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and lower classes, which is so intimately connected with their own personal happiness and enjoyment of life, and with the well-being of society.
On pp. 9 to 11, the author has noticed the ancient gildes, as the models on which modern friendly societies are formed, and has given from Hickes' Thesaurus, and from Dugdale, the constitutions of some of them, in corroboration of this fact. We quite concur in the opinion that the ancient gildes were friendly societies, although we doubt whether they "had no further object than the relief of the brethren in times of distress, and perhaps the protection of the associated members against the lawless attacks of powerful neighbours." On the contrary, we see very little reason to doubt that they had their origin in the piety, however mistaken, of the early ages of christianity, and that "pious offices" were not merely "concomitants," but were originally the principal objects of such fraternities; with which charity, hospitality, conviviality, and commercial adventure, were afterwards associated as concomitants.
It is however a fact, that their carly history is involved in some obscurity, which, probably, time and an examination of their records may hereafter
Mr. Ansell's tables and calculations will be found of great use by persons connected with friendly societies.
An Historical Sketch of the Art of Sculpture in Wood, from the earliest period to the present time. By Robert Folkestone Williams, Author of" Rhymes and Rhapsodies," Svo. pp. 109.
THIS little book having been sent into the world to pave the way for a larger one, the author has wisely failed to anticipate the pleasure and instruction which his readers may expect to derive from the investigation of the heavier tome, and he leaves them to indulge in the hope that the paucity of original information in the octavo will be fully compensated for by the completeness of the coming quarto, which, in the author's own words, is to be "a complete book of reference, in which every thing relating to timber architecture, and sculpture in
wood, will be lucidly arranged and philosophically treated."
We should have suspected that an author who had investigated the subject of wood carving so very deeply, would have been an oracle of information to the many friends whose valuable collections he so kindly introduces to public notice. Yet here we meet with a second disappointment : for even on a subject so well understood as the ludicrous carvings which are to be found by the prying antiquary beneath the seats of many of our cathedrals, the origin of which may be traced to the disputes and animosities between the regular and secular clergy, we find the author fearful of drawing on his own stock of originality, cautiously obtaining the opinion of one of his friends, and this opinion he retails with great gravity as a perfectly new discovery.
But, during the time the author is engaged investigating the obscure carvings under the seats of the church, he seems to have overlooked another class of works of the middle ages, which would appear to bear more closely upon the subject of his treatise. This class comprehends the ancient monumental statues in wood, specimens of which are to be met with in most of our larger churches, but with the existence of which the author appears to be totally unacquainted.
It may be a matter of information, and will be a useful hint towards the compilation of the larger work, to remind Mr. Williams of the class of statuary, at the head of which stands the unrivalled effigy of Robert Duke of Normandy, in Gloucester Cathedral.
Upon the works of a more recent period the author is not a whit more diffuse; for we find that Gibbons, the surprising artist to whose hand the beautiful decorations of so many of Wren's churches are owing, is with his works very slightly noticed from some modern compilation.
But after all it would seem that the principal object, both of octavo and quarto, is to excite public attention to an exhibition of carved statues, which are said to be works of Brustolini. These works, the author states, are open for public inspection, and he recommends the reader to see them and judge for himself, and with a view of
assisting him he gives a list of the subjects, with the inscriptions, accompanied by translations exactly copied from the catalogue sold at the rooms.
We have already described the statues in question, as they appear at present, (Gent. Mag. vol. Ill p. 191,) and we assigned them to the class of architectural sculptures denominated Atlas's, which were very common at the period when these were executed. In works of architecture they usually supplied the place of columns, by sustaining an entablature; but in the present instance they are said to have supported heavy buttresses, in what way is not explained.
The feature in which the present differ from other carvings in wood, is in the attempt which the artist has made to imitate in the closest manner the appearance of statuary. The wood is exceedingly close-grained, and the sculptor has succeeded in gaining a smoothness which could scarcely be expected from the material. This peculiarity is unnoticed by the author.
