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LONDON CHIT-CHAT-MRS. RADCLIFFE-CASTLE OF UDOLPNO, &-c.
(Blackwood's Mag.) London, March 11, 1822. Italian skies, and love-lorn girls, and NOTHING could have been more dim forests, and dusky chambers in old
ill-advised, and unhappy in its ef- forsaken castles,) will be uneasy at fects, than the re-appearance of old hearing she is about again to essay these Madame Mara a short time since in a things, and to vex the charm which has public orchestra. She had, many years wrapped itself, I hope for ever, round ago, retired from the musical profession, her name. surrounded by such admiration and Lord Byron, it is said, is shortly comfame as per haps never fell to the lot of ing home to make some family arrangeany other singer-Mrs. Billington not ments, in consequence of the death of a excepted. The most classical judges near relation. This will be awkward for of the art in Europe scarcely knew the beginning of the Pisan Journal, how to clothe their praises in compe- which, by the bye, is to be edited in tent terms ; her skill, voice, and ex- London by Mr. John Hunt of the Er. quisite feeling and expression, were aminer. The author of “ Amarynthus, chronicled in treatises and cyclopædias, the Nympholept,” it is suspected, will and the qualities of succeeding singers be one of the contributors. were estimated according to the degree Haydon is getting on famously with in which they approached her. The his large picture of Christ raising Lazlovers of music who had grown up arus. The composition of it is very since her retirement were full of envy simple and grand; and the fearfulness of those older persons who had heard of the subject is rendered overpowerthis miracle of art, when on a sudden, ing by its being treated in a pathetic, to the astonishment of every body, out rather than in a violent or horrible comes an announcement that Madame way. Lazarus has already arisen upMara bad arrived here, and intend- right from the earth, and is seen staged to sing again in public. A crowd- gering with a bewildered and reluctant ed audience waited on her bidding ; air under the shadow of the mouth of but alas, poor aged soul ! the meanest the cavern which contains his grave.chorister in the ranks of the orchestra Christ is standing in the middle of the could have done better. It is invid- picture, beckoning the fearful object to ious and painful to dwell on the ex- come forth ; and the people about him posure.
have their terror in some degree calmI have been led into a recollection of ed by the sight of his calmness, and this circumstance by having heard a their consciousness of his divinity. The report, not in general circulation, that figures placed between the Saviour and another old lady of equal fame in lite- the cavern have not the benefit of see rature to that of Madame Mara in mu- ing his godlike tranquillity, and they sic, is about to resume her exertions, are therefore agitated with the spasm after a long interval, and to strive again of mortal dread. This is in my opinion, at a species of composition which re- very subtilely and delicately felt, and quires, above every thing, a fervid im- will have its due effect with the public. agination, and a fresh and elastic fancy. The Literary Gazette, in one of its I allude to Mrs. Radcliff, the author of late numbers, gave a review of a poem Mysteries of Udolpho, who, it seems, published anonymously, and called is preparing a new romance. Whoev: “ Italy," which they confidently ater has tasted the melancholy sweetness tribute to Mr. Southey. This seemed and mystery of her writings, (for her at the time to argue great thoughtlesshelpless common-place and prosing sink ness on their part, because the very in the memory of the reader, leaving same number contained Southey's annothing behind but mingled impressions swer to Lord Byron's attack, in which of moonlight festivals, and convent- he takes occasion to aver solemnly chaunts heard oyer still waters, and that he never published a book writ
ten by himself without affixing his el Barlow, which was pretty bad. dame to it. (This, by the way, is Should the book contain any thing in very unfashionable.) The poem is as verse as interesting by virtue of its nasuredly very much in Southey's man- tionality, (for, perhaps, after all, this is ner ; but it was difficult to conceive the chief source of whatever is valuathat he would lay himself so open to ble and lasting in literature), as the his enemy as to perpetrate an anony- novels of Charles Brockden Brown, mous publication in the very teeth of it will be a capital introduction to our a gratuitous avowal of his disdain of knowledge of the genius of the Unisuch concealment. It has since been ted States. Washington Irving has reported that the poem was written grafted himself (style, feelings, alluby Mr. Rogers, who is said to have sions, every thing) on our literature, acknowledged it. The story of the properly so called, and has become two Foscari, which forms one of its merely one of a crowd of good English episodes, is much more affecting than writers. Brown, it must be admitted, Lord Byron's tragedy on the same followed the manner of Godwin a subject.
