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The skilful master on each motion tends,
she heaves and laves,
To gain some tidings of the Gallic fleet.' The subject of this poem is generally interesting; and its descrip, mions of nautical operations, illustrated by the notes, will be particu. larly pleasing to those landsmen who are partial to naval affairs, and wish to acquire more idea of them than the opposite nature of their pursuits has allowed them to attain. Art. 48. Leonidas, a Poem, by William Glover. Adorned with
Plates. 8vo. 2 Vols. 18s. Boards. Printed for F. J. du Roveray, by T. Bensley, and sold by Boosey, &c. 1798.
This is a very beautiful edition of an ingenious poem, but of which the merit has been so often discussed, that we shall not now enter
•* Her prow obedient, &c.] There is something highly pleasing in the
appearance of a vessel “casting to sea," that is, when her anchor being once clear of the ground, she begins to lift and swing off, being before stationary, by the conjoint influence of the wind and waves.'
• Now on the swelling surge, &c.] It is perhaps one of the grandest images existing, and most sublime, confining our ideas to works of art and the manner in which they may be affected, to oba serve so beautiful, so vast, stupendous, and complex a machine as a man of war of a hundred guns rising and plunging in the waves. I have been struck with a silent and pleasing astonishment, at beholding a vessel of that magnitude crossing the stern at sea, when it has been tempestuous weather, and the waves consequently loftySuch an immense, yet beautifully diversified body, tossing, rolling, and darting along the waves, gives you an idea of some huge, animated, monstrous Being."
on its examination. Indeed it may be said to be out of statute, with respect to our critical court ; having been published in 1737, twelve years before our establishment. Its present editor candidly confesses that this poem was too highly rated by the friends of the author, on its first appearance ; and that, with equal injustice, it afterward experienced neglect, when that party had either gained their point, or its principal members were retired “ to thrát bourne, from whence no travellers return.” Many instances might be given, of the enthusiasm with which literary productions, in support of party, have been at first received, and which have experienced the same
diminution of favour : such as Drydon's Alban and Albanice, Rowe's Tamerlane, Addison's Cato, Churchill's Poems, &c. In.prose, as well as in verse, if an author's political principles flatter those of his readers, or hearers, they are not disposed to be very fastidious critics.
All that remains for us to do, with respect to Leonidas, lies in a very small compass. The author of the poem having, amid che clash of opinions, obtained an honourable niche in the temple of fame, we shall not attempt to displace him by critical ejectment, in order to assign him either a better or a worse station than that of which he has been long in possession ; and we have only to add that the plates of this edition, of which there are seven, have been designed and engraved by excellent artists; and that the paper and type do honour to Mr. Bensley and our national press. Art. 49. The Rape of the Lock, an Heroi-Comical Poem, by Mr.
Pope. Adorned with Plates. 8vo. 103. 6d. Boards. Printed for F. J. du Roveray, and sold by Arch, &c.
This is an exquisite edition of our great bard's playful poem. Besides the frontispiece, there is a beautiful plate to each canto, by artists of the first class. Intending this for a companion to Leonidas, the editor has spared neither pains nor expence in rendering it equally complete. Art.
50. The Sacred Oratorios, as set to Music by Geo. F. Handel. Part I. Containing, Messiah, Athalia, Belshazzar, Deborah, Esther, Jephtha, Joseph, Israel in Egypt, Joshua, Occasional Oratorio, Samson, Saul, Solomon, Judas Maccabæus, and Su, sannaha 12mo. pp. 251. 45. 6d. Boards. Hookham, &c.
A collection of the words of sacred dramas set by Handel, the first reception and subsequent patronage of whose compositions reflect so much honour on our country, was much wanted :-for, as the music to these poems is not likely to be soon laid aside, correcç copies of the words must be very acceptable and useful to the votaries of this great musician.
The paper and type of this collection are beautiful and elegant. We wished, however, to have found the names of the writers and compilers of these oratorios, and the dates of their first performance ; most of which are, we apprehend, recorded in Dr. Burney's History of Music, and Dr. Arnold's edition of the Works of Handel. The first two, Esther and Athalia, we have no doubt, were formed on the model of Racine's sacred dramas of the same name. Pope and Gay have
been said to have had some share in furnishing Handel with the words of Acis and Galatea ; and Sani must have been the production of no contemptible poet. Many of the others were written, or compiled, by the learned Dr. Moral; who constantly attached himself to Handel, during the latter years of his life; and in whose judgment the composer often confided in the import, pronunciation, and expres. sion of passages in, serįpture, and in allusions to the sacred writings.
