1797 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Abraham Cowley

Charles Lamb to Samuel Taylor Coleridge, 10 January 1797; in Letters, ed. Thomas Noon Talfourd (1837) 1:64.



In all our comparisons of taste, I do not know whether I have ever heard your opinion of a poet, very dear to me, the now-out-of-fashion Cowley. Favour me with your judgment of him, and tell me if his prose essays, in particular, as well as no inconsiderable part of his verse, be not delicious. I prefer the graceful rambling of his essays, even to the courtly elegance and ease of Addison; abstracting from this the latter's exquisite humour.