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have reason to believe, by the authority of the British government from the information of the British archives.'
In that pamphlet we find the following passage :
• It may be now proper to state why the British government has, since the American war, consented to consider as Americans, persons whom, before, it detained in its service as not being Americans.
• Great Britain never impressed an American, knowing him to be such; and she never held in her service an American who was proved to be such ; and, in her liberality, she admitted the collectors' certificates, and the certified lists of the crew, to be proof, where there were no contradictory evidence; and it will, I think, now be admitted, that though we may perhaps accuse ourselves of being too lax in our concessions, America at least has no right to complain that we were too strict; and it will also be allowed, that, at a time when America was at peace with all the world, and Great Britain was carrying on a war for her own existence and the independence of Europe, the detention of seamen suspected to be British subjects, until they should produce some proof of their being Americans, was no more than, perhaps not quite so much as, the rule of self-preservation required.
But, when America declared war against Great Britain, the case was in a material degree altered ;—the consequence of any mistake in impressing, and, even for a time, detaining in our military service, an American, would have the effect of forcing the citizen to bear arms against his native country. This was a risk to which Great Britain, true to her principles, and revering the first duty of a citizen -his natural allegiance—would not, even for a week, expose any man.
• She therefore consented to release from her military service, and to consider as American prisoners of war, those who should claim this admission. Some produced documents—some offered assertionsand some made' oath to their American citizenship. The British Government had not altered its opinion of these documents ; it knew that these assertions were probably untrue, and it was not bound to give credit to oaths which there was every reason to fear would be too readily and loosely taken; but, I repeat it, the risk of forcing a man to incur the crime of treason, and the penalty of death, was too serious to be put in a balance of evidence and probabilities. It was besides felt, that though there would be many cases of fraud, there would probably be some real cases of American citizenship; and, in consideration of the difficulty which a poor and illiterate seaman might have in procuring perfect documents to prove his citizenship, it was very justly determined that the ordinary strictness of proof ought not, in such a case, to be required ; and accordingly between seven and eight hundred seamen were discharged from his Majesty's ships, on their allegation that they were Americans, and on our admission that no man can be held to fight against his country.'--pp. 44–52. These were just and liberal sentiments, and were carried into practice to the full extent of releasing from our navy all that claimed to be Americans: and the number, instead of one thousand four hundred and twenty,' was, it seems, between seven and eight hundred' only. But the British Government did not stop there: it released from its service at once, and without further inquiry or delay, the whole number of claimants ; but
• These men were acquainted, that though, on their allegations of being Americans, they should not be forced to fight against America, yet that they could not be permitted to go to America to fight against Great Britain, without proof that they were bonâ fide what they alleged themselves to be. The proof required was that which any real American could most easily procure—a certificate from his parents, or from any clergyman or other respectable person, in America, that he knew the man or his parents; or letters from his family or friends in America, from which the man's nativity could be inferred; in short, anything that afforded a fair presumption that the man was really an American, was accepted for proof. Now how many of these eight hundred men have (during an interval of two years) prodnced such proof ?-Only, as I am informed, seventeen!'Right and Practice of Impressment, &c. pp. 55, 56.
So that the · British archives,' instead of furnishing Mr. Rush's number, 1462, give only 17! We are not now arguing this question ; we are only examining Mr. Rush's statement; and we think we have satisfied dur readers that his assertion, as to the number, is exaggerated, and that it cannot be true that it is supported by the official lists furnished by British functionaries. The question is one of great interest and importance; and we think that the state of it—the law on which we founded our practice, and the extent to which we carried it-are no where better explained than in the pamphlet which we have quoted, and which should be carefully perused by every one who wishes to understand the real, unexaggerated state of this difficult case.
