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feelings in lines, for which we have not room ; but Nevertheless, the eye of genius is flashing in reminding us, from their fierce irony, their misan- Tennyson's head, and his ear is unstopped, whethropy, their thrice-drugged despair, of Swift's ther to the harmonies of nature, or to the still sad "Legion Club;"and—as in that wicked, wondrous music of humanity. We care not much in which poem—a light sparkle of contemptuous levity of the tracks he has already cut out, he may glimmers with a ghastly sheen over the putrid choose to walk; but we would prefer if he were pool of malice and misery below, and cannot all persuaded more frequently to see visions and disguise the workings of that remorse, which is dream dreams-like his “Vision of Sin”-imbued not repentance. At length this sad evil utterance with high purpose, and forming the Modern Me. dies away in the throat of the expiring sinner, tamorphoses of truth. We have no hope that he and behind his consummated ruin there arises a will ever be, in the low sense, a popular poet, or " mystic mountain range," along which voices that to him the task is allotted of extracting music are heard lamenting, or seeking to explain the from the railway train, or of setting in song tho causes of his ruin.
“fairy tales of science”-the great astronomical “ Behold, it was a crime
or geological discoveries of the age. Nor is he Of sense, avenged by sense, that wove with time." likely ever to write anything which, like the Another
poems of Burns, or Campbell, can go directly to "The crime of sense became
the heart of the entire nation. For no “ Song of The crime of malice, and is equal blame."
the Shirt" even, need we look from him. But A third
the imaginativeness of his nature, the deep vein “ He had not wholly quenched his power
of his moral sentiment, the bias given to his mind A little grain of conscience made him sour.” by his early reading, the airy charm of his versiAnd thus at length, in a darkness visible of mys- fication, and the seclusion in which he lives, like a tery and grandeur, the “ Vision of Sin” closes:- flower in its own peculiar jar, all seem to prepare
him for becoming a great spiritual dreamer, who “At last I heard a voice upon the slope Cry to the summit, Is there any hope?
might write not only “ Recollections of the AraTo which an answer pealed from that high land,
bian Nights,” but Arabian Nights themselves, But in a tongue no man could understand ;
equally graceful in costume, but impressed with And on the glimmering limit, far withdrawn, a deeper sentiment, chastened into severer taste, God made himself an awful rose of dawn.”
and warmed with a holier flame. Success to A reply there is; but whether in the affirmative such pregnant slumbers ! soft be the pillow as or negative we do not know. A revelation there that of his own “ Sleeping Beauty;" may every is; but whether it be an interference in behalf of syrup of strength and sweetness drop upon his the sinner, or a display, in ruddy light, of God's eyelids, and may his dreams be such as to banish righteousness in his punishment, is left in deep sleep from many an eye, and to people the hearts uncertainty. Tennyson, like Addison in his “ Vi- of millions with beauty! sion of Mirza," ventures not to withdraw the veil On the whole, perhaps Tennyson is less a profrom the left side of the eternal ocean. He leaves phet than an artist. And this alone would serve the curtain to be the painting. He permits the better to reconcile us to his silence, should it turn imagination of the reader to figure, if it dare, out that his poetic career is over, The loss of shapes of beauty, or forms of fiery wrath, upon even the finest artist may be supplied that of a the “awful rose of dawn,” as upon a vast back- prophet, who has been cut off in the midst of his ground. It is his only to start the thrilling sug- mission, or whose words some envious influence gestion.
