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mals, which an Introduction to Conchology should exhibit. Linnæus's System is taken for the ground work; but such alterations are admitted as the advanced state of science requires; and when it is borne in mind, that not only as respects a large section of the animal kingdom, but its intimate illustrative connection with Geology, the history of shells and of their inhabitants can no longer remain under the stigma of being a dry or unprofitable study. All this the gentle and lovely work before us fully establishes.
ART. XXVII.-Conversations on the Human Frame and the Five Senses. Illustrated with Plates. London: Darton and Clark. 1837. AN outline of the anatomy of the most important organs of the human body, calculated to interest and instruct the young, and by a lady, is rather a novel exhibition of popular knowledge. But be its plan or suggestion new or old, we can safely assure our readers, that the author of " Aids to Development, A Gift for Mothers," "Memorials of Two Sisters," &c. has here acquitted herself admirably. She says, that the idea of sketching this outline of anatomy was suggested to her mind by the questions of some children; and no work existing that was simple and pointed enough to put into their hands, these lessons have been framed to supply the want. It certainly is reasonable in commencing any course of instruction in Natural History, to make the human body a starting point. This is what has here been done, and, as already intimated, done exceedingly well. What renders this elementary work particularly desireable, are the impressive religious and scriptural doctrines that are most appositely and richly enforced in the course of its illustrations. The Bible is, in fact, the richest treasury to which manualists can resort; for it contains the most numerous and emphatic aphorisms and examples that the whole range of literature ever collected into a moderate compass. These "Conversations," may not only safely, but with the most perfect reliance upon their useful and never-to-be forgotten efficacy, be put into the hands of every young person; which is a great deal more than can be said of many cleverly compiled manuals.
ART.XXVIII.—Fragments and Fancies. By the Lady E. STUART WortLEY. London: Saunders and Otley. 1837.
ALTHOUGH We can hardly keep pace with our Lady, and although we have often regretted that she should in such a slipshod style as is her wont, adventure before the public; it is impossible to deny her the praise, which not only a wonderfully fertile fancy deserves, but that of naturally possessing and of having assiduously cultivated the most tender and graceful feelings that properly belong to a feminine mind. If Lady E. S. Wortley does not stand foremost amongst our female writers in any one of her efforts, yet take them altogether, she has spread out her charming and high-souled sympathies over a space, and in communion with a greater number of subjects, than, perhaps, any one that can be named. It is impossible to read a page of her verses, without being assured that she is one of the best and most talented of her sex, and without being soothed or bettered by the exercise. And to what better can talent, accomplishments, and leisure, be devoted than
to the soothing of humanity here below, and tutoring it to the ecstasies which will reward purity and virtue above?
We quote three stanzas from the third poem in the volume. Its title is "Mourners of Earth."
ART. XXIX.-Tilt's Almanacks for 1838.
HERE are six or seven of those indispensable remembrancers and directors, without one or more of which no person, be he rich or poor, old or young, learned or unlearned, should exist a day. They are each, with one remarkable exception, extended on one side of one piece of paper, but of all shapes and sizes. First, there is "The National Almanack," which is well suited for being pasted upon a board and suspended in the parlour or business-room for constant and ready reference. It has a remarkably rich border, such as would be gorgeous, if of more solid materials, as the frame of a large picture. The price of this sheet is three pence. Next comes the " Paragon," of about half the size of the former, and containing nearly the same information, but in a smaller though clear and distinct type. The same description may be applied to the "Useful Almanack," which, however, is not so ornate in respect of borderings. These two are priced One Penny each, and are well adapted for the desk.
The three Almanacks now specified contain very nearly the same particulars and tables-viz. the days of the month, festivals and holidays, and the usual announcements for each day. The Sovereigns of Europe, the Royal Family of England, Ministers of State, Public Offices, Bankers in London, &c. &c., obtain short and distinct notices; the arrangement being such as readily to catch the eye, though in each sheet it is varied.
