William Cowper

(26 November 1731 – 25 April 1800 / Hertfordshire)

To Mrs. Throckmorton, On Her Beautiful Transcript Of Horace's Ode Ad Librum Suum


Maria, could Horace have guessed
What honour awaited his ode
To his little volume addressed,
The honour which you have bestowed,--
Who have traced it in characters here,
So elegant, even, and neat,
He had laughed at the critical sneer
Which he seems to have trembled to meet.

And sneer, if you please, he had said,
A nymph shall hereafter arise
Who shall give me, when you are all dead,
The glory your malice denies;
Shall dignity give to my lay,
Although but a mere bagatelle;
And even a poet shall say,
Nothing ever was written so well.

Submitted: Tuesday, April 13, 2010

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