« PreviousContinue »
seems to have had leisure enough. As to the acceptation of Vorligern, it may be said that its way had been prepared by a number of comparatively insignificant documents, which having been received with too ready a credulity, the believers probably had not courage to suspect or perhaps even to scrutinize this fresh miracle which emanted from the same source. Faith, like Fame, acquires strength by progress. Possibly had Vortiffern been produced as one of the earliest papers, it would have been rejected as summarily as it was when submitted to the judgment of the Drury-lane pit.
There is no evidence to counterbalance William Henry's positive and repeated assurance that he received no assistance from any quarter. If there were any one towards whom suspicion might bo directed, it would be to Mr. Montague Talbot, the intimate friend and confident of young Ireland, and to some extent his aider and abettor in the fraud." Talbot to adopt W. H. Ireland's
to the mortgage and the three signatures to the •will; but they are all mucli larger than the originals, and are obviously not original tracings. There is an anecdote recorded in the Gentleman's Magazine (1838), that W. II. Ireland, having once inspected the De Surgum Pedigree, one of Chatterton's earliest forgeries, then in the possession of Mr. Jos* Cottle, wrote on a piece of p:\perfuc-similet of various autographs of Queen Elizabeth and Shakgpere.
* Talbot was originally articled to a conveyancer but quitted the law, and*^ appeared fora short time on the London stage. He then went to Ireland (the kingdom so called), and acted there under his Christian name of Montague. It seems he had from the first suspected the vilidity of the Slmkspere papers, and by n stratagem contrived to take his friend unV/t (he mainour,—that is, detected him in the very net of fabrication. He promised him secrecy, and kept
phrase, was " a friend of the Muses ; " he undoubtedly offered to assist in the fabrication of Fortigem, and it was agreed that the plan of some of the scenes should be sent to him in Dublin ; but William Henry says this plan was never carried into execution, and that lip completed the play without any aid from him.
On this part of the case, therefore, the conclusion seems inevitable either that Dr. Inglcby's informant is in error, or that he derives his knowledge from some sources •which, have never been open to the public.* JFrom the evidence before them, Mr. Ireland, senior, must be acquitted from all share of the knavery of the transaction, and be convicted only of an egregious amount of folly j and the charitable will not be sorry to think that the young gentleman is not so black as he has been painted.
T. J. A.
his word. He seems to have been ft young gentleman who, to use the words of one of our living witst was wont "to postpone truth to the purposes of the moment." He not only became the voucher to Mr. Ireland, senior, for the story about " Mr. II.," but when the explosion was imminent, expressed his readiness to make an affidavit to the snme effect, if his friend William Henry would join in it. But the latter, it seems, had some weak scruples on the subject, and did not cure to commit a perjury which mi:'hi have been detected.
* Since this article was in type, the writer has received a communication from a liternrv gentleman, who was on terms of intimacy with the late W. H. Ireland. This gentleman, who describes him as an intelligent and well-condacted person, says he was very communicative as to his Slmksperian, fabrications; be never said in plain terms that bis father was priey to his imposture, but somewhat suspiciously hinted doubts as to bis total ignorance of what was so mysteriously going on.
Bide v. Drive.—I have been amused by the discussion which has been carried on as to the propriety of the expression " riding in a carriage." If those who object to it had read the Bible carefully, or even listened to it when read in the church, they would scarcely have spoken of the phrase so contemptuously, one of them even calling it a vulgarism. I would refer them in particular to 2 Kings ix. 16., " So Jehu rode in a chariot;" and x. 16, "So they made him ride in his chariot." Several other passages might be quoted from that "well of English undclilod," the authorized version of the Bible, but your readers will probably think these sufficient. —Notes and Queria. Senescebs.
Likes On A Pigeos.—Dr. Wm. Lort Mansell, afterwards bishop of Bristol, iu a letter to
T. J. Mathias, author of The Pursuits of Literature, dated August 9, 1782, sends to him the following lines, most probably his own composition. He says:—
"By the by, Shaver Hoclson swears these six lines are an incomparable parody:—
"' If 'tis joy to wound a pigeon,
How much more to eat him broiled?
"He says, there is not a word hooked in, and that it is a model for parodying."
Whose lines are here parodied! —Note* and Queries. J. V.
