1800
ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Sonnet to Ianthe.

Poetical Register and Repository for Fugitive Poetry for 1808-09 (1812) 165.

Richard Alfred Davenport


A Spenserian sonnet, belatedly published in 1812, by Richard Alfred Davenport, editor of the Poetical Register and a future editor of the British Poets. In his capacity as editor of the Poetical Register Davenport would have known Samuel Egerton Brydges and Thomas Park, who were assistant editors early in the nineteenth century. Ianthe is Davenport's wife, Selina.

British Critic: "The Sonnet is truly Petrarchan: and in the songs, we recognize the simplicity of Shenstone, with a liveliness peculiarly belonging to the author" 41 (1813) 399.

Peter L. Courtier: "In 1800 Mr. Davenport married Miss Wheler, a very beautiful young lady, descended from families respectable for their antiquity and property. To this lady, his IANTHE, many of Mr. Davenport's poems are supposed to refer" Lyre of Love (1806) 2:103.



Loveliest and best belov'd, sever'd from thee
How oft the lagging hours I sorely chide;
And murmur "when, O when, shall I see
—"My sweet Ianthe, mine and Beauty's pride?"
At opening morn I wish for even-tide;
When evening comes, "return, O morn, I cry!"
And still I think, though from afar descried,
Could I but see thy home I less should sigh:
For I might fancy that may straining eye
Saw thee fond musing on thine absent love.
Oft, too, I say, sad gazing on the sky,
"O were but mine the pinions of the dove,
How soon, Ianthe, should thy soothing strains
In sweet oblivion lull my cares and pains!"

[p. 165]