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ton-chops, muffins and melancholy, To sum up the more prominent predilections much cultivated by an points of his character in few words. inherent good taste, and an ardent As he is a great respecter of himlove of the agreeable ; yet he has self, so he is a great respecter of all taken to himself no one to do his persons in authority : his bow to a mutton and music, no one to soften beadle on Sundays is indeed a lesbis melancholy and spread his muf- son in humility. Being a sincere fins. It is unaccountable ; the la- lover of his country, he is also a dies say so, and I agree with them. sincere lover of himself: he prefers
I have mentioned “the things he roast-beef and plum-pudding to any is inclined to; " I must now speci- of your foreign kickshaws; and fy“ those he has no mind to." His drinks the Colonnade champagne antipathies are tight boots and bad when he can, to encourage the ale-two of the evils of life (which growth of English gooseberries ; is at best but of a mingled yarn) for smokes largely, to contribute his which he has an aversion almost modicum to the home-consumption ; amounting to the impatient. His pays all government demands with dislike to a scold is likewise most a cheerfulness unusual and altogeremarkable, perhaps peculiar to ther perplexing to tax-gatherers ; himself; for I do not remember to and subscribes to a poor hospital have noticed the antipathy in any (two guineas annually — nothing one beside. A relation is, to be more.) In short, if he has not sure, linked to a worthy descendant every virtue under heaven, it is no of Xantippe ; and this perhaps is fault of Mr. Smith. The virtues, the key to his objections to the pad- he has been heard to say, are such lock of matrimony.
high-priced luxuries, that a man of It is the bounden duty of a biog- moderate income cannot afford to rapher (and I consider this paper to indulge much in them. be biographical) to give in as few These are Mr. John Smith's words as possible, the likeness of good qualities : if he has failings, his hero. Two or three traits are they “ lean to virtue's side, but do as good as two or three thousand, not much affect his equilibrium : where volume-making is not the he is a perpendicular man in general, prime consideration. He is eccen- and not tall enough in his own contric, but without a shadow of turn- ceit to stoop when he passes under ing. He is sensitive to excess ; Temple Bar. If he is singular, he for though no one ever has horse- lays it to the accident of his birth : whipped him, I have no doubt if he was the seventh Smith of a either A or B should, he would seventh Smith. This fortuitous cawince amazingly under the inflic- tenation in the links of the long tion, and be very much hurt in his chain of circumstance, which has feelings. Indeed, he does not me- before now bestowed on a fool the rit any such notice from any one ; reputation of “a wise man,” only for he has none of that provoking rendered him, as he is free to conirascibility generally attendant on fess, an odd man.
His pursuits genius (for he is a genius, as I have indeed of late been numerous have shown, and shall presently beyond mention, and being taken show.) He was never known to up in whimsies, ended in oddities. have been engaged in more than As I have said, he wrote verses, one literary altercation ; then he and they were thought by some endeavored, but in vain, to convince people to be very odd and unachis grocer, who had beaten his boy countable. He lost a Miss to the blueness of stone-blue for who was dear to him, in trinket exspelling sugar without an h, that he penses more especially, through was assuredly not borne out in his point of poetical etiquette certainly orthography by Johnson and Walker. very unpardonable. In some la
addressed to that amiable spinster “ Nature has made us 2, but Love shall make and deep-dyed bas bleu, he had oc
1 mind, 1 soul, 1 heart," &c. casion to use the words one and two, and either from the ardor of This reminded the learned lady too haste, or the inconsiderateness of irresistibly of a catalogue of salelove, or perhaps from the narrow 1 warming-pan, 2 stoves, 1 stewpan, ness of his note-paper, he penned 1 smoke-jack, &c. and she dismissthe passage thus :
ed him in high dudgeon.
