« ForrigeFortsæt »
his Majesty's government, to reflect, Because it was the very crisis of Euthat, whatever may be the consequences rope ; because it was more than a war of the struggle in which we are em- -it was a conflict of the principles of barked, we have not lost the confidence freedom with tyranny-a great trial of the Spanish people ; we know that of the question of national independevery true Spanish heart beats high ence against universal domination ; for this country; we know that, what- because such was the palpable and inever may happen, they will not accuse trinsic interest of the contest to Euus. Submission may be the lot which rope, to England, and to freedom, that they are fated to endure in the end; those who could not honour the rebut they do not impute to us the cause sistance of Spain, or see its vital conof their misfortunes. They are sen- nexion with the hope of nations, must sible, that neither the thirst after com- be either fools or knaves. merce, nor territory, nor security, is to · But if our contempt for Whiggism be imputed to us in the assistance we could be deepened, what could throw have afforded to them on this most it into more cureless ridicule than its important occasion. Whatever may present clamour for Spanish insurrecbe the result, we have done our duty; tion; a miserable, half-cast descendwe have not despaired; we have per- ant of French Jacobinism-repelled severed, and we will do so to the last, by the people, revolting to national while there is anything left to contend manners, uncalled-for by the necessi. for with a prospect of success.”-De- ties of the country, and, at the sight bate of April 21, 1809.
of punishment, flying in despair to the To this powerful and luminous remotest corner of Spain? What can speech-of which I have given but a be more ridiculous than that charlatan fragment, but of which the whole de- Wilson, deported from village to vilserves to be studied, and is not less an lage of Portugal, in the midst of pohonour to its speaker, than an exposition pular disgust, and, like a beggar, lashed of the policy of the war—no reply could back to his parish? What more silly, be made; and Opposition, broken down than the attempt to bolster up the at once by defeats in the legislature, emaciated fraud of Whig boasting at and unpopularity with the nation, home, by fetes and fooleries in taverns abandoned its resistance for a time and theatres ? The failure of the SpaNew casualties at length arrived to its nish ball was ludicrously completesuccour, and it rose again, to impede the influence of quadrilles and syllathe interests, and degrade the honour, bubs, in sustaining a national war, has of the empire.
been found impotent—and the Whigs Why do I insist upon the conduct are without resource for revolutions to of the Whigs in the peninsular war?
LETTERS OF TIMOTHY TICKLER, ESQ. TO EMINENT LITERARY CHARACTERS.
ers of periodicals feel of continuing
their sets. Therefore, if a good article, Thank you for the Quarterly. I a rara avis, nay, a rarissima, appears have just glanced through it with ra- in the Edinburgh, it is open to you to ther a hasty eye, and send you, as you praise it, without any fear of hurting wish, my opinions concerning it. You your own side of the question. You rather astonish me when you tell me may say that Jeffrey's review of Sithat people are amazed at some of my mond, for example, was light, sketchy, former remarks. You are asked, you and pleasant, trifling agreeably, and say, what you mean by abusing the just fit for the calibre of the reQuarterly every now and then, and viewer. You may allow that Sydney every now and then puffing the Edin- Smith can still trim off an article, burgh. As to the latter, that is mere which, if you be in a great hurry, you matter of taste. The Edinburgh is de- might admit into your Magazine. You cidedly going down ; it is hardly seen may confess that Brougham is a good in decent company now-a-days, and I sort of scold, whose intemperance to imagine it owes whatever circulation his literary superiors amuses you, on it retains, to the desire which all buy- the same principle that you are amused by the slang of a blackguard going with them, as they do with other wriit against a gentleman. This, I repeat, ters, if I think them wrong. The great does no harm. The qualities of these ability of many, of most of its articles, gentlemen are admitted by all parties; I not only admit, but am proud of. Í and the smartness of Jeffrey, the buf- think it does honour to our party to have foonery of the parson, the Billingsgate such powerful writing engaged in its of Brougham, serve to float the lumber cause; but, at the same time, I cannot of the stottery of Macculloch, and shut my eyes to its occasional puffery filth of Hazlitt. We now look on it and humbug, by which it, sometimes as a sort of fangless viper, which we betrays that cause. I cannot see why allow to crawl about, permitting our- the mere circumstance of its being selves to smile now and then, if any printed by Mr Murray, should render of its slimy contortions please the fan- it necessary that every one of Mr Murcy of the moment, knowing that it can ray's books, no matter how infamous do no hurt. It is indeed quite helpless or indecent, should be puffed off, diat present. Look at the articles in the rectly or indirectly; and, above all, I last on Slates and Virginius, and other cannot see why we are to hold our crockery-ware. Why, sir, the work tongues, or wink at such conduct. Still which talks of such trash, except, by a farther, when I see a Review, professsentence or so, to dispose of them for ing to be the organ of Toryism, turnever, is destroyed.
