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it seems enough to know that he who has
true that the disastrous drug made from the
One would imagine that there was not much to be said in reply to this. But official ingenuity is equal to any emergency, and can afford to be especially acute when a revenue of six millions sterling is involved. So young Lord George Hamilton, son of a duke, and a rising Tory hope, proceeded to apprise the importunate Scot that opium is really a blessing to the Chinese. It appears that it is virtuous, not vicious, to cram it into their throats nolens volens. Why, opium is just the thing for the Celestial constitution; were it withdrawn, "one-third of the Chinese nation would die." The Chinese take opium as the Scotch take whiskey and the English beer; and so Lord George would not perhaps object to see the Scotch compelled to have whiskey, and the English beer, whether they would or not.
Another utterly false argument was that the Chinese would have opium, and, if they did not get it from India, they would from somewhere else. Every rum-seller in the world may thus make of his trade a virtue. The opium trade is a scandalous blot on English morality, and no official self-hoodwinking, or attempts to hoodwink others, can wipe it out. It would be bad enough for the most benevolent of nations to raise it and sell it; but to keep the Chinese bound down by stringent treaties, backed by war-fleets, to receive and consume it, is a masterpiece of the inconsistency which is not less characteristic of nations than of individuals, The effort to prove opium not only harmless, but actually a tonic and necessary stimulant, would be amusing, were it not for the hypocrisy of the excuse and the sordidness of its object.
collections, eulogies of his works in elabo-
THE recent assault upon a woman in the compartment of an English railway-carriage prompts many people to inquire why the plan of the American car is not adopted abroad. We imagine that the dangers pertaining to the English' system must increase greatly before travelers there will abandon their quiet and comfortable carriages for our dusty, cramped, and wholly disagreeable
These "outrages," of which so much is said, are after all only occasional: in view of the immense number of trains always coming and going, their percentage is low enough to warrant a tolerable.confidence with each traveler that he is going to escape them. But, if the English do change the construction of their carriages, they will find better models in Switzerland than with us, where a car is used with rear and front platforms and central passage-way through, as ours are, but with the vehicle divided into compartments, just as in England. By this method there is every necessary seclusion, without
entire isolation from other parts of the car. riage. These Swiss railways may be studied to advantage in more particulars than one. They have in use on some of the lines a carriage that should be seen by those into whose hands the approaching rapid-transit road in this city is to fall. It is a double-tier or two-story car, the upper section being covered, but open at the sides. This upper tier is in no wise rudely or roughly constructed; the seats are very comfortable, and the arrangement very good; and a most charming eyrie does the position afford for the traveler who is desirous of plenty of fresh air, or is seeking for good views of the country through which the train is passing. Cars like these would prove to be a most agreeable feature of our trains when the elevated railway comes; they might, indeed, be introduced on our city roads to the great comfort of the now muchcrowded and much-oppressed passengers.
THE English republicans have been try ing to get up a breeze of popular indigna. tion against the grant to pay the expenses of the Prince of Wales in India. But the English refuse to be agitated in hot weather; besides, there is such a general condition of apathy in British politics of late, that for the time at least the resources of popular indignation are exhausted. It is true enough that a million sterling, at least, which the princely tour will cost, is a heavy sum to pay for a royal pageant which is to take place at the antipodes; but then, as long as the English have a royal family, and cleave to it, such things must be, and an expenditure of this sort is not inconsistent. Still, the radicals who wish to do away with royalty are right to make a fuss every time fancy sums of this sort are voted; for while the English may properly think that royalty should be maintained with becoming state as long as it exists, these incidents are so many arguments against doing away with it altogether. Meanwhile the prince's visit to Hindostan may have political results well worth the
IF criticism is either a science or an an it is singular that as yet no progress has been made in formulating its laws or class lit fying its results. For a century or more erary criticism has been practised by some of the leading minds in England and Germa ny, and during Sainte- Beuve's lifetime, least, it overtopped every other departmen of French literature; and yet its definition are even now so meagre that every trivis story and commonplace poem has to be eithe analyzed, elucidated, and described, as if were an entirely new type in letters, or sim ply handed over to the reader with a dogmat
ic indorsement or condemnation. Every one whose acquaintance with books, and especially with current literature, is at all intimate, knows that they fall into species, and even genera, almost as distinct as those into which the animal and vegetable kingdoms have been divided; and nothing would seem more certain than that literary criticism only needs some critical Cuvier in order to be developed at once into that stage of a science in which its mere definitions are adequately descriptive. It hardly needs to be pointed out, perhaps, how greatly the critic's task would be lightened if, like the naturalist, he could make the nature and quality of a book clear to the reader's mind by some such simple formula as this: order, fiction; genus, subjective-analytical; species, trash.
