Page images
PDF
EPUB

drew a dirty black cotton veil over her ous and peculiar for the character of its head, and came with tears in her eyes, to paintings: musical instruments, and musibeg me to hire a donkey to carry her to the cians playing on them, being delineated on tombs. The reis was in high spirits, and its walls in common with the more usual talked and shouted as much as if he had representations of kings taught by the gods, been in a passion : and as a sort of harm- priests offering sacrifices, and sacred aniless flirtation had been going on since we mals and emblems in countless variety. In left Manfaloot between Youssouf and the the last chamber of the Harp Tomb is a lady, he entertained her with all sorts of granite sarcophagus, in two parts, much chatter; and as the torch-bearers were mutilated ; and on the roof, considerably quarrelling, and the donkey-drivers shout- injured by damp, the stalactical process has ing to their charges, our party was as noisy commenced, and the walls by the torcha one, and as various as could well be ina- light glitter like a fairy hall. Re ascend gined. However, we found every body use- ing from this, we entered a third tomb, ful in their way, and having lighted the numbered nine above its entrance, and torches, we commenced our descent over found it finer in its proportions than either the first flight of stairs, which were steep we had before seen, but less richly painted. and rugged, but led to a noble corridor, In the third chamber stands an enormous sloping downwards, and lined with fine relie- sarcophagus, with a full-length figure sculpvos, bearing the marks of the ancient paint- tured on the top, and hieroglyphics surings. A second descent, and we were in rounding it. It has been sadly fractured by the rich painted chambers, surrounded by the army of Napoleon, but still remains the magnificent works of art, all possessing most entire sarcophagus in the royal tombs. great spirit of delineation, and the most Among other names, stands prominently perfect proportion of outline. The repre-forth that of Prince Puckler Muskau, who sentations of this celebrated tomb are well in putting his signature among the carknown in England, as also the sarcophagus touches of Egypt's royal line, felt perhaps found in it by Belzoni ; and in splendor, somewhat like the fly upon the cart-wheel, richness, and beauty, it far surpasses all who rejoiced at the dust he could kick up; that have been opened. The appearance it is a common vanity this, and, as a huof grandeur given by nature to the head of man weakness, must, I

suppose, be

parthe remarkable valley, in which was found doned; yet nothing, I confess, annoys me these royal tombs, certainly was such as to more, than to have my attention attracted authorize Belzoni in his opinion, that it was from works of interest and beauty, by the a spot likely to be chosen for the burial- scribblings of Smiths and Joneses, whose places of the Pharaohs; and yet it would names, respectable enough in their cardseem that nothing less than some revelation cases, are but vain impertinences when decould have induced the Italian to seek for facing the magnificent remains of ancient the tomb of a king in the bed of a moun- art. Among such I do not entirely rank tain torrent. The elaborateness of its that of the traveller prince, but I should work, the beauty of its finish, the richness have held him higher had he been content of its paintings, and the number of its to have gone down to posterity on the titlechambers of imagery, make it indeed wor- page of his own amusing book, rather than thy of being considered as among the finest on the sarcophagus of a Pharaoh, whose of those “ eternal habitations" which the beautiful and mystic characters he has deEgyptians, by no means worshippers of faced by such idle vanity. kings, assigned to those among their rulers, We were anxious to see some of the wellwho having been sternly judged after death, preserved mummies, but in consequence of and against whose justice, wisdom, and an order forbidding their sale by Mehemet mercy, not a breath arose, were ferried Ali, the Arabs, dreading discovery and across the sacred lake of Thebes, borne in punishment, secrete them with great care. funeral pomp around its temples, and along However, after some confabulation with the steep defile, to these last resting places, the Arabs, who were animated with the in whose chambers prayers for the dead idea that we intended to become purchasarose, and in whose splendid decorations it ers of their treasures, they agreed to guide was supposed that the soul of the departed us to the huts where they were to be found. took the most exquisite delight.

