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terested and patriotic soldier more than the biogra- | And its thin eye-lids fell so gently o'er pher of Judge Chase. He loved him from the cra- Those deep blue orbs of vision, one would have said dle to this hour. It is said, that he denied the fact that the sweet babe was listening to the notes in an address, which he delivered on the spot, when of sweetest modulation, falling from paying his last visit to America ; and, therefore, The lyres of cherub bands, that waited there, the reviewer says it is certainly incorrect, and of To waft its pure, unspotted soul to Heaven. course becomes an undesigned imputation on the As if there were one tie the spirit felt

Its tender arms were twined around its mother's, patriotism of his fellow-soldiers. Be that as it may, Too strong to sever in a moment's space : the testimony of Washington cannot be set aside; But as the light of life grew dimmer still, the very letter of the highly respectable colonel, Its little arms relaxed their hold, and fell acting on behalf of his constituents, is before our Upon its breast. eyes—it contains the distinct proposition, which is

The mother lowly bowed, rejected by the father of his country in most To catch the last breath of her dying child. decisive terms. The case is closed. These docu- It oped its glazed eye to gaze again ments-canonized by the lapse of more than fifty- Upon the visage whose sweet smiles had been six years—sent down to posterity, by him whom The sunshine of its life. There came again the nations of the earth universally call great, as A heavy sigh, and the dear babe was dead ! abiding proof of his lofty and incorruptible integ- Her fondest hopes had just begun to bud;

The mother gazed upon her lifeless child : rity and patriotism-cannot be nullified by the But the cold breath of icy Death had swept unsupported assertion even of the excellent and In desolation o'er them. The lone tear noble Lafayette. He was mistaken : no more. That trickled down her cheek, and the deep sigh

THE BIOGRAPHER OF JUDGE CHASE. That seemed to rend her heart, most eloquently told Frederick, August, 1938.

Of grief we name, but never can describe.

October, 1839.



It was the holy hour of evening :
The sun had set behind the western hills,
Yet daylight, ling'ring, kissed their lofty tops,
And bathed their summits with its mellowed light.
The earth sent up to Heaven its vesper hymn,
Upon the pinions of the evening breeze:
The little streamlet gently rippled on,
As tho’ it would not break the harmony,
Whose modulations hung around its course.
It cannot be that such sweet melody
Would make a discord in the other world,
Where angels tune their golden harps to praise.
The softness of its notes would mingle with
The hallowed sounds that float amid the groves
Of Paradise, but as a younger sister.

It was at such a holy hour as this,
That a fond mother bent her o'er the couch
Which held the body of her dying child.
If on this earth there be a love so holy,
That 'uwould not stain a sainted soul in Heaven,
It is the deep devotion of the heart
Of a fond mother for her first-born child.

There lay the infant in the arms of death.
It did not seem as though the mortal change
Thai tears the fair inhabitant of this
Poor, wasting clay, from its frail tenement,
And leaves it desolate, had come upon it

It seemed as though a mild and gentle sleep
Had thrown its thin veil o'er its infant form,
And the light images of some sweet dream
Were sporting in their fairy revelry.
The veins that coursed their purple streams across
Its little temple, seemed the shadow of
A gossamer's web upon the lily's leaf;

NOTES ON THE WESTERN STATES ; Containing Descriptive Sketches of their Soil, Climate, Resour. ces and Scenery. By James Hall, author of "Border Tales," &c. Philadelphia : 1938.

By far the greater part of the region of country, of which this work is descriptive, once belonged to Virginia. This single fact, would of itself impart an interest to this volume, among the inhabitants of the “Old Dominion.” But there are other considerations of deeper import, which give an importance to all that relates to the west. It is there, that in little more than half a century, an empire has sprung, not only into existence, but a vigorous manhood. The west can hardly be said to have had a youth. Within a period, less than is usually required to take the first steps in planting a colony, an extended region has been peopled with millions of inhabitants, free, enterprising and independent. An immense avalanche of human beings, gathered from the Atlantic states and from Europe, has been gravitated upon the valley of the lakes, the Ohio and the Mississippi, carrying with them the intelligence, the arts and the social comforts of communities, highly elevated in the scale of civilization. If the agriculture, commerce and manufactures-the systems of education, moral and intellectual—the roads, canals, and numerical strength of this region, be viewed in connection with the period that has elapsed since the smoke of the lone wigwam proclaimed that its soil was pressed by none but a savage foot, the mind is lost in amazement. In vain may the history of nations be searched for a parallel case : the record of the world contains nothing that may be compared to it. More than this need not be said, to invest every attempt to depict the great and growing west, with a deep and abiding interest.

