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ENGLISH, ITALIAN, AND LATIN,
Viz. Lycidas, L'allegro, Il Penseroso, Ar-
WITH NOTES CRITICAL AND EXPLANATORY,
BY THOMAS WART ON,
FELLOW OF TRINITY COLLEGE
Printed For JAMES DODSLEY In Pall Mall.
TH E poems which compose the present volume were published almost thirty years before the appearance of the Paradise Lost. During that interval, they were so totally disregarded, at least by the general reader, as scarcely to have conferred on their author the reputation of a writer of verses; much less the distinction and character vof a true poet. After the publication of the it Paradise Lost, whose acknowledged merit and increasing celebrity might have naturally contri> buted to call other pieces of the fame author, and v of a kindred excellence, into a more conspicuous * point of view, they long continued to remain in ^ their original state of neglect and obscurity. At the infancy of their circulation, and for some years afterwards, they were overwhelmed in the commotions of faction, the conflict of religious disputation, and the professional ignorance of fanaticism. In succeeding years, when tumults and usurpations were at an end, and leisure and literature returned, the times were still unpropitious, and the public taste was unprepared for their reception. It was late in the present century, before they attained their just measure of esteem and popularity. Wit and rhyme, sentiment and satire, poli/hed numbers, sparkling couplets, and pointed periods, having so long kept undisturbed possession in our poetry, would not easily give way to fiction and fancy, to picturesque description, and romantic imagery.
a 2 Wheji