« PreviousContinue »
scared ?" It simply means “indefati. I'm class'd with masters' and such scum, gably” or “ assiduously;" but neither And yea, with ' doctors,' by my soul ! of these words could be made to rhyme And like them I have become to “ locked" or to “ barred.” Similar A plodding pedant of the schools, monstrosities are to be met with in Into every musty hole, almost every page of most of these And up and down through mazes vile, translations. Here is one. Faust- Leading flocks of docile fools, gazing upon certain visions, is made And seeing plainly, all the while, to exclaim
That wisdom will not thus be caught,
That, in his present plight, à man Oh, what a sight! yet 'tis but the eyeball's May strive, but as for knowing aught, lure,
That he neither does nor can. Where shall I clutch thee-illimitable Nature ?
'Tis true I'm of another stamp
Birch, p. 28. Than those who make the schools their Here is a still better one. When camp, Wagner knocks at the door, Faust Doubts and scruples never cramp exclaims
My soul that soars from weakness free,
And hell is terrorless to me, Alas! that the fulness of the flame-clad But, for this very cause, my lamp vision,
Of joy is sunk as in the sea. Should thwarted bé by the sapless sneaker's I feel the simplest matter lies intercision.
Beyond my understanding's reach; Birch, p. 31.
I have no hope that man will rise If Paul Pry, instead of saying, “I To virtue, or become more wise hope I don't intrude, had come for By any lesson I can teach. ward, saying, “ I hope I don't inter- Then I have neither pelf nor place, cide, we wonder what his success
Nor station's claims, nor glory's race, would have been before a London
What dog, with any spark of grace, audience. What could have tempted Would deign to live in such a case ? Mr Blackie on one occasion to put Therefore to magic I have flung these words into Faust's mouth ad
My being in despairing hours,
To try if truth may not be wrung dressing Mephistopheles
From the lips of spirit-powers, There is the window-'twere no mighty
And myself spared the labour vain, matter,
The forehead wet For one like you adown the wall to
With bitter sweat, clatter.
When teaching what I can't explain : But there would be no end to it if That I may view the secret rings we were to go on extracting (tender Whose grasp the universe engirds, dentist) such carious specimens as
May know the force that works in things, these. Verily, much requires to be
Not the mere sound that breathes in done before the English public can
words. know any thing at all about the veritable Faust. We do not pretend to
Oh! would, fair moon! that thou wert be able to “ imitate Goethe closely;"
The last time shining on my woes. but, in our humble opinion, the fol
How oft I've waited here, repining lowing version of the opening soli
Till thy face of beauty rose : loquy is more like the original than
And when my papers and my books some of the samples we have given.
From thoughts of thee perchance had FAUST.
won me, All that philosophy can teach,
Then would thy pure and peaceful looks All that theology can preach,
Be lifted * suddenly upon me. The lore of lawyer and of leech,
While sorrow seem'd to thee to lend Is mine—and now my curse on each ! The expression of a tender friend, For here I stand, when all is o'er,
Whose aspect doubts if all be right. No wbit wiser than before,
Oh! would that I, o'er mountain height, A fool whose life has flow'd amiss ; Might wander in thy blessed light, Though one thing, to be sure, my lore Float across, on spirit-sails, Has done for me, and it is this,
The luminous and gulfy vales,
Expect her rising (the moon's) as you will, the suddenness always adds a slight surprise to your delight," -Blackwood's Magazine, xxxi, 880.
Weave my being in thy beams,
Was it a god who framed the spell
And turns my heart into a well
Of happiness and peace ? Wash out the curse which knowledge Am I a god? I'm fill’d with grace, brings.
I've got within the inner shrine,
The veil is up from nature's face, I had forgotten where I stood,
And all her mysteries are mine. But thy walls, thou dungeon-hole,
I fathom now, and read aright Awake me to a sob'rer mood,
The necromancer's words of might:-And I curse thee from my soul !
