THE WORKS OF SAMUEL JOHNSON LL D

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Page 172 - Dryden is sometimes vehement and rapid ; Pope is always smooth, uniform, and gentle. Dryden's page is a natural field, rising into inequalities, and diversified by the varied exuberance of abundant vegetation ; Pope's is a velvet lawn, shaven by the scythe, and levelled by the roller. Of genius, that power which constitutes a poet ; that quality without which Judgement is cold and knowledge is inert; that energy which collects, combines, amplifies, and animates ; the superiority must, with some hesitation,...
Page 173 - If the flights of Dryden therefore are higher, Pope continues longer on the wing. If of Dryden's fire the blaze is brighter, of Pope's the heat is more regular and constant. Dryden often surpasses expectation, and Pope never falls below it. Dryden is read with frequent astonishment, and Pope with perpetual delight.
Page 171 - Dryden knew more of man in his general nature, and Pope in his local manners. The notions of Dryden were formed by comprehensive speculation, and those of Pope by minute attention. There is more dignity in the knowledge of Dryden, and more certainty in that of Pope.
Page 383 - In the character of his Elegy I rejoice to concur with the common reader; for by the common sense of readers uncorrupted with literary prejudices, after all the refinements of subtilty and the dogmatism of learning, must be finally decided all claim to poetical honours.
Page 347 - In his Night Thoughts he has exhibited a very wide display of original poetry, variegated with deep reflections and striking allusions, a wilderness of thought, in which the fertility of fancy scatters flowers of every hue and of every odour. This is one of the few poems in which blank verse could not be changed for rhyme but with disadvantage.
Page 219 - Yet softer honours, and less noisy fame Attend the shade of gentle Buckingham : In whom a race for courage fam'd and art, Ends in the milder merit of the heart ; And, chiefs or sages long to Britain given, Pays the last tribute of a saint to heaven.
Page 136 - Who but must laugh if such a man there be ? Who would not weep if Atticus were he?
Page 318 - Insatiate archer ! could not one suffice ? Thy shaft flew thrice ; and thrice my peace was slain ; And thrice, ere thrice yon moon had fill'd her horn.
Page 286 - As — she may not be fond to resign. 1 have found out a gift for my fair, I have found where the wood-pigeons breed ; But let me that plunder forbear : She will say 'twas a barbarous deed.
Page 240 - The great defect of the Seasons is want of method ; but for this I know not that there was any remedy. Of many appearances subsisting all at once, no rule can be given why one should be mentioned before another ; yet the memory wants the help of order, and the curiosity is not excited by suspense or expectation. His diction is in the highest degree florid and luxuriant, such as may be said to be to his images and thoughts both their lustre and their shade; such as invests them with splendour, through...

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