Our consciousness of the great convenience which such a classification would prove, however, shall not tempt us to undertake it here; and we shall only avail ourselves of the suggestion so far as to say that in any system of the kind "Wildmoor "* would rank among the lowest species-probably under that which might be defined as "painstakingbarely-dall." It is a book that has quite evidentply cost its author an immense amount of
trouble-it is her "work" in the most homely signification of that term. Her preparations for it apparently included a careful study, not only of the way in which novels are divided into chapters, the narrative broken up into dialogue, and the secret on the keeping of which the interest of the story is supposed to depend, let out in the second or third chapter; but also of the qualities which people in novels are supposed to admire, of the way in which they express this admiration, of their manner of falling in and
love, of their deportment under sorrow, and of their genial custom of consenting to be taken off at precisely the moment most convenient to all concerned. The very phraseology appropriate to the various circumstances and occasions has been carefully
Brent writes," and "Hope writes,” and “Ge-
"FATED TO BE FREE,"* though very far
and there is a kind of coherence and conti-
The peculiar plot of "Fated to be Free"
their chief interest from the careful minute-
and the loveliest and sweetest women of real life are considerably older than the vast majority of heroes and heroines in the world of fiction."
As criticism, this is fairer, probably, than most of the criticisms bestowed by authors upon their own works, and as an explanation of Miss Ingelow's theory of novel-writing it is evidently entirely candid; for it insists upon what we had intended to point out as the chief fault of both stories. Miss Ingelow has written largely for children, and all her works show that she is consistent in claiming for children more attention than they usually "Off the Skelligs," for exget in literature. ample, was an attempt to demonstrate that boys and girls could furnish very satisfactory heroes and heroines for a story designed for adult readers; and the numerous pages devoted to children in the present work would, if separated from the context, and bound together, make an almost incomparable juvenile. It is certain, too (and this demonstrates the faultiness of her theory), that the book would be greatly improved, in an artistic sense, by such elisions. We wonder if Miss Ingelow has ever reflected on the reason why "books written for grown-up people are, as a rule, kept almost clear of children?" She has jumped to the conclusion, apparently, that it is because the opportunities which
children afford to novelists have been overlooked or purposely ignored; but we think it has arisen from an instinctive sense of fitness on the part of novelists. Human life, and of course any representation of human life, takes its interest from the relations between persons whose actions are free, and whose conduct may therefore be regarded as indicative of characters that have gone beyond the inchoate or merely impulsive stage, or from the struggle of man with his environment. Childhood can comply with none of these conditions; for children are but passive actors at best-their conduct is judged not by its proximate results, but by the tendencies or "line of development" which it reveals. Furthermore, children can take no part in the one universal human passion which alone touches universal human sympathies. A novel for " grown-up people" in which children play more than a subordinate part is as untrue to Nature as it is defective in art; in fact, it is defective in art because it is untrue to Nature.
