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Perhaps the highest instance of Words- | pher as well as of a poet. He reviews them worth's imaginative faculty, exerted in a tale with emotions equally remote from pedantry of human fortunes, is to be found in "The and from intolerance-regarding not only the White Doe of Rylstone." He has here suc- grace and the loveliness of their forms, but ceeded in two distinct efforts, the results of their symbolical meaning-tracing them to which are yet in entire harmony. He has their elements in the human soul, and bringing shown the gentle spirit of a high-born maiden before us the eldest wisdom which was ingathering strength and purity from sorrow, bodied in their shapes, and speedily forgotten and finally, after the destruction of her family, by their worshippers. Thus, among "the paland amidst the ruin of her paternal domains, pable array of sense," does he discover hints consecrated by suffering. He has also here, of immortal life-thus does he transport us by the introduction of that lovely wonder, the back more than twenty centuries and enable favourite doe of his heroine, ai once linked us to enter into the most mysterious and farthe period of his narrative to that of its events, reaching hopes of a Grecian votary:and softened down the saddest catastrophe and the inost exquisite of mortal agonies. A gal
-A Spirit hung, lant chieftain, one of the goodliest pillars of
Beautiful region ! o'er thy Towns and Farms,
Statues, and Temples, and memorial Tombs; the olden time, falls, with eight of his sons,
And emanations were perceived, and acts in a hopeless contest for the religion to which Or immortality, in Nature's course, they were devoted—the ninth, who followed Exemplified by mysteries, that were felt them unarmed, is slain while he strives to As bonds, on grave Philosopher imposed bear away, for their sake, the banner which
And armed Warrior ; and in every grove, he had abjured—the sole survivor, a helpless
A gay or pensive tenderness prevail'd woman, is left to wander desolate about the
When piety more awful had relaxed.
“Take, running River, take these locks of mine," silent halls and tangled glades, once witnesses
Thus would the votary say, this sever'd hair, of her joyous infancy-and yet all this variety My vow fulfilling, do I here present, of grief is rendered mild and soothing by the Thankful for my beloved child's return. influences of the imagination of the poet. The Thy banks, Cephisus, he again hath trod, doe, which first with its quiet sympathy excited
Thy murmurs heard; and drunk the crystal lymph relieving tears in its forsaken mistress, which
With which thou dost refresh the thirsty lip, followed her, a gentle companion, through all
And moisten all day long these flowery fields.'
And doubtless, sometimes, when the hair was shed her mortal wanderings, and which years after Upon the flowing streamn, a thought arose made Sabbath visits to her grave, is, like the Of life continuous, Being unimpair'd spirit of nature, personified to heal, to bless, That hath been, is, and where it was and is and to elevate. All who have read the poem
There shall be seen, and heard, and felt, and known, aright, will feel prepared for that apotheosis
And recognised,-existence unexposed which the poet has reserved for this radiant
To the blind walk of mortal accident;
From diminution free, and weakening age, being, and will recognise the imaginative truth
While man grows old, and dwindles and decays; of that bold figure, by which the decaying
And countless generations of mankind towers of Bolton are made to smile upon its Depart: and leave no vestige where they trod." form, and to attest its unearthly relations:
We must now bring this long article to a “There doth the gentle creature lie
close--and yet how small a portion of our aaWith these adversities unmoved ; Calm spectacle, by earth and sky
thor's beauties have we even hinted! We In their benignity approved !
have passed over the clear majesty of the And ay, methinks, this hoary pile,
poem of " Hart Leap Well"—the lyrical granSubdued by outrage and decay,
deur of the Feast of Brougham Castle-the Looks down upon her with a smile,
masculine energy and delicate grace of the A gracious smile, that seems to say, Sonnets which, with the exception perhaps of "Thou art not a Child of Time, But daughter of the eternal Prime !""
