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ment was made on the south-eastern extremity of Madagascar, the river when it was dark, carrying with him a lighted firebrand and a fort built, which was called Fort Dauphin. We have no to scare those dreaded monsters. Drury was brought home to space to follow the narrative of the repeated attempts made by the England by a vessel which came to Madagascar for slaves. French to effect a permanent settlement. Bad or weak-minded Domestic slavery has been, from time immemorial, a part of men were too often at the head of the infant colony; quarrels the constitution of society in Madagascar; and, like the Britons and wars with the natives were frequent ; and M. Lescallier, who at the time of the invasion of Julius Cæsar, or the New Zea. was deputed, in 1792, by the French National Assembly, to visit landers of the present day, the various tribes consigned their Madagascar, thus reports :-"Europeans have hardly ever visited prisoners of war to slavery. But early in the eighteenth century, this island but to ill-treat the natives, and to exact forced ser- the exportation of slaves grew into a great trade. Madagascar vices from them; to excite and foment quarrels amongst them, had been for mang years a resort of reckless sailors, who turned for the purpose of purchasing the slaves that are taken on both pirates *, and infested the Indian seas. But their establishments sides in the consequent wars ; in a word, they have left no other having been broken up, many of them became slave factors. marks of having been there but the effects of their cupidity. The Enormous was the mischief thus inflicted on the natives ; internal French government has, at long intervals, formed, or rather wars were excited ; and all the evils followed which spring from attempted to form, establishments amongst these people, but the cupidity, violence, and lawless indulgence. Yet even amid the agents in these enterprises have attended exclusively to the inte horrors of that detestable trade, we can perceive something like rests and emoluments of the Europeans, while the interests and good springing from it. In return for slaves, various commodities well-being of the natives have been entirely forgotten."
were imported; new wants were created, and some of the advanRobert Drury's interesting narrative of his fifteen years' deten- tages as well as the evils of civilisation began to be diffused tion in Madagascar gave to the English a better idea of the cli- among the people. mate, natives, and resources of the island, than they had hitherto It appears that Madagascar has been peopled by different races obtained. Robert Drury was the son of the landlord of the at different periods. We perceive from Marco Polo that the King's Head in the Old Jewry, London; and having, at the age island was frequented by Arabians, and some of the tribes on the of 14, a passionate wish to go to sea, was sent out in a vessel to eastern coast are of Arabian descent. A great immigration has the East Indies, his careful mother providing him with all com- also evidently taken place from the African continent, a large forts, in the hope that a single voyage would cure him of his proportion of the natives being black, with “woolly” hair. sea-faring inclination. On the homeward voyage the vessel was But there is also an olive-coloured race, which has exercised wrecked on the coast of Madagascar in 1702. A large number of nearly as much influence on the civilisation of Madagascar as the the people on board got safe to land, where they were, on the Normans did on that of England. Whence they came, and when, whole, kindly treated by a native chief; but becoming furious are matters for speculation ; they are not aborigines; they now at their detention, violent counsels were adopted, the chief was occupy chiefly the central portion of Madagascar, which is an seized as a prisoner, and the whole party undertook a perilous elevated and 'hilly country, not so fertile, but far more salubrious march, or rather flight, pursued and harassed by the natives. than the coast. The tradition is, that they came from the southDrury details the subsequent proceedings with some minuteness ; east, and dispossessed or conquered the aborigines, who are tradi. the natives repeatedly overtook the flying party; the chief was tionally known as the Vazimba, and whose graves are objects of restored to his people on a promise of no further molestation idolatrous veneration to their conquerors, as the barrows of the being given, but still the pursuit was continued ; the fatigued ancient Britons are objects of curiosity to ourselves. The name and the stragglers were cut off; and at last, the more hardy and of this olive-coloured race is the Hovahs ; the central province resolute having got greatly a-head of the pursuers, those who which they inhabit is called Ankova, the “ country of the Hovahs," remained behind were assaulted and slain, Drury being preserved, the h being changed into k; and this province contains Tanana. his youth having saved him.
