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Over the past few years I have had published a number of articles on or deriving from eighteenth-century periodicals, largely but not exclusively in Studies in Bibliography.[1] As before, I am still on the lookout for that which has gone unnoted or has long been forgotten.

The Westminster Magazine, or Pantheon of Taste (hereafter WM) was first published in January 1773 and ended publication in December 1785, microfilm of the thirteen volumes being made in 1973 by University Microfilms of Ann Arbor, Michigan. While scholars working before 1973 were able to consult some volumes of the periodical in scattered locations, I am not sure that any of these scholars was able to consult all the volumes. Thus, Mary E. Knapp used the first volume of the WM in her Checklist of Verse by David Garrick (1955), but no other, with the result that at least twenty-five more entries might have been included for appearances of verse by Garrick in the WM.[2] In the 1779 WM (pp. 459-461) a memoir of Garrick has an appended footnote which identifies his earliest contributions to the Gentleman's Magazine, poems in the volume for 1740 on pages 460, 461, 462, 464 and eight verses added to a poem by Gilbert Walmesley (p. 567). This last is not in Miss Knapp's Checklist, nor is a poem on p. 462 of the 1740 Gentleman's Magazine, a poem which she lists only in its autograph form in the Folger (#8a), i.e. Garrick's answer to some verses by L. (Mr. Logie) to Chloe.[3] Number 364 in Knapp, Garrick's "Prologue for the Benefit of the Theatrical Fund of the Drury Lane Theatre," appeared in many periodicals, but its appearance in the WM in 1776 (p. 327-328) is overlooked in her Checklist and in an article devoted solely to that poem.[4] Number 199 in the Checklist is Garrick's own epitaph; it appears in the Whitehall Evening-Post for March 2-4, 1779 and


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can be read in an "extra-illustrated set of [Arthur] Murphy's Life [of Garrick], and [Garrick's] Private Correspondence, X. 170, newspaper clipping, with letter dating verses, August 1777. [Tom] Davies, Life [of Garrick], (1781), II. 400" (p. 32). The epitaph is not included in the two-volume collection of Garrick's poems published by George Kearsley in 1785. Unless the index to the definitive biography of Garrick is incomplete, there is no mention of the epitaph or the circumstances leading up to it.[5] Now, those not fortunate enough to have access to the few places where the text of the poem is available may be grateful for the opportunity afforded by the WM for 1779 (p. 162). I quote both the head-note and the poem.
In August, 1777, Mr. Garrick, accompanied by his neighbour and friend, Mr. Hen. Hoare, of the Adelphi, made a visit to Mr. Hoare, of Stourhead, in Wilts. Being particularly charmed with the Grotto, he said he should like it for his burying-place; upon which one of the company wished him to write his own Epitaph; which as soon as he returned to the house, he did. Extempore.
Tom Fool, the tenant of this narrow space,
(He play'd no foolish part to chuse the place)
Hoping for mortal honours e'en in death,
Thus spoke his wishes with his latest breath.
"That Hal, sweet-blooded Hal, might once a-year,
Quit social joys to drop a friendly tear;
That Earle, with magic sounds that charm the breast,
Should with a requiem teach his soul to rest;
Full charg'd with humour, that the sportive Rust
Should fire three vollies o'er the dust to dust;
That Honest Benson, ever free and plain,
For once shou'd sigh, and wish him back again;
That Hoare too might complete his glory's plan,
Point to his grave and say—I lik'd the man."
Hal is identified in a footnote as "Henry Hoare, jun. Esq. of the Adelphi Buildings;" Earle, as "Benson Earle, Esq. of Salisbury"; Rust, as "John Rust, Esq."; Benson as "John Benson, Esq."; and Hoare, as "Henry Hoare, Esq. of Stourhead." Benson Earle is William Benson Earle who became a Fellow of the Royal Society on 4 March 1773, and John Rust's connection with Garrick is demonstrable from the fact that there are two extant letters from him to Garrick, written on January 7 and 17, 1777, the same year as the visit to Stourhead. I find no reference to John Benson in the Stone and Kahrl biography nor in Garrick's letters.[6] Incidentally, the index to Miss Knapp's Checklist lists Number 199 as a reference for Henry Hoare, but there is no mention of him there, and the reader who knows nothing of the circumstances of the epitaph is left in ignorance. Henry Hoare is mentioned only once in the Stone and Kahrl biography of Garrick and there simply as neighbor and acquaintance (p. 121). The WM date for the anecdote, August 1777, will serve to correct the conjectural 1776 date of letters 1035 and 1039 in Little and Kahrl. Nor will one find any reference there to the "Verses from Sir Thomas Mills to Mr. Garrick, on receiving his Portrait painted by Mr. Dance" printed in the 1776 WM (p. 271), or to Sir Thomas Mills himself,