The work before us, is embraced in one volume of ments of winter, and assuming their vernal robes. The gum 300 pages. It makes no claim to present a scientific tree is clad in the richest green; the dogwood and red-bud are exposition of the geography, history, or physical condi- buckeye bends under the weight of its exuberant blossoms


laden with flowers of the purest white and deepest scarlet; the tion of the country which it describes. Its chapters The oak, the elm, the walnut, the sycamore, the beech, the constitute a series of familiar sketches of the soil, cli- bickory, and the maple, which here tower to a great height

, mate, resources, scenery and business of the west, have yielded to the sunbeams, and display their bursting budg drawn principally from personal observation-the au- and expanding flowers. The tulip tree waves its long branches thor having, we are informed, resided in different parts briar, and the vine, are shooting into verdure ; and, clinging to

and its yellow flowers high in the air. The wild rose, the sweetof the west, for near a quarter of a century. These their sturdy neighbors, modestly prefer their claims to adaisketches, written with that spirit and gracefulness of ration, while they afford delightful promise of fruit and framanner, which are characteristic of the author's pen, grance.” abound with just that kind of information which is In depicting the surface of the country, we find the acceptable to the general reader, and especially impor- following general remarks: tant to those the number, we are compelled to say, is far from being a small one--who, taking leave of other

“The traveller who visits our valley for the first time, adlands, are pushing their barks into the great tide of westward, is struck with the magnificence of the vegetation,

vancing from the east to the Ohio river, and thence proceeding western emigration, and seeking, in the fair and fertile which clothes the whole surface. The vast and gloomy gracplains of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois and Michigan, a new deur of the forest ; the gigantic size and venerable antiquity of and more inviting field of active enterprise. We shall the trees; the rankness of the weeds ; the luxuriance and variety endeavor to sustain our opinion of the value of the of the underbrush ; the long vides that climb to the tops of the work, by such short extracts as may properly be boughs ; the brilliancy of the foliage, and the exuberance of the

tallest branches; the parasites that hang in clusters from the crowded into an article for a monthly magazine. In fruit, all show a land teeming with vegetable life. The forest speaking of the soil and mineral resources of this region, is seen in its majesty; the pomp and pride of the wilderness is the author says:

here. Here is nature unspoiled, and silence undisturbed. A

few years ago, this impression was more striking than at pre“ Neither is there any supernatural fertility in our soil, sent; for now farms, villages, and even a few large toros art which yields its rich returns only under the operation of careful scattered over this region, diversifying its landscapes, and and laborious tillage. It is the great breadth and continuity or breaking in upon the characteristic wildness of its scenery, our fertile surface, which gives to the west its superior advan still there are wide tracts remaining in a state of nature, and tages. It is the accumulation within one wide and connected displaying all the savage luxuriance which first attracted the plain, of the most vast resources of agricultural and commercial pioneer ; and upon a general survey, its features present, at this wealth; and the facilities afforded by our country, for concen- day, to one accustomed only to thickly populated countries, the trating and using an unlimited amount of wealth, and bringing same freshness of beauty, and the same immensity, though into combined action the energies of millions of industrious rudeness of outline, which we have always been accustreed to human beings, on which are based the broad foundations of our associate with the idea of a western landscape. I knew of greatness. With the breadth of an empire, we have all the nothing more splendid than a forest of the west, standing in its facilities of intercourse and trade, which could be enjoyed with original integrity, adorned with the exuberant beauties of a more limited boundaries. Our natural wealth is not weakened powerful vegetation, and crowned with the honors of a veneraby extension, por our vigor impaired by division. The riches ble age. There is a grandeur in the immense size of the greu of soil, timber and minerals, are so diffused as to be everywhere trees-a richness of coloring in the foliage, superior to anything abundant; and the communication between distant points is so that is known in corresponding latitudes a wildness, and an easy, as to render the whole available. The products of the unbroken stillness that attest the absence of man--above all

