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who have not the literary taste. They night, and as jolly as the jolly beggars. prefer the adventures of Sir Harry and Perhaps his "Night with Villon" is the the other Allan in Kukuana-land or in Zu- most perfect of modern short studies in Vendis. We may not agree with their romance. One cannot be too thankful for taste, but that is their taste. Probably no a writer with such various endowments. critic would venture to maintain that the There is no sense in comparing them with discoverer of Kôr has the same literary Mr. Haggard's gifts; he only resembles qualities as the historian of John Silver. Mr. Stevenson in natural daring and inIt seems a pity, when we chance to have ventiveness, and in having written admitwo good things, to be always setting one rable tales of adventure. He is as far as off against the other, and fighting about possible from being a born student, or a their relative merits. Mr. Stevenson and born master of style. He does not see Mr. Rider Haggard have both written the world through books, and he writes novels, have both written boys' books. like a sportsman of genius. Thus one Personally, I prefer their boys' books to cannot pretend to criticise the style of the their novels. They seem happier in their romantic school, as (to a certain extent dealings with men than with women, and and with limitations) we may criticise the with war than with love. Of the two, style of the realistic school. There is, Jess appears to me real, and the wife there can be, no romantic school. Any of Mr. Stevenson's Prince Otto shadowy. clever man or woman may elaborate a But Mr. Haggard's savage ladies are bet- realistic novel according to the rules, and ter than his civilized fair ones, while may adopt the laborious use of inverted there is not a petticoat in "Kidnapped" adjectives. But romance bloweth where or "Treasure Island." As for "She" she listeth, and now she utters her mesherself, nobody can argue with a personal sage to a student and a master of words, affection, which I entertain for that long-like Mr. Stevenson, through whom the lived lady.
The holy priests
Bless her when she is riggish, Shakespeare says of Cleopatra, and, like the holy priests, I can pardon certain inconsequences in Ayesha. But other moralists must find her trying; poor Ayesha, who "was a true lover," though she did not therefore, like Guinevere, "make a good end." Apparently female characters are not the strong point either of Mr. Haggard or of Mr. Stevenson, as far as they have gone. Consequently it is difficult to compare those agreeable writers with, let us say, M. E. de Goncourt or Mr. Howells. Nor is there much reason in comparing them with each other. Mr. Stevenson is a born man of letters, a born student of style. Since Thackeray no English author has been gifted with or has acquired a manner so perfect, so subtle, so original. And yet he has plenty to say, though he can say it so well, "which is strange." Unlike Sir Walter Scott, he can write English as well as he can write Scotch, and, since Scott, no one has written Scotch like him. If any short story comes second to the tale of "Wandering Willie," it is "Thrawn Janet." In addition to all these accomplishments, Mr. Stevenson possesses an imagination which touches that of Edgar Poe on one side, and of M. Anatole France on the other. He can be as witty as Mr. George Meredith, as humorous as Burns, as sad as
tale reaches us "breathed softly as
Whatever the merits and demerits of modern English romance, one thing is certain. It is now undeniable that the love of adventure and of mystery, and of
a good fight lingers in the minds of men character, and life, and adventure are so and women. They are stirred by the mingled in a whole, that we can scarce tell diamonds and the rich ingots, the "Last which of them charms us most. There is Stand of the Greys" (a chapter from actual even room for the novel of disquisition history), the bland John Silver, and the and discussion of life, as no admirer of malevolent Gagool. The moral is mani- Fielding, and Thackeray, and George fest enough. The moral is not that even Eliot will deny. Some of us will be betthe best boys' books are the highest class ter pleased by one kind, some by another. of fiction, but that there is still room for All will be good for some of us, if they romance, and love of romance, in civilized are good in their kind. Why should perhuman nature. Once more it is apparent sons of this taste or that give themselves that no single genre of novel is in future, airs, as if they only were the elect? A or at least in the near future, to be a lonely man need not hate "M. Lecoq" because literary sultan, lording it without rival he delights in "Manon Lescaut." A man over the circulating libraries. But to may have his hours for "Madame Boargue, therefore, that there is no more vary," and his hours for "Le Cardinal," room for the novel of analysis and of and his hours for "Le Crime de l'Opéra." minute study of character would be merely "There is one glory of the sun, and anto make a new mistake. There will al- other glory of the moon; " let us contemn ways, while civilized life endures, and none of the heavenly bodies. I have while man is not yet universally bald and heard Mark Twain called a "barbarian." toothless there will always be room for This will not make me say that "Huckleall kinds of fiction, so long as they are berry Finn " is better than a wilderness good. A new Jane Austen would be as of "Prophets of the Great Smoky Moun successful as a new Charles