1822 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

William Hazlitt

James Harley, in The Press, or Literary Chit-Chat. A Satire (1822) 17-19 &n.



HOCUS.
Alas, for Jeffrey! he so idle grows,
Courting on Pentland's braes demure repose,
That the Review, to other hands consign'd,
No longer owns the chieftain's mightier mind.

POCUS.
Who fill his place?

HOCUS.
Men of little note,
With just enough of learning to misquote;
Men with whom sophistry may pass for sense,
Bless'd with no scanty lot of impudence.
Horner no longer charms us with a store
Of classic sweets cull'd from a Roman shore,
But there his bones revolving years consume,
Whilst rapt admirers linger near his tomb:
Hazlitt now fills the void.

JOCUS.
Oh, jaunty wight,
Shining in aught that thou essay'st to write,
Mighty and wonderful thy name shall be
From Chelsea Reach unto the river Lea!
Oft in one man we've seen one virtue shine,
In thee, great Hazlitt, what a host combine:*
At once wit, critic, painter, politician,
And, eke, a moralist and rhetorician!
Lord of the happy limits of Cockaign,
With lengthen'd empire o'er thy subjects reign;
May thy deep Essays teach them how to live,
Thy wit delight to all their moments give;
Long may'st thou strut along th' admiring street,
Receiving homage from each cit you meet!

POCUS.
You would not have him take the throne of Leigh,
That would be worse, my friend, than treachery—

* Mr. H. is undoubtedly possessed of considerable talents, and can write in a lively, amusing style. — An additional recommendation — where his jokes fail to excite a laugh, his self-conceit is sure to elict a smile.