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We are not, of course, to compare the filful, hurBURNS.
ried outburstings of Burns' untaught genius with
the elegant long-labored efforts of Pope, or the There is a lesson of pleasing instruction in the heavenward sketches of Milton's diviner spirit. varied forms and fortunes of hursan greatness. No-the full fountains from which they drank so When the world is in commotion—when na:ions freely were sealed against him and such as him. are the sport of foreign wars or intestine cabal, But the expanse of heaven was over him; the the conquering chieftain, or the cunning statesman broad world of nature and manhood was around may compel our startled admiration, while he is him, and it was enough. Thrown, as he was, into watching, perhaps, like a hungry bird of prey, to the very bosom of nature, from her alone he sought seize upon the torn and palpitating State. When his inspiration and his themes. Under her guisome fearful moral evil must be cured, the Re- dance, he touched his artless harp, and there came former comes forth as the special minister of forth those notes of melting melody which were Providence; and we look with silent awe, to see to find a quick response in human bosoms. His the workings of his stern and lofty mind, as he poetry is but the gushing forth of his own swelling tramples on every obstacle, and strides on to the emotions; and whether he describes those scenes fulfilment of his destiny. But the Poet, whose of home devotion from which “ Old Scotia's granbosom swells with all the manly virtues, and the deur springs"—those sweet scenes of piety and gentle, generous affections—whose soul, like a love and peace, or kindles into pbrenzy in the richly tuned harp changes the common winds of memory of the deeds of Bannockburn-whether life into sweetest niusic,--the Poet comes abroad to he utters forth the felt language of joyous rapture, stir from their secret fountains the softer sympa- the sublime wailings of his woe, or the cherished thies of man's nature: and as he struggles on enthusiasm of soft, sweet sadness--he finds a ready through the sorrows and entanglements of life, witness in the ever varying moods of man's heart. and dies, perhaps, in utter desolateness and neglect, What Burns might have been, in circumstances tears mingle with our reverence and love.
less adverse, we can not tell : but there is enough Such in the lofty sublimity and deep, tender to excite our warmest admiration while we conbeauty of his spirit—such in the sadness of his template him the Poet or the man. At one time brief but glorious career was Robert Burns. Cheer- we see him toiling, by day, “behind his plough less poverty was the companion of his youth ; upon the mountain side,” and at evening, sitting Toil and sorrow waited ever his pathway; but alone beneath the hawthorn shade, or wandering Nature, by the richness of her benefactions, made and musing upon the braes of his loved rivers; at ample amends for Fortune's smiles; and Genius, another time standing upright, as if at home, amidst that owns no localities, was with the Rustic in his the loftiest, coolest spirits of Scotland's capital, darksome drudgery, and from the midst of his deep astounding them all by the force and fire of his obscurity broke forth, at length, upon the world in genius, convulsing them by the rough floods of his a serene, majestic brightness, which men gazed on merriment, or wringing delicious tears from their with wonder and with tears.
eyes by the impassioned pathos of his feeling. Themes for the muse had not, indeed, been Now he is borne away headlong by the tide of mad, wanting in the land of Wallace and Bruce. Scot- blind passion, and again bowed down to the very land was full of the grand and the lovely in nature, earth in pungent sorrow and remorse.
At one and of all the nobler and the softer virtues which time his self-forgetting sympathies flow out over lift op and beautify humanity. There were the all his suffering fellows, or his pitying thoughts are fields of battle where the tide of invasion had been fixed upon the poor wounded hare, or the “ beaten back, and there rested the ashes of patriots sleeket, cowering, timorous beastie” which his who had nobly drawn the steel for their country plough share has unhoused :-and again, though half and fallen in her defence. There towered in stern starved, he spurns from him alike the narrow sugsublimity the rugged mountains and the wild hang- gestions of selfish interest, and the wretched, pating woods; there slept in quiet, peaceful beauty ronizing “insolence of condescension.” In his the calm lakes : and amidst them all there fourished, poetry, as in his life, are seen a warm, overflowing in perennial richness, those deep and pure affec-heart which in its embraces took in all the dwelltions of the heart which flow out in a thousand ers upon earth; a sterling honest worth which streams to brighten and adorn the field of life. And poverty could not debase; a proud Scotch spirit Poets
, too, of power and beauty had been there : which oppression could never subdue. bot Scottish scenery and Scottish life were never He had his faults, and keen eyed envy saw them fitly sung 'till the wild sounding lyre of the Plough to his hurt. He had his virtues too ; and the longBoy was heard on the banks of his own native coming judgment of an after and calmer age has at Doon, where the songs of his loves, his hopes and length silenced forever the wild clamorings of shrillhis sorrows were singing themselves in strains of mouthed malice. rich immortal melody through his soul.
