1796 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Joseph Addison

Bryan Waller, "Inscription for a Bust of Addison" Waller, Poems (1796) 114.



O ADDISON, to thy lamented dust
With pious hands I consecrate this Bust.
Oh! grac'd with virgin purity of soul,
With wit to charm, with morals to controul,
To gentle MONTAGUE and SOMMERS dear
Whilst Verse as yet could soothe a Courtier's ear.
Lo! touch'd by thee with pure Religion's flame,
Philosophy assumes a loftier aim,
And better Truths and Mysteries refine
The Wit of SENECA and ANTONINE!
Thou great, best Censor of a vicious Age,
Whose blameless life flow'd gently as thy page,
Tho' chaste yet courteous, tho' correct yet free,
Ev'n VIRTUE may admire herself in Thee!
Nov. 1795.