A character that seem'd complete,
Indeed a treasure well worth guarding—
Dame COSWAY said 'twas Mrs. HARDINGE.