Penury depressed and chilled his spirit, and the
world refused to know his inward worth. Dark An amendment of our orthography would require clouds of sorrow thickened round him while he three things : lived—and the few brief gleams of light which First. The removal of all letters not sounded. broke in, sometimes, like blessed sunshine, on his for those that are not ; and
Secondly. The substitution of letters that are sounded soul, served but to make the gloom more gloomy Thirdly. The removal of letters not sounded, and the as they disappeared. When earthly hope was needed, in the same word.
substitution of those that are for those that are noi, when gone, and to the many poisoned arrows rankling in his heart was added the crowning pang of cold given to illustrate the first of the above proposed
In the present paper a number of words will be neglect, death opened for him the only gate of de changes. It would be easy to enlarge the list, but liverance; and the world saw too late that one of it has been preferred to present only such words its gentlest, noblest spirits had passed away beyond as are in most common use. the reach of its sympathies forever.
Present Spelling. There needs no commendation of his writings;
instead of ad
add for a charm which cannot pass away is in them and acheve
achieve they can not die—through the wild glens of his agil
beauty native land, and beside the rivers, consecrated by
believe his muse; amidst the splendor and refinement of bereve
below palaces, in the straw-roofed cottage of the peasant,
bo (for shooting)
bow and in the cloistered cell of the Philosopher alike, bon (of a tree)
bough the Ploughman Poet will be known and loved as
bom one of nature's gifted ones, while the language in breth
breath which he wrote shall endure.
death Nay—while the thistle blooms upon the moun
deceive tains, or waves in the breeze upon the banner of his
earth country—while the “sweet Afton,” the “clear
flow winding Devon" and the “ Bonny Doon" send on
genuin their sparkling waters, while Scotia's bright blue
giv Locks shall reflect to heaven her pure sky and her
grieve heathery hill-tops, thousands will thrill and melt at
haunt the poesy, and thousands more will shed their tears
have upon the grave of Robert Burns. J. M. B.
heave ENGLISH ORTHOGRAPHY.
house The defective system, (if that word may be justly
jealous applied to it,) of English Orthography has long
key been a reproach to this truly noble language.
lie Changes in the mode of spelling have from time
makrel to time been made, but they have as ofien been
marriage from bad to worse as from bad to good ; thus, since
knee the period when the Bible was translated into En
nigh glish, the word plow has been altered to plough and
knock cloke to cloak. In some words, the spelling has
honor been amended, as in wagon, formerly spelt with
perceive two g's; but as baggage retains both, the alteration plaster
plaisier is likely to occasion an improper way of spelling
plumb both words. What can be more absurd than that
receive the letters ough should represent seven distinct
siege sounds, as is shown by the following lines written by the late Condy Raguet?
siere “ Though the tough cough and hiecough plough me through, O'er life's dull lough my course I'll still pursue.”
thigh No reason can be given why the letter i should
though occur in the last syllable of such words as believe,
throw conceive, &c., nor why it should precede the e in
yout believe, relieve and grieve, whilst it follows it in
W.D. conceive, deceive, perceive and receive.
* The o should be omitted in the last syllable of 2! A reform of our spelling would be attended with words ending in ous, as famous, gracious, various, var many advantages. It would abridge the labor of tuous, &c., &c. foreigners and children in
+ The c should be omitted wherever it precedes a k, 35 it would shorten the process of writing and print
in rock, block, brick, stick, &c., &c. ing, and save ink and paper now uselessly con- ing" may obviously be still farther shortened, with equal
# Many of the words in the co'umn of “ amended spell. sumed.
neath its depressing burdens, and she almost laLOVE SKETCHES. mented the loving solicitude that had lengthened
an experience so fraught with perplexities and reShe was most gifted; sad it is,
gret; for we know not what we do, nor what heavy Such powers to profane
griefs we pray for, in asking that life may be proHer spirit knelt to worldliness
The last rays of the declining sun were lighting
the view on which Bertha gazed, and nothing was And lovely was the snowy white
there to mar its peaceful loveliness. A soft smile or ber fair and faultless brow.