We have now to speak of the "Hat Almanack," which must always be at hand when men of business are abroad. It will at once by uncovering the caput, inform that seat of knowledge and anxiety, of the day
of the month, of holidays, and the prices of stamps for every chargeable sum. The price is One Penny. A like price will procure "The Sunday Guide," a page very suitable to church-going people whose eyesight is not the best; but to those who can make use of a Pocket Prayer-Book, we recommend "The Sunday Almanack,"-if they are plain people,—in blue, One Penny; if more tasteful,-in gold, Two-Pence. These three give the Sunday lessons for the ensuing year, and will naturally be placed within the cover of the Bible or Prayer-Book.
The last of Mr. Tilt's Almanacks, at present before us, has appropriately obtained the title of "Miniature," and deserves to be regarded as a prodigy among its kind and even among books. Its size is one inch and a quarter, by two inches and a quarter, price, neatly done up in gilt cover, One Sixpence. Its pages amount to about thirty-two, twelve of them being blank, and facing the several months of the year, to admit of important memoranda. The remainder of the volume contains such tables and notices as have been mentioned as forming prominent parts in the "National," the "Paragon," and the "Useful."
After this who can set a limit to improvements and novelties; or who can deny that the spirited Publisher of these several works has not performed a public service by enabling every man, woman, and child to obtain not only a familiar knowledge of the cycles of time and the position of current history, but of becoming punctual in the great concerns of secular life and of religion?
ART. XXX.-The Poetical Works of Robert Southey.
Himself. In 10 Vols. Vol. I. London: Longman and Co. 1837. AT a period when the works of many of our most esteemed authors have been published in a uniform and popular shape, some of them having received the corrections and illustrations of the authors themselves, it was time that Southey should follow the example, and enable the world to appreciate his achievements more generally and fully than they have ever yet been, as well as to secure for himself a permanent place in every considerable English library. The form in which his poetical works are now to appear, is sure to obtain for him a station alongside of Scott and Byron. We could wish that his very voluminous prose productions were in a similar manner made available to the public at large; for if it be true that his poetry has secured for him the name of a true son of song, his pure, chaste, and mellifluous prose ought to be a model in all time coming to the English scholar.
The preface which ushers in the present volume, is one of the finest specimens of his prose, in as far as language is concerned; and as regards sentiment and mind, it is as simple, lofty, and serious as becomes a great man writing for posterity-a man knowing that he must shortly give an account of his stewardship, yet conscious of those principles and regulating motives that will not allow him to be unjust to his own merits. This preface it would be inexcusable altogether to withhold from our readers.
"Now, when about to perform what, at my age, may almost be called the testamentary task of revising, in all likelihood for the last time, those works by which it was my youthful ambition to be for ever known,' and
part whereof I dare believe has been 'so written to aftertimes as they should not willingly let it die,' it appeared proper that this poem, through which the author had been first made known to the public, two-and-forty years ago, should lead the way; and the thought that it was once more to pass through the press under my own inspection, induced a feeling in some respects resembling that with which it had been first delivered to the printer, -and yet how different! For not in hope and ardour, nor with the impossible intention of rendering it what it might have been had it been planned and executed in middle life, did I resolve to correct it once more throughout; but for the purpose of making it more consistent with itself in diction, and less inconsistent in other things with the well-weighed opinions of my maturer years. The faults of effort, which may generally be regarded as hopeful indications in a juvenile writer, have been mostly left as they were. The faults of language, which remained from the first edition, have been removed; so that, in this respect, the whole is sufficiently in keeping. As for those which expressed the political prejudices of a young man who had too little knowledge to suspect his own ignorance, they have either been expunged, or altered, or such substitutions have been made for them as harmonise with the pervading spirit of the poem ; and are, nevertheless, in accord with those opinions which the author has maintained for thirty years through good and evil report, in the maturity of his judgment as well as in the sincerity of his heart. I have thus acknowledged all the specific obligations to my elders or contemporaries in the art, of which I am distinctly conscious. The advantages arising from intimate intercourse with those who were engaged in similar pursuits cannot be in like manner specified, because in their nature they are imperceptible; but of such