rivo, which, within the last half century, has become the capital Drury spent fifteen years in Madagascar, “ suffering almost of Madagascar. every kind of privation and distress, became a domestic slave, “ In the early part of the reign of the father of the late Radama, a and as such passed from the hands of one proprietor to another, period not more than seventy years ago, the Malagasy were divided sometimes experiencing kindness, but more frequently being into not fewer than fifty distinct tribes, governed by their respective treated in a manner, which, though not regarded as cruel by his chieftains, and independent of each other; the chief of each tribe exermasters, must often have embittered the regrets with which he cising absolute power over the lives, property, and services of bis subremembered the reckless desertion of his own pleasant home.” jects. Since that period the processes of amalgamation have been He at one time made his escape, for the purpose of reaching rapid and effectual, and the principal divisions now recognised are those St. Augustine's Bay, in the hope of meeting with some of his already named. All the rest are either subdivisions of these, or people countrymen ; and his description of his lonely wanderings in the belonging to one or the other intermixed. That they are all nearly country can only be compared to the narrative of Ross Cox, when, the same, is manifest from their general colour, language, customs, without arms or food, he lost the party with which he was tra- and the names of towns, rivers, bills, and productious.' velling across the American continent, from the Colombia River The father of Radama, mentioned in the preceding extract, to Canada. Ross Cox tells us that at one time a wolf faced him, from Mr. Ellis's recently published “History of Madagascar," was and he had no other resource but to boldly face it too, while he a Hovah chieftain, who began that acquisition and centralization shouted out all the names of all the acquaintances he could recol- of power which was still farther carried out by Radama himself, lect, to make the animal believe he had friends at hand. At another and will probably result in making the people of Madagascar time he went to sleep in the hollow trunk of a tree, which proved united, national, and subject to one government. Radama's to be a bear's rest, and was awakened by Bruin returning home. father is “universally represented as having been a man of great Confounding his visitor by a sudden blow with a stick, he got energy of character, bold, brave, and adventurous, yet possessing time to ascend a tree : but the bear watched him with persevering an eminent share of prudence, sagacity, and shrewdness." He attention, and it was only when it went off to get a meal, that died in 1808. Of Radama, who was a second son, (his elder Ross Cox had an opportunity of escaping from the unpleasant brother having been put to death for a conspiracy against his neighbourhood. Robert Drury was not troubled with bears or father,) the following characteristic anecdote is told wolves ; but one night, as he lay asleep between the decaying “ When quite a child, having observed that his father and mother embers of two fires he had kindled, a fox began to pull away at had some dispute, and that the latter had been sent from home his heel ; and when Drury started up and struck it with a brand, divorced, he contrived one day during his father's absence to get a the audacious creature few at his face, and was with difficulty chicken, which he tied to the leg of a chair in the house. His father beaten off. At another time, as he was trying to cross a river, on bis return inquired who had done this, and was told Radama. The he was chased by a crocodile. “As I was searching," he says, child was called, and asked why he had so treated the little animal. “for a proper place to wade through, or swim over, I spied a large He replied, it was a little chicken crying for its mother.' Impoina crocodile ; I still walked upon the banks, and in a short time saw took the hint, sent for his wife home, and the dispute which had sepathree more.
This was a mortifying stroke, and almost dispirited rated them terminated." me.
I went on until I came to a shallower place, when I entered We now arrive at an important era in the history of the civilithe river about ten yards : but seeing a crocodile make towards
One of Defoe's works is, the Life, Adventures, and Piracies of the me, I ran directly back. He pursued me until I got into vert
famous Captain Singleton, containing an account of his being set ashore at shallow water, and then he turned back into the deep, for the Madagascar, his settlement there, with a description of the place and will never attack a man near the shore.” He afterwards crossed inhabitants.
