ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION
, "To the Memory of W. Collins, Esq." The Songs of Deardra (1825) 15-21.
1746: Thomas Gray
1746: Rev. Joseph Warton
1754: Samuel Johnson
1764: Rev. John Langhorne
1768: G. B.
1770: James Beattie
1779: Rev. Vicesimus Knox
1781: William Preston
1782: John Scott of Amwell
1782: Rev. William Bagshaw Stevens
1784: William Cowper
1785: Sir Samuel Egerton Brydges
1785 ca.: Susanna Blamire
1786: Dr. Thomas Chalkley James
1792: Thomas Dermody
1793: Thomas Clio Rickman
1794: Robert Alves
1794: Thomas Clubbs
1795: William Hayley
1795: William Seward
1795: Dr. Robert Anderson
1796 ca.: William Hayley
1796: C. D.
1797: Thomas Enort Smith
1798: Dr. Nathan Drake
1798: Edward Gardner
1800: Dr. Nathan Drake
1801: Leigh Hunt
1805: Rev. Henry Boyd
1805: Sir Samuel Egerton Brydges
1806: Dr. John Aikin
1807: Robert Southey
1808: Anne Grant
1810 ca.: Thomas Park
1810: Rev. Elijah Waring
1810: William Hersee
1813: Sir Walter Scott
1813: Jeremiah Holmes Wiffen
1815: Lord Byron
1815: William Wordsworth
1816: E. Walgrave
1818: William Hazlitt
1821: R. T.
1822: Chandos Leigh
1823: Leigh Hunt
1823: Rev. Charles Burton
1824: William Hazlitt
1825 ca.: Henry Mackenzie
1825: Thomas Stott
1826: Richard Ryan
1828: Rev. Edward Smedley
1829: William Wordsworth
1829: Anna Brownell Jameson
1830: Charles Crocker
1830: Rev. George Barrell Cheever
1830: Robert Aris Willmott
1833: James Montgomery
1835: Robert Southey
1880: Algernon Charles Swinburne
1882: Epes Sargent
1801: Robert Southey
1802: Dr. Robert Anderson
1804: Rev. Henry Boyd
1804: Thomas Campbell
1805: Robert Burns
1808: Samuel Taylor Coleridge
1809: Bp. Thomas Percy
1810: Jane West
1816: Lord Byron
1821: Thomas Campbell
1821: Oliver Goldsmith
1822: Thomas Campbell
1822: John Clare
1824: Lord Byron
1824: Lord Byron
1825: William Collins
1825: Sir Walter Scott
Distinguished Leader of the lyric throng,
That whilom sooth'd Britannia's pensive ear
With the sweet sounds of sentimental song,
Wilt thou, removed now to thy native sphere,
Above on starry cope of cloudless light—
Wilt thou benignly bend a favouring ear
To the weak warblings of an earthly muse,
Into whose heart such pleasure exquisite
Thy tuneful reliques frequently infuse,
That gratitude compels her now to pay
Thy memory, charming Bard! the tribute of a lay?
Each kind affection of the heart
By thee was intimately known—
PITY still prompt assistance to impart,
And feel the woes of others as her own:
And meek-eyed MERCY, still inclined to spare,
When scowling Vengeance rais'd his angry arm
To strike, regardless of the victim's prayer,
Till sooth'd by her persuasive charm,
His rage grows cool — evaporates in air—
And drops the lifted blade that threaten'd instant harm.
The knowledge of the PASSIONS too was thine—
Thy skilful hand could nicely trace
Their various features, and combine
Them with such sweet poetic grace,
That in the glowing line,
A strong and striking portraiture of each
(So high thy tuneful art could reach!)
The wondering senses found.
And still as Music touch'd th' appropriate string,
Obedient to the potent sound,
Alternately they'd fall and rise,
And moving in a magic ring,
Excite increas'd emotions of surprise.
The MANNERS, too, by Fancy dress'd,
In many a wild, cameleon vest,
Were to thy keen, observant view
Display'd, in every change of hue.
Thy nimble pencil caught their flight
With the velocity of light,
And in unfading tints of nature warm,
Fix'd and embodied each fugacious form.
The ALLEGORIC train, that rove
By Fancy's haunted stream and grove,
And fan her mystic flame,
Depicted in thy strains we find,
Those strains that e'en "the shadowy tribes of mind"
Could charm, arrest, and tame.
But when thy verse, "like Sparta's fife,
In solemn sounds awakes to life
The forms applauding Freedom loved to view,"
When it laments the injuries she bore
From vandal rage, in days of yore,
And bans the barbarous crew;
What moving pathos marks the tale
Of LIBERTY oppress'd!
But see! once more her struggling arms prevail,
And Albion's sons their glorious guardian hail,
Great "Mistress of the West."
How sweet thy soothing, doric numbers steal
Upon still, pensive EVENING'S listening ear,
In softest cadence breath'd,
Like her own "dying gale!"
SIMPLICITY thy tuneful call
Rejoicing heard, who gives to all
Her gentle train a grace that none beside,
Nor rank, nor power, nor art,
Nor riches can impart—
Sweet nymph! to spotless Truth and Friendship near allied.
Does Worth, or Genius, to the tomb descend,
Snatch'd from the world in an untimely hour—
Doth generous Valour to misfortune bend,
Or blooming Beauty mourn her blasted flower—
In tenderest tones, thy sympathizing shell
Teaches the feeling heart with kindred grief to swell.
Great Lyrist! to thy gifted mind
The Muse her holiest views unveil'd.
Thy skill in all her mystic lore,
On every leaf impress'd we find,
Of that delightful fairy field,
Thy plastic pen has left behind,
For Britain's future Minstrels to explore.
Though Criticism, of aspect sour,
Jealous of thy superior power
To soar beyond his limited control,
May keenly search to find some flaw,
Some breach of the despotic law
He frames to cramp the sallies of the soul—
Yet long as genius, sentiment and fire,
The life and ornament of verse remain,
The fine effusions of thy lofty lyre
Shall never cease to charm true Taste's distinguish'd train.