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To which will be added a Poem sacred to the Memory of Sir Isaac Newton. And an Essay on Descriptive Poetry will be prefixed to the Whole.
By Mr. Thomson. I This Work is proposed to be printed in one Volume in Quarto, on a Superfine Royal Paper, and adorned with Copper-Plates adapted to the Subject.
II. The Price of the Book in Sheets to Subscribers is One Guinea, to be paid at the time of Subscribing.
III. The Names of Subscribers to be printed before the Work, which is in great Forwardness, and will be published with all possible speed.
N.B. The Pieces already published, viz. Winter, Summer, and a Poein on the Death of Sir Isaac Newton, will be corrected and enlarged in several Places.
Subscriptions are taken in by the Author, at the Smyrna Coffee-House in Pall-Mall; and by G. Strahan, at the Golden Ball in Cornhill; A. Millar, at Buchanan's Head, over-against St. Clement's Church in the Strand; J. Millan at the Blue Anchor in Pall-Mall; and by A. Ramsay, at Edinburgh.
1) These “Proposals” are found appended to the first edition of "Spring", but had already been published before.
By JAMES THOMSON.
Jam clarus Occultum Andromedæ Pater
Sole Dies referente siccos.
near the upper End of the Hay-Market.
Price 1 s. 6 d.
To the Right Honourable
Mr. Dodington, ")
Sir, It is not my Purpose, in this Address, to run into the common Tract of Dedicators, and attempt a Panegyric which would prove ungrateful to You, too arduous for Me, and superfluous with Regard to the World. To You it would prove ungrateful, since there is a certain generous Delicacy in Men of the most distinguished Merit, disposing Them to avoid those Praises They so powerfully attract. And when I consider that a Character, in which the Vertues, the Graces, and the Muses join their Influence, as much exceeds the Expression of the most elegant and judicious Pen, as the finish'd Beauty does the Representation of the Pencil, I have the best Reasons for declining such an arduous Undertaking. As, indeed, it would be superfluous in itself; for what Reader need to be told of those great Abilities in the Management of public Affairs, and those amiable Accomplishments in private Life, which You so eminently possess. The general Voice is loud in the Praise of so many Vertues, tho' Posterity alone will do Them Justice. But may You, Sir, live long to illustrate your own Fame by your own
1) This epistolary dedication is found only in the editions prior to the subscription quarto of 1730. In the quarto, and in some of the later editions, the following short dedication appears on the titlepage: Summer. Inscribed to the Right Honourable Mr. Dodington. Actions, and by them be transmitted to future Times as the British Mæcenas!
Your Example has recommended Poetry, with the greatest Grace, to the Admiration of Those, who are engag'd in the highest and most active Scenes of Life: and this, tho' confessedly the least considerable of those exalted Qualities that dignify your Character, must be particularly pleasing to One, whose only Hope of being introduced to your Regard is thro' the Recommendation of an Art in which You are a Master. But I forget what I have been declaring above, and must therefore turn my Eyes to the following Sheets. I am not ignorant that, when offered to your Perusal, they are put into the Hands of one of the finest, and consequently the most indulgent Judges of the Age: but as there is no Mediocrity in Poetry, so there should be no Limits to its Ambition. I venture directly on the Tryal of my Fame. – If what I here present You has any Merit to gain your Approbation, I am not afraid of its Success; and if it fails of your Notice, I give it up to its just Fate. This Advantage at least I secure to myself, an Occasion of thus publickly declaring that I am, with the profoundest Veneration,