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To have no kindred which may pass between us,
Mercer. Court now in session, sir,-your time is precious,
And this great case of yours, 'gainst Blasinghame,
A moment then!
And we now entreat you,
Suffer this nomination.
Friends, believe me,
Pray, deliver them.
Maurice. To be a Candidate in common usage,
Mercer. You are our man!Such is already what is spoken loudly By thousands in Missouri.
I'll not deny it.
I will not seek for office on conditions
One tribute to the vulgar vanity!
I will not bow, nor smile, nor deference yield,
Mercer. We feel the justice of your sentiments. Brooks. They're needful to us now, when all's corruption,
Oh! could we but inform the popular mind.
Maurice. This can be done where virtue is the teacher.
And where they can still hunt them down to ruin.
And nurse it till it rises to a law,
We are agreed-
At the expense of his most precious fortunes,
To sell the wealth most precious in our keeping,
That he who buys the vote will sell his own;-
Who, with the faculty to use it nobly,
Mercer. This suits us well. On your own terms, we
We feel, with you a stern necessity
To check the abuse of the Elective Franchise!
Brooks. But should we call a meeting, to enlighten
The people in respect to public measures, You'll not refuse to meet them?
Clarice. It is the widow Presslev.
Mercer. It is that we are liable to fear,
I passed an hour lately in examining various substances through a powerful microscope, with a man of science at my elbow, to expound their use and relations. It was astonishing what revelations of wonder and beauty in common things were thus attained in a brief period. The
Widow. They're old ones, sir, plough'd twenty years eye aptly directed, the attention wisely given and
the minute in nature enlarged and unfolded to the vision, a new sense of life and its marvels seemed created. What appeared but a slightly rough surface proved variegated iris-hued crystals; a dot on a leaf became a moth's nest with its symmetrical eggs and their hairy peut-house; the cold passive oyster displayed heart and lungs in vital activity; the unfolding wings grew visible upon the seed-vessels of the ferns; beetles looked like gorgeously emblazoned shields; and the internal economy of the nauseous cockroach, in its high and delicate organism. showed a remarkable affinity between insect and animal life. What the scientific use of lenses-the telescope and the microscope-does for us in relation to the external universe, the psychological writer achieves in regard to our own nature. He reveals its wonder and beauty, unfolds its complex laws and makes us suddenly aware of the mysteries within and around individual life. In the guise of attractive fiction and sometimes of the most airy sketches, Hawthorne thus deals with his reader. His appeal is to consciousness and he must, therefore, be met in a sympathetic relation; he shadows forth,-hints,-makes signs,-whispers,―muses aloud,—gives the keynote of melody—puts us on a track ;—in a word, addresses us as nature does-that is unosteutatiously, and with a significance not to be realized without reverent silence and gentle feeling-a sequestration from bustle and material care, and somewhat of the meditative insight and latent sensibility in which his themes are conceived and wrought out. Sometimes they are purely descriptive, bits of Flemish painting-so exact and arrayed in such mellow colors, that we unconsciously take them in as objects of sensitive rather than imaginative observation; the “Old Manse” and the “Custom House"-those quaint portals to his fairy-land, as peculiar and rich in contrast in their way, as Boccacio's som-. bre introduction to his gay stories-are memorable instances of this fidelity in the details of local and personal portraiture; and that chaste yet deep tone of colouring which secure an harmonious whole. Even in allegory, Hawthorne imparts this sympathetic unity to his conception;
If he should lose his case.
Widow. Do not make light of it, I do entreat you!
Maurice. Let me see," of thirty,
In truth you smile not!
[hands him a small dagger
Maurice. What! your dagger, my Clarice,
Clarice. [aside.] Oh! should you fail! "Twould break her heart.
Maurice. 'Twere something worse than death!
[END OF ACT III.]
BY HENRY T. TUCKERMAN.
