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Yes, indeed, it was a deliglitful lit- will be at work, reviewing their tle holiday; it lasted a whole week. lives, and passing judgment on tlieir With the exception of that little pint works. This is no review or history of amari aliquid at Rotterdam, we or criticism : only a word in testimony were all very happy. We might have of respect and regard from a man of gone on being happy for whoever letters, who owes to his own profesknows how many days more ? a week sional labor the honor of becoming more, ten days more: who knows acquainted with these two eminent how long that dear teetotum happi- literary men. One was the first amness can be made to spin without top- bassador whom the New World of pling over ?
Letters sent to the Old. (He was bornk But one of the party had desired almost with the Republic; the paler letters to be sent poste restante, Am- patrice had laid his hand on the child's sterdam. The post-office is hard by head. He bore Washington's name: that awful palace where the Atlas is, he came amongst us bringing the and which we really saw.
kindest sympathy, the most artless, There was only one letter, you see. smiling goodwill. His new country Only one chance of finding us. There (which some people here might be it was. “ The post has only this disposed to regard rather supercilimoment come in,” says the smirking ously) could send us, as he showed in commissioner. And he hands over his own person, a gentleman, who, the paper, thinking he has done some- though himself born in no very high thing clever.
sphere, was most finished, polished, Before the letter had been opened, easy, witty, quiet, and, socially, the I could read COME BACK, as clearly equal of the most refined Europeans. as if it had been painted on the wall. If Irving's welcome in England was It was all over. The spell was broken. a kind one, was it not also gratefully The sprightly lightly holiday fairy remembered ? If he ate our salt, did that had frisked and gambolled so he not pay us with a thankful heart? kindly beside us for eight days of sun- Who can calculate the amount of shine – or rain which was as cheer-friendliness and good feeling for our ful as sunshine gave a parting pite country which this writer's generous ous look, and whisked away and and untiring regard for us dissemivanished. And yonder scuds the nated in his own ? His books are postman, and here is the old desk. read by millions * of his countrymen
whom he has taught to love England, and why to love her. It would have been easy to speak otherwise than he
did : to inflame national rancors, NIL NISI BONUM. which, at the time when he first be
came known as a public writer, war Almost the last words which Sir had just renewed: to cry down the Walter spoke to Lockhart, his biog- old civilization at the expense of the rapher, were, “Be a good man, my new : to point out our faults, arrodear!” and with the last flicker gance, short-comings, and give the of breath on his dying lips he sighed republic to infer how much she was a farewell to his family, and passed the parent state's superior. There away blessing them.
are writers enough in the United Two men, famous, admired, beloved, States, honest and otherwise, who have just left us, the Goldsmith and preach that kind of doctrine. But the Gibbon of our time.* Ere a few the good Irving, the peaceful, the weeks are over, many a critic's pen
* See his Life in the most remarkable * Washington Irving died, Nov. 28, “Dictionary of Authors," published lately 1859; Lord Macaulay died, Dec. 28, 1859. at Philadelphia, by Mr. Alibone.
