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lives and actions he records : having studied tale is soon told. It is not so, however, with to make himself acquainted with the philos- all; kings and princes have shared with ophy of the human mind, as manifested in some the companionship of the studio ; they its development and working, he is permit- have held constant communion with the ted, indeed is required, to give to others the great and the powerful, and have played benefit of his knowledge that they also may their parts boldly and openly in the battle be taught wisdom.
of life. But it is not such who exclusively There are few men of note whose history afford the most interesting or profitable has not been written over and over again ; subject-matter to the writer ; there is much if they moved as stars of the first magni. to be gleaned from the history of many tude among their fellow-men, an entire whose world lay within their own paintingvolume, or even more, has not been con- rooms, who knew little beyond, and cared sidered too much for a record of their lives; for less ; who felt that, while other men if of secondary importance, whatever is re- were working their way to fame and forlated of them forms only a portion of large tune amid the tumult and bustle of political and costly publications, so that, in either life, they were earning an immortality as case, such biographies are placed beyond proud and as imperishable in the quiet, the reach of the great mass of the public. hallowed pursuit of their own avocations. This is more especially the case with paint. There is a glory that awaits the scholar, ers and other disciples of art; it is there the indefatigable laborer in the fields of litfore thought that a series of brief sketches of erature, and the patient yet enthusiastic some of the great masters of by-gone times, artist, which the most mighty conqueror accompanied by illustrations of their works, never has, and never will, achieve: it is will find favor with a large class of our won, perhaps, in solitude and obscurityreaders. In carrying out this plan we shall amid trial and distress : but it is a glory not affect to offer any thing new to those that brings no affliction upon others, and who have already studied the lives and that leaves no sorrow behind it. works of such as may come under notice ; ! Premising that we are indebted for the ilwe shall rather address ourselves to those lustrations which accompany this series, and who have had no opportunity of so doing, for many of the historical facts, to a volumiand consequently endeavor to make our nous and costly French publication of recent sketches acceptable to them in particular. date, our list cannot be commenced with a The history of some painters offers little for better name than that of Paul REMBRANDT, the biographer to narrate, beyond a chrono- whose works are so highly appreciated in logical statement of their birth, parentage, this country. This great master of the preceptors, and a list of their works; the Dutch school was the son of a miller, named
Herman Gerretsz, and surnamed Van Ryn, in the engraving above, near Leyden, between that is, of the Rhine, because his mill was the villages of Leyderdorp and Koukerck. situated upon a branch of that river, as seen | He was born on the 15th of June, 1606, and
was christened in the name which has since , him, animate and inanimate, with his own become so famous, that of Rembrandt. His eyes, and stamped his works with an origi. father, a man of easy circumstances, deter-nality that cannot be mistaken for any thing mined to give him a classical education to but the result of a free and unbiased mind. qualify him for one of the learned professions, and accordingly sent the lad to the University of Leyden, then in high repute ; but by
From “ Eliza Cook's Journal." some means or other, which can only be ac
A CHILD'S MEMORY OF THE SEA. counted for by an inborn genius that will always develop itself under any circumstances, a love for painting had taken fast
“ I stand again beside thee as I stood,
In panting youth, watching thy billows break, hold of his mind, and to practise this was a
Fix'd by the strong spell of thy headlong flood, far higher charm than the study of the dead
Even as the bird is charm-bound by the snake." languages and legal authorities. Accord
ELIZA Cook. ing to Sandrart, his contemporary, who wrote a “History of Painters,” young Rem- Ir rises up before me like a dream! The brandt passed much time with Van Zwan- fisherman's cottage, out of which we peeped enberg, an engraver of Leyden, from whom in the early morning, stood about twenty be received his first lessons in that art for yards from the shelly strand, upon a flat which he subsequently became so distin- | ledge of rock, which barely afforded space guished. Bryan, in his “ Dictionary of for it and a half a dozen more little huts, Painters,” says, “ Rembrandt's father placed while almost close behind them sprung up a him as a disciple with Jacob van Zwaanen- tall brown cliff, which extended all round berg, at Amsterdam, under whom he stud- the little bay. Down the face of this cliff, ied three years, and his progress in that in an oblique direction, ran a steep, narrow time was the astonishment of his master.” | road, which by dint of hard labor had been But we are inclined to follow the former made practicable as a cart road; but, few authority, as it is more than probable that indeed were the vehicles of any kind that the youth would have remained in Leyden, ever ventured down into that sequestered rather than be removed farther from home; 1 little haven. A narrow patch of grass lay moreover, Bryan's