A second part of these lyrical productions is promised, with the life of Handel, and a general index. Art. 51. The Count of Burgundy, a Play ; in Four Acts. By
Augustos Ven Kotzebue. Translated from the Genuine German Editions, By Anne Plumptre. 8vo. 25. 6d. Symonds.
The original of this play was noticed in our xxviith volume, p.581. It appears to advantage from the hands of the present translator. Arr:52. The Natural Son; a Flay, in Five Acts, by Augustus
Von Kotzebue, Poet Laureat and Director of the Imperial Theatre at Vienna. Being the Original of Lovers' Vows, now performing, with universal Applause, at the Theatre Royal, CoventGarden. Translated from the German by Anne Plumptre, (Author of the Rector's Son, Antoinette, &c.) who has prefixed a Preface, explaining the Alterations in the Representation ; and
has also annexed a Life of Kotzebue. 8vo. 25. 6d.' Symonds. Art. 53. Lovers' Vows; a Play, in Five Acts. Performing at the
Theatre Royal, Covent-Garden. From the German of Kotzebue. By Mrs. Inchbald. Svo. Robinsons.
The name of Kotzebue will now secure to every production of his pen a considerable popularity in Great Britain. Considered as a national moralist,-and such is the very responsible office which every dramatic writer assumes,—he is too indulgent, for the true interests of domestic happiness, to breaches of chastity: yet there is, in other respects, a refinement in the cast of his ethics, á lofty indifference to artificial distinctions, a catching spirit of disinterest and benevolence, and an exclusive enthusiasm for the qualities of the heart, which provoke only because they humiliate the cringers to fortune, birth, and power. It is no feeble symptom of interior selfishness, not to relish the general flow of his sentiments ; not to glow with sympathetic rapture, while this Rousseau of the drania delincates the sweet affections and the noble sacrifices which abound among his heroes and heroines, and which are so well adapted to electrify an audience.
Of the play specifically before us, every one is familiar with the story, from its great success in representation. The translation of Miss Plumptre is, to mere readers, of most value on account of its superior fidelity. That of Mrs. Inchbald is more wisely adapted to representation in this country. The soliloquy of Frederick will afford a convenient passage for comparison.
Miss Plumptre, p. 30:
• Return with these few pieces ;-Return to see my mother die ? -No, no, rather plunge into the water at once rather run on to the end of the world. Ah, my feet seem clogged- I cannot advanceI cannot recede--the sight of yonder straw-roofed cottage, wherş
rests my suffering mother !—why must I always turn my eyes that way?-am I not surrounded by verdant fields and laughing meadows ? why must my looks be still drawn irresistibly towards that cot which contains all
my sorrows! (looks with anguish at the money) Man! man! is this your bounty? this piece was given me by the rider of a stately horse followed by a servant, whose livery glittered, with silver ;-this, by a sentimental lady who had alighted from her carriage to gaze at the country, describe it, and print her description, “ Yon cottage,” said I to her, while my tears interrupted me-" It is very picturesque,” she answered, and skipped into her carriage. This was given me by a fat priest, enveloped in a large bushy wig, who, at the same time, reviled me as an idier, a vagabond, and ihus took away the merit of his gift. This Dreyer (extremely affected) a beggar gave me unasked ; -he shared with me his mite, and, at the same time, gave me God's blessing. Oh! at the awful day of retribution, at how high a price will this dreyer be exchanged by the all-righteous Judge! (He pauses und lonks again at the money) what can I purchase with this paltry sum? Hardly will it pay for the nails of my mother's coffin-scarcely buy a rope to hang myself !, (He casts a wishful look towards the distant country) There insultingly glitter the stately towers of the prince's residence ;-shall I go thither there implore pity ?-Oh no! she dwells not in cities--the cottage of the poor is ber palace-the heart of the poor her Temple. Well then, should a recruiting officer pass by, for five rix-dollars paid on the spot, he shall have a stout and vigorous recruit. Five rix-dollars! Oh what a sum! yet on how many a card may such 4, sum be staked, even at this moment! (wipes the sweat from his forehead) Father! Father ! on thee fall these drops of anguish-on thce the despair of a fellow creature, and all its dreadful consequences;yet God forbid thou shouldst languish in vain for pardon in another world, as my wretched mother languishes in this for a drop of wine. (a hunting horn is beard at a distance,-a gun is fired,---succeeded by the “ Halloo, Halloo,” to the hounds ; several dogs run over the stage, Frederick looks around) Hunters ! Noblemen probably! Well then, now to beg once more !- to beg for my mother !--Oh God! God! grant that I may meet with compassionate hearts !!