"I am told that they are peculiar, and I feel that they must be so, for most stories of human life are, or at least aim at being, works fa noted, and the author has followed out her of art selections of interesting portions of The programme with the conscientious exactness life, and fitting incidents, put together and of a Brahman at his prayers. But, though presented as a picture is; and I have not aimed at producing a work of art at all, but a such genuine painstaking is entitled to recog-piece of Nature. I have attempted to beguile nition in these days of flimsy and careless my readers into something like a sense of writing, the result can hardly be said to be reality; to make them fancy that they were otherwise than dull. In fact, Miss Burck-reading the unskillful chronicle of things thut wett fairly invited failure from two different really occurred, rather than some invented directions: first, by localizing her story in story, as interesting as I knew how to make England without knowing any thing at first it. It seemed to me difficult to write, at least hand of either English scenery or English in prose, an artistic story; but easy to come ociety; and, second, by adopting what, next nearer to life than most stories do. o autobiography, is perhaps the most diffiĮ. ult form of composition-that of telling a tory through the medium of several differ- commonplace man. It seemed proper, indeed, writing English (and excellent English, too),
at persons, writing independently and with F common object in view. This, of course, mands a strong power of conceiving and presenting individual character, but the ople who figure in "Wildmoor" do not en attain to the dignity of puppets-no achinery could make them so much as imiete the movements of real men and women. ere is nothing that amounts to a variation tone between the chapters which "" Miss
Wildmoor. A Novel. By Florence Burckett. ladelphia: J. B. Lippincott & Co.
"Thus, after presenting a remarkable child, it seemed proper to let him (through the force of circumstance) fall away into a very
to crowd the pages with children, for in real
though, as a rule, books written for grown-up
It may be well to add that while "Fated to be Free" is a sequel to "Off the Skelligs," it is also complete in itself.
MRS. C. JENKIN is the only novelist who,
finds herself more at home in France and among the French people, and who chooses her subjects accordingly. All of her previous novels have been simply sketches of French society, chiefly in the southern "provinces," as they are called; and, though a third of the volume is devoted to a Scotch country-family, "Within an Ace" (New York: Henry Holt & Co.) is no exception to the rule. An Englishwoman's experiences among the old French nobility would necessarily be * Fated to be Free. A Novel. By Jean Inge- piquant and picturesque, so the author aplow. Boston: Roberts Brothers. pears to have thought, and her story was evi
Dreaming," approach about as near to real life as the personified Virtues and Vices of the old medieval Spanish plays. The truth is, the author is not writing a novel, but preaching, and no paraphernalia of homely names and conventionally common circumstances could disguise the fact beyond the first page or two.
dently constructed for the special purpose | Hugh, and the other phantoms in "Doing and of revealing these. This is the key to whatever portion of "Within an Ace" is dependent upon the story; but Mrs. Jenkin is a thorough-going convert to the modern theory of novel-writing, in which the story is nothing and revelation of character every thing, and the interest which her present work may be supposed to excite is concentrated exclusively upon the relations between the Comte de Jençay and his wife. And just here lies what is at once the strength and the weakness of the book. "Cattie" is a very lively and life-like person, and a mere passing glimpse of such a character would be well enough; but she is the only portrait that is drawn at full length, and she fails either to interest or amuse the reader-she simply irritates. We do not demand, of course, that a heroine shall be of the perfect and immaculate sort; but it is difficult to feel any keen interest in a young wife who, conscious that her husband loves her, and more than suspecting that she loves him (though she married him to escape home troubles), not only destroys his happiness and her own, but drives him to the verge of distraction by a course of conduct which is at once silly, violent, and spiteful. Such people may exist in real life; probably they do; but they are not a fruitful subject of contemplation, and they certainly are not amusing. So thoroughly, indeed, does "Cattie" tease us during our forced acquaintance that we are hardly satis fied with the author's assurance that "she had to give years of self-discipline "" to the reconquering of her husband's heart, which she had thrown away in an hour of willful caprice. We are afraid she succeeded at last, and are certain that she deserved to fail.
Perhaps, however, we are treating Mrs. Jenkin's work too seriously. At its best it is but froth on the surface of literature. It may be consumed in any quantity without danger of causing mental indigestion, and perchance this will commend it to those who are in search of a summer diet.