list contains no account between the row of cottages and the sand, of the painter of Amsterdam, while he which in spring looked green and fresh, and makes mention of the engraver of Leyden. there in a morning the fishermen spread out Houbracken differs from both these writers, their nets, and sat mending them at their for he says Rembrandt's first master was leisure. The boats lay hauled up on the Peter Lastman, with whom he studied six beach beyond, and about them we scammonths at Amsterdam, and then quitted pered and played with the wild fisher chilhim to enter the study of Jan Pinas. This dren. seems to be the most correct statement, for At high water, the waves came far into we may see in the works of Pinas and of the bay, and at spring-tides they almost Lastman the germs of that manner which laved the grass patch before our cottage. A has given immortality to their pupil. But, ledge of rocks which inclosed the little haven inasmuch as seven cities of Greece contended securely protected the bay from the heavy for the birthplace of Homer, so, numerous seas which rolled in from the east, though writers have striven to place the illustrious sometimes, in high winds, the waves broke painter with some favorite master, as if the over these with tremendous roar, and then genius of the scholar were reflected back the waters of the bay were covered with upon that of the instructor. It is thus that foam, and the spray hovered like a thick Leewen assigns to him another master still, mist all round the bottom of the cliffs. G. Schooten, of Leyden. These matters are, There was one great projecting rock at the however, of little importance, for he was a eastern point, where the waves, by constant follower of no one predecessor, nor did he beating, had worked their way and bollowed form a style from a combination of what out a long, deep arch, through which wave had been done before ; he had his own pecu. after wave would dash with tremendous liar views of art; he saw the world around force and terrific roar, spending their last effort on the great black rock which lay | numbers, and seemed frantic as well as fuwithin the hollow of the bay, and which rivus in their rage at the invaders of their dashed the waters back again to meet the fastnesses. From our little bay we could next coming wave. In the dark nights, the observe the proceedings of these pleasure noise of the sea bursting through this nar- seekers for hours together, watch the boat row inlet had a solemn and awful grandeur, | as it disappeared behind the rock, listened and often I lay awake in fear, baunted by to the crack of the guns and saw the wheel. the dread of its power, and lest the sea ing clouds of birds rising up over the sum. furies, who seemed to be struggling to gain mit of the crag, then hail the boat as it an entrance there, should burst the rocks and rowed round the steep face of the island carry devastation before them. But the into full sight again ; and sometimes, on the morning would come, and there through the party landing in our bay, they would leave arch lay the far-off sea smiling under the behind them a lamed gull, which was essun, and the fishing boats, heavily laden, teemed by us as an almost unspeakable came sporting in through the narrow en- / prize. trance of the bay; the women and children I remember well, one brilliant morning, a all afoot to beckon to the hardy fishermen a gay party setting off in high spirits to visit cheerful welcome home. The last night's the rock. I have since thought it must have storm had subsided into a gentle breeze, and been a bridal party. There were two beauthere was only the long measured swell of tiful girls among them, whom I took to be the ocean rolling along, its surface broken by sisters, from their striking resemblance to little tiny waves sparkling in the sunshine. each other. They seemed the happiest and Far through the arch, lying a great way off merriest of the lot, and had a joke and a along the coast to the east, there stood out smile for every body; the party had baskets into the sea a tall white promontory, one of full of provisions and drinkables, and the the boldest headlands along that bold and kettle and store of dried sticks which they precipitous coast. Once or twice I saw the put into the boat, showed that they intended sun rise out of the sea behind it; a faint to have a long day's pleasure on the rock. streak of purple along the distant ocean-line A blind fiddler, whom they had brought heralded his coming, then a glimmer of gold with them from the neighboring town, was en light glanced along the waters, and then also there; gray hairs hung round his face, the edge of the glorious orb heaved slowly and though he saw not, but gazed into the up as from the deep, the distant bluff crownsky as if feeling for light, he seemed to be ed by its taper light-house, standing black not less happy than the gayest of the party. against the now glowing sky beyond. The two girls I spoke of proposed a dance
