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į lained into unbashful meaning. Schoolmasters, transpositions serve at once to give an idea of the who knew all that was in him except his graces, translator's learning, and of difficulties surmounted. give the names of places and towns at full length, and he moves along stiftly in their literal versions, PENELOPE TO ULYSSES. as the man who, as we are told in the Philosophi- "This, still your wife, my ling'ring lord! I send: cal Transactions, was afflicted with a universal Yet be your answer personal, not pemn’d." anchilosis. His female imitators, on the other hand, regard the dear creature only as a lover; ex- These lines seem happily imitated from Taylor, press the delicacy of his passion by the ardour of the water-poet, who has it thus; their own; and if now and then he is found to grow "To thée, dear Ursula, these lines I send, a little too warm, and perhaps to express himself a little indelicately, it must be imputed to the more

Not with my hand, but with my heart, they'ro poignant sensations of his fair admirers. In a

penn'd.” word, we have seen him stripped of all his beauties But not to make a pause in the reader's pleasure, in the versions of Stirling and Clark, and talk like we proceed. a debauchee in that of Mrs. ; but the sex should ever be sacred from criticism; perhaps the “Sunk now is Troy, the curse of Grecian dames! ladies have a right to describe raptures whích none (Her king, her all, a worthless prize!) in flames. but themselves can bestow.

O had by storms (his fleet to Sparta bound) A poet, like Ovid, whose greatest beauty lies Thi adult'rer perished in the mad profound! rather in expression than sentiment, must be necessarily difficult to translate. A fine sentiment

Here seems some obscurity in the translation;

we are at a loss to know what is meant by the mad may be conveyed several different ways, without impairing its vigour; but a sentence delicately ex

profound. It can certainly mean neither Bedlam pressed will scarcely admit the least variation with nor Fleet-Ditch; for though the epithet mad might out losing beauty. The performance before us agree with one, or profound with the other, yet will serve to convince the public, that Ovid is more

when united they seem incompatible with either. easily admired than imitated. The translator, in bad verses; and poets are sometimes said to be

The profound has frequently been used to signify his notes, shows an ardent zeal for the reputation mad; who knows but Penelope wishes that Paris of his poet. It is possible too he may have felt his beauties; however, he does not seem possessed of might have died in the very act of rhyming; and the happy art of giving his feelings expression. If as he was a shepherd, it is not improbable to supa kindred spirit, as we have often been told, must pose but that he was a poet also. animate the translator, we fear the claims of Mr. "Cold in a widow'd bed I ne'er had lay, Barret will never receive a sanction in the heraldry Nor chid with weary eyes the ling’ring day." of Parnassus.

His intentions, even envy must own, are laud- Lay for lain, by the figure girglimus. The able: nothing less than to instruct boys, school- translator makes frequent use of this figure. masters, grown gentlemen, the public, in the prin “Nor the protracted nuptials to avoidh ciples of taste (to use his own expression), both

By night unravell’d what the day employed. by precept and by example. His manner it seems

When have not fancied dangers broke my rest? is, "to read a course of poetical lectures to his pupils one night in the week; which, beginning with Love, tim'rous passion! rends the anxious breast.

In thought I saw you each fierce Trojan's aim; this author, running through select pieces of our own, as well as the Latin and Greek writers, and Pale at the mention of bold Hector's name!" ending with Longinus, contributes no lillle to

Ovid makes Penelope shudder at the name of wards for:ning their taste.” No little, reader ob- Hector. Our translator, with great propriety, serve that, from a person so perfectly master of the transfers the fright from Penelope to Ulysses himforce of his own language: what may not be ex- self: it is he who grows pale at the name of Hecpected from his comments on the beauties of an- tor; and well indeed he might; for Hector is repreother?

sented by Ovid, somewhere else, as a terrible fel But, in order to show in what manner he has low, and Ulysses as little better than a poltroon. executed these intentions, it is proper he should first march in review as a poet. We shall select "Whose spear when brave Antilochus imbrued, the first epistle that offers, which is that from Pene- By the dire news awoke, my fear renew'd lope to Ulysses, observing beforehand, that the Clad in dissembled arms Patroclus died: whole translation is a most convincing instance, And “Oh the fate of stratagem!" 1 eried. that English words may be placed in Latin order, Tlepolemus, beneath the Lycian dart, without being wholly unintelligible. Such forced His breath resign'd, and roused afresh my smart,

Thus, when each Grecian press’d the bloody field, | The Pylian sage inform'd your son embark'd in Cold icy horrors my fond bosom chill’d.”

quest of thee

Of this, and he his mother, that is me. Here we may observe how epithets tend to strengthen the force of expression. First, her hor- "He told how Rhesus and how Dolon fell, rors are cold, and so far Ovid seems to think also; By your wise conduct and Tydides' steel; but the translator adds, from himself, the epithet That doom'd by heavy sleep oppress'd to die, icy, to show that they are still colder—a fine climax And this prevented, a nocturnal spy! of frigidity!

