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objections should be popularly brought against both the principles and the persons that preside over the Establishment; so he resolves to answer them all together in a small book, which is neither more or less than a novel, every chapter being intended to answer some objection, or to explain away some abuse, which a mistaken public ascribes tó that immaculate and suffering body, the clergy of the Establishment. Of course, the ready answer to his answer is, that it is simply fiction; but we have no doubt it was the best he could make. His readers will doubtless be convinced that all pluralists are in the case of his Canon de Burgh, who could not possibly have afforded to keep his two poor rectories, with all the charitable calls they obliged him to answer, unless he had also held a rich canonry; or that all parsonic dishonesties are simply the result of the sacrilege and stinginess of lay-impropriators, and are all amply atoned for at last, because he paints an unfortunate “Mr. Wharton” in such circumstances. His Churchmen are all saints; his schismatics, as he calls the Dissenters, have all become such on low and interested motives; and an Italian lady, the only Catholic in the book, is pious indeed, but disposes of four husbands by slow poison-a virtue that we had thought was rather a specialty of English burial-clubs. Towards the end of the book our author becomes still more controversial, and answers the late Lord King's question: “Where is the prelate -name him-refer to him, if he be existent, who has shown the slightest evidence of self-denial?” by quoting two Anglican bishops who have, or had, a real existence; but he is obliged to go far afield before he can find them: having looked all through the provinces of Canterbury and York, Dublin and Armagh, and the Isle of Man, without result, he hits upon two nuggets in Australia and New Zealand, where, no doubt, even bishops are obliged to undergo almost as much rough usage as other diggers. The book is not badly written; but we hate controversial novels, especially when we don't agree with the religion of the writer.
Constantinople of To-day, by Théophile Gautier (London, Bogue). The translator of this lively book says: Perhaps no writer ever wrote, to whose eye every thing animate and inanimate so promptly resolved itself into colour and form, and was in that view so rapidly and skilfully transferred to paper.” Certainly M. Gautier is all pigment; he lays on his colours like a sign-painter, and tries to make every thing as painfully distinct and exaggerated as the artist who painted the mediæval court at the Crystal Palace. Constantinople looks no more natural in the colours of the Boulevards of Paris, than do Gothic ornaments plastered with cobalt and vermilion. There are some good illustrations, copied from photographic pictures, of some of the most remarkable things at Constantinople; these are about the only pages in the book that are not coloured.
Memoirs of Celebrated Characters, by Lamartine (2 vols. London, Bentley). The distinguished author conceives that literature has aimed too high. It has sought to conciliate the admiration of the educated and the talented, instead of the love of the masses, who have been left to fatten on the superficial philosophy, the false heroes, and the impure literature,” with which the workshop and cottage are flooded. He therefore gives us, as the last product of his literary life, a work which is intended to popularise history, by removing it from the sphere of the head to that of the heart. "Men are to be influenced by men, not by things; they will not be moved by a chart, or be excited by a chronology." History therefore becomes a series of biographies, in which he recommends principles that no Catholic can hope will become popular.
Nelson, whose last words were about his paramour, is introduced into
a glorious immortality;" Abelard is canonised at the expense of St. Bernard ; the Reformation arose from the abuses introduced by the Medici into the Catholic Church, and opened the way for liberty of thought, while still desirous of remaining faithful to the principal dogma of Christianity.”. On the whole, the book is the apotheosis of sentiment and emotion at the expense of principle and truth. He that fights for a love is a hero; he that fights for a truth is a bigot. This is quite in conformity with a very common tendency of the present age; but it is entirely repugnant to the spirit of the Catholic Church. It need not be said, that Lamartine is a most interesting and poetical writer; and that those who most differ from his principles, and entertain most suspicion of his historical veracity, must feel the charm of his composition. Still, we think that when poets talk prose, they should not use to the utmost their recognised license to talk nonsense. Lamartine has certainly availed himself of this liberty, which we larnent;- take the following specimens: “ Printing is the telescope of the soul," “printing has annihilated time,”
,” “ the press is an intellectual sense;" " it gives birth to poetry, sentiment, morality, religion; or, as we may say, a portion of the human mind.' We think this is almost enough poetry for a single paragraph.
Autobiography of an Indian-Army Surgeon, or Leaves turned down from a Journal (London, Bentley). This M.D. is no fool, and writes & very readable volume of personal gossip and adventure in Europe and India, with just enough of the "shop" in it to give it a professional individuality. The book is both sketchy and fragmentary, but the writer knows how to tell his story without circumlocution. We recominend it to our readers.
A Volunteer's Scramble through Scinde, the Punjaub, Hindostan, and the Himalaya Mountains, by Hugo James. (2 vols. London, Thacker and Co.) Though Mr. James was with Major Edwardes at Mooltan, and has therefore some stirring personal recollections to disclose, he spoils all by his utter inability to write. At the same time he delivers himself in an oracular way, quite unconscious that his pretensions to be a sage are somewhat inconsistent with his oblivion of syntax.
