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There is an offence to delicacy in that, whether single or married, they this system, which cannot be suffi- are alike responsible for the use they ciently reprobated; and we have often make of their time, as candidates for a seen a pretty modest girl shrink before kingdom where there is neither marthe silly eagerness of a shewing-off rying nor giving in marriage. I have mother, when compelled to make a the honour to be, Mr Editor, your display of her accomplishments to
Constant READER. every puppy who is deemed rich 6th June 1818. enough to hear the song of Maria,the harp of Julia,-or to be favoured with a sight of Matilda's sketches from nature. We own ourselves more of NOTICE OF ZACHARIE BOYD'S « fended by the gross indelicacy of this BATTEL OF THE SOULE." proceeding, than if the young ladies were taken into public merely to ac MR EDITOR, quire a taste for the incessant and un- I happened lately to be rummaging varying routine of a fashionable life; among some old books belonging to a but experience shews, that to those friend of mine, who has a very comwho obtain the grand desideratum, the plete collection of the theological consequences of their early initiation works which appeared in Scotland, into the Scotch gay world are by no from the time of the Reformation means prejudicial. The natural love down to nearly the middle of the last of our countrywomen for their hus- century. The following title page bands and children, together with the struck my eye: The Last Battel of smallness of their fortunes, induce the Soule in Death. By Mr Zacharie. them, with admirable grace, to re- Boyd. Edinburgh, 1629.” The aunounce the cloying charms of a dissi- thor I had often heard mentioned as pated life, for the sober joys of their having exerted his genius in a metri. own fire-side We must however con- cal paraphrase of the Bible, and from fess, that a very numerous body, we what I had heard of that production, mean the old maids, who have not I cannot say I anticipated much edifia domestic ties to counteract their early cation from his “ Last Battel.”-After introduction to folly, are often suffer- having perused it, however, I may ers from the present system, and do safely affirm, that it is a very interestnot seem to remember, that showing ing book, and that, if I have derived their poor old faces at every card-table no benefit from it, the fault is my own. in town, can scarcely be considered a It is evidently the production of a vi. a fit occapation for immortal beings. gorous intellect, and of a strong, if
We think, Mr Editor, we hear you not very refined, imagination. Moreask our intention in thus addressing over, if we may judge from the work, you? Why then, our wish is hereby Mr Zacharie Boyd must have been to say, we do not look upon ourselves eminently qualified for that important as at all renouncing the character of part of the pastoral office—the consolathinking beings, because, when young, tion of the sick. we sometimes dance at a ball! But It is true, that the style of the times though we condemn the pertness of in which it was written, and of which Alpina to the Old Indian, his last let- it hath a strong savour, is scarcely adter evidently corroborates the truth of apted to the fastidious taste of this poAlpina's remark, that his own inability lished age; but many of your readers, to relish tripping in the fairy ring, is a- I am persuaded, will not on that aclone the cause of the preference he gives count turn away with disgust from a to a fat dinner, over sipping lemonade work of real intrinsic merit. among the votaries of Terpsichore. As the book is very rarely to be met Let men and women try to improve with, I shall take the liberty of exthe rational part of their nature, and tracting from it some passages which we shall only object to those amuse- may give your readers a proper idea of ments which are criminal in their it. It is divided into eight conferentendency, or when, instead of the oc- ces, which take place chiefly between casional relaxation, they become the a dying man and his spiritual guide. business of life; and let mothers teach It also contains the last speech of the their daughters, that it is quite pos- former to his wife and children, and sible to live without matrimony, and concludes with a dispute between the
Devil and the Angel Michael, touching Many interesting conversations now the soul about to be disembodied. take place, in the course of which the
At the beginning of the conversa- dying man has his doubts removed, tion, the sick man is sorely beset with and his views greatly enlightened. Of temptations of different kinds. By his the seasonable assistance of the pastor own confession, his attachment to the he seems fully sensible, and his gratiworld is great, and it is not without a tude vents itself in the warmest exviolent struggle that he is able to wean pressions of obligation. The humble his thoughts from it. The faithful pastor is, however, far from attaching pastor, however, is always at hand with any merit to his own labours. “We his assistance, and uses the following who are pastors (says he,) are but the argument to reconcile him to quit the Lord's spouts and cocks of his conduits, world : “ If a lord should give to some whereby his graces are conveyed unto of his tennants a cottage-house of clay, the hearts of our hearers.” with some little piece of ground for
The advices which are bequeathed colewort or cabbage for to live upon, to the wife, may be listened to with saying, This will I give thee for my advantage by the present generation. life time; but if afterward this lord The husband seems aware of the should say, Fetch thee my good ser, danger that his spouse will not tarry vant out of his clattie cottage, and long to fill up the vacancy which his bring him to my palace, that he may death will occasion, and accordingly eat at mine own table for ever: Tell admonishes her to content herself me, if by the change that servant hath without carnal marriage. “ As for lost; would that servant, think yee, thee, my spouse, now shortlie thou art say, No, Lord, I will not come to thy for to bee a widow: I counsell that table, for thou hast promised me this thou marrie thyself to Christ ; let him cottage-house for my life time? What be thy spiritual spouse.” After this lord in the land was ever troubled preamble, he enters into the considerwith such an answer?"
