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Alas! from the day that we met,
What hope of an end to my woes? When I cannot endure to forget
The glance that undid my repose. Yet time may diminish the pain:
The flower, and the shrub, and the tree, Which I rear'd for her pleasure in vain, In time may have comfort for me.
The sweets of a dew-sprinkled rose,
The sound of a murmuring stream, The peace which from solitude flows,
Henceforth shall be Corydon's theme. High transports are shown to the sight,
But we 're not to find them our own; Fate never bestow'd such delight,
As I with my Phyllis had known.
O ye woods, spread your branches apace;
I would hide with the beasts of the chase;
- and I could not but love;
and I am undone !
THE DYING KID.
Optima quæque dies miseris mortalibus ævi
A TEAR bedews my Delia's eye,
To think yon playful kid must die;
From crystal spring, and flowery mead,
Erewhile, in sportive circles round
Pleas'd on his various freaks to dwell,
She tells with what delight he stood
She tells me how with eager speed
His every frolic, light as aïr,
But knows my Delia, timely wise,
Soon would the vine his wounds deplore,
No more those bowers might Strephon see,
Each wayward passion soon would tear
Then mourn not the decrees of Fate,
REV. CHARLES CHURCHILL.
THE HE REV. CHARLES CHURCHILL, a poet, once of great repute, was the son of a curate of St. John's Westminster, in which parish he was born in 1731. He received his early education at the celebrated public school in the vicinity, whence he was sent to Oxford; but to this university he was refused admission on account of deficient classical knowledge. Returning to school, he soon closed his further education by an early and imprudent marriage. Receiving holy orders from the indulgence of Dr. Sherlock, he went down to a curacy in Wales, where he attempted to remedy the scantiness of his income, by the sale of cyder; but this expedient only plunged him deeper in debt. Returning to London, he was chosen, on his father's death, to succeed him as curate and lecturer of St. John's. His finances still falling short, he took various methods to improve them; at the same time he displayed an immoderate fondness for theatrical exhibitions. This latter passion caused him to think of exercising those talents which he was conscious of possessing; and in March, 1761, he published, though anonymously, a view of the excellencies and
defects of the actors in both houses, which he entitled "The Rosciad." It was much admired, and a second edition appeared with the author's name. Churchill was now at once raised from obscurity to eminence; and the Rosciad, which we have selected as his best work, is, in fact, the only one of his numerous publications on which he bestowed due labour. The delineations are drawn with equal energy and vivacity; the language and versification, though not without inequalities, are superior to the ordinary strain of current poetry, and many of the observations are stamped with sound judgment and correct taste.
The remainder of his life, though concurring with the period of his principal fame, is little worthy of notice. He became a party writer, joining with Wilkes and other oppositionists, and employed his pen assiduously in their cause. With this was joined a lamentable defect of moral feeling, exhibited by loose and irregular manners. Throwing off his black suit, he decorated his large and cluinsy person with gold lace; and dismissing his wife, he debauched from her parents the daughter of a tradesman in Westminster. His writings at length became mere rhapsodies; and taking a journey to France for the purpose of visiting Mr. Wilkes, then an exile in that country, he was seized with a fever, which put a period to his life on November 4. 1764, at the age of 34.