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lilerati. In such houses as those of Sir John Bowring and John Martin, the vain little poet might, we are satisfied, have found much more taste and intelligence than in far more pretending quarters, had he condescended to put it to the proof. But it is as useless to wish Moore anything but what he was, as to wish a butterfly a bee, or that a moth should not fly into a candle. It was his nature; and the pleasure of being caressed, flattered, and admired by titled people must be purchased at any cost. Neither poverty nor sorrow could restrain him from this dear enjoyment. We find him at one moment overwhelmed by some death or distress amongst his nearest relatives, or in the very bosom of his family. News arrives that a son is ill in a far-off land, or a daughter is dead at home. In the very next entry in his Diary he has rushed away with his grief into some fashionable concert, where he sings, and breaks down in tears. He goes into the charmed, glittering ring to forget his trouble, and leaves poor, desolate Mrs. Moore, solitarily at home to remember it. And yet, this strange little fairy was a most affectionate husband, son, and brother. We find him and his wife at one time staying at Lord Moira's for a week beyond the time that they should have left, because they had not money enough to give to the servants. At another time you find him invited to dine with some great people, but he has not a penny in his pocket; Bessy however has scraped together a pound or two out of the housekeeping cash, and lets him have it, and he is off. Thus night after night, season after season, he is the flattered and laughing centre of the most brilliant circles of lords and ladies, while he and his wife in the daytime are at their wits' end to find the means of meeting the demands of their humble ménage. He is joking and carolling like a lark, while his thoughts are at every pause running on how that confounded bill is to be taken up. All the time his wife is sitting solitarily at home pondering on the same thing, and cannot call on her friends because it would necessitate the hire of a coach.
What is the motive wbich induced the great people to have him amongst them? It was what the Duke and Duchess of Bedford candidly confessed when they said—“They wished they had some one like Mr. Moore, to be agreeable when they got to their inn in the evening.”. And what were the agreeable man's own feelings in this life? “Never did I lead such an unquiet life ; Bessy ill, my Jane uncomfortable; anxious to employ myself in the midst of distractions, and full of remorse in the utmost of my gaiety.” What a costly price for the gratification of vanity! It is curious, amid these perpetual distractions of gaiety without, and of gloom within, these perpetual sacrifices of his time to the frivolities of fashionable life, to see what an amount of labour he achieved, a great deal of it, indeed, such as he only performed for daily bread, and which added nothing to his real fame.
The best parts of his character were his affection for his parents, his wife and children, and the spirit of liberty which distinguished bim for the greater portion of his life, though this became so lamentably deteriorated by his mingling with the aristocracy that
he cordially hated the Reform Bill, though it was the favourite object of his best friends, Lord John Russell
, Lords Lansdowne and Holland. The best part of his genius is to be found in his Irish Melodies, and his Lalla Rookh, the latter of which, though not attractive to a grave and lofty taste, will always charm those of an Eastern and rather flowery imagination.
The list of his works from first to last, is quite enormous. The Odes of Anacreon translated. A Candid Appeal to Public Contidence, or Considerations on the Dangers of the Present Crisis, 1803. Corruption and Intolerance, two poems. Epistles, Odes, and other Poems, 1806. Little's Poems, 1808. A Letter to the Roman Catholics of Dublin, 1810. M. P., or the Blue Stocking; a comic opera, in three acts, performed at the Lyceum, 1811. Intercepted Letters, or the Twopenny Post Bag, by Thomas Browne the younger, 1812: this has gone through_upwards of fourteen editions. Irish Melodies. Arthur Murphy's Translation of Sallust completed. The Sceptic, a philosophical Satire. Lalla Rookh, 1817. The Fudge Family in Paris, 1818. Ballads, Songs, &c. Tom Crib's Memorial to Congress, in verse. Trifles Reprinted in verse. Loves of the Angels. Rhymes on the Road. Miscellaneous Poems by Members of the Procurante Society. Fables for the Holy Alliance. Ballads, Songs, Miscellaneous Poens, &c. Memoirs of Captain Rock. Life of Sheridan. The Epicurean. Odes on Cash, Corn, Catholics, &c. Evenings in Greece. Life and Letters of Lord Byron, in 17 Vols. History of Ireland &c. &c. &c.