or circumstance has snatched from his lips, is After all, we have considerablemisgivings about irreparable. In the one case, it is but a painter's placing Tennyson-for what he has hitherto done pencil that is broken; in the other, it is a magic -among our great poets. We cheerfully accord rod shivered. Still, even as an artist, Tennyson him great powers; but he is, as yet, guiltless of has not yet done himself full justice, nor built up great achievements. His genius is bold, but is any structure so shapely, complete, and living, as waylaid at almost every step by the timidity and may perpetuate his name. weakness of his temperament. His utterance is Alfred Tennyson is the son of an English clernot proportionate to his vision. He sometimes gyman in Lincolnshire. He is of a retiring disreminds us of a dumb man with important tidings position, and seldom, though sometimes, emerges within, but only able to express them by gestures, from his retirement into the literary coteries of starts, sobs, and tears. His works are loopholes, London, And yet welcome is he ever among not windows, through which intense glimpses them — with his eager physiognomy, his dark come and go, but no broad, clear, and rounded hair and eyes, and his small, black tobacco pipe. prospect is commanded. As a thinker, he often Some years ago, we met a brother of his in Dumseems like one who should perversely pause a fries, who bore, we were told, a marked, though hundred feet from the summit of a lofty hill, and miniature resemblance to him-a beautiful painter refuse to ascend higher. “Up! the breezes call and an expert versifier, after the style of Alfred. thee—the clouds marshal thy way—the glorious The particulars of his literary career are faprospect waits thee, as a bride for her husband— miliar to most. His first production was a small angels or gods may meet thee on the top-—it may volume of poems, published in 1831. Praised in be thy Mountain of Transfiguration.” But, no; the Westminster elaborately, and extravagantly the pensive or wilful poet chooses to remain below. calogised in the Englishman's Magazine (a perio
dical conducted by William Kennedy, but long gests itself; for madness, we feel, there is somesince defunct, and which, according to some ma- where. It is, however, the madness of genius. licious persons, died of this same article)-it was It proclaims a furnace of soul heated seven times sadly mangled by less-generous critics. Black- hotter than even that of commonly-gifted men. wood's Magazine doled it out some severely-sifted | And whether the author lays the scene in Earth, praise ; and the author, in his next volume, or Hades, or Hell, or “Anywhere ;" and whatrhymed back his ingratitude in the well-known ever monstrous extravagancies of imagery and lines to “Rusty, musty, fusty, crusty Christo- language he perpetrates, (as when he speaks of pher," whose blame he forgave, but whose praise “ feeding on buttered thunder,") you feel you have he could not. Meanwhile, he was quietly form- to do with a powerful, capricious, ungovernable, ing a small but zealous cohort of admirers ; and fearless, and original spirit, who has dashed to some of his poems, such as “ Mariana,” &c., were pieces all the tables of common criticism, and universally read and appreciated. His second whose only literary law is the great and awful production was less successful, and deserved to soul within himself. be less successful, than the first. It was stuffed With Bayley, “ silver is of no account.” Golden with wilful impertinencies and affectations. His images are even more plentiful than words. His critics told him he wrote ill, and he answered figures rush out impetuously, like the pent breath them by writing worse. His third exhibited a of a diver, in thick, tumultuous succession. His very different spirit. It consisted of a selec- pictures of nocturnal scenes, of the glories of the tion from his two former volumes, and a num- stars, are, in our judgment, unsurpassed in the ber of additional pieces--the principal of which compass of poetry. His soul and song swell up we have already analysed. In his selection, uniformly, and seem to fill the concave of the he winnows his former works with a very sa- skies. It is as though a star were to break forth lutary severity ; but what has he done with into singing, and proclaim the praises of her that delectable strain of the “ Syrens”? We sister-orbs. So, with“ harp, with harp, and think he has acted well in stabling and shutting voice of psalms,” does Bayley's genius hymn the up his “ Krakens” in their dim, ocean mangers ; heavens. but we are not so willing to part with that beauti- A deep religion there is in “ Festus,” notwithful sisterhood, and hope to see them again at no standing all his theoretical crotchets, and artistic distant day, standing in their lovely isle, and absurdities. It is a boy of twenty wrestling with singing
the mystery of the universe ; and it is our wonder " Come hither, come hither, and be our lords, that he wrestles so faithfully and so nobly. We For merry brides are we.
have no sympathy with his sentiments, but every We will kiss sweet kisses and speak sweet words.
sympathy with the spirit which animates and Ye will not find so happy a shore,
adds beauty to all. Weary mariners all the world, o'er.
