« הקודםהמשך »
sas are each built of the same number of a tone as tender and with the same accent as nothing if not captious. He is like the red. logs, and are of a uniform size. They are that of any pampered little brat of enlight- pepper, utterly useless if not intensels biteach composed of five logs, about twelve or ened and refined parents. We account for ing. So, as I felt it to be the duty of every fifteen feet long, neatly skinned, and with the it by the fact that it is, of all other sounds, guest to try and enliven the circle, I deterends pointed. These are then laid side by the simplest and the most easily uttered by mined to say something to rouse his ire. side, and kept in position by cross-pieces fast- the human lips.
“I have been reading a French novel-a ened to them by pins made of chonta-wood The Campa Indians inhabit the hills and delightful French novel-lately." almost as hard as iron. Our canoes are spurs of the eastern Cordilleras, among which This was my first gun. I knew it would drawn up and all ready for any emergency, the tributaries of the Ucayali and Pachitea wake the echoes, if nothing more. and we will sleep on our arms to-night. take their rise. As a general rule, these In- “ Yes, I dare say you bave," answered the
June 14th.- At six A. M. we started up the dians never come down to the river except enemy, “ fifteen of them at least, and each Herrera-yaca, leaving in the huts we had oc- when on the war-path, or during the low- one worse than the last." cupied some little presents for any Campas water season, when they make expeditions for “I admit the number, but hesitate at the that might visit them in our absence. After turtle and fish. Like all other nations that in. classification : the last one was a great deal ascending the river for a few miles, it became habit a mountainous country, they are fiercer, better than any of the rest of them." unnavigable for canoes, and we returned to hardier, and more powerful, than their neigh- “And that was not saying much, I will be its mouth, and started up the left branch, or bors of the lowlands, who hold them in the bound. False sentiment, false morality, and main river. At six P. M. we stopped for the greatest dread. In the year 1712, a priest | ingenious excuses for breaking one's marnight on a sand playa. Last night our camp of the order of St. Francis established a riage-vows, finding anybody else's husband or was admirably situated for our being sur- college at the village of Ocopa, in the An- wife more agreeable than your own—I deprised by Indians, the bushes and cane grow- des Mountains, and a short distance from spise the whole set of them." ing right up close to our heads as we lay Jauxa. From this station, and through a “But they will do you no harm, for you asleep, and we accordingly kept a good look- great part of this Campa country, there went have no marriage-vows to break." out About midnight, being on watch, and forth priests and the teachings of the Cath- “I do not intend to read works on the while talking to the major, who could not olic Church, so that, in 1742, there had been profession of burglary, simply because I do sleep, we heard three distinct whistles, and a established, near the Cero de la Sal, and in the not intend to be a burglar—that negative second or two afterward three others in re- Pajonal, ten towns; and it is said that there reason would not make the literature of the ply, a little farther within the jungle. He were ten thousand converts. But, in this jimmy' or the picklock interesting to me
jumped up, and we both made the rounds year, an Indian, who had been converted and nor do I as at present advised wish to read with cocked revolvers, but, after creeping baptized as Juan Santos, and who had been the false sentiment of the French school. It and listening for half an hour, could dis- educated as a priest, arrived among his peo
does not amuse me." cover nothing. We then called up some of ple, and told them that he was a prophet, “Don't you enjoy tbe wit, vivacity, abour Indians, who also had heard the noise ; , and that the other priests were deceiving sorbing interest, and intense knowledge of and one old man expressed the opinion that them. The result was, the immediate death human nature, which the French story-tellers it might be a bird called the “papa-mamma," of all priests and white persons in their ter- show?" by the Indians, and alma perdida by the ritory; and, from that time to this, no wbites “Oh, yes; I like the ingenuity of the Peruvians. We were neither of us inclined have been able either to establish themselves | French mivd, but their intense knowledge to sleep, so, after my watch was over, the in that country, or to hold safe communication of human nature,' as you say, I hate. It major brought out some cigarettes and ca- with them. Many times since, priests, with means diving with the dissecting knife into chaça, and we took seats on the edge of a ca- strong bodies of Christianized Indians, and in the morbid and diseased portions of the poor, noe,
