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seventeenth century offers us another such contrast, in Matthias and Rodolph II.; the active, restless, grasping character of the former being “so incompatible with the cautious and suspicious temper” of the emperor, his brother, that they lived in perpetual bickerings, unbrotherly in will and deed.
Of fatal import was the contrast of character between the brothers Timoleon and Timophanes; the former mild, prudent, patriotic; the latter rash, profligate, overbearing, and utterly corrupt. But in this unhappy instance it was not the bad brother that acted Cain's part. Servilia, Cato's sister, and the second wife of Lucullus, was as infamous a character as her brother was an exemplary one. The opposite dispositions of Julian and his brother Gallus were from infancy so marked, and markworthy, that they were compared to the sons of Vespasian,—the all admirable Titus and the altogether detestable Domitian. The circumstances and education of the former two brothers were so nearly the same as to afford, in Gibbon's opinion, a strong example of the innate difference of character. So with Caracalla and Geta, sons of Severus ; the elder cruel and vindictive as the younger was mild and amiable. So with Andronicus and Manuel, sons of the Eastern emperor John Palæologus I., whose captivity and disgrace pleased the elder, Andronicus, regent of Constantinople, while the piety of the younger, Manuel, “severely reproved” his brother's “ undutiful neglect," by instantly selling or mortgaging all that he possessed; he embarked for Venice, relieved his father, and pledged his own freedom to be responsible for the emperor's debt.
Recurring briefly to Titus and his brother, classical authorities delight, as Dean Merivale shows, in representing the younger son of Vespasian as a striking contrast to the elder, the darling of the Roman people. But the historian of the Romans under the empire traces a strong family resemblance between them; both being constitutionally impulsive and irritable ; both taking“ with feminine facility the varnish of patrician refinement”; both being naturally voluptuous and sensual. “But whether from the misfortune of his breeding, or from his natural deficiencies, the character of the younger brother presents, on the whole, but a pale reflection of that of the elder"; and is indeed by the world at large, special criticism apart, accepted as not in any sense a copy, but in every sense a contrast.
It often appears in a family, Mr. Emerson has quaintly said, as if all the qualities of the progenitors were potted in several jars,—some ruling quality in each son or daughter of the house; and sometimes the unmixed temperament, the rank unmitigated elixir, the family vice, is drawn off in a separate individual, and the others are proportionally relieved. Some such theory Mr. Tennyson's crackbrained lover of Maud is eager to cherish, by way of reconciling himself to the fact of Maud's having such a brother and such a father : “ Maud to him,” the father, “is nothing akin,” her sweetness being only due to the sweeter blood on the other side :
"Some peculiar mystic grace
All, all upon the brother.” Meditating upon the utterly diverse characters of the sisters Judith and Hetty, Cooper's Hawkeye draws a suspirium de profundis, to think, “Alas ! alas ! that there should be so great differences between those who were nursed at the same breast, slept in the same bed, and dwelt under the same roof.” One of the twain might say to the other, as one sister in Molière says to the other :
"Et quoiqu'un même sang nous ait donné naissance,
Nous sommes bien peu scurs.”
“ We are so unlike each other,
Thou and I, that none could guess
We were children of one mother.” Of the family of the Webers, into which Mozart married, selecting Constanze, the third daughter, he thus reports in a
letter to his father : "I never met with such diversities of dispositions in any family. The eldest [daughter] is idle, coarse, and deceitful, crafty and cunning as a fox; Madame Lange (Aloysia] is false and unprincipled, and a coquette . .. The third ... is the martyr of the family, and probably on this very account the kindest hearted, the cleverest, and, in short, the best of them all.” Could it be the stars ? So Dante affirmed of such domestic discrepancies : “Hence befals that Esau is so wide of Jacob.”] So Horace not affirms, but suggests, in answering his own query, Cur alter fratrum, etc.
“Scit Genius, natale comes qui temperat astrum.” 2 What Horace refers to the sole knowledge of the astral genius, who governs this or that man's horoscope, the poet of the Christian Year refers to the sole knowledge of the Most High :
“He only can the cause reveal,
Why, at the same fond bosom fed,
Till the same prayer were duly said,
Aliens in heart so oft should prove ;
One dwell in wrath, and one in love."
