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And at evening evermore,
curate of St Peter's, Dublin. The scanty income In a chapel on the shore,
derived from his curacy being insufficient for his Shall the chanters, sad and saintly, comfortable maintenance, he employed himself in Yellow tapers burning faintly,
assisting young persons during their classical studies Doleful masses chant for thee,
at Trinity college, Dublin. The novels of Maturin Miserere Domine!
(which will be afterwards noticed) enjoyed consider. Hark! the cadence dies away
able popularity; and had his prudence been equal
[A long pause. to his genius, his life might have been passed in comOrd. The innocent obey nor charm nor spell!
fort and respect. He was, however, vain and extraMy brother is in heaven. Thou sainted spirit,
vagant-always in difficulties (Scott at one time Burst on our sight, a passing visitant !
generously sent him £50), and haunted by bailiffs. Once more to hear thy voice, once more to see thee, When this eccentric author was engaged in compoO 'twere a joy to me!
sition, he used to fasten a wafer on his forehead, Alv. A joy to thee!
which was the signal that if any of his family en. What if thou heardst him now? What if his spirit Re-entered its cold corse, and came upon thee
tered the sanctum they must not speak to him!
The success of Bertram' induced Mr Maturin to With many a stab from many a murderer's poniard ? attempt another tragedy, Manuel, which he published What if (his steadfast eye stilt beaming pity And brother's love) he turned his head aside,
in 1817. It is a very inferior production : 'the ab
surd work of a clever man,' says Byron. The unfor. Lest he should look at thee, and with one look
tunate author died in Dublin on the 30th of October Hurl thee beyond all power of penitence ?
1824. Vald. These are unholy fancies ! Ord. [Struggling with his feelings.] Yes, my father,
[Scene from 'Bertram.'] He is in heaven ! Alv. [Still to Ordonio.] But what if he had a (A passage of great poetical beauty, in which Bertram is brother,
represented as spurred to the commission of his great crimes Who had lived even so, that at his dying hour by the direct agency of a supernatural and malevolent being. The name of heaven would have convulsed his face
-Sir Walter Scott.] More than the death-pang ?
PRIOR-BERTRAM. Val. Idly prating man !
Prior. The dark knight of the forest, Thou hast guessed ill: Don Alvar's only brother So from his armour named and sable helm, Stands here before thee-a father's blessing on him! Whose unbarred vizor mortal never saw. He is most virtuous.
He dwells alone ; no earthly thing lives near him, Alv. [Still to Ordonio.] What if his very virtues Save the hoarse raven croaking o'er his towers, Had pampered his swollen heart and made him proud ? And the dank weeds muffling his stagnant moat. And what if pride had duped him into guilt ?
Bertram. I'll ring a summons on his barred portal Yet still he stalked a self-created god,
Shall make them through their dark valves rock and Not very bold, but exquisitely cunning;
ring. And one that at his mother's looking-glass
Prior. Thou’rt mad to take the quest. Within my Would force his features to a frowning sternness ?
memory Young lord ! I tell thee that there are such beings- One solitary man did venture there Yea, and it gives fierce merriment to the damned Dark thoughts dwelt with him, which he sought to To see these most proud men, that loathe mankind, vent. At every stir and buz of coward conscience,
Unto that dark compeer we saw his steps, Trick, cant, and lie; most whining hypocrites! In winter's stormy twilight, seek that passAway, away! Now let me hear more music.
But days and years are gone, and he returns not.
[Music again. Bertram. What fate befell him there? Ter. 'Tis strange, I tremble at my own conjectures ! Prior. The manner of his end was never known. But whatsoe'er it mean, I dare no longer
Bertram. That man shall be my mate. Contend Be present at these lawless mysteries,
not with meThis dark provoking of the hidden powers !
Horrors to me are kindred and society. Already I affront—if not high Heaven
Or man, or fiend, he hath won the soul of Bertram. Yet Alvar's memory! Hark! I make appeal
(Bertram is afterwards discovered alone, wandering near the Against the unholy rite, and hasten hence
fatal tower, and describes the effect of the awful interview To bend before a lawful shrine, and seek
which he had courted.] That voice which whispers, when the still heart listens, Comfort and faithful hope! Let us retire.
