Robert C. Ryan, Harrison Hayford, Alma A. MacDougall, and G. Thomas Tanselle (eds), The Writings of Herman Melville: The Northwestern-Newberry Edition, Vol. 11: Published Poems: Battle-Pieces; John Marr; Timoleon

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pg 875Melville's Marginalia on Poetry and Poetics

When Melville read poetry he remained alert to echoes from earlier poets and influences on later poets. He frequently jotted down cross-references and possible sources or parallels in the margins, presumably from memory, thus revealing his broad acquaintance with poets both famous and obscure. The table below reproduces such comments discovered to date, as well as some that bear on Melville's poetics. Some of the comments are from Walker Cowen, "Melville's Marginalia" (1965; repr. 1988), corroborated independently where possible; many are from Hershel Parker's or others' transcriptions of marginalia in books not known to Cowen. The list is arranged according to the date Melville acquired each book, which may or may not be the date he made his annotations. The passage that provoked Melville's remarks is quoted at the left (followed by locator information), and Melville's remarks are transcribed at the right. Editorial comments are provided in brackets; original lines that vary from Melville's annotations are supplied. All transcriptions and quotations appear literatim.

Sealts numbers refer to Merton M. Sealts Jr., Melville's Reading (1988), and Steven Olsen-Smith and Merton M. Sealts Jr., "A Cumulative Supplement to Melville's Reading (1988)" (2004). Bercaw numbers refer to Mary K Bercaw, Melville's Sources (1987). Wherever possible, volume and page numbers to the editions Melville owned are provided in both columns.

pg 876



1844: Bible. New Testament (1844); Sealts, no. 65

And sounded, and found it twenty fathoms: and when they had gone a little further, they sounded again, and found it fifteen fathoms.

[Acts 27:28]


[Aratus Solensis, the Stoic philosopher and poet, included in Plutarch's Lives; Bercaw, no. 560]

1847?: Joseph Forsyth, Remarks on Antiquities (1824); Sealts, no. 219

English poets cannot plead for the sonnet one successful precedent. Even the greatest of them all, Shakespeare, Milton, Spenser, split on this rock and sank into common versifiers.

[vol. 1, p. 133]

[At page bottom] What pedantry is this! Yet its elegance all but redeems it. Forsyth is the most graceful of pedants.

1849: Dante Alighieri, The Vision; or Hell, Purgatory, and Paradise, trans. Henry Francis Cary (1847); Sealts, no. 174

pg 877

[End of editor's introduction, p. xlviii]

"What execrations! What hatred against the human race! What exultation and merriment at eternal sufferings!—In this view, the 'Inferno' is the most immoral and impious book ever written." Thus savagely writes Savage Landor of the still more savage Tuscan.

["What execrations against Florence, Pistoia, Siena, Pisa, Genoa! what hatred against the whole human race! what exultation and merriment at eternal and immitigable sufferings! Seeing this, I cannot but consider the Inferno as the most immoral and impious book that ever was written."

Walter Savage Landor, The Pentameron and Pentalogia (London, 1837), p. 44; see Sealts, no. 319b. Quoted in Leigh Hunt, Stories from the Italian Poets (New York: Wiley & Putnam, 1846), p. 31; see Sealts, nos. 290b, 325. See also the Historical Note, pp. 380–81.]

[Above beginning of "Hell," p. 1]

"Thus, while he spoke, in swarms, hell's emp'ror brings / Daughters & wives of heroes and of kings; / Thick and more thick they gather round the flood, / Ghost throned on ghost, a dire assembly stood!" Odyssey, BXI. A.D. 1858

["Thus while she spoke, in swarms hell's empress brings / Daughters and wives of heroes and of kings; / Thick and more thick they gather round the blood, / Ghost throned on ghost, a dire assembly, stood!" Homer, trans. Alexander Pope, bk. 11, lines 273–76; Sealts, no. 147, vol. 3, p. 109]

With hands together smote that swell'd the sounds, ["Hell," 3.26, p. 13]

"And sounds of hands among them" John Carlyle's version of the line.

["and sound of hands amongst them," Dante's Divine Comedy: The Inferno, trans. John A. Carlyle (1849); Sealts, no. 173a, p. 27]

No sooner to my listening ear had come / The brief assurance, than I understood / New virtue into me infused, and sight / Kindled afresh, with vigour to sustain / Excess of light however pure.

["Paradise," 30.55–59, p. 511]


[Blake's rough sketch, "Dante in the Empyrean, drinking at the River of Light.———Canto XXX," illustrates lines 84–96 of this canto and is listed in the appendix to Alexander Gilchrist, Life of William Blake, "Pictor Ignotus," 2 vols. (London, 1863), 2:223; Sealts, no. 224. Melville scored nearly the entire canto.]

pg 878

1849: John Milton, The Poetical Works of John Milton, 2 vols. (1836); Sealts, no. 358b

[vol. 1, back flyleaf]

In Bartas

[Guillaume Salluste du Bartas, French epic poet translated into English by Joshua Sylvester and mentioned frequently in the editorial notes to this volume]

Heav'n, hell, earth, chaos, all; the argument / Held me awhile misdoubting his intent, / That he would ruine (for I saw him strong) / The sacred truths to Fable and old song: / (So Sampson grop'd the temple's posts in spite) / The world o'erwhelming to revenge his sight.

["Complimentary Verses," "On Paradise Lost," by Andrew Marvell, vol. 1, p. cxxviii]

It is still "misdoubted" by some. First impressions are generally true, too, Andrew.

The Verse

[vol. 1, p. [cxxxii], Milton's short preface describing his versification and defending the absence of rhyme.]

The music of the P. L. Like a fine organ—fullest & deepest tones of majesty, with the softness & elegance of the Dorian flute. Variety without end scarcely equalled by Virgil. Cowper in "Letters"

["Was there ever anything so delightful as the music of the Paradise Lost? It is like that of a fine organ; with all the softness and elegance of the Dorian flute, variety without end, and never equalled, unless, perhaps by Virgil." See Thomas Taylor, Life of William Cowper, Esq. (Philadelphia: Edward C. Riddle, 1841), p. 206.]

pg 879

Above th' Aonian mount, while it pursues

[Paradise Lost, 1.15, vol. 1, p. 2]


["O heavenly Muse, that not with fading bays / Deckest thy brow by the Heliconian spring, / But sittest crowned with stars' immortal rays / In Heaven, where legions of bright angels sing"; Torquato Tasso, Jerusalem Delivered, 1.2, trans. Edward Fairfax (1600). Tasso's poem La Gerusalemme liberata (1580) is frequently cited in the editorial notes to this and other editions of Paradise Lost. "Heliconian" is a synonym for "Aonian."]

