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We have been, in this cursory review, rather desirous of exhibiting the beauties than the faults of "Cain," for it's blemishes are many and glaring, and some, of a character even puerile: and we refer those, who may doubt the possibility of this word ever being justly applied to the creations of a Byron, to the description of the PreAdamites' Leviathans in the second Act. Indeed the only truly admirable passages, are those in which human passions are painted; where, as in most of his other works, the author is concentrated, and feeling pours from his pen the richest streams of poesy"Adah. O Cain! choose love. Cain. For thee, my Adah, I choose not,-it was
Born with me,-but I love nought else.
That which hath driven us all from
Adah. We were not born then,-and if we had been,
Should we not love them and our children, Cain ?
Cain. My little Enoch! and his lisping sister!
Were all like these, with what different emotions would this poem have been read; but they are only the bright stars of a black night, throwing an unhallowed glimmering through the stormy clouds. The pains taken to shake the faith of believers in revelation ever obtrude, to remind us, that the bright specks are but lamps to a sepulchre; the dismal fires of a charnel-house, rendering the darkness still more hideous.
Our summing up must be brief, for we have left ourselves but little space, and have certainly quite as little inelination to pursue an ungracious subject. "Sardanapalus" is a weak and very inadequate version of a tale, which afforded the amplest opportunities for powerful display, and poeti
cal effect; and we believe the warmest admirers of Lord Byron must admit that his performance has fallen far below that standard of expectation formed upon such a subject, and from such an author. All the pomp and splendour of the story are left with the original; and all the poverty of the drama is the Poet's own. Of "The Two Foscari," we can conscientiously speak rather better, though the few incidents are rendered most amazingly drowsy, by being spun out beyond all endurance. The Doge, however, is a very respectable, ill-used, old gentleman; his son, Jacopo, a meek, mild sufferer; and Jacopo's wife, Marina, most noisy, impatient, and vociferous. The brilliant passages are numerous, and in many cases of the counterbalanced by several others, highest order of poetry; but they are miserably weak, and remarkably ineffective. Indeed both dramas bear far too great a resemblance to Lord Hoppergollop's ancient staircase; being throughout,
"Long, dull, and old,, As great Lord's stories often are."
We come now to the awful Mystery of" Cain," which, whatever repug nance we may feel to the unpleasant task, it is equally our duty to expose thus placed upon a level with such and to condemn; and if Lord Byron is Hone, he will have only himself to despicable wretches as Carlile and censure for exciting the comparison, by the publication of his "horrible imaginings" now before us. His direct attacks upon the goodness of God, are such as no arguments can justify, and no criticism can sanction. The character of Lucifer is apparently introduced for no other purpose than to blaspheme; and though acquitting, as Christian charity would urge us to acquit, his Lordship of all intentional error and wilful perversion, yet we cannot but deplore that he should have ever embarked on a voyage so perilous, where danger threatened not himself alone, but might include a shipwreck of the faith of thousands, We have indeed higher hopes, and better expectations, than to anticipate such a result; but our opinion lessens not the evil; and that having been committed, our anxious wish now is, that he, whose mighty and commanding talents have been thus debased,
will, like the "recording angel" upon Le Fevre's oath, drop a tear over the writing, and, if it were possible, "blot it out for ever!" How Sir Walter Scott will receive the honour of it's dedication, we cannot bring ourselves
to decide: as a friend, he may be gratified; as a poet, he may feel it a compliment; but, as a Christian, we cannot doubt but that he must regret the distinction, and shrink from the defilement.
RIVINGTON's Annual Register, commencing with his present Majesty's Reign; or, a View of the History, Politics, and Literature, for the year 1820, 8vo. 18s.
A Summary of Christian Faith and Practice, confirmed by References to the Text of Holy Scriptures; compared with the Liturgy, Articles, and Homilies of the Church of England; and illustrated with extracts from the chief of those works, which received the sanction of public authority from the time of the Reformation to the final revision of the Established Formularies. By the Rev. E. J. Burrow, D.D. F.R. and L.S. 3 vols.
