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associated together. The condition of authorship began to fall from the days of the “ Dunciad :" and I believe in my heart that much of that obloquy which has since pursued our calling was occasioned by Pope's libels and wicked wit. Everybody read those. Everybody was familiarised with the idea of the poor devil, the author. The manner is so captivating that young authors practise it, and begin their career with satire. It is so easy to write, and so pleasant to read! to fire a shot that makes a giant wince, perhaps ; and fancy one's self his conqueror. It is easy to shoot—but not as Pope did. The shafts of his satire rise sublimely: no poet's verse ever mounted higher than that wonderful flight with which the “Dunciad” concludes :-*
“ She comes, she comes ! the sable throne behold
Of Night primeval and of Chaos old ;
* “He (Johnson) repeated to us, in his forcible melodious manner, the concluding lines of the 'Dunciad.'”-BOSWELL. † “Mr. Langton informed me that he once related to Johnson (on the autho.
In these astonishing lines Pope reaches, I think, to the very greatest height which his sublime art has attained, and shows himself the equal of all poets of all times. It is the brightest ardour, the loftiest assertion of truth, the most generous wisdom, illustrated by the noblest poetic figure, and spoken in words the aptest, grandest, and most harmonious. It is heroic courage speaking: a splendid declaration of righteous wrath and war. It is the gage flung down, and the silver trumpet ringing defiance to falsehood and tyranny, deceit, dulness, superstition. It is Truth, the champion, shining and intrepid, and fronting the great world-tyrant with armies of slaves at his back. It is a wonderful and victorious single combat, in that great battle, which has always been waging since society began.
In speaking of a work of consummate art one does not try to show what it actually is, for that were vain; but what it is like, and what are the sensations produced in the mind of him who views it. And in considering Pope's admirable career, I am forced into similitudes drawn from other courage and greatness, and into comparing him with those who achieved triumphs in actual war. I think of the works of young Pope as I do of the actions of young Bonaparte or young Nelson. In their common life you will find frailties and meannesses, as great as the vices and follies of the meanest men. But in the presence of the great occasion, the great soul flashes out, and conquers transcendent. In thinking of the splendour of Pope's young victories, of his merit, unequalled as his renown, I hail and salute the achieving genius, and do homage to the pen of a hero.
rity of Spence), that Pope himself admired these lines so much that when he repeated them his voice faltered. * And well it might, sir,' said Johnson, 'for they are noble lines.'”–J. BOSWELL, junior.
HOGARTH, SMOLLETT, AND FIELDING.
SUPPOSE, as long as novels last and authors aim at interesting
their public, there must always be in the story a virtuous and gallant hero, a wicked monster his opposite, and a pretty girl who finds a champion ; bravery and virtue conquer beauty; and vice, after seeming to triumph through a certain number of pages, is sure to be discomfited in the last volume, when justice overtakes him and honest folks come by their own. There never was perhaps a greatly popular story but this simple plot was carried through it: mere satiric wit is addressed to a class of readers and thinkers quite different to those simple souls who laugh and weep over the novel. I fancy very few ladies indeed, for instance, could be brought to like “Gulliver” heartily, and (putting the coarseness and difference of manners out of the question) to relish the wonderful satire of " Jonathan Wild.” In that strange apologue, the author takes for a hero the greatest rascal, coward, traitor, tyrant, hypocrite, that his wit and experience, both large in this matter, could enable him to devise or depict; he accompanies this villain through all the actions of his life, with a grinning deference and a wonderful mock respect : and doesn't leave him, till he is dangling at the gallows, when the satirist makes him a low bow and wishes the scoundrel good day.
It was not by satire of this sort, or by scorn and contempt, that Hogarth achieved his vast popularity and acquired his reputation.* His art is quite simple,† he speaks popular parables to interest simple
Coleridge speaks of the “beautiful female faces” in Hogarth's pictures, “in whom,” he says, “the satirist never extinguished that love of beauty which belonged to him as a poet.”—The Friend.
† “I was pleased with the reply of a gentleman, who, being asked which book he esteemed most in his library, answered 'Shakspeare :' being asked which