Things unattempted yet in prose or rhyme

[Paradise Lost, 1.16, vol. 1, p. 2]


["In the same strain of Roland will I tell / Things unattempted yet in prose or rhyme," Ludovico Ariosto, Orlando Furioso, 1.2, trans. William Stewart Rose (1831)]

and there to pine / Immovable, infix'd, and frozen round, / Periods of time; thence hurried back to fire.

[Paradise Lost, 2.601–3, vol. 1, p. 60]


["I come / To take you to the other shore across, / Into eternal darkness, there to dwell / In fierce heat and in ice," The Vision, trans. Henry Cary, "Hell," 3.79–82; Sealts, no. 174, p. 15. Cary's note cross-references Paradise Lost, 2.598–601.]

on some great charge employ'd / He seem'd, or fix'd in cogitation deep.

[Paradise Lost, 3.628–29, vol. 1, p. 104]


[See "but wore / The semblance of a man by other care / Beset, and keenly press'd, than thought of him / Who in his presence stands," The Vision, trans. Henry Cary, "Hell," 9.100–103; Sealts, no. 174, p. 46.]

pg 880

Nor where Abassin kings their issue guard, / Mount Amara, though this by some suppos'd / True paradise, under the Ethiop line

[Paradise Lost, 4.280–82; vol. 1, p. 121]

The account of the old travellers, on which Johnson fo[u]nded Rasselas.

[See the description of the happy valley in chap. 1 of Samuel Johnson, The History of Rasselas Prince of Abyssinia; Sealts, no. 300.]

others on the grass / Couch'd, and now fill'd with pasture gazing sat

[Paradise Lost, 4.350–51; vol. 1, p. 125]

"Full of the pasture" in "As-You-Like-It"

["Anon, a careless herd, / Full of the pasture, jumps along by him, / And never stays to greet him," Shakespeare, As You Like It, 2.1; Sealts, no. 460, vol. 2, p. 276.]

what glorious shape / Comes this way moving, seems another morn / Ris'n on mid-noon

[Paradise Lost, 5.309–11, vol. 1, pp. 165–66; editor's footnote: "See Dante, Il Purgatorio, c.xii"]


["The goodly shape approach'd us, snowy white / In vesture, and with visage casting streams / Of tremulous lustre like the matin star," The Vision, trans. Henry Cary, "Purgatory," 12.81–83; Sealts, no. 174, p. 240.]

A dreadful interval

[Paradise Lost, 6.105, vol. 1, p. 193]

"The deadly space between" Campbell.

[Thomas Campbell, "The Battle of the Baltic," line 22, in The Poets of the Nineteenth Century, ed. Rev. Robert Aris Willmott (New York, 1858); Sealts, no. 558a, p. 189]

Descend from heav'n, Urania, by that name / If rightly thou art call'd, whose voice divine / Following, above th' Olympian hill I soar, / Above the flight of Pegasean wing.

[Paradise Lost, 7.1–4, vol. 1, p. [224]]

Tasso's invocation

[See "Tasso" in the entry for 1849: Milton, above.]

pg 881

His visage drawn he felt to sharp and spare, / His arms clung to his ribs, his legs entwining / Each other, till supplanted down he fell / A monstrous serpent on his belly prone, / Reluctant, but in vain; a greater power / Now rul'd him

[Paradise Lost, 10.511–16, vol. 1, p. 347]


[The Vision, trans. Henry Cary, "Hell," 15.85–132, describing the transformation of a spirit into a serpent, especially "He, on the earth who lay, meanwhile extends / His sharpen'd visage," lines 120–21; Sealts, no. 174, pp. 128–29. Cary cross-references Milton's lines. Melville quotes from this canto in Pierre, bk. 4, sect. v, p. 85.]

With complicated monsters head and tail, / Scorpion, and asp, and amphisbaena dire, / Cerastes horn'd, hydrus, and ellops drear, / And dipsas; (not so thick swarm'd once the soil / Bedropp'd with blood of Gorgon, or the isle / Ophiusa;) but still greatest he the midst, / Now dragon, grown larger than whom the sun / Ingender'd in the Pythian vale on slime,

[Paradise Lost, 10.523–30, vol. 1, p. 348]


["Dread Amphisbæna with his double head / Tapering," Pharsalia, 9.798–99, as well as the list of monsters at 700–733. See also Dante, The Vision, trans. Henry Cary, "Hell," 24.77–88, which has an editorial cross-reference to the latter passage in Lucan; Sealts, no. 174, p. 122.]

Oh! why did God, / Creator wise, that peopled highest heav'n / With spirits masculine, create at last / This novelty on earth, this fair defect / Of nature, and not fill the world at once / With men as angels without feminine, / Or find some other way to generate / Mankind?

[Paradise Lost, 10.888–95, vol. 1, pp. 362–63]

So Sir Thomas Browne—also Byron somewhere

[See Browne's Religio Medici, which contains such antifeminist statements as "The whole world was made for man, but the twelfth part of man for woman. Man is the whole world, and the breath of God; woman the rib, and crooked piece of man" (1.9, p. 105); Sealts, no. 89. Byron's verse contains similar sentiments, such as "a rib's a thorn in a wed gallant's side," Don Juan, 11.46; Sealts, no. 112, vol. 10, p. 182.]

pg 882

O visions ill foreseen! better had I / Liv'd ignorant of future, so had borne / My part of evil only, each day's lot / Enough to bear; those now, that were dispens'd

[Paradise Lost, 11.763–66, vol. 2, p. 33]

"Seek not to know" the ghost replyed in tears / "The sorrows of thy sons in future years" Virgil

[Aeneid, trans. John Dryden, 6.867–68; Sealts, no. 147]

Myself my sepulchre, a moving grave,

[Samson Agonistes, line 102, vol. 2, p. 161]

My own soul's sepulchre Byron

[Manfred, 1.2.27; Sealts, no. 112, vol. 5, p. 20.]

Not less renown'd than in Mount Ephraim / Jael, who with inhospitable guile / Smote Sisera sleeping through the temples nail'd.

[Samson Agonistes, lines 988–90, vol. 2, p. 194]

There is basis for the doubt expressed by A. Marvel in his lines to Milton on the publication of the P. Lost. There was a twist in Milton. From its place, the above marked passage has an interesting significance.

["the argument / Held me awhile misdoubting his intent," Andrew Marvell, "On Paradise Lost," in this edition, vol. 1, p. cxxviii]

He knew / Himself to sing, and build the lofty rhime.

