The Poetical Works of William Cowper

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Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2012 - 254 pages
This historic book may have numerous typos and missing text. Purchasers can download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. Not indexed. Not illustrated. 1830. Excerpt: ... THE TASK. BOOK I. THE SOFA. ARGUMENT. Historical deduction of seats, from the stool to the sofa. A schoolboy's ramble. A walk in the country. The scene described. Rural sounds as well as sights delightful. Another walk. Mistake concerning the charms of solitude corrected. Colonnades commended. Alcove, and the view from it. The wilderness. The grove. The thresher. The necessity and the benefits of exercise. The works of nature superior to, and in some instances inimitable by, art. The wearisomeness of what is commonly called a life of pleasure. Change of scene sometimes expedient. A common described, and the character of crazy Kate introduced. Gipsies. The blessings of civilized life. That state most favourable to virtue. The South Sea islanders compassionated, but chiefly Omai. His present state of mind supposed. Civilized life friendly to virtue, but not great cities. Great cities, and London in particular, allowed their due praise, but censured. FSte champetre. The book coucludes with a reflection on the effects of dissipation and effeminacy upon our public measures. THE SOFA. I Sing the sofa. I who lately sang Truth, Hope, and Charity, and touch'd with awe The solemn chords, and with a trembling hand, Escaped with pain from that adventurous flight, Now seek repose upon an humbler theme;, The theme though humble, yet august and proud The occasion--for the Fair commands the song. Time was, when clothing sumptuous or for use, Save their own painted skins, our sires had none. As yet black breeches were not; satin smooth, Or velvet soft, or plush with shaggy pile: The hardy chief upon the rugged rock, Wash'd by the sea, or on the gravelly bank Thrown up by wintry torrents roaring loud, Fearless of wrong, reposed his weary strength. Those barbarous ages past...

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