and sat for a long time talking. He someinstances escorts of regular soldiers, have imperfect thing we call human nature, and told me the story of this bird, and moreover endeavored to penetrate into their country, rouses in us at the best a regret that we have much concerning the Campas. This is the but in every case they have been attacked, and such a corrupt side to us; or it does worselegend about the bird : “ According to an very few have escaped to tell the tale. The it rouses in.us a tendency to indulge in the Indian tradition, there was once an Indian government of Peru is set at defiance by this passions, and particularly the passion of talk whose family consisted of a wife and one powerful tribe; and at the fort of San Ra- | ing about our own emotions. The French beautiful little child, about three years old. mon, a frontier fort on the river Chancha. novel is full of that temptation." On one occasion, the father having gone hunt- mayo, where there is a large garrison of Pe- “What do you mean by temptation of ing, and not returning at the accustomed time, ruvian soldiers, these soldiers are allowed to all the vocabulary of the undeterminate emothe wife became uneasy, and went in search bathe or not, just as it suits the fancy of tions, I consider the word ' temptation' as of him. After seeking him for a long time, the Indians who hold the opposite bank of the least explained.” she, at last, found him, he baving lost bis the little stream on which the fort is situ- “Oh, you must go to the doctors of the way, and rejoicing they returned together. ated. Only a short time ago, a priest, who law and language for your definitions. I sm But, when they reached home, and found was on a visit to this fort, was invited to not going to be balked of my attack on their child missing, their joy was turned into baptize some children, but he had no sooner French vovels. I think they bave done great grief. For days and nights they hunted and gotten out into the shallow water, with the harm to the world, particularly the America hunted, and calleð and called, being enticed child in his arms, than he was fired upon by world. I think they have brought about farther and farther into the forest by the the Indians; and, although he was badly this imbecile notion of the femome incomprise. wailing cry of · Papa - mamma! papa-mam- wounded, and dragged himself back under Our grandmothers had no such notions. ma!' However, after vainly searching for cover, the troops were afraid to retaliate. They were glad to have a roof over their a long time, they finally gave up in despair. Although the sworn enemy of the white heads, and to be allowed to help build up the But, every night after this, they were visited man, they communicate with him sufficiently family honor, and to regard home as sacred, by it bird, that sat near the hut and uttered through other tribes, and in indirect ways, to and to rear their families in decency and this low, clear cry, ‘Papa-mamma! Papa. enable them to procure knives and axes—the purity. They had no time to be incormamma!' and which they supposed to be only things, indeed, that the Indians of this prises.'” the soul of their lost child, or, as the Peru- country really care for.
“ Poor grandmothers ! I always think vians have it, alma perdida — lost soul.'”
of that excellent witticism, that the Puritan The bird certainly has the talent of imitating
mothers had to endure all that the Puritan more than one sound, or else we heard the
HIGH COMEDY OF LIFE.
fathers did-and the Puritan fathers, too!' lost soul of some old Campa Indian. It is a
Don't you think the Puritan fathers must strange fact that the children of tbese sav. RESTES and I happened to be visiting have been a trifle dull sometimes ? " ages, born and reared amid the wild animals at the same country house, when I ob. “No; excellent, good, truthful, squareof this immense jungle, should address their served that he was growing very good-na-toed gentlemen." parents as papa-mamma," and this, too, in tured. Now, this is fatal to Orestes, who is I suppose you think they went out and
squeezed poor old Giles Cory to death be- times superficial ; she had a wit, playful, dreadful comparison of your inseriority to tween two stones, or hung a witch or two, and abundant, and well-toned' (delightful expres
Madame du Deffand." came in to their dinners in a very amiable sion!), ' an admirable conception of the ridic- “Well, as Horace finally got to call her frame of mind, don't you, Orestes ? "
ulous, and great skill in exposing it; a turn that blind old debauchee of wit,' I will." “Yes. No doubt these amusements qui. for satire, which she indulged, not always in So I resumed my reading : To these qualifieted the natural mar. They worked off orig. | the best-natured manner, yet with irresisti. cations were added an independence in forminal sin in that way, and came home in a ble effect ; powers of expression, varied, ap. ing opinions, and a boldness in avowing them, frame of mind the most amiable and loving." | propriate, flowing from the source ; and curi- which wore at least the semblance of hon
“ Well, you see husbands nowadays have ous without research ; a refined taste for let- esty, a perfect knowledge of the world, and none of these resources. Instead of squeez
ters, and a judgment both of men and books; that facility of manners which, in the comic ing old Giles Cory to death, they are pressed in a high degrec enlightened and accurate. merce of society, supplies the place of beto death in Wall Street or elsewhere them- As her parts had been happily thrown to- nevolence.'” selves, and they are obliged to bring home gether by Nature, they were no less happy “Yes, a little of Horace Walpole's cyni. rather incomplete tempers. I have read of in the circumstances which attended their cal unbelief at the end," said Orestes. two suicides, in to-day's paper, of unhappy progress and developinent. They were re. never could wholly praise anybody. "A wives, and two cases of women who have fined, not by a course of solitary study, but semblance of honesty ? ' why, Madame du Defbeen kicked to death."