, industry of millions, may be here interchanged with unparalleled there is a vastness, a boundless extent, an uninterrupted coetiease and rapidity; and when our broad lands shall be settled, nuity of shade, which prevents the attention from being disthere will be a community of interest, and an intimacy of inter tracted, and allows the mind to fill itself, and the imagination to course, between myriads of men, such as were never before realize the actual presence, and true character, of that which brought under the operation of a common system of social and had burst upon it, like a vivid dream." civil ties."

The fifth, sixth, seventh, eighth chapters treat of the A passage, descriptive of the upper portions of the prairies of the west, which certainly present one of the Ohio river, will give the reader an idea of the graphic most striking features in the formation and aspect

of manner in which our author portrays natural scenery. the country. The author goes somewhat at large into « The river Ohio, for some distance below Pittsburg, is rapid, various writers upon the subject, and advancing his

the theory of the prairies, examining the suppositions of and the navigation interrupted in low water by chains of rocks, extending across the bed of the river. The scenery is emi- own upon their formation. Without entering upon nently beautiful, though deficient in grandeur, and exhibiting this mooted question, we may quote the latter. great sameness. The hills, two or three hundred feet in height, approach the river and confine it closely on either side. Their “The prairies afford a subject of curious inquiry to every tops have usually a rounded and graceful form, and are covered traveller who visits these regions. Their appearance is netel with the verdure of an almost unbroken foreet. Sometimes the and imposing; and he who beholds it for the first time expe forest trees are so thinly scattered as to afford glimpses of the riences a sensation similar to that which fills the imagination at soil, with here and there a mass, or a perpendicular precipice of the first sight of the ocean. The wide and unlimited prospect

, grey sandstone, or compact limestone, the prevailing rocks or calls up perceptions of the sublime and beautiful ; its peculiaris this region. The hills are usually covered on all sides with a awakens a train of inquisitive thought

. Upon the mind of an soil, which, though not deep, is rich. Approaching towards American especially, accustomed to see new land clothed with Cincinnati, the scenery becomes more monotonous. The hills timber, and to associate the idea of a silent and tangled forest

, recede froin the river, and are less elevated. The bottom with that of a wilderness, the appearance of sundy plains, and lands begin to spread out from the margin of the water. Heavy a diversified landscape, untenanted by man, and unimproved by forests cover the banks and limit the prospect : but the wood art, is singular and striking. Perhaps, if our imagination were land is arrayed in a splendor of beauty, which renders it the divested of the impressions created by memory, the subject chief object of attraction. Nothing can be more beautiful than would present less difficulty; and if we could reason abstractly, the first appearance of the vegetation in the spring, when the it might be as easy to account for the origin of a prairie as it woods are seen rapidly discarding the dark and dusky habili. I that of a forest.

