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the very worst company in the world? He must do as I did when I returned home, having first carefully packed up my modesty, and left it in the keeping of a Parisian prude, who had sinned only to preserve it, as she assured me, where it is to"remain till called for,' and take out a regular license to practise in the court of fools ! It is vain to dissent ; you must sail with the stream, or be left on its muddy banks, to stagnate, or be absorbed into the mass. I did not aspire to the highest distinctions of the order. I could neither bear the restraint of stays; nor the regular apprenticeship to pugilisın. One might as well return to the schools, as toil at the mastery of the slang dictionary; and as to perfection in the art of indifference, the tread-mill is child's play to the laborious acquisition of it. I have, therefore, satisfied myself with being a coxcomb au second rang, or what may be called the Epicurean—which, with ample means and appurtenances to boot, qualifies me to do every thing I like, in the manner I like best. I learned to distinguish wines in Italy, which half the world never heard of, and became an adept in the art à faire le cuisine in Paris-not because I really cared for the thing, but because every body talked of it, and I had heard of its value, as an import at home." Vol. II. p. 326.
Last, and certainly not least in our good graces, come the hero and heroine. In the character of Lady Louisa the author has had, we think, complete success, corresponding as it does in warmth of feeling and high spirit, with the circumstances which she shall narrate in her own words.
« My first recollections may be traced back to the period of early childhood, when my mind began to develope itself, under the affectionate and tender culture of her whom I had ever called mother, within the walls of a convent in Flanders. Oh! Percy, she was indeed an angelic being : but, alas ! she was not my mother, although the veil was not rent from my eyes until she was herself about to be torn from me for ever. Every advantage that could be derived from a highly cultivated mind, and a heart endowed with all the finest feelings of our nature, were mine, under the constant and never-failing superintendence of this exalted woman. Percy, of a froward and haughty disposition, which, but for her happy culture, that scarcely could be called correction, so insen sibly, though so surely did it work, would have led to the misery of myself, and of all who might eventually become connected with me. My very failings she converted into benefits; and upon a too proud and daring spirit, which, opposed by injudicious treatment, might have degenerated into all that is ungentle and unwomanly, she grafted, through the influence of Christian motives, that independence upon all secondary causes, which has enabled me not only to see my way, but to persevere in it whenever I feel my own suggestions, or those of others, influenced by prejudice or passion, rather than by a sense of duty.'
“True true, who could have borne the eternal querulousness of Mrs. Norcliffe, or
“Oh! no, Percy, I take no credit for my forbearance in that quarter ; Mrs. Norcliffe could never possess the power of influenc. ing even my opinions, much less of trying my principles ; but I am not seeking to illustrate the few virtues I may have partially derived from the best of women; but to account to you for my not being what I might have been, under the privations of a worse than orphan state.'
66 Oh! could thy cruel cruel parents behold thee as I do.'
"I was about fifteen, when my benefactress, my preceptressmy more than mother, died; and it was on the evident approach of this long dreaded event, that she communicated to me the mystery which hung round my birth, without being able to dissipate it further than by the conviction on her own mind, that my parents were living, and that they moved in the higher sphere of life. But what satisfaction could this bring to an honourable and sensitive mind, in exchange for the filial affection which I had so long felt and con-, sidered due alone to the exemplary and virtuous Mrs. Bellenden; what were to me parents who dared not acknowledge their child ; or, in acknowledging, would cover her and themselves with ignominy and disgrace ?
“This disclosure, and the loss of my truly maternal friend, were the first tests to which my principles, so earnestly inculcated, and so divinely illustrated in her life and death, were subjected. I have had other trials, they have been less arduous; but enough of this. Vol. II.
159. Percy himself is an ingenuous, high-couraged, and generous boy, wbom every one would love in real life ; but he is only a boy, and this, we apprehend, is not what the writer intended: Traits which would be admirable in a real person, may be so combined in a fictitious one as to seem misplaced and unna. tural, inasmuch as it is less difficult and meritorious to invent than to practise, the conduct which flows from them. Nay, one may even say that the same scruples and self-denial, which sit on Lady Louisa with a dignified and feminine grace, amount subsequently in Percy, to a pitch of Quixotic delicacy which is even indelicate to the lady herself, and naturally places her in a situation inconceivably awkward.
" " You-you may command me, Loo, in all things, except-'
« • The only instance in which I would be arbitrary; But attend to me, you have taken a view of your situation, which neither my wishes nor my sympathy can alter.'
“For mercy's sake, do not reproach me, Loo!'
“ Neither in word, nor in my heart, Percy; but I must have the benefit of the fact ; you cannot face the world, you must there. fore turn your back upon it. All I ask, all I claim, is to be your companion and your friend; my uncle loves you as his son, he is anxious to strengthen the tie, by an alliance with his new-found niece,
“ • Be not too sure of that Loo, he is proud, justly proud of his high descent; and I have not seen him, he has been content to bandy messages with me, he has not, as he was wont, sought me out, since the fatal disclosure of Thursday; he was before staggered by the obscurity, be assured he is now shocked, and disgusted by the infamy of my family!
"Be it so, Percy; still his word is pledged, and his affections unchanged. He might, with his worldly notions, be avérse to the publicity of an union, thus formed by his niece and heiress, but he will not refuse to bestow upon us his own abandoned cottage on the hills ;, and there, in seclusion, if we do not find our own happiness, we must have forgotten what first constituted it, or have drawn strange inferences from the little we have seen of what is called the world.'
