1758 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Joseph Addison

G. G., in "To a Young Lady in Scotland" London Magazine 27 (January 1758) 46.



But hark! what stream of musick pours along,
Sublimely sweet, and elegantly strong,
Sacred to liberty, who rais'd his aim,
To add one wreath to Cato's deathless fame?
Tis Addison, whose numbers court thy ear
Where Churchill's glories ever bright appear:
Thrice happy pair, with equal ardor fir'd,
By one great power, in one great cause inspir'd!
Conquest obsequious led the hero's way,
Who would not all the toils of war sustain,
To shine immortaliz'd in such a strain?
What muse would cease to strike the loftiest lyre,
Should such heroic deeds their song inspire?

But wisdom, and the genius of mankind,
Another province to their son assign'd:
Britain's Spectator — in whose easy page,
At once is seen, the gentleman, and sage.
Here knowledge shines, in fairest colours drest:
The noblest truths, in justest words exprest.
Here cultivate your taste and form your stile;
Here at Sir Roger's various humours smile,
Here view with fancy's eyes the moral dream,
Or with new relish pass from theme to theme.
Hence may you learn in ev'ry light to please
To think with elegance and write with ease.