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which Mrs Tyler employed; for in & a fair, and by no means too minute reladies' controversy, no male has a lation of what she saw and heard, she right to interfere. Mrs Stowe tells is scoffed at, by a certain section of us that the origin of the address was the liberal gentry of the London press, this : “ Fearful of the jealousy of as a kind of parasite. This is really political interference, Lord Shaftes- very shabby and disgusting; for we bary published an address to the ladies do think that her modest, unaffected, of England, in which he told them and sometimes naïveobservations upon that he felt himself moved by an irre. what she saw passing around her, sistible impulse to entreat them to might have saved her from any such raise their voice, in the name of their reflection. She enjoyed in England common Christianity and womanhood, particular advantages such as very to their American sisters.” We shall few Americans could boast of. Had add, what Mrs Stowe is too modest N. P. Willis ever been able to comto say, or perhaps what she does not pass an admission to Stafford House, know, that, but for the publication of his literary fortune would have been Uncle Tom's Cabin, and the inte. made. We should have heard no rest excited thereby, Lord Shaftes. more of Count Spiridion Ballardos, or bury might have worn his pen to the any such small-deer ; but the intrepid stamp before he could have succeeded Penciller would have fixed at once in eliciting any such remonstrance. upon the Duke of Argyll as his victim,
Most graceful indeed, and becom- and have magnified himself in some ing, was the attention which was inconceivable way, by introducing lavished, on the part of the Duchess Philip Slingsby as the triumphant rival of Sutherland and her kindred, upon and competitor of the MacCallamMrs Stowe; and to us by far the most Mhor. Mrs Stowe does not try by pleasing portion of the book is that in any means to exalt herself—indeed which she records her impressions of her figure does not appear at all proLondon society. In the very highest minently in the picture. She has encircles of the metropolis, and while deavoured to give as accurate a sketch moving for a time in a sphere wbich as she could of London society, and might very well dazzle and perplex in some respects has succeeded pretty one to whom such scenes must have well. Blunders there are of course, appeared like a fairy dream, she really but that was unavoidable, and a good appears to have kept her equilibrium, deal of what appears to us to be gosand preserved her coolness of judg- sip, but which possibly may have a ment much better than when she was higher value in the eyes of her Transgreeted by civic demonstrations in atlantic readers. She very fairly adthe North, or by gatherings of the mits in her preface, that her narrative peaceful but somewhat prosy and dog. may be tinged couleur de rose; and we matic brotherhood of the Quakers in are only surprised, considering the the Midland Counties. To our great temptations in her way, that she has astonishment we have observed that used the Claude Lorraine glass with poor Mrs Stowe has been accused so much discretion. Society is quite by various liberal journals in Eng. as intoxicating as champagne; and it land, of “flunkeyism,” for conveying is impossible to write a book of this to her friends an accurate account of kind, without recalling, to a considerwhat she saw at Stafford House, and able extent, the feeling of the byone or two other mansions to wbich gone excitement. We have no doubt she was invited. Anything more that the printed narrative would seem unfair and even monstrous than this peculiarly sober, could we be favoured style of criticism it is impossible to with a perusal of the actual letters conceive. Mrs Stowe is writing her which Mrs Stowe despatched to Ameimpressions of British society for the rica from the bewildering whirl of information of her friends in America. London. In London it was her good fortune to One thing, however, we have rebe received cordially and hospitably marked with pain ; and that is the by several of the most distinguished introduction by Mrs Stowe of an elaand estimable of the nobility and pub- borate defence or explanation of what lic characters; and because she gives were called the “ Sutherland Clearings." Her motive for doing so is paraphrase by Dr Watts above everyquite apparent; but we cannot help thing in the English language, not even thinking that she has placed both her excepting Pope's Messiah"!!! Whereself, and the noble family for whom as, to any one possessing a comshe appears as an advocate, in a false mon ear, the lines must rank as aband disagreeable position, by putting solute doggrel, and the ideas which forth statements of the accuracy of they convey are commonplace and which she had no means of judging. wretchedly expressed. Elsewhere she