The Village Preacher, a Collection of short, plain Sermons; partly original, partly selected, and adapted to Village Instruction, by a Clergyman of the Church of England, Vol. II. 12mo. 5s.
The Pleasures of Fancy, a Poem, in two Parts, 8vo. 4s. 6d.
Twenty Sermons on the Evidences of Christianity, as they were stated and enforced in the Discourses of our Lord: comprising a connected view of the claims which Jesus advanced of the arguments by which he supported them, and of his statements respecting the causes, progress, and consequences of Infidelity, delivered before the University of Cambridge, in the Spring and Autumn of the year 1821, at the Lecture founded by the Rev. John Hulse, by James Clarke Franks, M.A. Chaplain of Trinity College, 8vo. 128.
Six Discourses preached before the University of Oxford, by Thomas Linwood Strong, B.D. of Oriel College, Oxford, Chaplain to the Lord Bishop of Llandaff, 8vo. 6s.
Suggestions on Clerical Elocution, by John Lettice, D.D. Prebendary of Chichester, Vicar of Peasmarsh, Sussex, and Chaplain to his Grace the Duke of Hamilton, 12mo. 3s. 6d.
A Remonstrance addressed to Mr. John Murray, respecting a recent Publication,
Remarks on the present State of Ireland; with Hints for ameliorating the Condition, and promoting the Education and moral Improvement of the Peasantry of that Country, the Result of a Visit
during the Summer and Autumn of 1821, by Robert Steven, 2s. 6d.
Bingley's Biographical Conversations on British Characters ;-Celebrated Travellers; and eminent Voyagers, 12mo. 6s. 6d.
The Thane of Fife, a Poem, by William Tennant, 8vo. 9s.
A Description of the Shetland Islands; comprising an Account of their Geology, Scenery, Antiquities, and Superstitions, by Samuel Hibbert, M.D. Ato, with maps and plates, 31. 3s. This Work will be found to contain many interesting particulars, illustrative of the Novel of "The Pirate."
The Ricciardetto of Fortiguerri, Canto I. Translated from the Italian, with Notes, Critical and Philological, and an Introductory Essay on Romantic, Burlesque, and Mock-Heroic Poetry, by Sylvester (Douglas), Lord Glenbervie, with engravings, 8vo. 108. Gd.
History of Cultivated Vegetables, comprising their Botanical, Medicinal, Edible, and Chemical Qualities, Natural His. tory, and Relation to Art, Science, and Commerce, by Henry Phillips, 2 vols. royal Svo. l. 11s. 6d.
Italy, a Poem, Part the First. 8vo. 7s. Atreus and Thyestes, a Tragedy, in five acts, altered from the French of Crebillon, by Edward Sinnett, 8vo. 3s.
The Calendar of Nature, designed for the Instruction and Entertainment of Young Persons, 8vo. 2s. 6d.
Some Account of Kentish Town, shewing it's ancient condition, progressive improvement, and present state; in which is comprised a brief review of the River Fleet, or River of the Wells, and the principal events connected therewith, by William Elliott, jun. 12mo. 2s. 6d.
Essays on Surgery and Midwifery; with Practical Observations, and Select Cases, by James Barlow, Surgeon, with plates, 12s. boards.
A Visit to North America and the English Settlements in Illinois, with a Winter Residence at Philadelphia, by Adlard Welby, Esq. 1 vol. 8vo. illustrated with 14 Sketches of Characteristic Scenery by the Author, 10s. 6d.
Dr. Chaimers' Christian and Civic Economy of Large Towns, No. X. On the
bearing which a right Christian Economy has on Pauperism, price Is. published quarterly. This Number is the commencement of a Series of Essays, by Dr. Chalmers, on the Causes and Cure of Pauperism, and is designed to expose the evils of Panperism in England, and in those places in Scotland, where assessments have been introduced, for the maintenance of the Poor.
