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cities, and endeavoured to turn the halls and tribunals of justice into seats of the muses. They made some vain efforts to revive in them poetical tournaments, and to these efforts we may probably ascribe the origin of the "Academie des jeux floraux" at Thoulouse, and of similar poetical institutions at Barcelona and Tortosa.
These efforts were all in vain. The Troubadours struggled long against neglect and contempt, but the order at last expired. Their country forgot them during its long religious wars; foreign nations did not esteem, because they misunderstood them, and the modern languages of Europe became cultivated and began to hear songs of a higher mood than those which the Provençals had been accustomed to sing. They died and were forgotten. But modern times which have rendered justice to much that was formerly mistaken, have drawn from a temporary oblivion these relics of former refinement, and rendered to the poets of chivalry their merited applause.
The biography of the Troubadours was first sketched by Nostradamus, and completely elucidated with proofs and exand the people rendered wild by persecution and want of education. Even the nobility lost the noble character which formerly distinguished them, and they who had so long delighted monarchs by their sweet strains, were silenced, or descended to the low condition of jesters and buffoons. The appellation of Troubadours was lost in those of Jongleurs, Comics, Musars. Philip Augustus, (1180—1223) banished the histriones from his kingdom, among whom the Troubadours were certainly included. The city of Bologna, as early as 1288, prohibited the singers of France from singing publicly in the streets-Muratori Antiq. Ital. t. ii. p. 844. Apud Ghirardaccium in Hist. Bonon. ad ann. 1288, statutum a populo Bononiensi fuit, ut Cantatores Francigenarum in plateis communis ad cantandum ommino morari non possint.
* The Troubadours had contemporary biographers, only two of whom we know by name, Hugues de St. Cyr, and Michel de la Tour, whom Millot cites in the Hist. des Troubadours. Their age he does not specify; but when they composed, historical taste and criticism were altogether wanting.
Nostradamus also mentions (Vies des plus cel. poetes Prov. p. 248–254,) two compilers of such biographies-Monge des Isles d'Or and H. de Saint Cezari, (Hugues de St. Cyr.) and many other authors, but he collected and repeats fables and traditions without any critical remarks.
The author we have placed at the head of this article, and to whose researches on this subject the literary world is indebted for much of what they know, devoted the whole of a long life (1697 to 1781) to the ages of chivalry and the Provençal literature. He collected the writings of many hundreds of their poets, and these collections, still in manuscript, have formed the basis perhaps of all modern accounts of the Troubadours. Mr. Raynouard has lately selected and published (Choix des Poésies originales des Troubadours-6 vol. Paris, 1816–25,) nearly all that is valuable among their compositions.
Among the modern critics, many controversies have arisen respecting the merits of the Troubadours Le Grand, in the preface to his "Fabliaux," ranks them below the poets of the North of France; Papon in his "Observations critiques sur les Trouvéres et les Troubadours;" (Appendix to the "Voyage de Provence," t. ii. p. 165,) is of the contrary opinion, and represents the Northern French as imitators of the Provençals. Le Grand replied to him as well as to other opponents, in "Observations sur les Troubadours par l'editeur des Fabliaux, à Paris, 1781-8vo. Clement, (Essais de Critique sur la Literature Ancienne et Moderne Amsterd. 1785, t. ii. p. 78,) adopts a middle opinion. The controversy now is occasionally revived, and as in all questions of taste, must remain long unsettled.
tracts from their writings by Millot. Many of them are, however, only known now by name, or by the representations of their contemporaries. Although the high praises which their productions received from their own age, ought not to seduce our judgment, for it was a period of comparative ignorance and great enthusiasm, yet do these praises deserve some respect, for they re-echoed the sentiments of a whole people, who heard them read and sung at a time when they could be understood and felt in all their force. This, indeed, is the great recommendation of these lays at the present times. Sismondi mentions it as a very noticeable fact, that none of the Troubadours ever attained to a very high order of excellence, and has justly accounted for their mediocrity. But they breathe the spirit of a heroic age. The spell of the times and the manners—of an original national poetry, in short, is upon them. And in the midst of all the wonders of more cultivated genius, we turn to these simple lays, as to the first accents of an infant literature, and the first moral lessons of modern society.
