« AnteriorContinuar »
stained with a single tear; there was encouragement of young artists. This no set-off against his laurels in the was spoken of at Rome, but thought miseries and curses of mankind. Yet natural. No one thinks there of dein the midst of all this, no man could grading their art, by making it the preserve more entirely the perfect tool of adding pelf to pell. This Engmodesty of true genius. His bust in lish propensity of fortune-making, the Vatican is a magnificent epitome (with which no true genius can possiof the man. The upraised eyes, the bly co-exist,) is unknown there. They open mouth, breathless with holy and cannot understand that happiness noble thought, the radiant placidity, which consists in sacrificing for life, resting, like the light of another world, all the elegant aspirings and pursuits, on all his solemn features, give some all the means which are calculated to faint conceptions of the spirit which make life happy. He was frugal, once could lend all this its animation, temperate, simple ; religious without and which was as uncontaminated, as cant-charitable without ostentation unclogged, by all those miserable de- -dignified by philosophy-courteous basements which generally cling about from instinct--the worshiped of all the sons of mere earth. Canova felt circles, but the more than idol, the his philosophy. He smiled at the fondly-beloved brother and father of follies and contentions of the parvenu. his own. I never heard a single word He was raised to the title of Cheva- of censure drop from any human lip lier of the Legion d'Honneur, by Na- against Canova. Envy was silent at poleon; and to the rank of Marchese his name. The homage was as unid'Ischia, by the late Pope; yet I ne- versal as it was voluntary. The day ver saw on his cards any other than of his death (kings here die quietly) that first of titles, “ Antonio Canova.” was a day of public calamity and laHe was disinterested in the extreme; mentation at Rome. Another star he gare with still more facility than he had fallen from her heaven, and its gained; but his gifts were judicious : magnitude and brightness were never it was liberality, and not profusion. more truly measured than by the darkOne of his first acts of the kind at ness and gloom which it left behind. Rome was that magnificent dedication The merits of Canova, as a sculpto the Genius of his Country in the tor, would be estimated by a very false Pantheon ; which, in my mind, consi- standard, were they to be considered dering the means and the donor, far in reference only to the man himself. eclipses the most splendid donations But a great portion of his glory is deof all our modern princes or kings. rivable from his position in the world He selected from the crowd of rising of art. He stands between two ages : sculptors in Italy, such amongst them two great epochs, two races, essentialas gave the strongest evidences of ex- ly and strongly distinct. It must be ertion and talent. To each he per- remembered that he preceded Thormitted the choice of their subject. waltzen, and succeeded to Bernini. The expense was his own. Thus a He altogether revolutionized the art. series of colossal portraits in marble The men before him had gone on, was formed, of everything great and century after century, laboriously exgood which Italy, through a long line aggerating the defects and vices of of intellectual glory, bas given to the their predecessors. Littleness had adroiration of the world. They have been systematized, and false theory since been removed to the Capitol, and reduced to falser practice. Arrogance stand in proud rivalry beside the an- and self-glory had replaced patient and cient dead. The Marquisate of Ischia deep inquiry : study was despised as produces a revenue of 1300 crowns. derogatory to genius, and genius was The day it was bestowed by the Pope, only known by the more audacious flaCanova conferred it upon the Acade- grancy of its absurdities and abuse. my of St. Luke, for the education and Canova struck down all this, and set up a reformation great and good in its beauty, or the welcomings of celestial stead. Bernini is recognizable now visitations, or the burning aspirations and then, it is true, in his inore early after an undying elysium of tranquilliproductions, but it is by intervals on- ty and enjoyment, were to be poured ly; and every step he took in his art abroad into lasting shape, then, indeed, removed him farther from him and his had he at his beck all forms of surfalse school, and closer to antiquity passing loveliness, and grace, and and truth. His genius was truly of light, with which the imaginations of feminine and gentle cast. He reluc- painter, sculptor, or poet, have ever tantly trod on « the burning marl” of yet stood forth to the wondering adorahigh and haughty thought; the tem- tion of their species. The same spirit pestuous and convulsing passions dis- worked in his very touch. He smoothdained his grasp ; he had not probed ed away into the softness of life all the pain, he could not dignify torture : his asperities of the marble : he almost sorcery was not over the grand, the seemed to paint into it; every harshness mighty, the magnificent ; the vasty be- melted and fled before the wonderful ings of the obscure were creations on “impasto" of Canova. To his sucwhich he had never dared to look. cessors he has left a great legacy-a But wherever the overburthened spirit glorious example. Many may yet equal of woman's love was dimly to be sha- him in different walks, none can ever dowed forth-wherever the slumber of equal him in the same. Thorwaltzen perfect pleasure was to be breathed is not his imitator, but his rival; but into delightful existence—wherever the it must never be forgotten, Thorwaltrejoicing of immortal youth, or the zen has succeeded Canova, and not glorious consciousness of transcendent dethroned Bernini.
