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Thou hast boasted and blustered and talked of One little hour of sleepless care, fight,
And sin could wrest no victory from us there; Hast set a bold face in lieu of right:
But, with the fame of our loved Lord to keep, If breath thou bate, or back thou draw, Like those we scorn, we fall asleep. Or instead of battle offer law, Oh, scornful the Lion's laugh will be
Oh, if our risen Lord must chide Then the message of War send thou by me!
Our souls, for slumbering his sharp cross be
Had shamed poor Peter's vigilance !
On Peter, James, and John no more
The wrong reproach of hasty pride we pour;
But feel within the question's torturing power, Oh, glad the Lion's great heart will be,
“ Could ye not watch with me one hour ?” If a message of Peace thou send by me.
W. C. R. Watchman.
POETRY.–At Port Royal, 1861, 434. Precious Time, 434.
SAORT ARTICLES.— The Late War with England, 450. Witch Stories, 450. Comfort for Bereaved Parents, 456. Mark Lemon's Lectures, 472. Composers charged with Plagiarism, 472.
NEW BOOKS. The Rebellion Record. Part XII. Containing Portraits of Gen. M'Call and Gen. Burnside. New York: G. P. Putnam.
CORRECTION.-In No. 920, page_157, is a poem entitled “Thc Picket Guard,” signcd E. B., and erroneously credited to the Pittsburgh Christian Advocate. Is was written for Harper's Weekly, whicre it appeared 30 Nov. The author is Mrs. Ethelin Beers, wlio bas published a clever story in Harper's Magazine for February.
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BY J. G. WHITTIER.
AT PORT ROYAL.-1861. .
We pray de Lord; be gib us signs
Dat some day we be free;
Do norf wind tell it to do pines, TAE tent-lights glimmer on the land,
De wild duck to de sea;
We tink it when de church-bell ring,
De ricc bird mean it when he sing,
De eagle when he scream. Our good boats forward swing;
De yam will grow, do cotton blow, And while we ride the land-locked tide,
We'll hab dc rice an’ corn; Our negroes row and sing.
Oh, nebber you fear, if nebber you hear
De driver blow his horn!
We know do promisc nebber fail,
An' nebber lic de word ; Among his sands of wrong ;
So like de 'postles in de jail,
We waited for de Lord; The power to make his toiling days
An' now he open obery door,
An' throw away de key;
He tink we lub him so before,
We lub him better free. Another glow than sunset's fire
De yam will grow, de cotton blow, Has filled the west with light,
He'll gib de rice an' corn; Where field and garner, barn and byre
So nebber you fear, if nebber you hear, Are blazing through the night.
De driver blow his horn! The land is wild with fear and hato,
So sing our dusky gondoliers; The rout runs mad and fast;
And with a secret pain, From hand to hand, from gate to gate,
And smiles that scem akin to tears, The flaming brand is passed.
We hear the wild refrain The lurid glow falls strong across
Wo dare not share the negro's trust, Dark faces broad with smiles ;
Nor yet his hopes deny; Not theirs the terror, bate, and loss
We only know that God is just, That fire yon blazing piles.
And every wrong shall die. With oar-strokes timing to their song,
Rude seems the song; each swarthy face, They weave in simple lays
Flamc-lighted, ruder still: The pathos of remembered wrong,
We start to think that hapless race The hope of better days
Must shape our good or ill; The triumph note that Miriam sung,
That laws of changeless justice bind The joy of uncaged birds ;
Oppressor with oppressed ; Softening with Afric's mellow tongue
And close as sin and suffering joined, Their broken Saxon words.
We march to fato abreast. (song of THE NEGRO BOATMEN.)
Sing on, poor hearts ! your chants shall be
Our sign of blight or bloomOh, praise an' tanks ! De Lord he como
The Vala-song of liberty, To set the people free;
Or deatlı-rune of our doom ! An' massa tink it day ob doom,
-Atlantic Monthly. An' we ob jubilce. De Lord dat heap dc Red Sea waves He juso as trong as den;
PRECIOUS TIME. Ho say de word : we las' night slaves;
When we have passed beyond life's middle To-day de Lord's freemen.
arch, De yam will grow, de cotton blow,
With what accelerated speed the years
Seem to flit by us, sowing liopes and fears
As they pursue their never-ccasing march !