"It is natural to suppose that the first covering of the earth | beauty consists in the vicinity of the surrounding margin of would be composed of such plants as arrive at maturity in the woodland, which resembles the shore of a lake, indented with shortest time. Annual plants would ripen and scaller their deep vistas, like bays and inlets, and throwing out long points, seeds, many times, before trees and shrubs would acquire the like capes and headlands ; while occasionally these points appower of reproducing their own species. In the meantime, the proach so close on either hand, that the traveller passes through propagation of the latter would be liable to be retarded by a a narrow avenue or strait, where the shadows of the woodland variety of accidents—the frost would nip their tender stems in fall upon his path, and then again emerges into another praithe winter--fire would consume, or the blast shatter them--and rie. When the plain is large, the forest outline is seen in the the wild grazing animals would bite them off, or tread them far perspective, like the dim shore when bebeld at a distance under foot ; while many of their seeds, particularly such as from the ocean. The eye sometimes roams over the green assume the form of nuts or fruit, would be devoured by ani- meadow, without discovering a tree, a shrub, or any object in mals. The grasses, which are propagated both by the root and the immense expanse, but the wilderness of grass and flowers; by seed, are exempt from the operation of almost all these while, at another time, the prospect is enlivened by groves, casualties. Providence has, with unerring wisdom, filted every which are seen interspersed like islands, or the solitary tree, production of nature to sustain itself againet the accidents to which stands alone in the blooming desert. If it be in the spring which it is most exposed, and has given to those plants which of the year, and the young grass has just covered the ground constitute the food of animals a remarkable tenacity of life ; 80 with a carpet of delicate green, and especially if the sun is that although bitten off and trodden, and even burned, they still rising from behind a distant swell of the plain, and glitering retain the vital principle. That trees have a similar power of seif npon the dew-drops, no scene can be more lovely to the eye. protection, if we may so express it, is evident from their present The deer is seen grazing quietly upon the plain ; the bee is on existence in a state of nature. We only assume, that in the the wing; the wolf, with his tail drooped, is sneaking away to earliest stage of being, the grasses would have the advantage his covert with the felon tread of one who is conscious that he over plants less hardy and of slower growth; and that when has disturbed the peace of nature; and the grouse, feeding in both are struggling together for the possession of the soil, the flocks, or in pairs, like the domestic fowl, cover the whole surformer would at first gain the ascendency; although the latter, face--the males strutting and erecting their plumage, like the in consequence of their superior size and strength, would finally, peacock, and uttering a long, loud, mournful note, something if they should ever get possession of any portion of the soil, like the cooing of the dove, but resembling still more the sound entirely overshadow and destroy their huable rivals.” produced by passing a rough finger boldly over the surface of a

tambourine. The grasses, as our author supposes, having origi

“When the eye roves off from the green plain, to the groves nally the ascendency over the trees, would maintain it, or points of timber

, these also, are found to be at this season, .by the fires which annually sweep over them destroy full bloom. The red-bud, the dogwood, the crab-apple, the wild

robed in the most attractive hues. The rich undergrowth is in ing all the young timber within their range. The fact plum, the cherry, the wild rose, are abundant in all the rich lands; that along the small streams which run through the and the grape vine, though its blossom is unseen, fills the air with prairies, trees are found, is explained on the supposi- fragrance. The variety of the wild fruit, and flowering shrubs, tion that the herbage in such places remains green until is so great, and such the profusion of the blossoms with which

they are bowed down, that the eye is regaled almost to satiety. late in the fall, and the soil being wet, the fire is pre- The gaiety of the prairie, its embellishments, and the absence of vented from taking effect. Thus the shrubs and young the gloom and savage wildness of the forest, all contribute to trees would escape from year to year, and finally the dispel the feeling of lonesomeness, which usually creeps over margins of the streams would become fringed with the mind of the solitary traveller in the wilderness. Though he thickels of trees that would eventually destroy the may not see a house, nor a human

being, and is conscious that

he is far from the habitations of men, he can scarcely divest grass, and thus grow up into forests.

himself of the idea that he is travelling through scenes embel. Those of our readers who have never seen a prairie, lished by the hand of art. The flowers so fragile, so delicate, will be pleased with the following description, while and so ornamental, seem to have been tastefully disposed to such as have revelled amid their thick grass and bril- have been scattered over the lawn to beautify the landscape;

adorn the scene. The groves and clumps of trees appear to liant flowers, will be struck with the faithfulness of the and it is not easy to avoid the illusion of the fancy, which per. picture here given.