Bertram. Was it a man or fiend! Whate'er it was,
All is around his dwelling suitable;
The invisible blast to which the dark pines groan,
The unconscious tread to which the dark earth echoes, The Rev. CHARLES ROBERT MATURIN, author of The hidden waters rushing to their fall; several romances, produced a tragedy named Bertram, | These sounds, of which the causes are not seen, which, by the influence of Lord Byron, was brought I love, for they are, like my fate, mysterious! out at Drury Lane in 1816. It was well received; How towered his proud form through the shrouding and by the performance and publication of his play, gloom, the author realised about £1000. Sir Walter Scott How spoke the eloquent silence of its motion, considered the tragedy 'grand and powerful, the How through the barred vizor did his accents language most animated and poetical, and the cha- Roll their rich thunder on their pausing soul ! racters sketched with a masterly enthusiasm.' The And though his mailed hand did shun my grasp, author was anxious to introduce Satan on the stage, and though his closed morion hid his feature, a return to the style of the ancient mysteries by no Yea, all resemblance to the face of man, means suited to modern taste. Mr Maturin was I felt the hollow whisper of his welcome,
I felt those unseen eyes were fixed on mine,
That brightness all around thee, that appeared If eyes indeed were there.
An emanation of the soul, that loved Forgotten thoughts of evil, still-born mischiefs,
To adorn its habitation with itself, Foul fertile seeds of passion and of crime,
And in thy body was like light, that looks That withered in my heart's abortive core,
More beautiful in the reflecting cloud Roused their dark battle at his trumpet-peal :
It lives in, in the evening. Oh, Evadne, So sweeps the tempest o'er the slumbering desert, Thou art not altered-would thou wert! Waking its myriad hosts of burning death: So calls the last dread peal the wandering atoms In the same year with Mr Sheil's 'Evadne' (1820) Of blood, and bone, and flesh, and dust-worn fragments, appeared Brutus, or the Fall of Tarquin, a historical In dire array of ghastly unity,
tragedy, by JOHN HOWARD PAYNE. There is no To bide the eternal summons
originality or genius displayed in this drama; but, I am not what I was since I beheld him
when well acted, it is highly effective on the stage. I was the slave of passion's ebbing sway
In 1821 MR PROCTER's tragedy of Mirandola All is condensed, collected, callous, now
was brought out at Covent Garden, and had a short The groan, the burst, the fiery flash is o'er,
but enthusiastic run of success. The plot is painful Down pours the dense and darkening lava-tide,
(including the death, through unjust suspicions, of Arresting life, and stilling all beneath it.
à prince sentenced by his father), and there is a Enter two of his band observing him.
want of dramatic movement in the play ; but some
of the passages are imbued with poetical feeling and Pirst Robber. Seest thou with what a step of pride vigorous expression. The doting affection of Miranhe stalks ?
dola, the duke, has something of the warmth and the Thou hast the dark knight of the forest seen ;
rich diction of the old dramatists. For never man, from living converse come, Trod with such step or flashed with eye like thine.
Duke. My own sweet love! Oh! my dear peerless Second Robber. And hast thou of a truth seen the
wife! dark knight?
By the blue sky and all its crowding stars, Bertram. [Turning on him suddenly.) Thy hand is i love you better-oh! far better than
chilled with fear. Well, shivering craven, Woman was ever loved. There's not an hour Say I have seen him—wherefore dost thou gaze ?
Of day or dreaming night but I am with thee: Long'st thou for tale of goblin-guarded portal ? There's not a wind but whispers of thy name, Of giant champion, whose spell-forged mail
And not a flower that sleeps beneath the moon Crumbled to dust at sound of magic horn
But in its hues or fragrance tells a tale Banner of sheeted flame, whose foldings shrunk
Of thee, my love, to thy Mirandola. To withering weeds, that o'er the battlements
Speak, dearest Isidora, can you love Ware to the broken spell-or demon-blast
As I do? Can-but no, no; I shall grow Of winded clarion, whose fell summons sinks
Foolish if thus I talk. You must be gone; To lonely whisper of the shuddering breeze
You must be gone, fair Isidora, else O'er the charmed towers
The business of the dukedom soon will cease. Pirst Robber. Mock me not thus. Hast met him of I speak the truth, by Dian. Even now a truth?
Gheraldi waits without (or should) to see me. Bertram. Well, fool
In faith, you must go : one kiss; and so, away. First Robber. Why, then, Heaven's benison be with
Isid. Farewell, my lord. you.
Duke. We'll ride together, dearest, Upon this hour we partfarewell for ever.
Some few hours hence. For mortal cause I bear a mortal weapon
Isid. Just as you please ; farewell. [Exit. But man that leagues with demons lacks not man.
