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published, than they which wrote them. And these men bave done what in them lay to make that paper public; and have recorded in the Annals of this kingdom, to all ages, what should have been smothered in the darkest pits of oblivion. They have often assembled the King's Majesty's subjects to the great charges and vain attendance of many noblemen and barons to see their passions put forward. They have busied the prince to condemn others by power (a minister of their attempts), and not purge himself to posterity; for such a paper should have been answered by a pen, not by an are. There is no prince living, no, nor dead, but subjects have and do both write and speak of after their fantasies.
Wise Princes have never troubled themselves much about talkers ; weak spirits cannot suffer the liberty of judgments, nor the indiscretion of tongues. To strive to restrain them is the work of busy bodies, who would fain have somewhat to do, but know not what, nor how to help Domitian to kill gnats with his dagger ; having won points and conclusions heretofore in the state beyond their hopes, they begin to foster great and shameful hopes beyond the reach of all obtaining."
We must now, however, come to the more immediate purpose of this review, the poetry of Drummond. Jonson's judgment, which seems to imply that he confined himself too closely to an imitation of the ancients, we cannot think altogether just; and we incline to believe that Jonson thought rather of Drummond's opinions than of his works, given probably in conversations at Hawthornden, and as we collect them from a very clever letter addressed to his “much-honoured friend Arthur Johnston, physician to the King."
The character of Drummond's poetry is various, consisting of Sonnets, Madrigals, Epigrams, Epitaphs, religious and other Poems. The Sonnets and other minor pieces, wherein he bewails his lost mistress, we are inclined to think the most beautiful; and some of them are, indeed, in the highest degree beautiful. The great excellence of Drummond is unaffected feeling, and unaffected language ;-conceits and crude thoughts could have no mastery over him, without his ceasing to be : and though he could not live in the age without some touch of its corruption, the simplicity of his own feeling has more frequently beautified and ennobled the vice, than the vice destroyed or corrupted his better nature. It will be evident to the reader, that Milton thought as highly of the following sonnet as we do :
“ Dear chorister, who from those shadows sends,
Who ne'er (not in a dream) did taste delight;
The bird, as if my questions did her move,
With trembling wings, sigh’d forth, I love, I love." The next, we acknowledge to believe one of the finest in the language
“Now, while the Night her sable veil hath spread,
I wake, I turn, I weep, oppress'd with pain,
brain.” Drummond loved the country with that deep and placid love which a calm and contemplative poet alone feels. He had suffered deeply,—he possessed a rich store of learning,-he had a wise and thoughtful turn of mind,-and, feeling a lively relish for all the charms of nature, he indulged his genius in poetico-philosophical reflections upon life, its vicissitudes, hopes, sorrows, and vanities. To one of this mood, no form of poetry is so admirably adapted as the sonnet; the entire, the unique, the harmonious, the dignified sonnet, that little poem, big with one fine sentiment, richly adorned and delicately wrought, never-tiring, -never-flagging, which bursts forth with an organ-like peal, and proceeds in a sustained and majestic march, until the soft and melodious close sweetly and gently winds up the whole. When a silver voice takes its course through a fine sonnet, like many of those of our author, we listen to it as to an oracle ; when the sound ceases, we feel as if a revelation had been made, and the very silence becomes musical. No poem leaves the mind in a finer mood than the
grand and solemn sonnet.-Such a one is the following, albeit turning upon the vulgar and trivial passion of love:
“ That learned Grecian, who did so excel
What wonder now I feel so fair a flame,
In another fine sonnet, our poet expresses the natural disgust of life, that sickness of all mortal joy, which grief never fails to inspire. His is no feigned satiety; we perceive the dismal and dreary livery of wretchedness iu every line:
“ If crost with all mishaps be my poor life,
Why seek I to prolong these loathsome days?
The fairest rose in shortest time decays.” The next is a sonnet of sound,—not, however, merely of sound. Drummond, as well as Milton, knew, that the glorious march of fine names did something more than please the ear,they recal a crowd of the finest associations of history, poetry, and romance.
“ Nor Arne, nor Mincius, nor stately Tiber,
He fell who burnt the world with borrow'd beams,
Have ever had so rare a cause of praise,
The following is one of the earlier sonnets, written before : the loss, which he, in other places, so feelingly deplores
“ I know that all beneath the moon decays,
Know what I list, this all cannot me move,
This is again the topic of another sonnet
“ Ah me, and I am now the man whose muse
Who ever think, and never think on aught
Of all the numerous addresses to sleep, there are few finer than this
“ Sleep, Silence' child, sweet father of soft rest,
Come as thou wilt, and what thou wilt bequeath,
The solitude which he loved with all his heart is often very delightfully eulogized —
“ Dear wood, and you sweet solitary place,
Ah! if I were mine own, your dear resorts
The pleasures of a lonely life in a rural retreat are contrasted with those of a court, with considerable force
“ Thrice happy he, who by some shady grove,