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Bina dedith, mirum artis opus, mirandus et ipse,
In medio rubri maris unda, et odoriferum ver,
Auroram vitreis surgentem respicit undis:
Parte alia polus omnipatens, et magnus Olympus :
Quis putet? hic quoque Amor, pictæque in nube pharetræ,
Nec tenues animas, pectusque ignobile vulgi,
Hinc ferit; at, circum flammantia lumina torquens,
h Bina dedit, &c.
Perhaps a poetical description of two real cups thus richly ornamented, which Milton received as presents from Manso at Naples; or perhaps this is an allegorical description of some of Manso's favours.-T. WARTON.
En, etiam tibi virginei servantur honores.
Deodate and Lycidas were both unmarried.—T Warton.
Dr. Johnson observes, that this poem is "written with the common but childish imitation of pastoral life:" yet there are some new and natural country images, and the common topics are often recommended by a novelty of elegant expression. The pastoral form is a fault of the poet's times. It contains also some passages which wander far beyond the bounds of bucolic song, and are in his own original style of the more sublime poetry. Milton cannot be a shepherd long: his own native powers often break forth, and cannot bear the assumed disguise.-T. WARTON.
JAN. 23, 1646.
AD JOANNEM ROUSIUM, OXONIENSIS ACADEMIE BIBLIOTHECARIUM. J De libro Poematum amisso, quem ille sibi denuo mitti postulabat, ut cum aliis nostris in Bibliotheca publica reponeret, Ode.
Ode tribus constat Strophis, totidemque Antistrophis, una demum Epodo clausis; quas, tametsi omnes nec versuum numero, nec certis ubique colis exacte respondeant, ita tamen secuimus, commode legendi potius, quam ad antiquos concinendi modos rationem spectantes. Alioquin hoc genus rectius fortasse dici monostrophicum debuerat. Metra partim sunt κατὰ σχέσιν, partim ἀπολελυμένα. Phaleucia quæ sunt, spondæum tertio loco bis admittunt, quod idem in secundo loco Catullus ad libitum fecit.
i John Rouse, or Russe, master of arts, fellow of Oriel college, Oxford, was elected chief librarian of the Bodleian, May, 9, 1620. He died in April, 1652, and was buried in the chapel of his college. He lived on terms of the most intimate friendship with G. J. Vossius; by whom he was highly valued and respected for his learning and activity in promoting literary undertakings. Not only on account of his friendship with Milton, which appears to have subsisted in 1637, but because he retained his librarianship and fellowship during part of Cromwell's usurpation, we may suppose Rouse to have been puritanically inclined.-T. WARTON.
Wood informs us that Fairfax, Cromwell, &c. having been admitted to the degree of doctor of civil law, went, after the ceremony, to the Bodleian library, where they were received with a speech by the keeper Rouse, who prevented the plundering of Bodley's chest. He bequeathed twenty pounds to the library.-TODD. Fronde licet gemina, &c.
By "Fronde gemina," we are to understand, metaphorically, the "twofold leaf," the poems both English and Latin, of which the volume consisted. So the Bodleian manuscript, and printed copies: but fronte is perhaps a better reading.-T. WARTON.
1 Insons populi.
Guiltless as yet of engaging in the popular disputes of these turbulent times.-T. WARTON. m Mox itidem pectine Daunio.
His Italian Sonnets.-T. WARTON.
Aonidum, thyasusque sacer,
Jam pæne totis finibus Angligenum;
Figat Apollinea pharetra,
Phineamque abigat pestem procul amne Pegaseo ?
Quin tu, libelle, nuntii licet mala
Fide, vel oscitantia,
Semel erraveris agmine fratrum,
Seu quis te teneat specus,
Seu qua te latebra, forsan unde vili
Optat peculi, numeroque justo
Voluit reponi, quibus et ipse præsidet,
Æternorum operum custos fidelis ;
Quam cui præfuit Ion o,
Opulenta dei per templa parentis;
Fulvosque tripodas, donaque Delphica ;
n Tollat nefandos civium tumultus, &c.
I fear Milton is here complaining of evils which his own principles contributed either to produce or promote: but his illustrations are so beautiful, that we forget his politics in his poetry. In reflecting, however, on those evils, I cannot entirely impute their origin to a growing spirit of popular faction: if there was anarchy on one part, there was tyranny on the other: the dispute was a conflict between governers, who ruled by will, not by law; and subjects, who would not suffer the law itself to control their actions." Balguy's Sermons, p. 55.-T. WARTON.
• Quam cui præfuit Ion, &c.
Ion, the treasurer of the Delphic temple, abounding in riches.—T. WARton.
Quicquid hoc sterile fudit ingenium,
Jam sero placidam sperare jubeo
Perfunctum invidia requiem, sedesque beatas,
Et tutela dabit solers Roüsi;
Quo neque lingua procax vulgi penetrabit, atque longe
Turba legentum prava facesset :
At ultimi nepotes,
Et cordatior ætas,
Judicia rebus æquiora forsitan
Adhibebit, integro sinu.
Tum, livore sepulto,
Si quid meremur sana posteritas sciet,