["Lycidas," lines 10–11, vol. 2, p. [271]]


["To build with level of my lofty stile," Spenser, "Ruins of Rome," 25.13; Sealts, no. 483a, vol. 8, p. 138]

How well could I have spar'd for thee, young swain, / Enow of such as for their bellies' sake / … But that two-handed engine at the door / Stands ready to smite once, and smite no more.

["Lycidas," lines 113–31, vol. 2, pp. 276–77]

Mark the deforming effect of the intrusion of partizan topics & feelings of the day, however serious in import, into a poem otherwise of the first order of merit.

pg 883

Time will run back, and fetch the age of gold;

["On the Morning of Christ's Nativity," line 135, vol. 2, p. 317]

From Jesus [Jews?] to Shakespeare

The oracles are dumb, / No voice or hideous hum / Runs thro' the arched roof in words deceiving.

["On the Morning of Christ's Nativity," lines 173–75, vol. 2, p. 319]

Plutarch on the Cessation of Oracles.

[Plutarchus, Morals, "Why the Oracles Cease to Give Answers"; Sealts, no. 404.2. See also NN Correspondence, pp. 262, 639–40.]

1849: Johann Schiller, The Poems and Ballads (1844); Sealts, no. 439

The Alp Hunter

[p. 29]

Here seems the idea of Longfellow's [erasure] fine piece—"Excelsior."

[Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, "Excelsior," in The Poets of the Nineteenth Century, ed. Rev. Robert Aris Willmott (New York, 1858); Sealts, no. 558a, pp. 479–81]

1849 (February 24): William Shakespeare, The Dramatic Works of William Shakspeare (1837); Sealts, no. 460

Thy death, which is no more.

[Measure for Measure, 3.1, vol. 1, p. 369]

[At page bottom] "Our little life is rounded by a sleep" Tempest

[Shakespeare, The Tempest, 4.1, vol. 1, p. 62]

Abhor. Sirrah, bring Barnardine hither. / Clo. Master Barnardine! You must rise and be hanged, master Barnardine! / Abhor. What, ho, Barnardine! / Barnar. [Within.] A pox o' your throats! Who makes that noise there? What are you? / Clo. Your friends, sir; the hangman: you must be so good, sir, to rise and be put to death. / Barnar. [Within.] Away, you rogue, away; I am sleepy.

[Measure for Measure, 4.3, vol. 1, p. 396]

Take this, and the other texts with the one comprehensive one in The Tempest, I think, "Our little life is rounded with a sleep."

[Shakespeare, The Tempest, 4.1, vol. 1, p. 62]

pg 884

To make a second fall of cursed man?

[Richard II, 3.4, vol. 4, p. 420]

To be found in Shelley & (through him) in Byron. Also in Dryden.

[Possibly P. B. Shelley's Essay on Christianity, Byron's Cain, and Dryden's Religio Laici or Dryden's theatrical version of Paradise Lost, The State of Innocence, and Fall of Man.]

Your crown's awry.

[Antony and Cleopatra, 5.2, vol. 6, p. 210]

Shelley in the "Cenci"

[See P. B. Shelley, The Cenci, 5.4, the scene in which Beatrice, like Shakespeare's Cleopatra, dies; Bercaw, no. 637; Sealts, no. 469, vol. 1, pp. 532–38.]

[Annotation on sixth rear flyleaf]

A seaman figures in The Canterbury Tales. With many a tempest had his beard been shook.

["With many a tempest had his beard been shake," modernized version of "The Shipman's Tale," line 408, quoted in Charles Cowden Clarke, The Riches of Chaucer, 2 vols. (London, 1835); Sealts, no. 141, vol. 1, p. 72. Also quoted in Leigh Hunt, The Indicator: A Miscellany for the Fields and Fireside (New York: Wiley & Putnam, 1845), p. 72, as "With many a tempest had his beard been shaken"; see Sealts, nos. 290b, 325.]

1849 (November 14): Francis Beaumont, Fifty Comedies and Tragedies (1679); Sealts, no. 53

To make his happiness if then he seize it

[The Custom of the Country, 2.1, p. 90]

"There is a tide" &c

["There is a tide in the affairs of men / Which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune," Shakespeare, Julius Caesar, 4.3; Sealts, no. 460, vol. 6, p. 74]

pg 885

And he that will to bed go sober, / Falls with the leaf still in October.

[The Bloody Brother; or Rollo. A Tragedy, 2.2, p. 433]

Walter Scott's Song.

[See "Health to Lord Melville. Air—Carrickfergus," in John Gibson Lockhart, Memoirs of the Life of Sir Walter Scott, 4 vols. (Paris: Baudry's European Library, 1838), 1: 297–98.]

To be excellent in evil, is your goodness; Mighty in evil, as thou art in anger

[The Lovers Progress A Tragedy, 2.2, p. 518]

Coincidences or ———. between B-&-F & Milton.

["Evil, be thou my good"; Paradise Lost, 4.110; Sealts, no. 358b, vol. 1, p. 114]

That like the wounded air, no bloud may issue

[The Lovers Progress A Tragedy, 4.2, p. 527]


[See "But their hearts wounded, like the wounded air, / Soon close; where past the shaft, no trace is found"; Edward Young, The Complaint; or, Night Thoughts, 1.428–30, in The Poetical Works of Edward Young, ed. John Mitford (1854), vol. 1, p. 18.]

By heaven / (Methinks) it were an easie leap / To pluck bright honor from the pale-fac'd Moon, / Or dive into the bottom of the Sea, / Where never fathome line toucht any ground, / And pluck up drowned honor / From the lake of Hell.

[The Knight of the Burning Pestle, "The Prologue," p. 47]

A hint at Shakespeare in Hotspur ["By Heaven, methinks it were an easy leap, / To pluck bright honor from the pale-faced moon; / Or dive into the bottom of the deep, / Where fathom-line could never touch the ground, / And pluck up drowned honor by the locks; / So he, that doth redeem her thence, might wear / Without corrival, all her dignities"; King Henry IV Part I, 1.3; Sealts, no. 460, vol. 4, p. 472]

pg 886

Laza. Let me not fall from my self; Speak I'm bound. / Count. So art thou to revenge, when thou shalt hear the fish head is gone, and we know not whither.

[The Woman-Hater, 2.1, p. 475]

vide Hamlet

["Ham. Speak; I am bound to hear. / Ghost. So art thou to revenge, when thou shalt hear"; 4.5, Sealts, no. 460, vol. 7, p. 278]

1849 (December): Ben Jonson, The Works of Ben Jonson (1692); Sealts, no. 302

An Elegy

[p. 556]

This may have suggested the form & spirit of Tennyson, "In Memoriam."