friendly, had no place for bitterness me, during a year's travel in the in his heart, and no scheme but kind country, as if no one ever aimed a ness. Received in England with blow at Irving. All men held their extraordinary tenderness and friend- hand from that harmless, friendly ship (Scott, Southey, Byron, a hun- peacemaker. I had the good fortune dred others have borne witness to their to see him at New York, Philadelphia, liking for him), he was a messenger Baltimore, and Washington,*' and of goodwill and peace between his remarked how in every place he was country and ours.) “See, friends !” honored and welcome. Every large he seems to say, " these English are city has its “Irving House." The not so wicked, rapacious, callous, country takes pride in the fame of its proud, as you have been taught to men of letters. The gate of his own believe them. I went amongst them charming little domain
on the beautiful a humble man; won my way by my Hudson River was forever swinging bepen; and, when known, found every fore visitors who came to him. He shut hand held out to me with kindliness out no one.f I had seen many picand welcome. Scott is a great man, tures of this house, and read descripyou acknowledge. Did not Scott's tions of it, in both of which it was King of England give a gold medal treated with a not unusual American to him, and another to me, your exaggeration. It was but a pretty countryman, and a stranger?' little cabin of a place; the gentleman
Tradition in the United States still of the press who took notes of the fondly retains the history of the feasts place, whilst his kind old host was and rejoicings which awaited Irving sleeping, might have visited the whole on his return to his native country house in a couple of minutes. from Europe. He had a national And how came it that this house welcome; he stammered in his was so small, when Mr. Irving's books speeches, hid himself in confusion, were sold by hundreds of thousands, and the people loved him all the bet- nay, millions, when his profits were ter. He had worthily represented known to be large, and the habits of America in Europe. In that young life of the good old bachelor were community a man who brings home notoriously modest and simple? He with him abundant European testi- had loved once in his life. The lady monials is still treated with respect (I he loved died; and he, whom all the have found American writers, of wide- world loved, never sought to replace world reputation, strangely solicitous about the opinions of quite obscure
* At Washington, Mr. Irving came to British critics, and elated or depressed Filmore and General Pierce, the President
a lecture given by the writer, which Mr. by their judgments); and Irving went and President Elect, were also kind enough home medalled by the King, diplo- to attend together. "Two Kings of Brentmatized by the University, crowned ford smelling, at one rose," says Irving, and honored and admired. He had
looking up with his good-humored smile.
| Mr. Irving described to me, with that not in any way intrigued for his hon- humor and good humor which he always ors, he had fairly won them; and in kept, how, amongst other visitors, a memIrving's instance, as in others, the old ber of the British press, who had carried
his distinguished pen to America (where country was glad and eager to pay he employed it in vilifying his own counthem.
try), came to Sunnyside, introduced himIn America, the love and regard self to Irving, partook of his wine and for Irving was a national sentiment. luncheon, and in two days described Mr.
Irving, his house, his nieces, his meal, and Party wars are perpetually raging his manner of dozing afterwards, in a there, and are carried on by the press New York paper. On another occasion, with a rancor and fierceness against Irving said, laughing, "Two persons came individuals which exceed British, al- whilst the other miscreant took my pormost Irish, virulence. It seemed to trait!”
her. I can't say how much the cately honest and grateful ; one of the thought of that fidelity has touched most charming masters of our lighter me. Does not the very cheerfulness language; the constant friend to us of his after-life add to the pathos of and our nation; to men of letters that untold story? To grieve always doubly dear, not for his wit and gewas not in his nature; or, when he nius merely, but as an examplar of had his sorrow, to bring all the world goodness, probity, and pure life: -I in to condole with him and bemoan don't know what sort of testimonial it. Deep and quiet he lays the love will be raised to him in his own counof his heart, and buries it; and grass try, where generous and enthusiastic and flowers grow over the scarred acknowledgment of American merit ground in due time.
is never wanting: but Irving was in 7°Irving had such a small house and our service as well as theirs : and as
such narrow rooms, because there was they have placed a stone at Greenwich a great number of people to occupy yonder in memory of that gallant them. He could only afford to keep young Bellot, who shared the perils one old horse (which, lazy and aged and fate of some of our Arctic seaas it was, managed once or twice to men, I would like to hear of some run away with that careless old horse- memorial raised by English writers man). He could only afford to give and friends of letters in affectionate plain sherry to that amiable British remembrance of the dear and good paragraph-monger from New York, Washington Irving. who saw the patriarch asleep over his As for the other writer, whose demodest, blameless cup, and fetched parture many friends, some few most the public into his private chamber dearly-loved relatives, and multitudes to look at him. Irving could only of admiring readers deplore, our relive very modestly, because the wife- public has already decreed his statue, less, childless man had a number of and he must have known that he had children to whom he was as a father. earned this posthumous honor. He He had as many as nine nieces, I am is not a poet and man of letters meretold — I saw two of these ladies at ly, but citizen, statesman, a great his house — with all of whom the British worthy. Almost from the dear old man had shared the produce first moment when he appears, of his labor and genius.