one or two of Warton and of Milton, far exceed
all others in our language-" The Wagoner," Although Wordsworth chiefly delights in that fine and hearty concession of a waterthese humanities of poetry, he has shown that drinker to the joys of wine and the light-hearthe possesses feelings to appreciate and powered folly which it inspires—and numbers of to grasp the noblest of classic fictions. No smaller poems and ballads, which to the superone can read his Dion, his Loadamia, and the ficial observer may seem only like woodland most majestic of his sonnets, without perceiv- springs, but in which he who ponders intently ing that he has power to endow the stateliest will discern the breakings forth of an undershapes of old mythology with new life, and to current of thought and feeling which is silently diffuse about them a new glory. Hear him, flowing beneath him. We trust, however, we for example, breaking forth, with holy disdain have written or rather quoted enough to induce of the worldly spirit of the time, into this such of our readers as hitherto have despised sublime apostrophy :
the poet on the faith of base or ignorant criti“Great God! I'd rather be
cism to read him for themselves, especially as A Pagan suckled in a creed outworn:
by the recent appearance of the Excursion in So might I, standing on some pleasant lee,
octavo, and the arrangement of the minor Have glimpses which might make me less forlorn;
poems in four small volumes, the whole of his Have sight of Proteus coming from the sea,
poetical works are placed within their reach. Or hear old Triton blow bis wreathed horn!"
If he has little popularity with the multitude, But he has chosen rather to survey the ma- he is rewarded by the in•ense veneration and jesties of Greece, with the eye of a philoso- love of the finest spirits of the age. Not only
Coleridge, Lloyd, Southey, Wilson, and Lamb —with whom his name has been usually connected—but almost all the living poets have paid eloquent homage to his genius. He is loved by Montgomery, Cornwall, and Rogers— revered by the author of Waverley—ridiculed and pillaged by Lord Byron' Jeffrey, if he begins an article on his greatest work with the pithy sentence “this will never do,” glows even while he criticises, and before he closes, though he came like Balaam to curse, like him “blesses altogether.” Innumerable essays, sermons, speeches, poems—even of those who profess to despise him—are tinged by his fancy and adorned by his expressions. And there are no small number of young hearts, which have not only been enriched but renovated by his poetry-which he has expanded, purified, and exalted—and to which he has given the means of high communion with the good and the pure throughout the universe. These, equal at least in number to the original lovers of Shakspeare or of Milton, will transmit his fame to kindred spirits, and whether it shall receive or be denied the honour of fashion, it will ever be cherished by the purest of earthly minds, and connected with the most majestic of nature's scenery. Too many of our living poets have seemed to take pride in building their fame on the sands. They have chosen for their subjects the disease of the heart—the sad anomalies of humanity—the turbulent and guilty passions which are but for a season. Their renown, therefore, must necessarily decline as the species advances. Instead of tracing out the lineaments of the image of God indelibly impressed on the soul, they have painted the deformities which may obscure them for
awhile, but can never utterly destroy them. Vice, which is the accident of our nature, has been their theme instead of those affections which are its groundwork and essence. “Yet a little space, and that which men call evil is no more " Yet a little space, and those wild emotions—those horrid deeds—those strange aberrations of the soul—on which some gifted bards have delighted to dwell, will fade away like the phantoms of a feverish dream. Then will poetry, like that of Wordsworth, which even now is the harbinger of a serener day, be felt and loved and held in undying honour. The genius of a poet who has chosen this high and pure career, too, will proceed in every stage of being, seeing that “it is a thing immortal as himself,” and that it was ever inspired by affections which cannot die. The poet even in brighter worlds will feel, with inconceivable delight, the connection between his earthly and celestial being—live along the golden lines of sentiment and thought back to the most delicious moments of his contemplations here—and rejoice in the recognition of those joys of which he had tastes and intimations on earth. Then shall he see the inmost soul of his poetry disclosed—grasp as assured realities the gorgeous visions of his infancy—feel “the burden of the mystery of all this unimaginable world,” which were lightened to him here, dissolved away—see the prophetic workings of his imagination realized—exult while “pain and anguish and the wormy grave,” which here were to him “shapes of a dream,” are utterly banished from the view—and listen to the full chorus of that universal harmony whose first notes he here delighted to awaken :
REVIEW OF “NORTH'S LIFE OF LORD GUILFORD,”
