1820 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Thomas Campbell

P. T. T., "To Thomas Campbell. An Expostulatory Epistle occasioned by the following passage in his Specimens of English Poetry" Blackwood's Magazine 6 (February 1820) 504-05.



"Stevens celebrated hard drinking, because it was the fashion — and his songs are now seldom vociferated, because that fashion is gone by." Specimens, Vol. VI. p. 437.

Sir, in your last work you the logic display
Of Aldrich or Burgerdick, Crousaz or Hamel,
But I think that you err very much when you say,
That the fashion of drinking is past, Mr. Campbell.

If fashion rejects jolly topers, 'tis plain,
That fashion's an ignorant sort of a strammel;
And fashion so senseless, so dull, will remain
But a short time in vigour, I think, Mr. Campbell.

In Ireland, I'm sure, many ages must roll
Before with such rules our free spirits we trammel,
Before the bright lights of the bottle and bowl
Will cease o'er our tables to shine, Mr. Campbell.

Come over among us, sweet bard, and I swear,
That when home you return with a nose red as stammel,
You will never again be so prompt to declare,
That the sons of gay Bacchus are dead, Mr. Campbell.

Then oh! by that face which in prospect I view,
All glowing and grand with its purple enamel,
Retract your rash statement. So, Thomas, adieu,
For my punch is just out and I'm tir'd, Mr. Campbell.
Cork, Jan. 24, 1820.
Half-past one o'clock in the morning.