suades the beholder that such scenery has been created to gratify

the refined taste of civilized man. Europeans are often re“ The scenery of the prairie country excites a different feel minded of the resemblance of this scenery to that of the extening. The novelty is striking, and never fails to cause an ex. sive parks of noblemen, which they have been accuston.ed to clamation of surprise. The extent of the prospect is exbilarat. admire, in the old world; the lawn, the avenue, the grove, the ing. The outline of the landscape is sloping and graceful. copse, which are there produced by art, are here prepared by The verdure and the flowers are beautiful: and the absence of nature; a splendid specimen of massy architecture, and the shade, and consequent appearance of a profusion of light, pro- distant view of villages, are alone wanting to render the simili. duces a gaiety which animates the beholder. It is necessary to cude complete. explain that these plains, although preserving a general level in “ In the summer, the prairie is covered with long, coarse respect to the whole country, are yet in themselves not flat, but grass, which soon assumes a golden lue, and waves in the exhibit a gracefully waving surface, swelling and sinking with wind like a ripe harvest. Those who have not a personal an easy slope, and a full, rounded outline, equally ayoiding the knowledge of the subject, would be deceived by the accounts unmeaning horizontal surface, and the interruption of abrupt which are published of the height of the grass. It is seldom so or angular elevations. It is that surface, which in the expres tall as travellers have represented, nor does it atain its highest sive language of the country, is called rolling, and which has growth in the richest soil. In the low wet prairies, where the been said to resemble the long heavy swell of the ocean, when substratum of clay lies near the surface, the centre or maja its waves are subsiding to rest after the agitation of a storm. It stem of this grass, which bears the seed, acquires great thickis to be remarked also, that the prairie is alınost always ele- ness, and shoots up to the height of eight or nine feet, throwvated in the centre, so that in advancing into it from either side, ing out a few long, coarse leaves or blades; and the traveller you see before you only the plain, with its curved outline marked often finds it higher than his head as he rides through it on upon the sky, and forming the horizon ; but on reaching the horseback. The plants, although numerous and standing bighest point, you look around upon the whole of the vast close together, appear to grow singly and unconnected, the scene. The attraction of the prairie consists in its extent, ils whole force of the vegetative power expanding itself upwards. carpet of verdure and flowers, ils undulating surface, its groves, But in the rich undulating prairies, the grass is finer, with less and the fringe of timber by which it is surrounded. Of all these, of stalk, and a greater profusion of leaves. The roots spread the latter is the most expressive feature—it is that which gives and interweave so as to form a compact, even sod, and the blades character to the landscape, which imparts the shape, and marks expand into a close thick sward, which is seldom more than the boundary of the plain. If the prairie be small, its greatest leighteen inches high, and often less, until late in the season,


when the seed-bearing stem shoots up. The first coat of grass boundaries, nor to divide the proceeds of the sales of is mingled with small flowers; the violet, the bloom of the straw. these lands among the state governments. berry, and others of the most minute and delicate texture.

The twelfth chapter, which treats of western steamthe grass increases in size, these disappear, and others, taller and more gaudy, display their brilliant colors upon the green boats, presents, perhaps, as forcible an illustration of surface; and still later, a larger and coarser succession rises the wonderful growth of the west, as any other in the with the rising tide of verdure. A fanciful writer asserts that the book. In 1794, four keel boats, carrying twenty tons prevalent color of the prairie flowers, is in the spring, a bluish each, were sufficient for the trade between Pittsburg purple ; in midsummer red; and in the autumn yellow. This is one of the notions that people get, who study nature by the fire and Cincinnati

. These had an armed force on board to side. The truth is, that the whole of the surface of these beau. defend them, and were pushed up the stream by poles. tiful plains, is clad throughout the season of verdure, with every Down to the year 1817, nearly all the business on the imaginable variety of color, from grave to gay. It is impos- western waters, was carried on in keel boats and barges. sible to conceive a more infinite diversity, or a richer, profusion at that period“ about twenty of the latter, averaging of hues, or to detect any predominating tint, except the green, which forms the beautiful ground, and relieves the exquisite one hundred tons each, comprised the whole commerbrilliancy of all the others. The only changes of color, obsercial facilities for transporting merchandize from New ved at the different seasons, arise from the circumstance, that Orleans to the upper country;' each of these perin the spring the flowers are small, and the colors delicate; as formed one trip down and up again to Louisville and the heat becomes more ardent, a hardier race appears, the flow. Cincinnati within the year. The number of keel boats ers attain a greater size, and the hue deepens; and still later a succession of coarser plants rise above the tall grass, throwing employed on the upper Obio cannot be ascertained, but out larger and gaudier flowers. As the season advances from it is presumed, that a hundred and fifty, is a sufficiently spring to midsummer, the individual flower becomes less beauti- large calculation to embrace the whole number. These ful when closely inspected, but the landscape is far more varie. averaged thirty tons each, and employed one month to gated, rich and glowing.

