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of those, 6 who deem orders as a mere interchange of trinkets, " and aitempt to turn chivalric distinctions into ridicule.” He laments, that “ the age of chivalry is gone by, when such insig. nia were prized beyond the wealth of worlds.” “ To laugh at 66 titles and customs of honour,” says he, “is to laugh at << honour itself. This absurd contempt, or baser envy, is “beyond my understanding." (Vol. II. p. 225.) It would indeed be an ill-natured thing, if any of Sir Robert's readers were to envy him his honours, since this would be grudging him the only advantage or distinction he appears to have gained by his travels : and though he modestly confesses, that he considers, his spurs are to be won;" and, in contemplation of future feats of chivalry, exclaims with Cæsar, “ Happy was 66 Alexander who had arrived at the prize of his career,

before " the Roman had started !" (Vol. II. p. 149.) it must not be imagined that, because honours are in great plenty in the North, they are to be had for nothing, or bought like Scotch degrees for a few shillings. But nothing can be more to the purpose on this subject, than an anecdote told by Sir Robert himself: his reflections on the occasion are peculiarly happy, and the reader of his work will feel their force and justness. (Vol. II. p. 96.)

And now the reader knows in what company he is to travel, he may prepare himself to attend the Knight on his journey as a faithful squire ; and while Sir Robert is in a snug familyparty with an emperor or empress, in familiar conversation with kings and queens, shaking hands with princes, or make ing love to a princess, he will have leisure and opportunity to make a few observations; keeping ever at respectful distance as gentle squire of knight-errant was wont in days of chivalry.

Anticipating, no doubt, the chivalric honours which awaited him in the North, Sir Robert, like his great precursor, the Knight of LaMancha, is ever in quest of adventures, and no sooner beholds the “ immortalized city of Elsineur,” than he is “ eager 's to traverse every part of the consecrated ground.” Before

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he has set foot on the shore, “ he had already followed Ham“ let every where, had measured the deep shadows of the “ platform, encountered the grey ghost of the royal Dane, had " killed Polonius in the Queen's closet, and drowned poor “ Ophelia in the willowed stream.” (Vol. I. p. 2.) This drowning part of the adventure, it must be confessed, is rather an unknightly trick, particularly for an embryo knight of the order of Amaranth : but then it must be remembered, this is all in imagination ; he neither meddles with ghost nor lady in reality. But, “his eye and mind are soon called back to the

narrow foot-paths of dull matter of fact :” he seeks in vain at Elsineur " for decayed battlements and mouldering towers,” and finds it “ an Herculean toil to wade through that wilder

ness of filth,” as he is pleased to term that city. His expectations meet with a no less mortifying disappointment at

a place a mile from the town, that bears the name of Ham“ let's garden," “ but retains no relic of antient interest, “excepting the tradition, which affirms that to be the spot “ where was enacted the tragedy which has been so gloriously “ immortalized by the genius of our great dramatic bard." Here, however, “ considering himself in the very haunts of “Shakspeare's Northern hero," Sir Robert lingers to communicate “ a few interesting circumstances relating to him," which he has 6 gathered at the fountain-head,” “ from the

very source whence our poct must have drawn the incidents 66 of his tragedy."

He means, “the annals of Denmark “ written by Saxo Grammaticus in the twelfth century.” Now those, who have never met with any of the commentators on Shakspeare, and have therefore never heard of this same Saxo Grammaticus, will no doubt be much astonished at this proof of Sir Robert's sagacity and erudition. He says the work is in Latin; and supposing it not easy to be “met with,” proceeds to “ finish his account of Hamlet's garden with a short ab, “ stract from that prince's history.” When he comes, however, to the scene between Hamlet and his mother, “ the

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“ precise situation and circumstances of which, and even the < sentiments and the very words themselves," it seems, Shakspeare has borrowed from this antient author, Sir Robert no longer confines himself to abstract. The speech of Hamlet inspires him ; and he says, “I have the more particularly “ translated part of this speech, as it will shew you, in its “ original state, the rough diamond which Shakspeare has

polished to so transcendant a brightness." (Vol. I. p. 7.) AS he adds in a note, “ the coarseness of this translation will be

pardoned, as it is literal; otherwise than literal, it would “ be unexpressive of the manners it is intended to represent;" it may be as well first to exhibit the original Latin, which is not quite so difficult to be met with as Sir Robert seems to imagine.

