Imágenes de páginas

able and accomplished youth, whose ceed, wrap yourself up in a sort of style, topics, and behaviour, he might suffering silence, with sometimes a thus acquire. But while assuming a slight smile, as if at the shallowness splendour which his education and of the speaker, and reserve yourself manners disgraced, he did it by de- for the first interval, shortly and dicgrees; still, from a bashful dread of tatorially to decide the subject, withridicule, leaving some part of his out offering any reasons. Draw, as establishment on its original scale. it were, an arctic circle around you, Like a garden on a morass, where in the centre of which you must reone uncultivated corner is sufficient main as fixed, as cold, and as un. to betray the nature of the soil, this approachable as the Pole. Cheer. want of congruity and completeness fulness and ease will thus be banished destroyed the effect of all his toil and from from your house; and, by expence, and constantly reminded bis adopting the pompous discomfort of guests, that he had not been carly patricians, you may be allowed a accustomed to the elegancies of life, portion of their repulsive dignity.. Be but was struggling to rise above his careful, above all, to associate chiefly native element, on feeble and artific with those whose pretensions are the cial wings. For their own interest, same in kind, though somewhat in. however, they humoured, while they ferior in degree with your own; and amused themselves with his forward prefer being the first man in a vil, and awkward imitation of their man, lage to being the second in Carthage.” ners. They devoured his dainties, This advice was followed, but withand laughed at the giver, who gratis out success. The constraint of a fied at once their appetite for food forced and counterfeit character and for folly.

could not be uniformly maintained. Pride entered a man of middle age, The phrases of the forum would who had retired from trade, to the sometimes dishonour the saloon : and enjoyment of senatorian dignity, and when the demon was off his guard, thus instructed him :-" Your busin his pupil, by relaxing in an evening ness now is, by imitating the nobles, with an old pot-companion, would to keep at a distance those whom you undo all the effects of his painful have hitherto admitted with a fainie self-denial. Like Penelope, he unliar affability. If you give an en- ravelled by night the web he had tertainment, let the invitations fix a wove by day, and had his labour to distant day, that your guests may commence anew. behold its approach with

awful soli- The rivals next met in Rome, citude and preparation. When they when their wish was to try, how far arrive, receive them with the same they could diminish the value of the cold and stately condescension which most perfect characters. Vanity you have yourself formerly experie chose a statesman who had rendered enced from the senators and suffetes, himself the most popular orator of and let the same unsocial solemnity his age; and succeeded in tarnishing prevail at your table. Never let it the splendour of his fame, by beappear that one man, by his personal traying him into a constant and disqualities, is more welcome, or can gusting repetition of his services,—by add more to your gratification than inspiring him with such a false sense another. Learn the art of damping of his own importance as led bim, in every pleasant sally, by a corrective domestic distress, or political advergravity; and let no man, who is sity, to tire the public ear with his not so rich as yourself, presume to childish whining, -by tempting him feel himself happy in your presence. meanly to solicit a friend to write a Beware of risking the statement of fictitious and flattering account of a comparison in any other point; his conduct,-and at last, by seducing and, therefore, should a man, dis- him to fawn upon the destroyer of tinguished only for worth or talents, his country, that he might preserve dare to take a lead in conversation, his ears to listen to his flatterers. let a reproving manner instantly Pride took possession of a stubborn, teach him that he is not wealthy intrepid patriot, and urged him to enough to be wise. Should conver- many of those actions which were sation, in spite of every repulse, pro- ascribed to his acknowledged ability

and virtue. He could not stoop to

With the exhibition of these mase modify his conduct to a change of terpieces the contest closed, but as circumstances, but maintained an ob it left undetermined to whom bestinate inflexibility, when accommo- longed the diabolical praise of have dation would have been more bene- ing added most to human misery, ficial. He would have all, of which the mutual hatred and pretensions of he had once signified his approba- the rival pair were only exasperated tion, or nothing; when pushed to by the inconclusive conflict. the last extremity, with savage im Desirous of the strongest barrier patience he tore out his bowels; between them, they fixed on the Pye and, to spare himself the personal renean mountains. Pride chose the mortification of meeting a triumph- south side, and Vanity the north, ant rival, he thus deprived the which still continue their favourite state of her ablest citizen. The last resorts. Both make occasional exact of his life robbed the rest of half cursions to a Green Isle in the oppoits glory, and unmasked a selfish- site ocean ; but their influence there, ness which rendered the motives of though not destroyed, is considerhis public conduct equivocal and sus- ably diminished by the superior popicious.