Duke. Farewell ; with what a waving air she goes
Yet statelier.-Hark! no sound, however soft
(Nor gentlest echo), telleth when she treads;
But every motion of her shape doth seem Another Irish poet, and man of warm imagina. Hallowed by silence. Thus did Hebe grow tion, is RICHARD LALOR SHEIL. ' His plays, Evadne Amidst the gods, a paragon; and thus and The Apostate, were performed with much suc- Away! I'm grown the very fool of love. cess, partly owing to the admirable acting of Miss O'Neil. The interest of Mr Sheil's dramas is con
About the same time Conscience, or the Bridal centrated too exclusively on the heroine of each, Night, by MR JAMES HAYNES, was performed, and and there is a want of action and animated dialogue; afterwards published. The hero is a ruined Venebut they abound in impressive and well-managed tian, and his bride the daughter of liis deadliest scenes. The plot of 'Evadne' is taken from Shir. enemy, and the niece of one to whose death he had ley's Traitor, as are also some of the sentiments. been a party. The stings of conscience, and the The following description of female beauty is very fears accompanying the bridal night, are thus definely expressed :-
scribed : But you do not look altered—would you did !
(LORENZO and his friend Julio.)
I had thoughts
Never again : even at my bridal hour
Thou sawest detection, like a witch, look on They are so innocent. Ah, thou art still
And smile, and mock at the solemnity,
Jul. No; all is still.
on that striking incident in Roman story, the death Lor. Then 'twas my fancy. Every passing hour of a maiden by the hand of her father, Virginius, to Is crowded with a thousand whisperers;
save her from the lust and tyranny of Appius. Mr The night has lost its silence, and the stars
Knowles's_Virginius had an extraordinary run of Shoot fire upon my soul. Darkness itself
success. He has since published The Wife, a Tale of Has objects for mine eyes to gaze upon,
Mantua, The Hunchback, Caius Gracchus, The Blind And sends me terror when I pray for sleep
Beggar of Bethnal Green, William Tell, The Love In vain upon my knees. Nor ends it here ;
Chace, &c. With considerable knowledge of stage My greatest dread of all-detection-casts
effect, Mr Knowles unites a lively inventive imagi. Her shadow on my walk, and startles me
nation and a poetical colouring, which, if at times At every turn : sometime will reason drag
too florid and gaudy, sets off his familiar images and Her frightful chain of probable alarms
illustrations. His style is formed on that of MasAcross my mind; or, if fatigued, she droops, singer and the other elder dramatists, carried often Her pangs survive the while; as you have seen to a ridiculous excess. He also frequently violates The ocean tossing when the wind is down,
Roman history and classical propriety, and runs into And the huge storm is dying on the waters.
conceits and affected metaphors. These faults are Once, too, I had a dream
counterbalanced by a happy art of constructing Jul. The shadows of our sleep should fly with sleep; scenes and plots, romantic, yet not too improbable, Nor hang their sickness on the memory.
by skilful delineation of character, especially in doLor. Methought the dead man, rising from his tomb, mestic life, and by a current of poetry which sparkles Frowned over me. Elmira at my side,
through his plays, 'not with a dazzling lustre--not Stretched her fond arms to shield me from his wrath, with a gorgeousness that engrosses our attention, At which he frowned the more. I turned away,
but mildly and agreeably; seldom impeding with Disgusted, from the spectre, and assayed
useless glitter the progress and development of inci. To clasp my wife ; but she was pale, and cold,
dent and character, but mingling itself with them, And in her breast the heart was motionless,
and raising them pleasantly above the prosaic level And on her limbs the clothing of the grave,
of common life.'* With here and there a worm,
hung heavily. Then did the spectre laugh, till from its mouth
[Scene from Virginius.'] Blood dropped upon us while it cried— Behold! Such is the bridal bed that waits thy love!'
APPIUS, CLAUDIUS, and LICTORS. I would have struck it (for my rage was up);
Appius. Well, Claudius, are the forces I tried the blow; but, all my senses shaken
At hand ? By the convulsion, broke the tranced spell,
Claudius. They are, and timely, too; the people And darkness told me-sleep was my tormentor. Are in unwonted ferment.
App. There's something awes me at
The thought of looking on her father!
The treasures of her beauty, nor avert it
[Appius ascends the tribunal. [Enter NUMITORIUS, Icilius, Lucius, CITIZENS, VIRGINIUS
leading his daughter, Servia, and CITIZENS. A dead silence
Virginius. Does no one speak? I am defendant here.
App. You had better,
Vir. The fashion, Appius! Appius Claudius tell me
App. Stand forth
Claud. Most noble Appius
Vir. And are you the man
That claims my daughter for his slave!-Look at me have recently been collected and republished in three And I will give her to thee. volumes. His first appeared in 1820, and is founded
* Edinburgh Reviow for 1833.