[In Memoriam, Sealts, no. 505.]

1849 (December 24): Christopher Marlowe, The Dramatic Works of Christopher Marlowe (n.d.); Sealts, no. 348

Shall lie at anchor in the isle Arant, / Until the Persian fleet and men of wars, / Sailing along the oriental sea, / Have fetch'd about the Indian continent

[Tamburlaine the Great, a tragedy, 3.3]


[Possibly "As when far off at sea a fleet descried / Hangs in the clouds, by equinoctial winds / Close sailing from Bengala," Paradise Lost, 2.636–38 (Satan's flight from Hell); Sealts, no. 358b, vol. 1, p. 61.]

1850: Sir William D'avenant, The Works (1673); Sealts, no. 176

Madagascar, with Other Poems.

["Epitaph on I. Walker," p. 234.]

This is Admirable, [and at bottom erased] A fine character this of I. Walker. I should like to have [sat down with] him & discussed the [one word undeciphered] of Ciciro & [four words undeciphered].

Poems, on Several Occasions, Never before Printed.

["Song," p. 320: "The Lark now leaves his watry Nest"]

[At heading] What a fine Persian tone is here. Hafiz Englished. Ah Will was a trump.

[See Shams-Ed-Din Muhammad Hafiz, Bercaw, no. 312.]

pg 887

1851: Baron Georges Cuvier, The Animal Kingdom (1827–43); Sealts, no. 171

[On the back flyleaf]

Music—pecus—underling [?] / Little knowledge is a dangerous thing. ["A little Learning is a dang'rous Thing," Alexander Pope, Essay on Criticism (1711), 2.215; Sealts, no. 405]

Edmund Spenser, The Poetical Works (1788), Sealts, no. 483a. [This was Melville's father's edition. Helen Melville began copying annotations of Melville's from this edition into Spenser, The Poetical Works (1855), Sealts, no. 483, making minor transcription errors. The marginalia below are all in Melville's hand.]

[Facing title page, vol. 1]

"Spenser to me (is dear) / whose deep conceit is such / As passing all conceit needs / no defence" / Shakspeare.

["Spenser to me, whose deep conceit is such, / As passing all conceit, needs no defence," Shakespeare, "The Passionate Pilgrim," lines 81–82; Sealts, no. 464, p. 193]

And on his brest a bloodie crosse he bore

[Faerie Queene,, vol. 1, front flyleaf]

"And on her beauteous breast a cross she wore" / Pope.

["On her white breast a sparkling cross she wore," "The Rape of the Lock," 2.7; Sealts, no. 405]

He never meant with words, but swords, to plead his right

[Faerie Queene,, vol. 1, p. 185]

"My voice is in my sword" / Macbeth.

[5.8, Sealts, no. 460, vol. 5, p. 260]

"Yea, but," quoth she, "he beares a charmed shield

[Faerie Queene,, vol. 1, p. 187]

"I bear a charmed life" / Macbeth.

[5.8, Sealts, no. 460, vol. 5, p. 260]

pg 888

"Thyselfe thy message do to german deare;" … "Goe, say his foe thy shield with his doth beare."

[Faerie Queene,–4, vol. 1, p. 193]

Down to hell & say I sent thee thither. / Macbeth.

["Down, down to hell: and say—I sent thee thither," Gloucester to King Henry in 3 King Henry VI, 5.6; Sealts, no. 460, p. 535]

And stirrd'st up th' heroes high intents

[Faerie Queene,, vol. 3, p. 121]

"Thence to their images it flows / And in the breasts of kings & heroes glows."

["Thence to their images on earth it flows, / And in the breasts of kings and heroes glows," Pope, "Elegy to the Memory of an Unfortunate Lady," lines 15–16]

Oft from the forrest wildings he did bring, / Whose sides empurpled were with smyling red, / And oft young birds, which he had taught to sing, / His maistresse praises sweetly caroled; / Girlonds of flowres sometimes for her faire hed / He fine would dight; sometimes the squirrel wild / He brought to her in bands, as conquered / To be her thrall, his fellow servant vild; / All of which she of him tooke with countenance meeke and mild.

[Faerie Queene, 3.7.17, vol. 3, p. 206]


[Shakespeare, The Tempest; Sealts, no. 460; the previous several stanzas had reminded Melville of Caliban and his mother.]

What medicine can any leaches art / Yeeld such a sore, that doth her grievance hide, / and will to none her maladie impart?

[Faerie Queene,–7, vol. 4, p. 148]

Macbeth to the doctor

["Canst thou not minister to a mind diseased, / Pluck from the memory a rooted sorrow, / Raze out the written troubles of the brain, / And with some sweet oblivious antidote / Cleanse the stuff'd bosom of that perilous stuff / Which weighs upon the heart?" Macbeth, 5.3; Sealts, no. 460, vol. 5, p. 253]

pg 889

"She wore much like unto a Danisk hood, / Poudred with pearle and stone, and all her gowne"

[Faerie Queene,–8, vol. 4, p. 226]

"Powdered with stars" / Milton

["Powder'd with stars," Paradise Lost, 7.581; Sealts, no. 358b, vol. 1, p. 248]

Into the great Nemæan Lion's grove

[Faerie Queene, introductory canto 6.4; vol. 5, p. 7]

"The lair of the Lion" / E. A. Poe

[Edgar Allan Poe, "Ulalume," line 49; Sealts, no. 404a]

Immoveable, resistlesse, without end

[Faerie Queene,, vol. 5, p. 13]


["O'er heav'n's high tow'rs to force resistless way," Paradise Lost, 2.62; Sealts, no. 358b, vol. 1, p. 39]

And in her necke a castle huge had made

[Faerie Queene,, vol. 5, p. 164]

Milton—In one of his sonnets

["And on the neck of crowned fortune proud / Hast rear'd God's trophies, and his work pursued," "XVI. To the Lord General Cromwell," lines 5–6; Sealts, no. 358b, vol. 2, p. 355]

Wherefore, it now behoves us to advise / What way is best to drive her to retire; / Whether by open force, or counsell wise, / Areed ye sonnes of God! as best you can devise.

[Faerie Queene,–9, vol. 6, p. 153]

Milton's speechs of the fallen spirits in conclave.

["and by what best way, / Whether of open war or covert guile, / We now debate; who can advise, may speak," Paradise Lost, 2.40–42; Sealts, no. 358b, vol. 1, p. 38]

And the dull drops that from his purpled bill / As from a limbeck did adown distill

[Faerie Queene,–5, vol. 6, p. 175]

Keats—the monk in the chapel.

