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YOUNG

Tu mring Eife was written, at my request, by a 5 Ten a bad better information than I could easily be admed, and the pablick will, perhaps, wish that I saucited and obtained more such favours from him!

- DEAR SIR.-In consequence of our different conta suces abost authentick materials for the life of You sat pe the following detail.

- Oi great ben, something must always be said | grazit cariosity. Of the illustrious author of the Ap Thoughts much has been told of which there never be have been proofs; and little care appears to have bez taken to tell that, of which proofs, with little trouble, n. bare been procured."

Edward Young was born at Upbam, near Wincheste. in June, 1681. He was the son of Edward Young, that time fellow of Winchester college, and rector t'pham; who was the son of Jo. Young, of Wooden in Berkshire, styled by Wood, gentleman. In Septem 1682, the poet's father was collated to the prebend on lingham Minor, in the church of Sarum, by bishop When Ward's faculties were impaired through age, duties were necessarily performed by others. We from Wood, that at a visitation of Sprat's, July 12th, 1686, the prebendary preached a Latin sermon, terwards published, with which the bishop was so please that he told the chapter he was concerned to hind preacher had one of the worst prebends in their cl Some time after this, in consequence of his merit an

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ation, or of the interest of lord Bradford, to whom, in 2, he dedicated two volumes of sermons, he was apated chaplain to king William and queen Mary, and ferred to the deanery of Sarum. Jacob, who wrote in "O, says, “ he was chaplain and clerk of the closet to

late queen, who honoured him by standing godmother the poet.” His fellowship of Winchester he resigned favour of a gentleman of the name of Harris, who mard his only daughter. The dean died at Sarum, after a ort illness, in 1705, in the sixty-third year of his age. a the Sunday after his decease, bishop Burnet preached

the cathedral, and began his sermon with saying, Death has been of late walking round us, and making each upon breach upon us, and has now carried away le head of this body with a stroke; so that he, whom you iw a week ago distributing the holy mysteries, is now id in the dust. But he still lives in the many excellent irections he has left us, both how to live and how to die.”

The dean placed his son upon the foundation at Winhester college, where he had himself been educated. At his school Edward Young remained till the election after iis eighteenth birthday, the period at which those upon the foundation are superannuated. Whether he did not betray his abilities early in life, or his masters had not skill enough to discover in their pupil any marks of genius for which he merited reward, or no vacancy at Oxford afforded them an opportunity to bestow upon him the reward provided for merit by William of Wykeham; certain it is, that to an Oxford fellowship our poet did not succeed. By chance, or by choice, New college cannot claim the honour of numbering among its fellows him who wrote the Night Thoughts.

On the 13th of October, 1703, he was entered an independent member of New college, that he might live at little expense in the warden's lodgings, who was a particular friend of his father, till he should be qualified to stand for a fellowship at All Souls. In a few months the warden of New college died. He then removed to

VOL. VIII.

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Of this oration there is no appearance in his o of his works; and prefixed to an edition by Carli hon, 1741, is a letter from Young to Carll, if we may Curll, dated December the 9th, 1739, wherein that he has not leisure to review what he formerly and adds, “ I have not the Epistle to lord Lansdow you will take my advice, I would have you omit that

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oration on Codrington. I think the collection will sell ter without them.” There are who relate, that, when first Young found himi independent, and his own master at All Souls, he was t the ornament to religion and morality which he afterrds became. The authority of his father, indeed, had ceased, some ne before, by his death ; and Young was certainly not hamed to be patronised by the infamous Wharton. But Tharton befriended in Young, perhaps, the poet, and parcularly the tragedian. If virtuous authors must be pa‘onised only by virtuous peers, who shall point them out?

Yet Pope is said, by Ruffhead, to have told Warburon, that “ Young had much of a sublime genius, though without common sense ; so that his genius, having no guide, was perpetually liable to degenerate into bombast. This made him pass a foolish youth, the sport of peers and poets : but his having a very good heart enabled him to support the clerical character when he assumed it, first with decency, and afterwards with honour.”

They who think ill of Young's morality in the early part of his life may, perhaps, be wrong; but Tindal could not err in his opinion of Young's warmth and ability in the cause of religion. Tindal used to spend much of his time at All Souls. “ The other boys,” said the atheist, “ I can always answer, because I always know whence they have their arguments, which I have read a hundred times; but that fellow Young is continually pestering me with something of his own.”

After all, Tindal and the censurers of Young may be reconcilable. Young might, for two or three years, have tried that kind of life, in which his natural principles would not suffer him to wallow long. If this were so, he has

¢ As my great friend is now become the subject of biography, it should be told, that every time I called upon Johnson during the time I was employed in collecting materials for this life and putting it together, he never suffered me to depart without some such farewell as this: “Don't forget that rascal Tindal, sir. Be sure to hang up the atheist." Alluding to this anecdote, which Johnson had mentioned to me.

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The poem eers needed also to reconcile the pure to the ate pesee. This is endeavoured to be sur showing that men are siam in var, and that in peace“ Featu wave, md commerce sveils her sail. If this be! manity, for which he neant it: is it politicks: 1 purpose of this episte appears to have been, to per the publick for the reception of some tragedy be have in hand. His lordship's patronage, he says, let him “ repent his passion for the stage;" and tienlar praise bestowed on Othello and Oroonoko to if some such character as Zanga was even then 1. plation. The affectionate mention of the deal friend Harrison, of New college, at the close, poem, is an instance of Young's art, which display sell so wonderfully, some time afterwards, in the Thoughts, of making the publick a party in b gorrow.

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