« AnkstesnisTęsti »
tears of the sorrowing bystanders. Being asked who was to succeed him, he mentioned no person by name, but said merely, "Whoever was most worthy." ""* He never would wear the ensign of royalty, saying, "It was too great arrogance for him to be crowned for glory, in that city in which God had been crowned in mockery." He died on the fifteenth before the kalends of August.
Death and Sleep.
THIS promising young poet, whose Newdegate prize-poem, entitled "Belshazzar's Feast," has been amongst the most successful in latter years, has subsequently published a small volume of graceful miscellaneous poems, from which we select the following:
The last good-night of the vesper-bell
As the last new buds in a night of June;
And over the hills was a silver bar
Where the moon kept watch for the evening-star;
*Probably having in mind the similar answer of Alexander the Great on his death-bed.
For never unloved, and never alone,
The star-queen comes to her cloudy throne.
Stoled in the gloss of his sable hair,
His fingers were filled with a sheaf of spears,
His forehead alight with a quiet joy;
But his lids were low, and his lips locked tight,
I knew them then, and I know them now-
Brother of me! I have waved my wing!
They sleep by the river and on the hill,
For I fastened the fingers of sorrow and pain
With a bond, till the sunlight shall break it again.
The door of their dreams till the morning peeps.
Silver-winged Sleep! when the dawnings break
Dost thou not know that the poets keep
But most thou mayst hear them at break of day,
The love-stricken lady and sorrowing man,
For the pleasant sleep that is over and gone.
Have I not loved them as well as thou,
But they open the prison and shatter the chain,
A carol of thanks for my comforting.
When shall the blindness of man have end? When shall they know me their lover and friend?
Comfort thee, brother! they do but sleep,
And I saw them fade into the stars above,
Character of Benjamin Franklin.
MR. BANCROFT's name, happily, still exists among the living ones of America. From his gracefully written history (so free from the too frequent turgidity of our Transatlantic brethren), we select the following sketch of one of the greatest teachers, and yet self-taught men, of modern times.
Benjamin Franklin, when but seventeen years old, sailed clandestinely for New York, and finding there no employment, went to Amboy; went on foot to the Delaware; for want of a wind rowed in a boat from Burlington to Philadelphia; and, bearing marks of his labour at the oar, weary, hungry, having for his whole stock of cash a single dollar, the runaway apprenticegreatest of the sons of New England of that generation, the humble pupil of the free schools of Boston, rich in the boundless hope of youth, and the unconscious power of genius which modesty adorned-stepped on shore to seek food, occupation, shelter, and
On the deep foundations of sobriety, frugality, and industry, the young journeyman built his fortunes and fame; and he soon came to have a printing-office of his own. Toiling early and late, with his own hands he set types and worked at press; with his own hands would trundle to the office in a wheelbarrow the reams of paper which he was to use. His ingenuity was such, he could form letters, make types and woodcuts, and engrave vignettes in copper. The Assembly of Pennsylvania respected his merit, and chose him its printer. He planned a newspaper, and when he became its proprietor and editor, he fearlessly defended absolute freedom of thought and speech, and the inalienable power of the people. Desirous of advancing education, he proposed improvements in the schools of subscription libraries, and laid the foundation of one that was long the most considerable library in America; he suggested the establishment of an academy, which has ripened into a university; he saw the benefit of concert in the pursuit of science, and gathered a philosophical society for its advancement. The intelligent and highly-cultivated Logan bore testimony to his merits before they had burst upon the world:-"Our most ingenious printer has the clearest understanding, with extreme modesty. He is certainly an extraordinary man-excellent, yet humble. Do not imagine," he adds, "that I overdo in my character of Benjamin Franklin, for I am rather short in it."
When the scientific world began to investigate the wonders of electricity, Franklin excelled all observers in the marvellous simplicity and lucid exposition of his experiments, and in the admirable sagacity with which he elicited from them the laws which they illustrated. It was he who first suggested the expla