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ment in the judicial administration of this state. Before that time the full court was present at jury trials, and the law and facts of the case were settled at once by the verdict. At that time it was provided that jury trials in civil actions might be had before one judge, and that questions of law might be reserved for the consideration of the full court. This seemed to be a necessary step towards the establishment of any thing like a regular system of adjudication; and this practice, extended, by an act passed the next year, to allow one judge to try all criminal causes, except where the offence was capital, has continued ever since. Those laws, together with the provision made about the same time for reporting and publishing the adjudged cases involving questions of law, have contributed greatly to the rapid progress that has been made in forming a uniform system of legal administration.
In a short note relating to the chancery jurisdiction, Mr Sullivan notices the groundless prejudice existing in the state against this species of judicial administration--a prejudice which every friend to an adequate administration of the laws ought to omit no opportunity of combating. For the impersection and inadequacy of the remedies afforded by the laws, without this kind of jurisdiction, are daily becoming more apparent, as the forms of property, the modes of business, and the species of contracts become more complicated and various. Great progress has been made, it is true, in providing equitable remedies for particular cases, but there are numer ous instances of the loss of rights on the one part, and the evasion of obligations on the other, for the want of sufficient provisions of law in this respect.
In naming the commissioners appointed a few years since, under a resolve of the legislature, to make a compilation from the records of Plymouth colony, a mistake occurs in the christian name of one of them. The commissioners appointed for this purpose were the Rev. Dr James Freeman, Samuel Davis, Esq. and Benjamin R. Nichols, Esq. ; under this commission the entire public records of Plymouth Colony were transcribed, and a copy has been placed in the archives of the Commonwealth.
Speaking of an article in the North American Review for July, 1823, on the history of the laws of Massachusetts, Mr Sullivan says, “ the writer has omitted some traits of the (early) times, which prove our forefathers to have been more polished than bas been commonly supposed;" and he instan
ces the solemn protest of Governor Endicott, Deputy Governor Dudley, and seven others, against the wearing of long hair, as a thing“ detestable, uncivil, and unmanly, whereby men doe deform themselves and offend sober and modest men, and doe corrupt good manners;" and also the Colony law providing as follows--- Nor shall any take tobacco in any inne or common victual house, except in a private room there, so as the master of said house, nor any guest there shall take ollence thercat; which if any do, then such person shall forth with forbear upon penalty of two shillings and sixpence." In addition to those two instances, we have a law of 1663, in which our forefathers agree with Lord Chesterfield in one of his doctrines of politeness, proscribing the drinking of healths; viz.—Be it enacted, “ that no masters of ships or seamen having their vessels riding within any of our harbours in this jurisdiction, shall presume to drink healths, or suffer any healths to be drunk within their vessels by day or by night, or to shoot off any gun after daylight is passed or on the sabbath day, on penalty for every health twenty shillings, and for every gun so shot twenty shillings. And the Captain of the Castle is hereby enjoined to give notice of this order to all ships that pass by the Castle.”
It is hardly necessary to add, that this Address and the notes make an interesting pamphlet. Every one who reads it, whether he belong to the profession of law or not, will regret that there is no more of it; and we hope that Mr Sullivan will find leisure to pursue his inquiries farther, and present the public with a larger work upon the plan adopted in his discourse.
A RESIDENCE IN GLASGOW.
DR CHALMERS AND MR IRVINE.
[Concluded.) In the afternoon, I repaired again to St John's, but was soniewhat surprised to find, in a city proverbial for church-going, that comparatively so few people seemed to attend the afternoon service. When the preacher rose up, I was surprised and disap
pointed to observe that it was not Dr Chalmers. You may wonder at my not discovering who the preacher was before he stood up; but your wonder will cease when I tell you, that in Scotland the good old custom continues of having the minister speak out of a deep box misnamed a pulpit. Well, uprose the tall, gaunt figure of the now celebrated Mr Irvine. My disappointment I could plainly see was participated by many of the audience. But I can plead no excuse for the ill breeding of those who deliberately rose up, and left the church, on perceiving that the speaker was not Dr Chalmers. Your inquiries about Mr Irvine indicate an uncommon interest in him; I shall therefore endeavour to give you a full and fair statement of the effect he produced on my own feelings.
The introductory prayer was stiff, lifeless, and uninteresting ; and an awkward imitation of the manner of Dr Chalmers, only made the bareness of the speaker's ideas more conspicuous. The national accent was not so observable on his tongue ; but the gesture, and the general attitude he assumed, were a close imitation of Dr Chalmers. I am told that, after going to London, “he reformed it altogether," and had the good sense to make gesture a study : so that his majestic figure, and his bold, commanding action, now harmonize finely in producing much of the peculiar effect of his eloquence.
The ideas and the composition of the discourse, were somewhat peculiar. in the first part of the sermon, there was nothing to distinguish Mr Irvine's mind from that of the common class of preachers in Scotland. The matter was sufficiently abstract, argumentative, and formal; and the style had the due degree of stiff and bookish phraseology. After dragging through a few sentences of this kind, he tlung me back, all at once, into the days of Spenser, by a sudden and fantastic attempt at an imitation of the style of the “olden time." After an awkward cariacole or two, he descended from his borrowed Pegasus ; and, for a while, was content to tread the vulgar earth once more. Again the spirit of affectation assaulted him; in a moment “ black Surrey was saddled for the field ;" and once more we were favoured with a display of the gallant and antiquated horsemanship of the rider.