sation of Madagascar. The enlightened governor of the Mau- for the method of training oxen for the yoke, and to carry burdens. ritius, Mr. afterwards Sir Robert Farquhar, sent, in 1815, a party Though passionately and avowedly fond of amusements, he neither of English to form a settlement on Madagascar. The settlers, introduced nor encouraged them in Madagascar. His constant aim having inconsiderately offended a badly-disposed chief, were all was to set an example of industry; and hence, although a billiard-table treacherously slain by his contrivance. Governor Farquhar de- was opened by a European at Tananarivo, he neither played himself spatched Captain Le Sage to inquire into the matter. The other nor gave it his sanction. chieftains in the neighbourhood not only disavowed all participa- “ The Protestant mission in Madagascar is deeply indebted to the tion in the affair, but gave a proof of their sincerity by causing support and countenance of Mr. Hastie. He was not only ready on the offender to be apprehended, tried, and executed. Captain Le all occasions to sanction its labours when solicited, but voluntarily Sage then went on an embassy to Radama, who, though but a embraced every opportunity by which he could manifest the cordial mere youth, was making himself famous as the most powerful interest he felt in its prosperity, believing it to be among the most chieftain in the island. Radama received Captain Le Sage with important means for securing his favourite object--the civilisation of great attention. Two of his brothers were sent to the Mauritius Madagascar.” to be educated; and Governor Farquhar, in looking out for a
Two years after Mr. Hastie's death, Radama followed him to preceptor, selected a man who had been a common soldier, and was
the grave. He succeeded his father at the age of sixteen, and died now a non-commissioned officer. This was the late Mr. Hastie, at that of thirty-six; he found Tananarivo, not what its name a worthy and an honourable name. He was the son of Quakers would imply— a thousand towns”—but a mere village, and he in Cork; grieved his parents by his gay disposition, and still left it adorned with many excellent houses, roads, plantations, and more by enlisting in the army; and came, in the providence of with an increased and increasing population ; his father left him God, to occupy a position, where what he did will yet ripen into fruit , and shed its influence over unborn generations. Mr. Hastie chief termed him, surpassed his father's fame, for he was the first
a reputation to be sustained, and the “ beardless boy,” as a rival attracted the attention of Governor Farquhar by his exertions in to reduce Madagascar to a real or nominal dependence ; and aiding to extinguish a fire which broke out in the government having a proud, ambitious spirit, being keenly sensitive to reputahouse, at Port Louis, and was recommended for a commission in tion, and quick to perceive his country's good, he adopted imthe army. Meantime, in 1817, he went over to Madagascar with provements even of the most novel description, and carried all his the young princes ; and found that a soldier of the name of Brady, purposes with a high hand. It is to be deeply regretted that whom Captain Le Sage had left behind him, had greatly improved such a man should have given way to self-indulgence, to the ruin Radama's troops. Mr. Hastie returned to the Mauritius; but, of his constitution, in the very prime and best estate of his life. after an interval
, was settled at Tananarivo as British agent, and On his coffin was placed the following inscription-(Manjaka acquired great influence over the mind of Radama, though for a signifies king)-the first of the kind that with any justice could time that influence was put to severe trial. One of Sir Robert have been inscribed to the memory of a Madagascar prince :Farquhar's objects was to procure a treaty with Radama, to abolish the slave-trade. This was not only opposed to the pecuniary
Tananarivo_1 August, 1828, interests of the slave-traders, but Radama's principal revenue was
RADAMA MANJAKA. derived from the traffic, and his subjects looked to it as a commercial
Unequalled among the Princes, staple. But Mr. Hastie induced him to agree to a treaty for
Sovereign its abolition, on the condition of certain annual supplies being
Of the Island. paid by the English government. The treaty was faithfully kept Great confusion followed the death of Radama. But at last one for a time by Radama, and he put to death some of his subjects of his queens, Ranavalona, a woman, doubtless, of energy and spirit, for daring to disobey his orders. But the supplies never came; however they may be directed-was proclaimed his successor, to Governor Parquhar had gone home on leave of absence, and the the exclusion of his favourite queen and daughter. The usurpation acting governor of the Mauritius broke off all connexion with was immediately marked by blood. Prince Rataffe, who was mar. Radama; the slave-trade was resumed, and “false as the ried to Radama's sister, and who had created considerable interest English ” became a proverb amongst the Hovahs. On Sir Robert in London by his visit to our capital in 1821, was put to death, Farquhar's return in 1820, he re-opened the communication ; and after a mock trial, and his wife was speared. Several of Radama's Mr. Hastie returned to Madagascar, accompanied by the mis- ablest chief men shared the same fate. During Radama's lifetime sionary Mr. Jones, from the London Missionary Society, who the party opposed to innovation—who hated the Missionaries and had been for several years watching for an opportunity to occupy their schools-had been kept in check, though their complaints this interesting field of labour. Mr. Hastie had an arduous task compelled their imperious monarch on one occasion to tell the to remove the impression which had been made. But the activity Missionaries that they were going on too fast. Now, with the of a straight-forward, manly mind, managing a rude, energetic, accession of Ranavalona, an opposite policy was introduced; and and ambitious one, and directing all its appeals with admirable the first victims to it were the illustrious natives who had patronjudgment, dexterity, and tact, at last triumphed over all oppo-ized the new system. But Ranavalona went farther-she annulsition, and the Madagascar slave-trade was abolished.
