Sunday, October 1, 1730

Grub Street Journal

Location: London, Middlesex

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Grub-Street Journal (Newspaper) - October 1, 1730, London, Middlesex Grub-ftreet JNUMB- ^ CiJtu$&ap> October i, 1730. Aula Pieridum peragro loca, nullhis ante Trita fob. -- Lucret. L. IV. Notwithflanding the following letter is written in praije of One, who was formerly an Enemy to this Society : yet I was willing to give it a place in our "Journal', the Society having refohed tc encourage Criticifm in general. Bavius. Sept. 28. 1730. Te Mr. Bayivs, Secretary to the Grubaan Society. SIR, (OU have not, I think, confined the learned Differtations, which have been pub-lifhedin your Journal,wholIy to Grubzean Subjects : but have fometimes conde-fcended to publifh Poems and Criticifms on fuch as may be efteem'd Parnaffian. This, I mppofe, may proceed partly from your impartiality, and partly from an opinion, that modern Criticifms are in the province of your Society. Be that as it will, I venture to lend you fome thoughts on a Poem of a new fpecies, which arofe in our nation, no longer ago than the middle of the lait Century : I mean the inimitable Htidibras. It is fomething ftrange, that a Poem, which does honour to our Country, mould never have engaged any learned pen in its explanation : when a Writer of the firft rank has employed fome of. his time in ferious Criticifms on two or three of our old Ballads. I call it a new fpecies of Poetry, becaufe I do not know of any Poem now extant, which is written in the fame manner : tho' the Margites of Homer feems to have been of this fort, which Ariftotle tells us had the fame relation to Comedy, which the I lias and Odyjfey have to Tragedy. The way of writing, which Homer introduced in that Poem was new: for thofe, who before him brought in low characters, wrote in a very abufive manner, which he laid wholly afide, treating them only with pleafantry and ridicule. What other rules were obferved in that Poem is unknown, they being probably contained, together with thofe concerning Comedy, in Ariftotle's fecond book of Pceticks, which is loft. Now as our Author had no opportunity of feeing either this antient poem, or the rules, which were to be obierved in writing after that manner; we rcay very juftly, in my opinion, allow his poem to be an Original. And, tho' perhaps he never read Ariftotle, or any other critical writer, yet nature and goodfenfe taught him to write in fuch a manner, th:u I fhall not fear to enter upon his examination, by fuch rules as we find in that Prince of Criticifm. '^fffe But before I proceed any farther, it will not be amifs ' ''^Fto confider, what name ought to be given to this kind of ; ^writing. Some have called this piece a Barlefque poem ; �'�'"tut that name, I think, belongs more properly to thofe poems, in which a thing in its own nature ferious is turned to ridicule. Others call it a Mock-Heroick ; but this feems rather to exprefs thofe pieces in which ridiculous nations are burlefqued, by being related in heroick verfe. Nor can I, with others, call it a Mock-Epick ; which name is no jnore proper to be given to this Poem, than that of a Mock-Tragedy, to be afcribed to Comedy. Give me leave to call this way of writing Hudibrastick, in honour of this excellent example now before me. The Hudibrastick, for fo I new take leave to call it, is to differ from the Epick, r.s Comedy decs from Tragedy. It muit be narrative like the Epic!; : it mull, like that fpecies of Poem, have its Fable, its variety of Characters, and its proper ityle : but all thefe in fuch a manner, as to move not terror or -companion, as in Tragedy ; but laughter, as in Comedy. The Fable muft be form'd by the narration of one, entire, ridiculous Acti-g> on : the Characters mull be fuch as either occurr in low p life, or are in their own nature odd and ridiculous; and thefe in as great a variety as poffible : and tiie Style or Language mufirEe contrived fo as to heighten the ridicu-loulnefs of the reprefentation. The