Page images

Such an innocent passion, so kind without art,
I fear I have wronged her. I hope she may be
So full of true love to be jealous of me.

And then 'tis I think that no joys are above
The pleasures of love,"

With the advent of the Guelphs the output of royal poetry ceased. It is known that the first three Georges "hated poetry," and the fourth certainly preferred millinery. George the Second, it is recorded, once corrected the proofs of a pamphlet against the Jacobites, but that was the chef d'œuvre of his literary career. At all events, for two centuries royalty has remained mute. Perhaps that is a wise choice; for, as certain great man said, comparisons are odious.

FAMOUS ENGLISH PRIVATE LIBRARIES. Commenting on the sale of the remarkable Ashburnham collection (the 4,075 lots brought a total of £62,7127s 6d), a writer in the Bulletin of Bibliolography notes that "there are four other magnificent collections of printed books, dispersed during the present century, to which, with certain reservations, the Ashburnham Library may be compared. The earliest, that of the Duke of Roxburghe, produced in forty-five days, in 1812, the total of £23,341 for 10,121 lots (for which the Duke is said to have paid not more than £5,000); the Heber sale, 1834-36, with its 52.000 lots, which realized £57,000; the Sunderland Library, 1881 83 with its 13,858 lots, produced in fifty-one days £56,581; whilst in 1882-83 the Berk ford collection, in fifty-eight days, showed the record total of £73,551."

The Ashburnham Library was one of the last of the really great private libraries in England. There yet remain the splendid collections of Mr. Huth, at Kensington, and of the late Mr. ChristieMiller, at Britwell Court; but apart from this, the private libraries of the country are now small in size and special in character.



Who loves to grope in corners dim

Of musty shops where books are sold? Who knows the new editions trim,

Yet values volumes foxed and old? Who recks not though his wife may rage, And lets the dinner-hour go by, When he can turn the yellowed page

Where Blakes or Bewicks feast the eye? Who squanders time he ill can spare

And dollars that he should conserve, And purchases editions rare

At prices that should make him swerve.
And loads his shelves with more to read
Than he can even crudely scan,

But checks not nor repents his greed?
I own my sin-I am that man!



The Danube to the Severn gave

The darkened heart that beat no more;
They laid him by the pleasant shore,
And in the hearing of the wave.

A pleasant shore, indeed, it is, breathing all the sweetness and repose so typical of the West country. And perhaps there is no more sacred spot on the coasts of these islands than that where Arthur Hallam, the "only begetter" of "In Memo riam," is laid at rest, in the south transept of the "Old Church," a mile or so from the little town of Clevedon, in Somerset.

The church itself with its thick set stone walls, and its plain square tower, looks grim and massive in the midst of the graves around it. It reminds one of another church in the "Passing of Arthur,"

That stood on a dark strait of barren land: On one side lay the ocean, and on one Lay a great water, and the moon was full. The neck of land on which the Old Church of Clevedon stands is not barren, but is green turf, studded with flowers. On one side lies the Severn, and on one lies a small estuary, and therein the wreck of a barque, stranded in the mud close to the shore.

The churchyard contains no old yew, grasping at "the stones that name the underlying dead," nor does Arthur Hallam lie in the churchyard. When his body was on its way from Italy across "the placid ocean plains," Tennyson seems to have imagined that this was to be its resting place

'Tis well; 'tis something; we may stand
Where he in English earth is laid,

And from his ashes may be made

The violet of his native land.

If it was not "to rest beneath the clover sod," then, at any rate, it would lie in the chancel,

Where the kneeling hamlet drain's
The chalice of the grapes of God.

As a matter of fact it lies in neither, but in the In south transept, beneath the famous tablet. the earlier editions Tennyson placed the tablet incorrectly in the chancel, the last lines of poem LXVII. reading

And in the chancel like a ghost, Thy tablet glimmers to the dawn. "Chancel" was subsequently altered to "dark church," and so the lines stand now.

The church within has been restored, completely but plainly, and still retains its original character. Its pews, its lofty, old-fashioned pulpit and its still more old-fashioned square lectern, are all of old carved oak. One walks to the narrow little transept on the south side, and there one sees on the wall the tablet immortalized in the lines of the poem

When on my bed the moonlight falls,

I know that in thy place of rest
By that broad water of the west,
There comes a glory on the walls:

Thy marble bright in dark appears,
As slowly steals a silver flame
Along the letters of thy name,

And o'er the number of thy years.

