Page images

save a people who were not prepared to save themselves. Justice is proverbially slow of foot, but she arrives at last. We think Sir John Moore's memory is no longer clouded with the surmises and accusations that once hung around his grave. He was sent with a force totally inadequate to the purpose; he was deceived, disappointed, decoyed, and deserted. Yet he effected his purpose. He saved the army that he could not lead to victory, and effected one of the most difficult and melancholy retreats in the face of a superior and victorious enemy, with wonderful courage and perseverance. That he hoped too reluctantly, that he desponded too soon, is all, we think, that even the Laureate, the friend of Spain and historian of the War, could urge against him. The author was attached to the fifth division under General Leith, and fought with them, with the exception of a short time when he was a prisoner, through the whole of the Peninsular Campaigns.—Of the military genius of the French Marshals," he does not appear to think highly,–the mistakes of Massena before the lines of Torres Vedras are mentioned, and at p. 212 he says, “At the same time one corps d'armée was acting in conformity to the orders received from Madrid, while another, destined to co-operate, was adopting a directly different sphere of action, according to the caprice or obstinacy of its Commander. In addition to this course of proceeding, in itself enough to cause the discomfiture of armies, is to be considered the jealousy of each other constantly bursting into publicity among these generals, by whom, and through whose exertions it has been ingeniously supposed the Emperor Napoleon accomplished in other countries his unparalleled successes.”

The kind of courage in which the French soldier abounds, is described with great truth and discrimination.

“The arena for a really vigorous French attack, is one that few other troops would enter—at all events, with equal alacrity, equal spirit, or with the same apparent determination. In mounting steps defended by troops—in making attacks on large bodies where a great crisis is at issue —in forcing an under fire, until all diffi

. * See also account of Marshal Soult, in vol. ii. p. 232.

culties but the personal, the close conflict with his opponent, has been overcome— the French soldier appears to be unequalled; but when perseverance has placed him on equal ground—when he has apparently obtained a chance of successfully terminating his attack, he becomes no longer formidable, and appears paralysed by the immediate presence of his opponents, a strange and inexplicable result of so much gallantry, such gaiety, such recklessness of danger, only to be accounted for by the supposition that the physical constitution of the people, does not permit the effervescence to subsist beyond a certain exertion, that, if unchecked, might have continued buoyant, but being resolutely met, becomes depressed and vanquished.”

We should more simply attempt to account for the fact of the French soldier never waiting a bayonet attack from the British Line, by saying that whether the danger be greater or not, it appears more certain and formidable; that a personal encounter is the greatest trial of the real courage of the soldier; and that the angry brow and glittering bayonet of the British grenadier, would quail a heart that balls and bullets and shells would in vain assail.

The Battle of Salamanca decided the fate of the war, liberated the Peninsula, and for ever broke down and destroyed the hopes and courage of the French army. The siege of Cadiz was raised, the Andalusians liberated, the army of Catalonia and Valencia paralysed, the guerilla force tripled,—then followed the fine passage of the Ebro, and the battle of Victoria, and the capture of St. Sebastian ; and the British trumpet heard in the valley of Roncevalles, and the British flag seen floating on the heights of the Pyrennees from the astonished and bewildered plains of Gascony.

Zschokke's Popular History of Switzerland.

A very good and useful account of the use and progress of the brave Helvetians, from their conquest by the Romans, till the establishment of the new Confederacy of the twentytwo cantons in 1613, inclosed between the Alps and the Jura, consisting of two millions of people crying freedom and independence.

[blocks in formation]

WE are afraid that stanzas like the following will not be esteemed by those lovers of poetry whose ears have been long used to what is correct as well as beautiful. To measure o'er the floor of heaven, Its gates and glittering vestibule, To scan creation's wings—I’ve striven, But all in vain—though beautiful. Scanning creation's wings is rather new, though scanning with goose's wings, we remember very well. Perhaps the rhime also in the first stanza of Madaleine, will not altogether prove so euphonious as it ought. For ever and for ever thine, My only love, my dearest, In whatever land or clime, Still thou art ever nearest. But we can excuse this, as the author, residing in France, has adopted the peculiar pronunciation of n for m, as in tems, and other words. We shall pursue our extracts with Ellen of Tours. Sweet Ellen of Tours is my choice, Why then should my cold heart despair, Oh! rather say bid it rejoice Since Ellen complies it is clear. I love her as well as my life; I love her, for good or for ill; I love her and would have her my wife; I love yet—yes much better—still '!

We must leave the maidens of Nantes, who are very bewitching, And never more charming than now,

and the maid of Clisson, who sang of Abelard

With sighs that rent the air;

—but we confess we cannot pass over one of the strangest metamorphoses that has taken place in our modern recollection.

There came a young Knight, clad in ar-
mour bright,
To the western tower at dawn :
And his noble mien, and mantle of green,
Bespoke him a Squire unknown.

And we must also leave to Messrs. Champollion and the decipherers of hieroglyphics, to explain the following mystical sentence to us. The Moslem sate in proud array By Saturn's marble throne; He recked not then his own decay, Nor saw Athena's zone.