The transactions to which she refers says:-"Í certainly do not worship are of an old date; and they occurred the old English poets. With the ex. in a district of which she has abso- ception of Milton and Shakespeare, lutely no personal knowledge. She there is more poetry in the works of never was in Sutherland, or indeed the writers of the last fifty years than any other part of the Highlands, and in all the rest together." We wonder therefore she was not entitled in any if she ever read a line of Chaucer or way to deal with such a subject. Tbat of Spenser, not to speak of Pope and she was furnished with materials for Dryden. But she objects even to the purposes of publication seems Milton. Here is a piece of criticism more than probable: if so, we cannot which we defy the world to match : commend the prudence of those who “There is a coldness about all the lustook so singular a method of refuting cious exuberance of Milton, like the what may very possibly be calumny wind that blows from the glaciers or misrepresentation. With the merits across these flowery valleys. How of the case we have nothing to do, nor serene his angels in their adamantine shall we express any opinion upon virtuel yet what sinning, suffering them ; but it does seem to us a most soul could find sympathy in them? extraordinary circumstance that Mrs The utter want of sympathy for the Stowe should have been induced to fallen angels, in the whole celestial put forth a long, elaborate, and statis- circle, is shocking. Satan is the only tical argument upon a subject of which one who weeps she is wholly ignorant. A defence of " For millions of spirits for his faults this kind-supposing that any defence
amerced, was required-is positively hurtful to And from eternal splendours flungthe parties whose conduct has been
“God does not care, nor his angels." called in question; and anything but
Our readers, we bope, will understand creditable to their discretion if they why we leave this passage without consented to its issue.
comment. But it may be worth while Interspersed with the actual narra
to show them the sort of poetry (betive, are commentaries, or rather criti
yond Watts) which Mrs Stowe does cisms, upon art and literature, which, admire. and she favours us with the for the sake of the authoress, we could
following as a “beautiful aspiration" wish omitted. Her taste, upon all from an American poet of the name subjects of the kind, is either wholly
of Lowell :uncultivated or radically bad-indeed it would be absolutely cruelto quote her
“Surely the wiser time shall come
When this fine overplus of might, observations on the works of the old
No longer sullen, slow or dumb, masters. In literature she prefers Dr
Shall leap to music and to light. Watts, as a poet, to Dryden, and has In that new childhood of the world, the calm temerity to proceed to quota
Life of itself shall dance and play, tion. She says, “ For instance, take
Fresh blood through Time's shrunk veins these lines :
be hurled, ««• Wide as his vast dominion lies
And labour meet delight half way." Let the Creator's name be known ;
Beautiful aspirations-lovely lines ! Loud as his thunder shout his praise, Why- they are absolute nonsense ;
And sound it lofty as his throne. Speak of the wonders of that love
and the mere silent reading of them Which Gabriel plays on every chord,
has set our teeth on edge. Try to From all below and all above
recite them, and you are inevitably Loud hallelujahs to the Lord.'
booked for a catarrh! In like manner “Simply as a specimen of harmoni- she refers to some rubbish of Mr Whitous versification, I would place this tier, an American rhymer, as a “ beautiful ballad, called · Barclay of Ury.'" manner, we should by no means covet We have a distinct recollection of hav- his company in any part of Europe ; ing read that ballad some years ago, and we are only surprised that, in one and of our impression that it was in- ortwo places (as for instance Cologne), comparably the worst which we ever he did not receive an emphatic check encountered; though, if a naked sword to his outrageous hilarity. But as were at this moment to be presented he seems to have been impressed to our throat, we could depone nothing with the idea that he exhibited himself further, than that “rising in a fury," rather in a humorous and attractive rhymed to “Barclay of Ury;" and light, we bave no intention of dispelalso, that “ frowning very darkly," ling the dream-we are only sorry chimed in to the name of " Barclay," that Mrs Stowe should have thought But it was woeful stuff; and it lingers it worth while to increase the bulk of in our memory solely by reason of its her book by admitting her relative's absurdity. However, as Mrs Stowe inflated, ill - written, and singularly prefers this sort of thing to Spenser, silly lucubrations, as part of a work we have nothing for it except to make which, considering her literary celeour bow, regretting that our æstheti- brity, and the interest of the theme, cal notions are so far apart, that, will in all probability have an extenunder no circumstances whatever, sive circulation. can we foresee the possibility of a A fter making every allowance for coalition,
the difficulty attendant upon the task Beyond the Channel we shall not of portraying with fidelity and spirit follow her ; the more especially as the the customs of a foreign country, we greater part of the Continental tour is cannot, with truth, express an opinion described in the journal of the Rev. that Mrs Stowe has been successful in Charles Beecher, an individual with her effort. Far more interesting and whose proceedings, thoughts, and rap- agreeable volumes have been written tures, we have not been able to con- by women of less natural ability; and jure up the sligbtest sympathy. In we are constrained to dismiss, with a fact, taking Mr Beecher at his own feeling of decided disappointment, a estimate and valuation, and making book which we opened with the antievery allowance for playfulness of cipation of a very different result.