by desultory reading, and chiefly by a living fand was the perfection of honesty. She ac. “Yes," said Orestes, as the Western hu- intercourse with the brightest geniuses of knowledged that she was an infidel, and yet morist remarked, 'the season for sitting on her age.''
she was dreadfully afraid to die." circular saws bas opened,' referring to the “Oh, the charming, brilliant, feminine “Those imperfections and inconsistencies periodicity with which that unique, or seem- creature!” interrupted Orestes;
make her very real, very human, and very ingly unique, excitement passes over the stocking, with theories, you see, but receptive, lovable, I think. I do not blame Horace American mind-so the season has now ar- taking all that was good out of every mind! Walpole for emphasizing them. The portrait rived for wife-murder and suicide. The child- she came near, by force of sympathy, and re- becomes so much more perfect-like Cromstealing mania has been nipped in the bud by jecting all that was crass, coarse, and poor'; well's insisting on his moles being painted the publicity of the poor Charley Ross case; not learned, and yet to have known her was a in. The thing is characteristic and intense.” but if Charley Ross had been found, we liberal education."
“Madame du Deffand," said Orestes, solfouryear-olds captured by prowling monsters. portunities, not her natural qualities. She are very deficient in generally. She had huiHowever, to return to the Freach novels, I had the advantage of “knowing all the bright- Do you notice how lightly and pretthink they have led to the frequency of di- est geniuses of her age;' we of the present tily Horace records that? ‘On whatever topic
The French cannot be divorced be- age haven't any Horace Walpoles to know. she touched, trivial or severe, it was alike en cause of their church. We can, and are, That is just like your unfairness."
badinant.' Now, I think American women stead of compromising the thing."
“Don't you think you had better return are very deficient in that quality; they want “I do not agree with you that divorces to Horace Walpole ? ”
graceful lightness of wit and humor. All are frequent, or the domestic morality of I knew Orestes would think so if I at. women want it. They are either very silly, our society light. We hear very much of di. tempted to say any thing, so I resumed read. and laugh loudly and without meaning at vorce, which proves that it is a rare thing ing:
nothing, or they are ponderous and pretenand a terrible thing. I claim that there are “ « Thus trained, her faculties acquired a tious, or, worse still, complaining and ill-temmore happy homes, more congenial marriages, pliability of movement, which gave to all pered. They have not that faculty which in our country than any other, except per- their exertions a bewitching air of freedom Lord Houghton describes in his ‘Monographs, haps England, from which we derive our and negligence, and made even their least Personal and Social,' in speaking of Lady ideas. Human nature is imperfect, and tem- efforts seem only the exuberance or flower- Ashburton, 'of making high comedy out of pers do not always agree, so that people ings of a mind capable of higher excellence, daily life. Do you remember the descripmust sometimes separate. But it is wonder. but unambitious to attain them.'” ful to me to see how many live together hap- Ah, that is sweet!” said Orestes. “I · Yes," said I, taking the book from the pily.”
like that land of promise, it flows with milk table and turning to it, “here it is, too good “Yes," said Orestes, “ when you consider and honey. However, read on."