The inscription of the tablet is worthy of the spirit whose departure it records. It refers to him as "Arthur Henry Hallam, of Trinity College, Cambridge, B. A.," and tells of his early death at Vienna at the age of twenty-two.

And now in this obscure and solitary church repose the mortal remains of one too early lost for public fame, but already conspicuous among his contemporaries for the brightness of his genius, the depth of his understanding, the nobleness of his disposition, the fervour of his piety, and the purity of his life.

Vale, dulcissme,

Vale, dilectissime, desideratissime.
Requiescat in pace.

Pater ac Mater Hic Posthac Requiescamus


Usque ad turbam.1

Around this tablet are those of his family. His brother, Henry Fitzmaurice Hallam, died at Siena in 1850, at the age of twenty-six, "in whose clear and vivid understanding, sweetness of disposition and purity of life, an image of his elder brotherlike him cut off by a short illness in a foreign land. His father deeply sensible of the blessing which he enjoyed in possessing such children as are commemorated in these tablets, submits to the righteous will of Heaven, which has ordained him. to be their survivor." Hallam's younger sister, after his death, also died young, in 1857, at the age of twenty-one. His mother died in 1840; his father, the historian, in 1859. One sister, "Julia Maria Francis, wife of Sir John Farnaby Lennard, Bart.," lived on to 1888, when she died at the ripe age of eighty. All their tablets are on the transept wall, grouped around that of Arthur Hallam, Who among Arthur Hallam's sorrowing family could have foreseen, when this simple tablet was set up "in this obscure and solitary church," that his friend Alfred Tennyson was destined to raise to his memory a monument more durable than marble, which should make his name a household word among generations then unborn? Little too can Tennyson himself have imagined, as he stood by the grave of his friend, that the poem. whose dim first beginnings he had just committed to paper to still the unquiet of his own heart, The sad mechanic exercise,

Like dull narcotics, numbing pain, Farewell, sweetest one.

Farewell, most beloved, most desired. Rest in peace. May we thy father and mother, in after time rest with thee here until the trumpet sounds.

was not only to become one of the greatest works of genius of the century, but, what is far more, was for all time to come to console the afflicted, to support the feeble, to dissipate doubts, to kindle ideals, to make duty more easy and faith more credible, and to inspire in men and nations a desire for higher lives, nobler manners, purer laws Nor did he see that the man whose early loss he he deplored,

So many worlds, so much to do,

So little done, such things to be, How know I what had need of thee, For thou wert strong as thou wert true?— though "the fame was quenched" that he forsaw, and though his head had "missed an earthly wreath," was destined, through the instrumentality of his friend, to perform more noble and lasting work in the world than any single man-be his qualities ever so transcendent, and his sphere ever so exalted-could have accomplished in the nar row span of mortal life.

The all-assuming months and years
Can take no part away from this.
Hallam might indeed have said, in the words of
Horace, though in a higher sense than Horace

Non omnis moriar, multaque pars mei
Vitabit Libitinam-

"I shall not wholly die, and a great part of me shall escape oblivion.”

We left the dim transept, and ascended to the highest point of the neighboring cliffs. It was evening, and the tide was coming up from the


There twice a day the Severn fills; The salt sea water rushes by. Below us lay the church on the neck of the little promontory that stretched beyond it. On the other side, the hulk of the stranded barque looked much as though it had chosen the quiet creek for its last repose rather than as though it had been wrecked there by the storms of the channel outside. Inland was a typical English landscape, ringed by an amphitheatre of low and distant hills. The fields were white with daisies, the hedges with hawthorn, "and o'er the sky, the sil very haze of summer drawn." Standing here, one "long and populous city pent," as his eye wanders

Among the pleasant villages and farms

Adjoined, from each thing met conceives delight, The smell of grain, or tedded grass, or kine, Or daisy, each rural sight, each rural sound. To the left of the picture the grey boarding-house blocks of Clevedon, and a staring red brickyard with cottages of the same color around, were the only things which marred the harmonious beauty of the scene. Across the Channel, their bases hidden by the evening mists, stretched the tender and delicate outlines of the welsh hills, rising here and there, as over Abergavenny, into coni

cal peaks. Far to the east, but outside the scope of the view, was the mouth of the "babbling Wye," up which the "salt sea-water" was now rushing. Newport, right opposite, Carleon, on the Usk, four miles behind it, were wholly blotted out; but to the west, just seen through the haze that hung over the water, glimmered the dim ghost of Cardiff. Like a mirage in the desert, only descried by being a deeper gray than the gray mists around them, the tall shafts of the Dowlais works poured forth their volumes of smoke, typifying the tumultuous industrial world of South Wales, so different from the calm English sweetness of the Somerset coast.

