Imágenes de páginas

fore enforced them by observations in prose ? knows whether our addlepated descendants Was it in pity to our ignorance that he has may think the work worthy of a clavis or a subjoined these explanatory remarks ? What commentary. would the ancients have said to this plan of Again : Every poet is desirous of producing an author's furnishing notes for his own com- a volume; and this, I assure you, is a matter position ?"

of considerable difficulty, admitting the verses “ You appear," said my friend, “ to have to be tolerable. But agreeably to this new formed an erroneous opinion of the nature of plan, nothing more is necessary than to write the work. The notes are not to be considered a few jingling lines, and attach a sufficiency as mere appendages to the poem : far from it of matter, in the form of notes, to swell out —they are an integral, and indeed the princi- the book to a respectable size. O that mine pal, part of the composition. The verses may adversary had written a book !' was the excla. be considered as a cement which consolidates mation of Job when he reflected on the evils the discordant matter of the notes in a beauti- he had suffered through the injustice of men. ful and harmonious whole. The poem may be Were Job now alive, he would think of some considered as the spine with which the various heavier curse for his enemies. The moderns bones of the animal are connected. The lines have made so many improvements in book. may--but I do not remember any thing else making and other manufactures; they have wbich would assist me in my illustrations. adopted so many labor-saving schemes, that Did you never hear of a statue composed of the production of a book is no longer a matter different materials—ivory and gold ?". of difficulty.

“I have heard of iron mixed with miry Thirdly : In writing notes, a man has it in clay: I have heard of the following supposi. his power, with very little trouble, to make a tion,

great display of his reading and erudition. He Humano capiti cervicem pictor equinam

brings forth the lumber from his literary wareJungere si velit, et varias inducere plumas

room, and astonishes the world with the depth Undique collatis membris, ut turpiter atrum of his researches. There is nothing however

Desinat in piscem mulier formosa supurne : antiquated, puerile, or ridiculous, but may find . I have heard of centaurs;—but this literary

a place in the farrago of his book. monster bears resemblance to nothing in the

Fourthly: The attention of the reader being regions of fancy, unless it be the Scylla of the continually diverted from the verses which poets, or Milton's Sin, who

give a name to the performance, he will be apt

to overlook those blemishes which a more cti. seemed a woman to the waist, and fair, tical examination would undoubtedly have exBut ended foul in many a scaly fold

posed: Voluminous and vast, a serpent armed

Fifthly : In this species of composition, an With mortal sting: about her middle round A cry of hellhounds neverceasing barked

author may not only acquire celebrity as a With wide Cerberian mouths full loud, and rung poet; but he may exhibit his talents as a wri. A hideous peal.

ter of prose: he may acquire renown as a critic

and philosopher. What do you think of the similitude ? Were it not for the woman to the waist and fair,' ity of Pindar and Persius? Had these poets

Sixthly: Who has not heard of the obscur. and the mortal sting,' I would say it was an explained their obscurities in a series of notes, excellent likeness." “ Search the poets,” said my friend, no terity. If it be admitted that a commentator

every note would have been a treasure to poslonger for an archetype : you will find nothing should understand the subject of his remarks, like itin heaven above or in earth beneath. permit me to ask, who can be able to enter so

Satira tota nostra est, was the boast of Quin- fully into the meaning of a writer, as the wri. tilian : and we with the utmost propriety may ter

himself? assert that this new species of composition is Seventhly: May not an author of genius wholly our own. The ancients would have think it necessary to incase his poetical gems derided the idea, of a man's writing notes ex. in substantial prose of his own to prevent their planatory of his own composition, as the height being eaten up by the commentating zeal' of of literary absurdity ; but we

succeeding annotators ? Nil intentatum nostri liquere poete

Lastly: Although I have asserted that this

lame poetry, leaning on crutches of prose, is we have opened a new way to the temple of a modern invention, yet I have no doubt that fame. And you must acknowledge that the the first idea of this species of writing was scheme is attended with snany advantages. taken from the satire of the Romans; or rather,

In the first place, it may be observed that that it may boast the same origin with the notes add greatly to the dignity of a poem: a musa pedestris of Horace. Now this satire work must be important that attracts the at- was said to be derived from satira, cibi genus tention of a commentator. But if these anno. ex variis rebus conditum, Anglice, a HASH. tations be left to be written by posterity, we But the Romans always supposed that this are denied the happiness of participating in literary repast, however multifarious its in. the honors conferred on our book; and who gredients, must be served up in one poetical


dish; whereas the moderns prefer bringing it rays herself in terrors and rises up in majesty to the public table in two half dishes ; which to confound the opposers of her power. practice, every one must acknowledge, adds It is little, therefore, that man, whose dura. greatly to the variety of the entertainment.” tion is for a moment, can expect to behold of

the magnificent commotions of the universe; Thoughts.

