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every vice, and knowing scarcely any A third of the troop must go to pot,--virtue but those of reckless bravery Without loss of time, I mount and ride ; and uncalculating obedience to the But farther, 1 beg very much, do you see, chief, their situation still presents That in all things else you would leave me
free. some aspects which affect or amuse us; and these the poet has seized The Pappenheimer is an older with great dexterity. Much of the man, more sedate and also more incruelty and repulsive harshness of domitable: he has wandered over these soldiers we are taught to for- Europe, and gathered settled maxims get in contemplating their forlorn of soldierly honour and soldierly nehouseless wanderings, and the practi- cessity: he is not without a rationale calmagnanimity with which even they of life; the various professions of contrive to wring from fortune a to men have passed in review before lerable scantling of enjoyment. Their him, but no coat that he has seen has manner of existence Wallenstein has, pleased him like his own “ steel at an after period of the action, ra- doublet;" cased in which it is his ther movingly expressed :
wish, Our life was but a battle and a march,
Looking down on the world's poor restless And, like the wind’s blast, never-resting, Careless, through it, astride of his nag to
scramble, homeless, We storm'd across the war-convulsed earth.
ramble. Still farther to soften the asperities
Yet at times with this military of the scene, the dialogue is cast into stoicism, there is blended a dash of a rude Hudibrastic metre, full of homely pathos; he admits : forced rhymes and strange double. This sword of ours is no plough or spade, endings, with a rhythm ever chang. You cannot delve or reap with the iron ing, ever rough and lively, which
blade; might almost be compared to the For us there falls no seed, no corn-field hard, irregular, fluctuating sound of grows, the regimental drum. In this ludi. Neither homenor kindred the soldier knows ; crous doggrel, with phrases and fi- Wandering over the face of the earth, gures of a correspondent cast, home- Warming his hands at another's hearth ; ly, ridiculous, graphic, these men of From the pomp of towns he must onward service paint their hopes and doings. In the village-green with its cheerful game,
roam ; There are ranks and kinds among In the mirth of the vintage or harvest-home, them, representatives of all the con
No part or lot can the soldier claim. stituent parts of the motley multi- Tell me then, in the place of goods or pelf, tude, which followed this prince of What has he, unless to honour himself? Condottieri. The solemn pedantry of Leave not e'en this his own, what wonder the ancient Wachtmeister is faith- The man should burn and kill and plunder ! fully given; no less so are the jocund ferocity and heedless daring of Hol, full of bustle as well as speculation ;
But the camp of Wallenstein is ky's Jägers, or the iron courage and stern camp philosophy of Pappen- soldiers, recruits, capuchin friars,
there are gamblers, peasants, sutlers, heim's Cuirassiers. Of the Jäger the sole principle is military obe moving to and fro in restless pursuit
of their several purposes. The serdience; he does not reflect or calculate; his business is to do whatever lelled composition; a medley of texts,
mon of the Capuchin is an unparalhe is ordered, and to enjoy whatever he can reach. “ Free would I live," puns, nick-names and verbal logic,
conglutinated by a stupid judgment,
and a fiery catholic zeal. It seems Free would I live, and easy and gay, to be delivered with great unction, And see something new on each new day; and to find fit audience in the camp: In the joys of the moment lustily sharing, towards the conclusion they rush 'Bout the past or the future not thinking or
upon him, and he narrowly escapes caring ; To the Kaiser, therefore, I sold my bacon,
killing or ducking for having venAnd by him good charge of the whole is tured to glance a censure at the getaken.
neral. The soldiers themselves are Order me on 'mid the whistling fiery shot, jeering, wrangling, romping, discussOver the Rhine-stream rapid and roaringing their wishes and expectations ; wide,
and, at last, they all combine in a
profound deliberation on the state of manhood; he is enthusiastic and vetheir affairs. A vague exaggerated hement; but the fire of his soul outline of the coming events and burns hid beneath a deep stratum of personages is imaged to us in their prudence, guiding itself by calculacoarse concepticons. We dimly dis- tions which extend to the extreme cover the precarious position of Wal- limits of his most minute concerns. leystein ; the plots which threaten This prudence, sometimes almost him, which he is meditating; we bordering on irresolution, forms the trace the leading qualities of the outward rind of his character, and principal officers; and form a high for awhile is the only quality which estimate of the potent spirit which we discover in it. The immense inbinds this fierce discordant mass to- fluence, which his genius appears to gether, and seems to be the object of exert on every individual of his many universal reverence where nothing followers, prepares us to expect a else is revered.
