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part, seems to be content to take Montesquieu's The tone of criticism in these volumes is temwitticism for truth—that “the Spaniards have pro- perate and candid. We cannot but think Mr. duced one good book, and the object of that was to Ticknor has profited largely by the former discuslaugh at all the rest." All, however, have not sion of this subject in his academic lectures. Not been so ignorant; and more than one cunning that the present book bears much resemblance to adventurer has found his way into the pleasant those lectures—certainly not more than must field of Castilian letters, and carried off materials necessarily occur in the discussion of the same of no little value for the composition of his own subject by the same mind, after a long interval of works. Such was Le Sage, as shown in more time. But this interval has enabled him to review, than one of his productions ; such, too, were vari- and no doubt in some cases to reverse, his earlier ous of the dramatic writers of France and other judgments, and his present decisions come before countries, where the extent of the plunder can us as the ripe results of a long and patient medionly be estimated by those who have themselves tation. This gives them still higher authordelved in the rich mines of Spanish lore. ity.
Mr. Ticknor has now, for the first time, fully We cannot conclude without some notice of the surveyed the ground, systematically arranged its style, so essential an element in a work of elegant various productions, and explored their character literature. It is clear, classical, and correct, with and properties. In the disposition of his immense a sustained moral dignity that not unfrequently mass of materials he has maintained the most per- rises to eloquence. But it is usually distinfect order, so distributing them as to afford every guished by a calm, philosophical tenor, that is facility for the comprehension of the student. well suited to the character of the subject. It is
We are everywhere made conscious of the especially free from any tendency to mysticism, abundance, not merely of these materials—though from vagueness of expression, a pretty sure indione third of the subjects brought under review, at cation of vague conceptions in the mind of the least, are new to the public—but of the writer's author, which he is apt to dignify with the name intellectual resources. We feel that we are sup- of philosophy. plied from a reservoir that has been filled to over- In our criticism on Mr. Ticknor's labors, we flowing from the very fountains of the Muses ; may be thought to have dwelt too exclusively on which is, moreover,
fed from other sources than his merits. It may be that we owe something to those of the Castilian literature. By his critical the contagion of his own generous and genial tone acquaintance with the literatures of other nations, of criticism on others. Or it may be that we feel Mr. Ticknor has all the means at command for more than common interest in a subject which is illustration and comparison. The extent of this not altogether new to us; and it is only an various knowledge may be gathered from his notes, acquaintance with the subject that can enable one even more than from the text. A single glance to estimate the difficulties of its execution. Where at these will show on how broad a foundation the we have had occasion to differ from our author, narrative rests. They contain stores of personal we have freely stated it. But such instances are anecdote, criticism, and literary speculation, that few, and of no great moment. We consider the might almost furnish materials for another work work as one that does honor to English literature. like the present.
It cannot fail to attract much attention from EuroMr. Ticknor's History is conducted in a truly pean critics, who are at all instructed in the topics philosophical spirit. Instead of presenting a bar- which it discusses. We predict with confidence ren record of books—which, like the catalogue that it will be speedily translated into Castilian, of a gallery of paintings, is of coinparatively little and into German ; and that it must become the use to those who have not previously studied standard work on Spanish literature, not only for them—he illustrates the works by the personal those who speak our own tongue, but for the history of their authors, and this, again, by the Spaniards themselves. history of the times in which they lived ; afford- We have still a word to add on the typograpliiing, by the reciprocal action of one on the other, cal execution of the book, not in reference to its a complete record of Spanish civilization, both mechanical beauty, which is equal to that of any social and intellectual. It would be difficult to other that has come from the Cambridge press, find a work more thoroughly penetrated with the but in regard to its verbal accuracy. This is not true Castilian spirit, or to which the general an easy matter in a work like the present, instudent, or the student of civil history, may refer volving such an amount of references in foreign with no less advantage than one who is simply languages, as well as the publication of poems of interested in the progress of letters. A pertinent considerable length from manuscript, and that, too, example of this is in the account of Columbus, in the Castilian. We doubt if any similar work which contains passages from the correspondence of erudition has been executed by a foreign press of that remarkable man, which, even after all that with greater accuracy.
We do not doubt that it has been written on the subject—and so well would not have been so well executed, in this written—throw important light on his character. respect, by any other press in this country.