rose to her lip—the smile that comes when we look Now every tone was musical
on those we love best-as she observed two perAnd every movement grace,
sons slowly traversing the shaded avenue leading But oh! it was a grief to me
to her home. They were a lady and gentleman, To look upon her face.
and “both were young, and one was beautiful.” So much of purer feeling lost,
An artist would have paused enraptured before the
stately and queen-like witchery of Clara Vernon's Departed without trace!
face, and every movement-every attitude of her
faultless form, was replete with the self-possessed There were gorgeous summer vines, curtaining and peerless grace of one who had made fascinathe open window, from which the soft, sweet eyes tion an absorbing and successful study. There was of Bertha Vernon were looking thoughtfully forth, nothing simply natural about her, but a nature in over a varied and “most living landscape." The itself attractive, had been guided, not altered, and gentle wind just stirred the bright ringlets of her the final effect of such tutoring was so beautiful, long fair hair, and summoned to her cheek the deli- that the most fastidious forgot to censure. There cate rose-hue which for months had been banished were lofty and glowing thoughts too, in the aspiby the continual presence of suffering. She had ring spirit of the proud beauty, and the eye whose been ill, very ill, and to expect her restoration, had flashing was so dazzling and lustrous, the lip whose for awhile seemed like hoping against hope, but gay smile was so winning, told eloquently of a mind youth is strong in endurance, and it was not willed whose dreamings were of no common character, that one so well beloved, should die so soon. Ber- and a heart whose impulses were the rebellious and tha had been always an affectionate and gentle impetuous ones, out of which are the issues of life. child, and she had grown to girlhood with all her The looks her companion bent on her were full of dearest ties uobroken. Not a voice spoke to her, ardent admiration, but it was the open and undisthat did not grow kinder as it greeted her, and none guised approval of brotherly tenderness, not the could look without friendly interest on one whose subdued and timid reverence of a lover's gaze. heart was so full of spontaneous tenderness for all Their conversation had been quiet and cheerful, things living. Very lovely had been her tranquil and those who had listened to their careless words and happy existence, and like awakening from the would have little imagined that Clara Vernon had fearful phantasies of some painful dream, seemed ever been more to her friend than a kind and symher arising from the sombre visions of sickness. pathizing sister. Yet the period had been when She gazed around her, and every object shone with Charles Herbert had no other vision, than the beaua new brightness, each tone of nature had acquired Liful face beside him, when she had been to him a strange and peculiar melody, and the glad, rejoi- the perfect embodiment of all life's fairest things, cing earth never appeared half so beautiful as now, and he had loved her wildly and fervently as boyin its glorious crimson robe of evening sunshine. hood ever loves its first enchantress. He had It is a solemn thing, to have heen on the very brink told his tenderness too, and the denial that answerof the grave, hovering, as it were, between two ed it had been cold and guarded, for Clara was exexistences, and then unexpectedly restored to the acting, enthusiastic and ambitious, and Herbert world, and we pity the hearts for whom such events had little to proffer then, but a warm, true heart, have no spiritual and enduring lesson, and who go and a future filled with many hopes. These were back to flutter again in their idle frivolity without not enough to satisfy a nature craving the glitterone higher thought of their own increased respon- ing and ostentatious realities of the world, and sibilities, or a single improving reflection on the Clara's rejection, though graciously worded, had deep realities of life and futurity. For such, there been calm and decisive. is little hope ; heaven help them in their dark and Now three years had elapsed, and Herbert's shadowy days —But Bertha's was not one of position was in every respect altered. He had these, and there were pure and prayerful thoughts in won an enviable reputation as a promising member the bright young spirit that had soared so near to of the bar, and had unexpectedly inherited wealth ; heaven. Ah! there were long years yet in store but the rapt devotion of old times had faded away for her, when her soul grew sad and languid be- 'with them, and the more tranquil affection of his
deeper feelings and maturer judgment had been after another, gloomily around us; cares gather, laid at a gentler shrine.