Rash man! undmindful what your friends you owe,

Night's gloom to tempt, and brave a Thracian foe "But Heaven, indulgent to my chaste desire,

By one assisted in the doubtful strife ; Has wrapp'd (my husband safe) proud Troy in To me how kind ! how provident of life! fire."

Still throbb’d my breast, till, victor, from the plain, The reader may have already observed one or

You join'd, on Thracian steeds, th' allies again. two instances of our translator's skill, in parentheti- « But what to me avails high Ilium's fall, cally clapping one sentence within another. This Or soil continued o'er its ruin'd wall; contributes not a little to obscurity; and obscurity, If still, as when it stood, my wants remain ; we all know, is nearly allieil to admiration. Thus, If still I wish you in these arms in vain ? when the reader begins a sentence which he finds pregnant with another, which still teems with a "Troy, sack'd to others, yet to me remains, third, and so on, he feels the same surprise which Though Greeks, with captive oxen, till her plains, a countryman does at Bartholomew-fair. Hocus Ripe harvests bend where once her turrets stood; shows a bag, in appearance empty; slap, and out Rank in her soil, manured with Phrygian blood; come a dozen new-laid eggs; slap again, and the Harsh on the ploughs, men's bones, half buried, number is doubled; but what is his amazement, sound, when it swells with the hen that laid them! And grass each ruin'd mansion hides around.

Yet, hid in distant climes, my conq'ror stays; "The Grecian chiefs return, each altar shines, Unknown the cause of these severe delays ! And spoils of Asia grace our native shrines. Gifts, for their lords restored, the matrons bring; "No foreign merchant to our isle resorts, The Trojan fates o'ercome, triumphant sing; But question'd much of you, he leaves our ports ; Old men and trembling maids admire the songs, Hence each departing sail a letter bears And wives hang, listning, on their husbands' To speak (if you are found) my anxious cares. tongues.

"Our son to Pylos cut the briny wave; Critics have expatiated, in raptures, on the deli- But Nestor's self a dubious answer gave; cate use the ancients have made of the verb pen

To Sparta next-nor even could Sparta tell dere. Virgil's goats are described as hanging on What seas you plough, or in what region dwell ! the mountain side; the eyes of a lady hang on the

“ Better had stood Apollo's sacred wall: looks of her lover. Ovid has increased the force of O could I now my former wish recall ! the metaphor, and describes the wife as hanging on War my sole dread, the scene I then should know; the lips of her husband. Our translator has gone And thousands then would share the common woe: still farther, and described the lady as pendent from But all things now, not knowing what to fear, his tongue. A fine picture!

I dread; and give too large a field to care. "Now, drawn in wine, fierce battles meet their Whole lists of dangers, both by land and sea,

Are muster'd, to have caused so long delay. eyes, And Ilion's towers in miniature arise:

“But while your conduct thus I fondly clear, There stretch'd Sigean plains, here Simoïs flow'd: Perhaps (true man!) you court some foreign faiz : And there old Priain's lofty palace stood. Perhaps you rally your domestic loves, Here Peleus' son encamp’d, Ulysses there; Whose art the snowy fleece alone improves. Here Hector's corpse distain'd the rapid car." No!-may I err, and start at false alarms;

May nought but force detain you from my arms. “Of this the Pylian sage, in quest of thee Embark’d, your son inform’d his mother he.” " Urged by a father's right again to wed,

Firm I refuse, still faithful to your bed! If we were permitted to offer a correction upon Still let him urge the fruitless vain Jesign; the two last lines, we would translate them into I am-I must be and I will be thine. plain English thus, still preserving the rhyme en- Though melted by my chaste desires, of late tire.

His rig'rous importunities abate.

