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We see, thus, that the word deva, by which, in the course of time, language seems to have recovered the idea of God, was derived from the same root div, from which those other words had arisen, by which language had failed at first to express the same idea (Dyaus, Zeús, &c.). We see, also, that this second step must have been made before the Indo-European separation. Sanskrit, diva, day;' we have in Sanskrit dyaus, and in Latin sub dio, in the sense of 'heaven.' Nay, in the same way as the Chinese says Kin tien, 'to-day,' the Hindu uses a-dya, literally, 'this heaven
or this day,' in the sense of 'to-day,' hodie. Now, on the strength of this supposed equivocal meaning of the word Tien, the Pope, in 1715, issued an Apostolic precept, by which the Missionaries were prohibited from using the word Tien in the sense of God, though they were allowed to use it for 'heaven.' The decision of the Pope was, of course, final, and it was implicitly obeyed by the Roman Catholic missionaries of every order. The phrase Tien-chu, or Lord of Heaven, has accordingly been universally and invariably adopted by all Chinese Roman Catholic Christians from that time to this day, Whether in passages like that in the parable of the Prodigal Son, 'I have sinned against Heaven,' the Pope would have allowed the use of Tien does not appear. But he has equally excommunicated the other Chinese word for God, - Shang-tee, which is the same as Tien. -heaven, that is, the God of Heaven. The Abbé Grosier, in his
History of China,' gives a striking account of the character and attributes of Shang-tee, the Divinity or Supreme Being from the King, or canonical books of the Chinese.
In spite of this, Tien and Shang-tee were stigmatised by the Roman Catholics as heathen idols, not better than the Zeus, or Jupiter, of the Greeks and Latins. As a natural consequence, the Christians are popularly considered by the Chinese as the introducers of a new and strange God, a sort of idol of their own, which they call Tien-Chu ; and this notion has been sedulously inculcated, until very lately, in successive edicts by the Government. We hope that the views so admirably advocated by Sir G. Staunton may prerail with the Missionary Societies in Europe and America, and that the old word Shang-tee may be re-adopted by Christians of whatever denomination in China. Upon a deliberate consideration of all the bearings of the questions, Sir George observes, 'It still may be right
to reject the term Tien-Chu, but I cannot agree with those who think that this should be done upon the specific ground of it being advantageous or desirable that Protestant and Roman Catholic * Christians in China should be distinguished from each other by their employment of different words for the Deity. This distinction may be unavoidable, but it must always be a matter of regret, from its tendency to suggest to the Chinese that Protestants and Roman Catholics do not worship the same God, which is not only untrue in itself, but is a mischievous exaggeration of the difference between the two forms of faith, which can have no other effect in China but that of discrediting our common Christianity:
Dennistoun's Dukes of Urbino.
And now, that generations after generations have passed away, with their languages, — adoring and worshipping the name of God, — preaching and dying in the name of God, thinking and meditating over the name of God, — there the old word stands still, as the most ancient monument of the human race ære perennius - breathing to us the pure air of the dawn of humanity, carrying with it all the thoughts and sighs, the doubts and tears of our by-gone brethren, and still rising up to heaven with the same sound from the basilicas of Rome and the temples of Benares, as if embracing by its simple spell millions and millions of hearts, in their longing desire to give utterance to the unutterable, to express the inexpressible.
It may be seen from this single instance that Comparative Grammar addresses itself
not only to the Grammarian, but to the Philosopher and the Historian also. It has opened a new and a safe path through a forest hitherto impervious, and it is now for other sciences to follow, and to gather with a careful hand the fruits which are brought within their reach.
ART. II. - Memoirs of the Dukes of Urbino, illustrating the
Arms, Arts, and Literature of Italy, from 1440 to 1630. By JAMES DENNISTOUN of Dennistoun. 3 vols. 8vo.
London : 1850. URBINO, the birth-place of Raphael, is a name familiar to every
body; but the place itself lies so much out of the highway, both of travellers and historians, and the petty princes who once reigned in it are, consequently, so little known, that even lovers of books, if their reading does not happen to lie in such directions, will have been almost as much surprised at the sight of Mr. Dennistoun's splendid volumes, as they would be at meeting as many portly footmen in blue and gold, clearing the way in the streets for the Kings of Brentford. The sweet painter, for the last two hundred years, has almost usurped the name of the Duchy ; as his brother artist Allegri has done that of Correggio, and Claude Gelée that of Lorraine. Raphael d'Urbino every body knows; but who was Duke Federigo, and Duke Francesco Maria ?
And, in truth, lovers of Italian literature, generally speaking, know little more of them. They meet them occasionally in the pages of Sismondi and Napier, of Black, Roscoe, and others; but it is either in the midst of petty wars, which leave nothing but confusion in the memory, or as obscure patrons of art and literature, whose names are not worth remembering beside those of the Medici and the Este. The best figure they make is in
Ginguené, but that is chiefly in connexion with one book. One book alone connected with them (the Cortegiano of Castiglione), became an Italian classic; and in their city was born, though not to flourish under their patronage, the great painter, without whom Mr. Dennistoun would not have been moved to write their history.
Nevertheless, for these very reasons among others, we hailed the appearance of Mr. Dennistoun's volumes; for he bad much to tell us respecting men little known; and the prospect of seeing a graceful court revived, and distinguished names returning to us with new interest, made us open his work with no little eagerness. It seemed as if we were again looking down, through parting mists, on one of those spots in Italy, which we had long desired to behold; and that a new stock of pleasure was about to be added to our recollections.