amongst boys, amongst college stu“ Be a good man, my dear.” One dents, amongst men, he is marked, can't but think of these last words of and takes rank as a great Englishthe veteran Chief of Letters, who had man. All sorts of successes are easy tasted and tested the value of worldly to him: as a lad he goes down into success, admiration, prosperity. Was the arena with others, and wins all Irving not good, and, of his works, the prizes to which he has a mind. A was not his life the best part? In his place in the senate is straightway family, gentle, generous, good-hu- offered to the young man. He takes mored, affectionate, self-denying : in his seat there; he speaks, when so society, a delightful example of com- minded, without party anger or inplete gentlemanhood ; quite unspoiled trigue, but not without party faith by prosperity; never obsequious to and a sort of heroic enthusiasm for the great (or, worse still, to the base his cause. Still he is poet and philosoand mean, as some public men are pher even more than orator. That forced to be in his and other coun- he may have leisure and means to tries); eager to acknowledge every pursue his darling studies, he absents contemporary's merit; always kind himself for a while, and accepts a and affable to the young members of richly-remunerative post in the East. his calling; in his professional bar- As learned a man may live in a cotgains and mercantile dealings deli- I tage or a college common-room; but
it always seemed to me that ample feats, which were so easy to him, who means and recognized rank were Ma- would grudge his tribute of homage ? caulay's as of right. Years ago there His talk was, in a word, adınirable, was a wretched outcry raised because and we admired it. Mr. Macaulay dated a letter from Of the notices which have appeared Windsor Castle, where he was stay- regarding Lord Macaulay, up to the ing. Immortal gods! Was this man day when the present lines are writnot a fit guest for any palace in the ten (the 9th of January), the reader world? or a fit companion for any should not deny himself the pleasure man or woman in it? I dare say, of looking especially at two. It is a after Austerlitz, the old K. K. court good sign of the times when such officials and footmen sneered at Na- articles as these (I mean the articles poleon for dating from Schönbrunn. in “The Times” and Saturday But that miserable“ Windsor Castle" Review”) appear in our public prints outcry is an echo out of fast-retreat- about our public men. They eduing old-world remembrances. The cate us, as it were, to admire rightly. place of such a natural chief was An uninstructed person in a museum amongst the first of the land ; and or at a concert may pass by without that country is best, according to our recognizing a picture or a passage of British notion at least, where the man music, which the connoisseur by his of eminence has the best chance of side may show him is a masterpiece investing his genius and intellect. of harmony, or a wonder of artistic
IT a company of giants were got skill. After reading these papers you together, very likely one or two of like and respect more the person you the mere six-feet-six people might be have admired so much already. And angry at the incontestable superiority so with regard to Macaulay's style of the very tallest of the party : and there may be faults, of course — what so I have heard some London wits, critic can't point them out? But for rather peevish at Macanlay's supe: the nonce we are not talking about riority, complain that he occupied faults: we want to say nil nisi bonum. too much of the talk, and so forth. Well — take at hazard any three Now that wonderful tongue is to pages of the “Essays speak no more, will not many a man tory;"- and, glimmering below the grieve that he no longer has the stream of the narrative, as it were, chance to listen ? To remember you, an average reader, see one, two, the talk is to wonder : to think not three, a half-score of allusions to only of the treasures he had in his other historic facts, characters, literamemory, but of the trifles he had ture, poetry, with which you are acstored there, and could produce with quainted. Why is this epithet used ? equal readiness. Almost on the last Whence is that simile drawn? How day I had the fortune to see him, a does he manage, in two or three conversation happened suddenly to words, to paint an individual, or to spring up about senior wranglers, indicate a landscape? Your neighand what they had done in after life. bor, who has his reading, and his little To the almost terror of the persons stock of literature stowed away in his present, Macaulay began with the mind, shall detect more points, allusenior wrangler of 1801-2-3-4, and so sions, happy touches, indicating not on, giving the name of each, and re- only the prodigious memory and vast lating his subsequent career and rise. learning of this master, but the wonEvery man who has known him has derful industry, the honest, humble his story regarding that astonishing previous toil of this great scholar. He memory. It may be that he was not reads twenty books to write a senill pleased that you should recognize tence; he travels a hundred miles to it; but to those prodigious intellectual make a line of description.
