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III. LETTERS FROM ELIZABETH BARRETT BROWN-
ING TO THE AUTHOR OF “ORION" ON
LITERARY AND GENERAL TOPics. Part IV., Contemporary Review, .
V. ALFRED B. STREET, . . . . . . . . . .
Old Stratford. By C. Elliot Browne, . Fraser's Magazine, .
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LITTELL & GAY.
I swarm with many lithesome wings,
That join me, through my ramble, “And when the voice was past, Jesus was found alone.” — St. Luke ix. 36.
In seeking for the honeyed things
Of heath and hawthorn bramble. The vision fades away, The brilliant radiance from heaven is gone; The angel visitants no longer stay,
And languidly amidst the sedge, Silent the Voice — Jesus is found alone.
When noontide is most stilly,
I loll beside the water's edge,
And climb into the lily.
I fly throughout the clover crops
Before the evening closes,
Or swoon amid the amber drops “Oh, linger, leave us not,
That swell the pink moss-roses.
At times I take a longer route,
In cooling autumn weather,
And gently murmur round about “He only - He, our own,
The purple-tinted heather.
To Poesy I am a friend ;
I go with Fancy linking,
And all my airy knowledge lend, Such surely was their thought
To aid him in his thinking.
So would we feel ; Jesus, forsake us not,
To every sense of duty ;
We owe a certain debt to him
Who clad this earth in beauty.
And therefore I am never sad,
A burden homeward bringing, Nor murmur we to-day
But help to make the summer glad That he who gave should claim his own again ;) In my own way of singing. Long from their native heaven they could
not stay, The servants go, - the Master will remain. When idlers seek my honeyed wine,
In wantonness to drink it, Jesus is found alone
I sparkle from the columbine, Enough for blessedness in earth or heaven!
Like some forbidden trinket; Yet to our weakness hath His love made
known, More than Himself shall in the end be given. But never sting a friend - not one
It is a sweet delusion, “ Not lost, but gone before,”
That I may look at children run,
And smile at their confusion,
H. L. L.
If I were man, with all his tact
And power of foreseeing,
To hurt a human being.
THE WILD BEE.
Are twinkling on the grasses,
That o'er the heather passes.
And thus my little life is fixed,
Till tranquilly it closes,
From Macmillan's Magazine. l of the First Crusade, when the monk of RECENT WORKS ON THE BUILDINGS OF
NGS OF Malmesbury stops his narrative to deROME.
scribe the topography of Rome, to tell us BY EDWARD A. FREEMAN.
how the Romans, once the lords of the Of all the various forms of homage world, were now the lowest of mankind, which the world has paid to the city who did nothing but sell all that was which was once deemed to be its mis- righteous and sacred for gold.* The tress, none is really more speaking than chain never breaks ; we have pictures of the countless multitudes of books of Roine in every age; but unluckily the which Rome has been the subject. If picture drawn in each age sets before us we say that works on Roman topography less than the picture drawn in the age have been growing for the conventional | just before it. Archbishop Hildebert of term of a thousand years, we are some Tours, whose verses William of Malmescenturies within the mark. We might bury copies, sang of Rome, when the almost venture to add another half mil- marks of the sack of Robert Wiscard lennium of formal and distinct descrip- were still fresh upon her, as a city already tions of Rome, as distinguished from ruined.t But the worst ruin had not notices in the works of historians, poets, come in his day. We may forgive the and professed geographers. Modern Norman and the Saracen ; we may forscholars still edit and comment on the give the contending Roman barons ; but topographical writings of the fourth and we cannot forgive the havoc wrought by fifth centuries, which describe Rome as Popes and Popes' nephews in the boasted it stood when the line of the Western days of the Renaissance. When we look Cæsars, reigning in Italy at least if not at what they have done, we may be thankin Rome, was still unbroken.t And ful that there are still some things, the series goes on, through the middle heathen and Christian, which have lived ages, through the Renaissance, till we through four ages of relentless destrucreach those great works of modern Ger- tion and disfigurement. For Rome as man research which have worked out the monumental city, as the museum of every detail, both of the surviving re-l art and history, the evil day was, not mains and of the lost buildings, of the when the Goth or the Vandal or the Eternal City. We can still track out Norman entered her gates, but when our way round the walls of Rome by Popes came back from their place of the guidance of the anonymous pilgrim happy banishment to destroy their city from Einsiedlen in the eighth century.I piecemeal. We may rejoice that their We pause not unwillingly in the history day is over. New causes of destruction
may arise, as the capital of new-born 1. “Die Ruinen Roms und der Campagna.” Von Italy spreads itself once more over hills Dr. Franz Reber. Leipzig, 1863.
