« PreviousContinue »
A BRIDAL SONG.
Uncheck'd by pain, untired by toil, closed by some lists useful to men of the He led the lions to the spoil,
world, and men of literature; and the Through desert and through flood ;
whole constitutes a work, from whose Till, ye eternal Pyrenees !
annual series we are entitled to expect Ye heard the thunder on the breeze,
unusual gratification. Our readers Whose fearful rain was blood.
will thank us for giving this touching Where thy final battle roar'd,
and powerful fragment. Mightiest harvest of the sword,
Immortal Waterloo !
Gia opprime i sensi miei To death and glory flew.
Del piu fatale orror
Per sempre lo ti perdei.
COME ye to seek me? Then bear me home, Th' unconquerable Will,
For the lover is banish'd—the bridegroom
is come! The living Mind, shall hover o'er The warriors that he led before,
Hear ye the chime of the bridal bell ? And love and lead them still !
Soon shall it toll a funeral knell.
Hear ye the bridal song this morn ? Bold companions of his grave,
Soon shall ye hear a song forlom. England's richest wreath shall wave
Scatter sweet flowers on my thomy way, In sorrow o'er your tomb;
I shall be wither'd as soon as they. And the sad infant on the knee
Clothe my form in bridal white, Shall lisp the dear-bought victory,
So shall it serve for my shroud to-night. In ages yet to come!
Deck with jewels my raven hair,
To-night it a darker wreath shall wear.
Take this fading rose from my breast, With poems of this order, the vo
And give it to him that loves me best ;
And say, as ye point to my early tomb, lume is scattered. Two engravings, a That the lover was dear, though the bride. vignette, &c. by the ablest artists,
groom was come. make the decorations. The volume is
" Quel dommage que tout cela nourrira !"
Oui, Monsieur ! mais cela n'est pas pourri." John Bull and Lord Byron are none but beauties were exposed to the agreed on one point at least. Both assaults of the tempter. Now, I am assert “cant” to be the prevailing mo- firmly of opinion, (nay, every day exral feature of the age we live in. In- perience proves it so,) that ugly wonumerable scribblers have caught up men, called plain by courtesy, are just the same note, and spun it out in end- as likely to slip and stumble in those less variation, and I, among the small treacherous pitfalls, as others of their fry of literature, am fain to join in the sex, more distinguished by personal chorus. Of all cants, then, one of the attractions; and that, on a fair avemost sickening to my taste is that of rage, pretty women are the happiest, some parents who pretend (for I give as well as the most agreeable of the them little credit for sincerity) to de- species. precate for their female offspring the Let us take a fair sample of this gepossession of that precious gift, as it nus-not a perfect specimen. The boreally is, or, as they are pleased to term tanist may select such for his herbal, it, “ that dangerous endowment,” per- but it would not so well answer our sonal attractiveness. They affect, for- purpose in exemplifying human varie sooth, to thank Providence that their ties. Let us suppose a child endowdaughters are“no beauties"-or to sigh ed with moderate abilities, an amiable and lament over their dangerous come- disposition, and a decent share of beauliness, and then they run out into a ty, and other children in the same falong string of trite axioms, and stale mily, gifted in an equal proportion common-places, about the snares and with the same mental qualifications, vanities of this wicked world, as if but wholly destitute of exterior advan, tages. Will not the fair attractive blossom in that congenial clime ;child be the most favoured, the best every individual of her family and beloved, generally speaking, even of friends, fondly or courteously contrithose parents who endeavour to be, and buting to her happiness or pleasure. honestly believe that they are, most Will not the desire to repay kindness conscientiously impartial? The same with kindness, love with love, blessanxious cares may, it is true, be equal- ing with blessing, be the responsive ly bestowed on all. The same tender impulse of her young heart ? She finds and endearing epithets be applied to by every day's experience, that the all—but the eye will linger longest on tenderest approbation, the warmest the sweet countenance of the lovely encomiums, the fondest caresses, relittle one, the parental kiss will dwell ward her endeavours after the attainmore fondly on its cherub lip, and the ment of useful information, and elevoice, in speaking to it, will be invo- gant accomplishment, and that blessluntarily modulated to softer and more ings more expressively silent, (the tender tones. I am not arguing that eloquent blessings of the eye,) beam this preference, however involuntary unutterable things on her performance and unconscious it may be, is even of higher duties ; that a powerful then wholly defensible, or that, if stimulus to persevere in the paths of