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acts, “and we would take the ghost's word for a thousand pounds." The present play appears to go on by fits and starts, and to be made up too much of unmatchable events. It is inlaid with facts of different colour, and we can see the cracks which the joiner's hand could not help leaving.

After these little objections, all our observations on this compilation are full of praise.

Great ingenuity is displayed, and we should think Kean had a hand in it. The author has extracted veins of gold from a huge mine, and he is liberal enough to share it with other people. The workings of Richard's mind are brought out as it were by the hand of the anatomist, and all the useless parts are cut away and laid aside.

But with all we fear the public will not take the obligation as it is meant, and as it ought to be received. The English people do not care one fig about Shakespeare, -only as he flatters their pride and their prejudices. We are not sure that this has not been remarked before, though we do not remember where; nevertheless it is our firm opinion. But let us say a few words of the actors.

Kean stands like a tower. He is “all power, passion, self-will." His animations flow from his lips “as musical as is Apollo's


It is impossible to point out any peculiar and little felicitic where the whole piece of acting is of no mingled web. If we were to single a favourite part, we should choose that in which he parts with his son, young Rutland, just before the battle. It was pathetic to oppression. Our hearts swelled with the feeling of tears, which is a deeper feeling than the starting of them in the eye. His tongue lingered on the following passage as fondly as his eyes clung to the object which occasioned them, and as tenderly as the heart dwells and doats upon some long-loved object :

"Bring in my dear boy, Rutland.

(Enter RUTLAND with attendants.
My darling! let me kiss thee ere I go-
I know not if I e'er shall see thee more.

If I should fall, I leave thee to thy brothers,
All valiant men; and I will charge them all,
On my last blessing, to take care of thee,
As of their souls."

His death was very great. But Kean always “ dies as erring men do die.” The bodily functions wither up, and the mental faculties hold out till they crack. It is an extinguishment, not a decay. The hand is agonized with death ; the lip trembles with the last breath, as we see the autumn leaf thrill in the cold wind of evening. The very eye-lid dies. The acting of Kean is Shakespearian-he will fully understand what we mean. There is little to be said of the rest. Pope as a Cardinal (how aptly chosen) balances a red hat. Holland wears insipid white hair, and is even more insipid than the hair that he carries. Rae plays the adulterous Suffolk, and proves how likely he is to act amiss. Wallack, as young Clifford, “ towers above his sex.” Mr. Maywood is more miserable in “Henry VI." than winters or wet nights, or Death on a pale horse, or want of money, or deceitful friends, or any other crying evil.

The comic parts are sadly mangled, owing to illness of Munden and Oxberry. Jack Cade dies of a lock-jaw; and Dick the butcher is become a grave man. Mrs. Glover chews the blank verse past endurance ; her comedy is round and comfortable ; her tragedy is worse than death.

One thing we are convinced of on looking over the three parts of Henry,from which this play is gleaned; which is, that Shakespeare was the only lonely and perfectly happy creature God ever formed. He could never have a mate, -being most unmatchable.

No. II.



Fanatics have their dreams, wherewith they weave
A paradise for a sect; the savage, too,
From forth the loftiest fashion of his sleep
Guesses at heaven ; pity these have not
Traced upon vellum or wild Indian leaf
The shadows of melodious utterance,
But bare of laurel they live, dream, and die ;
For Poesy alone can tell her dreams,-
With the fine spell of words alone can save
Imagination from the sable chain
And dumb enchantment. Who alive can say,
“Thou art no Poet-may'st not tell thy dreams ?"
Since every man whose soul is not a clod
Hath visions and would speak, if he had loved,
And been well nurtured in his mother tongue.
Whether the dream now purposed to rehearse
Be poet's or fanatic's will be known
When this warm scribe, my hand, is in the grave.

Methought I stood where trees of every clime,
Palm, myrtle, oak, and sycamore, and beech,
With plantane and spice-blossoms, made a screen,
In neighbourhood of fountains (by the noise


* The passages within brackets are those which are to be found in the printed poem.


Soft-showering in mine ears), and (by the touch
Of scent) not far from roses. Twining round
I saw an arbour with a drooping roof
Of trellis vines, and bells, and larger blooms,
Like floral censers, swinging light in air ;
Before its wreathed doorway, on a mound
Of moss, was spread a feast of summer fruits,
Which, nearer seen, seem'd refuse of a meal
By angel tasted or our Mother Eve;
For empty shells were scatter'd on the grass,
And grapestalks but half-bare, and remnants more
Sweet-smelling, whose pure kinds I could not know.
Still was more plenty than the fabled horn
Thrice emptied could pour forth at banqueting,
For Proserpine return'd to her own fields,
Where the white heifers low. And appetite,
More yearning than on earth I ever felt,
Growing within, I ate deliciously,-
And, after not long, thirsted; for thereby
Stood a cool vessel of transparent juice
Sipp'd by the wander'd bee, the which I took,
And pledging all the mortals of the world,
And all the dead whose names are in our lips,
Drank. That full draught is parent of my theme.
No Asian poppy nor elixir fine
Of the soon-fading, jealous, Caliphat,
No poison gender'd in close monkish cell,
To thin the scarlet conclave of old men,
Could so have rapt unwilling life away.
Among the fragrant husks and berries crush'd
Upon the grass, I struggled hard against
The domineering potion, but in vain.
The cloudy swoon came on, and down I sank,
Like a Silenus on an antique vase.
How long I slumber'd 'tis a chance to guess.

When sense of life return'd, I started up
As if with wings, but the fair trees were gone,
The mossy mound and arbour were no more :
I look'd around upon the curved sides
Of an old sanctuary, with roof august,
Builded so high, it seem'd that filmed clouds
Might spread beneath as o'er the stars of heaven.
So old the place was, I remember'd none
The like upon the earth : what I had seen
Of gray cathedrals, buttress'd walls, rent towers,
The superannuations of sunk realms,
Or Nature's rocks toil'd hard in waves and winds,
Seem'd but the faulture of decrepit things
To that eternal domed monument.
Upon the marble at my feet there lay
Store of strange vessels and large draperies,
Which needs had been of dyed asbestos wove,
Or in that place the moth could not corrupt,
So white the linen, so, in some, distinct
Ran imageries from a sombre loom.
All in a mingled heap confused there lay
Robes, golden tongs, censer and chafing dish,
Girdles, and chains, and holy jewelries.

Turning from these with awe, once more I raised
My eyes to fathom the space every way :
The embossed roof, the silent massy range
Of columns north and south, ending in mist
Of nothing ; then to eastward, where black gates
Were shut against the sunrise evermore ;
Then to the west I look'd, and saw far off
An image, huge of feature as a cloud,
At level of whose feet an altar slept,
To be approach'd on either side by steps
And marble balustrade, and patient travail
To count with toil the innumerable degrees.



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