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Q. HORATII FLACCI 1889
AT CAMBRIDGE, MICCLXVI.
TO THE REVEREND
M R. W A R BURTO N.
IVE me leave to present to you
the following Effay on the Epistle to Augustus; which, whatever other merit it may want, is secure of this, that it hath been planned upon the best model. For I know not what should hinder me from declaring to you in this public manner, that it was the early pleasure I received from what you had written of this fort, which first engaged me in the province of criticism. And, if I have taken upon
me to illustrate another of the finest pieces of antiquity after the Jame method, it is because I find myself encouraged to do so by higher confiderations, than even the Authority of your example.
CRITICISM, considered in its antient and noblest office of doing justice to the merits of great writers, more efpecially in works of poetry and invention, demands, to its perfect execution, these two qualities: a philofophic spirit, capable of penetrating the fundamental reasons of excellence in every different species of compofition; and a strong imagination, the parent of what we call true taste, enabling the critic to feel the full force of his author's excellence himself, and to impress a lively senfe of it upon
others. Each of these abilities is necessary. For by means of philosophy, criticism,
criticism, which otherwise a vague and superficial thing,