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breast the murderous secret, weighed down with the sense of a burden which becoines too heavy to be borne, at last finds relief at the Confessional at St. Peter's—the World's Cathedral. In this connection we have incidentally from our author some valuable art-criticism, which, as well as his observations on the Coliseum, will be recognized by all who have ever visited Rome. An interview next takes place between Hilda and Kenyon, which leads to the planning of an appointment which fails to be realized, owing to the sudden and mysterious flight of Hilda the Dove from her Dove-cote, announced by the extinction of the lamp before the virgin's shrine.
The next chapter (XIX) is taken up with a description of the sculptor's search for Hilda, during which, after some mishaps, he encounters in an assumed disguise a peasant and contadina, (our old acquaintances Donatello and Miriam,) who give him a clue which eventually conducts him ont of the labyrinth. At length Hilda re-appears in the midst of the celebration of the Carnival, the scenes in which are depicted with as much force as vivacity, and form an agreeable relief to the gloom and suspense of the preceding chapter. The book closes with an attempt to explain some phases of Miriam's past history, particularly her connection with the mysterious model, who turns out to be a Capuchin friar; as also the probable cause of Hilda's mysterious disappearance, supposed to have been brought about by religious interference; her union with the sculptor Kenyon, who has long since won the heart of the pure maiden; while in regard to the ultimate fate of Miriam and Donatello, he is left in a state of mind which may be described as not despairing if not hopeful.
Such, briefly analyzed in detail, is the “Romance of Monte Beni.” It has no regular plot-indeed, it is not so much a romance as a “poem in prose,” or to speak more accurately, an “ Art-Novel.” The two most interesting characters in the work are Donatello and Hilda--the Faun and the Dove, for we do not think the writer has succeeded in making Miriam or Kenyon in an intellectual point of view very attractive to the reader. We agree with a critic who says that “the character of Donatello alone is one of the subtlest conceptions of modern genius."
Hilda is also a pure creation of the author, and the almost ethereal nature and spotless soul of the sweet heretic, as exhibited in the severe conflict going on in her mind, after having come into possession of the dreadful secret, suffering for the sins of another, pointing the moral that the consequences of crime are not confined to the one who commits it, will long make her image linger in the reader's imagination. The Specter of the Catacomb, as we have seen, turns out to be a mortal man. Yet no particular interest attaches to the dead Capuchin, but that connected with his awful fate, and though an attempt is inade to account for his singular conduct on the plea of insanity, he continues to be a specter, and naught beside. The story is nothing but a reproduction of “The Scarlet Letter," save that the scene is transferred from New England to Italy; at the same time, as a romance, the work exceeds the latter, while the reading public is a gainer by the transportation.
In a dramatic point of view we think the book to be imperfect, not so, however, in an artistic point of view. Were the art-criticisms with which it abounds the only thing in the volume, it would still be intrinsically valuable. “The whole work is steeped in Italian atmosphere," and could only have been written by one whom long residence in Italy had made familiar with the master-pieces of modern and antique art. We have alady retransferred to our pages one of these unique criticisms having reference to the productions of our American artists. One chapter, entitled “The Emptiness of Art Galleries,” contains thoughts worthy to be pondered by our aspirants to artistic fame, and particularly by those would-be connoisseurs who often throw away a reputation for common sense, as well as coin, through inability to judge accurately of the value of a true work of Art.
Though the web of the Romance of Monte Beni is slightly woven, yet underneath is solemn truth. It is an attempt to discuss the problem, old and yet ever new, which has baffled so many minds in respect to the permission of evil and its relation to the Divine providence. The reader, we think, will hardly be satisfied with Mr. Hawthorne's solution of the question. By one who has attentively perused the story, some idea of it may be guessed at, though the dim religious light in which it appears scarcely makes it manifest. In one instance he does, indeed, hint at the infinite evil of sin as needing an infinite atonement, but the sentiments which he puts into the mouths of his principal characters, as in the case of his liberal views of the catholic creed of the confessional, evince the entertaining of thoughts which a healthy intellect as well as a healthy conscience could never for a moment perinit itself to entertain.
Thus speak Miriam and Kenyon on this point:
(You stir up deep and perilous matter, Miriam,' replied Kenyon, 'I dare not follow you into the unfathomable abysses whither you are tending.'