Our author has lately returned from his travels in the Holy Land; and has been enabled to make considerable accessions to our local knowledge of that singular and interesting country, both in nature and art, as may be seen in his Triumphal Hymn, “I come from Palestine !”

I come, I come, from Palestine, From the holy, holy, holy land, Where the Upas tree surrounds the shrine Of the Pagan's infidel band, And the Memphian pyramid bears on high The ungodly pilgrim's heraldry. The discovery of trees, pyramids, and pagans, in a country that was never before known to possess them, though much travelled and investigated, reflects great honour on the acuteness and enterprize of the author.” Not content with his beauties from Nantes and Tours, our amorous poet flies off to Anjou, and meeting a fair damsel in the streets, begs the favour of her to listen to the following petition, which she of course understood; though we confess to us that it is a little doubtful what the author wished the said lady to do. Maid of Anjou ! stay, oh stay ! Let me tell you all my grief, Listen to my evening lay, Tho' it be both sad and brief. * A new district in Egypt has also attended the discoveries of the author.

[ocr errors]


I from proud Albana's "isle,
Speed with hope and full of love;

Let me gaze upon thy smile,
That I may no longer rove.

Wilt thou grant me my behest, Wilf thou be to me as wine,

And beside me take thy rest, When we bow to Will divine 2

The Maid of Anjou does not appear to have complied with the wishes of the author, and very well for her that she did not, for all he told her was a love-imposture, a downright deceit; he was not in grief, he had no grief to tell: on the other hand, in the very next page, we find him thus carolling:

My heart was as light as a feather, All day I was happy and true.

Besides, he had already jilted three respectable young women, though with queer names, Ianthe, Evely, and Miss Iseline, not to speak of the Maid of Myance, and the Maid of Amiens, and Eliza, and Eliza-Jane, and an elderly lady of Franconia; but we must now reluctantly leave our lover sitting under his laurels, and playing his lute in celebration of his conquests.

P. S. We stop the press to announce that our fickle Bard has again changed his mind,-dismissed all the ladies mentioned above, and has attached himself to a plain decent gentlewoman called ‘Susan,” to whom he is lawfully married, at the age of 41.

[merged small][merged small][ocr errors]

Review.—Chevalier's Translation of St. Clement, &c.


[blocks in formation]

OF these very valuable remains of the early Christian Church, Mr. Chevalier has given Archbishop Wake's excellent translation, accompanied with the necessary alterations of the Epistles; the two Apologies of Justin the Martyr, and of Tertullian, are his own. The whole is accompanied with a very excellent prefatory account of these valuable writings, and with learned notes on corrupted passages, or explanatory of difficult and unusual words and customs. At the close is a dissertation on the disputed point, as to whether St. Paul ever preached in Great Britain. Usher and Stillingfleet (very high authorities) maintain the opinion that he did visit our island; and the present Bishop of Salisbury has added his zealous and learned testimony to theirs. But there are weighty authorities also on the other side. The Bishop of Lincoln is inclined to think that he never was here; and Bishop Bloomfield leans to the opinion of Jablonski, that the preaching of St. Paul in Britain is extremely improbable. The Latin poet Fortunatus, who lived in the 6th century, is the first writer who in express terms asserts that the great Apostle visited the “ultimos orbis Britannos.’ His words are these,

Transit et oceanum, vel qua facit insula

portum Quasque Britannus habet terras, quasque

ultima Thule.

But this was undoubtedly a poetical

expression, on which no stress can be laid; but it is certain that the Gospel was preached here by some of the apostles; as may be proved by the testimony of Tertullian (Apologia, c. 37), and Eusebius in his Demonstratio Evangelica, lib. iii. p. 112, D. Coloniae, 1633. Upon the whole this book is judiciously arranged, and executed in a most scholarlike manner, and is of great value to the theological student.

History of the British Colonies. By R. Montgomery Martin, Member of the Asiatic and of the Medical and Physical Societies of Bengal, &c. Pol. I. 8vo. pp. 543.

THE volume before us, which relates exclusively to the British possessions and interests in Asia, is dedicated, by permission, to His Majesty. It contains a view of the political history, statistics, and commerce of the territories in the East Indies, which are subject to British rule, including the territories on the Indian peninsula; and the island of Ceylon, together with Penang, Malacca, and Singapore; to which the author has added China. In the preparation of this volume, Mr. Martin has availed himself of the large collection of original documents respecting lndia, which the late discussions in Parliament and before Committees of the two Houses have elicited. He has also, as he informs his readers, been allowed access to the records of the India Governments, preserved at the India House; and has derived from them much valuable information. In the commercial portion of the volume, which the author appears to regard as not the least important part of his work, he describes the productions and manufactures of the East, to which he adds tables of the export and import trade, with some particulars of the monetary system of India. These details are calculated to make Mr. Martin's volume very acceptable to commercial men, for whose

