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“ It is a great pity,” said little Lestoc, " that go as far as Sicily, and put at his entire disposition the Latin barbarians must disappear; in a cen- one of his two palaces, and urged him to go to tury from now there will not be more than Malaserra and there spend an entire month. The three of their race left in the world. One will Prince said he was soon going there himself, and be a hair-dresser, the second a cook, and the immediately began to describe all the beauties third will make jests like Monsieur Taconet. of the place and of every tree upon it. Monsieur But, I am told that when they are dead, and Drommel accepted this proposition with the there is no one left in the world but the Ger- greatest delight, for, the more intimately associmans, the Academy of Berlin, starting on the ated he was with the Prince de Malaserra, the principle of the more fools the merrier, will offer more convinced he became that he was destined a purse of a hundred thousand francs to encour- to live with princes. age inventors to manufacture more barbarians. This agreeable conversation was interrupted
“You do the greatest injustice to German more than once by the indiscreet Madame Pi-savants," said Monsieur Taconet as he rose card. This good woman has so many excellent from the table. They are preposterous enough qualities that one can afford to name a fault or to keep the earth, the moon, and the stars in a two. She feels only a moderate respect for the perpetual state of gayety." Then approaching great of the earth, and for men of celebrity, even Monsieur Drommel—“One of the last of the red- if they do drink the best wine in her house. She skins,” he cried, “ wishes to the Germanic Syn- is even accused of treating somewhat cavalierly thesis a sweet night's rest and happy dreams.” those of her inmates whose faces were unknown
This being said, he bowed profoundly and to her, which was a great defect, inasmuch as it left the room.
is a part of her profession to have no preferences, “That man is really very disagreeable," mut- but to treat all persons alike. “Tell me what tered Monsieur Drommel; “he is rough and you are in the habit of eating and I will tell you surly, I am somewhat of a physiognomist. His who you are.” Such is the motto of the perfect face repelled me at once. It is not one that I innkeeper. should like to meet in a dark wood."
Several times during this long meal and con“ I know an honest man who was entirely of versation, Madame Picard entered the diningyour opinion,” said Lestoc, “and who would be room, hoping to find it empty, and then going still if he had not been guillotined the other out would slam the door with considerable vioday.”
lence. How could she say Go away” with “What do you mean by that?" asked the more clearness or emphasis ? Prince de Malaserra.
Monsieur Drommel could not refrain from “I mean to say, my Prince, that certain peo- saying to the Prince that Madame Picard's face ple like to meet a pretty woman in a wood rather struck him as quite as forbidding as that of than a police-officer any time.""
Monsieur Taconet, and he asked, in a mysterious "Ah! Monsieur Taconet belongs to the po- whisper, if the inns at Barbison were looked lice force, does he?” cried the Prince; “I sus- upon as honest, respectable places. The Prince pected it. The police always have a certain look inferred from this that Monsieur Drommel had in their eyes, and have no figures to speak of, at least, among his luggage, a collection of ruthat is, in France.”
bies. When, however, he understood that it was Visibly relieved by the departure of this man only a trifling matter of five or six thousand without a figure, he rang and ordered a bot- francs in notes of all kinds, he could not refrain tle of wine, with which he intended to regale his from a contemptuous shrug of his shoulders. illustrious friend. Three glasses were brought, What were six thousand francs to a great lord but little Lestoc went off declaring that the open- who owned Malaserra ? He represented to air school never drank that kind of wine, and Monsieur Drommel that it would have been the Prince de Malaserra was left with Monsieur much better to provide himself with letters of Drommel alone. The Prince congratulated him- credit, and he urged him never to separate himself on his good luck in having met one of the self from his little bag. greatest thinkers of the age, whose logic he pas- “ This house,” he said, "is a most respectsionately admired, although he was forced to dis- able place, but a man, my dear fellow, can never approve his principles.
be sure of anything but what he has !” The conversation became more intimate, for During this time the ex-police officer, who the wine disposed their hearts to expansion. The had retired to his room, had visions, as he smoked Prince de Malaserra asked a host of questions in- his pipe, of a very pretty woman with soft gray dicative of the most heartfelt interest. He was eyes, of an innocent youth with a blonde mousdelighted to ascertain that our sociologist pro- tache, of a leather satchel hung around the neck posed to linger in Italy; he made him promise to of a blockhead, and of the pale and haughty face
of a Sicilian Prince who exclaimed, “Respect to ponder on inferior races, and upon those nafor Property is the foundation of the Universe." tions which hold the secrets of the future, on
Monsieur Taconet built on these faces a Germanic synthesis—and upon Sedan. And, charming romance where elective affinities finally, he thought of the red-skins—and ended played an important part; an imbroglio wherein by murmuring, half aloud,“ Patience!' anhearts and hands “circulated." Then he began swered Panurge."
