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proper. The enforcement of a rule the events more surprising than in the specially suited to a pure and self-denying ordinary circumstances of life, yet at Church may be inexpedient at a time the same time natural; the characters when comfort is the idol which we wor
more strongly marked and distinctly ship. It is plain, too, that women are entitled to a share in the offices of the
separated than we meet with in the Church in visiting the poor, ministering
common intercourse of society, while
both characters and incidents should to the sick, and instructing the young : offices from which they might be in a
group around one common centre of great measure debarred now that celibacy
interest. We think this has been in the clergy is not recognised as the rule, effected by the author of the present until, which is most to be desired, sister
novel. There is such a contrast of hood shall again be formed by pious vir- characters as gives life and spirit to gins, and endowed by the wealthy of the the tale-as between Hildebrand and land. However, a Church where there is Don Felix, and between Sir Edgar and so much to justify the infraction of such
Shedlock, while a somewhat difficult important rules appertaining to the clergy, task is successfully achieved of intromust needs be a Church in sackcloth; or, if ducing a real person, and one no less not, ought to be. And it is but too plain that,
than Sir Walter Raleigh, among the with the loss of celibacy in the clergy, we have also lost the daily sacrifice, which
fictitious ones, without throwing them elsewhere is retained, and which is so
into shadow and indistinctness by his entirely connected with the former.... superior prominence and splendour. Peradventure, when the daily sacrifice is This is one of the great difficulties restored to us, the discretion of our clergy which the modern historical novel has will lead them to judge that a life of self. introduced, and perhaps succeeded in denying continence serves better to god. overcoming. The character of the liness than that course of life to which heroine, which is always of great their inclinations may dispose them," &c.
effect in the plot of a novel, and which In St. Ambrose's Treatise on Holy if not pleasing mars the success of Virginity, which follows the preface the other parts, is well and delicately from which we have quoted, the drawn. As regards another personage following curious passage occurs (the of foremost interest, we mean Donna date of the treatise from which it is Inez, we do not ask how it was that taken being about A.D. 393):
Hildebrand never recognised her under “These haughty daughters of England,
the assumed garb and name of Don who walk with outstretched neck and
Rafaele, (though we did from the wanton eyes, walking and mincing as
first,) because such disguises and they go, despise the degraded and wretched
dramatic allowances as that have woman whom deceit has lured or agonizing been granted from time immemorial, poverty has driven from the path of virtue, and which are impenetrable only to think you that their virtue would be proof, the person who ought to see through if the fear of public infamy were with- them the clearest; but the only doubt drawn, against the deed of sin, when now
in our minds is, whether we are quite so many acts imply that the thought of satisfied with the melancholy termisin is no stranger to their minds ?”' &c.
nation of her history; whether her It is the pious intention of the trans- great devotion, her pure disinterested lator that the profits of this edition love to Hildebrand, her noble courage should be given towards the liquida. and generous relinquishment of everytion of the debt on Great Haseley thing in fame and fortune that is dear church.
to woman for his sake, did not deserve
a happier fate. We do not know how Hildebrand, or the Days of Queen it was to be achieved amid the sur
Elizabeth. By the author of rounding difficulties of the plot; but King's Son." 3 vols.
that is the author's business, not ours : IF in a work of fiction like the however, we must say that it is the present the reader is conducted through only one point in the whole web of the narrative with continued or in. fiction that we are not entirely satiscreasing interest, nothing in the con- fied with ; and we grant that, when in struction can be essentially wrong. real or fabulous life two ladies are To effect this, everything should be equally in love with one gentleman, placed a little above common nature ; and as that gentleman has not a
duality of person to bestow on his the phenomena connected with the fair admirers, it is extremely difficult supposed radiation of light in absoto bring the matter to a satisfactory lute darkness. Such is a rude outline conclusion; unless, indeed, a third of the substance of this work ; but it steps in to cut the knot which cannot conveys no idea of the vastness of be uptied. We are obliged, for want curious philosophical reasoning to be of space, to pass over any particular found in it; among which will be redetail of the other personages, which marked the discovery of a new eleappear to conduct and vary the story; mentary principle, which the author but there is nothing in the design and calls energia, (vide p. 269,) and which execution of any part but what is very he would add as a fourth to the three creditable to the author's talents. We imponderable elements—light, heat, think in the next edition that some and electricity. little improvement might be made in Light, heat, and energia are the softening down the sudden surprises three principles, or the modifications and, as it were, abrupt starts in the of an elementary first principle, denarrative, and making it flow a little tected in the solar rays; the first more evenly ; but these are slight ob. acting on the organs of vision, and servations, and we must conclude by enabling us to distinguish external obobserving that any of our readers will jects, and giving colour to all. The be well repaid by themselves following second is that principle which reguthe course of a narrative which we lates the solid, liquid, or gaseous have not time to detail, but on parts states of matter, and which maintains of which we have made a few scattered this planet in the condition which is observations.