[John Keats, The Eve of St. Agnes, illus. Edward Wehnert, illustration III; Sealts, no. 305, p. 8]

pg 890

Now in the valleys wandring at their wills,

["Virgils Gnat," 10.4, vol. 6, p. 225]

"The river wanders at its own secret will" / Wordsworth [and] How W. W. must have delighted in this stanza.

["The river glideth at his own sweet will," "Composed Upon Westminster Bridge, Sept. 3, 1803," line 12; Sealts, no. 563a, p. 191]

To build with level of my lofty stile

["Ruins of Rome," 25.13, vol. 8, p. 138]

Build the lofty rhyme / Milton.

["Lycidas," line 11; Sealts, no. 358b, vol. 2, p. [271]]

1858 (November): Homer, The Iliads of Homer, trans. George Chapman (1857); Sealts, no. 277

Up from the grey sea like a cloud [1.360, vol. 1, p. 14]

Exhalation / Milton—"rose like an exhalation"—the Pandemonium palace

["Anon out of the earth a fabric huge / Rose, like an exhalation," Paradise Lost, 1.710–11; Sealts, no. 358b, vol. 1, p. 31]

The quarter of the Myrmidons they reach'd, and found him set / Delighted with his solemn harp, which curiously was fret / With works conceited through the verge; the bawdrick that embrac'd / His lofty neck was silver twist; this, when his hand laid waste / Aëtion's city, he did choose as his especial prise, / And, loving sacred music well, made it his exercise. / To it he sung the glorious deeds of great heroës dead, / And his true mind, that practice fail'd, sweet contemplation fed.

[9.183–90, vol. 1, pp. 192–93]

"Amused at ease the god-like man they found. / Pleased with the solemn harp's harmonious sound; / With this he soothes his angry soul, and sings, / The immortal deeds of heroes and of kings." Pope's version.

["Amused at ease, the godlike man they found, / Pleased with the solemn harp's harmonious sound. / (The well-wrought harp from conquer'd Thebae came, / Of polish'd silver was its costly frame.) / With this he soothes his angry soul, and sings / The immortal deeds of heroes and of kings"; Pope, Iliad, 9.245–50; Sealts, no. 147, vol. 1, p. 217]

pg 891

and should we set thee free / For offer'd ransom, for this 'scape thou still wouldst scouting be / About our ships, or do us scathe in plain opposed arms, / But, if I take thy life, no way can we repent thy harms.

[10.381–84, vol. 1, p. 222]

"Once a traitor, thou betrayest no more" Pope

["No—once a traitor, thou betray'st no more," Pope, Iliad, 10.521; Sealts, no. 147, vol. 1, p. 247.]

See, these are right / Our kings, our rulers; these deserve to eat and drink the best; / These govern not ingloriously; these, thus exceed the rest, / Do more than they command to do.

[12.320–23, vol. 1, p. 264]

"Whom those that envy, dare not imitate." Pope's version.

["Whom those that envy dare not imitate!" Pope, Iliad, 12.386; Sealts, no. 147, vol. 1, p. 290.]

Deiphobus, now may we think that we are evenly fam'd / That three for one have sent to Dis.

[13.419–20, vol. 2, p. 15]

See, on one Greek, three Trojan ghosts attend.

["See! on one Greek three Trojan ghosts attend," Pope, Iliad, 13:560; Sealts, no. 147, vol. 1, p. 311]

When ag'd Priam spied / The great Greek come, spher'd round with beams

[22.22–23, vol. 2, p. 208]


["Spher'd in a radiant cloud," Paradise Lost, 7.247; Sealts, no. 358b, vol. 1, p. 234]

1858 (November): Homer, The Odysseys of Homer, trans. George Chapman (1857); Sealts, no. 278

Hear me, Eumæus, and my other friends, / I'll use a speech that to my glory tends, / Since I have drunk wine past my usual guise. / Strong wine commands the fool and moves the wise

[14.657–60, vol. 2, p. 44]

"Since to be talkative I now commence / Let wit cast off the sullen yoke of sense" Pope

[Pope, Odyssey, 14.524–25; Sealts, no. 147, vol. 3, p. 168]

pg 892

1859: Ralph Waldo Emerson, Poems (1858); Sealts, no. 206

The Humble-Bee [p. 60]

"Happy thing! Thou seem'st to me almost a little god to be!" Anacreon — 'The Grasshopper'.

[Anacreon, trans. Thomas Bourne, ode 43, "On the Grasshopper"; Sealts, no. 147, p. 51]

1859 (October 15): Charles Mackay, ed., Songs of England (1857); Sealts, no. 342

This Bottle's the Sun of Our Table [p. 133; song from Richard Brinsley Sheridan's comic opera The Duenna]

Good for "Old Sherry"

[A popular nickname for Sheridan, used by Lord Byron and others.]

1860 (February 15): James Clarence Mangan, Poems (1859), Sealts, no. 347

The Bride of the Dead [p. 256]

The May Queen

[Poem and book by Tennyson; Sealts, no. 507]

Then saw I thrones, / And circling fires, / And a Dome rose near me, as by a spell, / Whence flowed the tones / Of silver lyres, / And many voices in wreathèd swell; / And their thrilling chime / Fell on mine ears / As the heavenly hymn of an angel-band— / "It is now the time, / These be the years, / Of Cáhal Mór of the Wine-red Hand!"

["A Vision of Connaught in the Thirteenth Century," p. 434]

T's "Haroun al Raschid"

["The fourscore windows all alight / As with the quintessence of flame, / A million tapers flaring bright / From twisted silvers looked to shame / The hollow-vaulted dark, and streamed / Upon the mooned domes aloof/ In inmost Bagdat, till there seemed / Hundreds of crescents on the roof/ Of night new risen, that marvellous time, / To celebrate the golden prime / Of good Haroun Alraschid"; Tennyson, stanza 12 of "Recollections of the Arabian Nights," Sealts, no. 508, vol. 1, p. 16]

pg 893

1860 (February 15): Thomas Moore, The Poetical Works (1856); Sealts, no. 369

The "Living Dog" and "The Dead Lion"

[poem, vol. 3, p. 102.]

Leigh Hunt Byron

[written above the title to indicate that Hunt was the "living dog" and Byron "the dead lion"]

1860 (February/March): Lord Byron, The Poetical Works ([1853?]); Sealts, no. 112

[On Milton:] Would he adore a sultan? he obey / The intellectual eunuch Castlereagh?

[Don Juan, dedication, stanza 11; vol. 9, p. 105]

What an awful clincher [?] on W. C. & S.

