תמונות בעמוד

dresses, would not relish to be set in high relief by these artificial puns. Sinash the chandeliers ! the lights of the understanding will suffice for us: behold thousands of workmen now metamorphosed into joyous citizens !

“And now figure to yourself, saddlers, lace makers, ribbon wea. vers, and workers in bronze, giving their arms to their wives, and followed by their children, hungry and on foot, but on foot like the rest of the world ; without money but equally without envy, without bread but without humiliation, without salary but without a tyrant master, naked but free, wretched but proud, and enjoying that greatest of luxuries, idleness.

“ There will be no longer a barrier between poor and rich ; the strictest equality well unite the great and little, for all will be little. The dreams of our modern economists will be fulfilled, and themselves will be content. They will rub their hands,-perhaps they would wash them, but for a long time, Windsor soap (inade at Marseilles), will have been suppressed as a most unnecessary fantasy; the reign of the people will be established, and the enemies of opulence triumphant.

“ After all, these very means will be the surest to establish aristocracy in time. Why were sumptuary laws enacted in former ages? Why in Rome and Venice, did they forbid expensive displays ? Merely to prevent the nobility from impoverishing themselves by their follies, and enriching the inferior classes by their spoils. You say that the great are enriched by the sweat of the poor ; on the contrary the people are fattened on the prodigal follies of the rich nobles. It is because the Duke ofis ruined by his waistcoats, that his tailor has made a fortune ; the Marquis of and the count ofbave lost their estates on the race-course, and Crémieur and Hobbs are thereby enriched. And you desire that our young elegants should go on foot | they ought to be thankful to you, for you save them from that misery which would make them your equals ; and you deprive the people who labor, of all the money they would gain by these young fools. Bravo gentlemen! you establish sumptuary laws which your opponents would not venture to tamper with, and which in the end will crush yourselves ; you protect accumulated fortunes in forbidding their owners to spend them, you stifle growing ones which might tend by rivalling them in time to preserve equality; in fine you work for the revival of the aristocracy, but the masses will pardon you as being ultra-democrats.*

* Notwithstanding all our Lady's keenness of penetration, moderate fortunes and little luxurious expenditure would make a bappier state of things than our present boundless luxury and miserable destitution. It is a hard thing for a delicately nurtured lady, one gifted with a fine taste for literary and other luxuries. to see these things from the point of view of the struggling tradesman or labourer.

It would not be doing justice to our fair writer, if we omitted to give some specimen of her devotional thoughts and feelings. The reader will be struck with the religious element as seen through her poetic coloring.

“ Every one of us has some favorite festival. Some prefer the Fete Dieu, and regret the beautiful processions, which formerly traversed the city in every direction, with waving banners, young girls with downcast eyes, and adorned with white crowns and veils, and battalions of choir children exhibiting their scarlet robes in the sun. And then the rich tapestries hung out from balconies, the magnificent tabernacles, with their rich accompaniments of superb candelabras, and precious vases_fairest mansions that could be devised by the rich of the earth to receive the Lord of Heaven. It is the most poetic of ceremonies, the vapour of perfumes uniting itself to the scent of roses, so as to intoxicate the senses of the devout worshippers.

“ Other spirits, we should say other hearts affect the day of the ASSUMPTION. For them the BLESSED Mary is the heavenly load. star : from her radiates the effulgence of beanty, purity, and love. She rules by every claim and right; she unites the chastity of the young Virgin to the august dignity of the Mother; she is powerful by her grace, absolute by her sweetness, awful in her innocence ; and yet it is to her intercession we sue, to obtain pardon of offences against this spotless virtue.

To young wives, the festival of CHRISTMAS is a welcome solem. nity. The lovely new-born Infant captivates their eyes : they feel for him devotion blended with maternal love. To the hearts of women, the Saviour of the world scarcely speaks as powerfully as the INFANT Jesus. This festival is of so affecting a character, that it once made a poet of a friend of ours, who was very ignorant of verse, till one morning, when on returning from early mass she improvised the following stanzas,"

Then follow some beautiful lines, which we would most gladly translate, had the poetic gift been among our birth-day presents. They are the aspirations of a childless mother for that very doubtful blessing, a child. We pray some lady on whom the divine affilatus bas breathed, to open the fourth volume at page 10, and send us, either prepaid or unpaid, a. worthy transfusion of the sweet poesy they will there find. Delphine was then a young childless wife, and there is an in. describable melancholy charm about the lines, that may be well attributed to this circumstance.

“ TWELFTH DAY is also an imposing festival from the prevailing sentiment which it brings with it." These proud kings prostrate before the lowly crib, human power bumbling itself before the divine, the crown lost in the encircling glory, all these images, grand and

gracious at the same time, strike the soul by their deep meaning, and charm the eyes by their vastness. Along with this the EPIPHANY is a household festival. It brings together a joyful group animated with sportive contests, and childish merriment. It is celebrated with joy while the family reunion is complete ; but alas, where a seat is vacant, the festival is only a day of mourning.

“But our own favorite solemnity is Palm SUNDAY. The very sight of a bit of blessed palm (box wood) still affects us as when a child. At Rome they have the genuine palm brought from the environs of Genoa. God knows how we love the palms ! and with what profound respect we are inspired by this tree of the Scriptures ! these waving branches embracing in themselves all the poetry of the East; and yet the memories of our childhood are so strong, that the sacred palm blessed by the Pope himself, had a weaker effect on us than a little branch of Parisian box wood.