ation of the question in form, and has Some conversation here ensues, but the precaution to begin with a quothe minister's words are not attended tation on his side from St Paul. with any immediately wholesome ef Having exhausted this topic, he fect. The dying man continues to gives her the signs of the spiritual life, speak his mind plainly, and confesses, which is to be the object of her aim. without hesitation, his carnal attach * There must appear four effects from ments. “ I have filled my barnes, the four winds : From the East, the and I desire to enjoy the fruits there- orient of that life, there must bee an of. There is no man but hath desire, arising from sinne: From the West, after great paines, to reape some fruites there must bee a dying to sinne, even of his labours: I wish that death a setting and going down of wickedwould excuse me for some years: This ness: From the South must come is my griefe, for I must be plain with the heat of zeale, moisted with showers you, I cannot well accord to leave such of tears of true repentance ; and last, comforts.” After some farther argu- from the North must come a chill cold mentation, he still remains very much of trembling fear to offend God.” in the same state of feeling. “ I have He is, however, far from wishing latelie bought some heritage; my ser- that, amidst her aims after more exaltvants are plowing it ; before I die I ed objects, she should neglect the pru. would wish once to reap the fruites dent management of her worldly matthereof.” And again, “ My lands are ters. “ My counsell is, that often, laboured; the harvest draweth neere; thou reade the holie Scriptures, and there is a plentifull croppe upon the particularlie the 31st chapter of the ground ; cornes and wheat and all a Proverbs, where thrift and godliness bound."
are joined together.” At last, however, he gives in. He His advice touching the mode of exclaims, Fye, fye, on my faultes apparelling herself is also very sound. and my folie : I foolishlie once thought “ Beware to out-runne thy rank, or to that I should feather a nest into this out-weare the fashions by attyring world that should never be pulled thyself too gorgeouslie. Sott apparele down: Mine heart hath been bent is but for kinges houses: what are such toward this vanity, that I have nei- cuts and cordons, silk and satins, and ther moved foote por finger toward other such superfluous vanities, whereeternal life.”
with many above their rank and place
are so disguised, but infallible tokens scorned against God's word, counting of an unsanctified heart? With such it but paper-shot. He burned with follies are often joyned libertyne eyes, lust like an oven heated by the baker. and wandering with wanton glaunces.” Hee so loved his lust, that it was his He seems to love to dwell upon this love. His hands were full of pickerie ; subject, again remarking, "Too curious his eyes were full of adultery, and his busking is the mother of lusting works, heart was of guile, and his tongue full the very bush hung out for to inveigle of lyes, ever gaggling like a goose. He unsanctified hearts unto folie." was a cunning
claw-back, and a paunch The discourse which he holds with pike-thank. His custom was to defile a carnal acquaintance, who sounds him the air with belghs of blasphemy. Hee touching the funeral and some other sported at all reproofs. * O the noble particulars, indicates the same good juggling.” There, then this gear goeth sense. Such is his humility, that he trimme. By hooke and by crooke will not even hear of a tomb-stone he sought for gaine. How hee won it with his name carved upon it. Here hee cared not, if men perceived not follow his directions : “Lay me un- his fraud. With Judas hee was wholder the greene turfe.—How many ly given to the bagg and baggage of martyres have been burnt into ashes, his covetousnesse.” “ Christ would which have been cast up into the never be a cautioner for such a reprowinds, and scattered upon the waters ? bate goat as he. In wickedness he caelo tegitur qui non habet urnam.” hath outstripped all others; he put His aversion from a funeral sermon is on Christ like an hat which goeth" off equally repugnant. Away” says he, to every one that wee meete. The “ with the flattering panegyricks of wyne pynt and tobacco pype, with such funerale praise. All men are sneesing powder, provoking snevell, lyers, but dummie cannot lye.” were his heart's delight.”
