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But then Lucretian wits abfurdly frame,
To fink those inbred fears, their impious scheme;
Their fierce remorfe, and dream a while at ease;
Immediately the Poet lanches into this fine ApoStrophe:
Thy force alone, Religion, Death difarms,
Mr THOMSON, in his poem, intitled, Summer, gives us these lines:
How then fhall I attempt to fing of Him,
Creation, book iv.
But should he hide his face, th' aftonish'd fun,
Next follows an Apoftrophe to Deity:
And yet was ev'ry fault'ring tongue of men,
They are charming lines in Dr WATTS's Elegy on the Death of the Rev. Mr THOMAS GOUGE:
Howe* is a great, but fingle name;`
Amidst the crowd he ftands alone:
Stands yet, but with his starry pinions on,
The next verfes are an address to Deity, and no-
Eternal GOD, command his stay,
Stretch the dear months of his delay:
O we could with his age were one immortal day!
And fhining guards t'attend thy prophet home, Amidst a thousand weeping eyes,
Send an ELISHA down, a foul of equal fize,
Or burn this worthless globe, and take us to the skiest.
The very great Mr JOHN HOWE, then living.
+ WATTS'S Lyric Poems, page 299.
MILTON introduces ADAM, after his fall, as faying,
Why comes not Death,
Said he, with one thrice acceptable stroke,
He then breaks out in an Apoftrophe;
O woods, O fountains, hillocks, dales, and bow'rs,
§ 3. The Scripture will afford us many examples of the Apostrophe in various forms.
Apoftrophes are addrefsed to GOD himself: Gen. xlix. 17, 18. "DAN fhall be a serpent by
the way; an adder in the path that bites the shorfe's heels, fo that his rider fhall fall back"ward, I have waited for thy falvation, O SS LORD." So Nehemiah vi. 9. " For they all made us afraid, faying, Their hands fhall be Sweakened from the work, that it be not done.
Now therefore, O GOD, ftrengthen my hands." Thefe Apostrophes are nothing else than the devout afpirations of the mind to Heaven.
(2) We find Apostrophes in the facred Writings directed to perfons both living and dead: 2 Sam. i. 24. " Ye daughters of Ifrael, weep over SAUL :"
Paradife Loft, book x. line 854.
and verse 26. I am distressed for thee, my brosther JONATHAN."
(3) Apoftrophes are fometimes in Scripture addrefsed to brute creatures that are destitute of reafon; Pfalm cxlviii. 7---10. " Praise the LORD " from the earth, ye dragons, beasts, and all cattle, and creeping things, and flying fowl." So Joel ii. 22. Be not afraid, ye beasts of the
field, for the pastures of the wilderness do fpring," &c.
(4) We meet with Apostrophes in facred Writ to inanimate and material beings: Jer. xxii. 29. "O earth, earth, earth, hear the word of the SS LORD! So Micah vi. 7. " Hear, O ye moun
tains, the LORD's controverfy, and ye ftrong ss foundations of the earth." So Ifa. i. 2. " Hear, SO heavens, and give ear, O earth, for the "LORD hath fpoken: I have nourished and brought up children, and they have rebelled * against me." Upon which passage St JEROM obferves, that "as GoD had called heaven and "earth as his witnesses, when he gave his laws
by MOSES to the Ifraelites, Deut. xxxii. 1. fo, "after they had broken those laws, he fummons "them again to be his witnesses, that all the "elements might know that God was justly
provoked to anger in taking vengeance for "the violation of his commands *." The fenfe
Quia per Moyfen teftes vocaverat Dominus cœlum & terram dans populo Ifrael legem fuam, Deut. xxxii. poft prævaricationem populi eofdem rurfum in teftimonium vocat, ut
of the passage may be, "that if the heaven and "earth had intelligence and reason, they would
certainly accuse the Ifraelites of their impiety, "since they and all things in them punctually "answer the ends of their creation; while men, "for whom they were made, dare to be delin"quents and apoftates from their GOD."
$ 4. This Figure is of admirable service to diversify our difcourfes, as we direct ourselves to different objects from those we first addressed.
By this Figure, fays Dr WARD*, the speaker "has an opportunity of faying many things with "( greater freedom than perhaps would be con"siftent with decency, if immediately directed "to perfons, themselves he can admonish, "chide, and cenfure without giving offence." Mr BLACKWALL alfo obferves, that when the "passion is violent, it must break out and dis"charge itself. By this Figure, the perfon "moved, fays he, desires to interest universal "nature in his caufe; and appeals to all the "creation for the juftness of his transport †."
I fhall conclude with an excellent passage from LONGINUS, in which he defcants on what he takes to be an Apostrophe. "DEMOSTHENES,
cuncta elementa cognofcant juftè Dominum in ultionem mandatorum fuorum ad iracundiam concitatum.
Comment. Efa. i. 2.
* WARD's Oratory, vol. ii. page 102.
+ BLACK ALL'S Introduction to the Claffics, page 198.