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he abhors licentiousness and loves chastity. He defends the slaying of the king; because a king is a king no longer than he governs by the laws; "it would be right to kill Philip of Spain making an inroad into England, and what right the king of Spain hath to govern us at all, the same hath the king Charles to govern tyranically." He would remove hirelings out of the church, and support preachers by voluntary contributions; requiring, that such only should preach, as have faith enough to accept so self-denying and precarious a mode of life, scorning to take thought for the aspects of prudence and expediency. The most devout man of his time, he frequented no church; probably from a disgust at the fierce spirit of the pulpits. And so, throughout all his actions and opinions, is he a consistent spiritualist, or believer in the omnipotence of spiritual laws. He wished that his writings should be communicated only to those who desired. to see them. He thought nothing honest was low. He thought he could be famous only in proportion as he enjoyed the approbation of the good. He admonished his friend "not to admire military prowess, or things in which force is of most avail. For it would not be matter of rational wonder, if the wethers of our country should be born with horns, that could batter down cities and towns. Learn to estimate great characters, not by the amount of animal strength, but by the habitual justice and temperance of their conduct."
Was there not a fitness in the undertaking of such a person, to write a poem on the subject of Adam, the first man? By his sympathy with all nature; by the proportion of his powers; by great knowledge, and by religion, he would reascend to the height from which our nature is supposed to have descended. From a just knowledge of what man should be, he described what he was. He beholds him as
he walked in Eden:
"His fair large front and eye sublime declared
Round from his parted forelock manly hung
And the soul of this divine creature is excellent as his form. The tone of his thought and passion is as healthful, as even, and as vigorous, as befits the new and perfect model of a race of gods.
The perception we have attributed to Milton, of a purer ideal of humanity, modifies his poetic genius. The man is paramount to the poet. His fancy is never transcendant, extravagant; but, as Bacon's imagination was said to be "the noblest that ever contented itself to minister to the understanding," so Milton's ministers to character. Milton's sublimest song, bursting into heaven with its peals of melodious thunder, is the voice of Milton still. Indeed, throughout his poems, one may see under a thin veil, the opinions, the feelings, even the incidents of the poet's life, still reappearing. The sonnets are all occasional poems. "L'Allegro" and "Il Penseroso" are but a finer autobiography of his youthful fancies at Harefield. The "Comus" is but a transcript, in charming numbers, of that philosophy of chastity, which, in the "Apology for Smectymnuus," and in the "Reason of Church Government," he declares to be his defence and religion. The "Samson Agonistes" is too broad an expression of his private griefs, to be mistaken, and is a version of the "Doctrine and Discipline of Divorce." The most affecting passages in "Paradise Lost," are personal allusions; and, when we are fairly in Eden, Adam and Milton are often difficult to be separated. Again, in "Paradise Regained," we have the most distinct marks of the progress of the poet's mind, in the revision and enlargement of his religious opinions. This may be thought to abridge his praise as a poet. It is true of Homer and Shakspeare, that they do not appear in their poems; that those prodigious geniuses did cast themselves so totally into their song, that their individuality vanishes, and the poet towers to the sky, whilst the man quite disappears. The fact is memorable. Shall we say, that, in our admiration and joy in these wonderful poems, we have even a feeling of regret, that the men knew not what they did; that they were too passive in their great service; were channels through which streams of thought flowed from a higher source, which they did not appropriate, did not blend with their own being. Like prophets, they seem but imperfectly aware of the import of their own utterances. hesitate to say such things, and say them only to the unpleasing dualism, when the man and the poet show like a double consciousness. Perhaps we speak to no fact, but to mere fables of an idle mendicant, Homer; and of a Shakspeare, content with a mean and jocular way of life. Be it how it
may, the genius and office of Milton were different, namely, to ascend by the aids of his learning and his religion,-by an equal perception, that is, of the past and the future, to a higher insight and more lively delineation of the heroic life of man. This was his poem; whereof all his indignant pamphlets, and all his soaring verses, are only single cantos or detached stanzas. It was plainly needful that his poetry should be a version of his own life, in order to give weight and solemnity to his thoughts; by which they might penetrate and possess the imagination and the will of mankind. The creations of Shakspeare are cast into the world of thought, to no farther end than to delight. Their intrinsic beauty is their excuse for being. Milton, fired "with dearest charity to infuse the knowledge of good things into others," tasked his giant imagination, and exhausted the stores of his intellect, for an end beyond, namely, to teach. His own conviction it is, which gives such authority to his strain. Its reality is its force. If out of the heart it came, to the heart it must go. What schools and epochs of common rhymers would it need to make a counterbalance to the severe oracles of his muse.