THE NEW EDITION, WITH ADDITIONS, OF
BARUCH’S BURNT BOOK.
JEREMIAH xxxvi. 32. D ARUCH the scribe, the son of Neriah, wrote from the
mouth of Jeremiah, then shut up in prison, all the Divine words of warning and menace which the prophet was enjoined to set forth; upon a roll of a book the Divine
i Paradiso, c. viii.
9 Horat. Epistol, ii. 2.
message was written, and the scribe was made the messenger to the princes, in whose ears he read the message he had already delivered to the people, and by the counsel of the princes the roll of the book was conveyed to the palace, and read aloud by Jehudi in the ears of the king. Not more than three or four leaves had Jehudi read out, when the king cut the book with a penknife, and, despite the intercession of the princes, cast the roll into the fire, and then and there it was burnt up. What gained the king by this? To burn the roll of the book was not to annul the contents. To consume the material volume was not to defeat the design of Him who had inspired it. For at once the Divine decree was issued for another roll to be written, not only omitting none of the heavy penalties of the consumed copy, but containing aggravated penalties, and making the assurances of impending judgment doubly sure. “Then took Jeremiah another roll, and gave it to Baruch the scribe, the son of Neriah; who wrote therein from the mouth of Jeremiah all the words of the book which Jehoiakim, king of Judah, had burned in the fire ; and there were added besides unto them many like words.”
!! the Weriah; her roll, judeme
An old writer is referring to the burning of Bibles by certain who were for stamping out the Reformation at any cost, when he says that albeit " the wicked think to have abolished the word of God, when they have burnt the book thereof; yet this [passage of Jeremiah the prophet] declareth that God will not only raise it up again, but also increase it in greater abundance to their condemnation.” To apply the lines of one of Shakspeare's contemporaries :
" Nor do they aught, that use this cruelty
Of interdiction, and this rage of burning,
And to the writers an eternal name.” Famous or infamous, in story, as related in Walker's History of Independency, is the soldier preacher's symbolical message and Bible burning in the churchyard of Walton on Thames ; how he and his five comrades carried five candles, which he successively lighted and then put out, to represent the abolition of the sabbath, of tithes, of ministers in the congregation, and of magistrates; four of the candles thus disposed of, the man then, “putting his hand in his basket, and pulling out a little Bible, showed it openly to the people, saying, 'Here is a book you have in great veneration, consisting of two parts, the Old and New Testament; I must tell you it is abolished. It containeth beggarly rudiments, milk for babes; but now Christ is in His glory among us, and imparts a fuller measure of His Spirit to His saints than this can afford, and therefore I am commanded to burn it before your faces'; so taking the candle out of his lantern, he set fire to the leaves. And then putting out the candle, “And here my fifth light is extinguished.'” Somehow or other, however, he failed to abolish the Bible after all.
Burning any book is bad policy, unless indeed the book be such as many which used curious arts in Ephesus brought together, and burned before all men, and the price of which was reckoned at fifty thousand pieces of silver. It is not by the burning of books, free from moral pollution but tainted by intellectual “unsoundness,” that mightily grows the word of God and prevails. But this kind of short and easy way with dissenters from orthodoxy has ever been in request to some extent, and in some circles; though ever, one may hope and believe, less and less so. John of Salisbury professes to have seen kings throw the books of the law into the fire, not scrupling to cut the laws (jura) and canons to pieces if they
1 The Prayer-Book of the Church of England was intended for a like holocaust in the streets of Bedford not many years ago. One Sunday afternoon, in 1862, a fanatic discoursed to the townspeople on disputed topics in doctrine, and was quietly enough listened to until, in the words of a narrative of the scene, happily a strange scene, he “applied to them a test which they were not prepared to bear, when he brought forth a Prayer. Book and set it on fire before them. His eloquence had lost its power, and they were just going to cool his zeal in the river, when he was saved by the police." There is no reason, as the narrator observes, to suppose that the churchmanship of the man's assailants was strong, or that they had any churchmanship at all; but they saw clearly enough that the preacher meant to persecute if he could, and they had no idea of letting him have his way,