« ForrigeFortsett »
O'er ocean bound a thousand giant ships,
Here then I stand-a woman, 'gainst a world.
I must deck out with certain royal virtues :
To hide them! Busy-fingered hate, still by,
"T is MARY STUART. Purge the earth of her, And I am free-free as the mountain air! *
[A long pause. In what succeeds, the Queen refers to a late interview with her prisoner.]
With what a look of scorn she eyed me! Ha!
Its stroke is death! it strikes, and where art thou?
[Advancing to the table, with a quick step, and seizing the
A bastard, am I? True-while thou dost live.
[She signs the paper with rapid and firm strokes; then
* I had else been perfect; Whole as the marble, founded as the rock,
As broad and general as the casing air.—MACBETH.
BY GEOFFREY LA-TOUCHE.
I PROFESS myself an enthusiastic lover of painting, however small may be my claim to the appellation of a critic. No one excites my envy less than the nice discerner of little inaccuracies. A glaring fault in design, coloring, or perspective, would strike me as soon as any one; but where there is neither of these, I can pardon much that others would consider intolerable, and forget the blemishes in admiring the beauties. In my visits to the Athenæum, I have often been amused with the rough remarks of the "newly-arrived" countryman, the every-day criticisms of the ladies' waiting-gentlemen; but the exquisite foreigner, and foreign exquisite, who comes in to cast a cursory glance round the walls, languish awhile at the ventilator, and then retire, with a look of supreme contempt in every feature of his whiskered phiz, excites my hearty disgust; and I long to assist his passage down the first flight of stairs, with what in Mechanics is called an impetus,-in Metaphysics, an impulse, in common language, a kick.
Speaking of the Gallery, every one must be happy that an establishment of the kind has met with such liberal encouragement from the public, and that the artists of our country have adorned it with so many and such admirable pictures. There were some, particularly those of Allston, which were inferior to none of the productions of modern art. His Jeremiah, Saul and the Witch of Endor, together with his historical pieces and landscapes, are perfect in their separate departments. Fisher and Doughty have each contributed a number of pictures, in their best manner; and the portraits of Peale, Alexander, Harding, and Stuart, were good specimens of their different styles. There were also many very fine works of the old masters, and of the living foreign artists. On the whole, the exhibitions have been such as would do honor to a country far more advanced in the elegant arts than our own, and we wish them, from our heart, constant success, and constant improvement.
In our humble opinion, there is no class of men that more deserve encouragement than artists. We owe them
our sympathy in their sufferings, our relief in their wants. We think, too, that they are possessed of more talent than the generality of men in the other professions; and we come to this conclusion from the fact, that none are painters, unless from the impulse of nature; and that when such an impulse strongly leads to the pursuit of any particular taste, we are gifted with powers fitted to follow it. Besides, we are confirmed in this belief, from the consideration, that the accomplishments and natural endowments requisite to excellence in this pursuit, are perhaps greater than those in any other. For, to be a perfect painter, in the higher styles of the art, a man must have a powerful mind, and a strong and brilliant imagination; and the energies of both must be brought under his control, by education and severe, well-directed discipline. But however great his talents may be, they are of no avail, without great mechanical execution. The eye of the artist may be crossed by ideal creations, which his hand refuses to transcribe to canvass. The enrapturing and beautiful visions of a higher and purer state of existence may float before his imagination, and melt away into nothingness, like bright and golden clouds, that vanish ere he can have the slightest opportunity of delineating them. It is not with the painter as with the author. The latter has his own native tongue to express his meaning in, and will find it a faithful medium through which to transfer his thoughts and feelings to future ages, and by which we may form a correct estimate of his genius. But the hieroglyphical language of the painter is far more difficult to acquire, and even its best masters have been unable entirely to do away its indistinctness, and make plain all its hidden shades of meaning; and hence I infer, that there is often more true genius displayed in the imperfect success of an artist, comparatively unskilled in the use of his pencil, than in many authors, whom the world has ever admired and idolized. Raphael brought down to earth the beings of another world, transferred them to canvass as if by magic, and thus permitted us to hold communion with the sublime creations of his gifted intellect. Michael Angelo breathed on the cold marble, and it instantly rose into new forms of surpassing loveliness and grandeur; and with the same heaven-born genius, he depicted the triumphs of the haughty
Roman, and the terrors of the Last Judgment-day. these are not unequalled in their original natural powers, though they stand so unrivalled in their glory. There have been many brothers of their art,-members, though to fame, perhaps, obscure ones, of that splendid fraternity which has so long been among the brightest ornaments of the world, who have gone down to decay and forgetfulness, leaving behind them no traces of those glowing inspirations, for the expression of which language was too weak, and the knowledge of their art too limited.