Nor have our expectations been disappointed. Mr. Dennistoun's Dukes, whether for their virtues or their vices, their talents or their absurdities, are very interesting people; and Urbino itself, for the first time in our lives, has become a distinctly known place to us, - a clear, definite object, with its pinnacles and its households, quite different from what we had supposed it. We do not like to find fault with writers from whom we derive either amusement or information ; Mr. Dennistoun has given us both; and therefore, although he himself is by no means free from those imperfections and inconsistencies, both in style and matter, which, in the writings of those who have gone before him, offend his own better judgment, yet as he always mingles what praise he can with blame, speaks with great modesty of his own literary pretensions, and mentions no living author but with direct or implied commendation, we shall give him the benefit due to so much good nature, and treat him with all considerate thankfulness. Indeed, it is but justice to our author to say, that besides his possession of a stock of new and curious information, he sometinies writes so well, that he wrongs himself in not doing so at all times. If he has not studied the subtler spirit of literary criticism, he is worth hearing on the subject of Art; and we think every impartial person will admit that, upon the whole, he has shown himself an inquiring, discerning, and — with allowance for a biographer's predilectionsa liberal and conscientious writer, superior, except in one instance, to unhandsome prejudices, and anxious at all events for the triumph of the highest principles. Again, to speak unequivocally of the more visible ornaments of his work, they are by no means confined to the blue and gold. They contain, besides pedigrees and facsimiles of handwriting, many illustrations in portraits and other pictures, not, indeed, well engraved, though
Raphael: and Majolica.
by Italians, but very interesting. One of them is a half length of Ariosto from Titian; another of Tasso; another of Castiglione; another of Raphael when a child, after his father; and there is a view of the city of Urbino, very striking from the towering and stony severity of its aspect, - so different from what might be expected of the birthplace of the gentle artist. But thence issued his passion and sincerity. We hope the portrait of Ariosto is genuine, for it is more like his writings than the older one in profile, which is also called Titian's.
It has more force, geniality, and variety. That of Tasso makes the poet of the Jerusalem seem a poor creature. It has all his weakness, but nothing of his pride. That the portrait of Castiglione is by Raphael, the author doubts; but whomsoever it is by, it is a masterly production,-a living and breathing fact; and we see nothing in it to deprive it of the honour it enjoys. The painting, it is true, is not before us; and there may be something in the treatment of that, which implies a different hand: but the engraving is better than most in the three volumes,— less hard and slight; and there is a handwriting of art which strikes through the coarsest facsimiles, if they have the least resemblance to the spirit of the original. We shall feel henceforth that we know the face of Castiglione as well as if we had seen him.
We are sorry we cannot repeat some of Mr. Dennistoun's observations on Art. He has said much about it, and to the purpose ; particularly as regards the religious precursors of Raphael, the culmination and declension of the religious spirit in the great painter himself, and the difference between a just aclmiration, and spurious imitation, of mediæval sincerity. We recommend his observations to those retrospective young gentlemen (natural stumblers on the road of progress) who take such pains to prove to us that they are not Raphaels, and who are nevertheless unable to be in earnest without turning to his precursors to help them. But as the subject is not new, we must hasten to other matter. We regret that we cannot notice even the accounts which Mr. Dennistoun gives us of the glazed and coloured pottery, called majolica, the renown of which Mr. Marryat also connects with Raphael and Urbino. Other nations of Europe have lately discovered what Italy knew long ago,— that as nature adorns her least as well as greatest works with beauty, 80 beauty may be brought to pervade artisanship as well as art; that as a daisy or a weed is gracefully turned, so may a pen be, or a spoon, or the knife that cuts the loaf; that a plate need not be clumsy, because it is cheap; nor the water-jug remind us of the dropsy, instead of being entwined with lilies. The moment poverty itself perceives the beautiful, it doubles its possessions. Next to the blessing of peaceful intercourse, no higher lesson than this will have been taught hy the Crystal Palace. But as majolica itself is to be found elsewhere, we must quit it for what Mr. Dennistoun's book is unique in showing us.
The only truly original topics of the work are the dukes themselves. Next to these in novelty is the court of Urbino, as depicted by Castiglione; and to these two points of interest we shall confine ourselves. The accounts of the sacking of Rome are worth reading; and a certain kind of interest is always roused by the Borgia family, whom our author has not forgotten. But he has added nothing to their history. We propose by and by making one suggestion respecting it, meaning, however, to notice nothing that does not, in some measure, bear upon the novelties of the work; and in whatsoever we do notice, we shall confine ourselves to the only permanent topics of interest in all ages; those which enable us to imagine ourselves under the same circumstances with the human beings who have gone before us, whether as actors or spectators.
The reader will bear in mind, that the space of time occupied by these annals of Urbino, namely, from 1440 to 1630, commences in the reign of our Henry the Fifth, and includes the reign of our First Charles. It is thus divided between the middle and modern ages; and the characters of our author's successive princes are to be estimated accordingly. During nearly one half of this period, the German emperors, content with the nominal sovereignty which they held from the Cæsars, had discontinued their wars in Italy, only to leave it the prey of
It was one incessant battle-ground of republics and principalities all struggling for existence or for ascendancy, now with one another, and now betwixt themselves, the Pope, like an evil genius, lording it in the midst of all, and more embroiling * the fray' for his own purposes. During the other half of the period, Spain, France, and Austria interpleaded in arms for the sovereignty of this unhappy country, till at length they reduced it to the state in which it has since remained.
In times anterior to the first of these epochs, there had grown up a race of feudal chieftains, whose origin, according to a received phrase, was lost in the clouds of antiquity.' Like most such origins, it was probably not worth finding, its whole merit most likely consisting in the arm of some military adventurer on the fall of the Roman Empire. The name of this family, derived from one of their Apennine possessions, was Montefeltro; they lived near the town of Urbino, the old Urbinum Hortense, or Garden Urbinum, of Pliny, so called, in all probability, from a cultivation of the soil superior to that of the Urbinum, its namesake ; though from a passage in Mon