« ПретходнаНастави »
exhibited the most wonderful union of genius and industry that perhaps the world ever saw. What kind of knowledge did he not attempt, and wherein did he not excel? He had studied with incessant diligence from his. infancy. When
he is said to have composed for his own use a Chaldee Grammar, a Greek and Hebrew Dictionary, and an Historical Dictionary, containing an abridgement of more than 2000 articles from Bayle and Moreri. As a proof of his activity, we learn, that when he had the misfortune to break his right arm, his surgeon was surprized, on visiting him one day, to find him writing with his left, which he had never ceased to try till he acquired that use of it. To these might be added several living characters, too well known to need enumeration, who are worthy successors of those illustrious men, and in due time will have their names joined by posterity with theirs. Medical systems will change; they must change, because human knowledge is progressive, and the works of God are past finding out; but amidst their revolutions, honour will continue to be paid to the memory of such as these, as long as learning and genius are esteemed among men.” *
Epistle prefixed to “ Observations on the Literature of the Primitive Christian Writers.”
In consequence of not succeeding in his profession at home, Dr. Bathurst became desirous of meeting any offer which might lead to employment abroad. He, therefore, gladly accepted of the appointment of physician to the army destined to the attack of the Havannah; where, soon after his arrival, he was seized with an epidemic fever, then prevalent among the troops, and perished before the place could be reduced. The grief of Dr. Johnson on this melancholy event was great and strongly expressed; writing to his friend Mr. Beauclerk, he exclaims “ The Havannah is taken ;-a conquest too dearly bought; for Bathurst died before it.
Vix Priamus tanti totaque Troja fuit.”* Dr. Bathurst appears, from the little which is recorded of his life, to have been a man of great moral worth, of a sound and cultivated understanding, and graced with pleasing manners. Of his humanity the following anecdote speaks strongly in favour; “ My dear friend Dr. Bathurst,” said Johnson to Mr. Langton with a warmth of approbation," declared, that he was glad that his father had left his affairs in total ruin; because, having no estate, he was not under the temptation of having slaves." +
* Boswell's life of Johnson, Vol. 1. p. 208. note.
^ Boswell's life of Johnson, Vol. 4, p. 27.
· The papers which Dr. Bathurst contributed to the Adventurer are in number eight; they have for their signature the initial A", and are chiefly of the ironical and satiric kind. The Doctor was indeed the first coadjutor whom Hawkesworth called to his assistance; and when this resource (owing to our author leaving England,) failed, Johnson and Warton were requested, and agreed, to supply the deficiency.
The essays of Bathurst include No. 3, a Project for a new pantomime entertainment ; No. 6, a Project for an auction of manuscripts, by Timothy Spinbrain, author; No.9, on the Impropriety of Signs ; No. 19, Proposals to improve the dramatic entertainment of the animal comedians; No. 23, a Scheme of a new memorandum-book for the use of the ladies, with a specimen : No. 25, Infelicities of matrimony produced by an imprudent choice : eremplified in many characters; No. 35, a Plan of a new paper called the Beau-Monde; and No. 43, the Adventures of a Halfpenny.
For the sprightly humour which peculiarly distinguishes the first volume of the Adventurer,
* Dr. Johnson is said to have dictated his numbers in the Adventurer, marked with the letter T, to Dr. Bathurst, who acted the part of an amanuensis on this occasion, and, at the request of Jolipson, appropriated the profits.
we are, therefore, almost entirely indebted to Bathurst, seven of the papers mentioned above being included in that portion of the work. The second, third, and fourth volumes, though displaying much elegant criticism, and great powers of imagination, would have presented a yet greater variety had he been spared to assist those who were afterwards associated in the prosecution of the plan. To the fancy of Hawkesworth, the morality of Johnson, and the criticism of Warton, had the sportive satire of Bathurst been added, the Adventurer, beautiful and interesting as it is, would have made a nearer approach to perfection.
JOSEPH WARTON, D. D., the son of Thomas Warton, B. D, Fellow of Magdalen College, Oxford, and Poetry-Professor in that University, was born at Dunsfold, in the county of Surry, and baptized there on the 22d of April, 1722.
Until his fourteenth year he was, with the exception of a short period spent at New College School, educated under the care of his father, a man of elegant classical learning, and the author of a volume of poems published in the year 1745.
On the 2d of August, 1736, young Warton was admitted on the foundation of Winchester College, and during a residence of near four years in this school gave evident indications of his future eminence in literature. It was here that he formed an intimacy, of the most durable and congenial kind, with that great, but unfortunate, poet, Collins; and they, together with another boy of the name of Tomkins, sent, during this period, three poems to the Gentleman's Magazine, * of such value as to draw forth an encomium from Johnson. Mr. Wooll has published these small pieces in his Memoirs of our author; they certainly, as juvenile effusions, deserve much praise; but the Sonnet by Collins, under the signature of Delicatulus, is in a strain greatly superior to its companions. As it is very short, a literary curiosity, and worthy of the matured age of the poet, its transcription in this place will not, I trust, prove unacceptable to my readers.
When Phæbe form'd a wanton smile,
My soul! it reach'd not here!
Before a rising tear!
That o'er those eyelids rove:
The fabled queen of Love. In September, 1740, Mr. Warton, who had been admitted the preceding January a member of Oriel College, Oxford, left Winchester to re* They are the first three entire articles in vol. ix, p. 545.