1806 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Edmund Waller

John Aikin, in Letters to a Young Lady (1806) 31.



The courtly WALLER, to whom the praise is commonly, but unjustly, given of having been the first who wrote rhymed heroic verse with elegance and correctness, may certainly lay claim to a lady's notice, since to her sex he devoted some of his choicest strains. I am apprehensive, however, that his gallantries may seem to you somewhat far-fetched, and his compliments over-strained, and that, for your own part, you would prefer tenderness to deification.