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mirth, closely treading on the heels of each other; if the sufferings of the greatest of heroes extend no farther than to his own heart, and the peasant at the end of his park palings carries on his daily work, and laughs and sings and jests at usual, even while his lord is stabbing or shooting himself in the wildest paroxysm of despair ;—if all these contrasts are observable in nature, and if they forcibly tend to impress on the imagination a true sense of the littleness of life and the inanity of all mortal grandeur, why may not the same contrasts produce the same effects in what is, or professes to be, the representation of nature? We are decidedly of opinion, that one of the greatest injuries ever done to our stage by the fury of modern reformers has been the banishment of Lear's fool; and grieved indeed should we feel ourselves, if the •ame rage for classical truth were ever to prevail against the grave-diggers of Hamlet.
This, however, is a discussion which would require volumes to do it ample justice, and it would be absurd to carry it farther in the short space still left to us for the conclusion of our present article. Proceed we, then, to the eulogist's ingenious comparison between
* Corneille, Bossuet, and Montesquieu.
4 Among the authors who differ most in the objects of their writings, may be found the closest analogy of thought and 6tyle. Already have we pointed out this relation between Corneille and Bossuet ; and a more lengthened examination will demonstrate that the one was on the stage just what the other has been in the pulpit. In both is manifested that generalization of ideas, that force of conception, which embraces the whole extent and penetrates the whole drplh of a subject. If it be the object to bring us acquainted with great Generals, the oration or the drama developes their military systems; his not a priest, it is not a poet that I hear, it is Sertorius, it is Conde, who reveal the secrets of this art. When Bossuet cairies his observations to the character of nations, when he paints the manners of the Romans, wc might be tempted to imagine that he has just departed from the representation of a tragedy of Corneille, and that he transcribes or analyzes the discourse of those proud citizens.
* Let a Christian orator, deriving religious instruction from the death of a great man, say, " Atitnde-z.-vous que Dieu resuscite les marts pour vous initruire ? il n'est pas necessaire que les marts reinenncnt; ce qui entre aujourd 'bui dans le tombeau sujjit pour nous converttr." On the other hand, let a poet, speaking fot the widow of Pompey, make her say to htt husband's urn, "Objet terrible et tendre, tu est plus saere pour moi que ces Dieux, qui, la fcudre a la main, ont pu voir egorger I'ompee.' It is evident that the orator and the poet have the same conception, and draw the same conclusion from the spectacle of death, which, according to the difference of religious opinions, leads to a revolt against heaven, or to a submission to its decrees.
_ * Corneille and Bossuet resemble each other als» in their imperfection* ; their diction is often harsh and unpolished,whether tin's defect i>e the consequence ofgreat strength, or whether they think that a man who is really eloquent may dispense with being elegant. - Sometime* also we discover surprizing incorrectness in their works ; into which they could not have (alien but that, in the grandeur of their imaginations, they for some moments neglected or disdained the rules of grammar. Both allowed themselves to create words; and by an effect of conformity in their conceptions, or from the love which Botsuet bore to the style of Corneille, many of these words are the tame. *
'It is not only to the eloquence of the pulpit that we may assimilate the dramas of Corneille, but also to the most celebrated work* of philosophy or politics; and this resemblance is singularly observable in the comparison of Corneille with Montesquieu. Assisting at the deliberation of Augustus respecting the abdication of the empire, we hear the constitutional principles of political societies, and their concordance with the manners of the people; this is but a presentimental the idea> of Montesquieu, it is an anticipated analysis of the Esprit Jcs Lois. On the other hand, in the dialogue between Sylla and Eucrate, which may be considered as a corollary to the considerations on the Causes tie la Grandeur et He la Decadence des Remains, we think that we hear the dictator, in a tragedy of Corneille, reveal to his confidant the motives of his abdication; *' Si je ne suis plus en spectacle a Punivers, e'est la faute des chases humaines qui ont des homes ... j'ai cru avoir rempli ma destinee des que je n'ai plus eu a /aire rien de
grand Je me suis demit de la dietature, elans le temps qu'il n'y
avail pas tin seul homme dans 1'univers qui ne crut que la dietature et .it mum seul asyle. J'ai ^aru devout les Romains, cituyen au milieu tie mes conciloyens; et j'ai ose leur ilire : je suis pret a rendre compte de tout le sang que j'ai verse pour la repubiique. Je repondrai a sous ecus qui viendront me redemunder leur pere, leurftls, leurfrire,—Tous Us Romains se son! ties deveigt mot"
'Let this dialogue be placed at the end of Cerneille's dramas, as a fragment of an inedited piece, or a scene which the author had not yet put into verse; and certainly the similarity in the grandeur of views, in the fierte of character, in the loftiness of sentiment, in masculine and noble eloquence, would luve deceived the finest last* and the most just discernment.'
The aothor next presems us with some short remarks on the morality of Corneille; and his discourse closes with an expression of deep regret that the sublime and just maxims concerning the polity of states, which this dramatisl exhibited on the theatre, were not allowed to influence the late popular assemblies in his country; since, had attention been paid, to them, they would infallibly have checked the imprudent and fatal effervescence which led to so many errors and atrocities.
A*t. XIII. Poésies diverses, >&c. ; /. e. Miscellaneous Poem3 by M. Chevillard, formerly Director of the Marine Artillery at Toulon, izmo. 2 ,Vols^ London. 1807.
