which he bestowed the manuscript, to have con- from the world. It were, he observed, but an sulted at once his generous disposition towards a act of cold justice to the memory of Lord Byron friend, and his desire of security against mutila- to state, publicly, that they appear the reflections tion or suppression. On this subject Captain of as generous a mind as ever committed its exMedwin's Journal makes him speak as follows :— pression to paper: for though, indeed, the traces « I am sorry not to have a copy of my Memoirs to of his temperament, and of his false position in show you.

I gave them to. Moore, or rather to society, are there, still the sentiments are lofty Moore's little boy.»

and enthusiastic; and every line betrays the « I remember saying, “Here are two thousand warmest sympathy with human suffering, and a pounds for you, my young friend. I made one scornful indignation against mean and disgracereservation in the gift—that they were not to be ful vice. published till after my death.»

The extempore song, addressed by Lord Byron « I have not the least objection to their being to Mr Moore, on the latter's last visit to Italy, circulated; in fact they have been read by some proves the familiar intercourse and friendship of mine and several of Moore's friends and ac- that subsisted between him and the subject of quaintances ; among others they were lent to this memoir. The following stanzas are very Lady Burghersh. On returning the manuscript, expressive :her ladyship told Moore that she had transcribed

Were 't the last drop in the well, the whole work. This was un peu fort, and he

As I gasp'd upon the brink, suggested the propriety of her destroying the

Ere my fainting spirit fell, copy. She did so, by putting it into the fire in

'T is to thee that I would drink. his presence. Ever since this happened, Douglas

In that water, as this wine, Kincaird has been recommending me to resume

Tbe libation I would pour

Should be-Peace to tbine and mine, possession of the manuscript, thinking to frighten

And a health to thee, Tom Moore! me by saying, that a spurious or a real copy, surreptitiously obtained, may go forth to the When Lord Byron had published his celebrated world. I am quite indifferent about the world satire of « English Bards and Scotch Reviewers,» knowing all that they contain. There are very in which our poet, in common with most of his few licentious adventures of my own, or scandal- distinguished contemporaries was visited rather ous anecdotes that will affect others, in the book. « too roughly » by the noble modero Juvenal, his It is taken up from my earliest recollections, al- lordship expected to be « called out, most from childhood—very incoherent, written fashionable phrase is; but no one had courage to in a very loose and familiar style. The second try his prowess in the field, save Mr Moore, who part will prove a good lesson to young men ; for did not relish the joke about « Little's leadless it treats of the irregular life I led at one period, pistols, and sent a letter to his lordship in the and the fatal consequences of dissipation. There nature of a challenge, but which he, by his leavare few parts that may not, and none that will ing the country, did not receive. On Byron's not, be read by women.»

return, Mr Moore made inquiry if he had received In this particular, Lord Byron's fate has been the epistle, and stated that, on account of certain singular; and a superstitious person might be changes in his circumstances, he wished to recal startled at the coi cidence of so many causes, it, and become the friend of Byron, through all tending to hide his character from the public. Rogers, the author of « The Pleasures of MemoThat scandal and envy should have been at work ry, » and who was intimate with both the distinwith such a man is not very extraordinary; but guished bards. The letter, addressed to the care the burning of his Memoirs, and the subsequent of Mr Hanson, had been mislaid; search was injunction on the publication of his Letters to made for it, and Byron, who at first did not like his Mother, seem as it something more than mere this offer, of one hand with a pistol, and the other chance had operated to preserve unconfuted the to shake in fellowship, felt very awkward. On calumnies of the day, for the benefit of future the letter being recovered, however, he delivered biographers. Of these Letters a friend of ours it unopened to Mr Moore, and they afterwards was fortunate enough to obtain a glimpse, and continued to the last most particular friends. never, he told us, was more innocent, and at It is but justice the unquestionable courage the same time more valuable matter, so withheld and spirited conduct of the Bard of Erin, to ob

serve here, that, though Byron had stated the · There is some trifling inaccuracy in this, as Moore's truth about the said « leadless pistols, » he had son was not with him in Italy. It is nevertheless true, as we are assured, that this was the turn which Lord Byron not stated the whole truth. The facts were these : gave to his present, in order to make it more acceptable Mr Jeffrey, the celebrated critic, and editor of to his friend.

