« VorigeDoorgaan »
When my understanding was awak- quit that happy life which we led ered by dint of years, nature impelled together? Why did my eager imne to seek a companion : you retined portunities thrust you from us? You rbe ardoar of my desires by the soli- were delighted with your work. I dity of reason; the strength of your saw it: I felt it: I was sure of it.arguments alone taught me to subdue You appeared happy when I was ;
I loved Sophia even before I the tender caresses of Sophia seemed knew it: this love sheltered me trom to flatter your paiernal leart: You the shares of vice; it inspired me loved us, you were pleased with us, with a desire for things which were and you quitted us!' But for your abvirtuolis ; it imprinted on my imagi- sence I should yet have been happy; nation the sacred laws of virtue. - my son would now live perhaps, or Wren, at length, I beheld this inef- at least would not have closed his fable object of my adoration, when I existence in the midst of strangers. felt the empire of her charms, all that His dear and virtuous, mother 100 could penetrate a soul, sofi, ravish- would yet live in the arms of her hus. ing, penetrated mine with a sensation band. Wreiched retreat, which unsg exquisite that words can but poorly ceasingly exposes me to all the hor.
Bli sful days of my first rors of my fate. No! never beneath affections! Days, whose remembrance thy eyes would these · misfortunes is cherished in my heart. Why can- have approached my family ; in abannot ve return, and never cease again? doning me you incurred greater ills Henceforın acıdate my whole exist- upon me than you had ever done me ence! Oh God, I would not with good during my life. another eterniiy:
Soon did Heaven cease to bless the Vain regrets! useless desires! all house in which you no longer resided, is gone! vanished nerer to return !-- Misfortunes and afflictions succeeded When, after so much languisling, without intermission. In a few such ardent sighs I obtained the prize, months we lost the father and mother all my vows were repaid. Hu-band, of Sophia, and lastly her dacghter,
yet a lover, I found in the tran- her charning girl : whom she so quil possession a happiness of another much doated on, whom she idolized, nature, but not less than that of dé- whom she would have followed. At şire. Ob my ma-ter, you thought this lavt blow her tirmness was stag, you had known ibis enchanting girl. gered, and it left her. Till ibis period How much you was deceived! You she had lived content and peaceabile
knew my mistress, my wife; but you in solitude, she had been ignorant of I never knew Sophia. Her charms, of the birrerness of life, she had not
every nature,' were inexh.justless ; armed her soul against misfortunes of Efery moment seemed to renew then, this kind; it was sensible and easily and the last day of her life disclosed affected. She felt these losses as we to me some which I had never known naturally feel our first; and they were before.
indeed ihe commencement of ours. Already father of two children, I Nothing could exhaust her tears; the divided my time between an adored death of lier daughter made her feel wife and the pledges of our mutual more keenly that of her mother; unlove. You enabled ine to lay down ceasing she called on one or the other a plan of education, similar to mine, with sighs; she inade ihose places re, for my son; and my daughter, be- sound with their names where she neath the eyes of her mother, had bad once received their innocent ca. Learnt to resemble her. All my em- resses; every object which recalled ployment was the care of Sophia's them augmented her grief; I resolved patrimony; mide I had neglected to to take her away from these causes of enjoy my felicity. Deceitful happi- pair:ful remembrance. I had, in the ness! Trebly have I felt thy incon. capital, what they call business, but stancy! Thy bound is but a point, which had verer been so to me till and when we arrive at its height we this period. I proposed to her to must quickly fall. And was it your follow thither a female friend, (an plare, inhuman father, to cause this acquaintance which she had contractdecline? By what fatality did you ed in the neighbourhood), and who
had been under the necessity of ac- that was not her. I sought her no companying her busbaud. Slie con- longer; I possessed her, and her sented to prevent being separated charms embellished those objects from me, and not penetrating my now as much as they had distigured motive. Her affliction was too great them in my youth. But quickly to attempt to alleviate it. To parti- these very objects weakened my decipate in it, and to weep with her, sire as I partook of them. Initiated, were the only consolations which by degrees, inta all those frivolous could be given.
