« 이전계속 »
system than the “Data of Ethics,” which was the keep the head clear in merely reading the intermivolume last issued, and which formed the first divi- nable procession of facts is a task of no small diffision of the “ Principles of Morality." For deciding culty; and, in collecting them and marshaling them to issue by itself this and each succeeding division in their due order and relations, Mr. Spencer has of the “Principles of Sociology,” Mr. Spencer has performed one of the most impressive of the Hercufound several reasons. “One is that each division, lean labors involved in his long and arduous task. though related to the rest, nevertheless forms a whole So closely interlinked are the various stages of so far distinct that it may be fairly well understood the author's argument, and so dependent upon each without the rest. Another is that large volumes other are the several portions of his exposition, that (and Vol. II. threatens to exceed in bulk Vol. I.) are it would be impossible to detach a series of passages alarming; and that many, who are deterred by their which should serve to exemplify and illustrate the size from reading them, will not fear to undertake whole. We must perforce content ourselves with inseparately the parts of which they are composed. dicating briefly the aim and purport of the book, A third and chief reason is that postponement of since it would be almost frivolous in dealing with a issue until completion of the entire volume necessi. work of this character merely to quote a number of tates an undesirable delay in the issue of its earlier disconnected passages because they seemed curious divisions : substantially independent works being or interesting. The fundamental proposition with thus kept in manuscript much longer than need be.” which the book opens, and to the establishing of
Portions of the present work have already been which the rest of the book is devoted, is laid down published as articles in various periodicals in Eng- in the following passage : land and on the Continent, and in “The Popular Science Monthly” in America; but the last five
If, disregarding conduct that is entirely private, we chapters, composing nearly half the volume, have consider only that species of conduct which involves di
rect relations with other persons; and if, under the name not hitherto appeared either at home or abroad, and of government, we include all control of such conduct, the whole has been subjected to a most careful and however arising ; then we must say that the earliest kind minute revision. "In deference to a criticism passed of government, and the government which is ever sponby friends upon the published articles that they were taneously recommencing, is the government of cereoverweighted by illustrative facts, Mr. Spencer has monial observance. More may be said. This kind of diminished in many cases the amount of evidence government, besides preceding other kinds, and besides offered in support of his propositions ; but he ad- having in all places and times approached nearer to unimits in advance that the defect may still be alleged. versality of influence, has ever had, and continues to " That, with a view to improved effect,” he says in have, the largest share in regulating men's lives. his preface, "I have not suppressed a larger number The next most important proposition, which is of illustrations is due to the consideration that sci- nowhere so distinctly formulated by Mr. Spencer, entific proof, rather than artistic merit, is the end to but which is implied throughout, is that these cerebe here achieved. If sociological generalizations monial observances which constitute the primary and are to pass out of the stage of opinion into the stage most comprehensive form of government, and which of established truth, it can only be through extensive are now distinguished as political, religious, and soaccumulations of instances; the inductions must be cial, had a common origin ; and that this origin is to wide if the conclusions are to be accepted as valid. be found not in conventions at one time or other Especially while there continues the belief that so- deliberately made, as people tacitly assume, but in cial phenomena are not the subject-matter of a sci- usages that are the natural products of social life ence, it is requisite that the correlations among them which have gradually evolved. “Adhering tena. should be shown to hold in multitudinous cases. ciously to all his elders taught him, the primitive Evidence furnished by various races in various parts man deviates into novelty only through unintended of the world must be given before there can be re- modifications. Every one now knows that languages butted the allegation that the inferences drawn are are not devised but evolve ; and the same is true of not true. Indeed, of social phenomena more than usages." all other phenomena, it must, because of their com- The process by which spontaneously arising cusplexity, hold that only by comparisons of many ex- toms gradually crystallize into laws is traced by Mr. amples can fundamental relations be distinguished Spencer along many converging lines of evidence ; from superficial relations."
