1797 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Edmund Burke

Percival Stockdale, "Epitaph on the Right Hon. Edmund Burke" Bath Journal (24 July 1797).



Of BURKE here lies the cold, inactive clay;
His Soul exulting in perpetual day:
With universal genius born to shine;
All themes, at once, to strengthen, and refine:
Science, in aid of Fancy to engage;
And pour it, softened, on his ardent page.
Survey the beauties of his classic mind;
The Critick leaves LONGINUS far behind.
Hear the great Legislator plead the cause
Of instituted; of eternal Laws;
Oppression, and rapacity submit
To matchless Reason, Eloquence, and Wit.
See, while his Thunders iron hearts assail,
The Tyrants of each Hemisphere turn pale!
Hail! Shade beatified! thou Friend of Man!
Friend of God's mortal, and immortal Plan!
Thy noble works, that guard us while we live,
Of heavenly bliss a demonstration give:
For surely minds like thine can never die;
They mount, by nature, and assert the sky;
Their glory fires us, to our latest breath;
Protects, through LIFE; and animates, in Death!
Durham, July 14, 1797.