to be half quoted: 'I do not know how I can what very uninteresting, fractious, extrava- « On whatever topic she touched, trivial better describe this faculty than as the fullgant, proud, discontented creatures American or severe, it was alike en badinant, but in the est and freest exercise of an intellectual gaywomen are! For my part, I want to go back midst of this sportiveness her genius poured ety, that presented the most agreeable and and marry Madame du Deffand. Since you itself forth in a thousand delightful fancies, amusing pictures in few and varied words, are so fond of French heroines, won't you and scattered new graces and ornaments on making high comedy out of daily life, and condescend to read me Horace Walpole's de- every object within its sphere. Iu its wan. relieving sound sense and serious observascription of her-or perhaps you do not read derings from the triples of the day to grave tion with imaginative contrasts and delicate English ?"
questions of morals or philosophy, it care- surprises.'” Orestes,” said I, “ you are insufferable ! | lessly struck out, and as carelessly abandoned “Do you know any woman of whom that However, since you have never succeeded in the most profound truths, and, while it aimed can be said?" asked Orestes. making one of those uninteresting, fractious, only to amuse, suddenly astonished and elec- “Yes, I do. I have a great admiration extravagant, proud, discontented creatures trified by rapid traits of illumination, which for my own countrywomen. I think them consent to the horrible tyranny of the mar. opened the depths of difficult subjects, and roused the most sparkling women in the world. riage relation with you, I will consent to read tbe researches of more systematic reason- They labor under immense disadvantages, you the description."
which Englishwomen do not, particularly “Well, read it slowly and distinctly; so “Capital!” said Orestes ; " there is a de- those in the position of Harriet Lady Ashfew of you women can read aloud decently-scription of a woman of genius by a man of burton, for whom life and its accidents had an accomplishment worth far more than your genius! How a woman's bright mind does been conquered for a thousand years. А piano-playing or your very poor singing- or should open the depths of difficult sub- woman born in a garden, and invited to walk worth more than your water-colors or your jects!! If you will find me such a woman, I into the most beautiful of houses, and to use attempts at oils." Thus Orestes ! will marry her to-morrow.”
a large fortune, and to adorn a distinguished “By all means, let us have Horace Wal. “And you think she would marry you ? ancestry, and to fill gracefully a position of pole, however poorly read, rather than Ores. That would rouse the researches of more extreme luxury and distinction, is in rather a tes in his present mood !” So I began: systematic reasoners,' I think," said I, infu. different position from one who is born on "" She was easy and volatile, yet judicious riated.
Plymouth Rock, grows up in a climate which and acute, sometimes profound, and some- “Ab! go on; don't force upon me the l always makes her ill and nervous, bas to fight
with narrow circumstances, or, what perhaps who gives me all the fascination of her at.
· Phillis is my only joy,
Changeful as the winds of morning,
Sometimes willing, sometimes coy'-
“Yes, I want her to manage the grocer's
to lethargic ease, any mornings spent read-
would pout, and"
What do you
"All the mortal sins of a man are venial,
know you can be better than we are, and we
thing about uninteresting, fractious, extrav.
“So it is high enough, very well. I love “Don't you think you have been to see
like to know the author. She sits there, ut terly neglected by her husband, wbo is liav. ing a great flirtatiou with her intimate friend, and who makes her parlor the ground on which he carries it on, and she has a little sentimental dream of love, of what a recipro. cated friendship might be. For that she is disgraced, scolded, and has to submit to my lord's displeasure. He meantime carries on his little affair with Miss Susan O'Hara, and no one minds it in the least. He is the only one who does any thing wrong in the play, and lie reaps the reward of virtue, and looks down on her verse of poetry with lofty disdain."
“The play has great merit; it is true to life," said Orestes. “Ladies mustn't dream."
“ Did it ever occur to you that you might improve ?"
* Never," said Orestes—"never; our rices are only our virtues carried to an extreme. Men never do any thing wrong; they cannot."
“I know it is always so refreshing wben you hear of the weakness, the folly, the wick. edness of woman, to reflect that men are so good.”
“Yes, it gives you hope for the future, a belief in the possibility of the perfection of the race," said Orestes.
“ And it is very pleasant to have some. thing to look forward to that has not yet ar. rived."
“ Certainly; you cannot look forward to any thing that has arrived."
"Then we may look forward to the perfection of the masculine character? Bor kind of you!”
