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than the annual increase for some years past, we may expect
the tolls to be, net,
Repairs and superintendence,
Net revenue, 44 per cent.
Interest on their cost, (say, $6,000,000,).
To be made up by taxes, &c.
The following table shows the increase of the exportation of some of the staples, by the Ohio Canal, northward, through Cleveland; and also of the tolls.
N. B. This account of tolls is of each year to December 1st; and therefore differs, somewhat, from the returns to November 1st, previously given. The great rise from 1836 to 1837 is, in part, owing to an increase in the rate of tolls.
School lands sold, and proceeds funded, and, ex
To be paid for tuition to public schools, 1837-8, $438,937-34
N. B. The school lands include, beside the section given for education by the Ordinance of 1785, lands given in lieu thereof in the Virginia Reservation, in the Connecticut Reservation, and in the United States Military District; and also the Salt Lands. In addition to the above revenue, the legislature, during the past winter, gave to the School Fund the tax on banks, &c.; and the whole revenue for 1838-9, will be more than $500,000.
Receipts from labor of convicts, for the year end
ing November 30th, 1837,
Expenses of every kind during that year,
To which should be added, labor of convicts the Penitentiary itself,
Number of prisoners December 1st, 1836,
December 1st, 1837, :
In 1835, were received 150 new prisoners; in 1836, 112; in 1837, 145. Of the 145 convicted during the last year, 18 were guilty of burglary; 18 of counterfeiting; 47 of grand larceny; 20 of horse stealing. From New York, were 32 of them; 23 from Pennsylvania; 21 from Ohio; 11 from Virginia; and 15 from the New England States.
ART. II. The Poetical Works of JOHN MILTON. A new Edition. 2 vols. 8vo. Boston: Hilliard, Gray, and Co.
THE discovery of the lost work of Milton, the treatise "Of the Christian Doctrine," in 1823, drew a sudden attention to his name. For a short time the literary journals were filled with disquisitions on his genius; new editions of his works, and new compilations of his life, were published.
But the new-found book having, in itself, less attraction than any other work of Milton, the curiosity of the public as quickly subsided, and left the poet to the enjoyment of his permanent fame, or to such increase or abatement of it only, as is incidental to a sublime genius, quite independent of the momentary challenge of universal attention to his claims.
But, if the new and temporary renown of the poet is silent again, it is nevertheless true, that he has gained, in this age, some increase of permanent praise. The fame of a great man is not rigid and stony like his bust. It changes with time. It needs time to give it due perspective. It was very easy to remark an altered tone in the criticism when Milton re-appeared as an author, fifteen years ago, from any that had been bestowed on the same subject before. It implied merit indisputable and illustrious; yet so near to the modern mind as to be still alive and life-giving. The aspect of Milton, to this generation, will be part of the history of the nineteenth century. There is no name in literature between his age and ours, that rises into any approach to his own. And as a man's fame, of course, characterizes those who give it, as much as him who receives it, the new criticism indicated a change in the public taste, and a change which the poet himself might claim to have wrought.
The reputation of Milton had already undergone one or two revolutions long anterior to its recent aspects. In his lifetime, he was little, or not at all, known as a poet, but obtained great respect from his contemporaries as an accomplished scholar, and a formidable controvertist. His poem fell unregarded among his countrymen. His prose writings, especially the "Defence of the English People," seem to have been read with avidity. These tracts are remarkable compositions. They are earnest, spiritual, rich with allusion, sparkling with innumerable ornaments; but, as writings designed to gain a practical point, they fail. They are not effective, like similar productions of Swift and Burke; or, like what became, also, controversial tracts, several masterly speeches in the history of the American Congress. Milton seldom deigns a glance at the obstacles, that are to be overcome before that which he proposes can be done. There is no attempt to conciliate, no mediate, no preparatory course suggested,—but, peremptory and impassioned, he demands, on the instant, an ideal justice. Therein they are discriminat
ed from modern writings, in which a regard to the actual is all but universal.
Their rhetorical excellence must also suffer some deduction. They have no perfectness. These writings are wonderful for the truth, the learning, the subtilty and pomp of the language; but the whole is sacrificed to the particular. Eager to do fit justice to each thought, he does not subordinate it so as to project the main argument. He writes whilst he is heated; the piece shows all the rambles and resources of indignation; but he has never integrated the parts of the argument in his mind. The reader is fatigued with admiration, but is not yet master of the subject.
Two of his pieces may be excepted from this description, one for its faults, the other for its excellence. The Defence of the People of England," on which his contemporary fame was founded, is, when divested of its pure Latinity, the worst of his works. Only its general aim, and a few elevated passages, can save it. We could be well content, if the flames to which it was condemned at Paris, at Toulouse, and at London, had utterly consumed it. The lover of his genius will always regret, that he should not have taken counsel of his own lofty heart at this, as at other times, and have written from the deep convictions of love and right, which are the foundations of civil liberty. There is little poetry, or prophecy, in this mean and ribald scolding. To insult Salmasius, not to acquit England, is the main design. What under heaven had Madame de Saumaise, or the manner of living of Saumaise, or Salmasius, or his blunders of grammar, or his niceties of diction, to do with the solemn question, whether Charles Stuart had been rightly slain? Though it evinces learning and critical skill, yet, as an historical argument, it cannot be valued with similar disquisitions of Robertson and Hallam, and even less celebrated scholars. But, when he comes to speak of the reason of the thing, then he always recovers himself. The voice of the mob is silent, and Milton speaks. And the peroration, in which he implores his countrymen to refute this adversary by their great deeds, is in a just spirit. The other piece, is his "Areopagitica," the discourse, addressed to the Parliament, in favor of removing the censorship of the press; the most splendid of his prose works. It is, as Luther said of one of Melancthon's writings, "alive, hath hands and feet, and not
like Erasmus's sentences, which were made, not grown." The weight of the thought is equalled by the vivacity of the expression, and it cheers as well as teaches. This tract is far the best known, and the most read of all, and is still a magazine of reasons for the freedom of the press. It is valuable in history as an argument addressed to a government to produce a practical end, and plainly presupposes a very peculiar state of society.
But deeply as that peculiar state of society, in which and for which Milton wrote, has engraved itself in the remembrance of the world, it shares the destiny which overtakes every thing local and personal in nature; and the accidental facts, on which a battle of principles was fought, have already passed, or are fast passing, into oblivion. We have lost all interest in Milton as the redoubted disputant of a sect; but by his own innate worth this man has steadily risen in the world's reverence, and occupies a more imposing place in the mind of men at this hour than ever before.
It is the aspect, which he presents to this generation, that alone concerns us. Milton, the controvertist, has lost his popularity long ago; and if we skip the pages of "Paradise Lost" where "God the Father argues like a school divine,' so did the next age to his own. But we are persuaded, he kindles a love and emulation in us, which he did not in foregoing generations. We think we have seen and heard criticism upon the poems, which the bard himself would have more valued than the recorded praise of Dryden, Addison, and Johnson, because it came nearer to the mark; was finer and closer appreciation; the praise of intimate knowledge and delight; and, of course, more welcome to the poet than the general and vague acknowledgment of his genius by those able, but unsympathizing critics. We think we have heard the recitation of his verses by genius, which found in them that which itself would say; recitation which told, in the diamond sharpness of every articulation, that now first was such perception and enjoyment possible; the perception and enjoyment of all his varied rhythm, and his perfect fusion of the classic and the English styles. This is a poet's right; for every masterpiece of art goes on for some ages reconciling the world unto itself, and despotically fashioning the public ear. The opposition to it, always greatest at first, continually decreases and at last ends; and a new race grows