Thomas, Elizabeth

, known to the world by the name of Corinna, with which Dryden flattered her, was born in 1675; and, after a life of ill health and various disappointments, died Feb. 3, 17 3O, in her fifty-sixth year, and was buried in the church of St. Bride. Among her other misfortunes, she laboured under the displeasure of Pope, whom she had offended, and who took care to place her in his “Dunciad.” He once paid her a visit, in company with Henry Cromwell, esq. whose letters, by some' accident, fell into her hands, with some of Pope’s answers. As soon as that gentleman died, Curl I found means to wheedle them from her, and immediately committed them to the press; which so enraged Pope, that he never forgave her. Corinna, considered as an author, has very few; claims to notice: she had not so much wit as Mrs. Behn or J Mrs. Manley, nor so happy a gift at intellectual painting; but her poetry was once thought soft and delicate, and her letters sprightly and entertaining. Her poems were published after her death, by Curll; and two volumes of letters (under the title of “Pylades and Corinua,”) which passed between her and a Mr. Gwynnet, who was to have been her husband, but died before matters could be accomplished. In this last publication she gives an account of her own life, which has been abridged in Gibber’s “Lives,” and other collections but which Mr. Malone has proved such a tissue of improbabilities and falsehoods, that a mere reference to it may be thought sufficient 2

2

Life as above. Malone’s Dryden, vol. I. p. 347. II. p. 96, 108. Bowles’s edition of Pope, see Index, Cibber’s Lives, vol. IV.