페이지 이미지

That Hickey's 'a capon, and, by the same rule,
Magnanimous Goldsmith a gooseberry fool.
At a dinner so various, at such a repast,
Who'd not be a glutton, and stick to the last ?
Here, waiter, more wine! let me sit while I'm able,
Till all my companions sink under the table;
Then, with chaos and blunders encircling my head,
Let me ponder, and tell what I think of the dead.

Here lies the good Dean,' reunited to earth, Who mix'd reason with pleasure, and wisdom with mirth : If he had any faults, he has left us in doubt, At least, in six weeks I could not find 'em out; Yet some have declar'd, and it can't be denied 'em, That sly-boots was cursedly cunning to hide 'em.

Here lies our good Edmund,' whose genius was such, We scarcely can praise it, or blame it too much; Who, born for the universe, narrow'd his mind, And to party gave up what was meant for mankind. Though fraught with all learning, yet straining his throat, To persuade Tommy Townshend* to lend him a vote; Who, too deep for his hearers, still went on refining, And thought of convincing, while they thought of dining: Though equal to all things, for all things unfit, Too nice for a statesman, too proud for a wit; For a patriot too cool; for a drudge, disobedient, And too fond of the right, to pursue the expedient. In short, 'twas his fate, unemploy'd, or in place, sir, To eat mutton cold, and cut blocks with a razor.



Here lies honest William,' whose heart was a mint, While the owner ne'er knew half the good that was in't;



“Honest Tom Hickey,” an Irish attorney. Died 1794. ? Dean Barnard, see note 3, p. 79.

3 Edmund Burke. 4 Thomas Townshend, M. P. for Whitchurch ; afterwards Lord Sydney. Died 1803.

5 William Burke, see note 5, p. 79.

The pupil of impulse, it forc'd him along,
His conduct still right, with his argument wrong;
Still aiming at honour, yet fearing to roam,
The coachman was tipsy, the chariot drove home:
Would you ask for his merits ? alas ! he had none;
What was good was spontaneous, his faults were his own.


Here lies honest Richard," whose fate I must sigh at: Alas, that such frolic should now be so quiet ! What spirits were his! what wit and what whim ! Now breaking a jest, and now breaking a limb !? Now wrangling and grumbling to keep up the ball ! Now teasing and vexing, yet laughing at all! In short, so provoking a devil was Dick, That we wish'd him full ten times a day at Old Nick ; But missing his mirth and agreeable vein, As often we wish'd to have Dick back again.

Here Cumberland lies, having acted his parts,
The Terence of England, the mender of hearts;
A flattering painter, who made it his care
To draw men as they ought to be, not as they are.
His gallants are all faultless, his women divine,
And comedy wonders at being so fine ;
Like a tragedy queen he has dizen’d her out,
Or rather like tragedy giving a rout.
His fools have their follies so lost in a crowd
Of virtues and feelings, that folly grows proud ;
And coxcombs, alike in their failings alone,
Adopting his portraits, are pleas'd with their own.
Say, where has our poet this malady caught,
Or, wherefore his characters thus without fault?
Say, was it that vainly directing his view
To find out men's virtues, and finding them few,

1 Mr. Richard Burke. See Note 6, p. 79. * Richard Burke was fond of a jest, and was unfortunate enough to fracture both an arm and a leg.


Quite sick of pursuing each troublesome elf,
He grew lazy at last, and drew from himself ?

Here Douglas retires from his toils to relax, The scourge of impostors, the terror of quacks : Come all ye quack bards, and ye quacking divines, Come, and dance on the spot where your tyrant reclines: When satire and censure encircled his throne, I fear'd for your safety, I fear'd for my own; But now he is gone, and we want a detector, Our Dodds' shall be pious, our Kenricks’ shall lecture; Macpherson write bombast, and call it a style, Our Townshend make speeches, and I shall compile; New Lauders and Bowers the Tweed shall cross over, No countryman living their tricks to discover; Detection her taper shall quench to a spark, And Scotchman meet Scotchman, and cheat in the dark.



Here lies David Garrick, describe me who can,
An abridgment of all that was pleasant in man;
As an actor, confest without rival to shine;
As a wit, if not first, in the very first line :
Yet, with talents like these, and an excellent heart,
The man had his failings, a dupe to his art.
Like an ill-judging beauty, his colours he spread,
And beplaster'd with rouge his own natural red.
On the stage he was natural, simple, affecting ;
'Twas only that when he was off, he was acting.
With no reason on earth to go out of his way,

1 The Rev. Dr. William Dodd, afterwards (1777) hanged for forgery. 2 William Kenrick, LL.D. (died 1779), lexicographer, reviewer, dramatist, and the bitter enemy of Goldsmith. He read lectures at the Devil Tavern, under the title of “The School of Shakespeare."

