Imatges de pàgina
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and he began to count out the Napoleons. Quick !' said the Baron, and his eyes dwelt upon the money anxiously and eagerly. • There, noble Sir, are 5,000 Napoleons, good weight, and uew.' The Baron swept them into a pouch, and then turning to Israel, said, . Now Jew, count me out the sum by five thousands, until I have the value of my deeds. By the rod of Moses, thou wilt rob me of my monies; I will give thee no more: the deeds be not worth the sum thou hast taken. • False ! interrupted the Baron, in a loud voice. “Give me the deeds or the money. I will do neither,' returned Israel, foaming with anger. I will have law; you have robbed me-give me back my monies !' Villain,' cried de Beaumain, seizing the Jew by the throat, deliver up the deeds -or-''Do thy worst; thou shalt have no more-O my monies ! there shall be witnesses—help! Manasseh! Amos !' The Jew conld utter no more, for he was almost choked ; and he then kicked violently against the partition. At this moment a man entered the room, the Baron cast a look over his shoulder, and immediately relaxed his hold of the Jew. But his anger grew even more furious, his face paled, and his eyes darted livid lightning. •Robber!' he exclaimed, and he drew a pistol from his vest- take this, and give me the opportunity of vengeance ! • Peace, peace, old man,' answered De Martini, for it was he, this matter can be settled more at our leisure. I have now other business on hand. “Ay, you are leagued against me with the Jew, with my robbers of the Palais Royal ; but old as you call me, I can take my vengeance ! Stand back ! " Hear me! I will hear nothing, thou art a villain !' answered the Baron, shaking his head and waving his hand to silence all remark; stand my fire! I will not fight with thee !' returned De Martini advancing. Then die!' The Baron fired Father! O my father!' exclaimed the youth, but it was too late ; he fell back against the wall. His disguise fell off, and the auburn locks of Florimand de Beaumain were disclosed. The Baron started back, and was for a moment fixed in doubt and agony; he then rushed forward, caught the youth in his arms as he was falling to the ground, and cried · Say'st thou true ? What mark hast thou? Yes, it is—it is-it is my own son !'—and he drew from the bosom of the youth the locket containing his own portrait. Father,' said Florimand, in a broken tone which thrilled through the Baron's bosom, I would have saved thee from ruin! I loved thee.' I believe thee, my son ; but why disguise thyself before me? But I have deserved all this ! 'twas my own wickedness! O God! O God !!—The eyes of the young man became glassy, his lips livid, and he pressed his father's hand gently and tenderly. Speak to me! bat speak ! cried the Baron,

one word only! say Pardon! He speaks not-I am accursed ! I have murdered bim-my own boy! But one look! He's dead dead.' The Baron sprung upon his feet, ran to and fro in the room, then stopped by the body of his son, grasped his grey hairs with clenched hands; heaved a deep, deep groan, and as if his heartstrings had burst asunder, he tottered, and fell inanimate by the side of the ill-fated Florimand." N, S-VOL. I.

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Gather the shades of night,
And on the surface of the waveless sky
Adventure forth the early barks of light,
And on mine ear a gentle melody

Steals, like the echoing
Of anthems sung by voyagers of Heav'n,
And the heart thrills, as if a communing
With powers eternal to its will were given.

And it is even so,
Father supremel and the wide realm of space
Is spirit-haunted; and pure souls below,
With those above hold converse, and embrace.

In days that now have fled,
I long'd to make enduring joys of earth ;
Nor knew I the great secret, that the dead
Perish to teach us an immortal birth.

While yet they live in sense,
The fair and good that sense so beautify,
That we grow wedded with a love intense
To the mere garb of immortality.

'Tis when the symbols fade,
The soul asserts her high prerogative
Of union-not with substance that is shade
But with that love by which even shadows live.

Then bend we kindly gaze
On the apparent which is not the real,
And know that the most loveless is a phase
(Albeit a dark one) of the true ideal.

In every mode of clay
Art thou, O universe-pervading mind!
And who is he shall dare to brand or slay
The form where the Almighty is enshrin'd?

If through the world there roam
Any from peace exil'd, and slaves to sin,
O be it ours to the internal home
With words of love such erring ones to win.

Not from her dreary cell
Shall the soul rise to meet the sons of gloom
Who trust in persecution as a spell —

To them no Lazarus gives up the tomb !

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CENSUS OF FOREIGN LITERATURE.

No II.-LAMARTINE AND Novalis.

(Continued from p. 61.)

It was remarked by a German critic (Tieck I think), that in the dramatic works of Heinrich von Kleist, the romantic poet, a kind of barrister-feeling is apparent; a taking up of the pro and con side with equal facility, like a skilful pleader. Thus, in a Romeo and Juliet sort of piece, die Familie Schroffenstein," he first gives a scene of one of the rival houses, then a scene of the other; and so he continues, as if he thought it was but fair to hear both sides of a question, and carried out this equitable notion even in his dramatic works.

In those “Meditations” of Lamartine, which assume a higher and more solemn character, we may observe much of a similar feeling; much of the pro and con of theology, the struggle between faith and infidelity; though, of course, as a writer strictly Christian, he invariably gives the victory to the former. In his address to Lord Byron (Med. II.), he confesses that he also has been in the sceptical state, and his Seventh and Eighth Meditations are complete pleas on each side. When he has passed this state, he really becomes sublime; there is about him a free expression like that of one who has shaken off painful shackles : having broken through the trammels of controversy, he sings in a strain of faith, as if conscious of a victory gained.