A FRAGMENT FROM THE “NOCTES.” Shepherd.-Few owtobecograffers and mortification for our manifold sins are verawcious historians.
and iniquities. Yet, my dear James, Tickler.-The man does not live who if, as I believe you do, you mean nodares to outrage humanity by a full, thing personal in your question,-and true, and particular account, of every- you know I hate all personality either thing he has said, done, and thought, in my own case, or that of othersduring even the least guilty year of his but interrogate me as a representative youth, manhood, or old age.
of human nature,then do I mostShepherd.-Especially auld age. cheerfully, I was going to say—but I Oh! never-never-never-but at the correct myself-most sorrowfully congreat day o' Judgment, will there be fess, that I am indeed--an old sinner. a revelation o an auld sinner's heart! Tickler.-So am I. I appeal to you, Mr. North, for the Shepherd.--And sae I howp to beawfu' truth o' that apothegm. Are meaning thereby, merely that I may na ye an auld sinner, sir ?
live till I'm as auld as you, Mr. TickNorth.--I do not know, my dear ler, sir, or you, sir, Mr. North. For James, that to you or any other man I the only twa perseck seenonims in the am bound to confess that ; sufficient English language are, man and sinner. surely, if I do not deny it. I am not North.-In utter prostration, and a Roman Catholic layman; nor are sacred privacy of soul, I almost think you, James, so far as I understand, a now, and have often felt heretofore, Roman Catholic Priest ; nor is the man may make a confessional of the Octagon a Roman Catholic confession- breast of his brother man. Once I al; nor are the Noctes Ambrosianæ had such a friend—and to me he was Roman Catholic nights of penance a priest. He has been so long dead that it seems to me now, that I have man, who has ever felt thus, would almost forgotten him and that I re- publish his inner spirit in a printed member only that he once lived, and confession, on wire-wove, hot-pressed that I once loved him with all my af- paper, in three volumes crown octavo, fections. One such friend alone can one guinea and a half in boards ? ever, from the very nature of things, Shepherd. And wait anxiously for belong to any one human being, how- the beginning o' every month, to see ever endowed by nature and beloved himsell reviewed in a pack o' paltry of heaven. He is felt to stand be- periodicals! tween us and our upbraiding con North.-Much of himself is gone science. In his life lies the strength gone forever-not only from his pre
-the power—the virtue of ours-in sent being—but even from his memory, his death the better half of our whole even like a thousand long summer being seems to expire. Such commu- days, each so intensely beautiful that nion of spirit, perhaps, can only be in it seemed immortal, yet all the splenexistencies rising towards their meri- did series now closed forever and aye. dian. As the hills of life cast longer Much remains—with strange transforshadows in the westering hours, we mation-like clear running waters grow-I should not say more suspi- chained by dim fixed frost, or like cious, for that may be too strong a soft, pure, alınost ærial snow-flakes, word—but more silent, more self- heaped up into hard, polluted, smoky, wrapt, more circumspect-less sympa- sooty wreaths by the road-side ; much thetic even with kindred and congenial is reversed into its opposite in nature, natures, who will sometimes, in our joy into grief, mirth into melancholy, almost sullen moods or theirs, seem hope into despair; and oh! still more as if they were kindred and congenial mournful, more miserable far, virtue no more-less devoted to Spirituals, into vice, honor into shame, innocence that is, to Ideas, so tender, true, beau- into guilt ;-while Sin is felt to have tiful, and sublime, that they seem to leavened the whole mass of our being, be inhabitants of heaven though born and Religion herself, once a radiant of earth, and to float between the two angel, now moody as Superstition, now regions angelical and divine--yet felt fantastic as Philosophy-or haply but to be mortal, human still the Ideas the hem of her garment seen like a of passions and desires, and affections, disappearing cloud, as an angel still, and “ impulses that come to us in soli- she evanishes from our short-sighted tude,” to whom we breathe out our eyes in heaven! souls in silence or in almost silent Shepherd.