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who died on 28 February 1793 at Mary-le-bone (European Magazine, 1793.i. 240). Further, the 1779 WM (p. 461), in a bibliography of Garrick's writings, states that he wrote some pieces in the St. James's Chronicle under the name of Oakley. I believe there is no mention of this, nor any attempt to locate the pieces in question, in any of the literature on Garrick.

In addition to the reprinting of poems by Garrick, the WM printed an anecdote about him which is absent from Stone and Kahrl. If it is true, it is sufficiently interesting for inclusion in any account of Garrick. The March 1779 WM (p. 120) printed an anecdote of Garrick's "first appearance in the character of Richard III at the Theatre in Goodman's-Fields" which had him so hoarse at the end of the second act that he could not have gone on had not a gentleman present behind the scenes "having luckily a Seville orange in his pocket" gave it to him, with the result that he finished the part to great applause. But, "had it not been owing to this trifling incident, we might have been deprived of the greatest ornament the British, or perhaps any other stage ever acquired." Incidentally, Tom Davies and Arthur Murphy, early biographers of Garrick, evidently did not know the anecdote.

The WM would not, of course, be of more than passing interest, if all one could glean from it was the Garrick material. And there is bigger game. Assuredly, one of the pleasures derivable from the turning over of the pages of old periodicals is the discovery of completely forgotten pieces, usually by minor writers, even obscure ones, for the works of major writers have usually surfaced because of the researches of many scholars. And when one comes upon an attribution in one of these periodicals to a major author the chances are excellent that the piece in question is not his. But there is always the off-chance it may be his. So very much has been written about Jonathan Swift that one is understandably chary of attributing a new piece to him, but the WM has not had wide exposure, and the attribution, a tentative one, is by a correspondent to that periodical and not by me. I refer to "A Humourous Description of Mortality, Said to be wrote by the Late JONATHAN SWIFT, D.D. DEAN OF ST. PATRICK's, DUBLIN." I quote the whole, depending upon others more knowledgeable about Swift's prose to render a decision.

As you have been pleased very generously to honour me with your friendship, I think myself obliged to throw off all disguise, and discover to you my real circumstances; which I shall with all the openness and freedom imaginable. You'll be surprised at the beginning of my story, and think the whole a banter; but you may depend upon its being actually true; and, if need were, I could bring the Parson of the Parish to testify the same. You must know then, that at this present time I live in a little sorry (a) house of clay, that stands upon the waste as other cottages do; and, what is worst of all, am liable to be turned out at a minute's warning. It is a sort of copyhold tenure, and the custom of the manor is this: for the first thirty years I am to pay no rent, but only do suit and service, and attend upon the (b) Courts, which are kept once a-week, and sometimes oftener; for twenty years after this, I am to pay (c) a Rose every year; and further than this, during the remainder of life, I am to pay a Tooth (which you'll say is a whimsical sort of an acknowledgment) every two or three years, or oftener if it should be demanded; and if I have nothing more to pay, "Out" must be the word, and it will not be long ere my person will be seized.—I might have had my tenement, such as it is, upon much better terms, if it had not