“In winter, the prairies present a gloomy and desolate scene. make the voyage from Louisville to Pittsburg, while The fire has passed over them, and consumed every vegetable the more dignified barge of the Mississippi made her substance, leaving the soil bare, and the surface perfectly black. trip in the space of one hundred days, if no extraordiThat gracefully waving outline, which was so attractive to the nary accident happened to check her progress.” eye when clad in green, is now disrobed of all its ornaments. Its

There are now, 1838, not less than FOUR HUNDRED fragrance, its notes of joy, and the graces of its landscape have all vanished, and the bosom of the cold earth, scorched and dis steamboats navigating the western waters! Conment colored, is alone visible. The wind sighs mournfully over the is unnecessary. The mind is lost in astonishment at black plain; but there is no object to be moved by its influence the wonderful revolution that has taken place in twenty not a tree to wave its long aring in the blast, nor a reed to bend years, throughout the valley of the Mississippi

. The its fragile stem---not a leaf, nor even a blade of grass to tremble thirteenth and last chapter of the work, relates to the in the breeze. There is nothing to be seen but the cold dead earth and the bare mound, which move not--and the traveller, trade and commerce of the west, embracing the exports with a singular sensation, almost of awe, feels the blast rushing and imports for a series of years—a list of the banks in over him, while not an object visible to the eye, is seen to stir. Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana and Illinois-some statistics Accustomed as the mind is to associate with the action of the of the Miami canal, and a list of the steamboats naviwind ils operation upon surrounding objects, and to see nature bowing and trembling, and the fragments of malter mounting galing the Louisville and Portland canal during the upon the wind, as the storm passes, there is a novel effect pro- year 1837, amounting to four hundred and twelve, and duced on the mind of one who feels the current of air rolling passing in the aggregate, during that year, fifteen bunheavily over him, while nothing moves around.”

dred times through the same; another fact illustrative The author examines in detail, the soil, water and of the vast resources and business of the west. timber of the prairies, and the question how far the The length of our extracts from this interesting and want of the latter is likely to interfere with the agri- valuable book, leave us no room for further notices of it. cultural occupancy of these treeless plains. The chap- Although not in point of literary merit equal to some ters upon the wild and domestic animals

, the birds, rep- other of the author's works, it is written with sufficient tiles, agricultural products, fruits and vegetables, possess accuracy and care for a series of popular sketches of the much valuable information, and present many facts region which it describes. It bears its own evidence of well calculated to invite immigration to that region. coming from the same pen which conducted the Illinois One of the longest and most elaborated chapters in the Magazine, and wrote the “Legends of the West,". book, is that which treats of the public domain, by "Harper's Head," and "The Border Tales;" all of which is meant the lands belonging to the general which have been widely circulated in the United government. This subject is embraced under these States, and have placed the author among the most two heads—the title of the United States to the public spirited and popular writers of the day. It would lands, and the policy pursued in disposing of them. seem, by the bye, that Judge Hall is most indefatiga. The intelligent reader must be already familiar with all ble with his pen. He has been for some time, and still that relates to the history of the former. The proper is, engaged, in conjunction with Col. McKenny

, in disposition of these lands is a matter of much impor- writing the biographical sketches, which accompany tance, and for several years past has occupied the that splendid gallery of Indian portraits, now in proattention of Congress, where it has caused much angry gress of publication in Philadelphia ; and yet, in the debate, and elicited many conflicting opinions. Judge midst of all his literary labors, he is performing the Hall favors the plan of Colonel Benton, to graduate the duties of cashier of one of the principa! banking instituprice of the public lands, by offering them periodically tions of Cincinnati. It would appear, indeed, as if the at reduced prices—the highest being one dollar and men of letters in the United States, were resolved upon twenty-five cents per acre--and the lowest twenty-five convincing the world that literature and the every day cents; but he does not favor the proposition to cede to business of life are not antagonist professions. Pauldthe states, respectively, the lands lying within their ing is at the head of the Navy-Bryant is engaged in