Ir is never a pleasant task to sit in judgment on such a book as Edward Garrett's Doing and Dreaming" (New York: Dodd & Mead). Strictly speaking, it is not literature at all; it claims a verdict not on artistic grounds, nor for the instruction which it may impart, but rather as an instrument of "doing good." Viewed from this point, even, it is difficult to feel any confidence in the result. Its doctrines are undeniably true, if somewhat trite; its precepts of morality are unimpeachable; its theories of social and personal duties are such as we could all wish to see obtain a wider acceptance. But the question remains whether human conduct is to be influenced in any appreciable degree by the reiteration of formulas which have for generations been the common property of the race, even when they are thinly disguised under the drapery of fiction. Personal interest, as "Edward Garrett" (who is a woman) is far too well informed not to know, is awakened only by persons; and it is hard to believe that it is not as clear to her as to us that Charlotte, and Elizabeth, and Will, and
THE Athenæum has a second notice of "Queen Mary" this week, and adheres to its unfavorable verdict. It says: Reviewing the play as a whole, we have nothing to add to the remarks we made last week, but it may be pointed out that the work should be compared, not with Shakespeare's historical plays, but with such a drama as Mr. Swinburne's 'Chastelard.' It is with reluctance that we declare that the results of such a comparison will not prove favorable to the elder writer. The world is indebted to Mr. Tennyson for so much fine poetry that it is painful to have to speak of any achievement of his in other words than those of praise, but, in spite of the merits of certain passages in the new volume, deep regret must be felt that the laureate has deserted the ground in which his strength lay to make an experiment in the drama. From what has been said, and from the extracts that are given, it will be seen that 'Queen Mary' is unsuited to the stage. The work is, however, to be at once produced at the Lyceum, and, with the omission of the act relating to Cranmer, the greater portion of the scenes concerning Sir Thomas Wyatt, and other matter, it may be brought within the dimensions of an acting drama. That it will attract a succession of audiences, and enjoy that singularly-barren triumph, a succès d'estime, is probable enough. It would be difficult, however, to adduce any sound reason for Mr. Tennyson's introducing so withered a leaf among the green leaves of his chaplet. When 'Queen Mary' has been brought on the stage, there can be no cause why every portion of Mr. Froude's elaborate history should not undergo the species of adaptation bestowed on his fifth and sixth volumes."
"THE PAPERS OF A CRITIO," just published in London, is a collection of the reviews written by the elder Dilke for the Athenæum. The volume is prefaced with a biographical sketch of his grandfather by Sir Charles Dilke, and contains reminiscences of many literary people of the last generation. . . The old Tabard Inn, made famous by Chaucer, is now in process of demolition. . . . The author of "A Member for Paris" has written a new novel, a sort of political squib, in which, under the name of Mr. Paramount, he gives a lively sketch of a certain well-known statesman, who is himself not guiltless of such satire in times past: "If Mr. Paramount had a weakness, it was for the surroundings which great wealth affords. Pictures, gorgeous furniture, satin menus, wines of rare brand, choice music, and rich hues of ladies' dresses, filled his purple imagination with Oriental visions unavowed; and, dreaming himself an Asian potentate, he was perhaps consoled for long exclusions from Downing Street. Birth had a lesser fascination in his eyes, for, besides cer
tain races who trace their descent from the infancy of time, the pedigrees of modern peers are small things indeed." are at last beginning to recognize their obligation to do justice to the memory of the famous author of "Don Quixote." A new literary periodical, called Cervantes, is soon to be
started in Madrid, the profits of which will be devoted to the erection of a monument at Alcala de Henares, in honor of the man whose name it bears. . . . Carlyle recently closed an interview with a London correspondent of a San Francisco newspaper with the following characteristic growl at California: "You are doing no good there: you are harming the world. Cover over your mines, leave your gold in the earth, and go to planting potatoes. Every man who gives a potato to the world is the benefactor of his race; but you with your gold are overturning society, making the ignoble prominent, increasing everywhere the expenses of living, and confusing all things."
Mr. George Grove, the eminent Biblical scholar, is said to be the responsible editor of Macmillan's Magazine. . A new quarterly
review, to be called The Mind, will be started in London in October.. The Saturday Review "takes it out of" Mr. Henry Kingsley's last book in the following lively style: "I am afraid,' says Mr. Kingsley, in beginning the last chapter, 'that our story has been very immoral, and that every character in it, with the exception of the two young French ladies, Héloïse and Clotilde, and of Lady Rhyader, ought to be picking oakum in Coldbath Fields.' There is nothing very immoral, so far as we can see, about the story. It is very unnatural and very stupid. As for ourselves, we would, we think, rather spend our time in picking oakum than in reading such a story as 'Number Seventeen."" The whole of
Swedenborg's MSS. are to be reproduced in fac-simile by photo-lithography, in pursuance of a resolution passed by the General Convention of the New Church in America. Some of his writings have already been so treated, and copies so widely dispersed over the United States that it is thought that nothing less than a flood sweeping the continent bare can place them in jeopardy of loss or destruction. . . Few young journalists, however clever, attain such worldly success as has befallen Hans Forssell, the Swedish writer on politics and philosophy, who has just, in his thirty-second year, been called to take a seat at the Council of State as Minister of Finance.