-I hae often wushed, my speech, in utterly mute adoration, or dear sir, that you would publish a few in broken hymns of feeling, believing volumes o Sermons. I dinna fear that the holy enthusiasm will go with to say't, 'cause I believe't true, that us through life to the grave, or rather in that department Christopher North knowing not, or feeling not, that the would be noways inferior to Jeremy grave is anything more for us than a Taylor. mere word with a somewhat mournful North.-My dear James, Friendship sound, and that life is changeless, is like Love-So far from being blind, cloudless, unfading as the heaven of each-I will not say sees what is not heavens, that lies to the uplifted fancy but magnifies what is—and that, too, in blue immortal calm, round the to such a degree, that Truth becomes throne of the eternal Jehovah. Falsehood.
Shepherd.—Wi' little trouble, sir, Shepherd.— I believe I was wrangin' that micht be turned into blank verse, you in the comparison. Taylor served and then, without meanin' to flatter in the sanctuary—the inner shrine. you, 'twould be a noble poem. Others can only bow down and adore
North.--Now, James, “ to descend at the threshold, and aneath the vesfrom these imaginative heights,” what tibule of the temple.
23 ATHENEUM, vol. 2, 3d series.
WHO LOVES ME BEST ?
BY MARY ANN BROWNE.*
Who loves me best ?-my mother sweet, Yet when I asked, that sister confest
Who loves me best?-my brother young,
With his healthy cheek and his lisping That she some time must pass away :
tongue ; Who then shall shield me from earthly ill:
Who delighteth to lead me in merry play Some one must love me better still !
Far down the green-wood's bushy way;
Who showeth me where the hazel-nute Who loves me best?-my father dear,
grow, Who loveth to have me always near; And where the fairest field-flowers blow; He whom I fly each eve to meet,
Yet perhaps he loves me no more than the When past away is the noontide heat ; Who from the bank where the sunbeam lies How shall I find who loves me best? Brings me the wild-wood strawberries. Oh ! he is dear as my mother to me,
My mother loves me, but she may die ; But he will perish, even as she.
My white dove loves me,,but that may fly ;
My father loves me,-he may be changed; Who loves me best?-the gentle dove, I have heard of brothers and sisters esThat I have tamed with my childish love,
tranged; That every one save myself doth fear, If they should forsake me, what should I do? Whose soft coo soundeth when I come near; Where should I bear my sad heart to? Yet perhaps it but loves me because I bring Some one surely would be my stayToits cage the drops from the clearest spring, Some one must love me better than they. And hang green branches around the door:
"Yes, fair child! there is One above, Something, surely, must love me more!
Who loves thee with an unchangeable love; Who loves me best ?-my sister fair, He who formed those frail, dear things, With her laughing eyes and clustering hair; To which thy young heart fondly clings, Who flowers around my head doth twine, Even though all should forsake thee, still Who presseth her rosy lips to mine, He would protect thee through every ill. Who singeth me songs in her artless glee,- Oh, is not such love worth all the rest ?Can any love me better than she ?
Child ! it is God who loves thee best !"
PAINS OF MUSIC.