ing round on the Lord ChancellorTherefore it is that you may praise who, if we view him in all his beara good article of the Edinburgh, as I ings, honour, integrity, knowledge of said before. When it went forth tri- law, impartiality, and talent, must be umphing and to triumph ; when its considered to be the greatest man who slander and scurrility dealt death about ever sat in Chancery, the very nucleus it, it would have been treason to have of our principles-abusing hiin and repointed out anything good which it viling the law of the land, because the contained ; it would have been a dere judge and the law will not allow Mr liction of duty not to have taken the Murray to make money by the sale of monster by the horns, and shewn him foul works-works altogether opposed forth in full brutality, proving that, to the political and religious views strong as he was in vice, there were which the Review supports, I must still giants in the land who could over- speak out, if nobody else will, and master his evil power. But now, when protest that the Quarterly does not uthe has neither hoof nor horn, but only ter my sentiments, in this instance at a pair of great long ears to prick up in least. To Murray's using the engine defiance, it is surely an act of Chris- in his hands for puffing off the fair tian charity, which does not at all in- books which he publishes, I do not terfere with our allegiance to Tory object. I think, indeed, that it is bad ism, to hold forth to admiration the taste to do it so much as he does; but good points of the creature. Puff ac- I do most strenuously object to the cordingly, if it so pleases you, any Quarterly's giving up, in any case, its good article which you may see im- party for the sake of its publisher. mersed in the Serbonian bog of Con- Without further preface, n, I beg stable's Review, without fear. The leave to remark, that there is too much concern is about as low as their old al- France in this number. Of thirteen ly Dicky Phillips's affair, which I am articles, six areon French works, which told is still published somewhere about is more than needful in an English Fleet-ditch.
review, particularly as there have been Then, as to finding fault with the so many books worth reviewing, pubQuarterly, it strikes me to be pure im- lished since the last appearance of the pertinence in any of the Quarterly Quarterly. It strikes me that both people to endeavour to bind you up. Edinburgh and Quarterly pay too li. The principles of that journal I ad- mited attention to our own literature; mire, I love-I mean its political prin- that they are anything but a fair picciples. But am I bound to acknow- ture of the actual state of the writing ledge it paramount in literature ? - world among us. They are just a Not I! Have not I as good a right to bundle of Essays on books apparently give an opinion on a book, as such peo- selected at random, or, at most, with a ple as Millman or Whittaker ? In view to serve their booksellers. The truth I have, and shall as liberally ex- old Monthly Review is a much fairer ercise my privilege of finding fault record of our current literature in this respect; I read its critiques, stupid and he did casually come in contact with prosing as they generally are, with an any such trumpery, would he have interest not at all derived from them- given himself the trouble of even exselves; but from my certainty that pressing disgust? Of course, he would they tell me how the intellect of Eng- not-he would merely laugh at the land is at the present moment em- poor creature; and yet there never was ployed."
such a fathomless distance between But as my business in writing to Dennis and Pope, as between Jeffrey you is not to discuss the beau ideal of and Burke. a review, but to consider an individual The ninth and tenth articles, on MaNumber of one actually existing, I dam Campan's Marie Antoinette, -- the shall begin with the beginning. The Dutchess of Angouleme’s Narrative of first article is Lacretelle's History of the Journey to Varennes,-her Private the Constitutional Assembly; a clever Memoirs of what passed in the Temple, paper, in a proper spirit, by Mr Cro- -and Louis XVIII.'s Narrative of his ker, I opine. It is, indeed, excel- Journey, are by the same accomplished lent throughout, and I quarrel only hand, and in the same spirit, as the first with its concluding paragraph. After article. I think C., however, rather pronouncing a just eulogium on Burke, hard on poor Louis, and that your own he quotes a character of that great man review was much fairer; but he doesamfrom an old Number of the Edinburgh ple justice to the sublime, simple, and Review that long since had been con- touching Memoirs of the Daughter of signed to the pastry-cook. Burke, teste France. I defy any man of human feelJeffrey, was a man of no judgment, no ings to read the 473d page of the Quarprinciples, no firmness, no honesty-he terly, the heart-rending page which was no philosopher, no man of busi- gives an account of the sufferings of the ness, no orator! There is a critic six poor child who had the misfortune to be feet and a half high, for you! In the Louis XVII.