Still, “ Festus" is a perilous pledge-a gloro Oh fly, oh fly no more.”
too gigantic for a youth to throw down. If The name of Tennyson always suggests to us
he redeem it fully, he will prove himself to be, those of Browning and Bayley. Of the works of as Coleridge said of Shakspere, “ if he had Browning, with the exception of his brilliant grown to his full height, which he never did, "Paracelsus," we are shamefully ignorant. But he had not been a man, but a monster.” If he we have read “ Festus" : and who that has read do not redeem it, we may be compelled to call has ever forgotten that prodigious poem? It is him (in another sense) a monstrous, not a manà Giant's Dream-say rather it is the work of a
like, birth ; and his greatness may, after all, only Lunatic Angel. Everything reels around
be that of a huge hydrocephalic head-the token
you. As you enter, you find yourself in the centre of a
of powerful disease, and not of vigorous life and
We trust tumultuous dance, in which Comets, Planets, and health. But we hope better things. Stars are confounded. It is the “Faust” dreamed that, by stern self-culture, self-denial, and mild over again—with dread or ludicrous variations, strong exercise given to his powers, he may rank all the poet's own. You find in it all contradic-1-nay, does he not rank already ?-with those of tions reconciled—all improbabilities accomplished
whom Keats speaks—all opposites paired-all formulas swallowed
• But other spirits there do stand apart all darings of thought and language attempted. Upon the forehead of the age to come ; “ What can come next ?” is your incessant ques
These, these will give the world another heart tion, as you turn over its prodigious pages.
And other pulses. it we, or is it the author that is mad ?”' is another
Ilear ye not the hum and rather ticklish inquiry, that irresistibly sug
Of mighty workings?
SUCCESS IN LIFE.
AX ESSAY. BY JOHN ROBERTSON. “ Mar’siller, * Jock_honestly if you can ; but been given by a Scotch laird to his son. This mak’ siller, Jock,” is the advice said to have story could not have become trite if it had not
been true. No doubt, it faithfully represents a * Silver, money.
class of men existing in Scotland and everywhere
elso, and the advice they give their sons. The Inverness to Penzance. In the Inverness wool father has seen many years and many men, and market, they show you shrewd and ruddy-faced looks forth anxiously for his son upon the wide men who were common shepherds, and now hold and wild world. Before the boy there lies an in- farms measured by scores of miles, and own flocks chanted island, full of sirens which are devils--a numbering more thousands of sheep than make bandit wilderness a treacherous battle-field- the boast of Prince Esterhazy. In the Scotch the caves of the fairies the halls of Eblis, where and English manufacturing towns, you are introwhirl the victims of the burning hearts. The boy duced to men who kept stalls in the market-place, is setting out alone on the sunlit isle of film called and now own splendid mansions and huge manulife, on which he floats amidst the infinitudes of factories. With a tone which has long ceased to space and time, and grey-haired experience sup- be used in reference to the owners of ducal coroplies paternal solicitude with the advice, anyhow nets with their strawberry leaves, men tell you Mak' siller, Jock."
that Jones or Smith can say “ My Railway.” Disappointment, misery, and madness may be Such is the sublime of this age of iron. In science prevented by showing youth what money will and and in letters, as in commerce, everywhere the will not do for them in the present day, in this lions are self-raised men. It would be hazardous commercial country. There are men who con- say that all the men of real, as distinguished struct their lives on a disregard of money. Such from conventional, consequence of the present day men are often made to feel much suffering from are themselves self-raised men, or the sons of men the lofty but hardy career they have chosen. But who have owed everything to themselves ; but the staple men and women of society seek only to this observation is not very far from the truth. test themselves by success in life--success as The men who seem most important are very difunderstood by the average opinion of their age ferent from the men who are, and they generally and generation. Thousands of parents impress are the builders of their own fortunes. Our nothing on their children more than the glory of countrymen are, for the first time in the history making their fortunes. They do not discriminate of the world, making a mile in a minute the rate the limits to the powers of new-made fortunes of the best travelling. The workers of the There is a far loftier test of success in life than wonder are men of personal and individual enterpublic opinion, as expressed by the reception and prise and skill. The nobility of a Watt, a consequence awarded to a man in society. How. Stephenson, or a Hudson—the first, the repreever, it may be well to show how fatally the sentative of sublime genius ; the next, of enterpower of money may be over-estimated even in prising talent; the last, of commercial shrewdreference to this test. The advice of the laird to ness-cannot be put by a royal hand upon the his son is a joke which the English people have outsides of their heads, but has been infused by against their brothers the Scotch, and is just as Heaven into the structures of their brains. Comnationally true as the account of the origin of the mercial freedom, which proclaims that all men new half-farthings, which says they were invented shall produce what they can produce best, and to provide Scotchmen with a coin which they exchange with all around the globe for what they would give away in charity. A discriminating need most--the law of nature-has become the estimate of what money really cannot do for a ascendant law of commercial nations, and the man was perhaps never more needful than to men who have wrought the revolution are all men the present generation of English youth. Per- who owe everything to themselves. Truth has haps some observant and thoughtful young men made the thoughts of Adam Smith stronger than may be prevented from venturing on the sca of the sceptres of Kings; and though dead he still commercial speculation-a sea in which sharks reigns. Richard Cobden was a bagman, and yet, swim, and over which cormorants hover_by strengthened by the truths of Adam Smith, learning that, after all, gold is not an all- premiers and legislators have been his clerks, powerful god.
