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as those of any tragedy. These emotions are indeed of too heart-rending a description. But if Mr. Crabbe sometimes makes an ill use of a pathetic situation, he is capable of inspiring a more tender sympathy when describing the tranquil decline of a virtuous old age, the calm joy of pious resignation, and the sentiments of an innocent affection. The Borough will supply us when necessary with numerous examples; this poem is the continuation of the Village, or the developement of the same system upon a large scale. It is a kind of moral history of a sea-port of the second order; the picturesque description of the spot chosen for the scene, and the portrait of the amphibious manners of the different classes of inhabitants. The author still confines himself within the limited circle of reality, although his views became enlarged with the enlarged range of his horizon. There are sublime inspirations from which Mr. Crabbe cannot divest himself in presence of the immensity of ocean ; the colours of his picture of a storm are so correct, that it would seem as if, in order to become a witness of its prototype, he had caused himself to be bound to the mast, like Joseph Vernet. The atmosphere, of a similar landscape, has doubtless imparted to his graphic touch an equal felicity in the portraiture of the passions. Not but that the greater number of his verses is not as usual consecrated to minute details and subtle analysis of characters, often but little interesting. His gaiety is not always in good tone. He is alternately diffuse and obscure, through his affected precision: but what a number of traits of refined irony, of smiling and agreeable images, of graceful or energetic sentiments, redeem those defects in a poem of considerable length. The Borough is divided into letters. We successively become acquainted with the vicar and curate of the place, with the dissenter, with the principal electors and candidates of an election day, with the lawyers, respecting whom Mr. Crabbe has not consulted Mr. Cottu, with the physicians, the apothecaries, and, in the self-same chapter, with the quacks. In another gallery figure the artizans, the strolling players, the amateur artists, the publicans, the governors of the hospital, and the overseers of the poor. But it is especially of the latter class that Mr. Crabbe is the historian, or rather the biographer, in the poor houses, the prisons, and the schools. Since the appearance of this poem, Mr. Crabbe has published a series of poetic tales, which might have been incorporated with it in the form of episodes. They are written in the same spirit, though the heroes of some of them are chosen from the middle walk of life. In his last work, the Tales of the Hall, the author introduces his readers to elegant society; and here he shews himself to be as profound an observer of human nature as in his delineations of more homely scenes. The tales in the volume to which I have just alluded, are for the most part extremely simple; but in many instances they display originality of conception. I was particularly pleased with the one entitled the
Parting Hour. It is the history of a young couple who have loved each other from childhood, but whose mutual poverty proves an obstacle to their union. Allen Booth, the lover, leaves his native land to try his fortune in America; but he is captured by the Spaniards and conveyed to Mexico, where in the course of time he forgets his Judith and marries another. However, after the lapse of forty years he loses his wife, and yields to his irresistible desire of seeing the land of his birth, and revisiting the scenes of his early love. But how are those scenes changed . He finds himself a stranger, forgotten or unknown. There is, however, an aged widow, who, hearing of his adventures, expresses a wish to see him. This is no other than Judith, who has never ceased to cherish the recollection of her plighted faith, and who, after anxiously awaiting the return of her lover for ten years, was betrayed into an unhappy marriage by a false report of his death. She is now a widow, and her children are scattered about in various parts of the world. The two lovers meet. Neither age nor sorrow have diminished their affection; and both listen with melancholy interest to the recital of their mutual misfortunes. The farewell scene, the description of Allen's return, and the history of his adventures, all impart a degree of dramatic interest to this drama, and it leaves a feeling of delightsul melancholy in the mind of the reader. Edward Shore is an equally pleasing little poem. Edward is a young enthusiast, whose talents afford the fairest promise ; but the indecision of his opinions and conduct proves fatal to his fortune and his happiness. He falls in love with an amiable and accomplished young female ; but his circumstances prevent him from cherishing any idea of marriage. He therefore withdraws himself from her society, and becomes an inmate in the house of a friend, a sort of philosopher, who has recently married a wife considerably younger than himself. Relying confidently on his wife's virtue, and on the honour of his young friend, he leaves them to enjoy each other's society, and to walk out together by moonlight, while he retires to his favourite studies.
The young bride soon begins to draw a comparison between her husband and his friend, which unfortunately happens to be wholly to the advantage of the latter, who
“— Wore no wig; no grisly beard was seen;
But what proves most fatal to the husband is the circumstance of his being surprised asleep. This idea, which I never before saw expressed either in verse or prose, is thus rendered by the poet.
“We indeed have heard
Like Francisca di Rimini and Paul, they at length yield to temptation. The husband, faithful to his philosophy, coolly renounces the friendship of Edward, and consigns him to the punishment of his own conscience. He is, however, cruelly avenged. All Edward's romantic dreams speedily vanish. In the hope of diverting away the misery of remorse, he courts the society of trivial and even profligate companions. His virtuous enthusiasm forsakes him, and he wastes his health and income without recovering his peace of mind. He is thrown into prison, whence he is released by an unknown benefactor; and he soon learns that this is no other than the friend whose confidence he repaid by treachery. This humiliation completely overwhelms his proud spirit, and he loses his reason. But I must here close my letter, for I find that an analysis of Crabbe's Tales of the Hall would lead me too far. In this work he has not disdained to employ what I believe he has himself termed the artificial ornaments of poetry; but that which might be deemed high colouring in the writings of others is merely simple grace in the poetry of Crabbe. Love, that passion which the poet seemed to contemn in his early lays, has frequently lent its romantic charm to the more recent productions of his muse, and