knowingly, and weakly yielded to, it well-doing, to strive to be all she is is not entirely inexcusable. I only as- thought capable of being ! sert that it is in human nature, and Her natural failings and youthful waiving that side of the question, errors are most mildly and tenderly which if analyzed would involve a long rebuked; her motives most charitably moral discussion, not necessarily con- interpreted—what incentives to connected with my present subject, I shall quer those failings ! to avoid those ersimply proceed to observe, that if this rors ! to realize hopes so fondly sanunconscious, irresistible preference fre- guine! Happiness is far less selfish quently influences even the fondest than sorrow. Its natural tendency is parents, how far more unrestrainedly to communicate, to infuse itself, as it does it manifest itself, in the surrounds were, into every surrounding object; ing circle of friends, guests, relations, and certainly nothing inspires us yith and casual visitors. How many in- such good will and charity towards dulgences and gratifications are ob- our fellow-creatures, as the sweet contained for the irresistible pleader! How sciousness that they are benevolently many petitions granted for the remu- disposed towards us. If all the disneration of a kiss! How tenderly are courteous, ill-natured, uncharitable the tears of contrition wiped away things that are said and done, were from eyes that look so beautifully re- traced back to their real source, it morseful! And all this, I firmly be- would be found that every other one lieve, if restrained by good feelings at least, resulted, not from resentand just principle, from reaching a ment for the infliction of serious in. blameable excess, is productive only jury, but from some wounded feeling, of good results in the young mind, and some smarting sense of neglect, unthat children happily constituted by kindness, or, it may be, of conscious innature in person and disposition, thrive significance, a consciousness (by the best (even in a moral sense) in that way) widely differing from Christian 'atmosphere of tender indulgence, and humility, and operating far otherwise become ultimately most amiable and on the heart and temper. equable, least selfish and exacting, in Allowing these to be fancied, or at all the various relations of life. The least fancifully exaggerated injuries, reason of this I take to be that they their influence on the character is not feel the most perfect confidence in therefore less pernicious, and the their fellow-creatures, and how many question is, Would these corroding, of the best affections of our nature crushing thoughts, have sprung up in spring up and flourish under the kind. the cheering sunshine of favour and lý influence of that most Christian feel indulgence ? Have they not been ing! The fair engaging child expands generated and fostered in a cold, uninto womanhood in the warm sunshine genial shade, where“ flowers that love of affectionate encouragement, and all the light” could never blossom? the delicate and grateful emotions of But “ vanity! vanity !” saith the her heart are drawn out to bud and Preacher. What sevenfold shield can
fence the heart of woman, against va- higher ground of observation, I will nity and its satanic legion? The only venture to assert, that there is less shield, I reply, capable of fencing any vanity, or, perhaps, more properly human heart against the perpetual, speaking, less solicitude about persoinsidious, and ever-varying assaults of nal appearance, in pretty than in plain the tempter sound moral principles, women. The cause is obvious the one founded on religious knowledge, and is perpetually striving to make herself, a firm and humble faith in the truths what nature has made the other. Its of revelation. When these have not frequent result is more perplexing. been early and sedulously inculcated, The exuberant self-complacency with the Beauty is exposed, indeed, to great which an ugly woman, in the full and peculiar dangers. But, is the ugly pomp and panoply of dress and dewoman, on her part, more secure from coration, seems, as it were, to inflate those temptations, to which she also is and expand her whole person; and if peculiarly liable? Is vanity solely con- some solitary charm of form or feature, fined to the consciousness of personal has been grudgingly bestowed upon attractions? Is there no such thing as her, what sedulous anxiety to exhibit conceit of sense, of talent, of taste, of it to the best advantage! How the magoodness—nay, even of humility? lady concentrates itself, in a manner, in There is conceit active, and conceit that peculiar part ! Betrays itself, by passive. That which plumes itself on an unnatural and perpetual distention being superior in such and such points, of the mouth, if a set of white and even is, to my taste, less odious than the teeth is the seat of the disorder ;-is pharisaical cant, “Well! thank God, characterised by a delicate curve of the I am not so and so."
