Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

Full in the front of war he stood;
His home, his country, claimed his blood :
Without one sigh that blood was given ;
He only thought of Heaven.

P.

THE REIGN OF MAY.

I feel a newer life in every gale ;

The winds, that fan the flowers,
And with their welcome breathings fill the sail,

Tell of serener hours,
Of hours that glide unfelt away

Beneath the sky of May.
The Spirit of the gentle south-wind calls

From his blue throne of air,
And where his whispering voice in music falls,

Beauty is budding there;
The bright ones of the valley break

Their slumbers and awake.
The waving verdure rolls along the plain,

And the wide forest weaves,
To welcome back its playful mates again,

A canopy of leaves;
And from its darkening shadow floats

A gush of trembling notes.
Fairer and brighter spreads the reign of May;

The tresses of the woods,
With the light dallying of the west-wind play,

And the full-brimming floods,
As gladly to their goal they run,
Hail the returning sun.

P.

TO A FRIEND AT SEA.

I bless the bright moon, as in heaven she rides
All

pure and serene in her maiden splendor, That, while thou art cleaving the pathless tides,

Her silvery lustre is thy defender.
I listen by night to the rushing wind,

As through the blue skies it is coldly sweeping,
And hope the wild breezes may never find

Their way to the pillow where thou art sleeping. Whenever I look on the dark green sea,

Or think of the fathomless depths of ocean, Oh! sadly my spirit then turns to thee,

And prays thou art safe from the waye's commotion. But joyfully swelleth my gladdened heart,

When favouring gales, in their balmy sweetness,
As lightly they glide o'er the deep, impart
Their freshness to thee, to thy keel their fleetness.

C.

ORITICAL NOTIOES,

Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine for February and March, 1825. Tårs journal has greatly degenerated within a year or two, and is now remarkable for nothing but ultra-toryism and scurrility. About six months since, there appeared in it a sort of chronicle of American writers, arranged alphabetically. This has been continued through five numbers, and is now concluded. When we first observed this, we were surprised at the acquaintance with the personal character and history of many of our writers, which was displayed in it, and at the number of names collected. We were astonished to perceive such a formidable list; and though the notices were generally abusive, we were rather flattered that our friends over the water should have taken the trouble to notice so many of our writers at all. There seemed to be something enigmatical about the whole affair; for though there were many mistakes, they did not appear to be such as a stranger would be likely to fall into; the writer seemed to have too much knowledge of many things, to be so ignorant of some others; and often appeared to be telling a lie rather than making a blunder. He has not had the wit, however, to keep his own secret. In the fifth and last number, he lets “ the cat out of the bag,” and completely nullifies every effect of his strictures, whether good or evil, by discovering himself to be a Mr John Neal, of Baltimore. This person is the author of several novels; one of which, called Randolph, we had occasion to notice in an early number of this Gazette. For this work Mr Neal is said to have received in a most unfortunately

" more kicks than coppers." This sort of honorarium, indeed, to do him justice, he strenuously denies the receipt of, and certainly he is as likely as any one to know. If we erred in publishing an intimation of this kind, we now make the amende honorable to Mr Neal, by giving equal publicity to his denial, and admitting, that at the worst, the thing was rather his misfortune, than his fault. Mr Neal was seen by several persons in this vicinity, some years since. We gather from their account of him, as well as from his writings, that he possessed some natural talent, and had he been “caught young,” might have made something; but that he has been left to himself so long, that he can scarcely be expected ever to be fit for any thing better than a contributor to the Edinburgh Magazine. There are several other articles in these numbers, of which we intended to give some account, but as we can say nothing good of them, we shall perhaps do more wisely to say nothing at all.