Kingsley. tain." But I will admit that I vastly preMoreover, it will always be possible to fer old Huck, that hero of an Odyssey of combine the interest of narrative and of the Mississippi. I can even imagine that adventure with the interest of character. a person of genius might write a novel This combination has been possible in the "all about religion," or all about agnostiearliest literature. If we take the saga of cism, which might be well worth reading. the Volsungs and Niflungs, we find the I don't expect to live to see that romance, union already perfect. What can be more but it may come, for the novel is a perfect barbaric than the opening of the saga? Proteus, and can assume all shapes, and Perhaps even Mr. Rider Haggard would please in all. The lesson, then, is that it not introduce a hero whose brother was a "takes every sort to make a world," that serpent, or a hero who turned into a wolf all sorts have their chance, and that none and bit off an old lady's tongue, and be- should assert an exclusive right to existcame the father of a family of little wolves.ence. Yet this very saga has the characters of Sigurd and Gudrun; the immortal scene of the discovery of wronged and thwarted love; the man's endurance of it; the woman's revolt, and all the ruin that she drew on herself, her lord, her lover, and her kin. There is no more natural, true, and simple picture of human nature, human affections and passions, in Balzac or in Shakespeare, than that scene from a savage tale which begins with the loves and hates of serpents and were-wolves. What could be combined in an entrancing whole by a minstrel of Chios, by a sagaman of Lithend, need not be kept apart in modern fiction. We may still have excellent studies of life and character, with little of the interest of story in them. We may still have admirable romances, in which the delight of adventure far exceeds the interest of character, or, very often, the elegance of style. And we may still have novels, like many of Scott's, in which
Do not let us try to write as if we were writing for Homo Calvus, the baldheaded student of the future. Do not let us despise the day of small things, and of small people; the microscopic examination of the hearts of young girls and beery provincial journalists. These, too, are human, and not alien from us, nor unworthy of our interest. The dubita tions of a Bostonian spinster may be made as interesting, by one genius, as a fight between a crocodile and a catawampus, by another genius. One may be as much excited in trying to discover whom a married American lady is really in love with, as by the search for the fire of immortality in the heart of Africa. But if there is to be no modus vivendi, if the battle between the crocodile of realism and the catawampus of romance is to be fought out to the bitter end why, in that Rag. narôk, I am on the side of the catawampus. ANDREW LANG.
From Temple Bar. LOOKING BACKWARDS.
"I HAVE no intention of writing an autobiography," says Mr. Adolphus Trollope. He may have remembered George Eliot's opinion, that "biographies are a disease of English literature." That gift ed writer held some strange opinions, but there is good ground for this one, if we do not as no doubt George Eliot did not include in the remark autobiographies, which are frequently delightful, and in which this season will be particularly rich. We are also promised a work from which we expect much, the "Reminiscences of Sir Frederick Pollock." Then the eagerly-looked-for "Life of Darwin," the biography of Sir Stratford de Redcliffe, lives of Emerson, Douglas, Forsyth, with others we do not now recall, will help to cheer our long November nights, but just now we will speak of Mr. Trollope's "Autobiography."
There are three Trollopes known to fame, a mother and two of her sons; Mrs. Trollope, whose "Widow Barnaby was long in standing demand in the old-fashioned libraries before the days of Mr. Mudie; Anthony, the author of " Barchester Towers;" and Adolphus, who wrote "La Beata a little gem, saturated with local color. It is not often that three persons in one family attain to success in one particular branch of literature. Two out of the three Brontës did, but the third did not discover the genius of the other two.
It is Thomas Adolphus Trollope, the elder of the two brothers, whose autobiography, under the title of "What I Remember," comes before the public this
I have lived a long time [says Mr. Trollope]. I remember an aged porter at the monastery of the "Sagro Eremo," above Camaldoli, who had taken brevet rank as a saint solely on the score of his ninety years. brethren called him and considered him as Saint Simon, simply because he had been porter at that gate for more than sixty years. Now my credentials as a babbler of reminiscences are of a similar nature to those of the old porter. I have been here so many, many
interest of "Tom Brown's Schooldays," and old Wykehamists will delight to see their past days so pleasantly brought back to them. To older people, it is pleasant to hear again of the days of the two tallow candles, and the snuffer-tray between them, and the dinner-hour settled so that we might go and hear Edmund Kean afterwards. But Mr. Trollope has been a traveller, has seen cities and men, has been a writer of novels, of books of travel, has been a special correspondent, and been behind the scenes of the political world. He is one who has been converted by Mr. Gladstone to the temperate Toryism of to-day, and who has come back to his own country to spend his last days in sight of "the silver streak."
