« 上一頁繼續 »
JAMES BAILIE FRASER.
Quickly springing on my feet, and grasping my spear and scimitar, which lay under my head, I looked
around for the cause of alarm. Nor did it long reMR JAMES BAILIE Fraser has, like Mr Morier, main doubtful; for, at the distance of scarce two bundescribed the life and manners of the Persians by dred yards, I saw a single horseman advancing. To fictitious as well as true narratives. In 1828 he tighten my girdle round my loins, to string my box, published The Kuzzilbush, a Tale of Khorasan, three and prepare two or three arrows for use, was but the volumes, to which he afterwards added a continua- work of a few moments ; before these preparations, tion under the name of The Persian Adventurer, the however, were completed, the stranger was close at title of his first work not being generally understood : hand. Fitting an arrow to my bow, I placed myself it was often taken, he says, for a cookery book! upon guard, and examined him narrowly as he apThe term Kuzzilbash, which is Turkish, signifies proached. He was a man of goodly stature and powerRed-head, and was an appellation originally given ful frame; his countenance, bard, strongly marked, by Shah Ismael I. to seven tribes bound to defend and furnished with a thick black beard, bore testimony their king. These tribes wore a red cap as a dis- of exposure to many a blast, but it still preserved a tinguishing mark, which afterwards became the prepossessing expression of good bumour and benevomilitary head-dress of the Persian troops ; hence lence. His turban, which was formed of a cashmere the word Kuzzilbash is used to express a Persian shawl, sorely tached and torn, and twisted here and soldier; and often, particularly among the Toorko- there with small steel chains, according to the fashion mans and Oozbeks, is applied as a national designa- of the time, was wound around a red cloth cap that tion to the people in general. Mr Fraser's hero rose in four peaks high above the head. His oemah, or relates his own adventures, which begin almost from riding coat, of crimson cloth much stained and faded, his birth ; for he is carried off while a child by a opening at the bosom, showed the links of a coat of band of Toorkoman robbers, who plunder his father's mail which he wore below; a yellow shawl formed his lands and village, situated in Khorasan, on the bor-girdle; his huge shulwars, or riding trousers, of thick ders of the great desert which stretches from the fawn-coloured Kerman woollen stuff, fell in folds over banks of the Caspian Sea to those of the river Oxus. the large red leather boots in which his legs were cased ; The infant bravery of Ismael, the Kuzzilbash, inte by his side hung a crooked scimitar in a black leather rests Omer Khan, head of a tribe or camp of the scabbard, and from the holsters of his saddle peeped plunderers, and he spares the child, and keeps him out the butt-ends of a pair of pistols—weapons of to attend on his own son Selim. In the camp of his which I then knew not the use, any more than of the master is a beautiful girl, daughter of a Persian matchlock which was slung at his back. He was captive; and with this young beauty, 'lovely as a mounted on a powerful but jaded horse, and appeared child of the Peris,' Ismael forms an attachment that to have already travelled far. increases with their years. These early scenes are
When this striking figure had approached within finely described; and the misfortunes of the fair thirty yards, I called out in the Turkish language, Shireen are related with much pathos. The conse- commonly used in the country, “Whoever thou art, quences of Ismael's passion force him to flee. He come no nearer on thy peril, or I shall salute thee assumes the dress of the Kuzzilbash, and crossing with this arrow from my bow! Why, boy,' returned the desert, joins the army of the victorious Nadir the stranger in a deep manly voice, and speaking in Shah, and assists in recovering the holy city of the same tongue, thou art á bold lad, truly! but set
Nay,' reMushed, the capital of Khorasan. His bravery is thy heart at rest, I mean thee no harm.' rewarded with honours and dignities; and after joined I, “I am on foot, and alone. I know thee not
, various scenes of love and war, the Kuzzilbash is nor thy intentions. Either retire at once, or show the united to his Shireen. Scenes of active life are
sincerity by setting thyself on equal terms with me:
dismount from thy steed, and then I fear thee not, painted by the author with the same truth, accuracy, and picturesque effect which he displays in drew my arrow to the head, and pointed it towards
