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Charlemaine, at St. Jean piè de Port, heard it, and said to his barons,—
“ • What means that sound of my bold nephew's horn?
Marsilio has deceiv'd me much, I dread,
Smiling, 'Oh sacred Emperor Charles, (he said)
Thy thoughts I ween befit a younker's head.'
The traitor next tells Charles that Orlando is only hunting on the plain; and, in the mean time, Orlando orders Terigi to speed to Charlemaine with the news of the disastrous fight of Roncesvalles. It does not seem that the bursting of his heart occasioned instant death, since he blows a third time with all his remaining strength ;-.
" then beside his page
And praising God, his lordly soul departed.”
At the third blast, all is confusion at St. Jean. Gan is accused of treachery, is struck by Ogier, Gerard, Namus, and others, and cast into a dungeon; while the emperor makes instant preparations to cross the Pyrennees, and, by a miracle, the mountains are removed and the rough places made plain that he may arrive with greater speed. On the road, Charles meets Terigi; and, to shew how well little circumstances are introduced to add to the general effect, we may mention that the squire, in the stupefaction of his suffering, and in the anxiety to make its cause known, forgot to kneel to the emperor. We can only give one stanza of his affecting relation of the disaster.
“ Dead is Orlando, flower of chivalry ;
Dead is Astolfo, his brave cousin dear;
Turpin is dead, who never yet knew fear;
And Angiolino, strong of arm whilere :
Charlemaine thus imprecates the most dreadful curses upon Ganelon.
“ Curst be the father in his lonely, tomb
That thee begot in matrimonial rite;
That brought thee, worst of devils, forth to light.
Thy league detested with the Pagan might,
Terigi leads him to the body of Orlando, over which the emperor weeps bitterly; and, striking his breast and face, exclaims, addressing the corse;
“ Is this the promise that you made to me.
When in the land of Aspramont we fought:
You promis'd, with a look that spoke your thought,
Here a new wonder is shewn; for the dead body of Orlando, being filled by the Santo Spirito, rises from the earth.
" To Charles, Orlando with his sword in hand
Turn'd, while a smile his deathly visage wore,
The noble sword you gave me I restore !
The life-deserted body fell once more:
This part of the story, we apprehend, differs from most of the other romances, some stating that Orlando failing to break his sword flung it into a river, while others relate that he succeeded in destroying it, not by striking it upon the rock, but by inserting it in a crevice and then dragging it transversely.We like the invention of Zinabi much better, nor was it inconsistent with the superstition of his time. Charles takes ample vengeance on the Moors, compelling Marsilio to throw himself from a lofty tower, and returns to Paris with the dead bodies of the Paladins, which are laid in the church of Nostra Donna di Parigi. We need not dwell upon the exemplary punishment of Ganelon, who is torn to pieces by four wild horses, after his
wife has in vain interceded, and his nephew fought for him. Alda not being in Paris the emperor sends for her, and, when informed of the fate of her husband and her brother, she hastens in an agony of grief to Notre Dame, where, as we have said, their corses are deposited.
“She groan'd, and tears ran down her pallid cheek
While she besought th' eternal Majesty,
Her lord without a peer in chivalry:
This miracle God wrought most wond'rously,
Amid the glory of our Saviour dear.'
He sank again upon his mournful bier.
She felt her own glad end approaching near,
After thanks to his auditors, the poem concludes with the following stanza :
“ Lordings, for you this rhiming tale is told :
Sostegno di Zinabi, Florentine,
And aye preserve him from his wrath divine ;
Whatever may from virtue's path incline,
If we had space, we should, probably, think it needless to add any thing to the running criticism with which we have accompanied our quotations.
ART. VII.-Hudibras. The Second Part. London, Printed in the
year 1663. Butler's Ghost; or Hudibras, the Fourth Part, with Reflections
upon these Times. London, 1682.
Hogan-Moganides : or the Dutch Hudibras. London, 1674. The Irish Hudibras, or Fingallian Prince, taken from the Sixth
Book of Virgil's Æneids, and adapted to the present times.
