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her finger ; - 'I will keep this for ever, my sweet Bessie,' she said ; the memorial of innocence, and purity, and much abused trust.'

"Oh, I did not mean that I did not mean that, Isabella. Surely I have not accused him; I told you he never said he loved me. I am not angry with him you must not be. You cannot be long, if you love him ; and surely you do love him.'

“Indeed, indeed I do not.'

“ Isabella Linwood ! you have loved him.' She threw one arm around Isabella's neck, and looked with a piercing gaze in her face. Isabella would at this moment have given worlds to have answered with truth -No, never!' She would have given her life to have repressed the treacherous blood, that, rushing to her neck, cheeks, and temples, answered unequivocally Bessie's illtimed question.

“ Meredith's eye was riveted to her face, and the transition from the humiliation, the utter abasement of the moment before, to the undeniable and manifested certainty that he had been loved by the all-exacting, the unattainable Isabella Linwood, was more than he could bear, without expressing his exultation. “I thank you, Bessie Lee,' he cried ; “this triumph is worth all I have endured from your raving and silly drivelling. Your silent confession, Miss Linwood, is satisfactory, full, and plain enough ; but it has

a thought too late. Good-evening to you a fair goodnight, to you, sir. I advise you to take care that your sister sleep more and dream less.'

“There is undoubtedly a pleasure, transient it may be, but real it is, in the gratification of the baser passions. Meredith was a self idolater; and at the very moment when his divinity was prostrate, it had been revived by the sweetest, the most unexpected incense. No wonder he was intoxicated. How long his delirium lasted, and what were its effects, are still to be seen. His parting taunts were lost on those he left behind.

“Bessie believed that her mission was fulfilled and ended. The artificial strength which, while she received it as the direct gift of Heaven, her highly-wrought imagination had supplied, was exhausted. As Meredith closed the door, she turned to Eliot, and locking her arms around him, gazed at him with an expression of natural tenderness, that can only be imagined by those who have been so fortunate as to see Fanny Kemble's exquisite personation of Ophelia, and who remember (who could forget it?) her action at the end of the flower-scene, when reason and nature seeming to overpower her wild fancies, she throws her arms around LaerVOL. XLII. NO. 90.



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tes's neck, and with one flash of her all-speaking eyes, makes every chord of the heart vibrate."

- pp. 180—189. We take our leave of Miss Sedgwick, on this as on every former occasion of the same kind, with feelings of unmixed gratitude for the entertainment afforded by her works, and for the favorable moral influence which they exercise upon the community. If her literary power be somewhat less than that of her illustrious English prototype, Miss Edgeworth, the moral strain of her writings is of a yet higher cast.

There are some appearances in the present state of learning, which seem to show that the ladies are taking the department of novel-writing into their own hands, and if they would all manage it with the ability, taste and discretion of our author, we cannot say that we should deeply regret the revolution. We noticed, not long ago, accounts in the newspapers of a meeting of female writers of this and other countries, at the residence of Miss Sedgwick, in Berkshire. If we were not misinformed by the daily chronicles of the times, Mrs. Sigourney, Mrs. Butler, Miss Martineau, Miss Gould, and we know not how many more of their fair compeers, were assembled upon this occasion, constituting a sort of female wittenagemote, or, in more intelligible language, a Blue Congress. The newspapers, after dwelling with great enthusiasm upon what was to be expected froin this brilliant assemblage, have preserved a rather ominous silence upon what was really done, nor has any authentic journal of proceedings been issued, as far as we are apprised, by the Diet itself. We venture to hope, however, that the object of the fair members of this re-union, was to encourage each other to persevere in the literary pursuits, to which they have all devoted themselves with so much success. There is something in the department of polite learning, and especially of the novel, dwelling as it does, or should do, chiefly on the scenes and characters of domestic life, that renders it a field peculiarly fitted for the graceful genius of the sex. When a man sits down to write a novel, he is apt to consider it as a means of effecting some, as he supposes, more important end, and you find with dismay, before you have finished the first volume, that you are perusing, under this seductive form, a treatise on metaphysics, or an inquiry into the antiquities of Italy, Egypt or China. But a female novelist gives up her whole work, with her heart and soul in it, to the distresses of the lovers. When she has introduced her hero and heroine in all their faultless perfection, at

tended with the usual accompaniment of other personages,

has led them through the mazes of intrigue and adventure for the regular four volumes, and brought them, at the close of the last, to the desired consummation of a fortunate marriage, she is fully satisfied. She would not exchange her achievement for the most perfect political constitution that ever came out of the pigeon-boles of the Abbé Siéyes. And this is as it should be. These, after all, are the novels for our money. We like metaphysics, we like morals, we like history ; but we like them all in their places, and we do not like them dished up in the form of a novel. Let then Miss Sedgwick continue to give us more Clarences, and more Linwoods. Let her accomplished relative bring us acquainted with more of the family of Allen Prescott. Let the interesting stranger who is now refreshing us with the light of her countenance, open again, on her return to her native country, the rich store-house of her Illustrations, taking care, if it please her, that the seasoning of political economy be a little less copious. Let the author of the Affianced One, draw the curtain, and shew us the Two Brides whom she has so long reserved for her private society; or, if she prefer it, let her weave a new and plaintive tale of some love-lorn Greek, or Italian Princess. Let Mrs. Butler, having now sown her wild oats, string her golden harp to the high strain of which it is capable. Let Miss Gould and Mrs. Sigourney warble their native wood notes wild. Come one; come all.