Transmutation, or the Lord and the Lout, by N. or M. (London, Chapman and Hall). The son of a peer and the son of a peasant are exchanged at birth by a village accoucheur. Under the fatality of organisation and blood, the first, deprived of his position, turns out a vagabond and a murderer; the second does honour to bis rank. The moral is, that aristocratic blood is infected with every kind of evil principle, which comes out when the checks of rank are removed ; and that peasant blood, with external advantages, is inherently noble, open, generous, frank, handsome, gentlemanly, &c. The book is truly foolish, though the author has some power of writing.
Hide and Seek, by W.W. Collins, author of " Antonia,” &c. (3 vols. London, Bentley). An interesting novel, written with true artistic care; the story is a good whole, every subordinate incident fitting into its proper place and helping the plot forward to its completion. The
* Another book which we notice this number (Hide and Seek, by Mr. Collins), has the same remarkable misapplication of the word “sense ;' he talks of a deaf and dumb girl having lost two senses. We have heard of a sailor who maintained that smoking was one of the five; to this Lamartine adds printing, and Collins talking.
details are filled in with a microscopic accuracy worthy of the brother of a Pre-Raphaelite; indeed, we think that the same fault may be found with them that we should be disposed to attribute to the pictures of the author's brother -we are inclined to think that the multifarious minutiæ of accessories takes away from the effect of the chief figures. The laborious description of the painter's studio, in which there is not a cobweb that escapes registration, is only tolerable because it occurs in the first volume, before the story has got into its full swing: to be interrupted in an exciting adventure by some bore, who holds you with his “skinny hand” or “glittering eye,” and makes you enter into the beauties of a Dutch picture of a cauliflower and a mug of beer, is simply disgusting. We do not accuse Mr. Collins of going so far; but his tendency is to this fault: he is so happy in his descriptions, and does them so easily, that it evidently costs a struggle to confine them to those parts of his narrative where the march may be suspended for a time. The story itself is quite unobjectionable; we only wish that he had not made the deaf and dumb sister fall in love with the brother; it adds nothing to the interest of the story, but rather introduces an element of painfulness into the otherwise satisfactory dénouement. It is free from a fault very common in modern novels, namely, an intrusive didactic purpose; the author, however, makes no secret of his principles, against which we for our own parts entirely protest. He is a member of the faction that has undertaken the apotheosis of good nature,-noble, honourable, and jolly (we can find no better word) natural impulses, in a word, organisation, at the expense of virtue properly so called, which consists in a struggle against nature. In this school it is part of the virtue of a young man to get drunk and to sow his wild oats recklessly, like the young prince and Poins, of an unfortunate young woman to die, invoking the curse of God upon the man who deceived her, and of her brother to spend his life in seeking vengeance, and only to be turned from it by friendship and good-nature, not by principle. Such a theory does no harm to the human interest' of a novel, but at the same time renders its effect ultimately most pernicious upon the morals of the age. The book is dedicated to the Coryphæus of this school, Charles Dickens. As a novel we can recommend it highly.
England and Rassia ; comprising the Voyages of John Tradescant the Elder, Sir Hugh Willoughby, Richard Chancellor, Nelson, and others, to the White Sea, &c. by Dr. J. Hamel; translated by J. S. Leigh, F.R.G.S. (London, Bentley). This volume contains most minute accounts of ihe first travellers from the civilised parts of Europe into Russia, with genealogical and family details. It supplies a great mass of new information concerning the early English naturalists mentioned in the title - Tradescant being the real founder of what is now called the Ashmolean Collection, at Oxford. It is remarkable, that in the opening sentence the author (who wrote in 1846) recommends that the year 1853 should be observed as a jubilee, to commemorate the uninterrupted friendship which would then have existed for three centuries between England and Russia. There is not very much of political interest in the book, but what there is naively discloses to our generation much of the aggressive and barbarous policy by which the rulers of Russia were actuated, even at the early period to which this work principally relates. The book is laborious and important, and to a certain class of readers even interesting: It shows a great knowledge of old English documents, and an intelligence in such matters which is very surprising in a Russian.
FOREIGN LITERATURE. Histoire du Canada, de son Eglise et de ses Missions depuis la découverte de l'Amérique jusqu'à nos jours, par M. l'Abbé Brasseur de Bourbourg, Vicaire-Gen. de Boston, &c. (Paris, Sagnier et Bray. 2 vols. 8vo, price 8s.) The author has the advantage of residing on the spot, and of having had it in his power to consult the valuable and hitherto inedited documents preserved among the records of the Archbishop's palace at Quebec. He has produced a history which has merited the eulogium of Mgr. Parisis, the Bishop of Arras. His conclusion is : “The morality and probity of the Canadian are indisputable; his quiet virtue, his hospitality, his politeness — so remarkable even in the lowest classes--are entirely due to his Catholic education. The history of Canada is inseparable from that of its Church.". These volumes contain the best abstract we have seen of the Catholic Missions to the American Indian tribes of the north, and are a valuable addition to popular history.