tency of a benignant Genius called In their next effort, the demons, Common Sense. Through his means shifting the age, but not the scene, the inhabitants are enabled to persought each a subject in whom they ceive objects in their just and natucould exhibit their power under the ral proportions,—to rate themselves, greatest variety of aspects. The male as well as others, at their real value, fiend selected a cardinal, whose brain and to dissipate the vapours breathed he inflamed in equal degrees, and, at around them by the kindred demons, the same time, with the pride of which would present things to their rank, the pride of wealth, the pride of eyes indistinctly swelled into false power, the pride of learning, and the and extravagant forms. pride of sanctity: and the female May the influence of this useful, chose a titled poet, who was vain of though homely household god, be a nobility which he affected to dee strengthened and extended till Astræa spise, of tale which he abused, shall return to the earth, and till the of infidelity which his remorse be- Genius of Self-estimation, disgusted lied, of scorn of mankind, while he with his illicit offspring, shall draw was straining every faculty to win his sister Merit from her retirement, their plaudits-of indignation against and again make her his only assocruelty, while practising it on those eiate ! May the Green Isle of the he had sworn to cherish,-of exces ocean be their darling abode, and sive sensibility, which was but excess from thence, as from another Delos, of selfishness, and of love for a may they waft their benign incountry which he laboured to demo- spiration over every corner of the ralise and debauch.


To a young Lady on St. Valentine's Eve.
This is the eve of Valentine,

No quaint device adorns his page,
And many a youth will rack his fancy, Of hearts commingling—turtles cooing;
In verse and billet-doux to shine,

Or Cupids, in resistless rage, With compliments to lovely Nancy. With quiver fill’d, for man's undoing. Methinks I see, around your room, I will not talk of flames and darts,

Lie scatter'd, emblems, am'rous posics, And other metaphoric fancies ; While each epistle breathes perfume Of wounded souls, and bleeding hearts, Far sweeter than Arcadian roses.

As lovers do who read romances. Dear Nancy, may the humble bard Although your beauties please my sight,

Whose artless song comes unadorn'd, And flattery to the fair is common, One moment meet your kind regard, I will not call you angel quite, Nor be for richer trifles scorn'd !

I think you lovelier as a woman.

'Twere easy for the Muse to swear His breath is cold as Lapland snows;

Of glowing cheek and swelling bosom ; Unseen he on your bosom lingers ; How this transcends the lily fair,

And o'er your cheek, that dimpling And that the rose-bud's opening blos- glows, som.

Unfelt he draws his withering fingers. What though these hills were never seen, Except in blest poetic vision ;

He'll dim the lustre of your eye, A poet's eye can pierce the screen,

Your snow-white neck with freckles And, raptur'd, gaze on fields Elysian !

sprinkle ;

And mark your forehead, fair and high, The lawn which veils a virgin's breast

With many & long, deep-furrow'd Gives vigour to Iinagination ;

wrinkle. As Fancy paints the phenix' nest, The rarest wonder of creation.

Then list, dear maid,

be it your care And I could praise your dewy lip,

The nobler charms of mind to nourish; And say it breath'd celestial nectar;

For they, with verdure fresh and fair, But as I ne'er was blest to sip,

Beneath his chilling hand shall flour

ish. This were at best a bard's conjecture. Your voice, the music of the spheres, Just now, improve your sun-bright hour; Would suit my rhyme and sound in Why should your sweets untasted wi. metre ;

ther? No tuneful orbs e'er sooth'd my ears, Love beckons from his myrtle bow'r ; I know not, therefore, if they're Let cautious Prudence guide you thither. sweeter.

But he who talks by rote, or rule,
My pen could say, your sparkling eye
Outshines the stars—sheds brighter Dear maid, suspect that man a fool,

Of killing frowns and seraph smiling ; lustre; With all that memory could supply,

Or that his purpose is beguiling. Or poetaster's fancy muster.