VICTOR CHERBULIEZ. (Conclusion in next Journal.)
BURTON'S “ANATOMY OF MELANCHOLY.”
R. JOHNSON is not generally supposed to pressly says, a "cento collected from others "; a
have erred as a critic on the side of exces- vast heterogeneous mass of miscellaneous readsive approbation. And yet he managed to be- ing; the contents of a commonplace-book kept stow upon one book the most forcible eulogium by a reader of boundless curiosity who has ranged ever uttered. Burton's “ Anatomy of Melan- over the whole field of learning then accessible, choly ” was, he said, the only book which ever from the classical authors down through the took him out of bed two hours sooner than he fathers and the scholastic philosophers of the intended. The compliment is always reproduced middle ages, to the grammarians, philosophers, when Burton's book is mentioned. Second-hand physiologists, and novelists of the Renaissance, booksellers judiciously quote it in their catalogues and who has dipped into the most fashionable to stimulate the appetite of their customers. playbooks, poems, and essays of the day—MonEvery lover of books has been induced to pro- taigne, Bacon, Spenser, Drayton, and even Ben long his evening sitting, sometimes to prolong it Jonson and Shakespeare.* It is a patchwork till daylight, by the charms of a fascinating au- stuck together with scissors and paste, a queer thor; but the most voracious of literary gluttons amorphous mass, in spite of its ostensible plan, seldom breaks his morning slumbers under such where we are half-baffled and half-attracted by an impulse. And, when we add that it was John- references to strange authors who delighted in son who was thus beguiled, Johnson whose whole masquerading with Latin terminations to their life was a continuous remorse for inability to rise names. We have heard more or less of some of early, when we see that Burton must have done them, of Bodinus and Paracelsus, or Cardan, or for once what could be done neither by strong Erasmus; but who, we wonder, was Rlasis the religious principles, nor by a morbidly keen con- Arabian, or Skenkius, or Poggius, or Fuchsius, science, nor by the pressure of stern necessity, or Busbequius t-a name which has no doubt a and what the united energies of Boswell and the peculiar favor of pleasant quaintness ? Such Thrales and the whole of the Club would have names carry with them a faint association of the failed in securing, we must admit that the per- days of high-built and ponderous pedantry; we formance borders on the incredible. Doubtless catch a passing glimpse of some ancient doctor it was the youthful Johnson whose slumbers he damning another for his theory of the irregular disturbed; and it was after the scanty fare of verbs, or settling the theory of the enclitic de, or Lichfield, not the solid festivities of the “Mitre” conducting tremendous disputations in the schools or the “ Turk's Head.” With all deductions, we with all the ponderous apparatus of the old sylloare still in presence of a “great fact.” Many a gistic artillery. Yet it is possible to have too young student must have turned with avidity to much of Busbequius; and, after dipping into the the promised treat, and a good many have prob- book, in search of that spirit and power which he ably retreated in disappointment. For, at first is said (still by Johnson) to display when writing sight, the reader becomes aware of the curious
* Shakespeare is noticed at least twice ; in a reference mildness of another phrase of Johnson's; the to Benedick and Beatrice in the comedy, and a quotabook, he said, is “perhaps overloaded with quo- tion from “Venus and Adonis." tations." That is rather like saying that Pick- † Busbecq, or Busbequius, was in fact a distinguished wick may “ perhaps " be regarded as aiming at diplomatist in the sixteenth century; he went to Confun; that there is possibly a dash of humor instantinople and wrote travels, and, according to the Charles Lamb; or that Pope may be accused of lilac from Turkey. There is a full article about him in
“ Biographie Universelle," was the first to introduce the a tendency to satire. The“ Anatomy" is all but Bayle. Possibly his name has a scholastic flavor to us made up of quotations; it is, as the author ex- from a vague association with the famous Dr. Busby,
from his own mind, it is well if we do not give and yet, under all his concealments, he has a cerup the chase in despair, and decide that it is tain vein of shrewd humor which may at least hardly worth cracking so vast a shell of effete serve to excite such a portion of that faculty as pedantry to come at so small a kernel of sound we may ourselves happen to possess.
