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mur'd softly in my ear, Emma, I love him !--but that, let him rather hope than know-You see, I have exceeded my powers-the coming moment will evince, whether I must repent my precipitancy.
• Hugel. (transported) Is this a dream ?-Minna ;--noblest Minna! where is she?--where can I find her ? • Emma. Dare I inquire with what intention?
Hugel. And can you inquire !-my beloved !--my bride! • Emma. It is as Ì expected-go--where she is I know notinstinct guides a lover,
• Hugel. (hastens away) Minna !_Minna !!
We observe a strange barbarism in more than one part of this translation : the respectable veteran, Erlach, uses the phrase • babypap,' as a term of contempt. Indeed the noble Captain's expressions of joy are not very congenial with English, as the following passage will evince :
· Erlach. (seizes overjoyed her hand) Girl! girl! what dost thou make of me?- I could fall on my knees before ther, had I not so often fondled thee on my knee-here then stand I-would fain speak and cannot-and falter before a being, who, eight years ago, was no taller than this rose bush ;- but one word for all, thou art my wife, my dearest wife !-Why, let them laugh-ah, ah, ha! I too will laugh -see here, see here, and disguise your envy under feign'd smiles-go your way; she is mine !- Erlach returns to his country, and the Alps shall reverberate his shouts—for never was his heart so full of extasy. :--(eagerly and playfully he takes her hand under his arm) Yes, my good girl, we will buy us a farm, an Alpine cot, with the friendly sunbeams, sporting on our soil, where aromatic roots exhale health, and the wild rose3 carelessly bloom like thy cheeks—there will we mingle in the song and dance of a true hearted peasantry. - Huzza! Era lach and his matchless wife. The lifts her up and swings her round)
• Emma. Dear Erlach, my mother approaches
• Erlach. Whom? thy mother :- I had nearly forgotten the romance-and is it then true ?--pardon me 'if I delay enquiring how all this hangs together?—it seems to me as if I were with Emma alone in the world, and had no concern with the rest of mankind.
• Emma. Let us beg her blessing !
• Erlach. ay, ay! (he throws away hat and cane-takes Emma in his arms, and carries her to meet her mother half way.)
We have once more to complain that the language of the translation is inaccurate, and even, in several instances, ungrammatical. Fer...r. Art. 32. The Peevish Man: a Drama, in Four Acts. By Au.
gustus Kotzebue. Being his last Production. Translated by C. Ludger, Esq. 8vo. 2s. 6d. Jordan Hookham. 1799.
Being his la:t production! No, gentle reader, do not fancy that this is to be the last of the Romans. Kotzebue is a man of an eternal vein, a perennial drama-bearer, whose dead foliage is replaced by an immediate supply of caducous vegetation. How, indeed, should he be drained, when the English public gladly receives back from him the crambé recocta of its own writers. The two principal chatacters of this play are taken from Tristram Shandy: Herman is Q_2
Mr. Shandy, Captain Toby Edelshield is our worthy Uncle, and Aunt Dinah is metamorphosed into a notable maiden, ycleped Ul. rica. Our readers may judge, from the following dialogue, how nearly the German artist has equalled Sterne, in pathos and sentiment :
· Ul. Providence has presented you with the gift of culling honey from every lower.
· Toby. Has it? (Puts down the rose-bush, and folds his hands.) Well, then, gracious God! thou hast bestowed a happiness upon me which thousands are deprived of ! 6 Ul. And
your rheumatism. • Toby. Nonsense ! if there were no pain upon earth, there would be no pleasure.
• Ul. You catch cold in wind and weather. Your delight in gardening
• Toby. Leave that unmolested, pray! I am the most fortunate monarch upon carth. The gardener is my prime minister. My subjects thrive; they know me only by my kindness; and reward me with fruit.
• Ul. If only the diversion of gardening wasn't so dirty.
Toby. With a little bit of earth sticking to them. What matters that? Man is nothing but a clod of clay, you know.
• Ul. Oh, brother! that is a distressing thought. I am all day busy wiping away every little bit of dust, and then I must be dust myself after all.'
A long scene, written with equal taste and brilliancy with this specimen, is interrupted by the following important person,-Mr. Herman's footman :
• Wal. (comes vexed out of his master's room.) That's too bad.
Toby. And scolding again?
• Wal. First, the chimney smoaked a little ; then he began to .curse the chimney.sweeper, then the architect who built the house, then the inventor of chimneys.
Toby. Ha! ha! ha!
Ul. The sinoke will smut the curtains ; he may be right enough there.
• Wal. When he saw the weather was fair, his humour began to brighten again ; he chatted and laughed till I helped him to put on his new shoes ; they unfortunately were too tight.
• Toby. Then he gave it the shoemaker, eh? • Wal
. I immediately began to talk of stable-feeding, and of the Spanish clover he gave the peasants; that it throve so nice, that all the village was pleased with it. • Ul. I'll lay, that instantly gave his humour a different turn.
• Wal. Immediately. He quite revived, and began to form new plans to improve the condition of his peasants. The devil knows, how it happened that I put his snuff box on the window-it must always stand upon the little table by the clock-he hunted for it a.; few minutes, called me a good-for-nothing fellow, and turned me out of the room.
Toby. A word in passion is like a cold flash of lightning.'