This unfortunate gentleman was The Necessity of Atheism, for which undoubtedly a man of genius—full he was expelled the University. of ideal beauty and enthusiasm. This event proved fatal to his And yet there was some defect in prospects in life ; and the treatment his understanding, by which he he received from his family was subjected himself to the accusation too harsh to win him from error. of atheism. In his dispositions he His father, however, in a short time is represented to have been ever relented, and he was received home; calm and amiable ; and but for his but he took so little trouble to conmetaphysical errors and reveries, ciliate the esteem of his friends, and a singular incapability of con- that he found the house uncomfortceiving the existing state of things able, and left it. He then went to as it practically affects the nature London, where he eloped with a and condition of man, to have pos- young lady to Gretna Green. Their sessed many of the gentlest quali- united ages amounted to thirty-two ; ties of humanity. He highly ad- and the match being deemed unmired the endowments of Lord By- suitable to his rank and prospects, ron, and in return was esteemed by it so exasperated his father, that he his Lordship ; but even had there broke off all communication with been neither sympathy nor friend- him. ship between them, his premature
After their marriage the young fate could not but have saddened couple resided some time in EdinByron with no common sorrow. burgh. They then passed over to
Mr. Shelley was some years Ireland, which, being in a state of younger than his noble friend; he disturbance, Shelly took a part in was the eldest son of Sir Timothy politics, more reasonable than might Shelley, Bart., of Castle Goring, have been expected. He inculcatSussex. At the age of thirteen he ed moderation was sent to Eton, where he rarely About this time he became demixed in the common amusements voted to the cultivation of his poeof the other boys ; but was of a shy, tical talents ; but his works were reserved disposition, fond of soli- sullied with the erroneous inductude, and made few friends. He tions of an understanding which, inwas not distinguished for his profi- asmuch as he regarded all the exciency in the regular studies of the isting world in the wrong, must be school ; on the contrary, he neg- considered as having been either lected them for German and Che- shattered or defective. mistry. His abilities were superior, His rash marriage proved, of but deteriorated by eccentricity. course, an unhappy one. After the At the age of sixteen he was sent birth of two children, a separation, to the University of Oxford, where by mutual consent, took place, and he soon distinguished himself by Mrs. Shelley committed suicide. publishing a pamphlet, under the He then married a daughter of absurd and world-defying title of Mr. Godwin, the author of Caleb
Williams, and they resided for some and the wreck of vessels : the spot time at Great Marlow, in Bucking- itself was well suited for the cerehamshire, much respected for their mony. The magnificent bay of charity. In the meantime, his ir- Spezia was on the right, and Legreligious opinions had attracted horn on the left, at equal distances public notice, and, in consequence of about two-and-twenty miles. The of his unsatisfactory notions of the headlands project boldly far into Deity, his children, probably at the the sea ; in front lie several islands, instance of his father, were taken and behind dark forests and the from him by a decree of the Lord cliffy Appenines. Nothing was Chancellor : an event which, with omitted that could exalt and dignify increasing pecuniary embarrass- the mournful rites with the associaments, induced him to quit England, tions of classic antiquity : frankinwith the intention of never return cense and wine were not forgotten. iny.
The weather was serene and beauBeing in Switzerland when tiful, and the pacified ocean was Lord Byron, after his domestic tri- silent, as the flame rose with extrabulations, arrived at Geneva, they ordinary brightness. Lord Byron became acquainted. He then cross- was present ; but he should himed the Alps, and again at Venice self have described the scene, and renewed his friendship with his what he felt. Lordship ; he thence passed to These antique obsequies were Rome, where he resided some undoubtedly affecting ; but the retime ; and after visiting Naples, turn of the mourners from the burnfixed his permanent residence in ing is the most appalling orgia, Tuscany. His acquirements were without the horror of crime, of constantly augmenting, and he was which I have ever heard. When without question an accomplished the duty was done, and the ashes person. He was, however, more collected, they dined and drank of a metaphysician than a poet, much together, and bursting from though there are splendid specimens the calın mastery with which they of poetical thought in his works. had repressed their feelings during As a man, he was objected to only the solemnity, gave way to frantic on account of his speculative opin- exultation. They were all drunk ;
for he possessed many amia- they sang, they shouted, and their ble qualities, was just in his inten- barouche was driven like a whirltions, and generous to excess. wind through the forest. I can
When he had seen Mr. Hunt conceive nothing descriptive of the established in the Casa Lanfranchi demoniac revelry of that flight, but with Lord Byron at Pisa, Mr. scraps of the dead man's own song Shelley returned to Leghorn, for the of Faust, Mephistophiles, and Ignis purpose of taking a sea excursion; Fatuus, in alternate chorus. an amusement to which he was much attached. During a violent storm “ The limits of the sphere of dream, the boat was swamped, and the
The bounds of true and false are past; party on board were all drowned. Lead us on thou wand'ring Gleam;
Lead us onward, far and fast, Their bodies were, however, after- To the wide, the desart waste. wards cast on shore ; Mr. Shelly's was found near Via Reggio, and, But see how swift, advance and shist,
Trees behind trees--row by row, being greatly decomposed, and un
Now clift by clift, rocks bend and lift, fit to be removed, it was determined
Their frowning foreheads as we go ; to reduce the remains to ashes, The giant-snouted crags, ho! ho ! that they might be carried to a place How they snort, and how they blow. of sepulture. Accordingly preparations were made for the burning.
Honor her to whom honor is due, Wood in abundance was found Old mother Baubo, honor to you.
An able sow with old Baubo upon her on the shore, consisting of old trees lo worthy of glory and worthy of honor.
The way is wide, the way is long,
Every trough will be boat enough, But what is that for a Bedlam throng? With a rag for a sail, we can sweep through Some on a ram, and some on a prong, On poles and on broomsticks we flutter along. Who flies not to-night, when means he to fly?"
ON THE MUSIC OF NATURE.
