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constable within the walls, if the vergers are incompetent to the duty—is it upon such wretched pretences that the people of England are made to pay a new Peter's Pence, so long abrogated; or must content

themselves with contemplating the ragged Exterior of their Cathedral? The mischief was done about the time that you were a scholar there. Do you know anything about the unfortunate relic ?—


Where were ye, Nymphs, when the remorseless deep Closed o'er the head of your loved Lycidas?

I Do not know when I have experienced a stranger sensation, than on seeing my old friend, G. D., who had been paying me a morning visit, a few Sundays back, at my cottage at Islington, upon taking leave, instead of turning down the right-hand path by which he had entered—with staff in hand, and at noonday, deliberately march right forwards into the midst of the stream that runs by us, and totally disappear.

A spectacle like this at dusk would have been appalling enough; but in the broad, open daylight, to witness such an unreserved motion towards self-destruction in a valued friend, took from me all power of speculation.

How I found my feet I know not. Consciousness was quite gone. Some spirit, not my own, whirled me to the spot. I remember nothing but the silvery apparition of a good white head emerging; nigh which a staff (the hand unseen that wielded it) pointed upwards, as feeling for the skies. In a moment (if time was in that time) he was on my shoulders; and I—freighted with a load more precious than his who bore Anchises.

And here I cannot but do justice to the officious zeal of sundry passers by, who, albeit arriving a little too late to participate in the honours of the rescue, in philanthropic shoals came thronging to communicate their advice as to the recovery; prescribing variously the application, or non-application, of salt, &c., to the person of the patient. Life, meantime, was ebbing fast away, amidst the stifle of conflicting judgments, when one, more sagacious than the rest, by a bright thought, proposed sending for the Doctor. Trite as the counsel was, and impossible, as one should think, to be missed

on,—shall I confess 1—in this emergency it was to me as if an Angel had spoken. Great previous exertions—and mine had not been inconsiderable—are commonly followed by a debility of purpose. This was a moment of irresolution.

Monoculus—for so, in default of catching his true name, I choose to designate the medical gentleman who now appeared—is a grave, middle-aged person, who, without having studied at the college, or truckled to the pedantry of a diploma, hath employed a great portion of his valuable time in experimental processes upon the bodies of unfortunate fellow-creatures, in whom the vital spark, to mere vulgar thinking, would seem extinct and lost for ever. He omitteth no occasion of obtruding his services, from a case of common surfeit suffocation to the ignobler obstructions, sometimes induced by a too-wilful application of the plant cannabis outwardly. But though he declineth not altogether these drier extinctions, his occupation tendeth, for the most part, to waterpractice; for the convenience of which, he hath judiciously fixed his quarters near the grand repository of the stream mentioned, where day and night, from his little watchtower, at the Middleton's Head, he listeneth to detect the wrecks of drowned mortality— partly, as he saith, to be upon the spot—and partly, because the liquids which he useth to prescribe to himself and his patients, on these distressing occasions, are ordinarily more conveniently to be found at these common hostelrics than in the shops and phials of the apothecaries. His ear hath arrived to such finesse by practice, that it is reported he can distinguish a plunge, at half a furlong distance; and can tell if it be casual or deliberate. He weareth a medal, suspended over a suit, originally of a sad brown, but which, by time and frequency of nightly divings, has been dinged into a true professional sable. He passeth by the name of Doctor, and is remarkable for wanting his left eye. His remedy—after a sufficient application of warm blankets, friction, -&c., is a simple tumbler or more, of the purest Cognac, with water, made as hot as the convalescent can bear it. Where he findeth, as in the case of my friend, a squeamish subject, he condescendeth to be the taster ; and showeth, by his own example, the innocuous nature of the prescription. Nothing can be more kind or encouraging than this procedure. It addelh confidence to the patient, to see his medical adviser go hand in hand with himself in the remedy. When the doctor swalloweth his own draught, what peevish invalid can refuse to pledge him in the potion 1 In fine, Monoculus is a humane, sensible man, who, for a slender pittance, scarce enough to sustain life, is content to wear it out in the endeavour to save the lives of others—his pretensions so moderate that with difficulty I could press a crown upon him, for the price of restoring the existence of such an invaluable creature to society as G. D.

