« НазадПродовжити »
you will have to find out.' They said, though he pronounces the Persian * Then you must purchase your blood with a foreign accent, yet he rivets with all you have. Wolff answered, the attention of every one of us.” "This will I do; for I am a dervish, and do not mind either money, clothing, or
In propounding his millennial opinanything.' And thus Wolff had to sur ions, “ Wolff did it with such morender everything. Oh, if his friends in desty that he gained the affection England could have seen him then, they of all," and expounded the eleventh would have stared at him. Naked, like chapter of the Romans to a poor old Adam and Eve, and without even an man, who had sunk into unbelief. apron of leaves to dress himself with, he :
in such a manner that “ Botta concontinued his journey; and as soon as
fessed cordially that Wolff had he was out of sight of the Hazara, he witnessed a sight which he never thought beautifully shown him that the to have seen among Mohammedans. All great apostle had combined in himhis Affghan companions knelt down, and self in a most prominent manner one of them, holding the palm of his the philosopher, the religious man, hand upwards to him, offered up the fol
and the divinely-inspired apostle. lowing extempore prayer :
Botta thanked Wolff most cordially " "O God! O God!
for his masterly exposition; and Thanks be to thy name !
wherever Wolff has expounded that That thou hast saved this stranger
chapter, whether to a philosopher Out of the lion's den.
or a religious man, a like observaThanks, thanks, thanks Be to thy holy name;
tion has been made to him.” WhenBring him safely back
ever he reached civilised ground, Unto his country,
all the alleviations which kind woUnto his family.
men and friendly men could render Amen.'"
him were lavished upon the well
pleased missionary, who comforts Such startling incidents did not and excuses himself for all the discourage the bold missionary. He amusing stories and records of his went on through all those savage own social powers, which are interextremities, indemnifying himself polated into the narrative, by reby the flatteries and kindnesses of membering that Francis Xavier also every little nucleus of Europeans was “ the life of the company" he lighted on, and recording, with whenever he made his appearance the kindliest, warm-hearted, bare- in the secular world. His social faced vanity, the laughing adula- qualities, however, never interfere tions addressed to him. “Wolff, with his work; and if the good man your amiable conduct will carry looms large through a mist of laughyou through the world," says one ter, in many cases with an aspect of his early friends; and though more amusing than refined, he is as the candid story - teller confesses picturesque a figure as could be defrankly that public opinion was sired when he goes with the mourndivided as to his eloquence in re- ful Jews at Jerusalem to chant at fined Calcutta—the Bengal Hurkara the ruined wall of the Temple that describing him “ as an amiable en- pathetic song of woe and anticipathusiast, but not eloquent;" an- tion which the Christian Hebrew other Anglo-Indian journal praising can still enter into with all his only his “zeal and good-humour;" heart; or sits at the gate of the while" the paper called the English Eastern city, in the very face of man cut Wolff up in a most tre- Islam, and chants aloud the psalms mendous and very clever manner" of prophecy—a proceeding the te-yet the invariable observation of merity of which strikes his English the Persians on hearing him was friends, who have seen him “shake this, “It is astonishing how, and in his shoes” for the slightest gale, with what precision, Wolff conveys with utter astonishment. The fahis ideas on religious subjects ; for shion of his courage was different ·
VOL. XC.-NO, DL
from the ordinary development of the devices common to captives, and that quality, and was not incon- by firmness and self-possession, he sistent with arrant cowardice, ac- did at last manage to get away from cording to his own confession—yet Bokhara, and, coming home by a dewas notwithstanding, when neces- vious course, enlivened by many of sity urged, a most sustaining and his old experiences, came finally to veritable valour.
