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Jet-black, save where some touch of grey
That glance, if guilty, would I dread
More than the doorn that spoke me dead!" (P. 158.)
To this exterior fully correspond the qualities of the mind. With what manly courtesy personal disputes were conducted by knights of high character, the challenge which passes from de Argentine to Bruce is a fine specimen.
"Courteous, but stern, a bold request
Thou art a noble knight.'
And I,' the princely Bruce replied,
Should in a tyrant's quarrel shine;
But, for your brave request,
Be sure the honour'd pledge you gave
Upon my helmet-crest;
Believe, that if my hasty tongue
Hath done thine honour causeless wrong,
Not dearer to my soul was glove,
Than this which thou hast given!
Thus, then, my noble foe I greet;
And then-what pleases Heaven.'" (P.87-89.)
The courteous mien, the noble race,
O'er better knight on death-bier laid,
Torch never gleam'd nor mass was said!"" (P.268-270.) It must, however, be acknowledged that extracts can afford but a very inadequate notion of the general merit of any wellconstructed poem, where the harmony and proportion of the respective parts mutually relieve and support each other: the figures detached from the frieze can show the workmanship of the artist, but not the genius of his composition. On this account we made our last citation with some degree of reluctance, for good as it is apart by itself, yet it has a ten-fold value when casting its tender shade over a portion of one of the most brilliant and varied battle pieces which is, perhaps, to be found in the whole range of poetry; where the truth of history is brought out in its boldest and finest forms by the aid of the most skilful contrasts, natural and moral. For similar reasons we have forborne to dislocate the compact mass of the 2d Canto, a Canto written under the happiest inspiration of poetry, and equally distinguished for boldness of conception, vigour of judgment, and accuracy of delineation. Of the versification sufficient examples have been selected to enable our readers to form an opinion of its general harmony; which general harmony, however, is not without a tolerably copious sprinkling of discords. Master as Mr. Scott is of versification, and easy as he finds the manage ment of the most complicated stanza to be, we are somewhat chagrined at his frequent change of metre, which draws off the attention too much from the subject to its mere vehicle. We believe that many readers of the Lord of the Isles have been so much puzzled with these variations, that, diverted from the career of the poem, they have completely lost themselves in connecting and reconciling the rhythm and the rhymes.
Little remains to be added respecting the general character of the poem, for we have before considered the story and its principal personages, and if there be some deficiency in these which may be fairly blamed, still the meed of praise will remain sufficiently large to gratify the ambition of any literary chief, who does not claim the attribute of never doing wrong. Allowing that the first Canto is broken into too many parts, and that the third, by the too frequent interruption of the narrative, creates some impatience, yet these faults find nearly an apology in the descriptions by which they are occasioned-descriptions which are not only boldly sketched, but correctly finished, and whose horrors are aggravated by beings more terrific than the shivered crags among which they are found. With these abatements we
have nearly all that we could wish. A chivalrous spirit, which rises far above the grovelling passions, curbing the violence of hatred and revenge amidst all the provocations of civil feuds and irregular warfare, diffuses an air of magnanimity over the whole poem, and gives it a brilliant expression of moral beauty. In genuine poetry, though not in interest, the Lord of the Isles is superior to all Mr. Scott's preceding poems; and it possesses that quality, in which modern poetry is for the most part lamentably deficient, the dignity of usefulness.
ART. VI. A brief Account of the Jesuits, with historical Proofs in Support of it, tending to establish the Danger of the Revival of that Order to the World at large, and to the United Kingdom in particular. 8vo. pp. 64. London. Rivingtons, Hatchard, &c. KINGS had began very quietly to die in their beds; combustibles had ceased to be discovered in the cellars of parliament-houses; no heathen convert had for a long time been murdered, to prevent his relapse; no protestant throne had been declared vacant with the king upon it; no Christian missionary had essayed to identify the family of Christ with that of Brama; no additional volume of Secreta Monita' had been dragged to the light of day; plots and intrigues had almost ceased to break the monotony of courts: in short, the world was rapidly subsiding into a state of religious tranquillity very unfavourable to genius and reform, when the good and wise hyperborean emperor, Paul, in the year 1801, decreed the restoration of the order of Jesuits. His illustrious example was followed in Sardinia by King Ferdinand, in 1804. And the present Pope, scorning to be outdone by any secular body, in his zeal for the real welfare of mankind, issued, in August 1814, a bull, re-establishing, by infallible authority, this much injured and much longed for society. It may be well to examine the reasons which the head of the Catholic Church assigns for so important an act. And for these we refer our readers to the very reasonable and satisfactory pamphlet before us. The Bull first states it to be the duty of the Pope to employ all his power" to supply the spiritual wants of the Catholic;" and then adds, that he should deem himself guilty of a great crime towards God, if, amidst the dangers of the Christian republic, he should neglect to employ the aids which the special providence of God had put in his power, and if, placed in the bark of St. Peter and tossed by continual storms, he should refuse to employ the vigorous and experienced rowers who volunteer their
services." It then declares that the Pope " in virtue of the plenitude of Apostolic power, and with perpetual validity, had decreed that the concessions made to the Jesuits in Russia and Sicily should extend to all his ecclesiastical states, and to all other states." All necessary powers are then granted to the present General of the Society "in order that the said states may freely receive all who desire to be, or shall be, admitted into the Order; and power is granted to the members to apply themselves to the education of youth to direct colleges and seminaries-to hear confessions, to preach, and administer the sacraments;" the several colleges, houses, and members of the Order and all who shall join it are then taken under the protection of the Holy See, which "reserves the power of prescribing and directing all that may be necessary to consoli date the Society more and more; to render it stronger; and to purge it of abuses SHOULD THEY EVER CREEP IN."
