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ed Greeks, who then fled for refuge to Italy, brought with them the elegant literature of Greece and Rome. They were happily adopted, and patronized by many noble and eminent persons, amongst whom the Medici family were distinguished as the first. The art of printing having been introduced in 1440, copies of the Greek and Roman writers were multiplied and circulated, under the critical eye of the most eminent scholars of the age. Need we mention the names of Politian, Aldus Manutius, Paulus Manutius; and, at a later period, Joseph Scaliger, Isaac Casaubon, &c. &c. By the introduction of these works the taste of our times has been refined; elegance of composition has been carried to a perfection which rivals that of the ancients; and it may be added, that, notwithstanding occasional instances of indelicacy which occur in the classics, purity of sentiment, and elevated ideas of virtue, are, upon the whole, promoted.

To present to the public the most perfect and correct editions of the classics was the aim and pride of the learned of the age of Leo X. To promote the same object is, to this day, the laudable aim of literary men.

Mr John Dymock, of the Grammar School of Glasgow, has lately, in this view, done an important service to the literary world, by the publication of the most correct editions of the Decerpta from the Metamorphoses of Ovid, and of Cæsar's Commentaries of the Gallic and Civil wars. Each of these has gone through two edi tions. They are modestly entitled "for the use of the Glasgow school:" but we will not hesitate to add, that their use may be extended to the views of the most accomplished scholar.

The text seems to be the most correct that has ever been offered to the public. That of Caesar is according to Oudendorp's celebrated edition that of Ovid is taken chiefly from

that of Cuppuigius, 1670, collated with every other edition that possessed any celebrity. There is good reason to affirm, that this of the Decerpta is immaculate.

But though the chief merit of any edition of the classics consists unquestionably in the accuracy of the text, it may be observed, that this does not, by any means, constitute the whole merit of Mr Dymock's labours.— At the bottom of the page, the more difficult phrases are briefly illustrated, and translated into English, by the most appropriate expressions. In the notes, the quantity of the proper names are accurately marked, to the number of about 14,000-a matter of the greatest importance to the tyro. To the names of places, the modern names are added in italics,an addition highly useful to the student of ancient and modern geography.

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But we come now to state the great and leading circumstance in the value of these publications-and it consists in the extensive and learned notes which accompany each; forming for Cæsar about one-third of the volume, and for Ovid, one half.

The notes are in the English language. Those on the' Commentaries embrace a correct geographical account of all the places which are mentioned by Cæsar; historical and biographical accounts of all the personages that appear upon the stage of the world, during that eventful period of the Roman history; together with occasional notices of Roman antiquities. We can hardly conceive any edition of the Commentaries more complete, or more useful to the classical scholar.

Ovid is allowed by all to be a delightful poet. He has his faults. He indulges too frequently in a puerile play on words: he often pursues an image too far: he is often guilty of indelicacy. But for luxuriance of fancy, for playfulness of imagination,

for

for ease of expression, and of versification, he had not perhaps his equal.

Quicquid scribebat, versus erat. He was the favourite poet of the late Mr C. J. Fox, till the latest period of his life.

of

The Excerpta of Mr Dymock are very judiciously arranged. They are all according to the old edition, excepting the very proper exclusion the horrible story of Tereus, in the first book; a story which can serve only to harrow up the minds of youth, and to inspire them with odious views

of human nature.

Mr Dymock's notes on Ovid form a most valuable edition to ancient Jore. As his Constituent Classic may be considered as the Grand Institute of Greek and Roman Fable, so these notes may be held to constitute a complete Code of Heathen My thology. They form indeed a Pantheon, which is beyond question the more unexceptionable, and the more valuable to youth, in this important respect, that, whilst it contains every information that regards the history of the immortals of Olympus, no expression, or idea, tending to indecency, is, on any occasion, admitted.— Sufficient praise cannot be given to Mr Dymock for his delicacy in this respect.

In these notes, the topography of classic ground is described in a way that has not, and could not have been done before. Mr Dymock enjoyed, in this respect, an advantage which had not occurred before to manyThe state of Western Europe, as is well known, precluded British travellers, for many years past, from visiting that part of the continent. They, accordingly, directed their excursions to Anatolia, Turkey in Europe, and the Islands of the Archipelago, the celebrated scenes of classic history and poesy.

From this circumstance, we possess, at this moment, more information,

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with regard to the topography of these interesting regions, than we ever before had it in our power to obtain.Mr Dymock has judiciously taken advantage of this important information; and his notes on Ovid contain notices of history, geography, and Mythology, which may be new even to the learned.

Impressed with a just sense of these publications, we sincerely wish that Mr Dymock would continue his classical labours, with the proper emolument to himself, and the evident advantage to the public.

