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O'er the dark trees a yellower verdure shed,
EVENING THOUGHTS ON DEATH.
From "Bowring's Matins and Vespers."
THE good man dies-it grieves us :
And this becomes our comforter;
No longer broken-hearted,
No sorrows now disturb him,
His life a summer's even,
Then darkness gathers round him—
He bursts the chains that bound him;
He rises from the main,
And marches heavenward gloriously,
DR JOHNSON TO THE RIGHT HONOURABLE THE EARL OF CHESTERFIELD.
I HAVE been lately informed by the proprietor of the WORLD, that two papers in which my Dictionary is recommended to the publick, were written by your Lordship. To be so distinguished, is an honour, which, being very little accustomed to favours from the great, I know not well how to receive, or in what terms to acknowledge. When, upon some slight encouragement, I first visited your Lordship, I was overpowered, like the rest of mankind, by the enchantment of your address; and could not forbear to wish that I might boast myself le vainqueur du vainqueur de la terre ;-that I might obtain that regard for which I saw the world contending; but I found my attendance so little encouraged, that neither pride nor modesty would suffer me to coptinue it. When I had once addressed your Lordship in publick, I had exhausted all the art of pleasing, which a retired and uncourtly scholar can possess. I had done all that I could; and no man is well pleased to have his all neglected, be it ever so little.
Seven years, my Lord, have now passed, since I waited in your outward rooms, or was repulsed from your door; during which time I have been pushing on my work through difficulties, of which it is useless to complain, and have brought it at last to the verge of publication, without one act of assistance, one word of encouragement, or one smile of favour. Such treatment I did not expect, for I never had a patron before.
The shepherd in Virgil grew at last acquainted with Love, and found him a native of the rocks.
Is not a patron, my Lord, one who looks with unconcern on a man struggling for life in the water, and when he has reached ground, encumbers him with help? The notice which you have been pleased to take of my labours, had it been early, had been kind: but it has been delayed till I am indifferent, and cannot enjoy it; till I am solitary, and cannot impart it; till I am known, and do not want it. I hope it is no very cynical asperity not to confess obligations where no benefit has been received, or to be unwilling that the publick should consider me as owing that to a patron, which Providence has enabled me to do for myself.
Having carried on my work thus far with so little obligation to any favourer of learning, I shall not be disappointed though I should conclude it, if less be possible, with less; for I have been long wakened from that dream of hope, in which I once boasted myself with so much exultation, my Lord, your Lordship's most humble, most obedient servant, SAM. JOHNSON.
THE SELECTED BEAUTIES OF
TRINITY COLLEGE, CAMBRIDGE.
STANZAS. POLYCARPA SALABARRIETA. DREAMS.
ELEGY. THE VOICE OF SPRING. A TRUE STORY.
THE MERCHANT OF VENICE.
REMEMBRANCE. THE PAINS OF SLEEP. MORTALITY.
The Stout Gentleman.
THE LAST HOURS OF SIR WALTER RAWLEIGH.
We have still to apologize for the non-insertion of many valuable pieces; but we trust our correspondents will have a little patience. The tale by Napoleon Bonaparte will certainly appear in our next number.
Each weekly Number of the CABINET contains Sixteen Pages, closely and beautifully printed on Crown Octavo; and its object being to select and combine all the scattered excellence of our Literature, every Number contains an interesting Tale, and other Pieces in PROSE and VERSE, of decided merit.
A Title and general Index will be given with the last Number of each volume, when the titles of the different Parts may be cancelled.