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Literature & Theatre

Epilogue to the Tragedy of Douglas

(33) Epilogue to the Tragedy of Douglas

            AN

     EPILOGUE

        TO THE

TRAGEDY of DOUGLAS,

      Spoke by the AUTHOR,

SHROUDED in glory, and with praiſe full blown,
Permit your Bard his gratitude to own.
To mine immortal genius firſt I bow,
And next, great ſquire, my thanks are paid to you ;
By your example, arid kind precept warn'd,
No heavy moral has my plot deform'd:
Thy ſignal too did teach the thoughtleſs crowd,
When fit to weep, and when to clap aloud.
C-------le and C-------ples, all the favourite tribe
Who on our Zion's top triumphant ride,
My thanks receive; nor fear the bigots frown:
Perſiſt; and Edin's ſtipends are your own.
O happy Edin! who ere long ſhall ſee
Each pulpit fill'd by ſuch bright wits as we.
Permit me next, great J—g-s of the land,
Who grace my audience; and reſpect command;
To bow obeiſance; what tho' the laws eontroul
The ſtage ? you ſcorn the antiquated rule.
To yonder box, where ſits a humble throng,
Some gratitude and thanks muſt ſure belong;
they are my flock, from A—nf—d they come,
And ſtand around their paſtor as a crown.
How warm my heart to every beau and belle,
Ere long my muſe to the dull world ſhall tell.
To thank thee, Ward ſurpaſſes all my art,
W——n and J-------n, bear a friendly part;
For tho' ſhe lately died Lord Barnard's wife;
Your preſence ſoon will quicken her to life.
And now in fame's loud horn each name ſhall riſe,
Who owns your Bard, and joins his works to prize;——

This ought for ever to ſilence theſe ſhallow critics, who have ſtated it as an objectic
againſt this play, that one is at a loſs to know what moral ſentiment it is deſigned to
inſpire.------According to the true ſenſe of the word moral, as accurately defined .
ſome late writers, many highly moral ſentences might be quoted from it; ſuch as t
beautiful adjuration uſed by one of the ſpeakers, who is introduced ſwearing by
that died on the accurſed tree to ſave mankind ;-and the devout exclamation put in
mouth of another when juſt expiring, I'll riſk eternal fire.

This refers to that horrid inſult offered by the presbytery of Edinburgh laſt
neſday to wit and genius, byordering letters to be writ to the different presbyter
which theſe miniſters belong who honoured the play-houſe with their company
occaſion.                   

The author ſent a number of tickets to his. pariſhioners, who came in bad
honſe and entered ſo much into the ſpirit of tragedy, that when met in the eyes
could ſcarce part without blows.

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