essential to the well-being of its in
habitants; and the third, energia, that Researches on Light. By Robert Hunt. power which effects all the changes,
THIS work contains an examina- whether chemical or molecular, which tion of all the phenomena connected are constantly in progress. It is that with the chemical and molecular agent which is for ever quickening all changes produced by the influence of the elements of growth, and maintainthe solar rays, and also embraces all ing the conditions of a healthful vithe known photographic processes and tality; and it is no less energetically new discoveries in the art : indeed it employed in the processes of corrupis the first history of photography that tion, which, indeed, are no other than has been published. It is executed the necessary changes of matter in its with great knowledge of the subject, progress from one state of organizaand is full of interest. The plan of it tion to another. “ There are several is as follows : After an introductory questions," the author observes, "ofthe chapter on the progress of the inquiry, greatest importance which remain for previous to the discoveries of Mr. F. The investigation of philosophers; Talbot and Mr. Daguerre, and on the among them the most important are decomposition of light by the prism, the following:-is energia absorbed by the influence of the solar rays is con- material bodies ? Does it influence sidered on metallic compound bodies their internal constitution ? Is it rawith reserence to their photographic diated from bodies in the dark ? or at application, as silver, gold, platinum, all concerned in the production of any mercury, &c. then on vegetable sub. of those changes which have been stances and on the colour of flowers. attributed to dark rays ? and lastly, is In the second part is considered the this power at all connected with the influence of the solar rays on vital production of the phenomena of elecorganisation, and on simple inorganic tricity?" At present the question is bodies ; on the germination of seeds, involved in much obscurity, but if we and the aeration of plants. The second regard the elements of the solar rays section of this part is particularly as distinct in character, though mostly curious, consisting of four chapters on connected in action, until we can prove phosphorism-influence of the solar them to be identical, we shall free it rays on chemical combination-mag- from a large amount of that complexity netory power of the solar rays—and which has been thrown around it, by thermography; an examination of all endeavouring to reconcile the chemical
action of this energia with the un- casionally related with an approach to dulating theory of light, &c.
humour, of which the following pas
sage, in which Sir Perceval is deThe Thornton Romances. The Early scribed as striking off the head of a
English Metrical Romances of Per- giant, is not the worst specimen : ceval, Isumbras, Eglamour, and De
“Sythen his hede gan he off hafe; grevante. Selected from MSS. at He was an unhende knave, Lincoln and Cambridge. Edited by A geant berde so to schafe, James Orchard Halliwell, Esq.
For sothe als I say?" F.R.S. &c. (Printed for the Camden
This Romance is printed from the Society.)
Thornton MS. at Lincoln; as is also THIS is a very seasonable and in
the second Romance, Sir Isumbras, of teresting volume; and the Members which an edition was printed by Copof the Camden Society are under no
land and reprinted by Mr. Utterson. trifling obligation to Mr. Halliwell, The next Romance, Sir Eglamour, for the pains he has taken in so care
elegantly analysed by the late George fully preparing for the press the four
Ellis in his “ Early English Metrical curious and valuable Romances which Romances,” is here printed from a it contains.
Cambridge manuscript. This is the When read as we have read them, beside a cheerful fire, while the night- fourth and last, and in many respects
case also with Sir Degrevant, the wind howled without, these curious
most interesting, in the collection. It specimens of old-world poesy carry is certainly unequalled for the glimpses back the funcy to those by-gone day which it affords us of the manners of when the visits ofthe professed minstrel the times, and the state of society at served to wile away the dreary hours the period when it was written. Had of winter, with “gest, and tale, and
the work been published with miniated song;
pictures, such as perhaps existed in " and al maner mynistralsie
some copies of the MSS. of this Ro. that any man kan specifye;"
mance, it could scarcely have afforded and when his recitals of
us such vivid pictures of the costume, “ Deeds of arms and of amour"
architecture, cookery, and domestic warmed his hearers far more than the arrangements, such minute touches of mead cup or wine flagon which every-day life, as are furnished by the circulated through the lofty hall, or musical and frequently alliterative even the huge brands which blazed verses of the author. As a representaand sparkled on the wide-spread tion of manners, a sketch of society, it hearth.