yet, of such infinite importance is he in his

own estimation, that he would have nature Quo me cunque rapit tempestas deferor hospes.

turn actress and go through her principal parts We cannot pretend to say what passes in merely to soothe his chagrin and dissipate the the minds of civilized men; but a savage, if vapors that have risen into his brain. And there be nothing to call forth the energies of when he experiences any uneasiness in his his soul, sinks into a state of torpid existence, contemptible microcosm (which is said to be in which, although he is sensible of the evils governed by laws in direct opposition to the of mortality, he feels no inclination to partake laws of the universe) his heart swells, with reof those enjoyments which awaken the desires, bellious indignation, against the eternal estab. and call forth the exertions of the inhabitants lishment of things; he looks down upon the of the earth.

earth with contempt and abhorrence; he looks He is unable, of himself, to shake off this upward with an air of defiance; and, in a mostupor of the faculties : it requires some unu

ment of disappointed ambition, this redoubtable sual occurrence on the earth, some strange áp. Sampson wonld take hold of the pillars of pearance in the heavens, or some violent com. heaven and bury himself in the ruins of the motion in the elements, to give a spring to the universe! mind and break up the gloomy enchantment.

Proud insect! thy rage proves the truth of Heavy black clouds rising in the west, and the proverb, Inest et formica bilis : thy pleathe loud rushing of winds in the mountains, sures and thy pains, thy sorrows and thy joys, the sudden rise of rivers and the noise of many thy hatred and thy love, thy existence and thy waters, cannot revivify the mind; but they luil non-existence, are of equal importance, in the it to a state of pleasing repose and banish those empire of nature, with the troubles experienced feverish dreams which accompany this restless by an ant in rolling her burthen. sleep, this inertness of soul. But when vivid Who talks of the dignity of human nature ? flashes of lightning are suddenly followed by Man himself! He is the lord of nature: the claps of thunder, - louder and louder still”- earth was created for his use, and the heavens when

for bis amusement. Comets appear predicting

revolutions in kingdoms, and armies are mar. Ipse Pater, media nimborum in nocte, corusca Fulmina molitur dextra. Quo maxima moru

shalled in the skies portending the destruction Terra tremit: fugere fere; et mortalia corda

of cities. Per gentes humilis stravit pavor. Ille flagranti

We have extracted the following parable Aut Atho, aut Rhodopen, aut alta Ceraunia, telo from the third book of Iddo, the Scer. Dejicit,

“In those days there stood an ant-hill in the when he feels the rocking of an earthquake; valley of Hobah. And it came to pass, that when the foundations of the world are shaken on the first day of the week, in the sixth month, then, he is startled into life, and enjoys the and on the sixth day of the month, the inhabi. pleasures of existence.

tants of the ant-hill assembled together to hold This disease of the mind has sometimes The ants desisted from their labors,and having

a solemn feast in the presence of their god. been relieved, though not permanently cured, purified themselves according to the law of their by a total eclipse of the sun, the eonflagration fathers, they prepared to celebrate, with joy of a city, or the sight of two armies rushing to and gladness of heart, the anniversary which battle. Any thing is preferable to this painful was kept in honor of the day when their eminertia : better to be “chased as the chaff of pire was established in the valley of Hobah. the mountain before the wind, or the down of But, lo! at the time of offering up the morning the thistle before the whirlwind !"

sacrifice, a whirlwind passed over the plain; and But nature pursues her calm unvarying after the whirlwind, there were thunderings; round: she effects her sublime purposes with and after the thunderings, there was an earth. infinite ease, and seldom finds it necessary to quake. And the ants were sore afraid, and have recourse to those stupendous exertions prayed with a loud voice, and cast ashes on which excite the fears, awaken the wonder, their heads, saying, Wo unto us, what have and elevate the feelings of men.

