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ART. X.-The Comic Annual. Thomas Hood, Esq. 12mo. pp. 176. London: Tilt. 1831. MR. Hood ushers in his new volume with complaints against Messrs. Hurst & Co. and Miss Sheridan, for attempting to interfere with the established title of his Comic Annual. There is nothing in the business of literature more reprehensible than this unworthy practice, which has, of late years, been too prevalent in all classes both of publishers and editors. It betrays the barrenness of their own resources to rob another of a name, under which his work may have been successful, and it shews a disposition, besides, towards unfair dealing, which we cannot too strongly stigmatize. At the same time, Mr. Hood may rest satisfied, that such deviations from the path of honour and honesty generally recoil upon those who are guilty of them, and that, at all events, they can do very little injury to a work like his, which it would be difficult to imitate with effect. His humour is peculiarly his own; his puns are his own; his illustrations we should know amongst a thousand forgeries. We cannot be ranked amongst his extravagant admirers, who look upon his eccentricities as sterling wit. We find in his book a good deal to laugh at, but little to praise. His oddities amuse for their season, and pass away like the caricatures, which grow old in a week. There is no exuberance of idea in his drollery. One thought is elaborated through twenty pages of prose, or as many verses. We see that he is a mere mechanic, employed in an operation which he has turned into a trade.
The present volume contains, amongst several failures, a few of the best things which his intellectual laboratory has yet produced. The "Parish Revolution" is a very fair burlesque upon the habit which the newspapers have, of exaggerating the most trifling incidents, and of giving accounts from different quarters of events, which they represent as alarming. The verses on the miseries of a married man are capital. His exile from the duett and the quadrille, the neglect of his fair friends, who used formerly to net purses and stitch collars, and hem frills for him in abundance, the indifference of the mamma of many daughters, to the presence of him who used to be so much prized and consulted, and the thousand other changes brought about by his new condition, are all enumerated in a style of pungent jocularity. We give two or three
'Miss Towne the toast, though she
A nose of Roman line,
Of compliments of mine!
Her sex's partisan,
'Tis hard to see how others fare,
Whilst I rejected stand,―
A trip to Hindostan,
With me don't care to mount a stair
I'm not a single man!
'Some change, of course, should be in force,
But, surely, not so much— There may be hands I may not squeeze,
But must I never touch ?— Must I forbear to hand a chair, And not pick up a fan? But I have been myself picked up— I'm not a single man!'
pp. 42, 43.
The visit of Mrs. Skinner and her
sons and daughters, is also a good hit, and perhaps as much might be said of two or three other pieces. The designs are all by Mr. Hood; they have the merit of being original, and laughable, and are moreover exceedingly well engraved.
ART. XI.-Domestic Gardener's Manual, being an Introduction to Gardening. To which is added,
a Concise Naturalists' Kalendar, and English Botanists' Companion, or Catalogue of British Plants, in the Monthly Order of their Flowering. By a practical Horticulturist. 1 vol. royal 8vo. pp. 564. London: Whittaker and Co. 1830.
the high priced volumes to which the account of them is limited. The present work is arranged with strict reference to the progress of the months and to each of these divisions of the year there are devoted respectively three sections, one of which treats of some point of natural philosophy immediately bearing on the operations of horticulture. A second is occupied with a full and scientific account of some of the chief esculent vegetables, with practical directions for the kitchen garden; and in the third section will be found a similar display of curious knowledge with respect to the most valuable fruit trees, toge
ther with instructions for their management. The first section we esteem as of particular value and importance; the introduction of such information as it contains being a novelty in books on gardening, which, if they adopt it, will entitle them to a very different station in our libraries from that which they have hitherto enjoyed. The illustrations of which the business of a mere gardener is susceptible, may be drawn from a very numerous class of the most interesting branches of human inquiry. Chemistry, meteorology, electricity, -in short, the whole circle of those sciences that are more especially esteemed for the pleasure which, in union with instruction, they afford. We anticipate, from the influence of this clever and elegant book, a very favourable alteration in the general state of our horticulture. A naturalist's kalendar, an English botanist's catalogue, and a very considerable number of well executed plates, complete the very strong claims of this volume on general attention.
We do not hesitate to say, that with the view of conveying sound practical information on the important subject of gardening, this is by far the most judicious volume that has appeared in our time. We must not be understood to undervalue Mr. Loudon's splendid labours in this department of natural science; we only speak of its value as connected with its economical shape, and its capability therefore of being extensively circulated among that class of the community, which really may be said to be excluded from the knowledge of many recent discoveries and improvements, by reason of
ART. XII.-The Island Bride, in Six Cantos. By the Rev. Hobart Caunter, B.D. Second Edition, 8vo. pp. 244. London : Bull. 1830. CONSIDERING how seldom it hap pens, in these days, that a poem of moderate length arrives at the honour of a second impression, we have heard of the success of the Island Bride with not a little surprise, as we did not think that its quiet attractions would have been so soon and so extensively acknowledged. The author uses the Spenserian stanza with equal facility and grace; and although it must be admitted, that he frequently descends to prose, yet we are of opinion that his verses are in general well sustained, and replete with poetic thoughts and imagery. The story is said to have grown out of the sympathy felt by the author for an old man residing in the Isle of France, who had become deranged in consequence of the loss of an only daughter. It is conducted in an affecting manner, though it resembles now and then too closely the "Minstrel" of Beattie.
