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plundered of all his property, and what is ever most dear to a man of learning, his
The peace of the country being now re-established, he appears to have applied him-
During the commotions excited by the popish plot, attempts were made to remove
2 Father of the learned Thomas Stanley, esq. Phillips dedicated his Theatrum Poetarum to Stanley
Gent. Mag. ubi supra. p. 462-3. C.
LIFE OF SIR EDWARD SHERBURNE.
was the principal person concerned in drawing up the "Rules, Orders and Instructions" given to the office of ordnance in 1683, which with very few alterations, have been confirmed at the beginning of every reign since, and are those by which the office is now governed.
To these scanty notices, may be added his acquaintance with Dr. Bentley, which was occasioned by that learned critic's announcing an intention of publishing a new edition of Manilius. Sir Edward, who had formerly translated the first book of that poet into English verse, took this opportunity of sending to Bentley his collection of editions and papers belonging to Gaspar Gevartius who had also intended an edition of Manilius, but was prevented by death*.
The writer of his life in the Biographia Britannica, concludes it with lamenting the misfortune of Anthony Wood's carrying on his history no longer than the year 1700, and thus leaving it doubtful when sir Edward Sherburne died: but this is one of the many instances of carelessness which occur in those latter volumes of the Biographia that were principally intrusted to Dr. Nichols. Collier, whose dictionary is in less reputation than it deserves, and which contains many curious facts not easily to be found elsewhere, ascertains Sherburne's death from an epitaph which he wrote for himself. He died in Nov. 4, 1702, and was interred on the 8th in the chapel belonging to the Tower of London.
In Sherburne's poems considerable genius may be discovered, but impeded by the prevailing taste of his age for strained metaphors and allusions. Poetical lovers then thought no compliments too extravagant, and ransacked the remotest and apparently most barren sources for what were considered as striking thoughts, but which appear to us unnatural, if not ridiculous. He appears to have derived most of his reputation from his translations. He was a man of classical learning and a critic, and frequently conveys the sense of his author with considerable spirit, although his versification is in general flat and inharmonious. In his sacred poems he seems to rise to a fervency and elegance which indicate a superior inspiration.
Biog. Brit. old edit. vol. ii. p. 744. note S. C.
Some of them are omitted in the present edition, as are his learned notes on Coluthus. C.