From The Saturday Review. TRAVELS AND ADVKNTURES OF DR. WOLFF.*
Dr. Wolff enjoys a deserved reputation, beyond the circle which is called the "religious world," for the courage and address •with which, when no longer a young man, he penetrated into Bokhara in order to discover the fate of the murdered English envoys, Conolly and Stoddart. The present instalment of the earlier travels and adventures of this celebrated missionary may be safely recommended as a very striking and entertaining narrative. Parts of it would seem from occasional remarks of the writer, to have been anticipated in various religious publications. But the general reader will find it all very novel and amusing, while the quaint style in which it is written adds no inconsiderable charm to the story. The autobiographer always speaks of liimself in the third person, and as often as not iu the present tense, and long dialogues are constantly interspersed in a very graphic manner. There is not a scruple of what is called retenue in Dr. Wolff's composition. He is forever confiding publicly to his readers his sense of his moral faults and deficiencies. Perhaps this is meant to disarm hostile criticism. Any how, under cover of this voluntary confession, he indulges in a most pleasant naivete and egotistical vanity, and portrays all his weaknesses very agreeably to his readers. He is evidently a clever, restless, and impulsive man, whose enthusiasm upon any subject has a tendency to run into credulity and exaggeration. But he is thoroughly in earnest, and we cannot help sincerely respecting him even when our judgment is inclined to question his sanity. How far a man with such pronounced crotchets, and such singular views of prophecy, as Dr. Wolff seems to have had, was tit for a Christian missionary may perhaps be doubted. Thus we find him in one place avowing his belief that "Isaiah was a dervish and walked about naked, and that the prophets and the dervishes of the present day symbolize by this nakedness events which are to take place upon this earth."
Many of his speculations as to the interpretation of unfulfilled prophecy he has in later years wisely abandoned. But he seems to have taught at one time, that the year 1847 would be the exact epoch of the "renovation of the world and the restoration of the Jews, at the coming of Messiah in glory"
* Travels and Adventures of flit Rev, Joseph Wolff, D.D., L.L.D., Vicnr of lie Breictn, near Taunton, ana late Missionary to the Jens and Mukommadant in Persia, Bokhara, Cathmeer, Etc. Vol. 1. London: Saunders, Otley, and Co. 1860.
—for which he was well laughed at by Sir Charles James Napier and others. "And Wolff deeply regrets," he now says, penitently, "that he ever fell into the errors here alluded to." But he still seems to cling to the belief that there is to be a personal millennial reign of our Lord upon earth, and he often says that he found this a powerful argument with the Jews to whom he preached. To do him justice, he never failed to urge upon them the truth that the Messiah had once come; but he very much conciliated them by the assurance that another coming —not to judgment, but to a millennial reign —was to be expected. Whether any good was ever effected by Dr. Wolff's erratic proceedings among the Oriental Jews and Muhammadans may perhaps be reasonably doubted. But this is not the place to discuss that question. We may safely say that his motives were good, and that his peculiar gifts of language and his singular restlessness of temperament qualified him for some such vocation j while any more fixed and ordered mode of life would have been to him simply intolerable. From several hints dropped in the present volume, he seems to have been forever in hot water with the London Society for Promoting Christianity among the Jews, whose agent in the East he ostensibly was. In some cases, he frankly acknowledges himself to have been in the wrong. But a gentler temper than his might well have rebelled against the narrow-minded dictation of a London committee; and his sarcasm is bitterness itself when he contrasts with the freedom allowed to St. Francis Xavier — his own self-chosen example — the petty tyranny exercised by certain missionary societies at home over their unfortunate agents abroad. Indeed, it is much to be regretted that he has not pruned the exuberance of the epithets which he applies to some of the religionists of whom he most disapproves. "Filthy Calvinist," "some longnosed, snuff-taking lady of the so-called Evangelical party," "a long-face-pulling lady with a whining voice," " nasty Atheist and infidel," and the like, are rather indecorous expressions. Even when religion is not concerned, Dr. Wolff is a good hater. He never mentions a certain Frenchman, with whom he travelled in Mesopotamia, but as "Digeon the scoundrel." Perhaps this want of reserve makes the book all the more amusing. It is no wonder that so plain-spoken a traveller got called names in return. Thus, on a visit to Ireland, he seems to have made himself peculiarly offensive to the Roman Catholics; and Mr. Sheil revenged them by calling' him "Baron von Munchausen, Katerfelto, Mendez, the old clothesman of
Monmouth Street," etc. "And Wolff, in chosen by lot on each Good Friday. The anger—certainly not in the true spirit of first victim, a poor girl, was thus murdered.
Christ—called him a liar in return."