Be yours to meet some modest youth, Such arts befit the venal throng,

Who holds your worth in estimation; Who sue for wealth, or flatter beauty;

Whose heart is love, whose tongue is I chuse to decorate my song

truth, With artless truth and friendly duty.

And sues to gain your approbation : I need not say that you are fair,

Then, led to Hymen's hallow'd porch, Your toilet tells you that each morn- Before next Valentine's returning, ing;

May Love light up his sacred torch, But Time, who lies in ambush there, Through life with ceaseless lustre burn.

Is all your winning sweetness scorning.


SCENES AND IMPRESSIONS IN EGYPT AND IN ITALY. We imagined, on perusing the first second ; and still more easy, on seepublication of this anonymous au- ing the second, to predict whether he thor, that we could detect peculiari- will attempt a third ; in the same ties about it, indicating a proneness way as it is a simple thing to judge on his part to the laudable employ- from the expression of a person's ment of book-making; and on this countenance, and a little talk with account we could not help viewing him, whether in his case taciturnity his Sketches of India as the fore- or loquacity prevails. The excel. runner of a family of Tours, Travels, lence of a first production, too, is geRecollections, Scenes, and Impres- nerally a pretty good criterion by sions. It is an easy matter, we appre- which to judge of the probability of hend, to foretel, with almost perfect its being followed by others from the certainty, on seeing a man's first same pen, for good authors commonperformance, whether he will try a ly write more than one book t. But

Scenes and Impressions in Egypt and in Italy; by the Author of Sketches of India, and Recollections of the Peninsula. London. Longman, &c. 1824. pp. 452.

+ Sir Walter Scott somewhere remarks, that the best English authors are the most voluminous. He himself must be taken as one great instance of this fact.

besides this criterion, there is about tion, and that, on the whole, he some works so much of the natural writes wonderfully well. The upspirit of their authors, so much that shot of this has been, we are sorry to indicates their ordinary feelings and remark, that our friend has clearly peculiarities, that really one cannot taken it into his head that he is fail to determine, to one's own satis- a man of notable talents, of no ordifaction at least, whether they are de- nary imaginative powers, and that he cidedly given to literary practices, possesses, withal, the necessary capaand to the composition of books. bilities of a more than tolerable auThat modesty, however, which it is thor. Now, we would really resaid is peculiar to great genius, may monstrate with him on this point, eventually gain the upper hand of a and submit, both to himself and to moderate ambition, and thus the the public, that his talents, though world may be disappointed of what good, are not by any means of an that genius promised; but middling order that entitles him to make such talents, which are generally accome literary flourishes as those displayed panied by an assortment of opposite in his last work. Though there was qualities--pertinacity, loquacity, and not much simplicity of style in his conceit, and not unfrequently, too, former works, they were comparaa degree of activity and industry tively free from two great faults most which leads them to the perpetrae conspicuous in this-affectation and tion of all manner of literary criines, bombast-the almost necessary evils are sure to prove abundantly steady of that complacency and self-approand unweariable in their operations, bation which we should suppose is when once they are fairly set upon invariably produced by the favoura literary course. But however this able judgment of a literary functionmay be, it is plain that the author ary, so high and authoritative as the before us, who unquestionably pos- one to which we have alluded. When sesses some peculiarities of the lat.

once a man conceives a very satister sort of writers, has now publish- factory notion of his own deserts, afed enough to challenge the critic; fectation, that most disgusting, by and as he has doubtless determined the way, of all our sinless, or at least to write still more, we have thought secondary failings, is sure to grow it high time seriously to admonish upon his character, as a loathsome him to abandon some of the faults bloat thrives and spreads on the with which all his writings abound. pampered body; and bombastic lan

Though there are great exceptions guage is so much akin to an affected to the general maxim, that “

prac- manner, that both may be accounted tice produces proficiency,” as in the for in the same way, and reproached instances of Home, Thomson, " The in the same terms. It is needless to Great Unknown,” Campbell, &c. remark, that both, or either of these whose Douglas, Seasons, Waverley, faults, especially when visible in com. and Pleasures of Hope, were among position, imply, at least, a defect of the first, and are decidedly the best literary skill

