It was written when Cowper felt again the darkness of insanity closing in upon him.
Cowper was already a man of nearly fifty when these hymns first appeared.
I thought so at the time; but you WOULD give him Cowper
Next she had picked up Cowper
's Letters , the classic prescribed by her father which had bored her, so that one sentence chancing to say something about the smell of broom in his garden, she had thereupon seen the little hall at Richmond laden with flowers on the day of her mother's funeral, smelling so strong that now any flower-scent brought back the sickly horrible sensation; and so from one scene she passed, half-hearing, half-seeing, to another.
As he approached, he recognized him as a Mormon named Cowper
, to whom he had rendered services at different times.
But he who dodges hospitals and jails, and walks fast crossing grave-yards, and would rather talk of operas than hell; calls Cowper
, Young, Pascal, Rousseau, poor devils all of sick men; and throughout a care-free lifetime swears by Rabelais as passing wise, and therefore jolly; --not that man is fitted to sit down on tomb-stones, and break the green damp mould with unfathomably wondrous Solomon.
For the matter of that he wanted me to read Cowper
, from whom no one could get anything but good, and he wanted me to read Byron, from whom I could then have got no harm; we get harm from the evil we understand.
When he was again in their company, he could not help remembering what he had seen; nor could he avoid observations which, unless it were like Cowper
and his fire at twilight,
Mr Pitt in a nightcap and bedgown, and without his boots, represented the poet Cowper
with perfect exactness; and Mary Queen of Scots in a dark wig, white shirt-collar, and male attire, was such a complete image of Lord Byron that the young ladies quite screamed when they saw it.
Does it not make you think of Cowper
? 'Ye fallen avenues, once more I mourn your fate unmerited.' "
Thus, one still reads in France, above the wicket of the prison in the seignorial mansion of Tourville, Sileto et spera ; in Ireland, beneath the armorial bearings which surmount the grand door to Fortescue Castle, Forte scutum, salus ducum ; in England, over the principal entrance to the hospitable mansion of the Earls Cowper
: Tuum est .
Then followed the recommendation to choose Southey's "Life of Cowper
," unless she were inclined to be philosophical, and startle the ladies of St.