1816 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Joseph Addison

Anonymous, "English Worthies: Addison" European Magazine 69 (January 1816) 26.



Addison wrote the best English prose — judiciously criticised the works of genius — improved the stage — delineated the characters of private life — ridiculed the follies and condemned the vices of mankind — taught philosophy and morality — pointed out the beauties of nature — wrote divine hymns — "employed wit on the side of religion — restored virtue to its dignity" — and led a charitable life. "See in what peace a Christian can die," were his last words — Words which ought to be engraven on every heart — May we so live and die!

Is it not extraordinary, that this amiable, and perhaps most useful of English Worthies, was sometimes envious and a flatterer.