« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »
Last Leaves of American History; comprising
under consideration with its sister tongues, or with its mother tongue, where the existence of this is certain. But in a grammar for young people, such comparisons must be in a great measure useless; and all that can be done with advantage, is to apply to the language under consideration such principles as may have been established by comparative philology. The
for the author has purposely abstained from making any material alteration in the arrangement usually adopted in grammars for schools; partly because he thinks that such alterations as have recently been introduced in school grammars are little calculated to benefit the fearner, and partly because he is of opinion that sound information can be given without obliging the teacher to abandon the order to which he has been accustomed from his youth, and which he may, not always be able or willing to abandon.
Mrs. Willard in her preface to this history, observes, "Washington Irving once said in conversation, pure truth is as difficult to be obtained as pure water; though clear in appear-present grammar does not lay claim to novelty, ance, it is ever found by the chemist to contain extraneous substances.' In recording the portion of my country's history, here presented to the public, I can only say, that pure truth has been my earnest aim; for history is truth, and truth is history. I am not conscious of any prejudices, or prepossessions, either as it respects individuals, parties, or sects, by means of which, I should incline to error or be led astray. And I have spared no pains in my power, to make myself acquainted with the state of facts concerning which I have written. But doubtless there are mistakes; for what book ever existed which had none? There may be errors of the press; authorities may mislead; and that mind must be clear indeed, which never misapprehends. But whenever an error is found, of whatever nature, and whether pointed out by a friend to serve, or a foe to injure, that error will be corrected as soon as discovered." Mrs. Willard writes clearly and interestingly, and her book is a valuable addition to our American history.
Grammar of the Latin Language. By LEON-
A. Grammar is a classified collection of the rules or laws regulating the language of which it professes to be an exposition. Every language is subject to changes, either for the better or for the worse; and although in the case of a dead language a grammarian must consider and illustrate it mainly as it was at the time of its most perfect development, still he cannot avoid taking into consideration the earlier and later forms of words and expressions; for in many instances the language, in its perfect state, cannot be fully explained without recourse being had to those forms of speech, out of which it has arisen. Very great advantages may also be derived, especially in the etymological part, from a comparison of the language
History of Queen Elizabeth. By JACOB ABBOTT. With engravings. New York: Harper & Brothers.
This history is one of a most valuable series-the author and the publishers are entitled to much praise. The narratives are not tales founded upon history, but history itself, without any embellishment or deviation from the strict truth. The author has availed himself of the best sources of information within his reach.
Manual of Ancient Geography and History.
This is a very useful book, and contains a clear and definite outline of the history of the principal nations of antiquity; and to render it more clear, a concise geography of each country has been added. Professor Greene furnishes a well-written preface.
The Crayon Miscellany. By WASHINGTON | the pride, the leisure, and the stomach, reject IRVING. New York: George P. Putnam, 155 Broadway.
Homer until they can comprehend him in the original; until they can sit down, and without thought of grammar or metre, read a book of him at once, as they would of Milton or Job, rapidly, and with a vivid insight; for short of that, they will never comprehend him; but for the inass of men, let us have perfect, literal translations, like those of our English Bible, and this of Dr. Carlyle's. A very tolerable, though rather pedantic, prose version of Homer has been published at Princeton, in New Jersey. To read this literal Dante, and the literal Homer, side by side with the literal Job! what an admirable employment, how enlightened and elevating!
Dante's Divine Comedy, The Inferno. Aliteral prose translation, with the text of the original. Collated from the best editions, and Explanatory Notes. By JOHN A. CARLYLE, M.D. New York: Harper and Brothers. 1849.
Dante's Divine Comedy, so called only because it ends happily, though it begins sadly, is counted among the greatest productions of genius. The Paradise Lost, the Inferuo, the Encid of Virgil, the Iliad of Homer, and the Book of Job, are generally regarded as the grandest works of imagination in their class. The Drama indeed contends with the Epic; and Shakspeare, Sophocles, and Calidas, stand upon the other equal summit of the glorysmitten Parnassus, but only at an equal, not a grander altitude.