amusements, my heart insensibly lost As we approached the capital, I its primal energy, and became incafelt myself shook with certain fore- pable of action or animation. Restbodings which I had never before less, I wandered from pleasure to experienced; sad presentiments arose pleasure; I sought everything, and within my breast; all that I had seen, with every thing I became wearied : ali that I heard from you, respecting I was pleased only with what I did great cities, made me tremble at the pot possess, and existed in confusion idea of our residing in this one. I instead of ampusement. I felt a revo. dreaded to expose so sure a union to lution, of which I desire not convic. the many dangers which there might tion. I forbore to look into myself, disturb it. I shuddered as I belield fearful of tinding nothing. All my the afilicied Sopliia, in reflecting that altachments were thus weakened, all I thus myself voluntarily dragged so my affections were thus couled; I had many incomparable virine's andcharius substituted, for reality, a jargon of to thaw guilph of prejudices and vices, sentiment and morality. I was a gal· where every vestige of innocence and lant without tenderness, a stoic withhappiness became audinilace:t. out virtue, and a sage occupied with
However secure in her and hyself, follies; there was nothing left of I despised this prudent advice, which your Emilius but the name and sonje I regarded as a vain prognostic; maxims. My frankness, my Aberty, suffering it to tornient me, 1 still my pleasures, my duties, you, my treated it as a chimera. Alas! little son, Sophia herself, all which once did I expect to see it so quickly and animated me, which exalted my mind so cruelly realized. I little suspecied to the full plenitude of my existence, that I did not go to search misfortune now, in deiaching themselves by dein the capital, but ibat it followed me. grees, seemed to detach me from my:
How sball I describe to you the self, and to leave, in my oppressed two years which we passed in this soul, an overpowering sentiment of fatal city; how shall I disclose the vacuity and annihilation. But, the fatal ettect which it had on my soul, fame which wils apparently, extin. and on my fate. Too well do you guished, slumbered only beneath know those sad events, whose remein- the ashes too quickly to burst forth brance, effaced in our days of happi- with redoubled fury. ness, now came with redoubled force,
[To be continued.] and exaggerate iny woes in leading me to their source. What an alteration did my courtesy towards two OBSERVATIONS upon COWPER. amiable connections wbich habit had ripened into friendship produce in
SIR, ime! How much did example and T has happened to Cowper, as it imitation, against whose influence has happened to other writers, you had so well fortified my heart, to be remembered by a single proinsensibly inspire me with a desire for duction, while other parts of their those frivolous things which, when writings, though probably inferior to younger, I had sense to despise.- one particular work, are yet well How different it is to view things, worthy of notice. It is thus that the diverted by other objects, and to be Liberty and Britanniu of Thomson solely occupied with those which are scarcely known by name to many strike us. It was no longer the time who read 'bis Seasons with rapture : when my heated imagination sought yet, can it be denied that both Liberty nothing but Sophia, and rejected all and Britannia have man; five pas.
sages in them? Thus also with Cowper, rough lines, to no meaning in musical whose Task has so completely occu- ones. There is, in this same poem, pied the vantage ground of his fame four lines which are truly characteriso that his other poems, written in heroic tical of the ardent mind of Cowper : couplets, are almost forgotten. But an attentive reader may observe in Place me where winter breathes his keenest these last the same cast of thought, And I will sing if liberty be there : the same glow of fancy, and the And I will sing at liberty's dear feet same energy of language, as prevail in Afric's torrid clime, or India's fiercest in his blank yerse. The peculiar vigour of Cowper's thoughts could not indeed accommodate itself to a The manly sentiments which these
lines contain, were eminently con. weak or flimsy style : and his notions of versification led him to adopt ra- genial to the heart and feelings of the ther the strong and manly verse of poet, nor could te have expressed Dryden, than the polished and har- ihem more forcibly in blank' verse. mónious couplets of_Pope._ A few
I think, indeed, that Cowper's rhimes instances from bis Table Talk, for are equal to his blank verse ; and. I example, will prove this. Take the wish that his poems, so written, were following character of a French- as much read as his Task. They
would amply repay the time. Whac
can be finer than the following chaBorn in a climate softer far than our's racter of the great Chatham? pow'rs,
In him, Deriosthenes was heard again, The Frenchman, easy, debonnair, and Liberty taught him her Athenian strain : brisk,
She cloth d him with avihority and awe, Give him his lass, his fiddle, and his frisk, Spoke from his lips, and in his looks gave is always happy, reign whoever may, And laughs the sense of misery far away :
His speech, his form, his action, full of He drinks his simple beverage with a gust: And, feasting on an onion and a crust, And all his country beaming in his face, We never feel the alacrity and joy
He stood, as some inimitable hand With which he shouts and carols, Vive le Would strive to make a Paul or Tully
Roi! Filld with as much true merriment and No sycophant or slave, that dar'd oppose glee
Her sacred cause, but trembled when he As if he heard his King say-Slare be free.
