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fuch-like ugly things, upon their faireft horses, and other goodly creatures, to fecure them against fascination. And, for those of a more confined understanding, who pretend not to cenfure; as they admire most what they leaft comprehend, fo, his verfes (maimed to that degree that himself scarce knew what to make of many of them) might, that way at least, have a title to fome admiration: which is no fmall matter, if what an old Author obferves be true, that the aim of Orators, is victory; of Hiftorians, truth; and of Poets, admiration. He had reason therefore to indulge those faults in his Book, whereby it might be reconciled to fome, and commended to others.

The Printer alfo he thought would fare the worse, if thofe faults were amended: for we fee maimed statues fell better than whole ones; and clipped and washed money goes about, when the entire and weighty lies hoarded up.

These are the reasons which for above twelve years past he has opposed to our request; to which it was replied, that as it would be too late to recall that which had fo long been made public; fo, might it find excufe from his youth, the season it was produced in. And, for what had been done fince, and now added, if it commend not his Poetry, it might his Philosophy, which teaches him fo chearfully to bear fo great a calamity, as the lofs of the beft part of his fortune, torn from him in prison (in which, and in banishment, the best portion of his life hath also been spent), that



he can still fing under the burthen, not unlike that Roman

*** Quem dimifere Philippi

Decifis humilem pennis, inopemque paterni
Et Laris, & fundi. * * *

Whofe fpreading wings the civil war had clip'd,
And him of his old patrimony ftrip'd;

Who yet not long after could say,

Mufis amicus, triftitiam & metus

Tradam protervis in mare Creticum

Portare ventis ***

Lib. I. Ode xxvi.

They that acquainted with the Muses be,
Send care, and forrow, by the winds to fea.

Not fo much moved with these reasons of ours (or pleas'd with our rhymes) as wearied with our importunity, he has at last given us leave to affure the Reader, that the Poems which have been fo long, and fo ill fet forth under his name, are here to be found as he firft writ them: as alfo, to add fome others which have fince been compofed by him. And though his advice to the contrary might have difcouraged us; yet, obferving how often they have been reprinted, what price they have borne, and how earnestly they have been

Horace, Lib. II. Epift. ii.

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always inquired after, but especially of late; (making

good that of Horace,

Meliora dies, ut vina, poemata reddit:

Lib. II. Epift. i.

"Some verfes being, like fome vines, recommended "to our tafte by time and age,”)

We have adventured upon this new and well-corrected Edition; which, for our own fakes as well as thine, we hope will fucceed better than he apprehended.

Vivitur ingenio, cætera mortis erunt.









Printed in the Year 1690.

HE Reader needs be told no more in commendation of these Poems, than that they are Mr. Waller's: a name that carries every thing in it that is either great, or graceful, in poetry! He was indeed the Parent of English Verfe, and the first that fhewed us our Tongue had Beauty, and Numbers, in it. Our language owes more to Him than the French does to Cardinal Richelieu and the whole Academy. A Poet cannot think of Him, without being in the fame rapture Lucretius is in, when Epicurus comes in his way:

Tu pater, & rerum inventor; Tu patria nobis
Suppeditas præcepta: tuifque ex, Inclute! chartis,
Floriferis ut apes in faltibus omnia libant,
Omnia nos itidem depafcimur aurea dicta;
Aurea! perpetuâ femper digniffima vitâ !

Lib. III. ver. 9.

The Tongue came into His hands, like a rough diamond: He polished it first; and to that degree, that all artists since him have admired the workmanship, without pretending to mend-it. Suckling and Carew, Į muft

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must confefs, wrote fome few things fmoothly enough: but, as all they did in this kind was not very confiderable; fo it was a little later than the carliest pieces of Mr. Waller. He undoubtedly stands first in the list of refiners; and, for aught I know, laft too; for I queftion, whether in Charles the fecond's reign, English did not come to its full perfection; and whether it has not had its Auguftan Age, as well as the Latin. It feems to be already mixed with foreign languages as far as its purity will bear; and, as Chemists say of their Menftruums, to be quite fated with the infusion. But pofterity will beft judge of this. In the mean time, it is a furprizing reflection, that between what Spenfer wrote laft, and Waller first, there fhould not be much above twenty years distance: and yet the one's language, like the money of that time, is as current now as ever; whilst the other's words are like old coins, one must go to an antiquary to understand their true meaning and value. Such advances may a great Genius make, when it undertakes any thing in earnest!

Some Painters will hit the chief lines and masterftrokes of a face fo truly, that through all the differences of age, the picture fhall ftill bear a resemblance. This art was Mr. Waller's: He fought out, in this flowing Tongue of ours, what parts would laft, and be of ftanding ufe and ornament: and this he did fo fuccefsfully, that his language is now as fresh as it was at firft fetting out. Were we to judge barely by the wording, we could not know what was wrote at twenty, and what at fourfcare. He complains, indeed, of

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