This old piece of legal biography, which has been lately republished, is one of the most delightful books in the world. Its charm does not consist in any marvellous incidents of Lord Guilford's life, or any peculiar interest attaching to his character, but in the unequalled naïveté of the writer—in the singular felicity with which he has thrown himself into his subject—and his vivid delineations of all the great lawyers of his time. He was a younger brother of the Lord Keeper, to whose affection he was largely indebted, and from whom he appears to have been scarcely ever divided. His work, in nice minuteness of detail, and living picture of motive, almost oquals the auto-biographies of Benevento Cellini, Rousseau, and Cibber. He seems to be almost as intensely conscious of all his brother's actions, and the movements of his mind, as they were of their own. All his
ideas of human greatness and excellence appear taken from the man whom he celebrates. There never was a more liberal or gentle prostration of the spirit. He was evidently the most humane, the most kindly, and the most single-hearted, of flatterers. There is a beauty in his very cringing, beyond the independence of many. It is the most gentleman-like submission, the most graceful resignation of self of which we have ever read. Hence, there is nothing of the vanity of authorship—no attempt to display his own powers—throughout the work. He never comes forward in the first person, except as a witness. Indeed, he usually speaks of himself as of another, as though he had half lost his personal consciousness in the contemplation of his idol's virtues. The following passage, towards the conclusion, where he recounts the favours of Lord Guilford to a ounger brother, and at last, in the fulness of is heart, discloses, by a little quotation, that he is speaking of himself—this breaking from his usual modest narration into the only personal feeling he seems to have cherished—is beautifully characteristic of the spirit which he brought to his work. “But I ought to come nearer home, and take an account of his benevolences to his paternal relations. His youngest brother (the honourable Roger North) was designed, by his father, for the civil law, as they call that professed at Doctors' Commons, upon a specious fancy to have a son of each faculty or employ used in England. But his lordship dissuaded him, and advised rather to have him put to the common law; for the other profession provided but for a few, and those not wonderful well; whereas, the common law was more certain, and, in that way, he himself might bring him forwards, and assist him. And so it was determined. His lordship procured for him a petit chamber, which cost his father £60, and there he was settled with a very scanty allowance; to which his lordship made a timely addition of his own money: more than all this, he took him almost constantly out with him to company and entertainments, and always paid his scot; and, when he was attorney general, let him into partnership in one of the offices under him; and when his lordship was treasurer, and his brother called to the bar, a perquisite chamber, worth £150, fell; and that he gave to his brother for a practising chamber, and took in lieu only that which he had used for his studies. When his lordship was chief justice, he gave him the countenance of practising under him, at nisi prius; and all the while his lordship was a house-keeper, his brother and servant were of his family at all meals. When the Temple was burnt, he fitted up a little room and study in his chambers in Serjeant's Inn, for his brother to manage his small affairs of law in, and lodged him in his house till the Temple was built, and he might securely lodge there. And his lordship was pleased with a back door in his own study, by which he could go in and out to his brother, to discourse of incidents; which way of life delighted his lordship exceedingly. And, what was more extraordinary, he went with his lordship in his coach constantly, to, and from, the courts of nisi prius, at Guildhall and Westminster. And, after his lordship had the great seal, his brother's practice (being then made of the king's counsel, and coming within the bar) increased exceedingly, and, in about three years' time he acquired the better part he afterwards was possessed of. At that time, his lordship took his brother into his family, and a coach and servants assigned him out of his equipages; and all at rack and manger, requiring only £200 a year; which was a trifle, as the world went then. And it may truly be said, that this brother was a shadow to him, as if they had grown together. And, to show his lordship's tenderness, I add this instance of fact. Once he seemed more than ordinarily disposed to ensiveness, even to a degree of melancholy.
what should become of him, if he should lose this good brother, and be left alone to himself: the thought of which he could scarce bear; for he had no opinion of his own strength, to work his way through the world with tolerable success. Upon this his lordship, to set his brother's mind at ease, sold him an annuity of £200 a year, at an easy rate, upon condition to re-purchase it, at the same rate, when he was worth £5000. And this was all done accordingly.
