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Zophiel A Poem   By: (1795?-1845)

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Produced using page scans from The University of Michigan's Making of America online book collection (


A Poem,

By Mrs. Brooks.

Forse la sorte F. stanca di me tormentar Metastasio.


Published by Richardson & Lord.

J. H. A. Frost, Printer.


DISTRICT OF MASSACHUSETTS, to wit: District Clerk's Office.

Be it remembered, that on the twelfth day of August, A. D. 1825, in the fiftieth year of the Independence of the United States of America, Richardson & Lord, of the said District, have deposited in this office the Title of a Book, the right whereof they claim as Proprietors, in the words following, to wit:

Zophiel, a Poem, by Mrs. Brooks. Forse la sorte E stanca di me tormentar. Metastasio.

In conformity to the Act of the Congress of the United States, entitled, "An Act for the encouragement of Learning, by securing the Copies of Maps, Charts and Books, to the Authors and Proprietors of such Copies, during the times therein mentioned:" and also to an Act, entitled, "An Act supplementary to an Act, entitled, An Act for the encouragement of Learning, by securing the Copies of Maps, Charts and Books to the Authors and Proprietors of such Copies during the times therein mentioned; and extending the benefits thereof to the Arts of Designing, Engraving and Etching Historical and other Prints."

JOHN W. DAVIS, Clerk of the District of Massachusetts.


Wishing to make a continued effort, in an art which, though almost in secret, has been adored and assiduously cultivated from earliest infancy, it was my intention to have chosen some incident from Pagan history, as the foundation of my contemplated poem. But, looking over the Jewish annals, I was induced to select for my purpose, one of their well known stories which besides its extreme beauty, seemed to open an extensive field for the imagination which might therein avail itself not only of important and elevated truths but pleasing and popular superstitions.

Having finished one Canto I left the United States for the West Indies in the hope of being able to sail thence for Great Britain, where I might submit what I had done to the candour of some able writer; publish it, if thought expedient; and obtain advice and materials for the improvement and prosecution of my work. But as events have transpired to frustrate that intention I have endeavored to make it as perfect, as with the means I have access to, is possible.

It is, now, far beneath what might have been done, under the influence of more decided hopes and more auspicious circumstances. Yet, as it is, I am induced to place it before the public, with that anxiety which naturally attends the doubtful accomplishment of any favourite object, on the principle that no artist can make the same improvement, or labour with so much pleasure to himself, in private, as when comparing his efforts with those of others, and listening to the opinions of critics and the remarks of connoisseurs. The beauty, though she may view herself, in her mirror, from the ringlets of her hair to the sole of her slipper, and appear most lovely to her own gaze, can never be certain of her power to please until the suffrage of society confirm the opinion formed in seclusion; and "Qu'est ce que la beaute s'elle ne touche pas?"

Literary employments are necessary to the happiness and almost to the vitality of those who pursue them with much ardour; and though the votaries of the muses are, too often, debased by faults, yet, abstractedly considered, a taste for any art, if well directed, must seem a preservative not only against melancholy, but even against misery and vice.

Genius, whatever its bent, supposes a refined and delicate moral sense and though sometimes perverted by sophistry or circumstance, and sometimes failing through weakness; can always, at least, comprehend and feel, the grandeur of honour and the beauty of virtue... Continue reading book >>

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