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These specimens must suffice from the last of the works in the list at the beginning of this paper. A considerable, and, after all, by far the best part of "My Book," consists of pure extracts from some of the most esteemed English authors, for the use, as states the extractor, of" writers and speakers." The collection, however, has nothing to boast of, either as regards its plan or execution. Any ordinary reader and thinker might have produced a much richer series, and after all, it seems to have been introduced merely to swell the volume.

In conclusion, and with reference to books which treat of goodbreeding, politeness, and taste, we must say that to persons whose minds are essentially vulgar or unrefined-to all who cannot perceive the beauty of moral and mental culture, they can be of very little use; but that, on the contrary, where there is the grace or the appreciation of mental culture as a natural and spontaneous result, will good manners follow, both in public and private intercourse. Where such inward treasures and tastes exist, the individual peculiarities which characterise their display, have a raciness and charm about them, worth ten thousand formalities.

ART. IV. The Tribute: a Collection of Miscellaneous Unpublished Poems. By various Authors. Edited by LORD NORTHAMPTON. 8vo. pp. 422. London: Murray. 1837.

THE preface to this volume informs us, that it was "projected as early as spring, 1836, while the late Reverend Edward Smedley was still living; and its original object was to spare him the necessity for those arduous literary labours which at that time threatened his sight or his life. His hearing he had already lost, and a disorder in his eyes was to all appearance sapping a sense still more precious. Before many weeks had elapsed, these anticipations proved too well founded, and death relieved him from his sufferings, and deprived his family of an affectionate husband and father. For them the project was continued." This benevolent purpose was not, however, disclosed to the family of the deceased, until the voluntary contributions presented by a number of our most illustrious poets were of such an amount as rendered the completion of a handsome volume certain. It is proper also to mention that Mrs. Smedley, in the meantime, has been preparing a collection of her husband's poems, with a memoir of his Life; to be published by subscription, to which, on its appearance, we shall be happy to lend the best recommendation in our power, consistently with candour. At present, however, it is only with the elegant " Tribute" before us that we have to do, and when we enumerate among its contributors the following names, there need little else be said to convince our

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readers that its contents possess very various beauties. Among these names, we specify some not only celebrated as poets, but several whose offerings will be more greedily read and sought after on account of other circumstances than being the wooers of the muse. Thus we have offerings, not only by Wordsworth, Southey, Moore, Joanna Baillie, Montgomery, Bowles, and Milman, but by Lord John Russell, and Mr. Spring Rice; the late Lady Northampton, Lady Dacre, Sir E. Cust, B. Barton, G. P. R. James, Chauncey Hare Townshend, Gally Knight, Horace Smith, Lander, Agnes Strickland, Mary L. Boyle, M. Popple, &c., besides the contributions of the noble editor himself, which are not less creditable to his genius as a poet, than the project fulfilled by the "Tribute" is to his judgment and considerate philanthropy.

In such a case as the present, it would be extremely ill-timed to apply the strictest rules of criticism. With reference to pieces which may have been written on demand, but where the object to be served is one that comes immediately home to the heart of every one, the will ought to be taken, in a great measure, for the deed. Two general remarks, however, we are bound to offer regarding the merits of these "Miscellaneous Poems." The first is, that the most eminent of the contributors, speaking of them according to poetic fame, appear to have laboured under some sort of restraint which did not usually controul them in most of their former unsolicited efforts. We have not detected in this collection any thing of Wordsworth's, Southey's, or Moore's, for example, that could ever have been the ground for any portion of their well-earned renown, much less increase or serve to perpetuate its amount. Take Moore's translation from the Persian, entitled "Mute Courtship."

"Love hath a language of his own-
A voice, that goes

From heart to heart-whose mystic tone

Love only knows.

The lotus-flower, whose leaves I now
Kiss silently,

Far more than words will tell thee how
I worship thee.

The mirror, which to thee I hold-
Which, when imprest

With thy bright looks, I turn and fold
To this fond breast-

Does it not speak, beyond all spells
Of poet's art,

How deep thy hidden image dwells

In this hushed heart?". We have not often found the modern master of the most bewitching conceits of thought and expression so cold and lame as in the

above instance. Take Wordsworth's "Stanzas," about the moon as another example; here, although it be quite true that he has clothed that orb, which poetasters have abused by their sickening fulsomeness, and forced addresses, time out of mind, with some fine and impressive attributes, which none but an originalist and one possessed of a subtle fancy that luxuriates in its own warmth and purity could have felt or uttered, yet the piece will not bear a comparison in point of the simplicity and intensity of the emotions and thoughts which it suggests, with almost innumerable specimens to be gathered both from his larger and smaller compositions. We copy them for the opinion of our readers.