Her unceas. we done, that the anger of our god is kindled ing operations are continued from eternity to against us? eternity; and cannot be interrupted by the re- Then stood oft Basha the son Bama in pinings of a fool or the ravings of a maniac. the midst of the congregation, and spake unto She is never in haste: she never employs more the multitude, saying, Give ear, Oye pismires, force than is necessary for the completion of to the words of my mouth, and lay up my her designs. It is only when she meets with counsels, in your hearts. Ye know that I have opposition from the chaotic tendency of things, given my days to study, and my nights to conor the stubborn inertia of matter, that she ar- templation ; that I have observed the rising and the setting of the sun, aud the various ap. that at the birth of common men, it would be a pearances of the moon; that I have discovered preposterous thing for the “ front of heaven to the nature of the firmament,and considered the be full of fiery shapes” or for the earth to course of the stars. Therefore, O ye citizens tremble; but at our own nativity, we admit, of Hobah, and inhabitants of the ant-hill, attend there might be some few signs in heaven, 'to the dictates of wisdom. When your fathers some little commotions on earth, to mark us settled in this valley they were a little band, extraordinary. miserable and poor ; but now ye are become as Who does not suppose that the order of nathe sand on the sea shore, or as the stars of ture might be interrupted to give him intima. heaven, which cannot be nuinbered. But ye tion of evils that may befal him ? Who would have waxed proud and have forgotten the pre- not suppose a squadron of angels honorably "cepts of the law. Know ye not that our fath. employed in watching his motions and directers have told us that we should push our ing his steps? Who does not think himself burthens before us, and not drag them after us worthy of being the peculiar favorite of heaven? according to the manner of the heathen ? Yet Who does not conceive himself able to change notwithstanding this, O ye ants, I have seen the unchangeable mind by his prayers ?' you turn your hinder parts to the temple of Bit whither have we wandered? We have our god, as ye ascended this holy mountain followed the train of our capricious thoughts which was given to our fathers; therefore the and lost sight of the object we meant to purheavens are troubled ; therefore the sun has sue. 'It is true that we discarded method, in hidden his face; and the earth is shaken from the beginning, and proposed to make an ex. her centre.

cursion through the fields of imagination; yet, While he yet spake there came a wild beast it will probably be expected that we should from the forest of Lebanon, and trod down the preserve some order in our wanderings and hillock."

not be continually changing our course in pur. But we not only expect that the heavens suit of every meteor that flits through the rę. should be disturbed by the revolutions of em- gions of fancy. pires, we expect that the births and deaths and We intended to have taken a more extensive little misfortunes of mortals should be preced- ramble: and we now see objects at a distance ed by terrestrial portents and celestial prodi. which we would willingly chase for a while, gies. This disposition in human nature is and then desert them for others; but as we finely ridiculed by Shakspeare.

are apprehensive that our readers would not Glendower. Sit, cousin Percy; sit good cousin choose to follow us in our fantastic flight from Hotspur:

one corner of the world to another, we shall For by that name as oft as Lancaster

hasten to put an end to our excursion. Doth speak of you, his cheeks look pale; and,with A rising sigh, he wisheth you in heaven.

Savage Correspondence. Hotspur. And you in hell, as often as he hears

We have lately received a number of letters Owen Glendower spoke of. Glend. I cannot blame him: at my nativity,

from our Muscogulgee friends, which afford The front of heaven was full of fiery shapes,

us very little satisfaction. Of burning cressets ; and at my birth

The government of the United States has The frame and huge foundation of the earth

been assiduously attentive to the business of Shaked like a coward. Hot. Why so it would have done

introducing the arts and improvements of civil. At the same season, if your mother's cat

ized life among the tribes which compose our Had kittened, though yourself had ne'er been now declining but once potent confederacy. born,

The arms of the warrior are exchanged for the Glend. I say the earth did shake when I was axe and the hoe, the hammer and the shuttle. born.

They no longer climb the proud mountains, or Hot. And I say the earth was not of my mind, traverse the desert: no-they toil with the If you suppuse, as fearing you, it shook. Glend. The heavens were all on fire, the earth spade, and sweat at the anvil! Lands are ap. did tremble.

propriated; fields are marked out, and perma. Hot. O, then the earth shook to see the heavens nent buildings are erected. A monopolizing on fire,

avaricious accumulating spirit has appeared ; And not in fear of your nativity.

sordidness, meanness, selfishness are triumph. Glend. Cousin, of many men

ant; freedom and virtue have vanished forever. I do not bear these crossings. Give me leave Personal merit, love of country, and a thirst To tell you once again, that, at my birth, The front of heaven was full of fiery shapes;

for glory, have been superseded by a swarm of The goats ran from the mountains, and the herds civilized virtues: creeping caution, cringing Were strangely clamorous to the frighted fields. servility, specious deception, sly prudence, and These signs have marked me extraordinary ; squint-eyed cunning. The line and the rule, And all the courses of my life do show,

the lock and the key have made their appear. I am not in the roll of common men.

ance—have made their appearance among In. Where is the man who does not think, with dians !--Shades of our fathers ! spirits of Glendower, that he is not on “ the roll of heroes! look not down on your degenerate Qmmon men ?” We can all readily admit children !

