ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION
John Graham of Lifford, "An Epistle to Lord Byron, on reading his Cain, a Mystery" The Literary Gazette (23 March 1822) 185.
1808: Hewson Clarke
1808: Henry Brougham
1809: Melesina Chenevix Trench
1810: Robert Southey
1810: Rev. Francis Hodgson
1811: Rev. Francis Hodgson
1811: John Murray
1812: Henry Crabb Robinson
1812: Mary Russell Mitford
1812: Granville Penn
1812: Sarah S. Pugh
1812: B. B.
1812: George Ellis
1812: Francis Jeffrey
1812: Thomas Denman
1812: Chandos Leigh
1813: J. C. Blaby
1813: Rev. Francis Hodgson
1813: A Lady of Boston
1813: Henry Gally Knight
1814: George Daniel
1814: Thomas Barnes
1814: H. S. B.
1814: T. C. Holland
1814: B. B.
1814: Unus Multorum
1814: Tom Tit
1814: James Hogg
1815: James Hogg
1815: T. Dutton
1815: Robert Gilmour
1815: C. S.
1815: C. S.
1815: John Taylor Esq.
1815: W. J. Extempore
1815: George Ticknor
1816: John Hamilton Reynolds
1816: John Murray
1816: Melesina Chenevix Trench
1816: Leigh Hunt
1816: George Taylor
1816: Thomas Stott
1816: Sir Walter Scott
1816: Francis Jeffrey
1816: Chandos Leigh
1817: John Chalk Claris
1817: A Lady of Glasgow
1817: John Neal
1818: Sir Walter Scott
1818: John Chalk Claris
1818: P. G. Patmore
1818: Mr. Rymer
1818 ca.: Elizabeth Cobbold
1818: An Old Friend
1818: Sir Walter Scott
1818: John Wilson
1818: Chandos Leigh
1818: Rev. Barton Bouchier
1819: John Keats
1819: Rev. Lionel Thomas Berguer
1819: William Gifford
1820: Jeremiah Holmes Wiffen
1820: Charles Lamb
1820: William Wordsworth
1820: David Carey
1820: Thomas Mulock
1820: John Wilson Croker
1821: Rev. William Lisle Bowles
1821: John Scott
1821: Bryan Waller Procter
1821: W. H. S.
1821: George Milner
1822: Samuel Taylor Coleridge
1822: John Graham of Lifford
1822: James Harley
1822: Robert S. Coffin
1822: G. G-m
1823: Frances Wright
1823: J. H.
1824: Eleanor Dickinson
1824: Sir Walter Scott
1824: Richard Hatt
1824: A Harrow School-Fellow
1824: J. J. Leathwick
1824: Thomas Charleton Smith
1824: John Dodderidge Humphreys
1824: Nathaniel Hazeltine Carter
1824: Bernard M. Carter
1824: Rev. Carlos Wilcox
1824: Elizabeth Barrett Browning
1824: Dr. James McHenry
1824: T. W. R.
1824: James Gordon Brooks
1824: Charles Sprague
1824: Robert Southey
1824: Dabney Carr Terrell
1824: Thomas Haynes Bayly
1824: J. S. W.
1824: Thomas Stott
1824: Thomas Stott
1824: W. P. B.
1824: Matthew Gregory Lewis
1824: J. B.
1824: John Taylor Esq.
1824: Sarah S. Pugh
1825: William Hazlitt
1825: Rev. William Lisle Bowles
1825: Thomas Enort Smith
1825: Hugh Brown
1825: Charles Caleb Colton
1825: Sophia Hyatt
1825: Charles Symmons
1825: Elisha Tatham
1826: George Lunt
1826: Richard Ryan
1827: James Hogg
1827: C. T. R.
1827: M. A. B., aged 14
1828: Leigh Hunt
1828: Walter Savage Landor
1828: Rev. George Croly
1828: H. Cox
1829: Mary Howitt
1829: Anna Brownell Jameson
1829: Rev. Oliver William Bourne Peabody
1829: James Gordon Brooks
1830: Rev. Henry Francis Cary
1830: Felicia Hemans
1830: Rev. George Barrell Cheever
1830: John Herman Merivale
1830: C. H.
1830: Mary Shelley
1830: John Wilson Croker
1830: William Kennedy
1831: Sir Samuel Egerton Brydges
1831: John Wilson
1831: Willis Gaylord Clark
1831: Henry Gally Knight
1831: Thomas Babington Macaulay
1832: John Abraham Heraud
1832: John Taylor Esq.