the Edinburgh Review, had, ip a good set phrase,»

as the

abused the Poems of Thomas Little, Esq., alias lated the odes of the Teian bard, as from the Thomas Moore, Esq.; and the latter, not chusing social qualities which he is known to possess,

and to put up with the flagellation of the then mo- the convivial spirit of his muse. Mr Moore seems dern Aristarchus, challenged him. When they to be of opinion, that arrived at Chalk Farm, the place fixed on for If with water you fill up your glasses, the duel, the police were ready, and deprived

You 'll never write any thing wise; them of their fire-arms. On drawing their con

For wine is the horse of Parnassus,

Which hurries a bard to the skies. tents, the compound of a villanous saltpetre » was found, but the cold lead,

He is not, however, ungrateful for whatever share

conviviality may have had in inspiring his muse, The pious metal most in requisition On such occasions,

but has amply acknowledged it in the elegant

and glowing terms in which he has celebrated had somehow disappeared. The cause was this: its praises. No individual presides with more One of the balls had fallen out in the carriage, grace at the convivial board, nor is there one and the seconds, with a laudable anxiety to pre- whose absence is more liable to be regretted by serve the public peace, to save the shedding of his friends. such valuable blood, and to make both equal, Being on one occasion prevented from attenddrew the other ball.

ing a banquet where he was an expected guest, In his youth Mr Moore was in the high road and where, in consequence, every thing seemed to court favour, and had his spirit been less in- (to use a familiar phrase) out of sorts, a gentledependent, we might even have had a Sir Thomas man, in the fervour of his disappointment, exMore in our days. It is said that when the juve- clained, Give us but one Anacreon more, ye nile Anacreon was introduced to the then Prince gods, whatever else you deny us.» of Wales, His Royal Highness inquired of him Presiding once at a tavern dinner, where soine whether he was a son of Dr Moore, the celebrated of the company were complaining that there was author of Zeluco; and that the bard promptly no game at the table, a gentleman present, alreplied, « No, Sir; I am the son of a grocer at lading to the fascinating manners of Mr Moore, Dublin ! »

who « kept the table in a roar," said, “Why, The following anecdote shows that His Majesty gentlemen, what better game would you wish King George the Fourth did not forget to pay off than moor game, of which I am sure you have the Prince of Wales's a old scorer with our poet : abundance?» - In the king's presence, a critic, speaking of the At another time, after the pleasures of the even« Life of Sheridan,, declared that Moore had ing had been extended to a pretty late hour, murdered his friend. « You are too severe,” said Mr D. proposed, as a concluding bumper, the his Majesty, « I cannot admit that Mr Moore bas health of Mr Moore; a toast which, having been murdered Sheridan, but he has certainly attempted twice drunk in the course of the evening, was his life.»

objected to as unnecessary. Mr D., however, It was not till after the Prince of Wales's in- persisted in giving the toast; and quoted in supvestment with regal power, that Mr Moore level- port of it the following passage from Mr Moore's led the keen shafts of his « grey goose quill » translation of the eighth ode of Anacreon. against that illustrious personage. He had pre- us drink it now," said he, viously dedicated the translation of Anacreon to

For death may come with brow unpleasant, His Royal Highness, by whom, it is said, his poe- May come when least we wish him present, try was much admired. We question, though,

And beckon to the sable shore, if his verse was as palatable to the Prince Regent

And grimly bid us-drink no More! as it had been to the Prince of Wales. Mr Moore, We here terminate the Biographical part of perhaps, thought as one of his predecessors had our sketch; and, after a few introductory and done on this subject, of whom the following anec- general remarks, shall proceed to take a critical dote is recorded. Pope, dining one day with review of our author's principal works, including Frederic, Privce of Wales, paid the prince many some interesting sketches aud anecdotes of ancient compliments. «I wonder," said His Royal High- minstrelsy, illustrative of the « Irish Melodies. » ness, that you, who are so severe on kings, Moore is not, like Wordsworth or Coleridge, should be so complaisant to me.» . It is,» replied the poet's poet; nor is it necessary, in order to the witty hard, « because I like the lion before enjoy his writings, that we should create a taste his claws are grown.»