England, and received from some The last great act of his life was confiding patron the living of Ile the singular chivalrous enterprise, Brewers, in Devonshire. He had undertaken in a forlorn hope of sav- held a Yorkshire curacy before seting two victims of Eastern ignor- ting out upon his journey, touching ance and cruelty, Stoddart and which Mr Drummond wrote him Conolly. With a characteristic with all the frankness of friendtouch of superstitious friendli- ship, “Your call is to be an evangelness, Wolff recalls to his mind ist for all the nations of the earth, that in all his disasters he has and for this you are fit; but, to use been delivered by British officers, your own simile, you are as fit for and, inspired with the recollec- a parish priest as I am for a dancingtion, full of pity, vanity, affection- master.'” Most people, we presume, ate regard, and confidence perhaps on a priori evidence, and judging excessive, but entirely just, in a from the nature of things, would be knowledge of Eastern ways which disposed to agree with Mr Drumfew living persons could equal, mond. A parish priest, however, set out to Bokhara on the forlorn the Grand Dervish has been for hope of delivering those captives. fifteen years, and in that position Trusting to his quick wit and old has built a church, parsonage, and experience, and to the effect which school-house, increased his acquainhis clergyman's gown, doctor's hood, tance to a large extent, and evidentand shovel hat, and the title of ly, by the testimony of the preface “ Grand Dervish of England, Scot- and execution of this very book, won land, and Ireland, and of the whole the love of his neighbours, whatever of Europe and America," which he his parishioners may have to say. meant to assume, would have upon In this calm refuge reposes still the the ignorant and brutal court of most notable of wandering Jews. Bokhara, the good man went forth How he confines his restless acin full canonicals, with a Bible, tivity, his adventurous spirit, his English and Hebrew, open in his love of frolic and commotion, into hand, into the jaws of the lion. A the restricted life and narrow limits most notable, vain, generous, and of the vicarage, we will not undernoble enterprise, which did not save take to say. The cage into which the already murdered victims, but he has thus cooped himself, however, which must commend Wolff to every has evidently not broken his spirit. man who has anything of the Qui- He seems to have retravelled all his xote in his veins-as most men have various adventures with the highest whose good opinion is worth asking. relish and enjoyment; and we know Though he escaped by the merest no book of recent times that will hairbreadth himself, he overawed stand comparison with this original the savage potentate into an inquiry record. The story overflows with whether he had power to raise the character, humour, acuteness, sense, dead a striking confession of re- and folly—the most naïve and unmorseful fright and compunction reserved self-disclosure. If Dr Wolff The Grand Dervish, however, found was a romantic hero, or the brightest it difficult enough to accomplish his type of a wandering apostle, we own escape, and all but testified his might indeed object to many mat
“gratitude to British officers” with ters which hold a place in his nar· his blood. By diligent use of all rative. But he is neither one nor the other; and what he does not or even a suspicion of tediousness, consider beneath his dignity, we, in the latter part especially, has a the well-pleased recipients of his fascination quite irresistible. We confidence, are not called upon to know neither priest nor traveller of consider in such a light. All the modern times worthy to compare vague reputation in which his name with this son of Levi and the desert has been wafted abroad, will be this wandering cross-bearer—this vindicated by his own honest out- Grand Dervish of Christendom. It spoken tale. He is not a heroic would be hard to light upon another personage, but he is the most light. Wolff ;—to look for such exceptional hearted and dauntless of adventurers irregular personages would be fool-the most amusing of companions. ish, and to find them undesirable. Dipping at random into his stores, Nevertheless, there is in his mission it is quite uncertain whether you a precedent which we would gladly may light upon a broad modern see followed. A man of higher strain joke or a quaint Oriental legend of might make that sublime which primeval antiquity. His peals of Wolff has made interesting and excomfortable complacent laughter citing; and we cannot doubt that the laughter of a man fully satisfied the flash of this passing visitor with himself, and enjoying his own through regions of obscurity will jests—are interrupted by wild chants throw farther reflections than anyof the desert, and pathetic Hebrew body dreams of—reflections in all lamentations, pealed forth in a voice probability more original, and therethat has made itself heard among fore more lasting, than those which the clamours of savage tribes, and are likely to arise round the percaused the halls of the Propaganda manent glimmer of some single stato ring again. Altogether the book, tionary taper planted alone in the which is not free from vulgarities, wilderness.
