1760 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Rev. William Mason

Edward Cooper, in "In Retirement. Inscribed to Mr. Thompson" A Collection of Elegiac Poesy (1760) 33 & n.



Though just Apollo gave the meed of worth,
To Isis bard that triumph'd o'er thy strain;
Yet Mason we allow thee of poetic birth,
Nor ere but once did court the muse in vain.

Oft o'er thy sweetest wailings did I roam,
And o'er Musaeus urn just drop a tear;
Or in thy Mevil bribery's sons bemoan,
And with my latest breath his name revere.

Mr. Mason wrote the tears of Isis, poems, &c. on various subjects; and of late a tragedy called Caractacus. In relation to his other poems his character has been long since determined by the literary world, and he appears as a clear, elegant, and masterly author; but we are concerned to say that the tragedy of Caractacus, (though the performance deserves honourable mention in many particulars) is not deserving the pen of the celebrated Mr. Mason.