Burton, in his opening address to the reader, It is well, I say; for after all there is a real sets forth his claims to the title of Democritus charm in the old gentleman. Certainly the junior; and he tells at length the legend of the “ Anatomy” is not a book to be read through; laughing philosopher; how the citizens of Abit would have no place in the short list of literary dera took him to be mad by reason of his excesmasterpieces which the intelligent reader is sup- sive perception of the ludicrous, and brought the posed to absorb into his mental structure. It is weeping Hippocrates to cure him of his folly; a book for odds and ends of time, and to be read how Hippocrates found him sitting on the ground only at appropriate seasons; not, perhaps, in a cutting up beasts to find out the causes of melrailway-carriage or by the seaside, or in any ancholy; and how, when Hippocrates tried to place where the roaring wheels of our social point out that reasonable citizens employed themmachinery make themselves too plainly heard. selves upon business or pleasure instead of disIt is rather a book to be taken up in a quiet section, Democritus answered every argument by library, by accident, not of malice prepense, and, peals of laughter and demonstrations of the utin spite of Johnson, rather in the last hour of the ter absurdity of all the ordinary activities of man. night than at morning. When you are tired of So clearly did Democritus preach upon the old blue-books or scientific wrangling or metaphysi- text, Vanity of Vanities, that Hippocrates decal hair-splitting; when you have turned to the parted with the fullest conviction of his sanity. last book from the circulating library only to dis- Burton proposes to continue the discourse of cover that novel-writing is a forgotten art; that Democritus. Never, he says, was there so much poetry has become a frivolous echo of sounding food for laughter as now; for now, “as Salisverbiage; that the smartest mazagine article is a buriensis says in his time, totus mundus histrimere pert gabble of commonplace-jaundiced onem agit, the whole world plays the fool; we views which sometimes suggest themselves on have a new theatre, a new scene, a new comedy such occasions—it may be pleasant to soothe of errors, a new company of personate actors ; yourself by entering this old museum of musty Volupia sacræ (as Calcagnius willingly feigns in antiquities, and to feel as though you were enter- his · Apologius) are celebrated all the world ing a forgotten chamber where the skeletons of over, when all the actors were madmen or fools, seventeenth-century spiders are still poised upon and every hour changed habits, or took that undisturbed cobwebs. The phantoms of Busbe- which came next.” The world is a farce; quius and his fellows may then have substan- princes are mad; great men are mad; philosotiality enough to hold converse with you for a phers and scholars are mad, and so are those time, and you gradually perceive that old Burton who scorn them. Methinks,” he says, himself probably once filled an academical cos- men are fools,” if we may apply the judicious tume with a genuine structure of flesh and bone. tests given by Æneas Sylvius. Nevisanus, the Carefully as he retires behind his moth-eaten lawyer, holds it for an axiom, most women are folios, there are moments when he drops his dis- fools ; Seneca, men, be they old or young; who guise, and you can depict the quaint smile of the doubts it, youth is mad as Elius in Tully, stulti humorous observer of men and manners, and be- adolescentuli ; old age little better, deliri senes.” lieve that he had in his days a genuine share of And, after running through as many classes as the pathetic side of human folly. Nobody, it is he can think of, Burton confesses that he is himtrue, is more provokingly shy. It is the shyness self as foolish and as mad as any one.
We are of the genuine old-fashioned scholar, who is half- tolerably familiar with the theory, “ All the world ashamed of possessing tissues not made out of is a stage,” and the players are “mostly fools.” an ancient parchment. You ask him for an opin- Satirists and poets and moralists and essayists ion, and he throws a dozen authorities at your have set the same sentiment to different times; head and effects his escape into an ingenious and it is the special function of the humorist to digression; he balances himself in curious equi- give fresh edge to the ancient doctrine. Burton librium between the ranks of opposing doctors, has certainly chosen a thesis which affords ample and only lets slip at intervals an oblique intima- room for the widest illustration ; and we have tion that he is inclined to think that one of them only to ask how he acquits himself of his task. is a donkey. In all this he is certainly as differ- And here we perceive that he begins to ent as possible from the ordinary humorist. He shrink a little. Some people, he says, will think requires an interpreter, and must be cross-ex- his performance “ too fantastical, too light and amined to make him yield up his real meaning; comical for a divine”; and he replies that he is