literal sense,

Adsonville, or Marrying out; A Narrative Tale. Albany. 1824. 12mo. pp. 285. This is a very ordinary book, printed in a very ordinary manner. The author promises, “ if this shall pass with impunity, to sin no more.” It

is an American novel in the strongest sense of the term. It abounds in Americanisms, and the scenes and characters are copied from American nature, whenever they are copied from any. Few will probably understand the meaning of the secondary designation, “Marrying Out." The hero is a Quaker, who marries out of the society. We are told, that "the tale was mostly written whilst the author had extreme youth to plead in extenuation of its faults," and that it was published at the request of "particular friends." We are sorry to be severe upon a book, that makes so little pretension, but we must needs tell the truth. It is not a sufficient excuse for publishing such a work, that it is not "considered of sufficient consequence to affect American literature." A cheap novel is likely to fall into the hands, and to have its effect upon the minds, of the very class of people, whose language most needs improvement, and will, of course, have more or less effect in perpetuating bad language and bad construction. We believe that the following specimen of the book will be sufficient for most readers, who have any curiosity respecting it.

(6 Edgar had now so far recovered, as to discover their confusion, and that Caroline was missing, or that something had befallen her. He inquired where she was; but not receiving any answer, he pitched off the bed, and made for the door, whilst, to prevent it, they all surrounded him. Caroline, who had inadvertently shut the door after her, having recovered, and hearing them entreating Edgar to be pacified, now entered, and coming up behind him, took hold of his arm. 'Here,' said Penelope, here, cousin Edgar, is Caroline.' He turned, and falling towards her, clasped her in his arms, whilst she, from her recent misfortune, scarcely able to sustain her own weight, sunk under the addition of his, and the carpet, by receiving them both, fortunately kept them from coming to the floor."

An Address to the Utica Lyceum, delivered February 17, 1825. By A. B. Johnson, prefatory to his course of Lectures on the Philosophy of Human Knowledge. Utica. 1825. 8vo. pp. 16.

WE have received a pamphlet with this title, from which we learn two facts that there is a Lyceum at Utica,-and that they are about to have a course of lectures on the " Philosophy of Human Knowledge." We rejoice in the organization and establishment of every institution for the promotion and diffusion of useful knowledge; and have no doubt the Lyceum at Utica is one of those institutions, though we know little of its particular objects, or its means and resources for obtaining them. "The philosophy of human knowledge" is rather a vague subject for a course of lectures; and it would be difficult to predict how a lecturer would manage such a subject. Unfortunately the "prefatory" lecture does not aid us in forming a conjecture. Mr Johnson, on this point, only tells us "it is his misfortune to possess a strong inclination for abstruse studies." But his Address shows a discriminating mind. A remark upon the imperfections of language as an organ of communication between different minds, is worthy of attention. "Words," he says, "may be compared to music. When a Briton listens to a certain tune of Handel, the notes articulate distinctly, God save great George the King; but when an American hears it, the notes articulate 'God save great Washington.' Hence the difficulty of understanding a new idea. The words will constantly excite old ones, though the speaker intends new."

"

INTELLIGENCE.

RECOVERED EDITION OF SHAKSPEARE.

a

A literary treasure of no common value, and of most singular rarity, which is likely to excite a strong interest in the minds of all well-read lovers of the ancient English drama, and will awaken the hopes and fears of every ambitious and zealous collector of scarce books, has, within a short time, been brought to light.

This exhumated curiosity is a book in small quarto, said to have been once possessed by Sir Thomas Hapmer, but not alluded to by him; and containing scarce editions of eleven of Shakspeare's plays, among which is Hamlet of an edition printed in 1603. Of this edition not the slightest mention has ever been made ; it is therefore fair to conclude, that to the various able and learned commentators of Shakspeare it was utterly unknown, the earliest which has ever obtained notice being that of 1604, of which Mr Malone gives the title, though it is quite clear he had no other knowledge of it.

Hamlet first appeared, according to Malone's calculation, in 1600, the newly discovered edition, therefore, was published only three years after the tragedy was produced. Hence it may be, in many respects, a more exact copy of the original than any subsequently printed. The following notice is taken from the London Literary Gazette.

It is proper to remark, that the copy shows abundance of typographical errors, and a great want of skill in the copyist. The errors, however, are retained in the quotations which are made.