It was pleasant to observe the effect of the subsiding alarm upon the nerves of the dear absentee. It seemed to have given a shake to memory, calling up notice after notice, of all the providential deliverances he had experienced in the course of his long and innocent life. Sitting up in my couch—my couch which, naked and void of furniture hitherto, for the salutary repose which it administered, shall be honoured with costly valance, at some price, and henceforth be a state-bed at Colebrook,—he discoursed of marvellous escapes—by carelessness of nurses—by pails of gelid, and kettles of the boiling element, in infancy—by orchard pranks, and snapping twigs, in schoolboy frolics—by descent of tiles at Trumpington, and of heavier tomes at Pembroke— by studious watchings, inducing frightful vigilance—by want, and the fear of want, and all the sore throbbings of the learned head.—Anon, he would burst out into little fragments of chanting—of songs long ago—ends of deliverance hymns, not remembered before since childhood, but

coming up now, when his heart was made tender as a child's—for the tremor cordis, in the retrospect of a recent deliverance, as in a case of impending danger, acting upon an innocent heart, will produce a self-tenderness, which we should do ill to christen cowardice; and Shakspeare, in the latter crisis, has made his good Sir Hugh to remember the sitting by Babylon, and to mutter of shallow rivers.

Waters of Sir Hugh Middleton—what a spark you were like to have extinguished for ever! Your salubrious streams to this City, for now near two centuries, would hardly have atoned for what you were in a moment washing away. Mockery of a river—liquid artifice—wretched conduit! henceforth rank with canals and sluggish aqueducts. Was it for this that, smit in boyhood with the explorations of that Abyssinian traveller, I paced the vales of Amwell to explore your tributary springs, to trace your salutary waters sparkling through green Hertfordshire, and cultured Enfield parks ?—Ye have no swans —no Naiads—no river God—or did the benevolent hoary aspect of my friend tempt ye to suck him in, that ye also might have the tutelary genius of your waters 1

Had he been drowned in Cam, there would have been some consonancy in it; but what willows had ye to wave and rustle over his moist sepulture ?— or, having no name, besides that unmeaning assumption of eternal novity, did ye think to get one by the noble prize, and henceforth to be termed the Stream Dtbrian?

And could such spacious virtue find a grave
Beneath the imposthumed bubble of a wave?

I protest, George, you shall not venture out again—no, not by daylight—without a sufficient pair of spectacles—in your musing moods especially. Your absence of mind we have borne, till your presence of body came to be called in question by it. You shall not go wandering into Euripus with Aristotle, if we can help it. Fie, man, to turn dipper at your years, after your many tracts in favour of sprinkling only!

I have nothing but water in my head o'nights since this frightful accident. Sometimes I am with Clarence in his dream. At others, I behold Christian beginning to sink, and crying out to his good brother Hopeful

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(that is, to me), " I sink in deep waters ; the billows go over my head, all the waves go over me. Selah." Then I have before me Palinurus, just letting go the steerage. I cry out too late to save. Next follow—a mournful procession—suicidal faces, saved against their will from drowning ; dolefully trailing a length of reluctant gratefulness, with ropy weeds pendent from locks of watchet hue—constrained Lazari — Pluto's half-subjects—stolen fees from the gravebilking Charon of his fare. At their head Arion—or is it G. D. ?—in his singing garments marcheth singly, with harp in hand, and votive garland, which Machaon (or Dr. Hawes) snatcheth straight, intending to suspend it to the stern God of Sea. Then follow dismal streams of Lethe, in which the half-drenched on earth are constrained to drown downright, by wharfs where Ophelia twice acts her muddy death.

And, doubtless, there is some notice in that invisible world when one of us approacheth (as my friend did so lately) to their inexorable precincts. When a soul knocks once, twice, at Death's door, the sensation aroused within

the palace must be considerable; and the grim Feature, by modern science so often dispossessed of his prey, must have learned by this time to pity Tantalus.