But next year the lot "fell on a fat Roman
It is time, however, to jnve a brief sketch j Catholic priest, who did not relish the of Dr. Wolff's singular history and adven- i thought at all, and Bo he gave notice to the tures. Few men have had a wider and more | police, who took the Mystics into custody, unusual experience of men and things than ! and Wolff himself saw Peschel in prison." the subject of this autobiography. He was j Hoffbauer, the head of the Vienna Ultraborn in 1795, at Weilersbach, near Bamberg, I montanes was only a degree less fanatical, being the eldest son of the Jewish rabbi of Wolff himself preferred the more moderate that place. Fifteen days after his birth, the —or what we should call the Oallican—opinterrors of the French invasion drove the j ions of Sailer, whom he calls the Fenelon of Wolffs to Kissingen; and, in 1802, Rabbi Germany, and was still more influenced by David settled at Ullfeld, in Bavaria. Joseph the celebrated Count Stdlberg, who became Wolff's earliest recollections give a curious his patron, and entertained nim for many insight into the habits of thought prevailing months in his castle. In 1815, Wolff made among the German Jews of that time. The j the acquaintance of Prince Hohenlohe, afterfollies and superstitions of the Talmud seem wards famous for his alleged miraculous powto have been accepted unhesitatingly, and ers though the Pope himself said of him miracles in favor of Judaism were supposed ] sneeringly to Niebuhr—"Questo far dei mirato be of frequent occurrence. A barber-sur- j coli." Wolff accuses this enthusiast of somcgeon, named Spicss, gave Wolff the first j thing like theft, of deliberate falsehood, and glimpse of Christianity, and bade him read j of profligate conversation. Continuing his the fifty-third chapter of Isaiah, which made ! Oriental studies at Tubingen, under the fahim resolve to abandon Judaism at the ear- | mous Arabic scholar Schnurrer, Wolff was liest opportunity. He went at once to the warned by the Protestant professors there Lutheran minister of the place; but he, un- I that his moderate opinions would not be tollike Canon Dalton of Norwich, finding that i erated when he came to the Propaganda, the young inquirer was only seven years old, From Tubingen, in 181C, he started on foot declined to receive him, as he was still un- j for Rome. At Aarau, on his way, he had an der the legal tutelage of his parents. The interview with Madame de Krudener, the lad was sent by his father, four years later, i pietist, who had the credit of converting the to the Protestant Lyceum at Stuttgart, and • Emperor Alexander and Jung Stilling, the afterwards by an uncle, who was " a Jew of j mystic tailor. At Fribourg his Hebrew Bithe modern style, rather leaning to infidel- ] ble was taken away from him by the head ity," to the Roman Catholic Lyceum at Bam-1 of the Redemptorists there, because it was berg. Turned out of doors, at last, by his | printed in so heretical a town as Amsterdam, friends, for his wish to become a Christian, j Further on, at Vevay, he got another one he wandered to Frankfort, Prague, and Vi- from a Lutheran pastor. But this, in its enna, and nearly every other city in South turn, was confiscated by the Redemptorists Germany, supporting himself by teaching at Valais, because it was printed at Leipsic. Hebrew. He seems to have been received 1 However, Wolff recovered it by stealth, and kindly by all sorts of religionists in turn, ran away. Afterwards he showed it to the and to have picked up some instruction from pope, and told him its history, " on which them all. He says that he found most of ) Pius VII. laughed, and said, 'There are the Jews and of the Protestants infidels or hot-headed people to be found everywhere.'" freethinkers, and maintained his own pro- The Bible's adventures were not over yet. ference for Roman Catholicism. Accord- In 1818, Wolff was expelled from the Propingly, he was baptized into that communion aganda, and left the book behind him; but at Prague, in 1812, being then seventeen years afterwards it was restored to him at years old. Philadelphia, by Kenrick, a fellow-student,
He had already made the acquaintance of i who had become one of the Roman Catholic
Falk, Goethe, and Voss. Now he was matriculated at Vienna, and got to know the Orientalists, Jahn and Von Hammer, besides Fried rich von Schlegel, Kb'rner, the poet, and the celebYated Redemptorist, Hoffbauer. The description of the five religious parties then existing in Vienna, is most curious. But it seems scarcely credible that the Mystics—who were disciples of one Peschel— could have proceeded, as he asserts, to the
bishops of the United States. One of the best-told anecdotes of Wolff's journey to Rome describes his reception as un Ebreo convertiio by a convent of Salesian nuns at Novara. He had to recite the Pater Nuster and Ave Maria and Salve Heffina amidst the enthusiastic ladies. "They all exclaimed 'How this blessed, blessed young man makes the cross.' 'Amabile giotanc,' said they, in the midst of their prayers, 'God bless him!'"