--the poor, dear, innocent, opinion of the great Jeffrey-the gen- unhappy, little creature, in his privatleman who actually can speak to their tions, his terrors, his neglect, his lonelordships in court, until he comes to a liness, and his almost sublime silence pain in his leg from standing, the only without emotion. It proves how period of Jeffrey's harangues—Burke fact surpasses fiction. No writer would was no speaker. We have here nicely have dared to imagine such a characbalanced orator Jeffrey versus no- ter as the docile, courteous, obedient orator Burke, and the Irishman is child, who never spoke again, after found wanting. So saith the Prince having been forced by monsters in huof Critics and the King of Men, as man shape to sign a deposition against Hazlitt, the gallant of Southampton- his mother. Well does the Quarterly street, Holborn, styles his friend. remark, that even the Queen's own ap Burke's shade may, however, derive peal to the maternal hearts of her some consolation from the fact, that hearers, was not so pathetic, so irresist the same great and ingenious person ible a touch as this. discovered also that Swift was no wit, The Reviewer remarks on these Wordsworth no poet, Pindar unable things, like a man whose heart is worto write Greek, Addison not worth thy of his genius. Why does Croker reading, Socrates a scoundrel, Burns do nothing of his own? Surely, surenothing but a blackguard. In a word, ly he might be the Swift of our time that they were not to be named in a if he pleased. day with Jeffrey the great, the advo- The second article is on Burton's cate who domineers in the Jury Court, Rome, with sufficient learning and and actually writes thirty pages full of pleasantry to reward its perusal. The words at a time for the Edinburgh reviewer talks a little twaddle about Review. But, to be serious, why did church ceremonies, fretted vaults, stateC. quote such trash ? Would he turn ly columns, &c. which so good a Presup the pages of the heroes of the byterian as I am cannot swallow, but Dunciad for a character of Pope? or if certainly shall not fight about.
• Good Timothy, abuse whom you please, but the Monthly is a very good book-for, 1stly, it contains first-rate articles every now and then ; and, 2dly, it is less than any pe. riodical, except mine, under base Bibliopolic influence.-C. N.
Article third is on Arago's Voyage tian and moral maxims, is just the Round the World, and a capital cutting proper subject for acts of Parliament. up of an empty French coxcomb it is. When we add the precious discovery, We may expect, I suppose, a recla- that compulsory assessments will be mation from Arago-at least I hope so. rather more equal in their operation He is a most superlative jackass. than voluntary contributions, the sum · The fourth article, on the Poor Laws, of this conclusive argument in behalf is a very superficial and moderate af- of the English Poor Laws is exhaustfair; but is perhaps quite as well on ed ; and it is upon a foundation thus that account; for there is not a hu- deep and solid, that this wiseacre of man being who will now read a grave the Quarterly Review has placed the treatise on so unpromising a subject. defence of a system, which the wisest The evil, as it prevails in England, is men of England have long pronounced confessedly enormous; but the pri- indefensible, and the nation at large has vilege of 'murmuring now alone re- felt to be all but intolerable. This mains, all classes appearing to aban- weightier controversy is preceded by a don exertion as hopeless, under the brief skirmish with our countryman weight of this irremediable calamity. Dr Chalmers, who some years ago took The fundamental principle of the up this business of the poor with chaEnglish Poor Laws, viz. that the Le racteristic enthusiasm-which, it is a gislature can by its fiat create unli- pity to observe, however, so prematuremited means of subsistence, and an ly evaporated-and although the Docunlimited demand for labour, is now tor's singular hurry and heedlessness universally disowned; but it is easier to appear to have given the Reviewer some disavow the principle, than to recal its petty advantages in the detail of the practical effects; and the whole subse- question, it is by no means so clear as quent legislation of the sister kingdom, he supposes, that the “ answers to has been a wretched struggle in detail, these (the Reviewer's) questions must to counteract the master-principle of overthrow Dr Chalmers's system." misgovernment, which, in the first in- Mark the fairness of the weapons em. stanee, struck down the moral feeling ployed for this imaginary overthrow. of independence. Some of the wisest Dr Chalmers alleges, as a proof of and ablest of Englishmen have retired the defects of the existing system for from this intractable subject in des relief of the poor in Glasgow, that, pair ; but the Reviewer, who is nei- under it, the assessment was quadther very wise nor very able, manages rupled from 1803 to 1818; and the it with a freedom and facility which Reviewer rebuts this objection of an are quite decisive of his incapacity. assessment quadrupled during one peThe drift of his argument-although riod, by appealing to an increase of less there is much discreet reserve in the than a third of the population during expression-is the absolute defence of a different period. Again, the Doctor the existing Poor Laws of England as refers to the fact, that the voluntary to their principle, coupled with some contributions of his parishioners were hints neither very new nor important found for three years more than adeas to improvements in the mode of quate to the relief of all the new cases their execution. In a strain of rea- of pauperism that occurred, leaving, in soning at once original and profound, fact, after such relief, a considerable we are taught, that to assist the poor, surplus ; and the Reviewer disputes " is not only a precept of the Chris- the inference deducible from this fact, tian religion, a maxim of moral vir- by stating, that during the same petue, but an instinctive feeling of hu- riod the poor-rates were reduced even man nature ;" and this being the main in England, and by hazarding the riargument for compulsory, instead of diculously ignorant assumption, that voluntary aid, we are led to infer, the parish of St John's, Glasgow, is, that, in the opinion of this judicious compared with other parishes of the writer, the due enforcement of Chris- city, remarkably free of pauperisni.*
St John's parish being in fact inhabited, with few exceptions, by people of the very lowest rank, and the natural proportion of paupers there about 5 to 1 to the most of the other parishes of that town. VOL. XIV.
