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Canterbury, the eight of September, 1705, which ap-
Cures for Melancholy,
578 style and mannor of the Ilon. Robert Boyle's Medi-
581 ALEXANDER Pore, .
Page DR JOHN ARBUTHNOT,
642 Prejudices and Opinions, The History of John Bull, . 642 From Maxims Concerning Patriotism,
659 Usefulness of Mathematical Learning,
646 LORD BOLINGBROKE,
HISTORICAL, CRITICAL, AND THEOLOGICAL National Partiality and Prejudice,
WRITERS. Absurdity of Useless Learning,
648 Unreasonableness of Complaints of tho Shortness of LAWRENCE ECHARD,
669 Human Life, 648 JOHN STRYPE,
659 Pleasures of a Patriot, 649 PORTER AND KENNETT,
660 Wiso, Distinguished from Cunning Ministers, 650 | RICHARD BENTLEY,
660 LADY MARY WORTLEY MONTAGU,
Authority of Reason in Religious Matter,
660 To E. W. Montagu, Esq.-In prospect of Marriage, 651 DR FRANCIS ATTERBURY,
661 To the Same-On Matrimonial Happiness, 651 Usefulness of Church Music,
661 To Mr Pope-Eastern Manners and Language, 651 DR SAMUEL CLARKE,
602 To Mrs S. C.-Inoculation for the Small-pox, 652 Natural and Essential Difference of Right and Wrong,
664 To Lady Rich-France in 1718, 653 DR WILLIAM LOWTH,
665 To the Countess of Bute-Consoling her in Affliotian, 653 DR BENJAMIN HOADLY,
665 To the Same-On Female Education, 653 The Kingdom of Christ not of this World,
665 Ironical View of Protestant Infallibility,
606 CHARLES LESLIE,
667 METAPHYSICIANS. WILLIAM WHiston,
Anecdote of the Discovery of the Newtonian Philo. EARL OF SHAFTESBURY,
694 sophy, Platonio Representation of the scale of Beauty and DR Philip DODDRIDOE,
The Dangerous Illness of a Daughter,
670 Bisnor BERKELEY, 656 Happy Devotional Feelings of Doddridge,
671 Verses on the Prospect of Planting Arts and Learning in Vindication of Religious Opinions,
637 DR WILLIAM NICOLSON - DR MATTHEW TIXDAL- De Industry,
age presents us with historical chronicles, theologiANGLO-SAXON WRITERS.
cal treatises, religious, political, and narrative poetry,
in great abundance, written both in Latin and in the HE ENGLISH native tongue.* LANGUAGE is The earliest name in the list of Anglo-Saxon essentially a writers is that of Gildas, generally described as a branch of the missionary of British parentage, living in the first Teutonic, the half of the sixth century, and the author of a Latin language spo-tract on early British history. Owing to the ob
ken by the scurity of this portion of our annals, it has been the inhabitants of somewhat extraordinary fate of Gildas to be reprecentral Eu- sented, first as flourishing at two periods more than a rope immedi- century distant from each other, then as two differately before ent men of the same name, living at different times ;
the dawn of and finally as no man at all, for his very existence
history, and is now doubted. Nennius is another name of this which constitutes the foun- age, which, after being long connected with a small dation of the modern Ger- historical work, written, like that of Gildas, in Latin, man, Danish, and Dutch. has latterly been pronounced supposititious. The Introduced by the Anglo- first unquestionably real author of distinction is Saxons in the fifth century, ST COLUMBANUS, a native of Ireland, and a man it gradually spread, with the of vigorous ability, who contributed greatly to people who spoke it, over the advancement of Christianity in various parts of nearly the whole of England, Western Europe, and died in 615. He wrote reli
the Celtic, which had been gious treatises and Latin poetry. As yet, no eduthe language of the aboriginal people, shrinking cated writer composed in his vernacular tongue: it before it into Wales, Cornwall, and other remote was generally despised by the literary class, as was parts of the island, as the Indian tongues are now the case at some later periods of our history, and retiring before the advance of the British settlers Latin was held to be the only language fit for reguin North America.*
lar composition. From its first establishment, the Anglo-Saxon The first Anglo-Saxon writer of note, who comtongue experienced little change for five centuries, posed in his own language, and of whom there are the chief accessions which it received being Latin any remains, is CÆDMON, a monk of Whitby, who terms introduced by Christian missionaries. Dur- died about 680. Cædmon was a genius of the class ing this period, literature flourished to a much headed by Burns, a poet of nature's making, sprung greater extent than might be expected, when we from the bosom of the common people, and little consider the generally rude condition of the people. indebted to education. It appears that he at one It was chiefly cultivated by individuals of the reli- time acted in the capacity of a cow-herd. The cir. gions orders, a few of whom can easily be discerned, cumstances under which his talents were first dethrough their obscure biography, to have been men veloped, are narrated by Bede with a strong cast of of no mean genius. During the eighth century, the marvellous, under which it is possible, however, books were multiplied immensely by the labours of to trace a basis of natural truth. We are told that these men, and through their efforts learning de- he was so much less instructed than most of his scended into the upper classes of lay society. This equals, that he had not even learnt any poetry ; 80
that he was frequently obliged to retire, in order to It is now believed that the British language was not so hide his shame, when the harp was moved towards immediately or entirely extinguished by the Saxons as was him in the hall, where at supper it was customary generally stated by our historians down to the last age. But certainly it is true in the main, that the Saxon succeeded the for each person to sing in turn. On one of these British language in all parts of England, except Wales, Corn * Biographia Britannica Literaria : Anglo-Saxon Period. By wall, and some other districts of less note.