ART. VI.-1. The Life of Sir Walter Raleigh, Knt. By ARTHUR CAYLEY, Jun. 2 Vols. 4to. London. 1805.
2. Cobbett's Complete Collection of State Trials. London. 1809. 2d Vol. The Trial of Sir Walter Raleigh, Knt. at Winchester, for high treason.
THE origin of the North American Provinces may be traced to the enterprizing genius, and the persevering and costly labours of Sir Walter Raleigh. He is one of the heroes of the new world, not seen like those of antiquity through the mist of fable, but in his actual proportions; and yet gigantic as the founders of ancient colonies, as Danaus orCecrops. His memory is recommended to us by gratitude; and in his comprehensive genius, his romantic temper, his adventurous life, and his extensive learning, we find materials for the gratification of the most excursive curiosity; while the greatness of his calamities, notwithstanding the most splendid gifts of nature and fortune, un
fold a moral lesson which the axe has consecrated with the honours of civil matrydom.
To prove the antiquity of his family, his name has been traced to villages, and even towns in the West of England, called Rale or Ralega. Whatever might have been its origin, the family was old enough to have lost its ancient riches ;* for Walter, who was the youngest son of a third marriage, each of which had been fruitful, was born upon a leasehold farm in Devonshire, which appears to have been nearly all that was left to his father at that time, of the paternal inheritance. He was probably more indebted for his genius, to his mother than to his father; for she by a former marriage had produced the three Gilberts, distinguished like Raleigh, by hardy courage and maritime adventure. He was born in 1552, a year, according remarkable in our chronicles for that 'strange shoal of the largest sea fishes, which quitting their 'native waters for fresh and untasted streams wandered up 'the Thames, an event surprisingly analagous to the life of 'this adventurous voyager, whose delight was in the hazardous 'discovery of unfrequented coasts.'
to the astrologers;
At the university of Oxford he obtained some reputation, not only for letters but wit; for Lord Bacon among his apothegms records that while Raleigh was a scholar at Oxford, there was a cowardly fellow who happened to be a good archer; but having been grossly abused by another he bemoaned himself to Raleigh and asked his advice, what he should do to repair the wrong that had been offered to him. Raleigh answered, why challenge him at a match of shooting.
His stay there must have been short, as he served in a company of volunteers sent to the aid of the Huguenots, when quite a youth. However young, he was not a heedless observer of characters and events; for in his History of the World,† he often recurs to his juvenile campaigns. The superiority of wisdom to valour, even in military affairs did not escape him, and he says of the great Coligni, in contrasting him with the Prince of Condé, that so much did the valour of the latter 'outreach the advisedness of the former, that whatever the 'admiral intended to win by waiting the advantage, the Prince 'adventured to lose by being over confident in his own courage.'
Courage, though indispensible to the military life, derives its virtue, in commanders, not so much from promoting action as by preserving the mind from fear, and thus leaving it undisturbed to mature its plans, and to take advantage of events.
* Nobility-virtus et antiquæ divitiæ.--Ral. Hist. of the World. b. i. c. ix. § 4. + See Oldy's Life of Raleigh, p, 7.
He also relates a stratagem in Languedoc, which he thus introduces in his History of the World. I saw in the third civil war of France certain caves in Languedoc, which had but 'one entrance, and that very narrow, cut out in the midway of high rocks, which we knew not how to enter by any ladder 'or engine, till at last by certain bundles of straw let down by an iron chain, and a weighty stone in the midst, those that 'defended it were so smothered, that they rendered themselves 'with their plate, money, and other goods.'*
Afterwards in the Netherlands, he served under the Prince of Orange. It was in these schools, and chiefly in that of the Low Countries, that the English youth were trained to arms and manners. Their morals generally suffered from the license of a foreign camp; but Raleigh happily passed through this ordeal unhurt; and returned to England with the fame of a soldier and the accomplishments of a gentleman.