ART. XIII.-An Abridgment of Zumpt's Latin Grammar for the Use of Schools. By the Rev. J. Kenrick, M. A. 12mo. London: B. Fellowes. 1830. It is very unlikely that any of our readers are by this time at a loss to know our opinion of Zumpt's Latin Grammar. We have spoken of it as we thought it deserved, a few years ago, and upon mature deliberation, if we are now disposed to vary the judgment which we formed, it would be only in consequence of some doubts we entertain, that our eulogy was commen
surate with its merits. The little work before us is an abridgment, or, strictly speaking, the abridgment of an abridgment, and we feel that we say enough in its favour, when we state, that it embodies the principles of Zumpt. Mr. Kenrick, who is master of Manchester College, York, must be too good an authority on practical education not to entitle him to every respect; but we cannot resist the impression, that in his endeavour to shorten and simplify the rules of syntax, he has deprived them of that extreme facility of being thoroughly understood by the scholar which they possessed in the original; an attribute, without which, he will own, no school-book is worth employing. However, we doubt if in so small and cheap a work a greater quantity of the judicious rules of Zumpt could have been collected.
ART. XIV.-The Emperor's Rout. Illustrated by coloured plates. 12mo. pp. 38. London: Tilt.
THIS is a pretty little child's book, the object of which is to give an account of the family of the moths, in verse that may be easily remembered. These varied members of the insect creation, envying the success of the Butterfly's Ball, get up a rout of their own under the patronage of their emperor the Pavina Major; but their sports are all brought to a sudden termination by the chimney of their ball-room taking fire. In the and they discover, that nature never intended them, either in beauty or in routs, to rival the butterflies. The author should have omitted in his notes the Latin nomenclature, as it is apt to deter juvenile minds from a study, which ought to be presented to them in the most inviting form.
ART. XV.-1. Hints addressed to the
Small Holders and Peasantry of Ireland, in Road-making and on Ventilation, &c. &c. By Martin Doyle. 12mo. pp. 88. Dublin Curry & Co. 1830.
2. Hints to Small Holders on Planting and on Cattle, &c. &c. By Martin Doyle. Dublin : Curry & Co.
No better service can be performed towards the peasantry of Ireland, than the circulation amongst them of Martin Doyle's little tracts, containing, within a small compass, a great deal of useful information upon subjects, which it is of the greatest importance to their health, industry and happiness to understand. He tells them how they are to make roads in the most economical and durable manner; how they are to preserve pure air in their cottages by a simple system of ventilation; he gives them a few excellent rules connected with the care of their health, and insists, above all things, upon the necessity of temperance and education. The remarks on planting are well adapted to their wants and their means; but we imagine that they may derive still greater advantage from the hints respecting horses, oxen, mules, asses, swine, sheep and poultry. How much it is to be lamented that there is no association for the gratuitous distribution of these and other similar publications, among those classes of the people who cannot afford to pay for them!
ART. XVI.-The Gentleman in Bluck. With illustrations by George Cruikshank. 12mo. pp. 309. London: Kidd. 1831.
A PART of this story has already appeared in the "Literary Magnet," a periodical conducted with con
siderable taste, which has for some time ceased to exist. The Gentleman in Black' is no other than the "old gentleman" as some call him, or as others more commonly style him, the devil, and we have here a history of one of his German tricks, which relates how he bargained for the souls of two young men for inexhaustible stores of gold, who, without any mutual knowledge of their common position, meet in Paris, become friends, and gain universal admiration by the extravagance of their expenditure. Their adventures are very pleasantly described, but how they terminate we are not very clearly informed, except that what very few are supposed capable of effecting, they contrive by some means to cheat their sable protector of his prey. We cannot discover any particular merit in Cruikshank's illustrations. Indeed a story of diablerie does not furnish the sort of material upon which his talents can work with advantage.
The disinterestedness of his views, the simplicity by which he is known, lead him into a series of conduct which would appear to the unthinking as inconsistent with the dignity and importance of a genuine member of the faculty; and we have no doubt that his claims on the public attention have been on this account frequently misinterpreted. But those who choose to judge for themselves, will not have to go deeply into his writings, before they shall find him a man of thorough and scientific attainmentshighly esteemed by the profession, except for his excessive candourand so far from being worthy to be classed with the irregulars and pretenders, who one and all have so much recourse to the press, the Doctor is principally indebted for his celebrity to the wholesome state of terror into which he has subdued the whole body of metropolitan quacks. The little pamphlet before us is an instance of that disposition
which has ever marked this able man, to render his experience and discoveries serviceable to the country at large. He gives a detailed account of the efficacy of the lobelia in cases of asthma: he describes the manner in which it is to be prepared, the symptoms of the patient when it is proper, or otherwise, that it should be administered; and, in short, he enters into every particular concerning its administration that is necessary to guide the most simple to the knowledge and the enjoyment of its virtues. The same description applies to the chirayita.
ART. XVIII.-The Family Cabinet Atlas, conducted upon an original plan, and engraved on steel, by Mr. Thomas Starling. Part VIII. London: Bull.
WE are glad to see this interesting
THE object of the author of this pamphlet is to defend the conduct of the French Royal Guard, during the celebrated three days' Campaign in Paris. They and their military colleagues, it is well known, were vanquished in the fair collision of force with force, and that too by a parcel of citizens who did not present themselves in any great superiority of numbers, but certainly with an infinite inequality in respect of discipline and appointments. This fact, alone, was the fertile source of numerous reports as to the causes which led to its occurrence-and in these rumours, the courage, the patriotism, the generosity, and the whole host of civil and military virtues of the Royal Guard, were treated in a manner which called for some effort at vindication. We are not sufficiently interested in the character of the regiment to enter into the details of their defence. But as that defence required the ample and accurate account of military operations on the eventful days in question, which is here presented to us, we think that it is worthy of preservation as a sound and authentic record so far.