« السابقةمتابعة »
I love the air; her dainty sizeets refresh
My drooping soul, and to new sweets invite me; Her shrill-mouth'd choir sustain me with their flesh,
And with their Polyphonian notes delight me: But what's the air, or all the sweets, that she Can bless my soul withal, compar'd with thee?
I love the sea : she is
fellow-creature, My careful purveyor ; she provides me store : She walls me round; she makes my diet greater ;
She wafts my treasure from a foreign shore: But, Lord of oceans, when compar'd with thee, What is the ocean, or her wealth to me?
To Heav'n's high city I direct my journey,
Whose spangled suburbs entertain my eye; Mine eye, by contemplation's great attorney,
Transcends the crystal pavement of the sky. But what is Heav'n, great God, compar'd to thee? Without thy presence, Heav'n's no Heav'n to me.
Like to the arctic needle, that doth guide
The wand'ring ship by his magnetic pow'r, And leaves his silken gnomon to decide
The question of the controverted hour, First frantics
and down from side to side, And restless beats his crystal'd iv'ry case,
With vain impatience jets from place to place,
At length he slacks his motion, and doth rest
E'en so my soul, being hurried here and there,
By ev'ry object that presents delight,
She likes at morning what she loaths at night:
To that sweet swan-like voice of dying pleasure,
Then tumbles in the scatter'd heaps of treasure; Now flatter'd with false hope; now foild with fear:
Thus finding all the world's delight to be
Book V. EMBLEM XIII.
How happy are the doves, that have the pow'r
Whene'er they please, to spread their airy wings! Or cloud-dividing eagles, that can tow'r
Above the scent of these inferior things !
Leaves earth, and there for joy mounts up and sings!
O how my soul would spurn this ball of clay,
And loathe the dainties of earth's painful pleasure ! O how I'd laugh to see men night and day
Turmoil to gain that trash, they call their treasure.
To catch a blast or own a smile from Cæsar!
Quarles also published, or at least added a Preface to a book of Emblems, by J. H.Call]; but we have neither space nor inclination to add any extracts from it to the present pages, notwithstanding the warm eulogies bestowed upon the work by Quarles.
We have in this article given specimens of the chief if not of all the English writers of Emblems, and have endeavoured to make the selection as agreeable as our taste enabled, and the works themselves allowed us to do. Greater variety might certainly have been produced, if we had resorted to the emblematic treasures of the other modern languages of Europe; but to have carried into effect such a plan, a volume rather than an article would have been required. A notice of the Dutch writers alone would occupy a considerable space; for that sedate people are peculiarly partial to this striking and pleasing mode of moral instruction; and books of Emblems are to be found in most of the cottages of their peasantry,
and indeed afford almost the only literary pleasure within their reach. Nor is their poetry by any means contemptible; nor are the Dutch in reality the very antipodes of the nine muses, as is generally supposed. If, however, any of our readers doubt the existence of such a thing as Dutch poetry, let them refer to Mr. Bowring's Batavian Anthology, published a few days ago, and they will find many elegant and spirited versions of the poetry of the Netherlands. This volume enables us to present our readers with a translated specimen of the illustrative verses of the Dutch Emblem, from the works of Jacob Cats, a celebrated composer of Emblems of the earlier part of the seventeenth century.
" When ivy twines around a tree,
Thou, whom the powerful Fates have hurl'd
ART. VIII.-The Life of John Elwes, Esq. Member in three suc
cessive Parliaments for Berkshire, first published in the Paper of
Every singular character merits some notice from posterity, and I have always said, that if fate prolonged my life, I would write his.”
Major Topham, the biographer of one of the greatest misers that ever perished of excessive gold, was, in his day, an active officer, an agreeable companion, a lively writer, and a keen sportsman. He received the approbation of his king for the high state of discipline to which he raised the troop over which he commanded : and he was, in consequence of his military reform, caricatured in his time, as “the Tip-top Adjutant,” in all the print-shop windows. Horne Tooke, George Colman, (the father of Old George Colman the Younger,) Wilkes, Jerningham, and Jekyll, were of his companions; and he was confessedly one of the most successful prologue and epilogue writers, that ever heralded a dull play, or entreated for a damned one. In two instances he was peculiarly fortunate, having written a prologue which was spoken by Lee Lewes, in the character of Moliere's Old Woman, and which brought full houses for many nights; and also having luckily hit upon a fashionable private play, as a subject for an epilogue, which was most agreeably written, and admirably delivered by the fascinating Miss Farren, the present Countess of Derby. The elder Colman acknowledged that this epilogue produced £500 to the Haymarket Theatre during the season, a sum at which many an apoplectic tragedy of these degenerate days would stare with envy:
Major Topham's first production in the literary world was entitled Letters from Edinburgh, which was written with sufficient spirit to carry it into a second edition.
for a young fellow fresh from Cambridge, was not a little encouraging ; and he was soon mixed up with all the smart writers of this metropolis. He wrote a little for the stage, and a little for the newspapers ; and thus he caught Miles Peter Andrewes for an acquaintance, an epilogue and prologue writer of great momentary popularity. Mrs. Wells, of Drury-lane theatre, the celebrated actress, applied to him for an address; and so great was her beauty, that he paid her the best of his addresses. Indeed, so enamoured did the Major become of her exceeding loveliness, that he started a paper, The World, for the great purpose of lauding his mistress into public favour. The World, standing on this tender ground, took captive all the sentimentalists of the age, and became widely circulated, and vastly profitable. In this paper, Mrs. Robinson, Mrs. Cowley, Merry, and the rest of that dewy crew, that whined under the satin banners of the Della Cruscan muse, first adored each other as lovers and strangers. In this paper, too, as though purposely to con: trast with the effeminacy of such writers, did Humphreys and Mendoza pen haughty letters of defiance and war : and, much to the credit of the then public taste be it said, that the sale of The World experienced more benefit from the Jew than the Gentile.
It was during his connection with this paper, that Major Topham wrote The Life of John Elwes, the subject of our present article; and the interest which the public took in the portions periodically given to them, induced the Major to gather the pieces together, touch them up with a correcting pen,
add a tidy little preface about truth and modesty- and gratitudeand so forth; prefix a dedication to Doctor Joddrell, and send forth a smart, profitable pamphlet, which certainly.anused a wide circle of English readers at the time, and still preserved the curious memory of a miser in the spirit of pleasant prose: The Major, soon after the publication of this piece of pinching biography, retired into Yorkshire, and became a great inagistrate and breeder of greyhounds!
It is now and then fortunate for the estate of a family, that after a run of spendthrifts, and when the wealth of a house has nearly all flowed out, that there comes a timely and wholesome miser, that not merely dams up the outflowing current, but turns its course back to its original source. A miser, or a minority, is the best medicine to the diseased and shattered fortunes of a house ; and well is it for the next heir, if he be of spirit to enjoy life, that he succeeds the patient starveling who has wooed his mistress Wealth, like green-eyed Dumbiedikes, with silence only and with looks. The harmonies of a generation are made up of well-arranged spendthrifts and misers: they come “ each under each,” in well ordered fitness. If squanderer followed squanderer, the race must perish, and posterity could not hold on its course. It is indeed fortunate, that when the liberal hand has let blood sufficient, that the careful hand binds up the vein. A great living poet has termed avarice a gentlemanly vice, and the world is ever ready to call the miser's passion a selfish one: we are not disposed to admit the truth of either opinion. Avarice, to our mind, is a solitary virtue, a bitter selfdenial, a painful patience! The miser hoards not for himself,