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training; but he must have been getting his special mental education in his own way long before he left Oxford, for his Oxford and Cambridge Magazine, published monthly during the year 1856, teems with work from his own hand, saturated with medievalism. The profession of an architect being selected, he was articled to Street, but abandoned his articles. His first serious and independent appeal to the public as a man of letters was "The Defence of Guenevere, and other Poems" (1858), although "Sir Galahad" had appeared separately a few months earlier; and long before his "Jason" came out he had founded, with the co-operation of Gabriel Rossetti, Burne-Jones, Madox Brown, and others, the commercial undertaking conducted under the style of Morris, Marshall, Faulkner & Co., fine art decorators-a business over which he presided up to the time of his death.
In literature, as in life and its varied pursuits, bis work divides itself into definite periods, of which the chrono logical minutiæ would be here misplaced. Considered in the light of a poet and story-teller, he may be said to have started on his career as an Anglo-Norman mediævalist, drawing, however, considerable inspiration from the Greek and Latin classics, and gradually, with a widening area of knowledge and reading, taking in at first hand influences from the sturdy literature of the Northmen who peopled Iceland.
From the pure mediævalism of "The Defence of Guenevere," "Sir Peter Harpdon's End," "The Haystack in the Floods," and the Chaucerian classicism of "The Life and Death of Jason," (1867), we pass through "The Earthly Paradise" (1868-70) to find the flavor far more Northern at the end than at the beginning; the actual work of translating large Icelandic sagas in conjunction with Mr. Eric Magnusson had effected the change and had led to the transformation of one Icelandic prose masterpiece, the "Saga of the Laxdale Men," into that poetic masterpiece, "The Lovers of Gudrun," which closes the tale-cycle of
"The Earthly Paradise," and ends the first period.
"Love is Enough" (1873), a dramatic and lyric morality, derives the more marked features of its poetic method from the Icelandic; and it is to the second period that both this and several renderings of Icelandic sagas belong, though some of them remained in manuscript till a recent date. The period is that in which Morris shows a prevailing feeling of Northern hardiness, has abandoned the three Chaucerian stock metres, and developed a metric system with anapæstic movement surpassing in every vital particular all that has been done in anapæstic measures since Tennyson showed the way in "Maud." In the much higher qualities, which derive from knowledge of life, feeling for national myth, epic action and tragic inteusity combined, "The Story of Sigurd the Volsung" (1877), the epic in anapæstic couplets which rounds this period, stands among the foremost poems not only of this century, but of our literature.
The third period, from 1878 to 1890, is chiefly an epoch of lectures, pamphlets, leaflets, and periodical press work; but the literary artist gradually gets the upper hand again. "Chants for Socialists," "The Tables Turned, or Nupkins Awakened," "The Pilgrims of Hope," "A Dream of John Ball," and "News from Nowhere," are all works of art, though saturated with Socialist intention. The translation of the "Odyssey" in anapæstic couplets came out in this period (1887), which may be said to close in effect somewhat before the disruption of the Socialist League and the death, early in 1891, of its journal, the Commonweal, which contained less and less of Morris's work towards the close, though "News from Nowhere” in its first form appeared in the journal.
Meanwhile, 1889 had been signalized by a wholly new thing in literature-the wonderful myth-romance of the Goths and Romans called, "A Tale of the House of the Wolfings," chiefly in prose, but with a considerable mass of
poetry woven in: and here begins Mor- the handicraftsman's life joyful.