A weaver boy, and a coffee-house keeper, have Great Britain contains an immense number of been nobly distinguished among the pens and self-raised men.
They are so numerous, as all tongues which won the beneficial change. The men who have an extensive acquaintance know, function of the bar is merely one of routine in that it is scarcely a distinction, and never ought the great work of civilisation, yet it derives a to be made a boast. They are the men in the dignity from the splendours of gladiatorial intellect ascendant in this country at this hour. Among which it exhibits. With few exceptions, the the country squires, who read little beyond their splendid intellects of the bar are
men selfcounty newspapers, there prevails a mythos of educated and self-advanced ; or men who could the day. They believe that Richard Cobden and never have entered their profession without the George Hudson served behind the same counter aid of the fellowships of the universities. The at York. They see the old families vanishing Army and Navy have little to do with what is into insignificance before Factory Lords and Rail- noblest and highest in the work of the age. Howway Kings. The baronial castle moulders in the ever this may be, their real power is wielded awful presence of the counter and the till. Most much more than is supposed by the men of perself-raised men are silent about themselves ; but sonal qualities. In science, we learn the same go into the haunts of men, with companions who tale. This best of geological describers tells us have been in active life thirty years.
Anecdotic his observations as a journeyman stone-masonbiography tells the same tales in every town from that profound investigator into electricity was a bookbinder's apprentice. The last half-century crown to pleasure. There is a rest in the dignity has witnessed one of the holiest feats in the re- of the judicial bench peculiarly felt by the man cords of time. Missionaries have encircled the who swept a shop every morning for years in his whole earth, teaching the divine doctrine of self- boyhood. Honours from the hand of 'royalty sacrifice in the Cross of Christ. Amidst the must be greatly heightened to the man who darkness of the human lot, this cross is lifted up, has been much kicked about in the kennel of and the sun gleams on no land where it is not. A poverty. Godlike work this! Of course, we all know that Peoplo exaggerate very much the advantages the missionaries were “cobblers, and ploughmen, derived from being born to the beginnings of eduand such like fellows." The largest share of the cation and capital. People over-estimate the diswork of advancement is done by the Press- advantages of being born to a humble look-out. meaning by this word the writers of books as Many men—of whom it is said “Ah! their well as the writers of leaders. In the present fathers were born before them”_would have done day, 'we have seen a revolution effected in the quite as well had they come into the world by Sir wholé aspect of English history — the work of Thomas Brown's favourite process of sprouting writers who are sons of the people. A pam- like trees. Men who hold their tongues for fifty phleteer has made correspondence accessible to years about their early day, find themselves surthe poor. All our statesmen profess the elevation rounded by a generation who honour them with of the labouring classes to be the chief end of the respect given to old-established, hereditary, their efforts, and they were taught this beneficent and time-honoured importance. The huge faclesson by the Press. In Philosophy, great things tory, with its square bulk, tall chimneys, and have been done to give clearness to the methods countless windows, has been seen by the new geof seeking truth-a revolt has been proclaimed neration all their days. Every day, in childhood from the materialistic systems of the eighteenth and youth, they have seen the old grey-headed century—à distressed cry has been raised for gentleman to whom it belongs trotting past, folhigher spiritual truths ; and the sway in this lowed by his liveried servant, or driven in his grand empire of mind can never be wielded by stately carriage. Few know, and none realiso any but great and clear spirits. In short, the the fac