for them other than what we receive from nature The name of Anacreon Moore, by which our and education. Yet his style is contemned as author is distinguished, is not so much his due tinsel and artificial, whereas the great praise befrom the mere circumstance of his having trans- stowed on those preferred to it is, that they are

« Let

the only true natural.- Now if it requires study are viewed under this one aspect. The man, the and progressive taste to arrive at a sense of the poet, the philosopher, are blended, and the attrinatural, and but common feeling to enjoy the butes of each applied to all without distinction. beauties of the artificial, then certainly these One person inquires the name of a poet, because names have changed places since we met them he is a reasoner; another, because he is mad; in the dictionary

another, because he is conceited. Johnson's asFormerly, people were content with estimating sertion is taken for granted ---that genius is but books -- persons are the present objects universally great natural power directed towards a particuIt is not the pleasure or information a volume lar object: thus all are reduced to the same affords, which is taken into consideration, but scale, and measured by the same standard. This the genius which it indicates. Each person is fury of comparison knows no bounds; its abetanxious to form his scale of excellence, and to tors, at the same time that they reserve to themrange great names, living or dead, at certain in- selves the full advantage of dormant merit, make tervals and in different grades, self being the no such allowance to established authors. They hidden centre whither all the comparisons verge. judge them rigidly by their pages, assume that In former times works of authors were composed their love of fame and emolument would not alwith ideal or ancient models, -- the humble crowd low them to let any talent lie idle, and will not of readers were content to peruse and admire. hear any arguments advanced for their unexAt present it is otherwise, - every one is con- pected capabilities. scious of having either written, or at least having The simplest and easiest effort of the mind been able to write a book, and consequently all is egotism,-it is but baring one's own breast, literary decisions affect them personally:- disclosing its curious mechanism, and giving exScribendi nibil a me alienum puto,

aggerated expressions to every-day feeling. Yet

no productions have met with such success ;is the language of the age, and the most insigni- what authors can compete, as to popularity, with ficant calculate on the wonders they might have Montaigne, Byron, Rousseau ? Yet we cannot effected, had chance thrown a pen in their way. but believe that there have been thousands of -The literary character has, in fact, extended men in the world who could have walked the itself over the whole face of society, with all the same path, and perhaps met with the same sucevils that d'Israeli has enumerated, and ten times cess, if they had had the same confidence. Pasmore—it has spread its fibres through all ranks, sionate and reflecting minds are not so rare as sexes, and ages. There no longer exists what we suppose, but the boldness that sets at nought writers used to call a public-that disinterested society is. Nor could want of courage be the tribunal has long since merged in the body it only obstacle: there are, and have been, we used to try. Put your finger on any head in a trust, many who would not exchange the privacy crowd—it belongs to an author, or the friend of of their mental sanctuary, for the indulgence of oue, and your great authors are supposed to pos- spleen, or the feverish dream of popular celebrity. sess a quantity of communicable celebrity: an And if we can give credit for this power to the intimacy with one of them is a sort of principality, many who have lived unknown and shunned and a stray anecdote picked up rather a valuable publicity, how much more must we not be insort of possession. These people are always cry- clined to allow to him of acknowledged genius, ing out against personality, and personality is and who has manifested it in works of equal the whole business of their lives. They can con- beauty, and of greater merit, inasmuch as they sider nothing as it is by itself; the cry is, « who are removed from self? It has been said by a wrote it?» — « what manner of man is he?» — great living author and poet,' that a the choice of a where did he borrow it ?" They make pup- a subject removed from self is the test of gepets of literary men by their impatient curiosity; nius.» and when one of themselves is dragged from his These considerations ought, at least, to premalign obscurity in banter or whimsical revenge, vent us from altogether merging a writer's gehe calls upon all the gods to bear witness to the nius in his works, and from using the name of malignity he is made to sufter.

the poem and that of the poet indifferently. It is this spirit which has perverted criticism, For our part, we thi

that if Thomas Moore and reduced it to a play of words. To favour had the misfortune to be metaphysical, he might this vain eagerness of comparison, all powers and have written such a poem as the Excursion faculties are resolved at once into genius-that that had he condescended to borrow, and at the vague quality, the supposition of which is at same time disguise the feelings of the great Lake every one's command; and characters, sublime in one respect as they are contemptible in auother,

· Coleridge.