“ A spirit-world encircles thee, Here, day and night, I sic begirt
The Genii have not fied, By heaps of literary dirt
Thine is the eye that will not see, Which worms begnaw and smoke be- And thine the heart that's dead. stains,
Would'st thou be taught to disabuse And waste away my baffled brains
The heart that's dead, the eye that's Here where God's very light comes hurt
dim, And sadden'd through the painted
Then rise when first the sun renews panes
His course above the ocean's brim, Boxes stuff'd with stones and grasses,
And bathe thy breast in ruddy dews Bottles fill'd with chemic juices,
That drip from off his mighty rim." Foul abortions cramm'd in glasses,
[He continues gazing intently on Instruments for which no use is,
the sign. Ancestral lumber rare and fine,
In continuation of Faust's soliloquy, Litter'd round in brave neglect
we here draw upon Dr Anster for a These form the world which I call “mine,"
passage, which, we rejoice to say, And does it not command respect !
commands our most unqualified praise
and admiration. O, si sic omnia ! But does my serious heart confess We candidly confess it is far beyond
The sense that something is amiss, any thing to which our powers are The weight of an obscure distress
competent in dealing with the same That checks her health :--my answer's
Oh! how the spell before my sight That man by God is ever told
Brings nature's hidden ways to light: To lead the life that nature owns; But here art thou 'mid smoke and mould,
See all things with each other blending
Each to all its being lending,
All on each in turn depending-
Heavenly ministers descending,
And again to heaven up.tendingOf Nostradamus for a guide :
Floating, mingling, interweaving, It shall spread out thine eyes afar
Rising, sinking, and receiving Through all the boundlessness of space
Each from each, while each is giving And make thee see how star on star
On to each, and each relieving In millions weave their order'd race.
Each, the pails of gold, the living And when thou once hast got the sign
Current through the air is heaving: Which only nature's lips can teach,
Breathing blessings see them bending Which barren sense in vain would reach,
Balanced worlds from change defending, The spirit-power shall then be thine,
While every where diffused is harmony And thine shall be the spirit-speech.
unending. Ye guardians of the mystic token,
With this harmonious close we stop Make answer when the spell is spokeo for the present, without going into any [He throws the book open, and gazes original “ Faust,” or these transla
further details respecting either the on the sign of the Macrocosm.
tions. But it is possible that we may Hal how my bosom drinks the flood
return ere long to the subject, for we Of rapture circling there,
know that there are other versions in My blood grows calm as infant's blood,
the wind, and " where the bungler is, My breath as infant's prayer,
there will the critics be gathered toI feel such promises as bud
gether;" so let future translators When spring is in the air,
look to their tackle,
THE AFFGHANISTAN EXPEDITION.
“ In the light of precaution," says rules of art in its execution. It is the Gibbon, “ all conquest must be inef- destiny of all conquering powers to be fectual unless it could be universal; exposed to this necessity of advancing for, if successful, it only involves the in their course. Napoleon constantly belligerent power in additional diffi. said, and he said with justice, that he culties and a wider sphere of hostili- was not to blame for the conquests he ty."
All ages have demonstrated undertook ; that he was forced on by the truth of this profound observation. invincible necessity; that he was the The Romans conquered the neigh- head merely of a military republic, to bouring states of Italy and Gaul, only whom exertion was existence; and that to be brought into collision with the the first pause in his advance was the fiercer and more formidable nations of commencement of his fall. No one Germany and Parthia. Alexander can have studied the eventful history overran Media and Persia, only to see of his times, without being satisfied his armies rolled back before the arms of the justice of these observations. of the Scythians, or the innumerable The British empire in the East is not, legions of India ; and the empire of indeed, like his in Europe, one based Napoleon, victorious over the states on injustice and supported by pillage. of Germany and Italy, recoiled at Protection and improvement, not spo. length before the aroused indignation liation and misery, have followed in of the Northern powers. The British the rear of the English flag ; and the empire in India, the most extraordi- sable multitudes of Hindostan now nary work of conquest which modern permanently enjoy that protection and times have exhibited, forms no excep- security which heretofore they had tion to the truth of this general prin- only tasted under the transient reigns ciple. The storming of Seringapa- of Baber and Aurungzebe. But still, tam, and the overthrow of the House notwithstanding all its experienced of Tippoo, only exposed us to the in- benefits, the British sway in Hindoscursions of the Mahratta horse. The tan is essentially that of opinion; it subjugation of the Mahrattas involved is the working and middle classes who us in a desperate and doubtful con- are benefited by their sway. The inflict with the power of Holkar. His terest and passions of too many of the subjugation brought us in contact with rajahs and inferior nobility are inthe independent and brave mountain- jured by its continuance, to render it eers of Nepaul ; and even their con- a matter of doubt that a large and quest, and the establishment of the formidable body of malecontents are British frontier on the summit of the to be found within the bosom of their Himalayan snows, has not given that territories, who would take advantage security to our Eastern possessions for of the first external disaster to raise which its rulers have so long and again the long-forgotten standard of strenuously contended; and beyond independence, and that, equally with
; the stream of the Indus, beyond the the empire of Napoleon in Europe, mountains of Cashmere, it has been our first movement of serious retreat deemed necessary to establish the ter- would be the commencement of our ror of the British arms, and the in- fall. Nor would soldiers be wanting fluence of the British name.
