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· are filent your self you are most open to the Insults of • the Noisy.
I am, S I R, &c. W. B.
• I had almost forgot to inform you, that as an Im. provement in this Instrument, there will be a particu• lar Note, which I call a Hush-Note ; and this is to be • made use of against a long Story, Swearing, Obscene• ness, and the like.
No. 229. Thursday, November 12.
---Spirat adluc amor,
Æolie fidibus puella. Hor. Od. 9. 1. 4. v. 10.
Preserves her soft Degre,
AMONG the many famous Pieces of Antiquity
which are still to be seen at Rome, there is the Trunk of a Statue which has lost the Arms, Legs, and Head ; but discovers such an exquisite Workmanship in what remains of it, that Michael Angelo declared he had learned his whole Art from it. Indeed he studied it fo attentively, that he made most of his Statues, and even his Pictures in that Gufto, to make use of the Italian Phrafe ; for which Reason this maimed Statue is still called Michael Angelo's School.
A Fragment of Sappho, which I design for the Subject of this paper, is in as great Reputation among the Poets and Criticks, as the mutilated Figure abovemen. tioned is among the Statuaries and Painters. Several of our Countrymen, and Mr. Dryden in particular, seem very often to have copied after it in their Dramagick Writings, and in their Poems upon Love.
WHATEVER might have been the Occasion of this Ode, the English Reader will enter into the Beau
ties of it, if he supposes it to have been written in the Person of a Lover sitting by his Mistress. I shall set to View three different Copies of this beautiful Original :
The first is a Translation by Catullus, the second by Monsieur Boileau, and the last by a Gentleman whose
Translation of the Hymn to Venus has been so deservedly admired.
Speclat, & audit
Quod loquar amens.
MY learned Reader will know very well the Reason why one of these Verses is printed in Roman Letter ; and if he compares this Translation with the Original, will find that the three first Stanzas are rendred almost Word for Word, and not only with the fame Elegance, but with the same short Turn of Expression which is so remarkable in the Greek, and so peculiar to the Sapphick Ode. I cannot imagine for what Reason Ma. dam Dacier has told us, that this Ode of Sappho is preferved intire in Longinus, fince it is manifest to any one who looks into that Author's Quotation of it, that there must at least have been another Stanza, which is not transmitted to us.
THE second Translation of this Fragment which I fhall here cite, is that of Monsieur Boileau.
Heureux ! qui prés de toi, pour toi feule føúpire :
Je sens de veine en veine une fubtile flamme
Un nuage confus fe répand fur ma vuë,
Fe n’entens plus, je tombe en de douces langueurs;.
THE Reader will see that this is rather an Imitation than a Translation. The Circumstances do not lie so thick together, and follow one another with that Vehe. mence and Emotion as in the Original. In short, Monsieur Boileau has given us all the Poetry, but not all the Passion of this famous Fragment. I Mall, in the laft Place, présent my Reader with the English Translation.
Bleft as th' immortal Gods is he,
For while I gaz'd, in Transport tole,
ius III. · My Bosom glowd; the fubtle Flame ..: Ran quick through all my vital Frame ; .
O'er my dim Eyes a Durkness hung;'
**** IV. i
INSTEAD of giving any Character of this last Translation, I shall desire my learned Reader to look into the Criticisms which Longinus has made upon the Original. By that means he will know to which of the Translations he ought to give the Preference, I shall on. ly add, that this Translation is written in the very Spirit of Sappho, and as near the Greek as the Genius of our Language will poslibly suffer.
LÖNGINU S has observed that this Description of Love in Sappho is an exact Copy of Nature, and that all the Circumstances which follow one another in such an hurry of Sentiments, notwithstanding they appear repugnant to each other, are really such as happen in the Phrenzies of Love.
I wonder, that not one of the Criticks or Editors, through whose Hands this Ode has passed, has taken Occasion from it to mention a Circumstance related by Plutarch. That Author in the famous Story of Antiochus, who fell in Love with Stratonice, his Mother-in-' law, and (not daring to discover his Passion) pretended to be confined to his Bed by Sickness, tells us, that Erafiftratus, the Physician, found out the Nature of his Diftemper by those Symptoms of Love which he had learnt from Sappho's Writings. Stratonice was in the Room of the Love-fick Prince, when these Symptoms discovered themselves to his Physician ; and it is pro: bable, that they were not very different from those which Sappho here describes in a Lover fitting by his Mistress. This Story of Antiochus is so well known, that I need not add the Sequel of it, which has no Relation to my prefent Subject.
095089800000000000000 No. 230. Friday, November 23.
Hornines ad Deos nullà re propiùs accedunt, quàm falutem Hominibus dando.
Alen resemble the Gods in nething so much, as in doing good
to their Fellow-creatures.
ITUMAN Nature appears a very deformed, or a Il very beautiful Object, according to the different Lights in which it is viewed. When we see Men of infamed Passions, or of wicked Designs, tearing one. anoth-r to pieces by open Violence, or Undermining each other by secret Treachery ; when we observe base and narrow Ends pursued by ignominious and dishoneft Means ; when we behold Men mixed in Society as if it were for the Destruction of it ; we are even ashamed of our Species, and out of Humour with our own Being : But in another Light, when we behold them mild, good, and benevolent, full of a generous Regard for the publick Prosperity, compassionating each other's Distresses, and relieving each other's Wants, we can hardly believe they are Creatures of the same Kind. In this View they appear Gods to each other, in the Exercise of 'the nobleft Power, that of doing Good; and the greatest Coinpliment we have ever been able to make to our own Being, has been by calling this Disposition of Mind Humanity. We cannot but observe a Pleasure arising in our own Breaft upon the seeing or hearing of a generous Action, even when we are wholly dilinterested in it. I cannot give a more proper Instance of this, than by a Letter from Pliny, in which he recommends a Friend in the most handsome manner, and, methinks, it would be a great pleasure to know the Success of this Epistle, though each Party concerned in it has been so many hundred Years in his Grave