« PreviousContinue »
V.—INTENDED FOR MR. ROWE,
IN WESTMINSTER ABBEY.
ON ROWE. He altered it much for the better as it now stands in the abbey on the monument erected to Rowe and his daughter. Thy reliques, Rowe, to this sad shrine we trust And near thy Shakespeare place thy honoured bust. Oh, next him, skilled to draw the tender tear For never heart felt passion more sincere, To nobler sentiment to fire the brave, For never Briton more disdained a slave. Peace to thy gentle shade and endless rest. Blest in thy genius, in thy love too blest! And blest, that timely from our seal removed Thy soul enjoys the liberty it loved. To these so mourned in death, so loved in life The childless parent and the widowed wife With tears inscribes this monumental stone That holds their ashes and expects her own.
1 The tomb of Mr. Dryden was erected upon this hint by the Duke of Buckingham; to which was originally intended this epitaph,
This Sheffield raised. The sacred dust below
Was Dryden once. The rest who does not know? which the author since changed into the plain inscription row upon it, being only the name of the great poet.
VI.-ON MRS. CORBET,
WHO DIED OF A CANCER IN HER BREAST.
VII.-ON THE MONUMENT OF THE HON.
In the Church of Sherborne in Dorsetshire, 1727.
And thou, blest Maid! attendant on his doom,
1 Mr. Digby died of consumption, and was followed by the affec. tionate sistor who had hung over his sick bed,-Bowles,
Yet take these tears, morality's relief,
VIII.—ON SIR GODFREY KNELLER,
IN WESTMINSTER ABBEY, 1723.1 KNELLER, by heaven, and not a master, taught, Whose art was Nature, and whose pictures Thought; Now for two ages having snatched from fate Whate'er was beauteous, or whate'er was great, Lies crowned with princes' honours, poets' lays, Due to his merit, and brave thirst of praise.
Living, great Nature feared he might outvie Her works; and dying, fears herself may die.
IX.—ON GENERAL HENRY WITHERS.
IN WESTMINSTER ABBEY, 1729.
Withers, adieu! yet not with thee remove
1 Pope had made Sir Godfrey Kneller, on his death-bed, a promise to writa his epitaph, which he seems to have performed with re. luctance. He thought it “the worst thing he ever wrote in his life, (Spence.) - Roscoe,
X:-ON MR. ELIJAH FENTON,"
AT EASTHAMSTEAD IN BERKS, 1730. This modest stone, what few vain marbles can, May truly say, Here lies an honest man: A poet, blessed beyond the poet's fate, Whom Heaven kept sacred from the proud and great; Foe to loud praise, and friend to learnèd ease, Content with science in the Vale of Peace. Calmly he looked on either life, and here Saw nothing to regret, or there to fear; From nature's temp’rate feast rose satisfied, Thanked heaven that he had lived, and that he died.
XI.—ON MR. GAY,
IN WESTMINSTER ABBEY, 1732.
i A poet of no mean acquirements; he translated part or the dy soy for Pope, who only did the first twelve books himself.
XII.—INTENDED FOR SIR ISAAC NEWTON,
IN WESTMINSTER ABBEY.
Hoc marmor fatetur.
XIII.—ON DR. FRANCIS ATTERBURY,
BISHOP OF ROCHESTER, Who died in exile at Paris, 1732, (his only daughter having expired
in his arms, immediately after she arrived in France to see him.)
SHE. Yes, we have lived-one pang, and then we part! May Heav'n, dear father! now have all thy heart. Yet ah! how once we loved, remember still, Till you are dust like me.
Dear shade! I will: Then mix this dust with thine-O spotless ghost! O more than fortune, friends, or country lost ! Is there on earth one care, one wish beside ? Yes- Save my country, Heaven!.
He said, and died.
XIV.—ON EDMUND DUKE OF BUCKINGHAM,
Who died in the nineteenth year of his age, 1735.
He was born on the very day that Galileo died,