“Oh, yes, I am as kind as I can be."
“ You always remind me, Orestes, of one of Arsène Houssaye's speeches. Do you re. member the marchioness who hung her head with all the 'ingenuousness of fourscore ? '
“Yes, perhaps I am ingenuous, among my other virtues. Was she the same marchioness (one of your good French ones) who said: 'I entered the world through marriage -a bad enough entrance, is it not? At the end of two years and a half the marquis, niş husband, died ; I clung to this new misfor. tune for fear of a worse. My regrets were not very lively, for the marquis had takes the trouble to come into the world and to go out of it again—that was all! I moistened his will with my tears, and veiled my face with solemn-looking crape, which yet did not hide the cheerful horizon of widowhood ?!"
“Yes, the same dear, witty marchioness You see there is some danger in having wom. en too witty. Who knows but that if Mrs. Orestes, now, should happen to be witty, she might smile when she heard or thought of the cheerful horizon of widowhood?"
I told you—or at least I wished to confide to you—that I preferred the tragic one."
“No; you have promised to marry Nadame du Deftand, if I can find her."
“Supposing that we split the difference, and I will describe exactly what will suit nie. I wish her to be noble, true, generous, and sincere, charitable in the highest sense, not only with her money and her time, but in her judgments. I wish her to be very serere
toward herself, excessively lenient toward in the manner of this soliloquy thinks, hesi- is only natural under all the circumstances others. I wish her to have a joyous tempera- tates, halts, mentally questions, broods, shows -a great sorrow, an appalling secret, disment, a festive disposition, and yet to feel flashes of feeling, falls away into dreamy spec- tracting fears, a lost love, and a revelation quite capable of tears when I consider them ulation; but Mr. Booth, as soon as he is fair- from the grave! It is true that he tells us proper. There are moments when I love a ly under way, dashes along as if the whole of his intention to put on an “antic disposia pensive beauty. Thalia is all very well, business were to deliver a certain number of tion," but we can only suspect that this asbut I like a little of Melpomene occasionally words within a given time. The lines- sumption is largely prompted by the “fever -in fact, she must be the shadow of my * For who would bear the whips and scorus of
at the core; ” he gives us to understand that mood. She must have that'fine tone'wbich
he is to enact madness for a purpose, but we Horace Walpole describes; her key - note The oppressor's wrong, the proud man's con- apprehend that this very purpose is as wild must be high. Then I wish her to be stamped
and turbulent as the strange disposition which with a special distinction-nothing common,
The pange of despised love, the law's delay,
is supposed to cover it up. Let us look at a nothing like anybody else. She must have
That patient merit of the unworthy takes,
few of the facts. the noblest and truest purpose in every thing When he himself might his quietus make
Hamlet assumes madness under cover of With a bare bodkin?"slie does, and yet be so entirely without con
which to mature his purposes in relation to ceit that she does not suspect herself of hav- are all flung off at a beat, as is learned by the usurping king, and to conceal" the heart ing any excellence whatever. I shall be care- rote, not as if coming meditatively ght of his mystery.” But by so doing he does ful never to tell her that she has any for fear on thought. Nor are they expressed with all not in the least further his designs, and only that she might grow conceited. Then she their shades of meaning, with those touches excites the apprehensions of the whole court must be witty without propensity to satire; that give life and color to language. Every that something must be wrong. “Prompted full of agreeable talk, without saying aught person who has really siudied this famous so- to his revenge by beaven and hell,” he plans that is disagreeable of any one. She must | liloquy knows that half the time Mr. Booth is nothing, projects nothing, apparently intends be religious without bigotry or narrowness; quite at sea as to its artistic sense. We say ar- nothing except at some good time or othshe must be very prudent, but not the least tistic sense advisedly. Everybody knows the er to fulfill the commands of his father's prudish. She must never be grotesque ; she drift of the argument, but only the student spirit; and in all this the assumption of madmust remember that fine saying that she 'be- is aware of all the suggestions and the half- ness seems to be quite as motiveless as the longs to a sex who cannot afford to be gro. hidden thoughts which the passage contains, rest of his conduct. Throughout he seems tesque,' therefore she must avoid even the and which it is the province of the reader to to lack the balance, directness, and reason exercise of the talent for imitation, if that shape and body forth. We have heard actors of perfect saneness. should lead her to be grotesque. She must who have thrown many lights over Shake- In the midst of bis halting uncertainty he be very sensible of my merits, and very indif
spearean passages, who have brought out seizes upon the chances of the presence of a. ferent to her own. She may be as learned as hidden meanings, who have revealed un- company of players to produce a play before she pleases, if she will only conceal it; and, thought-of ideas; but we assert with confi. the court, the story of which so much resemabove all, she must make bigh comedy of dence that Mr. Booth far oftener covers up bles the taking off of his own father that he life!"