Now we have a hatred of intolerance. It is a weapon we should disdain to employ even against a body who refused to employ any other. Those who take that sword will ordinarily perish by it; and, if not, it is our wish and duty to listen to the command of Him, who has bid us 'put' it up. It is not, therefore, by any means, our intention to condemn even Jesuitism unheard; still less is it our wish to confound Catholics with Jesuits, and to make the crimes of the one a handle for an attack upon the other. We design, indeed, no assault upon popery: although steady adversaries to many of the claims of its adherents, and to all of these claims, when they are urged as rights, we think it neither just nor politic to endeavour to widen the breach between Protestants and Papists. We have each studied the opposite system too long and too exclusively through the media of jealousy and suspicion. Nor is this our only reason for leaving popery unassailed: it is our strong conviction, that it lags too much behind the temper and genius of the age long to survive in its present form; we are willing, therefore, to let it die a natural death, taking care, at the same time, not to be injured by its expiring struggles. In this view of the subject, we have evidently no temptation to attack the Church of Rome through the sides of Jesuitism. Nor is this all in this particular instance we feel ourselves called upon to make a common cause with many Popish individuals and nations; for many of these have been found among the steadiest enemies to the system of Loyola. Nor is it our wish to confine this spirit of moderation to the Papists in general; we desire to extend it even to the Jesuits them selves. If indeed these faults are only those of a particular season or country; if they attach rather to a few individuals than to the whole body; if they arise rather from a violation of the principles of the order, than from the principles themselves; if
any reasonable hope may be entertained, that under any practicable modification of the system these errors will not recur; then are we content to ascribe the offences of Jesuitism to the common infirmities of our nature, and shall be disposed rather to pity their weakness than to denounce their guilt. But if, as we believe, the offences of Jesuitism are the natural and necessary fruits of the system; if they are confined to no age, piace, or person; if they follow, like the tail of the comet, the same disastrous course with the luminary itself; not this or that nation, but humanity is startled at the re-appearance of this common enemy of man; and we must not tolerate a mandate, which is possibly to be sealed with the blood of ourselves, or of our chil dren. It is, however, far from our wish, that this charge against Jesuitism should be received upon our mere assertion. The pamphlet before us, and a few other accredited works, will enable us, we think, to prove that the crimes of Jesuitism are wrought into its very essence and constitution; that a certain succession of evils may be expected to mark its course, as the march of an army is to be tracked by the bodies of those whom it has slain. In order to the establishment of this point, let us look, first, at the constitution of Jesuitism, and then at some facts connected with its history.
One of the most striking features in the constitution of the order, is the vow of implicit obedience to the pope: the pledge given to serve him in any part of the world without requiring any support from the papal see. Until this pledge was given, Paul the Third refused to sanction the institution of the order. He refused to charge so formidable an engine, unless he himself might have his hand upon the trigger. Now this vow in itself, we conceive, constitutes a sufficient objection to the order. It is incompatible with the peace of society that one empire should float within another without subordination, union, or agreement; that the legitimate monarch of every state should wear his crown by sufferance; should be hemmed in by unknown agents, whose duty it may become to resist his sceptre, or to wrench it from his hands. The Society, it has been said, is a sword of which the hilt is at Rome! But if the hilt be there, the blade is every where, and that with so fine an edge as to make itself felt before it can be seen,
But the authority of the pope was by no means the most formidable feature of the institution. Popes are sovereign princes, surrounded by a court, exposed to public scrutiny, and responsible to other civilized states for their conduct." The Jesuits were placed under the control of another master, whose influence, like that of the laws of Nature, was secret and irresistible.