mood in which we hold the lessons of sweet si- ment, however, is that, according to Nicholas lent thought. But, again, we drop to the most Leonicus, Solon, when “ besieging I know not physiological, and, as we should now call it, ma- what city," poisoned the springs with hellebore, terialistic view. Melancholy is “ black choler,” as and so weakened the inhabitants that they could its name imports; and we are treated to the defi- not bear arms. Recent writers, however, espenitions of the whole series of physicians, the ques- cially Paracelsus and Matthiolus, have restored tion having been agitated by Galen, Avicenna, Va- the reputation of the injured drug. For so venlesius, Montanus, Cappivaccius, Bright, Fiennes, erable and classical a medicine, it was perhaps and others, with a variety of results anything natural to go back to the records of Solon's siege but encouraging to the patient. We can not but of “I know not what city." Indeed, another sympathize with the excellent Trincavellius, who, statement may remind us that, even in the reign being demanded what he thought of a certain of experimental philosophy, the effects of familiar melancholy young man, “ ingenuously confessed drugs are not always established beyond possithat he was indeed melancholy, but he knew not bility of dispute. “Tobacco," exclaims Burton, to what kind to reduce it.” Trincavellius, indeed, “divine, rare, and superexcellent tobacco, which being consulted on another occasion along with goes far beyond all panaceas, potable gold and Fallopius and Francanzanus, each of these three philosopher's stones, a sovereign remedy to all famous doctors gave a different opinion-an un- diseases. A good vomit, I confess, a virtuous precedented and startling phenomenon ! herb, if it be well qualified, opportunely taken,
Undaunted, however, by this want of agree- and medicinally used; but, as it is commonly ment, or rather encouraged by the boundless abused by most men, who take it as tinkers do field of conjecture which it opened, Burton con- ale, 'tis a plague, a mischief, a violent purger of structs a vast and systematic scheme of analysis, goods, lands, health, hellish, devilish, and damned a network so comprehensive, with its judicious tobacco, the ruin and overthrow of body and divisions and subdivisions, partitions and mem- soul.” The controversy, as many contemporary . bers, and sections and subsections, that the fish allusions testify, was as keen at that time as it is must indeed be strange which can not be some- at the present day. Bobadil, we may remember, where entangled in his toils. The causes of mel- professed to have lived for twenty-one weeks on ancholy range from the highest of all causes, the fumes of this simple, while Justice Overdo down through magicians, witches, the stars, old entreats all men to avoid “the creeping venom age, sickness, poverty, sorrow, and affright, to of this subtle serpent.” special peculiarities of diet, such as the consump- Burton, to do him justice, does not fail to intion of “ dried, soused, indurate fish, as ling, fu- sinuate a sly hit or two at his physicians, under mados, red herring, sprats, stock-fish, haberdine, due shelter of learned names. “Common expoorjohn, all shell-fish ”; and even in detail we perience,” he points out, shows that those “ live are generally left in a painful attitude of doubt. freest from all manner of infirmities that make “ Mesarius commends salmon, which Bruerimus least use of apothecaries' physic”; though apothcontradicts,” and who is to decide between Me- ecaries might possibly argue that he is here insarius and Bruerimus ? The physiology, indeed, verting cause and effect. But he goes further: which forms so large a part of the book is a very “The devil himself was the first inventor of mediamusing illustration of the chaotic state of medi- cine,” he argues; "for Apollo invented it, and cal theory, which gave so many openings for the what was Apollo but the devil?” He points out satirists of the period, and which has so happily with more cogent logic the discord of the docbeen succeeded by perfect unanimity. Johnson tors of his day, and remarks: “This art is wholly was not improbably attracted to the "Anatomy" conjectural, if it be an art, uncertain, imperfect. by the title, which promised to give him some hints and got by killing of men; they are a kind of in his life-long struggle with disease. If so, he butchers, leeches, menslayers, chirurgeons and must indeed have been edified. The general tone apothecaries especially, that are indeed the phyof the decisions of the physicians of the period is sicians' hangmen and common executioners, excellently given by the controversy as to helle- though, to say truth, the physicians themselves bore. This drug fell out of its old repute, it ap- come not far behind, for, according to that facete pears, owing to the authority of Mesue and some epigram of Maximilianus Urentius” (which, in other Arabians ; and it is “still oppugned to this Burton's phrase, I here voluntarily pretermit), day by Crato and some junior physicians. Their “what's the difference?” And, though Burton's reasons are briefly that Aristotle and Alexander skepticism is judiciously tempered by a considAphrodiseus called it a poison, while Constantine eration which has restrained many of his fellow the Emperor, in his "Graponics,' attributes no satirists-namely, that when he is ill he will probother virtue to it than to kill mice and rats, flies ably want a physician himself-he significantly and mouldwarps.” The most prominent argu- prefaces his selections from the “infinite variety
