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&c. inscribed with huge characters, but entire consent of the attitude of his whole really a small square wooden box, bound body, by this man's assumption of repose round the head by a leathern belt, and and dignity shown in his leaning back containing the written promises of the on the dewân. The fifth rabbi, an old, old dispensation. Such is the phylac- mild-visaged man, whose long white tery the second rabbi holds in one hand, beard, divided in two parts, falls nearly while he presses the other upon the to his girdle, sits more erect; his feet, wrist of his neighbour, and seems to be drawn up beneath him, are planted asserting that, whatever might be the flatly before. He holds a shallow glass nature of the reasonings of Christ, they vessel of wine in his hand that has been at least had these promises that were poured out by an attendant behind. written within the phylactery upon He looks at the reunion of the Holy which they might both rely.
Family, and suspends his drinking to Next comes another, in the prime of observe them. A sixth elder leans life, who, having entered eagerly into forward to look also, placing his hand the dispute with the Saviour, unrolls upon the back of the dewân. The seventh the book of the prophecies of Daniel, and last is as distinct in character and whereby to refute the argument. He is action as all the rest are. Like the fifth, interested, disputatious, and sceptical; he has an ink-horn in his girdle ; he is leans forward to speak passionately, half corpulent, self-satisfied, and sensuously impatient of the interruption caused by good-natured; he raises his hand from the entrance of Joseph and Mary, to his knee to express an interest in the which the attention of several of the transaction before him ; he sits crossother rabbis is given. His feet are legged, and quite at ease, nevertheless. drawn up close beneath him upon the This individual completes the semidewân, a characteristic action of such a circle of the rabbis, and brings us again temperament when excited : those of to the figure of Christ. the elder rabbis are placed at ease upon Returning now to the other side of the floor, but with varying and appro- the picture : Immediately above the dispriate attitudes. There is a hard look putatious rabbi, and leaning against one upon this man's face—set passion in his of the gilded columns, is a youth holdmouth, resolute anger in his eye, and a ing a sistrum in his hand-one of the firm, sharp gripe of the hands upon the rings strung upon its wires about to roll he holds ; this is finely in keeping drop from his fingers. He is handsome, Over his shoulder, from the second row, supercilious-looking, and fair-complexleans a musician, one of the house of ioned. Leaning upon his shoulder is Levi, speaking to him, and with pointed another youth, also a musician, bearing finger making a comment on the words a four-stringed harp; the face of the of Christ, at whom he is looking. The last is quite in contrast to that of his fourth rabbi, who is also concerned in companion, having an ingenuous sweetthis dialogue, wears a phylactery on his ness and gentleness of character about forehead. We presume Mr. Hunt in- it that is almost fascinating. Eagerly tended by this to indicate a supereroga- thrusting his face against the column, tion of piety in this individual, the and peering over the head of the last, is phylactery, in strict propriety, being a third youth, whose large, well-open only worn at time of prayer. He recounts eyes, broad features, and inquisitive look, the arguments, and, holding a reed pen support his active anxiety to see what in one hand, presses its point against a is going forward, admirably. finger of the other, as one does who is In the extreme distance of the vista anxious to secure the premises before he of columns, a money-changer is seen advances further. The overweening cha- weighing gold in a balance. A father racter of this man is thus indicated; let bas brought his firstborn to the Temple, the observer note how the artist makes accompanied by his wife, who bears the the action of each person to be with an child in her arms; the husband has
across his shoulder the lamb of sacrifice, while a seller of lambs, from whom this has just been purchased, counts the price in the palm of one hand, and with the other presses back an anxious ewe that would follow her offspring. In another part, a boy is seen with a long scarf driving out the fugitive doves that have entered the Temple. At the door, a lame and blind beggar is chanting a prayer for alms.
Thus far we have spoken of the incidents of the design, the character and expressions of the personages, and general appearance of this marvellous picture. We have endeavoured also to indicate what have been the artist's purposes and motives, and the difficulties of its execution. It remains now to speak of the manner in which he has carried this out, especially in regard to the noble qualities of colour and drawing. For the last, let it suffice that the minutest detail has been wrought out; the very hands of the men are a perfect accompaniment to their eyes and physical aspect; those of the oldest rabbi are pallid, full-veined, and slow pulses seem to circulate in them. Mary's are elegantly slender a little sunken, but very beautiful. Each fold in every garment is “ accounted for," and duly studied from nature. The Virgin's dress is grey, dust-stained with travel. She has an under-garment of white, and a girdle, whose red fringes show at the open side, tossed up with the eagerness of her actions. An elegant head-dress of white, striped with red, falls back on her shonlders. Joseph's body-coat is like that of Christ, crimson and purple in very narrow stripes ; over this is a brown and white burnoose, such as the Arabs wear to this day. The provision for a journey, a row of figs, is strung to his girdle. The rabbis have all the over
garment proper to Pharisees, of pure white, except that worn by the chief, which is barred with broad and narrow bands of black upon the sleeves; a dress styled the “ Tillith,” worn only when bearing the Torah, or rolls of the law. The most removed has his under-garment amber-coloured, striped with blue, and a deep-blue robe beneath all. He that is about to drink wears an exquisite turquoise green-blue vest of sheeny texture, that gathers brightness in the shade ; this is girt to him by a girdle of white and red. The young musicians wear green garments and turbans of rich crimson, and purple and green, harmoniously blended so as to create exquisite colour. The roof of the Temple is gilt like the columns, elaborately decorated with alternate pines, vine-branches, and pomegranates, and lighted from without by small openings, filled with stained glass. The door of the Temple, visible over Joseph's head, bears plates of hammered gold riveted upon it; upon these is discernible a great circle, from whose centre radiates an ornament of papyrus plant, the intersections filled with the unopened buds of the same : guttce of gold are drawn on the flat surface of the door. The pavement of the Temple is of a deep-tinted marble, in broad veins of a palish blood-colour and white.