And every venal stickler for the voke The sense is here protracted through Felt himself crushed at the first word he the whole paragraph, instead of being spoke. closed with the couplet, as is usually I will not trespass further on your done by Pope: and in this respect he attention, or that of your readers, but imitates Dryden. Indeed he has ex- conclude, Sir, by subscribing myself, pressed his opinion of versification in one of his letters, in which he
Your's, &c. arows his preference for meaning in Leeds, Aug. 12, 1810,
hot form'd like us with such Herculean
" Nulli negabimus, nielli differemus justitiam." Tales of ROMANCE, with other lish Poetry. The fictions are, some Poems; including Selections from of them, wild and improbable, yet Propertius. By C A. ELTON. interesting: while others are both I vol. 8vo. 1810.
pleasing and natural. They are twelve THESE Tales of Romance are, as in number, and are parrated in almost ed from the Gesta Romanorum, a book times adopted that of the old English which Warton has mentioned with ballad, in imitation of Walter Scott, commendation, in bis History of Eng, and with equal success, Mr. Elton
UNIVERSAL MAG. VOL. XIV. Q
may perhaps value this commendation, The columns of stone, that encircled the as he seemis, from his prefatory lines, cave, to entertain a sufficiently high opinion Were fraught with philosophy's lore; of that author's writings.
In letters of gold did a sage there engrave
The words of the wise, and the deeds of the With regard to the relative merits brave, of these tales, the Duke's Feast is the The fears and the virtues of yore. best, and the Enigmas the worst. The Pit of Temptation has a pleasing moral The prince with a lute the slow moments pleasingly conveyed. The Hound and beguild, the Falcon, the Blind Emperor, and the Or the target was piered by' his lance; Devils who catch Mén, deserve also to be With silent observance the governor smild mentioned with praise. The latter we At the restless aspirings that wrought in
the child, will extract.
And that flashd in the roll of his glance. “ The Devils who catch Men.
Hark! timbrels re-echo and dulcimers ring; IN a rock was his mansion beside the hoarse Songs of triumph foal distant in air : main
The Paladins enter; the queen and the king; Whose dashings at distance were heard: Their smiles, their embraces, their blessings But the prince's soft limbs were ungall'd by they bring, a chain,
The prince to his people they bear. He was serv'd on the knee by the Paladin train,
The sun shines in gold; the broad heavens And was gay as the cage-prison'd bird.
The waves green as emerald roll; At his birth the physicians were met in The city's bright pinnacles dazzle his view, debate,
The crowds thronging thick as the stars or And his horoscope earnestly read;
the dew The planets were adverse; and sad they Oppress and bewilder his soul.
relate Their fearful conjunction, whose menacing O'er the vast, floating multitude wanders
fate Now glares o'er his infantine head.
O'er the banners, the shields, and the
spears : "" From his cradle three lustres must dark Recover'd at length from bis dazzled amaze, pass away,
The gifts which his parents have brought “ And the sun must be hid from his eyes;
he surveys, « If before he encounter the splendor of And perplex'd in his rapture appears.
day, The clear orbs of vision depriv'd of their There vestments of silver, and vestments ray
of gold, “Shall in vain seek the light of the skies.” . Are gorgeously pild on the plain :
In heaps, pearls and rubies and sapphires A mountain was hollow'd, a cavern delv'd
are rollid, wide
And pictures, and statues of exquisite mould, With arches and pillars of stone;
His choice with their beauties detain. A fire, that with cedars blaz'd fragrant, defied The damps that arose from the salt ocean- There stood guilded chariots, and coursers tide,
snow-white And with far-streaming radiancy shone.