A pulse assuredly was felt along the line of the Elysian shades, when the near arrival of G. D. was announced by no equivocal indications. Prom their seats of Asphodel arose the gentler and the graver ghosts— poet, or historian—of Grecian or of Roman lore—to crown with unfading chapleta the half-finished love-labours of their unwearied scholiast. Him Markland expected—him Tyrwhitt hoped to encounter —him the sweet lyrist of Peter House, whom he had barely seen upon earth,* with newest

airs prepared to greet ;and patron of

the gentle Christ's boy,—who should have been his patron through life—the mild Askew, with longing aspirations leaned foremost from his venerable yEsculapian chair, to welcome into that happy company the matured virtues of the man, whose tender scions in the boy he himself upon earth had so prophetically fed and watered.

Geaium tanlum ridit.


Sydney's Sonnets—I speak of the best of them—are among the very best of their sort. They fall below the plain moral dignity, the sanctity, and high yet modest spirit of selfapproval, of Milton, in his compositions of a similar structure. They are in truth what Milton, censuring the Arcadia, says of that work (to which they are a sort of after-tune or application), "vain and amatorious" enough, yet the things in their kind (as he confesses to be true of the romance) may be "full of worth and wit." They savour of the Courtier, it must be allowed, and not of the Commonwealthsman. But Milton was a Courtier when he wrote the Masque at Ludlow Castle, and still more a Courtier when he composed the Arcades. When the national struggle was to begin, he becomingly cast these vanities behind him; and if the order of time had thrown Sir Philip upon the crisis which preceded the revolution, there is

no reason why he should not have acted the same part in that emergency, which has glorified the name of a later Sydney. He did not want for plainness or boldness of spirit. His letter on the French match may testify he could speak his mind freely to Princes. The times did not call him to the scaffold.

The Sonnets which we oftenest call to mind of Milton were the compositions of his maturest years. Those of Sydney, which I am about to produce, were written in the very heyday of his blood. They are stuck full of amorous fancies—far-fetched conceits, befitting his occupation; for True Love thinks no labour to send out Thoughts upon the vast and more than Indian voyages, to bring home rich pearls, outlandish wealth, gums, jewels, spicery, to sacrifice in selfdepreciating similitudes, as shadows of true amiabilities in the Beloved. We must be Lovers—or at least the cooling touch of time, the circum prcecordia frigus must not have so damped our faculties, as to take away our recollection that we were once so—before we can duly appreciate the glorious vanities, and graceful hyperboles, of the passion. The images which lie before our feet (though by some accounted the only natural) are least natural for the high Sydneah love to express its fancies by. They may serve for the loves of Tibullus, or the dear Author of the Schoolmistress; for passions that creep and whine in Elegies and Pastoral Ballads. I am sure Milton never loved at this rate. I am afraid some of his addresses (ad Leoivorwm I mean) have rather erred on the farther side ; and that the poet came not much short of a religious indecorum, when he could thus apostrophise a singing-girl:—

Angelus unicuique suus (sic credite grates)

Obtigit Eetherels ales ab ordinibus.
Quid minim, Leonora, tibi si gloria major,

Nam tua prsescntem vox sonat ipsa Deum?
Aut Deus, aut vacui ccrto mens tertia cccli,

Per tua secretd guttura serpit agens;
Serpit agens, facilisquc docet mortalia corda

Sensim immortal! assuescerc posse sono.


In Te Vxa. Loquitur, Cetera MUTUS IIAret.

This is loving in a strange fashion; and it requires some candour of construction (besides the slight darkening of a dead language) to cast a veil over the ugly appearance of something very like blasphemy in the last two verses. I think the Lover would have been staggered if he had gone about to express the same thought in English. I am sure Sydney has no flights like this. His extravaganzas do not strike at the sky, though he takes leave to adopt the pale Dian into a fellowship with his mortal passions.