great man; and, when Wallenstein, In The Two Piccolomini, the next after long delay and much forewarndivision of the work, the generals for ing, is in fine presented to us, we at whom we have thus been prepared first experience something like a disappear in person on the scene, and appointment. We find him, indeed, spread out before us their plots and possessed of a staid grandeur; yet counterplots; Wallenstein, through involved in mystery ; wavering bepersonal ambition and evil counsel, tween two opinions; and, as it seems, slowly resolving to revolt; and Oc- with all his wisdom, blindly credutavio Piccolomini in secret under- lous in matters of the highest import. mining his influence among the lead- It is only when events have forced ers, and preparing for him that pit of decision on him that he rises in his ruin, into which, in the third part, native might, that his giant spirit Wallenstein's Death, we see him sink stands unfolded in its strength before with all his fortunes. The military us; spirit which pervades the former piece is here well sustained. The Night must it be ere Friedland's star will
beam : ruling motives of these captains and colonels are a little more refined, or amid difficulties, darkness, and immore disguised, than those of the pending ruin, at which the boldest Cuirassiers and Jägers; but they are of his followers grow pale, he himthe same in substance; the love of self is calm, and first in this awful present or future pleasure, of action, crisis feels the serenity and conscious reputation, money, power; selfish- strength of his soul return. Walness, but selfishness distinguished by lenstein, in fact, though pre-eminent a superficial external propriety, and in power, both external and internal, gilded over with the splendour of of high intellect and commanding military honour, of courage inflex- will, skilled in war and statesmanible, yet light, cool, and unassuming. ship beyond the best in Europe, the These are not imaginary heroes, but idol of sixty thousand fearless hearts, genuine hired men of war: we do is not yet removed above our symnot love them; yet there is a pomp pathy. We are united with him by about their operations, which agree- feelings which he reckons weak, ably fills up the scene. This din of though they belong to the most gewar, this clash of tumultuous con nerous parts of his nature. His inflicting interests, is felt as a suitable decision partly takes its rise in the accompaniment to the affecting or sensibilities of his heart as well as in commanding movements of the chief the caution of his judgment: his becharacters whom it envelopes or lief in astrology, which gives force obeys.
and confirmation to this tendency, Of the individuals that figure in originates in some soft kindly emothis world of war, Wallenstein him- tions, and adds a new interest to the self, the strong Atlas which supports spirit of the warrior; it humbles it all, is by far the most imposing. him, to whom the earth is subject, Wallenstein is the model of a high- before those mysterious powers which souled, great, accomplished man, weigh the destinies of man in their whose ruling passion is ambition. balance, in whose eyes the greatest He is daring to the utmost pitch of and the least of mortals scarcely
differ in littleness. Wallenstein's kind praised loudly, if not sincerely confidence in the friendship of Oc- by their friends, and detested deeply tavio, his disinterested love for Max by their enemies. His object may Piccolomini, his paternal and bro- be lawful or even laudable ; but his therly kindness, are feelings which ways are crooked: we dislike him cast an affecting lustre over the but the more, that we know not poharsher more heroic qualities with sitively how to blame him. which they are blended. His treason Octavio Piccolomini and Wallento the Emperor is a crime, for which, stein are, as it were, the two oppoprovoked and tempted as he was, sing forces by which this whole uni. we do not greatly blame him: it is verse of military politics is kept in forgotten in our admiration of his motion. The struggle of magnanobleness, or recollected only as a nimity and strength combined with venial trespass. · Schiller has suc treason, against cunning and appaceeded well with Wallenstein, where rent virtue aided by law, gives rise it was not easy to succeed. The to a series of great actions, which truth of history has been but little are here vividly presented to our violated; yet we are compelled to view. We mingle in the clashing feel that Wallenstein, whose actions interests of these men of war; we individually are trifling, unsuccessful see them at their gorgeous feasts, and unlawful, is a strong, sublime, and stormy consultations, and pa commanding character: we look at ticipate in the hopes or fears that him with interest, our concern at his agitate them. The subject had many fate is tinged with a shade of kindly capabilities; and Schiller has turned pity.