Yet there is a pleasure in them! I delight to brood on the verge of this great mystery,' returned she. The story of the fall of man! Is it not repeated in our * Romance of Monte Beni!' And may we follow the analogy yet farther? Was that very sin, into which Adam precipitated himself and all his race-was it the destined means by which, over a long pathway of toil and sorrow, we are to attain a higher, brighter, and profounder happiness than our last birthright gave? Will not this idea account for the permitted existence of sin, as no other theory can ?'
It is too dangerous, Miriam! I cannot follow you,' repeated the sculptor. Mortal man has no right to tread on the ground where you now set your feet.'” Vol. II, p. 250.
The same peculiarities of style which characterized Mr. Hawthorne's former works are even more apparent in the Romance of Monte Beni. This is distinguished hy simplicity, purity, and beauty. “Melancholy—a quiet pensiveness like the faint light of an autumn afternoon is the atmosphere of Hawthorne's writings.” He has been called “The Tennyson of Prose." “ There is an indescribable grace about his sentences and a particular rhythm in their construction, which falls on the ear like the voice of some one who is dear to us." His writings are characterized by a remoteness and picturesqueness of idea, which is equally striking in the delineation. “Every word tells, and there is no word that does not tell.” Such perfection of style can only be the result of a felicitous gift of nature, combined with great and laborious practice, and according to an irreversible decree in the world of letters, is the precious amber which must embalm his thoughts and preserve them to posterity.
ARTICLE IX.—THE CRIME AGAINST THE RIGHT OF SUF
In a free commonwealth it is the duty of every citizen to care for the welfare of the state; and it is his right to speak his honest thought wherever he can find a hearing. The duty of remonstrating against public evils, and of contributing to correct them, is not incumbent on magistrates and legislators only, but on every citizen. Against every peril hanging over the commonwealth, an appeal may always be made to the people ; for the safety of the state against perils from within, as well as against perils from without, is dependent on the people.
It is the boast of these states that they are self-governed. The officers of government, in every department, legislative, executive, or judicial, are not, in the strict use of language, rulers—nol sovereigns, doing as they list and irresponsible except to God; but servants, sustaining to the people, by whom they are directly or indirectly appointed, a relation almost identical with that which the various functionaries in a despotic government sustain to the monarch whom they serve. The great duty of a sovereign is to fill all the offices of government with capable and faithful men. A monarch, however absolute, can rule only through the agency of the officers whom he appoints to serve him; and his great business is to get good officers for every trust. He must have his royal or imperial council from which his legislative edicts shall proceed, and in which the policy of his government shall be considered and determined. In this council, it is his duty to collect the wisest, most just, most honorable, and most faithful of his subjects. He must have his judicial officers to hear and decide, according to the law and the facts, in all cases of crime against the government, or of wrong or controversy between one subject and another. For these duties he must select men of thorough learning in the system and science of VOL. XVIII.
the laws by which they are to judge, of a quick and inflexible sense of justice, and of unimpeachable and incorruptible honor. He must have his executive functionaries-heads of the departments of administration superintendents of the police-chief rulers, under him, of provinces and cities; and all these must have their subordinates. In such posts of trust and power, he must place the right men, men of competent understanding and skill, men of known integrity and of suitable dignity and weight of character. All this—which, in a simple monarchy, depends on the will of the sovereign-is with us dependent on the will of the people expressed by their suffrages. As, under a simple monarchy, all misgovernment by whatever officers, must be in some sense the fault of the sovereign, proceeding from some incapacity or delusion on his part, or else resulting from some unjust and wicked intention in him; so, under our political institutions, all misgovernment by the various functionaries entrusted with power, is in some sense the fault of the people by whose suffrages, directly or indirectly, those men are placed in office. It may be because the people are ignorant and deluded; it may be because they are carried away by some bewildering but dishonorable and criminal excitement; it may be because, through some negligence on their part, their intentions as expressed by their votes are defeated, but it is difficult to conceive of misgovernment which may not be in some sense imputed to the people. Even when the will of the people, as expressed by the majority of actual and legitimate suffrages, is defeated, that defeat must be owing, in some sense, to the ignorance, the impetuosity and heedlessness, or the apathy of the people themselves. It must be because the people, for some reason, are not sufficiently awake and enlightened, or not sufficiently on their guard to prevent the perpetration of the fraud.
It has often seemed to us—and more and more for the last twenty years——that the moral turpitude of illegal voting at elections, and of other kindred crimes, which may be classed together as the crime against the right of suffrage,—is not duly estimated by American citizens generally, and that the