1719 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Rev. Laurence Eusden

Anonymous, in "The Election of a Poet Laureate in 1719" Freeholder's Journal (13 February 1723) 375.



And so spying one who came only to gaze,
A hater of Verse, and despiser of Plays:
To him with reat Form, without any Delay
(Tho' a zealous Fanatick, presented the Bay.

All the Wits stood astonish'd, at hearing the God,
So gravely pronounce an Election so odd:
And tho' Prior and Pope only laugh'd in his Face,
Most others were ready to sink in the Place.

Yet some thought the Vacancy open was kept,
Concluding the Bigot would never accept:
But the Hypocrite told them he well understood,
Tho the Function was wicked the Stipend was good.

At last in rush'd Eusden, and cry'd, "Who shall have it
But I the true Laureat to whom the King gave it?"
Apollo begg'd Pardon and granted his Claim,
But vow'd tho' till then he ne'er heard of his name.