and the following passage from his closing chapter We have followed Mr. Spencer's example in contains, perhaps, as convenient a summary of the touching upon this point at the outset, because, to the evidence and the conclusion to which it leads as can general reader coming unprepared to the work, it be quoted: would be apt to seem little more than an aggregation of facts and instances, the vast number and infinite
In primitive headless groups of men, such customs as variety of which confuse the judgment and bewilder regulate conduct form but a small aggregate. A few the memory. The principles with which Mr. Spen- certain cases bodily mutilations, and some interdicts on
naturally prompted actions on meeting strangers, in cer sets out and the conclusions at which he arrives foods monopolized by adult men, constitute a brief code. are comparatively few and simple, but his method of But, with consolidation into compound, doubly comproof is by what we may call cumulative evidence pound, and trebly compound societies, there arise great drawn from an infinite multiplicity of sources. To accumulations of ceremonial arrangements regulating all
the actions of life-there is an increase in the mass of ob- was announced and announced because the author had servances. Originally simple, those observances become taken a fancy to the title and proposed to write “up” to progressively complex. From the same root grow up it. We can not say how much of the long interval was various kinds of obeisances. Primitive descriptive names occupied with this endeavor; but certainly the “ Capidevelop into numerous graduated titles. From abori- taine Fracasse" is as good as if a quarter of a century ginal salutes come, in course of time, complimentary had been given to it. Besides being his most ambitious forms of address adjusted to persons and occasions. work, it bears more marks of leisure and meditation than Weapons taken in war give origin to symbols of au- its companions. M. Meissonier might have written it, if, thority, assuming, little by little, great diversities in with the same talent and a good deal more geniality, he their shapes. While certain trophies, differentiating into had chosen to use the pen rather than the brush. The badges, dresses, and decorations, eventually in each of subject is just such a one as Gautier was born to apprethese divisions present multitudinous varieties, no longer ciate-a subject of which the pictorial side emphasizes bearing any resemblance to their originals. And, besides itself as naturally as that of “Don Quixote." It is borthe increasing heterogeneity which in each society arises rowed, indeed, but as great talents borrow-for a use among products having a common origin, there is the that brings the original into fashion again. Scarron's further heterogeneity which arises between this aggregate “Roman Comique,” which furnished Gautier with his of products in one society and the allied aggregates in starting-point, is as barren to the eye as "Gil Blas ”itother societies. Simultaneously there is progress in. self, besides being a much coarser piece of humor. The definiteness ; ending, as in the East, in fixed forms pre- sort of memory one retains of the “Capitaine Fracasse” scribed in all their details, which must not under penalty is hard to express, save by some almost physical analogy. be departed from. And in sundry places the vast assem
We remember the perusal of most good novels as an blages of complex and definite ceremonies thus elaborated intellectual pleasure-a pleasure which varies in degree, are consolidated into coherent codes set forth in books. but is, as far as it goes, an affair of the mind. The hours
spent over the Capitaine Fracasse " seem to have been The entire book is substantially devoted to fur- an affair of the senses, of personal experience, of obsernishing detailed proofs of these propositions; and to vation and contact as illusory as those of a peculiarly showing, furthermore, that the growth of ceremonial vivid dream. The novel presents the adventures of a or governmental institutions conforms in every par. company of strolling players of Louis XIII.'s timeticular to the laws of evolution at large. “When their vicissitudes, collective and individual, their miseries we observe,” says Mr. Spencer, “the original unity and gayeties, their loves and squabbles, and their final
apportionment of worldly comfort-very much in that exhibited by ceremony as it exists in primitive hordes, symmetrical fashion in which they have so often stood in contrast with the diversity which ceremony, un- forth to receive it at the fall of the curtain. It is a fairyder its forms of political, religious, and social, as- tale of Bohemia, a triumph of the picturesque. In this sumes in developed societies, we recognize another case, by a special extension of his power, the author has aspect of the transformation undergone by all prod- made the dramatic interest as lively as the pictorial, and ucts of evolution."