When Arthur Hallam was buried in the "Old Church," Cardiff was a paltry place of some 6000 inhabitants. Newport was only known for the riots that had just made it notorious. Clevedon had no pier, no lodging-house blocks, no asphalted promenade. Railways, steamships, telegraphs, were almost wholly things of the future. The great Reform Bill had just been passed, and the people were thronging "the chairs and thrones of civil power." Mr. Gladstone, Hallam's old schoolfellow, had just been elected for Newark, and already promised to become "a potent voice in Parliament." The Queen was still a simple girl, living with her mother in Kensington Palace. The British Empire, as we conceive it, was yet to be. Australia was almost unexplored. New Zealand was absolutely uncolonized. Canada and the Cape were torn asunder by the feuds of turbulent and hostile races. Since 1833 a new world has come into being. The old order has changed, giving place to new, but the message which Arthur Hallam's life and character inspired was never more relevant than to-day,and never more deeply or devoutly believed. Indeed he lives more truly and more effectually in these modern times than in the days ere

in Vienna's fated walls

God's finger touched him and he slept.




The greatest library in the world is that of the quays of Paris. Hour after hour and mile after mile, you may wander, if you will, past treasureboxes of old books-books so delightfully old that though you should purify them with fire and water, they would never quite lose their musty odor of antiquity. One must have a little of Sylvestre Bonnard in him to love that odor. It is at once acrid and sweet. It hints of dusty bookclosets-of forgotten cedar-chests-of neglected garrets. In its way it is a certificate of authenticity.


A grimy little book of Latin songs; Paris, 1637; price, six sous ("How much better," says my flip. pant companion, "to be sans-souci than sans six sous"). You will have noticed, in your acute way, that the little volume is redolent of the past. This odor, faint and yet penetrating, is worth a dozen booksellers' pedigrees. Youth sang out of it in the long ago, beating time on the winestained table of some old tavern in the Rue Mouffetard, or some Cafe Procope of the day; and, since there are love-songs, a pour-pointed gallant may have conned it by moonlight. Here on page 34 is a stain of coffee left by a negligent student, who summoned the bacchanal past in these monkish songs. What pedigree could give you this?

Six sous-it is getting one's sensations cheap.

There was a history of the Greek stage in seven volumes at fifteen sous the volume. Cheap enough, you would say. I fluttered the pages thoughtfully. The bookseller, a stout old man in a shortskirted greenish coat, paid no attention to me. He looked out across the river as though it were his only business in life to study the facade of the Institute.

"At fifteen sous a volume," I thought, "they will come to a dollar and five cents. It's a great deal of money. Now that print of Rowlandson near the Pont des Arts was only a dollar."

I went back to look at the print. It was certainly very wonderful, in its brutal, old-fashioned English manner. And then I like Rowlandson as well as Hogarth. He has a- -a sort of Britishness about him that is unique. And this scene in a barber shop is in his grimest, most grotesque, and strenuous manner. But where could I hang it— except on the little sapling in the garden! I hesitated.

I started to go back for another comparative look at the history of the Greek stage, in German, by the way. The woman who kept the stall, and presumably owned the Rowlandson, saw that the moment was crucial. She was a square-built young woman with a look of Auvergne about her.

"Mossieu," she said, smiling pleasantly, but with all there was a look of determination in her gray eyes that I did not like-it was the sort of look I have seen in the eyes of a young woman returning from her dressmaker-that calm, concentrated, victorious feminine look before which man is helpless as a child.

"I won't buy it," I said to myself, "not even if she comes down twenty sous in price." She must have known; she took down the print.

"What a color!" she exclaimed, contemptuously, and indeed the color-scheme was very British. "What a color! And yet, Mossieu, people buy

these things. What betise! Of course, it is old- ing of the prerevolutionary past, when bankers very old but stupid."

"Only a fool would buy it at that price." I said. I felt that I had won my victory.

"Pardon, Mossieu," she said, calmly, "or a stranger."