Do some of our readers wish to observe that of oxercising the ingenuity of our contena pora. christianity will be introduced among the ries and affording employment to critics, com heathen ; and that the loss of a savage freedorn mentators, and book-makers, not yet in exis. will be amply compensated by the glad tidings tence. of salvation being published in our land ? The clerical gentleman to whom our cor

Yes: ye will make us such christians as ye respondent has given the appellation of Blackyourselves are. Pretended disciples of Jesus ! cont must be highly pleased with Chotahowee shall we gain by the change?

and Piomingo for taking notice of his apostoliWe have likewise received a series of letters cal labors. His thoughts, we apprehend, are from a Cherokee warrior : some of which we not wholly engrossed by preparing the Indians will venture to lay before the public.

for the world which is to come : if we be not In order to enable the reader to understand misinformed, he intends to establish a little some allusions that are made in these letters, Jesuitical empire in the Cherokee nation. it will be necessary to observe that many years

LETTER I, ago, our warriors took a number of Cherokee

From Chotahovee, a warrior of the Cherokee prisoners; among whom was a boy, who has

nation, to Piomingo, a headınan and war. since acquired the name of Chotahowee. We

rior of the Muscogulgee confederacy. were at liberty to determine the fate of one

Father! I have prevailed upon Oseii John, captive : and we made choice of Chotahowee;

a beloved white warrior, to put this speech who honored us ever after with the appellation

upon paper and convey it to you. of father.

Father! You have forgotten your friends Chotahowce can express himself in English and your country ; Chotahowee is no longer indifferently well : these letters were dictated reinembered : shall I also be forgetful of you? by him in that language, and written by a

-When the sun shall forget to rise, when the citizen of the United States who frequents the wind shall forget to blow, when the Tennessee Indian towns for the purposes of trade.

shall cease to flow from the mountains; then, In preparing these letters for the press, we will Chotahowee be forgetful of his friend ; have been solicitous to retain, whenever it was then, will he cease to remember Piomingo. possible, the words of our correspendent; and

Father! I was painted black : I was bound where we have found it necessary to discard to the stake; the fuel was prepared; and the his expressions and substitute others, we have flames were ready to devonr me. I had made been particularly careful to preserve the mean. myself strong to suffer ; but, you put forth ing of the sentence.

hand and preserved me.

I became your In many instances it was altogether impos- son. I was happy. But the man of the sorsible to present to our civilized readers, at the rowful spirit came among us; he turned away same time, the original words and the mean.. ing intended to be conveyed by them : the al. your face from your friends, from your coun

try, and from your son Chotahowee. You lusions to savage manners, customs and opinions; the extravagant metaphors, wild simili. have your ear to the wicked talks that were

written in his books; and forgot the beloved tudes, and abrupt apostrophes, would have speech of your fathers. I wept when I saw been wholly wintelligible. We had some thoughts, at first, of civilizing remained unstrung, and that your arrows con.

that your rifle became rusty, that your bow the language of our friend; but we soon found tinued to sleep in your quiver ; I wept when I that it could not be done withont destroying saw that your thoughts became deep; and that natural simplicity which is its greatest your face became strange to your son Chotarecommendation. And we have consequently howee. endeavored to pursue that golden mean (every

Father! When the man of the sorrowful good is denominated golden among christians) spirit died, I was glad: I said Piomingo will which is so highly recommended by poéts, no longer give his ear to the cursed talks philosophers and crítics.

that are written in the books; he will attend We shall make no apology for the sentiments in the council, preside at the feasts, and listen of our friend: our readers are in the practice to the beloved songs of his fathers. But the of expressing their own opinions freely, and, man of the sorrowful spirit had poisoned your consequently, will never be so inconsistent as mind; your countenance was sad; you deto deny that privilege to others which they parted in the night; and we knew not whither elaim for themselves. They find fault with our

you rudeness and barbarity ; we blame the deceit

Father! I continued a long time with the ful appearances they exhibit :

Muscogulgee warriors; I procured a name by --et hanc veniam petimusque damusque vicissim. my abilities in hunting; and was honored with

We shall probably be blamed by posterity a crown for my success in war. After which, for not attaching some explanatory notes to I departed, and came into the country of the the obscure and curious passages that may be Cherokees, to the beloved town of Chota, where found in these letters; bot we will frankly de. I was born. clare that we thought it right to leave many Father, lend me your ear! About sixty or ambigrous expressions merely for the purpose soventy moons ago, there came among us

had gone.


man dressed in black, with a book full of talks, his speech. Then the headman of Chota arose He spoke to the people at first with a very and said, smooth tongue, and said he had brought them

“ Brother Blackcoat! we take you by the good news from the great spirit who rides in hand. You have come a great distance to the storm, and who thunders in the clouds that bring us good news.