BY MR. FRANCIS HOCK.*
I CANNOT exactly tell why I first fell in love with Caroline Lee. I do not remember why an evening that we shortly afterwards spent together, was the happiest of my life; nor why we went home that evening, so well pleased with each other, ourselves, and every thing about us. But when Caroline had thrown on her shawl, and tied the strings of a pretty bonnet beneath the prettiest chin in the world, and timidly accepted my arm-that delightful walk! If my years outnumber the leaves of the forest, I shall not forget
I could never conceive, however, why such a charming incident should occur in December. It would have been infinitely more proper in rosy June, the month of fresh beauty, the time of the leaf and flower, when the air is laden with music and perfume. It was an evening of December, however, but a pleasanter the moon never shone upon; being of that remarkably mild weather, which ushered in the Christmas of twenty-eight.
* We do not know who Mr. Hock is. We are informed that this article was left at the printing-office, by a gentleman in a snuff-colored coat, highly rouged, and with an ugly nose, who requested that it should be set up immediately. If the gentleman in a snuff-colored coat, highly rouged, and with an ugly nose, is desirous of inserting his reminiscences in "The Collegian," he would oblige us by directing them to one of the CLUB. We are astonished that he should have hoped to pass himself off as our editorial self; and still more are we astonished, that he should have been successful. We never wore a snuff-colored coat, seldom rouge, and have a very respectable nose.
I have said that I could not tell why I first loved Caroline; but I was writing in a hurry, and was very much mistaken. I could only have loved her because she was altogether a lovely object. I may have seen, in my lifetime, a darker eye than hers, and blacker hair, but never a glossier lip, or a more delicate cheek. Her expression could hardly be called intellectual, for it wanted altogether that paleness and sadness of feature which generally mingle with this character of beauty. Above every thing else, however, she had a soul; and you may write it down among your commonplaces, that very few of Eve's fashionable daughters have souls.
If I were writing fiction, I should have lived and loved among the vineyards of France; or been straying at this romantic season, among the crumbling colonnades of Rome, or in the shadow of a decaying palace at Venice. But I am recording a page in the history of my own life, and am reminded, by my strict regard for truth, that I have nothing to do with the magnificent mansion of the noble, or the green cottage of the vine-dresser. Our walk was in one of the oldest cities of New England, and in the course of it we met with neither splendid nor massive architecture, though we passed scenes connected with much that is interesting; here the plain and antique house of a patriotic leader in the revolution; there, a spot marked by tradition for some daring and heroic adventure. Though the scenes around us had never been breathed upon by the spirit of romance, they had been hallowed by the spirit of patriotism.
Of all my life I remember nothing like that evening. The sky was cloudless, and in its blue depths were the moon and the silent company of stars, with nothing to dim their glory. Our thoughts were roving over every thing of light and beauty in every corner of the globe. The mind of my fair companion, naturally brilliant, had been enriched by all that woman should learn. It had been elevated by a deep sense and a deep love of poetry. Her conversation was a stream of beautiful sentiments, uttered in the fittest language. We wandered on. Caroline talked as if her lip had been touched with inspiration; and I, too, caught a portion of her spirit, and spoke as I never spoke before, and much fear I never shall speak again. We talked folly