1833: Alaric Alexander Watts
1833: Allan Cunningham
1837: Caroline Norton
1839: Chandos Leigh
1842: Robert Story
1843: John Holland
1846: John Dix
1851: Dr. David Macbeth Moir
1857: Samuel Griswold Goodrich
1873: Joseph Devey
1877: Bryan Waller Procter
1880: John Addington Symonds
1891: Samuel Smiles
1893: George Saintsbury
John Graham of Lifford:
1822: Lord Byron
BYRON, alas! that such a soul as thine,
So richly gifted with poetic fire,
Form'd as a light in darksome time to shine,
Should sink in sensuality's foul mire;
Bard of proud unbelief and dark desire,
Would nothing serve thee but a sacred theme!!
To play with thunderbolts wouldst thou aspire,
Nor when misusing GOD'S most holy name,
Fear dreadful wrath in fierce avenging flame?
And yet all bold and daring as thou art,
Fear seems to haunt thee in thy dark retreat,
When a misgiving — undecided heart,
Would prompt thee to deny a future state,
Where woes immense the Infidel await.
But quite consistent is the graceless wight,
Victim of pride, and vice and self deceit,
Who vainly strives to draw the veil of night
O'er scenes terrific to his feeble sight.
In vain thine eye o'er Holy Writ may rove,
Or trace the woes of Cain's unhappy wife,
Or Moses bring with Prophets to disprove
Our blessed hope of everlasting life.
To that bright state with joys unfailing rife,
Was Enoch call'd to leave his native land,
Translated from this vale of tears and strife,
Before the throne at God's benign command
In endless joy and happiness to stand.
I know, says Job, that my Redeemer lives,
And on the earth shall stand at latter day,
When he who cheers my hope, my sin forgives,
Shall raise my body from its bed of clay;
And tho' my flesh and skin must both decay
And worms destroy them — yet by him set free
From Death's cold hand, in rapture borne away,
HIM for myself my joyful eye shall see,
And in that sight for ever happy be.
I set thee always, LORD, before mine eyes,
Said Israel's king, and of thy glory tell,
And in thy realm beyond the vaulted skies,
In bliss with Thee for ever hope to dwell:
Thou surely wilt not leave my soul in hell,
My body wilt thou from the grave restore,
The chorus of eternal joy to swell,
Where blissful myriads thy name adore,
At whose right hand are pleasures evermore.
So spake the Psalmist; having first defin'd
The kind of man who on GOD'S holy hill
Shall dwell in rest; whose pure and spotless mind
Is train'd in truth, and meditates no ill:
And further proof have we from David still,
Who, when for sin he was condemn'd to see
His infant dead, bent low his wayward will
And said, I murmur not at this decree,
I'll go to him, he'll not return to me.
Isaiah says, that when the faithful die,
Their souls that moment enter into peace,
And only from this world's trouble fly,
To taste of pleasure that shall never cease.
Ezekiel, blest by heaven's inspiring grace,
Describes the resurrection of the dead,
When ev'ry bone shall reassume its place,
And though the vital spark be long since fled,
With skin and sinew shall be overspread.
Daniel depicts that everlasting throne,
On which the JUDGE shall take his awful seat,
Whose jurisdiction all the world shall own,
Whilst kings and emp'rors — the small — the great—
Shall trembling stand to hear their final fate;
Forth from the throne shall issue floods of flame,
The dead shall rise — but oh! their different state!
Some wake to find in life's great book their name,
Others to scorn and everlasting shame.
Then shall the wise shine forth in radiant light,
Happy partakers of the life divine;
And those who lead the weak from wrong to right,
Like stars in firmament for ever shine.
Oh BYRON! pray that such fate may be thine:
Pity it is, that one who well could make
Melodious concert with the choir divine,
Celestial poesy should e'er forsake,
To join the dismal hissings of the snake.
What wouldst thou give on that tremendous day,
In view of torments which must never end,
That thou hadst never thought on "Harold's" lay,
Or vile "Don Juan's" ribbald stanza penn'd.
Then, yet be wise, to calm enquiry bend,
Nor kind advice from humbler mind disdain;
From Pride's frail pinnacle in time descend,
Fall on your knees in penitential pain,
And shun the fate of Lucifer and Cain.