is only within a few years that out-door sketching has been at all common, except by professional painters. By degrees some of the young men on their vacations, and some of the maidens who, with Alpine sticks and shade-hats, swarm in summer in the mountain-regions and by the sea-shore, have found out that there is something more interesting in watching a painter copy the soft bloom of a mountain-side in the haze of a low sun, or in seeing him imitate the amber: tones of a mountain-brook running over pebbles and moss, than in gossiping over worstedwork or crochet. It may be a troublesome process to the artists themselves to have their sketches examined, and the merits of camp stools, sketch-boxes, and black or white um brellas, discussed with them, yet their pres ence in the picturesque regions of our coun try in summer-time has, no doubt, helped largely to create a taste for drawing and painting among a considerable class of our people.
Summer sketching has long been a com mon and pleasant accomplishment among the
English, skilled in water-colors, and during the past few years it has become an object of much stronger interest than for mere amusement among the more intellectual of them. Through the influence of Ruskin and his followers, young people of both sexes, who formerly looked upon drawing as an agreeable recreation, have come to understand that amateur drawing, equally with music, must have intrinsic merit, and that if it be ignorantly and poorly executed it has no claims to consideration whatever. From the daughters of the queen downward, all sensible English people seem to have resolved that their efforts must be good as far as they go, and, while one of the English princesses exhibits very good busts at the Exhibition of the Royal Academy, another of them, we learn, is earnestly studying with the hard-working scholars of the South Kensington Museum.
One of the pleasantest summer books published this season is "Our SketchingClub," by Rev. St. John Tyrwhitt. It gives a vivacious account, in the guise of a story, of one of the little associations of persons in England which have formed themselves for the study and practice of art. In the introduction to this book, Mr. Tyrwhitt tells us that he has written it at the suggestion and desire of American as well as of English friends, and the whole tone of the book, as well as the special instruction he gives for beginnings of good water-color drawing, would make it as acceptable and suggestive to educated Americans as to his own countrymen. Hitherto we have been far behind the English in this most charming branch of an elegant education-music having gotten decidedly the start among us. All the girls and many of the Sons of our rich people for the past thirty years have been taught the use of the piano, and under suitable masters have been required to practise rigidly many hours a week. But scarcely a man or woman could make an outline of even so simple a form as a common chair, and American girls who could sketch a bit of natural scenery, either in pencil or water-colors, were few indeed. But, thanks to our growing familiarity with artists in Country-resorts, and the sight of their pictures and sketches in their studios in winter, a taste for and some knowledge of painting is now no longer very rare, and a great many people who do not make painting or drawing a profession are yet trying to learn to do what they can and to do it well.
Mr. Tyrwhitt, in his "Sketching-Club," describes its leader as either a professional artist or at least a person of good technical experience, who, while his pupils and friends make trips to distant sketching-grounds, criticises their work, and gives suggestive hints, written or by word of mouth. A record of the club is kept, and, from many rules and regalations, much very good work and analysis of Nature and pleasure in it are the results. At present we don't know of any such complete organization among us as this which Mr. Tyrwhitt describes, but something very ike it has sprung into existence.