Claud. She is mine, then:
Sent forth a stream of liquid living pearl Do I not look at you?
To cherish her enamelled veins. The lie Vir. Your eye does, truly,
Is most unfruitful then, that takes the flower But not your soul. I see it through your eye The very flower our bed connubial grewShifting and shrinking-turning every way
To prove its barrennéss! Speak for me, friends ; To shun me. You surprise me, that your eye, Have I not spoke the truth? So long the bully of its master, knows not
Women and Citizens. You have, Virginius. To put a proper face upon a lie,
App. Silence! Keep silence there! No more of But gives the port of impudence to falsehood
that! When it would pass it off for truth. Your soul You're very ready for a tumult, citizens. Dares as soon show its face to me. Go on,
[Troops appear behind. I had forgot; the fashion of my speech
Lictors, make way to let these troops advance ! May not please Appius Claudius.
We have had a taste of your forbearance, masters, Claud. I demand
And wish not for another. Protection of the Decemyir!
Vir. Troops in the Forum ! App. You shall have it.
App. Virginius, have you spoken?
Vir. If you have heard me,
Virginius; I had evidence to give,
Would make your pleading rain.
[Aside. Numitorius. Hold, brother! Hear them out, or App. My conscience will not let me suffer me
Be silent. 'Tis notorious to you ah, To speak.
That Claudius' father, at his death, declared me Vir. Man, I must speak, or else go mad!
The guardian of his son. This cheat has long And if I do go mad, what then will hold me
Been known to me. I know the girl is not From speaking! She was thy sister, too!
Virginius' daughter. Well, well, speak thou. I'll try, and if I can,
Vir. Join your friends, Icilius, Be silent. (Retires. And leave Virginia to my care.
[Aside. Num. Will she swear she is her child ?
App. The justice Vir. [Starting forward.] To be sure she will—a I should have done my client unrequired, most wise question that!
Now cited by him, how shall I refuse ! Is she not his slave? Will his tongue lie for him- Vir. Don't tremble, girl! don't tremble. [Aside. Or his hand steal—or the finger of his hand
I feel for you ; but though you were my father,
Claudius must take Virginia home with him!
Vir. And if he must, I should advise him, Appius, What mockery it is to have one's life
To take her home in time, before his guardian In jeopardy by such a bare-faced trick !
Complete the violation which his eyes Is it to be endured! I do protest
Already have begun.-Friends! fellow citizens! Against her oath!
Look not on Claudius-look on your Decemvir! App. No law in Rome, Virginius,
He is the master claims Virginia! Seconds you. If she swear the girl's her child, The tongues that told him she was not my child The evidence is good, unless confronted
Are these—the costly charms he cannot purchase, By better evidence. Look you to that,
Except by making her the slave of Claudius, Virginius. I shall take the woman's oath.
His client, his purveyor, that caters for Virginia. Icilius !
His pleasures-markets for him-picks, and scents, Icilius. Fear not, love; a thousand oaths
And tastes, that he may banquet-serves him up Will answer her.
His sensual feast, and is not now ashamed, App. You swear the girl's your child,
In the open, common street, before your eyes And that you sold her to Virginius' wife,
Frighting your daughters' and your matrons' cheeks Who passed her for her own. Is that your oath? With blushes they ne'er thought to meet to help Slave. It is my oath.
him App. Your answer now, Virginius.
To the honour of a Roman maid! my child !
This second Tarquin had already coiled 'Tis not with men as shrubs and trees, that by His arms around her. Look upon her, Romans ! The shoot you know the rank and order of
Befriend her! succour her! see her not polluted The stem. Yet who from such a stem would look Before her father's eyes!—He is but one. For such a shoot. My witnesses are these
Tear her from Appius and his Lictors while The relatives and friends of Numitoria,
She is unstained.-Your hands! your hands ! your Who saw her, ere Virginia's birth, sustain
hands! The burden which a mother bears, nor feels
Citizens. They are yours, Virginius. The weight, with longing for the sight of it.
App. Keep the people backHere are the ears that listened to her sighs
Support my Lictors, soldiers! Seize the girl, In nature's hour of labour, which subsides
And drive the people back. In the embrace of joy—the hands, that when
Icilius. Down with the slaves ! The day first looked upon the infant's face,
[The people make a show of resistance; but, upon the ad. And never looked so pleased, helped them up to it, vance of the soldiers, retreat, and leave ICILIUS, VIRAnd blessed her for a blessing. Here, the eyes
GINIUE, and his daughter, &c. in the hands of APPIUS and That saw her lying at the generous
his party.] And sympathetic fount, that at her cry
Deserted !--Cowards! traitors! Let me free
But for a moment! I relied on you;
Vir. If they dare Had I relied upon myself alone,
To tempt the desperate weapon that is maddened I had kept them still at bay! I kneel to you- With drinking my daughter's blood, why, let them: Let me but loose a moment, if 'tis only
thus To rush upon your swords.