Entering the first, which was in fact the From that known as Belzoni's, we en-occupied tomb of an ancient family of rank, tered the Harp Tomb, as it is called, curi- the Arabs closed the door behind us, and then with great secrecy dragged forth twoj spread our canvass for the far-famed Khenmummy chests from an inner chamber, and nek, the oasis of all the beggar and pilgrim removing the richly-painted tops of the class of “true believers." coflin, displayed the mummies bound in their cerecloths, and evidently untouched. For each they demanded two hundred piastres, or about two pounds, and offered for that sum to wrap the chest in matting, and put it on board our boat in the evening. The size and weight of the chest, however, discouraged us from at

FLOWERS. tempting its transfer, and we left the venders with a doubtful answer, and proceeded

From Bentley's Miscellany. to a second hut, in which we saw another mummy case, containing the body of a BEAUTIFUL Flowers! wherever ye bloom, woman, as appeared from the figure painted With your soft-tinted leaves, and your fragrant on the top, which was represented with its

perfume; arms crossed over the bosom, a style only Or when Autumn scatters her dead leaves around;

Whether in Spring ye come forth from the ground, adopted for the coffins of women. The Whether in cottage or palace ye dwell, news soon flew round that the strangers Beautiful Flowers ! I love ye well. wanted mummies, and numerous were the beckonings and hints we received that

Behold a young girl, in her mirthful play,

Laughing the hours of childhood away, many were for sale in the several huts

The light winds are waving her sunny hair, while on passing one, an Arab snatched up And ber voice sounds sweet in the silent air. a mummy which had lain in his court-yard, While her fair hands are twining, from summer stripped of its outer cerements, and held it

bowers,

Wild blooming wreaths of the beautiful Flowers. out to us with a triumphant grin.

Through the narrow cloth that bandaged The scene is now changed, for years have flown; the body, the limbs and features of the That gay laughing girl to a woman has grown; dead were clearly perceptible, and nothing And the lover is there, who fain would iell could be more piteous in its expression But Flowers he plants in her snowy breast

,

The secret their eyes have reveal'd too well! than this shrunken form of the ancient And their eloquent leaves have his love confest. Egyptian, in the arms of the brawny and deriding Arab.

'Tis a bridal morn, and loudly swells I was not sorry to give up mummy hunt- A merry peal from the old church-bells; ing; for we were now every where followed The white-roh'd bride is smiling now and surrounded by Arabs laden with limbs And bright-ey'd maidens before her strew

Neath a budding wreath from the orange bough; from dismembered bodies, as well as entire Beautiful Flowers, of every hue. mummies of serpents, ibis, and cats, with the heads of wolves, and other hideous ob- There's a voice of sorrow,-for time hath fled, -jects of Egypt's symbol worship. We bar- They've laid her to sleep in her endless rest,

A wife and a mother lies cold and dead; gained for an ibis, and got it for a piastre, With a young babe clasp'd to her marble breast; but were grievously disappointed to find And Flowers are there, with their perfum'd that, instead of its proving a white plumed,

breath, handsome bird, as it once was, it retained Decking the bud and the blossom in death.] neither form nor color ; but we consoled In the green churchyard is a lonely spot, ourselves with the shawl that had once en- Where the joyous sunshine enters not; veloped a Theban belle, and a pair of an- Deep in the gloom of the cypress' shade, cient sandals, in form such as our Hum- There is her home in the cold earth made,

And over her still the sweet flowrets bloom, malls constantly wear in India.

They were near her in life, and forsake not her Unless the visitor is attracted as a student tomb. to Thebes, it is not a place the stranger will be disposed to tarry at, and therefore, Beautiful Flowers ! ye seem to be having seen its wonders, and just encoun- Link'd in the fond ties of memory! tered a large party in blouse and telescope Companions ye are to our lifeless clay;

Companions ye were to our childhood's day, array, preparing with umbrellas and sketch-And barren and drear were this wide world of books to follow our steps, we left the rem

ours, nants of the city of a hundred gates, free Lacking the smile of the beautiful Flowers ! to their investigations, and re-embarking,

FREDERICA EMILIE D.

poor

HUME, AND HIS INFLUENCE UPON they expect, and rightly, that it will fill up HISTORY.

the gap on their shelves, and the void in

their heads, without any further pains.' From the Quarterly Review.