When I got home with it I hid it in a drawer of my writing-table; it is there now to prove this is no parable; it is beastly-the Rowlandson.

Now, it is this very uncertainty about what one will bring home that lends seven-tenths (to be precise) of its pleasure to haunting the quays. You go out to buy a history of the Greek stage an old edition of Juvenal with the Dutch plates— or a bundle of new French novels, all joyously yellow-and you come home with a guide-book or an engraving of Ninon de l'Enclos. It is a lottery of the most fascinating kind. You see, there is only the vaguest sort of classification. Foreign books-and that means Arab or English, Mexican or Russian-are grouped together; so are the text-books, the classics, scientific works, and the like. Then there is a general distribution, according to prices. In this box, for instance, all the books are a cent apiece, in the next two cents, or three, or four, and so on up to a dollar or more. But every day these books are tumbled over by book-lovers, idlers, passers-by, and gradually they are mixed up into the prettiest chaos imaginable. Jostled by the fathers of the church, you may find the faded memoirs of some marquise of the long ago. In a box of cook-books at eight sous you may discover the missing third volume of your 12mo edition of Voltaire.

Although the banks of the river are lined, as I have said, with books, you will find the richest hunting-ground between Notre Dame and the Tuileries-surely a broad enough direction. And of all the quays those on the Rive Gauche are richest in old books, odd books, books that have come from distant days and far-away lands. They have been bought-and sold-by the students; they come from the collections-dispersed by death-of many an unregarded Cousin Pons. And here they lie in the tumult of Paris, souvenirs of the studious past. Who reads Latin? Now that the universities are turning it out of doors, now that it is no longer the parole of well-bred men the world over, as it was in Dr. Johnson's day, the stately folios have found their last hospice, here on the quays. And who reads Latin? You and I, flaneurs of the quays, who pause for a moment, turn the pages of Tacitus, and filch an epigram against the Germans; some reviewer who filches obscure cynicisms from Propertius; some poet who filches an adjective from the arbiter elegantiarum. And you may buy them for a song-a tag of balladry. Imposing volumes, very stately, with coats of arms and antique book-plates, hint

and traders were not gentlemen, and good blood and dignity went together. All this seems very strange in a Paris where the government is made up of attorneys and the led captains of finance, and has for allies the street-rufflers and avowed anarchists. It seems, I say, very strange that France should have ever been the home of the grand seigneur, who fought and danced, wrote Latin sonnets to Phyllis, and conned his Ovid. Of that old world there is left only a dusty mass of books-here under the elms beside the Seine, that goes seaward, oily, shining, yellow-gray.

There is an old man whom I have known by sight for years, for he, too, is a haunter of the quays and a hunter of the soul of the past. I was not surprised when I saw him to day. He is as much a part of the quays as my taciturn stallkeeper in the short-skirted coat of faded green. And, as usual, he was delving in a box of dusty romances of the seventeenth century. Such a gentle old man, polished, gallant-with the grand air- he might have stepped out of the yellowing pages of "Estelle." I fancy he must have come up to Paris in his own coach-and-four--at worst in a diligence, the old big-bellied, yellow diligence that used to go swinging over the white roads of France. After he has savoured the odor of the old pages-absorbed faint hints and instigations of the past he will mount into the narrow coupe of the diligence, draw the leathern curtains, and be trundled away into the anachronism of some misty chateau in Normandy.

As he lifts his hat-we are courteous, he and I-I notice that it has a curious three-cornered look.

Ah! these old feuilletons, cut from the daily newspapers, bound into impromptu volumes-love, romance, and adventure at a penny the pound. Ponson du Terrail, Richembourg-and many another Laura Jean Libby and Albert Ross of France. What would you not give, my young confrere, seeking for immortality, to have written the feuilleton--for, you see, there is only one, and it is imperishable. It is always new and always old, always fresh and always the same-the story of the kind eyes and the drooping moustache, the story of the Prince Cophetua of Faerie and the milliner's prentice, the story of the pine and the palm. And to tell this story again in Albatrocious prose-it is for the writer the great triumph. I have not written that story, my young confrere. But will the dimity girls ever circle and chirp about the bookstall where the rubbish of our books lie, as they do about these tattered pages, wherein is writ large the eternal romance of servant-galism? Do not believe it. Your poem, mon ami, on the soul-even my story of "The Porcelain Pipe and the Taffeta Night-cap"-will