Fire Worship," "The Celestial Railroad," | fancies but experience seem borne in from the "Monsieur du Miroir," "Earth's Holocaust," entrancing page. and others in the same vein, while they emphat- There is a charm also essential to all works of ically indicate great moral truth, have none of genius which for want of a more definite term the abstract and cold grace of allegorical writing; we are content to call the ineffable. It is a qualbesides the ingenuity they exhibit, and the charm ity that seems to be infused through the design of they have for the fancy, a human interest warms the artist after its mechanical finish-as life enand gives them meaning to the heart. On the tered the statue at the prayer of the Grecian other hand, the imaginative grace which they sculptor. It is a secret, indescribable grace, a chiefly display, lends itself quite as aptly to re- vital principle, a superhuman element imparting deem and glorify homely fact in the plastic hands the distinctive and magnetic character to literaof the author. "Drowne's Wooden Image," ture, art and society, which gives them individual "The Intelligence Office," and other tales deri-life; it is what the soul is to the body, luminous ved from common-place material, are thus mould-vapour to the landscape, wind to sound, and light ed into artistic beauty and suggestiveness. Haw- to color. No analysis explains the phenomenon; thorne, therefore, is a prose-poet. He brings it is recognized by consciousness rather than together scattered beauties, evokes truth from through direct intellectual perception; and seems apparent confusion, and embodies the tragic or to appeal to a union of sensibility and insight humorous element of a tradition or an event in which belongs, in the highest degree, only to aplyric music-not, indeed, to be sung by the lips, preciative minds. Its mysterious, endearing) but to live, like melodious echoes, in the memo- and conservative influence, hallows all works ry. We are constantly struck with the felicity universally acknowledged as those of genius in of his invention. What happy ideas are embo- the absolute significance of the word; and it gives died in "A Virtuoso's Collection," and "The to inanimate forms, the written page, the compoArtist of the Beautiful"-independent of the ser's harmony and the lyric or dramatic personagrace of their execution! There is a certain tion, a certain pervading interest which we inuniformity in Hawthorne's style and manner, but stantly feel disarming criticism and attesting the a remarkable versatility in his subjects; and each presence of what is allied to our deepest instincts. as distinctly carries with it the monotone of a It touches the heart with tender awe before a special feeling or fancy, as one of Miss Baillie's Madonua of Raphael; it thrilled the nerves and plays:—and this is the perfection of pyscholo-evoked the passions in the elocution of Kean; it gical art. lives in the expression of the Apollo, in the characters of Shakespeare, and the atmospheres of There are two distinct kinds of fiction, or nar-Claude; and those once thus initiated by experative literature, which for want of more apt rience, know spontaneously the invisible line of terms, we may call the melo-dramatic and the demarkation which separates talent, skill and meditative; the former is in a great degree me- knowledge from genius by the affinity of impreschanical, and deals chiefly with incidents and ad- sion invariably produced :—a distinction as clearly venture; a few types of character, an approved felt and as difficult to portray as that between the scenic material and what are called effective sit- emotions of friendship and love. It would apuations, make up the story; the other species, on pear as if there was a provision in the minds of the contrary, is modelled upon no external pat- the highly gifted similar to that of nature in her tern, but seems evolved from the author's mind, latent resources; whereby they keep in reserve a and tinged with his idiosyncracy; the circum- world of passion, sentiment and ideas, unhackstances related are often of secondary interest-neyed by casual use and unprofaned by reckless while the sentiment they unfold, the picturesque display-which is secretly lavished upon their or poetic light in which they are placed, throw mental emanations:-hence their moral life, inan enchantment over them. We feel the glow tense personality, and sympathetic charm. Such of individual consciousness even in the most a process and result is obviously independent of techuical description; we recognize a signifi- will and intelligence; what they achieve is thus cance beyond the apparent, in each character; crowned with light and endowed with vitality by and the effect of the whole is that of life rather a grace above their sphere; the Ineffable, then, than history: we inhale an atmosphere as well is a primary distinction and absolute token of as gaze upon a landscape; the picture offered to genius; like the halo that marks a saintly head. the mental vision has not outline and grouping, Results like these are only derived from the union but color and expression, evincing an intimate of keen observation with moral sensibility; they and sympathetic relation between the moral ex- blend like form and color, perspective and outperience of the author and his work, so that, as line, tone and composition in art. They differ we read, not only scenes but sensations, not only from merely clever stories in what may be called
flavor. There is a peculiar zest about them which of its flow; the terms are apt, natural and fitly proves a vital origin; and this is the distinction chosen. Indeed, a careless reader is liable conof Hawthorne's tales. They almost invariably tinually to lose sight of his meaning and beauty, possess the reality of tone which perpetuates from the entire absence of pretension in his style. imaginative literature;-the same that endears to It is requisite to bear in mind the universal truth, all time De Foe, Bunyan, Goldsmith, and the that all great and true things are remarkable for old dramatists. We find in pictorial art that the simplicity; the direct method is the pledge of conservative principle is either absolute fidelity sincerity, avoidance of the conventional, an into detail as in the Flemish, or earnest moral beau- stinct of richly-endowed minds; and the perfecty as in the Italian school; the painters who yet tion of art never dazzles or overpowers, but gradlive in human estimation were thoroughly loyal ually wins and warms us to an enduring and noeither to the real or the ideal to perception or ble love. The style of Hawthorne is wholly into feeling, to the eye or the heart. And, in lit evasive; he resorts to no tricks of rhetoric or erature, the same thing is evident. Robinson verbal ingenuity; language is to him a crystal Crusoe is objectively, and Pilgrim's Progress medium through which to let us see the play of spiritually, true to nature; the Vicar of Wake- his humor, the glow of his sympathy, and the field emanated from a mind overflowing with hu- truth of his observation. manity; and it is the genuine reproduction of passion in the old English plays that makes them still awaken echoes in the soul.