and obscures meaning than he reveals it. hopes, by watching its effect upon the king, to “When you find her, will you be so good After the soliloquy comes the perplexing confirm the story of the ghost. The play does as to invite me to the wedding?"
scene with Ophelia, and here, more forcibly | confirm these suspicions; in truth, it ren. “Certainly; you shall bave cards." than elsewhere, arises the question of Ham. ders the guilt of the king beyond question ;
M. E. W. S.
let's sanity. The literature evolved in the dis- aud yet, no sooner has Hamlet established pute of this issue is compendious, profound, this fact than he at once surrenders all his
and searching ; nevertheless, we cannot do designs, foregoes the advantage of this comMR. BOOTH'S HAMLET. full justice to Mr. Booth's personation without plete verification of the ghost's story, and
giving the question a brief consideration. goes off to England at the command of the
It is an error to draw a sharp line of de king. Assuredly a purpose so infirm and II.
markation between the sane and the insane, easily diverted as this is very far from being UR previous paper brought us to the inasmuch as the two classes fade into each end of the second act.
other. Between the extremes the gulf is Hamlet's whole conduct toward Polonius We now enter upon the most stirring great, but the intermediate gradations are in- betokens uncertain temper and an aimless and important of all the acts of this great finite. Many astute physicians have declared caprice that has no logical defense. The drama.
that no person is wholly sane on every point. violent death, by his own hand, of the father At one time it was thought that the capa. A man may be of sound judgment on nine of the woman he loves, causes no remorse or bility of an aotor in this part was shown by questions, but exhibit marked disorder on grief — never once awakens in him sorrow his reading of the famous soliloquy, begin. | the tenth; it is, indeed, certain that he even on Ophelia's behalf; it was caused in ning “ To be or not to be!--probably the will not be equally sane, balanced, and judi- an explosion of frenzy, and so distraught is best-known passage in Shakespeare, which cial, on every subject. All imaginative per- the unhappy creature's mind that never once every one with it taste for elocution is food
sons seem a little crazed to those of cool does he apprehend the significance of the act, of repeating, and every one with a philo- blood; the poetical temperament, ever since
or understand the blow he has struck at sophical bent is prone to study. Mr. Booth poets have flourished, has been suspected of Ophelia's peace. begins this soliloquy with a great deal of being at least remotely allied to madness. Perfect sanity moves steadily forward to feeling. He enters upon the stage in a mood There may be ebullitions and disorders in its purposes ; it is calm ; it foresees; it is profoundly meditative. His bearing, the ex. minds that commonly are peculiarly clear and not disturbed by every idle whiff; it is sepression of his countenance, and his whole regulated ; and hence, in view of these facts, rene amid conflict, opposition, and danger. manner, indicate the dreamy abstraction of it is unphilosophical to make a sharp issue That is not sanity which drifts bither and one who is speculating upon a profound prob- as to whether Hamlet is sane or insane. thither; which would, and yet would not; lem. But these outward forms soon disap. Hamlet is sane in many things; but to say which permits the imagination to run away pear. As he talks, the meditative mood es. that he is sane in all is to misunderstand with the reason ; that obeys the bebest of cipes from him, and presently there is lit- the meaning of the word. A sensitive, intro- every impulse; which knows no helm or tle more than rapid and characterless decla- spective nature, so burdened with sorrow and guidance for its turbulent disorders. mation. We have already pointed out Mr. tossed between conflicting duties and fears, It is only by understanding this duplex Booth's deficiency in the use of pause. In would be sure to do unaccountable things, nature of Hamlet's condition that we can at this soliloquy it is inperatively needed ; but and exhibit strange perturbations of spirit. all comprehend bis conduct toward Ophelia. here, after the first few lines, Mr. Booth's That Hamlet should fall away into dreams, We must enter into the soul of that sensitive, tendency to hasty, half-considered utterance explode in self-upbraidings, break into fever- high-strung, overwrought nature, and realize asserts itself. The dreamer who meditates ish mirth, show wild and unsettled conduct, how the touch of certain chords awakens all
a sane one.
