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And common cries pursue your ladyship,
For hindering of their market.

Lady B. Have you done, sir?

Born. I could accuse the gaiety of your wardrobe,
And prodigal embroideries, under which
Rich satins, plushes, cloth of silver, dare
Not shew their own complexions ; your jewels,
Able to burn out the spectators' eyes,
And shew like bonfires on you by the tapers :
I could urge something more.

Lady B. Pray do, I like
Your homily of thrift.

Born. I could wish, madam,
You would not game so much.

Lady B. A gamester too !

Born. But are not come to that acquaintance yet,
Should teach you skill enough to raise your profit.
You look not through the subtilty of cards,
And mysteries of dice ; nor can you save
Charge with the box, buy petticoats and pearls,
And keep your family by the precious income;
Nor do I wish you should : my poorest servant
Shall not upbraid my tables, nor his hire,
Purchas'd beneath my honour. You make play
Not a pastime but a tyranny, and vex
Yourself and my estate by it.

Lady B. Good! proceed.

Born. Another game you have, which consumes more
Your fame than purse ; your revels in the night,
Your meetings call'd THE BALL, to which repair,
As to the court of pleasure, all your gallants,
And ladies, thither bound by a subpena
Of Venus, and small Cupid's high displeasure;
'Tis but the Family of Love translated
Into more costly sin !

Lady B. Have you concluded ?
Born. I have done ; and howsoever

My language may appear to you, it carries
No other than my fair and just intent
To your delights, without curb to their modest

And noble freedom.- vol. iv., pp. 5—10. We conclude with a few observations on this ' editio princeps' of Shirley. The plays, as we have before observed, were collected, arranged, and edited by the late Mr. Gifford; and his was a task of no light labour-for never had unhappy author suffered so much from careless and ignorant printers as Shirley. Some errors of the press, which have either crept into this edition or have remained uncorrected, show that the keen eye of that most accurate scholar was somewhat bedimmed before his work was concluded; but the fame of Shirley is deeply indebted to the collector of his dramas. Many passages of poetry, which had been crowded into halt and disjointed prose, have been brought back, as near as possible, to their original harmonious flow: in some places, the sense, which might have appeared irrevocably lost, by the dislocation of sentences and the transposition of lines, has been restored by conjectural emendations, both bold and felicitous; in others, where words or lines have been lost, the hiatus is marked, and the reader is spared much unprofitable waste of time, in endeavouring to elucidate the meaning of vocables which might seem cast at random from the types.* No one, in short, who has not attempted to acquaint himself with the beauties of Shirley's drama, through the old quartos, can appreciate the luxury of reading them in the clearer letter, and more genuine text of the present edition. Mr. Dyce has performed his humbler task as editor of the poems, with his accustomed ability; and, on the whole, it is no fault of the edition, if justice be not at length fairly done to the merit of Shirley. One of his cotemporary poets ventured to prophesy,–

accurate * In the fine and eloquent tragedy of Chabot, the obscurity of Chapman's manner, the hardness of which his contemporaries called his 'full and heightened style,' is greatly increased by the incorrectness of the press. This play, as bearing the name of Shirley in its title-page, conjoined with that of Chapman, ought not to have been omitted: yet it is very difficult to assign any part of it to Shirley; even the comic scenes are more in Chapman's close and pregnant manner than in the light and airy style of Shirley.

That ages yet to come shall hear and see,

When dead, thy works a living elegy. For the first time, in the nineteenth century, this elegy has been removed from the obscure and inaccessible quarter where it had long mouldered unseen ; it has been transcribed in legible characters; and fully asserts the claim of this last of our Elizabethan dramatists, to be admitted to a high place among the second class of the poetical hierarchy of England.

ART. II.—Mémoires de René Le Vasseur, de la Sarthe, ex-Conventionnel. 4 vols.

4 vols. Paris. 1829-1832. THESE Mémoires profess to be written by one Le Vasseur, an

old Jacobin and regicide, who is still, or lately was alive, and are preceded by an introduction and a biographical notice avowedly from the pen of an editor, M. Achille Roche. We had not, however, read half-a-dozen pages of the Mémoires before we began to suspect that they were not the actual composition of Le Vasseur—that this was a fresh instance of French fabrication, and that the editor was also substantially the author. As we proceeded in our perusal, this suspicion became certainty. We did not doubt that M. Roche might have had some coinmunication with Le Vasseur and his sanction for the use of his name, but it was evident that Roche was the writer of the whole, and that Le Vasseur's share in the work must be very inconsiderable. We noted,' as we read, several proofs of fabrication which we intended to lay before our readers ; but when we came to the conclusion of the fourth volume (which was published two years after the first), we found that we might spare Ourselves the trouble of a critical examination of that point, for that the fact of fabrication, to the full extent we suspected, had been already established in a court of justice.