have gone to the lining of trunks and the wrapping-up of inconsidered trifles of cheese, while still the weeping girls "wake" the love of Madeleine Montmorency and Adolphus Howard. There are two books-and only two-that I should care to write. One would be a History of Vagabondage in many volumes, written in the unclassical Latin which is at my command; it should be printed on vellum, and Eugene Grivaz should illustrate it with marvelous aquarelles, depicting all the glorious vagabonds from Ishmael to Jean Richepin's chemineau; and the other? The other would be a novel, published anonymously, and it should be such a joy to the heart of servant-galism that no one could say whether it was written by Richembourg or Richard Harding Davis. And then, when the world was all agog, I would come boldly forward and claim it as my own, and the critics-perhaps even Harry Thurston Peckwould call me a new Miss Libby. Fame-a futile dream of fame.

I watch the little girls bearing away the tattered fragments of romance. I imagine, hardily, to what shabby mansardes they mount with their treasures, and see them-each in a gilt halo of candlelight-reading, reading-until, with a little shiver of regret, they tuck romance under the pillow, blow out the candles, and drift away into dreams of an Adolphus who looks singularly like the brav garcon at the cafe on the corner. (To be youngto be a shopgirl--to read old feuilltons--is that not the best of life?)

The evening darkens; over the bookstalls the petroleum torches shine and flicker; as you stroll along the quays you catch the titles of books that never should be read-never should have been written; they are displayed for the noctambulists, night-errants; those who love-but not books. The pictures in front of the print-stalls have taken on a new air. In the flickering light they seem to beckon you from their frames. Here the picture of some Fanny Ellsler-saltavit et placuit-mimes an invitation. There glooms a head of the great Napoleon. ("He was a great man," you say, "he almost undid the revolution, with its 'immortal principles' of discord and disorder with its latter-day fruit of Waldeckism.")

A few steps more▬▬

Here is the Rue de Rivoli, with its tawdry little shops, tawdry big hotels for Uitlanders, the new Paris. You hail a passing omnibus; it is complete. So you deposit yourself and your purchases in a cab and ride home, in quasi-royalty, for thirty-five


But to-morrow, and the next day and the next you will find yourself wandering the quays, tasting the vague, implacable joy of book-hunting. It is a passion like any other-like love for Ireland-like tippling or patriotism-like dice or

[blocks in formation]

domesticity. And perhaps one's best excuse for living in Paris (and life anywhere demands an apology, if not an excuse) is that it is the city of old books-the hospice for the homeless, vagrom books of all the world.--The Criterion.



Those Mr. W. L. Andrews Produces-Their Charm and Their Rising Values.

There is a small class of books which, while almost unknown to the general reader, yet appeal very strongly to and are intended for those who appreciate all the details of fine bookmaking. Of this class no better examples can be found than the dainty volumes written by William Loring Andrews of New York. There are two very good reasons why the possession of Mr. Andrews' books should be restricted, one being the very limited edition in which they are issued, and the other, their somewhat prohibitive price. Then, too, some of Mr. Andrews' books have been issued entirely for private distribution, and were not really published at all.

The first book Mr. Andrews issued, that on the Aldine Presses, was made in an edition of fifty copies only-all of which were for presentation, and the only way in which it is obtainable now is when it happens to be offered at auction or, as a result of such auction, gets into the hands of some good bookseller. "Among My Books," another not offered for sale in the regular way, was also made in an edition of fifty copies. It is the one Andrews book above all others which the present writer has always wished to own, and has never even had a chance to see. The largest edition of any one book Mr. Andrews has issued is one of 200 copies, and that occurred in two instances only. Even before the editions are quite sold out, small as they are, the subscription price of Mr. Andrews' book has been often increased. Such was the case with "New Amsterdam, New Orange, and New York," the more ordinary copies of which increased in value from $15 to $20 immediately after publication.

Indeed, one of the marked features of recent book auctions in New York has been the great advance upon subscription price of most, if not all, of the Andrews books so sold, the only parallel instance being the increased valuation of the Kelmscott Press books. Mr. Andrews' books are all fine specimens of the best work of the De Vinne and Gillis Presses, and are beautifully illustrated. E. D. North, in the current Book Buyer, says: "Perhaps no individual has done. more for the cultivation of the public taste in the line of perfectly made books than William Loring Andrews. The high prices these books have

« PreviousContinue »