But is our wisdom cqual to the speed Ole massa on le trabbles gono;
Which brings us nearer to the shadowy bourn Ho icab de land behind;
Whence we must never, never moro return ? De Lord's breff blow liim furder on,
Alas! cach wish is wiser than the deed. Like corn-sliuck in de wind.
“We take no note of time but from its loss," Wo own de loc, we own de plow,
Sang one who reasoned solemnly and well; We own de hands dat hold.
And so it is ; we make that dowry dross, Wo sell de pig, we sell de cow,
Which would be treasure, did wo learn to But nebber child be sold.
quell Do yam will grow, de cotton blow, Vain dicains and passions. Wisdom's alchemy We'll hab do rice an' corn ;
Transmutes to priceless gold the moments as Oh, nchber you fear, if nehber you hear
tlıcv flv. De driver blow his horn !
J. C. P.
From The Quarterly Review. are read, no doubt, as aids to the study of Plutarch's Lives. The Translation called the originals; and some-like our Hor
Dryden's, corrected from the Greek and aces”-for the pleasure of secing how far a revised by A. W. Clough, sometime Fel- delicate and difficult task has been overlow and Tutor of Oriel College, Oxford, come. We have plenty of " cribs," and we and late Professor of the English Lan- have a few works of art, of wbich last the guage and Literature at University Col- Aristophanes of Mr. Frere is (as far as it lege, London. In five volumes. 1859.
goes) an unrivalled specimen. Where, howThe appearance of a new version—as in ever, is the mere stranger to look for transsome sort this is—of the “Lives” of Plu- lations which shall justify to him the tantatarch, is not only a literary event, but one lizing and provoking praise he hears on all of no little historical importance. For Plu- hands of the antique men? They are not tarch is not merely the first of biographers to be found. by right of having produced a great number We are told by the literary historians that of biographies of the first class, but he holds Plutarch was translated into modern Greek a position unique, peculiar, and entirely his in the fourteenth century; and a pious archown, in modern Europe. We have all“ nat- bishop of Heleno-Pontus had, three centuuralized” the old gentleman, and admitted ries earlier, expressed a hope of his eternal him to the rights of citizenship, from the salvation conjointly with Plato.* But we Baltic to the Pillars of Hercules. He was do not find him quoted by our own chronia Greek, to be sure, and a Greek no doubt clers, as the Latin poets and Cicero somehe is still. But as when we think of a Dev- times are. His real glory begins with the ereux or a Stanley we call him an English- revival of letters, when Latin versions of man, and not a Norman, so, who among the his “ Lives” first appeared, and were folreading public troubles himself to reflect lowed by Greek editions (though not till that Plutarch wrote Attic prose of such or early in the sixteenth century) both of such a quality ? Scholars know all about it the " Lives " and the “Morals.” Plutarch, to be sure, as they know that the turkeys of however, was destined to be famous through our farmyards came originally from Mexico. translations chiefly. The folios of Venice Plutarch, however, is not a scholar's author, and Florence would get abroad, no doubt, but is popular everywhere, as if he were a and obtain their share of notice from the native. It is as though the drachmas which scholars who were now laboring like miners he carried in his purse on his travels were in the long-buried cities of antiquity. But still current coin in the public markets and the important day for Plutarch and the modexchanges.
ern world was that on which the eyes of Now this, we repeat, is a unique phenom- Jacques Amyot, a French churchman, first enon. There is no other case of an ancient fell upon his text. Amyot was born at writer-whether Greek or Latin–becoming Melun, of humble parents, in 1513, (just as well known in translations as he was in the four years before the appearance of the classical world, or as great modern writers editio princeps of the “ Lives,” in Greek, at are in the modern one. Neither is there Florence), and studied at Melun, Paris, and another case of the world's accepting—as it Bourges. He held a chair in the last-named does with Plutarch's Lives—all translations town—thanks to the kindness of Margaret, with more or less thankfulness. Nor, again, sister of Francis I.; and some early versions will another instance be found of an ancient which he made from the “ Lives ” induced writer's forming so curious a link between that “humane great monarch to present his world of thought and those who care for him to the Abbaye of Bellozane. He went nothing else but what he tells them about to Venice, attached to an ambassador, where or in that world. It is, indeed, wonderful he had no doubt access to important MSS. how little translators have yet achieved for of his favorite author. He was for some the classical men; and this fact might well time at the Council of Trent. He received deserve serious consideration in our age. something from each of several successive Pope's “ Homer ”is, perhaps, our most pop- kings of France, and died a bishop, rich and ular translation. But is there any other renowned, in 1583. Such is a brief sumversion of an ancient much read? Some! * Fabricius, Bibl. Græc., ed. Harles, v. 156.
