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please; and whilst the rich, the gay, the noble, and honourable saw how much he excelled in wit and learning, they easily forgave him all other differences. Hence it was that both his acquaintance and retirements were his own free choice. What Mr. Prior observes upon a very great character was true of him : 'that
most of his faults brought their excuse with them? 23 “Those who blamed him most understood him least: it being
the custom of the vulgar to charge an excess upon the most complaisant, and to form a character by the morals of a few who have sometimes spoiled an hour or two in good company. Where only fortune is wanting to make a great name, that single exception can never pass upon the best judges and most equitable observers of mankind; and when the time comes for the world to spare their pity we may justly enlarge our demands upon
them for their admiration. 24 “Some few years before his death he had engaged himself in
several considerable undertakings; in all which he had prepared the world to expect mighty things from him. I have seen about ten sheets of his English Pindar?, which exceeded any thing of that kind I could ever hope for in our own language. He had drawn out the plan of a tragedy of the Lady Jane Grey, and had gone through several scenes of it. But he could not well have bequeathed that work to better hands than where, I hear, it is at present lodged 3 ; and the bare mention of two such names may justify the largest expectations, and is sufficient to make
the town an agreeable invitation. 25 "His greatest and noblest undertaking was Longinus. He had
finished an entire translation of the Sublime, which he sent to the reverend Mr. Richard Parker, a friend of his, late of Merton College, an exact critick in the Greek tongue, from whom it came to my hands. The French version of Monsieur Boileau, though truly valuable, was far short of it. He proposed a large addition to this work, of notes and observations of his own, with an entire system of the Art of Poetry, in three books, under the titles of Thought, Diction, and Figure. I saw the last of these perfect, and in a fair copy, in which he shewed prodigious judgement and reading; and particularly had reformed the Art of Rhetorick, by reducing that vast and confused heap of terms, with which a long succession of pedants had encumbered the world, to a very narrow compass, comprehending all that was useful and ornamental in
* Prior wrote of the Earl of Dor- scholar, and was acquainted with the set :-'His faults brought their chief wits of the University, among excuse with them, and his very fail whom he would be very merry and ings had their beauties.' Eng. Poets, facetious, but he was very modest and
even sheepish,and would be very shy in ? Post, SMITH, 53.
strange company. He was commonly 3 Post, SMITH, 54, 66; ROWE, 16. called learned Dick Parker.' HEARNE, "He was
an excellent classic Remains, iii. 24.
poetry. Under each head and chapter he intended to make remarks upon all the ancients and moderns, the Greek, Latin, English, French, Spanish, and Italian poets, and to note their several beauties and defects.
What remains of his works is left, as I am informed, in the 26 hands of men of worth and judgement, who loved him. It cannot be supposed they would suppress any thing that was his, but out of respect to his memory, and for want of proper hands to finish what so great a genius had begun ".'
SUCH is the declamation of Oldisworth, written while his 27 admiration was yet fresh, and his kindness warm ; and therefore such as, without any criminal purpose of deceiving, shews a strong desire to make the most of all favourable truth. I cannot much commend the performance. The praise is often indistinct, and the sentences are loaded with words of more pomp than use. There is little however that can be contradicted, even when a plainer tale comes to be told.
EDMUND NEAL, known by the name of Smith, was born 28 at Handley, the seat of the Lechmeres, in Worcestershire. The year of his birth is uncertain.
He was educated at Westminster. It is known to have been 29 the practice of Dr. Busby to detain those youths long at school, of whom he had formed the highest expectations : Smith took his Master's degree on the 8th of July, 1696; he therefore was probably admitted into the university in 1689, when we may suppose him twenty years old.
His reputation for literature in his college was such as has been 30 told; but the indecency and licentiousness of his behaviour drew upon him, Dec. 24, 1694, while he was yet only Batchelor, a publick admonition, entered upon record, in order to his expulsion. Of this reproof the effect is not known. He was probably
+ [In 1777 the work was still un to copy the MS. of Clarendon's published. Gent. Mag. xlvii. 110, History, and stayed a year extra371. In 1739 had appeared a trans ordinary at the School for this purlation of Longinus by William Smith, port.' Burton's Genuineness, &c., D.D., of New College, Oxford, after PP;
136, 140. wards Dean of Chester.)
