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embellishment of a character fo replete with insolence, ingratitude, and criminal diffipation, can hardly be ascribed to motives of greater purity than the sale of the copy, unless we should take into the account the delicacies of friendAsip, and the congenial talents of the man and his orator.

Savage was a poet, and in his biographer's opinion, a poet above mediocrity, and not inferior in the poetical

scale of Dr. Johnson to some of thofe -whom he hath honoured with his prefatory narratives,

May we not then presume, that the Doctor's Life of Savage will be added to those elogies of eminent bards which have been received by the public with so'much applanuse, and read with To much avidity !,- We would not anticipate the pleafure of his readers in observing the Doctor's improvements in political wisdom fince

the year 1744; we shall only give one instance of it, taken from pages: 120, 127, 122, of the edition of Savage's Life that ycar, where there are some just, and indeed beautiful, contemplations, on the tise and settlement of colonies, both in a poetical and political viewT

Savage composed a poem on the subject, where, as the biographer informs us, he has laudably afferted the natu" ral equality of mankind, and endea6 voured 10 - fuppress that pride which

6 inclines

® inclines men to imagine that right is “ the coursequence of power.”

The benevolent Dr. Price himself could not have advanced a doctrine more unsavoury to the palate of Dr. Jonnson's friends, nor needs it much sagacity to Thew how it appears in contraft with the change which experience hath made in the Doctor's opinions *. The Doctor, we presume, found his account in both his opinions, and all sides ought to be fatiffied.

There is indeed one performance af cribed to the pen of the Doctor, where the prostitution is of so fingular a nature, that it would be difficult to select an adequate motive for it out of the

* Life of Savage, p. 122,

moun

mountainous heap of conjectural causes of human passions or human caprice. We allude to the speech delivered by the late unhappy Dr. Williain Dodd, when he was about to hear the sentence of the law pronounced upon him, in consequence of an indictment for forgery.

The voice of the public has given the honour of manufacturing this speech to Dr. Johnson; and the stile and configuration of the speech itself confirm the imputation.

· Dr. Dodd was a man of parts, a poet, and an orator. He can hardly be supposed to have suspected that the powers of his own rhetorie would be too feeble for so critical an occasion. Presence of mind he could not wart to compose a

speech

4

speech for himself. His effufions both in prose and poetry, during the most trying moments of his confinement, prove that he did not. The naked unadorned feelings of his own mind on that awful occasion (which he could hardly convey to Dr. Johnson) would have been the most expressive of his fincerity and selfhumiliation; and the most proper and

1 effectual recommendation of his case to the commiseration of his audience, and the merciful interposition of his judges.

An ambition to go out of the world with the applause of having made a florid speech, we cannot, with any degree of charity, impute to the unfortunate criminal. He must, in that case, have

had

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