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been for a fault of my great (d) grand-father: he and his wife together, with (e) the advice of an ill neighbour, were concerned in robbing an (f) orchard, belonging to the (g) Lord of the Manor, and forfeited this great privilege, to my sorrow I am sure; but, however, I must do as well as I can, and shall endeavour to keep my house in tolerable repair. My (h) kitchen, where I dress my victuals, is a comical little roundish sort of a room, somewhat like an oven; it answers much to the purpose it was designed, and that's enough. My (i) garrets (or rather cock-lofts) are very indifferently furnished; but they are rooms which few people regard now, unless to lay lumber in. The worst part of the story is, it costs me a great deal every year in (k) thatchings; for, as my building stands pretty much exposed to the wind and weather, the covering you know must decay faster than ordinary; however, I make shift to rub on in my little way, and when (l) rent-day comes I must see and discharge it as well as I can. Whenever I am turned out, I understand my lodge, or what you please to call it, descends upon a low-spirited creeping (m) family, remarkable for nothing but being instrumental in advancing the reputation of a great Man in Abchurch-lane*; but be this as it will, I have one snug (n) apartment that lies on the left side of my house, which I reserve for my chiefest friends: it is very warm, where you'll always be a welcome guest; and you may depend upon a lodging as long as the edifice shall be in the tenure and occupation of J.S.

P.S. This room that I value so much, was set on (o) fire once, and my whole building in danger of being demolished, by an unlucky (p) boy throwing his lighted torch in at the window, the casement happening to be open.-----I must not forget to tell you. that the (q) person who is sent about to gather our quit-rents before-mentioned, is a queer, little, old, round-shouldered fellow, with scarce any hair upon his head; which grotesque figure, together with his invidious employments, makes him generally slighted, and oftentimes much abused. He has a prodigious stomach of his own; whatever he gets, it goes all into his unrighteous maw, which makes a fool of the Ostrich for digestion; he is continually exercising his grinders upon one thing or another, and yet he is as poor as a rake, and by that means goes so light that he is often at a man's heels before he thinks of him; he is very absolute and ready in executing his commission; and has a relation, one (r) Tide a Waterman, that is full as saucy and peremptory as himself. If you meet with either of them, and cry out "Stop a little," the devil a moment they'll stay. (1780, pp. 70-71)

I append the footnoted explanations of the allegory: a (The body.), b (Divine Service.), c (The colour from his cheek.), d (Adam and Eve.), e (The Devil.), f (Paradise.), g (Jehovah.), h (His Stomach.), i (His Head.), k (Clothes.), l (His death.), m (The worms.), n (The heart.), o (By love.), p (Cupid.), q (Time. This description is elegant, and the slighting and abusing Time, the Teeth of Time, and Man's abuse of the precious jewel, even when he is at his heels, i.e. Death, reminds me of a line I have somewhere seen, "Every moment of Time is a monument to God's Mercy."), r The Author, no doubt, had the old Proverb in his Thought, viz. "Time and Tide will stay for no Man." A "great Man in Abchurch-lane" is explained as "Probably alluding to some Physician or Quack Doctor, resident in that place, who might at that time be famous for curing those vermin in the body." Whoever wrote these notes, and it was not the author, was right. In Swift's The Importance of the Guardian Considered "Mr. John Moor the Apothecary at the Pestle and Mortar" is mentioned (VIII. 9 in The Prose Works, ed. Herbert Davis and Irvin Ehrenpreis), but not otherwise identified. He is, however, the worm-powder man. See Pope's poem, "To Mr. John Moore, Author of the Celebrated Worm-Powder," (Twickenham ed., VI, 161-164) with its reference to


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"Abchurch-Lane" l. 33, and the note thereupon naming the Pestle and Mortar.

George Lyttelton, first Baron Lyttelton, friend of Pope, patron of James Thomson and David Mallet, and to whom Fielding dedicated Tom Jones, has been called "A Minor Augustan" by his modern biographer.[7] His poems were included in that collection of English poets for which Dr. Johnson wrote the Lives, and of those poems Johnson wrote that "they have nothing to be despised and little to be admired. . . . His little performances, whether Songs or Epigrams, are sometimes sprightly and sometimes insipid. His epistolary pieces have a smooth equability, which cannot much tire because they are short, but which seldom elevates or surprizes" (ad finem). In any event there is one poem by him in the WM which does not appear in any collection I have seen. It is titled "On Good Humour," with the first line "Tell me ye sons of Phoebus, what is this," and was said to be "[By the late Lord Lyttelton]" in the April 1774 number (p. 431).

