Cosmelia's charmes inspire my Lays



Primary Text:

MS Harleian 7316, 55r.


1724 The Hive II, 268.


Possible attribution as sixth in the series of 14 poems in MS Harleian 7316. It occurs with Finch's "Cupid, one day, ask'd his mother" in 1724 Hive. This may be a late poem on drink, love and false coquets; it also recalls Finch's dislike of sentimental endings in plays. The poet has been irritated with "plaister'd fair" (reverse of usual situation in Finch's songs and fables where it is usually the man who is the "Drunkard"); poet dislikes of sentimental plays; poem includes a reference to "Glastonbury Thorn," and Shakespeare's Midsummer's Night Dream (the lady can only return his "Kiss/Like Thisbe through the Wall" of drink). Crude or heavy-handed in the manner of Finch's poems on foolish "beaux."


Cosmelia said to be "three score" as Anne Finch was in 1720. If by Anne, perhaps she is referring to some contemporary woman friend whose behavior provoked her disgust. The pseudonym recalls the pseudonyms used by Mary Wortley Montagu in her "Town Eclogues."
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