« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »
cers, to fufpend the courts of justice, and then,-at the close of the Seffion,-condescended at last to read the terms held out. No change, no modification, was proposed in them, but they were crudely rejected in the terms of disrespect and insolence and rancour,' we have already ci:ed.
But this is not all, men who petition in earnest for redress, will wait the event of their Petitions. The last Petition, addressed to the King, was drawn up in the month of August, and presented to the King in the month of September 1775. In the same month of Au. gult, before their Petition had reached the Throne, a boat belonging to the Asia was burnt at New York; two ships were seized by vessels fitted out in South Carolina. Before they could hear how their Petition had been received, St. John's was attacked, Montreal attempt. çd, Canada invaded by Arnold, commissions issued by Washington to cruize on the ships of Great Britain, as against a foreign enemy; Courts of Admiralty appointed to try and condemn them as lawful captures.
Can any man after this entertain a doubt whether they were determined on independence ? Had an Angel descended from Heaven with terms of accommodation, which offered less than independence, they would have driven him back with holile scorn.'
Our Readers have now seen that this Author is no common pamphleteer, or political Hack; but a respectable, spirited, and able advocate for the cause, in support of which he has drawn bis pen. His performance is, unquestionably, one of the most elaborate pieces that the Public hath lately seen, on the subje&t of American Controversy; and we do not expect a more complete or more decisive Answer to the famous Declaration which hath given birth to it.-The great question, however, of external taxation (the main object of the Colonies) ftill remains, in our opinion, for a more satisfactory discussion; note withstanding all that has been urged, by the present ingenious Writer, with regard to ufage, and the acquiefience of the Americans, in the infant state of their settlements : 'fee Art. XVII. with the Answer ; which we were tempted to extract, but our limits are too narrow.
At the close of this work, the Author has given a comprehensive review of the general dispute ; and here he attacks the Preamble to the American Declaration, exploding the theory of Government which the Congress seem defirous of introducing. He concludes, that in the tenets which they have advanced, 'they have outdone the utmost extravagance of all former fanatics'-' even the German Anabaptists,'—and · have put the axe to the root of all Government'
He finally takes leave of his Readers, with a repetition of his hope,' that we shall now unite as one man, and acquiesce in the necesity of submitting to whatever burdens, of making whatever efforis may be necessary, to bring this ungrateful and
rebellious people back to that allegiance they have long had it in contemplation to renounce, and have now at last so daringly renounced.'
ART. VII, The Works of Andrew Marvell, Eli; Poetical, Controver.
fal, and Political. Containing many original Letters, Poems, and Tracts, never before printed. With a new Life of the Author, by Capt. Edward Thompson. 4to. 3 Vols. 31. 35. Boards. Becket, &c. 1776.
E are very glad to see so handsome an edition of the
works of so respectable a WRITER, and so excellent a MaN, as Andrew Marvell; the affectionate friend of Milton, the ardent lover of his country, and the undaunted champion of the common rights of inankind.
Of the Editor's motives for undertaking this work, and of the affiftance which he has received, in order to its completion, the following account is given in the preface :
I have ventured, says Mr. Thompson, to give the excellent compofitions of this great and exalted character, because they Þave never been given to the world but in a mutilated and an imperfect ftate.- His political and controversial works were never yet collected. The late Mr. Thomas Hollis, of honourable memory, had once a design of making a collection of his compositions, and advertisements were published for that purpose.'
Our Editor proceeds to inform us, that all the manuscripts and scarce tracis collected for Mr. Hollis's intended edition, have fallen into his hands; and that the additional Letters on the bufiness of Parliament (which Mr. Marvell addrefled to his conftituents, the corporation of Hull, in a course of 18 years correspondence) gave him fresh encouragement to persevere in an undertaking, to which he had been first prompted by his early respect and veneration for the Author's memory * -These letters were found in the possession of the corporation ; by whose permission Capt. Thompson transcribed them; and they are given to the Public, in the first of these volumes: they amount, in number, to 256.
After the death of Mr. Hollis (whose loss is much lamented by the best friends to the liberties of this country) our Editor says, he was “ favoured, by his successor, with many anecdotes, manuscripts, and scarce compositions of our Author,' such as Mr. Thompson' was unable to procure any where else;' and by the attention and friendhip of Mr. Thomas Raikes, he has
Mr. Thompson, it seems, is a native of the place which had the honour of being so long represented by Mr. Marvell.
e been put in poffeffion of a volume of Mr. Marvell's poems, fome written with his own hand, and the rest copied by his order. This valuable acquisition was many years in the care of Mr. Robert Nettleton ; which serves now (in his own words) to detect the theft and ignorance of some writers.'--And here our Editor (on the authority of the above mentioned MS. volume, and in virtue of Mr. Nettleton's remark) proceeds to reclaim, in behalf of Marvell's poetical fame, certain admired pieces of poetry, which have been given to other authors. The first of theie is the celebrated hymn originally printed in No. 453 of the Spectator,
When all thy mercies, O! my God,
My rising foul surveys, &c. This hymn being found in the aforesaid book, our Editor fcruples not to affert Mr. Marvell's property in it, as being its real author; but we do not apprehend the circumstance to be of sufficient weight to justify this claim. The internal evidence, we think, is strongly against it: the modern air and polish of the verses, plainly speak a later pen than that of Marvell.-Mr. Thompson, however, does not charge the Spectator with any literary felony on this occasion : he only says, with decency enough, · How these (the verses) came to Mr. Addifon's hands, I cannot explain; but by his words' [fee his prefatory introduction to the poem] they seem to be remitted by correspondents, and might perhaps come from the relations of Marvell.'