“Loo, Loo, tempt me not with such a prospect; point not out the cool spring, to the exhausted victim of the desert; hold not up the fruits of paradise to the eyes of a famishing wretch, who has not strength to reach them. I cannot listen, I dare not, fascination is in your voice, heaven in your accent; and the more they breathe their balmy influence upon my distracted soul, the more surely they 'speak of happiness, which never, never can be mine, without sinking me to the depths of infamy, even lower than my cruel fate has plunged me. Forgive, forgive, blest being; think of my strug. glès ; call me not weak, deem me not feeble or infirm, when I have the resolution to bid adieu to thee, and to happiness, for ever.'And before she was aware of the action, he had snatched up
his hat, and flown' rather than precipitated himself out of the room and down the stairs." Vol. III. p. 311.
After this, it is but fair perhaps to allow the author to plead his own excuse, at least to shew that he is perfectly aware of the incongruity.
“ If there be no kind considerate mạiden aunt-no father of a family whose daughter has lately had a narrow escape of running away with a strolling player---ready at hand to bestow an eulogium upon Percy's admirable example of self-denial, he must be subjected to a jury, not of his peers, because it would be difficult, if not impossible, to find so many within any reasonable allotted space--but of young ladies under the age of lwenty-one-and we may add, -Heaven grant him a safe deliverance." Vol. III. p. 315.
To this. last clause we willingly say Amen. If a writer must needs indulge in the marvellous, it is at least pleasant to see the eccentricities of his characters take a generous and disinterested turn ; and there is no danger of their having too many imitators. Besides, Percy is a young man bred in the
Cc VOL. XXI. APRIL, 1824.
mountains, and must stand excused on the plea of ignorance, if he shall appear no adept in the mysteries of that matrimonial policy which is understood to such a nicety by the YorkHouse club at Bath. For our own part, having always loved and esteemed Don Quixote, as a thorough-bred gentleman, we are secretly partial to characters which partake in some measure of his romantic pranks; and among these we must class our friend Percy, protesting however against his being confounded with the dark-haired curly-lipped gentlemen of the Germanized or Byronian school, whose romance takes the shape of enthusiastic selfishness.
At the risk of being considered hypercritics, we must take exception at the language of some parts of the dialogue. We can overlook the omission of the article le in one or two places where it was required to make sense in the for department, but not the extraordinary manner in which the native dialects of our own country are transposed and misused. Admitting that the Cumberland smugglers might have picked up in the course of their wandering lives a non-descript jargon, compounded of the flippancies of the tailors shop-board and the bratality of the condemned hoid, yet why put such broad Scotch phrases as "a stoup extraordinar," and the like, into the mouths of the inhabitants of a London alley? The truth is, that it is more easy to copy the terse easy elegant language of the higher orders, as the author has uniformly done, than to imitate to the life the different shades, and peculiarities of idiom and brogue, which prevail in different districts, and mould each into a natural shape : but this is hardly an excuse for such gross and obvious blanders as the one in question. If the author, however, be a Scotchman, he certainly does not belong to that peculiar school, who professedly draw their inspiration from th punch-bowl, and screen such disgraceful ribaldry as “ Visits to the Haram," and such puritanical indecency as " Ann Stavert and Amos Bradley," under the sanction of Buchanan's grave visage. Percy Mallory is as free from the least approach to grossness, as from the taint of Germanized sentiment, or of that controversial chit-chat and godly gossip, which attract a large and separate class of admirers. It is in short written in a frank, honest, healthy tone of feeling, which does honour to the author's heart; and though it does not undertake the thankless office of laying down a specific moral, higher considerations are never sacrificed to the amusement of the reader ; nor is a line to be found which indicates other than sound and rightminded principles.
Art. V. A Comparative Estimate of the Mineral and
Mosaical Geologies. By Granville Penn, Esq. 8vo. 460 pp. 12s.
12s. Ogle and Duncan. 1822. ART. VI. A Supplement to the Comparative Estimate of
the Mineral and Mosaical Geologies : relating chiefly to the Geological Indications of the Phenomena of the Cave
at Kirkdale. 8vo. 186 pp. 55. Ogle & Duncan. 1823. We have always doubted the expediency of connecting the speculations of science with the truths of revealed religion ; and the work now before us has fully justified all our scruples on this head. It is sufficient to observe, as the ground of our opinion, that the Holy Scriptures were not meant to convey to mankind a system of philosophy; and that consequently every attempt to derive from them a species of knowledge which they profess not to contain, will not only be attended with complete failure, but will also, in most instances, call forth the scorn of the sceptic and the regret of the sincere believer. The book of Genesis ought never to be resorted to as a manual either of astronomy or of geology. The objects contemplated by its Inspired Author were much more sacred and important; and accordingly though he was skilled in all the learning of the Egyptians, he uniformly abstained from obtruding upon the attention of those whom he wished to instruct in heavenly things, the crude notions of priests or magicians, however ingenious or however popular.
There is no doubt, some reason to lament that those who, in modern times, cultivate science with the greatest assiduity, are not always the most ready to engraft upon it pious feeling and moral reflection. They do not identify, as frequently and resolutely as they ought, the laws of nature with the power and wisdom of the Supreme Being ; nor point out, in the constitution and events of the material world, those final causes which are so well fitted to raise the mind of the youthful student to the contemplation of the divine attributes. We may ever and doon too detect, in the pursuits of philosophy, certain symptoms of that modified atheism which withdraws the thoughts from all causes but such as are physical and secondary. Nay, the very language which is used in such researches seems to have the same unhappy tendency. There is in the terms of science a species of epicureanism, which is found to interpose a veil between the inquiries of the student, and the operations of the Great First Cause; whilst the spirit of modern investigation contributes to en.