To make these wonderful works common in all languages has been the task of the most accomplished scholars. A wretched, we had almost said an inhuman pedantry, has forbidden currency to accurate translations of Iomer, and had it happened that Dante were a college book, we might have been deprived of this valuable translation, Let those who have
Typee; a Peep at Polynesian Life, during a
This is a very elegant edition of the popular work of Mr. Melville, with his own revisal and improvements.
Selections from Catullus for the use of Classical Students. With English Notes. By G. G. COOKESLEY, M. A., one of the Assistant Masters at Eton. Revised, with additional Notes, by C. A. BRISTED, late B.A., Scholar of Trinity College, Cambridge. New York: Stanford & Swords, 137 Broadway. 1849.
The most elegant poems of Catullus, with the indecencies omitted; very properly, we think. Age, surely, does not sanctify obscenity, at least among the living; why, then, should antiquity? Besides, if we have a tooth, there is Moore and Byron, and Paul de Kock
and Madame Sand, and a hundred others, all | The Statesman's Manual. The Addresses and
in good plain English, or equally facile French. These moderns are much more obscene, though not quite as gross as the ancients. The talk of antiquity was very like the small talk of Shakspeare's day, or the jests of lusty bachelors in our time. Chivalry, refined by Christianity, first made decency a rule, and forbade the sacrifice of modesty to wit. It seems to us, therefore, both a chivalrous and a Christian, or in one word, a gentlemanly precaution in Mr. Bristed, to have omitted the indecencies of Catullus in this critical and elegant selection.
Those of our readers who read only Tennyson and Shelley, can have no idea of the manner and spirit of Catullus. Like nature's self, it combines simplicity, the result of severe criticism, with extreme grace and lightness. Like nature, or rather like the music of Mozart, or the canzonets of Haydn, seeming to affect the sense only, it secretly raises and harmonizes the spirits. It fulfills the first great end of poetry-to please without debauching. It breathes a harmless and benign complacency; it smiles while it sings, is gay without effort, witty without point or edge, humorous without severity.
"Let us live, my Lesbia," cries the sweet heathen, "and let us love, and count the saws of cross old fellows not worth a copper. Suns may set and rise again; but to us, when our short day is ended, the long night comes with its endless sleep. Give me a thousand kisses, then give me a hundred, and then a thousand more; and then a second hundred; and after these another thousand and a hundred; and when we have kissed many thousand times, let us rub out the score, and never know, nor let any envious fellow know, that there have been so many kisses." But now we have only metaphysics and the rights of man done into verse; or, if a love sonnet is written, it gathers no cream by standing.
The Documentary History of the State of New York. Arranged under the direction of the Hon. CHRISTOPHER MORGAN, Secretary of State. By E. B. O'CALLAGHAN, M.D. Vol. I. Albany: Weed, Parsons & Co., Public Printers. 1819.
On turning the leaves of this collection, sent us by the courtesy of the Secretary of State, we find a variety of interesting and important papers, and ancient maps, relating to the early history of New York. Among others might be mentioned several papers relative to the French military expeditions against the colonies, and a variety of statistical documents on population, trade, and manufactures, from 1647 to 1757.
Messages of the Presidents of the United States, Inaugural, Annual, and Special, from 1789 to 1849; with a Memoir of each of the Presidents, and a History of their Administrations. Also, the Constitution of the United States, and a selection of important documents and statistical information. Com piled from official sources, by EDWIN WILLIAMS. Embellished with Portraits of the Presidents, engraved on steel, by Vistus Balch. In 4 vols. New York: Edward Walker, 114 Fulton-street, 1849.
We are intimately acquainted with this work, and must speak of it in terms of unqualified praise. It is not only a good Political History of the United States, from the Inauguration of President Washington to that of General Taylor, but contains a collection of the Presidential Messages, special and general, of all the Administrations, each prefaced with, and followed by complete and clearly written historical chapters of the most unquestionable accuracy.