The manufacturing town as well as the country has found its Burns. As Burns grew and lived amid the open fields, inhaling their free winds, catching views of the majestic mountains as he trod the furrowed field, and making acquaintance with the lowliest flower and the lowliest creatures of the earth, as he toiled on in solitude, so Elliott grew and lived amid the noisy wilderness of dingy houses, inhaling smoke from a thousand furnaces, forges, and engine chimneys, and making acquaintance with misery in its humblest shapes as he toiled on in the solitude of neglect. The local circumstances were diametrically different, to show that the spirit in both was the same. They were men of the same stamp, and destined for the same great work; and therefore, however different were their immediate environments, the same operating causes penetrated through them, and stirred within them the spirit of the prophet. They were both of that chosen class who are disciplined in pain, that they may learn that it is a prevailing evil, and are stimulated to free not only themselves but their whole cotemporary kindred. Of poets, says Shelley :“ They learn in suffering what they teach in song;"
and the names of Milton, Chatterton, Byron, and of Shelley himself, remind us how true as well as melancholy is the assertion. Buns and Elliott were to be great teachers, and they both had their appointed baptisms. The same quick and ardent passions; the saine quivering sensibility; the same fiery indignation against tyranny and oppression; the same lofty spirit of independence, and power of flinging their feelings into song, strong, piercing, and yet most melodious, belong to them. They are both of the people, their sworn brethren and champions. For their sakes they defy all favour of the great ; they make war to the death on the humbug of aristocratic imposition; to them humanity is alone great, and by that they stand unmoved by menace, unabashed by scorn, unseduced by Hatterers. As messengers of God they honour God in man; and if they show a preference, it is for man in his misery. They are drawn by a divine sympathy to the injured and afflicted. The world knows its own, and they know it, and leave the world to worship according to its worldly instinct. For them the gaudy revel goes on, the chariot of swelling property rolls by, the palace and the castle receive or pour out their glittering throngs, unmarked save by a passing glance of contempt; for they are on their way to the cabins of wretchedness, where they have their Father's work to do. In their eyes, "the whole need not a physician, but those that are sick.” They leave the dead to bury their dead, and have enough to do to soothe the agonies of the living; of those who live only to suffer, the martyr mass of mankind who groan in rags, and filth, and destitution, under the second great curse-not that of earning their bread by the sweat of their brow, but of not being able to do it.
England owes a debt of thanks to a good Providence, who, aftfuent in his gifts of honour and beneficence, has raised up great men in every class and every location on her bosom, where they were most needed. In that magnificent work which England has assur. lly to do in the earth-that of spreading freedom, knowledge, arts, and Christianity over every distant land and age, gross errors have been committed, and malignant powers have been developed, like pestilential diseases in her constitution ; but these have not been suifered to stop, though they may have retarded her career. New infusions of health have been made, new strength has been manifested ; out of the pressure of wretchedness new comfort has sprung; and when hope seemed almost extinct, new voices have been heard above tbe wailing crowd, that have startled the despairing into courage, and shed dismay into the soul of tyranny. As the population has assumed new forms and acquired new interests, out of the bosom of the multitude have arisen the poets who have borne those forms, and have been made familiar with those interests from their birth. Byron and Shelley, from the regions of aristocracy, denounced in unsparing terms its arrogant assumptions ; Burns, beholding the progressing work of monopoly and selfishness, uttered his contempt of the spirit that was thrusting down the multitude to the condition of serfs, and haughtily returning glance for glance with pride of rank and pride of purse, exclaimed
"A man's a man for a' that."
But the work of evil went on. While war scourged the earth in "the defence of the doting despotism of kingship, and monopoly shut out the food of this nation in defence of the domestic despotism of
aristocracy, millions and millions of men were born to insufferable misery, to hunger, nakedness, and crime, the result of maddened
ignorance; and that in a land teeming with corn and cattle, and the wealth that could purchase them; and in a land, too, that sent out clothing for a world. The work of selfishness had proceeded, but had not prospered ; wealth had been accumulated, but poverty had been accumulated too, a thousand fold ; rents had been maintained, but ruin looked over the wall; there was universal activity, but its wages were famine ; there was a thunder of machinery, and a din of never-ceasing hammers ; but amidst the chaos of sounds there were heard—not songs, but groans. It was then that Elliott was born, and there that he grew, in the very thick of this swarming, busy, laborious, yet miserable generation. He saw with astonishment that all that prodigious industry produced no happiness; there was pomp and pauperism; toil and starvation ; Christianity preached to unbelieving ears, because there were no evidences of its operation on hearts that had the power to bless; and thus famine, ignorance, and irritation were converting the crowd into a mass of ravenous and dehumanized monsters. There needed a new orator of the patriot spirit. There needed a Burns of the manufacturing district, and he was there in the shape of Elliott. Had Burns been born again there, and under those circumstances, he would have manifested himself exactly as Elliott has done. He would have attacked manfully this monstrous bread-tax, which had thus disorganized society, disputing the passage of God's blessings to the many, and stamping a horrible character on the few. He would have vindicated the rights of man and his labours, and have sung down with fiery numbers all the crowding bugbears that armed monopoly had gathered round the people to scare them into quiet. Elliott has done that exactly ; done that and no less. In the unpresuming character of “ A CornLaw Rhymer,” of “ The Poet of the Rabble," he sent out right and left, songs, sarcasms, curses, and battle cries, amongst the people. His words, never ceasing, fell like serpents amongst the multitude deadened by long slavery, and stung them into life. His voice, once raised, never faltered, never paused; wherever the multitude met they heard it; wherever they turned, they saw it embodied in largest bandwriting on the wall. “Up! bread-taxed slave! Up! our bread is taxed-arise !" It was Elliott who sounded from day to day, and month to month, these ominous words in the nation's ears. He took the very form of Burns's patriot song, and instead of "Scots, wha ha' wi' Wallace bled,” exclaimed
“ Hands, and hearts, and minds are ours;
Shall we bow to bestial powers!
Reason is our citadel.
Knowledge of the million eyes!
Not the might of wickedness.