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powers," &c. the Preacher very for. cibly inculcates the duty of submission to the constituted authorities of the State, both Civil and Ecclesiastical; and thus concludes:
"We of this country have more especial cause to give thanks to Almighty God, the disposer of all events, “at whose command nations and empires rise and fall, flourish and decay," for suffering our lot to fall under such a constitution as we enjoy; and that these blessings may be continued to us, let us beseech him that those who act here on earth as his vice. gerents inay ever have his favour and protection, and be endued with such wisdom, strength, and firmness, as may enable them, heedless of popular remonstrances, effectually to beat down sedition wherever it rears his snaky crest, and to crush the monster in its first efforts to spread abroad ruin and desolation." pp. 22, 23.
7. Memoirs of the Public and Private Life of the Right Hon. R. B. Sheridan, with a particular Account of his Family and Connexions. By John Watkin, LL. D. 2 vols. 8vo.
BIOGRAPHY is of much importance in developing the characters of public persons, and unfolding the seeret springs of complicated events. In the present work the author appears to have risen superior to the influence of party, and has been careful to represent actions as he found them, and to discover the real causes out of which they sprang. The late Mr. Sheridan may be considered as a most prominent character, by the splendour of his eloquence, the bril liancy of his wit, and the versatility of his powers. A genuine narrative, therefore, of the particulars of the life of the Author of the " School for Scandal" could not fail of being highly acceptable to the literary, as well as to the political world.
The first volume is divided into sixteen chapters, besides the introduction, which contains an account of the antiquity of the family of Sheridan, memoirs of Dr. Thomas Sheridan, and anecdotes of Dean Swift; but these we pass over in order to keep in view the principal and chief character of the work.
If it be true what Plutarch, in his Life of Demosthenes, asserts, that the "first requisite to happiness is, that a man be born in a famous city," Mr. Sheridan may be said to have been happy even from his cradle, for he
was born in October, 1751, in Dorsetstreet. Dublin, and baptized on the 4th Nov. in the parish church of St. Mary. His mother had the charge of his early education, and when she placed him under the care of her cousin, Mr. S. Whyte, she observed that she had brought him a subject for the trial of his patience, as he had nearly exhausted hers by his impenetrable dulness. At this time the subject of these memoirs had nearly attained his seventh year, and this anecdote confirms the idea of that constitutional indolence which accompanied Mr. Sheridan through life. In August, 1759, young Sheridan arrived in England from Dublin, and the same complaint of sluggish indifference to learning continued to be made by his mother, who, in a letter to Mr. Whyte, thus expresses herself:
"My son, thank God, arrived safe and well. I can't say he does his preceptor as much credit as George Cunningham does, for his progress has been small, for eighteen months; but, mistake me not: [don't say this, as it is too much the absurd custom of parents, by way of throwing a reflection on their teacher, of whose care and abilities I am perfectly satisfied: it is the interest of the master to do every thing to the best of his power for the advantage of his pupils."
His mother now again took her favourite son under her care, and had the satisfaction of seeing her labours attended with success.
In the beginning of 1762, R. B. Sheridan was sent to Harrow School, then under the snperintendance of Dr. Sumner, but his progress was not calculated to remove the unfavourable estimate which his mother had formed of his abilities and diligence. Among his contemporaries at school, were some who have shone with splendour and utility in public life, but these were not his companions; and, in consequence of his indifference to learning, he was regarded by the superior boys with coutempi. This treatment, however, would sometimes provoke exertion which indicated native genius that only wanted a proper stimulus and cultivation to become eminent; and this did not escape the observation of Dr. Samuel Parr, who was one of the under-teachers of the school, who, perceiving in Sheridan strong powers of retention and an acuteness of penetration, generously undertook
undertook the task of drawing into exercise his opening talents.
But the departure of Parr for Cambridge was a serious loss to his young pupil, who experienced another affliction of still greater moment by the death of his mother, to whom he was indebted for the elements of knowledge, and whose counsel, would, in all likelihood, have been of essential benefit to the direction of his conduct, and the right application of his talents.
Whilst he was at Harrow, his Biographer relates the following anecdote:
"We are told he was made a frequent butt for the ridicule of the other boys, particularly those who were born of great families, or to brighter prospects. One of the most troublesome and impertinent of these youths, the son of an eminent phy. sician in London, took occasion, in the play-ground, to exercise his wit at the expense of Sheridan, as being the son of a player; on which the latter quickly retorted, 'Tis true, my father lives by pleasing people, but yours lives by killing them.'"
