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strength which it could oppose to an invading army from any quarter. The result, in our opinion, is, that the Khanat is weak, and might easily have been chastised for the murder of our ambassadors, had we possessed a foreign minister of any moral courage or resolution; but into questions like this, it is not necessary for us to enter at present. Mr. Khanikoff's work, which is most ably and freely translated, must be extensively circulated, and will in a short time enable the public to enter properly into discussions such as we shall shortly perhaps open up. The history and character of the present khan are exceedingly curious; as are also his relations with the Persian adventurer, who now serves him in the capacity of minister. Altogether we strongly recommend Mr. Khanikoff's book to public attention-it has rendered its author an object of suspicion to the Russian government, though written for the use of the czar, and with highly patriotic intentions.
Travels in Luristan and Arabistan. By the Baron C. A. DE BODE. 2 vols. London: Madden and Co. 1844.
THESE pleasant volumes will be read with great interest by a very large portion of the public. They contain the account of a journey from Teheran through Isfahan to Persepolis, and back by Shiraz and Behbehan, through the country of the Mamaseni and Khogilu tribes, in part unvisited by any previous traveller. The author, who was secretary to the Russian embassy, travelled with great advantages, the political influence of the czar in Persia insuring safety and respect for those of his subjects who undertake to travel. At many points of his journey he encountered friends, holding positions of authority, who gave him every facility for prosecuting his researches; and he enjoyed, also, the especial favour and protection of the Moétemid Daulet, or governor of the most important and dangerous provinces through which he passed. We cannot pretend to give even an outline of his journey. We can only say generally that he has visited some of the most interesting cities and tracts of south-western Persia. His description of Persepolis is full of eloquence, and presents a very vivid picture to the mind. With great judgment, however, he dwells comparatively briefly on this, so many other travellers having visited the spot. But he enlarges on the royal tombs at Nakshi Rustam, having entered one which had not been visited by Sir Robert Ker Porter. He also, during his journey, discovered many important remains of antiquity, among others those of Tenghi-Saulek, which must really be very extraordinary. We can promise a rich treat to all interested in antiquarian research, but cannot further allude to the numerous topics of this nature on which he touches so graphically, and with so much ingenuity. Other parts of his work are to us more interestingnamely, the personal adventures, the anecdotes, the sketches of manners and customs, the description of scenery, the lively narratives interspersed. We never remember to have seen a more charming picture of pastoral
The History of the Defection of the United Netherlands. 519
life than Baron de Bode's account of an Iliyat migration. It carries us back to the times of Abraham. We have really never read any passage in any Persian traveller with more pleasure, and much regret that we have not space to extract it. However, we are sure that all who are fond of ethnological information communicated in so agreeable a manner, cannot fail to refer to the volume before us. We must not forget to notice the Essay on the Marches of Alexander and Timur,' which concludes the work. It is a learned and ingenious performance, and in general conclusive. The baron had ample opportunities of verifying his theories, by examination of the ground over which the two conquerors marched; and, as we have hinted, over a certain portion of the traveller had preceded him. He has thus the merit of revealing a new and extensive tract of country to the world.
The History of the Defection of the United Netherlands from the Spanish Empire. Translated from the original German of Schiller, by Lieut. E. B. EASTWICK. Frankfort on the Maine. 1844.
THE author of this translation says it has been his 'study to be literal and to preserve, as far as possible, not only the meaning of the author but his exact words, and even the structure of the sentences, so that to the student of German the work may be useful, as easy to retranspose into German.' He has succeeded admirably; his version has the rare merit of combining ease and fluency with close literal fidelity. Lieutenant Eastwick, who has passed many years of active service in India, is favourably known to Oriental scholars as the translator of several very rare and curious Persian works connected with the history and religion of the Parsees, and as having compiled the most complete vocabulary yet known of the dialect of Sinde. The present is, we believe, his first attempt at translation from the German, and was entered upon as a preliminary exercise before engaging in the laborious task with which we rejoice to hear that he is now occupied. He is busy upon a translation of the second part of Bopp's 'Comparative Grammar of the Sanskrit, Greek, and German Languages.'
Want of space has compelled us to postpone several reviews of books which we had prepared for this number.
FLORENCE, Nov. 10th, 1844.