Charles James Fox is better known to historians than to students of literature, but he was no exception to the rule that most educated men of the eighteenth century could turn their hand to verse, often of the occasional kind. I wish to call attention to three of his verse efforts that appeared in the WM. The first to appear, in the June 1775 number (p. 325), is titled "Upon Mrs. C--E. By Mr. C. F--X," beginning "Where the loveliest expression to features is join'd" and continuing in similarly complimentary vein. Frances Crewe, daughter of Fulke Greville, married John Crewe in 1766 and soon became a famous Whig hostess and politician.[8] Next chronologically is "An Invocation to Poverty. Said to be written by the Hon. Mr. C. F-x, after the Reflexion on his Penury, thrown out in the House of Commons last Sessions by Mr. Ad--s," in the August 1776 number, "Oh! Poverty! of pale consumptive hue" (p. 440). The poem was also printed in the Sept. 1776 Gentleman's Magazine (p. 428), without "by Mr. Ad--s" and again seven years later in that same periodical (p. 379). The editors of the WM, possibly influenced by the Gentleman's Magazine reprinting, also reprinted the poem in 1783 (p. 585). In the winter of 1773-74 Fox owed some £140,000 in debts, his father finally bailing him out.[9] The only "Mr. Ad--s" in the House of Commons at this time has to be William Adam (no "s") with whom Fox fought a duel on November 29, 1779, in Hyde Park (DNB). Fox suffered a slight wound and remarked, "I should infallibly have been killed, if Mr. Adam had not been using government powder." The last of the three poems also has a political atmosphere. It is the "Epistle from the Hon. Charles Fox, partridge-shooting, to the Hon. John Townshend, cruising" in Jan. 1780 (p. 46), a long, three-column affair beginning "While you, dear Townshend, o'er the billows ride" and full of political allusions.

The DNB states that Henry Fox's marriage to the daughter of Charles, second Duke of Richmond, was "secretly solemnised at the house of Sir Charles Hanbury Williams, the Lady's parents having refused their consent." The March 1773 WM (p. 221) contained the following poem, which I quote


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in full, since it is not in the three-volume collection of the works of Sir Charles Hanbury Williams.
The Review, Written on George II.
By Sir Charles H. Williams.
Serene the morn, the season fine,
Great G--e advances on the plain
To view his troops and concubine,
The godly blessings of his reign!
The trumpets sound, the colours bound,
The fields all blaze with arms;
Thus Trojan true the Tacticks shew,
And Helen all her charms.
The God of War and Love by turns
Preside upon his phiz;
One while you'd think for war he burns,
Another while for Miss.
You'd think when he surveys his men,
He'd waste the world for fame;
And that he'd people it again,
When he surveys his dame.
'Tis all a farce, and nothing more;
This am'rous martial Knight
Age won't allow t' enjoy his W--e,
Nor courage let him fight.
In 1737 George II, on the advice of the Duke of Newcastle, Secretary of State, sent some one other than Hanbury Williams on a diplomatic mission to Naples, despite Sir Robert Walpole's advocacy of young Williams's claim.[10] Possibly this was the reason for The Review. Another possible reason was the King's displeasure at something for which Hanbury Williams expected praise.[11]

When the 1773 Johnson-Steevens Shakespeare was published Philip Stanhope, Earl of Chesterfield, evidently sent a set to a young lady of his acquaintance, for the November 1773 WM (p. 668) includes a poem titled "Verses sent to a Young Lady, with the New Edition of Shakespeare. By the Right Hon. the Earl of C--.", beginning "Poet of Nature, thou whose boundless art," a thoroughly conventional piece of versification and literary appreciation. Some three years later, May 1776, two poems attributed to him appeared (p. 327), one entitled simply "Verses by the Earl of Chesterfield," beginning "Chlorinda still rejects my hand"; the other, "By the Same," beginning "Let social mirth with gentle manners join." One imagines that the key words in the opening line are "social" and "gentle," the Earl being notoriously hostile to more unseemly mirth.

Next to coming upon new pieces, one is almost equally excited by the discovery of textual variants in known pieces. The WM for June 1773 (p. 388) printed a poem, "On the Day of Judgement. By Dr. Swift, and not published among his Works," the text of which differs radically from the accepted text.