With bow sad steps, O Moon, thou cllmb'st the skies;
How silently; and with bow wan a face I
What! may it be, that even in heavenly place
That busy Archer his sharp arrow tries?
8ure, if that long-with-love-acquainted eyes
Can judge of love, thou feel'st a lover's case;
I read it in thy looks; thy languisht grace
To me, that feel the like, thy state descries.
Then, even of fellowship, O Moon, tell me,
Is constant love deem'd there but want of wit?
Are beauties there as proud as here they beI
Do they above love to be loved, and yet
* Those lovers scorn, whom that love doth possess?
Do they call virtue there—ungratefulness!

The last line of this poem is a little obscured by transposition. He means, Do they call ungratefulness there a virtue?

Come, Sleep, O Sleep, the certain knot of peace,
The baiting place of wit, the balm of woe,
The poor man's wealth, the prisoner's release,
The indifferent judge between the high and low;
With shield of proof shield me from out the prease *
Of those fierce darts despair at me doth throw;

O make in me those civil wars to cease:

1 will good tribute pay if thou do so.

Take thou of me sweet pillows, sweetest bed;
A chamber deaf to noise, and blind to light;
A rosy garland, and a weary head.
And if these things, as being thine by right,
Move not thy heavy grace, thou shalt in me,
Livelier than elsewhere, Stella's image see.

The curious wits, seeing dull pensivencss
Bewray itself in my long-settled eyes,
Whence those same fumes of melancholy rise,
With idle pains, and missing aim, do guess.
Some, that know how my spring I did address.
Deem that my Muse some fruit of knowledge plies;
Others, because the Prince my service tries,
Think, that I think state errors to redress;
But harder judges judge, ambition's rage,
Scourge of itself, still climbing slippery place,
Holds my young brain captived in golden cage.
O fools, or over-wise! alas, the race
Of all my thoughts hath neither stop nor start,
But only Stella's eyes, and Stella's heart.

Because I oft in dark abstracted guise
Seem most alone in greatest company,
With dearth of words, or answers quite awry,
To them that would make speech of speech arise;
They deem, and of their doom the rumour flies,
That poison foul of bubbling Pride doth lie
So in my swelling breast, that only I
Fawn on myself, and others do despise;
Yet Pride, I think, doth not my soul possess,
Which looks too oft in his unflattering glass;
But one worse fault—Ambition—I confess,
That makes me oft my best friends overpass,
Unseen, unheard—while Thought to highest place
Bends all his powers, even unto Stella's grace.

Having this day, my horse, my hand, my lance,
Guided so well that I obtained the prize.
Both by the judgment of the English eyes,
And of some sent from that sweet enemy,—France;
Horsemen my skill in horsemanship advance;
Townsfolk my strength; a daintier judge applies
His praise to sleight, which from good use doth rise;
Some lucky wits impute it but to chance;
Others, because of both sides I do take
My blood from them, who did excel in this,
Think Nature me a man of arms did make.
How far they shot awry! the true cause is,
Stella looked on, and from her heavenly face
Sent forth the beams which made so fair my race.

In martial sports I had my cunning tried.
And yet to break more staves did me address,
'While with the people's shouts (I must confess)
Youth, luck, and praise, even fiU'd my veins with

when Cupid having me (his slave) descried

• Press.

In Mars's livery, prancing in the press,

1 1 What now, Sir Fool 1" said he: "I would no less;

Look here, I say." I look'd, and Stella spied,

Who hard by made a window send forth light.

My heart then quaked, then dazzled were mine eyes;

One hand forgot to rule, th' other to fight;

Nor trumpet's sound I heard, nor friendly cries.

My foe came on, and beat the air for me—

Till that her blush made me my shame to see.

No more, my dear, no more these counsels try;

O give my passions leave to run their race;
Let Fortune lay on me her worst disgrace;

Let folk o'crcharged with brain against me cry;
Let clouds bedim my face, break in mine eye;
Let me no steps, but of lost labour, trace;
Let all the earth with scorn recount my case?—
But do not will me from my love to fly.

