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But I am more particularly influenced by the occasion it affords me, of thus publicly declaring, how sensible I am of the honour of
your intimacy and friendship for so many years; and of testifying the affectionate attachment of,
MY DEAR LORD,
YOUR LORDSHIP'S MOST OBLIGED,
AND MOST FAITHFUL SERVANT,
BATH, JAN. 1805,
THE Author of this Miscellany has not
attempted the higher regions of Poetry, for he does not agree in sentiment with the Roman Poet, when he says,
“ Quod si deficiant vires, audacia certe
He has contented himself, therefore, with endeavouring to extract, like the bee in his motto, some honey from the humbler flowers of the valley.
How far even there he may have succeeded, the reader must judge, to whom
these Trifles are submitted with diffidence; and yet he is not altogether without hope, that some may be found not entirely unworthy of perusal. Leaving his Original Productions to their fate without
farther comment, he begs leave to make a few remarks on the subject of his Imitations.
· In regard to those of PETRARCH, he requests indulgence; and intreats more particularly the candid reader of the Italian to consider the difficulty of transfu-. sing the peculiar beauties, exquisite pathos, and inimitable harmony of the original into the English language; which, though equal to the grand and sublime, is certainly inferior in
grace and flexibility. He deems it also necessary to add, that whenever he has introduced a thought or sentiment, which is not contained in the original sonnet, he has always drawn its substitute
from some other composition of the same author.
In his imitations of HORACE and MarTIAL, he shelters himself under the precedents of other writers, for the liberties he has taken in applying modern characters and customs: for this reason, he has translated, imitated, or paraphrased, as inclination prompted, or the nature of the subject required, preserving, as far as suited his objects, or as he was able, the original turn of thought and sentiment. He has subjoined the Italian and the Latin of the Poets he has imitated, not with a view of swelling the book, but to enable the classical reader more readily to compare each translation with the original.
P.S. It may be proper to state that some of the Epigrams and three or four of
the other compositions have occasionally found their way into print. -Among the latter he has to note that the blank verses on Contentment, the Lines on Dancing, and the Epitaph on a Young Lady, were, by permission of the Author, introduced into the “ Female Mentor,” a work calculated chiefly for the instruction and amusement of the yonthful female mind, printed for CADELL and DAVIES, Strand, London.