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Sir Harold Williams makes no reference to the WM text, but writes of a version which he has ignored: "The faulty version printed in The Friend, London, 1773, ii. 75-77, is the outcome of imperfect memorizing, and may be ignored."[12] The Friend, a little elementary research reveals, is an error for "The Friends, or original letters of a person deceased. Now first published from the manuscripts in his correspondent's hands [sic], 2 vols. 12 mo. published by Bell," where on page 77 of the second volume the poem appears in Letter LXXX, enclosing a letter from Dublin College, signed F. A. Among other things, F. A. writes "As Swift never gave a Copy of it [the accompanying poem], it has been only preserved in Memory, by a few Friends of his, ever since, to whom he had privately repeated it. From one of whom, Mr. Rochfort, I, this Morning, received the oral Tradition." Swift numbered members of the Rochfort family resident in Dublin among his friends, it is true, but unluckily I can discover nothing about the author of The Friends. The work attracted very little attention, the reviewer for the Monthly Review remarking "We suppose the letters are what the Editor seems to mean by the term original; for (though the Writer was not destitute of abilities) we have found nothing very surprizing or interesting in them" (XLVIII, 321). F. A. from Dublin College cannot be Francis Annesley, thrice mentioned in Swift's correspondence and a graduate of Trinity College Dublin in 1682, the year Swift matriculated there, but he might be another Francis Annesley who matriculated in 1719.[13] In any event, the error in the title of the work has been corrected, the possible (even probable) identity of F. A. has been suggested, and I now append the text Sir Harold chose to ignore, as The Friends, from which I print the text, is a rare work, and the WM on film or in the original is not always easy of access.
With undigested thoughts opprest,
I sunk from Reverie to Rest.
An horrid vision seiz'd my head;
I saw the graves yawn up their dead;
Jove arm'd with terrors ope'd the skies,
The thunder roars, and lightning flies;
While each pale spectre hangs its head,
Jove nodded, burst the clouds, and said,----
"You whom the various Sects have shamm'd,
"And come to see each other damn'd,
"As Priests have threaten'd (tho' they knew
"No more of my decrees than you)
"The world's vain business now being o'er,
"Such Dogmas may prevail no more;
"I 'gainst such Blockheads set my wit:
"I damn you all!----Go, go, you're bit."
Recourse to Sir Harold's edition reveals that the above text has readings in common with other versions of the poem, i.e. "sunk" in l. 2, "yawn" in l. 4, "The" in l. 6, and "whom" in l. 9. Given the various versions of the poem that exist, that in The Friends should have been included in Sir Harold's collation.

From one text to another. The April 1774 WM (pp. 205-207) prints


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Oliver Goldsmith's poem Retaliation with some textual variations from the received text in Arthur Friedman's edition of Goldsmith's works (1966), IV. 352-359. A headnote to the poem reads,
How the following poem by Dr. GOLDSMITH stole into print, we cannot tell, as it was only intended by the Author for the laugh of a convivial party who belonged to a Club at the British Coffee-house, and only three or four copies were given by the Doctor to his most intimate friends. The incorrectness of the versification will shew that the Author never intended it for the public eye in its present form.
This jibes with Goldsmith's statement, as reported by William Cooke, that he had given copies to various friends (Friedman, IV. 346). Retaliation, like Swift's Day of Judgement, has had a checkered textual history (Friedman, IV. 346-348), but the WM text has not hitherto played any part in that history. Variants in the WM text in lines 37 (he's fit), 41 (play), 55 (wrangling), and 69 (left) derive from errata, but those in lines 83 (While), 92 (Scotchmen [twice]), 99 (ill judge in), 123 (receiv'd), 128 (one om.) and 129 (this) are, with one exception, either wrong or of no substantive importance. The possible exception is in the use of "Scotchmen" twice in line 92, since it comes at the end of a series of plurals. "Scotchman" can, of course, be considered a generic plural. There is a nice question, then, about the treatment of texts such as the two discussed, i.e. should they be totally ignored, mentioned only, or collated? I obviously do not believe they should be ignored.