length of crucifying one of their number j At Turin, Wolff met Madame de Stael, and
From Blackwood's Magazine. LORD 11ACAULAY AND DUNDEE. Few celebrated men have suffered more injustice at the hands of posterity than John; Grahame of Claverhouse, Viscount Dundee. I A perverse fate seems to have pursued his memory. Falling upon evil days, and playing au important part in'the closing scenes of a dark and tragic period, it is not wonderful that his acts should have heen misrepresented, and his character distorted, by contemporary malice and falsehood. But the ill fortune of Claverhouse has pursued him to our own times. Sir Walter Scott once remarked, with perfect truth, "that no character had been so foully traduced as that of the Viscount of Dundee—that, thanks toWodrow, Crookshank, and such chroniclers, he, who was every inch a soldier and a gentleman, still passed among the Scottish vulgar for a ruffian desperado, who rode a goblin horse, was proof against shot, and in league with the devil."*
Unhappily it is not among the Scottish vulgar alone that misconception as to the character of Dundee has prevailed. It is indeed only very lately, and principally in consequence of the reaction produced by the unscrupulous virulence of recent attacks upon his memory, that investigations have • been made, which have placed his character in a truer light, and removed the load of obloquy under which it has so long and so unjustly lain. True as Sir Walter Scott's instincts and sympathies were, even he has admitted into his masterly portrait of Claverhouse some touches darker than can be justified by what we now know of his character. This is to be attributed partly to the fact that many circumstances have come to light since Old Mortality was written, and partly to the excellences of Sir Walter Scott's own character, which became, by excess, defects. His acquaintance with the times of which he wrote was profound; his power of reproducing the character ho depicted—of evoking not merely the form and lineaments of the dead, but of breathing into that form the very soul by which it had been animated —was unequalled by any but Shakspeare himself; and his mind was far too great, his sympathies too catholic, and his disposition too generous, to permit him to pervert this power to the service of party aims, or the promulgation of his individual opinions and predilections. His fault lay in the opposite direction. His opponents found more than justice at his hands, whilst those with whose opinions and characters he sympathized, sometimes found less. He has adorned Balfcur of Burlcy with a wild heroism far higher than should be awarded to the savage mur* Lockltarft Lift <f Scott, vol. iv. p. 88.
derer of Archbishop Sharpe, and has dealt out but scant measure of justice to the accomplished and chivalrous Grahame of Claverhouse.
Lord Macaulay's errors were of a different kind. They proceeded from a too eager partisanship, a too fervid attachment to the creeds and traditions of the party to which he belonged. We have never grudged our share of the tribute universally and justly paid to the eloquence, the power, the varied research, the vast knowledge, which combined to chain the reader by a magical influence to the pages of his History. It stands like that fair cathedral, whose unfinished towers are reflected in the waters of the Rhine, a mighty and a beautiful fragment. We trust that no feebler hand will attempt its completion; and we indulge with pleasurse the belief that future volumes would have redeemed the injustice into which his impetuous temperament, his love of striking and picturesque effects, and sometimes a natural, though dangerous, delight in the exercise of his own powers, have too often betrayed the historian.
; There are few occurrences in life that so deeply impress the mind and touch the heart, as when a noble antagonist is struck down in the full vigor of his powers. The eloquent : pen which placed in vivid reality before our ] eyes the defence of Derry and the trial of Warren Hastings, which painted the court of Charles II. with the gayety of Watteau, and the Black Hole of Calcutta with the power of Rembrandt, has dropped from the hand that guided it; the flashing eye which heralded the impetuous words to which we have often listened with delight is dim; and the stores of that marvellous memory, where priceless jewels and worthless trifles were alike treasured up, will never more be poured out in prodigal generosity for our instruction and delight.
Justice to the mighty dead with whose ashes his own are now mingled, has, however, frequently compelled us to point out ! what have appeared to us to be the errors, . the mistakes, and the faults of Lord Macaulay's History.
The conqueror of Blenheim, the founder of Pennsylvania, the hero of Killiecrankie, and the victim of Glencoe stand now no further from us than he whom we have so lately lost. The narrow line over which we may be as suddenly summoned, is all that separates us. Silent shadows, they demand equal justice. But we enter upon our present task with mournful feelings, and we trust that we shall keep carefully in view, that in writing of the dead it is the duty no less of the critic than of the historian to keep ever in mind that i he r. dealing with those who cannot reply.