THE moralists of the last century applied not to mind but to external were in the habit of giving a pro- polish, we all reject as old-fashioned, minence and importance to the sub- as belonging to the past, to a difject of manners, which we do not ferent, and, as we think, less admeet with now. Manners must, in- vanced stage than our own. If deed, be an interesting and momen- people want to express the same tous question at all times; but we do ideas now, they take refuge in slang, not find the duty of good manners, and are unwilling to treat them as and the practical value of attractive grave questions involving a moral, ones, pressed upon us now in the or as though their own manners same way—or, at least, not by the were influenced by direct thought, same class of teachers. If we want and were not the happy result of to see what writers have said on the merit or fortunate circumstances. subject we naturally look back; But, a hundred or a hundred and indeed, the numerous biographies fifty years ago, manners were an and collections of letters of worthies acknowledged topic, with a fitting of the last century, recently pub- vocabulary; they were made an lished, and all of which turn our avowed point in education, with minds to this topic, necessarily lead distinct rules, and were an admitted us to do so. Our novelists, it is question in the case of each inditrue, give illustrations of what man- vidual. We suspect that a good ners should and should not be, and manner of that period would apour satirists devote their wit and pear to us extremely artificial, an powers to detect and expose what elaborate performance, the result of is faulty and vulgar in the manners conscious care, seeming to invite of our own day ; but for a grave observation, and therefore a fit subtreatise, a clear, apt, and full dis- ject for criticism, praise, and cencussion, on what constitutes good sure. We still know it to be immanners, from what source and portant; but no moral authority causes they spring, we turn to the amongst the ladies of our own day measured, graceful, sonorous sen- would venture, with Mrs Delany, tences, wherein our literary fathers to rank a good manner next to expressed their opinions and con- religion and morality. Assuming clusions on society. It is now, per- good manners to follow naturally haps, more completely taken for on a good education, there would granted that people know how to be a fear lest nature and simplicity behave themselves; we are seldom must suffer by pressing them on the disturbed by the solecisms and learner as an accomplishment in breaches of the social code which itself ; but this fear was never preonce obtruded themselves into every dominant at the time of which we circle ; nor have we affectation in at speak, when a fastidious taste was all the same degree. We have pro- perhaps constantly offended by a bably made some way in general prevailing coarseness, and graceful refinement. A fine manner cannot action and a polished address were now set itself off by contrast, nor charming from contrast, and very need people become affected (that fit to be put forward for example is, assume a manner) to escape being and imitation. Thus, Addison, after vulgar. Before they had settled giving various pictures of incivility into a certain uniform propriety, and awkwardness, writes : “A man manners were unquestionably more fully instructed in this art (of good in men's minds. The terms “fine manners) may assume a thousand gentlemen,” “ elegant manners," shapes, and please in all ; he may "genteel,” even “gentlemanly," if do a thousand actions that sball
become none other but himself; pain, the other imparts positive
—not that the things themselves pleasure ; the one guarantees us are different, but the way of do- from censure and contempt, the ing them.” And Johnson, sixty other excites respect and admirayears later, describes, with a sort tion ; by the one we pass muster of envy which does not obscure in any company, the other enables his admiration, a manner of perfect its possessor to take the lead in it ; address. It has a touch of patron- the one can be taught and acquired, age and condescension which would the other is a gift of nature, fosnot be acceptable to our ideas, but tered by favouring circumstances ; we believe it a truthful picture of the one is simply a reflection of a good manner, when manner was cultivated society, and has no intreated as one of the fine arts. “I dividuality, the other is the object remarked with what justice of dis- of conscious imitation, and has its tribution he divided his talk to a disciples and followers. It is a mere wide circle ; with what address he duty to aim at good manners; it is offered to every man an occasion of the folly and sin of affectation to indulging some favourite topic, or strive after a good manner, when, displaying some particular attain- not content with simple propriety, ment, the judgment with which he it sets itself by false assumptions regulated his inquiries after the to attract and to engross attention. absent; and... I soon dis- Thus simple good manners bring covered that he possessed some no risk or danger with them, but science of graciousness and attrac- a good manner is too often a snare tion which books had not taught; and a temptation. While drawing ... that he had the power of these broad distinctions, we are obliging those whom he did not quite aware that in very few inbenefit ; that he diffused upon his stances can they be seen in their cursory behaviour and most trifl- full separateness. The emphatiing actions, a gloss of softness and cally good manner we would be delicacy by which every one was understood to mean, is a very rare dazzled ; and that, by some occult accomplishment; while all wellmethod of captivation, he animated mannered persons have an indivithe timorous, softened the super- duality, which distinguishes their cilious, and opened the reserved. demeanour, in things indifferent, I could not but repine at the in- from that of the other well-manelegance of my own manners, which nered persons about them. Everyleft me no hopes but not to offend, body in a certain sense has a manand at the inefficacy of rustic be- ner of his own; but it is not patent, nevolence, which gained no friends not a power, not recognised or inbut by real service.”
fluential in society, like what we One distinction suggested by this would point at, or that suggested portrait lies at the very portal of by our quotation from Dr Johnson. our subject : there is all the differ- No doubt good manners develop ence between good manners and and slide into a good manner, under what the writer means to describe fortunate auspices; for it needs, and, as a good manner. Good manners indeed, must have, a sphere. The are, in homely phrase, the art of woman, for instance, has good manalways knowing how to behave our ners while she is one of many in selves. A good manner sets its pos- her father's house ; transplanted sessor off, on all occasions, to the into a sphere of her own, with best advantage. The one is a habit, room to expand, her most insignithe other a power; the one is ficant action assumes a certain perdecorum, the other grace; the sonality; her manners develop into one secures us from committing a manner of her own, distinctive, ourselves, the other confers distinc- amiable," full of numberless nametion ; by the one we escape giving less graces;'and henceforth she takes