lodged good human hearts beneath the wonderfullypainted rusty doublets and tarnished satins of his mask
ers. The great charm of the book is a sort of combined It may be numbered among the curious incidents geniality of feeling and coloring, which leaves one in of literary history that after nearly twenty years
doubt whether the author is the most joyous of painters have elapsed since the first publication of Gautier's humor-a good-humor sustained by the artist's indefati
or the cleverest of poets. It is a masterpiece of good“Le Capitaine Fracasse,” without any one thinking gable relish for his theme. In artistic “ bits,” of course, it worth while to introduce it to American readers, the book abounds; it is a delightful gallery of portraits. two rival translations of the story have been issued The models, with their paint and pomatum, their broken simultaneously by different houses in the same city.* plumes and threadbare velvet, their false finery and their This is partly explained, no doubt, by the very high real hunger, their playhouse manners and morals, are praise which Mr. Henry James, Jr., has bestowed certainly not very choice company ; but the author hanupon the work in his “French Poets and Novelists”; which we so speedily feel the influence that, long before
dles them with an affectionate, sympathetic jocosity of and, this being so, it may be interesting to the reader we have finished, we seem to have drunk with them, one to know precisely what Mr. James has to say about and all, out of the playhouse goblet to the confusion of it. In his charming essay on Gautier occurs the fol- respectability and life before the scenes. If we incline lowing passage :
to look for deeper meanings, we can fancy the work in If, as an illustration, we could transfuse the essence with the social position of the comedian which Gautier
the last analysis an expression of that brotherly sympathy of one of Gautier's best performances into this colorless
was too much what the French call an homme de théâtre report, we should choose the “ Capitaine Fracasse." In
not to entertain as an almost poetic sentiment. The this delightful work Gautier has surpassed himself, and
“Capitaine Fracasse" ranks, in our opinion, with the produced the model of picturesque romances. The story first works of the imagination produced in our day. was published, we believe, some twenty-five years after it
This fine and true description renders it unne* Captain Fracasse. From the French of Théophile cessary for us to say anything more of the original Gautier. By M. M. Ripley. With Illustrations by Gus work, as a literary product; and such further comtave Doré. Leisure Hour Series. New York : Henry ments as we have to make may be profitably adHolt & Co. 16mo, pp. 411.
dressed to a question which seems to be raised by Captain Fracasse. By Théophile Gautier, Trans- both the translations before us—the question, namelated by Ellen Murray Beam. New York: G. P. Put- ly, of the proper function of a translator. It would nam's Sons. 16mo, pp. 532.
be generally conceded, we suppose, that the primary
aim of a translator should be to reproduce the ideas, Mrs. Beam's delinquencies are of a different meaning, and language of the original with the ut- character, though their effect upon the story is hardmost possible fidelity and exactness. Differences of ly less injurious. She has not allowed herself to be structure and idiom between any two languages will intimidaced by the features of which we have spoalways suffice to prevent a literal word-for-word re- ken, and she records the "episodes " that have disproduction, and the extent of the deviation author. appeared entirely from Miss Ripley's text with unized by this has to be left to the taste and discretion shrinking literalness and precision ; but of the deof the translator; but the fundamental rule of good scriptive portions of Gautier's work she has presented translation is as we have stated it, and applies with little more than a summary or abstract. Miss Ripespecial force to the work of so supreme a literary ley sins in this respect also, but to nothing like the artist as Gautier. Tested by this rule, we regret to extent that Mrs. Beam has done. She has endeavsay that both the translations of “ Captain Fracasse ored to preserve some, at least, of the original outare not only defective, but inexcusably so. Each lines, while Mrs. Beam has simply picked out phrases translator, in her different way, has seemed to think and sentences here and there, and constructed a sethat she could improve Gautier's work, and has sub- ries of pictures to please herself. This would be a jected it to a process decidedly worse than “that comparatively venial fault in many cases, but Gaulight editorial hacking and hewing to right and left” tier's highest power as an artist is exhibited in the which Carlyle resented so deeply when it was in- opulence and splendor of his pictorial effects; and flicted upon his own manuscript by Jeffrey. Miss in " Le Capitaine Fracasse" the copious details— Ripley, indeed, frankly confesses in a prefatory note minute and leisurely, but never tedious-display in that certain considerations seemed to furnish "jus- its most striking aspect his fertility of invention. tification for carrying the translator's work further To quote Mr. James agnin: “His real imaginative than mere verbal expressions"; and though Mrs. power is shown in his masterly evocation of localiBeam says nothing on the point-thereby implying, ties, and in the thick-coming fancies that minister to we think, that her version has been prepared on the his inexhaustible conception of that pictorial 'setcustomary plan-she has felt no more hesitation than ting' of human life which interested him so much her rival in introducing “ some minor changes” of more than human life itself.” her own.