whatever be thy designs. Beware!' And so saying, I landscapes or single figures. In war, especially, he him. By the head of my father! cried the stranger, is at home; and gives the attack, the retreat, the thou art an absolute youth! but I like thee well; rally, the bloody and desperate close combat, the thy heart is stout, and thy demand is just; the sheep flight, pursuit, and massacre, with all the current of trusts not the wolf when it meets him in the plain, a heady fight, as one who must have witnessed nor do we acknowledge every stranger in the desert such terrors.' A brief but characteristic scene-a meeting of two yet with a weight that inade the turf ring again-See,
for a friend. See,' continued he, dismounting actively, warriors in the desert – is strikingly described, 1 yield
my advantage ; as for thy arrows, boy, I fear though the reader is probably haunted with an idea them not. With that he slung a small shield, which that European thoughts and expressions ningle with he bore at his back, before him, as if to cover his face, the author's narrative:
in case of treachery on my part, and leaving his horse By the time I reached the banks of this stream the where it stood, he advanced to me. sun had set, and it was necessary to seek some retreat Taught from my youth to suspect and to guard where I might pass the night and refresh myself and against treachery, I still kept a wary eye on the momy horse without fear of discovery: Ascending the tions of the stranger. But there was something in his river bed, therefore, with this intention, I soon found open though rugged countenance and manly bearing a recess where I could repose myself, surrounded by that claimed and won my confidence. Slowly I lowgreen pasture, in which my horse might feed ; but as ered my hand, and relaxed the still drawn string of it would have been dangerous to let him go at large my bow, as he strode up to me with a firm composed | all night, I employed myself for a while in cutting step. the longest and thickest of the grass which grew on ‘Youth,' said he,'had my intentions been hostile, the banks of the stream for his night's repast, per- it is not thy arrows or thy bow, no, nor thy sword and mitting him to pasture at will until dark; and secur- spear, that could have stood thee much in stead. I ing him then close to the spot I meant to occupy, am too old a soldier, and too well defended against after a moderate meal, I commended myself to Allah, such weapons, to fear them from so young an arm. and lay down to rest.
But I am neither enemy nor traitor to attack thee The loud neighing of my horse awoke me with a unawares. I have travelled far during the past night, start, as the first light of dawn broke in the East. I and mean to refresh myself awhile in this spot before
I proceed on my journey ; thou meanest not,' added a while quite overpowered me : I covered my face he with a smile, 'to deny me the boon which Allah with my hands and wept in silence. extends to all his crcatures? What! still suspicious ? Come, then, I will increase thy advantage, and try to
Besides his Eastern tales, Mr Fraser has written win thy confidence. With that he unbuckled his a story of his native country, The Highland Smugglers, sword, and threw it, with his matchlock, upon the in which he displays the same talent for descriptiou, turf a little way from him. * See me now unarmed; with much inferior powers in constructing a prowilt thou yet trust me?' Who could have doubted bable or interesting narrative. longer? I threw down my bow and arrows : ‘Pardon,' cried I, ' my tardy confidence; but he that has escaped
THEODORE EDWARD HOOK. with difficulty from many perils, fears even their shadow : here,' continued I, are bread and salt, eat THEODORE EDWARD Hook, the best of our fashionthou of them ; thou art then my guest, and that sacred able novelists, was born in London, September 22, tie secures the faith of both. The stranger, with an- 1788. He was the son of a distinguished musical other smile, took the offered food.
The following passage, describing the Kuzzilbash's return to his native village, affects us both by the view which it gives of the desolations caused in half barbarous countries by war and rapine, and the beautiful strain of sentiment which the author puts into the mouth of his hero :
We continued for some time longer, riding over a track once fertile and well-cultivated, but now returned to its original desolation. The wild pomegranate, the thorn, and the thistle, grew high in the fields, and overran the walls that formerly enclosed them. At length we reached an open space, occupied by the ruins of a large walled village, among which a square building, with walls of greater height, and towers at each corner, rose particularly conspicuous.