An Excerpta from Horace, which would give an opportunity of introducing the literary anecdotes of the Augustan age, would be an acceptable present from Mr Dymock to the public. The scrupulousness of his taste might dispose him to exclude many poems of that elegant writer : let him use the edition of the Jesuit Juvencius, who has curtailed Horace without mercy.

Both works are neatly printed, and do credit to the University Press of Glasgow.

III. The Poetic Mirror; or the Living Bards of BRITAIN. Second Edition. Longman & Co. 7s. 6d.

WE do not very exactly comprehend

the nature and scope of this ingenious performance. It professes to be a collection of pieces contributed expressly for this work, by many of the first living poets; yet, very evidently, is not what it thus professes to be. We very easily recognize in it the work of one individual, endeavouring successively to model bis style according to that of the different poets of whom he seeks to exhibit a picture. But, whether this picture is meant to be a faithful portrait, or whether the object be to throw ridicule on its original, is not always very

obvious.

obvious. In some pieces, the latter is certainly aimed at; while there are others, which bear no semblance of having been written with such an intention. Either attempt is one of the first difficulty. The parody is certainly the easiest; but it too requires a talent which falls to the lot only of a few. We have not much to say in favour of our author, either as an imitator or a parodist. The resemblance is generally very rude and imperfect; or becomes closer, only by the aid of almost mechanical copying. The author, whoever he be, appears to us to have studied and admired very particularly the poetry of Mr Hogg; for whomsoever he attempts and professes to imitate, he slides always naturally and insensibly into the style of the bard of Ettrick. In many cases, however, it is the best style of that meritorious bard; so that if the author of this volume cannot be much extolled in the humbler character of an imitator, his merit, in the higher capacity of an original poet, is frequently of no ordinary cast.

The first poem, termed the Guerilla, professes to be by Lord Byron; but it scarcely recals to us the faintest idea of that "mighty master of the lyre," neither do we think it at all the best in itself; for though some brilliant thoughts gleam through, it would be difficult to select a passage of any length, which could be pronounced good. We proceed, therefore, to the second piece, the epistle to J. S., held forth as an imitation of Scott. Its model seems to be taken from the introductions prefixed to each canto, the Lay of the Last Minstrel, and of Marmion, particularly that addressed to Mr William This appears to us an uncommonly pleasing little poem, both as to sentiment and description. It adheres also pretty close to its model, to the best specimens of which it is little in. ferior. It begins thus

Dear S
while the southern breeze
Floats, fresh'ning, from the upland leas,
Whispering of Autumn's mellow spoils
Awakening in the soften'd breast
And jovial sports and grateful toils,
Regrets and wishes long supprest,
O, come with me once more to hail

The scented heath, the sheafy vale,

The hills and streams of Teviotdale.

'Tis but a parting pilgrimage
To save from Time's destroying rage,
And changeful Fortune's withering blast,
And though my steps have linger'd long
The hallow'd pictures of the past.
From scenes that prompt the poet's song,
Till almost in my heart has died
The flame that glow'd with boyish pride,
For this I'll wake once more the strain,
Which else had ne'er been waked again.
Which first on opening fancy smiled,
And, there, we'll woo the visions wild
By breezy dawn, by quiet noon,
Beneath the bright broad harvest moon,
Or 'midst the mystic shadows dim
While dreams of glory spring to birth,
Which round the car of Twilight swim ;

More lovely than the forms of earth,

We shall extract also the following passages:

Far inland, where the mountain crest

O'erlooks the waters of the west,
And, 'midst the moorland wilderness,
Dark moss-cleughs form a drear recess,
Curtain'd with ceaseless mists which feed
The sources of the Clyde and Tweed,-
There injured Scotland's patriot band
For faith and freedom made their stand,
When traitor kings, who basely sold
Their country's fame for Gallic gold,-
Too abject o'er the free to reign,—
Warn'd by a father's fate in vain,-
In bigot fury, trampled down
The race who oft preserved their crown.
There, worthy of his masters, came
The despot's champion, bloody Graham
To stain for aye a warrior's sword,
And lead a fierce, though fawning horde,
The human bloodhounds of the earth,
To hunt the peasant from his hearth!
Erskine.--Tyrants! could not misfortune teach,
That man has rights beyond your reach?

Thought ye the torture and the stake

Could that intrepid spirit break,
Which even in woman's breast withstood
The terror of the fire and flood !-

Yes-though the sceptic's tongue deride
Those martyrs who for conscience died,-
Though modish history blight their fame,
And sneering courtiers hoot the name

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Of men who dared alone be free
Amidst a nation's slavery,—
Yet long for them the poet's lyre
Shall wake its notes of heavenly fire;
Their names shall nerve the patriot's hand,
Upraised to save a sinking land;
And piety shall learn to burn
With holier transports o'er their urn.