Although he seldom transcends the limited sphere in which he so efficiently concentrates his genius, the variety of tone, like different airs on the same instrument, gives him an imaginative scope rarely obtained in elaborate narrative. Thus he deals with the tragic element, wisely and with vivid originality, in such pieces as
It may be regarded as a proof of absolute genius to create a mood; to inform, amuse, or even interest is only the test of superficial powers sagaciously directed; but to infuse a new state of feeling, to change the frame of mind and, as it Roger Malvern's Burial" and "Young Goodwere, alter the consciousness-this is the triumph man Browne; "with the comic in "Mr. Higginof all art. It is that mysterious influence which botham's Catastrophe," "A Select Party," and beauty, wit, character, nature and peculiar scenes "Dr. Heidegger's Experiment," and with the and objects exert, which we call fascination, a purely fanciful in "David Swan," "The Vision charm, an inspiration or a glamour, according of the Fountain," and "Fancy's Show Box." as it is good or evil. It may safely be asserted Nor is he less remarkable for sympathetic obserthat by virtue of his individuality every author|vation of nature than for profound interest in huand artist of genius creates a peculiar mood, dif- manity; witness such limning as the sketches enfering somewhat according to the character of titled "Buds and Bird Voices," and "Snowthe recipient, yet essentially the same. If we Flakes"-genuine descriptive poems, though not were obliged to designate that of Hawthorne in cast in the mould of verse, as graphic, true and a single word, we should call it metaphysical, or feeling as the happiest scenes of Bryant or Crabbe. perhaps soulful. He always takes us below the With equal tact and tenderness he approaches surface and beyond the material; his most inar- the dry record of the past, imparting life to its tificial stories are eminently suggestive; he makes cold details, and reality to its abstract forms. us breathe the air of contemplation, and turns The early history of New England has found no our eyes inward. It is as if we went forth, in a such genial and vivid illustration as his pages dream, into the stillness of an autumnal wood, afford. Thus, at all points, his genius touches or stood alone in a vast gallery of old pictures, the interests of human life, now overflowing with or moved slowly, with muffled tread, over a wide a love of external nature, as gentle as that of plain, amid a gentle fall of snow, or mused on a Thomson, now intent upon the quaint or charship's deck, at sea, by moonlight; the appeal is acteristic in life with a humor as zestful as that to the retrospective, the introspective to what is of Lamb, now developing the horrible or pathetic thoughtful and profoundly conscious in our na- with something of Webster's dramatic terror, and ture and whereby it communes with the myste- again buoyant with a fantasy as aerial as Shelley's ries of life and the occult intimations of nature. conceptions. And, in each instance, the staple And yet there is no painful extravagance, no of charming invention is adorned with the purest transcendental vagaries in Hawthorne; his imag- graces of style. This is Hawthorne's distinction. ination is as human as his heart; if he touches We have writers who possess in an eminent dethe horizon of the infinite, it is with reverence; if gree, each of these two great r quisites of litehe deals with the anomalies of sentiment, it is rary success, but no one who more impressively with intelligence and tenderness. His utterance unites them; cheerfuluess as if caught from the too is singularly clear and simple; his style only sea-breeze or the green-fields, solemnity as if imrises above the colloquial in the sustained order bibed from the twilight, like colors on a palette,
seem transferable at his will, to any legend or accustomed, into the region of imaginative beauty locality he chooses for a frame-work whereon to and genuine sentiment, requires an extraordinary rear his artistic creation; and this he does with power of abstraction and concentrative thought. so dainty a touch and so fine a disposition of light Authors in the old world have the benefit of anand shade, that the result is like an immortal tiquated memorials which give to the modern cabinet picture—the epitome of a phase of art cities a mysterious though often disregarded and the miniature reflection of a glorious mind. charm; and the very names of Notre Dame, the Boccaccio in Italy, Marmontel in France, Hoff Rialto, London Bridge, and other time-hallowed man and others in Germany, and Andersen in localities, take the reader's fancy captive and preDenmark, have made the tale or brief story clas- pares him to accede to any grotesque or thrilling sical in their several countries; and Hawthorne narrative that may be associated with them. It has achieved the same triumph here. He has is otherwise in a new and entirely practical counperformed for New England life and manners. try; the immediate encroaches too steadily on the same high and sweet service which Wilson our attention; we can scarcely obtain a perspechas for Scotland—caught and permanently emtive: bodied their "lights and shadows."
