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Among other sciences, Mr. Gray had acquired great knowledge of Gothic architecture. He had seen and examined, while abroad, the Roman propor, tions on the spot, both in ancient times and in the works of Palladio. In his later years, he applied

Saxons, and Provençaux. Some account of the Latin rhyming poetry, from it's early origin, down to the fifteenth century,

Part I. On the School of Provence, which rose about the year 1,100, and was soon followed by the French and Italians. Their heroic poesy, or Romances in verse, Allegories, Fabliaux, Syrvientes, Comedies, Farces, Canzoni, Sonnets, Balades, Madrigals, Sestines, &c. Of their imitators, the French: and of the first Italian School, commonly called the Sicilian,' about the year 1,200, brought to perfection by Dante, Petrarch, Boccace, and others. State of poetry in England from the Con. quest, A. D. 1,066 (or rather from Henry II.'s time, A. D. 1,154) to the reign of Edward III, 1,327.

Part II. On Chaucer, who first introduced the manner of the Provençaux improved by the Italians, into our country: his character, and merits at large: the different kinds, in which he excelled. Gower, Occleve, Lydgate, Hawes, Gawen Douglas, Lyndesay, Bellenden, Dunbar, &c.

Part III. Second Italian School, of Ariosto, Tasso, &c. an improvement on the First, occasioned by the revival of Letters at the end of the fifteenth century. The Lyric poetry of this and the former age introduced from Italy by Lord Surrey, Sir T. Wyat, Bryan Lord Vaulx, &c. in the beginning of the six. teenth century.

Part IV. Spenser, his character: subject of his poem, allegorie and romantic, of Provençal invention; but his manner of tracing it borrowed from the Second Italian School. Dray. ton, Fairfax, Phineas Fletcher, Golding, Phaer, &c. This School ends in Milton. A Third Italian School, full of conceit, begun in Queen Elizabeth's reign, continued under James and Charles I. by Donne, Crashaw, Cleavland, carried to it's height by Cowley, and ending perhaps in Sprat.

Part V. School of France, introduced after the Restora: tion-Waller, Dryden, Addison, Prior, and Pope--which has continued to our own times.'

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himself to consider those stupendous structures of more modern date, which adorn our own country; and which, if they have not the same grace, have undoubtedly equal dignity. He endeavoured to trace this mode of building from it's commencement through it's various changes, depending not so much upon written accounts, as the internal evidence supplied by the arms, ornaments, and other marks of the buildings themselves, of their respective antiquity. With this view, he applied himself to the study of heraldry, as a preparatory science; and ultimately acquired a degree of sagacity, which enabled him at first sight to determine the precise time, when every particular part of our cathedrals had been erected.* But his favourite pursuit, for the last ten years of his life, was Natural History, which indeed he then rather resumed than began; as, by the instructions of his uncle Antrobus, he had rendered him. self no contemptible botanist at fifteen. His marginal notes on Linnæus and other naturalists, especially Hudson's · Flora Anglica,' were very numerous, and an interleaved tenth edition of the Systema Natura' he had nearly filled with his remarks. On the English Insects, there is nothing so perfect. While employed on Zoology, he read Aristotle's Treatise upon the subject with great care, and illustrated many difficult passages of that obscure ancient by the lights which he had received from modern discoveries. In a word, excepting pure mathematics and the studies depending on that science, there was hardly any part of human learning, in which he had not acquired a

* He is said to have furnished the very valuable introduçtory matter, on Saxon churches, in Bentham's Account of Ely Cathedral.?

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competent skill, while in some he possessed a consummate mastery.

Among his failings are enumerated, want of personal courage, reservedness and caprice of temper, and a foppish attention to dress. In his tour to the Lakes, it is affirmed, some of the finest views escaped him, because he did not choose to venture to those . spots whence they were to be seen. This timorousness singularly contrasts with the manly and martial strains of his poetry, as do the other defects abovementioned with his turn for humour and his quick sense of the ridiculous. His sensibility was even morbid, and his fastidiousness frequently gave trouble, as well as concern, to his most intimate friends. The coarse manners and unrefined sentiments, too often to be encountered in the ordinary intercourse of life, appeared to overset him. This, however, Mason and others with friendly earnestness attribute rather to "an affectation of delicacy and effeminacy, than to the things themselves;' adding, that Gray chose to put on this appearance before persons, whom he did not wish to please.'

He appears to have written in a desultory manner. Many of his efforts were, very probably, the efforts of a single sitting; and either want of affection for his subject, or the consciousness of being unequal to a long-continued flight, prevented him from returning to it. Few modern poets, it is certain, have left so many scraps of composition; so much planned, and so little executed. The only persevering labour, to which he seems to have been adequate, was such as tended to store his own mind with various knowledge for his own satisfaction. But if, as one of his admirers has insinuated, he was the most learned

man in Europe,' never was learning more thrown away. When, at the age of fifty one, his professorship called upon him to concentrate and apply his knowledge, he apparently sunk under the task.

Upon his poetry, it is needless to bestow praises. Whatever Dr. Johnson* may have contended to the contrary, he undoubtedly holds one of the highest places among the English poets of the eighteenth century. If his bold expressions be nonsense, what shall we pronounce some of the most rapturous passages of those, who are placed by universal consent at the very head of their class, of Shakspeare and of Milton? In sublimity, and pathos, and enthusiasm he is perhaps excelled by Dryden and Collins, the two great lyrists of England; but in richness of imagery, glow of expression, and harmony of versification he surpasses them both. Few in number indeed, and for the benefit of frequent and patient revision kept long under his own eyes before they were submitted to those of the public, his poems may be regarded as a standard of the correctness of our modern muse. Of his . Elegy' in particular the subject, like that of Milton's immortal Epic, is universally interesting, the allegory sublime, the natural description picturesque, and the numbers matchlessly melodious. “ It abounds,” even Johnson admits, “ with images which find a mirror in every mind, and with sentiments to which every bosom

* Not, however, without numerous and able opponents. In 1782, Mr. Potter vindicated his lyrical compositions ; and a more general defence appeared under the title of, Remarks on Dr. Johnson's Life of Gray.' Professor Young of Glasgow parodied the atrabilious stile of the critic, and he fell under the lash also of Mr. Wakefield.

returns an echo."-" Had Gray written often thus, it had been vain to blame, and useless to praise him.”

A complete edition of his Poems, with Memoirs of his Life and Writings compiled principally from his Letters, was published by Mr. Mason, in one volume Ato. in 1775, and in four volumes 8vo. in 1778. The common editions are too numerous to be specified. To one by Mr. Wakefield, in 1786, were added notes and parallel passages to perhaps a hypercritical extent; and the Rev.John Mitford has recently given another, of high character : but the most complete, in every respect, was published in 1815 by Mr. Mathias.

The following character of Gray, drawn up by the Rev. Mr. Temple, rector of St. Gluvias in Cornwall, and published in the London Magazine a month or two after his decease, was adopted by the Rev. Editor of his works ; “ Perhaps he was the most learned man in Europe. He was equally acquainted with the elegant and profound parts of science, and that not superficially but thoroughly. He knew every branch of history, both natural and civil; had read all the original historians of England, France, and Italy; and was a great antiquarian. Criticism, metaphysics, morals, politics made a principal part of his study ; voyages and travels of all sorts were his favourite amusements; and he had a fine taste in painting, prints, architecture, and gardening. With such a fund of knowledge, his conversation must have been equally instructive and entertaining; but he was also a good man, a man of virtue and humanity. There is no character without some speck, some imperfection; and I think the greatest defect in his was an affectation in deli

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