1810 ca. ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Elizabeth Montagu

George Hardinge, "On the Letters and Works of Mrs. Montagu" 1810 ca.; Hardinge, Miscellaneous Works (1818) 2:97-98.



Of the mind's wonders, old or new,
Give me the pen of Montagu—
Rich in all styles — in every vein—
A Cowper, Stanhope, and Montainge.
Her comic ease and sportive grace
Can Sevigne herself replace:
By her enlighten'd, we forget
That Wortley's name commands regret:
Her dialogue has Congreve's wit,
The cap a Sheridan would fit.

But, when her taste and genius dare
To fight their cause against Voltaire,—
Was judgment ever more acute?
Could praise its Hero better suit?
In her Longinus we renew;
She's the Sublime her pencil drew.
Or, when ascending to its claims,
With Carter, Beattie, or with Kaimes,
Her vision takes a higher cast,
The Reasoner is by none surpass'd.

So Tully, Rome's enlightening sun,
Was all the Orators in one;
And Caesar had a Native's word
In all the Languages he heard.