"Of teasing suitors a luxurious train,

ludicrous for serious reproof. While we censure From neighbouring isles, have cross'd the liquid as critics, we feel as men, and could sincerely wish plain.

that those, whose greatest sin, is perhaps, the veHere uncontroll'd the audacious crews resort, nial one of writing bad verses, would regard their Rifle in your wealth, and revel in your court. failure in this respect as we do, not as faults, but Pisander, Polybus, and Medon lead,

foibles; they may be good and useful members of Antinous and Eurymachus succeed,

society, without being poets. The regions of tasta With others, whose rapacious throats devour can be travelled only by a few, and even those The wealth you purchased once, distained with often find indifferent accommodation by the way, gore.

Let such as have not got a passport from nature be Melanthius add, and Irus, hated name ! content with happiness, and leave the poet the unA beggar rival to complete our shame.

rivalled possession of his misery, his garret, and

his fame. “Three, helpless three! are here; a wife not strong, A sire too aged, and a son too young,

We have of late seen the republic of letters

crowded with some, who have no other pretensions He late, by fraud, einbark'd for Pylos' shore,

to applause but industry, who have no other merit Nigh from my arms for ever had been tore.”

but that of reading many books, and making long These two lines are replete with beauty: nigh, quotations; these we have heard extolled by symwhich implies approximation, and from, which pathetic dunces, and have seen them carry off the implies distance, are, to use our translator's expres rewards of genius; while others, who should have sions, drawn as it were up in line of battle. Tore been born in better days, felt all the wants of pov. is put for torn, that is, torn by fraud, from her erty, and the agonies of contempt. Who then arms; not that her son played truant, and embark- that has a regard for the public, for the literary ed by fraud, as a reader who does not understand honours of our country, for the figure we shall one Latin might be apt to fancy.

day make among posterity, that would not choose

to see such humbled as are possessed only of talents “Heaven grant the youth survive each parent's that might have made good cobblers, had fortune date, turned them to trade? Should such prevail

, the And no cross chance reverse the course of fate.

real interests of learning must in a reciprocal Your nurse and herdsman join this wish of mine,

proportion to the power they possess. Let it be And the just keeper of your bristly swine."

then the character of our periodical endeavours, and Our translator observes in a note, that “the sim- hitherto we flatter ourselves it has ever been, not to plicity expressed in these lines is so far from being permit an ostentation of learning to pass for merit, a blemish, that it is, in fact, a very great beauty; nor to give a pedant quarter upon the score of his and the modern critic, who is offended with the industry alone, even though he took refuge behind mention of a sty, however he may pride himself Arabic, or powdered his hair with hieroglyphics. upon his false delicacy, is either too short-sighted Authors thus censured may accuse our judgment, to penetrate into real nature, or has a stomach too or our reading, if they please, but our own hearts nice to digest the noblest relics of antiquity. He will acquit us of envy or ill-nature, since we remeans, no doubt, to digest a hog-sty; but, antiquity prove only with a desire to reform. apart, we doubt if even Powel the fire-eater him- But we had almost forgot, that our translator is self could bring his appetite to relish so unsavoury to be considered as a critic as well as a poet; and a repast.

in this department he seems also equally unsuc

cessful with the former. Criticisin at present is “By age your sire disarm’d, and wasting woes,

different from what it was upon the revival of taste The helm resigns, amidst surrounding foes.

in Europe; all its rules are now well known ; the This may your son resume (when years allow),

only art at present is, to exhibit them in such lights But oh! a father's aid is wanted now.

as contribute to keep the attention alive, and excite Nor have 1 strength his title to maintain,

a favourable audience. It must borrow graces Haste, then, our only refuge, o'er the main.”

from eloquence, and please while it aims at instruc“A son, and long may Heaven the blessing grant, tion : but instead of this, we have a combination of You have, whose years a sire's instruction want.

trite observations, delivered in a style in which Think how Laertes drags an age of woes,

those who are disposed to make war upon words,

will find endless opportunities of triumph. In hope that you his dying eyes may close;

He is sometimes hypercriticul ; thus, page 9.
And I, left youthful in my early bloom,
Shall aged seem; how soon soe'er you come.”