the tumult of bis heart, He encounters his wild brain, his torn heart, his terrible light and shade, and commonly to be uttered Ophelia in one of his most despondent mystery, who, in pursuance of his vengeful in an off-hand dash that ignores all the shades moods; he has been musing gloomily on purpose, has sworn to wipe all“ fond rec- of meaning. These defects mark the “ Look death and the hereafter, but he greets her ords” from the tablet of his memory.
here upon this picture, and on this," as they with courtesy; when straightway she offers We like Mr. Booth's management of the do other of his deliverances. The intense to him remembrances she had “longed long play-scene. Whether because of his lame exultation he exhibits when, in slaying Poloni. to redeliver." In an instant there rushes arm, or from deliberate choice, we do not us, he thinks he has killed the king, is pain. upon him all the past : bis love for her; her know, but instead of the old business of ful in suggesting a too great willingness on denial of his access to her presence; the ap- crawling up to the feet of the seated king in Hamlet's part to accomplish the death of parent falsehood of all the world, and of one order to watch his countenance—a movement Claudius by accident, and without personal he loved most in the world. He is deeply that would bave excited the suspicions of risk; and the indifference manifested at the stirred, profoundly agitated; wild and hys. the king and the surprise of the whole court discovery that Polonius is the victim of his teric sentences break from his lips ; he gives - Mr. Booth now remains in his place by the rash plunge behind the arras is fairly heartthe rein to his severish fancy; he riots, part- side of Ophelia, and thence launches his bit. less. Hamlet scarcely killed men with the ly by unrestrainable impulse and partly by a ter sarcasms at his “ uncle-father.” The coolness of a bravado. forced assumption, in a whirl of words and scene is well done, and so is the wild burst It is to be wished that in this scene the bitter objurgations.
of hysteric mirth that escapes from him as practice of bringing on the ghost were abanIt is customary now on the stage to ex- the king, in guilty confusion, rushes from the doned. The voice of the spirit floating in plain this scene by bringing the king and stage. The outburst of convulsive feeling the air, coming none could tell whence, would Polonius ou as eaves-droppers, causing Ham. that occurs here is rarely sufficiently marked be far more awful and impressive. This plan let to detect their presence. The fact that he by Hamlets. It shows not only a rebound / would, moreover, meet one difficulty. Ilamlet is overheard, that he discovers how Ophelia from Hamlet's strained tension, but is an- sees his father in "his habit as he lived," but has been set upon him to learn his secret, is other proof that his wildness is not always the ghost always comes in, as in the first made the reason for Hamlet's conduct toward assumed. This explosion has no witness but scene, in armor. The ghost dressed so as to her. There is evidence to support this view Horatio, is wholly without motive, and can fail of recognition by the audience would be of the case. We know that Ophelia is but only be understood as an impulsive outburst hurtful to the effect of the scene, and thereobeying the behests of her father ; we know of uncontrollable feeling. Note the sudden fore the plain contradiction between the that the king and Polonius are listening; and rush from the whole scene, and the call for text and the fact is permitted. Let the there is one line in the text, “ Where is your music — a wonderfully natural touch in a ghost's voice be heard, his form visible only father?” which may be interpreted as evi- character like Hamlet's under a great strain; to Hamlet's distracted but preternaturally dence that Hamlet had detected the fact of the but how is it to be explained by those who mental vision, and the effect of the scene hidden listeners. But, while this situation will have explanation for every thing, and would be enhanced. would be certain to lead Hamlet into some yet insist that “ Hamlet is the sanest man The words addressed to the ghost here kind of erratic conduct, it gives no explana- about the court?"
overflow with tenderness. In the hands of a tion of the form his wildness here takes. It The scene with Rosencrantz and Guilden- great actor, Hamlet should melt every listener is more consonant to the complex nature of stern, and that with Polonius, which follows, into tears : his tried heart to believe that his conduct exhibit a great deal of the actor's skill.
