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journal of domestic minutiæ, and those mental operations of which the patient alone is percipient. We regret the destruction of the manuscript exceedingly, and cannot account for it upon any principle of justice to the dead or to the living. The crazy dreamer we have mentioned above, “the spinner of cobweb theories,” has left behind the journal of his errors and his faults, and by so doing shut the mouth of exaggerated calumny. The world admitted his “Confessions” as a sufficient apology; for-having dealt severely with himself, and wounded his reputation with stones, which none else had dared to throw, charging himself with acts, as crimes, which no man would have designated as such in the case of another, and omitting none which any man would,-he did justice to his own memory, and cleared it from those aspersions, which, wandering about for an illustrious victim, had alighted upon him in his lifetime. Franklin, also, has left his memoirs ; nor has he omitted some errors in his early life, common to him with the meanest of the species;—thereby warning the master intellects of their time, that they too are liable to the infirmities of human nature, and therefore to take heed lest they fall. But, by such self-sacrifice, he has not diminished, but rather in creased, his own reputation. It is understood, that Byron had not spared his feelings,--but had criticised his errors, with a severity of which no man was more capable than himself, or so likely to exercise, as he who had ever delighted to make the world acquainted with the deepest secrets of his own individual being; and to whom the heroes of his poesy were but instruments to lend utterance to the movements of his soul, and to impersonate, as in a mirror, his inner man. This

very severity would have disarmed censure; and, we doubt not, would have left his character as “chaste as ice,” and “as pure as snow,” compared with that ascribed to him by the cupidity, envy, or hatred, of sect or of party.

" Oft have I heard of you, my lord Biron,

Before I saw you; and the world's large tongue
Proclaims you for a man replete with mocks;
Full of comparisons, and wounding flouts;
Which you on all estates will execute,

That lie within the mercy of your wit*.” In this description, and in what follows, Shakspeare has described our Byron, by anticipation, in the character of his

It is to be hoped that the clamour which has been excited against the poet, and the misrepresentations respecting the morality of his productions, had not their origin in the


SHAKSPEARE." Love's Labour's Lost."

malice which such “idle scorns" are likely to produce, seeing that

A jest's prosperity lies in the ear

of him that hears it, never in the tongue

Of him that makes it." Byron was doomed to endure a strange destiny. He appeared as the great luminary of our literary hemisphere, and, in the language of Sir Walter Scott,—“Every telescope was levelled for the examination of the spots which dimmed its brightness." It is no matter of surprise that some, who were interested, pretended to discover spots that were not there. Added to which, such was his constitutional impatience of reproof, that, as the same writer observes, “ reproach hardened him in his error, and much of that in which he erred, was in bravado and scorn of his censors, and was done with the motive of Dryden's despot, to show his arbitrary power.'” To shew this same power, also, he very often adopted that of which he had been falsely accused. He observes, that “with regard to the conduct of the last canto of Childe Harold, there will be found less of the pilgrim than in any of the preceding, and that little slightly, if at all, separated from the author speaking in his own person. The fact is, that I had become weary of drawing a line which every one seemed determined not to perceive: like the Chinese in Goldsmith's

Citizen of the World,' whom nobody would believe to be a Chinese, it was in vain that I asserted, and imagined, that I had drawn, a distinction between the author and the pilgrim'; and the very anxiety to preserve this difference, and disappointment at finding it unavailing, so far crushed my efforts in the composition, that I determined to abandon it altogether-and have done so.” Thus, in the last canto, he became actually the hero of his own poem; and, indeed, in the preceding, had prepared the way for becoming so. The world charged him with scepticism, also, before it had any proof, and to establish the charge, referred to the exordium of the second canto, in which the noble Childe has set the doctrines of the annihilation and immortality of the soul in opposition, and concludes in favour of the latter. Yet the critics objected to a mere form of speech. Because, by the necessity of composition and of language, he had put the matter of faith hypothetically; they, out of their exceeding good-will, proceeded to infer, that he was sceptical with respect to the final destiny of man.

“Yet if, as holiest men have deemed, there be

A land of souls beyond that sable shore,
To shame the doctrine of the Sadducee

And sophists, madly vain of dubious lore;

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How sweet it were in concert to adore,

With those who made our mortal labours light!
To hear each voice we feared to hear no more!

Behold each mighty shade revealed to sight,

The Bactrian, Samian sage, and all who taught the right." This is the way in which the noble poet threw off the incumbrances of mortality and scepticism; these are the anticipations in which he indulged the contemplation of that sublimer condition of the intellect, after which he so ardently aspired.