[Wordsworth, Coleridge, and Southey renounced their revolutionary politics for the reactionary views of Robert Stewart, Viscount Castlereagh, a Tory whom Byron despised.]

If you think 't was philosophy that this did, / I can't help thinking puberty assisted.

[Don Juan, canto 1, stanza 93; p. 149]

This is a touch from Dean Swift.

[See Bercaw, nos. 683, 684]

1860 (March): William Hazlitt, Lectures on the English Poets (1859; bound with Lectures on the English Comic Writers); Sealts, no. 263b

he is even without God in the world

[Lecture 1, "On Poetry in General," p. 22]

True: no gods, I think, are mentioned in Ossian.

[James Macpherson, Fingal; Sealts, no. 343]

pg 894

If it were indeed possible to shew that this writer was nothing, it would only be another instance of mutability, another blank made, another void left in the heart, another confirmation of that feeling which makes him so often complain, "Roll on, ye dark brown years, ye bring no joy on your wing to Ossian!"

[Lecture 1, "On Poetry in General," p. 22.]

I am rejoiced to see Hazlitt speak for Ossian. There is nothing more contemptable in that contemptable man (tho' good poet, in his department) Wordsworth, than this contempt for Ossian. And nothing that more raises my idea of Napoleon than his great admiration for him.—The loneliness of the spirit of Ossian harmonized with the loneliness of the greatness of Napoleon.

[James Macpherson, Fingal; Sealts, no. 343]

The great fault of a modern school of poetry is that it is an experiment to reduce poetry to a mere effusion of natural sensibility … for their minds reject, with a convulsive effort and intolerable loathing, the very idea that there ever was, or was thought to be, anything superior to themselves.

[Lecture 3, "On Shakspeare and Milton," pp. 62–63]

Wordsworth was in the writer's mind here, very likely.

but after reading the Excursion, few people will think it [Candide] dull

[Lecture 6, "On Swift, Young, Gray, Etc.," p. 136.]

Wordsworth so called it.

[The Solitary in The Excursion, bk. 2, refers to Candide as "this dull product of a Scoffer's pen"; Sealts, no. 563a, p. 409.]

[Passage jibing at Samuel Rogers's "Pleasures of Memory," lecture 8, "On the Living Poets," pp. 176–77]

This is pretty much all spleen. Rogers, tho' no genius, was a painstaking man of talent who has written some good things. "Italy" is an interesting book to every person of taste. In Hazlitt you have at times to allow for indigestion.

[Italy (1822–28), Rogers's travel verses]

pg 895

1860 (March 4): Anne Louise Germaine Staël-Holstein, Germany (1859); Sealts, no. 487

Events like those of the Iliad interest of themselves, and the less the author's own sentiments are brought forward, the greater is the impression made by the picture; but if we set ourselves to describe romantic situations with the impartial calmness of Homer, the result would not be very alluring.

["Of Romances," vol. 2, p. 58]

Admirable distinction. In the "Idylls of the King" (Tennyson) we see the Homeric, or rather Odyssean manner pervading romantic stories, and the result is a kind of "shocking tameness."

[Melville quotes the phrase "shocking tameness" from Francis Jeffrey, review of Robert Southey, Roderick: The Last of the Goths, Edinburgh Review (June 1815); collected in Sealts, no. 359, The Modern British Essayists, vol. 6, p. 424. For "Idylls of the King" see Tennyson, The Poetical Works; Sealts, no. 508.]

the opinions of Goethe are much more profound, but they do not present any greater consolation to the soul.

[vol. 2, p. 60]

It is delightful and wonderful to see — passim — such penetration of understanding in a woman, who at the same time possesses so feminine & emotional a nature. — who would one compare Madam De Stael too? — Mrs. Browning? — Mrs. B. was a great woman, but Madam De S. was a greater.

1861 (August 14): Alfred, Lord Tennyson, The Poetical Works; Sealts, no. 508

[Pasted on front flyleaf: clipping of a critic's accusation that Tennyson borrowed the meter for "The Charge of the Light Brigade" from Michael Drayton's "The Battaile of Agincourt" (1627), with eight lines from Drayton quoted.]

stuff by a Small Man

[This annotation is enclosed in a drawing of a hand pointing up toward the clipping; Melville directs his sarcasm toward the critic's accusation, not toward Tennyson.]

pg 896

1862 (March 17): Heinrich Heine, The Poems of Heine, Complete (1861); Sealts, no. 268

["Clarissa," p. 98]

[By title:] Swinburne's inspiration is tracable distantly in some of these things. — Especially in Queen Mary.

[See Algernon Charles Swinburne's poem "Adieux à Marie Stuart," the epilogue to his dramatic trilogy Chastelard, Bothwell, and Mary Stuart. See also Swinburne, Laus Veneris, and Other Poems and Ballads, Sealts, no. 492a.]

["The Return Home," p. 183]

[Above title:] The poetical part of The Reisebilder

[Early in his career Heine wrote a series of travel narratives, Die Reisebilder (or Pictures of Travel).]

1862 (March 21): Abraham Cowley, The Works (1707, 1711); Sealts, no. 160a

His Faith perhaps in some nice Tenets might / Be wrong; his Life, I'm sure, was in the right.

["Miscellanies," vol. 1, p. 46]

"He can't be wrong whose life is in the right." Pope.

["His can't be wrong whose life is in the right," Essay on Man, 3.306; Sealts, no. 405]

Nothing in Nature's sober found, / But an eternal Health goes round. / Fill up the Bowl then, fill it high, / Fill all the Glasses there, for why / Should ev'ry Creature drink but I, / Why, Man of Morals, tell we why?

["Drinking" from "Anacreontiques," vol. 1, p. 49]

Acme & Septimius p. 561 v. 2

[See Cowley's "Ode. Acme & Septimius out of Catullus," vol. 2, p. 561 of this edition.]

pg 897

I'll teach him a Receipt to make / Words that weep, and Tears that speak,

["The Prophet," vol. 1, p. 113]

"Thoughts that breathe and words that burn"

[Thomas Gray, "The Progress of Poesy: A Pindaric Ode," 3.3.4]

["The Inconstant." "I Never yet could see that Face / Which had no Dart for me," vol. 1, p. 153]

[Beneath title:] Sheridan's Song

[See the air from Richard Brinsley Sheridan's The Duenna (1775), which begins "I ne'er could any lustre see / In eyes that would not look on me"; Sealts, no. 471.]

Since the whole Stock may soon exhausted be, / Bestow't not all in Charity. / Let Nature, and let Art do what they please, / When all's done, Life is an Incurable Disease.