As we approached this place I felt my heart stirred within me, and my whole frame agitated with a secret and indescribable emotion; visions of past events seemed hovering dimly in my memory, but my sensations were too indistinct and too confused to be intelligible to myself. At last a vague idea shot through my brain, and thrilled like a fiery arrow in my heart; with burning cheeks and eager eyes I looked towards my companion, and saw his own bent keenly upon
“Knowest thou this spot, young man ? said he, after a pause : 'if thy memory does not serve thee, cannot thy heart tell thee what walls are these! I gasped for breath, but could not speak. "Yes, Ismael,' continued he, “these are the ruined walls of thy father's house ; there passed the first days of thy childhood; composer; and at the early age of sixteen (after an within that broken tower thy eyes first saw the light? imperfect course of education at Harrow school), he But its courts are now strewed with the unburied dust became a sort of partner in his father's business of of thy kindred, and the foxes and wolves of the desert
music and song.
In 1805 he composed comic rear their young among its roofless chambers. These opera, The Soldier's Return, the overture and music, are the acts of that tribe to which thou hast so long
as well as the dialogues and songs, entirely by himbeen in bondage-such is the debt of blood which cries self. The opera was highly successful, and young out for thy vengeance !
Theodore was ready next year with another afterI checked my horse to gaze on the scene of my in- piece, Catch Him Who Can, which exhibited the fant years, and my companion seemed willing to in- talents of Liston and Mathews in a popular and dulge me. Is it indeed true, as some sages have effective light, and had a great run of success. Setaught, that man's good angel hovers over the place veral musical operas were then produced in rapid of his birth, and dwells with peculiar fondness on the succession by Hook, as The Invisible Girl, Music innocent days of his childhood ? and that in after Mad, Darkness Visible, Trial by Jury, The Fortress, years of sorrow and of crime she pours the recollec- Tekeli, Exchange no Robbery, and Killing no Murder. tion of those pure and peaceful days like balm over Some of these still keep possession of the stage, and the heart, to soften and improve it by their influence ? evince wonderful knowledge of dramatic art, musical How could it be, without some agency like this, that, skill, and literary powers in so young an author. gazing thus unexpectedly on the desolate home of my They were followed (1808) by a novel which has fathers, the violent passions, the bustle, and the misery been described as a mere farce in a narrative shape. of later years, vanished from my mind like a dream; The remarkable conversational talents of Theodore and the scenes and feelings of my childhood canne Hook, and his popularity as a writer for the stage, fresh as yesterday to my remembrance? I heard the led him much into society. Flushed with success, joyous clamour of my little brothers and sisters ; our full of the gaiety and impetuosity of youth, and congames, our quarrels, and our reconciliations, were once scious of his power to please and even fascinate in more present to me; the grave smile of my father, the company, he surrendered himself up to the enjoykind but eternal gabble of my good old nurse ; and, ment of the passing hour, and became noted for above all, the mild sweet voice of my beloved mother, his 'boisterous buffooneries,' his wild sallies of wit as she adjusted our little disputes, or soothed our and drollery, and his practical hoaxes. childish sorrows--all rushed upon my mind, and for Amongst his various talents was one which, though
familiar in some other countries, whose language ral years the efficient conductor of a magazineaffords it facilities, has hitherto been rare, if not certainly affords, as the Quarterly Review reunknown in ours, namely the power of improvisatising, marks, sufficient proof that he never sank into idleor extemporaneous composition of songs and music. ness. At the same time Theodore Hook was the Hook would at table turn the whole conversation of idol of the fashionable circles, and ran a heedless the evening into a song, sparkling with puns or round of dissipation. Though in the receipt of a witty allusions, and perfect in its rhymes. 'He large income-probably not less than £3000 per accompanied himself (says a writer in the Quar- annum-by his writings, he became involved in terly Review) on the pianoforte, and the music pecuniary embarrassments; and an unhappy conwas frequently, though not always, as new as nexion which he had formed, yet dared not avow, the verse. He usually stuck to the common ballad entailed upon him the anxieties and responsibilities measures; but one favourite sport was a mimic of a family. Parts of a diary which he kept have opera, and then he seemed to triumph without been published, and there are passages in it discloseffort over every variety of metre and complication ing his struggles, his alternations of hope and deof stanza. About the complete extemporaneousness spair, and his ever-deepening distresses and difficul. of the whole there could rarely be the slightest ties, which are inexpressibly touching as well as doubt.' This power of extempore verse seems to instructive. At length, overwhelmed with diffihave been the wonder of all Hook's associates; it culties, his children unprovided for, and himself a astonished Sheridan, Coleridge, and the most illus- victim to disease and exhaustion before he had comtrious of his contemporaries, who used to hang de- pleted his 53d year, he died at Fulham on the 24th lighted over such rare and unequivocal manifesta- of August 1842. tions of genius. Hook had been introduced to the The works of Theodore Hook are very unequal, prince regent, afterwards George IV., and