1801
ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Il Luttoso, ed Il Gaudioso, Il Giocoso, ed Il Diligente.

Il Luttoso, ed Il Gaudioso, Il Giocoso, ed Il Diligente: Poems on Music, the New Century, Sport, and Care.

Francis Godolphin Waldron


Anonymously-published imitations of Milton. Francis Godolphin Waldron was an actor and antiquarian who took an interest in early literature. Not seen.

Monthly Mirror: "These moral effusions, which possess an apparent vivacity of youthful fancy, are the productions of a respectable veteran in the poetic and histrionic art. Though modestly put forth without a name, we have sufficient authority for ascribing this opusculum to the pen of Mr. Waldron, a laudable restorer of our earlier poets, and no unsuccessful suitor to the dramatic muse. Il Luttuoso, paints pleasing, and Il Gaudioso, painful scenes; the author's intention being to describe a sorrowful man, striving to alleviate his affliction by adverting to subjects of tranquillity and delight; and a joyful man, heightening his felicity by comforting the wretched, and diffusing happiness to all around him. Il Giocoso, and Il Diligente, which depict a sportful, and a careful man; are very amusively contrasted. In these poems the inductions of Milton are endeavoured to be imitated, and his plan to be followed" 11 (January 1801) 30-31.

European Magazine: "The Author of these pleasing poems is Mr. Waldron, of Drury-lane Theatre. The contrast in the first two of the joyful and sorrowful man being pointed out to him as resembling (though not intended) the opposition of character in Milton's L'Allegro and Il Penseroso, induced him to extend his design to two other essays on a sportful and careful man, in which Milton's inductions are endeavoured to be imitated, with a greater laxity of versification, the admission of occasional double rhymes, and Italian titles given to the whole. In prefixing Italian titles, the Author has probably not added any attraction to his poems; but those who can be pleased with familiar thoughts and images, suggested by domestic social incidents, clothed in good versification, will not rise dissatisfied from the perusal of this little volume" 39 (February 1801) 119.

Anti-Jacobin Review: "These doggrel rhymes, given in all manner of numbers, and all manner of quantities, abounding with the most barbarous elisions, and every species of nonsense, are dedicated to William Hayley, Esq. who, no doubt, feels himself highly honoured by the attentions of the author. The two latter pieces are 'professed imitations' of Milton: we, however, have not been able to discover in them any farther resemblance to the original, than that of their possessing Italian titles" 10 (September 1801) 80.

Charles Burney: "Some prosaic expressions, and indeed whole lines of that character, might be pointed out in every one of these little poems. We should suppose that the first has not been published hastily, because Miss Brent is mentioned in it as the favourite Siren of the time, who delighted the country with the strains of Handel; and at least 30 years have elapsed since Miss Brent flourished: — but she was not so much accustomed to warble the strains of Handel, as those of Dr. Arne, her master. — To describe this production in one sentence, we shall conclude by observing that it seems to be dilettante poetry, rather than that of a scribe by trade" Monthly Review NS 36 (October 1801) 218.



Hence ever-eating Care!
That, still unsated, feed'st upon my heart!
What, would'st thou never part?
Of my life's stream thou'st drawn an ample share!
Lurk in some miser's breast!
And with him count his piles of useless gold,
Too numerous to be told:
Make him mistake, and number o'er and o'er
His soul-ensnaring store:
Nor let him ever know a moment's rest!
But, welcome Sport! of Health the sire!
The infant's, youth's, and man's desire. . . .

[Monthly Mirror 11 (January 1801) 31]