'" At his A short time before the last scene, a prayers before men, he did chirpe like dialogue takes place between the soul a grasshopper, but where are his tears and the body, in which the latter ex. of repentance?. He in his braggs was presses its grief at their approaching like the hen which cackleth at every separation, in a very natural way, and egg she layeth.” the former attempts to reconcile the The reader is now perhaps suffilatter to its fate, by observing, that ciently satisfied with the devil's merits their separation is only temporary, and as a pleader. He had, however, very that the time approaches when they soon to lower his tone some little, and shall again meet to enjoy each other's it was evident that Michael would society more than ever.
carry off the prize. He attempted to There is perhaps as much power of give the dying man a “girke with his imagination manifested in the dispute rodde," but Michael prevented him. between the devil and the angel Mi At last he was glad to make the folchael as in any part of the work. Sa- lowing humiliating proposal : “ Seetan commences thus: “ I have many ing in his life I have been his master, things to lay to this man's charge. 1 let him be divided, let me have any am the Lord's proctor and attore part, and let God take his choice in ney, appointed to plead for his jus- the partnership. tice. I have already sifted his life. Michael, of course, enters into no Of force this soul must be damned. such bargain with Satan, but refuses Nane assies can cleanse it. It is now any farther parley with him, and taken red hand in the path and pas- straightway, taking the soul under his sage of sin.” Michael is not deterred protection, directs his flight to the by these threatening words of the ene- mansions of the blessed. I am, Sir, my, but openly challenges him to do your obedient servant, his utmost. Come, come, with thy
T. T. B.* most foule mouthed objections; what Glasgow, Feb. 22, 1818. canst thou allege against the soule of this man before that it come out of
We should be extremely obliged to our the body: Come on, fraime thy in- correspondent, if he would favour us with
some farther notices of Boyd's writings; in ditement against him. Discharge thy particular, of the far-famed version of the fiery darts with the utmost of thy Bible. A sketch of his life would also be force.” The devil again proceeds to very acceptable to us, and we are persuadhis accusations. “ In his youth he ed, to our readers.
* A NOVEL
the greater part of their lives with
women, and men with men ; and selSo many reviews of novels have ap- dom does it happen, that the characpeared within the last two or three ters of any considerable number, either years, that we ourselves are well-nigh of males or of females, is understood sick of criticism upon such subjects. by a person of the opposite sex. Men, The plan we follow in private, is to above all, are mysterious beings to skip over the first two or three pages women. They flatter themselves that of the article, which commonly con- they thoroughly comprehend us, and tain a regular history of romance they do, indeed, seize, with great fawriting and novel writing, and to cility, on as much of our nature as is commence reading at that paragraph sufficient for their purposes. But, whichwe find opening with “ —the behind this there remains an immense hero, or heroine, of the present work, and a highly interesting region, which is the son or the daughter,” &c. We is, and, we suspect, must always conare pretty sure, from this point, to tinue to be, untouched upon by the read something that we have not met most adventurous of female explorers. with before; and that, to all students We, in like manner, only go " so far of prose fiction, is all in all.
but no farther" in our individual adThere is only a single remark which
vances towards a knowledge of woman. we wish to make, before proceeding to But the female novelists have been a short sketch of the exquisite per- sad traitors to their own sex; they formance which lies before us.
It is have gone on blabbing “ the secrets this. The merits of those female au
of the prison-house” most unconscionthors who have written English nove ably, and we fancy (for we cannot els are, we think, praised with more pretend to form any very precise or ardour than judiciousness. It is com determinate opinion on the subject,) monly said, that ladies have more lei, that the limits of their terra incognita sure to make observations, in regard are now much more contracted than to small things, than falls to the share those of ours. of the other sex; and that the char
“ Marriage,” is at once discovered acteristic excellence of their produc- to be the work of a female hand, both tions consists, accordingly, in the de- by the minute accuracy of its ordinary lineations which they give of the mi- details, and by the exquisite originalinutiæ of social life. This is all very ty and instinctive fidelity of its female true, so far as it goes ; but we think portraits. We are not sure that any the works of Madame D'Arblay and fair author ever went farther in the Miss Edgeworth are chiefly valuable practice of that sort of tale-bearing, to for something of a yet more import which we have just alluded, than this ant nature,--for the new light, name
apparently new offender. She possesses, ly, which they have thrown upon one indeed, all those talents which lend great department of human nature. eminent dangerousness to the characThey have introduced men into a
ter of a spy. She is, in the first place, more intimate acquaintance with the both as acute and as extensive an obcharacters of women, than they could server, as Miss Edgeworth herself; before pretend to, or, at least, than like her, she pourtrays, with equal could at all be gathered from any facility and accuracy, every gradation works, either in prose or verse, write of social life, from the highest ton of ten by persons of their own gender. the cool and indifferent metropolis, The arrangements of society among us where every body's maxim is “nil adare such, that women spend by far mirari,” down to the enthusiastic ig
norance of a poor Highland laird's Marriage, a Novel; in 3 vols. Black
“purple” daughters, and the tawdry wood, Edinburgh. Murray, London. 1818. blue-stockingship of a young lady from
“ Life consists not of a series of illustri- the manufacturing district of the Lowous actions; the greater part of our time lands. But our author knows and passes in compliance with necessities—in feels many things of which no trace is the performance of daily duties in the removal of small inconveniences—in the pro- the Irish spinster. She has, in short,
to be discovered in the witty pages of curement of petty pleasures ; and we are well or ill at ease, as the main stream of been in love in her time, and that has life glides on smoothly, or is ruffled by small given her a mighty advantage over her and frequent interruption." Johnson. calm and satirical rival. She thus
unites some of the best qualities of moreland. At the end of this enchantEdgeworth and Burney; and has com- ing period, their purse is discovered to posed a novel, which, although very be very light, and they resolve, by defective, both in the design and the way of a dernier resort, to visit Glenconduct of its fable, and marked, be- fern Castle in Lochaber, the seat of sides, with many failings characteristic Douglas' father, whom he had never of an unpractised writer, contains in it seen “ from a boy.” Lady Juliana almost as much of nature, humour, has read several novels, whereof the good sense, and amusement, as are to scene is laid in mountainous regions, be found in any one of their most ad- and imagines that she is about to visit mired productions.