fingers, or graceful action of the hand, · Now, verily, I am inclined to believe, if that happens to be the part affected; that of all modifications of this infir- or by a frequent protrusion of the foot, mity—this vice, if you will have it so, should the disease have possessed it that is most harmless which plumes self of the lower extremities. itself on outward advantages, (I speak Good Heavens! in what thing, in with exclusive reference to female beau- what place, under what circumstances, ties,) and in point of fact, have we not will not vanity take root, and thrive ? often occasion to remark, that a pretty, Stick it, like house-leek, on a bare vain, giddy girl, one of the most ap- wall, its fibres will insert themselves parently inconsiderate character, will into the crevices, and the plant will settle down for life with a companion prosper somehow. Strew it like muswho deserves and possesses her respect tard and cress over a few woollen and affection, into a domestic, prudent threads in an earthen platter, and you wife, a careful and tender mother, an may pick sallad to-morrow. Hang it exemplary mistress of a family, while up like the air plant, between heaven some grave, demure-looking maiden, and earth, by a single thread, and, guarded at all points in the armour of like the air plant, it will bud and blosugliness, bristling all over with de- som without other than ethereal nucorum, and pinched into the very pat- triment. They are inexperienced natern of primness and propriety, will turalists, who affirm, that it flourishes (if occasion offer) launch out into such only, or peculiarly, in soil or climate extravagances and indiscretions, as of such and such nature and temperadefy all calculations on probability ture. and liability, and utterly confound the But to all who persist in the belief wise theories of all declaimers against that beauty is the forcing bed of this the dangerous endowment of beauty. idle flaunting weed-to all parents who
But, to sum up all-are there, in the are really sincere in deprecating for class of beauties, fewer good wives, their offspring, what they term so fatal good mothers, good women, and good an endowment,- I would compassionChristians, than amongst those of the ately suggest one simple expedient, sex, to whom nature has been more calculated to strike at the very root of niggardly of outward adornments ? the evil. Let the pride of civilization, An impartial observer will acknow for once, condescend to adopt the pracledge, that such characters are found, tice of those unsophisticated savages, in pretty equal proportions, amongst who (for very opposite purposes, it is the lovely and unlovely; but, revert- true) flatten the noses, depress the ing to minor considerations, from that skulls, and slit the lips and ears of their new-born females. The most progress of time, could hardly fail to obstinate charms,—the most invete be wholly obliterated ; and in their rate beauty, must infallibly yield to stead, would arise a new standard of this early discipline; to which, for perfection, not less the object of a further security, may be added, a ge- dangerous worship, for being the very neral tattooing of the whole person, so reverse of a former idol. With the that po separate part or portion may custom of a savage nation, we may become a stronghold for that subtle adopt its tastes also; and thencefordemon, who can entrench himself in ward, a celebrated beauty of the Brithe hem of an ear, or the tip of a little tish Court, may be constituted such, finger.---But whither, in its compas- by perfections similar to those thatquasionate zeal for the relief of parental lify a Hottentot Venus,-an Esquianxiety,--whither tends my specula- maux petite Maitresse, -or a reigning tive genius? What might be the pro- toast of the Sandwich Islands; and bable result of the measures I sug, the first view of a squat nose, and flatgest? If adopted by a few leaders of tened pericranium, in his new-born rank and fashion, the universal rage babe, may strike into the heart of an for novelty and imitation would soon anxious parent, the same pious horror, make the practice general, and then, with which he now contemplates the indeed, a great and decisive conquest Grecian outline and delicate propor, over beauty, might be confidently an- tion of the infant beauty, who smiles ticipated. But, with its utter extinc in his face, with such innocent uncon tion in the land, might not our pre- sciousness of the fatal charms with sent conception of its component parts, which nature has endowed her. and general combinations, fade away
A. to dim recollections ? Those also, in
THROUGHOUT the months occupied cause, and clothe, in a few plain senby the Duke of Angouleme’s campaign, tences, what is our opinion, and what we have abstained almost entirely from we take to be also the opinion of the touching on the subject of Spanish af- great majority of the impartial public fairs. Long before that expedition com- of England, in regard to the whole of menced, nay, long before the House of this matter. Commons heard Mr Canning's most ad- Our opinion, then, to state the thing - mirable exposé of the views of the Bri- distinctly at the outset, is, that the tish government in contemplation of Spanish Liberals and the French go it, we had said enough to convince our vernment have all along, and throughreaders, that we had thoroughly made out the whole business, been in the up our own minds as to the unjusti- wrong ; but that, compared with Ferfiable character of those principles, on dinand VII., notwithstanding, they which the Bourbon government of have always been, and are now," whiFrance had proclaimed