".... Look you, how pale he glares ! has no such simple and cheap explanation. There are actors who, in these scenes, lose His form and cause conjoined, preaching to stoner, Explanation! This is the thing so many all remembrance of the great revelation Would make them capable.- Do not look upon commentators are wrecked upon. There are just made, and Hamlet's intense exultation
Lest, with this piteons action, you convert some things that cannot be explained, and at the success of his scheme; but with Mr.
My stern effects: then what I have to do this supreme fact is often conclusive evidence Booth clouds of the high-wrought passion Will want true color; tears, perchance, for blood." of their truthfulness. To force explanations drist across it, and one feels the lingering
Does Mr. Booth read these lines with the upon us of Hamlet's conduct is to destroy its presence of the great event.
It is perhaps mystery, its illusive, fascinating undertouch a question, however, whether Mr. Booth's in profound feeling they require? We think
not. But in truth we do not know any Harn. -if we may so express it—its profound agi- terpretation of the situation is the right one.
let that does. tations that ascend from depths of feeling He exhibits anger, intense impatience. He
Mr. Booth makes a good point later in and suffering, which, while they perplex, are can tolerate no longer the persecuting attenstill recognized as genuine. There are many tion of the two spies, and resents their in
the scene when the queen extends her hands strange things in the philosophy of life that terference with bitterness; and toward Po.
over his kneeling figure to bless him. He we must believe without hoping to explain. lonius he abandons himself to even more
leaps up, catches her hands, sayingMr. Booth attempts in this scene to force than bis wonted sarcasm and disdainful "When you are desirous to be blessed, the language into meanings not intended. mirth. Might it not be supposed, rather, that
I'll blessing beg of you ; " He is resolved that Hamlet shall not be brutal Hamlet, in the exultation of success, feels no but he fails to convey the idea in Hamld's toward Ophelia, that he shall evince tender- anger, but with flushed spirit gives vent to a mind, which is that when the queen shall ness, love, feeling, sympathy, with only kind of riotous impatience? They fool him to
have confessed herself to Heaven, and has enough wildness to mislead his covert listen- the top of his bent, and he plays with them to
shown by her acts her desire to be blessed, “Go to a nunnery” is not with him the extent of his impulse. He takes a fierce then, and not until then, can he accept 3 a frenzied command, but tender, tearful ad- delight in perplexing, embarrassing, discon- blessing from her. Hamlet, refusing her mavice. Where others storm, he remonstrates. certing them; he observes toward Rosencrantz ternal benediction, also rejects all proffers of "Why wouldst thou be a breeder of sin. and Guildenstern almost all his former show of
affection from the now heart-broken woman. ners ?” is urgent and affectionate solicitation courtesy; and he is determined that not even
“Good-night,” he says, and turns away esfor Ophelia to forego her hopes of marriage. i Polonius shall make aught of him in that mo- claiming“I am myself indifferent honest," and what ment of triumph. follows, is an earnest desire to convince her The great scene with the queen is one
“I must be cruel, only to be kind." that he and all men are unworthy of a wom- that a skilll'ul actor could scarcely go far But Mr. Booth is not cruel. He declines the an's love. In acting out this view of the wrong in, but Mr. Booth at the close of it blessing, but he folds his mother in his arms, scene, Mr. Booth is compelled to gallop over manages to force a situation that completely weeps over her, utters the most tender many sentences with a total disregard of their reverses the meaning of the text. Altogeth- "good-nights,” and upon this picture the meaning; but it must be conceded that he er, we cannot complain of the acting of the curtain falls, leaving all to wonder wherein makes an effective scene, and succeeds in scene, nor do we recall any signal error. For Hamlet's cruelty exists. In attempting : moving the sensibilities of his auditors. But our part, we are never satisfied with any of new line of “business" here, Mr. Booth has he is rather the tender lover taking a last the longer speeches delivered by Mr. Booth; | unmistakably done violence to the plain farewell of his mistress than Hamlet, with as already explained, they seem to us to lack I meaning of the text.