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bombs, each in a different way, his own madness. One took the bombs to be a link in the plot of his enemies against him, etc. It is hard to consider the symbolizing and visions of the extreme romanticist, such as those of William Blake, without thinking at times of Charenton.

What I have said of the romantic symbol is true in some degree of the romantic metaphor, for the symbol and even the myth are often only a developed metaphor. The first part of the romantic metaphor, the image or impression that has been received from the outer world, is often admirably fresh and vivid.' But the second part of the metaphor when the analogy involved is that between some fact of outer perception and the inner life of man is often vague and misty; for the inner life in which the romanticist takes interest is not the life he possesses in common with other men but what is most unique in his own emotions — his mood in short. That is why the metaphor and still more the symbol in so far as they are romantic are always in danger of becoming unintelligible, since it is not easy for one man to enter into another's mood. Men accord a ready welcome to metaphors and symbols that instead of expressing something more or less individual have a real relevancy to their common nature. Tribulation, for example, means literally the beating out of grain on the threshing floor. The man who first saw the analogy between this process and certain spiritual experiences established a legitimate link between nature and human nature, between sense and the supersensuous. Language is filled with words and expressions of this kind which have become so current that their metaphorical and symbolical character has been forgotten and which have at the same time ceased to be vivid and concrete and become abstract.

i G. Duval has written a Dictionnaire des métaphores de Victor Hugo, and G. Lucchetti a work on Les Images dans les æuvres de Victor Hugo. So far as the ethical values are concerned, the latter title is alone justified. Hugo is, next to Chateaubriand, the great imagist.

The primitivistic fallacies of the German romanticists in their dealings with the symbol and metaphor appear in various forms in French romanticism and even more markedly in its continuation known as the symbolistic movement. What is exasperating in many of the poets of this school is that they combine the pretence to a vast illumination with the utmost degree of spiritual and intellectual emptiness and vagueness. Like the early German romanticists they mix up flesh and spirit in nympholeptic longing and break down and blur all the boundaries of being in the name of the infinite. Of this inner formless ness and anarchy the chaos of the vers libre (in which they were also anticipated by the Germans) is only an outer symptom.

If the Rousseauistic primitivist recognizes the futility of his symbolizing, and consents to become a passive register of outer perception, if for example he proclaims himself an imagist, he at least has the merit of frankness, but in that case he advertises by the very name he has assumed the bankruptcy of all that is most worth while in poetry.

But to return to romanticism and nature. It should be plain from what has already been said that the romanticist tends to make of nature the mere plaything of his mood. When Werther's mood is cheerful, nature smiles at him benignly. When his mood darkens she becomes for him "a devouring monster.” When it grows evident to the romanticist that nature does not alter with his alteration, he chides her at times for her impassibility; or again he seeks to be impassible like her, even if he can be so only at the expense of his humanity. This latter attitude is closely connected with the dehumanizing of man by science that is reflected in a whole literature during the last half of the nineteenth century — for instance, in socalled "impassive” writers like Flaubert and Leconte de Lisle.

1 The French like to think of the symbolists as having rendered certain services to their versification. Let us hope that they did, though few things are more perilous than this transfer of the idea of progress to the literary and artistic domain. Decadent Rome, as we learn from the younger Pliny and others, simply swarmed with poets who also no doubt indulged in many strange experiments. All this poetical activity, as we can see only too plainly at this distance, led nowhere.

The causal sequences that had been observed in the physical realm were developed more and more during this period with the aid of pure mathematics and the mathematical reason (esprit de géométrie) into an allembracing system. For the earlier romanticists nature had at least been a living presence whether benign or sinister. For the mathematical determinist she tends to become a soulless, pitiless mechanism against which man is helpless. This conception of nature is so important that I shall need to revert to it in my treatment of melancholy.

The man who has accepted the universe of the mechan

· Grant Allen writes of the laws of nature in Magdalen Tower :

They care not any whit for pain or pleasure,
That seems to us the sum and end of all,
Dumb force and barren number are their measure,
What shall be shall be, tho' the great earth fall,
They take no heed of man or man's deserving,
Reck not what happy lives they make or mar,
Work out their fatal will unswerv'd, unswerving,
And know not that they are!

ist or determinist is not always gloomy. But men in general felt the need of some relief from the deterministic obsession. Hence the success of the philosophy of Bergson and similar philosophies. The glorification of impulse (élan vital) that Bergson opposes to the mechanizing of life is in its main aspects, as I have already indicated, simply a return to the spontaneity of Rousseau. His plan of escape from deterministic science is at bottom very much like Rousseau's plan of escape from the undue rationalism of the Enlightenment. As a result of these eighteenth-century influences, nature had, according to Carlyle, become a mere engine, a system of cogs and pulleys. He therefore hails Novalis as an "anti-mechanist,” a “deep man,” because of the way of deliverance that he teaches from this nightmare. “I owe him some what." What Carlyle owed to Novalis many moderns have owed to Bergson, but it is not yet clear that either Novalis or Bergson are “deep men.'

The mechanistic view of nature, whether held pessimistically or optimistically, involving as it does factors that are infinite and therefore beyond calculation, cannot furnish proofs that will satisfy the true positivist: he is inclined to dismiss it as a mere phantasmagoria of the intellect. The Rousseauistic view of nature, on the other hand, whether held optimistically or pessimistically, is even less capable of satisfying the standards of the positivist and must be dismissed as a mere phantasmagoria of the emotions. The fact is that we do not know and can never know what nature is in herself. The mysterious mother has shrouded herself from us in an impenetrable veil of illusion. But though we cannot know nature absolutely we can pick up a practical and piecemeal knowl


edge of nature not by dreaming but by doing. The man of action can within certain limits have his way with nature. Now the men who have acted during the past century have been the men of science and the utilitarians who have been turning to account the discoveries of science. The utilitarians have indeed derived such potent aid from science that they have been able to stamp their efforts on the very face of the landscape. The romanticists have not ceased to protest against this scientific utilizing of nature as a profanation. But inasmuch as these protests have come from men who have stood not for work but for revery they have for the most part been futile. This is not the least of the ironic contrasts that abound in this movement between the ideal and the real. No age ever grew so ecstatic over natural beauty as the nineteenth century, at the same time no age ever did so much to deface nature. No age ever so exalted the country over the town, and no age ever witnessed such a crowding into urban centres.

A curious study might be made of this ironic contrast as it appears in the early romantic crusade against railways. One of the romantic grievances against the railway is that it does not encourage vagabondage: it has a definite goal and gets to it so far as possible in a straight line. Yet in spite of Wordsworth's protesting sonnet the Windermere railway was built. Ruskin's wrath at railways was equally vain. In general, sentiment is not of much avail when pitted against industrial advance. The papers announced recently that one of the loveliest cascades in the California Sierras had suddenly disappeared as a result of the diversion of its water to a neighboring powerplant. The same fate is overtaking Niagara itself. It is

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