Some of the admirers of Sheridan have attempted the justification of his carelessness at school, by the absurd plea that he did not feel that pedantic attachment to the learned languages which, it is said, too often distracts the attention from better pursuits, and gives to a comparatively useless brauch of education, the monopoly of time, talents, and attention.
Richard Brinsley Sheridan was in his eighteenth year when he quitted Harrow School, where he passed undistinguished, except by the commiseration of Samuel Parr, but where he neither formed any particular friendship, nor left behind him any pleasing
marks of remembrance.
The second chapter contains the Retirement of Mr. Sheridan from public exbibition, Anecdote Observations of Dr.Johnson, Embarrassments, Private Concerts, Comedy of the Rivals, Farce of St. Patrick's Day, Opera of the Duenna, Abdication of Garrick, succeeded by Sheridan.
After his marriage his chief resource appears to have been derived from writing for the fugitive publications of the day, in which he was assisted by bis wife; and many years he has been heard to say, that "if be bad stuck
to the law, he believed he should have done as much as his friend Tom Erskine, but (continued he) I had no time for such studies: Mrs. Sheridan and myself were often obliged to keep writing for our daily leg or shoulder of mutton, otherwise we should have had no dinner." One of his friends, to whom he confessed this, wittily replied, "Then, I perceive, it was a joint concern."
It was in the year 1782, upon the fall of Lord North's Administration, that Mr. Sheridan began to shine as a first-rate Statesman, and he never missed an opportunity of exercising his wit, when he could display it with effect.
"At length, on the 20th March, Lord North came down to the House, and declared that he and his colleagues were no longer in power. Mr. Sheridan, on this change, obtained the appointment of Under Secretary of State for the Northern department, which office, however, he held but a short time; for the death of the Marquis, in July, occasioned a breach in the Cabinet of so serious a nature, that Mr. Fox and his immediate friends gave up their places. Various were the reasons assigned for this hasty measure; but though the seceders endeavoured to justify their conduct upon public principles, no doubt can be now entertained that the elevation of the Earl of Shelburne, afterwards Marquis of Lansdowne, to the vacant post of First Lord of the Treasury, was the real ground of separation."
It was in the month of February 1783, that Mr. Sheridan, for the first time, came in contact with Mr. Pitt, who was then Chancellor of the Exchequer. The subject of debate in the
House of Commons was the terms of the peace just concluded with Holland; in the course of the debate, Mr. Sheridan animadverted upon Mr.Pitt's language and conduct in having recommended that temper to others, of which he failed to set them an example; and he concluded by advising Mr. Pitt and his friends to reserve themselves for the approaching day of discussion. Alluding to Sheridan's dramatic connexions and pursuits, Mr.
"No man admired more than he did the abilities of the honourable Gentleman, the elegant sallies of bis thoughts, the gay effusions of his fancy, his dramatic turns, his epigrammatic points; and if they were reserved for their proper stage, they would, no doubt, receive what the Hon. Gentleman's abilities always did re
Mr. Sheridan in explanation adverted in a forcible manner to this personality, saying,
"He need not comment on it, as the propriety, the taste, and the gentlemanly point of it must have been obvious to the House. But," added he, "let me assure the Right Hon. Gentleman, that I do now, and will at any time when he chuses to repeat this sort of allusion, meet it with the most sincere good humour; nay, I will say more:-flattered and encouraged by the Right Hon. Gentleman's panegyric on my talents, if ever I again engage in the composition he alludes to, I may be tempted to an act of presumption, to attempt, with an improvement, on one of Ben Jonson's best characters, that of the angry boy in the Alchymist."
This reciprocity of sarcastic ridicule occasioned much sport at the period, and the whimsical application of Sheridan's dramatic reading fixed upon his opponent an appellation which he did not get rid of for many years.
The latter part of the first volume details at great length the particulars relative to the share that Mr. Sheridan took in the famous prosecution of Warren Hastings, Esq. This was, we think, the period when Mr. Sheridan had arrived at the apex of his political fame; and this portion of the work, abounds with numerous specimens of his splendid talents as an orator and a statesman, which commanded the universal admiration, of both his friends and foes.