I am not sure what, if any, significance to attach to the attention paid to Goldsmith's work in the WM. Arthur Friedman writes,

Goldsmith's last four essays appeared in the first and third numbers of the Westminster Magazine, published 1 January and 1 March 1773 . . . all four essays were reprinted in Essays and Criticisms, by Dr. Goldsmith (1798) on the authority of Thomas Wright, who, according to John Nichols, 'printed the "Westminster Magazine" in which he marked the Writer of every article in a copy which probably still exists.' (III. 205)
Wright's attributions, while a number of them are incorrect (Friedman, III. 88), are valuable in fixing the canon of Goldsmith's writings, and it was almost surely Wright who influenced the editors of the WM to include so much of Goldsmith's work and material on him. Friedman reprints "The History of a Poet's Garden" from the January 1773 WM; the "Essay on the Theatre; or, a Comparison between Laughing and Sentimental Comedy" (Jan. 1773); "The History of Cyrillo Padovano, The Noted Sleep-Walker" and A Register of Scotch Marriages," both from the March 1773 WM. In addition to these, in order of appearance in 1773: "Humorous Anecdotes of Dr. Goldsmith" (pp. 176-177), partial answer to the "Essay on the Theatre" by K.W. [William Kenrick?] (pp. 193-194), a "Critique" of She Stoops to Conquer (pp. 217-218), and the Prologue and Epilogue to that play (pp. 223-224), all in March 1773. In 1774: "Literary Anecdotes of the Late Dr. Goldsmith" (p. 167), William Woty's "Epitaph" on Goldsmith (p. 207), a four-line laudatory poem on him (p. 263), the poem "Retaliation" with its head-note (pp. 205-207), and Goldsmith's "Epilogue" for Mr. Lewes, in the character of Harlequin (p.


Page 278
263). In 1775, an extract from the life of Beau Nash (pp. 478-479); in 1776, "Observations on a Simile in Dr. Goldsmith's Deserted Village," i.e. "So some tall cliff" etc. (p. 432); and in 1777, some more anecdotes (p. 456) and Garrick's poem "Upon Dr. Goldsmith's Characteristical Cookery" (p. 665). None of the above, which would come under the heading of "Writings about Goldsmith," is included in Samuel H. Woods, Jr.'s Oliver Goldsmith, A Reference Guide (1982).[14]

And then there are other bits and pieces. Dr. Johnson's Dictionary is such a formidable affair, more than 3000 pages in the two folio volumes of the revised 1773 edition, that few have been hardy (or foolhardy) enough to analyze its contents to any great extent. Any detailed or statistical information about it should, therefore, be very welcome. Helen Louise McGuffie records that in the WM for March 1776 "Leveller" essay number 14 "Includes a brief burlesque of SJ's diction,"[15] but unaccountably fails to notice in the same issue (p. 136) another, much more interesting piece on Johnson. A correspondent who signed with four asterisks wrote,

While Political Writers are estimating the national debt, or enumerating our forces by land and sea, a friend of mine, a great Philologist *, has employed himself in computing our literary forces; that is, the words which compose the English language, those which are derived from Greek and Latin, and more especially those which are borrowed from the French—with whom we have had a constant literary intercourse for above seven hundred years, ever since the introduction of the Normans under William the Conqueror. The following list exhibits a distinct view of the words derived from the French by Bailey and Johnson, under each respective letter of the alphabet:                                                    
Johnson  [Nathaniel] Bailey  Difference. 
692  894  202 
434  831  397 
424  675  251 
387  641  254 
372  467  95 
290  495  205 
287  442  155 
264  418  154 
235  351  116 
216  531  315 
200  277  77 
182  249  67 
169  263  94 
159  359  200 
159  191  32 
106  201  99 
92  166  74 
91  122  31 
41  51  10 
28  23 
----  ----  ----  ---- 
4812  7670  2868 


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The Philologist friend is identified in a footnote as "The Author of a Dictionary of Proverbs lately published for Broke in the Strand," but I can find no record of the bookseller Broke or Brook(e) in the Strand, nor have I discovered a dictionary of proverbs of around this date. The rest of the letter to the WM is a rather spirited albeit facetious defence of the English language against words taken over from the French. Johnson is praised for his omission of many Gallicisms; Bailey is labelled a "laborious Etymologist."

