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from one * by the ingenious Mr. Percy. I do not think there is any great resemblance between the two pieces in question. If there be any, his ballad is taken from mine. I read it to Mr. Peroy some years ago ; and he (as we both considered these things as trifles at best) told me, with his usual good humour, the next time I saw him, that he had taken my plan to form the fragments of Shakespeare into a ballad of his own.
. He then read me his little Cento, if I may so call it, and I highly approved it. Such petty anecdotes as these are scarce worth printing : and, were it not for the busy disposition of some of your correspondents, the Publiç should never have known that he owes me the hint of his ballad, or that I am obliged to his friendship and learning for communications of a much more important nature.
I am, Sir,
* The Friar of Orders Gray. “ Reliq. of Anc. Poetry," vol. i. p. 243
TURN, gentle Hermit of the daile, “ And guide my lonely way “ To where yon taper cheers the vale
" With hospitable ray.
“ For here forlorn and lost I tread,
“ With fainting steps and slow; u Where wilds immeasurably spread,
“ Seem length’ning as I go."
“ Forbear, my son," the Hermít cries,
“ To tempt the dangerous gloom ; For yonder faithless phantom flies, “ To lure thee to thy doom.
66 Here to the houseless child of want My door is
still 1; “ And though my portion is but scant,
6 I give it with good will.
“ Then turn to-night, and freely share
6. Whate'er my cell bestows; “ My rushy couch and frugal fare,
“ My blessing, and repose.
“ No flocks that range the valley free,
“ To slaughter I condemn; “ Taught by that Power that pities me,
“ I learn to pity them:
66 But from the mountain's
side “ A guiltless feast I bring; “ A scrip, with herbs and fruits supply'd,
66 And water from the spring.
“ Then, pilgrim, turn, thy cares forego;
“ All earth-born cares are wrong: “ Man wants but little here below,
“ Nor wants that little long."
Soft as the dew from heav'n descends,
His gentle accents fell ;
And follows to the cell.
Far in a wilderness obscure
The lonely mansion lay ;
And strangers led astray.
No stores beneath its humble thatch
Requir'd a master's care ;
Receiv'd the harmless pair.
And now, when busy crowds retire, . '
To take their evening rest; .' The Hermit trimm'd his little fire,
And cheer'd his pensive guest :
Around, in sympathetic mirth,
Its tricks the kitten tries;
The crackling faggot Aies.
But nothing could a charm impart
To sooth the stranger's-woe; For grief was heavy at his heart,
And tears began to flow.