in 1812 and none of them perhaps display the rich and varied he received the appointment of accomptant-general powers of his conversation. He was thoroughly acand treasurer to the colony of the Mauritius, with a quainted with English life in the higher and middle salary of about £2000 per annum. This handsome ranks, and his early familiarity with the stage had provision he enjoyed for five years. The duties of taught him the effect of dramatic situations and the office were, however, neglected, and an exami- pointed dialogue. The theatre, however, is not nation being made into the books of the accomptant, always a good school for taste in composition, and various irregularities, omissions, and discrepancies Hook's witty and tragic scenes and contrasts of were detected. There was a deficiency of about character are often too violent in tone, and too little £12,000, and Hook was ordered home under the discriminated. Hence, though his knowledge of high charge of a detachment of military. Thus a dark life was undoubted, and his powers of observation cloud hung over him for the remainder of his life; rarely surpassed, his pictures of existing manners but it is believed that he was in reality innocent of seem to wear an air of caricature, imparted insenall but gross negligence. On reaching London in sibly by the peculiar habits and exuberant fancy of 1819, he was subjected to a scrutiny by the Audit the novelist. His pathos is often overdone, and his Board, which did not terminate until after the lapse mirth and joyousness carried into the regions of of nearly five years. He was then pronounced to be farce. He is very felicitous in exposing all ridiculiable to the crown for the deficit of £12.000. In lous pretences and absurd affectation, and in such the meantime he laboured assiduously at literature scenes his polished ridicule and the practical sagaas a profession. He became, in 1820, editor of the city of the man of the world, conversant with its John Bull newspaper, which he made conspicuous different ranks and artificial distinctions, are strikfor its advocacy of high aristocratic principles, some ingly apparent. We may collect from his novels virulent personalities, and much wit and humour. (especially the “Sayings and Doings, which were His political songs were generally admired for their carefully written) as correct a notion of English point and brilliancy of fancy. In 1823, after the award society in certain spheres in the nineteenth cenhad been given finding lıim a debtor to the crown in tury, as Fielding's works display of the manners of the sum mentioned, Hook was arrested, and continued the eighteenth. To regularity of fable he made nearly two years in confinement. His literary labours little pretension, and we suspect he paid little attenwent on, however, without interruption, and in 1824 tion to style. He aimed at delineation of characterappeared the first series of his tales, entitled Sayings at striking scenes and situations-at reflecting the and Doings, which were so well received that the language and habits of actual life-and all this he author was made £2000 richer by the production. In accomplished, in some of his works, with a success 1825 he issued a second series, and shortly after that that produced many rivals, but no superior. publication he was released from custody, with an intimation, however, that the crown abandoned no
THOMAS COLLEY GRATTAN-MR T. H. LISTERthing of its claim for the Mauritius debt. The po
MARQUIS OF NORMANBY. pular novelist now pursued his literary career with unabated diligence and spirit. In 1828 he published THOMAS COLLEY GRATTAN, an Irish writer of a third series of “Sayings and Doings ;' in 1830, Max fiction, commenced his literary career in 1819 with well ; in 1832, The Life of Sir David Baird ; in 1833, a poetical romance entitled Philibert, which was The Parson's Daughter, and Love and Pride. In 1836 smoothly versified, but possessed no great merit. In he became editor of the New Monthly Magazine, and 1823 appeared his Highways and Byways, tales of contributed to its pages, in chapters, Gilbert Gurney, continental wandering and adventure, written in a and the far inferior sequel, Gurney Married, each light, picturesque, and pleasing manner. These were afterwards collected into a set of three volumes. In so well received that the author wrote a second 1837 appeared Jack Brag; in 1839, Births, Deaths, series, published in 1824, and a third in 1827. In and Marriages ; Precepts and Practice; and Fathers 1830 he came forth with a novel in four volumes, and Sons. His last avowed work, Peregrine Bunce, The Heiress of Bruges ; a Tale of the Year Sisteen supposed not to have been wholly written by him, Hundred. The plot of this work is connected with appeared some months after his death. The pro- the attempts made by the Flemish to emancipate duction of thirty-eight volumes within sixteen themselves from the foreign sway of Spain, in which years—the author being all the while editor, and they were assisted by the Dutch, under Prince ! almost sole writer, of a newspaper, and for seve- Maurice. A power of vivid description and obser;
vation of nature appears to be Mr Grattan's prin- bear and man, and scarcely distinguishable, by the cipal merit. His style is often diffuse and careless; colour of his dress, from the brown flags along which and he does not seem to have laboured successfully he sauntered. in constructing his stories. His pictures of ordinary Two novels of the same class with those of Mr life in the French provinces, as he wandered among Lister were written by the present MARQUIS OF the highways and byways of that country with a NORMANBY; namely, Matilda, published in 1825, and cheerful observant spirit, noting the peculiarities of Yes and No, a Tale of the Day, 1827. They were the people, are his happiest and most original well received by the public, being in taste, correctefforts.