A great many people know Mount Desert by this time. The charms of its landlocked
and, above all, its cool, healthy climate, have been dwelt on and described over and over again. Bar Harbor, which is the favorite resort of this island, stands upon a little bay, the upper end of which is formed by a bar which the low tide leaves dry. In this bay many small craft lie at anchor, and, from the pleasure-yachts which anchor here in little fleets, with tiny flags waving in dozens from each one of them, to the fishing-boats and the birch-bark canoes of the Indians who frequent this spot in summer, the small bay is alive with vessels all day long. In early morning and at evening, when the billows of sea-fog have either rolled up and dried on the hill-sides, or retreated to their fastnesses on the remote wastes of the ocean, the villagers and the summer guests of Mount Desert may be seen in great numbers lingering along the shores, or in small row-boats plying over the still, glossy surface of the bay. Not every day, but very often, one of these boats may be seen making good time as it speeds across in the bright morning or the opal-colored evening light, from one of the high, rocky islands that bound the harbor on the north. This boat contains not exactly a sketching-club such as Mr. Tyrwhitt describes, but a party of highly-educated and traveled persons, who, under the guidance of Miss Susan Hale, paint in watercolors out-of-doors for a few hours each day when there is no fog nor rain.
preserved, the general iron tones of the rocks marked, and their breadth of light and shade, remove these summer jottings far above the mincing and inaccurate daubing of amateurs that was formerly considered "sketching."
To paint carefully a few hours a week with some good master in winter-time, and then in summer to be in close intercourse with Nature two or three hours a day, learning critically her moods, her changes of color from hour to hour, and how the long gray or purple shadows of morning and at sunset lessen and nearly vanish in the short, sharp forms of light and shade at noon-to watch and fix on canvas or in sketch-book islands and sails grown rosy in the surface of the blue summer sea, while near pastures and pine-woods sink dim and gray into cool shadow these are only a few of the charms that belong to this new kind of picnic.
Many persons have the notion that nothing can be done in art except by those possessed of high natural talent. But, from Ruskin to Walter Smith, everybody who has had any experience assures us that special talent is not requisite for fair drawing or sketching. Careful work and a little common-sense are sure to succeed, and a man or woman who can tell the difference in shade between a gray cravat or apron and a black gown or jacket, or between a red apple and the green tree on which it hangs, can learn to distinguish accurately enough for sketching the darkness of a rock rising from a pale sea, or the green of a field with its background of purple hill-side.
Miss Hale and her brother, the Rev. Edward Everett Hale, of Boston, are friends of Mr. Tyrwhitt, and are among the Americans at whose suggestion his "Sketching - Club " was written. Miss Hale herself is an accomplished water-colorist, having studied in the best schools abroad, and her fresh energy in walking about among the woods and rocks of the islands of this region, as well as in rowing to picturesque nooks along the shore, where the sea ripples on a pebbly beach, or beats into small caves, gives a sort of Eng-sionally came to visit them, and criticise their lish tone of life to her party, otherwise accustomed, as most Americans are, to the languid indolence of a summer vacation.
So much has been said and written in the last two or three years on the subject of water-colors, that nearly every one has had the chance to learn the improvement that has been made in them, both by the English
schools and in the Water-Color Society of New York. Mr. William M. Hunt, in his "Talks on Art," dwells particularly on the importance of attending to the "values," as artists designate relative dryness of light and
shade, and also on not trying to see too much
detail in the landscape. The new effects to be got by using plenty of color at a time, instead of the thin washes which formerly made
water-colors synonymous in the minds of
many people with feebleness, and Mr. Hunt's
teaching of the "values," are specially use
We have heard of one or two other of these sketching-parties made up from winter classmates and companions in painting; non professional lovers of Nature and of art, who have gone on picnics of a few weeks to pleasant places, where they have painted, sketched, walked, and rode, and where their master, in one case William M. Hunt, of Boston, occa
There is a fashion in household art, and a passion for Japanese embroidery, and it may be that summer sketching-parties will come into vogue with the same class of our prosperous population, and we sincerely hope that it may, for the pleasure, the health, and the refining and poetical knowledge of Nature that such an employment brings with it.