1 do not envy Aristotle's wit,

Nor do aspire to Cfesar's bleeding fame;
Nor aught do care, though some above me sit;
Nor hope,'nor wish, another course to frame,
But that which once may win thy cruel heart:
Thou art my wit, and thou my virtue art.

Love still a boy, and oft a wanton, is,
School'd only by his mother's tender eye;
What wonder then, if he his lesson miss,
When for so soft a rod dear play he try!
And yet my Star, because a sugar'd kiss
In sport I suck'd, while she asleep did lie,
Doth lour, nay chide, nay threat, for only this.
Sweet, it was saucy Love, not humble I.
But no 'scuse serves; she makes her wrath appear
In beauty's throne—see now who dares come near
Those scarlet judges, threat'ning bloody pain?
O heav'nly Fool, thy most kiss-worthy face
Anger invests with such a lovely grace.
That anger's self I needs must kiss again.

I never drank of Aganippe well,

Nor ever did in shade of Tempe sit,

And Muses scorn with vulgar brains to dwell;

Poor lay-man I, for sacred rites unfit.

Some do I bear of Poet's fury tell,

But (God wot) wot not what they mean by it;

And this I swear by blackest brook of hell,

I am no pick-purse of another's wit.

How fulls it then, that with so smooth an ease

My thoughts I speak, and what I speak doth flow

In verse, and that my verse best wits doth please?

Guess mc the cause—what is it thus '—fye, no.

Or so ?—much less. How then? sure thus it is,

My lips are sweet, inspired with Stella's kiss.

Of all the kings that ever here did reign,
Edward, named Fourth, as first in praise I name,
Not for his fair outside, nor well-lined brain—
Although less gifts imp feathers oft on Fame.
Nor that he could, young-wise, wise-valiant, frame
His sire's revenge, join'd with a kingdom's gain;
And, gain'd by Mars could yet mad Mars so tame.
That Balance weigh'd what Sword did late obtain.
Nor that he made the Floure-de-luee so 'fraid,
Though strongly hedged of bloody Lions* paws,
That witty Lewis to him a tribute paid.
Nor this, nor that, nor any such small cause—
But only, for this worthy knight durst prove
To lose his crown rather than fail his love.

O happy Thames, that didst my Stella bear,

1 saw thyself, with many a smiling line
Upon thy cheerful face, Joy's livery wear.
While those fair planets on thy streams did shine;
The boat for joy could not to dance forbear.
While wanton winds, with beauty so divine
Ravish'd, stay'd not, till in her golden hair
They did themselves (O sweetest prison) twine.
And fain those AtoVs youth there would their stay
Have made; but, forced by nature still to fly,
First did with puffing kiss those locks display.
She, so dishevell'd, blush'd; from window I
With sight thereof cried out, O fair disgrace,

Let honour's self to thee grant highest place!

Highway, since you my chief Parnassus be;

And that my Muse, to some ears not unsweet.

Tempers her words to trampling horses' feet.

More soft than to a chamber melody;

Now blessed You bear onward blessed Me

To Her, where I my heart safe left shall meet,

My Muse and I must you of duty greet

With thanks and wishes, wishing thankfully.

Be you still fair, honour'd by public heed.

By no encroachment wrong'd, nor time forgot;

Nor blamed for blood, nor shamed for sinful deed.

And that you know, I envy you no lot

Of highest wish, I wish you so much bliss,

Hundreds of years you Stella's feet may kiss.

Of the foregoing, the first, the second, and the lost sonnet, are my favourites. But the general beauty of them all is, that they are so perfectly characteristical . The spirit of "learning and of chivalry,"—of which union, Spenser has entitled Sydney to have been the "president,"—shines through them. I confess I can see nothing of the "jejune " or "frigid " in them ; much less of the "stiff" and " cumbrous "—which I have sometimes heard objected to the Arcadia, The verse runs off swiftly and gallantly. It might have been tuned to the trumpet; or tempered (as himself expresses it) to " trampling horses' feet." They abound in felicitous phrase

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