MR. EDITOR, -Among the minor mi- delight with which, in childhood, I series of life, there is one which I do listened to the simple ballads of my not remember to have seen touched nurse, and the sweet but untaught on by any author, but from which I tones of a fond mother. No pains have been an acute sufferer. In this were spared for the improvement of age of display and exhibition, what my musical powers, and as my taste can be more painful to a person of a became cultivated, I derived the most timid, retiring disposition, than to be exquisite gratification from the works brought forward in all companies, for of the eloquent masters of this enthe amusement, or annoyance, as it chanting art; yet, were the pains and may chance, of all her acquaintance, pleasures which music has afforded (misnamed friends,) by the exertion me fairly balanced, the former would of the talents she may happen to pos- preponderate. The very sensibility sess !—This is my unfortunate case. which opened to me its deepest sources
Endowed by nature wiih a quick of feeling and enjoyment, revolted ear and lively sensibility to the beau- from a public display. I pass over ties of harmony, I still remember the the years spent at school ; where I
* Authoress of “ Mont Blanc,” “ Ada,” &c. and of a volume just published, entitled “ Repentance; and other Poems,” from which the above is taken. Miss Browne is not yet seventeen.
had the advantage of the best masters the name of wonder, she should have the metropolis could supply. If, with been so finely taught, I can't conceive, trembling hands, and a palpitating unless indeed her father intends to heart, I obeyed a summons to perform make a music-mistress of her, or a before occasional visiters, yet I had public performer." Oh, she's a some sympathy in the satisfaction genius you know."-"My girls dewhich my proud master expressed in clare they will never touch the instrumy success, and was rewarded by ment before her.”_" Nay," intermany advantages. I was often invit- poses my young friend, Mary Lee, ed to hear good music, and many most “No one need mind playing before delightful hours were thus mine, Sophia; she is so good-natured, that which would otherwise have passed even I, who know so little of music, without a note of record in my heart am not at all afraid to play to her ; or memory. These days could not she has offered to teach me some dulast forever. After some years I re- ets, and I am sure if the Miss turned home to enliven the mansion Smithg"- Vastly well, Miss Maof my widowed father. He is pas. ry, if you like it, but my daughters, sionately fond of music, though he (with a toss of the head,) could afnever made it his study, and was de- ford lessons of a master, if I thought lighted with the proficiency I had ac- it desirable for them to play betler quired. It would have been ungrate- than they do : for my part I don't like ful in his only child to show any re- to see girls go beyond their station." luctance in gratifying his parental (My father was formerly in business, vanity. Not an acquaintance came from which he retired long before I to the house but must pay the tax of was born, on a moderate fortune, the usual compliments on such oc- which he enjoys in a quiet rational casions ; and I was continually placed manner.)" I own I think the young at the instrument, to excite the admi- lady would be better employed in ration of the few who really cared for making a gown, or a cap, or learning me or my music, the envy of the something of household affairs from young ladies and their mothers, and her worthy aunt."-" I assure you," the applause of all. I soon perceived again interposed Mary, “ that Sophia that, of the many who were compelled does not neglect or despise any emto listen to my perforinance, few took ployment suited”- "Oh, we all the least interest in it, and by far know she is a favorite of yours, Miss the greatest number would rather Lee, and 'tis vastly proper for you to have been displaying their own ac- undertake her defence; but Miss Soquirements.
phy is not more perfect than other None but those who have felt, can people, I suppose.”—“ Let's see conceive, how disagreeable it is to be who'll get a good husband first, with obliged to “ waste sweet sounds" up- all her accomplishments ! that's what on a set of people, who, all the while, I say,” retorted vulgar Mrs. Smith. wish you fairly at Jericho; and who, “ Very true, Ma'am, there's never at the saine time, give you credit for much good comes of them geniuses, being as vain and conceited as their in my humble opinion; and then Miss false-hearted compliments would tend Sophy's a reading lady too, I hear !” to make any one, with whom such -“ Fine airs some people do give base coin would pass current. Then themselves truly ! but her father's a the neighborly remarks, of which I respectable sort of a gentlemanlike was the subject :- Pray have you person, and well to do in the world, heard Miss Sophy Rondeau yet?" so one would be civil to the girl for “ No, but I suppose I must have a his sake, you know.” And so I was party for her next week.”_" She's a invited to do penance at Mrs. Smith's, prodigious fine player, I assure you: and Mrs. Hodgkinson's, and Miss quite a masterly style !"_" Why, in Blenkinsop's, and Mrs. Sibthorpe's,