صور الصفحة
PDF
النشر الإلكتروني
[blocks in formation]

In the following couplet there is a mixture of Metaphors:

195-6. Oh may some spark of your celestial fire

The last, the meanest of your sons inspire,

and in the following couplet the action of Erasmus is described by two Metaphors which are incongruous:

695-6.

Stemm'd the wild torrent of a barb'rous age,

And drove these holy Vandals off the stage.

§ 2. PASSAGES IN WHICH THE MEANING IS OBSCURELY EXPRESSED.

Launch not beyond your depth, but be discreet,

And mark that point where sense and dulness meet. (50-1)

Some beauties yet no precepts can declare,

For there's a happiness as well as care. (141-2)

They talk of principles, but notions prize,

[blocks in formation]

Thus critics of less judgment than caprice,
Curious, not knowing, not exact, but nice,
Form short ideas, and offend in arts

(As most in manners) by a love to parts. (285-8)
True wit is nature to advantage dress'd,

What oft was thought, but ne'er so well express'd;
Something whose truth convinc'd at sight we find,
That gives us back the image of our mind. (297-300)
Others for language all their care express. (305)

Leave such to tune their own dull rhymes, and know
What's roundly smooth, or languishingly slow;

And praise the easy vigour of a line

Where Denham's strength and Waller's smoothness join. (358-61)

Of all this servile herd, the worst is he

That in proud dulness joins with quality. (414-5)

Oft, leaving what is natural and fit,

The current folly proves the ready wit. (448-9)

But sense surviv'd when merry jests were past;
For rising merit will buoy up at last. (460-1)
Unhappy wit, like most mistaken things,
Atones not for that envy which it brings. (494–5)

(Said of wit)

'Tis what the vicious fear, the virtuous shun;

By fools 'tis hated, and by knaves undone! (506-7)

Nor suffers Horace more in wrong translations

By wits, than critics in as wrong quotations. (663-4)

In lines 32-3, and 80-7, the meaning is fairly plain, but the relevance of these passages is not obvious. Lines 56-9 admit of an ambiguous interpretation.

§ 3. GRAMMATICAL IRREGULARITIES.

1. Of Construction.

(a) Concord: plural verb following singular subjects connected by disjunctive or:

'No monstrous height, or breadth, or length appear.' 251.

(b) Ellipsis: (1) of preposition:

'meant but fools,' i.e. for fools, 27;

'meant each other's aid,' i.e. for each other's aid, 83;

'whose truth convinced,' i.e. convinced of whose truth, 299;

'virgins smil'd at what they blush'd before,' i.e. at what they

blushed at before, 543;

(2) of antecedent; supply those:

'there are who judge,' 35;

'who could not win the mistress, woo'd the maid,' 105;

'there are to whose presumptuous thoughts,' 169;

'whose example strengthens his laws and is himself the great

sublime he draws,' (679-80); from whose supply who or he.

(3) of several words:

-'read each work of wit 'With the same spirit that its author writ,' 233-4, i.e. with the same spirit as that in which its author writ.

'No place so sacred from such fops is barr'd,' 622, i.e. No place is so sacred that from such fops it is barred. (c) Anacoluthon:

'In such lays.... we cannot blame indeed,' 239–42, a blending of two constructions, viz.,

(1) In such lays we cannot blame anything,

(2) Such lays we cannot blame.

2. Of Idiom.

(1) With Relative pronoun who:

(a) 'such who' for 'such as,' (15, 385, 511).

(b) 'who can or cannot write,' (30), for 'whether he can or cannot write.'

(2) With Infinitive mood:

(a) after 'know';

'who justly knew to blame,' (730).

(b) in place of gerund;

finding.'

'not proud to know,' (632), i.e. of knowing;

'bless'd with...love to praise,' (642), i.e. of praising.

'vice admir'd to find,' (551), i.e. 'vice was astonished at

(3) With Preposition :

'precepts from great examples given,' (98), where from is used instead of by.

'wit, like most mistaken things,' (494), with the meaning, ‘wit, like most things about which our judgment is mistaken.'