A cold fash of lightning is a very bright idea ; for which, we believe, we must thank the translator.
Mr. Kotzebue has even borrowed the whistling of Lillabullero for his Captain Toby. This might have been spared.
We extract the following part of a scene, to shew the high polish and elegance of our bard:
• Hér. Come hither, Theresa ! I here introduce Colonel Hammer to you, and hope you will find him to your liking.
The. (Curtsies with dignity.) The friend of the father has a claim to the esteem of the daughter.
• Col. (Drawing himself up.) Graceful young lady, I aspire to . the honour of becoming your champion.
• The. As soon as my father shall give a tournament, I shall habit the valiant knight in my colours.
• Col. I throw my gauntlet to the ground, and maintain, in the face of the whole world, That Theresa Edelshield is the most beauti? ful and the most chaste virgin in the whole country..
« The. I'll think of a prize to reward my champion as I ought. • Her. He has already been thinking of that himself.
• Col. Whereas, however, those glorious times are no more, when, in honour of the fair, horses were tumbled and lances broken, it will be necessary, by other proofs of affection, to gain the sweet reward of love. May I be permitted, therefore- Approaches with many graceful bows, very politely takes the book out of her hand, and composedly throws it out of the window.)
• The. ( Amazed.). Colonel! what are you about?
• The. (To her father.) Schiller's Xenia, which I had this very morning received from town
• Col. They lie in the ditch.
( The. (Looking out of the window.) Upon my word, papa, Schiller's Xenia lies in the very midst of the mire.
• Col. They are in their proper place. • The. (Piqued.) I don't know, Sir, what all this means • Col. A well-meaning criterion " The. The respect I bear my father retains me • Her. (Laughing.) Be composed, child ; his intention is good. He is.of opinion, that reading will do women no good ; and as he has chosen you for his consort
• The. (Quite struck with amazement.) Me? • Col. Yes, you, fair lady.
• The. Pardon me, Colonel; but a lover, who sets oat by throw. ing my
books out of the windowCol. Is a brave nobleman of the old metal.' If the book thrown out of the window had been one out of an hundred foolish productions that we could name, we should not have severely blamed the testiness of the veteran.-We cannot help observ. ing that the minute details of coffee drinking, smoking, and sweeping the floors, in this play, are sufficiently powerful to convert a good-natured reader into the leading character of the piece, and to render him very peevish with the muse of the writer, who might bę not unaptly typified by the aforenamed Miss Ulrica. Fer..I.
The Corsicans ; A Drama, in Four Acts, Translated from the German of Augustus Kotzebue. Svo.
Bell. Oxford Street. There are some good situations in this comedy, as dramatic manu. facturers term them; and there is, throughout, more liveliness i with less babbling dialogue, than in most of this author's plays. As to the plot, we have a father (a Corsican exile) who lives incognito, as steward in the same house with his own daughter, without suspecting her to be related to him į and other wonderful mysteries of the same nature. We have also marginal directions: witness the following scene, which we extract as a specimen of the art of writing a part of dumb-shew :
• Felix, NATALIA. * [Whilst Felix is engaged in the following Soliloquy, Natalia ap.
proaches, as if involuntarily; then retires, and comes back.] • Fel. She came to see me–Fortunate Camillo ! . Dar'st thou . flatter thyself with the glorious idea that something more than pity warms the bosom of that angel?-She came to see me! - From yonder hill she gazed at me-thought of me-was occupied with me during the cool evening-hour ;-and I this very day walked past that hill, as if it had been nothing else than a common heap of earth planted with trees ! .-Oh! I did not know that she had hallowed the spot by her presence!- I did not know that it was to become my favourite abode, the altar of my devotion ; from which, during the sweet gloom of twilight, the most ardent vows for Natalia's happiness shall rise to the evening star !- Natalia! Natalia !-let's forth to the lovely hill!-(He turns quickly round, and sees Natalia standing before him. He shrinks back, trembles, and casts his eyes downwards.
• Natalia casts a timid side glance at him, while her face appears covered with the graceful blushes of virgin innocence.
• Felix slowly ventures to raise his eyes tawards her, • Natalia looks at him with incxpressible tenderness.
• Felix brows himself at her feet; drops the rose, lays bold of her hand, which he covers with ardent kisses, then rises and runs of precipitately.
· Natalia stands as if fixed to the ground. After some pause she stoops to pick up the rose; places it on her bosom with a sigh, and slowly withdraws.'
And so the curtain drops pathetically, in cadence with the sobs of the audience!
We own that we cannot approve this treatment of a character like that of La Pérouse, consecrated by benevolence, true philosophy, and misfortune, to fasting fame. Let M. Von Kotzebue attribute his own ideas to imaginary personages ; but let him no: profane the memory of such a man as Pérouse ; a man whose observations on the various states, in which he had studied society, contain the clearest refutation of Rousseau's wild opinions, and furnish the true and sim. ple history of civilization.
Another translation, from the same very exceptionable origival.A Register-office seems wanting for Kotzebue's numerous (we had almost said innumerable) productions; by means of which our rival translators by profession, male and female, might escape the danger of running foul of each other, as several have unfortunately done ;-or, perhaps, an Insurance-office might prove a more desirable scheme. Q4