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We hang each other in the light of day;
And in the world deny the right to live. And now for a specimen of the Poetry. First then appears a heavy strain at something in the shape of a shadow of a ghost of a pun.
When Cromwell's cavalry just made a call,
And left a heavy card at Aston Hall. Had Mr. H. left any of his productions at the same spot-a volume of his Poems would have been adjudged a still heavier one.
What a soaring of fancy is there in the annexed specimen of this gentlemans literary labours.
E’en now the sword is yielding to the pen ;
When Hutton, &c., &c.,
Unearthly screams now run “along the line,” &c., &c. We will end it with the last poetic lines our patience can gather.
See Edgbaston, the bed of prosperous trade,
We think how nice it is to be genteel!!!
Were "inspired or something worse,”
MEMORIALS OF WESTMINSTER. By the Rev. M. E. C.
WALCOT, M.A. London: F. and J. Rivington. It has often been a matter of astonishment to us that the history of Westminster, forming as it does, at the present time, no inconsiderable moiety of that marvelous combination of defunct cities and villages, which the progress of man has melted into the modern Babel, so fertile as it is, in relics of the middle and the dark ages, had not been attempted otherwise than by a passing notice in the bulky tomes of the English histories. At the same time, however, we were aware of the deep research and patient application of learning, which the accomplishment of such a work demanded, and we felt an inclination rather to wait till the times should have given birth to one, in whom those essentials were united, than to witness the pitable spectacle of the slaughter of so fine a subject, by the hand of a tyro. But our fears are now dissipated, a scholar and a gentleman bent himself to the task, and the fruits of his laudable industry are lying before us. Having turned over his pages, with no hasty or careless hand, we have closed them with a high estimation of the antiquarian wealth and historical information, with which they are sprinkled. The patient research, of which we have above spoken, as essential to the production of a work like the present, appears to be possessed by its Rev. author, in an extraordinary degree. From no comparatively modern period of its annals does he date his memorials, but in that (to our eyes) dreamy and scarce-comprehended century, A.D. 785. After lifting, with his pen, the thick veil from its face, he turns upon his heel and we follow him joyfully, step by step, over the graves of the sleeping centuries, pausing at each mound to listen, while he proceeds to instruct, to amuse, to sadden, and to warn us with reminiscences of the sleepers beneath, till he arrives at the point where the ninetenth century, standing under the shadow of its Exhibition, looks back upon her buried forebears.
Step by step, as we have already remarked, does he lead us, not hastily or mindful of the sixpences, as the Vergers of the Abbey, or the menials of the palace, but warily and musingly; many a graceful, and many an heroic deed, hallowing the very dust of the Westminster streets, touched by his pen, throw aside their aged vesture, and freely with the horror of the minister and the man, lays he bare to the gaze of us each deed of profanity and shame.
All this has been given to us in the pure Saxon, which the taste of this age (happily) regards as the only true material for nervous and manly narrative; and therefore it is with confidence, that we assure our readers, that if they are gifted with one spark of patriotism, if they do not esteem the memory of the past as a dream, from the reconsideration of which no benefit, profit, or per-centage, can possibly be attained,—in such case we assure them that how deep soever they dip into these pages, how heartily soever they drink of the goblet offered to them, their reason and their attention will turn from the draught, uncloyed and unrepenting. AN INTRODUCTORY AND SECOND LECTURE ON FREE
MASONRY. By Dr. H. HOPKINS, W. M. London: Spencer,
High Holborn. Two very illustrative Essays; the former regarding Free Masonry as a moral and religious system, in which the author girds on the shield of candour, to ward off the many prejudices that have attached themselves to the order. In the second Lecture, Free Masonry is regarded in its social influences, through the which there reigns a stamp of moral feeling, seldom so freely penned, and we have only to add, that we hope these Lectures may enjoy a circulation, coinciding with the high ability and eloquence of their author. HISTORY OF THE PONTIFICATE OF PIUS THE NINTH.