It is now time to announce our conviction that Mr. Holman Hunt, who has ever been the steadfast centre of the Pre-Raffaelite movement, has in this noble work successfully laid down his idea of art; that by so doing he has put a crown on to his previous labours; and that the result is likely to be a great extension of those principles—now, perhaps, for the first time fairly elucidated—to which is mainly due the remarkable and inestimable advance that has of late years taken place in English art.
OUR FATHER'S BUSINESS : HOLMAN HUNT'S PICTURE OF “CHRIST IN THE TEMPLE.”
BY THE AUTHOR OF “JOHN HALIFAX.”
O CHRIST-CHILD, Everlasting, Holy One,
This, this is Thou. No idle painter's dream
() infinitely human, yet divine !
Messiah! Elder Brother, Priest and King,
Have mercy on us, Jesus Christ, our Lord !
Uncomforted, save by the solemn rests
Our Father's business :-unto us, as Thee,
O Thou who wert the Child of Nazareth,
SPIRITUALISTIC MATERIALISM :-MICHELET.
BY J. M. LUDLOW.
The future historian of the literature of he a pure physiologist ? His latest prothe nineteenth century will have con- ductions turn largely on physiological siderable difficulty in ticketing M. considerations; yet I suspect that a real Michelet according to his proper class physiologist will be as little disposed to and order. Is he to rank among the admit him for such, as a lawyer would historians? He has written many deem him a jurist in virtue of his volumes of so-called histories, but volume “On the Origins of French which are generally valuable and in- Law.” Is he a political writer} His teresting precisely by that in them lectures had to be stopped by command which is not really historic. Is he a of Government; yet I doubt if even naturalist? He has taken to natural his invocation to the “Holy Bayonets history in later life; but his two pleasant of France” ever raised him in any one volumes on “The Bird,” and “The madcap's mind to the rank of a political Insect," contain the blunders of a tyro, leader. Is he a philosopher? He cernor should I advise any student to tainly has translated the “Scienza assert anything as a fact in nature, Nuova” of Giambattista Vico; but I because M. Michelet has stated it. Is pity the man who should seek to evolve a connected philosophy from his writings. universities — those survivors of an Is he a theologian ? a religious inno- earlier age, trained either by Jesuit or vator? He has seemed everything by Jansenist, before the first Revolution turns—at one time writing “Luther's and Empire had deprived Frenchmen, Memoirs ;” at another professing his for a time, of the leisure to learn Greek, attachment to the “ poor old Catholic stood utterly aghast at the pranks of Church ;' at a third attacking Jesuitism a young professor of the Normal School, in the name of Voltaire ; at last setting who talked of Sanscrit poetry and up Egyptian mythology as the most Welsh triads; quoted at first hand the perfect of religious symbols.
legendary romances of the middle ages; “Unstable as water, thou shalt not gave extracts from Dante ; referred to excel.” Reuben's lot seems to have Walter Scott; and constantly mixed up been his. With marvellous gifts of style, the experiences of the present with the an imagination of singular vivacity, narratives of the past. Still Michelet's active faculties of observation, occa- works,-although of course read with sional keen flashes of insight, very con- avidity wherever they were treated, or siderable and varied acquirements, quick supposed to be treated, as forbidden sympathies at once with the beautiful fruit,- did not bear their full effect at the and with the good, and the most sincere comparatively early age at which the desire for the welfare of his fellow-crea- ordinary French college is usually fretures,—with powers, in a word, sufficient quented. The school-boy in all counfor the creation of half-a-dozen master- tries is in general an essentially practical pieces, and much of that universal creature. He soon found that for schoaptitude which, if it be not genius lastic purposes-for the cram of exitself, seems yet as it were the bulb out aminations-Michelet's works were of of which it springs,-M. Michelet has far less use to him than much duller not produced, and I believe will not ones, but better stored with the right leave behind him, one single great work facts, and more methodically treated. —one really beautiful-one really good It was at a later age, and in that much one; although he will leave few which higher theatre of the “Collége de are not replete with interest; not one France," where the vulgar stimulus of which does not present us with beautiful competition disappears, and the student thoughts, attractive pages, often chapters learns for the sake of learning, that the at a time.
brilliant eloquence of the man really Yet M. Michelet's influence over his took hold of the Parisian youth. Here generation in France has been consider- the variety at once, and the mobility of able, and has not ceased to be such. Michelet's mind—which will preserve Not a little, probably, on this account for him a kind of youth even in his that few men have opened a greater dotage--seemed exactly to correspond number of new paths, for the time with the like qualities in his hearers. being, to their countrymen. He brought Here was a man who appeared to have back to them, from Italy, the great handled everything, looked into every. Neapolitan thinker, Vico. He was for thing, thought about everything, sympaFrance one of the first discoverers of thized with almost every human tenmodern Germany. He first, in his dency ; who brought up the past into Roman History, popularized some of the pictures as living as those of the present; Niebuhrian views as to Roman origins. who yet was essentially a Frenchman, Older professors stood aghast; the book and a Frenchman of the nineteenth and its fellows were for a time nearly century, full of national prejudices and as much tabooed in the history classes national vanities, carried away with all of French colleges as a novel, or were the dominant impulses of the day. only used in otherwise desperate cases, Who can wonder that when he came to kindle an interest in the subject to deliver, simultaneously with his colLearned men, the very pillars of the league, M. Quinet, his famous course