Your comparison, however apposite-was Histoire de la Conquête de l'Angleterre par the reply of Euphranor-cannot be carried

les Normands. "Par Augustin Thierry, entirely through. He who purchases the de l'Institut Royal de France. Qua-tool-chest endeavors to ascertain the temtri me édition, Bruxelles. 1842.

per of the tools : he assures himself that THIERRY, largely and approvingly quoted the shear-steel is Holtzapfel's and not Shefby Sir James Mackintosh, and praised by field ware. It is not the mere 'town made' many English reviewers, has, without ab- which will satisfy him. In the medicinesolutely superseding any of our standard' chest, you take pains enough to insure that authorities, become, through the medium the contents of phials and boxes shall be of translations and cheap editions, a popu- the right thing : no willow-bark instead of lar book. So much attention has been ex- Battley's cinchona: genuine unadulterated cited by the novelty of his very

doubtful senna. Still more anxiously would you views, which we trust to have ere long an keep away from the shop, however gay and opportunity of discussing, that it has tended attractive, if you knew that the pharmacoto revive the scheme, often suggested, but polist had been tried and convicted of sellnever yet adopted, of publishing an annota- ing oxalic acid in the place of Epsom salts, ted Hume,

or arsenic for magnesia. But with respect 'Hume, after all'-it was urged by an to the standard work,' or the whole legion able advocate of the plan, whom, according of educational works, equally 'standards' to the fashion of the days of Berkeley and in their degree, is the same salutary caution Hervey, we will designate as Alciphron-employed ? Rarely does the teacher, who 'Hume, after all, retains his literary ascen- places the book before the pupil, take the dency. People will turn to him naturally trouble to consider the character of the as the educational book, the unchallenged mind whence the work emanates, or the source of authority. New histories, such tendency of the doctrines which it may as Thierry, may enjoy a flash of reputation, boldly display or coyly conceal. How often but they will not be considered as the sober, does the careful mother, who anxiously regular book, the outfit of the new book- guards her children against opening any but case in the newly-furnished breakfast-room, Sunday books' on the Lord's day, renewly occupied by the newly-married ex- sume on the Monday her regular course of pectants of a numerous family. As Pro- readings-lessons on history, lessons on fessor Smith says, in his Lectures, It is botany, lessons on geology, taken from proHume who is read by every one.

Hume is ductions in which, either in express terms, the historian whose views and opinions in- or by inference, Holy Scripture is either so sensibly become our own. He is respected excluded as to destroy all trust in its realiand admired by the most enlightened read-ty, or represented as a fable ! er; he is the guide and philosopher of the Surely not so'-said Alciphron;-'name ordinary reader, to whose mind, on all the them.' topics connected with our history, he entire- Nay-quoth Euphranor—it is mamma's ly gives the tone and law. Were, however, business, not mine; let her set her wits to the merit of Hume's history less than it is, work, and examine the first dozen of the the stamp given by the name of a standard rubbish which she shoots upon the schoolwork will always sustain its value as a lite room table. rary or commercial speculation. Hume We are wandering from our question:may be truly characterized as History for resumed Alciphron ; do not suppose that the Million. In our active age, the pre- I contend for the absolute persection of vailing desire is to acquire the largest show Hume's history. In many respects it may of information, with the smallest expense not satisfy the awakened curiosity of the of thought. Just as you buy a tool-chest public mind. Copious sources of informaor a medicine-chest, because it contains all tion, unexplored in Hume's day, have been the hammers and chisels, or tinctures and made known since his time by the diligence powders which you want, all ready chosen of our modern antiquaries. Sounder critifor you without any trouble of your own- cism is employed in judging the mediæval even so do people purchase the standard work period : more truly do we appreciate the for their handsome, select libraries, because poetical character of the middle ages, the JULY, 1844.

20.

