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with Arbuthnot and Gay, had engroffed all the understanding and virtue of mankind; that their merits filled the world; or that there was no hope of more. They fhew the age involved in darkness, and fhade the picture with fullen emulation.
When the Queen's death drove him into Ireland, he might be allowed to regret for a time the interception of his views, the extinction of his hopes, and his ejection from gay fcenes, important employment, and fplendid friendships; but when time had enabled reason to prevail over vexation, the complaints, which at firft were natural, became ridiculous because they were useless. But queruloufnefs was now grown habitual, and he cried out when he probably had ceased to feel. His reiterated wailings perfuaded Bolingbroke that he was really willing to quit his deanery for an English parifh; and Boling. broke procured an exchange, which was rejected; and Swift ftill retained the pleasure of complaining.
The greatest difficulty that occurs, in analyfing his character, is to discover by what depravity of intellect he took delight in revolving ideas, from which almost every other mind fhrinks with difguft. The ideas of pleasure, even when criminal, may solicit the imagination; but what has difeafe, deformity, and filth, upon which the thoughts can be allured to dwell? Delany is willing to think that Swift's mind was not much tainted with this grofs corruption before his long vifit to Pope. He does not confider how he degrades his hero, by making him at fiftynine the pupil of turpitude, and liable to the malig
nant influence of an afcendant mind. But the truth, is, that Gulliver had defcribed his Yahoos before, the vifit; and he that had formed thofe images had. nothing filthy to learn.
I have here given the character of Swift as he exhibits himself to my perception; but now let another be heard who knew him better. Dr. Delany, after long acquaintance, describes him to Lord Or-, rery in these terms:
"My Lord, when you confider Swift's fingular, "peculiar, and most variegated vein of wit, always. rightly intended (although not always fo rightly. "directed), delightful in many inftances, and falu"tary even where it is moft offenfive; when you "confider his strict truth, his fortitude in refifting oppreffion and arbitrary power; his fidelity in friendship, his fincere love and zeal for religion, "his uprightness in making right resolutions, and "his steadiness in adhering to them; his care of his "church, its choir, its economy, and its income;
his attention to all thofe that preached in his ca"thedral, in order to their amendment in pronuncia❝tion and style; as alfo his remarkable attention to "the intereft of his fucceffors, preferably to his "own prefent emoluments; his invincible patriotism, << even to a country which he did not love; his very "various, well-devifed, well-judged, and extenfive "charities, throughout his life, and his whole for; "tune (to fay nothing of his wife's) conveyed to "the fame Chriftian purposes at his death, charities, "from which he could enjoy no honour, advantage, 66 or fatisfaction of any kind in this world; when you confider his ironical and humorous, as well
as his serious schemes, for the promotion of true religion and virtue, his fuccefs in foliciting for the "First Fruits and Twentieths, to the unfpeakable "benefit of the Established Church of Ireland; and "his felicity (to rate it no higher) in giving occa"fion to the building of fifty new churches in "London:
"All this confidered, the character of his life "will appear like that of his writings; they will "both bear to be re-confidered and re-examined with "the utmost attention, and always difcover new "beauties and excellencies upon every examination.
"They will bear to be confidered as the fun, in "which the brightness will hide the blemishes; and "whenever petulant ignorance, pride, malignity, "or envy, interpofes to cloud or fully his fame, I "will take upon me to pronounce, that the eclipse "will not last long.
"To conclude-No man ever deferved better of "his country, than Swift did of his; a fteady, "perfevering, inflexible friend; a wife, a watchful, "and a faithful counsellor, under many fevere trials "and bitter perfecutions, to the manifeft hazard "both of his liberty and fortune.
"He lived a bleffing, he died a benefactor, and "his name will ever live an honour to Ireland."
IN the poetical works of Dr. Swift there is not
To divide this collection into claffes, and fhew
It was faid, in a Preface to one of the Irish editions, that Swift had never been known to take a fingle thought from any writer, ancient or modern. This is not literally true; but perhaps no writer can cafily be found that has borrowed fo little, or that in all his excellencies and all his defects has fo well maintained his claim to be confidered as original.
BROOME was born in Cheshire,
Was is faid, of very mean parents. Of the
place of his birth, or the first part of his life, I have not been able to gain any intelligence. He was educated upon the foundation at Eton, and was captain of the school a whole year, without any vacancy, by which he might have obtained a scho. larship at King's College. Being by this delay, such as is faid to have happened very rarely, fuperannuated, he was fent to St. John's College by the contributions of his friends, where he obtained a fmall exhibition.
At his college he lived for fome time in the fame chamber with the well-known Ford, by whom I have formerly heard him defcribed as a contracted scholar and a mere verfifier, unacquainted with life, and unfkilful in conversation. His addiction to metre was then fuch, that his companions familiarly called him Poet. When he had opportunities of mingling with mankind, he cleared himself, as Ford likewise owned, from great part of his fcholaftick