Many Londoners - not all - have that book, and of what countless seen the British Museum Library. Ipiles of others ! speak à cæur ouvert, and pray the In this little paper let us keep to the kindly reader to bear with me. I text of nil nisi bonum. One paper I have seen all sorts of domes of Peters have read regarding Lord Macaulay and Pauls, Sophia, Pantheon, - what says " he had no heart.” Why, a not? - and have been struck by none man's books may not always speak of them so much as by that catholic the truth, but they speak his mind in dome in Bloomsbury, under which spite of himself: and it seems to me our million volumes are housed. this man's heart is beating through What peace, what love, what truth, every page he penned. He is always what beauty, what happiness, for all, in a storm of revolt and indignation what generous kindness for you and against wrong, craft, tyranny. How me, are here spread out! It seems to he cheers heroic resistance ! how he me one cannot sit down in that place backs and applauds freedom strugwithout a heart full of grateful rever-gling for its own! how he hates ence. I own to have said my grace scoundrels, ever so victorious and sucat the table, and to have thanked cessful! how he recognizes genius, heaven for this my English birthright, though selfish villains possess it! The freely to partake of these bountiful critic who says Macaulay had no heart, books, and to speak the truth I find might say that Johnson had none: there. Under the dome which held and two men more generous, and Macaulay's brain, and from which his more loving, and more hating, and solemn eyes looked out on the world more partial, and more noble, do not but a fortnight since, what a vast, live in our history. Those who knew brilliant, and wonderful store of learn- Lord Macaulay knew how admirably ing was ranged! what strange lore tender and generous,* and affectionwould he not fetch for you at your ate he was. It was not his business bidding! A volume of law, or his- to bring his family before the theatre tory, a book of poetry familiar or for- footlights, and call for bouquets from gotten (except by himself, who forgot the gallery as he wept over them. nothing), a novel ever so old, and he If any young man of letters reads had it at hand. I spoke to him once this little sermon - and to him, inabout “Clarissa." “Not read 'Cla- deed, it is addressed — I would say to rissa !'” he cried out. “If you have him, “Bear Scott's words in your once thoroughly entered on 'Clarissa' mind, and be good, my dear.” Here and are infected by it, you can't leave are two literary men gone to their acit. When I was in India I passed count, and, laus Deo, as far as we one hot season at the hills, and there know, it is fair, and open, and clean. were the Governor-General, and the Here is no need of apologies for shortSecretary of Government, and the comings, or explanations of vices Commander-in-Chief, and their wives. which would have been virtues but I had 'Clarissa' with me: and, as for unavoidable, &c. Here are two soon as they began to read, the whole examples of men most differently station was in a passion of excitement gifted : each pursuing his calling; about Miss Harlowe and her misfor- each speaking his truth as God bade tunes, and her scoundrelly Lovelace ! him; each honest in his life; just The Governor's wife seized the book, and irreproachable in his dealings ; and the Secretary waited for it, and dear to his friends; honored by his the Chief Justice could not read it for
He acted the whole scene : * Since the above was written, I have he paced up and down the “ Athe- been informed that it has been found, on næum” library: I dare say he could he was in the habit of giving away more
examining Lord Macaulay's papers, that have spoken pages of the book of than a fourth part of his annual income.