little too slavishly, but in all else he is T'he specimens of the American po- purely American; and this it is which ets, which have been announced, will makes him stand out with so bold and be selected by Mr. Roscoe, son of the single a prominence. It is to be hopBiographer of the Medici family. Ited that Mr. Roscoe will give us, awill be a curious thing to receive sam- mong the rest, a specimen or two of ples of foreign poetry, in the language the more recent poetry of Mr. Alston, in which they were originally written, the painter, for surely his muse cannot and that language our
own mother have been idle since his return to Amertongue. Little is known here of Amer ica. His sonnet on Rembrandt was ican poetry, except the epic of Mr. Jo- first-rate.
ON THE DETERIORATION OF MAN AND BEAST.
(From the same.)
THERE is in fact nothing very phi- or parent stock all, or any of these ani
losophical in the supposed notions mals, human or brute, may have oirgiof animals in a state of nature being inally sprung, each has long since been ever deteriorated by that same climate enabled, by a wise provision of nature, in which, and for which they were pro- to assimilate its attributes to the qualiduced. The various climates of the ties of the climate, in which it was desearth, and the various tribes of animals tined to live, move, and have its being. which live under their influence, are Had it been incompetent to effect or reciprocally fitted for each other; and undergo such'assimilation, it would then it is only by confusedly combining the indeed have deteriorated; that is to qualities of an animal formed for one say, it would have died. But creatures country, with those of another formed of all kinds, whether irrational or intelfor a totally different one, that the lectual, prefer the other alternative, notidea of deterioration can arise in the withstanding its being attended with mind. The same observation may be some occasional inconveniences. equally applied to the numerous varie- we admire the stim smooth elegance of ties or races of each kind.
the Italian greyhound, and regard the The Laplander is not a deteriorated rough shaggy coat of the dog of Nova Asiatic of the Mongolian or Caucasian Zembla, as a deterioration, let iis reline, any more than the Georgian or member that that which is the delight Circassian is a highly refined Laplan- of the one, would be the death of the der; neither is the Shetland pony a other; and what would then become of deteriorated Arabian courser, any more that forlorn agriculturist, whose business than the steed of Araby is a thorough- it is to drill the ice, and to forrow the bred Sbelty. From whatever country sņow? The small stature and peculiar
habits of the northern Nomadian, with in matters gastronomical, as your more the curry-comb-despising hide and short taper-limbed Frenchman or Italian limbs of the afore-mentioned Shelty, when he titivates a stewed ortolan, rewould have been as little fitted to sus- posing in the purer juice of the olive. tain the fiery breath or shifting sands Nor is it a whit more rational for the of an eastern desert, as an inhabitant of one to abhor what he regards as the Arabia, with his more stately steed, the foul feeding of the other, than it would cold and cloudy clime, and the rugged be for that other to despise the overand precipitous mountains of Lapland refinement of his more luxurious fellow. and Thule. Therefore, each exists in creature. The olive and the ortolan the best and most improved state, ac- neither flourish nor flit among the snows cording to the nature of its particular of Greenland, nor does the polar bear calling, and is not deteriorated. ramble among the cypress groves, or
A similar observation is also appli- the northern whale flounder along the cable to many of the tastes and propen- balmy shores of the “ Saturnia Tellus.” sities of the human mind and body, But where to find that happiest spot below, which are too often regarded by us as
Who can direct, when all pretend to know the results of grossness or refinement, The shuddering tenant of the frigid zone in proportion as they remove from or Boldly proclaims that happiest spot his own; approach towards that ideal standard Extols the treasures of his stormy seas, of perfection, which sometimes natural, The naked negro, panting at the line,
And his long night of revelry and ease. but more frequently artificial circum- Boasts of his golden sands, and palmy wine, have erected as our criterion of judg- Basks in the glare, or stems the tepid wave, ment. Your Esquimaux, when he And thanks his gods for all the good thes swallows a bit of polar bear’s fat dipt in whale oil, is as much a man of taste
BEAUTIES OF THE OLD BALLAD.