It rushes in amongst them. Way there! Way! Vir. Icilius, peace!
[Exit through the soldiers. You see how 'tis, we are deserted, left Alone by our friends, surrounded by our enemies, Nerveless and helpless.
(From The Wife, a Tale of Mantua.') App. Separate them, Lictors!
LORENZO, an Advocate of Rome, and MARIANA. Vir. Let them forbear awhile, I pray you, Appius : Lorenzo. That's right-you are collected and direct It is not very easy. Though her arms
In your replies. I dare be sworn your passion Are tender, yet the hold is strong by which
Was such a thing, as, by its neighbourhood, She grasps me, Appius-forcing them will hurt them; Made piety and virtue twice as rich They'll soon unclasp themselves. Wait but a little As e'er they were before. How grew it! Come, You know you're sure of her !
Thou know'st thy heart-look calmly into it, App. I have not time
And see how innocent a thing it is To idle with thee; give her to my Lictors.
Which thou dost fear to show-I wait your answer. Vir. Appius, I pray you wait! If she is not How grew your passion ? My child, she hath been like a child to me
Mariana. As my stature grew, For fifteen years. If I am not her father,
Which rose without my noting it, until I have been like a father to her, Appius,
They said I was a woman. I kept watch For even such a time. They that have lived
Beside what seemed his deathbed. From beneath So long a time together, in so near
An avalanche my father rescued him, And dear society, may be allowed
The sole survivor of a company A little time for parting. Let me take
Who wandered through our mountains. A long time The maid aside, I pray you, and confer.
His life was doubtful, signor, and he called
Morning and night, invoked along with him ;
Lorenzo. I perceive: you mingled souls until you App. Have your wish. Be brief !
mingled hearts ? Lictors, look to them.
You loved at last. Was't not the sequel, maid ! Virginia. Do you go from me?
Mariana. I loved, indeed! If I but nursed a flower Do you leave? Father! Father!
Which to the ground the rain and wind had beaten, Vir. No, my child
That flower of all our garden was my pride : No, my Virginia-come along with me.
What then was he to me, for whom I thought Virginia. Will you not leave me? Will you take To make a shroud, when, tending on him still me with you?
With hope, that, baffled still, did still keep up; Will you take me home again! O, bless you! bless I saw, at last, the ruddy dawn of health
Begin to mantle o'er his pallid form, My father! my dear father! Art thou not
And glow—and glow—till forth at last it burst My father?
Into confirmed, broad, and glorious day! (VIRGINIUS, perfectly at a loss what to do, looks anxiously
Lorenzo. You loved, and he did love! around the Forum ; at length his eye falls on a butcher's Were to affirm what oft his eyes avouched,
Mariana. To say he did, stall, with a knife upon it.]
What many an action testified-and yet-
App. Keep back the people, soldiers! Let them not 'Twas now abstraction—now a start-anon
į Virginius secures the knife. As nought remained of life, save life itself, Well, have you done?
And feeling, thought, and motion, were extinct. Vir. Short time for converse, Appius,
Then all again was action! Disinclined But I have.
To converse, save he held it with himself; App. I hope you are satisfied.
Which oft he did, in moody vein discoursing, Vir. I am
And ever and anon invoking honour, I am that she is my daughter!
As some high contest there were pending 'twixt App. Take her, Lictors!
Himself and him, wherein ber aid he needed. [Virginia shrieks, and falls half-dead upon Lorenzo. This spoke impediment; or he was bound her father's shoulder.
By promise to another; or had friends
Or 'twixt you lay disparity too wide
Mariana. I saw a struggle,
But knew not what it was. I wondered still,
(Kissing her. That what to me was all content, to him There is one only way to save thine honour Was all disturbance ; but my turn did come. 'Tis this.
At length he talked of leaving us ; at length
breaks from the soldiers that held him, O how my heart did bound! Then first I knew
It had been sinking. Deeper still it sank
When next he fixed to go; and sank it then I do devote thee to the infernal gods !
To bound no inore! He went. Make way there!
Lorenzo. To follow him App. Stop him! Seize him!
You came to Mantua?