A Key to the Critical Reading of the Four Gospels, consisting chiefly of Gleanings for the use of Students in Divinity, 8vo. 4s.
A Guide to Christian Communicants, in the Exercise of Self-Examination, by the Rev. William Trail; with a Life, by the Rev. Robert Burns, Paisley, 18mo. 9d.
A Narrative of the Rise and Progress of Emigration, from the Counties of Lanark and Renfrew, to the New Settlements in Upper Canada, with a Map of the Townships, Designs for Cottages, and interesting Letters from the Settlements, by Robert Lamond, Secretary and Agent, 8vo. 3s. 6d.
IT is enrrently reported in the Literary Circles, that Lord Byron has sent to the Hon. Douglas Kinnaird the MS. of a Parody on Mr. Southey's "Vision of Judgment;" which is, as might have been expected, unfit for publication. Leigh Hunt, and Bysche Shelley, are also understood to be his Lordship's colagnes at Pisa, where they are engaged in the production of some periodical work, for transmission to England, to console their native country for their absence.
Shortly will be published, in one vol. Svo. illustrated with numerous portraits of historical characters, Monarchy Revived, being the Personal History of Charles the Secoad, from his earliest Youth to his Restoration, comprising many curious Particulars of his Escape after the Battle of Worcester, and his Residence on the Continent.
The Rev. E. Berens, author of Village Sermons, will shortly publish another Volume, containing Sixteen Village Sermons on certain Parts of the Christian Character.
Mr. Bridgen's Work, containing coloared representations of the Customs and Manners of France and Italy, with descriptive account of the plates by the late Dr. Polidori, is now complete. It forms an interesting Volume of 50 coloured plates, and is particularly illustrative of Italian Customs.
A comparative Estimate of the Mineral and Mosaical Geologies, by Granville Penn, Esq. one vol. 8vo.
Mr. Crabb, author of English Synonymes Explained, has in the press, A Technological Dictionary, containing Definitions of all Terms of Science and Art, drawn from the most approved Writers, ancient and modern, and illustrated with numerous cuts, diagrams, and plates. It will be completed in two 4to. volumes and published in monthly parts. Mr. Southey is preparing for publication a Third Volume of "The Remains of Henry Kirke White," which will appear
Dr. Drake has in the press a new Work, entitled, "Evenings in Autumn.”
Mrs. Opie's new Tale of Madeline, and Miss A. M. Porter's new Romance of Roche Blanc, will be published next month.
The Widow's Tale, and other Poems, by the Author of Ellen Fitzarthur, are to appear next week.
Miss Lowry, daughter of the celebrated engraver of that name, has nearly ready for publication, "Conversations on Mine. ralogy," illustrated with numerous plates by her father.
Contents of the Journal des Savans for December, 1821;-Cleomedis circularis doctrinæ de sublimibus, libri duo, reviewed by M. Létronne; Ssufismus sive Theosophia Persarum Pantheistica, &c. by Silvestre de Sacy; H. Hallam, Europe in the Middle Ages, by Raoul Rochette; G. Biagioli, Edition de Pétrarque, by Raynouard; J. F. Bodin, Recherches Hist. sur l'Anjou, by Daunou.
It is a curious illustration of the value of Literary property in this country, that a share of a school book entitled, "Geography and History, by a Lady," which retails for 3s. 6d. in boards, was lately sold at a trade sale for as much money as a similar share in Gibbon's Rome in 12 volumes 8vo. that retails for 41. 4s. in boards.
A translation of the eminent Swedish Chemist Berzelius' work, on the use of the blowpipe, with notes by Mr. Children, is in the press.
The splendid French work on Egypt, of which a second edition is now publishing in Paris, has been consigned to Messrs. Rodwell and Martin, as agents in London, at whose house it may be seen.