ness of delineation, and general good sense, superior Mr T. H. LISTER, a gentleman of rank and aris- to the ordinary run of fashionable novels. tocratic connexions, was author of three novels, descriptive of the manners of the higher classes;
LADY CAROLINE LAMB-LADY DACRE-COUNTESS OF namely, Granby, 1826; Herbert Lacy, 1827; and
MORLEY-LADY CHARLOTTE BURY. Arlington, 1832. These works are pleasingly written, and may be considered as affording correct pictures Lady CAROLINE LAMB (1785-1828) was authoress of domestic society, but they possess no features of of three works of fiction, which, from extrinsic cirnovelty or originality to preserve them for another cumstances, were highly popular in their day. The generation. A strain of graceful reflection, in the first, Glenarvon, was published in 1816, and the hero style of the essays in the Mirror and Lounger, is was understood to body forth’ the character and mingled with the tale, and shows the author to have sentiments of Lord Byron! It was a representation been a man of refined and cultivated taste and of the dangers attending a life of fashion. The feeling. In 1838 Mr Lister published a Memoir of second, Graham Hamilton, depicted the difficulties the Life and Administration of the Earl of Cla- and dangers inseparable, even in the most amiable rendon, in three volumes, a work of considerable minds, from weakness and irresolution of character. talent and research, in preparing which the author The third, Ada Reis (1823), is a wild Eastern tale, had access to documents and papers unknown to his the hero being introduced as the Don Juan of his predecessors. Mr Lister died in June 1842, at day, a Georgian by birth, who, like Othello, is sold which time he held the government appointment of to slavery,' but rises to honours and distinctions. Registrar-general of births, marriages, and deaths. In the end Ada is condemned, for various misdeeds, The following brief description in 'Granby' may be to eternal punishment! The history of Lady Carocompared with Mr Wordsworth’s noble sonnet com-line Lamb is painfully interesting. She was united, posed upon Westminster Bridge.
before the age of twenty, to the Ilonourable William
Lamb (now Lord Melbourne), and was long the de[London at Sunrise.]