(To be continued.)
8. Eveleen Mountjoy; or, Views of Life. A Novel. By Mrs. Robert Moore. 4 vols. 12mo. Longman and Co.
MRS. Moore introduces her Novel, by professing to consider that "Works of Fiction, written on Christian principles, may do good, by accidentally falling into the bands of those readers, whose minds are too little under the influence of religion, to incline them to peruse works more worthy of their attention ;"-" and certain, that however she may have failed in the execution of her story,
the moral tendency of her work can. not be injurious, she ventures to hope its errors may be forgiven."
To the humble meed of approbation thus solicited, the author is fully moral teudency throughout, its great entitled: her work has strictly a ing out the danger and pernicious object appearing to be that of pointeffects of a neglected education, and the disregard of an early attention to religious principles.
The Story is somewhat prolix, and many of the circumstances forced and unnatural; yet does it bear sufficient marks of ingenuity and inventive fancy to repay the trouble of perusal.
The outline is as follows: Eveleen Mountjoy, the secret offspring of a clandestine marriage, is committed at an early age to the guardianship of her uncle, General Gresville, by her father in his dying moments; whose death is accelerated by his wife having entered into a second marriage, in consequence of a premature report that he had died in India. In the mean time, an estate, bequeathed to Eveleen's father, devolves to General Gresville, from the belief that his brother had died without issue. Eveleen becomes a neglected inmate in the dissipated family of her uncle, until, struck with compunction on her account, he determines to make her some compensation, by uniting her in marriage to his eldest son; but the young heir not complying with his wishes (and being ignorant of their source), she is contracted to a younger brother, and afterwards introduced into the world as a future member of the family. In the gay circles she meets with her mother, who is the wife of Lord Ulverstone, and being still in the prime of life, is endeavouring, by plunging in dissipation, to forget her early sorrows. The mother and daughter, without any suspicion of their relationship, become mutually fascinated with each other, which attachment draws upon Eveleen the displeasure of the Gresville family, and at length proves the means of dissolving her marriage contract.
Upon the death of General Gresville, she is removed from his family, a de serted orphan, with the slender fortune which her father had been enabled to acquire in India. Under these circumstances, she eventually becomes
pious and reflecting; and, when, upon the death of Lady Ulverstone, the mystery of her birth is revealed, she disinterestedly refuses to expose the failings of her uncle, of laying claim to the estate, but is prevailed upon to accept from the family a sum of money. The Story concludes by her union with a gentleman to whom she had been from infancy attached.
9. Lucilla; or, the Reconciliation. By the Author of the Twin Sisters, &c. &c. 2 vols. cr. 8vo. Sherwood and Co.
THE intention of this Novel is to expose the mischiefs which may re sult from female confidantes, here effecting the cruel separation of a fond and dignified couple. As to the other matters, they turn of course upon the usual pivot of courtship:
Says a pig to a pig, pretty piggy say, "If your mammy will say yes, you will not say nay."
The character of the heroine and various other friends, is a very proper rebuke of weak and proud girls of fortune and the lover is an honourable constant swine, as rusticks pervert the old poetical word “swain."