Sir Humphrey Gilbert, his brother, had just obtained a patent from Queen Elizabeth to plant a colony in North-America, and Raleigh joined the adventurers; but the expedition failed, though not until a ship had ventured to sea, and a sea-fight had occurred, in which Raleigh tried his courage on a new element. This voyage, however unfortunate, probably gave his mind a direction towards the naval service, and first turned his attention to maritime discoveries and the settlement of colonies. From these he was for the present diverted, by the petty war which was then carried on in Ireland, where he next appears, with a Captain's commission. Lord Grey was then the deputy-who is said to have acted upon the maxim, "that the Irish were like 'nettles, sure to make those smart who gently handled them; but 'must be crushed to prevent stinging." Under such a master, Raleigh, it is to be feared, was but too apt a pupil. What he considered rigour, the Irish thought cruelty. After several slight skirmishes, the Spanish fort, as it was called, was invested, and was compelled at length to surrender unconditionally, the deputy having refused all terms, when nearly the whole garrison was put to the sword. It was composed of adventurers chiefly Spanish, under the Pope's banner; 'who, (his holiness) if an author is 'to be credited who had been in Spain, (says Oldys) had pro'vided a chalice to drink the Queen of England's precious blood, as soon as she should be made a sacrifice."+ Raleigh was never taxed, we are told, with any cruelty on this account, more than the rest of the officers. He only obeyed instructions. It is too late when an officer is leading a storm, to listen to anything but "History of the World, b. iv. c. 2. § 16. + Life of Sir Walter Raleigh.
his orders; the culpability lies in going upon the duty, or in continuing in a service, where cruelty and licentiousness aggravate the horrors of war; but it is by no means unlikely that Raleigh, however elevated by genius and cultivation, thought it rather a fair opportunity for weeding out these noxious papists. So much are all mankind slaves to the opinions of their party, and so completely does bigotry, more than any other passion, efface the sentiments of humanity! After this, Raleigh was engaged in several personal adventures, in which, the generosity of his nature being unrestricted by prejudice, had free scope. Returning from an unsuccessful pursuit of the Lord Barry, upon his approach to the ford of a river, rather ahead of his men, he was set upon by a party in ambush, but broke through them, and crossed the river; yet Mr. Moyle, his friend, being thrown by his horse in the stream, Raleigh, though alone, returned, and dragging him out of the mire, bore him to the shore. Here with his pike and pistol, he awaited the arrrival of his men, who were allowed, such an impression had Raleigh made upon the enemy, to pass unmolested. On another occasion, having attacked a party of rebels with six horse, under the expectation that the rest of his force would soon join him, his horse was killed, and he rescued with great peril by his servants, whom, however, he would not allow to remain with him, but at the hazard of his own life, despatched to the rescue of his friend Fitzgerald. Raleigh's company being disbanded, he returned to England, and was first introduced to the Queen by a gallant adventure. The Queen being interrupted in her walk by a muddy spot in the pathway, Raleigh gracefully threw off his new and rich cloak, and spread it before her Majesty's feet. When admitted to court, he endeavoured to attract her notice, but his person, wit and confidence procured him only some small employments. He attended the Duke of Anjou to the Netherlands, by the Queen's direction; and brought over a letter to her from the Prince of Orange. He was sufficiently noticed to excite envy, not to ensure success. Finding that he must be the architect of his own fortune, and animated by an adventurous spirit, he united himself with Sir Humphrey Gilbert in his unfortunate expedition to Newfoundland. Though Raleigh's own ship was driven back, and Sir Humphrey lost at sea upon his return, Raleigh not at all disheartened, prepared for a more arduous enterprize. The histories of the Spanish discoverers and conquerors in the new world, had been the delight of Raleigh's youth, and had nourished his romantic genius. He had been engaged in two expeditions of Sir Humphrey Gilbert's to Newfoundland; but now he projected a more enlarged and splendid scheme, and may be