Abbildungen der Seite


This fear's half brother, of resembling face,
But fix'd, unwavering, and bound down to place :
Earnest, alarmful gaze, intently keen,
Notes the weigh'd object — yet, distrusts it, seen;
As in pale churchyards, gleam'd by silent night,
Shou'd some cross'd' spectre shade the moon's dim

Shudd'ry, the back’ning blood, revolving swift,
Cloggs the press'd heart - stretch'd fibres fail to

lift: Loft, in doubt's hard’ning frost — stopt motion lies, While fenfe climbs, gradual, to the straining eyes.


[ocr errors][merged small]
[ocr errors]

Glücklicher noch in der beschreibenden, als in der ei: gentlichen didaktischen Dichtungsart war John Dyer, geb. 1700, geft. 1758.. Das größte seiner Gewichte ist indeß von der leßtern Gattung, und hat die Ueberschrift: The Fleece, oder, die wolle. Es besteht aus vier Büchern, wovon das erste die Schafzucht und Schafschur, das zweite die Gewin: nung und Zubereitung der Wolle, das dritte das Verfahren beim Weben und Fårben derselben, und das vierte den ens glischen Wollhandel zum Inhalt hat. Die Wahl dieses Ges genstandes war nicht allzu glücklich, und konnte bloß für seis ne Nation durch den Umstand, daß der Wollhandel eins ihs rer vornehmsten Gewerbe ist, einiges Interesse gewinnen. Der Dichter wußte indeß seinen Begenstand durch Hülfe reis ner bilderreichen Phantasie, und durch einige ganz angeneh. mie Episoden, ftellenweise zu beleben; nur dem Gangen manz gelt es doch an lebhaft anziehender Straft; wovon aber freis lich die Schuld mehr dem Subjekt, als dem Dichter beiju: meiten ift. Zur Probe gebe ich hier den Schluß des ersten Gesanges, worin die Freuden und festlichen Gebräuche bei der Schafschur, besonders in Wales, und am Ufer des Flur: fes Severn, geschildert werden. Vergl. Dusd's Briefe, Th. I. 10. II.


Now, jolly Swains! the harvest of your cares
Prepare to reap, and feek the founding caves
Of high Brigantium, *) where, by ruddy flames;
Vulcan's (trong sons, with nervous arm, around
The steady anvil and the glaring mass


*) The caves of Brigauitiuin - the forges of Sheffield, in

Yorkshire , where the shepherds Cheers, and all edgetools, are made.


[ocr errors]

Clatter their heavy hammers down by turns,
Flatt ning the steel: from their rough hands re-

The sharpen'd instrument that from the flock
Severs the Fleece. If verdant elder spreads
Her filver flowr's; if humble daisies yield
To yellow crow-foot, and luxuriant grass
Gay shearing time approaches. Firít, howe'er
Drive to the double fold, upon the brim
Of a clear river, gently drive the flock
And plunge them one by one into the flood.
Plung d in the flood, not long the struggler finks,
With his white flakes that glisten thro' the tide;
The sturdy rustic, in the middle wave,
Awaits to leize him rising; one arme bears
His lifted head above the limpid stream,
While the full clammy Fleece the o:her laves
Around, laborious, with repeated toil;
And then resigns him to the funny bank,
Where, bleating loud, he shakes his dripping

Shear them the fourth or fifth return of morn
Left touch of busy fly-blows wound their skin,
Thy peaceful subjects without murmur yield
Their yearly tribute: 'tis the prudent part
To cherish and be gentie, while ye ftip
The downy vesture from their tender fides.
Press not too close; with caution turn the points,
And from the head in regular rounds proceed:
But fpeedy, when ye chance to wound, with

Prevent the wingy (warm and scorching heat;
And careful house them, if the low ring clouds
Mingle their stores tumultuous: thro' the gloom
Then thunder oft with pond'rous wheels rolls

And breaks the crystal urns of heav'n; adown
Falls streaming rain. Sometimes among the steeps
Of Cambrian glades (pity the Cambrian glades!)
Fait tumbling brooks on brooks enormous swell

Beisp. Sammi. 3. B.



And sudden overwhelm their vanish'd fields:
Doun with the flood away the naked sheep
Bleating in vain, are borne, and Itraw-built

And rifted trees, and heavy enormous rocks
Down with the rapid torrent to the deep.
At shearing time along the lively vales
Rural festivities are often heard;
Beneath each blooming arbour all is joy
And lusty merriment. While on the grass
The mingled youth in gaudy circles Sport,
We think the Golden Age again return’d,
And all the fabled Dryades in dance:
Leering they bound along, with laughing air
To the fhrill pipe, and deep-remurm'ring cords
Of th' ancient harp or tabor's hollow sound,
While th' old apart, upón a bank reclin'd,
Attend the tuneful carol, softly mix'd
With every murmur of the stiding wave,

And every warble of the feather'd choir,
| Music of Paradile! which still is heard

When the heart listens, still the views appear
Of the first happy garden, when Content
To Nature's flowery scenes directs the sight.
Yet we abandon those Elysian walks,
Then idly for the loft delight repine;
As greedy mariners, whose delp’rate fails
Skim o'er the billows of the foamy flood,
Fancy they see the lessening shores retire,
And sigh a farewell to the finking hills.

Could I recall those notes which once the

Heard at a shearing, near the woody fides
Of blue-topp'd Wreakin! ) Yet the carols (weet
Thro’ the deep maze of the memorial cell
Faintly remurmur. First arose in song
Hoar - headed Damon, venerable swain;


*) Wreakin, a high hill in Shropshtte.


The footheft fhepherd of the flow'ry vale:

This is no vulgar scene; no palace-roof
„Was e'er so lofty, nor so nobly rife
Their poiish'd pillars as these aged oaks,
Which o’er our Fleecy wealth and harmless

Thus have expanded wide their 1 helt’ring arms
„Thrice told an hundred summers, sweet Con.

tent „Ye gentle Shepherds! pillow us at night.“

[ocr errors]

„Yes, tuneful Damon, for our cares are short, ,, Rising and talling with the cheerful day." Colin reply'd; „and pleasing weariness

Soon our unaching heads to sleep inclines. Is it in cities fo? where, poets tell,

The cries of sorrow sadden all the streets,
And the diseases of intemp'rate wealth.

Alas! that any ills from wealth should rise!
„May the sweet nightingale on yonder spray,
„May this clear stream, these lawns, those snowwhi-

te lambs
Which with a pretty innocence of look
„Skip on the green, and race in little troops;
„May that great lamp which finks behind the hills
And streams around variety of lights,
,, Recall them erring! this is Damon's wil h.“

„Huge Breaden's *) stony summit once

I climb'd
After a kidling: Damon, what a scene !
What various views unnumber'd spread beneath!
Woods, tow'rs, vales, caves, dells, cliffs and tor-

rent floods
„And here and there, between the spiry rocks,
The broad Aat sea. Far nobler prospects these
Than gardens black with smoke in dusty towns
, Where stenchy vapours often blot the fun:
, Yet, flying from his quiet, thither crowds

[ocr errors][merged small]

*) Breaden, a hill on the borders of Montgomeryshire.

« ZurückWeiter »