["To Dr. Scarborough," no. 6 in "Pindarique Odes," vol. 1, p. 237]


[Perhaps "The Muse but served to ease some friend, not Wife, / To help me through this long disease, my Life," "An Epistle to Dr. Arbuthnot," 131–32; Sealts, no. 405.]

He has liv'd well, who has lain well hidden. Which if it be a Truth, the World (I'll swear) is sufficiently deceiv'd: For my part, I think it is, and that the pleasantest Condition of Life is in Incognito.

["Several Discourses by Way of Essays, in Verse and Prose," vol. 2, p. 700]

See Addison

[Perhaps "Thus I live in the world, rather as a Spectator of Mankind, than as one of the Species," Joseph Addison, The Spectator, no. 1, Bercaw, nos. 3a, 662.]

This humble Roof, this rustick Court (said he) / Receiv'd Alcides crown'd with Victory. / Scorn not (great Guest) the Steps where he has trod, / But contemn Wealth, and imitate a God.

[Verse extract from the Aeneid in "Several Discourses by Way of Essays, in Verse and Prose," vol. 2, p. 714]

"Dare to be poor" Dryden's Æneid.

[And, in another hand, "Aeneid lib: 8. v178"; Sealts, no. 147.]

pg 898

And Business thou wouldst find, and wouldst create: / Business! the frivolous Pretence / Of human Lusts, to shake off Innocence; / Business! the grave Impertinence; / Business! the thing which I of all things hate, / Business! the Contradiction of thy Fate.

["Verses Written on Several Occasions," vol. 2, p. 586]

[Rear free endpaper, verso:] 586—Business &c

That from all which I have written I never receiv'd the least Benefit, or the least Advantage, but, on the contrary, have felt sometimes the Effects of Malice and Misfortune.

["Preface" to Cutter of Cole-man Street. A Comedy, vol. 2, p. [800]]

How few will credit this; nevertheless how true, one doubts not, said by a man like Cowley.

The Works of Mr. John Milton, containing his Paradise Lost and Paradise Regain'd; to which is added Samson Agonistes, and Poems on several Occasions compos'd at several Times. In 2 Vols. 8 vo.

["Books Printed for Jacob Tonson, at Grays-Inn Gate," vol. 2, p. [895]]

33 years after his death.

1862 (March 22): Ralph Waldo Emerson, Essays: Second Series (1844); Sealts, no. 205

It is a secret which every intellectual man quickly learns, that, beyond the energy of his possessed and conscious intellect, he is capable of a new energy.… As the traveller who has lost his way, throws his reins on his horse's neck, and trusts to the instinct of the animal to find his road, so must we do with the divine animal who carries us through this world.

["The Poet," p. 29]

Wordsworth. "One impulse from a vernal wood" &c / This is an original application of the thought.

["The Tables Turned; An Evening Scene on the Same Subject," line 21; Sealts, no. 563a, p. 337]

pg 899

So the poet's habit of living should be set on a key so low and plain, that the common influences should delight him. His cheerfulness should be the gift of the sunlight; the air should suffice for his inspiration, and he should be tipsy with water.

["The Poet," p. 32]

This makes the Wordsworthian poet — not Shakespearian.

1862 (April): Charles Churchill, The Poetical Works (1854); Sealts, no. 144

When to the top the bold adventurer's got, / He reigns vain monarch o'er a barren spot, / Whilst in the vale of ignorance below / Folly and vice to rank luxuriance grow;

["The Author," vol. 2, p. 168]


[Perhaps "The Prelude," 8.495–97: "Ere long, the lonely mountains left, I moved, / Begirt, from day to day, with temporal shapes / Of vice and folly thrust upon my view"; The Prelude (New York: Appleton, 1850), p. 227; see the Historical Note, p. 491n.]

1862 (April 6): Matthew Arnold, Poems (1856); Sealts, no. 21

Sohrab and Rustum. An Episode.

[poem, p. [31]]

(from the "Shah Nameh" of Firdousi)

[The Shah-nameh, or Book of Kings, is the Persian national epic.]

To A Friend

[poem, p. [172]]

Homer, Epictetus, Sophocles

[For Homer, see Sealts, nos. 147, 277, and 278; for Epictetus, see Bercaw, no. 257; for Sophocles, see Sealts, no. 147.]

But Wordsworth's eyes avert their ken. / From half of human fate; / And Goethe's course few sons of men / May think to emulate.

["Obermann," p. 312]

True as to Wordsworth. Of Goethe it might also be said that he averted his eyes from everything except Nature, Intellect, & Beauty.

pg 900

Whose one bond is that all have been / Unspotted by the world.

["Obermann," p. 316]

That is very noble—why? Because it is nobly true—ideally—

The Youth of Nature

[p. 322]

"And oft suspend the dashing oar / To bid his gentle spirit rest" / Collins—of Thompson

"Now let us, as we float along / For him suspend the dashing oar" Wordsworth—of Collins.

How beautifully appropriate therefor this reminiscent prelude of Arnold concerning Wordsworth.

[William Collins, "Ode on the Death of Thomson," lines 15–16; Sealts, no. 156, p. 64. Wordsworth, "Remembrance of Collins," lines 17–18, The Complete Poetical Works, Sealts, no. 563a, pp. 346–47.]

1862 (September): Jean de La Bruyère, The Works of M. De La Bruyere (1776); Sealts, no. 314

The finest and most beautiful thoughts concerning Manners have been carried away before our times, and nothing is left for us but to glean after the ancients, and the most ingenious of the Moderns.

[Essay, "Of Works of Genius," vol. 1, p. I7]

Pope's Preface

[See 1716 preface to Pope's Works: "Among the moderns, their success has been greatest who have most endeavoured to make these ancients their pattern"; Sealts, no. 405.]

There are few men so accomplished, or so necessary, but have some failings or other which will make their friends bear the loss of them with the greater patience.

[Essay, "Of Personal Merit," vol. 1, p. 58]

True. Shakespeare goes further: none die but somebody spurns them into the grave.

["Who dies, that bears / Not one spurn to their graves of their friends' gift?" Timon of Athens, 1.2; Sealts, no. 460, vol. 5, p. 379]

pg 901

but, as opposed to wise, able, and virtuous men, vulgar includes as well the Great as the Little.

[Essay, "Of the Great," vol. 1, p. 230]

"Both the great vulgar and the small" Cowley

And of the two the G.V. are the vulgarest.