Poets, he might perhaps have written the best be this—that the partial conception and confined parts of Childe Harold-and had he the disposition knowledge which they naturally possessed of a or the whim to be egotistical, he might lay bare a country, so opposed in the character of its inhamind of his own as proudly and as passionately bitants and the aspect of its scenery to their own, organized as the great lord did, whom some one occasioned them, after the manner of all imperdescribes « to have gutted himself body and soul, fect apprehenders, to seize upon its prominent for all the world to walk in and see the show. » features and obvious characteristics, without en

So much for the preliminary cavils which are tering more deeply into its spirit, or catching its thrown in the teeth of Moore's admirers. They retired and less palpable beauties. The sudden have been picked up by the small fry of critics, transplantation of a European mind into Asiatic who commenced their career with a furious at- scenes can seldom be favourable to its well-being tack on him, Pope, and Campbell, but have since and progress; at least none but those of the first thought it becoming to grow out of their early order would be enabled to keep their imaginalikings. And at present they profess to prefer tions from degenerating into inconsistency and the great works which they have never read, and bombast, amid the swarms of novelties which which they will never be able to read, to those start up at every step. Thus it is that, in nearly classic poems, of which they have been the most all the oriental poems added to our literature, destructive enemies, by bethumbing and quoting we had the same monotonous assemblage of intheir beauties into triteness and common-place. sipid images, drawn from the peculiar phenomena

The merits of Pope and of Moore have suffer- and natural appearances of the country. ed depreciation from the same cause – the faci- We have always considered Asia as naturally lity of being imitated to a certain degree. And the hoine of poetry, and the creator of poets. as vulgar admiration seldom penetrates beyond what makes Greece so poetical a country is, that this degree, the conclusion is that nothing can be at every step we stumble over recollections of easier than to write like, and even equal to, ei- departed grandeur, and behold the scenes where ther of these poets. In the universal self-com- the human mind has glorified itself for ever, parison, which is above mentioned, as the foun- and played a part, the records of which can dation of modern criticism, feeling is assumed to never die. But in Asia, to the same charm of be genius- the passive is considered to imply the viewing the places of former power-of comparactive power. No opinion is more common or ing the present with the past, there is added a more fallacious—it is the « flattering unction » luxuriance of climate, and an unrivalled beauty which has inundated the world with versifiers, of external nature, which, ever according with and which seems to under-rate the merit of com- the poet's soul, positions, in which there is more ingenuity and

Temper, and do befit him to obey elegance than passion. Genius is considered to

High inspiration. be little more than a capability of excitementthe greater the passion the greater the merit; It was reserved for Mr Moore to redeem the and the school-boy key on which Mr Moore's character of oriental poetry, in a work which love and heroism are usually set, is not considered stands distinct, alone, and proudly pre-eininent by any reader beyond his reach. This is cer. above all that had preceded it on the same subtainly Moore's great defect; but it is more that ject. of his taste than of any superior faculty.

Never, indeed, has the land of the sun shone We shall now proceed to notice the most la- out so brightly on the children of the north-nor boured and most splendid of Mr Moore's produc- the sweets of Asia been poured forth-nor her tions- a Lalla Rookh » :

gorgeousness displayed so profusely to the de

lighted senses of Europe, as in the fine oriental Then if, while scenes so grand, So beautiful, shine before thee,

romance of Lalla Rookh. The beauteous forms, Pride, for thine own dear land,

the dazzling splendours, the breathing odours of Should haply be stealing o'er thee;

the East, found, at last, a kindred poet in that Oh ! let grief come first,

Green Isle of the West, whose genius has long
O'er pride itself victorious,

been suspected to be derived from a
To think how man hath curst
Wbat Heaven lath made so glorious.

clime, and here wantons and luxuriates in these

voluptuous regions, as if it felt that it had at Several of our modern poets had already cho- length recognised its native abode. It is amazing, sen the luxuriant climate of the East for their ima- ! indeed, how much at home Mr Moore seems to be ginations to revel in, and body forth their shapes in India, Persia, and Arabia ; and how purely of light; but it is no less observable that they and strictly Asiatic all the colouring and imagery had generally failed, and the cause we believe to of his poem appears. He is thoroughly imbued



with the character of the scenes to which he trans- consisting of many pages, should have detached ports us ; and yet the extent of his knowledge is and distinguishable beauties in every one of them. less wonderful than the dexterity and apparent No great work, indeed, should have many beaufacility with which he has turned it to account, ties: if it were perfect it would have but one, and in the elucidatiou and embellishment of his poetry. that but faintly perceptible, except on a view of There is not a simile, a description, a name, a the whole. Look, for example, at what is the trait of hisiory, or allusion of romance, which most finished and exquisite production of human belongs to European experience, or does not in- art—the design and elevation of a Grecian temple, dicate entire familiarity with the life, nature, and in its old severe simplicity. What penury of orlearning of the East.