Sir George Nayler's history of the Coronation of George IV. will be the only work of that Kind since 1687, when Sandford, Lancaster Herald, published his account of the Coronation of James II. The prospectus announces it in five parts (the first in June next,) and with above 70 plates, including portraits of the King and many noblemen, delineations of the most imposing ceremonies, &c. &c. The price of the whole to be 25 guineas,
THEATRICAL JOURNAL. "Veluti in Speculum.”
DEC. 22. Our dramatic friends are well aware, that it has always been the practice at this season, of mirth and festivity, to prepare a banquet suitable to the inclinations of every taste; and thus, during the Christmas holidays, to permit the comic tricks and practical jokes of pantomine to supersede the more legitimate drama. It is said also that these absurdities are principally intended for the amusement of those "Little Folks" who, at this period, congregate in the metropolis; though, if we may judge from the crowded houses during such representations, the old, as well as the young, derive an equal pleasure from the same sources.
Drury-lane, however, departing from the backnied track, but at the same time not less assiduous in catering for the mirthful appetite of John Bull, this winter, for the antics of Harlequin, substituted adventures of a different description, which were scarcely likely to prove equally attractive.
A new Extravaganza Opera in three acts, entiled "Giovanni in Ireland," by Mr. Moncrieff, had, therefore, long been advertised, of which a dress rehearsal took place this evening. The eccentric and accomplished libertine, Giovanni, has been introduced to the public under so many different disguises, that a description of his charaeter would be superfluous; and the piece has been very properly entitled an Extravaganza, as it is not marked by any very distinct plot, but consists of a series of comic situations, in which a vast number of national characters are introduced; and in which opportunities have been taken to parody the most celebrated Irish airs.
The Grand medley overture, and the whole of the new music, was composed and arranged by Mr. T. Cooke, with his accustomed taste; and on the rising of the curtain, Mr. Cooper delivered a very common place Address. The business of the piece then commenced with a beautiful scene of the Bay of Dublin, by moonlight, and the arrival of the Holyhead packet off the Pigeon House, where a groupe of peasants were seen dancing with great hilarity on
a spot where nothing has danced since the creation but a ship or a mermaid. Don Giovanni, (Madame Vestris) lands, followed by Leperello, (Harley) and is received by the dancers with rapturous recognition. He begins to make love without loss of time, and the scene changes to Castle Rackrent, transformed into the Palace of King Corney, immortalized by Miss Edgeworth.
In the hall of audience, Glorvina (Miss Cubitt) appears; and is immediately wooed by the irresistible Spaniard, whose nodding feathers and laced jerkin are miraculously familiar to all the Irish, both peasantry and gentlefolks. The scene shifts, with a rapidity worthy of the deprecated Pantomine, to Donnybrook fair, as the bill says, “during fair time!" As we cannot easily recognize a fair during any other time, this is probably a species of the pleasant pleonasm thought indigenous to Ireland. Giovanni is still the presiding genius of the hour, makes love to Florence M'Carthy (Miss Copeland) and is at length hustled off in the clouds of a cudgel fight. From Donnybrook the scene changes to a whiskey house in Tipperary, where his new enchantress officiates as mistress, Nothing but the Don's exhaustless gallantry could supply the innumerable demands on his flirtation; for without loss of time, a new trial assails him in the shape of The Novice of St. Dominic, (Miss Povey) who falls desperately in love, and is desperately fallen in love with, on the spot. The Abbess, (Mrs. Bland) is next captivated, and the Don is apparently in serious danger of being overwhelmed by the whole Nunnery; he flies, however, to Phænix Park, the Hyde Park of Dublin; but is seized and brought to answer for his fascinations before King Corney, is found guilty on a re gular hearing, and reprieved at the sound of the cannon announcing the King's arrival in Ireland. Thus ends the second act: though we should have mentioned, as the close of the first,-a view of the Kilkenny Amateur Theatre, in which the amateurs cut a very moderate figure; with dressed busts as company in the upper boxes,