"I N the Age of Lewis XlVik, Voltaire reproaches Saurin and tha greater part of his expatriated brethren with a certain peculiarity of manner and language, which he denominates the "style réfugié." We are not aware that M. Chevillard, in his long absence from his native country, has contracted any of thb rust. He appears to write with purity, and, as far as our northern ears are capable of discerning, his versification is harmonious and correct.
The poems are divided into odes and miscellaneous pieces. They consist chiefly of translations of didactic, sentiment*!, and amatory poems from Pope, Gay, Thomson, Merrick, Gray, Goldsmith, Barbsuld, and other English writers, and of the *' Vivamus mea Lesbia atque amemtts" and the "Ille tnî para esse deovidetur" of Catullus together with several short original < compositions. Among the imitations, we discover the letter of Abclard, describing his sensations in the dressing room of Eloisa, clothed in poetic garb.
M. Chiv;llard's translation of the "Beggar's Petition" partakes of the character of the original:
* Ay est pitié d'un être malheureux
£)ui vient d'un pas tremblant demander assistance s
Adoucisse» son destin douloureux,
* Voyex l'état de cet infortuné,
Ces cheveu» qu'a blanchis sa trop longue carrière.
Cet aufiétri de rides sillonné
'L'aspect trompeur de ce palais brillant
Jih l j'espérais quelque soulagement
'Je demandais un seul morceau de pain,
En me disant d'un ton dur, inhumain,
'Il fit grand froid; je suis si malheureux!
Cette faveur remplira tous mes vaux...
'§>uand vous saurez la cause de mes pleurs,
sib ! vous serez louché de mes malheurs,
'Un petit bien, avec art cultive,
Par la chicane it me fut euleve;
1 Ma Ji'le etoit Pespoir de mes vieus jours,
Rassasie de ses jolles amours,
'Pour partager les ho-reurs de mon sort,
Elle succombe, et je perds, par sa mart,
* Je me soumets a Vorder du Tres Haut,
Qui mieux que moi connoit ce qi'il me faut,
The fable of the Cameleon seems destined to exhibit as many changes as the animal which forms the subject of it. Merrick borrowed it from La Motte, and the present author has restored it to his country.
In M. Chevili.arp's selections, and in his own productions, he mii;ht have omitted several which rather trespass on the boundaries of decorum.
Art. XIV. Le Comte de Corke, Sic.; i. e. The great Earl of Cork, or Seduction without r\rtitice, to which arc subjoined five Novels. By Mad. De Genlis. a Vols. lamo. Paris. 1808.
Tijdge JerFeries accused the celebrated non-conformist Richard Baxter of publishing as many books as would fill a cart; and Mad. Genlis, who certainly has the pen of a ready writer, seems resolved to expose herself to a similar charge. Her works, indeed, have not the character which was falsely imputed to those of poor Baxter: but never was a writer more laborious in promoting a romantic turn of mind. She professes at times to follow history: but she soon leaps over its narrow boundaries, and employs herself in creating some aliment to feed the imagination of enthusiastic lovers.
Had we not been previously acquainted with this lady's habits, we should have been led to suppose by her reference to the life of Richard Boyle, in the general Biographical Dictionary, that she meant closely to follow the memoir of this distinguished individual: but we were prepared by her former productions of this class, for the kind of entertainment which is here served up. In the preface, she gives a brief statement of the historic facts pn which her romance is
founded, founded, adding also some notices of Robert Boyle, ton of Richard, the illustrious experirnent.il philosopher. Having thus referred to the fond on which she professes to work, and stated the circumstances which gave rise to the present fiction, 6he spreads her own canvas, and delineates a Richard Boyle more adapted to a circulating library than to an historical museum. This Richard, like his prototype, is born of obscure parents: but Mad. De G. finds him a generous protector in Mulcroon, who lived near Black rock, four miles from Dublin; who superintends his education, and presents him with a most beautiful and elegantly furnished cottage, not only decorated with a good library, but with things which are not usually found in dwellings of this description, vases of porphyry, &c. Here, contented with his garden and his books, he lives without ambition; till the Earl of Essex, then Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, visiting his cottage, and being struck with the noble appearance of this young man, gives him a book in which he had written these words; I predict that Richard Boyle will make his name illustrious. From this moment, the germ of ambition begins to shoot; and no longer are Richard's views confined to his cottage and his g.urlrn. He wishes to visit London; and his kind protector Mulcroon is not only desirous of gratifying him, but accompanies him in his journey. Arriving at Chatham when Queen Elizabeth visited that place to go on board the ship ot Sir Francis Drake, who was just returned from his circumnayjgation of tlie globe, Richard, in the croud which attended on that occasion., again encounters, the Eirl of Essex: but, to his great mortification, he is not recognized by this nobleman •, and he returns to Black-rock without having effected any object by his tour.
As, however, in nov»ls every thing is accomplished by the potent machinery of love, Richard is soon introduced to the acquaintance of a lady, who occupies his mind abundantly more than the prediction of Essex. Lady Ranelagh pays an accidental visit to the cottage; and having thrown back the veil which concealed her beautiful face, the young .and manly Richard is at once inflamed with the ardour of love, as in the adventure with the minister of Elizabeth he had been warmed .with ambition. On having asked hi'11 thv question, •« Whether the cultivation of his flowers had not formed his happiness?" his answer.—"Yes, Madam, hitherto,"—reveafed to Lady Ranelagh the impression which her charms had made on this young peasant; and flattered by so delicate a compliment, which seemed to require explanation, Lady K. replied, "You say that, //"// now, your greatest pleasure has been derived from