k&Xor^i Hudibras is the Knight's fcttir.g out on % feries of ridiculous" attempts to gain the heart of a per-verfe Widow, with whom he is in love. It begins with a revival of his pafiion, which hid llept for fome time; and concludes with his utter difappointmeut. The whole is carried on in fuch a manner, as renders the principal ^ctor* fufhciently ridiculous, - ' ' There is the greateft variety imaginable of odd and low Characters. The Knight and Squire are exceedingly odd ; and at the fame time entirely different. The feveralper-fons, who compofe the Bear-baiting mob, are admirably well drawn, and keep up their own low characters when ever they are introduced. The Widow, the Aftrologer, his Man, the Lawyer, are all excellent in their kind, and confiftent. v"^^ The Language in Hudibras contributes very much to the ridiculoufnefs of the reprefentation, by the odd, and often new words the Author makes ufe of, by the meafure of his verfe, and by the very Rhymes. I am not ignorant, that fome have reckoned the double Rhymes as a blemilh in Hudibras : and it has been objected that they are of no ufe ; becaufe they could give no wit to any paffage, which had none before. This is certain ; but the fame may be objected to the Rhymes, the Numbers, or the Meafure of any Poem. Verfe itfelf cannot give either Wit or Senfe to a mean or foolifh thought: but it can heighten them where they are already. The fame may be faid of the double Rhymes in Hudibras. They give no wit, no ridicule, to a flat or dull thought or expreflion : but they heighten the ridicule that was otherwife in the reprefentation itfelf. I could produce many inftances of this, out of my Author : 'but at prefent fhall beg leave only to produce one, which I believe every impartial Reader will allow to be a Relation highly ridiculous, and yet more fo on account of thofe Rhymes, which I have endeavoured to vindicate. Mean while th' incomparable Colon To aid his Friend began to fall on'. Him Ralph encounter'd; and ftraight grevt A difmal combat 'twixt them two : Th' one arm'd with Metal, th' other with Wood j This fit for Bruife, and that for Blood: With many a ftifF thwack, many a bang, Hard Crab-tree, and eld Iron rang. While none that faw them could diving To which fide conqueft would incline: Until Magnano, who did envy That two ihould with fo m3ny men via. By fubtle ftratagem of brain Perform'd what force could ne'er attain. For he, by foul hap having found Where Thiftles grew on barren ground ; In hafte he drew his weapon out, And having cropp'd them from the root^ He clapp'd them underneath the tail Of fteed, with pricks as fharp as nail. The angry beaft did ftraight rcfent The wrong done to his Fundament : Begun to kick, and fling, and wince. As if h' had been befidc his fenfe; Striving to difengage from fhiftlc, Th it gaul'd him forcly under his tail. Inilead of which he threw the pack Of Squire and baggage from his back ; And blund'ring ttill with fmarting Rump, He gave the Knight's fteed fuch a thump, As made him reel.--- If vou fhall condefcend, Mr. Bavius, to publifh this Criticifm on an Author, by no means of ycur Clafs; and give me leave to prei'ent you with fome farther obfervations 011 the fame fubject ; I fhall cfteem it as a favour done to Your confhru Reader, and humble Servant, M. J. 'Thefollowing letter cones from an eminent member of our Society. Dear Bro. Bavy, Salisbury-court, 10Sept. 1730. IjR AY advife me what to do. I have been fo bold as unhickilv to draw myfeif under the refemment of the tremendous Deputy Warden of the Fleet, as you'll fee by the enclos'd * : on the publication whereof, his terrible per-for.sge was pleas'd to fend a Mirmidon of his, mere than once, for me to come to him to ani'wer for my audaciouf-nefs; and becaufe I lent him word I was engag'd at home in my common affairs, he haughtily lent me word, he would make me come to him; which I as haughtily replied; It mule be when I am hi cr near she itror.g. """penuj Poft, Sept. 7. If Room. Then he fent another of his milder Tools to^gr, poftulate