led the treaty with Britain, and permitted Mr. Hastie's successor, Mr. Hastie died in 1826, at Tananarivo, having met with a Mr. Lyall, to be driven out of the country with indignities for which series of accidents and illnesses before his death, which broke up Radama would have exacted a plentiful crop of heads. his constitution. He died at the early age of forty. Radama Meantime the coronation of the new queen was celebrated with watched his sick bed, and wept over his grave; and the following a splendour unknown before in Madagascar, showing, in a most testimonial, truly eloquent in matter, is inscribed by Mr. Ellis to decided manner, the progress that had been made during the late his memory i
reign. Ranavalona was crowned on the 12th of June, 1829. “It would be fruitless to attempt anything like an account of the Upwards of 60,000 people were assembled to witness the cereindividual instances in which Mr. Hastic endeavoured to promote the mony, which took place in a large open space near the capital, great work of civilisation in Madagascar. The introduction of the first where the Kabaries or public assemblies are held. The Europeans Protestant missionaries to the capital ; tl:e wise, humane, and judicions in Tananarivo had a place reserved for them behind the platform, counsels he gave to Radama; and the faithful, laborious, persevering with a guard of two hundred soldiers to protect them from the efforts made to effect the abolition of the slave-trade, and the suppres- crowd. We cannot give the whole of the coronation ceremonial, sion of the piratical attacks on the Comoro islands, have been already as detailed by Mr. Ēllis; it would really appear to advantage detailed. His successful efforts with the king to induce a commutation beside our own; but we may find room for the following passage :of capital punishments, by snbstituting hard labour in chains, is as “When the queen entered the place of assembly, she was carried creditable to his humanity, as the reduction of money from 70, 80, towards the sacred stone, which stands about one hundred yards from the and 100 per cent. to 33, is to his sound policy, in a country where platform on which the sovereign usually appears. Alighting on the capital is small, and requires encouragement. Besides the good already south side of the stone, her majesty ascended it, and stood with her stated, Madagascar is indebted to Mr. Hastie for the introduction of face towards the east, being surrounded by five generals, each holding the horse, and many other useful and valuable animals, and of seeds his cap or helmet in one hand, and a drawn sword in the other, the and plants of various descriptions. He had made arrangements with band at the same time playing the national air.
standing the king for the manufacture of sugar, and, a short time before his upon the sacred stone, exclaimed, “ Masina, masina, v'aho?' i. e. ' Am decease, ordered apparatus from England for that purpose. He had I consecrated, consecrated, consecrated ?'' The five generals replied, also introduced two ploughs, a harrow, and some wheel-carriages, with Masina, masina, masina, hianao !'—You are consecrated, consevarious implements of industry; and to him the people are indebted crated, consecrated ! Then all the crowd shouted, • Trarantitra hianao, Ranavalomanjaka !' i. e. ' Long may you live, Ranavaloman.
LIFE AND CHARACTER OF MRS. FELICIA jaka !' Tho queen, then doscending from the stone on the cast side,
HEMANS*. took the idols Manjakatsiroa and Fantaka into her hands, and addressed thom, saying, “My predecessors have given you to mo. I put my
Ir is one of the beauties of Christianity that it not only warns trust in you ; therefore support me!' She then delivered them into the soul of the future, and fits it for the life to come, but also the hands of their respective keepers, entered her palanquin, and was
sheds its kindly influence over the relations of the present. It is borne towards the platform."
adapted to every situation and circumstance in which we may be The Missionaries, after the accession of Ranavalona, did not placed. Interwoven with the best habits and dispositions of our
nature, its gentle graces, like the dews of heaven, water every immediately experience any inconvenience, farther than the loss fertile soil. It is serious in the solemn worship of the sanctuary ; of court favour and patronage.
But their proceedings were
it is tender and familiar in the affections of the household ; it is strictly watched ; restriction after restriction was placed on their the friendly companion amid the scenes of nature ; it is the stay preaching and teaching; the natives were restrained from free of adversity, and the best comfort of prosperity: it never deserts communication with them; and one Sunday, as the queen passed
us. Wherever a man has a true source of enjoyment, it is present the chapel, and heard the congregation singing, she exclaimed that these people would not stop till they had lost their heads! | the conditions of our state. It nerves the arm of the artisan at
to sanctify and increase the happiness. Christianity embraces all The Missionaries, notwithstanding, continued cautiously their his daily labour ; it strengthens the soldier in patriotism ; it operations, endeavouring to avoid cause of offence. The New enlightens the study of the philosopher ; it teaches the scholar Testament was finished in 1830, and a printing-press and types his just end and aim ; it seconds the call of duty; it invigorates brought from London in 1834. was roused by insinuations that the objects of the Missionaries every faculty to its most perfect exercise. Nor does it fail the
mere man of letters in his pursuit of literature, but it meets the were ulterior and political, tending to the overthrow of the govern; author in his closet and infuses into his page the real and natural ment; and at a great “ kabary,” or assembly of the people, held interests of life. For it lays before him in the Bible the best early in the year 1835, the decree was issued for the suppression model of composition ever jenned, and awakes in him the influof Christianity. All things considered, this decree is a very remarkable state document ; the following passage contains the It shows him effects not in themselves, but linked to a first Great