(Monthly Magazine, Mar.) IT is a remarkable fact, that the two pears, at first view, inexplicable. "I
most important changes in the his- never heard," says Sir Philip Sydney, tory of the country have been partly “the old song of Percie and Douglas, accomplished by Old Ballads. At that I found not my heart moved more the battle of Hastings, the Normans than with a trumpet ;” and Ben Joncommenced the onset, singing the song son used to say he had rather have been of Roland, a famous peer of Charle- the author of that fine old ballad than magne ; and the great revolution of all his works. Addison, who had seen 1688 was partly effected by the well- only a later version of Chevy Chase of known song of Lillibulero, made on the time of Elizabeth, has compared the the appointment of Talbot to the lieu- fine passages with the best parts of tenancy of Ireland. The song of Ro- Virgil; and it must be allowed, if poland is lost,but we still haveLillibulero. etical excellence consists in the power
- This miserable doggrel, we are told, to yield pleasure to the greatest number
poetry. There is in them all that can
move the heart, delight the imagination, is proverbial, but the power and fasci- or chain the attention. Scenes of love nation of the old metrical romance, ap- and tenderness--the adventures of chi
valry—the frolics of kings and tinkers chant of Venice” is evidently taken -of robbers, gypsies, and friars, form from the ancient ballad, entitled “A their subjects; and these narrated in a new Song, shewing the crueltie of Gerstyle of unaffected simplicity, and with nutus, a Jewe, who lending to a mera vigour and sincerity of feeling, that chant one hundred crownes, would have give the impress of reality to the crea a pound of his fleshe, because he could tures of the imagination. That such not pay him at the time appointed. themes, so treated, should interest, is To the tune of • Black and Yellow.?” far from wonderful. The sources on The sequel of Gernutus's story corwhich they draw for admiration are uni- responds exactly with the remorseless versal, and will find a mirror in every Shylock. bosom : they appeal to nature—to our The bloudie Jew now ready is passions—our love-hatred and curios With whetted blade in hand, ity—and that any numerous class should To spoyle the bloud of innocent, be insensible to such appeals, would be
By forfeit of his bond. more surprising than that their domin And as he was about to strike ion is universal. Add to this, the old
In him the deadly blow :
Stay, quoth the judge, thy crueltie ; ballad derives some advantage even from
I charge thee so to do ; rudeness and antiquity ; the novelty of
Sith needs thou wilt thy forfeit have, an obsolete language, and the glimpse of Which is of Aesh a pound : ancient manners, conducing in part to See that thou shed no drop of bloud, their general attractions. Besides, they Nor yet the man confound. rarely contain any wire-drawn poem, For if thou doe like murderer, or complicated plot : the old songs, it Thou here shalt hanged be : is true, are of the nature of epics, with
Likewise of flesh see that thou cut a beginning, a middle, and an end ; but No more than longes to thee. the plot generally turns on a simple in
For if thou take either more or lesse, cident, comprised in a few stanzas, ap.
To the value of a mite,
Thou shalt be hanged presently, parently struck out at a heat, and start As is both law and right. ing with a vigour and impetuosity that inclines the reader to sing them after The rest is well known. the minstrel fashion, rather than recite
“ The Passionate Shepherd to his them like ordinary verse. Their
Love” is a beautiful old sonnet quoted
grossieretés are the fault of all early writing, in the Merry Wives of Windsor, and and as long as the staple commodity is erroneously ascribed to Shakspeare. good to demur on account of indelica. The real author was Christopher Marcies of language, would be like shun- low, a dramatic writer of some repute, ning a person, otherwise unexceptiona
who lost his life by a stab received in a
Sir ble, on account of his clothes. No brothel, before the year 1593. doubt, any modern imitation of these Walter Raleigh wrote the Nymph's Rcdefects would be disgusting enough, in- ply to the Passionate Shepherd,” but asmuch as we should not expect from
we can only insert a part of the latter, an educated person the behaviour of a
which has been frequently imitated : clown; but in the old bards, their free Live with me, and be my love, dom and simplicity augment their value,
And we wil all the pleasures prove
That hils and valies, dale and field. by cloathing them with the venerable
And all the craggy mountains yield. hoar of antiquity, which, like the crust
There will we sit upon the rocks, on good old port, attests their age and
And see the shepherds feed their flocks, genuineness.