that forsake us not; the hopes that gladdened the He had met Bertha in a distant city, where she hereafter depart from the earth, to brighten a farhad been residing for the completion of her educa- ther futurity; the step that was lightest becomes tion; they had there revived the intimate acquaint- languid, and life is a sorrow to the soul. Thrice ance of their childhood, and he was now her ac- blessed are the ones who never experience this cepted and acknowledged lover. Of his former inevitable change, but lie down to sleep with unattachment to Clara, Bertha knew nothing, and no tainted spirits, and pass gently from their youth, to voice bad spoken more cordial gratulation and ap- heaven. And blessed, too, are they who love the proval of his choice, than that of his early love. young, and deal kindly with their frivolities and To Bertha, with her sweet and confiding disposi- failings ; for cold words fall bitterly on the gay, imtion, her pure, self-forgetting nature, this new tie petuous heart, and the season comes to us all was the bright realization of all her spirit hoped when such things are regrets, when it is a pleasure for, and there was not one sullying trace of calcu- to recall the gladness we have conferred, and a lating worldliness in the deep tenderness that re- pain to remember its reverse, and when a kind look sponded to Herbert's with a child's true and un- and tender word are among the soul's recorded doubting reliance. Her health, which for several treasures. months had been precarious, alone prevented their There was something amounting almost to rereimmediate marriage, and perhaps her fragility, and rence in the deferential nature of Bertha's affection the consciousness of her having patiently suffered for her sister. In her eyes, Clara's appearance so much, lent a softness and anxious solicitude to and character were equally faultless, and the imHerbert's feelings which rendered them doubly pre- perious selfishness, the dictatorial manner too often cious.
apparent in Clara's daily conduct, seemed to her There is nothing in moral existence more touch-judgment only the involuntary result of a sapeingly beautiful, than the uncomplaining endurance riority not to be doubted, nor denied. Dispositions of suffering in youth. In maturer years, we learn like Bertha's, simple, yet refined, timid to excess, from observation, if not from actual experience, to but capable of a moral heroism stronger souls anticipate pain in some one of its unnumbered would shrink from, meet us rarely in the world; forms; we are then less prone to express our emo- we turn to them as the desert wanderer pauses tions, or to expect the sympathy of those around when the green place greets him in the wilderness, us, and we feel that silent calmness is the wisest. the pure fountains of their thoughts refresh and and best philosophy. But it is difficult for the cheer us ; they bear our memories to the time of young to realize this, and it is a hard thing for the our own early innocence, and awaken a deeper warm, wild impulse to be subdued and deadened veneration, and truer appreciation for the diviner in its earliest spring, for the elastic step to grow tendencies still lingering amid the mysteries of prematurely slow and languid, and yet for the heart humanity. to maintain its patient tranquillity, and the true soul A smile lent its sunny and exquisite light to to look hopefully upward and be strong.
Clara's face as she left the lovers alone that evenHerbert had mingled much with society, and ing, but it soon disappeared, and sadness, vague, though young had looked often on the dimmer side indefinable, and irrepressible lay heavily on her of human nature. There was to him a peculiar in- reflections as she sat languidly in her chamber, with terest in the innocent freshness of Bertha's being, her writing on the table before her. An espresand something sweet in the unshadowed hopes of one sion of irony and bitterness glanced across her for whom the hereafter seemed filled with bright- countenance, as she idly and carelessly turned orer ness and for whom life was now unfolding its love the closely covered leaves, where it has long been liest leaves.
her habit to record the trivial events and emotions Youth! the true and holy and evanescent! hea- that marked her every day experience,—those triven-sent is the magical witchery that makes thee Aes which make up woman's life, and decide her beautiful, that paints the present with dream-like final desting. She had been accustomed for serehappiness, and lints the future with radiant and vi- ral years, regularly to trace these pages, and there sionary promise. Soon thou leavest us with all was a sad contrast between the childish confidence thine enchantment; we miss thy presence and yet and impetuous hopefulness of the early records, know not when was thy farewell. We only mourn- and the prematurely heart-worn, depressed, disapfully feel that thou hast departed from our lot, for- pointed tone, evinced in the later ones. And yet, ever, and we go wearily onward, heart-sore pil- the circumstances around her were prosperous and grims to a darker and sadder time, and the past brilliant; she had never known a severe sorrow, whose reality was so brilliant, grows dim upon our there were many who praised her, and one or two pathway, till remembrance is all shadow. Then who sincerely loved. She was beautiful, gifted, the responsibilities, the trials, the endurances of cultivated and intellectual; the world, whose afhumanity press heavily upon us, truths arise, one'plause she worshipped, had bowed down in admiration to her, and thus far, her footsteps had only ment in a girl's life, when she hears a lover's decpressed on flowers. Then, what needed she ? Ah! laration of affection, for her thoughts go forth to questioner! if thou hast ever felt the total insuffi- the future with new vividness, and she learns to ciency of these things for happiness, if when ac- realize her woman's lot. The clouds or sunbeams tual blessings and pleasures were brightest, thy of many after years, lie hoarded in the decisions soul has still burningly thirsted for something en- of such brief instants. True and impassioned during and beyond them all, if the time has been were the earnest professions I have heard, yet they to thee when no aims were thine but those of the have been breathed, and listened to, in vain. And earth, then look into thine own heart, and read its am I so wedded to my idle, ambitious dreams, that mournful memories, and thou art answered ! Turn a love so beautiful as his should be rejected, even we now to a few of these hasty pencillings of a while valued too well ? And yet such rejection is proud and restless and craving intellect.