How a certain disposition of certain Even when Nature arrays herself sounds should, through the medium in all her terrors, when the thunder of the ear, raise, depress, or tran- roars above our heads, and man, as quillize the spirits, is a problem dif- he listens to the sound, shrinks at ficult to be solved; yet, in a greater the sense of his own insignificance or less degree, all are convinced of -even this, without at all derogatits truth ; and, to gratify this univer- ing from its awful character, may sal feeling, Nature seems to have be termed a grand chorus in the mingled harmony in all her works. music of Nature. Each crowded and tumultuous city Almost every scene in the creamay properly be called a temple to tion has its peculiar music, by which Discord; but wherever Nature its character, as cheering, melanholds undisputed dominion, music is choly, awful, or lulling, is marked the partner of her 'empire. The and defined. This appears in the “ lonely voice of waters,” the hum alternate succession of day and of bees, the chorus of birds ; nay, if night. When the splendor of day these be wanting, the very breeze has departed, how consonant with that rustles through the foliage is the sombre gloom of night is the music. From this music of Nature, hum of the beetle, or the lonely, solitude gains all her charms; for plaintive voice of the nightingale. dead silence, such as that which But more especially, as the diffeprecedes thunder-storms, rather ter- rent seasons revolve, a correspondrifies than delights the mind : ing variation takes.place in the muOn earth 'was all yet calm around,
sic of Nature.
As winter apA puiseless silence, dread, profound- proaches, the voice of birds, which More awful than the tempest's sound !
cheered the days of summer, ceases; Perhaps it is the idea of mortality the breeze that was lately singing thereby awakened, that makes ab- among the leaves, now shrilly hisses solute stillness so awful. We can- through the naked boughs ; and the not bear to think that even Nature rill, that but a short time ago murherself is inanition ; we love to feel mured softly, as it flowed along, her pulse throbbing beneath us, and now, swelled by tributary waters, to listen to her accents amid the gushes headlong in a deafening still retirements of her desarts. torrent. That solitude in truth, which is de It is not, therefore, in vain that, scribed by our poets, as expanding in the full spirit of prophetic song, the heart, and tranquillizing the Isaiah has called upon the mountains passions, though far removed from to break forth into singing ; "the the inharmonious din of worldly forests, and every tree thereof." business, is yet varied by such gen- Thus we may literally be said to tle sounds as are most likely to
“find tongues in trees-books in make the heart beat in unison with the running brooks ; and, as the serenity of all surrounding ob- look upward to the vault of Heaven, jects. Thus Gray
we are inclined to believe that Now fades the glimmering landscape on my There's not the smallest orb which we behold, sight,
But in his motion like an angel sings,
But whilst this muddy vesture of decay
GENIUS AND VIRTUE.
Various states of the soul are in which it belongs ; and our forward themselves so excellent—and so admiration awakes to excellence ready for the reception of Virtue, which is dimly apprehended, but not such, for example, as self-command, manifested to our eyes. patience, and steadfastness of pur Is it not in this way, we ask, pose—that to the Imagination, which that we look upon the highest geconceives not merely what is, but nius, imaginative or meditative, as what is possible to be, which can kindred to the highest virtue ? hardly represent to itself the soul so When we think of Newton in the full of powers, without supposition, silence of midnight reading the raat the same time, of their noble ap- diant records of creative wisdom in plication, these very powers them- the sky, and with something of a selves receive a part of that esteem seraph's soul, enjoying a delight which is due to them only when known but to intellect alone, we they are applied in the service of cannot but transfer the admiring Virtue. Now, may we not, with- thoughts with which we have reout violence, extend the spirit of garded the contemplative philosothis remark to those intellectual pher, to what we feel to be the virpowers and dispositions which we tue and piety of the man. It is the are always accustomed to contem- will of God for which he is searchplate with a feeling resembling that ing among the stars of heaven. In of moral approbation? They be- the laws which guide those orbs long to the highest state of the soul ; along in their silent beauty, he feels to the exaltation of that spirit, of still the presence of the one Great which the highest exaltation is Vir- Spirit ; so that with the name of tue. How much of that nature, Newton are not only associated which is indeed moral, must be un- ideas of vastness and sublimity in folded in him, in whom either the our imagination, but thoughts of dicreative or meditative powers of the vine love and mercy in our hearts. mind have attained to great perfec- Thus everything low and earthly is tion! They are not, strictly speak- dissevered from that majestic name. ing, moral indeed ; for they may It rises before us pure and beautiexist apart from all morality. But ful as a planet ; and we may be althey have prepared so many facul- most said to feel our own immortaties of the whole being tu bé iu liar- lity iu tho magnifioont power, bem mony with Virtue, that we can stowed by the Deity upon a child of scarcely regard them without some- dust. thing of the reverence which is jus So, too, when we think on the tifiable only towards Virtue itself.
highest triumphs of imaginative GeIn respect, then, to these and nius, and see it soaring on its unother similar qualities, there is al- wearied wings through the stainless ways one feeling prevalent in the ether. The innocence of a yet unmind. We regard the soul in the fallen spirit, and the bliss of its yet excellence of all its highest powers, unfaded bowers, as breathed upon as that object to which our moral us in the song of Milton, seems to reverence and love are due. But consecrate to us that great Poet's none of its nobler powers can ap- heart; and we feel the kindred napear to us in great strength, with- ture of the intellectual and moral out giving intimation to our thoughts spirit of Genius and Virtue, when of something beyond what appears shown by his sacred power the
That ennobled state of one image of a sinless world, or, mixed power appears connected with the with human, celestial shapes, ennobled state of the whole being to “ Crowning the glorious hosts of Paradise,"?