Second edition, published the same year as the first, the issue with, on p.more...
14, ‘lye’ as the final word of the eighteenth line and the catchword ‘Hast’ (rather than ‘lie’ and ‘Hadst’).
Churchill was a close friend of John Wilkes, writing for The North Briton and attacking its opponents with satirical verse. The target here is Hogarth, in retaliation for his famous caricature of Wilkes; it contains ‘such ridicule of Hogarth’s bodily infirmities that Garrick declared [it] “the most bloody performance that has been publish’d in my time” ... Hogarth replied on 1 August 1763 with a caricature of Churchill as a drunken bear, in clerical bands with a pot of porter, wielding a huge club marked “Lies and North Britons”, while Hogarth’s pug pisses on the Epistle ...’ (Oxford DNB)..see full details
Sole edition, scarce, dedicated to the Duchess of Devonshire.more...
A close imitation of Anstey’s popular New Bath Guide (1766), but satirizing contemporary army camp life. ‘The names of the personages may give some idea of their characters; but such as are desirous of farther acquaintance with them, may resort to the camp, where, we doubt not, the originals form a considerable number’ (Critical Review). The enormous Coxheath Camp, near Maidstone in Kent, had become something of an attraction in 1778 with its large-scale mock battles etc., receiving visits from the George III, Queen Charlotte and, as related here, the famous Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire..see full details
First edition: ‘a jaunty little piece’ (Altick) of political satire.more...
‘Two candidates, the one a retired proprietor of a Leadenhall Street oil-shop, the other a Portugal merchant, “a knight by creation,” have been canvassing Cornwall, and wearily arrive at Exeter. In their inn they call for a book, but the host can supply only a Bible. The travellers, feeling that even reading the Bible is better than staring at each other, accept it, opening it at Judge IX. 8 ...’ (op. cit., p. 122): ‘The trees went forth on a time to anoint a king over them; and they said unto the olive tree, Reign thou over us’. They duly give up their work.
Cambridge had recently found fame as author of The Scribleriad (1751). Although he wrote much light verse, relatively little of his poetry found its way into print during his long lifetime (1717–1802). .see full details
First edition, the Latin printed as footnotes.more...
This is ‘a skit describing the poet’s being bothered by a talkative, pestiferous coxcomb while he is out walking. The broadest of hints are of no avail in getting rid of the nuisance. Finally, however, a chance allusion to “the Sabbath of the Jews” as they are passing through Billingsgate leads the fishwives to take the coxcomb for an Israelite. While he is being severely belabored by the denizens of the neighborhood—for these were the days of the anti-Jew bill—his late victim makes his escape ... The Monthly Review found in his handling of his model a nice moderation, neither flattening the humor by too strict an adherence to the original nor deviating from it so far as to obscure Horace’s own plan’ (Altick, pp. 123–4). Cambridge had published another imitation of Horace, A Dialogue between a Member of Parliament and his Servant (Book II, Satire 7), in 1752..see full details
Sole edition: the mock last will and testament of a calf, in verse.more...
‘The Duchess of Devonshire’s Cow brought forth this Calf; a witty calf, forsooth,—which makes a will, puts it into rhime, and leaves the following legacies; its brains to the Duke of D——; its prudence to the Duchess; its feet to Lady H—r—g—n, for jelly; its religion to Lord S—d—h; its oratory to Lord O—s—w; with a great deal more of the same second-hand worn-out stuff’ (Monthly Review)..see full details
Sole edition, scarce: ESTC locates 9 copies only (BL, Bodley, Harvard, NYPL, Library of Congress, Kansas, Yale, Monash, Pretoria State Library).more...
