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and the most extravagant of poets ? state of such utter dilution, that scarceSimply because he is the most sun- ly a speech has been uttered since the burnt of men. Why is the Frenchman beginning of the year, loud or deep all over caprice, feeble and violent, gay enough to remind us of the existence and gloomy,—this month a worship- of the legislature. All public meetings per of the Bourbon, and the next, si seemed to have been soaked away. A Diis placeat, un brave de la republique ? few rash attempts made in York, in a Because he breathes a milder fitful sky, vain reliance on waterproof cloaks, and is more frequently washed from umbrellas, and popular irritation, were - head to foot by the free bounty of the visited with immediate and vindictive heavens, and dried by the same cheap torrents; and, from the utter silence and summary exsiccation, than any which has since filled that region of man between the Poles. Why do an wrongs and oratory, it is concluded Englishman's doors and windows shut that the chief speakers, severalof whom close, while beyond his shores there is had long found it difficult to keep their not a door or window in Europe that heads above water, had fairly gone is not freely entered and battered down. In Parliament, Mr Canning's by shower and storm? Why is he a exposé of the Bourbons, and Mr Plunman of broad-cloth and bent brows, a kett’s exposé of himself, were expressly lover of firesides and a puddler in des- put off 'till those months when there perate finance, -of sullen aspect and might be a hope of fine weather. On sturdy politics ? Because it rains every the stage nothing had appeared, but a month in the year. His house is a play by Miss Mitford, an extremely ship, he must therefore spend his life watery production, and an eastern mein caulking and nailing. He has an lodrame, of which by much the finest instinctive horror of a chink ; he navi- scenery represented the bottom of the gates among the nations; and he has
sea. In poetry we had but one publithus become the most plodding, hu- cation, and that one was upon the demid, prosperous, and unhappy, of ani- luge. Thus we were in a state of unimals.
versal humectation at home,-abroad, Half of this year has been rain. We war paused on the Pyrenees, and carare more fortunate in our power of re- ried a barometer instead of a sword. sisting submersion than our forefa- In Africa, the invasion of the Manthers ; in Noah's time, it rained but dingoes was washed back by an inun, forty days. Such is the benefit of cus- dation, and Cape Coust Castle preserved tom. As it is, however, the effect of for new crimes and calentures. Alongthe this determined irrigation was formi- Zaura, supplications for sunshine were dably obvious. I disdain to allude to put up to Mahomet, through ten dethe extinction of fields and farm-yards, grees of sand and lions; and, for the and the utter absorption of all that first time in the life of the colony, the once made the physiognomy of spring settlers in Hottentots' Holland were The nobler operations of the mind, wet from Heaven. ministerial and opposition, were in a
English Songs.* The English have been charged by music of their own, infinitely purer, foreigners with having no native mu- more original, and more touching, sic. This charge partakes of the spirit than all the canzonets and cavatinas, of all foreign accusations, and is part from the Alps to Vesuvius. ly prejudice, and partly ignorance, let But even among ourselves there the impeachment be laid by whom it have been many shrewd doubts and may. With the chief portion it is bitter aspersions on the musical fertirank ignorance ; for under the name lity of the centre of the island. That of England they have included the fat and flourishing district, which has empire, and are still, in ninety-nine supplied the realm with sovereigns and instances out of a hundred, to be told merchants, and has borne away the that Ireland and Scotland have had a palm in beeves and battles, from time
* The Loyal and National Songs of England, for one, two, or three Voices. Selected from original MSS. and early printed copies in the library of William Kitchener, M.D. London, Hurst and Robinson, 1823.
