The notes of this work greatly illustrate the text, and are written with the same decisive spirit and boldness that characterize the author of South Britain. We shall exhibit foine few of them. On this passage—"Lefftan, Lewin, Aluret, Sired, and two others held it of King Edward, and could alienate their lands at pleasure,” (P. 78,) there is this observation :

« These formed a borough, or frith, of fix men or hinds, who could chuse what Lord or Baron, for their patron, they pleased. The gradation of ranks, (and the proportionate fines,) may be seen in Alfred's laws, $. 36, though it cannot be distinguished in Wilkins's pretended Translation. The original, after enumerating the fine for breaking the borough of the King, Archbishops, Bishops, Eldermers, specifies the BURHBRYCE


SCYLL: CEORLES DOR. FIF Scyll-in English,, a twelve-hind man's boroughbreak, thirty Thillings, a six-hind man's fifteen shillings, a cari's door-break five shillings; which Wilkins gives hominis MCC * Solidorum, triginta ; DC Solidorum quindecim ; Coloni Violatio sopii quinque." P. 78, note. On hagæ we have the following note:

We cannot render hagæ, houses correctly from the following entry :- Centum fuerunt hage, et sunt in eisdem mafuris fexaginta Domus ;'-consequently matur.e-messuages, and hagæ, heys, haughs, or houghs, are nearly fynonimous, and were confidered as proper scites prepared for the erection of houses.” P. 75.

On the meaning of the word servus we have this justifica









“Ibi Æccleíia et unus servus. It is with regret that I differ with a learned Antiquarian friend, relative to the meaning of this word. He considers it as designating an order of men inferior to the Bordarii, because they are frequently mentioned after them,) and the baseit of villains or bondsmen. The foundation of my difference of opinion rests on this base. In the Saxon language, theilerde, thief of the Lord, or servants of the Lord, was the general term for the clergy. We allow that they are mentioned, almost conftantly, after villani and bordarii, in order, for the ploughs and the hufbandmen, or house. bound-men, occupied the first care of the reporters and commissioners. But they are ranked among articles of high value and consequence, à mill, a fishery, falt-pans, and frequently connected with a church,

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

* “ Where is Solidorum in the original ? But we hope to fee Saxok laws speaking fenf in a short period.”

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

after which they are commonly enumerated, so that, doubtless, when treacing of the territories of che dignitaries of the church, we think ourselves fully vuftified by rendering them minifters; when treating of feudal chieftains, they might be his followers, that accompaniet hin in war.-Indeed Serii or Servientes ad Legem is an honourable tile, the ancient term fervant of a lover to his mistress, or our modern m.ft obedient humble servant, degrades not the person using it." P. 35, note.

It was little imagined that Domesday contained such important information to the historian and the lawyer, or that this record contains fufficient evidence in itself to overthrow the authority and statement of every modern British writer, relative to the character and conduct of the Norman William. We find the customs of the Saxon Edward transmitted and secured to Englishmen by tha: bastard, who has always been described as the most despotic tyrant that ever existed; and we find Englishmen in pofseflion of ample estates, in direct contradiction to the representation of former historians. We hope that the editors will meet with such patronage and encouragement as will incite them instantly to proceed in their translation, since it will establish the foundation of an av. thentic history of South Britain ; and we trust that our Legislature, or the Society of Antiquaries, will speedily examine the Survey of the four Counties in the time of Edward the First, and present them to the public as perfect as pollible.


Art. XI. Cupid and Psyche. A Mythological Tale, from the

Golden Ajs of Apuleius. 8vo. Pp. 48. Price is. Wright. London. 1799.

[ocr errors]

HE original of this tale occupies the fourth, fifth, and fixth

books of the Asinus Aureus of Apuleius, fupposed by commen. tators to be an allegorical compofition. La Fontaine was so well pleased with the fubject, that he bestowed great pains in adapting it to the taste of the French public, and, indeed, he says, in his preface to his “ Loves of Cupid and Psyche,"_" J'ai trouvé de plus grandes difficultés dans cet ouvrage qu'en aucune autre qui soit lorti de ma plume.” Mr. Lockman, who was acquainted with the French poet, translated his work into English in 1744, and gave, at the same time, a version of the original Latin. But, we believe, this fable has never before appeared in Englifh, in a poetical dress;


and we are pleased to find that it has at length attracted the notice of a writer who has taste and ability to execute his talk in a manner that will neither do any discredit to Apuleius, nor give the bard himself reason to shrink from a comparison with La Fontaine, There are a fimplicity and attention to nature, highly pleasing, in the following description of Psyche, before the knew the power of love :