Your talk is very good : pass over our heads.

and we thank you. We have prepared you a As we are always pleased to hear good news, lodging to which you may retire." and were not without hopes that he would Father, farewell. May the Master of our make us some presents, we assembled at the life preserve you from danger. May hc keep townhouse to receive his talk and deliver our you from learning the crooked words of the

smooth-tongued people, among whom you But the man dressed in black with the book dwell.

ChoraHOWEE. of talks in his hanıl, would not come into the townhouse: he said his good news were not

The State House Yard. for the chiefs and warriors only, but for all the beloved people belonging to the nation. He Do not expect, reader, that we are going to went into the public square, and mounted on a give an account of the proceedings in the hench; but it was not sufficiently high to Statelouse yard. No: we merely mean to enable him to overlook the assembly. And he inform you of some of those savage meditations therefore desired some more elevated place on which were occasioned by this assemblage of which he might stand. I sent my two friends, the people. Bloody Bear and Red Jacket, to bring an empty We sometimes walk in search of amusehogshead from my house, which I conceived ment, but, for the most part, are so unfortunate would answer the purpose of the man dressed as to return without having found it. There in black.

is such a lamentable paucity of unexpected inAs soon as the Cherokees of Chota got a cident-such a universal sameness reigns sight of the hogshead they concluded that throughout the city—that the mind becomes Blackcoat had brought them some rum; and, torpid for want of stimuli to keep it in motion. consequently, they flocked in froin every di- It is therefore our practice, if, in our peram. rection.

bulations, our ears be saluted by any species Blackcoat having ascended the hogshead of uproar or noise, immediately to repair to the with his book of talks in his hand, he told us spot, hoping that some novel appearances, odd many wonderful things which, he informed us, associations, or spirited oppositions, will be might be found in his book. He said the exhibited, which may contribute to our enterGreat Spirit made the earth and the sun, and tainment. the moon and the stars; and all very good. Well: we were moving up Chesnut street, He made a man and woman out of clay : and apparently buried in contemplation, but, in he put them in a garden, and gave them a reality, not thinking at all, when we were talk; but the man and the woman forgot the startled by the shouting of many voices in the beloved talk, and gave ear to wicked spirits public square. who led them astray. The Great Spirit was We found a crowd, noisy and restless as the very angry, and drove away the man and the waves of the ocean, surrounding an elevated woman from the garden. After this men be- platform, on which several men were stationed: came very numerous and covered the earth. one of whom appeared to be reading certain They became wicked,and learned the crooked resolutions, to which he seemed occasionally to ways of the spirit that is cursed. The Great require the assent of the multitude. Spirit sent beloved men, who gave them good The man on the platform appeared to ad. talks; but they turned away their faces and dress himself to us as well as to the others; but persisted in evil. The Good Spirit sent a great as we could not hear the purport of the resoluand beloved chief, who did many wonderful tions, we neither expressed our dissent nor apthings; who died, and was buried, and rose probation. We endeavored to approach the from the dead.

scaffold, in order to understand the nature of Father, attend to my words ! Blackcoat the subject which occupied the attention of made a speech very long and very curious; the people. We unfortunately succeeded too but we could not understand it. He told us well in our undertaking: we advanced so far of a place he called hell, full of fire and brim. into the crowd that we found it almost imposé stone, which burns for ever and ever; and of sible to return; which we were much more a place he called heaven, a very fine place ; anxious to do than we had been, a few mor but his talk was crooked: and we could not ments before, to proceed. The sovereigu peos believe it.

ple paid no more respect to a Muscogulgee When the young men discovered that the chief than they did to each other. We were hogshead was empty, they arose and went jostled, without ceremony, first to one side and away; and when the chiefs perceived that then to the other; again we were wedged up Blackcoat had brought them no presents, they immovably, and found it impossible to advance turned away their ears from his talk. How- or recede. Gentlemen, let me passDo be ever, we sat still and waited the conclusion of so obliging as to permit me to pass!" Byte

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