ence of noble precept and example. It enlarges his understanding. whole spirit of the objections of the Madagascar government to Cause. It unfolds futurity, and thus gives the necessary complethe propagation of Christianity :
tion to the history of man. It creates new sympathies in the " As to baptism, socioties, places of worship, distinct from the kind, for it teaches that all men are brothers, and humility the schools, and the observances of tho sabbath, how many rulors are there corner-stone of virtue. It cultivates the love of nature. It in this land? Is it not I alone that rulo? These things are not to be cherishes the domestic ties, and reads a brighter memorial in the dono, they aro unlawful in my country, saith Ranavalomanjaka, for tear of affection than in the most successful effort of policy. It is they are not the customs of our ancestors, and I do not change their spiritual, and looks to the emotions of the soul above the great customs, excepting as to things alone which improve my country.” acts of fortune. In fine, it embraces the very spirit of literature ;
This decree completely stopped the operations of the Mission- dwelling in the heart, and rendering every thought sensitive to aries, who seeing no change in the sentiments of the government, the claims of humanity. left Madagascar in 1836, and went to the Mauritius. The native These remarks might be pursued, but we hasten to illustrate Christians, who were numerous, have been subjected to a bitter then by the example of Mrs. Hemans. By observing the su. persecution, have been obliged to read their copies of the Scrip. periority of her verse to that of the poetesses of the day, and of tures in secrecy, and to meet by stealth ; and many have lost their her later to her early writings, in connexion with her history, we lives. Mr. Ellis records the fate of an interesting and noble- must be led to attribute the different character to the influence of minded lady. Indeed the whole reign of Ranavalona has been religion inspiring her later poetry with more natural interest, hitherto marked by the blood of the best and bravest of her and fitting it for its just end-an intimacy with the religious prinpeople.
ciples of our nature. But there is hope for Madagascar. The very circumstance of a Mrs. Hemans set out in life with all the ardour and enthusiasm well-appointed embassy being sent to Paris and London in 1836, of genius. She showed her individual character almost in her shows what progress the nation is making. The language has childhood. Her parents' residence in Wales, surrounded by lofiy been written ; the foundation of a literature laid ; the Scriptures bills, and bordering on the ocean, brought her under poetic in. have been translated; useful arts have been introduced; and if fluences she was formed to experience and retain. Often do we Christianity be not utterly exterminated, it will revive with more find her in after life, recurring in her imagery to the scenes of her power. If the comparison does not appear too far-fetched, we youth. Living apart from the world, her soul dwelt in a sphere may term Radama the Henry the Eighth of Madagascar, and his of its own-weaving peculiar associations into an ideal world for its successor a combination of the Mary and Elizabeth.
She cultivated only the imagination ; all her thoughts not hope that this “ Great Britain of Africa,” as Mr. Ellis terms were tinged with romance. This, as her biographer remarks, has it, is yet destined to be a great nation ?
its evils as well as its advantages. While she was looking on The natives, customs, and physical characteristics of Madagascar all things in a poetic light, seeing only the fanciful and romantic afford ample materials for another article. We shall therefore, at separated from the gross and actual, her affections were lost to the an early period, return to the island.
thousand social sympathies with mankind, which only an actual participation in their joys and sorrows, a mingling with the com
mon routine of life, can confer. But this was destined to be THE ADORATION OF THE MAGI.
remedied in the sad experience of life, loosing one by one these
ties, and fastening them to more real objects of interest. Over deserts wide and far
The poetical character of Mrs. Hemans' mind being thus early They have traced the guiding star ;
established, her muse was never silent; but sent forth to the world
a long series of works which, undergoing some curtailment—as what Still with eyes of faith they gaze
modern poets shall not ?-will be remembered with the language. On the mystic meteor's blaze.
Her first pieces were little more than specimens of skilful versificaTo Bethlem's stable points the sign,
tion; as she advanced, her individual manner appeared in the Rude cradle for a babe divine!
truly woman-like feeling which marked her poetry. The selection There the Virgin-mother mild,
of subjects, the delicacy of taste, the nice perception of beauty, Gazed upon her heavenly child,
the heroic ardour shown in her writings, nay even their fluency,
evince the feminine nature of her mind. Her women share the While all around the Shepherds bent Honouring him their God had sent,
grace and softness with the high-toned spirit of her disposition.
In great trials they are courageous with the boldest, and where The bearer of his gracious will
they may not do or die, they can submit with heroism. The Who his promise should fulfil,
“ Records of Woman" are a trophy for her sex ; its constancy, And in this his wondrous birth
devotion, patriotism, and love, are commemorated in strains that Give hope and happiness to earth.
should be dear to every female heart. It was reserved, however,
• From the New York Review.