Professor McGuffie (p. 201) includes a "'Letter signed C. Risp.' Writer reports on number of borrowed words in the Dictionary" in the WM for January 1777 (p. 25). The nature of her work obviated against any more elaborate digest of the letter, yet the literature on the Dictionary, abundant as it is, contains few pieces as detailed as this letter and that for March 1776. C. Risp writes,

Having, in my leisure hours, carefully perused Dr. Johnson's Dictionary of the English Language, curiosity prompted me to mark the number of words, which are supposed to be derived from other nations. If you will be so obliging as to give the following List a place in your Magazine, you may probably entertain some of your numerous Readers, and will particularly oblige
Your Correspondent,

    Words derived from the

  • Latin 6732
  • French 4812
  • Saxon 1665
  • Greek 1148
  • Dutch 691
  • Italian 211
  • German 106
  • Welch 95
  • Danish 75
  • Spanish 56
  • Islandic 50
  • Swedish 34
  • Gothic 31
  • Hebrew 16
  • Teutonic 15
  • Arabic 13
  • Irish 6
  • Runic 4
  • Flemish 4
  • Erse 4
  • Syriac 3
  • Scottish 3
  • Irish and Erse 2
  • Turkish 2
  • Irish and Scotish 1
  • Portuguese 1
  • Persian 1
  • Frisic 1
  • Persic 1
  • Uncertain 1
  • Total 15,784
The rest of the letter is given over to "the sources from which we have derived our literary treasures, and to what languages we are most indebted," i.e. the Romans, the Normans, the Saxons, and the "many valuable books written in Greek," C. Risp concludes, "I shall only add, that there is, upon a general computation, about 40,000 words in Johnson's Dictionary, out of which I have only reckoned 15,784 derivatives. The rest are adjectives, adverbs, compounds, or substantives, formed by analogy." Faute de mieux, one may use the statistics in these two letters as a base of departure for further possible study.[16]

William Richardson, Professor of Humanities at Glasgow, is principally


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remembered, when remembered at all, for a series of essays on Shakespeare's characters, with a very few more on other aspects of Shakespeare's plays and on the drama in general. His chief effort in this area was his Essays on Shakespeare's Dramatic Characters of Richard III, King Lear, and Timon of Athens, with an Essay on the Faults of Shakespeare, 1783, 1784, 1785. He had analyzed the character of Hamlet in an earlier volume, published in 1774, and provided additional observations on that character in the 1783 volume. What has gone unnoticed is that parts of the essays on Hamlet, Richard III, King Lear, and on Shakespeare's faults appeared, respectively, in the January, February, March, and August numbers of the 1784 WM. All are signed "W. R." The question arises: Why did Richardson, if indeed it was he, although he was alive and could protest the use of parts of his essays and his initials, submit these pieces to the WM? And do these parts therefore represent what he thought the essential arguments for the various essays? The essay on Hamlet (pp. 36-39) consists of all but the first and last paragraphs and sections four and five (of five sections) of the additional observations on that character. The critical observations on Richard III (pp. 70-72) consist solely of the first three and last two paragraphs, approximately one third of the original essay. More perplexing is the last sentence of the observations on King Lear (pp. 121-123), the first ten paragraphs (approximately two-thirds) of the original essay, for it reads, "Some further remarks on the distinguished character will conclude these observations in our next number," a promise that was not kept. Finally, and most puzzling, is the essay "On the Imperfections of Shakespeare. In a Letter to the Editor of the Westminister Magazine" (pp. 404-406). First, there is a change in the original title which had "Faults" instead of "Imperfections." Second, the assumption that this was written for the WM, i.e. "In a Letter to the Editor. . . ." Third, the concluding sentence: "Perhaps a future occasion, you will have some further remarks on this subject, from W. R.," another unkept promise. The essay in the WM consists of paragraphs nine through twelve of the original essay. While all this may not be unique in editorial practices in eighteenth-century English periodicals, it is certainly very rare and raises a number of unanswered questions.