From Burritt's Christian Citizen. Slowly, evangelical ideas and benevolent thoughts EIGHTEEN HUNDRED AND FIFTY!
took hold of the mind of the age and germinated
into enterprises of philanthropy. Slowly, the Then it is noon on the dial-plate of the nineteenth humanizing arts and sciences worked out their feats century! And have we reached such a high semi- on time and space, and all the other partition walls centenary stand-point of time? SEVENTEEN Hundred | which divided different countries and communities. and Fifty! Eighteen Hundred! Eighteen Hun- The Iron Horse began to thunder across the islands dred and Fifty! What eventful periods have been and continents. The steamship trod the waves told off to humanity by these bells of time! What and the stout head-winds of the ocean beneath its epochs in the life of nations, what spaces of human feet, and walked the seas, a thing of giant life. progress, what vicissitudes of experience, what The wires of the electric telegraph thrilled with revolutions and renovations of human society, have messages sent by bitted lightning from metropolis been included in these three periods ! Turn to to metropolis. Nations approached each other. any middle-aged man around you, and he will tell Old animosities vanished before the genius of you that his grandfather heard the clock strike another age. Commerce plied its ceaseless shuttles Seventeen Hundred and Fifty. And that grand- across the ocean and the sea, and in the silken father could read and write, and was a sensible warp and woof of mutual interests inwove peoples man, and owned and tilled, it may be, the farm once alienated by hereditary jealousies. And over, which that grandson owns and tills ; and there and above, and through all these agencies, perwas, perhaps, as close resemblance, in form and meated the ideas of Christian faith, and the light feature, between him and his own son, as between of the new revealed revelation, that “God hath the latter and his son. In fact, no essential or made of one blood all nations of men.” Swifter striking difference may have existed in these three flew the Iron Horse, and with longer reach the links of individual life. If that grandson lives, steam-ship paced the ocean, and the lightning flew and moves, and thinks, in this age of railways and on smaller errands, and great nations fraternized, electric telegraphs, and has mastered ideas un-j and peoples of different tongue met in congress to known to his predecessors, his experience is rather organize perpetual peace and brotherhood within a quiet inheritance than an acquisition which has their family circle. cost him effort. No great vicissitudes, revelations, And now the great clock of time has struck struggles, or transformations may have changed the Eightecn Hundred and Fifty. The men who recourse or condition of these three individuals. member the century's birth and the early and latter Their family line holds the even tenor of its way years of its history, may command such a retrospect on the tide of time. But turn to the life of nations, as never came within the reach of one human vision and what vast changes have marked their experience or memory since the Christian era. No men who during these three periods of time which can be have lived upon the earth were ever permitted to spanned by the united memories of three indi- contemplate the past and future from such a Pisgah viduals! When the clock struck Seventeen of observation as they have now reached. What a Hundred and Fifty, there were about 3,000,000 vista of momentous events to humanity must fill of the Anglo-Saxon race in America, scattered that retrospect! What changes, what progress, sparsely in little settlements from the mouth of the what new conditions in the being of nations and Mississippi to the mouth of the St. Lawrence. individuals, have they not witnessed! They saw, What an epoch in the history of Christendom was and remember vividly, the slaughter-day of Waterincluded in the succeeding fifty years! What long | loo, and all the bloody days in which the young and sanguinary struggles convulsed Europe during century was cradled in its infancy. They rememthis period! And all perhaps taking their rise in ber the awful mêlée, in which all the nations of circumstances connected with the settlement and Christendom took a sanguinary and ruinous part, development of the New World.
and acted out such an enormous drama of fruitless It was virtually an unbroken age of war and violence as the world had never witnessed. How rumors of war, and revolutions that shook down natural to contrast that period with the last fifteen thrones and dynasties. From the Cossack on the years ! to contrast the conquests of brute force of Don to the painted Indian on the Ohio, all peoples, the one with the moral force conquests of the tribes, and tongues, would seem to have taken part other; the garments rolled in blood, and the shout in these bloody conflicts. There were no railways, of victory on the field of Waterloo, with the garnor electric telegraphs, nor any quick facilities of ments of praise and freedom-shouts of 800,000 communication between the world's populations in slaves in the British islands on the morning of their those dark years of mutual jealousy and alienation. emancipation ; the Bridge of Lodi with the Bridge Christian philanthropy confined its pale and stinted with which steam has spanned the ocean, and concharities at home; or, if it ventured abroad, it found nected two worlds ; England and France, with all no rest for the sole of its foot on the wild deluge their Titan-handed energies, grappling in deadly of violence which covered the earth.
