The Pearl-Oyster.



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our nature. What images of horror does not this instinct summon to its aid?


-“To die, and go we know not where;
To lie in cold obstruction, and to rot;
This sensible warm motion to become
A kneaded clod; and the delighted spirit
To bathe in fiery floods, or to reside
In thrilling regions of thick-ribbed ice;
To be imprisoned in the viewless winds,
And blown with restless violence round about
The pendent world; or to be worse than worst
Of those, that lawless and incertain thoughts
Imagine howling! tis too horrible!
The weariest and most loathed worldly life,
That age, ache, penury, imprisonment
Can lay on nature, is a paradise
To what we fear of death."

Nor is it fear only that asks the withholding of the fatal shears. A nobler motive often prompts the cry for life. The dying mother, as she thinks of the little ones she is to leave behind, prays, passionately prays, for their sake to be spared; with Mrs. Osgood in one of her sweetest lays, she may say,

“Ah, let me stay !-albeit my heart is weary,
Weary and worn, tired of its own sad beat,
That finds no echo in this busy world
Which cannot pause to answer-tired alike
Of joy and sorrow, of the day and night.


THERE are those undoubtedly who may sin My frank and frolic child, in whose blue eyes, cerely pray, with ancient Pistol,

Wild joy and passionate wo alternate rise ;

Whose cheek the morning in her soul illumes; “Abridge my doleful days,

Whose little, loving heart a word, a glance, - let grievous, ghastly, gaping wounds

Can sway to grief or glee; who leaves her play, Untwine the sisters three. Come, Atropos, I say;" And puts up her sweet mouth and dimpled arras

Each moment for a kiss, and softly asks, or think, with Casca,

With her clear, flute-like voice, 'Do you love me?' “He that cuts off twenty years of life,

Ah, let me stay! ah, let me still be by, Cuts off so many years of fearing death;"

To answer her and meet her warm caress !” who are unwilling patiently to wait

Pardon, kind reader, if the picture has made “Till the Destinies do cut the thread of life;"

us sad. Look upon that mysterious thread,

and count not the question inopportune, even who might even say, with Cleopatra to the asp, at this festal season-for, of the many thous“Come, thou mortal wretch,

ands for whose eyes this paragraph is written, With thy sharp teeth this knot intrinsicate there are certainly some of whom it may be Of life at once untie;"

said before this sheet meets the light, some, yea how many, young and loving wives,

“Their thread of life is spun”who heart-broken and in despair over a husband wrecked on the quicksand of intempe- that thread in the picture—is it yours, dear rance, are ready to cry out, with Amavia in reader, or mine? the Legend of Sir Guyon,

“Fates! we would know your pleasures :“Come, then; come soon; come, sweetest Death to me,

That we shall die, we know ; 'tis but the time, And take away this long lent loathed light;"

And drawing days out, that men stand upon." and yet, when

Shut not, then, the thought of death from thy “ The strings of life begin to crack,"

heart. Look once more upon the picture.

Clotho, the eldest of the fatal Three, has begun they find the web “is of a mingled yarn, good to spin, Lachesis with heaven-directed hand is and ill together;" they shrink, and call on Atro- disposing, the mysterious thread of our exispos to withhold a while the dreadful shears. tence:-when, when, dread Atropos, shall thy

The fear of death is the common instinct of office commence ?-J. S. H.

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this period in illustration of the works of Washington Irving and those of his uncle, excited great expectations. Accordingly, he was placed in a situation to commence seriously and in earnest, a formal series of studies suited to prepare him for the successful pursuit of art as a profession. He advanced rapidly, and received flattering encouragement from such men as Sir Francis Chantry and Sir David Wilkie, the latter furnishing him with a recommendatory letter as a probationary student in the Royal Academy, of which institution he is now an associate, and with the prospect of an early admission into the ranks of its Academicians. At the age of twenty he visited Rome, where he remained upwards of two years, availing himself of the excellent facilities afforded there, not merely for the study of the finest works of past time, but in that most necessary branch of study, the lifemodel. From thence he passed to Munich, and studied fresco painting under the celebrated Cornelius. In 1839

he arrived once more in London, and made his debut with ART NOTICES.

the picture of “Cimabue and Giotto,” which at once drew

attention to him, and raised expectations which since then E. M. WARD.-This talented and rapidly rising artist, have been fully realized, although he is yet only in his the author of our embellishment in this number, of upward course. " Benjamin West's First Effort in Art," is a nephew to His works have been occasionally familiarized to the Horace Smith, one of the authors of "Rejected Addresses.” | American public. His picture of “Dr. Johnson Reading

was born in London in 1816, and when quite young, the MS. of the Vicar of Wakefield in Goldsmith's Lodgmanifested a decided love for the fine arts. At the age of ings,” was engraved for the Eclectic Magazine, and pubfourteen he received one of the premiums of the Society lished in the number for January, 1848. The Art-Union for the Encouragement of Arts in his native city, on ac of London issued a lithographic print of his picture of count of the merit displayed in a pen-and-ink drawing “La Fleur's Departure,” and “Goldsmith on his Travels," submitted to the committee, in competition with other has also been engraved. The lato Mr. Vernon, famous youthful aspirants. His original designs made about for his munificent encouragement of modern art, pur


chased the picture of “Dr. Johnson in the ante-room of the author-seems to us no more settled than before. We Lord Chesterfield,” and as the whole of that superb col. read the first half of the volume with almost a conviction lection is now in course of publication in the Art-Journal that the writer was a man. There was everywhere mani(a work that is doing more for the diffusion of taste in art fest a knowledge of affairs, an intimate acquaintance with and art manufactures in the United States than perhaps the out-door world, such as is certainly very rare among all other causes together), it will soon be accessible to all writers of the gentler sex. To this indeed there are excep on both sides of the Atlantic.