Mr. Williams alludes to the superiority of the carvers of Germany, both in ancient and modern times. At the
Harold de Burun, a semi-dramatic Poem, in six Scenes, by Henry Austen Driver, author of The Arabs," a Poem.-Lord Byron is the hero of this poem. Percy, is Percy B. Shelley; and Teresa, we suppose, the Countess of Guiccioli: to these Personæ Dramatis are to be added Maledicus and Patronus, a hermit, a peasant, and a minstrel. These are strange materials for a drama; yet the genius of the author has produced, certainly not a good play, but a very clever and powerful poem. We cannot say much for the dramatic, but the descriptive parts are good, sometimes excellent: there is a fine flow of verse, and a rich combination of language; some new and elegant meta phors, and some few moral reflections well expressed. We admire the author's powers more than their production: he conceives powerfully, and expresses himself with elegance and vigour. There are some queer little blotches on his muse's face, as capsomancy (O Lord, what a word!)" the lovely cortices of a lady's eyes" "the pyramidal institutes of time" -"the delices of hope in earlier life" which some cooling physic from some of the reviewers will doubtless remove. We would willingly have given some extracts, but the margin of our book is full.
first sight of these statues we imagined them to be the work of a German artist. Some degree of mystery seems to hang over their existence. They are said to have once adorned the library of the well-known church of St. John and St. Paul at Venice, and some engravings are cited as evidences of the truth of this important point in their history. But it must not be overlooked, that one of the inscriptions evidently contains sufficient to lead to the identification of the monastery from which they have been removed. Mr. Williams will perhaps at a future period inform his readers why he translates "Hujus convent' filius," in the inscription upon the statue of Zuingle, by an " &c."
The subject is one which in good hands would form the basis of an excellent treatise. We hope that the author of " Rhymes and Rhapsodies" will succeed in producing such a work in his forthcoming volume; but, if the sample now before us is a fair specimen of the bulk, we fear he will only keep his "word of promise to his readers' ear, and break it to their hope."
Sonnets, by the Rev. Charles Strong, A.M.-A Sonnet is a poem undoubt edly as perfect and entire in itself as any other, even the Epic or Dramatic. It ought to have, like all other poems, a beginning, a middle, and an end: it ought to be inclosed within the limit of fourteen lines, and to have a certain number of lines ending with the same rhymes. It may run on without any decided pause or break through its structure; or, as is most often the case, it may rest at the end of the eighth line: other varieties in this pause are admitted at the will of the poet, but the one mentioned is the most common. There were many beautiful sonnets written by our Elizabethan poets, as Shakspeare, Spenser, Daniel, and Drummond; but few, however, after the strict Italian model, either in the rhymes or pauses; of which Milton gave the first example; and most eminently beautiful his sonnets are. With the exception of a few by Bamfylde, and one or two by other poets, Mr. Wordsworth claims the place of honour, as a sonneteer, next to Milton; though some of Mr. Wordsworth's sonnets are irregular in structure. Mr. Strong's are the production of a man of elegant taste, and a scholar: simple and severe in the language, and preserving a
Is this the spot where Rome's eternal foe Into his snares the mighty legions drew, Whence from the carnage spiritless and few,
A remnant scarcely reach'd her gates of woe? [slow,
Is this the stream, thus gliding soft and That from the gushing wounds of thousands grew [hue So fierce a flood, that waves of crimson Rush'd on the bosom of the lake below? The mountains that gave back the battle cry [green Are silent now, perchance yon hillocks Mark where the bones of those old warriors lie. [scene, Heaven never gladden'd a more peaceful Never left softer breeze a fairer sky To sport upon thy waters, Thrasymene.
Manuscripts of Erdely. 3 vols.-This half historical and half romantic narrative is too long; and minute even to tedium in the multiplicity of its incidents; but it is written with force and skill: there are many powerful descriptions, many highly interesting situations, and many eloquent discourses in it. The author appears to be a person of scholarship and taste; and we hope the next novel with which he favours us will be less full of the devil's pictures' than the present.
GENT. MAG. VOL. IV.
Tales of the Peerage and Peasantry. By Lady Dacre. 3 vols. 1835.-The first story of Winifred, Countess of Nithsdale, is we think defective in want of movement and rapidity of the narrative; but the interest with which we read it, shows that it is told with judgment, and is a proof, if such were wanting, that even when the conclusion of a tale is foreknown, as in those founded on historical facts, the judicious disposition of events, and the gracefulness and elegance with which they are told, will sufficiently detain and delight the attention of the reader. The second narrative, The Hampshire Cottage, has the merit of telling a simple tale in the language of simplicity. There is also a pretty little moral attached to it, which may be of advantage to the village maid in the regulation of her conduct and the resignation of her will. The last called Blanche' is more fully and elaborately drawn, and is well conold tale and often told. Lady Blanche ceived and happily executed. It is an believed that she could live on love with a half-pay officer, more happily than on venison and claret, with a young and worthy peer. But, as usual, she forgot that love had wings: and so when she and the half-pay captain, and their troisieme Poverty, walked into the cottage, Love flew out of the window. This is pursued through many ludicrous and many sorrowful details, and is at last overcome by the call that a very dangerous illness makes on the most powerful affections and the dearest sympathies of the heart. Folly, and discontent, and ingratitude, and spleen, and wickedness, all fly like idle phantoms before a thankful heart and a rectified understanding; and if there is any one who will condescend to profit by the experience of others, the moral of this tale will not be lost on him. It is needless to add, that all the works produced by Lady Dacre's unknown protegée, are written with as much taste and feeling as if they had proceeded from her Ladyship herself!