especial use he appears to have designed it, and to whom we venture cordially to recommend it. The author's historical sketches of the origin and progress of British dominion in different parts of Asia, are necessarily very brief; but they are, so far as we can judge of them, accurate, and are professedly founded on the fullest and most authentic information. This work contains some minute details of the population of British India, well worthy of attention: they are supplementary to those which had previously been made public by Parliament. In describing the physical aspect, area, climate, and natural productions of the several countries, Mr. Martin is in general brief, but perspicuous. He has collected and given to his readers a few geological notices, but they are necessarily very few ; very little being yet known of the geology of eastern countries. An interesting portion of the volume is that which is devoted to the moral, political, intellectual, and religious state of the British possessions in Asia. Of the state of education in the East India Company’s immediate territories, this writer has given a very favourable as well as a very novel view, from documents which he quotes. We must leave his readers to form their own judgment on this subject, by a reference to his authorities. The physical varieties of the several tribes, who inhabit the peninsula, are minutely described, and not less so the diversified religious character and customs of those tribes, who, it is stated, all enjoy equal protection from the Government. In his account of religious establishments, Mr. Martin includes the English Episcopal Church, and a very curious statement of the establishment which is upheld for the idol Juggurnauth. Page 283 contains a deed of endowment, which, on account of its length, we cannot quote, but from which it appears that the late celebrated bramin Rajah Rammohun Roy, after having traced his way through the modern idolatry of his countrymen, which he found had resulted in the invention of not less than 330,000,000 of pagods, had brought himself back to

monotheism, and founded and endowed in Calcutta a church for the worship of the “one indivisible, invisible, omnipotent, and omnipresent God.” This deed of endowment, which is a curiosity, is stated to have been drawn up for the signature of the bramin by the author of the present volume. A very interesting account of China is contained in the eighth chapter; but we suspect that his Imperial Majesty of the Celestial Empire would not feel himself highly complimented, were he apprised that an English writer had clerked down his immense territory, with its 360,000,000 of inhabitants, and himself at their head, as a colony dependent on a small insular State and Government in Europe: but perhaps this has been designed as the retort courteous on the Chinese Monarch, for a similar claim

Adam the Gardener. P. 10.-4: Almost all the beautiful pigeons you see in the farm-yards have come, originally, from those wild ones that live in the woods.”—That is not the fact ; see White's Selborne, Montagu's Dictionary, and other books. The original stock of the domestic pigeon is not ascertained. P. 12. “In hard frosts rabbits injure the trees by gnawing off the bark.”— Only particular trees, as hollies, acacias, sennas, &c. P. 30. “There are in a full hive 30,000 bees 1’’—The number of bees in hives varies exceedingly from 6,000 to 20,000. P. 46. “Turners make use of Sallow for cricket-bats.”—A good bat-maker never makes use of Sallow for cricketbats, but of Willow, chiefly those from the Surrey part of the Thames, as Moulsey, &c. P. 47. “Yews are planted in Churchyards to furnish the inhabitants of the parish with bows.”—We should think never. The yew is a very slow growing tree. How many bows would one furnish, and how often ? They were planted to be used as evergreens in churches on festivals: as the Palms at Rome. Why are there none in Suffolk 2 P. 61. “The Elm used to be employed by the Ancients as a helper or prop to the vine:”—equally used by the Moderns. P. 60. “One Chesnut that I have heard of, can be proved to have stood in the year 1150, that is, nearly 700 years ago.”—This is is the Chesnut in Lord Ducie's park at Tortworth, Gloucestershire. P. 92. “The Toad has been found

to superiority which he or his officers are represented to have made, when Lord Amherst and Sir George Staunton visited Pekin. On those occasions, according to the statements published at the time, the presents sent to his Imperial Majesty, by our then most gracious Sovereign King George the Third, were paraded through the Chinese territories with flags flying over them, bearing an inscription, which Doctor Morrison translated, “Tribute to the Emperor.” Upon the whole, we consider this volume as a valuable addition to the useful literature of the present time: it evinces great industry, and appears to us to have been executed with considerable ability. We have indeed seldom seen so much and such valuable information so well arranged, and condensed into so small a space.

enclosed and alive in the trunk of a tree ; and there is a wonderful instance related of one that was discovered in a block of marble.”—We do not believe either account, for this reason—there never was a well authenticated instance of such discoveries. Sir Joseph Banks, a most accurate, curious, and investigating naturalist, assured us, that in his whole life he never, with all pains, could trace such a tradition or account to any credible authority, so that it could be recorded as a fact. P. 107. Adam wanted to know the reason of the Cuckoo's change of song ; instead of his two clear notes he stuttered out three hoarse ones. The common people say, ‘because there are no more little birds' eggs for him to suck."— The song of all wild birds is periodical, depending on food, season, &c.; generally ceases soon after hatching, when their superabundant spirits are exhausted. The breaking of the Cuckoo's voice is nothing more than his song gradually ceasing. The Nightingale's breaks up in the same way. P. 129. On Swifts (Hirundo Apus.) “No one has been able to find out where they go to.” Lo in the very next page the Author has made the discovery.— “In the course of a fortnight or three weeks, they will be continuing the same occupation round the summit of a temple in Algiers or Ceuta in Africa.”—Which account does the Author wish us to believe 2 P. 151. “The entrails of a Woodcock are cooked with it. We know no other instance of the entrails of an animal

« PreviousContinue »