Thomas Wright, M.A.
occasions, it happened to be Cædmon's turn to keep Then spake he words :
of the hot hell, was the reply, and thereupon Cadmon began to sing
bereft us of heaven's kingdom, verses " which he had never heard before,” and
hath decreed which are said to have been as follows:
to people it
with mankind. Nu we sceolan herian* Now we shall praise
That is to me of sorrows the greatest, heofon-ríces weard, the guardian of heaven,
that Adam, metodes mihte, the might of the creator,
who was wrought of earth, and his mod-ge-thonc, and his counsel,
shall possess wera wuldor fæder ! the glory-father of men !
my strong seat; swa he wundra ge-hwes, how he of all wonders,
that it shall be to him in delight, ece dryhten, the eternal lord,
and we endure this torment, oord onstealde. formed the beginning.
misery in this hell. He ærest ge-scéop He first created
Oh! had I the power of my hands * * ylda bearnum for the children of men
then with this host Iheofon to hrófe, heaven as a roof,
But around me lie halig scyppend ! the holy creator !
iron bonds ; tha middan-geard then the world
presseth this cord of chain ; mon-cynnes weard, the guardian of mankind,
I am powerless ! ece dryhten, the eternal lord,
me have so hard æfter teode, produced afterwards,
the clasps of hell firum foldan, the earth for men,
so firmly grasped ! frea ælmihtig ! the almighty master !
Here is a vast fire Cædmon then awoke ; and he was not only able to above and underneath ;
never did I see repeat the lines which he had made in his sleep, but he continued them in a strain of admirable versifica.
a loathlier landskip ; tion. In the morning, he hastened to the town
the flame abateth not,
hot over hell. reeve, or bailiff, of Whitby, who carried him before the Abbess Hilda ; and there, in the presence of
Me hath the clasping of these rings, some of the learned men of the place, he told his
this hard polished band,
impeded in my course, story, and they were all of opinion that he had re
debarred me from my way. ceived the gift of song from heaven. They then expounded to him in his mother tongue a portion
My feet are bound, of Scripture, which he was required to repeat in
my hands manacled ;
of these hell doors are Cædmon went home with his task, and the next morning he produced a poem which excelled
the ways obstructed ; in beauty all that they were accustomed to hear.
so that with aught I cannot
from these limb-bonds escape. He afterwards yielded to the earnest solicitations of
About me lie the Abbess Hilda, and became a monk of her house;
huge gratings aud she ordered him to transfer into verse the whole
of hard iron, of the sacred history. We are told that he was continually occupied in repeating to himself what he
forged with heat,
with which me God heard, and, " like a clean animal, ruminating it, he
hath fastened by the neck. turned it into most sweet verse."' + Cadmon thus
Thus perceive I that he knoweth my mind, composed many poems on the Bible histories, and
and that he knew also, on miscellaneous religious subjects, and some of
the Lord of hosts, these have been preserved. His account of the Fall
that should us through Adam of Man is somewhat like that given in Paradise Lost,
evil befall, and one passage in it might almost be supposed to
about the realm of heaven, have been the foundation of a corresponding one in
where I had power of my hands.'* Milton's sublime epic. It is that in which Satan is described as reviving from the consternation of his The specimen of Cædmon above given in the overthrow. A modern translation into English fol- original language may serve as a general one of lows:
Anglo-Saxon poetry. It will be observed that it is
neither in measured feet, like Latin verse, nor [Satan's Speech.]
rhymed, but that the sole peculiarity which distinBoiled within him
guishes it from prose is what Mr Wright calls a very his thought about his heart;
regular alliteration, so arranged, that in every couplet Hot was without him
there should be two principal words in the line behis dire punishment.
ginning with the same letter, which letter must also
be the initial of the first word on which the stress * In our specimens of the Anglo-Saxon, modern letters are of the voice falls in the second line. substituted for those peculiar characters employed in that lan
A few names of inferior note-Aldhelm, abbot of guage to express th, dh, and u. | Wright.
* Thorpe's edition of Cædmon, 1832.