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We can inform Jonathan what are the inevitable consequences of being too fond of glory: taxes upon every article which enters into the mouth, or covers the back, or is placed under the foot ; taxes upon everything which it is pleasant to see, hear, feel, smell, or taste ; taxes upon warmth, light, and locomotion ; taxes on everything on earth, and the waters under the earth — on everything that comes from abroad, or is grown at home; taxes on the raw material ; taxes on every fresh value that is added to it by the industry of man ; taxes on the sauce which pampers man's appetite, and the drug that restores him to health — on the ermine which decorates the judge, and the rope which hangs the criminal ; on the poor man's salt, and the rich man's spice ; on the brass nails of the coffin, and the ribbons of the bride : at bed or board, couchant or levant, we must pay. The school-boy whips his taxed top ; the beardless youth manages his taxed horse with a taxed bridle, on a taxed road ; and the dying Englishman, pouring his medicine, which has paid seven per cent, into a spoon that has paid fifteen per cent., flings himself back upon his chintz bed, which has paid twenty-two per cent., and expires in the arms of an apothecary who has paid a license of a hundred pounds for the privilege of putting him to death. His whole property is then immediately taxed from two to ten per cent. Besides the probate, large fees are demanded for burying him in the chancel ; his virtues are handed down to posterity on taxed marble; and he is then gathered to his fathers — to be taxed no more.
SAMUEL TAYLOR COLERIDGE.
Samuel Taylor Coleridge was born in Devonshire in 1772. He was the son of a poor curate, and the youngest of ten children. His early education was received at Christ's Hcspital, in London. Charles Lamb was his schoo!-fe.low, and has made a touching allusion to him in one of the Essays of Elia. Coleridye was unusually precocious, and was thorcuzily spoiled by the ill-judging fondness of his uncle, who took charge of him after 'hu death of his father. He went to the University at Cambridge, but quitted it after two years, o account of debts, it is supposed. He enlisted as a common soldier, but was discharged, aftst a few months' service, on the interposition of his friends. He became an intimate friend of Southey, and the two poets subsequently married sisters. It does not arpear that Co'eridge had either property, employment, or any rational prospect of earring a living at the time of his marriage ; but his early years were his best and most productive ones. The Ancient Mariner, the Hymn in the Vale of Chamouni, the first part of Christabel, and cher minor poems, displaying the highest qualities of im gination, were written ia his
twenty-fifth year. To quiet the pangs of his diseased nerves, he commenced the use of opium; and the habit, once established, was never broken. In the quantity of this terrible drug which he came to consume he left even De Quincey far behind ; and the effect of this slavery to a morbid appetite upon his health, his intellect, and his moral character made the record of all his subsequent life pitiable. Vast projects were conceived, as baseless as the domes of Kubla Khan ; great quartos were planned, of which not a line was written but the title page. His wife and children left him in despair, and took refuge with Southey. All that he earned was insufficient for his wants, and his begging letters show too well the depth of his abasement. He found a home at last with a certain Mr. Gillman, who was proud of his famous guest; and there he lived for eighteen years, until his death in 1834
Coleridge had, by nature, all the great qualities which constitute a poet. We cannot pres dict the future growth of the poetic art; but it is difficult to imagine a state of society in which his best works will not be read with pleasure, if not with ungrudging admiration The splendor of his imagery, the force and the subtilty of thought, and the natural melody of his verse have placed him, by common consent, among the few immortal names. We cannot forget, as we wish we could, the selfish indulgence, the aimless indolence, the habit. ual untruth, and the unspeakable degradation of his later years; and we must lament that, with a mind so ill balanced, his very genius should have taken the form of a “splendid dis
His poems were collected by his son and daughter, and are published in three vol
His prose essays, published in The Friend, are finely written, and are as clear in meaning as metaphysical treatises in general. A very striking description of him occurs in Carlyle's Life of Stirling, one of the most beautiful and characteristic works of the great essayist.
HYMN BEFORE SUNRISE IN THE VALE OF CHAMOUNI.
Hast thou a charm to stay the morning star
Yet, like some sweet, beguiling melody, -
Till the dilating soul, enrapt, transfused
Thou first and chief, sole sovran of the vale –
And you, ye five wild torrents, fiercely glad,
Ye icefalls, ye that from the mountain's brow
Answer, and let the ice-plains echo, God !
Ye living flowers, that skirt the eternal frost;
Once more, hoar mount, with thy sky-pointing peaks,
“In mist or cloud, on mast or shroud,
It perched for vespers nine, Whiles all the night, through sog-smoke
white, Glimmered the white moonshine."
God save thee, Ancient Mariner,
From the fiends that plague thee thus ! Why look'st thou so?” “With my cross-bow
I shot the albatross."
“The Sun now rose upon the right,
Out of the sea came he,
Went down into the sea;
And the good south wind still blew behind,
But no sweet Lird cid follow, Nor any day, for food or play,
Came to the mariners' horlo;
The bride hath paced into the hall;
Red as a rose is she ;
'The merry minstrelsy.
Yet he cannot choose but hear;
The bright-eyed Mariner :-
Was tyrannous and strong ;
And chased us south along.
And forward bends his head,
And southward aye we fed.
And it grew wondrous cold ;
gTeen as emerald ; -
Did send a dismal sheen ;
The ice was all between.
The ice was all around :
“And I had done a helish thing,
And it would work 'em woe ;
That made the breeze to blow, 'Ah, wretch !' said they, 'the bird to slay,
That made the breeze to blow !'
"Nor dim nor red, like God's own head,
The glorious Sun uprist :
That brought the fog and mist. ''Twas right,' said they, “such birds to slay
That bring the fog and mist.
“The fair breeze blew, the white foam flew,
The furrow followed free ;
Into that silent sea.