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cial institutions, and raise every man to a social position, which will give him free scope for the full and harmonious development of all his faculties. I say perfect, not destroy, all social institutions. I do not feel that God has given me a work of destruction. I would improve, preserve, whatever is good, and remedy whatever is defective, and thus reconcile the Con. SERVATOR and the RADICAL. My third article is, that man should labour for his soul in preference to his body. Man has a soul ; he is not mere body. He has more than animal wants. He has a soul, which is in relation with the absolute and the Infinite a soul, which is for ever rushing off into the unknown, and rising through a universe of darkness up to the first Good and the first Fair. This soul is immortal. To perfect it is our highest aim. I would encourage inquiry, I would perfect society; not as ultimate ends, but as means to the growth and maturity of man's higher nature-his soul.
“This is my object. I am not here to preach to working men, nor to those who are not working men, in the interests of aristocracy, nor of democracy. I am here for humanity ; to plead for universal man ; to unfurl the banner of the cross on a new and more commanding position, and call the human race around it. I am here to speak to all who feel themselves human beings; to all whose hearts swell at the name of man ; to all who long to lessen the sum of human misery, and incrcase that of human happiness; to all who have any perception of the Beautiful and Good, and a craving for the Infinite, the Eternal, and Indestructible, on whom too repose the wearied soul, and find rest :—to all such is my appeal; to them I commit the object I have stated, and before which I stand in awe, and entreat them by all that is good in their natures, holy in religion, or desirable in the joy of a regenerated world, to unite and march to its acquisition, prepared to dare with the hero, suffer with the saint, or to die with the martyr.”
1. Mémoires d'un Prisonnier d'état au Spielberg. Par. A.
ANDRYANE, compagnon de l'illustre Comte Confalo
nieri. 4 vols. Paris : 1837.
By ALEXANDER ANDRYANE, fellow-captive of Count
disclosed to astonished Europe the tragedy of the Spielberg, so long the secret of the gaoler and the victims. But though the subject be the same, nothing is more opposite to the saint-like meekness of Pellico than the elaborate narrative of M. Andryane. The former repudiates at the outset of his book the notion of having written to gratify his vanity by the exhibition of his trials; and, with all the uprightness and candour of a self-searching conscience, he proceeds to enumerate the nobler objects he trusted he had in view. We believe him; we know of no tale of suffering so eminently calculated to awaken the deepest sympathy, and which at the same time impresses the reader with so ready and implicit a reliance on the veracity of its statements.
The “Prigioni” of Pellico is an ascetic book : it forms part of a religious crusade, by which a few well-meaning believers, with Manzoni at their head, have in late years been endeavouring in Italy to make a stand for the faith of their fathers; and hoping, with perhaps more ardour than either discernment or chance of success, to support the dismantled edifice of Catholicism. The work of Pellico is the result of the long and painful efforts of a martyr: he appears in it only as the frail vessel in the hand of Providence: his fortunes are exhibited merely as an episode of that great drama of which the universe is the stage. He is not in fact the hero of his narrative, neither is any of his fellow-sufferers. It is principally perhaps on this account that his work has obtained less reputation in Italy than elsewhere. The author of “ Francesca da Rimini” had been dear to his countrymen from his earliest youth: their sympathy had accompanied him in his captivity; vague rumours of his death had kept them in anxious suspense for ten long years; and the tidings of his release were for a time doubtingly received. The Italians read the narrative of his imprisonment, they sympathized with him, they admired the self-possession which restrained him from uttering a word of resentment against his persecutors; but they were disappointed. Pellico had withdrawn himself from the cause he had served ; he had stifled all the natural indignation of a patriot; he had not only pardoned his own wrongs, but those of his country; Spielberg had been for him a cloister, with oblivion at VOL, X.-No, XX,
its threshold. The Italians doubted whether he was free thus to withdraw his hand from the plough,—whether even ten years of anguish could justify his losing in an abstract feeling of devotion all thoughts of the exertion which his country demanded of him, and remaining a passive observer of the strife that was silently but incessantly going on around; -whether, to use his own words, “as a lover ill-used by his mistress, and proudly determined to keep aloof from her,” he could fairly “ leave politics alone and speak of something else.” We shall not impugn, nor shall we subscribe to, these opinions concerning "Le mie Prigioni”; but shall only observe that, whatever sentence may have been passed on that work, it would be difficult to point out a single passage in which the author is found indulging in a spirit of vain-glory.
