In the School of ---- is a tablet, on which are inscribed, in
gilt letters, the Names of the several persons who have been
Schoolmasters there since the foundation of the School, with the
time at which they entered upon and quitted their office. Opposite
to one of those names the Author wrote the following lines.
Such a Tablet as is here spoken of continued to be preserved in
Hawkshead School, though the inscriptions were not brought down to
our time. This and other poems connected with Matthew would not
gain by a literal detail of facts. Like the Wanderer in "The
Excursion," this Schoolmaster was made up of several both of his
class and men of other occupations. I do not ask pardon for what
there is of untruth in such verses, considered strictly as matters
of fact. It is enough if, being true and consistent in spirit,
they move and teach in a manner not unworthy of a Poet's calling.