The next piece here brought into question, is a translation of the u4th pfalm, which is given in the Spectator, No. 461, by Mr. Tickell (not Tickle, as our Editor writes it) who, says Capt. T. apologises · as a correspondent, compliments the Spectator on his former hymns, and then says he has a mind to try his hand ; and as the 114th psalm appears to be an admirable ode, he will try to turn it into our language.'-- Whether this is Mr. Tickle's or not,' says our Editor, it is very extraordinary that he should take so much pains to hide his theft,' &c. Without infifting on the inaccuracy of this observation, which may be merely a flip of the pen, we would only, in friendly fort, remind Capt. T. of the incivility which he has shewa to the memory of Mr. Tickell, at the same time that he has, possibly, been attempting to rob him of bis justly acquired fame. For, after all that our Editor has said, with respect to Marvell’s claim to the Spectator's version of the 114th psalm t, we apprehend that the internal testimony is here, also,
† And which, now, appears to have been the late Dr. Watts's property, from its being printed as such in the Doctor's celebrated book of the Psalms, as fung in the Diffenting congregations,
as well as in the former case, totally against him; and amply fufficient to overchrow all his presumptive evidence, drawn merely from the circumstance of a transcript, made by no one knows whe, nor from what original.
A third poerical prize here contended for, is the beautiful ode in No. 465 of the Spectator, beginning with
The spacious firmament on highThis piece is here, likewise, reprinted, as Marvell's, on the fame authority on which our Editor founds his Author's claim to the hymn and the psalm abovementioned; and which we beg leave to restore to Mr. Addison, on the same grounds on which we ventured to diffent from Capt. To's opinion, with refpect to the other disputed articles.
A fourth poetical performance here ascribed to Andrew Marvell, in opposition to the hitherto allowed claims of other writers, is the celebrated ballad of WILLIAM and MARGARET, which the late Mr. Mallet has given to the world, as the production of his muse. • This manuscript book, says our Editor, proves it (the ballad) the composition of Marvell, written by him in 1670.' He adds, I am sorry this truth did not appear sooner, that the Scots bard might have tried to defend himself; but now the jack-daw must be stripped of his stolen plumage, and the fine feathers must be restored to the real peacock.'-We are forry, too, that Mr. Mallet is not living to vindicate his claim to this beautiful piece of poetry, if his claim were just: which, we acknowledge, is, with us, a matter of fome doubt. Possibly Capt. T. is right in asserting Marvell's property in it; but, be that as it may, we think his zeal for bis Author has burried him too far, in thus insulting the memory of so respectable a writer as Mallet; especially in a matter wherein, after all that has been said on the subject, there is a possibility that he may, one day, be found mistaken. We cannot allow the manuscript to be an incontestible authority, except with relation to such poems as can be proved to have been written by Marvell's own hand.
A number of other poems, from the manuscript, are introduced in our Editor's prefatory discourse; some of which have great merit; and all partake, most undoubtedly, of the genuine spirit of this witty Writer,
Our Editor, in the course of his presace, has the following observations respecting his admired Author :
• I have now most carefully, rendered to the Public every vaJuable paper written by this illustrious patriot, and with as much accuracy as possible; and, as I mean the work to be a testimony of respect to the Author, I hope it will be found and allowed, that I have spared no expence in making it, in fome
small degree, equal to his merits; though his compositions uns adorned, are the best obelisks of his virtues: and since it hach been of late a kind of wicked fashion to decry the purest compositions of our noblest authors, to vainly render patriotism ri. diculous, by attempting to laugh all patriot virtue out of countenance; yet I trust, in the character of Mr. Marvell there will be discovered such proofs to the contrary, that the very Dalsymple, who hath attempted to traduce the glorious names of Sydney and Russel, will fail in any malignant efforts to blacken so fair a page of character ; and that one man, even with him, shall be found to be proof against all bribery and corruption ; and that no place in the gift of a king, nor any money in the treasury, could warp his mind to defert his religion when attacked by Papifts, or seduce him to abandon the post of a faithful and watchful centinel in the hour of ruin and danger. Dalrymple's papers I have ever regarded with horror and detertation, and aitribute their existence to that vindictive spirit expressed in their national motto, nemo me impune, &c. a maxim fitter for the Indians of Chili and Peru, than of any Christian ftate.
• One of my first and (trongest reasons for publishing the works of Marvell, was the pleasing hopes of adding a number of ftrenuous and sincere friends to our conftitution, but alas ! what is to be expected in this degenerate age, when arbitrary power, by her baneful engines of venality and corruption, is daily putting a check to every notion of rational and inanly liberty!
• The (late) Rev. Dr. Granger in his excellent Bisgraphical History of England, speaks thus of Marvell's character. _“ A. Marvell was an admirable master of ridicule, which he exerted with great freedom in the cause of liberty and virtue. He never respected vice for being dignified, and dared to attack it wherever he found it, although on the throne itself. There never was a 'more honest satirist. He hated corruption more than he dreaded poverty; and was so far from being venal, that he could not be bribed by the King into silence, when he scarce knew how to procure a dinner *
The first of these volumes contains, beside the Editor's extensive and miscellaneous preface, of s7 pages, the large collection of Marvell's letters to the corporation of Hull, in which are many curious anecdotes relative to parliamentary proceedings ; familiar epistles from Marvell to his friends, among which is
• An anecdote, explanatory of this passage, is given in the life of the Author, printed at the end of the third volume. Is is fo generally known, that we thought it needless to infertit,