By G. B. NICHOLINI. Edinburgh: Johnstone and Hunter;
London: Theobald. SIGNOR NICHOLINI possesses a double advantage in being, on the one hand, thoroughly acquainted with the past history, as well as an actor in the recent struggles of his own country; and being on the other hand, a perfect master of the English language. Expatriated from Rome, many years ago, he took up his residence in England, where he became well versed in our literature, and returned to his own land at the period when Pius the Ninth deserted his kingdom; and when liberty for a time shed her fair beams upon those, who for a long series of ages, had been involved in civil and ecclesiastical bondage. The history is written with as much impartiality as well could have been exercised by one who was a partner in some of its stirring events. The author intimates that he has endeavoured, in the most candid spirit, to give a fair view of the transactions of the period, of which he has undertaken to be the historian; and certainly he has not failed in the endeavour. Its perusal will serve to correct many erroneous notions as to the causes of events lately, occurring in Italy; and show to our countrymen, that the Roman Republicans were better men than their enemies represented them.
THE MIDLAND MAGAZINE,
The Progress of Science.
BY THOMAS RAGG.
“ FORWARD" is the motto of our town; and if the Conductors of the Midland Magazine wish to make it what they desire it to be, and do, what few local periodicals ever have donementer into a second volume—they must not forget that motto. These are days of advancement; and though many “go-a-head" too fast, he who refuses to advance at all, will surely be left behind. To aid the advance of mind, I have resolved to offer for insertion this paper, which, if approved, may only be an introductory one to a series, to be given occasionally, on the Progress of Science, Physical, Psychological, and Ethical, especially in their social, moral, and religious bearings.
It has been the complaint of nearly all earnest Students, that every discovery, on its first announcement, instead of meeting with a hearty and rejoicing welcome, is greeted only with derision and scorn, and treated as a scientific heresy. True men of Science, indeed, are seldom very loud in their complaints. It is the Empyric and the Charlatan, who wish to pass off notions and theories for facts and axioms, who usually echo most loudly this “note of wailing.” There has, however, been really too much ground for the accusation. During the last century, and the early part of the present, great numbers, if not even the majority of devout and excellent men, were wont to give Science the cold shoulder, as though she were an enemy of religion ; thus acting as if they thought the Word and the Works of God could utter opposing voices. Nay, even our dearest pocket companion and fire-side friend, William Cowper, with all his meekness and humility, could not forbear making a tilt at Geology, where he speaks of man having, by digging in the earth, and examining its strata, discovered
" That he who made it, and revealed its date
To Moses, was mistaken in its age.” Perhaps, had the heavenly-minded, though sorrowing Poet of Huntingdon, known a little more of the facts of Geology, he might have fancied that he had possibly “mistaken” the meaning of the passage on whose authority he relied ; and found, on re-consideration, that God had possibly not revealed the date of the first creation at all; but only the date of the present cosmogony, or restoration of order out of chaos. There may, for aught we know, be a chasm of incalculable ages, between the first verse of Genesis, which simply declares the doctrine of Creation; and the remaining portion, which gives a resume of the early history of the present cosmogony-detailing matters in which we are more personally interested than we could be with the history of periods of the earth's existence, prior to man's creation.
It is true there are those who still cleave to the traditionary idea that the Mosaic date is the date of the first Creation ; and that six thousand years have not passed since the Universe was called out of nothingness. Such men generally profess to believe in the Bible, and nothing but the Bible ; and yet they believe so fully in the traditionary interpretation of certain passages, that no evidence is sufficient to move them. I hope I am as firm a believer in the truth of Scripture as any of them. The old woman, who, when asked by the Sceptic how she could believe that the whale swallowed Jonah, replied that “if the Word of God told her Jonah swallowed the whale, she would believe that too,” had not faith a whit too strong for me. As readily would I assent to such a seeming impossibility, if it could only be