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HE Occafion of publishing thefe Imitations was the Clamour raised on fome of my Epiftles. An Anfwer from Horace was both more full, and of more Dignity, than any I could have made in my own Perfon; and the Example of much greater Freedom in fo eminent a Divine as Dr. Donne, feemed a proof with what indignation and contempt a Chriftian may treat Vice or Folly, in ever fo low, or ever fo high a Station. Both thefe Authors were acceptable to the Princes and Minifters under whom they lived. The Satires of Dr. Donne I verfified, at the defire of the Earl of Oxford, while he was Lord Treasurer, and of the Duke of Shrewsbury, who had been Secretary of State; neither of whom looked upon a Satire on Vicious Courts as any Reflection on those they served in. And indeed there is not in the world a greater error, than that which Fools are fo apt to fall into, and Knaves with good reason to encourage, the miftaking a Satirist for a Libeller; whereas to a true Satirist nothing is fo odious as a Libeller, for the
fame reafon as to a man truly virtuous nothing is fo
hateful as a Hypocrite.
æquus Virtuti atque ejus Amicis.
Few Imitations of Horace are executed with more fidelity and fpirit than that of the 1ft Sat. of B. i. by Sir Brooke Boothby, addressed to his amiable and poetical friend Dr. Darwin. "Had Horace wrote his Satires or Epiftles in the fame kind of numbers with Virgil's Æneid, it would have been a monstrous impropriety; like hunting the fox or the hare on a war-horse, with the equipage of a General at a review, or in the day of battle. He knew very well, that, in familiar writings, dignity of verfification would be quite ridiculous." ARMSTRONG.
SATIRA PRIM A.
SUNT quibus in Satira videar nimis acer, et ultra Legem tendere opus; fine nervis altera, quid
Compofui, pars effe putat, fimilefque meorum
Mille die verfus deduci poffe.
Quid faciam? præfcribe.
VER. 1. There are,]" When I had a fever one winter in town," faid Pope to Mr. Spence, "that confined me to my room for five or fix days, Lord Bolingbroke came to fee me, happened to take up a Horace that lay on the table, and, in turning it over, dipt on the first fatire of the fecond book. He obferved how well that would fuit my cafe, if I were to imitate it in English. After he was gone, I read it over, tranflated it in a morning or two, and fent it to press in a week or fortnight after. And this was the occafion of my imitating fome other of the Satires and Epiftles." "To how cafual a beginning," adds Spence, "we are obliged for the moft delightful things in our language! When I was faying to him, that he had already imitated near a third part of Horace's fatires and epiftles, and how much it was to be wished that he would go on with them, he could not believe that he had gone fo far; but, upon computing it, it appeared to be above a third. He feemed on this not difinclined to carry it farther; but his last illness was then growing upon him, and robbed us of him, and of all hopes of that kind, in a few months."
Tranfcribed from Spence's Anecdotes; 1754
No parts of our Author's Works have been more admired than thofe Imitations. The aptnefs of the allufions, and the happinefs of many of the parallels, give a pleasure that is always no
TO MR. FORTESCUE.
HERE are, (I fcarce can think it, but am told,).
There are, to whom my Satire seems too
Scarce to wife Peter complaifant enough,
"I come to Council learned in the Law:
small one to the mind of a reader-the pleasure of comparison. He that has the leaft acquaintance with these pieces of Horace, which refemble the Old Comedy, immediately perceives, indeed, that our Author has affumed a higher tone, and frequently has deferted the free colloquial air, the infinuating Socratic manner of his original: and that he clearly resembles in his ftyle, as he did in his natural temper, the severe and ferious Juvenal more than the fmiling and fportive Horace. Let us felect fome paffages in which he may be thought to have equalled, excelled, or fallen fhort of the original; the latter of which cannot be deemed a difgrace to our Poet, or to any other writer, if we confider the extreme difficulty of transfufing into another language the fubtle beauties of Horace's dignified familiarity, and the uncommon union of fo much facility and force.
VER..10. Advice; and, as you use,] Horace, with much seem ing ferioufnefs, applies for advice to the celebrated Roman lawyer C. Trebatius Tefta, an intimate friend of Julius Cæfar, and of
Omnino verfus ?
H. Ne faciam, inquis,
H. Peream, male, fi non
Optimum erat: verum nequeo dormire.
T. Ter uncti
Tranfnanto, Tiberim, fomno quibus eft opus
Tully, as appears from many of his epiftles to Atticus; the gravity and self-importance of whofe character is admirably fupported throughout this little drama. His anfwers are fhort, authoritative, and decifive. Quiefcas, aio." And, as he was known to be a great drinker and swimmer, his two abfurd pieces of advice have infinite pleafantry. All these circumstances of humour are dropt in the copy. The lettuce and cowflip-wine are infipid and unmeaning prescriptions, and have nothing to do with Mr. Fortefcue's character. The third, fourth, and ninth lines of this Imitation are flat and languid. We muft alfo observe, from the old commentators, that the verbs tranfnanto and habento are in the very style of the Roman law: "Vide ut directis jurifconfultorum verbis utitur ad Trebatium jurifconfultum."
There are many excellent remarks in Acro and Porphyrio; from whom, as well as from Cruquius, Dacier has borrowed much, without owning it. Dacier's translation of Horace is not equal to his Ariftotle's Poetics. In the former, he is perpetually ftriving to discover new meanings in his author, which Boileau called, The Revelations of Dacier.
Cicero, as appears from many of his letters, had a great regard for this Trebatius, to whom he fays, fpeaking of his accompanying Cæfar in his expedition to Britain, "I hear there is neither filver nor gold in that island." On which Middleton finely obferves, "From their railleries of this kind, on the barbarity and mifery of our island, one cannot help reflecting on the surprising fate and revolutions of kingdoms: how Rome, once the mistress of the world, the feat of arts, empire, and glory, now lies funk