1824 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Richard Brathwait

Bryan Waller Procter, in Effigies Poeticae, or, the Portraits of the British Poets (1824) 48.



From a scarce Print by Vaughan, prefixed to his "English Gentleman."

BRAITHWAITE (the historian of Drunken Barnaby, and author of various satires and comedies), has the look of a listener; and indeed he seems to have sate, through life, a self-elected judge of the follies and vices of the surrounding world. What an eye he has for a court-martial! We could almost fancy him dealing with the small wits of the army, disengaging their wisdom from the stays and stocks, the sashes and gilding, with which it is confounded, and laying it bare, and displaying its due proportions, for the benefit of admiring villagers. We should tremble for our heroes in epaulets and scarlet, were they compelled to abide the scrutiny of Mr. Richard Braithwaite. Would they vanquish fewer women, or enlist a less number of recruits, if they were stripped of the bright plumage of the mind, and made manifest? — perhaps not.