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world than ours. They are of an ethereal beauty, sadness, and suggestiveness, difficult to match, and impossible to surpass. There is no indication of an intention in the author that they should be coupled; yet a unity of spirit is traceable in them; and each, in its place in the Hesperides, stands a clear head and shoulders above its neighbours. Here are the lines on Blossoms :

Fair pledges of a fruitful tree,

Why do ye fall so fast?

Your date is not so past

But you may stay yet here a while,
To blush and gently smile;
And go at last.

What! were ye born to be
An hour or half's delight,
And so to bid good-night?
'Twas pity Nature brought ye forth
Merely to show your worth,
And lose you quite.

But you are lovely leaves, where we

May read how soon things have

Their end, though ne'er so brave;

And after they have shown their pride
Like you a while, they glide
Into the grave.3 34

Are not sense and melody perfect? Pass to Daffodils, and we wonder if perfection do not admit of degrees of comparison: Fair daffodils, we weep to see

You haste away so soon;

As yet the early-rising sun
Has not attain'd his noon.
Stay, stay,

Until the hasting day

Has run

But to the evensong;

And, having prayed together, we

Will go with you along.

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Together, the lovely pair, so various with the same conclusion-just thirty-eight short lines-set all the chimes. in the heart playing at once! Labour to track the magic home. It is as impossible as for the anatomist to discover the footprints of a fled soul in a human corpse. The words, ninety per cent. of them, are of one syllable. They are on a text the oldest of all worn themes. Subtlest analysis has nothing else to show. The dry bones reunite; and a tongue of fire descends upon them, bringing all Heaven before our eyes.

Why are we not oftener blessed with this seraphic visitant in the harmonious legion, fourteen hundred strong, of the Hesperides and Noble Numbers? The only, and sufficient, answer is, I fear, Herrick's own :

That things of greatest, so of meanest worth,

Conceiv'd with grief are, and with tears brought forth.36

The delightful singer suffered from the malady of indolence, intellectual, moral, and spiritual, aggravated by nature's too great kindness. He knew he had but to let music flow from his pen, and it would flow. So he let it.

Robert Herrick: The Hesperides, and Noble Numbers, ed. Alfred Pollard, Preface by A. C. Swinburne. (The Muses' Library.) Two vols. Lawrence & Bullen, 1891.

1 An Ode for Him (Ben Jonson) (Hesperides, 911, ii. 110, st. 1).

2 (Hesperides, 1028.) His Tears to Thamesis, and (Hesperides, 715) His Return to London.

3 Oberon's Feast (Hesperides, 293).

4 Ibid.

5 Corinna's Going a Maying (Hesperides, 178), and The Wake (Hesperides, 763).

Mrs. Eliz. Wheeler-the Lost Shepherdess (Hesperides, 263).

The Cheat of Cupid (Hesperides, 81).

8 Mrs. Eliz. Wheeler. See supra, 6.

• The Night-Piece-to Julia (Hesperides, 619).

10 Delight in Disorder (Hesperides, 83).

11 The Rock of Rubies, and the Quarry of Pearls (Hesperides, 75).

12 How his Soul Came Ensnared (Hesperides, 878).

13 The Captiv'd Bee (Hesperides, 182).

14 Cherry-Ripe (Hesperides, 53).

15 Upon Julia's Voice (Hesperides, 67 and 68).

16 Upon Her Feet (Hesperides, 527).

17 To the Virgins, to Make Much of Time (Hesperides, 208).

18 To his Dying Brother, Master William Herrick (Hesperides, 186).

19 The Kiss: A Dialogue (Hesperides, 329).

20 The argument of his Book (Hesperides, 1), i. 3, and His Confession (Noble Numbers, 1-2).

21 The Primrose (Hesperides, 580).

22 Upon a Child (Hesperides, 640).

23 The Bellman (Noble Numbers, 121).

24 His Litany to the Holy Spirit (Noble Numbers, 41)

25 His Winding-Sheet (Hesperides, 515).

26 To His Sweet Saviour (Noble Numbers, 77).

27 Ibid.

28 Hesperides, 1129, ii. 165. His Creed (Noble Numbers, 78).

29 To Primroses Filled with Morning Dew (Hesperides, 257).

30 The Poet's Good Wishes for The Duke of York (Hesperides, 266). 31 Another Grace for a Child (Noble Numbers, 95).

32 The Widow's Tears; or, Dirge of Dorcas (Noble Numbers, 123), 216-19.

33 To Anthea, who may Command him Anything (Hesperides, 267). 34 To Blossoms (Hesperides, 467).

35 To Daffodils (Hesperides, 316).

36 To Primroses, &c. (Hesperides, 257).



A GREAT name in the history of mind, politics, and literature.

Dryden himself did not argue in rhyme with the elaborate dexterity of Hudibras. The mental eye is kept hard at work as it watches the swift thrusting and parrying. Now the Knight is answering his Squire's 'vitilitigation' on the respective merits of 'Synods or Bears';1 and now debating with the Widow he was courting on Nature's ordinance of Marriage :

Those heavenly attracts of yours, your eyes,

And face, that all the world surprise,
That dazzle all that look upon ye,
And scorch all other ladies tawny,
Those ravishing and charming graces,
Are all made up of two half-faces,
That in a mathematic line,
Like those in other heavens, join,
Of which, if either grew alone,
"Twould fright as much to look upon.
The world is but two paths that meet
And close at th' equinoctial fit;
And so are all the works of nature;
Stamped with her signature on matter;
Which all her creatures, to a leaf,
Or smallest blade of grass, receive.
All which sufficiently declare

How entirely marriage is her care.2

Then the text for discussion, as at a gathering of Christian

Scientists, is the reality or nullity of

this thing call'd pain.

It is the learned Stoics maintain-
Not bad simpliciter, nor good;
But merely as 'tis understood.
Sense is deceitful, and may feign,
As well in counterfeiting pain
As other gross phaenomenas
In which it oft mistakes the case.
But since th' immortal intellect—
That's free from error and defect,
Whose objects still persist the same-
Is free from outward bruise or maim,
Which nought external can expose
To gross material bangs or blows,
It follows we can ne'er be sure
Whether we pain or not endure;
And just so far are sore and grieved
As by the fancy is believ'd.3

The logic-chopping jumps from one perplexing topic to another, as adroitly as if the whole were a show of circus riders. The aphorisms are at once wit, dazzling wit, and wisdom, practical wisdom, in disguise; and both wisdom and wit, from two to three centuries old, are, for the most part, modern now. The wonder of it all is that, while no parallel to so heterogeneous a medley of folly and sagacity exists in the language, yet there is unity in the whole. It is made to appear entirely reasonable that sense and absurdity should walk hand in hand; that depths of learning should be sounded to dredge up sewage; and that the hero of the piece should possess the infallibility of Solomon, and act with the silliness of Simple Simon.

The book is an absolute treasure-house of phrases which have been incorporated into English. No author but Shakespeare has been more accommodating in this way,

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