mary of the career of a man to whom Plu- frequently garnish their descriptions with tarch owes his modern fame, and to whom allusions to their mighty names. But all the modern world owes Plutarch. But Am- was dark and shadowy about them, and they yot's literary merits do not even stop here. wore always a quasi-feudal garb, just as the He is one of the earliest writers of attract- Virgin Mary was spoken of as “ a princess ive French prose. He had an immense in- of coat-armor” by our countrywoman Dame fluence on Montaigne ; and, what is still Juliana Berners. In Shakspeare's “ Troilus more important, our own countryman, Sir and Cressida,” with its “ Lord Æneas," we Thomas North, translated from Amyot's see the influence of the mediæval view of translation, and supplied Shakspeare with the ancients ; but when he writes from Pluthe groundwork of his “Coriolanus,” “ Ju- tarch, they become different men.
It was lius Cæsar," and "Antony and Cleopatra." Amyot that worked this change, by showing Very few men of letters have done so much them in their real characters as described by for the world as Jacques Amyot, bishop of an ancient in a civilized age. Auxerre.
We must not be surprised then to hear Amyot finished the “Lives" before the that Amyot's “Plutarch” was the favorite “ Morals,” and published them in 1559. It reading of Henri Quatre, nor that De Retz was the year that Mary Stuart's first boy- found only among the “men of Plutarch” husband died; and Montaigne was a young parallels to the heroic Montrose. Homme gentleman of twenty-six. By and by the de Plutarque became indeed a typical de“Morals” appeared, and made Montaigne scription in France, as we name plants after an essayist-so at least he tells us himself; their discoverers and classifiers. Amyot for Plutarch and Seneca, he says, formed might be superseded by Dacier, but Plutarch him, and he preferred Plutarch of the two. was still read by the generation of Rousseau, “ I draw from them,” are his words, “ like who himself sat up till sunrise over the old the Danaides, filling and emptying, sans Bæotian's page. Later still, whatever varcesse.” He read no books so much as Plu- nish of classicality adorned the heads of the tarch's “ Lives” and “ Morals,” and espe- “revolutionary heroes” seems to have come cially admired the “Comparisons” in the from the same inexhaustible source. We “ Lives," “ the fidelity and sincerity of which know that this has been urged against the equal their profundity and weight.” And he Plutarchian influence. But the answer is, furiher expressly tells us that he read them that without it the "
“ heroes would have in Amyot, “ to whom I give the palm over been still more brutal and vulgar than all our French writers, not only for the some of them were. The “ Gracchus" and naïveté and purity of his language, but for " Hampden” of our own Sunday papers are having had the wisdom to select so worthy a very unlike the children of Cornelia or the book.” Montaigne had, indeed, some per- landholder of Bucks; they bear the names sonal acquaintance with Amyot; aud it is a with much the same appropriateness that fact that he quotes Plutarch no less than two negroes do Cæsar and Pompey. It would, hundred times. As every essayist traces his however, he too extravagant, we venture to pedigree to Montaigne, what a noble, flour- think, to decline studying on that account ishing tree must that be esteemed which the historians of the Roman Republic or the rooted itself and spread its healthy green English Civil War. leaves in Chæronea in the first century ! Amyot's folios, we say, were popular; and
Amyot's folios were popular-strange as in time it occurred to an Elizabethan knight, popular folio sounds to us. The fact is, that Sir Thomas North, to translate them. Sir this was the first time that the gentlemen of Thomas was a collateral ancestor of the feudal Europe made the personal acquaint- Guildford family, being a younger son of ance of the gentlemen of classical Europe. Edward, the first Lord North, and studied Of course there had always been a vague at Lincoln's Inn in the reign of Philip and traditionary knowledge of the Roman and Mary. But this is nearly all we know of his Greek heroes. Niebuhr remarks that stories personai history. In a late edition of his about them used to be read out of Valerius“ Plutarch's Lives,” dedicating afresh to Maximus to the German knights as they sat Queen Elizabeth, he speaks of the princely at dinner; and the mediæval chroniclers i bounties of your blessed hand . . . comfort