And it is thus that this heavy cham- In nothing, indeed, as in such articles, pion of English pauperism demolishes is the vast superiority of the Quarterly the hardy presbyterian declaimer.- over the Edinburgh so clearly disThe Doctor is perhaps not just the man cernible. whom, except for practical purposes- As many idle conjectures concernfor fervid zeal and assiduous ministra- ing the fate of Captain Parry are tion in the hovels of poverty and vice afloat, and many tormenting specula--we should select as the champion tions vented on the tardiness of his of a great reform in the management return, too much publicity cannot be of the poor ; and the more is the pity given to the fact, that Parry himself that his singular retreat from the “ calculated upon three summers, and world should limit for the future his only wished, that, if not heard of in contributions to this good cause to the beginning of 1824, a vessel with the periodical accumulation of lum- provisions might be sent into Behring's bering pamphlets, of which we have Straits in the autumn of that year.' already had more than enough ; but P. 409. Mr Barrow concludes by rehe is not just a person, after all, to be marking“overthrown" by any ordinary contri- “ With regard to risk, we apprehend butor to the Quarterly Review, nor can none beyond that to which all navigation what he has done be so easily oblitera- in the icy seas is liable, and which the longted as seems to be imagined by an obso- frequented whale-fishery, conducted in ves. lete apologist of the English poor-laws. sels not half so strong, nor half so well
Article fifth. Theodore Ducas—a manned, has proved to be little more than common-place review of a common
common sea risk. Indeed, with ships as place book.
strong as wood and iron can make them; The sixth article is such as the Quar
stored with provisions and fuel for nearly terly only can furnish. It is a review of four years ; with a commander excelled by Captain Franklin'sstupendousjourney. sion ; endued with intellectual faculties of
none in the various duties of his profesa Mr Barrow brings every qualification the highest order, and full of zeal and enerdesirable for the consideration of such
gy tempered with due prudence and discrea work: profound geographical know- tion ; with experienced officers, and crews ledge, clear and accurate views of all of picked seamen ;-we cannot persuade the subjects connected with voyages
ourselves that any reasonable ground of of discovery, and a lucid style and ar
alarm for their safety need be entertained." rangement. Compare his articles with I hope, and trust not. the drossy, mock-scientific, dogmatic, In Mr B.'s remarks on the ornaments and impertinent mumpings of the Blue of this book of travels, he pays them and Yellow on the same subject, full a well-deserved compliment, but of ignorance, self-conceit, self-puffery, sadly out of his way to abuse what and insolent abuse of other people. he calls “ the greasy daubs of lithoCompare, in particular, their article graphy.” Now, this is unjust to a most on the North-West Passage with this useful art, which they are daily bringmasterly one.
ing to more and more perfection. If Had I not the fear of the criticism Mr Barrow would just cast his eyes of the Jury-Court before my eyes—that over Francis Nicholson's plates, he awful band of reviewers, whose fiat would, I think, be inclined to retract decides all literary questions, Hebrew, his censure. Be the defects of lithoSamaritan, Chaldee and Masoretic, graphy what they may, it at all events Thermometrical and Frigorific, í gives you the picture from the very should say, that a more stupid and pre- hand of the painter ; and I trust the sumptuous collection of betises was unworthy jealousy among line engranever thrown together by the merest vers, which has already turned it three smatterer in literature. Read, for in times out of the country, will not stance, Barrow's and Parry's Remarks again prevail to banish it from us a (p. 406-408) on the Navigation of the fourth time. To Mr Finden's merits Arctic Seas, and then turn to read, if I readily subscribe ; indeed, I should you can, the Blue and Yellow's pyet be blind if I did not; but a more com--(mind I do not say parrot, but) plete apropos des bottes never occurred pyet attempt at waggery, their nau- than in the way Barrow here brings seating stuff about the Polar basin, him forward. He mentions that the Don Quixote and Mambrino’s helmet. etchings are finished in line-engraving