Life treads on life and heart on heart-
Brevity is as truly the soul of romance as of wit; the light that warms is always concentrated, and expression and finish, in literature as in painting, are not dependent upon space. Ac- Yet with a calm gaze, a serenity and fixedcordingly the choicest gems of writing are often ness of musing that no outward bustle can disthe most terse; and as a perfect lyric or sonnet turb and no power of custom render hackneyed, outweighs in value a mediocre epic or tragedy, Hawthorne takes his stand, like a foreign artist so a carefully worked and richly conceived sketch, in one of the old Italian cities,—before a relic of tale or essay is worth scores of diffuse novels and the past or a picturesque glimpse of nature, and ponderous treatises. It is a characteristic of loses all consciousness of himself and the presstandard literature, both ancient and modern, ent, in transferring its features and atmosphere thus to condense the elements of thought and to canvass. In our view the most remarkable style. Like the compact and well-knit frame, trait in his writings is this harmonious blending vivacity, efficiency and grace result from this of the common and familiar in the outward bringing the rays of fancy and reflection to a world, with the mellow and vivid tints of his focus. It gives us the essence, the flower, the own imagination. It is with difficulty that his vital spirit of mental enterprise; it is a wise econ- maturity of conception and his finish and geniomy of resources and often secures permanent ality of style links itself, in our minds, with the renown by distinctness of impression unattained streets of Boston and Salem, the Province House in efforts of great range. We, therefore, deem and even the White Mountains; and we conone of Hawthorne's great merits a sententious gratulate every New Englander with a particle habit, a concentrated style. He makes each pic-of romance, that in his native literature, "a loture complete and does not waste au inch of can-cal habitation and a name," has thus beeu given vass. Indeed the unambitious length of his tales to historical incidents and localities;—that art is apt to blind careless readers to their artistic has enshrined what of tradition hangs over her unity and suggestiveness; he abjures quantity, brief career-as characteristic and as desirable while he refines upon quality. thus to consecrate, as any legend or spot, Ger
A rare and most attractive quality of Haw-man or Scottish genius has redeemed from ob ithorne, as we have already suggested, is the ar-vion. The "Wedding Knell," the "Gentle Boy," tistic use of familiar materials. The imagina- the "White Old Maid," the "Ambitious Guest," tion is a wayward faculty, and writers largely the "Shaker Bridal," and other New England endowed with it, have acknowledged that they subjects, as embodied and glorified by the truthcould expatiate with confidence only upon themes ful, yet imaginative and graceful art of Hawhallowed by distance. It seems to us less mar-thorne, adequately represent in literature, native vellous that Shakespeare peopled a newly dis-traits, and this will ensure their ultimate apprecovered and half-traditional island with such new ciation. But the most elaborate effort of this types of character as Ariel and Caliban; we can kind, and the only one, in fact, which seems to easily reconcile ourselves to the enchanting im- have introduced Hawthorne to the whole range possibilities of Arabian fiction; and the supersti- of American readers, is "the Scarlet Letter." tious fantasies of northern romance have a dream- With all the care in point of style and authentilike reality to the natives of the temperate zone. city which mark his lighter sketches, this genuine To clothe a familiar scene with ideal interest. and unique romance, may be considered as an and exalt things to which our senses are daily artistic exposition of Puritanism as modified by