Right over against the mouth of our bay, on the tuft of green sward, before putting and about a mile from shore, stood a great, to sea-_“it looked so inviting.” But their rugged, conical-crowned rock, precipitous on proposal was overruled, and they embarked. its eastern side, which was bleached by end. They laughed, and joked, and sung songs as less beatings of the surf, and sloping gradu- they cleared the little strait between the ally towards the west, where an old wall rocks, and I sat listening to their fine voices, and a few ruins marked the traces of some mingling with which I could detect the clear ancient castle and its surrounding fortifica- tones of the blind man's violin, until only tions. The place had been used as a prison the shadow of a sound reached me, and then in the bygone days of religious persecutions, it was mingled with the quiet murmur of and it was now the frequent resort, in sum- the tide among the rocks. I watched the mer time, of gay pleasure-parties, some of boat as it neared the landing-place, when whom set out from our bay, and others from suddenly I saw a commotion among the the nearest little seaport town. The pre-party; there was a rush to one side, the cipitous side of the rock was the haunt of boat had nearly capsized, and I saw that innumerable gulls, guillemots, wild ducks, several persons had fallen over the side, and solan geese, whose wild screamings and were struggling in the water. But they grew perfectly deafening when a sportsman were close to the rock, and the greater part discharged his fowling-piece in their midst. jumped on shore. I then saw some of them They almost darkened the air with their | running along the ledge of rock as if looking for some one still in the water; bands were distance. The squadron passed speedily raised as if in piteous agony; minutes elapsed before our gaze, amid cheers from the boats, and still the frantic emotion continued. At and the firing of cannons and musketry, and last I saw some one stretching out a boat- then the boats came ashore, and our little hook into the waves, and slowly drag up bay was left to its quiet once more. some heavy object into the boat. After a The melancholy accident which led to my few minutes the party re-embarked, and departure from the fisherman's cottage berowed back into our little bay. There were fore my two months had expired will ever no more songs, por laughter; their faces, remain impressed upon my memory. A when I could recognize them, were bathed storm bad suddenly set in, while the fisherin tears, and the face of one I saw not at all. men's boats were yet at sea, and the waves As the boat grounded, I perceived that a were dashing over the crest of rocks, and female form lay motionless on the rowers' bounding with fearful noise through the seat; it was that of one of the beautiful cavernous passage already described, making sisters, whom I had seen but an hour ago so the hearts of the mothers along our narrow full of laughing glee. She was borne heavily strand quake with fear. Their eyes were into our cottage by a fisherman, but it was turned towards the east, and a little boat too late to restore her. It was all over with which had now come within sight, seemingly the lovely girl, and a deep grief now settled no bigger than a cork, seemed to be in imdown upon that formerly so merry party. minent danger; it was tossed about, now in
Many ships daily sailed past the entrance the trough of a wave, now dancing on its to our bay, and we learned to know them crest. The old weather-beaten fisherman, by their rig and their build. There was the whose only son was in the boat, with two tidy little king's cutter, spanking along with other seamen, stood watching its approach her streaming pennant floating in the breeze. | with anxious gaze. His bare head, covered Then there was the swift smack, with her with straggling gray hairs, was exposed to great after-sail, bowling along through the the blast, but he had no thought save for waves, which she dashed from her bows in his son and his boat. Gradually it drives foam. There was the brig and the schooner ! on, and now it nears the narrow channel, with their peculiar rig, their cross-sails, and and “will she make it ?” is the agonizing their canvas-laden masts, and sometimes, cry. The men strain at the oars, but the though this was more rare, the large ship of sea has lashed itself into fury, and the little war floating along majestically, scarce seem- boat seems powerless in its midst. While ing to care for the heavy waves that beat they seem almost to have entered the chanagainst her sides. A great commotion one nel, and the standers-by prepare to set up day possessed our little bay. All the boats a shout of joy, suddenly a tremendous wave were put off, filled with strangers, who went seizes the boat and dashes it furiously upon forth to see the royal squadron pass. And the rocks. There is a sudden shriek. The sure enough, there, rounding the great bluff boat is lost! the three men are seen strugto the east, stood three gallant vessels under gling in the water for life ; two strike out, full canvas, studding-sails alow and aloft, and make for the shore, which they reach. all their kites flying, and the royal flag of But the third has disappeared. It is the old England fluttering in the breeze. These man's only son! He cannot swim, and the were the royal yacht with its attendant father knows it. He runs wildly along the frigates, and soon other heavy ships of war, rocks, and would plunge into the foaming showing their gigantic ribs of cannon, one by waves, but he is held back by force. What one, rounded the headland. There was a can he do but wring his hands and weep? sudden flash from the summit of the rock | He wanders eagerly along the strand, and over against our bay, and a loud “boom" he picks up here and there a fragment of rolled across the waters. “Hurrah! there his shivered boat but his lost son! At last, goes old Jack at last !” cried some one at he is seen dragging forth from an eddying my side. The smoke rose circling in the pool some dark object, and he hurriedly air, and then volley succeeded volley, an-grasps it in his arms and bears it with him swered from the shore, until they seemed into the hut. Alas I life has quite fled: the to echo along the coast and die away in the fisherman's only son is no more.