THE latest addition to the collection of statuary in the Central Park is George Simond's "Falconer," a colossal bronze figure executed in Rome in 1871, and presented by Mr. George Kemp, of this city. The statue is notably one of the most artistic and spirited conceptions now in the Park, and is receiving the warmest praise from the most critical observers. The Park collection of statuary, with the exception of Ward's "Indian Hunter," and possibly one of the colossal portrait statues, is not greatly esteemed for its spirit, hence the addition of a manly
ful for rapid sketching, and under Miss Hale's
hays, its low, green, sloping hills, its cliffs, which the great contours of the rocks are
much of the severity which has heretofore belonged to it. The statue stands upon a rocky eminence on the main drive, overlooking the lake, one of the most commanding
sites in the Park. The height of the figure is about seven feet, and the pose and action are suggestive of youthful vigor and the enthusiasm of early manhood. The weight of the body rests upon the right foot, which is firmly placed on the ground, while the left leg is extended as in walking. The right arm is bent across the waist, and the left arm is raised, and upon the gauntleted hand sits a falcon, with outstretched wings, poised for flight. The head of the falconer is thrown back, and his eyes are eagerly watching the movement of the bird. The face of the figure is handsome, without being effeminate, and a jaunty little cap, with an eagle's feather stuck in its crown, serves to keep his flowing hair in order. The chest is broad and full, and the firm lines of the neck and body are as positive as those of an athlete. The muscular action of the figure is one of its strongest features of excellence, and it is emphasized by tight-fitting drapery. The body is covered with a simple huntingshirt, which covers the hips, and the legs are incased in trunk - hose. This costume has given the sculptor a fine opportunity for the display of his anatomical knowledge, and he has availed himself of it with great success. The only accessories in the way of costume are a hunting-bag slung over the shoulder and hanging against the right hip, and a The hunting-knife suspended from a belt. extraordinary grace and spirit of this work attract the attention of all observers.
THE statue of Lafayette, which was ordered by the French Government, under Thiers, in 1871, for presentation to the city of New York as an expression of gratitude, and in remembrance of the friendly offerings and kind feelings of its people during and at the close of the late war, arrived at this port last week, consigned to the Consul-General of France, and in the honorary charge of M. A. Salmon, president of the Cercle Français de l'Harmonie. The statue was finished one year ago, but no arrangements had been made for its shipment, nor would there have been at this time had not M. Salmon taken upon himself the duty of investigating the matter, and assumed the expenses attending its removal. The figure is seven feet high, exclusive of the pediment, and is the work of M. Frédéric Bartholdi, an eminent sculptor of the French school, and a native of Colmar, in Alsace. The design represents General Lafayette in his twentieth year, and was suggested to the sculptor by the passage taken from his memoirs, in which he says: "As soon as I heard of the Declaration of Independence, my heart was enrolled in the cause." He stands upon the bulwarks of the ship, as if in the act of speaking. His right arm is thrown across his breast, the hand grasping the hilt of his sword; the left arm is gracefully extended, and supports a mass of drapery, which falls at his feet. The body is firmly posed upon the right foot, while the left leg is extended, and only the toe of the military boot rests upon the bulwark. The head is partly turned to the right, and is strikingly in accord with the action of the body. The pose of the figure is excellent, and the simple yet graceful arrangement of
the drapery adds greatly to its force. The military cloak envelops no part of the figure; but, as it falls from the arm, lends a grand suggestion of strength to the design, and the formal lines of the military costume assume a picturesqueness which is really attractive. The portrait was studied from paintings of Lafayette taken from life, and is said to be accurate. The sculptor received one hundred and fifty thousand francs for his work. It is the wish of the French residents in New York that the statue should be erected in the Central Park, and this has been acquiesced in by the Park authorities. No time has yet been set for the unveiling ceremonies, and before this can be done a proper pedestal must be provided, as well as the necessary expenses connected with it. M. Salmon, as president of the Cercle Français de l'Harmonie, has already communicated with the Park authorities in regard to the erection and unveiling of the statue, and the ceremonies, we may hope, will take place without any unnecessary delay.