2. " Rome and the Campagna, an Historical and which have become almost as desolate as Topographical Description of the Site, Buildings, and they were when the first settlers raised Neighbourhood of Ancient Rome." By Robert Burn, their huts on the Palatine. As new M. A. Cambridge and London, 1871.
3. “Rome." By Francis Wey, with an Introduction streets arise, there is danger that many by W. W. Story. London, 1872.
“Die Regionen der Stadt Rom." Von L. Preller. * William of Malmesbury (Gesta Regum iv. 351.) Jena, 1846.
thus begins his account of Rome: “De Roma, quæ "Codex Urbis Romæ Topographicus." Edidit
quondam domina orbis terrarum, nunc ad comparaCarolus Ludovicus Urlichs. Wirceburgi, 1871.
tionem antiquitatis videtur oppidum exiguum, et de “ Topographie der Stadt Rom im Alterthum.” Von Romanis, olim rerum dominis genteque togata, qui H. Jordan. Zweiter Band. Berlin, 1871.
nunc sunt hominum inertissimi, auro trutinantes justiThe first volume of this last work has not yet ap- tiam, pretio venditantes canonum regulam." peared. Among the three the student will find several
† The verses of Hildebert begin thus: recensions of the text and abundant commentaries on the early and mediæval topographers of Rome.
"Par tibi Roma nihil, cum sis prope tota ruina ; I The Itinerarium Einsidlense is printed by Ulrichs, Quam magni fueris integra, fracta doces." p. 58, and the latter part by Jordan, p. 646. The
Presently after we read: former text is specially valuable, as it contains the inscriptions, many of them now lost or defaced, which i “Non tamen aut fieri par stanti machina muro, were copied by the pilgrim.
Aut restaurari sola ruina potest."
relics of old Rome, many ruined frag- deep and enthralling interest, the memoments, many foundations which have to rials of Rome's second birth, of the day be looked for beneath the earth, may be when with a new faith she put on a new swept away or hopelessly hidden. But life. Between these two periods of birth the main source of evil is dried up; there and of revival, the time of mere dominion, is no fear of columns being pounded into the time of the Republic and of the earlime, no fear of perfect or nearly perfect lier Empire, has but a secondary charm. buildings being used as quarries ; per- Its proudest monuments yield in interest, haps even there is less danger of that as historical memorials, alike to the subtler form of destruction which cloaks foundations of the primæval Roma Quaitself under the garb of restoration. All drata and to the churches reared in all the has become, if not wholly safe, at least zeal of newly-won victory out of the spoils safer than it was, now that the power of the temples of decaying heathendom. which so long boasted itself that it could | The purely artistic student naturally do mischief is happily banished beyond looks on them with other eyes. The the bounds of the ancient Rome, shut up stones of the primitive fortress can in a modern palace in a suburb which hardly claim the name of works of formed no part of the city either of Ser-art at all. And the basilicas, built with vius or of Aurelian.