May we abode.
for her later works to add to these a still nobler memorial—the is hardly any scene of a happy, though serious domestic life, or any strength and endurance of woman's piety.
mood of a reflective mind, with the spirit of which some one or other Another of the early characteristics of Mrs. Hemans' verse was of them does not beautifully barmonize. This author is the true its patriotic tone. Her mind clung to every trait of national cha. Poet of Home, and of all the lofty feelings which have their root in racter wherever it might be found. Her fine martial and lyric the soil of home affections. His fine sonnets to liberty, and indeed all ** Lays" are of “Many Lands." They embrace the northern his pieces which have any reference to political interest, remind me of legend of "Runic rhyme" with the tradition of the south._Songs the spirit in which Schiller has conceived the character of William Tell of ancient Greece awake in the stirring pages with the old English -a calm, single-hearted herdsman of the hills, breaking forth into a war message. The German harvest song equally with the Indian fiery and indignant eloquence, when the sanctity of his hearth is invaded.” tale enlists her sympathy, while America owes her a debt of
After this introduction, Mrs. Hemans became a student of gratitude for the bold and picturesque
Wordsworth, so that, at least during the later years of her life, a “ Landing of the Pilgrim Fathers."
single day never passed without a reference to his works. It was But her attention became awakened to simpler objects. In a indeed a source of pleasure to her when she lived a summer at gay mood she could always surrender herself to an " Hour of "The Lakes," during part of the time an inmate at Rydal Mount. Romance," and live over some old dream of chivalry; but as the Her acquaintance with the man did not detract from the idea of pressing interests of life closed around her, she gave herself to
his writings. more real though less ambitious topics. The poetry of domestic Intimacy with the poetry of Wordsworth doubtless led the way life, as it appears in the excitement
of joy, the calm sufferance of to the change to a more serious character in Mrs. Hemans' verse, affliction, or the hope of hereafter, arrested her thoughts. Slie which the severe school of affliction afterwards matured. The felt that this came home to the hearts of all; that while other “Quarterly Review" of 1820, in a notice of her poems, says, " In themes might attract the fancy or imagination, this was buried our opinion, all ber poems are elegant and pure in thought and deep in the soul with an interest permanent as our nature. She language ; her later poems are of higher promise, they are vigorous, knew that other associations of man would lose their force-the picturesque, and pathetic." There was yet a third stage to which storied castle perish with the record of human glory-while this they afterwards attained—they became sublime and religious. It remained a part of our common humanity
was not till sickness had touched her frame, and sorrow tamed the " There may the bard's high themes be found,
wildness of her spirit, that she reached her worthiest efforts in We die, we pass away:
song. As her heart was purified from the world, her mind was But faith, love, pily-these are bound
freed also, and soared to a better element. Its purpose was fixed, To earth without decay.
for it had found an appropriate object in the religious sympathies The heart that burns, the cheek that glows,
of life. Not only the domestic affections, but even the beauties The tear from hidden springs,
of nature, ever familiar to her verse, were coloured with a new The thorn and glory of the rose
aspect. They were not only holy or fair in themselves, but they These are undying things."
reflected the qualities of their Creator. The passions of life, before This change in the poetry of Mrs. Hemans, caused by a devo- by the prospects of Revelation, connected to an endless existence
so imperfectly represented in their brief hour of excitement, were, tion to real life, may in no slight degree be attributed to the hereafter. There, just poetry, like true morality, must find its study of Wordsworth. When she had once become acquainted with his works, they were ever after her chosen oracles. What end; all else falls short of its proper aim. This is well illustrated she says in one of her letters of the lake scenery, “ My spirit is by our authoress herself in one of her letters. She is speaking of
“ It was with some difficulty that I too much lulled by these sweet scenes to breathe one word of refrained from making Alcestis express the hope of an immortal sword and spear, until I have bid Winandermere farewell," may re-union. I knew this would be out of character, and yet could be extended to the mighty genius of the place. The poetry of scarcely imagine how love so infinite in its nature could ever have Wordsworth opened her a new being. She had before looked existed without the hope (even if undefined and unacknowledged) upon the world with an eye to the fanciful and romantic; she of a heavenly country, an unchangeable resting-place. This now saw the simple and religious. Her thoughts of the affections awoke in me many other thoughts with regard to the state of had been always blended with the woman's love of excitement, human affections, their hopes, and their conflicts, in the days of the interest of battle and engagement, the knightly banquet and the "gay religions, full of pomp and gold,' which, offering, as they the aged midstrel, the tilt and tourney, the masquerade, and all did, so much of grace and beauty to the imagination, yet held out the ancient retinue of chivalry; now they were attempered to a kindlier feeling. Her harp had echoed to the notes of glory and I affections owed to a deeper and more spiritual faith, to the idea
so little comfort to the heart. Then I thought how much these adventure: it was now responsive to the vibrations of the soul. of a God who knows all our inward struggles, and pities our She became acquainted in his pages with
sufferings." "The still sad music of humanity"
The best corollary on what we have written is to be found in the stealing gently from the heart of every human being, the simple as actual experience of Mrs. Hemans, as recorded by herself. She well as the learned, the cottager and peasant alike with the
noble- writes, the year before her death, serious with the solemn purpose man, the humblest with the most elevated. Here she found of life, “ I have now passed through the feverish and somewhat something like repose. The tempest of the passions was stayed, visionary state of mind, often connected with the passionate study the airy visions of fancy were called home, and she came to learn of art in early life ; deep affections and deep sorrows seem to have the calm of true poetry. In her own language her earlier works solenınized my whole being, and I now feel as if bound to higher had been
and holier tasks, which though I may occasionally lay aside, I "Sad sweet fragments of a strain
could not long wander from without some sense of dereliction." First notes of some yet straggling harmony,
And about the same period—“ The more I look for indications of By the strong rush, the crowding joy and pain
the connexion between the human spirit and its eternal source, of many inspirations met, and held
the more extensively I see those traces open before me, and the From its true sphere."