"Never, Tom," said my grandfather, "put in motion forces which you are unable to control." This sound advice, which is blown to the winds by the sort of national-convention politicians we are now breeding, oddly enough came from a man who sank his money in "patents about as remunerative and useful as that which Charles the Second is said to have granted to a sailor who stood on his head on the top of Salisbury steeple, securing to him the monopoly of that practice.' was humor in that Charles.
Very early in these reminiscences we get a glimpse of the stage in its palmy days, and of the eagerness of people to see and hear the great actors of that time.
of an incident which somewhat curiously illusI remember to have heard my mother speak trates the ways and habits of a time already so far left behind us by a whole world of social changes. It was nothing more than a simple visit to the theatre to hear Mrs. Siddons in
circumstances that rendered it memorable for Lady Macbeth." But this exploit involved other reasons besides the intense gratification derived from the performance. In the first place "the pit was the destination to which my father and mother were bound; not altogether, I take it, so much for the sake of the lower price of admission (though my father ful man to render this a consideration), as was a sufficiently poor and a sufficiently carefrom the idea that the pit offered the best vantage ground for a thoroughly appreciative and critical judgment of the performance. This visit to the pit involved the necessity of being at the theatre at two in the afternoon, and then standing in the crowd till, if I rightly Of course remember, six in the evening! food had to be carried. Of course each man there did his best to support and assist the lady under his charge. But the ordeal must have been something tremendous, and the amount of enthusiasm needed to induce a lady to face it something scarcely to be understood
at the present day. My mother used to relate | dogs, the clergy have their privileges; and that sundry women were carried out from the crowd at the theatre door fainting.
Mrs. Trollope even allowed that their first kiss might be hedged round with a sort of sacred sanction, but she drew the line so as to bar all claim to a second—at least on the same grounds.
Among the neighbors at Harrow was a Mr.
(well, I won't print the name, though all the parties in question must long since, I suppose, have joined the majority), who had a family of daughters, the second of whom was exceedingly pretty. One day this girl, of who was always a special friend of all the some eighteen years or so, came to my mother, young girls, with a eulogistic defence of the
The old coaching memories are by no means the least delightful in these volumes, telling as they do of the "Quicksilver" and the Exeter Telegraph, of the four miles between Ilchester and Ilminster done in twenty minutes, of the guard alone on the hinder boot with his blunderbuss before him, of the hearty breakfasts with twenty minutes allowed, when cream and butter and hot toast, eggs, beef, etc., disappeared with marvellous facility under the sprightly air of an autumn morn-vicar. She was describing at much length ing. the delight of the assurances of grace which Time works its changes, and won't even he had given her, when my mother suddenly, leave language alone. In those days looking her straight in the eyes, said, "Did Berkeley was pronounced Barkley, and he kiss you, Carrie?" "Yes, Mrs. Trollope. I am sure Mr. Trollope says that when he was a lad He did give me the kiss of peace. there was no harm in that!" "None at all, old-fashioned people called Rome Room; Carrie! For I am sure you meant none!" gold, gould; James, Jeames; beefsteak, returned my mother. "Honi soit qui mal y beefsteek; and danger and stranger had the letter "a" in them pronounced as in of peace is apt to change its quality if repense! But remember, Carrie, that the kiss "man." The late Lord John Russell al-peated!" ways to the last said "obleege." Nevertheless Mr. Trollope thinks that written English then was more correct than it is now, and he sees constantly in these days words wrongly used in print. Take the word trouble, he says, which is an active
Now scarcely a day passes without my meeting in print with such phrases as "He did not trouble," meaning, trouble himself; "I hope you won't trouble," instead of trouble yourself. To old-fashioned ears it seems a detestable vulgarism.
Of course it is an abuse of language to say that the beauty of a pretty girl strikes you But he who first said of some girl that she was "awfully" pretty, was abundantly justified by the half humorous, half serious consideration of all the effects such loveliness may produce. But then, because this was felt to be the case, and the mot was accepted, all the tens of thousands of idiotic cretins who have been rubbed down into exact similarity to each other by excessive locomotion and the "speed" of education spread, indeed, after the fashion in which a gold-beater spreads his metal-imitate each other in the senseless use of it. They are just like the man in the Joe Miller story, who, because a laugh followed when a host, whose servant let fall a dish with a boiled tongue in it, said it was only a lapsus lingua, ordered his own servant to throw down a leg of mutton, and then made the same remark.
