1788 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Rev. Percival Stockdale

J. H. Colls, "Verses written on a blank Leaf of Ximines, a Tragedy by the Rev. Percival Stockdale" The Times (2 February 1788).



Stockdale, to thee, my Muse devotes her lays;
Whose mind with many a classic beauty fraught,
Darts thro' misfortune's cloud its purest rays,
And gives the most congenial form to thought.

The various passions in the human breast,
Thou hast with elegant precision drawn;
Shown Truth, encircled in an angel's vest,
And Charity more mild than op'ning morn,

Here, trac'd th' effects of superstition's sway,
Which wraps in clouds th' intellectual sight;
There, giv'n to virtue's self a brighter ray,
And plac'd religion in the strongest light.

Hence shalt thou live, in spite of Envy's pow'r,
Belov'd and honor'd, to thy latest breath:
Conscience shall cheer thee, in thy dying hour,
And turn to transport e'en the pangs of death.
Jan. 29, 1788.