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by some such I expect to be told that my project is jacobinical, as tending to make the profane vulgar independent of those legitimate correctives—the axe and the halter; but I cannot see the matter in this light. John Bull, we are sometimes told, is like a restive horse-give him his head and he runs to the devil; but, by my proposition, the common people will never be able to make head at all, whatever be their provocations, so that I really consider myself entitled to the great prize from the members of the Holy Alliance. Other cavillers may urge that it would be injurious to the progress of knowledge and the cultivation of literature, as if the brains could not exist any where but in the head! Buffon, no ignoramus in such matters, was decidedly of opinion that the stomach was the seat of thought. Persius dubs it a Master of Arts,
“ Magister Artium,
Ingeniique largitor venter." We have it on the powerful authority of Menenius Agrippa, a grave Roman, that the belly once maintained an argumentative colloquy with the members. Ventriloquism is yet in its infancy, but who should limit its eloquence were it cultivated from necessity ? So satisfied are we of the reflecting disposition of this portion of our economy, that we call a cow, or other beast with two stomachs, a ruminating animal, par excellence. Why might not our clergy, instead of dividing their discourses into heads—Cerberean, Polypean, and Hydraform, which always afflicts me with a Cephalalgy-spin the thread of their sermons, like the spider's, from the stomach instead of the head, and apportion them under the titles of the peristaltic motion, the epigastre, the hypochondre, and the colon -names as sonorous and classical as those of the Muses, with which Herodotus has baptised his respective chapters ? Even constituted as we now are, with headquarters already provided for the brains, will any one deny that an Opera dancer's are in his heels, or that Shakspeare had not a similar conviction, when he makes one of his characters exclaim,
“ Hence will I drag thee headlong, by the heels,
Unto a dunghill which shall be thy grave?"
“ He was a man
Himself with princes.”
THE GALLERY OF APELLES. *
Combabus had not yet passed his 20th year, and Apelles was in his 75th. Yet the two friends communed at parting with the sympathy and freedom of equal ages-for the heart of Apelles was still in its 20th year. The gods had vouchsafed to him that rare endowment of privileged genius—to retain in his old age the fancy and sensibility of youth. At some moments, indeed, he would reprove the young man for the extravagance of his purpose ; " What,” said he, " leave Greece, the land of arts, literature, and beauty, to look upon one fair woman on the barbarian shores of Asia !"-But this was mere obeisance to the decorum of his years—his heart went with Combabus. “Go," said he, “my young friend-may the gods preserve you!" As they embraced, Combabus felt upon his shoulder, where it was uncovered by the fold of his peplus, a drop from the old man's eye, and pressed both his hands affectionately in return. “ No, Combabus,” said Apelles, “it is not the grief of parting, although thou art dear to me as my own child, but the despair of these aged limbs which will not bear me, to look once more upon that divine form-farewell !"
Combabus noticed but few objects or incidents during his voyage. His mind was occupied with the divine perfection of the Apellean Venus, and the fitting visions of beauty in which his imagination arrayed the original which he was going to behold. On board the ship which conveyed him, he was so silent and absorbed as to attract the notice of the passengers. Of these, the men pronounced him a fool; the women, more charitable, ascribed his behaviour to disappointed or parted love. A young Ionian girl approached him with a winning air of polished simplicity and young innocence, to ask if he was indisposed, Combabus, in his distraction, answered by some incoherent phrase: “ Pardon me," said the innocent and beautiful questioner, "if supposing you indisposed, I have intruded upon, perhaps, the sadness of being parted from those you love." Combabus looked for the first time upon the countenance of her who spoke to him. It was of the Diana cast; the traits pronounced to an outline nobly beautiful—but the severer loveliness of the Virgin of the woods, touched into softness by the influence of blue Ionian eyes. Combabus merely thanked her ; but the tone in which he spoke told her that he felt her kindnessperhaps, also, that her beauty had not escaped him. He rose from his seat, took her by the hand, and requested her to sit on the bench beside him. “ You should,” said she, “ be a Greek, and yet, pardon me, there is something of the stranger.” “ Your observation is just,” said Combabus ; “ I was born in Persia, of an Athenian mother, whom the fortune of war made the slave, and her beauty and virtue afterwards made the wife, of a Persian general. But Greece (continued he) ay, my beloved Athens ! thou art the country of my youth, my education, and my filial love.” “ And I too,” replied the ingenuous girl, “ though born at Miletus, claim kindred with all that is Athenian. You see this little clasp of gold-it is the reward of the polished and amiable Athenians, to a simple girl who proved some skill in music, and denotes that
* Continued from vol. iv. page 1.