Dieu et les Dieur, ou un Voyageur Chrétien devant les Objets primitifs des Cultes anciens, les Traditions, et la Fable. Monographie des pierres dieux, par le Cheval. R. G. des Mousseaux. (1 vol. 8vo, pp. 588. price 7s. 6d. Paris, Lagny, frères). Though we cannot agree with the conclusions of the learned author, we gladly own that this is a remarkable work, characterised by very deep research, and throwing together a great quantity of facts, the relationship of which to each other has not hitherto (as far as we know) been pointed out. He derives the first idea of the divinity of stones from the custom of the Patriarchs to set up stones in memory of the communications of God;—when this stone was anointed, as by Jacob at Bethel, it became a real image of the Messiah, who calls himself the “corner-stone,” who founds his Church on Peter, “a stone,” the image of stability and immutability. This idea was caught up by the rest of the world, who were adorers of the stars (Sabæans) or of nature; the former set up as gods all the stones that fell from heaven, as divine stars that had descended into this world,– these were Palladia, called Betylia, or Bethels; the latter worshipped the generative powers of nature under the form of the lingam or phallus, The sacred tree was the tent or temple which overshadowed these divine stones. Thus our author derives all the image-worship of Paganism from the inspired practice of Abraham and Jacob, whose history he traces as Chronos, Saturn, and Siva, in Greek, Roman, and Indian history. This fanciful speculation we consider to be utterly unfounded, of no value whatever, and utterly inconsistent with the fact, that several of the instances which he quotes from Egyptian mythology can be proved to be of more ancient origin than the time of Abraham. The great number of instances he has collected are, however, highly valuable to the student of mythology, and to the inquirer into the ancient magical philosophy of mankind. In a field so very abundant as this, it is easy to prove any forgone conclusion by a judicious selection of inductive instances. M. des Mousseaux has only added a fresh_theory to those wbich have emanated from the fanciful brains of our Fabers, Maurices, and Bryants, who have identified the great figures in Pagan mythology with soe, as our present author has with Abraham.
Le Désert et le Soudan; études sur l'Afrique au Nord de l'Equateur, son climat, ses habitants, les moeurs, et la réligion de ces derniers, par
M. le Comte d'Escayrac de Sauture, M. Soc. Asiat., Soc. Orient., et de la Commission Centrale de la Société de Géographie (1 vol. gr. 8vo, pp. 628, price 10s. 6d. Paris, J. Dumoine). This is a traveller who does not look for stones and trees, but for men and manners, He has filled a large volume with the most interesting details on the climate and commerce of Africa, on the state of the Mussulman and heathen population, their religious and political systems, their morals, their personal characteristics, their wars, and their character. These pieces of information are presented in adrnirable order, and are illustrated with maps and plates, which, though they have no artistic merit, are, the author assures us, to be relied on as faithful transcripts of nature. The view he takes of Íslamism is more favourable than that of most writers; he considers it to be the only means of introducing the rudiments of civilisation into the interior of Africa. The laws of Christian marriage are alone sufficient to be an unconquerable impediment to the reception of Christianity by a people, one of whose most obstinate practices is that of promiscuous intercourse; and the results of the Christian Missions which he has visited are more negative than positive. This applies both to Catholics and Protestants; which latter, though more numerous, are less active than the former. The volume concludes with chapters on the statistics and the history of the Mussulman and the American slave trades. It is a very important book.
La Franc-maçonnerie dans sa véritable Signification, ou son Organisation, son But, et son Histoire, par E. M. Eckert, avocat à Dresde, traduit par l'Abbé Gyr (2 vols. 8vo, price 88. Liège, Lardinois). Details on the rituals and catechisms of the order of Freemasons, on its aim, which is pure democracy, the destruction of the Church and of all existing governments, on its organisation and its history. The revelations of the author are astounding, if true; but we cannot help suspecting that he is the victim of the suspicions which a single idea, long brooded over, is sure to generate in the mind. We know nothing of freemasonry, except that it is condemned by the Church; whether merely on general principles, as a secret society binding its members to conceal that which it may be their duty to reveal, or whether as a blasphemous pretence, clothing nothing but frivolities with the garb of a venerable tradition, and with holy names, or as a dangerous conspiracy against religion and government, we know not. The author, however, seems to us to prove too much. Every wickedness is due to the order. He tells us (vol. ii. p. 242), “since Lord Palmerston became secretary of state, the authority of the government has been vested in the hands of the order; for the noble lord had become grand master of all the masons in the world. This I have from a certain source, from the Grand Lodge of Berlin; and an attentive observation suffices to demonstrate its truth.” He then goes on to recount the conduct of English authorities in the Revolutions of 1848-49, which he thinks prove his point. We think not; but we know not whether to attribute his book to a mystification of mind or to a reality, which in his mind has become mixed up with other irrelevant matters. We mention the book, as giving a very full account of the remarkable secret society which it purports to describe, and as being, if true, most valuable and curious.
Exposition suivie des quatre Evangiles, par St. Thomas d'Aquin. Traduit par M. l'Abbé Em. Costan (Tom. Í. 8vo, pp. 508, price 58. 6d. Paris, Louis Vivés). This is a French translation of the Catena Aurea of St. Thomas, from a text purified and corrected by Father Nicolai, which is also printed at the bottom of each page. We need say nothing