The case was this. The two first volumes were published in 1829, and in Feb. 1830 they were prosecuted before the tribunal de police correctionelle, as immoral and seditious—as a justification of regicide, irreligion, and anarchy; and on the trial it appeared, that Řoche had been employed by the son of Le Vasseur to edite his father's memoirs under the following circumstances. Le Vasseur the younger says, that his father had a wish to write his own apology, and had in fact made many scattered memoranda, but that his great age and infirmities (he was above eighty) had interrupted his work. He gave, however, these notes to the son, who put them into some kind of order, and with the help of verbal explanations from the old gentleman, and large extracts from the Moniteur, completed a manuscript-equivalent in size to about one volume. On his return to Paris he offered this volume to the bookseller Rapilly. In the then state of France, an apology for regicide and a panegyric on the republic fell in luckily with the conspiracy

de quinze ans,' against the legitimate monarchy, which was already so far matured as to have obtained full possession of the press; and Rapilly entered readily into the speculation ; but one volume, he said, would never do--it must be swelled into four at least, in order to make it lucrative as well as mischievous-for these liberals have always a careful eye to the main chance. Le Vasseur consented; a young litterateur, M. Roche, was selected for the business and into his hands the manuscript was delivered. The bookseller's evidence, and the sentence of the court, describe the manuscript delivered to Roche as being only heads of chapters and scattered materials for about one volume; but Le Vasseur the younger, alarmed for his profits, is very indignant with the bookseller for having given so poor an account of his materials ; ' which were not,' he says, 'scattered, but collected by himself into a volume. Both these stories may be true-the bookseller's substantiallyLe Vasseur's verbally. The materials were, we have


no doubt, mere loose notes and scattered hints, which, M. Le Vasseur, junior, must permit us to think, would not have acquired much historical authenticity, even if he should have pasted or transcribed them into a volume. The difference, however, is of no great iinportance ; as all parties are agreed that the Mémoires were not written by old Le Vasseur, as they affect to be, but that the original draft was compiled by the son, and that even that portion was all re-written, and three-fourths of additional matter supplied, by the ingenuity of Roche, who never had seen either the son or the father.

How much of the work thus doubly fabricated may really belong to the old Regicide, we must leave to the conjecture of our readers. In our own judgment, the portion is so small and so insignificant, that we should not have thought it worth while to have noticed the book at all, but that it seemed desirable to exhibit so well authenticated an instance of the system of fabrication which is now carried on so impudently in France ;* while it may not be unamusing nor uninstructive to see the kind of apology which the conscience of the father, the filial piety of the son, and the literary talents of the editor, have combined to make for a period, hitherto, as they tell us, most unjustly stigmatised as the Reign of Terror.

Having thus, however, acquainted our readers with the real history of the production, we shall, in our further observations, treat it as the work of Le Vasseur the elder-not only because it has, to a certain degree, his sanction, but also because it may be considered as expressing the sentiments of the party to which he belongs, and which has lately recovered not a little of authority in France. In fact, M. Thiers, now Secretary of State for the Home Department, in a history of the Revolution published previous to July, 1830, took much the same view of the subject that M. Le Vasseur does or is made to do; though we hear, and indeed could have guessed if we had not heard, that Thiers looks back with no great satisfaction to that foundation of his fame and fortunes. The theories of a young advocate of the Revolution are rather at variance with the duties of the minister of even a citizen-king. Not that Le Vasseur is quite so universal a panegyrist of the Revolution as M. Thiers—for he admits with great sincerity that the course of that Revolution was distinguished by at least one bloody injustice, one lamentable tragedy, in which certain friends of the author-Messrs. Danton, Robespierre, and others -were cruelly and wantonly put to death, while he himself narrowly escaped the same unworthy treatment. These victims were all des hommes énergiques, mais que n'avait jamais souillé le crime,' members of a society called the Jacobins, and of a party called the Mountain. It is the object of the book to rescue these much-injured persons from a great deal of unmerited obloquy which has, some how or other, attached itself to their proceedings.

There is in this work one instance of impudence so remarkable, that we cannot but notice it. The trial which established that Roche, and not Le Vasseur, was the real author of the book, took place after two volumes only had been published, or even written, yet the two latter volumes proceed gravely in the name of old Le Vasseur ; nay, what is still droller, after the son had avowed that in 1828 the octogenarian was incapable of continuing his own notes, we find him in 1832 revived into a lively observer of, and active critic on, current events and recent publications.


Before we proceed to investigate the merits of this apology, we must premise that we are ready to give it all the weight wbich is arrogated to it on the score of Le Vasseur's character. The intensity of his conviction, his sincere enthusiasm, we admit without cavil; and he claims what it is not hazardous to allow to a Frenchman-courage in the field. As a man and a midwife, (his profession united these characters,) we give him his due, and are even willing to believe the story of his sacrificing the expectation of a rich inheritance to the honest maintenance of his opinion, against that of a wealthy relative, on the subject of negro slavery. We fear, indeed, that the race of rich West Indian uncles is extinct in France as elsewhere, or only survives to wind up the denouements of M. Scribe's comedies, and to supply the deus ex machina for the relief of that ingenious dramatist's heroes and heroines. But such things were ; and, without discrediting this anecdote of M. Le Vasseur's early life, we will only add, that when any of our own Buxtons or Lushingtons can give anything like as good proof of their sincerity, we will admit their individual right to complete the robbery of the planter, and the destruction of poor Lord Seaford's remaining sugar mills.

From what we have already said, it is obvious that those who may open these volumes, with the hope of finding in them that fund of personal details which constitutes the charm of memoirs, must be disappointed. They will discover here no counterpart to Madame d'Abrantes' trousseau or accouchement, or Napoleon's master-key of the bed-chambers of St. Cloud ! and they must content themselves with floods of declamation, and a few facts floating here and theremin gurgite vasto. We are told that the ardent patriotism which had procured our accoucheur the suffrages of his native arrondissement of St. Calais for his election to the Convention, pointed out at once his seat to be on the Mountain ; but that his acquaintances, at the commencement of his Parisian career, were few, and that he was then unknown to the leaders either of the Jacobins or the Gironde. All details as to his own private habits, all anecdotes about his personal society, all accounts of the formation of his political connexions, and, what we more lament, all personal sketches of the public


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