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a divine original of the greatest of upon it, and the figures will come all the old masters.
out upon you a bright and beauteous Dryden dashes off a somewhat too
group. « With a scream,” &c. for sketchy copy, but with fine free- ixaivon iáxw, &c. is the truth most flowing lines.
entirely; so is the word “ dreadful” “ The pledge of love, and other hope of for devor, which we see not in the Troy,"
other copies—" shaggy” is fine; but is a needless line. The first half of “ crested terror," borrowed from it weak, and the second a repeti- Pope's “ glittering terror,” is but a tion of what has been said before. poor plagiarism, unworthy of Cow“ His unknown father,” is a charm- per. “ Played away his infant fears," ing touch of Dryden's own, and may give the picture to the imaginaflashes forth the soul of the sense ; tion, but not to the eye; and Homer, “ dismissed his burnished helm,” is you know, through the eye doth here a formality much inferior to the sim- appeal both to the imagination and ple original, and he says nothing of the heart. it“ lying all ashine on the ground;" Sotheby's is far from a failure" the pride of warriors, and the pomp but it might have been a more disof war,” is sad slavering ; but the tinguished success. “Onward prest,” end, with the exception of“ hugged," &c. is minuter and more particular which is not the right word, is excel- than Homer, who is here minute lent. Faulty but not feeble, you and particular just up to the proper still see in the sketch the hand of point. “Bright splendour flashed too “ Glorious John,” and therefore you fierce a light,” is not the best of may purchase it.
modern English, and has no rePope's copy is almost as good as semblance to old Greek.
“ Cast its the original-to a common judge sweeping shade,” is a picturesque like Christopher or Nicodemus. The particular, but though it might third and fourth lines seem to us frighten a child, it is not so well perfect—"And Hector hastened to adapted for that especial purpose as relieve his child,” is, you will per
the circumstance Homer mentions ; ceive, taken from Dryden.“ Glit- the scaring, shrieking, (both in themtering terrors,” in line seventh, are selves good,) come in too late in the same thing as “ beaming helmet” Sotheby, for Homer, as was right, in line eighth, which ought not to shews them the very first thing; and have been; and, indeed, Homer we are sorry to see that Sotheby steals knew better than to have said “ glit- the“ terror" from Pope, who had just tering terrors," a mode of speech the pocketed it from Dryden, and we ininvention of a later day, when poets sist on both pilferers returning the became impatient of speaking like property to the lawful owner-which other people, which Homer never they may do without being the poorwas, nor even Apollo. Still, this copy er, he the richer; for after all, it is from Homer by Pope, is a fine cabi. not better than a Bandana. Yet with net picture, and hangs in the Sanc- these faults, real or imaginary, the tum.
copy is a spirited-nay, a splendid Perhaps you think Cowper's copy one--and speaks of Sotheby. somewhat dim, and perhaps it is ; Look here, before we part, at anbut keep your gaze fixed steadfastly other picture.
Ως είπών, αλόχοιο φίλης εν κιρσίν έθηκε
" This said, the heroic sire
“ He spoke, and fondly gazing on her charms,
His soul; he fondly prest her hand and spake."
but how much better is ruido tox? almost all the other translators have “ The troubled pleasure soon chasfollowed him in this—and, without tised by fear" is very unlomericblame, as there can be no doubt that and though at first hearing it sounds Hector did dry Andromache's tears very fine, yet is it essentially faulty; with his lips from which "not words for observe that the word“ troubled" alone pleased her,” and that without doth of itself necessarily imply in the those kisses her heart would have pleasure the very “ fear” which is broken.
said soon to chastise it ! Call not Dryden is not correct in saying this, we beseech you, O reader! a that Hector first “.with suppliant verbal criticism, for it strikes at the hands the gods adored.” For Hec- root of an error originating in the tor had done that already; but brain that at the time was trying to “wiping her fair eyes,” is, if not in do the business of the heart. Homer, Chapmannish and Miltonic, Cowper is very tender. “ Lovely and mighty motherish; and there- spouse is just 'áróxouo Qians,“ darfore, “ dear child of nature, let them ling boy,” is just add sóv, accordrail,” the version is good. Pope's translation is, in itself, so Greek and English speech ; with
ing to the corresponding spirit of the delightful, that we have no beart to “mingled smiles and tears” comes breathe a syllable in its deprecia- as near to deexquósv garáctou as may be,
without attempting to give the pe- the writer of this note with such effect, culiarity of the expression; “panged even to the marrow of his soul, to use with pity” is strongly true for irenos; a bold expression of Euripides, that, “stroked softly” is right, and uw is could genius and fortune have conwell changed into“ cheek;" “ wrap- spired in his favour, he had owned ped in her bosom's fragrant folds,” is no superior in literary accomplishvery motherly, and very sweet. In ment; but circumstances were unfa. short, though not perfect, the version vourable, and nature infused a large in spirit is “ tender and true.” portion of cold blood about his heart."