light of the fashionable circles, from the singularity Granby followed them with his eyes ; and now, too as well as the grace of her manners, her literary full of happiness to be accessible to any feelings of accomplishments, and personal attractions. On jealousy or repining, after a short reverie of the purest meeting with Lord Byron, she contracted an unforsatisfaction, he left the ball, and sallied out into the tunate attachment for the noble poet, which confresh cool air of a summer morning-suddenly passing tinued three years, and was the theme of much from the red glare of lamplight to the clear sober bright- remark. The poet is said to have trifled with ness of returning day. Ile walked cheerfully onward, her feelings, and a rupture took place. “For many refreshed and exhilarated by the air of morning, and years Lady Caroline led a life of comparative seinterested with the scene around him. It was broad clusion, principally at Brocket Hall. This was indaylight, and he viewed the town under an aspect in terrupted by a singular and somewhat romanwhich it is alike presented to the late retiring votary tic occurrence. Riding with Mr Lamb, she met, of pleasure, and to the early rising sons of business. just by the park-gates, the hearse which was conHe stopped on the pavement of Oxford Street to conveying the remains of Lord Byron to Newstead template the effect. The whole extent of that long Abbey. She was taken home insensible: an illness vista, unclouded by the mid-day smoke, was distinctly of length and severity succeeded. Some of her visible to his eye at once. The houses shrunk to half medical attendants imputed her fits, certainly of their span, while the few visible spires of the adjacent great incoherence and long continuance, to partial churches secmed to rise less distant than before, gaily insanity. At this supposition she was invariably tipped with early sunshine, and much diminished in and bitterly indignant. Whatever be the cause, it apparent size, but heightened in distinctness and in is certain from that time her conduct and habits beauty. Had it not been for the cool gray tint which materially changed; and about three years before slightly mingled with every object, the brightness was her death a separation took place between her and almost that of noon. But the life, the bustle, the Mr Lamb, who continued, however, frequently to busy din, the flowing tide of human existence, were visit, and, to the day of her death, to correspond all wanting to complete the similitude. All was with her. It is just to both parties to add, that hushed and silent; and this mighty receptacle of Lady Caroline constantly spoke of her husband in human beings, which a few short hours would wake the highest and most affectionate terms of admi. into active energy and motion, seemed like a city of ration and respect.' A romantic susceptibility of the dead.
temperament and character seems to have been the There was little to break this solemn illusion. bane of this unfortunate lady. Her fate illustrates Around were the monuments of human exertion, but the wisdom of Thomson's advice the hands which formed them were no longer there. Few, if any, were the symptoms of life. No sounds Then keep each passion down, however dcar,
Trust me, the tender are the most severe. were heard but the heavy creaking of a solitary wagon, the twittering of an occasional sparrow, the The Recollections of a Chaperon, 1833, by LADY monotonous tone of the drowsy watchman, and the DACRE, are a series of tales written with taste, distant rattle of the retiring carriage, fading on the feeling, and passion. This lady is, we believe, also ear till it melted into silence: and the eye that authoress of Trevelyan, 1833, a nove
hich was searched for living objects fell on nothing but the considered at the time of its publication as the grim great-coated guardian of the night, muffled up into an appearance of doubtful character between
* Annual Obituary for 1829.
R. PLUMER WARD.
best feminine novel, in many respects, that had ap- leisure, as we are forced to undergo? What is it, peared since Miss Edgeworth's Vivian. Among other then, that so seduces you ? A little intoxication, works of this class may be mentioned the tale of returned Mr Wentworth, laughing off a subject which Dacre, 1834, by the COUNTESS OF MORLEY; and he did not wish carried too far; for which you several fashionable novels (The Divorced, Family philosophers say we ought to be whipped, and for Records, Love, The Courtier's Daughter, &c.) by which whipped we often are. Those, however, who LADY CHARLOTTE Bury. This lady is the supposed want this whipping would do well to take Sir George's authoress of a Diary Illustrative of the Times of advice, and visit the shrines of the mighty dead. George IV., a scandalous chronicle, published in They would see how inferior most of themselves are 1838. It appears that her ladyship (then Lady in present estimation to beings who, when alive, could Charlotte Campbell) had held an appointment in not, in splendour at least, compare with them. I the household of the Princess of Wales, and during have too often made the reflection, and was not the this time she kept a diary, in which she recorded happier for it. You cannot be serious,' said the the foibles and failings of the unfortunate princess divine; 'since who are such real benefactors to manand other members of the court. The work was kind as enlightened legislators and patriot warriors! strongly condemned by the two leading critical What poet, I had almost said what philosopher, can journals—the Edinburgh and Quarterly Review - stand in competition with the founder or defender of and was received generally with disapprobation. his country?' 'Ask your own Homer, your own