struggle on the field of battle, with England and Then the clock struck Eighteen Hundred; and, France walking arm in arm, as mediators and heedless of the great lessons of the past, the nations peace-makers among the nations, whom they taught of Christendom lighted the new century into the the art of war; the Peace Congress at Paris, with world with the torch of war, and baptized its first the Congress of Vienna; the principles enunciated years in the blood of five millions of human beings at the one with those which monarchs decreed slain in battle, and that too_awful fact !-in the divine at the other; the spirit of fellowship and name of the Christian Religion! It was not until brotherhood between the peoples now, with their the nations had given all their power to the Beast mutual jealousies and alienation in 1815 ! of Brute Force, and lay exhausted from loss of Eighteen Hundred and Fifty! Blessed be the blood and treasure, that a still, small voice arose, young eyes that shall see its future through of fifty uttering the reb'ıke of the Gospel against all war; years! Blessed be the ears that shall hear the and men began to associate their convictions, sym- clock strike the century-hour of Nineteen Hundred! pathies, and efforts, to banish it from the earth. Blessed be those who shall ascend that Pisgah's
I did not,
top of time and look back over the pathway of but the suggestion was ridiculous. Risum teneatis, humanity to this hour, and contemplate its great amici, was all that he, the Onion, had to say to progress-points, and the events of happy augury that.' (Loud laughter, in which all but the Melon and impetus which shall divide the distance like illuminated mile-stones along the road! And joined.) He, the Onion, would " not detain them blessed be the eyes, thrice blessed, that shall look longer, but would conclude by proposing health, futureward from that sublime stand-point, and see long life, and prosperity to the Potato.” what God has prepared for the vision of human The toast was received with enthusiasm by all eyes within the horizon of that distant day! And but the Cucumber, whose coolness seemed to excite many eyes now fixed upon these lines will see that much disgust among his brother vegetables. The day, and contemplate its past and future of fifty Onion had, in fact, affected many of those present years; and some of the gray-headed men and women of that epoch may remember these words to tears, and the Celery, who sat next to the in connection with this anniversary. For there Horseradish, hung down his head in an agony of are thousands of young minds, on both sides of the sensibility. When the cheering had partially subAtlantic, who have learned to sympathize with the sided, the Potato rose, but that was only a signal spirit of the philanthropic movements of the present for renewed enthusiasm ; and it was some minutes day. The men who have borne the brunt and before silence was restored. At length the Potato burden of these movements may be permitted to
proceeded nearly as follows :pass over a little way into the Canaan of the next half century; but one by one they will disappear,
“ Friends and fellow-vegetables : It is with and the ark of the cause be transferred to the difficulty I express the feeling with which I have shoulders of those now in the morning of youth. come here to-day. Having suffered for the last Children of to-day, and fathers of the first men of three or four years from a grievous disease, which Nineteen Hundred, God and humanity expect that seemed to threaten me with total dissolution, it is you will do your duty, and be true to your high with intense satisfaction I find myself once more charge and vocation.
among you in the vigor of health. (Cheers.) I should be indeed insensible to kindness were I to
forget the anxious inquiries that have been made GRAND BANQUET TO THE POTATO.
as to the state of my health by those who have
held me in esteem, and sometimes in a steam. That highly respected vegetable, the Potato, (A laugh, in which all but the Melon joined.) I canbeing now, it is hoped, thoroughly reëstablished in not boast of a long line of ancestors. health, it was determined by a few leading mem-like some of you, come in with the Conqueror ; bers of the Vegetable Kingdom to offer a banquet but I came in the train of civilization, amidst the to the worthy and convalescent root on his happy memorable luggage of Sir Walter Raleigh, in recovery. The arrangements for the dinner were company with my right honorable friend, the Toon a scale of great liberality, and the guests in- bacco, who is not now present, but who often helps cluded all the principal vegetables. The invita- the philosopher to take a bird's-eye view of some tions had been carried out by an efficient corps of of the finest subjects for reflection. (Immense Scarlet runners, and the Onion occupied the chair. checring, and a nod of assent from the Turnip Top.) He was supported on his right by the head of the Though I may be an American, I may justly Asparagus family, while Salad occupied a bowl say that I have taken root in the soil, and though I at the other end of the table, and was dressed in may not have the grace of the Cucumber, who his usual manner. The Potato, though just out seems to have come here in no enviable frame, of his bed, was looking remarkably well, and wore (Loud cheering,) I believe I have done as much his jacket, there being nothing to mark his recent good as any living vegetable ; for, though almost illness except perhaps a little apparent blackness always at the rich man's table, I am seldom round one of his eyes. After the cloth had been absent from the poor man's humble board. removed,
