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THESE verses were written for a Benefit at the Dublin Theatre, and were spoken by Miss Smith, with a degree of success, which they owed solely to her admirable manner of reciting them. I wrote them in haste ; and it very rarely happens that poetry, which has cost but little labour to the writer, is productive of any great pleasure to the reader. Under this impression, I should not have published them if they had not found their way into some of the newspapers, with such an addition of errors to their own original stock, that I thought it but fair to limit their responsibility to those faults alone which really belong to them.
With respect to the title which I have invented for this Poem, I feel even more than the scruples of the Emperor Tiberius, when he humbly asked pardon of the Roman Senate for using “ the outlandish term monopoly." But the truth is, having written the Poem with the sole view of serving a Benefit, I thought that an unintelligible word of this kind would not be without its attraction for the multitude, with whom, “ If 'tis not sense, at least 'tis Greek.” To some of my readers, however, it may not be superfluous to say, that by “ Melologue," I mean that mixture of recitation and music, which is frequently adopted in the performance of Collins's Ode on the Passions, and of which the most striking example I can remember is the prophetic speech of Joad in the Athalie of Racine.