Who wrote for the WM? According to two friends of Isaac Reed, both of whom wrote biographical accounts of him, Reed began to contribute biographical articles to the WM about 1773 and continued to do so until about 1780.[17] None of these biographical articles has been identified. Indeed, Nichols's statement, "The biographical articles are from his pen" (p. 80), if taken literally, means that all the biographical articles are Reed's. Reed, according to the same authorities, also wrote biographical articles during this same period for the Gentleman's Magazine and the European Magazine, although the latter did not begin publication until 1782. One of Reed's earliest manuscripts is a collection of "Anecdotes of Sundry Eminent Personages—1765,"[18] and he both collected biographical material and published biographical accounts much of his life. Among other biographical compendia are the fourteen Lives he added to a 1790 edition of The Works of the English


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Poets, the collection for which Dr. Johnson had written the original Lives. And, of course, he was the editor of the 1782 Biographia Dramatica. Both as biographer and inveterate play-goer he was much interested in actors and actresses. As an editor of the works of various literary figures, he was equally interested in men of letters. And hence, while for the most part identification of specific biographical contributions may be impossible, the fact that so very many of these accounts in the years from 1773 to 1780 are of actors, actresses, and writers suggests Reed was, as both Nichols and Bindley noted, contributing rather considerably to the WM in these years. In the years from 1773 through 1779, of eighty-four biographical accounts that were the lead contributions thirty were of actors, actresses, and men of letters, and of that number ten were of actors and actresses. There were no such accounts in 1778 and 1780 and only two in both 1781 and 1782, evidence, I believe, of Reed's declining role in the WM and his prominent part in the establishment of the European Magazine which published its first number in January 1782. For the record, however, in the last three years of the WM there were biographical accounts of two actresses, two actors, and of Samuel Johnson. Of some possible evidential value is the fact that the accounts of Tobias Smollett and Sir John Hill in 1775 (pp. 225-228, 628-630) and of Mrs. Elizabeth Griffiths and Henry Carey (1777, pp. 451-453, 567-568) are repeated in part, and in part verbatim, in the 1782 Biographia Dramatica edited by Reed. Nor is it without significance that one of the biographical accounts in 1775 is of a man, Isaac Madox, of whom Reed had compiled a brief life.[19] However, Reed wrote biographies of Paul Whitehead, Charles Churchill, Robert Lloyd, and Samuel Johnson, among others, for the 1790 seventy-volume edition of Johnson's collection of the English poets and these bear little resemblance to the biographical accounts of those poets in the WM. Indeed, the sketches of Churchill and Lloyd are by a friend and not by Reed. Reed used C. D., i.e. Isaac Reed, as a signature for a series of contributions to the European Magazine.[20] The August 1779 WM (p. 413) includes a letter signed C. D. introducing a passage from Johnson's life of Edmund Smith, the same letter with the same signature having appeared on July 31, 1779, in the St. James's Chronicle, the periodical with which George Steevens, Reed's close friend, was intimately associated.[21] Reed's, is then, the only name one can confidently identify as a major contributor to the WM.

A few, very few, remaining pieces must come under the heading of miscellaneous information. Thus, a memoir of Bishop Richard Hurd in the May 1781 WM contains a bibliography of his writings (p. 229) which includes "Discord: A Satire, 4to 17----", not elsewhere attributed to him. The British Library catalogue of printed books lists an anonymous 1773 quarto, "Discord. A Satire [In Verse]," which is almost positively the work attributed to Hurd and which must now be included in any discussion of Hurd's career. In November of this same year a contributor pointed out for the first time that Henry Layng, on the evidence of certain lines from one of his poems, quoted in a footnote (p. 633), had helped Pope in his translation of the


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Odyssey. Austin Warren, in 1932 in an article in the Review of English Studies, brought up the matter of Layng and Pope's translation, quoting a contribution to the May 1793 Gentleman's Magazine (pp. 391-392) by Thomas Park in which the relevant lines from Layng's poem, "The Epistle to Lady Charlotte Fermor," are quoted.[22] But Park had been anticipated by twelve years by the anonymous contributor to the WM. Finally, a five-installment critique of Thomas Otway's Venice Preserved in the 1775 WM, simply signed "W.", should be mentioned, as I did not find it in the literature on Otway.[23] While I do not think it remarkable as criticism, it, like other pieces in the WM that I have discussed, may be grist to somebody else's mill.