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Perverse are we-a froward race;
Thousands, though rich in fortune's grace,
With cherished sullenness of pace
Their way pursue,
Ingrates, who wear a smileless face
The whole year through.
If kindred humour e'er should wake
My spirit droop for drooping sake,
From Fancy following in thy wake,
Bright ship of Heaven,
A counter-impulse let me take
And be forgiven."

Our second remark is, that while our mighty minstrels, as compared with themselves, cannot reap any additional fame from their present offerings, the contributors here of lesser name appear to us, in not a few instances, to eclipse them. Let it not be thought, however, that by our succeeding extracts we have sedulously searched for the best proofs. Indeed on such an occasion any such principle of selection would be invidious, especially as there is not a piece in the whole volume that does not add to the adornment of our literature. But it is nothing more than what is due to the noble editor, to give him a precedence, for his tributes possess a double value. Take his sonnet to" Memory," as a fitting commencement.

Oh, Memory! thou ever restless power,
Recalling all that's vanish'd from our sight,
Thy pencil dipp'd now in the rainbow's light,
Now in the gloomy tints of midnight's hour,
From youth's gay garden, manhood's blighted bower,
Culling thy varied chaplet, dark and bright-
The rose, the rue, the baleful aconite :
Alternating the cypress and the flower!
Casting with light'ning speed thy vizard glance

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Through the long retrospect of by-gone years,
Whence, at thine hest, in dim array advance,
Shadows of idle hopes, and idle fears :
Half cheerful is thy saddest countenance,

Thy sweetest smile, alas, is moist with tears!"

The next specimen by the same writer-"The Poor Poet to his Purse, the work and gift of three sisters," is playful in measure and quaintly poetical.

"Phoebus had golden hair,

"Twas all the gold he e'er possess'd,
But then he had a very flashy air,

And in his dishabille was thought well dress'd.
Alas! 'twould cost much money now-a-days,
To make hat, coat, and trowsers of green bays!

We Poets yet,

As was Apollo erst, are poor

He ran in debt

We may be sure,

And never paid the coachmaker his bill,
Who furnish'd him his Phaeton :

And we, his sons, can testify that still
Pactolus is not Helicon !

Dear Purse, my song returns to thee,
Thou creature of my patronesses three!

I gaze admiring on thy silken sheen,
Thy rings vandyked, thy pendent glossy ends,

Thy meshes intricate of blue and green,

Thou proof the Muses and the Graces are good friends.
Another proof less pleasing dost thou yield:
Purses are sooner made than fill'd!-

We like the verses by the Rev. H. Thompson, of Wrington Rectory, to the memory of his deceased friend, whose condition called forth the contents of the "Tribute." We extract a part—

"I set no cypress on thy last abode,

Friend of my earliest, best, and happiest days!
But rather would I plant the solemn sod

With emblems bright of thankfulness and praise;
VOL. III. (1837.) No. II.

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Violet and rose, whose fragrant bloom decays
In grateful incense to their author God,
And trustful hope again their heads to raise
From root ensepulchred in earthy clod.
Thus didst thou fall, in richest flower and pride
Of genius and of years; the fragrance pure
Of learning and example scattering wide;
Best sacrifice to Him who gave! in sure
And certain hope' to rise beatified

"

In the spring morn that ever shall endure.

*

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*

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Happy in life and death, lov'd friend, farewell!
Happy in life! since life's severest woes
At Love's transforming smile in joy repose,
While health is sickness where he deigns not dwell!
Happy in death! for with the invisible,

With whom was here thy converse, God, and those
Who share his vision's bliss, thou dost unclose
The unbodied sense to words ineffable!

Farewell a little space! Taught here how brief,
How insignificant the woes of time,

From earth I hope not nor regret relief;
But, rising to thy hopes and aims sublime,

I'll trust to meet thee far o'er care and grief
In Love's own native and immortal clime."

Here are some sweet and spirited lines to an old acquaintance of ours. We judge of their worth by the manner in which they revive early and dear impressions. The lines are by William

Empson, Esq.

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From the hedge-partition'd plain
And the wood-topp'd hill.
With thine unmistaken shout

Make the valley ring!
All the world is looking out,
But in vain, for spring.
I have search'd in every place,
Garden, grove, and green;
Of her footstep not a trace

Is there to be seen.

Yet her servants without fail
Have observed their day,
Swallow, bat, and nightingale ;
And herself away!

Shout again! she knows thy call,
'Tis her muster drum:
An she be on earth at all
She will hear and come."

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