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THE life of Mr. Lovibond appears to have afforded no subject for biography. Those who knew him best have declined the opportunity which the publication of his works afforded them to say something of the author. All they have been pleased to communicate is, that “ he was a gentleman of fortune, who passed the greater part of his years in the neighbourhood of Hampton in Middlesex, where he lived greatly beloved by those who best knew him. · He was an admirable scholar, of very amiable manners, and of universal benevolence, of which all his writings bear strong testimony. The little pieces which compose this volume were chiefly writ. ten on such incidents as occasionally arose in those societies of intimate acquaio. tance which he most frequented. After his death, which happened in 1775, his poems being dispersed in the hands of different friends, to whom they had been given by himself, many people expressed to his only brother, Anthony Lovibond Collins, esq. a wish to have them collected together, and preserved. This gentleman, equally zealous for the reputation of a brother he affectionately loved, hath put into the editor's hands those pieces he hath selected for that purpose.”
Of a man of so many virtues, and so greatly beloved, the public might reason. ably have expected a more detailed account. His father, I am told, was a director of the East India Company, and died in the year 1737, leaving him probably that fortune on which he was erabled to pass his days in the quiet enjoyment of the pleasures of rural life. He died September 27, 1775, at his house at Hampton, but the register of that parish is silent on his interment. I have been informed, also, that he was married, and not very happily.
When the World was began by Edward Moore, and his many noble and learned contributors, Mr. Lovibond furnished five papers; Nos. 93 and 94 contain some
THE LIFE OF EDWARD LOVIBOND. just remarks on the danger of extremes, and the impediments to conversation. In Nos. 132 and 134 he opposes the common erroneous notions on the subject of Providence with considerable force of argument, and concludes with some iron. ical remarks not ill applied. In No. 82 he first published the Tears of Old May Day, the most favourite of all his poems. The thoughts are peculiarly ingenious and happy, yet it may be questioned whether it is not exceeded by his Mulberry Tree, in which the distinguishing features of Johnson's and Garrick's characters are admirably hit off, the frivolous enthusiasm of the one, and the solid and steady veneration of the other for our immortal bard, are depicted with exquisite hu. mour. Julia's printed letter appears to have been a favourite with the author. There are some bursts of genuine passion, and some tenderness displayed occasionally, but it wants simplicity. It was probably suggested by Pope's Eloisa, and must suffer in proportion as it reminds us of that inimitable effort. His lines on Rural Sports, are both poetical and moral, and contain some interesting pictures sweetly persuasive to a humane treatment of the brute creation.
His love verses, some of which are demi-platonic, are tender and sprightly. The Miss K-P— was Miss Kitty Phillips, a relation of a family now ennobled by the title of Milford.
The tale of the Hitchin Convent, the lines To a young Lady a very good Actress, the Verses to Mr. Wooddeson,and those on converting that gentleman's house into a poor house, are all distinguished by original turns of thought. His pieces were generally circulated in private, as he had not the common ambition of an author, and was contented to please those whom he intended to please: yot he never ate templed any subject which he did not illustrate by novelty of manner, and upon the whole may be considered as among the most successful of tbat class who are rather amateurs, than professional poets.
ON THE DEATH OF EDT ARD a constitution like ours. But though no lover LOVIBOND, ESQ.
of his country would desire to weaken this principle, which has more than once preserved the
nation, yet he may lament the unfortunate apAh! what avails—that once the Muses crown'a plication of it, when perrerted to countenance Thy head with laurels, and thy temples bound ! | party violence, and opposition to the most innoThat in that polish'd mind bright genius shone, cent measures of the legislature. The clamour That letter'd science mark'd it for her own!
against the alteration of the style seemed to be Cold is that breast that breath'd celestial fire!
one of these instances. The alarm was given, Mute is that tongue, and mute that tuneful and the most fatal consequences to our religion O could my Muse but emulate thy lays, (lyre! and government were immediately apprehended Immortal numbers should record thy praise, from it. This opinion gathered strength in its Redeem thy virtues from oblivion's sleep,
course, and received a tincture from the remains And o'er thy urn bid distant ages weep ! - of superstition still prevailing in the counties Yet though no laureat flowers bestrew thy hearse, most remote from town. I knew several worthy Nor pompous sounds exalts the glowing verse, gentlemen in the west, who lived many months Sublimer truth inspires this humbler strain, under the daily apprehension of some dreadful Bids lore lament, and friendship here complain : visitation from pestilence or famine. The vulgar Bids o'er thy tmb the Muse her sorrows shed, were almost every where persuaded that Nature And weep her genius, number'd with the dead !- gave evident tokens of her disapproving these
innovations. I do not indeed recollect that any ADVERTISEMENT.
blazing stars were seen to appear upon this ocAs the first poem in this collection was thirty- casion; or that armies were observed to be en.
one years ago introduced to the public in a countering in the skies: people probably conpaper of The World, and written on a very troul the Sun in his course, would assume equal
cluding that the great men who pretend to conremarkable event in our bistory, viz. the reforming our style or calendar to the general authority over the inferior constellations, and vsage of the rest of Europe ; the paper expla- not suffer any aerial militia to assemble themnatory of the subject being also written by Mr. selves in opposition to ministerial proceedings. Lovibond, it was judged proper to let it still
The objection to this regulation, as favouring precede it in this collection.
a custom established among papists, was not
heard indeed with the same regard as formerly,
when it actually prevented the legislature from THE WORLD.
passing a bill of the same nature: yet many a
president of a corporation club very eloquently NUMBER LXXXII.
harangued upon it, as introductory to the doctrine July 25th, 1754. of transubstantiation, making no doubt that TO MR. FITZ-ADAM.
fires would be kindled again in Smithfield before
the conclusion of the year. This popular clsSIR,
mour has at last happily subsided, and shared It is a received opinion amongst politicians, that the general fate of those opinions which derive the spirit of liberty can never be too active under their support from imagination, not reason.