that this dignified personage was once men who have emancipated the slave, taught a keen-eyed boy, selling hanks of worsted from temperance to nations, started thought on electric his stall in the inarket place of his native town. wings on à race with light, brought correspon- Vanity is garrulous, and pride is silent : most dence and literature within the reach of the autobiographies tell best by a man's own family poorest, and practically annihilated the barriers fireside. Wise men will not detract from the imof space and time — the nobility of fact — are pression of their energy, produced by their success, the children of the people. They are our greatest by an exposure of their vanity. proprietors. They own the ships whose white Money is power—and so is beauty, talent, not sails shine in the sun on every sea. Their's are to name knowledge. But they mistake hugely, the roads of iron, the laboratories of the arts, who make money---honestly if they can, but the sanctuaries of skill, the shrines of labour, make it at all events. Some men found their and the books which ennoble the living race of lives on the observation that poor men are of no men, and hold the seeds of the glories of the com- account. They think the poor man is the only ing time,
real nobody. Money, as power, becomes their obMost of the men who raise themselves hold ject. To make money, it is only needful to posttheir tongues about it. Next in paltriness to the pone enjoyment. Once five pounds a-head of tho meanness of being ashamed of a lot and origin world, a man is rich; and, if he has sense, may from the oppressed and not the oppressing classes, make every sovereign work for him. However, is the vanity which induces some self-raised men they make a great mistake who, in their eagerness to hold up themselves as wonders. It is nothing to acquire wealth, allow the least suspicion of unwonderful for a man in this country and age to scrupulousness or of selfishness to be associated be able to say he kept a shop, or drove a cart, with their names. What chastity is to women, and is an author, a landlord, or a member of integrity is to men. No man ever recovers Parliament. Men who, finding themselves pro- suspicion of his integrity. At the bar and in the vosts or mayors, brag of having been errand-boys senate, the man who has made a slip of memory --editors, who tell us they once were packmen- in reference to a document, a bargain, or an in“representatives of the press," who once were cident in an election, finds himself, however rich, tailors-law lords, who formerly were newspaper shunned-his juniors in standing, and his inreporters—merchants worth a million, who began feriors in talents, are promoted over his head life with half-a-crown-should know that in these —and his advancement up the natural steps of feats, in this country and age, there is nothing his career is a generation behind his contempomarvellous. Of course, there are pleasant con- raries. An atmosphere of cold suspicion surtrasts in their lives which these gentlemen must rounds him. His words never reach the hearts enjoy. Alfred Tennyson says truly
of others. On leaving his lips they become ice, " This is truth, the poet sings, so cold is the air in which he lives.
Whatever That a sorrow's crown of sorrow is remembering happier the wealth of a man may be, if he is generally things."
deemed selfish and sharp, he is made to breathe However, it is also true that contrast supplies the scorn, and his sky rains rotten eggs. Some of
the wealthiest men in the City of London are saw poets and peers at his table. , However, seldom named without contempt, because they somehow his guests were a very chaugeable set ; have nothing in them but money and the qua- the poets forgot to call, and the peers tried to lities which make it. A considerable and osten- borrow money of him. Nothing could be more tatious outlay in charity is necessary to prevent condescending than their familiarity in calling such men from being pelted with moral mud. him Pritchard, only it was disagreeable their Generous minds regard them as essentially of being in want of a hundred pounds for a few creatures of prey, and the sharks, vultures, and days. However, James Pritchard, Esquire, felt harpies of the zoology of man.