“ I remember, one evening, when some of Kenrick's works were mentioned, Dr. Goldsmith said, he had never heard of them ; upon which Dr. Johnson observed, 'Sir, he is one of the many who have made themselves public, without making themselves known.'"-BOSWELL by CROKER, p. 171.

3 James Macpherson, Esq. (died 1796). Goldsmith alludes to his prose translation of Homer.

- William Lauder (died 1771) and Archibald Bower (died 1766) were two Scotch authors of very indifferent moral and literary reputations.


He turn'd and he varied full ten times a day:
Though secure of our hearts, yet confoundedly sick,
If they were not his own by finessing and trick:
He cast off his friends, as a huntsman his pack,
For he knew when he pleas'd he could whistle them back.
Of praise a mere glutton, he swallow'd what came,
And the puff of a dunce, he mistook it for fame;
”Till his relish grown callous, almost to disease,
Who pepper'd the highest was surest to please.
But let us be candid, and speak out our mind,
If dunces applauded, he paid them in kind.
Ye Kenricks, ye Kellys,' and Woodfalls' so grave,
What a commerce was yours,

while you got and you gave !
How did Grub-street re-echo the shouts that you rais'd,
While he was be-Roscius'd, and you were be-prais'd !
But peace to his spirit, wherever it flies,
To act as an angel and mix with the skies:
Those poets, who owe their best fame to his skill,
Shall still be his flatterers, go where he will,
Old Shakspeare receive him with praise and with love,
And Beaumonts and Bens be his Kellys above.'

Here Hickey reclines, a most blunt pleasant creature, And slander itself must allow him good nature; He cherish'd his friend, and he relish'd a bumper ; Yet one fault he had, and that one was a thumper ! Perhaps you may ask if the man was a miser ? I answer no, no, for he always was wiser : Too courteous, perhaps, or obligingly flat ? His very worst foe can't accuse him of that. Perhaps he confided in men as they go, And so was too foolishly honest ? ah, no!

| Hugh Kelly, author of “False Delicacy," Word to the Wise,” “Clementina," "School for Wives,” died 1777.

9 William Woodfall, printer of the “Morning Chronicle," died 1803.

3 "The sum of all that can be said for and against Garrick, some people think, may be found in these lines of Goldsmith.”—DAVIES, Life of Garrick, ii, 159, ed. 1780.

Then what was his failing ? come tell it, and, burn ye:
He was, could he help it ?-a special attorney.


Here Reynolds is laid, and to tell you my mind, He has not left a wiser or better behind; His pencil was striking, resistless, and grand; His manners were gentle, complying, and bland ;' Still born to improve us in every part, His pencil our faces, his manners our heart : To coxcombs averse, yet most civilly steering, When they judg’d without skill, he was still hard of hearing: When they talk'd of their Raphaels, Correggios, and stuff, He shifted his trumpet, and only took snuff.”



HERE Whitefoord reclines, and deny it who can,
Though he merrily liv’d, he is now a grave man :
Rare compound of oddity, frolic, and fun!
Who relish'd a joke, and rejoic'd in a pun;
Whose temper was generous, open, sincere;
A stranger to flatt'ry, a stranger to fear;
Who scatter'd around wit and humour at will ;
Whose daily bon mots half a column might fill :


I "To his gentle and happy composure of mind, our common friend Goldsmith alludes, when, in describing Sir Joshua Reynolds, he employed the epithet bland—a word eminently happy, and characteristic of his easy and placid manner.”—MALONE, Life of Sir Joshua Reymolds.

2 Sir Joshua Reynolds was very deaf, and used an ear-trumpet. He was also a great taker of snuff. These were the last lines Goldsmith ever wrote. He intended to have concluded with his own character.

3 After the fourth edition of “Retaliation” was printed, Kearsly, the publisher, received from a friend of Goldsmith's, an epitaph on Caleb Whitefoord, a Scot, and so notorious a punster, that Goldsmith used to say, it was impossible to keep him company, without being infected with the itch of punning. He died in 1810, and has been immortalised by Wilkie, in his admirable “ Letter of Introduction."

[ocr errors]
« 이전계속 »