themselves to ter," both of them," than unsunnel be acting. Some months later, in the snow." course of a Review of Mr Quin's Tra- The faults of the Spanish Liberals vels, we took occasion to be equally have been many. In the first place, explicit in expressing our sentiments, they framed at Cadiz, in 1812, a contouching the constitution promulgated stitution altogether unfit for the counby the Cortes of Cadiz in 1812, and try where they meant it to be placed re-established in Spain by the military in operation, in regard to many of its insurrection of 1820. The result of the most important provisions. In the seconflict between these two systems, cond place, they, by false representawith which we from the beginning tions as to fact, made it pass for a time had thus expressed our equal dissatiso that this constitution had been really faction, is now before all the world.- framed by the real representatives of The result, said we ?-No, not the the Spanish nation—it having never final result, assuredly, but the primary been anything but the manufacture of one ;-and we conceive it is now time one particular party, and having been for us to lay the consequences by the openly disavowed from the beginning
by every part of the nation besides. own condition ; but that condition Thirdly, they abandoned this consti- has, nevertheless, been uniformly tution at the time of Ferdinand's re- and unbrokenly sinking. The crafty storation, in a manner altogether un- Charles, by alternate acts of swindling worthy of the high principles on which and robbery, deprived the nation of they had professed to be acting. In all that was really valuable in her pothe fourth place, they re-established litical institutions. The glare of his it in 1820, in a manner equally at va- conquests--the splendour of his name riance with those principles. And, in the imperial influence in Europe, the fifth place, they have utterly and and the American floods of wealthirremediably disgraced themselves by all these were considered by the Spathe pusillanimous exhibition with niards as things of their own, and which they have just concluded their they shut their eyes to the domestic
misdeeds of their magnificent tyrant, The sin of the French govern- just as the French of our own time ment, on the other hand, is one, and did theirs, to those of a tyrant not indivisible. It lies in the unjustified, his inferior in meanness, and cerand unjustifiable aggression, which tainly his superior in almost everyhas been made upon the Spanish thing besides. The spirit of military soil. For the present, this interfe- adventure, and the lights of a beautirence has been crowned with appa- ful literature, gilded over, in like manrent success-probably much more so ner, the superficies of the two ages than King Louis's ministers themselves that followed that of Charles V.; but had anticipated; but the whole busi- all this while the elements of univerness is rotten, and will come to no- sal degradation had been working surething, or to worse than nothing, in the ly below, and it was not long ere all upshot.
settled into the uniform and melanOn both of these, therefore, we are of choly gloom of that intellectual night, opinion, that a great burden of blame the first lurid, uncertain, and stormy lies and must lie. Still, however, we dawning from which, has just been must admit, that neither the conduct of fixing the hopes and the fears of the one party, nor that of the other, is to Europe. our minds irreconcilable wit
The history of Superstition and the think like fairness of intention in the Inquisition in Spain, has been sketcheal main. They may both have chosen false by Mr Southey, in one of the late principles of action, but it is not quite Numbers of the Quarterly Review, apparent that either has done so know, with the hand of a master to that ingly—and the haughty rashness of sketeh we need add nothing here the one side, need not, any more than it is complete so far as it goes ; it will the vacillating imbecility of the other, live as a chapter in the history of our be taken as the clear and indubitable species, long after the mass of contemsymbol of deliberate dishonour.-We porary writings shall have passed incan pardon much from any Spaniards to oblivion. But Mr Southey has not striving against the cause of despotism, brought the matter sufficiently down and we can also pardon much from any to our own time, nor, by consequence, French government striving against sufficiently home to our feelings. Om the cause of Jacobinism ; but the con- the contrary, the picture he presents, duct of Ferdinand VII. has been con- deriving evidently, and indeed consistent with no intelligible principle of fessedly, all its darkest touches from any kind, that is worthy of being re- the
congeries of a most laborious erugarded with any species of tolerance. dition, is a thing which ordinary obHe has been guilty of the basest servers are more apt to stare at, than treachery to all-and has stamped to study—the impression it leaves is THE WHOLE of his own character with rather that of what has been, than of one dye of unrelieved blackness. what is.—The appearance of Mr Blan
The history of Spain has been, in- co White's book, (Doblado's Letters,) deel, one series of misfortunes ever was therefore a matter of greater imsince the accession of Charles V. A mediate importance, and we regret exfew brilliant campaigns, and many ceedingly that Mr Southey has done no magnificent foreign acquisitions, have more than refer to that work, instead of for their respective seasons blinded drawing from its comparatively ephethe eyes of this proud race to their meral pages the materials for a fuller