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into his widow's bedchamber; of Dr. Garth falling into a rotten beer-barrel;-of the non
Chaucer, Cowley, &c. Before he was brought from the College, an Ode was sung, with a fine consort of musick, and an excellent oration made in Latin by the ingenious orator, Dr. Garth; there being abundance of the nobility and gentry present. The corps was preceded by several mourners on horseback: before the hearse went the musick on foot, who made a very harmonious noise. The hearse was followed by twenty coaches drawn by six horses, and twenty-four drawn by two horses each, most of them in mourning."
The FLYING POST, OR THE POSTMASTER, of the same day, is more concise:
"Yesterday the corps of Mr. Dryden, the Poet, was honourably attended from the College of Physicians to the place of interment in Westminster-Abby, near the two famous poets, Cowley and Chaucer. One of the Prince's coaches, and a great many of those of the nobility, in mourning, honoured the funeral."
For the last two extracts, as well as for some other curious notices from the same newspapers, I am indebted to the very learned Dr. Charles Burney, Jun. of Greenwich.
Edward Ward's quaint account contains some particulars, not noticed in the papers of the day:
"The first honours done to his deserving relicks was lodging them in Physicians' College, from whence they were appointed to take their last remove. The constituted day appointed for the celebration of that office which living heroes perform in respect to a dead worthy, was Monday the 13th day of May, in the afternoon: at which time, according to the notice given, [formerly, printed notices of funerals were sent to such persons as were invited to attend,]
attendance of the Choir, and want of an organ; of the two singing-boys chanting an ode of Horace, in the Abbey, each of them holding a small
most of the nobility and gentry, now in town, assembled themselves together at the noble edifice aforesaid, in order to honour the corpse with their personal attendance. When the company were met, a performance of grave musick, adapted to the solemn occasion, was communi. cated to the ears of the company by the hands of the best masters in England; whose artful touches on their soft instruments diffused such harmonious influence amongst the attentive auditory, that the most heroick spirits in the whole assembly were unable to resist the passionate force of each dissolving strain, but melted into tears. When this part of the solemnity was ended, the famous Dr. Garth ascended the pulpit, where the physicians make their lectures, and delivered, according to the Roman custom, a funeral oration, in Latin, on his deceased friend, which he performed with great approbation and applause of all such gentlemen that heard him, and were true judges of the matter; most rhetorically setting forth those elogies and encomiums which no poet hitherto but the great Dryden could truly deserve. When these rites were over in the College, the corpse, by bearers for that purpose, was handled into the hearse, being adorned with plumes of black feathers, with the sides hung round with the escutcheons of his ancestors, mixed with those of his lady; the hearse drawn by six stately Flanders horses; every thing being set off with the most useful ornaments to move regard, and affect the memories of the numberless spectators, as a means to encourage every spritely genius to attempt something in their lives, that may once render their dust worthy of so publick a veneration. All things being put in due order for their movement, they began
candle in his hand;-of the mob breaking in, so as to prevent any more than eight or ten gentlemen gaining admittance, who cut their way with drawn swords;-and finally, of Mr Charles Dryden challenging Lord Jefferies, and never being able to meet with him,--all these circumstances, with
their solemn procession towards Westminster Abbey, after the following manner :
"The two beadles of the College marched first, in mourning cloaks and hatbands, with the heads of their staves wrapped in black crape scarves; being followed by several other servile mourners, whose business it was to prepare the way, that the hearse might pass less liable to interruption. Next to these moved a consort of hautboys and trumpets, playing and sounding together a melancholy funeral march, undoubtedly composed upon that particular occasion: after these, the Undertaker, with his hat off; then came the hearse, as before described, most honourably attended with abundance of quality in their coaches and six horses; that it may be justly reported to posterity, that no Ambassador from the greatest Emperor in all the universe, sent over with a welcome embassy to the throne of England, ever made his publick entry to the Court with half that honour as the corpse of the great Dryden did its last exit to the grave. In this order the nobility and gentry attended the hearse to WestminsterAbbey, where the Choir, assisted by the best masters in England, sung an epicedium; and the last funeral rites being performed by one of the Prebends, he was honourably interred between Chaucer and Cowley: where, according to report, will be erected a very stately monument, in order to recommend his worth, and to preserve his memory to all succeeding ages." LONDON SPY, P. 420-422.
many others of inferior note, were merely the "nimble shapes" and lively effusions of Corinna's forgetive imagination.
Very soon after Dryden's death, Henry Playford, who had long been known as a publisher of musick, solicited the followers of the Muses to express their sorrow for the loss of that great poet;' in consequence of which he was enabled, in less than two months, to publish a Collection of English and Latin verses, under the title of "LUCTUS BRITANNICI, or the Tears of the British Muses for the Death of John Dryden," &c.;' and this was preceded or followed by several separate Ele
9 IN THE POSTBOY, for Tuesday, May 7, 1700, Play. ford inserted the following advertisement:
"The death of the famous John Dryden, Esq., Poet Laureate to their two late Majesties, King Charles and King James the Second, being a subject capable of employing the best pens; and several persons of quality, and others, having put a stop to his interment, which is designed to be in Chaucer's grave, in Westminster-Abbey; this is to desire the gentlemen of the two famous Universities, and others, who have a respect for the memory of the deceased, and are inclinable to such performances, to send what copies they please, as Epigrams, &c. to Henry Playford, at his shop at the Temple 'Change in Fleetstreet, and they shall be inserted in a Collection, which is designed after the same nature, and in the same method, (in what language they shall please,) as is usual in the composures which are printed on solemn occasions, at the two Universities aforesaid."
This advertisement (with some alterations) was conti nued for a month in the same paper.
gies, and another collection of plaintive verses, entitled "THE NINE MUSES, or Poems written by nine several Ladies, upon the death of the late famous John Dryden, Esq."-From some lines in the first of these collections, we learn, that there was
' IN THE POSTBOY of June 20th, 1700, this Collection was thus advertised:
Yesterday was published, LUCTUS BRITANNICI, or the Tears of the British Muses for the death of John Dryden, Esq., late Poet Laureate, &c. Written by the most eminent hands in the two Universities, and by several others; with his Effigies. Printed," &c.
It consists of fifty-five folio pages of English, and twenty-four pages of Latin, verse.
* IN THE POSTBOY for Thursday, May 2, 1700, the day after our author died, we find
"This morning was published, an Elegy on John Dryden, Esq.; the true and right sort. Printed for John Nutt, near Stationers' Hall."
This Elegy I have never seen. It was probably written by Tom Brown; for Nutt was his publisher.
IN THE FLYING POST for June 18, 1700, was advertised—“To the Memory of Mr. Dryden, a poem; printed for Charles Brome, at the Gun, at the West end of St. Paul's church-yard. Price 6d."
IN THE FLYING POST, Tuesday, June 25, 1700, was advertised as then published-“ An Ode by way of Elegy, on the universally lamented death of the incomparable Mr. Dryden. By Alexander Oldys. Printed for John Nutt, &c. Price 6d." This I have never seen.
Mrs. Thomas, in her volume of Poems, has one addressed to Captain Gibbons (probably a son of our author's Physician,)" on his Poem to the memory of Mr. Dryden;" but I have never seen it, unless that published by C. Brome be his; which is a very mean performance.