In conclusion, we may say that Miss Ripley's There are certain features of “Le Capitaine version is the more spirited and vivacious—more Fracasse," it may be candidly said, which go far to skillful in its suggestion of Gautier's light and sparexplain if not to justify certain of the omissions kling style ; while Mrs. Beam's gives a more trustwhich Miss Ripley has ventured upon. The man- worthy idea of the character and contents of the ners, the morals, and the language of the age of story. But it will be necessary to read both in order Louis XIII. were much freer than those of our own to get even a tolerably exact notion of the original time, even in France; and Gautier was not the art- work, and a real translation yet remains to be made. ist to soften this feature in any picture of the time that he might undertake to paint. On the contrary, he has depended upon it largely for that “ local
Almost at the beginning of English literature color” which is indispensable to the vraisemblance of stands Chaucer, and, of course, the biographer who an historical novel ; and, besides the laxity of tone undertakes to deal with him has a much more diffwhich pervades the whole, has introduced a series of cult task than he whose subject stands in the full episodes designed especially to illustrate that con- light of more recent and better recorded times. tempt for conventional restraints which characterizes Bearing this in mind, it must be admitted, we think, the period he has attempted to depict. All these that Professor Ward's little book is a most praiseepisodes, without exception, Miss Ripley has re- worthy achievement.* All that is definitely known, morselessly cut out, and has thereby mutilated the
or even plausibly conjectured, about Chaucer's life story irretrievably as a work of art. We say “muti- could be adequately stated within the compass of lated," because, aside from the danger of disturbing twenty lines, and to make a biography of him in the the light and shade of a picture as the artist has ordinary sense of the term would of course be imconceived it, these “ playhouse manners and morals,” possible ; yet those who study his works attentively, as Mr. James calls them, form the indispensable and with a proper knowledge of the times and cirbackground to the character of the pure and refined cumstances in which they were produced, can obtain Isabelle and the idyllic love between her and Cap- a clear and probably accurate conception of the tain Fracasse which constitute the great charm of character and personality which lie behind them. the book. We are not to be understood as main
To enable the reader to approach these works taining that such episodes are unobjectionable; but, with a proper equipment of the knowledge necessary the time to consider them is when deciding whether to interpret them, and to awaken his attention to the the story is one which deserves to be introduced to a personal revelations and implications of the works new circle of readers. If it be decided that, in spite themselves, is the task which Professor Ward has of its faults, it deserves to be so introduced, then there can be no doubt that, in the case of such an
* English Men of Letters. Edited by John Morley, author as Gautier, at least it should be presented as Chaucer, by Adolphus William Ward. New York: “one entire and perfect chrysolite.”
Harper & Brothers. 12mo, pp. 199.
set before himself, and which he has fulfilled with a cal fact and conjecture which the laborious researches gratifying degree of success. Nearly a third of his of students and scholars have disinterred from the little volume is devoted to a consideration of Chau. Royal Wardrobe Book, the Issue Rolls of the Excer's times, a clear understanding of which is abso- chequer, the Customs Rolls, and such like public lutely essential to a just appreciation of Chaucer's records, and from the writings of his contemporaries work in literature. Of every man it is true in a or immediate successors. In it also he points out general way, but of Chaucer it may be said in a pe- the conclusions which may be drawn from the inculiar sense, that he was the creature of his period; ternal evidence of the poet's own works; and as an and, while he himself furnishes the most valuable indispensable preliminary to this considers fully the and conclusive evidence of what that period was, the questions involved in the genuineness or spuriousevidence must be fully sifted and classified before its ness of the various works which have been attributed significance can be wholly grasped. Speaking of this to Chaucer. All the light which his indisputably study of Chaucer in intimate connection with his genuine works can be made to throw upon the life times, Professor Ward says:
and character of the poet is here studiously collected ;
and then in another brief chapter the author disThe value of such evidence as the mind of a great
cusses the “Characteristics of Chaucer and his Poepoet speaking in his works furnishes for a knowledge of the times to which he belongs is inestimable ; for it shows try.” The criticism in this last-named chapter is to us what has survived, as well as what was doomed to
our mind the most helpful and satisfactory to which decay, in the life of the nation with which that mind was Chaucer has been subjected, and it is entirely indein sensitive sympathy. And it therefore seemed not inap- pendent of the customary dicta. Chaucer is usually propriate to approach, in the first instance, from this praised as a narrative poet and as a painter of napoint of view, the subject of this biographical essay- ture, and in neither of these departments, as it seems Chaucer, " the poet of the dawn": for in him there are