Hamlet-Edition of 1603. “We will rather express our gratification that an edition of Hamlet, anterior to any hitherto known to the world, has just been brought to light, than our surprise that it should have been so long hidden. Yet it is a strange thing that such a volume as that in which it has been found, and in the possession of the parties to whom it belonged, should have been suffered to be undiscovered or unnoticed among the lumber of any library. Every person of literary taste must wonder, and every enthusiastic admirer of Shakspeare be inclined to utter an exclamation of dismay, when we lay before them the contents of this precious book. They are as follow1. The Merchant of Venice. Printed by J. R. for Thomas Heyes. 1600. First

edition. (Perfect.] 2. The Merry Wives of Wirdsor. Printed by T. C. for Arthur Johnson. 1602.

First edition. [Wanting last leaf but one.] 3. Much Adoe about Nothing. Printed by V. S. for Andrew Wise and William 8. Henry IV. Part II. Printed by V. S. for Andrew Wise and William Aspley,

Aspley. 1600. First edition. (Perfect.] 4. A Midsommer Nights Dreame. Printed for Thomas Fisher. 1600. First edi.

tion. [Wanting four leaves in the middle.] 5. Troylus & Cressida. One of the two first editions, both printed in 1609. (Wants

title.] 6. Romeo & Juliet. Printed by Thomas Creede for Cuthbert Burby. 1599. First

edition of the enlarged Play. [Perfect.] 7. Hamlet. Printed by N. L. and John Trundell, 1603. First known edition. Last

leaf wanting; but contains Hamlet's Death, and very few lines are wanting, probably not half so many as occur after the hero's death, in the received text of the play.

1600. First edition. Signature E has six leaves. (Perfect.] 9.

Part I. Printed by P. S. for Andrew Wise. 1599. First edition." Perfect.] 10. Henry V. Printed by Thomas Creede, for Thomas Pauier. 1602. Second

edition. [Perfect.] 11. Richard Ill. Printed by Thomas Creede, for Andrew Wise. 1602. Third

edition. (Peofuct.) 12. The Two Noble Kinsmen, by John Fletcher and William Shakspeare. 1634.

First edition. [Perfect.]

The size of this important and curious volume is the ancient small quarto, and, with the exceptions specited above, it is in excellent order. It was the property of Sir T. Hanmer, but must have been purchased by him after he had published his Shakspeare; otherwise he would have made use of it in that publication. From Sir T. Hanmer, it passed into the possession of the Bunbury family ; and it was from one of its branches that it came into the hands of its present owners,

Messrs Payne & Foss.

[To be continued.]

HARRIS' NATURAL HISTORY OF THE BIBLE. We are happy to learn, that this valuable work has been reprinted in London, and very favourably reviewed in the Philosophical Magazine and Journal for January, 1825. We quote a few sentences from that review with the greater pleasure, because they will serve the double purpose of furnishing a notice of the work, and of showing the estimation in which it is held where it has been reprinted.

“ Among the valuable contributions to science and literature, with which our American brethren are now enriching our language, we are happy to notice this useful volume. The want of such a work has been much felt in this country. * * * It is of essential service to the public to possess works on subjects of common interest, comprising in a small compass, what before could not be found without access to voluminous authors and extensive libraries.

“In order fully to understand the Sacred Writings, a knowledge of whatever is local and peculiar becomes important. Not the least important, as contributing to the illustration of Scripture, is Natural History. The poetical books of the Hebrews, in particular, abound in lively comparisons, local allusions, and strong metaphors, drawn from material objects, whose most powerful charms arise from their individuality. The real import of the sentiment, expressed by such allusions and inetaphors, must be gathered from a knowledge of the objects on which they are founded. Much of the poetry of the Hebrews, like that of every people of a remote age, partakes largely of the pastoral kind, resulting from the personal occupation of the authors, or the common condition of mankind. To enjoy the beauty of the pastoral scenery, which is so often alluded to in the Hebrew Scriptures, one should have some knowledge of the climate and natural productions of the country which furnishes it; and every thing which tends to make the Sacred Scriptures more engaging to the mass of readers, by illustrating what is obscure, is a great good.

In the use he has made of his various authorities, Dr Harris manifests a due discrimination, and puts it in the reader's power, generally,

[ocr errors]
« ZurückWeiter »