Billeder på siden
PDF
ePub

warn us against considering any of the productions of the carth as useless. One more example and we have done, “ so fing poetic itrainş” p. 25. We know that the common expression of sa says ibe story may be alledged in justification, but in correct writing strains do not fing, but are sung. We had almost forgot to hold forth to public notice a curious non-descript of the author's own creation; it is truly a curiofity, and will no doubt draw the attention of all the naturalists in Europe. Poets we know are ex officio, Creators, but to make a filing lion was beyond the daring of all Mr. H-s's predecessors. It was reserved for him to produce this phænomenon of the woods, and he cannot be accused of having done it incompletely.

• The fierce tyrant of the secret woods-

Drops his fiercenefs, smooths his brinded main, And couching harmlefs at his guardian's feet, With alpect bland, and many a softened smile, p. 17, 18. Marks the strong feelings of a mindful heart.”

We have seen lions of all colours, golden, red, blue, &c. the productions of that anomalous race the sign-post painters, and we are now in hopes of one day refreshing ourselves with a cup of good ale at the sign of the Smiling Lion.

Art. VI. The Governels; or the Boarding School dile&ted. A

Dramatic original in Three Acts. Wherein are exposed in Dramatic Order the Errors in the preselit Mode of Female Edu. cation ; and a Method of correcting them in order to form the Mind, and. Improve the Understanding; London, printed for the Author ; and fold by, Appointment at the Female Academy, No. 103, Hatton-Street, and to be had of the Bookfellers, 8vo. 2s. 60 1785

THE author stumbles in the very threshold. Instead of ex

prefsing with perspicuity the idea he intended to convey to his readers in his title page, he leads them to imagine that it is his intention to ridicule. what he really purposes to recommend. · He tells us that in his work 56 the errors in

the prefent mode of female education are exposed ;" so far all is well, but when he goes on to say " and a

method of correting them, in arder to form the mind ço and improve the understanding," likewise

expoled, We cair only say that the author hasi expofed himself, Paffing from the title-page, we turned to the first sentence of this dramatic, original," where the governess fays“. Indeed & Mr. Addison your Umilitude of education in the human

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

** soul, to å block of marble in the hands of an artist, displays " at one view, the valuable effects and necefsity of educastion." Indeed Madam, Addison never wrote such noi fenfe. He, it is true, has compared the human mind, formed by education, to a block of marble in the hands of an artist the fimilitude of education to that same block was left for you, We next meet with the following passage in Mr, Ti. mothy Lenitive, the apothecary's billet-doux to Miss Wisely, “ your merit, improved by your numerous good

qualities, havë reduced « me to the pleafing necessity to

confess, &c.” We had hitherto imagined that good qualities in a person constituted merit, our Author has dis, covered that they are very different things. At the conclu. fion of as the first, we meet with the following cou. plet.

“ Dancing and dress may aid the body's form,

" But folid learning does the foul adorn." From the subje&, and the numerous grammatical slips we have met with, we are led to believe that " The Governess!! is the production of a Boarding School Teacher.

But we will not part with'our Author or Authoress in bad humour; the work such as it is, is well-intended, and may be of use.

[ocr errors]

He

Art. VIII. A Dialogue bereveen Dr. Johnson and Dry Goldsmith,

in the Shades, relative to the former's Strictures on the English Poets, particularly Pope, Milton, and Gray, 4to, 1s. 6d, Debrett, 1785

R. DR

JOHNSON is heartily schooled in this perform

ance by his old acquaintance Goldsmith, for his criBicifins on the works of the three poets mentioned in the title-page ; and so totally is the Doctor's rugged tenacity of chara&ter done away by the pure air of Elyfium, that he kiftes the rod with all the mildness of a trye penitent. does not indeed altogether give up the point, but he confesses that inany of his animadversions might be dictated by envy, and acknowledges that Goldsmith may be partly in the right,

And what you say, ix part I know is true. The Author of the dialogue is a most ferocious combatant for the pre-eminence of English poetry, and

maintains that it may perform Things unattempted yet in rhyme”. Speaking of Pope, he says,

Morality from thee has learn'd to fing ,
* So clear, so rich, so sweet, fo bold of wing,
« That mathematics yet in verse may glide,
" And Auxions flow upon the muse's tide”.

He

tion.

He must be a very Katterfelto in verse, who produces this wonderful wonder. As a specimen of the work we shall

present our readers with the Author's idea of Pope's verfifica,

' In his dear verse the softest accents die,
In his dear verse the thirsty jav'lins fly.
The fair ANDROMACHE there ceaseless moans,
There rise triumphant shouts, and dying groans,
Now like Vesuvius flames the

rage
of

war,
And shock repelling Mock is felt afar ;
Now on the wing th' impatient courfers fly,
While swords of fame are brandish'd to the sky;
O'er all the man a nobler fury burns,

And foot and cavalry discharge by turns ; What does the Author mean by discharge here? He muft know that there was neither pistol, carabine nor musket, in the Grecian or Trojan army, and consequently that there could be no discharge but of a very powerful kind indeed. Had the measure permitted, would not charge have been fully ás proper ? We cannot enough commend the admirable man ner in which he makes his army perform their evolutions

Now to the right, now to the left they strain,

« Now to the left, now to the right again". Yet we have our suspicions that he has stolen his art of manæuvring from the well-known song

Hey! we go up, up, up,
Hey! we go down, down, downy,
Hey! we go backwards and forwards,

And bey! we go round, round, roundy.
“Who freed our sounds, most magically sweet,

" From rhyme, the Chinese shoes of flowing feet”. What a sad thing it is to get head and ears into incongruous metaphor. Here Chinese Thoes and flowing feet are so closely united, that they suggest very unfavory ideas.