ENGLISH readers, and English reviewers also, Mr. Editor, are wont frequently to complain of the too exuberant fertility of our own press. Books are multiplied more rapidly than the most persevering and indefatigable reading power can dispose of them. Then what quantities of merest trash deluges our library tables, and the shelves of the booksellers! How much chaff is mingled with the corn! Ungrateful public!- O fortunati sua si bona norint,' English readers! Your rich crop is mingled with weeds, is it? Know you not that weeds indicate the fertility and strong productive power of the soil? You grumble over the rank exuberance of your harvests. How would dead sterility content you? Receive then with patience, long-suffering, ay, with gladness, all Essays, Histories, Treatises, Memoirs, Travels, Novels, and other printed ware whatsoever. It has been written that A book's a book altho' there's nothing in't,' and the dictum has-very unlike most other dicta-more instead of less sense in it than the writer of it intended. When books with nothing in them are thrust upon us, there will, it is certain, be plenty of books rich in matter. The writing faculty reaches latest those who are least capable of writing well; and when blockheads write it is that all write.
Would to heaven that such was our condition here in Italy! Would to heaven that it could be permitted to Italy to receive the product of the unnumbered rich intellects of her sons, now compelled to unwilling, nay, agonising silence, at the simple cost of receiving also, and disposing of as best she might, all that her weaker vessels might be induced by unlimited licence of publishing, to bring forth. Gunpowder Plot! Foolish Guy Fawkes! What is your gunpowder plot to a printer's ink plot! What may not that be expected to blow up!
It is this incalculably dangerous printing-ink plot that the sovereigns of Italy are unceasingly active in providing and guarding against. When the traveller has reached the confines of la bella Italia, what does the sagacious Charles Albert of Sardinia most anxiously inquire of him? What is the grand object of the minute scrutiny to which his baggage is subjected? Books and Tobacco. To the latter the intelligent monarch objects, as being himself exclusive Tobacconist to his unfortunate cabbage-leaf-smoking subjects. To the former article his antipathy is positive, invincible, and in truth not unreasonable. Not unreasonable, Charles Albert! For despite thy caution, thy guards, thy trained douaniers, this so damnable printing-ink is too subtle an agent to be kept out. Stop up every crevice of your darkened dominions as you may, fatal leakages appear in all parts. Already the danger is imminent. The destructive element is gaining on you. And, trust me, those who best know the nature of this magic fluid consider your doom and that of your fellows to be sealed!
Yes! despite the systematic and well-combined endeavours of the Italian sovereigns-with one exception-to crush the intellects of their subjects,--to keep down every manifestation of intelligence,-to shut out the light, and
Niccolini's 'Arnaldo da Brescia.'
to keep their people in a condition of childhood,-progress is observable in a right direction.
Botta's history has now recently been published entire in Lombardy, for the first time. It is an important fact. For no work has given more offence to the Austrian government, or has been more rigorously prohibited and excluded. Are we then to suppose that Austria has changed either her own views, or her opinion of the tendencies of Signor Botta's work? By no means! But Austria has given up excluding Botta as a bad job.' It has found that an untenable point; and has retreated. And so it will be with another and another. And through the hole by which Botta has now passed, a bigger than Botta will soon be able to squeeze himself.
The result of this forced and most involuntary relaxation on the part of the rulers of Italy is beginning to manifest itself in all quarters. And although the state of things is still such, that no Italian can dream of writing on any of the great questions, that most immediately concern the social and moral well-being of mankind, yet the Italian mind is becoming gradually awakened; opinion is beginning timidly and cautiously to show itself, creeping out to the light of day by such indirect paths, and small outlets as the vigilance of despotism finds it impossible to close hermetically;—and as a necessary consequence books are multiplied.
The one exception, alluded to above, which exists to the universality of despotic and antisocial principles among the sovereigns of Italy, is obvious enough to all who have ever interested themselves in Italian affairs and prospects. The exception presented by the Grand Duke of Tuscany is an important and a bright one. The grand duke is, probably, one of the most liberal-minded men in his dominions. The misfortune is, that he is far more so than the majority of his people. In fact, the excellent government of Tuscany, the character of its prince, and the affection of all classes of his people for him, are obstacles in the way of revolution in Italy. There are no revolutionists Tuscany. Every body is too well contented with things as they are. And Italian patriots of other cities fail not to upbraid the Florentines with their poco-curante political apathy. It is in Bologna, in Rome, in Milan, and in Naples, that the fermenting materials must be sought which are to revolutionise the Peninsula. Oppressive governments, imbecile and bigoted princes, tyrannical institutions-these are the surest and most effectual abolishers of despotism.