“O et praesidium et dulce decus meum.”
We will now conduct our readers through Lord Guilford's life—introducing as many of the nice peculiarities of his historian as our limits will allow—and will then give them one or two of the portraits with which the work is enriched—and add a word on the changes which have taken place in the legal profession, since the time when the originals “held the noisy tenour of their way” through its gradations.
The Hon. Francis North, afterwards Baron Guilford, was the third son of Dudley, Lord North, Baron of Kirtling, who deserved the filial duty of his children, by the veneration which he manifested towards his own father, beyond even the strictness of those times; for, though he was an old man before his father died, he never sat or was covered in his presence unbidden. He sent his son, at an early age, to school, but was not very fortunate in his selection, for the master was a rigid Presbyterian, and his wife a furious Independent, who used “to instruct her babes in the gift of praying by the spirit, making them kneel by a bedside and pray;” but as “this petit spark was too small for that posture, he was set upon the bed to kneel with his face to the pillow.” This absurd treatment seems to have given the child an early disgust for those who were esteemed the fanatics, which never left him. He finished his scholastic education under a “cavalier master,” with credit. After he left school, he became a fellow-commoner of St. John's College, Cambridge, where he improved greatly in solid learning, and acquired a knowledge of music, which he afterwards used as a frequent solace amidst the toils of his profession.
He next became a member of the Middle Temple, and occupied “a moiety of a petit chamber, which his father bought for him.” Here he “used constantly commons in the hall at noons and nights,” studied closely, and derived much benefit from the practice of putting cases, which was followed in the old temple cloisters by the students, and for the convenience of which they were rebuilt by Sir Christopher Wren in their present form. He, also, diligently common-placed the substance of his reading, having acquired a very small but legible hand—“for,” as his biographer observes, “where contracting is the main business, it is not well to write, as the fashion then was, uncial or semi-uncial letters to look like pig's ribs.” In his studies, he was wont by turns to read the reports and institutes;
is lordship never left pumping, till he found “as, aster a fulness of the reports in a morning,
out the cause of it; and that was a reflection
about noon, to take a repast in Stamford, Crompton, or the Lord Coke's Pleas of the Crown, and Jurisdiction of Courts, Manwood of the Forest Law, and Fitzherbert's Natura Brevium.” He, also, “despatched the greatest part” of the year-books, beginning with the book termed Henry the Seventh, from whence he regarded the common law derived “as from a copious fountain.” While thus engaged, he did not altogether refuse recreation, but delighted in a small supper and a temperate glass with his friends in chambers, sometimes fancied “to go about town and see trade-work, which is a very diverting and instructive entertainment,” and visited every thing extraordinary in town, “as engines, shows, lectures, and even so low as to hear Hugh Peters preach " The only obstacle to his legal success was his excessive bashfulness, which so oppressed him, that when he dined or supped in the hall, of the Middle Temple, he would not walk in alone, but “used to stand dogging at the skreen till other company came, behind whom he might enter.”