From our remark on this Author's " discharge”, it will be perceived that he does not always understand the meaning of the word he employs. The two following instances will confirm this

" For shade is friendly to the feafted eye,
“ As clouds betimes adorn the richest sky.”.
“ His faults no refuge found, dear friend, with you,

But still humanity may have a few;

“ And faults betimes will necessary prove". Here betimes is unaccountably substituted for sometimes.

To give our poet all the consolation we can, fome imagination is discoverable in the Dialogue; if he is a young man, he may hereafter produce something superior to the

pre

present performance. But we must confefs, that our hopes of this are not very sanguine if he is much beyond his

teens.

ART. IX.. Travels into Poland, Russia, Sweden and Denmark. In

terspersed with historical Relations and political inquiries. Illuftrated with Charts and Fingravings. By William Coxe, A. M. F. R. S. Fellow of King's College, Cambridge ; and Chaplain to his Grace the Duke of Marlborough. 2 vols. 4to. 21. 28. boards. Cadell. London. 1784.

[Continued from December Review.] MR.

TR. Coxe having entered into the confines of Russia, de

scribes the limits and gives an account of the province, that was disinembered from Poland. Its population amounts to about 1,600,000 souls. Its productions are chiefly grain in large quantities, hemp, flax, and pasture. Its forests furnith great abundance of masts, planks, pitch, tar, and pak for ship-building. On his journey to Smolensko our traveller found a great luxury in clean straw for his bed. Ac that town he dined with a judge, who lived in a wooden house provided by the court.

• The rooms were small, but neatly furnished. The company con•. fifted of that gentleman, his wife and fifter, all of whom talked French: the ladies were dressed in the French fashion, and had on a good deal of rouge: they do not curtfy; but their mode of falute is to how their heads very low. Before dinner liqueurs were handed about ; the ladies each took a small glass, and recommended the same to us as favourable to digestion. The table was neatly set out, the dinner excellent, and served up in English creamcoloured ware : beside plain roast and boiled meats, several Russian dishes were introduced; one of these was a kind of fallad composed of mushrooms and onions, and another the grain of green corn, baked and moistened with sweet oil. Before we rose from table our host called for a large glass; he filled a bumper of champagne, drank it off to our health, and then handed the glass round.

'. This is an old custom,' said the judge, and was meant as an expression of regard ; the age is now grown delicate, and the free effufions of hofpitality must be suppressed in ceremony; but I am an old-fashioned man, and cannot easily relinquish the habits of my youth.' After dinner we adjourned to another room, and played two or three rub. hers' at whist. Coffee and tea were brought in, and a plate of sweetmeats was handed round to the company.'

Pursuing his journey to Moscow, Mr. Coxe had an opportunity of observing the dress, cottages, and food of the Ruffian Peasants. Their dress and habitations are simple, but their food both hearty and palatable.-Moscow, which is minutely described, notwithitanding the removal of the

seat

[ocr errors]

feat of empire to Petersburgh, is still the most populous city of the Russian empire. Here the chief nobles who do not belong to the court of the empress reside. They here fupport a larger number of retainers: they love to gratify their tafte for a ruder and more expensive magnificence in the antient stile of feudal grandeur, and are not, as at Petersburgh; eclipsed by the superior splendor of the court.

The following is an account of Russian hospitality. We could never pay a morning visit to any, nobleman without being detained to dinner

' ;. we also constantly received several general invitations ; but as we considered them in the light of mere compliments, we were unwilling to intrude ourselves without further notice. We foon. found, however, that the principal perfons of distinction kept open tables, and were highly obliged at our resorting to them without ceremony, Prince Volkongi in particular, having casually discovered that we had dined the preceding day at our inn,

politely upraided us; repeating his allurances, that his table was ours, and that whenever we were Rot particularly engaged, he should always expect us for his guests, Jideed the strongest expressions can scarcely do justice to the attention and kindness of this excellent noblémán; not content with adniitting us to his table without form, he was anxious that out curio fity should be gratified with the fight of every remarkable object at Moscow; he ordered his aid-de-camp to accompany us to different parts of the city, and as we were extremely defirous to become ac. quainted with Mr. Muller, the celebrated hiftorian of this country, heone day invited that respectable old gentleman to meet us at dinner.'

On the roth of September, being the anniversary of St. Alexander Newski, afterattending divine service, about ninety persons sat down at prince Volkonski's table.

· The entertainment was splendid and profuse. During the second course, a large glass with a cover was brought to prince Volkonski, who, standing up, delivered the cover 'to the archbishop, who sat next him, filled the glass with cham pagne, and drank thé emprefs's health, which was accompanic. with a discharge of cannon, The archbishop followed his example, and the glass was in like manger circulated round the table, The healths of the great-duke, of the greatedachefs, and of their fon prince Alexander were then successively toasted with the fame ceremo nies; after which count Panin arose, and drinking a return of thanks to prince Volkonski as master of the feast, was joined by the whole company. When each toast was' named by the prince; all the perfonis at table got up out of refpect, and remained standing while he drank, The reader will excuse the mention of thefe particulars on this and other occasions ; as they may be deemed not unworthy of notice, because they are sometimes characterifties of national manners.

Mr. Coxe, by the obliging attentions, ańd the coinmuni. cations of Mr. Muller, has been enabled to give an historical account of the connection between the courts of London and Moscow ; of the correspondence between Queen Elizabeth

ang

« ForrigeFortsæt »