“ Pope
in his excellent Essay on Criticism (as will

, in its place, when you come to be lectured upon it, But let not the reader imagine we can find plea- at full be explained, ) terms this making the sound an Sure in thus exposing absurdities, which are too lecho to the sense. But I apprehend that definition takes in but a part, for the best ancient poets ex- Sometimes contradictory: thus, page 3. “Stylo celled in thus painting to the eye as well as to the (says he) is used by some writers, as synonymous ear. Virgil, describing his housewife preparing her with diction, yet in my opinion, it has rather a wine, exhibits the act of the fire to the eye. complex sense, including both sentiment and dic

tion.” Oppose to this, page 135. “As to con• Aut dulcis musti Vulcano decoquit humorem,

cord and even style, they are aequirable by most Et foliis undam trepidi dispumat aheni.'

youth in due time, and by many with ease; but "For the line (if I may be allowed the expres- the art of thinking properly, and choosing the best sion) boils over; and in order to reduce it to its sentiments on every subject, is what comes later." proper bounds, you must, with her, skim off the And sometimes he is guilty of false criticism : as redundant syllable.” These are beauties, which, when he says, Ovid's chief excellence lies in dedoubtless, the reader is displeased he can not scription. Description was the rock on which he discern.

always split; Nescivit quod bene cessit relinquere, Sometimes confused: “There is a deal of artful as Seneca says of him : when once he embarks in and concealed satire in what Enone throws out description, he most commonly tires us before he against Helen : and to speak truth, there was fair has done with it. But to tire no longer the reader, scope for it, and it might naturally be expected. or the translator with extended censure; as a critic Her chief design was to render his new mistress this gentleman seems to have drawn his knowledge suspected of meretricious arts, and make him ap- from the remarks of others, and not his own reflec, prehensive that she would hereafter be as ready to tion; as a translator, he understands the language leave him for some new gallant, as she had be- of Ovid, but not his beauties; and though he may fore, perfidiously to her lawful husband, followed be an excellent schoolmaster, he has, however na him."

pretensions to taste.

LETTERS

FROM A

CITIZEN OF THE WORLD

TO HIS

FRIENDS IN THE EAST.

teen.

THE EDITOR'S PREFACE. Their formality our author carefully preserves.

Many of their favourite tenets in morals are illus The schoolmen had formerly a very exact way trated. The Chinese are always concise, so is he of computing the abilities of their saints or authors. Simple, so is be. The Chinese are grave and senEscobar, for instance, was said to have learning as tentious, so is he. But in one particular the resem. five, genius as four, and gravity as seven. Cara-blance is peculiarly striking: the Chinese are often muel was greater than he. His learning was as

dull

, and so is he. Nor has any assistance been eight, his genius as six, and his gravity as thir- wanting. We are told in an old romance, of a certain

Were I to estimate the merits of our Chi- knight errant and his horse who contracted an intinese Philosopher by the same scale, I would not mate friendship. The horse most usually bore the hesitate to state his genius still higher; but as to knight; but, in cases of extraordinary dispatch, his learning and gravity, these, I think, might (the knight returned the favour, and carried his safely be marked as nine hundred and ninety-nine, horse. Thus, in the intimacy between my author within one degree of absolute frigiility.

and me, he has usually given me a lift of his eastYet, upon his first appearance here, many were ern sublimity, and I have sometimes given him a angry not to find him as ignorant as a Tripoline return of my colloquial ease. ambassador, or an envoy from Mujac. They were

Yet it appears strange, in this season of panesurprised to find a man born so far from London, gyric, when scarcely an author passes unpraised, that school of prudence and wisdom, endued even either by his friends or himself, that such merit us with a moderate capacity. They expressed the

our Philosopher's should be forgotten. While the same surprise at his knowledge that the Chinese epithets of ingenious, copious, elaborate, and redo at ours. * How comes it, said they, that the tined, are lavished among the mob, like medals at Europeans so remote from China, think with so

a coronation, the lucky prizes fall on every side, much justice and precision? They have never but not one on him. I could, on this occasion, read our books, they scarcely know even our let-make myself melancholy, by considering the caters, and yet they talk and reason just as we do. priciousness of public taste, or the mutability of The truth is, the Chinese and we are pretty much fortune : but

, during this fit of morality, lest my alike. Different degrees of refinement, and not of reader should sleep, I'll take a nap myself, and distance, mark the distinctions among mankind. when I awake tell him my dream. Savages of the most opposite climates have all but

I imagined the Thames was frozen over, and I one character of improvidence and rapacity; and

stood by its side. Several booths were erected tutored nations, however separate, make use of

upon the ice, and I was told by one of the spectathe very same method to procure refined enjoy-tors, that Fashion Fair was going to begin. He

added, that every author who would carry his The distinctions of polite nations are few, but works there, might probably find a very good resuch as are peculiar to the Chinese, appear in every ception. I was resolved, however

, to observe the page of the following correspondence. The me humours of the place in safety from the shore; Laphors and allusions are all drawn from the East. sensible that the ice was at best precarious, and Le Comte, voL I. p. 210.

having been always a little cowardly in my sleen

ment.

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