(Tremendous applause.) But,"' continued the Po The Onion got up to propose as a toast, “ The tato, “ let me not get flowery, or mealy-mouthed, Potato, their much-respected guest.” (Immense for there is something objectionable in each ex cheering.) He, the Onion, had known the Potato treme. I have undergone many vicissitudes in the from infancy; and though they had not always course of my existence. I have been served up been associated in life, they had frequently met at ay, and served out, (A smile,) in all sorts of ways. the same table. They had sometimes braved I have been roasted by some; I have been basted together the same broils, and had found themselves by others; and I have had my jacket rudely torn often together in such a stew (He alluded to the Irish off my back by many who knew not the treatment stew) as had brought them, for the time being, I deserved. But this meeting, my friends, repays into an alliance of the very closest kind. He, the me for all. Excuse me if my eyes are watery. Onion, was delighted to see the Potato once more (Sensation.) I am not very thin-skinned; but I restored to his place in society, for he, the Onion, feel deeply penetrated by your kindness this could say, without flattery, that society had en- day.” deavored to supply the place of the Potalo in vain. The Potato resumed his seat amid the most tu(Hear, hear.) They had heard of Rice having been multuous cheering, which lasted for a considerable suggested to take the place of his honorable friend, time. — Punch.
VOL. XXIV. 15
From the Examiner. Wind and rain, and cold and darkness,
Swept through every desert street. We have had to notice, for many successive Muffled to the teeth, that evening seasons, the deterioration and decline of the annu
I was struggling in the storm, als. Other gift-books have usurped their place ; Through pestilent lanes and hungry alleys; and they must have perished altogether, several Suddenly,-an Ancient Form
Peered from out a gloomy doorway, years back, but for the accident of having in their service the talents and tact of Lady Bless
And with trembling croak, it said
" In the left-hand empty garret ington. She had a circle of wits of her own,
You will find a woman-dead. poets and painters, who did not think this kind of literature beneath them as long as she took part in “ Never stepped a finer creature, it. Thus her annual books had always a merit
When she was a simple maid ; beyond the average-some pleasing illustration,
But she did like many others,
Loved a man, and was betrayed. and some pointed passages of literature. Often
I have seen her in her carriage the popular tone or color of the year was reflected
Riding, diamonds in her hair; in them, and what she wrote herself was admira- And I've seen her starving (starving, bly suited to the idle yet social mood in which Do you hear ?) and now-she's there!” such books are taken up. We could not expect that the annuals would survive the death of this Up the worn and slippery stair accomplished woman-though it certainly is the
With a quickened pulse I sprung:
Famine, Filth, and mean Despair least of the many sad regrets attending her loss.
Round about the darkness hung : The Book of Beauty has been changed into a No kind vision met my glances, Court Album,* and is a mere collection of female Friend or helper of the poor, heads with accompanying explanations in prose. So the crazy room I entered, The Keepsake appears once more, probably for And looked down upon the floor! the last time.t
There, on the rough and naked boards, Lady Blessington's name is still on the title
A long, gaunt, wasted figure lay, page. She had prepared a portion of it, and its
Murdered in its youth by Hunger, conclusion appears to have been entrusted to her
All its beauty-wrinkled clay. niece, Miss Power, who remarks, in the course Life's poor wants had left her nothing, of a preface written with much feeling, that
Clothes nor fuel-food nor bed.
Nothing-save some ragged letters When the career of her under whose auspices
Whereon lay the ghastly head. this periodical had so often appeared was suddenly brought to a close, the proprietor, unwilling to keep back a volume which he felt was invested with so peculiar and melancholy an interest, ventured to
· Nothing !”—yet what more could Pity trust its conclusion to one who, however deficient
Crave, for one about to die, she may be in those qualifications which so emi
Than sweet words from one she worshipped, nently fitted Lady Blessington to produce a work
(Sweet, though every word a lie?) of this nature, has at least had the advantage of
In the morning of her pleasure, being thoroughly acquainted with the system of
In the midnight of her pain,
They were all, her wealth, her comfort, management pursued by the late editress, who had even assisted in her labors, and who was in com
Treasured-ay, and not in vain. munication with the contributors whose names ap
And with her they now lie mouldering, pear in its pages.
