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“Mr. Addison is generally allowed to be the most correct and elegant of
all our writers; yet some inaccuracies of style have escaped him, which it is the chief design of the following notes to point out. A work of this sort, well executed, would be of use to foreigners who study our language; and even to such of our countrymen as wish to write it in
perfect purity.”—R. Worcester [Bp. Hurd]. “I set out many years ago with a warm admiration of this amiable writer
[Addison]. I then took a surfeit of his natural, easy manner; and was taken, like my betters, with the raptures and high rights of Shakspeare. My maturer judgment, or lenient age, (call it which you will,) has now led me back to the favourite of my youth. And here, I think, I shall stick; for such useful sense, in so charming words, I find not elsewhere. His taste is so pure, and his Virgilian prose (as Dr. Young styles it) so exquisite, that I have but now found out, at the close of a critical life,
the full value of his writings.”—Ibid. “Whoever wishes to attain an English style, familiar but not coarse, and
elegant but not ostentatious, must give his days and nights to the volumes of Addison.”—Dr. Johnson.
“It was not till three generations had laughed and wept over the pages of
Addison that the omission (of a monument to his memory] was supplied by public veneration. At length, in our own time, his image, skilfully graven, appeared in Poets' Corner.Such a mark of national respect was due to the unsullied statesman, to the accomplished scholar, to the master of pure English eloquence, to the consummate painter of life and
It was due, above all, to the great satirist, who alone knew how to use ridicule without abusing it, who, without inflicting a wound, effected a great social reform, and who reconciled wit and virtue, after a long and disastrous separation, during which wit had been led astray by profligacy, and virtue by fanaticism.”-Macaulay.