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Page:The Works of Lord Byron (ed. Coleridge, Prothero) - Volume 1.djvu/437

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395
HINTS FROM HORACE.

Then fear not, if 'tis needful, to produce
Some term unknown, or obsolete in use,
(As Pitt has furnished us a word or two,[1]
Which Lexicographers declined to do;)
So you indeed, with care,—(but be content
To take this license rarely)—may invent.
New words find credit in these latter days,
If neatly grafted on a Gallic phrase;[2]80
What Chaucer, Spenser did, we scarce refuse
To Dryden's or to Pope's maturer Muse.
If you can add a little, say why not,
As well as William Pitt, and Walter Scott?
Since they, by force of rhyme and force of lungs,[3]

Enriched our Island's ill-united tongues;
  1. Mr. Pitt was liberal in his additions to our Parliamentary tongue; as may be seen in many publications, particularly the Edinburgh Review. [The reference may be to financial terms, such as sinking fund (a phrase not introduced by Pitt), the English equivalent of caisse d'amortissement, or income tax (impót sur le revenu), or to actual French words such as chouannerie, projet, etc. But Pitt's "additions" are unnoticed by Frere and other reporters and critics of his speeches. For a satirical description of Pitt's words, "which are finer and longer than can be conceived," see Rolliad, 1799; Political Miscellanies, p. 421; and Political Eclogues, p. 195.

    And Billy best of all things loves—a trope."

    Compare, too, Peter Pindar, "To Sylvanus Urban," Works (1812), ii. 259.

    "Lycurgus Pitt whose penetrating eyes
    Behold the fount of Freedom in excise,
    Whose patriot logic possibly maintains
    The identity of liberty and chains."]

  2. Adroitly grafted.—[Proof b, British Museum.]
  3. Since they enriched our language in their time
    In modern speeches or Black letter rhyme.
    —[MS. L. (a).]