"In them is plainest taught and easiest learnt,
What makes a nation happy, and keeps it so."
The lover of Milton reads one sense in his prose and in his metrical compositions; and sometimes the muse soars highest in the former, because the thought is more sincere. Of his prose in general, not the style alone, but the argument also, is poetic; according to Lord Bacon's definition of poetry, following that of Aristotle, "Poetry, not finding the actual world exactly conformed to its idea of good and fair, seeks to accommodate the shows of things to the desires of the mind, and to create an ideal world better than the world of experience." Such certainly is the explanation of Milton's tracts. Such is the apology to be entered for the plea for freedom of divorce; an essay, which, from the first until now, has brought a degree of obloquy on his name. was a sally of the extravagant spirit of the time, overjoyed, as in the French revolution, with the sudden victories it had gained, and eager to carry on the standard of truth to new heights. It is to be regarded as a poem on one of the griefs of man's condition, namely, unfit marriage. And as many poems have been written upon unfit society, commending
solitude, yet have not been proceeded against, though their end was hostile to the state; so should this receive that charity, which an angelic soul, suffering more keenly than others from the unavoidable evils of human life, is entitled to.
We have offered no apology for expanding to such length our commentary on the character of John Milton; who, in old age, in solitude, in neglect, and blind, wrote the Paradise Lost; a man whom labor or danger never deterred from whatever efforts a love of the supreme interests of man prompted. For are we not the better; are not all men fortified by the remembrance of the bravery, the purity, the temperance, the toil, the independence, and the angelic devotion of this man, who, in a revolutionary age, taking counsel only of himself, endeavoured, in his writings and in his life, to carry out the life of man to new heights of spiritual grace and dignity, without any abatement of its strength?
ART. III.-Principles of Political Economy. Part the First. Of the Laws of the Production and Distribution of Wealth. By HENRY C. CAREY, Author of an "Essay on the Rate of Wages." Philadelphia: Carey, Lea, and Blanchard. 1837. 8vo. pp. xvi. 342.
WHAT is political economy? It is now a late day to put this question, respecting a department of practice, in which men have been studying and acting from the formation of the primeval political community downwards; and a department of scientific speculation, on which a very considerable library of books has been written within the past century. And yet the question is not without its doubts and difficulties, as we readily find by opening the recent works, which differ widely in their definitions. In short, they are not agreed in what constitutes this science. We will therefore begin with a definition of our own, that may serve us in our remarks, if it has no other use.
Political economy, then, we understand to be the science, that treats of the general causes, instruments, principles, and phenomena of the production, the accumulation, the ex
change, and the consumption of marketable things; that is, things which bear a price, and are customarily bought, sold, exchanged, and transferred, or delivered. These are the
subjects treated of in books of political economy; and the problem proposed is one of great intricacy, as well as of great importance, namely, to explain why it is, that one nation has a greater proportional amount of marketable, that is, valuable, things than another; or, in other words, is richer; and how it happens that one is growing richer, and another becoming poorer. For we would fain persuade ourselves, that we can, by the help of this science, observe the operations of the social throng, as we may those of a swarm of bees in a glass hive, and trace the connexion of the labors of each with the condition of all; and thus resolve the doubts that hang over the subject of national weal, and not only deduce the present condition of each community from its true causes, but clearly point out the courses that may lead to growth or decay. But the attempt to study the science with these views is at first disheartening; for we no sooner open a book upon the subject, than we find ourselves involved in disputes about its extent and appropriate topics; and then, as we proceed, we find ourselves perplexed with discussions. concerning the meaning of words, or the investigations of metaphysical questions, sterile in results; and the great moving causes of national abundance and want still remain in obscurity. Perhaps the subject is too vast and complicated to be embraced by the human mind, and must remain in its rudiments to the end of time, a field for dogmatism and specious, inconsequential theories to the superficial, and for perplexity to the scientific; a cloudy element, in which objects do not appear in distinct outlines and true magnitudes, which is too thick and viscid to move in, and in which any attempt at progress proves to be only a stationary struggle. If we are ever to make any advance, the first step seems to be, a more successful classification and division of subjects, by which the looseness and obscurity of language in this department of philosophy may be, in some degree, remedied. We will glance at the leading divisions of the subject; mention some very important branches of the science, which seem to have been neglected; and point out what appear to us to be errors in the ordinary mode of treating it.
Every writer on economy is bound to give his readers an explanation of the word value; and, having explained it, to