Pitt became Britain’s youngest Prime Minister in December 1783. This poem, dated New Year’s Day 1784, criticises the new ‘mince-pie’ administration, as it was known and which, it had been predicted, would not last the Christmas season. ‘What is the state of England all this time? / I answer, in one word—a pantomime— / A speaking pantomime—where nothing’s meant, / No business, but a deal of incident ... For bus’ness while we look in vain from each, / No one gets farther than an empty speech ... Nothing does either party think about, / But how to drive the other party out ...’ (p. 25). In the event, Pitt survived for 17 years..see full details
Browne (1706–1760) had been a classmate of Samuel Johnson, who later described him as ‘of all conversers the most delightful with whom I ever was in company’. This Latin poem on the immortality of the soul, composed towards the end of his life, is his principal work, and ‘received high commendation from the scholars of his time’ (Oxford DNB)..see full details
A penny pamphlet dedicated to the evangelical preacher William Romaine (1714–1795), author of the ‘classic trilogy on Christian spirituality The Life of Faith (1763), The Walk of Faith (1771), and The Triumph of Faith (1795)’ (Oxford DNB). The poem was perhaps aimed at a less educated readership; there is an Explanation of Words (‘Acclaim. The Shout of Joy ... Choir. A Band of Singers ... Reptile. A creeping Thing ...’ etc.) at the end..see full details
It was printed by William Bowyer, his records showing that 1000 copies were printed (Maslen & Lancaster, Bowyer Ledgers, 4390).
Known as ‘Estimate’ Brown for his popular Estimate of the Manners and Principles of the Times (1757; six editions within a year), the Northumbrian clergyman—a favourite of William Warburton, the literary Bishop of Gloucester—was also a keen musician. He soon turned The Cure of Saul, a poem on the healing powers of music and nature, into an oratorio, selecting the music himself, and included the poem as part of his Dissertation on the Rise, Union, and Power, the Progressions, Separations, and Corruptions, of Poetry and Music (1763), ‘a pioneering work of conjectural history reminiscent of [Vico’s] Scienza nuova’ (Oxford DNB)..see full details
In the late 1970s, a small cache of copies of this poem, some with a decorative watermark, others watermarked ‘1797’ as here, were apparently discovered at the Senhouse family home near Maryport, Cumbria. A number of the 12 copies located by ESTC came from this cache, sold by the late C. R. Johnson: British Library, Bodley, Cambridge, NLW, NLS. The present copy may well be the last from the cache not in an institution.
The suggestion that the printer was Ann Dunn of Whitehaven is based upon the existence of four four-page poetical pamphlets of apparently the same date, of very similar appearance and with the same or similar watermarks. These appear in ESTC as Chloe in Summer [Whitehaven?: printed by Ann Dunn?, 1797?]; Paddy in Extasy ‘A. Dunn, printer, Whitehaven’ [1797?]; A Song made by Sir Joseph Senhouse, on the 27th of November 1794, being the Birth Day of his Nephew Humphrey Senhouse Junior of Netherhall, when he attained to the Age of twenty one Years [London? 1794?]; and The Wish [Whitehaven?: printed by Ann Dunn?, 1795?].
Only one of these has the printer’s name and place of printing, and only one gives an author’s name, but they point to all four having been written either by Sir Joseph Senhouse or someone in his immediate circle and printed by Ann Dunn in Whitehaven, who was responsible for producing a number of books in the 1790s..see full details
First edition in book form, originally published in The Telegraph.more...
Broome, a prolific pamphleteer, had first targeted Burke and his circle in Letters from Simkin ... containing a humble Description of the Trial of Warren Hastings (1788). ‘To the admirers of real humour and elegant satire, it must afford much satisfaction, that, the author of SIMKIN has again taken up the pen—again renewed his pleasant versification, again parodized the ravings of Burke. The severe castigation which the champion of the Begums received on the trial of Warren Hastings will not be forgotten; and it will be found that the lash under which he then smarted is here directed with equal success against the sublime and beautiful of his last eccentrick effort ... As it has been recommended that these verses should be bound up along with Mr. Burke’s letter, it was thought proper to print it on a paper of a corresponding size’ (pp. 6, 7)..see full details
.. levelled at those malevolent Beings [the old hags of the title] who are miserable themselves and rejoice at the Misfortune of others’ (London Magazine). The Annual Register thought it a work of ‘truth, elegance and spirit’, the Monthly Review ‘the work of a writer of good sense, and a genius poetical’..see full details
Sole edition, rare: ESTC locates 6 copies only (BL, Ickworth (NT), Harvard, New York Historical Society, Chicago, Cincinnati).more...
This is political satire in ballad form, aimed at the Earl of Bute, with the sycophantic ministers around the young George III cast as rapacious bloodhounds, each with its own particular character: ‘Amongst the First RATES first was seen / A Sea-dog, head of hte the marine; / In South-sea charts no scholar, / Yet wise enough to not let slip / A rich prize, Acapulco ship, / And pocket every dollar ... Happy the clime! where Freedom reigns: / Whether on Florida’s parch’d plains, / Or (eight-months froze) Montreal! / Liberty! thy all-chearing beam / Makes fancied raptures real seem, / And horrors prove ideal’..see full details
It was printed by William Bowyer, his records showing that 500 copies were printed (Maslen & Lancaster, Bowyer Ledgers, 4291).