-Tinged with that departing sun, To fancy's eye arises dun.

A hill, along whose dusky brow,
Yet unprofaned by rustic plough,
The shaggy gorse and brown-heath wave
O'er many a nameless warrior's grave.
-Yon peak, of yore, which wide and far
Gleam'd like the wakeful eye of war,
And oft with warning flame and smoke,
Ten thousand spears to battle woke,
Now down each subject glen descries
Blue wreaths from quiet hamlets rise,
To where, soft fading on the eye,
Tweed's cultured banks in beauty lie,
Wide waving with a flood of grain
From Eildon to the eastern main.
-Oft from yon height I loved to mark,
Soon as the morning roused the lark,
And woodlands raised their raptured hymn,
That land of glory spreading dim;
While slowly up th' awakening dale
The mists withdrew their fleecy veil,
And tower, and wood, and winding stream,
Were brightening in the golden beam.

"Wat of the Cleuch" is an imitation of the moss-trooping strains of Scott, but not equally happy. It does not possess the dignity or bold impetuosity of the poet of feudal times.Such expressions as the following are a good deal beneath the level of Border Minstrelsy.

Late at Elsden's he had been

One evening of St Valentine,

And there had wrought much wreck and dole,

Had called the abbot beast and fool; Taken, bot leave, their hoarded pelf, And whatsoever pleased himself.

In deliberate way His mighty two hand sword he drew. It reached so high, it swung so low, It galled his shoulder and his toe.

"The Stranger," the " Flying Tailor," and "James Rigg," are imitations, or rather parodies of Wordsworth. They give, not ill, the worst parts of that author's poetry, though

they do not introduce any of the beauties by which he redeems them. Isabelle, is Coleridge, almost a copy of Christabelle. Another, from Coleridge, is called the Cherub. It does not recall the original very strikingly, but it appears to us in itself very wildly beautiful.

Was it not lovely to behold

A Cherub come down from the sky,
A beauteous thing of heavenly mould,
With ringlets of the wavy gold,
Dancing and floating curiously?
To see it come down to the earth
This beauteous thing of heavenly birth!
Leaving the fields of balm and bliss,
To dwell in such a world as this!

I heard a maiden sing the while, A strain so holy, it might beguile An angel from the radiant spheres, That have swum in light ten thousand

years;

Ten times ten thousand is too few-
Child of heaven, can this be true!
And then I saw the beauteous thing
Slowly from the clouds descending,
Brightness, glory, beauty blending,
In the 'mid air hovering.

It had a halo round its head,
It was not of the rainbow's hue,
For in it was no shade of blue,
But a beam of amber mixed with red,

Like that which mingles in the ray

A little after the break of day.

Its raiment was the thousand dycs
Of flowers in the heavenly paradise ;
Its track a beam of the sun refined,
And its chariot was the southern wind;
My heart danced in me with delight,
And my spirits mounted at the sight,
And I said within me, It is well;
But where the bower, or peaceful dell,
Where this pure heavenly thing may dwell?
Then I bethought me of the place,
To lodge the messenger of grace;
And I chose the ancient sycamore,
And the little green by Greta's shore;
It is a spot so passing fair,
That sainted thing might sojourn there.

Go tell yon stranger artizan, Build as quickly as he can. Heaven shield us from annoy! What shall form this dome of joy! The leaf of the rose would be too rude, For a thing that is not flesh and blood; The walls must be of the sunny air, And the roof of the silvery gossainer, And all the ceiling, round and round, Wove half of light, and half of sound ;

The

The sounds must be the tones that fly
From distant harp, just ere they die;
And the light the moon's soft midnight
ray,

When the cloud is downy, and thin, and grey.

And such a bower of light and love,
Of beauty and of harmonie,

In earth below or heaven above,
No mortal thing shall ever see.

Southey is presented in Peter of Barnet, and Carmen Judiciale, very unfavourably. To the latter, we may apply the same observation as to Christabelle.

The Gude Greye Katt" is intended to represent James Hogg, who, as already hinted, appears to be the favourite of the poet. It appears to afford a very fair exhibition, though we cannot admire the uncouth orthography with which it is obscured.This Cat seems rather to exceed what poetical licence can permit in such a personage. The laird of Blain being left a widower with seven daughters, she undertakes the charge of their education, and trains them up in the most meritorious manner. Disap proving the conduct of a certain bishop, she seizes and precipitates him to the regions below. There is something picturesquely humorous in this

scene.

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