the lives of the most eminent english poets with critical observations on their works

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Page 24 - James, whose skill in physic will be long remembered ; and with David Garrick, whom I hoped to have gratified with this character of our common friend. But what are the hopes of man ? I am disappointed by that stroke of death which has eclipsed the gaiety of nations, and impoverished the public stock of harmless pleasure.
Page 89 - The whole nation was at that time on fire with faction. The Whigs applauded every line in which liberty was mentioned, as a satire on the Tories ; and the Tories echoed every clap, to show that the satire was unfelt.
Page 60 - Lovelace; but he has excelled his original in the moral effect of the fiction. Lothario, with gaiety which cannot be hated, and bravery which cannot be despised, retains too much of the spectator's kindness.
Page 110 - He has dissipated the prejudice that had long connected gaiety with vice, and easiness of manners with laxity of principles. He has restored virtue to its dignity, and taught innocence not to be ashamed. This is an elevation of literary character, " above all Greek,
Page 24 - His studies had been so various, that I am not able to name a man of equal knowledge. His acquaintance with books was great; and what he did not immediately know, he could at least tell where to find.
Page 94 - Not long afterwards, an attempt was made to revive the Spectator, at a time indeed by no means favourable to literature, when the...
Page 42 - To which the King is said to have replied, " You do well to put me in the way of making a man of him ;" and ordered him a pension of five hundred pounds.
Page 190 - The cause of Congreve was not tenable; whatever glosses he might use for the defence or palliation of single passages, the general tenour and tendency of his plays must always be condemned. It is acknowledged, with universal conviction, that the perusal of his works will make no man better ; and that their ultimate effect is to represent pleasure in alliance with vice, and to relax those obligations by which life ought to be regulated.
Page 110 - He not only made the proper use of wit himself, but taught it to others ; and from his time it has been generally subservient to the cause of reason and of truth. He has dissipated the prejudice that had long connected gaiety with vice, and easiness of manners with laxity of principles.
Page 241 - This piece was received with greater applause than was ever known. Besides being acted in London sixtythree days without interruption, and renewed the next season with equal applause, it spread into all the great towns of England; was played in many places to the thirtieth and fortieth time ; at Bath and Bristol fifty, &c.

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