Armstrong (1709–1779) was a doctor by profession, and published serious medical works. But he was also a poet, best known for the explicit verse sex manual The Oeconomy of Love (1736), and the rather more respectable The Art of preserving Health (1744). He was a friend of fellow literary Scots Tobias Smollett and James Thomson, and also of the young rake and rising politician John Wilkes. ‘On 18 April 1760 Armstrong sailed from Harwich as physician to the English army in Germany, a post he perhaps owed to Wilkes’s patronage ... His only literary work during his two and a half years’ campaigning with the army in north-west Germany was, it seems, the verse epistle A Day, written at Kassel and sent on 31 August 1760 to Wilkes with an invitation for him to revise and publish it. A mutilated version of the poem, in which passages cancelled by Wilkes were indicated by rows of asterisks, was published in January 1761, but not seen by Armstrong until his return to London early in 1763. This affair, together with Armstrong’s resentment of Wilkes’s disparagement of Scotsmen in his North Briton, led to a quarrel’ (Oxford DNB)..see full details
Two others followed. This is Anstey’s contribution to the literature surrounding ‘the unfortunate Dr Dodd’— the Reverend Dr William Dodd (1729–1777), or ‘Macaroni Parson’ as he was dubbed—convicted and sentenced to death for forging a bond for £4200 in the name of his former pupil, Lord Chesterfield, to clear his debts. Though famously supported in his efforts to win a reprieve by Samuel Johnson, Dodd was unsuccessful and he became the last man to be hanged at Tyburn..see full details
First edition, with an otherwise apparently unrecorded engraved plate bound as a frontispiece.more...
Though having the same title as that of a preceding Kendal edition, this is actually a completely new collection, with only a few repeated articles (enough to assure us that Graham of Kendal is the same individual as Graham of Liverpool), including the essay on cock-fighting. In this 1793 collection, Graham advertises his occupation as writing-master through the elegant engraved plate (by Ashby of London) and the verse ‘On the Arts of Penmanship and Engraving’. Graham also notes in his preface ‘Some of the Poems were written during our unhappy contest with the Americans, and have some allusion thereto; but I trust, no person will take offence on this account: my remarks are of the pacific kind; being sensible that devastation and slaughter; are incompatible with the Christian name.’ The long poem ‘Columbus, or the Discovery of America’ is offered, with a prose introduction, to mark the three-hundredth anniversary of the voyage of Columbus. It ends with a reference to the construction of Washington, with the footnote: ‘The New City of Washington, now Erecting, intended to be the Capital of the United States.’.see full details
A critique of contemporary financial practice: the brokers, banks, stockjobbers, ‘bulls’ and ‘bears’: ‘Such Means to prey upon your Fortune / These worthy Gentlemen call SPORTING, / And give each base Negotiation / The well-bred Term of—SPECULATION’ (p. 18)..see full details
Sole edition of Scots poet Grahame’s first published book.more...
It contains ‘On Burns the Scottish Poet’, the ironically-titled ‘An unanswerable argument for the slave trade’; and a Latin translation of part of Burns’s ‘To a Mouse’.
‘He was educated at Glasgow grammar school and at Glasgow University. Against his own inclination to study for the church, he was then apprenticed to his cousin, Laurence Hill, a writer to the signet, in Edinburgh. Despite his dislike of the work and uncertain health, he completed his apprenticeship, and on 11 December 1788 was admitted a member of the Society of Writers to the Signet. On the death of his father in 1791 he contemplated a change of profession, and he eventually became an advocate in 1795’ (Oxford DNB). He later won the approval of Walter Scott but was the target of one of Byron's barbed comments in English Bards and Scotch Reviewers (1809).see full details
The poem, ‘by an unlucky accident’, was sent too late to be included in ‘Lady Miller’s Vase’, as her salon was known. It is ‘based upon the 15th elegy of the first book of Ovid [which is addressed to Envy], the Latin text of which is prefaced to the work’ (ESTC)..see full details