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but of convenience. The passage which we have put in italics will excite the smile of the Protestant, who has never thought of comparing the Lord's table to a gentleman's sideboard.
If we remove Mr. Eustace from his religious b si, his opinions will be found very matured; and London, as well as Paris, should thank him for his strictures. To the subject of fountains, as embellishments of a capital, the English have not turned their thoughts; and the French, though they have taken the lead of us in this respect, yet stand in need of instruction. The following hints ought not to be slighted in the projected improvements of the British capital :
- The new fountain on the Boulevard St. Martin is the noblest ornament of the kind in this capital, and derives a considerable degree of beauty from its magnitude, its form, its materials, and its decorations. The form is circular, the ornaments are lions, the materials are granite and bronze, and the quantity of water is abundant. The trees that line the Boulevards are a very pleasing accompani. ment. I am inclined to object to lions, and indeed to any animals introduced as active decorations in fountains. The idea of a stream rushing from the mouth of an animal is not natural, and if it were natural, it is not pleasing. All the embellishments and even all the accompaniments of a fountain ought to breathe freshness, purity, and cleanliness. The water should appear as if bursting from its source, and either rush from a rock, bubble up in the midst of a basin, or spring in the centre of a vase, and fall in sheets all over its edges. Water spouting from tubes, or squirted into the air from syringes, or flowing from fishes, beasts, and tritons, may perhaps for a moment amuse the eye, but cannot surely gratify the taste of the intelligent spectator.
• When the beauty and the utility of fountains are considered, it cannot but appear surprising that the British capital should be destitute of such decorations, especialiy as the torrents that now roll under its pavements, and so frequently burst their pipes for want of a vent, supply a superabundance of water.
• How beautiful would the gleaming of a sheet of falling water appear through the shrubberies of Grosvenor-Square ! and how much more appropriate than the pony and its pigmy rider, imprisoned in the middle of the pool of St. James's! The truth is, that in no city has less been given to ornament than in London ; its beauties are the result of convenience, and its wide streets, its flags, and its squares, owe their origin, not to the taste, but to the convenience of the inhabitants. Hence, an abundant supply of water has been carefully provided; but the purposes of utility being thus attained, public attention was withdrawn from the object. At present, however, when plans of embellishment occupy government, and when, if re. port be true, very considerable improvements are to be made, it is to be hoped that fountains will not be forgotten, and that the play of waters will add to the freshness of the squares, and to the cleanliness of the streets already so conspecuous.'
It is not to be supposed that Mr. E. can contemplate with any satisfaction the Gallery of Pictures in the Louvre, which is composed in a great measure of paintings taken from Catholic churches. He is indignant, indeed, at this act of Tapacity : but, setting aside its immorality, he ventures to question its utility in promoting the arts ; and his remarks here have weight. We shall copy a portion of them :
In fine, it will be admitted that the locality is intimately con. nected with the effect, and consequently with the beauty of a picture, and that the very best light in which it can be placed, is and must be that for which the painter himself designed it, and widely different indeed are the emotions produced by the celebrated crucifixion of Rubens, when seen in the confusion of the Louvre, and under the glare of a window in front, and when contemplated singly over the high altar, and through the holy gloom of the cathedral of Antwerp. Thus we are authorized, as well by the love of the arts themselves, as by a principle of justice, to deplore not only the rapacity that displaced these master-pieces, but the indulgence that allowed them to remain thus in exile and in durance.'
No person who has visited Paris is more enamoured than Mr. Eustace with the magnificence of its edifices; yet he perceives the want of several essentials : ' It is to be regretted, that while so much attention has been paid to works of parade, and to external appearance, no care should have been taken of the far more important concerns of cleanliness and convenience. The sewers are still allowed to roll a black torrent of filth, stench, and infection, through the middle of every street, and the foot-passengers, without the advantage of flags, or the protection of posts, are still exposed to danger and accident,'
Black, indeed, is the picture which Mr. E. draws of the moral effects of the Revolution, and of the military system pursued by Bonaparte. In consequence of the neglect of public worship, the corruption of youth, and the prevalence of atheism, the French character is represented as considerably impaired :' but the author's consolation is that Christianity has not only survived this dreadful assault but has triumphed; and he hopes that better times will succeed. He denies that Protestantism has made any great progress in France, and he even questions the probability of its advancement. His reasoning on this head is curious and specious, but not solid :
• The truth is, that the only religious contest now.carried on in France, is not between Catholics and Protestants but between Christians and unbelievers. The Catholic religion has a peculiar hold upon the feelings of a Frenchinan; it is interwoven with the whole history of the nation; it combines its influence with the glory. of the French arms, with the charms of French literature, with the fame of French heroes, and with the virtues of French worthies. If a Frenchman is a Christian, he must naturally be a Catholic ; he considers the two appellations as synonimous, and takes or rejects the system on the whole and without distinction.'
