1766 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Christopher Anstey

J. S., "To the Ingenious Author of the New Bath Guide" Lloyd's Evening Post (14 May 1766) 457.



Not contented to rival Tibullus and Gray,
Say, whence this most charming diversify'd lay?
How came you by such an extraord'nary gift,
Thus to blend in one Poem both Yorick and Swift?
Dan Chaucer, bred up at old Granta before ye,
Ne'er told with such humour his Trumpington story:
His Simkin and Allen no more can compare
With the heroes of Bath, than the clown at a fair;
They gay Songster of Bottisham* is forc'd to submit,
And to you he resigns both the dancing and kit.
But I fear you will find it a much harder case,
To make the poor Poet surrender his place.
The Muses of Granta, so sweet is the theme,
Long to join with old Cam the Avonian stream.
At Bath could I meet with such a comical Bard,
The Vapours and Spleen I no more would regard,
And if ever again by Tarantula bit,
His music so sprightly shall charm the dull fit.
Away with the waters, I'd never more try
Old Moyse's cathartic, or blister of Spry;
I'd follow the Muses, I'd hallo thy dogs,
O'er Claverton's mountains, and Feversham bogs.
Come on my Bath Guide, Bard, Physician, and 'Squire,
You can cure all our nerves with your horn and your lyre.

* S. Jenyns, Esq;