his way, deemed himself an established man, and The making of a fortune enables a man to had his name proposed at some of the most facross the chasm which separates too widely the shionable clubs. He was black-balled. It must gentlo from the handicraft classes. His money be a mistake. He had been unfortunate in his just does this, and no more. : But the newly en- proposers. He was proposed again by a noblo. riched man stores the future with mortifications man, and seconded by a great banker. He was for himself, who fancies his mere wealth will gain doubly and trebly black-balled. He was struck him distinction in the circles of gentlemen. The down in his hour of pride. Nothing was alleged tone of good society is equality. Birth, wealth, against him. The sole reason was, he was, thing beauty, talents, may constitute eligibility for so- but a man of wealth. . Destitute of the refined ciety; but to be distinguished in it, persons must culture which adapts a man for the society of be admired for admirable, and liked for agreeable educated men, they would not receive his wealth qualities. Inferiority of manners would cause as a qualification for it. There was nothing noble Platus to be cut, and Cresus to be sent to Co- about him, and they did not respect him ; he posventry. There are very rich people who are never sessed merely, the economical, and was rejected asked anywhere. There are many people, of the for the want of the intellectual and social qualifioldest families, who are never asked into the best cations. Thus James Pritchard became a da. houses of their own party, in their own county. maged man. Clever men and beautiful women there are in Forty years ago and more, there was seen on hundreds, who are courted everywhere. Success the streets of a great manufacturing city, a smart in society depends on nothing so much as agree- boy driving a milk cart. Energetic, resolute, ableness. It is recorded that, at a country house perserering, and vain, the bay became a clerk, a in Roxburghshire, one of the richest women in manufacturer, a squire. But the gentry of his England, and enjoying the rank of a Duchess, neighbourhood were slow to visit him. The lordwas received by the lady guests with “ the cold lieutenant of the county did not back his applicashoulder.” To the interference of the son of an tion for admission to the magistracy. The preEdinburgh attorney—a poet and novellist-in- tensions of the upstart milk-boy, were scofled at solvent at the time, she owed it, if she obtained by his rivals. Robert Anderson was not a man civility and courtesy. The parties were the to bear a slight. He would enter parliament. Duchess of St. Albans and Sir Walter Scott. He would scale a height from which he could reA man can scarcely come among gentlewomen pay scorn with scorn. Robert Anderson stood and gentlemen more disadvantageously than several unsuccessful contests. At length, by feeshaking his purse in their faces. When a ing lawyers, treating electors, and expending newly enriched lady enters a room, her head thousands of pounds, Robert Anderson, Esquire, gleaming with diamonds, the emotion she inspires of Twisthall, saw on his letters the affix, M.P. is very different from respect, regard, or reverence. His proud step and lofty gait made people who
James Pritchard was the son of a farmer. looked after him on the streets, in the first days Shrewd and energetic, he raised himself from of his triumph, say—“that man thinks he has no being a shop-boy to have freehold properties in equal." He entered the House of Commons, half-a-dozen counties. His name figures as a and he was elected into a first-rate club. His director on railway and insurance companies, dream of greatness was soon over. The disThe walls of the rooms and stairs of his mansion, tinguished men of the House, the chiefs of his near Portman Square, were covered with good party, did not condescend to know him. His pictures. His equipage cut a dash in the Parks. leader would ask him questions on commercia! He travelled about among the watering-places at subjects in conversation in the House, and, meethome, or over the Continent, during the autumn. ing him half an hour afterwards in the street In the spring, he occupied his mansion, and gave would cut him. Robert Anderson, Esq., of Twistgood dinners and gay quadrille parties. At the hall, Member of Parliament, sat in his club alone public dinners of charities, his name figured over his wine, a nobody. The hum of cheerful among the list of stewards—an honour which parties filled the coffee-room, and he was solitary, costs some ten or twenty guineas. He had been all the gentlemen around him were his equals ; admitted into several learned societies, which many of them his superiors ; none of them his seldom black-ball any obscure and unknown man; dependents. On the topics all were discussing, and the name of Mr. James Pritchard was sure he could throw no light. Why should any one to appear in the lists of those present at the en- listen to him? He could not give zest to the tertainments of their presidents. He never met cookery, and flavour to the wine, with flashes of with any man of real importance of any kind wit and humour ; and the lovers of pleasuro would whom he did not immediately ask to dinner. He not waste their time with him. Ilis manners
VOL. X.-XO. CLX.