Imatges de pÓgina

tribe of Turcomans, might be easily transferred to canvass as a counterpart to Goldsmith's Auburn

“ Just upon the edge of the bank, the little stream, after filling a canal, had been trained to fall over an artificial cascade of stone, the sides of which had been adorned with ornaments of the same; but the canal was almost obliterated, and the stone over which the water rushed was broken, and had fallen in such a manner as to confine the stream still more. A rude spout of stone had been placed so as to collect it in the basin below, and to enable the women to fill their water-vessels more easily. A huge old sycamore-tree, once the chief ornament of the garden, grew on one side and overshadowed the basin ; and a vine, which had rooted itself among the broken stones, formed a still closer covering, protecting the water from the rays of the sun, so as to render it always cool and refreshing. It was a delicious spot, and had become the favourite rendezvous of the whole aoul: the women came morning and evening to fill their water-skins; the elders of the men met to smoke their calleevons under the shade, and the youths to talk over their exploits performed or anticipated, to play at games of chance, and listen to the tales of a Kissago, or to gossip with the women; the children sported below upon the green bank, or threw themselves into the sparkling waters of the little lake at its foot."-Vol. i. pp. 59, 60.

The following sketch of a Persian cavalier has the richness and freshness of one of Heber's, or Morier's, or Sir John Malcolm's pages :

“ He was a man of goodly stature, and powerful frame ; his countenance, hard, strongly marked, and furnished with a thick black beard, bore testimony of exposure to many a blast, but it still preserved a prepossessing expression of good-humour and benevolence. His turban, which was formed of a cashmere shawl, sorely tached and torn, and twisted here and there with small steel chains, according to the fashion of the time, was wound around a red cloth cap, that rose in four peaks high above the head. His oemah, or riding-coat, of crimson cloth, much stained and faded, opening at the bosom, showed the links of a coat-of-mail which he wore below; a yellow shawl formed his girdle ; his huge shul.

wars, or riding trowsers, of thick fawn-coloured Kerman woollen stuff, fell in folds over the large red leather boots in which his legs were cased. By his side hung a crooked scymitar in a black leather scabbard, and from the holsters of his saddle peeped out the but-ends of a pair of pistols ; weapons of which I then knew not the use, any more than of the matchlock which was slung at his back. He was mounted on a powerful but jaded horse, and appeared to have already 'travelled far."

Scenes of active life are painted by the author of the Kuzzilbash with the same truth, accuracy, and picturesque effect, which he displays in landscapes or single figures. In war, especially, he is at home; and gives the attack, the retreat, the rally, the bloody and desperate close combat, the flight, pursuit, and massacre, with all the current of a heady fight, as one who must have witnessed such terrors. We regret we have not space to give a farther extract ; and still more that we cannot add to these just praises any compliment to the art with which the author has conducted the incidents of his story-which are, to say the least, very slightly put together, and frequently place out of perspective the hero and his affairs. The historical events are dwelt on so often, and at such length, that we lose interest for the Kuzzilbash, in tracing the career of Nadir and the revolutions of Persia. This is a sin which, we hope, the author will not cleave to, on further experience. We must also hint, that the moral characters of the agents whom he introduces, are not sufficiently discriminated to maintain much interest with the reader ; they too much resemble the fortem Gyan fortemque Cloanthum. It may be answered, with plausibility, that people,

trammelled by the dogmatic rules of a false religion, and the general pressure of an arbitrary government, are not apt to run into the individual varieties of character to be found in a free and Christian community. But a more close inspection of that great mass which preserves, at the first view, one dull appearance of universal resemblance, gives a great many differences both of a national, a professional, and an individual kind. While, then, we sincerely hope the author of the Kuzzilbash will resume the pen, we would venture to recommend that he commence on a more restricted. canvass, and lend considerably more attention to the discrimination of his characters, and the combination of his story. In this case, with his stores of information and powers of language, we cannot help thinking he will secure public favour.

In the mean time, and with our recollection of the remarkable circumstance, that English literature has found an interest even in Persia, we feel disposed to nourish hopes that the taste may in

Why may not European productions become, in time, as indispensable to the moral habits of a Persian, as a Chinese leaf to an European breakfast ?

Such expectations may appear extravagant to that sect of dampers who may be termed the Cui-bonists.--What would be the good consequence, they may ask, should Britain be able to introduce into Persia the whole trash which loads her own circulating libraries ? We reply that these volumes of inanity, as Johnson would have


termed them, are yet not more inane than the romances of the middle ages, which spread wide over Europe the system of chivalry, and thereby wrought a more powerful change on human manners than ever was produced by any one cause, the Christian religion alone excepted.

“ Let any one who lists,” says a lively French author, “ make laws for a people, so I have liberty to compose their songs :" a similarity of books paves the way for a similarity of manners ; and the veil of separation once rent, there is no saying how soon it may be altogether removed.

The possibility of a great change being introduced by very slight beginnings may be illustrated by the tale which Lockman tells of a vizier, who, having offended his master, was condemned to perpetual captivity in a lofty tower. At night his wife came to weep below his window. " Cease your grief,” said the sage, “ go home for the present, and return hither when you have procured a live black beetle, together with a little ghee (or buffalo's butter), three clews, one of the finest silk, another of stout packthread, and another of whipcord ; finally, a stout coil of rope.” When she again came to the foot of the tower, provided according to her husband's commands, he directed her to touch the head of the insect with a little of the ghee, to tie one end of the silk thread around him, and to place the reptile on the wall of the tower. Seduced by the smell of the butter, which he conceived to be in store somewhere above him, the beetle continued to ascend till he reached the top, and thus put the vizier in possession of the end of the silk thread, who drew up the packthread by means of the silk, the small cord by means of the packthread, and, by means of the cord, a stout rope capable of sustaining his own weight,-and so at last escaped from the place of his duresse.


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