At the bar, he derived great advantage from the favour of Sir Jeofry Palmer, the attorneygeneral, who gave him many opportunities of showing his dexterity and knowledge of law, by procuring him to perform some of his own public duties, when he was himself disabled by sickness. Through the good offices of this zealous friend, Mr. North was appointed to argue for the king in the House of Lords, on the writ of error in the famous case of the King v. Hollis and others, which was brought, by order of the House of Commons, to reverse a judgment obtained in the time of Charles the First, against five of their members, who had been prosecuted for holding down the speaker in his chair, and other riotous proceedings. In consequence of the ability which he displayed on this occasion, though the commons succeeded, he was, on the recommendation of the Duke of York, appointed one of his majesty's counsel. Thus, having precedence, the favour of the court, great assiduity, and knowledge in law, he soon considerably extended his practice. To this, indeed, his great wariness and prudence, trenching on the boundaries of meanness, did not contribute a little. “He was exceedingly careful to keep fair with the cocks of the circuit,” especially Serjeant Earl, who was a miser, and with whom he was contented to travel, when no other would starve with him on his journeys. If he discovered a point which his leader had omitted, he would not excite dislike by moving it himself, but suggest it to his senior, and thus conciliate his regard. He was, also, to use the words of his biographer, “a wonderful artist in nicking a judge's tendency to serve his turn, and yet never failed to pay the greatest regard and deference to his opinion.” He never contested a point with a judge when he despaired to convince him, but resigned it, even when confident in its goodness, that he might not weaken his credit for the future. On the other hand, when the judge was wrongly on his side, and he knew it, he did not fail to echo, “ay, my lord,” to the great annoyance of his rivals. Thus gifted by knowledge and Pliancy, he soon “from an humble beginner
rejoicing at a cause that came to him, became cock of the circuit; and every one that had a trial rejoiced to have him on his side.” One piece of artifice which he used on behalf of a relative is so curious, that we will insert it in the words of our author. “His lordship had a relation, one Mr. Whitmore, of Balms, near London, an humoursome old gentleman, but very famous for the mere eating and drinking part of house-keeping. He was owner of Waterbeach, near Cambridge, and took a fancy that his estate ought not to pay tithes, and ordered his tenants expressly to pay none, with promise to defend them. The parson had no more to do but to go to law, and by advice brought an action of debt, for treble damages upon the statute
against subtraction of tithes. The tenants got
the whole demand to be put in one action; and that stood for trial at the assizes. Then he consults his cousin North, and retains him to defend this cause; but shows him no manner of title to a discharge. So he could but tell him he would be routed, and pay treble value of the tithes, and that he must make an end. This signified nothing to one that was abandoned to his own testy humour. The cause came on, and his lordship's utmost endeavour was to fetch him off with the single value and costs; and that point he managed very artificially: for first, he considered that Archer was the judge, and it was always agreeable to him to stave off a long cause. After the cause was opened, his lordship, for the defendant, stepped forward, and told the judge that “this would be a long and intricate cause, being a title to a discharge of tithes, which would require the reading a long series of records and ancient writings. That his client was no quaker, to deny payments of tithes were due, in which case the treble value was by the law intended as a sort of penalty. But this was to be a trial of a title, which his client was advised he had to a discharge: therefore he moved, that the single value might be settled; and if the cause went for the plaintiff, he should have that and his costs (which costs, it seems, did not go if the treble value was recovered,) and then they would proceed to their title.' The other side mutinied against this imposition of Mr. North, but the judge was for him, and they must be satisfied. Then did he open a long history of matters upon record, of bulls, monasteries, orders, greater and lesser houses, surrenders, patents, and a great deal more, very proper, if it had been true, while the counsel on the other side stared at him; and, having done, they bid him go to his evidence. He leaned back, as speaking to the attorney, and then, My lord, said he, we are very unhappy in this cause. The attorney tells me, they forgot to examine their copies with the originals at the Tower; and (so folding up his brief) My lord, said he, they must have the verdict, and we must come better prepared another time. So, notwithstanding all the mutiny the other side could make, the judge held them to it, and they were choused of the treble value. This was no iniquity, because it was not to defraud the duty, but to shift off the penalty. But the old gentleman told his cousin North, he had given away hit. cause. His lordship thought he had done him service enough; and could but just (with the help of the before said reason) satisfy himself that he had not done ill.” There is nothing very worthy of remark in the private life of Mr. North, before the beginning of his speculations for a settlement by marriage. These are exceedingly curious, not for their romance, but the want of it. In the good old times, when our advocate