Shakspeare,' answered Wentworth, forgetting his ambition for a moment in his love of letters. “You
take me in my weak part,' said Herbert, "and the Mr R. PLUMER Ward published in 1825 a sin, however, that but for the Solous, the Romuluses, the
subject would carry us too far. I would remark, gular metaphysical and religious romance entitled Charlemagnes, and Alfreds, we should have no Homer Tremaine, or the Man of Refinement. The author's or Shakspeare to charm as.' 'I know this is your name was not prefixed to his work; and as he favourite thenie,' said the minister, and you know alluded to his intimacy with English statesmen and how much I agree with you. But this is not prepolitical events, and seemed to belong to the evan. cisely the question raised by Sir George ; which is, gelical party in the church, much speculation took the superiority in the temple of fame enjoyed by men place as to the paternity of the novel. The writer distinguished for their efforts in song of history (but was evidently well-bred and intellectual-prone to who might have been mere beggars when alive) over philosophical and theological disquisitions, but at those who flaunted it superciliously over them in a the same time capable of forcible delineation of cha- pomp and pride which are now absolutely forgotten. racter, and the management of natural dialogue I will have nothing to do with supercilious flaunters, and incidents. The prolixity of some of the disser- replied Herbert; “I
speak of the liberal, the patriotic, tations and dialogues, where the story stood still for who seek power for the true uses of power, in order to half a volume, that the parties might converse and diffuse blessing and protection all around them. dispute, rendered · Tremaine' somewhat heavy and These can never fail to be deservedly applauded ; and tedious, in spite of the vigour and originality of I honour such ambition as of infinitely more real contalent it displayed. In a subsequent work, De Vere, sequence to the world than those whose works (howor the Man of Independence, 1827, the public dweltever I may love them in private) can, from the mere with keen interest on a portraiture of Mr Canning, nature of things, be comparatively known only to a whose career was then about to close in his prema- few. All that is most true," said Mr Wentworth ; ture death. The contention in the mind of this and for a while public men of the description you illustrious statesman between literary tastes and the mention fill a larger space in the eye of mankind; pursuits of ambition, is beautifully delineated in one that is, of contemporary mankind. But extinguish passage which has been often quoted. It represents their power, no matter by what means, whether by a conversation between Wentworth (Canning), Sir losing favour at court, or being turned out by the George Deloraine, a reserved and sentimental man, country, to both which they are alike subject ; let and Dr Herbert. The occasion of the conversation death forcibly remove them, or a queen die, and their was Wentworth’s having observed Deloraine coming light, like Bolingbroke's, goes out of itself; their inout of Westminster Abbey by the door at Poets' Auence is certainly gone, and where is even their Corner. Meeting at dinner, Sir George is rallied reputation? It may glimmer for a minute, like the by Wentworth on his taste for the monuments of dying flame of a taper, after which they soon cease to departed genius; which he defends; and he goes on be mentioned, perhaps eren remembered.' 'Surely,' to add
said the doctor, 'this is too much in extremes. And 'It would do all you men of power good if you yet,' continued Wentworth,' have we not all heard of were to visit them too; for it would show you how a maxim appalling to all lovers of political fame, little more than upon a level is often the reputation |“ that nobody is missed ?" Alas! then, are we not of the greatest statesman with the fame of those who, compelled to burst out with the poet :by their genius, their philosophy, or love of letters,
“What boots it with incessant care, improve and gladden life even after they are gone.' The whole company saw the force of this remark, and
To tend the homely slighted shepherd's trade, Wentworth not the least among them. You have
And strictly meditate the thankless muse?
Were it not better done, as others use, touched a theme,' said he, which has often engaged
To sport with Amaryllis in the shade, me, and others before me, with the keenest interest.
Or with the tangles of Neæra's hair?" I know nothing so calculated as this very reflection to cure us poor political slaves (especially when we Both Sir George and De Vere kindled at this; and feel the tugs we are obliged to sustain) of being the doctor himself smiled, when the minister prodazzled by meteors.' 'Meteors do you call them ?' ceeded. “In short,' said he, when a statesman, or said Dr Herbert. "Men do not run after meteors even a conqueror is departed, it depends upon the with such rapid and persevering steps as you great happier poet or philosophic historian to make even people pursue ambition.' 'I grant you,' returned his his name known to posterity; while the historian or friend ; and if we did not think them something poet acquires immortality for himself in conferring better, who would give himself [q. themselves] up to upon his heroes an inferior existence.' Inferior such labour, such invasions of their privacy and existence !' exclaimed Herbert. "Yes; for look at