London, 1689. The Whigg's Supplication. A mock Poem, in two parts. By
Sam. Colvil. Edinburgh, 1695. Pendragon; or the Carpet Knight, his Kalendar. London, 1698. In Imitation of Hudibras. The Dissenting Hypocrite, or Occa· sional_Conformist; with Reflections on Pwo of the Ringleaders,
8c. London, 1704. Vulgus Britannicus : or the British Hudibras. In fifteen Cantos.
Containing the Secret History of the late London Mob, their rise, progress, and suppression by the Guards. Intermixed with the Civil Wars betwixt High-Church and Low-Church, down to this time: being a Continuation of the late ingenious Mr. Butler's Hudibras. Written by the Author of the London Spy. Second Edition. London, 1710.
Hudibras Redivivus: or a Burlesque Poem on the Times. In
twenty-four Purts. With an Apology and some other Improvements throughout the whole. The fourth Edition. By E. Ward,
Gent. London. N. D. The Republican Procession; or the Tumultuous Cavalcade. A
Merry Poem. The Second Impression, with additional Charac
ters. 1714. The Hudibrastic Brewer : or, a preposterous Union between Malt and Meter. A Satyr upon the supposed Author of the Repub
lican Procession. London, 1714. Four Hudibrastic Cantos, being—Poems on Four the greatest
Heroes—That liv'd in any age since Nero's-Don Juan How
let, Hudibras—Dickoba-nes and Bonniface. London, 1715. Posthumous Works in Prose and Verse of Mr. Samuel Butler, in
three Volumes. The sixth Edition. London, 1720. England's Reformation, (from the T'ime of K. Henry VIII. to the
end of Oates's Plot.) A Poem in four Cantos. By Thomas Ward. London, 1747.
The Irish Hudibras, Hesperi-neso-graphia: or, a description of the
Western Isle. In eight Cantos, with Annotations. By William Moffett, School-Master. London, 1755.
The Poetical Works of the ingenious and learned William Meston, . A. M. Edinburgh, 1767.
It is the curse of original and successful writers to be dogged at the heels by a crowd of servile imitators, who copy and exaggerate their defects, caricature their peculiarities of thought and style, and force their own base metal into circulation by stamping it with the counterfeit impress of genius.* A work at once so novel and so powerful as Hudibras; so calculated to attract the admiration of the multitude by its oddity, of the courtier by its wit, and of the scholar by its sense and learning ; falling in with the politics of the prevailing party, and extolled and quoted by the reigning sovereign; could hardly escape the martyrdom of imitation. It has naturally given rise to a number of plagiarisms and mimickries of its style, plan, and title, of various but all of infinitely inferior merit. These publications, though individually of little worth and interest, acquire some importance from their number and diversity, and a brief review of them, with some specimens of their styles, may not be altogether unprofitable and uninteresting. It required, however, no ordinary exertion of patience and perseverance to toil through the dreary pages of dull scurrility and studied obscenity, which have assumed and degraded the title of Hudibrastic Poems, and we have often paused in dismay and weariness, doubting whether the scanty gleanings of these barren flats would repay us for the labour of our cheerless researches. It is not our intention to advert to such works as the Scarronides, the Marunides, the Homer-à-la-Mode, &c. which have little in common with the poem of Butler, but the coarseness and the doggrel metre; but to confine ourselves to the more direct and avowed imitations of the style and plan of Hudibras.
**" An imitator (says Butler, in his admirable Characters,) is a counterfeit stone, and the larger and fairer he appears the more apt he is to be discovered, whilst small ones, that pretend to no great value, pass unsuspected. He has a kind of monkey and baboon wit, that takes after some man's way, whom he endeavours to imitate, but does it worse than those things that are naturally his own; for he does not learn, but takes his pattern out, as a girl does her sampler. He is but a retainer to wit, and a follower of his master, whose badge he wears every where, and therefore his way is called servile imitation. His muse is not inspired, but infected with another man's fancy; and he catches his wit, like the itch, of somebody else that had it before, and when he writes he does but scratch himself. He binds himself prentice to a trade which he has no stock to set up with, if he should serve out his time, and live to be made free.” Remains, vol. 2.