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“ Sager than in thy fortunes ; for in them
Ambition steeld thee on too far to show That just habitual scorn which could contemn Men and their thoughts. 'Twas wise to feel, not so To wear it ever on thy lip and brow, And spurn the instruments thou wert to use Till they were turn'd unto thine overthrow; 'Tis but a worthless world to win or lose ! So hath it proved to thee, and all such lot who choose.
« But quiet to quick bosoms is a hell,
And there hath been thy bane ; there is a fire
Of aught but rest ; a fever at the core,
“ This makes the madmen who have made men mad
By their contagion ; Conquerors and Kings,
Are theirs ! One breast laid open were a school . Which would unteach mankind the lust to shine or rule:
“ Their breath is agitation, and their life
A storm whereon they ride, to sink at last ;
Melt to calm twilight, they feel overcast
With its own flickering; or a sword laid by,
“ He who ascends to mountain-tops, shall find
The loftiest peaks most wrapt in clouds and snow;
Contending tempests on his naked head,
The stern sublimity of this highly-poetical and descriptive passage may be agreeably contrasted with the introduction to Campbell's Gertrude of Wyoming,a poem of rare merit and delightful beauty, but comparatively very little known, except by name, notwithstanding the celebrity of the author.
The excellence of the execution, and the tenderness of feeling in this composition, should have secured it a much larger share of public admiration than it will ever obtain : the remoteness of the scene, however, and the imagery being drawn from descriptions in books, and not from impressions on the poet's sense, have impaired the effect of his power; and hence, though as a work of art, Gertrude of Wyoming will always rank high, yet it will never be in much request, notwithstanding all its numberless beauties, and the exquisite refinement of the sensibility that breathes and trembles in the pathos of every line.
GERTRUDE OF WYOMING.
“ On Susquehana's side, fair Wyoming,
“ It was beneath thy skies that, but to prune
“ Then, where of Indian hills the daylight takes
“ And scarce had Wyoming of war or crime
And spoke in friendship ev'ry distant tongue;
“ Nor far some Andalusian saraband
STANDARD NOVELS AND ROMANCES.
No kind of literary talent is more overrated than that of a reviewer, and this opinion Egeria was often in the practice of maintaining. “ Not,” she used to say, “ that I undervalue the endowment, independent of the learning, requisite to constitute a true critic; but, now-a-days, reviewers and rhymsters are a superabundant race, and among the innumerable swarms of both, which pester and sully modern literature, there are as few critics as there are poets.
“ One of the most characteristic peculiarities of a reviewer is a certain pert and off-hand manner, occasionally lively, sometimes gay, and perhaps now and then really witty. The free air, I would almost call it swagger, with which he carries himself, obtains much more consideration than would be accorded to his degree of ability differently employed. He is akin to those sprightly personages who are always on the best terms with themselves, and amusingly unacquainted with their proper place in society. They elbow themselves into notice with the most pleasant disregard, not only of all due precedence, but of the worth and the feelings of others. They say smart things with the happiest nonchalance, and, while they push aside modest or offended merit, are so very diverting in their selfconceit, that the grave and decorous are irresistibly led to join them in their laughter, even while condemning alike their impudence and deficiencies.
“ But though I have so little respect for the ephemeral progeny of the periodical press, I have yet still less for those authors who regard the faults of reviewers as proceeding from malice and malignity. I believe, indeed, that there is as much honesty of intention among reviewers as among any other class of persons whatever, and that they are really inclined to be as conscientiously just in their strictures as the flippancy of their natures will allow. It is well known, that they but undertake to review books; to think that they should read them is one of the many unreasonable expectations in which young authors are apt to indulge.
" But if this be the general character of those on