more indelibly they appear stamped upon our mysterious nature. It may not be uninteresting to the reader to quote Mrs. Hemans' I cannot but think that my mind has both expanded and strength. own words with respect to Wordsworth. Her first acquaintance ened during the contemplation of such things, and that it will thus with his writings is celebrated in a letter to Miss Jewsbury : by degrees arise to a higher and purer sphere of action than it has
“ The enclosed lines (those to the poet Wordsworth) are effusions yet known. If any. ears of peace and affection be granted to my of deep and sincere admiration, and will give you some idea of the en. future life, I think I may prove that the discipline of storms has, joyment, and I hope I may say, advantage, which you have been the at least, not been without a purifying and ennobling influence.' means of imparting by so kindly intrusting me with your precious copy | These few sentences unfold the true secret of Mrs. Hemans' later of Wordsworth's Miscellaneous Poems. It has opened to me such a
It is the “ discipline of storms" that must elevate the treasure of thought and feeling, that I shall always associate your name human character. Prosperity may be joyful to the sense, but with some of my pleasan test recollections, as having introduced me to the adversity is healthful to the soul. “Certainly virtue is like preknowledge of what I can only regret should have been so long a cious odours, most fragrant when they are incensed or crushed.” Yarrow Unvisited. I could not write to you sooner, because I
Under the combined influence of improved taste, much sorrow, wished to tell you that I had really studied these poems, and they have and a firmly infixed religious principle, Mrs. Hemans wrote her been the daily food of my mind ever since I borrowed them. There last work, " The Scenes and Hymns of Life." It is certainly, as
a literary composition, her best production, and justifies her con- duced them. We see one walking to and fro among us, mingling fidence, had her life been prolonged, of giving to the world some with us in the business and the charities of life, apparently superior thing far superior to her other writings. As admirers of her verse,
to ourselves in no internal endowment, and perhaps inferior to we would point to this, and show Christianity to be the best in
ourselves in external advantages and possessions. This man structor in literature. It will bear the test of criticism. To note an occasional beauty-she has a power of condensed expression remains among us, or perhaps we lose sight of him for several rarely acquired by the female writer, which appears in single lines years, after which he comes upon us all unawares, as one more of great force. Calling poetic inspiration
respected and distinguished than ourselves—one who receives more “ The gist, the visiou of the unseal'd eye,"
greetings in the streets and market-places-one who can afford to she approaches Wordsworth’s “ Vision and the faculty divine." fare and dress better than ourselves. Most people are content to Her allusions in these poems are incidental, and far more vigorous account for this by exclaiming, “Some people are born with silver than in her earlier works. When she speaks, in “The Prayer of spoons in their mouths !” This may be a very short and easy the Lonely Student,” of
way of reaching a solution ; but it is not a just one.
If one "The grave sweetness on the brow of Truth,"
inquire minutely into the history of such a person, we shall gene. we fancy almost that the dream of Plato has been realized, and rally find that conduct, and not chance-conduct more than even that we are looking upon the countenance of Truth, so lovely, that all fall down and worship her. The Sonnets entitled " Old Church ability—has been the source of his welfare. If we could acquaint in an English Park," and " A Church in North Wales,” are
ourselves intimately with the secrets of his heart and of his picturesque and thoughtful. In the sketch of the “ English chamber, and see how all things were made subservient to one Martyr," there is a fine ode on the Passion.
chosen pursuit-how carefully every fragment of time was em“The sun set in a fearful hour,
ployed—what discouragements were borne-what difficulties were The stars might well grow dim;
overcome,--and how, in the midst of trial and sorrow, the eye When this mortality had power
looked steadily forward to the brighter and better days to come So to o'ershadow Him."
at last :--if we could see this, we should not be so ready to think The Sabbath Sonnet, her latest work dictated from her bed of that these more prosperous and better days came too soon, or were death, was a noble last strain for a Christian poetess.
too bright when they came.