With trappings of crimson array'd:. The ivory couches with purple were dight, There mail rich-emblaz’d glitter'd keen on The walls hung with arras around;
his sight, There hawks, hounds, and horses, were
And helms in the pomp and resplendence of light,
hade pictur'd to sight, And woods waving green, and clear streams
Crested dark with the plume's nodding purling bright,
(sound. And huntsmen their horns seemd 10 Here linger'd the youth ; but he lifted his Beaten gold all the ceiling's arch'd surface On the throng that assembled around : o'erlaid;
When sudden he searts with a glance of Birds warbled in cages of gold ;
surprise, And as if by some minstrel's invisible aid, His blood circles fast, and his breath pant-, With musical echo soft instruments play'd ing flies,
As the passing wayes outwardly roll'd. And the hollow helın claukson the ground.
He whispers confus'd in the governor's ear, The merchant round him turnod an anxious “ What creatures, I pray thee, are those ?
eye, " More soft er'n than boys their mild fea- As yet scarce half the forest length was tures appear,
past; "They touch me with joy, yet they thrill While mingling with the gloom a deeper me with fear,
[glows.” dread, “And my blood with strange erdency The passing thunder rolld in murmurs o'er
his head. His age-silver'd head then Ydronicus shook,
The youth's hand he earnestly press’d; The steed shook wild his ruffled mane ; 4 Oh! fatal they are; shun that soul-thrilling look,
The oak-trees old rock'd roaring in the " Which already thy gaze with its venom
gale; hath strook,
And pines their branches stoop'd with “Lest the poison sink deep in thy breast. crashing sound; ** They with jewels are deck’d, and in scar- Drear clos'd the darkness on the lightlet are drest,
(vine : ning pale ; " And their ringlets are wreath'd like the When through the forest-breaks a light « Their shape is the fir-tree's; the swan's is
from high their breast,
Shone distant, as it seem'd, a watch-tower "Full many a wretch have their eyes robb'd
in the sky.
With livelier cheer the traveller wound the « Oh let not that folly be thine !
glade, “But, listen, my prince! I will tell thee Till climbing slow the dark hill's hang. their name,
ing steep, “ Aud thy pulse will beat fearfully then ; Th’illuminated turrets he survey'd * Thyself shalt my wisdom and caution Whose light had glimmer'd through those proclaim ;
forests deep; "Oh! shun as the plague, as the sword, as Beneath a stately castle's walls he stood, the Aame,
That, Aank'd with lofty towers, c'estopp'd “The Devils, the snarers of men !"
th' inferior wood. Atonias was mute—but his eyes linger'd yet Beside the gate was hung a brazen horn; On the damsel that smiling stoud by :
The pediment was gray'd with golden Their enainouring glances with his fre
quent met ; His feet' seem'd entangled as 'twere with “Here food and shelter wait the wreich
forlorn, a net,
“ Who owns the treasure of a grateful And his heart struggled soft with a sigh.
soul.", My father! my father ! the geins and the The merchant to his lips that horn applied, gold
The hollow mountain-glens re-echoed far
and wide. “ Some other unenvied may bear : * But thus let the choice of my fancy be Straight quivering streaks illume the gratold;
nite walls, "Oh! give me the Devils whom there I
From many a gliding torch reflected behold,
bright; “ Those Devils who men can ensnare!" Shrill ring the gates; expand the tapestried
(right; The basis of this tale is doubtless
And blooming pages guide his steps a. familiar to many readers, as it has been
busy hands disrobe the way-worn adopted by many writers of comic nar
And lave in tepid streams, and clothe in We are tempted, also, notwithstand
downy vest. ing its length, to gratify our readers with the perusal of the Duke's Feast ; Thence o'er a smooth mosaic floor he treads, in whichi, we think, Mr. Elton has Of greenest marble is the vast saloon; shewn considerable powers of descrip. A crystal lamp its chequering lustre sheds,
As o'er some valley shines the shadowy tion, and some good versification.
moon; « The Duke's Feast.
The figur'd arras waves, and on his sight
Sudden a presence-room bursts in a blaze The moon had suuk is: clouds; a storm
of light. was nigh, And eddy leaves came scattering on the His foot on cushion rais'd of cloth of gold, blast;
One sate beneath a purple canopy: