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them sooner than Saint Anthony or all the saints in their calendar; this was Saint Rattan, whose aid he and his mates invoked so heartily as to recover them all in a very short time ; liberally and literally bestowing crosses for them to carry on their shoulders for some days.
We were far out of sight of land ; and, when the wind sprung up again, some hours after we had been so alarmed, it was as foul as before. We therefore steered for the land; and, towards evening of the following day, met a Dutch dogger, the master of which informed us, that, early in the morning, he left the port of Lisbon, where the day before, they experienced a dreadful earthquake, that had done considerable mischief on shore. The particulars he had not heard, being anxious to get away with his vessel, as she was loaded, and the inhabitants too much alarmed to attend to any thing but their own immediate concerns.
On remarking the time when they felt the shock at Lisbon and we felt it at sea, our vain reasonings upon improbabilities and impossibilities were obliged to yield to our old gunner's experience of facts. Wonderful, indeed, must have been the concussion of the carth beneath the immense body of waters, to have caused so powerful an effect on our ship. It served us for much argument, the remainder of our voyage, whether what we experienced ought to be called an earthquake or waterquake; but we were not sufficient philosophers to decide the question.
On a subject so interesting to the philosopher and geologist, Mr. H. should have been much more particular. We should have been glad to have known hịs distance and direction from the rock of Lisbon exactly; with the precise rate at which this commotion travelled.
In chapter 26th, the scene India, a humourous story occurs, Our time passed merrily at Masulipatam, being always invited to the chief's, with whom, if not engaged particularly elsewhere, it was a luxury to sit at a table where the lady governess did the honours of the house with so much vivacity.
A trifling incident that occurs to memory, which then produced a hearty laugh, may possibly create a smile now. The lady had prevailed on her husband to send home for an English footman to wait upon her, which, uncommon as it was and not allowed ot, his interest had managed, and George made his appearance while I was there. It was a custom in India, at that time, as soon as dinner was removed, for some of the palanquin boes, or carriers, to bring in a large basin and ewer with water, with whichi they attended behind every chair; when, each person putting his bands at the back, One of the boes poured water on them from the ewer, while the basin was held underneath by others.
George, who had noticed this mode for a day or two, willing to show his attention by waiting himself upon his mistress, took the ewer from the Palanquin boe, and was continuing to pour the water on his mistress's hands, notwithstanding the lacly had called out to him to desist, by speaking in Moors, and, as she thouglit, to the Moormen, saying, “ Bus, bus, ge;" which signifies “ Enough, enough, you.” But George did not understand the Moorishi tongue ; and, being doubtful whether it was plain English, he continued pouring; but watching a repetition of what liis mistress said. The lady likewise, being at that instant engaged in relating something laughable about men wearing whiskers was not very attentive to the water pouring; but, recollecting herself, she turned her face half round, saying, rather smartly, “ Bus, bus, ge, say: On which, poor George, thinking he could not mistake her meaning, very sheepishly put his chin close to her shoulder, whispering, that "he would, with a great deal of pleasure, if his master were not present.” I believe no one heard what he said besides the good lady, and she thought it too good a joke to keep to herself; therefore as soon as she could refrain sufficiently from excess of laughter, she explained the whisper to the great entertainment of the whole company, poor George excepted, who was obliged to retreat.
The second volume is valuable also, for the descriptions it contains of America, and American manners. Mr. H's opinion on the comparative advantage of savage and civilized life, is entitled to peculiar attention; as showin? that the same passions domineer over the human heart, in all stages and states of life. He affirms that, not only have the Anglo Americans, by their independence exchanged real good with imaginary evils, for imaginary good with real evils, but that the Indian tribes are every way the worse for the progress of American power and population.
There are many shrewd observations in these volumes on men and manners, on the state of Affairs, and on measures taken at home, especially those for defence ; nor ought we to overlook the handsome behaviour of the Court of Directors of the East India Company to Mr. H. in granting situations to his two sons. Mr. H. gives us a copy of his parental instructions on parting with his children. We shall not hesitate in pronouncing some parts of it good; but it is extremely defective, in omitting those religious motives, which would well have become a Christian parent. The steadiness which such motives impart to the personal character, is more to be relied op for real enjoyment through life, than all other. Mr. H. has seen much of the world; has remarked many things useful to know; has served his country honourably, and has now furnished an amusing, interesting, and we doubt not. an ingenuous performance. We recommend it to all who are dissatisfied with Great Britain ; and especially to those who are misled into the opinion of considering America as the land of promise. The Utopia of fancy, it may be ; but surely, according to Mr. H. not of fact, for which, besides his own conviction, he produces the confessions of Dr. Priestley and Mr. Russell themselves.
FROM THE EDINBURGH REVIEW.
Marmion; a Tale of Flodden Field. By Walter Scott, Esq. 4to. pp. 500. Edinburgh
and London, 1808. — Philadelphia, republished, Hopkins and Earle, 2 vols. 12mo. pp. 219 and 259-price $2.
THERE is a kind of right of primogeniture among books, as well as among men; and it is difficult for an author, who has obtained great fame by a first publication, not to appear to fall off in a second; especially if his original success could be imputed in any degree, to the novelty of his plan of composition. The publick is always indulgent to untried talents; and is even apt to exaggerate a little the value of what it receives without any previous expectation. But, for this advance of kindness, it usually exacts a most usurious return in the end. When the poor author comes back, he is no longer received as a benefactor, but a debtor. In return for the credit it formerly gave him, the world now conceives that it has a just claim on him for excellence, and becomes impertinently scrupulous as to the quality of the coin in which it is to be paid.
The just amount of this claim plainly cannot be for more than the rate of excellence which he had reached in his former production ; but, in estimating this rate, varicus errours are perpetually committed, which increase the difficulties of the task which is thus imposed on him. In the first place, the comparative amount of his past and present merits can only be ascertained by the uncertain standard of his reader's feelings; and these must always be less lively with regard to a second performance; which, with every other excellence of the first, must necessarily want the powerful recommendations of novelty and surprise, and, consequently, fall very far short of the effect produced by their strong cooperation. In the second place, it may be observed, in general, that wherever our impression of any work is favourable on the whole, its excellence is constantly exaggerated, in those razue and habitual recollections which form the basis of subsequent comparisons. We readily drop from our memory the dull and bad passages, and carry along with us the remembrance of those only which had afforded us delight. Thus, when we take the merit of any favourite poem as a standard of comparison for some later production of the same author, we never take its true average merit, which is the only fair standard, but the
merit of its most striking and memorable passages, which naturally standforward in our recollection, and pass upon our hasty retrospect as just and characteristick specimens of the whole work; and this high and exaggerated standard we rigorously apply to the first, and perhaps the least interesting parts of the second performance. Finally, it deserves to be noticed, that where a first work, containing considerable blemishes, has been favourably received, the publick always expects this indulgence to be repaid by an improvement that ought not to be always expected. If a second performance appear, therefore, with the same faults, they will no longer meet with the same toleration. Murmurs will be heard about indolence, presumption, and abuse of good nature ; while the criticks, and those who had gently hinted at the necessity of correction, will be more out of humour than the rest at this apparent neglect of their admonitions.
For these, and for other reasons, we are inclined to suspect, that the success of the work now before us will be less brilliant than that of the author's former publication, though we are ourselves of opinion, that its intrinsick merits are nearly, if not altogether, equal; and that, if it had had the fortune to be the elder born, it would have inherited as fair a portion of renown as has fallen to the lot of its predecessor: It is a good deal longer, indeed and somewhat more ambitious; and it is rather clearer that it has greater faults, than that it has greater beauties; though, for our own parts, we are inclined to believe in both propositions. It has more tedious and fiat passages, and more ostentation of historical and antiquarian lore; but it has also greater richness and variety, both of character and incident; and if it has less sweetness and pathos in the softer passages, it has certainly more vehemence and force of colouring in the loftier and busier representations of action and emotion. The place of the prologuizing minstrel is but ill supplied, indeed, by the epistolary dissertations which are prefixed to each book of the present poem; and the ballad pieces and mere episodes which it contains, have less finish and poctical beauty ; but there is more airiness and spiri: in the lighter delineations; and the story, if not more skilfully conducted, is at least better complicated, and extended through a wider field of adventure. The characteristicks of both, however, are evidently the same ;-a broken narrative—a redundancy of minute description—bursts of unequal and energetick poetry-and a general tone of spirit and animation, unchecked by timidity or affectation, and unchasrised by any great delicacy of taste, or elegance of fancy.
But though we think this last romance of Mr. Scott's about as good as the former, and allow that it affords great indications of poetical talent we must remind our readers, that we never entertained much partiality fo this sort of composition, and ventured on a former occasion to express ou regret, that an author endowed with such talents should consume them i imitations of obsolete extravagance, and in the representation of manner and sentiments in which none of his readers can be supposed to take muc interest, except the few who can judge of their exactness. To write modern romance of chivalry, seems to be much such a fantasy as to buil a modern abbey, or an English pagoda. For once, however, it may be excused as a pretty caprice of genius; but a second production of the sam sort is entitled to less indulgence, and imposes a sort of duty to drive th author from so idle a task, by a fair exposition of the faults which are in manner inseparable from its execution. To enable our readers to judg fairly of the present performance, we shall first present them with a brie abstract of the story ; and then endeavour to point out what seems to E exceptionable, and what is praiseworthy, in the execution.
Lord Marmion, the fictitious hero of the poem, was an English knight of great rank, fortune, and prowess, in the reign of Henry VIII, and had sonie fears before the opening of the narrative, seduced and carried off from her convent, Constance de Beverley, a professed nun of good family, whom he had afterwards retained about his person in the disguise of a page. At the end of three years, however, he falls in love with the fair face or the broad lands of Clara de Ciare, a damsel of great merit, whosc rfections
, however, were previously engaged to Ralph de Wilton, a valiant knight in her neighbourhood. Marmion can think of no better way of cisposing of this rival, than to employ Constance to put a parcel of forged keters, importing treasonable practices, into his portfolio, and thereafter 10 arraign him of those offences before their jealous sovereign. The forged papers give credit to this accusation ; and the matter is referred to the madgment of God by a single combat between the two parties. In this contest the treacherous Marmion is victorious; and the true De Wilton, who is supposed to die of his wounds, assumes the dress of a palmer, and randers from shrine to shrine, brooding over his unmerited disgrace and his natural purposes of revenge. Constance, in the mean while, who had kent herself to this scheme for promoting the marriage of Marmion, only 10 make berself mistress of a secret which gave her power over his life, abu resolves to gratify her own jealousy and envy by the destruction of the Atal who had supplanted her in the heart of her seducer. She therefore tages a wicked monk in a plot to murder the lady Clare; but before she can cry it into execution she is delivered up by Marmion, now satiated vih ber beauty, and wearied out with her murmurs, to the spiritual supe. maurs from whom she had fled, and by whom this new crime of projected ber er is speedily detected. The lady Clare, in the mean time, full of sornever fer De Wilton and of horrour at his conqueror, had retired into the cet rest of Wl'hitby, with the intention of taking the veil; and lord Marmion, eating down remorse with pride and ambition, was proceeding on 20 Dissy from his sovereign to the court of James IV, of Scotland. to in.
into the cause of the great levy of troops which that prince was saking, and the destination of the vast army which he had assembled in be seighbourhood of his capital.
Seen is the situation of malters at the commencement of the poem, which es with the arrival of Lord Marmion and his train at the castle of Norham Gunite Tweed, the last English post upon his road, where he takes up a quarters in a fine summer evening, in the year of our Lord 1513. The veche first canto is taken up with the description of his train, and his recepin and eniertainment in the castle; every minute particular of which, wa the letting down the drawbridge and bringing in the venison pasties super, clown to the presentation of the stirrup cup at parting in the Ching, is recorded with the most anxious and scrupulous exactness. Sabe ai table, he asks his host to provide him a guide to the Scottish court; and after some consultation, a holy palmer is introduced for this purpose, afterwards turns out to be his injured rival De Wilton, although so auch disguised by his dress, beard, and misery, as not to be recognised by s opit:sor. This is the only incident in the first canto that can be said
bear at all upon the business of the poem. It ends with the departure sze embassy on the following morning under the guidance of the myste
Elle second Canto, we entirely drop Lord Marmion and his retinue, a cider to attend to the voyage of Clara, and the fate of Constance. This cot lady had been detected in her plot against her rival in the monastery.
of Holy, Isle ; and a chapter of the adjoining superiours had been summoned, to pass sentence on her for this crime, and for the breach of her monastick vows. The canto begins with a picture of the voyage of the abbess of Whitby, to assist at this tragical convocation. There is then a description of the Abbey at Holy Isle, and an abstract of the legends connected with the history of its saints, and with those of the rival foundation of Whitby. Then comes the condemnation of Constance, and her auxiliar monk. The judges assemble in a low, dark vault, paved with tombstones, and lighted with an iron chandelier, where two deep niches already appear in the massive walls, with stones and mortar laid, ready to immure the convicted delinquents The monk howls and shrieks with unmanly and unheeded agonies of terrour; but Constance maintains a lofty and heroick resolution. She discloses the whole perfidy of Marmion, in his accusation of De Wilton, and his baseness to herself. She expresses little penitence for her own conspiracy against the blameless lady Clare ; but after arraigning her judges of bigotted cruelty, and prophesying the speedy downfall of their power, she receives * sentence from the stern blind abbot of Lindisfarn, and is left to expiate her offences in the gloomy sepulchre to which she is committed.
In the third Canto, we return again to Lord Marmion and the Palmer, who guides him in silence across the Border, and to the village of Gifford, in East Lothian, where the train halts for the night at a country inn. Here the ghastly visage, and keen, steady eye of the Palmer disturbs the soul of Marmion, and awes the whole band into silence. Marmion tries to relieve this, by calling on one of his squires for a song; but is still further annoyed, when he pitches upon a favourite air of Constance, and sings about the vengeance that is reserved for those who are perfidious in love. The host then tells a long story of a rencontre which took place in the neighbourhood, between king Alexander the III, and a spirit in the shape of Edward the I. of England, in which the Scottish monarch discomfited his unearthly antagonist, and forced him to reveal the fortune that awaited him in the war in which he was engaged with the Danes. He concludes with saying that any knight who will repair at midnight to the same spot, and blow his bugle of defiance, will still be encountered by an aerial representation of his greatest enemy; and, if victorious, may learn from him the destiny of hi: future life. Marmion is unable to sleep after hearing all these stories; and rising in the night, mounts his charger, and gallops to the appointed ground where he is encountered by the figure of De Wilton, and unhorsed in the first shock. His foe, however, spares his life, and disappears; and th astonished champion returns sullenly to his train. The reader will proba bly guess, what is afterwards related at length, that this unexpected oppo nent las no other than the real De Wilton himself, who had heard Marmio ride out, and, suspecting his purpose, had put off his palmer's dress, an borrowing the arms and the steed of one of his sleeping attendants, had fo lowed and answered his challenge.
The Fourth Canto pursues the march of Marmion to the Scotish cour In his way, he meets the chief herald, or Lyon King at Arms of Scotland who had been despatched to attend him, and who conducts him to a cast
* We were a little surprised at the words of this sentence, Sinful sister, part peace ;" which sounds more like a merciful dismissal than a condemnation. On loo ing into the notes, we find Mr. Scott has adopted this formula from what we humi conceive to be a mistranslation of the Latin vade in pacem, which does not signit part in peace, but, “ go into peace," or into eternal rest; a pretty intelligible mitiim to another world,