to us, is he entitled to the highest rank. Professor many things significant of the age of transition in which Ward praises him more discriminatingly for his vihe lived ; in him the mixture of Frenchman and Eng- vacity and humor, for his gayety and brightness, and, lishman is still in a sense incomplete, as that of their above all, for his dramatic power in the portraiture languag is in the diction of his poems. His gayety of heart is hardly English ; nor is his willing (though, to be of character. On this latter point Professor Ward sure, not invariably unquestioning) acceptance of forms has a passage which we can not forbear quoting : into the inner meaning of which he does not greatly vex his soul by entering ; nor his airy way of ridiculing what is the first great observer of it among modern European
He is the first great painter of character, because he he has no intention of helping to overthrow; nor his writers. His power of comic observation need not be light unconcern in the question whether he is, or is not, dwelt upon again, after the illustrations of it which have an immoral writer. Or, at least, in all of these things been incidentally furnished in these pages. More espehe has no share in qualities and tendencies, which influences and conflicts unknown to and unforeseen by him cially with regard to the manners and ways of women, may be safely said to have ultimately made characteristic which often, while seeming so natural to women themof Englishmen. But he is English in his freedom and selves, appear so odd to male observers, Chaucer's eye
was ever on the alert. But his works likewise contain frankness of spirit ; in his manliness of mind ; in his preference for the good in things as they are to the good passages displaying a penetrating insight into the minds in things as they might be; in his loyalty, his piety, his
of men, as well as a keen eye for their manners, together truthfulness. Of the great movement which was to
with a power of generalizing, which, when kept within mold the national character for at least a long series of due bounds, lies at the root of the wise knowledge of generations he displays no serious foreknowledge ; and Bacon to Addison, and his modern successors. . . .
mankind, so admirable to us in our great essayists, from of the elements already preparing to affect the course of that movement he shows a very incomplete consciousness. ing character, above all, that Chaucer became the true
It was by virtue of his power of observing and drawBut, of the health and strength
which, after struggles predecessor of two several growths in our literature, in many and various, made that movement possible and both of which characterization forms a most important made it victorious, he, more than any of his contempo- element-it might, perhaps, be truly said, the element raries, is the living type and the speaking witness. Thus, which surpasses all others in importance.
From this like the times to which he belongs, he stands half in and point of view the dramatic poets of the Elizabethan age half out of the middle ages, half in and half out of a remain unequaled by any other school or group of dramphase of our national life which we can never hope to atists, and the English novelists of the eighteenth and understand more than partially and imperfectly. And it nineteenth centuries by the representatives of any other is this, taken together with the fact that he is the first development of prose-fiction. In the art of construction, English poet to read whom is to enjoy him, and that he in the invention and the arrangement of incident, these garnished not only our language but our literature with dramatists and novelists may have been left behind by blossoms still adorning them in vernal freshness, which others; in the creation of character they are, on the makes Chaucer's figure so unique a one in the gallery of whole, without rivals in their respective branches of our great English writers, and gives to his works an in- literature. To the earlier, at least, of these growths, terest so inexhaustible for the historical as well as for the
Chaucer may be said to have pointed the way.
His literary student.
personages--more especially, of course, those who are The most valuable chapter, of course, is that on
assembled together in the prologue to the “Canterbury
Tales "-are not mere phantasms of the brain, or even “Chaucer's Life and Works,” which occupies more mere actual possibilities, but real human beings, and than half the volume. In it Professor Ward has gath- types true to the likeness of whole classes of men and ered and linked together all those bits of biographi- women, or to the mold in which all human nature is
cast. This is, upon the whole, the most wonderful, as it themselves. She did this not because of any exalta. is perhaps the most generally recognized, of Chaucer's tion of pious fervor, for at the time the momentous gifts. It would not of itself have sufficed to make him a step was decided upon she was in the toils of religreat dramatist, had the drama stood ready for him as a literary form into which to pour the inspirations of his gious doubt; nor because of “blighted affections”
or disgust with the world, for the pride of life and genius, as it afterward stood ready for our great Elizabethans. But to it were added in him that perception of the pleasures of the senses were always strong with. a strong dramatic situation and that power of finding in her; nor from the desire for remunerative employ. the right words for it which have determined the suc- ment, for her home was secure, and after her father's cess of many plays, and the absence of which materially death she would possess an independent fortune. detracts from the completeness of the effect of others, Endowed with personal beauty which could not have high as their merit may be in other respects.