that most unpoetical of all human pursuits, the editing | is nearly powerless; its harp tuneless; its spirit of a violent politico-partizan newspaper-Halleck is tame; its wing unfitted to sustain either a long or still in the “sugar and the cotton line,” footing up bold flight into the regions of the imagination : accounts for John Jacob Astor-Kennedy is making without these, poelry, like too much of our native out briefs, and looking after the President's sub-treasury poetry, becomes, of necessity, a mere assemblage bill in Congress--Fay is playing Secretary of Legation of agreeable words and pleasant sounds; a wilderat the Court of St. James—and Hall is signing bank notes and drawing bills of exchange in Cincinnati. ness of beautiful verbiago; piles of fern and flowVerily, the time cometh, and now is, when the foolish ers destitute of fragrance—the mere abstract only popular prejudice, which has obtained some currency

of all that is beautiful in nature, wherewith the in this country, that the cultivation of a literary taste, imagination is pleased, without being improved, unfits a man for the forum, the desk, or the counting. while the heart remains untouched. room, must be added to the “receptacle of things lost

It is from a consciousness of this deficiency of upon earth.”

historical and traditionary interest, that some of our best poets have imitated or assumed the English and Italian school, not only in the direction

and application of their powers, but also, (which BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES

berein need not have been) in their natural images.

How often and familiarly are the nightingale, the OF LIVING AMERICAN POETS AND NOVELISTS.

field daisy, the sky lark, the harvest moon, the No. V.

turtle dove, with castle, knight, and troubadour, GEORGE P. MORRIS, ESQ.

drawn into the service of what is meant to be le

gitimate American verse, when they are excluIt is the lot of the American poet to be cradled sively foreign figures and subjects ; and how frein the lap of the sublimest scenery on the globe. quently is the “olden ballad” the prideful theme From infancy to manhood, his path is beside illi- of our native poets ! mitable lakes and majestic rivers, whose shores If America is ever to rank high as a land of are granite mountains, and he hunts his game poesy, (which from an inspection of its elements along hillsides whose summits are resting places we do not believe it ever will do,) and should for the thunder-cloud. If all that is grand and cultivate the native muse, pruned from foreign magnificent, or soft and beautiful in nature, has shoots and grafts, it is in moral and didactic, rustic power to expand the human heart, enlarge the in- and lyric poetry, she will found her claims to distellect, strengthen the imagination, refine and tinction. The lofty epic, and the legitimate balspiritualize the fancy, and fire the whole man with lad, have no place in her native muse : the former the loftiest and purest poetical images—if the con- is now found only in the pages of the historical templation of the poetry of the universe, will make novelist; the latter being, genuinely, a metrical poetry to spring up in the heart, then should relation of some ancient tradition, can have no place America be the Eden of poetry, and her poets in a land yet too young for gray tradition and princes in the empire of song.

hoary legend. In the progress of these sketches, But from the study of natural scenery alone, the we shall enter more fully into this subject; at poet cannot derive inspiration; it were the con- present, lyrical poetry, the last of the four just templation of the statue of Prometheus before named, alone comes under our consideration in animated with celestial fire-the arch of the rain this paper. bow without its colors. There must be perched To lyric poets, and lyric poetry, America is on the ragged pinnacle, hovering on the mountain's mainly indebted for much of her existing fame. brow, suspended from every crag, and dwelling in We have neither space nor leisure, here to support glen and fountain, the magical charm of past-time by the facts that are by us, this bold assertion ; but associations, around which the memory can lin- any one who will impartially review the history of ger—there must be a genius loci every where our imaginative literature for the last half cenpresent, for natural scenery, however grand and tury, will find the proofs numerous and satisfactory. picturesque in itself, to produce its natural and le- Since Moore's elegant and graceful muse has elegitimate poetical effect on the mind.

vated modern lyrics to a dignity in literature, they This genius of the place is wanting to American bad not enjoyed from the days of the troubadours, scenery: the blood-stirring border song; the wild poets, tuning their lyre to song, have sprung up traditionary legend of love and chivalry; the won- on both sides of the Atlantic. One among the drous tale of superstition and fairy, and the thou- few in the United States, whose verses are housesand romantic associations, that hover like ghosts hold words, and whose numbers have become a from the spiritual land of minstrelsy, about the part of the language, is the gentleman whose name vallies and mountains of the old world, inspiring we have placed at the head of this sketch. his tuneful sons, are wanting as auxiliaries to the Col. Morris has long been connected with American muse: without these, the wand of poesy American literature, as editor of the New York

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