The Immaterial System of Man contemplated, in accordance with the Sublime and Beautiful, and in reference to a Plan for General Education. By Elizabeth Hope. Vol. I.-Though there is much that is ingenious, and much that is substantially sound and judicious in the present volume, we are afraid that it is too dry and too long for general attention. The design of the work we will give in the words of the author. To awaken this spirit [of love] which only slumbers in the hearts of the many,-to promote the diffusion of its benign influence-depends
on education. This most efficient agent, active as it has been, has hitherto been limited in its operations, and biassed or checked in its progress. Men have been educated. Man should be so-and this he cannot properly be, till all the powers and attributes with which he is entrusted, are clearly understood, judiciously brought into action, and thus made subservient to this great purpose. A solid basis for general education, founded upon such prinIciples as shall tend to the moral, the intellectual, and the religious improvement of man, can alone ensure to society that long-desired condition under which individual liberty shall be equalized, and the sacred law of order inviolably maintained.'
The Mechanics of Law-making. By Arthur Symonds, Esq. Lond. 8vo. pp. 400. If we are desirous of finding a comparison for a verbose, encumbered, tautologous composition, we liken it to an Act of Parliament. Ought this to be a true comparison? Ought the law to adopt a style which in an ordinary composition would be denounced as full of sins against the proprieties of language? Ought the rule of every man's conduct to be concealed in a perplexed labyrinth of words, the mazes of which can be but doubtfully threaded even by professional persons? Ought it not rather to resemble a clear, pure stream, the very bottom of which may be seen by every one? Mr. Symonds's object is to simplify the phraseology of the Statute Law, and his volume contains a scheme for bringing about this very desirable end. We cannot follow him through his details, which are entirely practical, but we recommend his work to the serious consideration of all persons who are in any way concerned in the mystery of Law making. Some of his proposed machinery is probably liable to objection; but as a whole, his book is calculated to be eminently useful.
favours which Nature affords to her admirers even in the most ungenial situations.
Outlines of Botany. By R. B. Stewart, Esq. 8vo. This little volume contains a sketch of the Linnæan arrangement of plants, with tables to illustrate the distinctions of genera and species; but its peculiar merit is, that it affords the results of Mr. Stewart's experience during several years' cultivation of a London gardener, showing what trees, what shrubs, and what flowers, are best able to contend with an atmosphere fraught with humidity and smoke. It will therefore prove a source of great pleasure and amusement to those who, though "in populous city pent," yet sigh for rural joys, and are desirous to avail themselves of those
Little Fables for Little Folks, is a pretty little book, illustrated with very well-executed cuts. The fables are selected from the old stock, and related in familiar language, suitable to the infantine reader.
Account of the Labourer's Friend Society for bettering the condition of the Labouring Classes, particularly in allotting to them small portions of land, established at Wallington in Surrey, in the month of July 1835. By Nicholas Carlisle, Esq, F.R.S. &c. &c.-This is an exposé of the plans of the above Society, whose governing motive evidently is that of rendering the agricultural labourer at once industrious and independent. When men can be stimulated by the exercise of their own resources to become economists of their time, to desert the village alehouse for the cultivation of their small allotment of land, held at a fair but not onerous rent, an essential national benefit is conferred.
The husbandman is no longer the villein or slave of the soil, according to the obsolete terms of feudal bondage; he becomes a shareholder in the great aggregate of agricultural produce; he has a personal interest in all those better ties which unite the body politic, which make men good neighbours, moral and religious characters, and loyal subjects. The rules of this Society seem admirably calculated to secure its benevolent purposes from abuse, and we can conscientiously recommend them to the attention of those public-spirited persons who may desire to establish similar institutions in other districts. Indeed we hope that the day is not distant when we shall see them adopted throughout the land.