failed to secure her a marked position in any society ; Provided with Professor Ward's monograph and with talents which would have commanded success with Mr. Arthur Gilman's Riverside edition of the in almost any department of intellectual effort ; with poet's works, reviewed in a recent number of the the refined tastes and instincts of a carefully nurtured “ Journal,” the reader will find himself better and mentally cultivated lady; with an exceptionally equipped for an intelligent appreciation and enjoy- and with ample opportunities for enjoying them if
keen appetite for the delights of life and society ; ment of Chaucer's poetry than any previous genera- she had chosen ; possessed of every possible temptation of students has been.
tion and inducement to the customary life of selfish pleasure and occupation, she deliberately turned
from them all in the heyday of her health and beauWHOEVER has fallen under the malign influence ty, and devoted herself to that hospital-nursing of "that worst of all skepticisms, a disbelief in hu- which, while it involves much noble and skillful man goodness,” should read that biography of “Sis- work, involves also the performance of menial offices ter Dora " which, it is not surprising to hear, has from which the very dregs of society turn with dismade so profound an impression upon the English gust. Why did she do this? Her motive was simreading public.* It has been finely said by one who ply and solely the desire “to do good to others" ; knew her well that the life of Sister Dora exempli- and this object she pursued with an energy, an eagerfied “the sublime possibilities of Christianity"; but ness, an enthusiastic devotion which far surpassed in while her peculiarly vivid and vital faith no doubt ardor even that selfish greed which is peculiarly sustained her through many an arduous and discour characteristic of the age, and which her whole life aging experience, yet it must be said that her career, rebukes and puts to shame. “Money itself,” says rightly considered, can not fail also to exalt our es- her biographer," was valuable to her only that she timate of that poor human nature which has been so might spend it on others." much denounced and decried. For, if Sister Dora It is not our intention to summarize the story was distinctively a product of Christianity, she was which Miss Lonsdale has told so well—with such certainly a unique and unprecedented product. straightforward frankness and simplicity of style. Hers was no pious asceticism or exaltation of mys. It would be hopeless to attempt to improve upon the tic emotion, but a most wholesome and human per- manner of its telling; and no one, we imagine, will sonality; and her profound belief in the efficacy of think the story too long in its present shape. On good works would have shocked and grieved the the contrary, in these days of voluminous “memoirs," typical theologian of the old school.
it is difficult to avoid the feeling that less than adeSister Dora was not a member of one of the quate justice has been done to a most fruitsul subRoman Catholic orders, as might naturally be in- ject. This, however, is to make the mistake of ferred from her title. The daughter of a clergyman measuring such work by quantity instead of quality, of the Church of England, she was herself a zealous and a closer consideration will suffice to show that, member of that Church ; and the title by which she in the case of Sister Dora, the life and the record of is likely to become so widely known was derived it are singularly harmonious with each other. And from her temporary connection with the Sisterhood we are confident of receiving the heart-felt thanks of of the Good Samaritans, a secular community of all readers who shall follow our recommendation to voluntary associates who occupied themselves with read the little book for themselves. nursing and other "works of mercy" in different parts of the United Kingdom. At the age of twenty-nine she left her comfortable home, contrary to The contempt for politics and politicians which her father's wishes, to teach a poor parish school in has found expression in nearly every other departa remote village ; at the age of thirty-two she joined ment of our literature was sure, sooner or later, to the Sisterhood, and the remainder of her most labori- find its way into fiction, and it is rather surprising ous life was devoted unreservedly to those “works than otherwise that “ Democracy"* should be the of mercy” which the Sisterhood had marked out for first essay in a subject which, if not fruitful, was
sure to enlist a certain amount of popular sympathy. * Sister Dora. A Biography. By Margaret Lonsdale. With a Portrait. From the sixth English edition. * Democracy. An American Novel. Leisure Hour Boston : Roberts Brothers. 16mo, pp. 290.
Series. New York: Henry Holt & Co. 16mo, pp. 374.