Billeder på siden
PDF
ePub

THE

AMERICAN MONTHLY MAGAZINE

AND

CRITICAL REVIEW.

VOL. I.

NEW-YORK:

PUBLISHED FOR H. BIGLOW, Esq.

EDITOR AND PROPRIETOR,

BY KIRK & MERCEIN, AT THE OFFICE OF THE EDINBURGH AND QUAR-
TERLY REVIEWS, No. 22 WALL-STREET,

[merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small]
[ocr errors][merged small]

AMERICAN MONTHLY MAGAZINE

AND

CRITICAL REVIEW,

FOR MAY, 1817.

NO. I.....VOL. I.

ART. I. Childe Harold's Pilgrimage, Canto III,-Prisoners of Chillon, and other Poems, by Lord Byron.

IT
T has been so fashionable of late, to
admire Lord Byron's poetry, that no
man who valued his pretensions to ton,
dared to speak irreverently of any thing
that bore the sanction of his name. His
lordship's writings, indeed, pretty plain-
ly intimate his own sense of the sublimi-
ty of his genius; and what can be more
conclusive? What better authority could

oscillation of public opinion in his fa-
vour should have prepared him for its
vicissitude. As so much of his excel-
lence was taken upon trust, his fame was
closely connected with his veracity;
and he should not be astonished to find
his reputation declining with the deve-
lopement of his character. Violent
emotions are apt to be succeeded by

we possibly have than his lordship's their opposites. Contempt naturally

judgment in the case? or who could be so conusant to his lordship's merits as himself? But be this as it may, it was, at any rate, very generally agreed to believe what his lordship so seriously persisted in asserting; and if he obtained credit in any proportion to the extent of his claims, his celebrity is not wonderful. His title to panegyric being thus established, the only strife seemed to be, who should be most vociferous in his praise. If a snarling critic were surly enough to question a decree pronounced by acclamation, he could taste, and might have continued to scarcely hope to be heard in the tumult of applause.

follows disabused esteem; and mistaken sympathy may easily be converted into detestation. His lordship's boastful blazon of the depravity of his beart, casts no little imputation on the strength of his understanding; whilst his wanton exhibition of his deformity, has not left good-nature even a fig-leaf with which to cover his shame.

Yet, but for his folly, he might still have basked in the sunshine of favour. He had long enjoyed a plenary indulgence for sins against the canons of

But fanaticism, which is generally founded in delusion, is ever transient; and the fickleness of fashion is prover

transgress them with impunity, had he contravened no other laws. But, as he has chosen so intimately to blend his poetic with his moral character, and to obtrude himself, in both, so often, and His lordship's experience of the with so little modesty, on the public, it

« ForrigeFortsæt »