flourished, the language of sentiment was not in fashion. Some doubtless there were, perhaps not fewer than in these poetical days, in whose souls Love held its “high and hearted seat”— whose nice-attuned spirits trembled with every change of the intensest, yet most delicate of affections—whose whole existence was one fervent hope and one unbroken sigh. Since then, the breathings of their deep emotion— the words and phases which imperfectly indicated that which was passing within them, as light and airy bubbles rise up from the lowest spring to the surface of tranquil waters— have become the current language of every transitory passion, and serve to garnish out every prudent match as a necessary part of the wedding finery. Things were not thus confounded by our heartier ancestors. Language was some indication of the difference of minds, as dress was of ranks. The choice spirits of the time had their prerogative of words and figures, as the ancient families had of their coats of arms. The greater part of mankind, who never feel love in its depth or its purity, were contented to marry and be given in marriage without the affectation of its language. Men avowedly looked for good portions, and women for suitable jointures— they made the contract for mutual support and domestic comfort in good faith, and did not often break it. They had their reward. They indulged no fairy dreams of happiness too etherial for earth, which, when dissipated, would render dreary the level path of existence. Of their open, plain-hearted course of entering into the matrimonia. state, and of speaking about it, the Lord Keeper and his biographer are edifying examples. His Lordship, as his fortune improved, felt the necessity of domestic comfort, and wisely thought his hours of leisure would be spent most happily in a family, “which is never well settled without a mistress.” “He fancied,” says his eulogist, “he might pretend to as good a fortune in a match as many others had found, who had less reason to expect it; but without some advantage that way, he was not disposed to engage himself.” His first attempt in this laudable pursuit was to obtain the daughter of an old usurer, which we will give in our author's words: “There came to him a recommendation of a lady, who was an only daughter of an old usurer of Gray's-inn, supposed to be a good fortune in present, for her father was rich; but after his death, to become worth nobody could tell what. His lordship got a sight of the lady, and did not dislike her; thereupon he made the old man a visit, and a proposal of himself to marry his daughter. There appeared no symptoms of discouragement; but
only the old gentleman asked him what estate his father intended to settle upon him for present maintenance, jointure, and provision for children. This was an inauspicious question; for it was plain that the family had not estate enough for a lordship, and none would be to spare for him. Therefore he said to his worship only, That when he would be pleased to declare what portion he intended to give his daughter, he would write to his father, and make him acquainted with his answer. And so they parted, and his lordship was glad of his escape, and resolved to give that affair a final discharge, and never to come near the terrible old fellow any more. His lordship had, at that time, a stout heart, and could not digest the being so slighted; as if, in his present state, a profitable profession, and future hopes, were of no account. If he had had a real estate to settle, he should not have stooped so low as to match with his daughter: and thenceforward despised his alliance.” His next enterprise was directed to the “flourishing widow” of Mr. Edward Palmer, who had been his most intimate friend. Her family favoured his addresses—the lady did not refuse him—but flirted, coquetted, and worried him, until he was heartily tired of being “held in a course of bo-peep play by a crafly widow.” Her friends still urged him to persevere, which he did to please them rather than himself, until she relieved him by marrying another of her suitors. His third exploit is thus amusingly related. “Another proposition came to his lordship, by a city broker, from Sir John Lawrence, who had many daughters, and those reputed beauties; and the fortune was to be £6000. His lordship went and dined with the alderman, and liked the lady, who (as the way is) was dressed out for a muster, And coming to treat, the portion shrank to £5000, and, upon that, his lordship parted, and was not gone far before Mr. Broker (following) came to him and said, Sir John would give £500 more, at the birth of the first child; but that would not do, for his lordship hated such screwing. Not long after this despatch, his lordship was made the king's solicitor general, and then the broker came again, with news that Sir John would give £10,000. No ; his lordship said, after such usage he would not proceed, if he might have £20,000. So ended that affair; and his lordship's mind was once more settled in tranquillity.” At last, after these repeated disappointments, his mother “laid her eyes” on the Lady Frances Pope, one of three co-heiresses, as a wife for her son—and with his consent made overtures on his behalf. After some little difficulties respecting his lordship's fortune, this match was happily concluded, and , is celebrated by his biographer as “made in heaven." The lady, however, died of a consumption, in the prime of her days. On this occasion, our author rejoices that “his lordship's good stars" forced him to London about a fortnight before her death, because nearness to persons dying of consumptions is perilous—and “when she must expire, and probably in his arms, he might have received great damage in his