THOSE of our readers who have seen Millet's "Sower" at the Boston Athenæum, will be pleased with the following upon this painting from the Contemporary Review: "We may take this picture of 'Le Semeur' as representative of the noblest qualities of Millet's art. No one who has seen it can have missed its grandeur or its simplicity, its grace or its truth. As we gaze at the darkened figure broadly scattering the grain, we perceive at once how close and accurate has been the painter's knowledge of the facts of rustic life. There is here neither ignorance nor shirking of common truth; the peasant is not unfit for his place on the hill-side, and his gesture is strictly appropriate to the simple and worldworn duty he has to perform. But although fidelity, by one who knows the reality of this is a true peasant presented with unerring peasant-life, it is also something more. Looking at the plan of the picture, the sloping line of the dark hill-side, the space of waning light, and the stress and energy of the sower, we note that the peasant has become a grand figure in a grand design. The movement of his outstretched arm, the almost fierce energy of his progress across the barren landscape, the individual laborer, all thought of his occuseem to take a new significance. All sense of pation, are lost in the contemplation of a splendid and majestic picture in which these things serve only as material. We pass with the painter from the obvious appearance of the scene to its deeper beauty. We perceive how out of this simple physical duty, performed again and again, he has drawn new discoveries of the dignity of human form. The very monotony of the employment helps the impressiveness of the picture; the figure of the sower, that by the painter's art is kept forever in this one attitude of grace, seems to present in grand epic fashion an abstract of all human labor. There is a sadness in his persistent progress, a hopelessness that has been strangely imported into the aspect of this single figure, and which belongs rather to the vision of the painter than to his subject, the expression of a wider truth thrust into individual form. And when the full significance of this profounder motive has been realized, we may again return to a simple view of the actual scene to note once more how all this has been expressed without disturbance of the obvious simplicity and direct truth of the view
of rustic life. The sense of style and the familiarity with the employments of the country have united without conflict for a single
and harmonious effect."
OUR PARIS LETTER.
July 6, 1875.
HE inundations in the south of France con
tinue to be the leading topic in all circles. As the details of the disaster arrive, it becomes apparent that things are even worse than they were at first reported to be. The danger of a pestilence, caused by the overflow of rivermud which has spread over the vast area (two hundred miles square) that was covered by the waters, is rapidly increasing, and physicians are ordering away all those who can possibly leave. The stench arising from the unburied bodies, not only of animals, but of human beings, is said to be terrible. People dare not enter those houses which were flooded, as their foundations have become so insecure that in several instances they fell in upon those who had opened the doors. Many sad and strange events of the great disaster are chronicled. Especially tragic is the story of a priest who was hearing the confession of a lady-peniteut. In the midst of her avowals the floor gave way beneath their feet, and they were precipitated into the flood amid the ruins of the falling house. "Absolution-grant me absolution!" cried the poor woman as she sank. The absolution was given, then priest and penitent were parted by the rush of the torrent. The priest managed to clamber on a floating beam and was saved, but the poor woman never was again seen alive. Many people refused to leave their houses while the water was as yet only ankle-deep, and remained to perish beneath the ruins. One of the most heart-rending features of the scene were the cries of those who were beyond aid in the submerged and falling buildings. It is said that the loss of life can only be computed by thousands, over three thousand persons being already officially known to have perished. Sixty million dollars' worth of property has been destroyed. The subscriptions are pouring in on all sides. Every theatre in Paris has either given, or is organizing, a benefit - performance. That of the Opéra took place last Saturday. The programme, as is usual in such cases, was excessively scrappy, consisting of separate acte of "Faust," the "Huguenots," and the "Trovatore," one act of the ballet of "Coppelia," and a miscellaneous concert. In this last, the superb voice of Mademoiselle de Reszké, the débutante whose success I chronicled in my last, showed to great advantage in the Boler from the "Vêpres Siciliennes," and the quar tet from "Rigoletto." It is reported the this performance was the last appearance of Madame Gueymard, who is going to retin definitely from the stage. It is surely time for the lady is old and fat, and wellnigh voice less, her once-powerful organ having beel worn to shreds by long years of prima-donna ship at the Grand Opéra. Madame Roseni Bloch has already succeeded her in the role of the Queen in "Hamlet," and the change is great improvement.
Concerning the débutante, Mademoiselle d Reszkó, any number of romantic stories ar afloat. She is a Hungarian, is the sister of the tenor De Reschi, and is said to be immensely wealthy, and to have gone on the stage from sheer love of art. Of course, this latter stor is to be received with even more than the pro