THE CRYSTAL PALACE.
It is the common practice of inno. no such thing as taste; that it is a vators to set up a loud cry against mere idea, an unaccountable prejudice long-received opinions which favour somehow or other engendered in the them not, and the word prejudice is brain. And though there exists not the denunciation of " mad-dog." But a head in the universe without a porprejudices, like human beings who tion of this disorder-breeding brain, hold them, are not always "so bad the philosopher persists that the proas they seem.” They are often the duct is a worthless nonentity, and action of good, natural instincts, and altogether out of the nature of things., often the results of ratiocinations We maintain, however, in favour of whose processes are forgotten. Let prejudices and tastes-that there are us have no “Apology" for a long- real grounds for both; and, presuming established prejudice; ten to one but not to be so wise as to deny the eviit can stand upon its own legs, and dences of our senses, and conclusions needs no officious supporter, who of our minds, think it scarcely worth simply apologises for it.
while to unravel the threads of our We have had philosophers who have convictions. In matters of science told us there is really no such thing we marvel and can believe almost as beauty, consequently there can be anything ; but in our tastes and feel
An Apology for the Colouring of the Greek Court. By OWEN JONES. London, 1854.
ings we naturally, and by an un- statues from it-monuments, ornadoubting instinct, shrink from the ments, and costly floors? Of course, touch of an innovator, as we would everybody loves white marble. Then, shun the heel of a donkey.
reader, if such is your taste, you Whenever an innovator of this are a prejudiced ignoramus; you kind sets up “An Apology" for his belong to that age “devoid of the intended folly, we invariably feel that capacity to appreciate and the power he means a very audacious insult to execute works of art”—that age upon our best perceptions. The worst which certain persons profess to illuof it is, he is not one easily put aside minate. You are now, under the new - he will labour to get a commission dictators of taste, to know that you into your house, ransack it to its had no business to admire white sewers, and turn it out of windows. marble,*-that you are so steeped in He is the man that must ever be this old prejudice that it will require doing. He will think himself en. a long time before you can eradicate titled to perambulate the world with this stain of a vile admiration, albis pot of polychrome in his hand, though your teachers have acquired a and bedaub every man's door-post; true knowledge in an incredible time. and if multitudes—the whole offended You must put yourself under the neighbourhood - rush out to upset great colourman of the great Crystal his pot and brush, he will laugh in Palace, Mr Owen Jones, who, if be their faces, defend his plastering in- does not put out your eyes in the exstruments, and throw to them with periments he will set before you, will an air his circular, “ An Apology ;" at least endeavour to convince you and perhaps afterwards knock the that you are a fool of the first water. doors down for an authorised pay. But beware how you don his livery of ment. Such a one shall get no motley. Hear him : “ Under this in“Apology"-pence out of us.
fluence (the admiration of white We are prejudiced—we delight in marble), however, we have been born being prejudiced-will continue pre- and bred, and it requires time to judiced as long as we live, and will shake off the trammels which such entertain none but prejudiced friends. early education leaves." You have There are things we will believe, and sillily believed that the Atheniang give no reasons for, ever; and things built with marble because of its we never will believe, whatever rea- beauty, -that the Egyptians thought sons are to be given in their favour. there was beauty in granite. You We think the man who said, “Of thought in your historical dream that course, I believe it, if you say you he who found the city of brick, and left saw it; but I would not believe it if it of marble, had done something I saw it myself,” used an irresistible whereof he might reasonably boast. argument of good sound prejudice, You have been egregiously mistaken, mixed with discretion. It is better, If you ever read that the Greeks and safer, and honester, to bristle up like Romans, and other people since their a hedgehog, and let him touch who times civilised, sent great distances dares, than to sit and be smoothed for marble for their palaces and staind smoothed over with oily handling tues, you must put it down in your Jf sophisticated arguments, till every note-book of new "historic doubts." decent palpable roughness of reason You learn a fact you never dreamed is taken from you.