6

splendors of chivalry, the charm of ro-critical investigator of history, is entitled to mance, the beauty of the structures, the great respect, but the task of correction merit of the artists who, sixty years since, would not be so easy as you suppose. Fully were equally contemned by the man of let- do I acknowledge the cleverness displayed ters and the virtuoso. Above all, we begin in Hume's history, though I should not to understand how extensive is the inquiry characterize his qualities exactly in the involved in the annals of mankind; for the same terms. Allen's language is even more enlarged researches of our own times, make tinged by affection than that of the lover; for us now far more sensible of the exact ex- in the very same article he says,– We are tent of our ignorance. There is as much thoroughly sensible of the deficiencies in graphic archæology and curious quaintness, what constitute the chief merit of an histoin any one number of Charles Knight's rian, fidelity and regard to truth.' ProLondon or Old England, or my friend Fe- fessor Smith goes a deal farther. He warns lix Summerly's Guide-books, as, under Pitt's us to be' ever suspicious' of the author's administration, would have set up an Anti-'particular prejudices.' He virtually accuquarian Society-president, council, direct- ses his favorite writer of a perpetual falsior, and all the members to boot. But our fication of his subject,' by ascribing to the abundance will facilitate the editorial task. personages of history, as they pass before Hume's short-comings may be completely him, the views and opinions of later ages: remedied by the note, the excursus, the ap- those sentiments and reasonings which his pendix, and the essay. All those who pos-oron enlightened and powerful mind was sess the information and talent needed for able to form, not those which either really correcting Hume's errors, or making good were or could be formed by men thinking or his deficiencies, will have a far better chance acting many centuries before.' And he of profit or fame by annexing their informa- sums up the literary character of the 'beaution to his pages, than through any inde- tiful narrative' by telling us that 'in pendent production of their own. Embark Hume's history truth is continually mixed in the vessel which has so long braved the up with misrepresentation, and the whole storms of criticism: the good ship Hume mass of the reasoning, which in its final will always make a prosperous voyage, and impression is materially wrong, is so interfind a market for her wares in ports which spersed with observations which are in themto every other flag will be closed. It is in selves perfectly right, that the reader is at vain—as observed by a shrewd critic of our no time sufficiently on his guard, and is at own daythat we shall look elsewhere for last betrayed into conclusions totally unthose general and comprehensive views, that warrantable, and at variance with his best sagacity and judgment, those masterly les, feelings and soundest opinions.'* sons of political wisdom, that profound How can an editor deal with such a wriknowledge of human nature, that calm phi-ter-an historian who neither knows the losophy and dispassionate balancing of opin- truth, nor cares to know it, and whose wilion, which delight and instruct us in the pa- ful perversions must provoke a continual, ges of Hume. Hume is justly placed, by though ineffectual, refutation ?-The percommon consent, at the head of our philoso- petual commentary must become a perpetual phic historians : he is not more distinguish- running fire against the text. Let it be ed for his philosophy than for his sagacity further recollected that the particular preand judgment, his feeling and pathos.- judices' of Hume may chance to run counHume may be deficient in diligence and re-ter to an editor's best interests and feelings. search, but, as I have before said, how easi- If you, Alciphron, held a good estate in the ly can any defects arising from imperfect county of Berks, by your father's will, would information be supplied by those, who, with you like to attempt the correction of a topoless genius and philosophy, have more op- grapher who had such a 'particular prejuportunity of collecting materials, more assi- dice against testamentary devises as to duity, more knowledge! And if there be represent them to be grounded, in every any tendencies at variance with received case, upon fraud ? How could any Eng, opinions, surely a calm and temperate cor- lishman bear to edit a general history of rection of his errors, will sufficiently enable the reader to maintain a due impartiality.' * The passages quoted by Alciphron and Eu

You are quoting, O Alciphron—was the phranor will be found in the Edinburgh Review reply of Euphranor—the words of the late 1., Lecture V., which we request our readers to

No. 83, p. 5, &c.; and in Smyth's Lectures, vol

. John Allen, who, as an acute, diligent, and peruse attentively, comparing it with this article.