immemorial, has undoubtedly had oc- an apotheosis for having gathered a cupations more stirring and engrossing volume of those fine records. His than those of the whole host of min- work comprehends fifty-six of the strelsy, northern or western. A great, most celebrated old land songs. Anbusy-governing, opulent, prosperous, other volume will present a selection public-speaking, turtle-feeding, trade- of the finest in honour of our sea glofoving country, cropped with parlia- ries, and both will form a collection ment men, bishops, and philosophers; of singular value and interest, whether a huge mart for all the nations of the as specimens of English music, or meearth, a spot to which the Virginian, morials of the predominant feeling of as he sets his tobacco, and the Kam- our forefathers in their days of victory schatkan, as he skins bis ermine, cast and patriotism. their cyes
with a fellow-fondness for The volume, a showy folio, is prethe due return ;-England has had faced by an introduction treating of other things to do with its sleek and the general design of the work. The pursy opulence, or with its turbulent doctor hereindulges in the triumphant and nervous industry, or with its tone of successful authorship. haughty and supreme ambition, than first number of the LOYAL AND NAthe idlers of Italy. She has paid for TIONAL SONGS OF ENGLAND will be their music; she has had the whole a sufficient answer to those who have continentquick-eared and open-mouth- heedlessly said, the English have no ed for her pay. In the spirit of poli- national songs, and prove the proud tical economy she has found it cheap- fact in direct contradiction, that no er to import, than to raise the commo
nation in the world has half so many dity, and she has imported it accor- loyal, nor half so many national songs. dingly. If she have not hitherto shown What country can boast more beautia Catalani propagated on the banks of ful national songs than God save the the Thames, or a Farinelli of indispu: King, Toarms, Rule Britannia, Hearts table Yorkshire, it is because she has of Oak, and a hundred others which not thought it worth her while; or if are presented to the public in this she be content to take Rossini's music work?” Then follows a list of names at second-hand, or leave Germany the beloved by glee clubs and the men of honour of the only Mozart, it is be- cathedrals, but eclipsed in our degenecause she has been too busy and too rate day by foreign balladmongers." much pleased with settling the affairs The list is nearly thirty long, and of the earth, to think about the manu- boasts of Locke, Purcell, Bird, Carey, facture of composers. Yet England has Leveridge, Croft, Green, coming down had great composers, (for the true esti- through the Arnes, &c. to Calcott. mate is genius, not volume,) though Even among the modern composers a she neither forced the soil for them, vast number of works, popular in their nor extinguished her other products to day, have been flung into unmerited fill the world with sonatas-yes,GREAT oblivion, as the occasion passed away. COMPOSERS. Some of these men are This is the natural course of things. known but by a few melodies, but Victory supersedes victory, and with melodies of the heart, things pe- the old success perishes the old song. rennis ævi ; substantial additions to Party is trampled under the heel of the national treasure of delights ; bold, party; the Tory once shrunk before natural, and characteristic appeals to the Whig, and the Muses were furithe natural impulses of the English ously solicited to sing his discomfiture; character, or deep and most touching the Whig changed his principles, grew responses to the pathos of a people, contemptible, and lost the favour at that in all their busy life have as deep once of the nation, and of Parnassus. a tenderness as ever sang to the moon- Honest men eschewed the name, and light in the most sentimental casino in good poets scorned to give an eleemosight of St Marks. The majority of synary stanza to its nanes. Toryism their songs are, as they should be, in rose for the honour of common sense, the spirit of a brave, free, and conquer- and the good of the country; and if it ing nation—the first on land and sea, has hitherto been tardy in cementing with its heart eminently engaged in its constitutional supremacy by its all the achievements, and chances of harmonic captivations, yet, as all the those whom it sends to struggle round songs in honour of English honour, the world. Doctor Kitchener deserves loyalty, and glory, are palpably but
JULY, 1823 .
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Contents. LONDON ODDITIES AND OUTLINES. No. I.
The Exhibition at Somerset-House,
On George Cruikshank,
Tenth and last Tale of the Third Supper,
No. I. Mr D. Abercromby,
On the New Cantos of Don Juan,
59 61 65
80 88 93 99
WORKS PREPARING FOR PUBLICATION,
EDINBURGH: WILLIAM BLACKWOOD, No. 17, PRINCE'S STREET, EDINBURGH;
AND T. CADELL, STRAND, LONDON ;
To whom Communications ( post paid) may be addressed.
JAMES BALLANTYNE & co. PRINTERS, EDINBURGH.