Sotheby has much of the melliflu- None of the translations have miss. ousness of Pope, with more of the ed Andromache's “fragrant breast,” delightful definiteness of the Homeric xnádië xózoq; but we know not if any touch. He alone gives duxquósy ge- one of them knew why it was frarécura aright—"smiled in her tears" grant-the sole reason being, as - literally, “ weepingly smiling," - Blackwall somewhere informs us in our version of the two well-matched his rambling Enquiry into the Life words. “ Kissed her pale cheek” and Writings of Homer, that the Trowe approve of_since it is written jan ladies put certain odorous plants and therefore the whole is good. or preservatives into their clothesBut after all, to give the demon
baskets and chests to save them from bis due, the most Homeric of them the moths ! all is Gilbert Wakefield. Poor Gil
But we are at the end of our artibert! We have by heart one of his
cle-which, long as it is, may haply affecting confessions in one of his seem not too long, since it overflows notes. On quoting that famous line
with Homer-and ends with the partαιεν αριστεύειν και υπειροχον εμμεναι
ing of Hector and Andromache. #w-he says, “a maxim imbibed by
“ On went his helm, his princess home, half cold with kindly fears,
She pierc'd their hearts, that all her numerous train
Would look on his lov'd wife and home again." Dryden says, that Homer is “much served, “ that pity and the softer pasmore capable of exciting the manly sions are not of the nature of the passions than those of grief and pity.” Hiad.” Wood, the author of the DeAre grief and pity not manly pas- scriptions of Palmyra and Balbeck, sions? Ay that they are, whether in in his Essay on the Original Genius heroic or Christian hearts. Homer and Writings of Homer, remarks well had power given to him over them on this, that Pope might have said all; and he knew when and where to that they “ are not of the character touch them—the proper place and the of Homer's manners.
Yet when proper time--and the key to which they are introduced amidst the tereach heart-chord responded in terror rors of death and slaughter, the conor in tears. Mighty masters of emotion trast is irresistible; and a tender as were in a later age the three tra- scene in the Iliad, like a cultivated gedians, neither
Æschylus, Sophocles, spot in the Alps, derives new beaunor Euripides in that power tran- ties from the horrors which surround scended Homer. But Homer seldom it.” Well said Wood. But you say puts that power forth; for it is not not so well, when you go on to say, the prime end of the epic, as it is of “ should I presume to see a fault in the tragic, to purge the soul by pity this admired picture, it is one that and terror. “Homer,” Dryden says falls not upon the poet but his managain falsely," was ambitious enough ners; and may help to explain my of moving pity, for he has attempted ideas on this matter. Andromache twice, on the same subject of Hec- having raised our pity and compassion tor's death; first, when Priam and to the utmost stretch that tragedy Hecuba beheld his corpse, which was can carry those passions-Hector dragged after the chariot of Achilles; answers and then in the lamentation which «TH και εμοί τάδε πάντα μέλει, γύναι” was made over him, when his body was redeemed by Priam ; and concludes 'aaa' tis oixoy icūsu, and the same persons again bewail &c. His meaning here was to divert his death, with a chorus of others to Andromache's attention to other obhelp the cry. But if this last excite jects, and the expression was meant compassion in you, as I doubt not to convey the utmost tenderness; but it will, you are more obliged to but has it that effect upon us ? Is not the translator than the poet, [he al- the English reader offended at a cer ludes here to Congreve !j for Homer, tain indelicacy in those words which as I have observed before, can move Homer puts into the mouth of an afrage better than he can pity.” Dry
fectionate husband to his wife ?” A den uttered this sad stuff, we suspect, certain indelicacy forsooth! Nobecause he was the translator of Vir- the English reader is not offended gil. Now Virgil's pathos is certainly
- nor the Scotch reader either-nor more profuse than Homer's—but it yet the Irish ; for there is no indeliis not so profound; although, as cer- cacy, but all is beautiful and Bibletainly, it is more characteristic of his like-which, dear reader, you will delightful genius. Pope, too, in de- feel to-morrow--for it is the Sabference perhaps to Dryden, has ob- bath-So farewell!
We modern Athenians, with our put it to you if a finer picture can unfinished Approach and Parthenon, easily be imagined than that of the and with our finished pride and pre- whole inhabitation “exulting in the sumption, have of course the loftiest sight" of that one“ bright particular opinion of ourselves among all mor- star,”, perfectly fixed-yet harmotal creatures, and are constantly niously uniting within itself the seen by our introverted mental eyes elsewhere incompatible attributes of towering conspicuous, mountain- planet, comet, and meteor, except on like, over all the other nations of the those occasions when it would seem earth dwindled into molehills. On absolutely to be “ another sun risen us, and on our altitude, all the re- on mid-day." gards of all those pigmy peoples are Let this image suffice for the preat all times uplifted and concen. sent to shew our perpetual sense of tered; we are the cynosure of the our national supereminence. We are extensive neighbourhood of the uni- aware, at the same time, that Scotverse. Our literature, our philoso- land has often been laughed at by phy, our poetry, our politics, our the " conscious swains," when the patriotism, are all transcendental and moods of their own minds have been supermundane; and no wonder, . wearied of admiration; and that in therefore, that the genius of Scot- sudden revulsions of feeling, they land vainly attempts to hide her have not scrupled not only to regard head among the stars. There it us with evil eyes, but to bestow shines lustrous and more lustrous in upon us some very scurvy epithets. that transparent ether; on clear We confess that we are unwilling to nights it might be mistaken for the lay much emphasis on the term moon, but for the multum-in-parvo scurvy;" willing to lay less on the superiority of its lustre; Hesperus term“itch ;” anxious to overlook enhas too much good sense to compete tirely the term “sulphur;"and earnest with its radiance; and as for Luci- to forget that there is such a word in fer, shorn of his beams, he winks in the language as “ brimstone,” or presence of a luminary prouder and such a disease in “ man, in nature, brighter than ever he was, even be- and in human life," as that to which fore the revolt in Heaven.
it has often, we shall not say with As Pope's Homer says,
what propriety, been applied ;-but
still the fact itself we cheerfully ad“ The conscious swains, exulting in the
mit, that the “conscious swains,” and sight, Eye the blue vault, and bless the useful joice in the name of Englishmen, not
more especially such of them as relight.”
unfrequently within the last quarter “ Conscious swains" here mean man- of a century, and sometimes before kind—“ blue vault” is the world, it, while they have been “ eyeing the " useful light” Scotland; and we blue yault," instead of blessing
VOL. XXIX, NO. CLXXXI.