The public, we think we can assure them, will read, and what is better, buy, as long as they will write. We can add, if it will give them any further satisfaction, that while we continue our critical labors, their charming productions shall never want faithful, however in other respects, incompetent Reviewers. Such of them as are well versed in the mysteries of the craft, are aware that this point is one of no small consequence, and they will be encouraged, we trust, by this assurance, to pursue their useful and agreeable labors, with redoubled assiduity.

ART. VIII. Arago on Comets. 1. Des Comètes en Général et en particulier de la Comète

qui doit reparaître en 1832 et dont la Revolution est de 6 ans 18mo. Paris 1831. Par M. ARAGO,

Membre du Bureau des Longitudes. 2. Des Comètes en Général et en Particulier de celles qui

doivent paraître en 1832 et 1835. Par M. ARAGO, Membre du Bureau des Longitudes. 18mo. Paris. 1834.

The present return of Halley's comet seems a fit occasion for some remarks upon this class of heavenly bodies, and upon that wonderful science which has revealed to us the secret mechanism of their motions. How different the impression now produced upon the public mind, from that which was manifested five revolutions ago, in 1456, when all good christians were solemnly called upon by their acknowledged head, the Pope, to curse the Comet together with the Turks, whose arms then threatened the subjugation of the fairest portions of christendom. We of the present day, have our eyes indeed directed to the same object, but with a state of mind how different ? We are not taken by surprise ; we are not alarmed at the novel spectacle; we were fully prepared for it, were expecting it almost impatiently; we had indicated the time when, and the spot where it was to make its first appearance ; had traced among the stars, the path it was to describe ; foretold the rate of its progress from day to day, and the general increase of its magnitude and brightness ; when it was to be seen with the telescope, and when with the naked eye. All these minute particulars, and many more have long been before the world. They have been presented in every variety of form, adapted to the comprehension of different classes of readers. What a responsibility is thus assumed, on the part of those who have undertaken to make the future present? What confidence is thus manifested in the truth of those principles which have led to such astonishing predictions ? With what a firm and unhesitating faith have these predictions been received? Who has doubted whether or not a comet would appear at this time, attended by those peculiar phenomena by which it has been distinguished ? Is any one surprised at what has actually occurred; that in every essential particular the prediction has been verified ? It may be said, perhaps, that nine persons out of ten have not thought about the matter, and have given themselves no concern whether the comet made its appearance or not, or whether it conformed or not to what was foretold. But we would ask whence this indifference and unconcern ? How happens it that men's minds are not now agitated as they were formerly?

Who has taught us, that unusual appearances are no occasion for alarm and terror ? That they are not to be regarded as symptoms of derangement or interruptions of established order, or tokens of the displeasure of the Almighty? Is not this absence of all anxiety and concern on the part of the unlearned one of the beneficial results, and not the least, which has attended the successful study of the stars ? From year to year we are taught in our almanacs, which are perhaps more widely diffused than any other class of publications, not only the regular and stated occurrences of particular seasons, but rare and extraordinary events in the heavens, as eclipses of the sun and moon, the obscuration of a star or planet, and now and then the return of a comet to the sun, after long wandering in the remote regions of space. These predictions, accompanied as they are, with the minutest detail as to time, place, and circumstance, and followed as they have now been, for so many years, with the most exact fulfilment, have had an almost miraculous influence upon the public mind. The most illiterate are capable of appreciating this evidence, this undeniable and irrefragable proof of the high advancement of that science, which has thus enabled us to penetrate the future, and to forewarn mankind of events that are to come.

The history of this branch of astronomy, dates back only about two centuries. The accounts of comets that have come down to us from earlier times, although somewhat numerous, and in many cases relating to extraordinary celestial objects, are nevertheless so vague, and in all probability so exaggerated, as to be of little value. While the opinion prevailed, that comets were temporary fires lighted up in our own atmosphere, that is, of the same nature with those transient meteors that attract a momentary gaze and disappear, no exact observations were made, and no pains seem to have been taken to verify an hypothesis so hastily and generally received. It ippears not a little strange to us of the present day, that it

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