But we must hasten to a conclusion :—we part from Mr. Rush in good will; his work has not exalted our opinion of his knowledge
ents, but it has confirmed our personal recollection and opinion that he is a lover of truth, of amiable manners, of a kind and candid disposition, and, though a warm friend to America, not hostile to England. Except on this question of impressment, we charge him with no important error, and the trivial and sometimes laughable mistakes into which he has fallen appear to be the result not of any desire to misrepresent, but of a good natured credulity and an over desire to say something, and that, generally, a civil something, where there was perhaps little or nothing to say. Copious as our extracts have been, we cannot refuse ourselves the pleasure of quoting from the Introduction some account of a second visit which this amiable gentleman made us, and in which VOL. XLIX. NO, XCVIII.
he shows that his spirit of amity and conciliation is not diminished.
• I went to England again on a short visit in 1829. An interval of but four years had elapsed; yet I was amazed at the increase of London. The Regent's Park, which, when I first knew the west-end of the town, disclosed nothing but lawns and fields, was now a city: You saw long rows of lofty buildings, in their outward aspect magnificent. On this whole space was set down a population of probably not less than fifty or sixty thousand souls. Another city, hardly smaller, seemed to have sprung up in the neighbourhood of St. Pancras Church and the London University. Belgrave Square, in an opposite region, broke upon me with like surprise. The road from Westminster Bridge to Greenwich exhibited for several miles compact ranges of new houses. Finchley Common, desolate in 1819, was covered with neat cottages, and indeed villages. In whatever direction I went, indications were similar, I saw nothing of Carlton Terrace, for Carlton House was gone, or of the street, of two miles, from that point to Park Crescent, surpassing any other in London, or any that I saw in Europe. To make room for this new and spacious street, old ones had been pulled down, of which no vestige remained. I could scarcely, but for the evidence of the senses, have believed it all. The historian of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire remarks, that the description, composed in the Theodosian age, of the many stately mansions in Rome might almost excuse the exaggeration of the poet; that Rome contained a multitude of palaces, and that each palace was equal to a city. Is the British metropolis advancing to that destiny ? Manchester, Liverpool, Birmingham, and other provincial towns that I visited, appeared, on their smaller scales, to have increased as much,
• In the midst of it all, nearly every newspaper that I opened rang the changes upon the distress and poverty of England. Mr, Peel's bill, banishing bank-notes under five pounds from circulation, had recently passed. There was great clamour-there is always clamour at something among this people, Prices had fallen--trade was said to be irrecoverably ruined, through the over-production of goods. I have since seen the state of things at that epoch better described, perhaps, as the result of an under-production of money. Workmen in many places were out of employ; there were said to be 14,000 of this description in Manchester. I saw portions of them walking along the streets. Most of this body had struck for wages. I asked how they subsisted when doing nothing. It was answered, that they had laid up funds by joint contributions among themselves whilst engaged in work. In no part of Liverpool or its extensive environs did I see pauperism; the paupers for that entire district being kept within the limits of its poor-house; in which receptacle I was informed there were 1500. I passed through the vale of Cheshire; I saw in that fertile district, in Lancashire, Staffordshire, Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Warwickshire, Worcestershire, appearances of wide-spread prosperity, in the lands, houses, canals, roads, public works, domestic animals, people-in everything that the eye of the merely transient traveller took in.'—pp. xi.—xiii. We earnestly recommend to the attention of thinking men this description by a republican, by an impartial and not unintelligent observer, of that state of a country which bis Majesty's present ministers and their drivers, the mob, ( followers, they have none) thought so deplorable as to render urgent and inevitable the
* We think it is Goldsmith who shrewdly observes, that no man can hope to be popular with the English people who will not tell them that they are in a state of the greatest poverty and distress; and oue of the causes of the overthrow of the Duke of Wellington's ministry was an assertion in the king's speech, in the beginning of 1830, that distress, though partially severe, was not general. It was, and always has been, John Bull's pleasure to be miserable,
perilous experiment' of parliamentary reform—and all the other changes in every branch-legal, financial, clerical, commercialof our national policy, by which this once happy and, by all mankind, admired and envied country is now menaced.