It is much believed that the Grand Duke of Tuscany would willingly lend his aid to the establishment of a free constitutional government in his dominions, if it were in his power to do so. But Austria, with its dead weight of leaden influence, oppressing, like the hideous nightmare, the heaving breast of Italy, says No! And Tuscany has no power to resist the brutum fulmen of the imperial despotism.
It is, nevertheless, abundantly clear, that the liberal feelings and principles of the grand duke are by no means entirely inoperative in Tuscany. They are, on the contrary, visible in a thousand small matters of internal administration; and in things literary especially symptoms of toleration are observable. which cannot but have the effect of attracting to Tuscany the intelligence and talent of the Peninsula, and tending thus to render Florence the capital, at least, of intellectual and literary Italy.
Thus, last year, when Niccolini's Arnold of Brescia' appeared, it was rigorously prohibited throughout Italy. It was, indeed, a book to make her tyrants tremble on their thrones. A more awakening cry against the twofold tyranny of the church and the empire-of Austria and of Rome--under which Italy is groaning, has not been heard by her people. A more vigorous and damaging attack against the unholy alliance of Cæsar,' and 'Peter,' for the
VOL. XXXIV. NO. LXVIII.
spiritual and temporal oppression of the nations, has never aroused the rage of Vienna and the terrors of the Vatican. A more thrilling cry to union has never been sounded from the Alps to the point of Calabria. The volume was printed at Marseilles; and was instantly prohibited with the utmost rigour throughout the states of Italy. Tuscany could not stand alone, and refuse to join in the prohibition. Arnaldo da Brescia' was a prohibited book also in Tuscany. But three thousand copies were sold in a few weeks in Florence; and the author, instead of taking up his residence in St. Elmo, as he would have done had his home been Naples, or being marched off to Spielsberg, as would have happened had he had the misfortune of being a Milanese, continued and continues in the undisturbed and peaceable enjoyment of the affection and society of his friends, and the applause and admiration of his fellow-citizens. It is, moreover, within our knowledge, that when some would-be lick-spittle parasite, who little knew the man he wished to toady, offered to the grand duke to write a reply to Arnaldo da Brescia,' the proposal was rejected with marked coldness, and its author dismissed with the answer that the grand duke did not wish any thing to be said upon the subject. It should be mentioned, too, that Niccolini was enjoying, and still enjoys, a government salary as professor at the Academy delle belle Arti.'
All honour therefore from every friend to Italy to Leopold II. of Tuscany-a despotic monarch against his inclinations;-a liberal prince and enlightened philanthropist despite his position; and most righteously entitled by his administration to the appellation, which ancient Florence selected as most expressive of its reverence and affection for a beloved ruler, of Pater Patriæ.'
While Orioli of Bologna pines in his distant exile at Corfu;-while poor Bozzelli of Naples, innocent of aught save of having been mentioned to one friend by another known to hold constitutional opinions, in a letter intercepted by the spies of the government, is passing his weary days and nights in the hopeless dungeons of St. Elmo ;-while so many others of Italy's best and worthiest sons are atoning for their patriotism in prison or in exile, the author of Arnaldo da Brescia' has been tranquilly preparing for publication an edition of his collected works, which has just appeared in three volumes, post 8vo.
A considerable quantity of new matter has been added by the poet to the old favourites of the Italian reading world in these volumes. Two new tragedies Agamennone' and Beatrice Cenci,' are the most important additions. A Discourse on the Tragedy of the Greeks, and on that of Italy,' Occupying nearly a hundred pages of the first volume, is also now published for the first time, being prefixed to the Agamemnon. This essay expresses in strong language the veteran poet's opinion of the modern romantic school of art. He laments the desertion of the high ideal for the low natural, and complains that it to this notion that we are indebted for Marion Delorme,' and the truly monstrous Lucrece Borgia.'
From this he goes on to instance in the Mysteries of Paris,' the truth of the principle that the imitation of evil ever goes beyond its example, as contrarywise that of what is good falls short of it.' After giving a brief resumé of the story, he adds: This is what a contempt for art and for the ideal has brought us to! If the innovators, who usurp the name of philosophers, had better known the eternal laws of human nature, they would have been aware that, inasmuch as the sentiment of the beautiful is conjoined to that of what is good, outrages on morality would follow upon outrages on good taste.
These opinions of the Italian patriot poet I have transcribed for the benefit