nament – what neglect of beauties of detail Nor are the barbaric ornaments thinly scat- what masses of plain surface-what rigid econotered to make up a show. They are showered mical limitation to the useful and the necessary! lavishly over the whole work; and form, perhaps, the cottage of a peasant is scarcely more simple too much the staple of the poetry, and the riches in its structure, and has not fewer parts that are of that which is chiefly distinguished for its rich- superfluous. Yet what grandeur-what elegance

We would confine this remark, however, —what grace and completeness in the effect!to the descriptions of external objects, and the The whole is beautiful-- because the beauty is in allusions to literature and history-to what may the whole; but there is little merit in any of the be termed the matériel of the poetry we are speak- parts except that of fitness and careful finishing. ing of. The characters and sentiments are of a Contrast this with a Dutch or a Chinese pleasuredifferent order. They cannot, indeed, be said to house, where every part is meant to be beautiful, be copies of a European nature; but still less and the result is deformity-where there is not like that of any other region. They are, in truth, an inch of the surface that is not brilliant with poetical imaginations ;-but it is to the poetry of colour, and rough with curves and angles,-and rational, honourable, considerate, and humane where the effect of the whole is displeasing to Europe that they belong and not to the child- the eye and the taste. We are as far as possible ishness, cruelty, and profligacy of Asia.

from meaning to ipsinuate that Mr Moore's poThere is something very extraordinary, we etry is of this description; on the contrary, we think, in this work—and something which indi-think his ornaments are, for the most part, truly cates in the author, not only a great exuberance and exquisitely beautiful, and the general deof talent, but a very singular constitution of ge- sign of his pieces extremely elegant and ingeninius. While it is more splendid in imagery-and ous: all that we mean to say is, that there is too for the most part in very good taste-more rich much ornament—too many isolated and indein sparkling thoughts and original conceptions, pendent beauties—and that the notice and the and more full indeed of exquisite pictures both of very admiration they excite, hurt the interest of all sorts of beauties, and all sorts of virtues, and the general design, and withdraw our attentiou all sorts of sufferings and crimes, than any other too importunately from it. poem we know of; we rather think we speak the Mr Moore, it appears to us, is too lavish of his sense of all classes of readers, when we add, gems and sweets; and it may truly be said of that the effect of the whole is to mingle a certain him, in his poetical capacity, that he would be feeling of disappointment with that of admira- richer with half his wealth. His works are not tion,—to excite admiration rather than any warm- only of rich materials and graceful design, but er sentiment of delight—to dazzle more than to they are everywhere glistening with small beauenchant-and, in the end, more frequently to star. ties and transitory inspirations-sudden flashes tle the fancy, and fatigue the attention, with the of fancy that blaze out and perish; like earthborn constant succession of glittering images and high- meteors that crackle in the lower sky, and unseastrained emotions, than to maintain a rising in- sonably divert our eyes from the great and lofty terest, or win a growing sympathy, by a less pro- bodies which pursue their harmonious courses in fuse or more systematic display of attractions. a serener region.

The style is, on the whole, rather diffuse, and We have spoken of these as faults of styletoo unvaried in its character. But its greatest fault but they could scarcely have existed without gois the uniformity of its brilliancy-the want of oc-ing deeper; and though they first strike us as casional plainness, simplicity, and repose. We have qualities of the composition only, we find, upou a heard it observed by some very zealous admirers little reflection, that the same general character of Mr Moore's genius; that you cannot open this belongs to the fable, the characters, and the senbook without finding a cluster of beauties in every timents—that they all are alike in the excess of page. Now, this is only another way of expressing their means of attraction--and fail to interest, what we think its greatest defect. No work, chiefly by being too interesting.

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