I returned to my “lodgings" in that perplexed and perplexing mood of mind, in which we cannot tell whether we are pleased or dissatisfied, delighted or vexed, or why we should either be the one or the other. Since Mr Irvine's “ transportation" (as the Scotch call it) to London, he is become an adept in this business of imitation; so that his discourses are now not unlike the immortal Baron of Braidwardin's castle : an odd, picturesque, combination of ancient and semi-modern art.
During my stay in Glasgow I exercised a truly American in
quisitiveness with regard to Dr Chalmers. I had the happiness of becoming somewhat acquainted with him ; and I found that my countrymen have almost universally fallen into a mistake with respect to his genius and character. From vague report, and from a perusal of his sermons, many people have imagined Dr Chalmers' peculiar cast of thought and expression to be all a thing got up on purpose to produce a certain effect. There never was a greater mistake. I never in my life saw a man who had more downright, native simplicity of character. He is as incapable of doing any thing for effect, as of achieving a metempsychosis. His broad dialect, his blunt manners, his homebred honesty of heart, legible in all his looks and actions, are so many guaranties of his godly sincerity. Dr Chalmers composes and preaches just as he talks to a friend, if the subject of conversation is interesting to his own feelings. Touch any department of the cause of christian benevolence or of common philanthropy, one, especially, on which he has been contradicted or opposed, and immediately you kindle him up to the same sublimity of thought and vehemence of emotion, which characterize him as a speaker. It is true that Dr Chalmers is a mannerist, and his manner is wretchedly bad ; that he ought, long ago, to have cast off all this, together with his provincial accent ; that he ought to reduce his ideas to a less unwieldy form ; that his enormous, overgrown sentences should be pruned, and that he should change his action from the style of Vulcan to that of Apollo. But to require a change now, would be unreasonable. The man's physical and intellectual habits are unalterably fixed by early neglect and subsequent inattention. Suppose a person of his age willing to submit to the school-boy drudgery of mending his utterance and his action ; the attempt would, in all probability, be fruitless. Habit is proverbially powerful in New England; but in Scotland it has the merciless sway of a tyrant. To appreciate or to relish Dr Chalmers, you must give up all the externals of oratory, and take, in exchange, the majestic sweep of his mind; and if you are willing to accept of fervor and vehemence, instead of correctness and grace, you may even come to think of him as a powerful orator.
A mistake of an opposite kind to that made about Dr Chalmers, prevails in the estimation of Mr Irvine. Whilst the former is supposed to be one who artificially works himself up to a certain strain of sublimity, the latter gets the credit of being a man of wonderful originality of genius. The truth of the matter, as nearly as I could learn, is this. Mr Irvine began the career which has issued in his present popularity, by patching his composition with here and there an imitation of the older writers. Practice makes perfect. The transition from a sentence to a paragraph of imitation gradually became easy; till, at last, there was found
to be no difficulty in writing a whole discourse in the antique style. Here you have the whole secret of the matter. I do not mean to deny Mr Irvine's native talent for grand and elevated conceptions, but I think I have given you a fair history of his progress.
As for the weekly crowd and bustle about his chapel in London, I would not give a rush for it. The inhabitants of that city are always in that state of jaded, yet craving appetite for novelty, which induced the ancient monarch to advertise a reward for the discovery of a new pleasure. It is true that men of distinguished intellectual rank resort to the Caledonian chapel ; but it is only because the imitative style of the preacher has now attained its finish. Had Mr Canning seen the dove-tailed piece of work that came under my notice, he would, I suspect, have sided with those of the preacher's Glasgow hearers, who did not care to be favored with a repetition of such matter ; but rose and went out as soon as they observed he was about to officiate.
I admit that Mr Irvine's imitations are sometimes very fine ; but what then?_imitation is but a very ordinary attainment, at its best. The most that we can say about Mr Irvine, is, that he throws a romantic garb over the subject of religion. In this age the world runs mad after romance ; and Mr Irvine perhaps thinks it lawful to put on the tragedian's robe, for the sake of attracting notice to his subject.
ITALIAN LYRICAL POETRY.
The Italians pride themselves on ranking among their poets, and among those of the highest class, many of their first nobles, ecclesiastics, philosophers, and statesmen, who sought relief from severer studies or from the cares of life, in the cultivation of elegant literature. Of this number, and an illustrious name in the list of the restorers of Italian poetry, was the Cardinal Pietro Bembo.
His father was a patrician of Venice, honoured in his time with many high offices, and still more honored by posterity for his patronage of learned men, and his having renovated the tomb of Dante in Ravenna. Pietro was born at Venice in 1470; and from the earliest age he zealously improved the advantages which the taste and condition of his father afforded him for the study of literature, philosophy, and the arts. After his arrival at manhood he was occasionally employed in the public service of his native country, but more in the indulgence of his fondness for study,