He matriculated at Christ Church * Hanley Castle, near Upton upon on June 25, 1688, aged 16. Alumni Severn. Lewis's Top. Dict.
Oxon. Ante, DRYDEN, 4. Four years 5.Dec. 24, 1694, Ds. [Dominus) after Busby's death W. Wogan, 'at Smith was admonished for habitual about the age of twenty, being irregularities in order to his expulsion.' captain of the school, was employed Burton's Genuineness, &c., p. 42.
less notorious. At Oxford, as we all know, much will be forgiven to literary merit ; and of that he had exhibited sufficient evidence by his excellent ode on the death of the great Orientalist, Dr. Pocock', who died in 1691, and whose praise must have been written by Smith when he had been yet but two years in the
university. 31 This ode, which closed the second volume of the Musæ
Anglicanæ ?, though perhaps some objections may be made to its Latinity, is by far the best Lyrick composition in that collection ; nor do I know where to find it equalled among the modern writers 3. It expresses with great felicity images not classical in classical diction : its digressions and returns have been deservedly
recommended by Trapp as models for imitation *. 32 He has several imitations of Cowley:
• Vestitur hinc tot sermo coloribus
Te memores celebrare gaudent.' 33 I will not commend the figure which makes the orator pronounce
colours, or give to colours memory and delight. I quote it, however, as an imitation of these lines:
'So many languages he had in store,
That only Fame shall speak of him in more 5.' 34 The simile by which an old man retaining the fire of his youth
is compared to Ætna flaming through the snow, which Smith has
? Ante, SMITH, 14. “Since the Immane opus! crescentibusque days of Pocock and Hyde Oriental Vertice sideribus propinquum ! learning has always been the pride Nequicquam ; amici disparibus sonis of Oxford.' GIBBON, Memoirs, p. 61. Eludit aures nescius artifex,
? Ed. 1741, ii. 196; Eng. Poets, Linguasque miratur recentes, XXV. 122 ; post, ADDISON, 10. Lord In patriis peregrinus oris. Lyttelton, the elegant scholar, de Vestitur hinc, &c.' (for the continuascribed the Musae as an admirable tion see next paragraph in the text]. anonymous collection, from which Trapp continues :- Quam eleganEton boys used largely to “crib,” ter ab instituto divertit, ut Babel et and I presume do still.' N. & 2. linguas confusas pulcherrime descri5 S. ii. 289.
bat; inde quam eleganter redit ad Smith said that 'Addison's laudes viri linguarum peritia insipoem on the Peace of Ryswick was the gnissimi!' Praelectiones Poeticae, best Latin poem since the Aeneid.' ed. 1722, p. 228. Post, ADDISON, 18.
5 "Who had so many languages in Trapp quotes the following
store,' &c. lines :
On the Death of Sir Henry Wotton, .Quin nunc requiris tecta virentia Eng. Poets, vii. 113. Nini ferocis, nunc Babel arduum,
used with great pomp', is stolen from Cowley”, however little worth the labour of conveyance.
He proceeded to take his degree of Master of Arts, July 8, 1696. 35 Of the exercises which he performed on that occasion I have not heard any thing memorable.
As his years advanced, he advanced in reputation: for he 36 continued to cultivate his mind, though he did not amend his irregularities, by which he gave so much offence that, April 24, 1700, the Dean and Chapter declared the place of Mr. Smith void, he having been convicted of riotous misbehaviour in the house of Mr. Cole, an apothecary; but it was referred to the Dean when and upon what occasion the sentence should be put in execution?'
Thus tenderly was he treated : the governors of his college 37 could hardly keep him, and yet wished that he would not force them to drive him away 4.