Lord Macanlay's portrait of Claverhouse is dashed in with the boldest handling, and in the darkest colors. Every lineament is that of a fiend. Courage—the courage of a demon fearing neither God nor man—is the \ only virtue, if indeed such courage can be called a virtue, he allows him. A few lines! suffice for the sketch:—
"Pre-eminent among the bands whicn oppressed and wasted these unhappy districts, were the dragoons commanded by John Grahame of Claverhouse. The story ran that these wicked men used in their revels to play at the torments of hell, and to call each other by the names of devils and damned souls. The chief of this Tophet, a soldier of distinguished courage and professional skill, but repacious and profane, of violent temper and of obdurate heart, has left a name which, wherever the Scottish race is settled on the face of the globe, is mentioned with a peculiar energy of hatred. To recapitulate all the crimes by which this man, and men like him, goaded the peasantry of the Western Lowlands into madness, would be an endless task."
We confess that we are at a loss to understand the extreme horror with which the Eatanic snorts of the soldiery seem to have inspired Lord Macaulay. One would not expect the amusements of troopers to be of the most refined description, but it is going rather too far to conclude that a dragoon must necessarily be " wild, wicked, and hardhearted," because he hits a comrade across the shoulder in sport, and calls him Beelzebub. Sportive allusions to the prince of darkness aud his imps do not necessarily imply allegiance to his power. King George III. was certainly a pious prince, yet "the story runs," as Lord Macaulay would say, that when Lord Erskine presented the corps of volunteers belonging to the Inns of Court to his majesty, the king exclaimed," What! •what! all lawyers? Call them the Devil's Own—the Devil's Own." And " the Devil's Own" they were called from that day forward; their learned and gallant successors, who drill in Lincoln's-Inn Garden and King's Bench Walks still rejoicing in the same infernal designation, and being rather proud of it. We remember a jcu d'csprit, currently ascribed to an eminent Whig pen, which ran the circuit of the papers some twenty years ago, in which every eminent member of the Tory party was adorned with his particular diabolical cognomen. We quote from memory, but we have a very distinct recollection of the following lines as a part of the catalogue :— ** Devils of wit and devils of daring;
Mcphistophcles Lyndhurst and Mammon Baring;
Devils of wealth and devils of zeal,
Belial Crokcr and Beelzebub Peel."
THIRD SERIES. LIVING AGE. 545
Yet we never heard that the venerabl'e exchancellor felt his dignity compromised, or that Sir Robert Peel ever considered whether there might not be throe courses open to him, any one of which he might select to punish the audacious poet. Nor, we conceive, would Lord Macaulay have denounced him as " wicked and profane."
To descend from kings and statesmen to "mortal men and miscreants," we remember when the "Olympic Devils" was the most popular of all amusements. It was in our younger days, when, in that pleasant little theatre behind the Strand Church, men, and women too, who, we trust, were not of any extreme wickedness, used to "play at the torments of hell," and certainly to call each other by very diabolical names. Yet the chief of that Tophet in Wych Street, an actress of distinguished beauty and professional skill, was, we trust, neither rapacious nor profane, and certainly not of violent temper nor obdurate heart, and has left a name which, wherever the English race is settled on the face of the globe, is mentioned with a peculiar energy of any thing but hatred.
To come to more important matters. When Lord Macaulay asserts that Claverhousc was one of those whose conduct "goaded the peasantry of the Western Lowlands into madness," he shows an utter disregard both of facts and dates. There is probably but one opinion now as to the insanity of the attempt to force Episcopacy upon Scotland. But Prelacy was restored in May, 1662 ;* the ministers were ejected in the month of November in the same year.t The Court of Ecclesiastical Commission commenced its proceedings in 1664.J The military oppressions raged in 1665.$ The insurrection which terminated in the defeat of Pentland took place the following year. Then followed countless executions, civil and military. The boot and the gibbet were in constant employment. In 1668 the life of Sharpe was attempted by Mitchell. In 1670, rigorous laws were passed against conventicles; at the same time, the tyranny and insolence of Lauderdale excited universal hatred and disgust. In 1076 the proceedings of the government became even more severe. "Letters of intercommuning," as they were called, were issued, denouncing the severest penalties against all who should afford meat, drink, or shelter to an outlaw.|| The fieldpreachers were hunted down by the soldiery, but their hearers rallied round them, and contests, frequently bloody and often of doubtful issue, occurred. The Bass was converted into a prison, the dungeons of which were crowded with captive ministers, and the
* Laing, ii. 21,1st edit., vol. iv. of 2<1 edit.
t Ibid. -a. \ Ibid. ii. 34. \ Ibid. || Ibid. ii. 68.