Samuel Kettell, ed. Specimens of American Poetry. 1829.
Critical and Biographical Notice
Enoch Lincoln (17881829)
THE PRESENT governor of the State of Maine, is a native of Worcester, Massachusetts. He was educated for the law, and besides exercising that profession has been several times a representative in congress from the state over which he now presides. He is the author of The Village, a poem published in 1816, an unpretending performance, but one of merit and interest.
The Village is a picture of rural scenery and character, accompanied with such moral reflections as the matters touched upon are calculated to awaken. It has of course nothing imposing in the subject, nor is there anything brilliant or striking in the style, no straining after novelties of thought or fine expressions. As the author disdains the use of the common stock of embellishments which belong to verse, this production has perhaps little which were we to refine our criticism, would pass for downright poetry. But it has a fund of good sense and direct obvious meaning which compensates for the want of more showy qualities. Those who bend with interest over the sober and moral page of Cowper, or are delighted with the simplicity and pathos of Goldsmith, will find The Village a work which will afford high satisfaction in the perusal. The tone of sentiment which prevails throughout is noble and elevated, and the political and moral precepts highly commendable. The versification is perhaps a little heavy, and the language occasionally prosaic. There is, however, a strength of feeling, and at times an eloquence, displayed in the poem that render the reader in some degree insensible to their defects.