* mistake an author into vice,' (557), i.e. 'misinterpret an author and attribute to him a vicious meaning.'

3. Of words employed in an unusual sense.

Must with archaic force: 'worlds applaud that must not yet be found,' (194) i.e. ' worlds applaud that are not yet to be found,' 'cannot yet be found.'

[ocr errors]

Lays for lays down': 'the rules each verbal critic lays,' (261).

Content for trust': 'the sense they humbly take upon content,' (308).

Mistaken, in 'mistaken things,' meaning 'things which we estimate wrongly,' (494).

Atones meaning 'compensates': 'wit atones not for that envy which it brings,' (495).

Ill used attributively with author: 'each ill author is as bad a friend," (519).

Felt, in the sense of 'encountered,' followed by doom as object: 'both felt their doom,' (685).

Ambiguity is caused by the word past for 'over' in the expression 'merry jests were past'; 'jests were passed' would commonly be taken to mean 'jests were exchanged,' (460).

Latin influence has affected the meaning of the following words: conspire, i.e. 'unite,' in 'charms conspire,' (339).

admire, i.e. feel astonishment,' in 'fools admire,' (391), and 'vice admired,' (551).

(528).

nauseate, i.e. ‘turn sick at,' in ‘heads which nauseate all,' (389). sacred, i.e. accursed,' in 'sacred lust of praise,' (521).

provoking, i.e. 'challenging (punishment),' in 'provoking crimes,'

4. Of Form.

writ (234), now an archaism.

enlights (403), very rarely used for enlightens.

sure (533), adjective used as adverb.

thrived (535), less common than strong form throve.

begun (692), rung (703), and sung (704) are used as preterites, instead of began, rang, sang.

5. Of Order.

neither should be placed immediately before 'wits,' in 'Some neither can for wits nor critics pass,' (38).

but should follow 'restrained,' in 'Nature is but restrained by the laws which herself ordained,' (90).

yet should stand first word in the sentence, 'Some beauties yet no precepts can declare,' (141).

W. P. E.

II

In the following lines the construction is grammatically correct but the Inversion is awkward.

§ 4.

'A work t'outlast immortal Rome designed,' (131).
'But when t'examine ev'ry part he came,' (134).
'If, where the rules not far enough extend,' (146).
'Something whose truth convinc'd at sight we find,' (299).
'That not alone what to your sense is due

All may allow, but seek your friendship too,' (564–5).
'Blunt truths more mischief than nice falsehoods do,' (573).
'The learn'd reflect on what before they knew,' (740).

VERSIFICATION OF THE ESSAY ON CRITICISM.

Rhyme:

Faulty Rhymes: call, equivocal, 42; steer, character, 118; esteem, them, 139; take, track, 150; rise, precipice, 159; delight, wit, 237, 301; appear, regular, 251; glass, place, 311; still, suitable, 318; ear, repair, 341; worn, turn, 446; safe, laugh, 450; care, war, 536; eye, tapestry, 586; buy, Dispensary, 618; receive, give, 733.

Rhymes less faulty but still imperfect are to be found in lines 86, 94, 98, 148, 167, 265, 322, 414, 416, 424, 588, 649, 709.

Eye Rhymes: Jove, love, 376; prove, love, 532; proved, loved, 102, 576; good, blood, 303, 725; own, town, 408; brow, grow, 705; ease, increase, 534; skies, blasphemies, 552; revive, live, 701.

Rhymes good in Pope's time but faulty now, owing to changes in pronunciation:

(1) Rome, doom, 685. See the note to l. 248, p. 102.

(2) none, own, 10. The rhyme may be faulty here or the original pronunciation of one, still retained in the derivatives al-one, on-ly, at-one, may have survived also in none as late as Pope's day. See note to l. 495, p. 129.

Dryden has the same rhyme in the following couplet:

'With patience braving wrong, but off'ring none,
Since ev'ry man is free to love his own.'

(3) faults, thoughts, 170, 422. See note to l. 170, p. 98.

(4) join, line, 347, 361, divine, 525, shine, 563; join'd, find, 670, mind, 688.

I-love

« السابقةمتابعة »