And a date upon a stone The most striking contribution is from Barry
Telleth where (to end the story) Cornwall. It is one of those mournful and terri
Love's poor outcast sleeps alone. ble romances of the streets of a great city, which
Mourn not; for at length she sleepeth
The soft slumber of the dead, the same writer has so often addressed, in plain,
Resting on her loved love-letters, strong, unsuperfluous verse, to thoughtful and
Last, fit pillow for her head. feeling hearts. These lines are beautiful throughout, but eminently so in the concluding stanzas.
About ten years ago, a paragraph appeared in
some of the daily newspapers, giving an account VERDICT, FOUND DEAD." THE SURGEON'S TALE. of an inquest held on the body of a young woman
6 found dead” in some obscure street or lane in 'T was on a dark December evening;
London. The body was discovered, frightfully Loud the blast, and bitter cold:
emaciated, scantily clothed, and in a poor garret. Downwards came the whirling waters;
which was entirely destitute of every article of Deep and black the river rolled :
furniture, comfort or otherwise, except a few ragNot a dog beneath the tempest;
ged love-letters which she had preserved through Not a beggar upon his beat :
every privation. According to the evidence she
had been at one time a person of considerable beauty, * The Court Album : fourteen portraits of the Female and had evidently died of hunger. Aristocracy. Engraved by the best artists, from drawings by John Hayter. Bogue.
We need not particularize other papers, but The Keepsake, 1850. Edited by the late Countess there is agreeable writing throughout the volof Blessington. With engravings under the superintendence of Mr. Frederick A. Heach. Bogue.
ume, and if the Keepsake series is to close here
BY BARRY CORNWALL.
it closes not unworthily. Of the Court Album We have little to say, but that its fourteen portraits embody several very pretty faces, though savoring somewhat of a monotonous style in the painter. The most attractive are those of Miss Lygon, the Ladies Clementina Villiers and Adela Ibbetson, Miss Ogilvy, the Princess Nicholas Esterhazy, and the Lady Frances Russell. The accompanying prose notices are occasionally not ill written, but they have marvellously little connection with the young ladies' faces or histories.
The Drawing Room Scrap-Book* is this year edited by Mr. Charles Mackay, who contributes to the illustration of its " scraps" several flowing and some earnest verses. The peculiarity of this annual, and that which will probably give it longer life than its fellows, is that its engravings are not expressly prepared for its pages, but, being used in other works during the year, are at the end of it collected into this. It gives a place to every possible subject-portrait, landscape, fancy, history—and imposes, therefore, no light tax on the ingenuity and variety of its laureate. But Mr. Mackay gets through his task exceedingly well.
He has the art of popular writing, having already taken a degree from the street-singers and organ-players such as no writer may becomingly affect to despise. His subjects are intelligible to everybody, and his verse has an easy fluency of movement and thought which is caught like a lively lune. We borrow from the book before us a set of stanzas in honor of the “ storytellers."
All blessings on their name and fame,
The pleasant story-tellers,
From sweet SCHEHERAZADE-
And model of a lady ;-)
As tender and loquacious,
Romantic and vivacious.
Their language or their nation,
Of beautiful creation ;-
On Chaucer, fresh as morning,
Humanity adorning ;-
Though somewhat stubborn-rinded ;-
Sublime, but simple-minded ;-
There came a sweetness after-
The ruler of our laughter ;* Fisher's Drawing Room Scrap-Book, 1860. By Charles Mackay, LL.D. Jackson.
On FIELDING, from whose wondrous pen
Came forth a stream incessant, Of wit and mirth, and feeling, too,
And genial fancies pleasant ;-
And RATCLIFFE, ruin-hauntress,
A sweet but sad enchantress ;-
Who ruled o'er wide dominions,
On her supporting pinions ;-
The wizard's fit successor ;-
The greater and the lesser ;-
Their flying Rosinantes ;
Lesage, and quaint CERVANTES.
A special benediction,
For his immortal fiction.
Who has not read his story?
His trials, and his glory?
Some wisdom from his preaching,
From more obtrusive teaching?
I make no reservation ;
And seek its elevation ;-
They bring to due fruition,
Must work its own perdition :-
The virtuous in dejection,
Teach goodness and affection ;-
THE PRESENT TIME.
Full many a bard of Memory sings,
And Hope hath oft inspired the rhyme ; But who the charm of music brings
To celebrate the present time?
While youth and health are in their prime, But 0, be still thy greatest care
That awful point-the present time! Fulfil the duties of the day
The next may hear thy funeral chime; So shalt thou wing thy glorious way Where all shall be the present time.