["Hence, ye profane; I hate ye all; / Both the Great, Vulgar, and the Small," Abraham Cowley, "Horace. L. 3. Ode. I. / Odi profanum vulgus, &c"; Sealts, no. 160a, vol. 2, p. 751. In his copy of Cowley, Melville struck the comma after "Great."]

but how shall I fix this Proteus, who changes himself into a thousand dissimilar figures?

[Description of a courtier in an essay, "Of the Fashion," vol. 2, p. 54]


["Hence Bards, like Proteus long in vain ty'd down, / Escape in Monsters, and amaze the town," Dunciad, 1.37–38; Sealts, no. 405]

The duty of a judge consists in the administration of justice; his trade is delaying it. Some judges understand their duty, and mind their trade.

[Essay, "Of Custom," vol. 2, p. 77]

Dean Swift has made more of this distinction

[See Gulliver's Travels, 2.6, particularly the passage in which the king of Brobdingnag asks Gulliver whether "Judges had any Part in penning those Laws, which they assumed the Liberty of interpreting and glossing upon at their Pleasure"; Bercaw, no. 683.]

1863 (March): William Hazlitt, Table Talk (1845); Sealts, no. 266a

To die is only to be as we were before we were born

[Essay 12, "On the Fear of Death," p. 124]

[At page bottom:] This is very fine—This modernizing & familiarizing of the grand thought of Lucretius.

["Nor aught imports it that he e'er was born, / When death immortal claims his mortal life," Titus Lucretius Carus, On the Nature of Things, trans. John Mason Good (1805), bk. 3, lines 896–97]

pg 902

1867 (May 17): Luis de Camoëns, Poems (1824); Sealts, no. 116

And sweetest eyes that e'er were seen! ["Madrigal," p. 40]

[At page bottom:] Mrs. Browning's verses on this.

[Elizabeth Barrett Browning, "Catarina to Camoens; dying in his absence abroad, and referring to the poem in which he recorded the sweetness of her eyes"; The Poems … A New Edition (New York, 1860); Sealts, no. 93]

1867 (October 27): Sir Henry Taylor, Notes from Life in Seven Essays (1853); Sealts, no. 495.1

"I would persuade you," says that very brilliant and remarkable writer, "that banter, pun, and quibble, are the properties of light men and shallow capacities; that genuine humor and true wit require a sound and capacious mind, which is always a grave one."

["The Ways of the Rich and Great," p. 186]

Landor's "Imaginary Conversations," 1st series, Vol. 2, p. 404, 2nd edition.

["Alfieri and Salomon the Florentine Jew," Vittorio Alfieri speaking to Salomon; Walter Savage Landor, Imaginary Conversations of Literary Men and Statesmen, 2 vols., 2d ed. (London: H. Colburn, 1826), p. 404; see also Landor, The Works …; see also Sealts, no. 319b]

1869 (December): Sir Joshua Reynolds, The Literary Works (1855); Sealts, no. 423

our great Lyric Poet, when he conceived his sublime idea of the indignant Welsh bard

[p. 106]


[Thomas Gray, "The Bard: A Pindaric Ode"; Bercaw, no. 310]

I must resume my discourse, following my author's text, though with more brevity than I intended, because Virgil calls me.

[p. 400]

And Virgil, damn him, calls. Pope.

["And Homer (damn him) calls," quoted in Thomas Moore, Life of Lord Byron; Sealts, no. 369, vol. 2, p. 24n.]

pg 903

1870?: Thomas Warton, The History of English Poetry (undated reprint of edition of 1778 & 1781); Sealts, no. 547a

With nightes starres thick-powdred every where,

[p. 770]


["Powder'd with stars," Paradise Lost, 7.581; Sealts, no. 358b, vol. 1, p. 248]

His dart, anon, out of the corpse he tooke, / And in his hand (a dreadful sight to see) / With great triumph eftsoons the same he shook, / That most of all my fears affrayed me.

[p. 775]

"And shook a dreadful dart" Milton

[Paradise Lost, 2.672; Sealts, no. 358b, vol. 1, p. 63. A footnote in Melville's edition of Paradise Lost cites Sackville's Introduction to Mirror for Magistrates (1610), p. 266, as the source for this parallel.]

[Scores a discussion of Shakespeare's sources for Romeo and Juliet that includes this quotation from George Turberville's "An Epitaph on the Death of Maister Arthur Brooke" who drowned on a passage to New Haven:] Apollo lent him lute for solace sake, / To sound his verse by touch of stately string; / And of the neuer-fading baye did make / A laurell crowne, about his browes to clinge, / In proof that he for myter did excel, / As may be iudge by Iulyet and her Mate; / For ther he shewde his cunning passing well / When he the tale to English did translate.— / Aye mee, that time, thou crooked dolphin, where / Wast thou, Aryon's help and onely stay, / That safely him from sea to shore didst beare, / When Brooke was drownd why was thou then away?

[pp. 931–32]

[Top of page 932:] Milton's dirge.

[See "Lycidas," particularly "Yet once more, O ye laurels, and once more / Ye myrtles brown" (lines 1–2); "He knew / Himself to sing, and build the lofty rhime" (lines 10–11); "Where were ye, Nymphs, when the remorseless deep / Clos'd o'er the head of your lov'd Lycidas?" (lines 50–51); and "O ye dolphins, waft the hapless youth" (line 164); Sealts, no. 358b, vol. 2, pp. 271, 273, 279]

pg 904

1870 (December): The Works of Eminent Masters (1854); Sealts, no. 564

["The Unknown Masterpiece," a legend about a monk who paints and chooses to remain anonymous (vol. 1, p. 190)]

"Pictor Ignotus" of Browning

["Pictor Ignotus. [Florence, 15–.]," in Poems, by Robert Browning, 2 vols. (Boston: Ticknor, Reed, & Fields, 1850), 2:321–23]

1871 (July 10): Matthew Arnold, Essays in Criticism (1865); Sealts, no. 17

Homer's manner and movement are always both noble and powerful: the ballad-manner and movement are often either jaunty and smart, so not noble; or jog-trot and humdrum, so not powerful.

[p. 321]

If this be intended to apply — for example — so all the ballads in Bishop Percy's Collection [rest erased]

[Bishop Thomas Percy, Reliques of Ancient English Poetry (1765). See also Francis James Child, English and Scottish Ballads (Boston, 1857–59; Sealts, no. 143), passim]

1873: Robert Bell, ed., Songs from the Dramatists (1854); Sealts, no. 56

[Reprints the poem "Fools" from Ben Jonson's Volpone; or, the Fox (1605); pp. 114–15.]

Erasmus's Folly—This seems a versifying of the first of it.

[Desiderius Erasmus, In Praise of Folly (1509); Bercaw, no. 258a]

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