“ Last Sunday the inhabitants of this great city seemed to sympa. thise strongly with us. The drivers of the public vehicles had the collars of their horses ornamented with branches of palm, and the women returning from church had their hands filled with a provision of the blessed shrub. Every one attached an idea, a belief, a souvenir to this sacred ornament, which he or she was going to fasten over some revered object-one over the portrait of his mother, ano: thor (it must be confessed) above the bust of Napoleon, a third over the holy-water vessel, a fourth over the image of her patroness. . What folly,' cry the philosophers, 'to pay such reverence to a dwarfish little shrub, which scarcely requires an inch of soil, and is only fit for making combs and snuff boxes !' Ah, what fine people the philosophers are ! they never have the slightest distrust of them. selves: their proud revelations, their lofty thoughts are ever at com. mand ; and they have no need of exterior objects to recal them from a distance. What use can the image be to him who is never without the idea, or the guardian recollection to him, whom a defect of memory has never led into a fault? We acknowledge that we have not this strength of soul. We have need in our hours of prostration of a holy image, of a sacred souvenir, to come to our assistance. when our souls are in trouble, consolation and counsel enter again through our eyes; and we make this acknowledgment the more readily, as we have seen minds of a very superior order subject to the same weakness."

The longest article must have an end, but in this instance it is not for lack of material, as our selections have scarcely extended beyond the first volume. For an exact picture of the period over which the papers extended, as to fashions, public feeling, state of the line arts, groupings in private and public life, they will be of the greatest value to the future historian of those things which are neglected by the setters up of the skeletons of past national events. We scarcely know a book better adapted to fill up hours spent in railroad carriages,

by the banks of country streams, or on the rocks of watering places. Accounts of spectacles, races at Chantilly, exhibitions, fireworks, and glances at the fashions, necessarily occupied some space as the feuilletons appeared. They will enter into the tableaux of some future Macaulay of the Champs Elysées ; but to a large portion of ordinary readers they would be supremely uninteresting. However they do not take up disproportionate space. Some of the novels of this lady have not given us as much satisfaction as these journals of the Chevalier de Launay. From the healthy tone of his lucubrations we expected something more edifying than the plan and details of the Marquis de Pontonges. A model lady marries a violent idiot (we would be glad to know how the dispensation was procured), and bestows the most tender care on him. Lovelace becomes domesticated at the castle; and if she does not fall into his clutches, it is not her religious nor moral strength that saves her. We are made to see however that if she had gone astray, it would be a mere self-sacrifice to her lover's ease of mind, not a gratification to herself.* This fascinating youth at last runs off out of pique, and marries; but on returning from the church with his bride, he hears of the death of his true love's husband. Oh, woe and desolation ! he runs off to her chateau, and she knowing nothing of his marriage, receives him with the sincerest joy, as her future husband.

However she is presently undeceived, and he is obliged to be off to console his deserted spouse. When she considers herself cured of her fantasy, they meet again in the gay world. He is more infatuated than ever, and she, finding her heart not entirely healed, makes a marriage of reason and esteem. This is done suddenly, and without the knowledge of Lovelace, whose wife dies most inconveniently the very same time. After some genuine, but not very enduring sorrow on his part, he flies like a steain coach to the castle of his long tried love, and is politely welcomed by her husband. We next hear of him in a mad house, and we are not informed that she enjoyed much happiness in her second espousals. She is however strongly commended for having retained her virtue and reason between two madmen. Now, however faulty the novel may be in outline and coloring, there was evidently no malice

• For a fine expose of this convenient help to morality see Miss Edgeworth's Leonora. Le Marquis de Pontanges was an early work,

prepense in the authoress's mind. She wrote to excite sympathy for the sufferings which the weaker portion of humanity endure at the hands of their selfish and unprincipled tyrants.

It is probable that Gay had no design of encouraging informers' or turnkeys' daughters to loose conduct, or shop: boys to take to the road, when he wrote bis dramatic sermon against hypocrisy and political knavery ; yet the Beggar's Opera is a decidedly unedifying spectacle for young people. Blame of the same quality but lighter in quantity, may be justly laid to the Marquis of Portanges.

The Lorgnon (Eye-glass) is a very pleasant novellette. She evidently sketches herself in the heroine of the story : for the bastiness of expression, occasional sharpness of repartee or sarcasm, speedy remorse, and satisfaction for pain given thereby, kindness of heart, and defence of absent friends, qualities ascribed to the lady of the story, are thoroughly appropriate to herself, as we find her painted by her sorrowing literary friends and admirers.

In Balzac's Cane, an article which, carried in its master's left hand renders him invisible, she humourously ascribes his wonderful insight into character, modes of life of all classes, intimate knowledge of puzzling business affairs, &c., to the wonderful virtue of his bamboo-we are sorry for not having room for the extract.

It is surprising, and pleasant at the same time, to find respectful and affectionate references to religious usages, and sincere tribute to the spirit of religious influence, thro various papers of the series, when we reflect on the continual attend. ance of such lax professors as Balzac, Théophile Gautier, Latouche, &c., at her select reunions. Though we hear of no domestic complaints nor amicable arrangements for living apart, but on the contrary, great and successful efforts made at times by the lady to extricate the gentleman out of the hands of powerful foes in high places, we can scarcely suppose that her married life was blessed with much domestic comfort ; she, living in the world of poetry and romance, he occupied day and night, struggling for a high political position, devising giant posters for the dead walls, and canards for the rise and fall of bubble and other shares in new companies. She is gone, and France will not see her peer for a century to come.


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