of medicines which he finds in every pharmaco- pride itself upon a knowledge of the world than pæia" by the warning that they should be used the university don of modern times. A Fellow “very moderately and advisedly," and only when of a college resents the traditional estimate which diet will not answer the purpose. The skepti- would make of him a mere smoke-dried bachelor, cism, indeed, was never pushed to any excess. ignorant, in virtue of his position, of the ordinary He was slightly scandalized, he tells us, when he play of human passion. But old Burton accepts saw his mother apply a spider in a nutshell and prides himself upon his character of learned wrapped in silk for the cure of a sufferer from recluse. He has looked at the world, perhaps, ague; but, on finding the very same remedy pre- more closely than he allows. He had been further scribed by Dioscorides, Matthiolus, and Aldero- from his common-room than merely to the bridge vandus, he began to “have a better opinion of end to hear the ribaldry of the bargees. But he it," and decides wisely with Renodæus that such thinks it necessary to defend himself for discoursamulets are “not altogether to be rejected." ing upon love by more than his usual affectation
Burton's collection of the prescriptions of the of learned authority. “It is part of my treatise,” day is a curious illustration of the time in which he says roundly, “and I must and will perform the most virtuous and benevolent men went about my task,” though in a spirit becoming a grave bleeding fever-struck patients to death, flogging divine. And certainly no fair reader will comothers out of madness, and with equal confidence plain that he has shown undue levity even in this administering spiders in nutshells—and all from department, where an access of gravity borders the best possible motives. Yet it is perhaps the most closely upon the ludicrous. least amusing part of the matter forced into an To get a little closer to Burton himself, to elaborate framework, which, as I have said, is catch a glimpse of the real man behind the elabcontrived with a view to including the most orate mask, we naturally turn to the chapters in heterogeneous stores of learning. One could which his personal experience is forced to come wish that he had not bothered himself with any nearer to the surface. “Democritus junior,” the ostensible method, and had avowedly presented professional laugher at all human folly, might be himself as a mere rambler, diverging hither and expected to show his bitterness when he treats of thither in obedience to any accidental association. his own craft. Beyond a doubt study is a cause Southey's “Doctor,” the last book of any note of melancholy, and indeed, as Lavinius Lemmius which may be regarded as in some degree be- assures us, the commonest of all causes. The longing to the same class, is so far more judi- theme should be a fruitful one, and, indeed, we ciously constructed, though Southey perhaps falls find some touches of genuine feeling. It must into the contrary error of forcibly contorting the be admitted, however, that Burton has a denatural flow of his thought into an appearance cidedly matter-of-fact and prosaic mode of reof more arbitrary digressiveness than really be- garding the subject. The most obvious reason, longs to him. A deliberate resolution to be funny he tells us, of the melancholy of students is their and fanciful is perhaps more annoying than a ill-health. They alone, of all men, as Marsilius forced appearance of methodical order. And Ficinus observes, habitually neglect their tools. there is certainly something characteristic in this A painter washes his brushes, a smith looks to thoroughgoing affectation which seems to be a his anvil, a huntsman takes care of his hawks part of the very nature of the old pedant. He and hounds, and a musician of his lute; but a can not get rid of his academical costume even scholar never thinks of attending properly to his when he is disposed for a game of “high jinks.” brains. Moreover, Saturn and Mercury, the paHe discusses the philosophy of love-melancholy trons of learning, are both of them dry planets, so with all the airs of an anatomical demonstrator, that the brains of their subjects become withered, and, if there is just a sly twinkle in his eye, he and the animal spirits, used up for contemplation, never permits himself such a smile as would be do not keep the other organs properly employed. inconsistent with his views of professorial dig- Whence it follows that bald students are comnity. He proves with his usual array of impos- monly troubled with “ gouts, catarrhs, rheums, ing authorities that men often fall in love with cachexia, bradiopepsia," and a long list of other beautiful women; and reminds us that “ Achilles diseases due to "overmuch sitting,” exceeding was moved in the midst of a battle by fair Briseis; even those which beset a famous lady at Diss in Ajax by Tecmessa ; Judith captivated that great Norfolk. A modern writer of Burton's meditacaptain Holofernes ; Delilah, Samson ; Rosa- tive turn would despise this physiological cause; mond, Henry II.; Roxalana, Solyman the Mag- he would call his “ bradiopepsia" Welt-Schmerz, nificent, etc.”; and we dimly wonder whether and elaborate a philosophical pessimism, proving this comprehensive "etc.” could even have in- conclusively that a man's disposition to melancluded the excellent Burton himself. There is choly must be proportioned to the depth of his perhaps no class of men which is more apt to knowledge of the general system of things. Bur