, if not, indeed, of judgthings they ever wrote,-yet, when we ment itself. But to call question read the first book of an author who is this high and peculiarly-honoured evidently not more than the third part intellectual power, is to an author as of a century old, and find it tolerably serious a matter as a denial of howell put together, we naturally ex- nesty is to a merchant, or an impect that as he writes lie will improve. peachment of professional skill to a This, however, does not hold good professional man, or of orthodoxy to in the case of the author of Scenes à divine, on which alone depends and Impressions ; and we can only the confidence of those whose confiaccount for the fact, by supposing dence he necessarily requires. On a very probable thing—that he has the ground, therefore, of affectation been

inuch spoiled by a critique upon and bombast merely, we shall not his Recollections of the Peninsula, farther urge the charge of a scarcity which appeared lately in the Quar- of judgment in the author before us, terly Review, and in which he was and we call upon our charity to withunluckily informed, that he is pos- hold us from seeking any other proof sessed of a brisk and lively imagina of the fact. But we do seriously

charge him with a very middling ever, a satisfaction in referring to taste. His is professcdly a work pages 103, 121, 125, and 257, for fitted more to amuse the fancy, and proofs of our author's religious and to tell upon the feelings of the heart, moral bearing. than to edify or enlighten the head, We have been somewhat particuand as such, therefore, the blandish- lar in making the foregoing critical ments and chastity of a pure taste remarks upon the literary character ought to have been regarded as of of our author's performance, because much more importance than the less, the merit of such works mainly conrefined marks of a powerful and vie sists in the mere elegance and corgorous understanding. Unfortunate- rectness of their diction; on these ly, however, he has assumed a style qualities, at least, depends much of which, for high-sounding tone and the pleasure derivable from them. blustering consequence, is not a whit M. A. B.-(we cannot be coninferior in many parts to the half- stantly reiterating “our author," polished, half-rude, though far more and we have no other mode of briefenergetic expatiations of a well- ly designating him)-M. A. B. apknown metropolitan divine. So far pears to be a sort of rambler to and from possessing any thing like har. fro on the face of the earth. On his mony, indeed, his composition is stiff way from India, where he had been to a degree that renders it frequently professionally employed, he called in unintelligible on a hasty perusal, — by Mocha, of which he gives the sudden and abrupt in turning from best and most graphic description we one subject to another,-and most have seen. From thence he sailed cramped and broken where it ought up the Red Sea to Djidda, a place to possess most freedom and contie described, as our readers will rememe nuity. But there is always meaning ber, by the master-pen of Bruce; but in what he says, and not a little of M. A. B. only sketches the character it; and there is instruction in it too, of its present Governor, Rustan Aga, though he disclaims all intention to and describes his unique and amuwrite for any other purpose than to sing interview with that important amuse his readers.

personage. From Djidda, by the There are, throughout the volume, way of Yambo, Kosseir, and the Deobvious indications of our author's sart, he ultimately arrived at Thebes, having perused, with attention and which was the first place in Egypt approbation, Volney's well-written he halted at to examine. He then Travels in Egypt, for whether studi- sailed down the Nile to Dendera, eil on the part of the former, or ac Siout, Radamont, Memphis, and from cidental merely, there are, in the thence to Ghizeh, of all which places writings of both, many strikingly si, he gives topographical and character. milar passages, and many instances, istic sketches, and, like the generality too, in which there are obvious re of Egyptian travellers, expresses his semblances in their manner. In particular astonishment at those moone very important point, however, numents of human power and folly, these authors, we rejoice to say, are the pyramids. We have then an ina perfectly contrasted. The one was a teresting enough account of Cairo, conscientious Deist; for, with all his and some very unsatisfactory partideism, Volney was yet an honest culars respecting the present Ruler man, and died at peace with all man of Egypt, Mohammed Ali Pasha, of kind: the other is apparently a whose character we had been led to Christian, of more piety than is com form a very different notion from monly found in people of his profes- that which is conveyed of it in this sion, among whom, alas! piety is a volume. He is here represented as thing more frequently scorned than a grovelling, brutal, and selfish Turk, revered ; "the sword (according to occasioning mischief, rather than a severe if not illiberal remark of doing good to Egypt. We quote the John Edwards) being a more deadly following paragraphs relative to him, weapon to the spirits of those who which may also be taken as specie do wcar it, than it is to their bodies mens of M. A. B.'s mode of exprese on the battle-day.” We feel, how- sing himself:

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