By shallow rivers, to whose falls We will now give a few specimens
Melodious birds sing madrigals. of the Old English Ballads ; they are a Then will I make thee beds of roses fruitful mine, from which later poets With a thousand fragrant posies, have drawn the rude materials of their
A cap of flowers, and a kirile,
Imbrodered all with leaves of mirtle. finest poetry, and polished it into gems of the purest ray. Even the Great A belt of straw, and ivie buds,
With coral clasps and amber studs ; Dramatist has been largely indebted to
And if these pleasures may thee move, the old bards ;-the plot of the “ Mer Then live with me, and be my love.
The sweet little sonnet which follows The Baron he stroakt his dark-brown cheek, has also been ascribed to Shakspeare To whipe away the starting teare
And turnde his head asyde with as little authority; the first stanza
He proudly strove to hide. is found in “ Measure for Measure,” and both are preserved in Beaumont In deepe revolving thought he stood
And musde a little spacc ; and Fletcher's “ Bloody Brother.”
Then raisde faire Emmeline from the Take, oh take those lips away,
With many fond embrace.
Lightes that do misleade the morn :
the ground-work of Prior's “ Henry Seales of love, but seal'd in vaine. and Emma," and though thickly cover
ed with the rust of antiquity--being at Hide, oh hide those hils of snowe, least three hundred years old—is justly
Which thy frozen bosom beares,
admired for sentimental beauties. We
give the introductory stanza : But first set my poor heart free, Bound in these icy chaines by thee.
Be it ryght, or wrong, these men among,
On women do complaype, What follows is of a different charac- A Hyrmyge this, how that it is
A labour spent io vayne, ter, and was intended by the poet lau- To love them well; for never a dele reate of the day to celebrate the glories They love a mon agayne : of Agincourt. The homeliness of this For late a man do what he can, laureate effusion would incline one to
Theyr favour to attayne,
Yet yf a newe do them pursue, think that something has appended to Theyr fyrst true lover then this office at all times, to depress the Laboureth for nought; for from her thought holders below their cotemporaries in
He is a banyshed man. every thing except maudlin piety and The elegant little sonnet of “Cupid courtly adulation. We give the first and Campaspe,” though not so old as stanza of this carmen triumphale as a the last is a real bijou. It is found in curiosity :
the third act of an old play, entitled Our kynge went forth to Normandy,
6 Alexander and Campaspe," written With grace and myzt of chivalry ;
by John Lilye, a celebrated writer of The God for him wrouzt marvelously, that prolific age of true poetry, the ElizWherefore Englande may calle and cry, abethan :
Deo gratias, &c.
Cupid and my Campaspe playd The humorous and lively description At cards for kisses ; Cupid payd : of the 6 Dragon of Wantley,” a rapa- He stakes his quiver, bow and arrows, cious overgrown attorney, shows the Hlis mother's doves, and teame of sparrows, vigorous strokes with which the ballad- Loses them too ; then down he throws
The coral of his lippe, the rose, makers struck out their characters :
Growing on's cheek (but none knows how) This Dragon had two furious wings,
With these the crystal of his browe, Each one upon each shoulder ;
And then the dimple of his chinne ; With a sting in his tayl as long as a flayl,
All these did my Campaspe winne. Which made him bolder and bolder.
At last he set her both his eyes,
She won, and Cupid blind did rise. He had long claws, and in his jaws
O Love ! has she done this to thee?
What shall, alas ! become of me !
The next, with which we shall con
clude our selections, though too deeply But it is in scenes of tenderness the beau- tinged with affectation and refinement ties of the Ballad shine most bewitch- to be ranked among bardic beauties ingly. The Childe (a name former- has too much merit to be omitted : ly given to knights) of Elle,” is particularly admired for its affecting simplic
TO LUCASTA ON GOING TO THE WAR. ity. We can conceive nothing more
Tell me not, sweet, I am uokinde,
That from the nudnerie touching and dignified than the follow
or thy chast:: breast, and quiet minde ing:
To warre and armes I die.