of, from Mr Owen Jones. They merely Reader, do you like white marble? used it (marble) because 'it lay acciWhat a question! you will ask,-do you dentally at their feet. He puts the suppose me to have no eyes? Do not richest colouring of his contempt on all people covet it-import it from “the artificial value which white Carrara? Do not sculptors, as sculp- marble has in our eyes." Learn the tors have done in all ages, make real cause of its use: "The Athenians
built with marble, because they found cess so to represent perfect humanity, it almost beneath their feet, and also when be looks at the finest antique from the same cause which led the statues ? Let an audacious innovator Egyptians to employ granite, which dare to dáub one of them with his was afterwards painted-viz.because it coat of stucco, and all the chiselling was the most enduring, and capable of of the life, breath, and motion is anreceiving a higher finish of workman- nihilated. It must be so, whatever ship.” He maintains that so utterly be the thickness of the coat; though regardless were these Greeks of any it be but a nail-paring it must disupposed beauty in marble--especially minish risings and hollows, and all white marble-that they took pains nicer touches must disappear. We to hide every appearance of its tex. should heartily desire to see the inture; that they not only painted it novator suffocated in his plaster and all over, but covered it with a coat. paint-pot, that in his suffering he may ing of stucco. Listen to an oracle know it is a serious thing to knock that, we will answer for it, never the life-breath out of the body even came from Delphi, that no Pythia in of a statue. her madness ever conceived, and that,
“ Nec lex est justior ulla if uttered in the recesses, would have Quam necis artifices arte perire suâ.” made Apollo shake his temple to pieces.
There is one slight objection to our ." To what extent were white mar- getting rid of this prejudice in favour ble temples painted and ornamented? of white marble which we suggest to I would maintain that they were en Mr Owen Jones, and all the “Stainers'" tirely so; that neither the colour of Company-the unseemly blots we shall the marble, nor even its surface, was have to make in the fairest pages of preserved ; and that preparatory to poetry, old and new. Albums will of the ornamenting and colouring of the course be ruined, and a general smear, surface, the whole was covered with bad as a “coat of stucco," be passed a thin coating of stucco, something in
over the whole books of beauties who the nature of a gilder's ground, to stop have "dreamed they dwelt in marble the absorption of the colours by the balls." The new professors, polychro. marble.”
matists, must bring out, if they are "A thin coat of stucco!" and no able, new editions of all our classics. exception with respect to statues to How must this passage from Horace be applied wherever the offensive provoke their bile : white marble showed its unblushing
« Urit me Glycone nitor nakedness and beauty!! Let us ima
Splendentis Pario marmore puriùs." gine it tested on a new statue-thus stucco over, however thin, Mr Bay. And when, after being enchanted by ley's Eve, or Mr Power's Greek Slave the “grata protervitas," he adds the
--the thought is enough to make the untranslateable line, scalptor go mad, and commit a murder on himself or the plasterer—to “ Et Vultus nimium lubricus aspici," see all his fine, his delicate chisellings obliterated! all the nice markings, we can almost believe, with that bad the scarcely perceptible dimplings taste which Mr Owen Jones will congone !—for let the coat of stucco be demn, that he had in the full eye of thin as a wafer, it must, according to his admiration the polished, delicately that thickness, enlarge every rising defined charm of the Parian marble. and diminish the spaces between It was a clown's taste to daub the them : thus, all true proportion must parity; and first he daubed his own be lost; between two risings the face, and the faces of his drunken space must be less. “What fine rabble. He would have his gods made chisel," says our immortal Shake, as vulgar as himself; and then, doubtspeare, “ could ever yet cut breath?" less, there was many a wooden, How did he imagine, in these few worthless, and obscene idol, the half words, the living motion of the "breath joke and veneration of the senseless of life" in the statue! and who clowns, painted as fine as vermilion doubts either the attempt or the suc- could make them.