better for us both ; for I am not fitted to enjoy the " The night, starry and tranquil and full of beau- tranquil pleasures of Herbert's lot, and he, amid the tiful visions as a poet's slumber, is resting on the duties of his profession, will speedily cease to lasummer-robed earth. Not a' cloud is on the hea- ment the loss of his boyhood's love. I write coldly, vens, not a shadow flits over the innumerable stars calmly, but my spirit grows faint, and hope dies that are looking down so placidly on this troubled within me, as I remember, and then look onward. world. I have no sympathy with this perfect But my era of romance has departed, if indeed, it peacefulness; a cloud would seem to me a friend. ever had existence; I can not live without the exIt was an idle, but elevating faith, that mortal des citement of public admiration and envy. I stand tiny was traced unalterably in yon bright leaves; on the ashes of love, and now the world, the active, and fraught with holy and bewildering mystery restless, rewarding world, must be my atoning fumust have been the lives of those whose days were ture !" passed in dreaming, and who, in the solemn depths Alas! young dreamer! thou knowest not what of night, strove to reveal the unreadable histories thou askest, in seeking the rewards the world ever written for eternity on the sky. Vain was the giveth to those who trust in it! creed, but yet not vainer than many an one whose
JANE TayloE WORTHINGTON. beginning and ending is here ; and oh! how full of inspiration, passing the power of language to depict, must have been the ever upward hopes and illusions of the astrologers of old. They had a perpetual aim in existence, an aim unrealized and unattainable, but deceiving pleasantly and com
LINES TO THE ABSENT. pletely to the last. And is not this, the foundation
" Love! how pass the weary hours, of human happiness ? if, in truth, humanity and
Since I parted from thy side ?" happiness have any thing in common.
Dearest! when thy own lov'd flowers real blessings would I willingly and rejoicingly re- Sweetest breathe at even-tide, linquish for a permanent motive in' life, however
There I wander, thoughtful now, delosive. But it is my misfortune to view all
Wearing garlands for thy brow;
But the rosy wreath I twine things vaguely; to be ever longing, aspiring, seek
Droops, like every joy of mine! ing—for I know not what. What a waste of ener- “ Happy ?" Yes, a tear is stealing, gy is my daily existence, what a continual fritter- Which I would not have thee see! ing away of time, opportunity and talent. And Much, too much, the heart revealing-yet, how can I avoid it? There is little scope for
Happy ? yes, I think of thee ! woman's ambition, and the world proffers nothing “Love ! how pass the weary hours, that harmonizes with mine. I hear praises of the Since I parted from thy side?" great and gifted, and the approval lavished upon
Dearest! in our rural bowers, them stirs my very soul with the deep, wild pioing
Where the sportive wood-nymphs bide;
Underneath the ancient tree, that such commendations might be my reward.
Where I oft reclin'd with thee, Little prospect have I of fulfilling such eager yearn- Or, in musing mood, I rove, ing; for I am too impetuous, too impatient, to be as- Sadly through the dark pine grove, siduous. The labor requisite to attain distinction, Hush'd my soul, in deep devotion, would embitter every moment, and literary fame
While the solemn blast comes o'er, is at once the most toilsome, and the only enduring
Sinking, swelling, like the occan,
Heard along a distant shore. one now attainable by my sex. Well were it with me, could I but learn to toil and be patient, 'to
“ Love! where pass the weary hours labor and to wait !
Since I parted from thy side ?"
Where we cull'd the sweetest flowers, "My heart is troubled, for I have heard to day the
Asking, wishing nought beside. warm arowal of a tenderness whose silent presence Bending o'er the cool, clear stream has long been around me. It is an important mo- Where we watch'd the ripples play;