Our correspondents have been bountiful to the Chest since our last meeting, and have sent us a number of pieces which though short, are very pleasing, among which that “on the fate of the Moth”, the “Verses to a Bullfinch”, and those “To Laura” are eminently beautiful. We shall always receive with particular gratitude, and read with delight such compositions as exhibit original and delicate sentiments, with the grace of poetic language.
“The Pastor restored to his Flock” gives us a pleasing idea of the affection and esteem which frequently subsists a worthy clergyman and a pious and well informed congregation, matured by a reciprocity of good offices for a length of years. The lines from Peregrine “To the Lady of the Golden Arrow” we think it our duty to read, though we cannot help feeling apprehension for the consequences, as nothing can be more hopeless than to assail a heart already pre-occupied by an adversary, both able and willing to defend it. It is even more hopeless than to attempt the buff of Ictinus, and the Lady of the Golden Arrow must either change her love or wear the garland of amorous despair. We observe an ambiguity in the verses which we must request our auditors to remove. The auditor says
“Here in this circle sits the chosen fair.”
does Peregrine mean the circle in which the verses were written, or the circle in which they are now to be read, and are we to suppose that he was present at our last meeting, or that some communicative sylph has informed him of its transactions. To identify both the lady and gentleman, will exercise the ingenuity of the Attic Society. We confess that we are not in the secret.
The verses signed Wag, addressed to the Miss D———ns have a peculiarity of style and humour that may claim attention, but we are sorry the writer has not acquainted us with. In this he seems to do more than imitate the classic writers of antiquity who closed their compositions when all that should follow could easily be divined by the reader: but Mr Wag has left us no mean of ascertaining whether he ascended for warmth and comfort to the ladies, or whether they descended to put his internals at rest by a break fast. If the ladies be present, they perhaps may condescend to enlighten us on this important point.
The stanzas entitled “Doubt and Certainty” are the conclusion of a series of good-humoured jokes playes off against a friend (whose loss we noticed with regret in a preceding number,) by Dr Joseph Cappe, which consisted of letters, verses and sketches, sent from time to time, under the signature of Michael Angelo Frisky. The amusement produced by the perplexity and whimsical conjectures of Mr Hoppner concerning the author, whenever he was visited by any person, in the secret, can hardly be imagined and is impossible to be described. It was terminated by the departure of the doctor from London, who soon after was lost to his friends and the world.
The charade which appeared in a former number is neatly and justly explained in the verses signed N. Besides the poems already enumerated we shall read, “An address to the pen” and a “Sonnet to a Young Lady”, both of which are worthy of the Chest, and conclude with a whimsical song to the tune of
“Four and twenty fiddlers all in a row”
if we can prevail on any of our friends to perform it in proper style; the Editress being apprehensive that it exceeds her musical abilities.
Since writing the above we have received the reply of Ictinus to Dido, by which it should seem that his heart is not so impenetrable as had been imagined, at least he would have it thought so. He gives a fair challenge to the lady, and it rests with her, by taking off her masque, to put his sincerity to the proof.
We ardently wish that she would do so forthwith, that we might have the pleasure of seeing Ictinus start from his chair and fall at her feet, when she of course will lift him from the ground and after a few adagios of tender sighs, conclude with a bravura of blubbering, when the curtain may drop, and all to supper.
We have to thank our correspondents for several favours, which we are obliged to postpone to a future evening.