to aid the dispossessed nobles in the That such an incursion into Central recovery of their pernicious authority. Asia has vastly extended the sphere Whoever raises the standard of even both of our diplomatic and hostile re- probable warfare, is sure of followers lations; that it has brought us in in India ; the war castes throughout contact with the fierce and barbarous Hindostan, the Rajpoots of the nornorthern tribes, and erected our out- thern provinces, are panting for the posts almost within sight of the Rus- signal of hostilities, and the moment sian videttes, is no impeachment what the standard of native independence is ever of the wisdom and expediency of raised, hundreds of thousands of the the measure, if it has been conducted Mahratta hörse would cluster around with due regard to prudence and the it, ardent to carry the spear and the
NO. CCXCII, VOL. XLVII.
torch into peaceful villages, and renew of these external considerations. the glorious days of pillage and con- Weakened by long-continued and apflagration.
parently interminable domestic feuds; But it is not only within our natural scarce capable of mustering round frontier of the Indus and the Hima- the standards of Cyrus and Darius laya that the necessity of continually twenty thousand soldiers ; destitute advancing, if we would exist in safety, alike of wealth, military organization, is felt in the British empire in the or central powers, the Kings of East. The same necessity is imposed Tehran are yet obliged to maintain a upon it by its external relations with doubtful existence in the midst of foreign powers. It is too powerful to neighbouring and powerful states. be disregarded in the balance of Asia- The Ottoman empire has long pressed tic politics ; its fame has extended far from the west upon them, and transmit. into the regions of China and Tar- ted, since the era when the religion of tary ; its name must be respected or Mahomet was in its cradle, the indedespised on the banks of the Oxus lible hatred of the successors of Othand the shores of the Araxes. The man against the followers of Ali. In vast powers which lie between the later times, and since the Cross has British and Russian frontiers cannot become triumphant over the Crescent, remain neutral; they must be influ. the Russian empire has pressed upon enced by the one or the other power,
them with ceaseless ambition from the “ As little," said Alexander the Great, north. More permanently formidable
as the heavens can admit of two than the standards of either Timour suns, can the earth admit of two rulers or Gengis Khan, her disciplined batof the East."
talions have crossed the Caucasus, Strongly as all nations, in all ages, spread over the descending hills of have been impressed with military Georgia, and brought the armies of success as the mainspring of diplo- Christ to the foot of Mount Ararat, matic advances, there is no part of and the shores of the Araxes. Even the world in which it is so essential the south has not been freed from to political influence as in the East. ominous signs and heart-stirring Less informed than those of Europe events: the fame of the British arms, in regard to the real strength of their the justice of the British rule, have opponents, and far less prospective spread far into the regions of Central in their principles of policy, the na- Asia ; the storming of Seringapatam, tions of Asia are almost entirely go. the fall of Scindiah, the conquest of verned by present success in their Holkar, have resounded among the diplomatic conduct. Remote or con- mountains of Affghanistan, and tingent danger produces little impres- awakened in the breasts of the Persion upon them; present peril is only sians the pleasing hope, that from those looked at. They never negotiate till distant regions the arms of the aventhe dagger is at their throat; but when ger are destined to come ; and that, it is there, they speedily acquiesce in amidst the contentions of England and whatever is exacted of them. Re- Russia, Persia may again emerge to garding the success of their opponents her ancient supremacy among the naas the indication of the will of destiny, tions of the earth. they bow, not only with submission, The existence of Persia is so obvibuť with cheerfulness to it. All our ously threatened by the aggressions diplomatic advances in the East, ac- of Russia, the peril in that quarter is cordingly, have followed in the train so instant and apparent, that the of military success; all our failures Persian government have never failhave been consequent on the neglected to take advantage of every succesto assert with due spirit the rights and sive impulse communicated to British dignity of the British empire. The influence, by their victories in Hindocelebrated Roman maxim parcere sub- stan, to cement their alliance and draw jectis et debellare superbos, is not there closer their relation with this country. a principle of policy ; it is a rule of The storming of Seringapatam necessity. It is the condition of exist- immediately followed by a defensive ence to every powerful state.