Leaving literature aside, the epochs of his life are so many important chapters in the history of arts and crafts in England, and in the social and political movement which is still going on for the benefit of the handicraftsman. Not to be too nicely discriminative, there is the period when he started his undertaking on æsthetic grounds to reform our views of color, curve, line, texture-in a word, our tastes. This threw him into those relations with handicraftsmen which could lead his generous heart but one way-to make
developing his views for the workmen, he enlarged his scope; from importing rough but comely pottery out France, he got to influencing the manufacture and securing the distribution of de Morgan lustre a lost art revived. From bringing home Eastern carpets he grew to see that after all these were not the fittest and best for a Western civilization, and he set up his dye-works and looms and made fabrics and carpets which will influence the taste of the Western world when he has been dead a century. He entered into the practical side of the Socialist propaganda and went on fearlessly till convinced not that he would come to harm, but that "ructions with police," as he phrased it, would injure the cause. Lastly, he saw what a base, mechanical thing was become this great art of printing of ours; and he set up the Kelmscott Press, to issue books in which every letter should be beautiful. He had his own hand-made paper made from pure linen rag, set up handpresses, obtained the best of ink, employed the best labor he could get, and set good binders to put his sheets together in seemly vellum or parchment; and he issued a great series of masterpieces in the art of printing. Many of his own fourth-period books appeared first in this sumptuous form; and now, as he lies at peace in the quiet little Oxfordshire village which gives his press its name, the fortunate possessors of the great folio Chaucer edited by his old friend Frederick Ellis and beautified by the lovely pictures of his older friend Edward Burne-Jones, whom he playfully called "the Baronet," are turning in wonder the pages of the noblest book ever printed. It is good to temper our grief with the thought that the brave man and great artist who crammed the joyous labor of three lifetimes into sixty-two years and a half, to benefit his humbler fellow-craftsmen, saw with his eyes this crowning work of many applied arts and crafts before he entered into his rest.
H. BUXTON FORMAN. 1
take three characteristic specimens of this initial stupidity in order to suggest that Goldsmith was not altogether to blame if he failed to play a brilliant game of fives against a haystack. "Sir," replied Cooke to Sam Rogers' inquiry as to Goldsmith's conversation, "Sir, he was a fool. The right word never came to him. If you gave him a bad shilling, he'd say, 'Why, it's as good a shilling as ever was born.' You know he ought to have said 'coined.' 'Coined,' sir, never entered his head. He was a fool, sir." Cooke was himself an Irishman, while Mrs. Thrale, who shall be put into the box next, will be allowed to come as near, in the matter of frivolity, to the level of the average Irish mind as any Englishwoman could. Here is her instance of "Poor Dr. Goldsmith's" idiocy: "Poor Dr. Goldsmith said once, 'I would advise every young fellow setting out in life to love gravy.' alleging for it the serious reason that a glutton once disinherited his nephew because of his unconquerable distaste to that condiment." If Mrs. Thrale had come upon this advice where it had originally appeared-in Goldsmith's burlesque specimen of a magazine in miniature-it is just possible that she might have understood it to be a joke. No such Bottom prologue could save the sage Boswell from mali
From The Speaker. GOLDSMITH'S CONVERSATION. There is no triter quotation from Boswell than that of Goldsmith's retort to the ridicule that Johnson poured upon him for his contention that it was difficult to make little fishes in fables talk in character. “Why, Mr. Johnson, this is not so easy as you seem to think; for if you were to make little fishes talk they would all talk like whales." The complementary difficulty of getting great whales to understand the prattle of little fishes explains much of the social contempt of the Club for Goldsmith. An Irishman in England talks generally too much, too fast, too lightly, too discursively; but talk of this kind seems idiotic only when taken seriously. If you insist on handling a soap-bubble, its grace, lightness, and iridescence disappear; and in the Club a soap-bubble was solemnly weighed and found wanting. Even Burke could not blow one with impunity. "When Burke does not condescend to be merry, his conversation is very superior indeed. When he lets himself down to that he is in the kennel," says Johnson of jocularity which Windham, Reynolds and even Boswell himself thought admirable. Burke, however, was not disconcerted by the failure of his flashes of merriment, whereas Goldsmith was. From his earliest childhood his natural_ciously misunderstanding the most obself-distrust had been deepened to morbidity by the taunts of friends, relatives, schoolmates and masters. He was pitiably conscious of his ugliness, his awkwardness, his "brogues and his blunders," and in uncongenial society this disconcerting self-consciousness aggravated these defects in its endeavor to conceal them. When he uttered in such society those random absurdities that an Irishman in high spirits sometimes lets escape him, like steam from a safety-valve, the stolid stare of his matter-of-fact audience disconcerted him. Instead, however, of reducing him to a safe silence, it but stimulated him to such stumbling and staggering attempts to regain his lost foot-hold as sank him deeper in the bog. initial stupidity was not his.
vious of jokes, since "the Jessamy Bride," in telling the following anec. dote, spoke of the sally of Goldsmith's as unmistakably playful. She and her sister, while standing with Goldsmith at the window of an hotel, attracted by their loveliness the admiration of a passing company of soldiers. "I, too, have my admirers elsewhere," cried the poet in affected pique. This light and luckless jest had but to pass through the dense mind of Boswell to come out a petulant outburst of envy, as gas under tremendous pressure is transmuted into a grosser element. "When accompanying two beautiful ladies with their mother on a tour in France," writes Boswell, "Goldsmith was seriously angry that more attention was paid to them than to him."