10. An Address to the Philharmonic Society. By T. D. Worgan, Professor of Music. pp. 52.
THE numberless publications of this nature to which Mr. Logier's system of musical education has given rise, have unquestionably, in a greater or less degree, claims upon the attention
of the public. We cannot, however,
discover in the work before us any new arguments in favour of a theo retical knowledge of music in the amateur; nor are we quite certain that Mr. Worgan has not advanced tissue of reasonings already sifted to the bottom, and nearly worn threadbare by the endless controversies which they have created. We regret that his ideas upon the subject, which, if occasionally void of originality, are not equally destitute of ingenuity,
should have been delivered in a strain of such pedantic egotism as must tend in a great degree to obviate his own intentions in the endeavour to give them publicity, and to destroy all the effects which might otherwise have been expected to arise from rational and well-founded argument. The
question to which this pamphlet re fers has been so frequently discussed, that we shall not waste our readers' time and our own by enlarging farther upon it on the present occasion. Suffice it to observe, that in order to comprehend its beauties and feel its excellencies, music must, to a certain extent, be understood and cultivated as a science, although we are by no means disposed to agree with Mr. Worgan, in thinking it absolutely necessary for ladies to take scores with them to concerts. The want of this knowledge must undoubtedly prevent au amateur from comprehending the merits of abstruse and studied compositions of music, almost in the same ratio as a deficiency of literary know. ledge would render it impossible for a man to enter into all the recondite beauties of Shakspeare or Milton. But as the powers and effect of me. lody and harmony do not require to be studied in order to be felt and cujoyed, so will the generality of amateurs, and especially the female part of them, be content with the gratifi. cations which are thus instinctively produced, and we fear shrink from the laborious task which necessarily imposes itself upon this branch of musical education, notwithstanding all Mr. Worgan's attempts to prove the facility with which it may be atLained, and the advantages of attaining it; nay, notwithstanding his quaint endeavours to strew the "thorny path" with the flaunting flowers of his tragi-comic Sonatinas. It is, we believe, Quintilian, who very pertinently remarks, Docli RATIONEM artis intelligunt, indocti VOLUPTATEM. Mr. W. is much too severe upon what he is pleased to term the "feathery versatility of the fair sex," and talks too much about the "growling and squeaking of gentleman amateurs," to become a favourite with either the one or the other; and whilst he very candidly confesses that one of his main objects in thus obtruding himself upon the public is to render his labours as beneficial as possible to himself and family, he has not, we conceive, devised the best method of "sprinkling himself with the golden showers" which he appears to consider at present so entirely monopolized by the music shops.
11. Odes and other Poems. By Henry Neele. Sherwood and C. 1816, pp. 144.—Additional Poems, 1819.
Mr. NEELE is the Author of some of the Lectures on Shakspeare, delivered by Mr. Britton at the late Stratford Commemoration of Shakspeare, and designed to be read at the Royal Institution. We are told that these evince powers. In poetry, he is a" pyre preciosa" in the school of Collins, Shakspeare, and Gray. We would say that he has read, rather than, imitated either, with the exception of the first. How near he has invented auy thing to match with the genuine prosopopaia of Collins, we leave the reader to judge.
"See Death, the mightiest of all,
Of Eglantine that once was gay,
But, notwithstanding these indications of high merit, we think that there are many of a superior order in his later descriptive pieces; a circumstance which is easily accounted for. Appearances with which our senses are conversant, please more than any other in poetry." Mr. Neele, in our next quotation, evinces sensibility enough for the charms of nature, and let him fill his fancy with them. Such is the theory of educating poetical genius; and the most eminent bard of his day is only pure and matchless, when he bears witness to it.
"The gentle Avon [ery vale, Wanders, like thought, down its own flowNow hid between its willows, and now bursting [signt, Bright with the beam of heaven, upon the kissing away the moss that hinders it. The everlasting bills are ranged around Magnificent; and on the highest summit The noon-tide rays in lines of glory fall, And form a path-a path of light that
And strange emotions, like remember'd music,
Steal o'er the soul, aud every bud of feeling,
Like Cœrulea, when the day-God smiles, Opens, expands, and blossoms."
These were written on the Welcombe Hills, Warwickshire. We omit, with regret, the lines so full of truth and beauty, on Fame, p. 103-and dismiss the subject with this hint, that no Muse, however pregnant with essential fire, is ascendant now, which has not eminently admired, selected, and displayed the forms of nature. It is the alphabet of the Poet, the informing source of variety, fertility, and sympathy.
12. A Treatise on the Existence of a Sapreme Being, and Proofs of the Christian Religion, with an Appendix concerning the earlier Opponents und Defenders of Christianity. By Thomas Moir, Member of the College of Justice, Edinburgh. 12mo. pp. 155.
AN excellent little Book, containing the principal arguments and proofs contained in more voluminous publications, and especially accommodated to the circumstances of those, whose situations in life do not permit them to peruse, or who are unable to procure, more expensive works.
We shall extract a short passage, because it seems to bear hard upon some recent Medical revivers of Materialism.
"It [the Soul] is a spiritual and imma
terial substance, whose nature depends,
not on the state of our mortal body, as is seen every day in old men, and bodies exsoul is often more pregnant and lively hausted by sickness, where the mind or thau in youth, when the body is in its full vigour." P. 33.
Should this Book reach a new edition, we recommend to the Author a studious perusal of the Works of Norris, Author of the "Ideal World," as a means of further enriching this useful Compendium.