« Quid, mulierum turpissima, gravissimi criminis dissimula. * tionem falso lamenti genere expetis, quæ scorti more lasciviens, "nefariam ac detestabilem tori conditionem secuta, viri tui inter“ fectorem pleno incesti sinu amplecteris, et ei qui prolis tuæ

parentem extinxerat, obscenissimis blandimentorum illecebris “adularis ? Ita nempe equæ conjugum suorum victoribus maritan. "tur: brutorum natura hæc est, ut in diversa passim conjugia “rapiantur: hoc tibi exemplo prioris mariti memoriam exolevisse “ constat. Ego verò non ab re stolidi speciem gero, çùm haud “dubitem, quin is qui fratrem oppresserit, in affines quoque pari ( crudelitate debacchaturus sit. Unde stoliditatis quam industriæ “habitum amplecti præstat, et incolumitatis præsidium ab extrema “deliramentorum specie mutuavi. In animo tamen paterna “ ultionis studium perseverat, sed rerum occasiones aucupor, “ temporum opportunitates opperior. Non idem omnibus locus “ competit. Contra obscurum immitemque animum altioribus “ ingenii modis uti convenit. Tibi verò supervacuum sit meam “ lamentari desipientiam, quæ tuam justiùs ignominiam deplorare "debueras. Itaque non alienæ sed propria mentis vitium defleas “ necesse est. Cætera silere memineris.;

Saro. Grammat. Histor. Dan. Lib, iii. p. 51. Edit, 1644. The following is the Knight's literal translation ; the closeness of which is sufficient evidence that he has copied only from the original Latin, and has not consulted ang German paraphrase.

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« Hear me, most polluted woman! thou who art loathsome “ from thy crimes and thy hypocrisy; whose very breath is impreg"nated with the falsehood of thine heart! Thou, who only seemest

to lament one, who claims and deserves thy truest tears !“ Shame !-by what a course of folly hast thou become a common “whore! Lasciviously and unlawfully holding in thy detestable “ soul, conditions with thy husband's murderer-embracing in “incest this bosom fiend, and staining, with him, the sacred 6 bed of that king whose son will avenge his blood, and destroy all " the obscene allurements to thy execrable adultery, in the object “ of thy brutal passion. Granted, thou mare-mated, that thy “ victory is gained; that thou art now linked to the sun of thy let

chery-nature of brutes! and like them ye lose no moments of

gratification, impelled but by your beastly wishes.-I had for. got..-to one worn out and self-consumed by much enjoyment,

these examples are excellent, and to a married woman's mind, most suitable.---Aye, forsooth, it must be preferable too, to

carry on such warm desires as far as they will extend,---that " she should be a husband's brother's wife! --and to add yet unto “ its pleasures, she must not stand to gain the foul accomplish.

ment, but by the bearing down her wedded lord. Thou dam of ( cruelty ! Yes, I have played the mad-man, raved ! With " this cloak of willing dulness I have wrapped about my reason; " it is my guard, while I watch to spring upon my prey. My soul 66 at every hour calls aloud for a murdered father's revenge. The “moment is now arrived. I waited the opportunity, and time " has now given what I so impatiently desired, though, alas! not in “ all deserving it. Dwell not, mother, on the dark and secret

causes which actuated thy son's apparent madness ; wail not for my wild ravings, nor the actions of my insanity: turn thy la.

mentations on thyself ; bemoan thine own infamy, and thine own 6 deformed heart.-Look to thyself !-deny not thy depravity “ and faultiness ; for these, thy sorrow is necessary indeed. “Tear such foul weeds from thy bosom, mother, and check the “ furor of thy crimes.- Thou hast once walked in the light of « virtue, call back to your remembrance its serenity, its joys: “ turn to its pure flame, and once more let thy son see it beam

upon his mother's face.” (Vol. I. p. 7.)

It is not easy to say which is most conspicuous on this occasion, the lcarning of the worthy Knight, or that of the Edinburgh Reviewer, who observes that Sir Robert “ translates" (call you this translating ?) “ some passages from Saxo “ Grammaticus, to which Shakspeare seems to have been “ indebted ;” and adds, “ They are curious, though not very “ delicate : but one does not quite see why that author, as “ well as Shakspeare, could not have been perused in Eng. “ land.” (Edin. Rev. No. xxvii, p. 171.) One certainly does not quite see why the Edinburgh Reviewer might not as well read authors before he undertakes to pass opinions on them.

Leaving Elsineur, “the accidental disagreeables of that “ city were soon forgotten in the natural beauties of the 6 view."

“ The shore, all along the Danish side, presents the most lovely 6 stretch of landscape I ever beheld. Mount Edgecumbe is look. “ed upon as the paradise of England : and what Mount Edge. "cumbe is in one spot only, so appears the whole of Denmark * from Elsineur to Copenhagen. The land is high, and undula6 ting in various romantic and sublime forms. Rich woods, s broken by park-like openings and verdant pastures, and inter

spersed with country-houses and villages for an extent of twenty" three miles, form the clothing of these beautiful hills. A stri.

king contrast to the black and naked line of the opposite coast." (Vol. I. p. 13.)

On landing at Constradt, where he “ seemed in a new “ region, and every senst was called forth to wonder and “ exercise," Sir Robert "receives many kindnesses from the

governor, Admiral Hennacoff;" so eager were the great to salute him even on the confines of Russia! Bidding adieu to this benevolent man, he embarks on the Neva ; and during his voyage, the boatmen, to whom he gives 66 a glass “ or two of brandy to amuse them," entertain him in return by singing with mnch simplicity and ease several of their national airs.

" The strains are wild, and possess many pleasing and melan.

choly passages : yet the whole bore a strong tone of monotony 6 and abruptness. The one you heard (given to me by the Prince “ de Courland while in England) is sufficient to convey a very just 6 idea of the general character of these northern songs.” (Vol. I. p. 18.)

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