with me about this affair, to know the rea$n why I would venture to publifh it,, after our brethren tha Daily Poft, Daily^ Poft-Boy, cum multis aliis^ had rehifed it. I told him I thought the Letter would fhinc in mr Paper fince it had glitter'd under his hand. I am inform'd he is forcibly procuring a fubfeription, under the hands of a few perfons unhappily under his care, to > carry' qn"\a profecution againft me : and that another fubfeription .js voluntarily fet on foot by the reft of that houfc to defend me with their Lives and Fortunes. I defire you'll lay this before the Society, that I may have their Advice next Journal-day. Your readers and mine admire your Journal takes no notice of the Society's good old brother G. P. Philomath, and Enhemenft. I cannot but think our learned Brother much to bl.nr.e, to infert the Letter he alludes to, without lid! confuting the ftars about the confequence. I am of opinion, however, that if he can but keep out of theftrcng room, his ad-verfary will hardly be able to do him much harm. The following Letter is -written with fome warmth : but as the writer of it feems to be ftirred up by no zvcrj'e a motive, than a great concern for the honour of his country, I could not refufe it a place in this paper. Mr. Bavius, "J Generally buy thofe books that come from the Univer- * fities, and have great expectations of pleafure and in ftruction in the reading of them. I was lend by that cu-riofity to read an Oration upon the Beheading of Charles the firft, lately fpoken at Cambridge, but printed here, by Mr. Taylor, Fellow of S. John's College.  I own to you, I was much furpriz'd to meet with anything fo, vehement and hot upon the fubject at this tim� of day : but I was in a fweat and trembling when I came to thofe words, page 23. ab irfami ilia & in omnem tne-moriam exjecrabili Satorum gente mind': vat urn, addiclum, auclionatum (Carolum) that nation of Scots in famous ani accursed to all eternity ! What immediately follows upon the whole Englifh nation, a fnis demum judiciojiji:',-- but I won't meddle with that ; let them look to it : I am of the number of the infamous and execrable. Now I ask you, Mr. Bavius, and you, M.,-vius, without paffion, Whether this pert Fellow of a College is not very much to blame ? Whether he does not really delerve cenfure and punifhment for fuch a horrid outrage upon * whole nation ? Surely he intends to be Fellow of a College, and enjoy his jtmno eff religiov.ibus, as he expreffes himfelf in the 19th page, as long as he lives; (I hope he will) otherwife he would never have talk'd at this,rate, and fet his name to fuch grievous words. 'Tis much none of thofe grat'ijjhna capita that heard hinxfhould keep him from printing fo terriule a Declamation ; efpecially when it might be eufily proved, that 'tis contrary to Hiftory and matter of fact; and not only fo, but in almoft every pr.ga falfe Latin. See the very firft fentence, Fix arbitrabar fire, etm quidquam proferre- cportere. I humbly conceiva that fere, eum cportere is bad Latin. It fhculd have been thus: fore, ut is, qui verba ejfet facturus, quidquam proferre neceffe haberet; or to that effect. If the Profeffbr of Humanity at Aberdeen had had this fenfe to exprefs in Li-tin, he would have done it perhaps after this manner. Vix credideram fieri poffe, ut is, qui ex hoc dicendi Iooj verba ejfet facturus, quidquam proferre neceffe haberet, quod vel ad invidiam hominum levar.dam, vel ad i'ui muncris ra* tionem vindicandam fpectare vidcretur. I an: yours, Caledomus. In ourlaft, under The Daily Journal. article from the Pegafus, 1. 32. read L O C. Courant. P. ?oft-Boy... D.P. Daiff _ 'JcurndU � veiling Poft'il ��' James's Ezen. Poft: mm.. N D O N- W.E. Whitehall' Even.Poft. L- E.^gg^^^^;/. Poft. Cr. Cuftsm'Mi-'-'-\-./r S/^f^\ XJn. Sp. Unvuerjal^eSbm C" . ImportaH&articles omitted in our hft. v^fi-'" - Yefterday at'Hackney died Mrs Littler, Wife ::"' "tUtler,a' coted-Stccking-maker in Spi�k-ii�ldj. j3^�t,-g-' .�

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