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four lines, constitutes so elegant a compound in the hands of Gray:

Alas! regardless of their doom,

The little victims play!
No sense have they of ills to come,

Nor cares beyond to-day;
Yet see how all around them wait
The ministers of human fate

And black Misfortune's baleful train !
Ah! show them where in ambush stand,
To seize their prey the murderous band !

Ah, tell them they are men.

A five-lined Stanza has been sometimes made up in a similar manner:

Tell me, Dorinda, why so gay,

Why such embroidery, fringe, and lace ?
Can any dresses find a way
To stop th' approaches of decay,

And mend a ruin'd face?

A seven-lined Stanza was in general use among our early poets; for much of Chaucer and Lidgate and the whole of the King's Quare are in that form. The first four make a quatrain ; the fifth rhymes to the fourth; and the two last are a couplet. Thus Daniel in his Complaint of Rosamond:

These presidents presented to my view,
Wherein the presage of my fall was showne,
Might have forewarn’d me well what would ensue;
And other's harmes have made me shun mine owne:
But fate is not prevented, though foreknowne;

For that must hap, decreed by heavenly powres,
Who worke our fall, yet make the fault still ours.

The eight-lined Stanza has been variously formed. A quatrain followed by two couplets, or two quatrains, equally make up the requisite number of verses; but it is supposed to link them more closely together by the intermixture of the rhymes. In the latter case the first line of the second quatrain usually rhymes with the last line of the first, as is exemplified by the following extract from Leyden's beautiful address to an Indian Gold Coin:

Ha! com'st thou now so late to mock

A wanderer's banish'd heart forlorn,
Now that his frame the lightening shock

Of sun-rays tipt with death has borne?

From love, from friendship, country, torn,
To memory's fond regrets a prey,

Vile slave, thy yellow dross I scorn!
Go mix thee with thy kindred clay.

Another and more ancient form of this stanza is to repeat the terminating rhymes of the first quatrain in the fifth and sixth, and then conclude with a couplet. Daniel's History of the Civil Wars is written wholly in this stanza:

For when it nought availes, what folly then
To strive against the current of the time?
Who will throw downe himselfe for other men
That make a ladder by his fall to clime?
Or who would seek timbroile his Country when
He might have rest; suffering but others crime;
Since wise men ever have preferred farre
Th' unjustest peace, before the justest warre?

Of all the old stanzas, that of Spencer has been most generally adopted by subsequent poets. Even the quaint stile and affected antiquity of his language has been imitated; and in spite of the generally improved taste of the times, he, as well as others of our early poets, has been recently outvied in that for which he is least to be praised. Moral Criticism, however, is no part of our present business: we have only to draw up a muster-roll of different forms of versification. The Stanza of Spencer is made up of two ten-syllable quatrains (tied together as those which we extracted from Leyden) with the addition of an Alexandrine, rhyming to its immediately preceding line.

Most sacred fire that burnest mightily

In living brests, ykindled first above
Emongst th' eternal spheres and lamping sky,
And thence pour’d into man, which men call Love;
Not that same which doth base affections move
In brutish mindes and filthy lust inflame;
But that sweete fit that doth true beautie love,

And choseth vertue for his dearest Dame,
Whence spring all noble deedes and never dying fame:-

Well did Antiquity a God thee deeme,

That over mortal mindes bast so great might,
To order them as best to thee doth seeme,
And all their actions to direct aright:
The fatall purpose of divine foresight
Thou doest effect in destined descents,
Through deepe impression of thy secret might;

And stirredst up th' Heroës high intents,
Which the late world admyres for wondrous moniments.

B. iii. C. iii.

We have hitherto considered English Versification as made up of feet of two syllables; and these, with the occasional interjection of a Spondee, are always either Trochees or Iambics. We shall now speak of feet of three syllables, or what our Grammars usually denominate the Anapæstic Measure. As the two syllable feet (with the few insertions abovementioned) are always composed of one long and one short syllable, either of which may precede, so the three syllable feet are compounded of two short and one long, without respect to precedence: thereby giving a choice to the poet in regulating his emphases and pauses. Verses made up wholly of this species of feet must consist of six, nine, or twelve syllables; but it is allowable to cut off a syllable from the beginning, or the end; a practice which introduces a considerable variety; and changes, at pleasure, one species of feet into another. The following line is purely Anapæstic: (0 U -).

At thị close 1 of the dãy | whěn the hām- | lět is still.

But in the three immediately succeeding lines of the same poem (Beattie's Hermit) the first foot of each is shortened into an Iambic, in consequence of the elision of a syllable; and the whole quatrain is thus scanned:

At the close of the day, when the hām- / let is still,

And mör- | tals the swēēts / of forgēt- | fulness prove; When nõught | but the tor- / rent is heard | on the hill, And nõught I but the night- | ingale's sõng | in the


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