« Young Psyche still more beauteous grows,

She seems unconscious of her charms;
Yet no one plucks this opening rose,

She takes no fuitor to her arms.
« Each lifter shines a regal bride,

In sweet connubial union bleft;
Each moves conspicuous in the pride

Of sceptred state and ermin'd vest.
" But PsYCHE Owns no lawful Lord,

She walks a Goddess from above ;
All faw, all prais'd, and all ador'd,

But no one ever dar'd to love.
" Yet half-form'd wishes still will ply

With feverish dreams th' unpractis'd mind,
When the clos'd eye, unknowing why,

Its wonted flumbers fails to find.
“ Though the blank heart no paffion own,

Some soft ideas will intrude,
And the fick girl in filence moan

Her dull unvaried solitude !" We shall extract, for the gratification of our readers, the paffage in which Psyche is described, having yielded to an irresistible im. pulse of curiosity, and consented to follow the revengeful advice of her envious filters, as visiting the apartment of her unknown husband, with a view to murder him in his Neep. We shall give La Fontaine's description first, and the English poet's afterwards :

A pas

tremblants et suspendus
Elle arrive enfin ou repose
Son époux au bras étendus,

Epoux plus beau qu' aucune chose ;
C'étoit aussi l'Amour: Ton teint, par sa fraicheur,

Par son eclat, par sa blancheur,
Rendoit le lis jaloux, faisoit honte à la rose.

Avant que de parler du teint,
Je devois vous avoir dépeint,

Pour aller par ordre en l'Affaire,
La Posture du Dieu. Son col étoit penché;
C'est ainsi que le Somme en sa grotte est couché ;

Ce qu'il ne falloit pas vous faire.



Ses Bras à demi nus étaloient des appas,

Non d'un Hercule ou d'un Atlas,
D'un Pan, d'un Sylvain, ou d'un Faune,

Ni même ceux d'une Amazone ;
Mais ceux d’un Vénus à l'âge de vingt ans.

Ses cheveux épars et flottants,

les mains de la nature
Avoint frisés à l'aventure,

Celles de Flore parfumés,
Cachoient quelques attraits dignes d'être estimés ;
Mais Psyché n'en étoit qu'à prendre plus facile,
Car pour un qu'ils cachoient elle en soupconnoit mille ;

Leurs anneaux, leurs boucles, leurs næuds,
Tour-à-cour de Psyché reçurent tous des væux ;

Chacun eut à part son hommage.
Une chose nuisit pourtant à ses cheveux ;

Ce fut la beauté du visage.
Que vous en dirai-je ? et comment
En parler assez dignement ?
Suppléez à mon impuissance ;
Je ne vous aurois d'aujourdhui
Dépeint les beautés de celui

Qui des beautés a l'intendance.
Que dirai-je des traits ou les Ris font logés ?
De ceux que les amours ont entre elix partagés ?

Des Yeux aux brillantes merveilles
Qui sont les portes du desir;
Et sur-tout des levres vermeilles
Qui sont les sources du plaisir ?*"
“ Now trembling, now diftracted : bold,

And now irresolute, she seems;
The blue lamp glimmers in her hold,

And in her hand the dagger gleams.
" Prepar'd to strike the verges near,

The blue light glimmering from above,
The HIDEOUS sight expects with fear,

And gazes on the God of Love!
“ Not such a young and frolic child

As poets feign, or sculptors plan;
No, no, the sees, with transports wild,

Eternal beauty veil'd in man.
“ His cheeks ingrain'd carnation glow'd

Like Rubies on a bed of pearls,
And down his ivory shoulders flow'd,

In clustering bands, his golden curls.

* Pp. 104, 105, of the splendid edition of Didot, Paris, 1797.

[ocr errors]

“ Soft as the cygnet's down his wings,

And as the falling snow-Aake fair,
Each light elastic feather springs,

And dances in the balmy air.
“ The pure and vital stream he breathes,

Makes c'en the lamp shine doubly bright,
Which its gay flame enamour'd wreathes,

And gleams with scintillating light.” Pp. 27, 28. There is a considerable degree of true poetical talent displayed in the compofition of this plealing tale, the style of which is equally semote from puerile fimplicity and the meretricious varnish of the Della Crusca school.

Art. XII. Review of Poetry, Ancient and Modern. By Lady

M******. 4to. Pp. 30. Booth, London, 1799. THIS cursory review of the merits, or rather of the characteristic features, of some of the first poets of ancient and modern times, comes from the elegant pen of Lady Manners, and is addressed to her infant Son. It displays an adequate knowledge of the different bards whom The reviews, bespeaks a well cultivated mind, and reflects credit on her ladyship's taste. That she knows how to discriminate with judgement, the following extracts will fufficiently demonstrate :

Aristophanes combin'd
Brilliant wit and force of mind;
Yet, with an indignant rage,
Turn from his licentious page,
That to ridicule consign'd
Th’ ornament* of human kind.
See amid a later age,
Plautus charm the Latian stage,
Quick invention's varied mien,
Sparkles in each comic scene,
But too oft th’averted eye,
Turns from grofs obscenity.
Terence chafter, more refin’d,
Pleases and improves the mind ;
To complete his polish'd line,
Lælius, Africanus join.
Attic taste his pen revives,
And Menander in him lives.

In Lucretius we lament
Talents loft and time mis-spent ;

# Socrates,



« ForrigeFortsett »