But this conduct of the critics was not without its effect. It did not urge him, indeed, to avouch scepticism, but it turned his attention to that system of “modern metaphysics, which banishes us to a land of shadows, surrounds with apparitions, and distinguishes truth from illusion only by the majority of those who dream the same dream," and directed his inquiries into those high and dangerous speculations in which the finite mind is ever bewildered and lost. Hence,

“ Like to the Pontic monarch of old days,

He fed on poisons, and they had no power,
But were a kind of nutriment; he lived

Through that which had been death to many men.” And to shew the “arbitrary power” before spoken of, he offered at the public mart the winds of vain doctrine," which he had thus been induced, like Ulysses, to gather into a bag, by virtue of his mastery over them, and at which weaker spirits trembled, lest by some mischance they should break prison thence, and wreck the vessel of our social institutions. But for these doctrines he shewed little regard, and less credence, when he intrusted them to the Prince of Darkness to promulge, and made them portion of the elements of which he combined the character of Lucifer. It behoves us, there. fore, to pause and consider, whether the real scepticism of Byron was any thing more than that absolute and scientific scepticism to which the mind voluntary determines itself for the specific purpose of future certainty. Nec tamen in eo scepticos imitabar, qui dubitant tantum ut dubitent, et preter incerti tudinem ipsam nihil quærunt. Nam contra totus in eo eram ut aliquid certi reperirem.—Des Cartes de Methodo.A scepticism, the objects of which are those original and innate prejudices which nature herself has planted in all men, and which to all but the philosopher are the first principles of knowledge, and the final test of truth.

The early age at which Byron began to write, would not permit us to expect that he had completed the round of metaphysical science, and it is reasonable to suppose that, in this philosophic opposition to these natural prejudices, which, by

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the way, are all reducible to one fundamental presumption, thut there exist things without us,--he also accidentallyinvolved the other position, which necessitates the admission of its immediate certainty; namely, the existence of our own being, wherewith that of all external things coheres, and whereby their realism is identified. Thus, truth is found to be correlative to being, and thus we are enabled to elevate our conception to the absolute Self, the great eternal principle of Being, and of knowledge, of idea, and of reality. This was the sentiment which our Byron expressed, when he wished to mingle with the universe; and, looking upon the ocean, beheld the form of the Almighty glassed in tempests, and perceived therein, as in a glorious mirror, the image of Eternity -the throne of the Invisible. Thus his inner sense gradually enlarged, and in that “sole prism of the truth's rays," he not only saw that “whatever is, is,” but in his own self-knowledge, and the knowledge of Nature, beheld the glory and the presence of Deity manifested in all her operations, even as in that blue sky, which, he says, was

“So cloudless, clear, and purely beautiful,

That God alone was to be seen in Heaven," His sun hath set at noon!–in the summer of his mental power hath he withered away! The work which heads this article was the last he published. We felt authorized in not confining our attention to that individual production, seeing that it is both imperfect and unfinished, and considering what a part he has sustained, in British literature, for the last sixteen years. We have undertaken an arduous task, and have not performed it to our satisfaction. However, if it induce any one to investigate his character and genius with a more philosophic spirit, and make a more charitable estimate, than has hitherto obtained, we shall have done much. Religion and morality will lose nothing by connection with genius and talents such as his; and though most assuredly in themselves they can gain nothing by talents and genius of any kind, yet may many votaries be brought within the pale of their influence by such coalition. Our space will not permit us to enlarge upon the other productions of his prolific muse. They have all teemed with immortal seeds. He had evidently designed to take a higher walk in his art, than he had hitherto attempted. From the didactic and brief poetical narrative, he ascended to dramatic exertion, in which, though he fell short of what our elder playwright's have done, he left, at an immeasurable distance, all competitors of modern times, notwithstanding his disdain of stage effect, and the technicalities of the theatre. The chief occasion of his failure, ap

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pears to consist in an attempt to unite the French and German schools of dramatic literature. Perhaps when that bastard epic, “Don Juan,” had been completed, he would have attempted the legitimate Epopee. In “ Manfred,” and “Cain," and“ Heaven and Earth,” and, finally, in the present drama, “The Deformed Transformed;" he aspired to a higher order of composition, embodying therein some of the loftiest creations of intellect, and the most daring speculations of philosophy. In these he has imitated Goethe, and evidenced that feverish state of the intellect, which, in its ravenous appetite for the wild, the wonderful, and the new, grasps even at the monstrous, the præter-human, and the unique. But this would soon have subsided; the soberness of manhood would have come upon him-his autumn was at hand-and, doubtless, the harvest would have been manifold and excellent. The blight smote him in the ripe ear.

The present work is characterized by his lately adopted inaccuracy of versification, some indiscretions of language, and violations of grammar; but there is now no fear of his being imitated in these particulars; the excitement of his frequent appearance is no more, and his productions will begin to be examined at the bar of refined taste, and sober reason. This drama is now in the hands of the public; any summary of its contents is unnecessary from us. It has already been analyzed by almost every periodical, and our analysis would be supererogatory. We shall, however, close this notice with extracts from some of the best passages,

It is not the time now to expatiate on defects; the period has arrived when his excellencies may only be remembered.


Those walls have girded in great ages;
And sent forth mighty spirits. The past earth
And present phantom of imperious Rome
Is peopled with those warriors; and methinks
They flit along the eternal city's rampart,
And stretch their glorious, gory, shadowy bands,
And beckon mne away.

They clasp
And raise, and wring their dim and deathlike hands,
And with their thin aspen faces and fixed eyes
Fascinate mine.

The god-like son of the sea.goddess,
The unshorn boy of Peleus, with his locks
As beautiful and clear as the amber waves
Of rich Pactolus rolled o'er sands of gold,
Softened by intervening crystal, and

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