Had Mr. E. occupied the Protestant ground on which we stand, and had we been in his situation, would he not have indulged in a hearty laugh against us, and called on his readers to join in the ridicule, if, in our zeal for Catholicism, we had asserted that a belief in transubstantiation was natural to the mind of a Frenchman?
Mr. Eustace is in raptures when he describes the effects of the Catholic worship, and he reminds the Protestant that the French Catholics have the whole service in French, in their prayer-books :' but, while he exults in this declaration, he seems to forget that this improvement has been effected by the animadversions of Protestants.
Two public gardens, six theatres, and a thousand coffeehouses, crowded every evening,' are such indications of the dissipation and frivolity of the French, at least of the Parisians, that this letter-writer seems to suspect that these are the obstacles which must retard their moral amelioration, and their ripeness for the full exercise of constitutional liberty. Since the return, however, of the benevolent sovereign to his throne, Mr. E.'s best hopes are alive with respect to the future condition of the French; yet he perceives nothing among them which should induce in Englishmen a preference of France to their own country, and he informs his correspondent that he may safely indulge his desire of visiting Paris without the least danger of being seduced from his allegiance.
ART. XII. Charlemagne ; ou l'Eglise Délivrée. Par Lucien Bona
Arrirant sur son nom les regards de la terre,' Charlemagne advances to action; and here we resume our analysis of this heroic poem.
The subjects of the 13th canto (extending from the 50th to the 68th day) are the return of Charlemagne; the rebellion of Gaiffre of Aquitaine ; and the funeral honours of Roland.
We left the Christian monarch in the midst of his peers, having pronounced his solemn vow of extermination against the Lombard, and of fidelity to the church. He then returns towards the German frontier of his empire, and prepares to frustrate the attempted invasion of France :
« L'amour des nations soumises à ses lois
Du roi des francs ainsi renouvelle l'armée :
De son empire immense
Il s'élance ; et son bras ramène la victoire.' Spain, meanwhile, is pouring her Moorish conquerors into France, and Italy is left a prey to the Lombards. Almanzor and Marsilius, assisted by the counsels and the arms of Longin and Gaiffre, have forgotten their private quarrels, and cordially combine in their hostile incursion into Aquitaine. Laurentia, the unwilling victim of their ambition, is now advancing with their army. The Queen has approached Roncesvalles, and with the inhabitants of Oria has proceeded to the burialplace of Roland. Gaiffre, his cowardly betrayer, arrives at the town shortly afterward, finds the houses deserted, although adorned with flowers and branches of laurel, and is directed to the scene of the funereal solemnities; where, in real delight, but in hypocritical sorrow for the murder of Roland, he listens to the sacred eulogy of the hero, while Laurentia and her children kneel by the tomb:
« “ De nos prospérités que la base est fragile !"
Dit le prêtre chrétien. “ L'honneur des chevaliers,
Dont les travaux nombreux
De quel poids seraient-ils devant le roi des rois ?
Que le souffle du soir poursuit de son haleine.
Que la gloire éblouisse
Et non pas une injuste et vaine renommée.
De l'orphelin, du faible il défendit les droits;
Mais dont l'accent plaintif pénètre jusqu'au Ciel,
Et plaît à l'Eternel?
Lui promettent des droits au céleste secours. In the fourteenth canto, (from the 68th to the 70th day,) we have the battle of the bridge of Strasbourg ; with the single combat of the Paladin Isolier, and of the Scandinavian Edgar; the deliverance of the Frank captives; and the rock of Roland. Here we have much animated description, scenery, and fighting: but our limits absolutely forbid farther detail.
The 15th canto (the 70th day) describes the last struggle of Witikind; who, although with Rodmir and Armelia he escapes from the field, leaves there the principal part of his forces, either dead or in captivity. The prisoners are converted to the Christian faith. From this canto we must select a stanza, descriptive of Charlemagne in the combat. The Saxons are now surrounded by the Franks:
• Ils sont de toutes parts en même temps pressés :
Charles d'un bras puissant dirige au loin sa lance ;
Et sa haute stature
de ses soldats ;
Des peuples d'Irmensul il vaincra la puissunce.' Of the 16th canto, (the night of the 70th day,) the subjects are the oak and funeral pile of Irmensul; the son of Heral; the apparition of Religion; and the prophetic vision of the descendants of Wicikind. It will be recollected that Ulric, the son of Heral, had been saved from the murderous hands of the Arch-druid by the interference of Witikind, in a former canto : but the unrelenting priest now makes a more successful attempt on his life, and the monarch in vain endeavours to preserve the son of his friend. The King then retires in horror and indignation to his tent, and is visited in the night by the dismal apparition mentioned above; who encourages his virtuous disgust with the Saxon barbarities, and, presenting to his eyes a long prospect of the glories of his race, bids him join the army of Charlemagne on the morrow, embrace the Christian faith, and expect its eternal rewards. At the side of the apparition, another form is seen, which excites the tenderest transports in the breast of Witikind. He had retired to rest in agitation and alarm :
• A peine