With the dark memory of that agonizing | early in the morning on the couch, accompa sight still strong within me, I left that little nied by the train of mourners, relatives, bay, the groans of the grief-stricken fisher and friends, including women above sixty; man, and the angry roar of the life-destroy a chorus of hired flute-players performing ing waves still ringing in my ears.
The burial-grounds were usually without the town, but not always concentrated in a common cemetery. The
rich might buy a spot of ground anywhere From Chambers' “ Papers for the People.”
for a family tomb; for the poor a public SEPULTURE AMONG THE GREEKS. place of interment was provided.
The two practices of burning and burying The rites of sepulture were piously at seem to have coexisted at all times ; in tended to by the Greeks. An honorable in what proportions, or under what particular terment was considered a happy lot to the circumstances one was preferred to the departed ; and an unburied mortal was be- other, is not distinctly ascertained. In both lieved to be wandering through Hades in a cases graves, vaults, or built tombs were restate of mournful disquietude. After a bat- quired, and columns and various forms of tle, a truce was granted by the victors, that tombstone were in use. The inscriptions both sides might collect and bury their contained the name of the deceased, with dead; and on the occasion of the naval bat- the occasional addition of an appropriate tle of Arginusæ, fought shortly before the moral in prose or verse. Vases and various close of the Peloponnesian war, the Atheni- articles were placed in the grave with the an generals, having neglected the duty of deceased. collecting the dead for interment, and the
After the burial, a funeral entertainment still more imperative duty of visiting the was given at the house of the nearest surviwrecks to save such of the living as clung ving relation. There were also various sacto them, were received with a storm of rifices to be offered, chiefly one on the ninth popular indignation that ended in their day, which concluded the ceremonies for the being publicly condemned and executed.
dead. A black mourning cloak, or himaIn ancient and more barbarous times, the tion, was worn for some time, the inner funerals of distinguished persons were ac- robe, or chiton, being the same as usual; companied with prodigious pomp and dis- and the custom prevailed of cutting the hair play: on the funeral pyre, which was an short. It became a perpetual obligation on immense pile of wood, were burnt along all persons to visit and tend the graves of with the dead body an immense number of their forefathers : on stated days, such as cattle, and even human beings ; such at the anniversary of their death, sacrifice was least is the picture given by Homer. Games performed at the tombs; and flowers and and athletic contests followed. But in the garlands were regularly brought to decorate historic age the funeral rites were kept them. At other times the survivors were within sober limits. The first thing done expected to visit the graves of their deafter death was to insert in the mouth of parted relatives ; and the approach of the defunct the small coin called an obolus, friends was considered agreeable to their to pay the ferryman of Hades. The corpse. spirits, while they received pain by the was washed, perfumed, crowned with a gar- proximity of enemies. In short, acts of reland of flowers, and dressed in white; it spectful attention and religious observance was laid out on a bedstead for the usual towards deceased relatives and progenitors length of time, not more than a day or two. were reckoned among the indispensable duA vessel of water was placed before the ties of life, and were one of the motives for house-door, to purify persons leaving the keeping up an unbroken line of descendants. house. Lamentation, or a wake for the dead, was practised by the women, although all the wiser portion of the community The art of being able to make a good thought it a custom more honored in the use of moderate abilities wins esteem, and breach than in the observance. On the day often confers more reputation than real of the funeral, the body was carried out | merit.