is really unrivalled; while it exhibits Of these Romances, that of Perceval no few traces of the hand of an artist is of European interest, the first author and the feeling of a poet. Surely ship of which is attributed to Kyot there is something exquisitely pathetic or Guiot of Provence, whose work no in the following confession of his love, longer exists, except in the Norman which Degrevant makes to his 'squire, version of Chrestien de Troyes, who and in his avowal that he loved the lady again is accused by Wolfram von “ for herself alane." Eschenbach, the author of the German
Melydore ys hure name, Perceval, of spoiling the story. Goerres
Whyegh as the seys ffame; and other German critics regard the My bolde burnes wold me blame, original Perceval as the commence
What bot is that y ley ? ment, and not the least important That I shoulde wow in a stede portion, of that mystic cycle of ro- Ayen alle mene rede, mance on the subject of the “Holy
And bothe my lyff and my dede Graal," of which Titurel forms the
Ys loken in hur tye ; very centre or jewel; and which is
Ffor she is frely and fair,
And the Erles owne eyer, completed by the Lohengrin. With
I wolde nothing off their this, however, the English Romance
Broche ne bye. has little to do, for in it the great
I wolde aske them na mare work of Chrestien (upwards of 20,000 But hyr body all bare, lines) is reduced to about one tenth And we frendes for evermare of the size, while the story is oca
What doel that I drye."
Mr. Halliwell has appended to this such a translation, though unattended volume Glossarial Notes upon such by a commentary, will be regarded words as he deemed to stand in need with interest by the members of each of explanation, and in his Introduction of the great communities into whtch has entered at some length into the the Christian world is divided." history of each Romance, its connexion Many readers will, we suspect, obwith similar productions in the early ject that the language of the translaliterature of the Continent, and it's tion is too Latinized. But, on the bearing upon the general history of other hand, Mr. Thorpe would plead, fiction. The book is, in our opinion, and probably with success, that he by far the best edited that Mr. Halli. was unable to introduce many purely well has yet put forth; and we most Saxon expressions, not because they cordially congratulate that gentleman had changed their original meaning, and the Camden Society upon their but because they are now so generally respective shares, in making this va. regarded as vulgarisms that their introluable addition to our stores of Early duction would have been prejudicial to English Literature.
his work by giving an air of vulgarity
to his translation, quite at variance THE HOMILIES OF THE ANGLO-SAXON
with the scholar-like character of the CHURCH. The Homilies of Ælfric, Saxon original. with an English Translation. By Mr. Thorpe pronounces his work Benjamin Thorpe, Esq., F.S.Ă.
“ the firstfruit of the praiseworthy atParts I., II., III., IV., and V. tempt of the Ælfric Society to rescue (Printed for the Ælfric Society.) from oblivion the literary remains of 8vo. pp. 624.
our forefathers," and adds that it WE can recommend this work to
was selected for the earliest publicaour readers, not more for its theologi. its valuable matter and the manner in
tion of the society, on account both of cal interest—although that is most which it is conveyed." considerable, from the illustration
We can bear witness that the book which it affords of the state, views, fully justifies such selection; and we doctrine, and discipline of the Anglo- trust that the day is at length arrived Saxon Church-than for its importance when the “incurious disregard” with in illustrating the philology of our
which Sir James Macintosh charged noble Germanic tongue, which was
the English nation “as having hitherto spoken by a Jeremy Taylor no less
treated the literary monuments of their than a Shakspere, by a Barrow as well
forefathers," has given way to a laud. as a Milton.
able anxiety for their preservation ; The volume contains no fewer than
and that such support will be given to forty Homilies, which form the first the Ælfric Society by those whose portion of the well-known manuscript station and circumstances enable them in the Public Library at Cambridge,
to do so, that the great objects for which has been supposed to be Ælfric's
which the society was instituted may autograph copy.