treaty between Persia and -Great BriThe court of Persia is, in an espe- tain, in 1800, by which it was stipucial manner, subject to the influence lated, that the English merchant
should be placed on the footing of the of the British empire were loosened, most favoured nation, and that no and the strength of the British arms høstile European force should be per- withered in the hands of conceding mitted to pass through the Persian administrations. The consequences territories towards Hindostan. Every might easily have been foreseen: prosuccessive addition made to our Indian vince after province was reft by the empire ; every triumph of our Indian Muscovite invaders from the Persian arms, drew closer the relations be- empire ; fortress after fortress yielded tween Great Britain and the court of to the terrible powers of their artilTehran; and it was not till the wretch, lery; the torrent of the Araxes was ed days of economy and retrench- bestrode by their battalions; the basment began, till the honour of Eng. tions of Erivan yielded to their can. land was forgotten in the subservi- non; and Persia avoided total conence to popular clamour, and her quest only by yielding up its whole ultimate interests overlooked in the northern barrier and most warlike prothirst for immediate popularity, that vinces to the power of Russia. It is any decay in our influence with the immaterial to us whether these consecourt of Persia was perceptible. In quences took place under the nominal those disastrous days, however, when rule of Lord Liverpool, Mr Canning, the strong foundations of the British or the Duke of Wellington ; suffice empire were loosened, in obedience to it to say, they all took place during the loud democratic clamour for re- the government of the masses ; and trenchment, the advantages we had that the principles on which they gained in Central Asia were entirely were founded were those which had
With an infatuation been advocated for half a century by which now appears almost incredible, the whole Whig party, and which but which was then lauded by the were then, as they still are, praised whole Liberal party as the very height and lauded to the skies by the whole of economic wisdom, we destroyed our Liberal leaders of every denomination. navy at Bombay, thereby surrender- The consequences of this total deing the Red Sea and the Persian reliction of national character and inGulf to any hostile power that chose terests, in order to gratify the shortto
occupy them ; we reduced our In- sighted passions of an illiberal demodian army from two hundred and cracy, rapidly developed themselves. eighty, to one hundred and sixty Russia, encouraged by the success thousand men, thereby exposing our
with which she had broken the barrier selves to the contempt of the native of Hindostan in Central Asia, conpowers, by whom respect is never tinued her aggressions on the Ottopaid but to strength, and weakening man power in Europe. The Turkish the attachment of the native popula- fleet was destroyed by the assistance tion, who found themselves in great of a British force at Navarino ; the part shut out from the dazzling career
Russian arms were carried across the of British conquest ; and we suffered Balkan by British sufferance to AdPersia to combat, single-handed, the rianople ; and the Ottoman empire, dreadful power of Russia in 1827, and trembling for its existence, was glad never sent either a guinea or a bay- to subscribe a treaty which virtually onet to save the barrier of Hindos- surrendered the Danube and its whole tan from Muscovite dismemberment. northern defences to the Russian These disgraceful deeds took place power.
Not content with this, the during the halcyon days of Liberal rulers of England, during the halcyon administration ; when the Tories no- days of the Reform mania, descended minally held the reins, but the Whigs to still lower degradation and unpareally possessed the power of govern- ralleled acts of infatuation. When ment; when that infallible criterion the Pasha of Egypt revolted against of right and wrong, popular opinion, the Ottoman power, which seemed was implicitly obeyed; when the demo- thus alike deserted by its allies and cratic cry for retrenchment pervaded, crushed by its enemies, and the disaspenetrated, and paralysed every de- trous battle of Koniah threatened to partment of the state ; and when, bring the Egyptian legions to the shores amidst the mutual and loud com
of Scutari, we turned a deaf ear to the pliments of the Ministerial and Op. earnest
prayer of the distressed Sulposition benches, the
foundations tan for aid. Engrossed in striving to