Yet it is to Boswell's blunt burin that we owe our picture of Goldsmith!
It should be remembered, too, that the wise and witty sayings of Goldsmith's grudgingly recorded by the jealous Boswell are only those that were complementary to the conversation of Johnson. Boswell was resolved that "all should show like two gilt two-pences" to Johnson; why otherwise has he given to Burke so small a place in the biography? Burke was the only conversationalist Johnson feared or envied. "That fellow calls forth all my powers," he said of Burke. "Were I to see him now"-i.e., when he was out of sorts-"it would kill me!" Yet how little of Burke ther is in Boswell, and of that little how much is altogether unworthy of the greatest purely extemporary speaker, probably, that ever lived! In truth, Boswell was jealous on Johnson's behalf of Burke, and on his own behalf of Goldsmith: hence the inadequate representation of the two Irishmen in his pages.
The truth is, as the librarian at Bath testified, Goldsmith, when at ease and in congenial company, was not only an entertaining, but a lucid and even brilliant talker. No man who wrote with his ease and speed and crystal clearness could be the addle-pated "Poor Poll" he is represented to have been. "Style," says Schopenhauer, "is the physiognomy of the mind, and a safer index to character than the face. An obscure or bad style means a dull or confused brain." Consider the conditions under which all Goldsmith's hack work was done-always at racing speed, and sometimes with the dunuing bookseller or printer's devil in the room-and consider again its exquisite limpidity, and what becomes of the
The Anti-Toxin Serum.-An interesting report of its first year's work has just been issued by the Austrian State Institute for the preparation of antitoxin serum. Of 1,100 cases of diphtheria treated with the serum, 970 recovered, a very favorable result compared with the previous mortality. When the remedy was applied on the
"muddy river" theory of Macaulay? Disregarding, therefore, as simply silly, the way in which all Goldsmith's critics and some of his biographers speak of his exquisite style, as though it were something as separate from his mind as an exquisite voice is from the mind of a singer, and allowing style to be but thought incarnate, then the limpidity of every line of work done in such peremptory and perfunctory haste is itself and alone a confutation of the theory that "poor Goldy's" thoughts were always born aborted, and needed as much nursing as an infant kangaroo to be presentable. Surely it is strange that his writing should be conspicuously distinguished for what is presumed to have been conspicuously absent from his talk-ease, order, and lucidity; though this style characterized work which must have been as extemporary as speaking. Strangely, too, this style characterized also his extemporary speeches. In the archives of the "Robin Hood" Debating Club, where Burke first, in London, proved his powers, this note was entered about Goldsmith long before he became famous: "A candid disputant with a clear head and an honest heart, though coming but seldom to the society." Perhaps the fault of having been found the reverse of this did not lie wholly with Goldsmith. The present writer remembers a formal and wooden Yorkshireman complaining to him once of an Irish clergyman, who had the reputation of being the most genial and jovial of men. "I sat with him," said my ponderous Yorkshire friend-"I sat with him for two hours and more, and he seemed anything but cheerful the whole time."
first and second day of the illness the percentage of deaths was only 6.7. After the third day, however, the mortality reached 19 per cent., rising to 33 per cent. after the sixth day. Of 318 cases of preventive inoculation only 20 were attacked by the disease, mostly in a mild form, and all recovered.
Vienna Correspondent of London Times.
V. SOME LANDLADIES OF FICTION,
VII. TEA-TIME IN THE VILLAGE. By M. E.
VIII. ABOUT FEASTS AND HOLIDAYS.
IX. PHILIP II. IN HIS DOMESTIC RELATIONS.