Athens adopted me her child." A slight gesture, accompanying these words, drew the eye of Combabus to a little golden figure of the grasshopper, usually worn at the meeting of the drapery on the breast, by those Athenian ladies who claim their descent from the stock of Cecrops. The beautiful Ionian, from instinctive modesty, wore it drawn nearly to the shoulder, clasping the foldings of her light robe, so high across her bosom, as wholly to veil its brightness ; but a slight embroidered cincture confined the descending drapery underneath, so as to delineate the beauty of its contour. Combabus said nothing. But it is probable there was something in his looks—or perhaps, he sighed to sustain the conversation-for the fair Greek, in a voice bordering upon the familiarly kind, offered to play for him on her lyre. She rose on the instant without waiting his assent, and produced from its case of ebony a slender eleven-stringed lyre, exquisitely wrought, but of simple ornament. Having resumed her seat, facing Combabus, and presenting to him her right arm (her left hand was engaged in holding · the lyre), “ Will you,” said she, “ release my arm from this clasp :" Combabus did so, with a tremulous sensation of rapture and respect. The clasp, a little above the elbow, was no sooner unloosed, than the sleeve became open along the whole external seam, and descended from the point of the shoulder close to her side, discovering an arm so beautiful, so soft, so fair, that a lover's kiss had printed upon it a touch too rude, or left a stain upon its whiteness. After a few tones of improvised melody, she sang some verses with the accompaniment of her lyre. The following were among the number:
'Tis lovely-when the blushing dawn
But blushing dawn,
And dew-geinmed lawn,
To me more dear
The silent tear
Oh! Helle dear
This silent tear,
Dear, as thou art,
To this fond heart,
Its secret thou may'st never know. “ I love the music of Ionia,” said Combabus, without adding a word of compliment to the fair Citharist; yet a half-checked smile, which played about her mouth, seemed to say that she was pleased. verses,” said she, “ are common, but the melody is of Timotheus, the great master of our Ionian music, who perfected the lyre, by increasing the number of its strings." "I have heard,” said Combabus, " his music in the tragedy of Ajar applauded by the Athenians at the theatre, with the same enthusiasm, as when it gained him the garland of victory from all his opponents—the antient prejudices of the people, and the envy and intrigues of his rivals in the art.” “ He was cer
tainly eminent,” replied she, “ in the tempestuous and pathetic, for which that fine tragedy is so favourable a vehicle; but I chiefly admire in him the art of blending the plaintive and the gay with an enchanting volatility. It was by this that he refined the musical taste of the Athenians, and so alarmed the churlish Spartans for their unamiable virtue, that they banished the musician, and cut the strings of his lyre, as the only means of guarding against the fascinating power of his strains." "I can well believe their fascination,” said Combabus, “ from the strain which you have just sung." Their eyes met accidentally as he spoke, but it was only for an instant. “ So simple in its melody," continued Combabus, " yet so flexible and varied ; so light and playful, yet so naturally running into a note of sadness.”
“ The very secret, said she, “ of the tender and moving in musical expression: the two opposite feelings should be commingled. How much more of touching sadness in the rose that smiled yesterday but droops to-day, than in the eternal mourning of the willow and the cypress!" " And how much," said Combabus,“ does a transient reminiscence of melancholy, in the hour of rapture, heighten the luxury of sentiment, and refine the cup of bliss !" Perhaps,” said she, "a note of sadness too frequently intrudes itself in our joyous airs; but the reason may be,” continued she, after pausing for an instant, “ that ours is the music of a conquered people.” It is true, that the Ionians received the Persian yoke with a facility which justly lowered them in the estimation of the other Greeks. • They consoled themselves,' says the historian of Halicarnassus, ' in the bosom of luxury and the arts, and under the most delightful heaven.' But, doubtless, they still felt their humiliation--for what can console a people under the sense of slavery and shame?” Combabus observed that a tear started in her eye as she spoke, and turned away from a topic which seemed to give her pain. “Your's," said he, “is the music in which parting lovers should say, "We meet no more. " Ay,” said she smiling, whilst the tear still hung upon her long dark eye-lashes, “and in which meeting lovers might say, 'We part no more.'
