The Lives of the English Poets: and a Criticism of Their Work

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R. Dodsley, 1795 - English poetry - 536 pages
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The Lives of the English Poets: And a Criticsm of Their works stands out as one of the earliest types of antogies. it is highyly probable that this book became a model for us, anthology writers, to produce a certain kind of anthologies including biography and works of certain authors. therefore, this book is very important in terms of its pioneer position in these kinds of analytical books 

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Page 400 - Damn with faint praise, assent with civil leer, And without sneering, teach the rest to sneer; Willing to wound and yet afraid to strike, Just hint a fault and hesitate dislike; Alike...
Page 202 - We know that they never drove a field, and that they had no flocks to batten; and though it be allowed that the representation may be allegorical, the true meaning is so uncertain and remote, that it is never sought because it cannot be known when it is found.
Page 149 - ... devout prayer to that eternal Spirit who can enrich with all utterance and knowledge, and sends out his seraphim, with the hallowed fire of his altar, to touch and purify the lips of whom he pleases...
Page 195 - To be of no Church is dangerous. Religion, of which the rewards are distant, and which is animated only by Faith and Hope, will glide by degrees out of the mind, unless it be invigorated and reimpressed by external ordinances, by stated calls to worship, and the salutary influence of example.
Page 327 - Of him that knows much it is natural to suppose that he has read with diligence; yet I rather believe that the knowledge of Dryden was gleaned from accidental intelligence and various conversation; by a quick apprehension, a judicious selection, and a happy memory, a keen appetite of knowledge, and a powerful digestion...
Page 525 - James, whose skill in physic will be long remembered ; and with David Garrick, whom I hoped to have gratified with this character of our common friend. But what are the hopes of man ? I am disappointed by that stroke of death which has eclipsed the gaiety of nations, and impoverished the public stock of harmless pleasure.
Page 344 - Or, shipwreck'd, labour to some distant shore ; Or, in dark churches, walk among the dead : They wake with horror, and dare sleep no more.
Page 22 - Yet great labour directed by great abilities is never wholly lost : if they frequently threw away their wit upon false conceits, they likewise sometimes struck out unexpected truth ; if their conceits were far-fetched, they were often worth the carriage. To write on their plan, it was at least necessary to read and think.
Page 186 - ... read for pleasure or accomplishment, and who buy the numerous products of modern typography, the number was then comparatively small. To prove the paucity of readers, it may be sufficient to remark, that the nation had been satisfied from 1623 to 1664, that is, forty-one years, with only two editions of the works of Shakspeare, which probably did not together make one thousand copies.
Page 351 - From harmony, from heavenly harmony, This universal frame began : When Nature underneath a heap of jarring atoms lay, And could not heave her head, The tuneful voice was heard from high. Arise ye more than dead. Then cold and hot, and moist and dry, In order to their stations leap, And music's power obey. From harmony, from heavenly harmony, This universal frame began : From harmony to harmony Through all the compass of the notes it ran, The diapason closing full in man.

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