1760 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Rev. James Hervey

Anonymous, "Lines on Hervey" London Chronicle (23 August 1760) 189.



Urania, speak! in pensive numbers tell
How Zion trembled when great Hervey fell!
When fail'd his strength, and when his pulse beat low,
Tell how she mourn'd to see th' impending blow!
O thou, to whom all sacred things belong,
Pour forth the sweetly melancholy song!

"Alas! grim Death hath shot the fatal dart,
Which long seem'd pointed at his languid heart.
Th' insatiate tyrant, crown'd with fun'ral gloom,
In triumph drags him to the hollow tomb;
Who now so well can paint the blooming Flower,
Or preach from Sepulchres at midnight hour?
Who now so well the Starry Heavens scan,
And read the lectures Nature meant for man?
No more his voice a careless world can move,
Or tell the wonders of redeeming love;
No more shall thousands round his pulpit throng
To hear the heavenly precepts of his tongue:
For lo! above this gross impurer air,
Releas'd from ev'ry pain, and ev'ry care;
He soars aloft (anglick hosts his guide)
On wings new plum'd, which ne'er before he try'd.
With rapid speed his golden pinions rise
Thro' starry plains, and skim th' empyrean skies.
And now where sparkling portals wide display
The blissful regions of eternal day;
His Lord receives him 'midst caelestial choirs,
Who crown his head, and strike their golden lyres;
Thro' heav'n's glad courts the greeting anthems roll,
And joys new blooming feast his ravish'd soul;
Joys which to tell all eloquence is faint,
And which the loftiest Muse can never paint."