a magnificent castle after the fashion The plot is by no means excellent. of Udolpho. One whole third of the book is over before we hear a word of the person his infancy had left upon the mind of the
“ The impressions, which the scenes of age in whom its principal interest is
young Scotsman, it may easily be supposed, designed to centre. But the truth is,
were of a pleasing description. He expati. that the heroine of Marriage, like the ated to his Juliana, on the wild but august heroes of Waverley and Guy Manner- scenery that surrounded his father's castle, ing, is among the most uninteresting and associated with the idea, the boyish exmembers of the whole fabulæ personæ. ploits, which, though faintly remembered, The work consists of a series of scenes
still served to endear them to his heart. He and portraits, most of them excellent spoke of the time when he used to make one in themselves, but few of them deriv- of a numerous party on the lake, and, when ing much advantage from the general sound of soft music, they would land at
tired of sailing on its glassy surface, to the arrangement and purposes of the gal- some lovely spot; and, after partaking of lery in which they are inserted and their banquet beneath a spreading tree, condisplayed. We dare say, the author, clude the day by a dance on the grass. after she had written her book, and “ Lady Juliana would exclaim, • How considered with herself whether there delightful ! I doat upon pic-nics and dancwere no one among her personages by ingapropos, Henry, there will surely be
a ball to welcome our arrival ?" whose name it should be called ; and finding, with her usual discernment, just at that moment they had gained the
“ The conversation was interrupted; for that there was in reality no such indi, summit of a very high hill, and the postvidual, she christened it “ Marriage;" boy stopping to give his horses breath, turnand thus very prudently divided the ed' round to the carriage, pointing at the compliment among some half-score of same time, with a significant gesture, to a her heroes and heroines, whom, to- tall thin grey house, something resembling wards the conclusion of the work, she a tower, that stood in the vale beneath. A had conducted, pair by pair, to that small sullen-looking lake was in front, on
whose banks grew neither tree nor shrub. blessed consummation. The first volume might almost have hills, on the declivities of which were some
Behind, rose a chain of rugged cloud-capped been published as a separate tale, as it faint attempts at young plantations ; and contains, in fact, the whole of the in- the only level ground, consisted of a few teresting and active life of its heroine, dingy turnip fields, enclosed with stone walls, Lady Juliana Lindore, and her hus or dykes, as the post-boy called them. It band, Captain Douglas. Her ladyship was now November ; the day was raw and marries this handsome guardsman for cold; and a thick drizzling rain was beginlove, in the midst of all the splendid ning to fall. A dreary stillness reigned all preparations for a more suitable alli- around, broken only at intervals by the
screams of the sea-fowl that hovered over ance with the Duke of L- This the lake ; on whose dark and troubled waproceeding throws both parties out of ters, was dimly descried a little boat, plied favour with all their rational friends; by one solitary being. the young lady is talked of as a lost “ • What á scene!' at length Lady Julicreature by her family, and the cap- ana exclaimed, shuddering as she spoke; tain is deprived of the countenance of Good God, what a scene ! how I pity the an old bachelor, one General Cameron, unhappy wretches who are doomed to dwell who had long considered him as his in such a place ! and yonder hideous grim adopted son. These things, however, heaven's sake, bid him drive on. Another
house ; it makes me sick to look at it. For are not at first viewed with much significant look from the driver, made the concern by the happy pair, and the colour mount to Douglas' cheek, as he honeymoon passes very delightfully on stammered out, Surely it can't be; yet the banks of one of the lakes in West- somehow I don't know. Pray, my lad,'