M. Andryane is not thus exempt from the charge of egotism. The “Mémoires d'un Prisonnier d'Etat” are not written in the same spirit of self-forgetfulness which gives the peculiar charm to the “Prigioni”, though they were intended to fill up the blanks occurring in that simple tale of sufferings which leave the curiosity of its readers half-satisfied. Much as the completion of Pellico's narrative had been expected in Europe, we confess that on first reading Andryane's work we were dissatisfied with the manner in which he had executed his task; like a bad artist (for he writes like a professed one) he has dwelt so minutely on the smallest particulars, that the general impression which such a picture might have displayed is frittered away in detail. M. Andryane has left nothing untold ; he has weighed every sigh, measured every inch of suffering,-he suffers like one whose miseries are to be recorded, and unfortunately for himself he is their chronicler. We do not deny that he has evinced magnanimity, but we regret that, by parading it so carefully in the pages of his work, he has lessened its dignity in the regard of his readers. We had hitherto only been allowed to roam around that gloomy stronghold, or had heard at most the voice of poor Pellico rising faintly from his lonely cell, as he sought peace and consolation in solitary prayer. But the prison-doors have now been thrown open, the graves of Ressi, Villa, Moretti and Oroboni, the madness
of Pallavicini, the mutilated frame of Maroncelli, and the walking skeletons issuing from that living tomb,—all are now brought with painful distinctness before our view,the wrecks of a long imprisonment, which had blunted their feelings even to the sensation of pain, and plunged them into a stupor from which the very tidings of their deliverance could hardly arouse them. We confess we did not desire so minute a recital of details of suffering, knowing how difficult it must be to avoid indulging in lamentations or invectives liable to the charge of exaggeration or petty vindictiveness; we agree with Confalonieri, in doubting the expediency of such a work, and honour his motives for maintaining a dignified silence on the subject of his wrongs.
The “ Mémoires d'un Prisonnier d'Etat" extend to four volumes octavo : these Mr. Prandi has deemed it expedient to compress into two, finding that their author, “ led away by his ardour, as also by the deep sense of his wrongs, “ had indulged too freely in political discussions and per“sonal details, and diffused over his pages a morbid sen“ timentality, inconsistent with the dispassionate simplicity < of history."
The besetting sin of vanity is indeed prominent throughout the book. M. Andryane takes no trouble to disguise the fond persuasion he cherished from his earliest youth, of his being born to be a hero,—a feeling common to the majority of young men, but which does not appear in his case to have faded before the disenchanting influence of age, nor even under adversity. He describes himself as crossing the Alps under the impression that he carried the destinies of Italy in his writing-desk ; he felt all the importance of his “immense responsibility,” and “would have been ashamed of betraying a ny hesitation to those who reckoned so much on his services.” But at the first view of the position of affairs in Italy, the illusion vanishes; he is instantly “ well convinced of the uselessness of his endeavours," and with French precipitation he warns his correspondents that “under such circumstances he must renounce his mission,” and leave Italy to her fate. In prison, again, and brought before the tribunal which was to pronounce his doom, his heroism triumphs over all the versatility of the grand inquisitor Salvotti, the alternate
allurements and menaces with which he was incessantly besieged-over the strong appeals to his feelings as a son, a brother and a lover, and over the snares to his youthful vanity and ambition. It is in the nature of the greatest calamities to awaken new energies, and to strain the best faculties of man; but we should have risen from the perusal of this work with a higher opinion of the author, if he had endea. voured less to make himself appear as the prominent martyr in the cause. It is true that he extols the magnanimity of Confalonieri with a kind of idol worship, but in doing so he never allows us to forget that he was his bosom friend and his support: and the very sufferings of his companion are heightened by the consolation which he rendered. We acquit him of having intentionally represented himself thus as the hero of Spielberg, but such is the impression conveyed to readers who are not in the habit of excercising discernment or searching the characters of their authors.
The system of pruning, by which the ambitious style of the original is sobered down in the translation, has been amply justified by the testimony of public opinion. We are averse on principle to abridgements and alterations on the part of a translator; but in the present instance curtailment was not only justifiable but necessary; and Mr. Prandi has shown great judgement and skill in the very difficult task he took upon himself, in preserving the narrative entire, while divesting it of the mass of superfluous and frivolous matter which renders a very interesting work unreadable to the English public. We can detect in the translation no omission of facts, no alteration except in expressions and style, and those invariably for the better. It is only through the medium of his translator that Andryane's narrative can be justly appreciated. Instead of the French hero and his dreams of love and ambition engrossing our whole attention, the other illustrious men who suffered with him occupy proper station in the history of these fearful events.
The “ Memoirs of a Prisoner of State,” as now presented to us, is a book of deep interest. The scene opens at Geneva, about the end of 1822: M. Andryane, then a young man, was prevailed upon by the well-known republican Buonarotti, and a few of the most ardent Italian exiles, to repair to