Here is a delicious story of a kissing parson, given by Mr. Trollope. Lucky
Whatever difference of opinion may exist on matters of religion, we think all will admit that some good came out of the Tractarian movement. The gifted men who set that ball rolling were men who had taken high honors, and were completely distinct in that as in other matters from the Ritualistic school, which has show a distinguished college career. very few men among its leaders who can could hardly be otherwise, for the really able men fight only about essentials, and don't condescend to the battle of the vestments. To have the services of our Church decently read was something to fight for, and such stories as the following told by Mr. Trollope are now impossible.
In reading, or rather intoning the prayers, the habit was to allow no time at all for the choir to chant their "Amen," which had to be interjected in such sort that when the tones of it died away the priest had already got through two or three lines of the following prayer. One of our chaplains, who had the well-deserved character of being the fastest of the three, we called the diver. For it was his practice in reading or intoning to continue with great rapidity as long as his breath would last, and then while recovering it to proceed mentally without any interruption, so that we lost sight (or hearing) of him at one point, and when he came to the surface, ie., became audible again, he was several lines further down the page, and this we called "diving." It was probably believed in college that this was the gentleman of whom the story was first told, that he was ready to give any man to
"Pontius Pilate" in the Creed, and arrive at the end before him.
Another of our three chaplains was a great sportsman. It was the practice that the les
to observe the vindictive priest's last day on earth as a very vigorous fast day." While at Oxford Mr. Trollope had the
sons were always read in chapel by one of the advantage of the lectures of Whately, a
I remember, by-the-by (but this is parenthetical), that one of cur number was unable to pronounce the "r," and we used to scheme that it should fall to his lot to tell us that "Bawabbas was a wobber."
Now the boy who read the lessons, sat, not in his usual place, but by the side of the chaplain who was performing the service. And it was the habit of the reverend sportsman I have referred to, to intercalate with the verses of the Psalm he was reading, sotto voce, anecdotes of his most recent sporting achievements, addressed to the youth at his side, using for the purpose the interval during
which the choir recited the alternate verse.
As thus, on one twenty-eighth evening of the month, well remembered after some sixty
And so on.
Mr. Trollope tells a very singular story told him by Blanco White, which we must abbreviate for want of space. A priest was condemned at Seville to capital punishment. That the public might be properly impressed, market-day was selected for the purpose. To be degraded from his sacerdotal character he had to pass through the market-place, whilst the powers deemed inherent in the priesthood were still in his possession. Undegraded as yet and unrepentant, he dealt a malicious blow at the people assembled to witness his degradation. "Suddenly in the market-place, he stretched out his arms, and pronounced with a loud voice the uncancellable sacramental words, 'HOC EST CORPUS.' All the contents of that vast mass were instantaneously transubstantiated! All the food in Seville was forthwith unavailable for any baser than eucharistic purposes, and Seville had
man, if not of genius, of great talent and wit. Mr. Trollope says that he considers 'Whately to have been the wittiest man he ever knew; and contemporary memoirs teem at least with proofs of his wit. A lady once went to Dublin Castle in such very full dress that more bust than barège was visible. "Did you ever see anything so unblushing?" said some one to the archbishop. "Never, since I was weaned," replied the wit.
"The difference between a form and a ceremony," said Whately, "is a nice one, and it lies in this, you sit upon a form, and you stand upon ceremony.'
He was very happy in some of his apothegms, and when some one quoted the well-known proverb "Honesty is the best policy," - "True," he replied; "yet an honest man." he who is governed by that maxim is not
Mr. Trollope says:
Whately's wit was not of the kind which ever made any "table roar. "" It was of that higher and deeper kind, which consists in prompt perception, not of the superficial resemblances in dissimilar things, but in the underlying resemblances disclosed only to the eye capable of appreciating at a glance the essential qualities and characteristics of the matter in hand. I have heard Whately deliciously witty at a logic or Euclid lecture.
How wise Whately could be on political matters is well known. Let us hear the great Liberal priest on attempts to pacify Ireland by yielding to the criminals who now pretend to represent her :
"To seek to pacify Ireland," he writes a little further on, "by compliance and favor
shown to its disturbers would be even worse fathers, with their weapon salve, who left the than the superstitious procedure of our forewound to itself, and applied their unguents to the sword which had inflicted it."
We present these opinions to the member for Midlothian. The opinions were formerly his also, but a disastrous alliance no longer permits him their enjoyment.
One of the greatest charms of Mr. Trollope's two volumes is the immense variety of subjects treated of. He saw so many countries, talked with so many eminent men, and frequently on topics of general interest, that you have never the sense of fatigue, sometimes resulting from good matter too long drawn out.