See the vast universal sacrifice !
The fane, the universe— the altar, earth!
The heavens are the dome! the countless stars,
Those half-veil'd fires, pale ornaments of night,
Scattered with order o'er the azure vault,
These are the torches for this temple lit,
And those pure clouds tinged by the dying day,
Which the light gale, breathing from west to east,
And softly gath'ring them in plains of air,
Rolls to the sky's edge in small purple flocks.
These are the waves of incense which ascend
To the altar of that God whom nature worships.
This temple hath no voice.--The holy concerts,
The hymn to heaven's king-O where are they?
All's hushed, my heart alone in silence speaks,
The voice of all the universe speaks in my mind.
On evening rays, upon the wings of wind,
To God it rises as a living scent;
And giving to each creature its own tongue,
To nature lends my soul that she may worship.
Alone, invoking his paternal glance,
I fill the desert with th' Eternal's name,

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And he who from the bosom of his glory
Hears music of the spheres, ruled by himself,
He also hears my humble reason speak

Which views his glory-softly breathes his name. Still it is in a melancholy calmness that he seems most at home; the sublimer strain is more like the flush of a moment; but the soft sigh is his most natural expression: the weariness of the world, the calm hope for death, sketched with a kind of luxuriousness, as if the wish for death was not to be taken quite literally. The “ Meditations" expressive of these feelings are those which give the most pleasurable sensations. Of these the following is a pretty fair specimen.

THE VALLEY.
My heart now tir'd of all of hope itself,
No more shall trouble fate with its desires;
Vale of my infancy grantme no more,
Than an asylum where to wait for death.
A narrow path winds through the shady vale,
On the bill-side are hanging leafy woods,
Which, spreading o'er my brow their mingled sbade,
Form me a canopy of peace and silence.
Here are two brooks, bid by a verdant arch,
Flowing along the vale with serpent-course;
Their waves and sounds unite for one brief time,
And near their source they're lost without a name.
My source of life, like them, has flowed away,
Pass'd without sound or name—without return;
But while those streams are clear, my troubled soul
Reflects no brightness of a sunny day.
The freshness of their beds, the shade that crowns them,
Lead me to rest upon their banks all day-
And as a child lull'd by monot'nous songs,
My soul reposes to their murmurs soft.
By a green rampart compass'd all around,
With an horizon for my eye sufficient,
I love to stand, as if alone in nature,
Hearing but waves—and seeing but the sky.
I've seen, I've felt, loved too much in my life,
And I have come to seek for Lethe's calm;
Sweet spot when here, 0, let me but forget;
Oblivion is my only happiness.
My soul is silent, and my heart's at rest,
And as it comes the world's far din expires;
Like sounds remote which in the distance fade,
Borne by the wind to the uncertain ear.
Here I see life as through a veil of mist,
Before me vanish iu the past's dim shade;
But love alone as some great image lasts,
Of a lost dream after the dreamer wakes.
In this asylum rest thyself, my soul,
Like to some wand'rer, who with heart of hope,
Before he enters his love city's gates,
Pauses to breathe awhile the evening air.

Like him, we'll shake the dust from off our feet.
Man, by this road, can ne'er return again ;
Let us, like him breathe at our journey's end,
That calm-the harbinger of lasting peace.
Thy days—gloomy and short as autumn days,
As the shade cast on the hill-side-decline;
Pity abandons, Friendship but betrays,
And thou must wander to the tomb alone.
Nature, who loves thee-she invites thee here,
Sink in the bosom she unfolds to thee;
Though all may change, still Nature is the same,
The same sun rises upon all thy days.
She will surround thee still with light and shade,
The false wealth thou hast lost bewail no more;
Adore the sounds Pythagoras adored ;
With bim to heav'nly concerts lend thine ear.
To conceive Him God give us intellect;
Learn beneath Nature to discern her source ;
A voice speaks in her silence to the mind.
Who has not heard that voice within his heart?

This silence Lamartine lives to express; but it was a most sublime idea to make his own soul the spokesman for dumb Nature in the extract first given. The psychological phenomenon presented by the " Premières Meditations,” taken as a whole, is singular. The mind of the poet is evidently in the controversial state, engaged in a polemic discussion with itself. The air of uneasiness is strongly marked throughout. The poems in the softer strain are the mournful repose which seems to arise from the weariness incident to a controversial position, while the more fiery enthusiastic strains seem to proceed from a strong act of the will, a determination to leave the sceptical state entirely: and it is the palpable form in which this determination is exhibited that gives these poems their fire. We have seen the struggle,-have felt with the poet its painfulness; we have seen him repose as if weary of it, rather sinking under it than overcoming it; when the sudden victory over doubt declared by such poems as La Prière bursts upon us like a sudden light, and strikes us the more on account of the alternate restlessness and listlessness which we feel preceded it. The will, not the understanding, has solved all difficulties; and it is the majesty of the will which is enthroned before us, and which darts radiance through every line of the work. We now feel that notwithstanding the sceptical tone here and there, Christian was occasionally at Doubting-castle, but that he was Christian notwithstanding.

In Novalis we do not see a trace of the sceptical state, as present; he alludes to a state previous to that of faith in his “ Geistliche Lieder;" but so little practical influence has this state upon his works, and he relates so circumstantially his quitting it, that we may regard it as occurring at a period indefinitely distant, and passed away long before he introduces himself to our notice. The two following poems declare the past transition.

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