We, who are now privileged to address the readers of the London
Saturday Journal, have ourselves been regarded as a silver-spoon Whence the sweet chimes proclaim the hallow'd day.
man by many of the friends and associates of our boyhood. Not The halls from old heroic ages gray,
that we have attained to any positive eminence among men, but that Pour their fair children forth; and hamlets low, With whose thick orchard blooms the soft winds play,
our circumstances and employments are in strong contrast to those Send out their inmates in a happy flow,
of our early life; and the stronger such contrast is, the stronger Like a free vernal stream. I may not tread
at all times will be the disposition to attribute the alteration to With them those pathways,-to the feverish bed of sickness bound ; yet, oh my God! I bless
happy chances, or to a peculiarly happy tact in bending circumThy mercy, that with Sabbath peace hath fill'd
stances, or in bending to them. We see no reason to imagine that My chasten'd heart, and all its throbbing stillid
the most destitute reader of this Journal has experienced circumTo one deep calm of lowliest thankfulness.”
stances of greater destitution than ourselves, or has been less Our task is now briefly performed. We have asserted our argu- favourably situated for the improvement of his mind, or his per. ment, not that all poetry must be religious, but that the best sonal circumstances. The very worst of the discomforts and poetry, and worthiest the name, that which enters into the nature of man, his passions and affections, which represents his character, privations which the poorest and most destitute are obliged to must be essentially so. Let the poet, then, who would write for bear, formed but the least portion of our discouragements and man, study to be taught of Heaven. Let the envy, malice, and difficulties : and while it is denied that they were overcome through selfishness of his disposition be supplanted by Christian charity. fortunate chances, it is admitted that there is no man to whom Let his life breathe the spirit of the New Testament. Let his victories more signal are not open, if he will but fight for them. inspiration be from Heaven.
Our own prevailing desire in early life was to gratify a strong SILVER SPOONS AND WOODEN LADLES.
thirst for knowledge, under circumstances of physical obstruction “Some people are born with silver spoons in their mouths, and which made it difficult to procure books, while books were others with wooden ladles.” Every one knows what this proverb
soon rendered the only means by which that knowledge could
be obtained. means, and how it is applied ; and we are constrained to say that that we were the possessor of an ingenious cabinet of our own
Almost the earliest thing we can remember, is, we admire neither the proverb nor its application. Spenser says:- manufacture, being a box six inches long, by about four in
“It is the mynd, that maketh good or ill,
breadth and depth, made of deal board nearly an inch thick,
secured by a hasp of shoemaker's thread, a staple of wire, For some, that bath abundance at his will, Hath not enough, but wants in greater store ;
and the padlock of a stable door. Through the kindness of one And other, that hath little, asks no more,
whose kindness availed not in the cloudy and dark days which But in that little is both rich and wise ;
came after, and through much abstinence of our own from apples, For wisdom is most riches; rooles therefore
gingerbread, and barley-sugar, this box was stored with a very They are, which fortunes doe by vows devize
extensive collection of halfpenny, penny, and two-penny books. Sith each unto himselfe his life may fortunize."
There was Cock Robin and the House that Jack Built ; Cinderella That every one may in this manner" fortunize” his inner life by and Goody Two-Shoes; the Giant-killer and King Pippin ; with the cultivation of habits, feelings, and acquirements, which tend many other works of less note, the very names of which have to happiness by strengthening the mind, and humanizing the cha- escaped our recollection. These, certainly, were not works of the racter, is not much questioned. But perhaps there are not many most informing description ; but on the same principle that the readers who would be quite ready to concede thatchance has in general
sports of children satisfy the child,” exciting and amusing very little to do with even a man's external prosperity in life. reading of this sort, in the want of something more fitted to the What the wooden-ladle people call the “luck” of the silver-spoon use, forms an early love of reading, the value of which in maturer people is assuredly nothing more than the proper use of some years cannot be too highly estimated. The sanguine hope and common quality, such as industry, perseverance, self-denial, which expectation with which we look forward to the doings and conduct all men, if they choose to tax their own energies, are capable of of the rising generation, is principally founded on the consideration exerting. We allow our minds to dwell too much on contrasts of the happier auspices under which their minds have been formed. to look too much on effects, separately from the causes which pro. During the first fifteen or twenty years of this century, such as