advantages no man has ever possessed more or greater, than at different times it has been my lot to enjoy. Personal attachment first, and family circumstances afterwards, connected me long and closely with Mr. Coleridge; and threeand thirty years have ratified a friendship with Mr. Wordsworth which, we believe, will not terminate with this life, and which it is a pleasure for us to know will be continued and cherished as an heir-loom by those who are dearest to us both. When I add what has been the greatest of all advantages, that I have passed more than half my life in retirement, conversing with books rather than men, constantly and unweariedly engaged in literary pursuits, communing with my own heart, and taking that course which, upon mature consideration, seemed best to myself, I have said everything necessary to account for the characteristics of my poetry, whatever they may be. It was in a mood resembling in no slight degree that wherewith a person in sound health, both of body and mind, makes his will and sets his worldly affairs in order, that I entered upon the serious task of arranging and revising the whole of my poetical works. What, indeed, was it but to bring in review before me the dreams and aspirations of my youth, and the feelings whereto I had given that free utterance which, by the usages of this world, is permitted to us in poetry, and in poetry alone? Of the smaller pieces in this collection, there is scarcely one concerning which I cannot vividly call to mind when and where it was composed. I have perfect recollection of the spots where many, not of the scenes only, but of the images which I have described from nature, were observed and noted. And how would it be possible for me to forget the interest taken in these poems, especially the longer and more ambitious works, by those persons
nearest and dearest to me then, who witnessed their growth and completion? Well may it be called a serious task thus to resuscitate the past! But, serious though it be, it is not painful to one who knows that the end of his journey cannot be far distant, and, by the blessing of God, looks on to its termination with sure and certain hope."
This is not more beautiful than earnest. We must remark, however, that in reference to the correction of the "political principles of a young man, who had too little knowledge to suspect his own ignorance," posterity will pay little heed. The consistency of Dr. Southey will be far less thought of, than the propriety or wisdom of his tenets uttered at any one time, and probably those published when he was young may come to be considered as the least tortuous assertions of the truth,—the sternest and most indignant denouncements of oppression, and the most arousing appeals in regard to man's inalienable rights. Again, if he has partly had in view a disclosure of the progress of his own mind, to be traced in his writings, we do not clearly see how expunging and altering that which he wrote in his youth, but which now in his advanced years, he thinks was wrong, will afford a starting point for the critical reader to begin with, or allow him to catch hold of a thread of continuous guidance.
Besides collecting and correcting his poems, the author, is to add such illustrations as will no doubt greatly increase the interest which his separate pieces possess. Every one knows how wonderfully Scott has enhanced the value of his noblest productions in this way; and the treasures of Southey's memory and imagination, we can easily suppose are no less extraordinary.
We have already heard what he has to say about the dreams and aspirations of his youth; and the vivid recollections cherished by him of the times, places, and circumstances connected with each production. We must introduce two specimens of what he has to communicate in this way about himself. First for his early reading :
"My first attempts in verse were much too early to be imitative, but I was fortunate enough find my way, when very young, into the right path. I read the Jerusalem Delivered and the Orlando Furioso again and again, in Hoole's translations: it was for the sake of their stories that I perused and reperused these poems with ever new delight; and by bringing them thus within my reach in boyhood, the translator rendered me a service which, when I look back upon my intellectual life, I cannot estimate too highly. I owe him much also for his notes, not only for the information concerning other Italian romances which they imparted, but also for introducing me to Spenser; how early, an incident which I well remember may show. Going with a relation into Bull's circulating library at Bath, (an excellent one for those days,) and asking whether they had the Faery Queen, the person who managed the shop said, Yes, they had it but it was in obsolete language, and the young gentleman would not understand it.' But I who had learned all I then knew of the history of English from Shakspeare, and who had moreover read Beaumont and Fletcher, found no difficulty in Spenser's English, and felt in the beauty of his versification a charm in poetry of which I had never been fully sensible before. From that time I took Spenser for my master. I drank also betimes of Chaucer's well. The taste which had been acquired in that school was confirmed by Percy's Reliques and Warton's History of