To the young politician this work is indispensable. It will richly reward his most attentive study. To be master of its entire contents is to be as well informed as the reading of one work can make us, in the policy and conduct of both the great parties.
To a lawyer's library the work is of the greatest importance. Every young men's circulating library will need a copy of it. Every debating club, and every State Department will require it.
The politics even of the last year can rarely be gathered from newspapers. It is only by such histories and compilations as this, that we are to be thoroughly informed and guided to a just estimate of the present movement in the political world. The volumes are cheap, but well printed and neatly bound, and adorned with really excellent Engravings of all the
brandy, one, or all conjoined, as herein directed, to check the diarrhoea in its first stages, seems to be all that is necessary. The disease is in the organs of the circulation, and its first and principal symptom is a rapid escape of the watery part of the blood into the intestinal canal. To prevent this escape by the use of astringents and narcotics is, of course, the treatment indicated. We commend the pamphlet especially to the attention of our Western readers. Dr. Cox is good authority in New York.
The History of the United States of America, from the discovery of the Continent to the Organization of the Government under the Federal Constitution. By RICHARD HILDRETH. 3 vols. New York: Harper & Brothers, 1849.
As far as we have examined the first volume of this History, in a cursory manner, it seems to be a plain, direct narrative, written in a sharp and clear, but somewhat dry style, with occasionally a critical remark or a severe stricture. The spirit of the author is that of a man fully satisfied that he is master of his subject and of the motives and principles of the men whose actions he describes. His advertisement is perhaps the key to his sentiments and intentions. "Of centennial sermons and Fourth of July orations, whether professedly such or in the guise of history, there are more than enough. It is due to our fathers and ourselves, it is due to truth and philosophy, to present for once, on the historic stage, the powers of our American nation, unbedaubed with patriotic rouge, wrapped up in no fine-spun cloaks of excuses and apology; without stilts, buskins, tinsel or bedizenment, in their own proper persons, often rude, hard, narrow, superstitious, and mistaken; but always earnest, downright, manly and sincere. The result of their labors is eulogy enough; their best apology is to tell their story exactly as it was.'
After a declaration of so much literary vigor, we had almost said of so much moral ferocity, the reader is to expect nothing but a hard, plain, and fearfully "earnest" account of the actions of our fathers. In ourselves, indeed, it breeds a feeling of critical responsibility. Were we
to read this history, we should read it with a microscope. The least flaw would strike us. The least bedizenment, or touch of patriotic rouge, pearl-powder or burnt cork, would raise our critical spleen. It is the author's own fault; we cannot help it. Come on my lads, says he, and I will show you how to write a good, plain, straightforward, history.
The most curious symptoms of our modern literature is perhaps the very prevalent affectation of simplicity and hardness, à la Carlyleending, for the most part, in a rattling together of the Saxon dry bones of English, in a very unmelodious fashion. Surely, grace and kindlyness, a full and easy manner, are greater recommendations of a writer, than a coarse, insolent, frowning style, whose very force degenerates into impertinent quickness and hardness, and which seems adapted for the torture and exasperation, rather than for the pleasure and consolation of readers.
The Hand-book of Hydropathy, for Professional and Domestic use with an Appendix on the best mode of forming Hydropathic Establishments; being the result of twelve years' experience at Graefenberg and Freiwaldau. By DR. J. WEISS, formerly Director of the establishment at Freiwaldau. From the second London Edition. Philadel-. phia J. W. Moore, 139 Chestnut-street. 1849.
This is unquestionably the treatise of the water cure. We have seen none comparable with it for completeness and simplicity. The publishers inform us that already one large edition is nearly exhausted, though it has but lately issued from the press.
Of all theories of medicine, we esteem the Hydropathic to be the most innocent. It pro'motes cleanliness-a virtue which comes next" to godliness-it leads to a careful observance of all the rules of diet and exercise, and it preserves the constitution from the horrid inroads of quack purgatives and pills of all descriptions. Next to our own theory, which is to have no theory, but to consider that practice the best, which is most successful, we prefer the hydropathic.