The author compiler of these Sermones Catholici, form Collection of the Literary Re
be realized, by the publication of a uni(for his share in the work is not now
mains of the Anglo-Saxons,-in short, to be ascertained) was, in Mr. Thorpe's
of that great desideratum, a complete opinion, not Ælfric the Archbishop of
CORPU S ANGLO-SAXONUM. Canterbury, but Ælfric Archbishop of York, who presided over that see from the year 1023 to 1051; and, as in the A Dictionary of Archaic and Provinwork before us, the editor has furnished cial Words, Obsolete Phrases, Prous with a faithful transcript of what he
verbs, and Ancient Customs, from the believes to be the most complete ma
Fourteenth Century. By James Ornuscript, "and a conscientiously cor
chard Halliwell, Esq.F.R.S. &c. &c. rect translation of that transcript, as
Part I. A--Ann. Part II, Ann-B, literal as his acquaintance with the 8vo. pp. 128. language and his notions of good taste MR. Halliwell has now for some permitted,” he is fully justified in years made his name exceedingly congiving expression to the "hope, that spicuous in antiquarian literature, not
only by his appearance in most of the gave as it were the descent and geassociations intended for its advance. nealogy of our language, might be comment, either as an actual or an hono. pared to a magnificent temple, perfect in rary member, but more particularly in all its parts; Mr. Halliwell's Dictionary the title-pages of various publications, we can only assimilate to a tessellated which must be accounted, even by him. pavement, or a patchwork counterpane. self, rather by their number than their Contenting himself with putting togeimportance. He has now attempted a ther an alphabet of archaisms, provinfar more laborious task, one indeed cialisms, technicalisms, and solecisms, which, even if unsuccessful, might, with a sprinkling of "proverbs” and from its magnitude, be deemed to merit “customs,” he performs a task not the praise allowed to great failures : very different to those wherein he
magnis tamen excidit ausis. has previously distinguished himself, And if the extent of the undertaking whilst editing his multifarious succesbe great, so also in many respects is its sion of libretti, and, it must be feared, difficulty; nor is his boldness lessened as totally deficient of any definite deby the circumstance that a similar work sign or substantial conclusion. was commenced only a few years ago The plan proposed in the selection by two very eminent and experienced of words, and their treatment, is as antiquaries, * and abandoned at an early follows: stage of its progress.
"It is intended, within as moderate a The present work is put forward to supply the alleged deficiency of any
compass as possible, to give a large collec“ general dictionary of the early Eng- which are most likely to be useful, without
tion of those obsolete and provincial words lish language.” A glossary to Chaucer extending the size and cost of the work by has long existed, and more erudite
etymological or otber similar researches; glossaries have been since supplied by and while care is taken to establish, as far Sir Frederic Madden and others to as possible, the correct meanings of the various ancient writers. Still more words, to avoid discussion on subjects that recently, the Camden Society has would be interesting only to the professed obliged the world with the first por
etymologist. It is not of course proposed tion of an invaluable work, Mr. Way's
to exclude etymology, but merely to render edition of the Promptorium Parvulo.
it subservient in the way of explanation, rum. There are various Provincial
and not allow it to occupy too much space." glossaries for the relics of local dia- Here, it will be seen, are announced lects,t and a "General Dictionary of four characteristics for the Dictionary: Provincialisms” has been compiled by 1. a moderate compass, size, cost, and Mr. William Holloway, in an octavo space; 2. general utility ; 3. accuracy; volume.
4. a little gentle dalliance with etymo. From these sources, and from his logy. These stipulations are on the own reading, Mr. Halliwell has under- whole unexceptionable ; but we are taken to compile his General Diction- much disposed to conclude that a more ary of the early-English language, faithful devotion to the charms of Etyintended, it may be presumed, to com- mology would have conduced to the bine the obsolete words of all periods accomplishment of all the other ends apd all dialects.
proposed, -to greater accuracy, greater Such a work, executed by a philolo- utility, and greater economy of space gist determined to develope the history and cost. of the language, might, if performed The plain fact is, that Mr. Halliwell with intelligence and judgment, be of is the victim of a very extraordinary the highest value: a dictionary which passion. Whilst sparing of his atten
tions to the decent and orderly nymph, * Boucher's Glossary of Archaic and
Etymology, he is absolutely ena
moured of a very ugly and decrepid Provincial Words : edited by the Rev. Joseph Hunter and Joseph Stevenson, esq.
old witch, named Cacography, every Parts I. and II.
wrinkle of whose haggard face he is + This class of books is now very nume
desirous to immortalise on a perrous ; as may be seen in the Bibliogra. petual canvas; though, with the phical List of them published by Mr. usual capriciousness of her sex and Russell Smith,
age, the old lady says she is deter.