England, composed by Monsieur De Nigre- who is apparently the most virtuous differs ment the Frenchman, who, entertaining only from the most profligate by “cant and the most ' particular prejudicesagainst the grimace.” Lorenzo is most actively conBritish sea-service, always advocates his sistent-he tries to seduce every woman he own opinion by so artfully mixing up truth can get at. When you have him in your with misrepresentation, as to make all our house he will endeavor on all occasions to naval men appear odious or ridiculous; put his doctrines into practice, whether he and to induce us to believe that our naval meets your smart lady's maid in the park service is equally mischievous and con- or your staid governess on the stairs, plays temptible; our wooden walls, not the de- an accompaniment to your spinster cousin, fences of the realm, but useless sources of assists your wife at the dinner-table, reads extravagant expense; our sailors, ruffi ans, a sermon to your budding daughter, or esserving merely for plunder; the 'whole corts your well matured sister to the opera.' scope of all our Admiralty orders directed-Would it not probably occur to you that to the same wicked object; our command your friend would consider it rather inexers, knaves or fools, traitors or cowards; pedient to begin by shaking hands with a who represents Howe as a ninny, and Col- scoundrel, whom he would soon be comlingwood as a brute; and who, in narrating pelled to get rid of by kicking him out of the last days of Nelson, fraudulently omits doors ? his ‘England expects every man to do his duty; lest, by quoting these emphatic words, he should preserve a memorial of the ardent and sincere patriotism of the Hume's merits must be examined with dying hero?

reference to the era in which he flourished. An editor appears to me to be nearly in Previously to Hume, it can hardly be said your position when you introduce a stran- that England possessed historical literature ger to your friend. In this case, you wish in the æsthetic sense of the term. AdoptLif consistent with truth-to become the ing the Gibbonian phrase, it was our reentire voucher for the character of the par- proach that no British altars had been raisty: if you cannot go to that full extent, ed to the Muse of History. All who, since then, in connexion with the introduction, Hume, have earned any commanding repuyou feel yourself obliged to put your friend tation, are more or less his disciples; and sufficiently upon the qui vive to protect him- all our juvenile and educational histories, self in his intercourse. As the world goes, and conversations, and outlines, are, in the you may often be compelled, even for your main, composed out of Hume's material friend's benefit, to place him in close quar- occasionally minced up with a few pious ters with an individual whose connexion or reflection or even with texts, in order to acquaintance cannot be pursued or cultiva-correct the taint of the food thus dished up ted without caution.— Chipchase is an for the rising generation. Even Turner honest workman, but very cross-John Bean strongly partakes of his flavor. takes good care of his horses, though he is Before Hume, we had many valuable and not a teetotaller-Sir Richard enjoys capi- laborious early writers, such as Hall and tal credit upon 'Change, but he is apt to be Graston, Speed and honest Stow, who tricky.-In all such cases the merit or tal- chronicled events with diligence, giving ent, such as it may be, is accepted as a that instruction which facts, faithfully compensation for the defect. So far as though unskilfully narrated, afforded to the concerns the particular purposes required, multitude, when the comparative sterility the balance is on the right side. But you of the press rendered reading scarcer and would find it rather awkward, had you to reflection more abundant. · Baker's Chronstate, ‘Lorenzo is a delightful companion, icle,' in the hall window, the one book confull of wit, talent, and information; he has ned over by the fine old English gentleman, only one fault, his whole heart and soul is taught him to think for himself. May be given up to gallantry: he never loses sight his chaplain helped him a little.

The of his purpose.

He has written a most modern English gentleman thinks as he is clever essay upon the natural history of taught by his newspaper.

Besides such chastity-to prove, not only the bad influ- Gothic chroniclers, for we name Baker only ence exercised by the “popular notions of is the exemplar, there were other writers chastity" upon morality, but that, in point who had made a nearer approach to the of fact, chastity never exists; and that she science of history, by treating the subject

« PreviousContinue »