Mrs. Inchbald, p. 33.
"To return with this trifle for which I have stooped to beg ! return to see my mother dying ! I would rather iy to the world's end. [Looking at the money.) What can I buy with this ? It is hardly enough to pay for the nails that will be wanted for her coffin.
My great anxiety will drive me to distraction. However, let the consequence of our affliction be what it may, all will fall
upon my father's head; and may he pant for Heaven's forgiveness, as my poor mother_[At a distance is heard ihe firing of a gun, then the cry of Halloo, Halloo-Gamekeepers and Sportsmen run across the stage he looks about.] Here they come - a nobleman, I suppose, or a man of fortune. Yes, yes-and' I will once more beg for my mother. – May heaven send relief!'
A few scenes are fortunate : but, in general, they are loosely conrected, and excite no progressive anxiety : nor is the story probable.
Art. 54. Lovers' Vows, or the Child of Love. A Play. In Five Acts.
Tranláted from the German of Kotzebue : with a brief Biography of the Author. By Stephen Porter, of the Middle Temple. 8vo. 25. Hatchard.
We have already noticed two translations of this affecting but ill. constructed play. The present belongs to the class of literal, not amended, versions, and approaches very nearly in quality to that of Miss Plumptre. From the prefixed biography, we transcribe à paragraph.
• Kotzebue was born at Weimar, in Saxony, a city which has long been considered as the most refined in Germany, as far as relates to the manners of its inhabitants; and is at present particularly famous for a seminary of education for young men of rank, which affords the students the double advantage of acquiring the most extensive learning, and of improving their manners by a constant intercourse with the Court of the reigning Duke, at present one of the most polished in Europe.-His predilection for the Drama displayed itself while he was very young ; for in his youth he not only wrote, but performed in several private theatres, though, we believe, he never yet appeared on the public stage, He was educated under the celebrated professor Musæus ; and early betook himself to the profession of the Law, which he practised with considerable success, filling various eminent stations, till, at length, he was appointed President of the high College of Justice, in the Russian province of Livonia, where he wrote a great number of his dramatic works, as well as his other miscellaneous compositions. The cabals of a party in Livania, who envied his superior talents, compelled him, after some years, to resign his high situation; when, fortunately for the ad. mirers of genius and learning, he resolved to devote hiinself entirely to literary pursuits, and accordingly repaired to the Court of Vienna, where he was shortly after appointed, “Director and Dramatist of the Imperial Theatre ;” a place which he has ever since filled with pleasure to himself, and the greatest satisfaction to the Emperors he has lived under.'
It would be well, in order to prevent collision, if translators were to announce the works which they undertake, previously to pub. lication: one of the least meritorious of Kotzebue's plays has in this instance obtained the honour of triple translation. Art. 55. Poems or various Subjects. By R. Anderson, of Carlisle. Small 8vo.
Pp. 227. 35. 6d. Boards. Clarke. 1798. It has been said that there are writers for every reader, and readers for every writer.” The favour which thesc pieces may have. obtained is probably local ; and they may have appeared wouderful, perhaps, from the situation and circumstances of the writer ; who scens self-taught, and who, indeed, modestly confesses that his education did not entitle hiin to a place among the learned. We are wholly unacquainted with this rural hard's peculiar history, and can only judge of his poetical merits by the productions before us. They are certainly neither ungrammatical nor absurd, and may perhaps be ranked with those of Stephen Duck, and other favourites of the " wettered muse.” Mr. Anderson seems to hitch his thoughts