[Here there is a considerable chasm in the manuscript. It is, however, but partially injured, so that it may be collected, from the traces remaining, that Combabus and this Ionian girl interchanged the story of their lives, or rather of their hearts—both being still so young ; that they put in at Cyprus, which lay in their line of navigation from the Cyclades to Syria; that Combabus offered sacrifice of fruits and flowers (for the divinity of love abhorred all cruel offerings) to sea-born Venus, in her favoured isle ; that the name of this girl was Leucolene, given to her from the remarkable whiteness of her arms--perhaps adopted from Homer, who frequently employs the epithet, and whose poems were read with enthusiasm in his native lonia; and lastly, that Combabus and Leucolene left Cyprus in different ships--the latter two days earlier, and with evident haste. The manuscript, after this chasm, runs as follows.]
This impression [perhaps of parting from Leucolene) did not endure long : the object of his voyage resumed its empire over the mind of Combabus, as he beheld the city which rejoiced in the beauty of Stratonice. Arrived at Antioch, his first care was to present the letter of
VOL. V. NO, XX.
Apelles to Erasistratus the physician, who was in the highest favour with the Queen, and resided within the precincts of the royal palace. Erasistratus received him with the usual forms of hospitality, touching his right hand, and conducting him to a seat. Combabus observed that he often smiled whilst reading the letter. Having read it twice over, he folded it up, looked at Combabus with frank familiarity, and said, “ So, young man, you have made this voyage solely to behold the Queen of Syria.” “To look," replied Combabus, " upon her who has inspired the divinest creation of the pencil of Apelles, and who is, on earth, the representative of the Queen of Love." “ But how," said the doctor, “ do you hope to behold the Queen, who lives not in the simplicity of Republican Greece, but surrounded by the pomp and pride of an Asiatic court ?'' “For that," replied Combabus, “ I trust to the friend of Apelles.” “ And your own,” rejoined Erasistratus :
you are now my guest. Here (continued he, whilst leading Combabus into his cabinet) you may pass your time until my return, with Homer, Plato, and my illustrious kinsman.*"
The physician's library was well supplied. Homer had the place of honour, like a presiding genius, in that compartment which held the poets and philosophers. His bust, a copy from the Apotheosis of the poett, by a pupil of him who is so celebrated among the Greeks for that admirable piece of sculpture, was placed full in view on entering the cabinet. The bandeau across the forehead, attached in a knot behind, and the absence of the veins on the sculptured surface, attested that the divinity of his genius had received the honours of Apotheosis. The form of the eyes indicated the blindness, true or fabled, of the poet; but without producing disfigurement or vacancy in the expression of the face,-and rather blending with its elevation a feeling of pathos. It is doubtful whether the images bearing the name of Homer, of which there were several in the form of a Hermes, executed at different periods, and with various degrees of skill, were genuine likenesses, or only fictitious and conventional--and this doubt produces in the heart a sentiment of despondent privation. But let the race of man be consoled with having the authentic traits of his divine spirit in his immortal poems. Next, on the right hand, was seen, sculptured in relief, Calliope, the epic Muse, conversing with the poet; and on the left, Erato, the muse of philosophy, instructing Socrates in her moral
+ The “ Apotheosis of Homer" was a work of great celebrity among the ancients, and is mentioned by several writers, Greck and Roman. A bust (or Hermes) agreeing almost exactly with the description in the text, and undoubtedly one of those heads which passed among the Greeks for likenesses of the poet, was discovered at Rome, making part of the garden wall of a Roman prince, in the time of Clement the XIIth. It was first observed by the antiquary Ficorini, and ultimately found its way into the museum of the Capitol, where it remained until the French Republicans despoiled the Capitol to adorn the Louvre. I have seen it placed carefully, indeed reverentially, in one of the covered vehicles which conveyed away the treasures of the Louvre in 1815, and never have I beheld funeral convoy inore mournful.-(Translator.)
• It is from this non-appearance of the veins, that the celebrated Torso of Belvedere is supposed to represent Hercules, after he had obtained immortality. The observation is made by Winkelman.-(Trans.)