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There is something very unnatural, and to us very disgusting, in this affection, half pure, half sensual, of Zuleika's; and the declaration of it at p. 20, is particularly offensive. At night she goes to the appointed grotto in the garden, and finds her quondam brother, her present lover, in the disguise of a sailor's
From him she learns, that her father Giaffir, and his father, Abdallah, were brothers, and that Abdallah had been poisoned by the order of Giatfir, for the sake of his Pachalick. Himself, then a child, was spared, in some fit of remorse or natural feeling, and with him Haroun, a harain guard. Bred up, however, as Giaffir's son, he was yet jealously watched, confined in the palace, and debarred all manly exercises and accomplishments. But once, in the absence of Giaffir, Haroun had permitted him to wander forth upon his parole; and he had joined the pirates that infested the islands of the Archipelago. To these he was purposing to return; a boat was waiting to carry him oft, and he invites Zuleika to share with him in this blessed state of liberty. Just, however, as they are going off, they are surprized by flambeaux and all the signs of pursuit: he fires a pistol, as a signal to the boat; the boat appears, and he has fought his way to it, and is just stepping into it, when a bullet, from the carbine of Giaffir, lays him dead upon the beach. Zuleika had fainted and died, when her lover left the cave.
Such is the story which is very spiritedly told by Lord Byron, though, we think, with pot quite so much strength of poetry, as is to be found in the Romaunt,' or the Giaour. There are, however, very beautiful passages to be quoted.
The opening of the poem contains a rich description of eastern landscape, though we could have wished that the images in the four first lines had given place to others less finical and unnatural. Indeed, the lines might be advantageously struck out.
• Know ye the land where the cypress and myrtle
Are emblems of deeds that are done in their clime,
Now melt into sorrownow inadden to crime?-
We may add to this, the effect of such scenery on a youthful und susceptible mind.
I « So lovelily the morning shone,
" That- let the old and weary sleep
With none to listen and reply
“ And, as thou knowest that for me
«« Soon turns the Haram's grating key,
^ The World-nay-Heaven itself was mine!"'p. 42. The most spirited part of the poem, however, is the conclusion, The death of Selim is brought immediately beneath the eye of the reader.
· But ere her lip, or even her eye,
“ But yet my band not far from shore
“ No matter--yet one effort more.”
His pistol's echo rang on high,' pp. 49-50.
Already at his feet hath sunk
A gasping head, a quivering trunk;
And almost met the meeting wave;
Oh! are they yet in time to save ?
His feet the foremost breakers lave,
His heart's best blood is on the water !' p. 51. The desolation and distress disclosed by the dawning liglit are painted in the author's strongest manner.
• Morn slowly rolls the clouds away
Few trophies of the fight are there
That strand of strife may bear
But where is he who wore?
And cast on Lemnos' shore:
Chat handwhose motion is not life-
Then levelled with the wave-
Within a living grave?' pp. 534. We think the reader will agree with us that the wild versification of the following passage is admirably fitted to the mouraful subject.
By Helle's stream there is a voice of wail !
Thy destin'd lord is come too late-
ne'er shall see thy face!
Can he not hear
Thy handmaids weeping at the gate,
The silent slaves with folded arms that wait,
Tell him thy tale!
Thy heart grew chill-
Sufficed to kill
Peace to thy broken heart and virgin grave!' p. 55-6 The conclusion is very pleasing and romantic. A single rose, says the poet, flourishes by the tomb of the lovely Luleika; and near it, every night, is heard ' a bird unseen." '
• It were the Bulbul-but bis throat,
Though mournful, pours not such a strain ,
As if they loved in vain!
'Tis sorrow so unmixed with dread,
That melancholy spell,
He sings so wild and well!
the day-blush bursts from high,
been who could believe
Yet harsh be they that blame,
That note so piercing and profound
Into Zuleika's name.
As weeping Beauty's cheek at Sorrow's tale ! pp. 58-60. We must not close without just noticing the frequent embarrassment and complication of the author's style. The reader will have seen something of it in the passages already quoted; it appears to proceed from haste.
How ungrammatical, ungraceful, and obscure are the following passages !
• “ Pacha! to hear is to obey.--"
And starting ott, as through the glade
The maid pursued her silent guide;' p. 30, Every thing that in any way impedes the progress of the reader, helps to destroy the effect of the passage. The spiritedness of Scott is never lost by a want of intelligibility, that of Campbell is but too frequently.