columns brought from other buildings, Of the general antiquities of Rome, columns often of unequal proportions, of its early topography and early history, and crowned with capitals of different and of the light which modern researches orders, are apt to be looked on simply have thrown upon them, I do not mean as signs of the depth of degradation to speak here at any length. The history into which art had fallen. Of these of Rome is indeed written in her monu- two propositions the truth of the former ments, and new pages of that history, cannot be denied; the latter is true or above all in its earliest chapters, are al- false according to the way in which the most daily brought to light. We can history of art is looked at. The fornow see many things in a new light tresses of primæval days from which, if through the great works of digging which we only read them aright, we may learn are still going on in various parts of the such precious lessons of primæval hiscity, above all on the spot which was the tory, are hardly to be called works of cradle of Rome and on the spot which architecture ; they are simply works of was the centre of her full-grown life, on construction. They are simply the putthe Palatine Hill and in the Roman Foting together of stones, sometimes in a rum. But the pages of history which are ruder, sometimes in a more workmanlike thus brought to light are pages which need fashion, to serve a practical need. There the greatest caution in reading. They is no system of decoration, no ornament of are oracles which tell their own tale, but any kind, upon them. Indeed among the which tell it only to inquirers who draw scanty remains which we have of prinear in the spirit of sound criticism, not mæval work at Rome we could not look in that of blind belief or hasty conjecture. for any system of decoration. There is Of all the works of men's hands in the not so much as a gateway of the primæEternal City, two classes speak to the val fortress left to us, and in no age should mind with a deeper interest than any we ask for much of architectural detail others. The first are the small remains in the mouth of a sewer or in the roof of of primitive times, the still-abiding relics an underground well-house.* Had Rome of the days when the Raines of the never risen higher than the other cities Palatine and the Titienses of the Capitol lived each on their separate hills, as dis- l of the building which bears the name - mediavai only,
I. All scholars seem now agreed that the lower story tinct and hostile tribes. These relics but still perhaps traditional — of the Mamertine Prison, speak of the first birth of Rome : next to was at first simply a well-house or tullianum, and that, of Latiuin, she might have been as rich What Rome began in her sewers, she in remains of these early times as some carried out in her gateways, in her of the other cities of Latium still are. aqueducts, in her bathis and her amS:ill in the early remains of Rome, scanty phitheatres. Other nations invented as they are, in these abiding relics of a the round arch as well as Rome; in time when the names and deeds of men Rome alone it found an abiding home. are still legendary, we can see clear signs It was only in Rome, and in the lands of two stages in the art of construction. which learned their arts from Rome, that We can see a stage when the greatest of it became the great constructive feature, all constructive inventions was still un- used on a scale which, whatever we say of kdown, and another stage when it was the Roman architects, stamps the Roman already familiar. We can see in Rome, builders as the greatest that the world as in Latium, in Greece, in Ireland, and ever saw. But it was not till, in common in Central America, works of the time belief, the might, the glory, and the art when men were still striving after the of Rome had passed away, that Rome, great invention of the arch. We can working in her own style in the use of see works which are clearly due to a her own great constructive invention, stage when men were still trying various learned to produce, not only mighty experiments, when they were making works of building, but consistent works various attempts to bring stones so as to of architecture. overlap and support one another, but In this way the two turning points in when the perfect arch, with its stones the history of Rome, her birth and her poised in mid-air by a law of mutual me- new birth, the days of her native infancy chanical support, had not yet rewarded and the days when she rose to a new life the efforts of those who were feeling at the hands of her Christian teachers their w:v towards it. The roof of the and her Teutonic conquerors, are brought Tuliianum is no true vault, any more into the closest connection with one anthan the roof of New Grange or of the other. From the point of view of the Treasury at Mykênê. In some of the unity of history, the course of the archipassages connected with it the roof has tecture of Rome strikingly answers to real mutually supporting voussoirs; but the course of the literature of Rome. the shape of the voussoirs is still polyg- Her architecture and her literature alike onal; the most perfect form of the arch are, during the time of Rome's greatest bad not yet been lighted on. In the outward glory, during the ages which Cloaca Maxima we find the round arch purists mark out by the invidious name in its simplest form, but in a form per- classical,” almost wholly of an imitafect as regards its construction. This tive kind. As men followed Greek modgreat invention, which was independently els in literature and clothed Roman made over and over again in times and words and thoughts in the borrowed Llaces far apart from one another, was metres of Greece, so men followed Greek also made at Rome, or at all events models in art also. They clothed a somewhere in Central Italy. The round | Roman body in a Greek dress, and arch, the great invention of Roman art, masked the true Roman construction the very embodiment of Roman strength | under a borrowed system of Greek ornaand massiveness, the constructive ex-mental detail. In both cases the true pression of the bounderies which were national life was simply overshadowed ; never to yield, of the dominion which it was never wholly trampled out. While was never to pass away, came into being philosophy and rhetoric, epic and lyric in a work characteristically Roman. The poetry, were almost wholly imitative, law beginning of Roman architecture is to be and satire and, to some extent, history found, notin a palace or in a temple, but remained national. So too in architecin those vast drains which were said to ture. If we stand in the Forum and adform an underground city, rivalling in ex-mire the exotic grace of the columns of icot the city which they bore aloft. the temple of Vespasian and of the Great
when it was afterwards used as a prison, the true meanthem, almost beyond them from the point ling of its name was forgotten, and it was connected of view of universal history, come, in' with the legendary King Servius Tullius.