tions. No man, for instance, who has ever handled pistols His subjects are generally chosen from those depart for real use, would have let Shirley keep her dread watch ments of literature less frequently adopted as furnishing that “summer night" (p. 298) without ascertaining first materials for artistic illustration, and his method of treat of all whether the pistols in question were loaded or not. ing them displays a thorough education in all the means

This is just one of those small things which, in weaving a of his art. Industry and application are no less apparent work of fiction, a man who writes from knowledge always than inventive genius, and by this happy union in Mr. recollects, while a woman, who ex officio knows nothing Ward, the highest anticipations exist as to his future about it, is very apt to overlook. On the other hand, there eminence in the walk of “familiar domestic history," are so many instances of this very kind, where the writer which he has selected as his province.-J. S.

seems to be perfectly at home in manly affairs, that the We acknowledge our indebtedness to Messrs. Goupil, doubt vanishes, and we feel for the moment that none but Vibert & Co. for their courtesy in permitting the copies a man has written the book. Yet as we proceed towards for this Magazine of one or two of the prints they pub the close of the volume, and see the familiar, the truly lished from pictures belonging to the French school of wonderful acquaintance which the author has with the art. The engravings referred to were issued last spring, female character, we are half disposed to doubt the foreand it was an oversight that due thanks were not tendered gone conclusion, and to agree with Mary Howitt, who in at the time.

her last letter says, in speaking of Shirley, “we suppose there can now be no doubt that the author of Jane Eyre is a woman !"

We are requested by the American publishers to say that Shirley is given by them in two forms—the Library edition, 12mo. in muslin, and the cheap popular style in paper covers.

LIFE OF ASHBEL GREEN, D.D., LL.D. New York: Robert Carter & Brothers. All who know anything of the character and habits of Dr. Green, and of the origin of the present publication, will be prepared even before examination to recard it as a most valuable contribution to the original and authentic materials of American history. No man living in the church of which he was a member, except perbaps the venerable Dr. Miller of Princeton, was more remarkable throughout his long life for his methodical habits. His mental and his physical machinery seemed to move with an exactitude, which we are wont to expect only in

material processes. In connexion with this, he is known BOOK NOTICES.

to have commenced very early in life a daily register of

his personal experiences and observations, which he conSHIRLEY. By the Author of Jane Eyre.New York: tinued till within a few days of his death. This register Harper & Brothers. Shirley is at once worse and better was made in a cipher of his own invention, and known than its predecessor. It has not the faults-real or im- only to himself. A few years before his death, he computed-of Jane Eyre. That is to say, there is nothing in menced transcribing from this diary such passages as the book about which even a question as to its morality or seemed to him worthy of commemoration. These passages propriety can be raised. On the other hand, as a work | form--they were intended by the author to form-his of the imagination, it has not the same power. The intel autobiography. Very few of them, however, are strictly rest is divided between too many, and being divided it is private. The author, during much of his life, stood more of course weakened. At the same time it contains many intimately related than any other one man to American powerful passages. It has special scenes equal to anything Presbyterianism. He was, for many years before his in the former work. In clear and bold delineations of death, the only surviving member of the Synods by whom character-a species of writing in which the author excels the General Assembly of that church was formed and its -it is superior to the former. There are more characters articles adopted. Besides this, he was to his latest day introduced, giving the author a fuller opportunity to dis- deeply tinctured with the old-fashioned patriotism of the play in this respect his peculiar power. We refer not last generation. Under the influence of this spirit, while merely to the leading characters, such as Shirley, Caroline, yet a boy, he was impatient for the arrival of his sixteenth Robert and Louis Moore, Yorke, and Helstone, which are year, that he might be permitted to shoulder a real musket conceived with a precision truly wonderful, but also to the (in the anticipation of this event he had learned the use of minor and subordinate characters, every one of which, no this instrument by drilling with a wooden one) and to matter how casually introduced, has an individuality march against the invaders of his native soil; he was intialmost Shakespearian. Take, for example, the three mately acquainted with Dr. Witherspoon, one of the signers curates, the two old maids, or the sketches of the six little of the Declaration; he was one of the two chaplains to the Yorkes in the chapter entitled “Briarmains.” Every one Continental Congress during its sessions in Philadelphia, of these sketches shows the hand of a master-not merely l the other being the venerable Bishop White; he saw in a keen observer of the externals of humanity, but a this capacity much of Washington and the other great men psychological chemist-a man (-or woman) capable of of that period; he always felt a deep interest, he sometimes analyzing the subtle workings of the human soul in its took an active part, in public affairs. Such having been most occult processes. Still, rich as the work is in its his temper and his relative position in life, his remini. details, and suggestive as it everywhere is of thoughts scences assume the character of public documents, while and feelings that spring up, like newly opened fountains, as being based upon a contemporaneous record, they have from the depths of one's own internal consciousness, it a special character for authenticity that will always make does not as a whole produce that powerful impression them valuable. which was left on the mind by its predecessor.

As a mere piece of biography, a book of more general The question of its authorship-or rather of the sex of l and popular interest might have been made by adopting

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