them all to profit. Our minds are In Octavio Piccolomini, his war- kept alert by a constant succession companion, we can find less fault, of animating scenes of spectacle, diayet we take less pleasure. Octavio's logue, incident; the plot thickens qualities are chiefly negative: he and darkens as we advance; the inrather walks by the letter of the terest deepens and deepens to the moral law, than by its spirit; his very end. conduct is externally correct, but But among the tumults of this there is no touch of generosity within. busy multitude, there are two forms He is more of the courtier than of of celestial beauty that solicit our atthe soldier ; his weapon is intrigue, tention, and whose destiny, involved not force. Believing firmly that with that of those around them, gives “whatever is is best,” he distrusts it an importance in our eyes which it all new and extraordinary things; could not otherwise have had. Max he has no faith in human nature, and Piccolomini, Octavio's son, and Thekseems to be virtuous himself more by la, the daughter of Wallenstein, difcalculation than by impulse. We fuse an ethereal radiance over all scarcely thank him for his loyalty : this tragedy; they call forth the serving his Emperor, he ruins and finest feelings of the heart, where betrays his friend: and, besides, other feelings had already been athough he does not own it, personal roused; they superadd to the stirring ambition is among his leading mo pomp of scenes which had already tives; he wishes to be general and kindled our imaginations, the enprince, and Wallenstein is not only a thusiasm of bright; unworn humatraitor to the sovereign, but a bar nity, “ the bloom of young desire, to this advancement. It is true, Oc- the purple light of love." The histavio does not personally tempt him tory of Max and Thekla is not a rare towards his destruction ; but neither one in poetry; but Schiller has treatdoes he warn him from it; and, per- ed it with a skill which is extremely haps, he knew that fresh temptation rare. Both of them are represented was superfluous. Wallenstein did as combining every excellence; their not deserve such treatment from a affection is instantaneous and unman whom he had trusted as a bro- bounded; yet the coolest, most scepther, even though such confidence tical reader is forced to admire them, was blind, and guided by visions and and believe in them. starry omens. Octavio is a skilful, Of Max we are taught from the prudent, managing statesman, of the first to form the highest expecta
tions: the common soldiers and their ther's camp, but the living emblem
impetuous despair of Max PiccoloHis mistress Thekla is perhaps mini, torn asunder by the claims of still more so.
Thekla, just entering duty and of love ; the calm but on life, with “ timid steps,” with the broken-hearted Thekla, beside her brilliant visions of a cloister yet un- broken-hearted mother, and disturbed by the contradictions of rounded by the blank faces of Walreality, beholds in Max, not merely lenstein's desponding followers. There her protector and escort to her fa- is a physical pomp corresponding to
the moral grandeur of the action : him, to watch and beware. But he
century can boast.
France never Less tender, but not less sublimely rose into the sphere of Schiller, even poetical, is the fate of Wallenstein in the days of her Corneille : nor can himself. We do not pity Wallen our own country, since the times of stein; even in ruin he seems too Elizabeth, name any dramatist to be great for pity. His daughter having compared with him in general vanished like a fair vision from the strength of mind, and feeling, and scene, we look forward to Wallen- acquired accomplishment. About the stein's inevitable fate with little feel- time of Wallenstein's appearance, we ing save expectant awe: it is almost of this gifted land were shuddering as if we viewed the ponderous sway- at The Castle Spectre! Germany, ining of some high majestic tower deed, boasts of Goethe: and on some about to fall. Yet there is, un rare occasions, it must be owned doubtedly, some touch of pathos that Goethe has shown talents of a mingled with the failing strength of higher order than are here manifestFriedland. The last scene of his ed; but he has made no equally relife is among the finest which poetry gular or powerful exertion of them: can boast of. Thekla's death is Faust is but a careless effusion comstill unknown to him; but he thinks pared with Wallenstein. The latter of Max and almost weeps. He looks is in truth a vast and magnificent at the stars : dim shadows of super work. What an assemblage of stitious dread pass fitfully across his images, ideas, emotions, disposed in spirit, as he views those fountains of the most felicitous and impressive light, and compares their glorious order! We have conquerors, statesand enduring existence with the men, amb us generals, marauding fleeting troubled life of man. The soldiers, heroes, and heroines, all strong spirit of his sister is subdued acting and feeling as they would in by dark forebodings: omens are nature, all faithfully depicted, yet all against him ; his astrologer entreats, embellished by the spirit of poetry, one of the relenting conspirators en- and all made conducive to heighten treats, his own feelings call upon one paramount impression, our sym