An Inquiry into the origin of Copyhold Tenure. By George Beaumont, Esq. 8vo, pp. 72.-Upon arriving at the conclusion of this Inquiry, we could not help exclaiming, almost involuntarily, "What can Mr. Beaumont mean?" Fortunately we turned the page, and found an Appendix, at the commencement of which we were told that his "doctrine" is "that manors were originally the districts of a certain extent occupied by the subject Romans and Britons, who chose, or were permitted to reside in a Saxon kingdom in the enjoyment of their possessions, but subject to a land-tax." Now, if any reader, emulating our heroic perseverance, should actually peruse the "In
quiry," ," but happen to miss the Appendix, we defy him to explain what the book is about. In this respect it is a literary curiosity; and as we have no doubt the author intended it to be, it is an admirable satire upon those antiquarian writers who mystify their subjects by a palpable obscurity of style. There is something very happy in the idea of writing a long "Inquiry," which nobody can understand, and adding an Appendix to tell the poor bewildered reader Mr. Beaumont what the author meant. intimates, that if any one should ask "of what service his Inquiry will prove?" it will be well to delay making any reply until "the origin of all the ruling decisions in abstruse points of copyhold law shall have been satisfactorily proved to be correctly stated in our Text Books and Reports ;" and when that correctness has been proved, Mr. Beaumont wittily adds, "In that case I should answer that there was no utility in this inquiry." This is admirable. We quite agree with Mr. Beaumont.
The French Language its own Teacher, Part 2, by René Aliva, appears to be a useful school-book; the grammatical explanations of the reading lessons are very good. It contains a new system of French conjugations.
Rapin's Life of Alfred the Great, translated into French, with a vocabulary and dictionary of genders, by N. Lambert, is a good reading book for beginners.
We recommend The Essentials of French Grammar, by the Rev. J. Macgowan, to the pocket of the student; it contains much in a small space.
Private Thoughts on Religion, &c. By Bp. Beveridge. Edited by Rev. H. Stebbing. (Sacred Classics.)-There is no name more venerable among those who have adorned the doctrines of the Church of England, by the sanctity of their lives, or explained and enforced them by their learning and eloquence, than that of Bp. Beveridge. This treatise, one of the most interesting among the Bishop's works, has therefore been judiciously selected for publication, and a very good practical Introduction of the Editor has conferred an additional value on it.
tyn and by all who have perused it with attentive and pious minds. It appears that in 1823 there were 471,417 North American Indians, from the eastern shores of the Mississippi to the west of the rocky mountains. The name of Brainerd will hereafter rank with those of Elliot and Schwarz, and, we trust, with many others now less known, who are dedicating their lives to the great work of scattering the bread of life on the distant and desolate waters of the earth. We have no room to abridge a work, which ought to be read in all the fulness of its interesting narrative; for its minutest details are full of spiritual information, and every letter of the book seems to point as it were to distant and unconverted regions, and admonish the reader, "Go and do thou likewise."
The Life of the Rev. David Brainerd, Missionary to the North American Indians. By Rev. J. Pratt.-A very interesting and most instructive little volume, which was highly valued by Henry Mar
The Angler in Ireland, or an Englishman's Ramble through Connaught and Munster. 2 vols.-A book which may be of advantage to Piscator, and direct him to where the fattest salmon and largest bull-trout resort; but we are afraid that any other information will be sought in vain. We kept a sharp look-out for facts which would delight naturalists, but they were all lying at the bottom of such deep bottles of poteen, that we could not fish them up. We learn, indeed, at p. 53, that there are no minnows in the Irish streams, nor moles among its animals, nor nightingales among its birds, nor snakes among its reptiles, and that pheasants and jays were formerly unknown. The author also says, that he caught a trout of about four pounds weight, with a deep gash down its side, which had been inflicted by the talons of a brother angler, the eagle. He also remarks on this bird of Jove: "disturb him how and when you will, the eagle never shows any symptoms of fear; but slowly leaves the spot invaded by man, rising and rising above you, without any perceptible movement of his out-stretched pinions.""I have often," says the author, "watched the way of the eagle in the air for a considerable time together, and never could perceive him once flap his wings to his side. His movements seem to be entirely governed by the inclination of the huge wings and tail to the wind; in the same way as a ship is propelled by the action of the breeze on its sails." Of the terrific ignorance of the common peo.. ple in Ireland, a curious story is told in vol.i.p. 188: a botanist on the hills of Cunnemara was with difficulty rescued from death, being suspected of having been sent into the district to propagate the cholera !