Some time afterwards he assumed an appearance of decency; 38 in his own phrase he whitened himself, having a desire to obtain the censorship, an office of honour and some profit in the college ; but when the election came the preference was given to Mr. Foulkes, his junior; the same, I suppose, that joined with Freind in an edition of part of Demosthenes 5: the censor is a tutor, and it was not thought proper to trust the superintendance of others to a man who took so little care of himself.
From this time Smith employed his malice and his wit against 39 the Dean, Dr. Aldrich, whom he considered as the opponent of his claim. Of his lampoon upon him I once heard a single line too gross to be repeated.
But he was still a genius and a scholar, and Oxford was unwilling 40 to lose him: he was endured, with all his pranks and his vices, two years longer ; but on Dec. 20, 1705, at the instance of all the canons the sentence declared five years before was put in execution ?
'Eng. Poets, xxv. 124.
De Corona and In Ctesiphontem in Ode to Mr. Hobbes, ib. viii. 136. 1696. 3 Burton's Genuineness, &c., p. 42.
Burton's Genuineness, &c., p. 41. For the expulsion of six Metho ? 16. p. 42. [A writer who signs dists from Oxford in 1768 for “publicly himself · Philalethes Oxoniensis'conpraying and exhorting' see Boswell's tends in the Gentleman's Magazine Johnson, ii. 187.
(Sept. 1822, p. 222) that the evidence 5 It was the same Peter Foulkes of Smith's expulsion for misconduct who, with John Freind, edited the rests on untrustworthy report. He
The execution was, I believe, silent and tender; for one of his friends, from whom I learned much of his life, appeared not to
know it. 42 He was now driven to London', where he associated himself
with the Whigs, whether because they were in power, or because the Tories had expelled him, or because he was a Whig by principle, may perhaps be doubted. He was however caressed by men of great abilities, whatever were their party, and was supported by the liberality of those who delighted in his conversation.
There was once a design hinted at by Oldisworth to have made him useful. One evening, as he was sitting with a friend at a tavern, he was called down by the waiter, and, having staid some time below, came up thoughtful. After a pause, said he to his friend, 'He that wanted me below was Addison, whose business was to tell me that a History of the Revolution was intended, and to propose that I should undertake it? I said, “What shall I do with the character of lord Sunderland 37" and Addison immediately returned, “When, Rag, were you drunk
last?" and went away.' 44 Captain Rag was a name which he got at Oxford by his
negligence of dress 4. points out that the society of Christ Lord Castledurrow wrote to Swift Church consisted of joi students, in 1736 : It grieves me to think that and of these the highest twenty over Virgil and Horace Rag and (theologi) were required to enter into Philips smoked many a pipe, and orders 'sub poenà amotionis.' By drank many a quart with me, besides 1705, sixteen years from his matricu the expense of a bushel of nuts, and lation, according to a computation that now I am scarce able to relish made by the list in 1822, Smith their beauties.' Swift's Works, xix. would have reached the number when he became subject to the statute, “The fair sex used at once to comunless he obtained 'a faculty student- mend and reprove him by the name ship.' He would not take orders and of the Handsome Sloven.' Biog. so ipso facto vacated his studentship.] Brit. Supple. p. 162.
In 1690 he had become a student According to a writer in Gent. of the Inner Temple. Alumni Oxon. Mag. 1780, p. 280, he was nicknamed ? Ante, SMITH, 14.
'from his gown, which was always Smith, I suppose, saw great flying in rags about him, and to condifficulty in honestly drawing the ceal which he wore one end of it in character of the first Earl of Sunder his pocket, a practice still common land while his son, the second Earl, among the young Rags of the present was Secretary of State. For the day.' His fame lasted long. Fortyfirst Earl see Macaulay's Hist. i. 256. three years after his death Joseph
* Burton wrote more than twenty Warton, in The Adventurer, No. 59, years after Smith's death:- He was, described how minute rhymers negand is still, commonly known by the lect to change their linen because name of Captain Rag.' Genuineness, Smith was a sloven.' &c., p. 40.