Art. III.— Bibliotheca Greca, curantibus Fr. Jacobs et
V. C. F. Rost. Vol. XIX.- continens Anacreontis, que feruntur, Carmina, Sapphus et Erinne Fragmenta. Edidit
Ern. Anton. Mæbius. Gothæ et Erfordiæ. 1831. 2. Collections from the Greek Anthology. By the late Rev.
Robert Bland and others. A new edition, comprising the Fragments of early Lyric Poetry, with Specimens of all the Poets included in Meleager's Garland. By J. H. Merivale, Esq., F.S.A. London. 1833. THE elegy and the ode of the Greeks flowed out of the
Homeric poetry like two streams from a common fountainhead. They both preserved, throughout, some touch of the quality of the parent waters, whilst they mingled with it, in varying proportions, and not by the same process, the new elements which each took up in its particular course. The chief and most characteristic of those new elements was a distinct
expression of the personal feelings of the individual. Poetry, thenceforth, ceased to be a sound of many voices, kept in tune by common subjects and an all-pervading spirit, and became, instead, the out-pouring of the poet's own heart, the record of his hopes and fears, his joys and sorrows, the escape of his patriotism or his tove, the vehicle of his fattery, or the instrument of his revenge. The fragments of Callinus and Tyrtæus seem to show that the elegy was in its inception deeply imbued with the warlike spirit of the old heroic poetry; but it was not long before the unerring instinct of the Greek taste restricted the use of the couplet to the expression of feelings connected with the natural incidents or pru2 B 2
dential dential ethics of private life, to the complainings of disappointed love, or the lamentations of bereaved affection.* But whatever the immediate theme or occasion might happen to be, so far as we can judge from the remains of Mimnermus, Theognis, and Si. monides, there breathed in every elegiac poem a characteristic spirit of melancholy—that gentle melancholy, in which the transient flashes of a reckless gaiety are as natural and sweet as the intermittent twinklings of the lesser fire-fly in the silent darkness of a tropical night. How true to human nature-how true, more especially, of those whose minds and bodies are of the subtlest fabric—that temper is, which produced such a strain of poetry, many of our readers can, by personal experience or observation, abundantly testify. It exists in us, as men, now as of old ; but Christianity, whether we have faith in it or not, has, by necessity, much altered in any of us the genuine character of the Greek melancholy;—for how can the true believer ever be without hope, or how can the infidel, say what he may, be entirely without apprehension? Whereas, in the paganism of antique Greece, there was neither promise nor threat by revelation, and the spirit which then moved in the minds of men—with reverence be it spokenwas a spirit that knew not the living God.
But there is another mood of feeling, as truly natural, and more common to men in social life, which requires, and works out for itself, a freer issue, and a more splendid vehicle of poetic expression. Moreover, there are many subjects and occasions which are calculated to excite the passions so vehemently as to suspend all sense of melancholy, and which demand an utterance too rapid, too figurative, and peremptory, to be compatible with the character or capacity of the elegy. In thankfulness for national deliverance, in exultation at national victory, the ode had its first rise; and it is in the state of feeling, called into energy by such and similar emergencies--in anger, desire, admiration, joy-in danger and difficulties, in conflict and success—that it has ever since found its spring and its aliment. Ages before that marvellous instrument of music, the Greek language, was ready for the touch of a Sappho or a Pindar, the venerable Hebrew of the patriarchs had been wrought up to the very highest pitch of human sublimity in the triumphant songs of Moses and Deborah.† In
* The reader may find this subject more sully treated in a late article in this Journal on Greek Elegy.
t Exodus xv. Judges v. Perhaps there does not exist a more perfect instance of the pure lyric impetus—of the transition with a link, than in vv. 9, 10, 11, 12, of the fifteenth chapter of Exodus. Conceive them arranged to music, or sung by Miriam and all the women, in this manner :Semi-chorus (rapidly)-The enemy said, “ I will pursue, I will overtake, I will