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Another time the ladies of the drama, it was chiefly in view to royal harem contrived to feign fevers in point out the skill of Eschylus in the order to obtain a sight of the great Ha- delineation of character; and particukim, and I was introduced to a collec- larly in the manner in which he gra tion of the most beautiful and delicate dually unfolds the character of Cly. hands and arms in nature, that I might temnestra, it was remarked, that he feel their pulses and prescribe; but seems to have set
an example of I could not obtain the sight of a single admirable management, which has face, though I heard the malicious scarcely, however, been followed by creatures laughing at my embarrass- any succeeding poet. We are, in ment through the veil between us. most dramas, made acquaiuted with Then, at a great entertainment, where the characters, almost in the first scenes the loveliest dancers and the sweetest in which they are presented to us, singers were assembled, my state as and even the greatest hypocrites, howfavourite forbade my speaking to any. ever they may be supposed to impose Such was my visit to the Persian upon the rest of the Dramatis PerCourt, where, though I enjoyed the sonæ, always take care in their solilofavour of the sovereign, the applauses quies, and speeches aside, which are, of the courtiers, and the admiration in fact, speeches to the audience, to of the multitude, my health suffered make us perfectly intimate with the from new customs, my mind from most secret workings of their minds. continual restraint, and my heart from Shakespeare himself falls very much disappointed affection and misplaced into this method ; and, were it not friendship, for I was too closely sur- that the reflections and reveries which, rounded and too carefully watched to on these occasions, he puts into the be able to distinguish between real mouths of his characters, are, for the worth and well masked villany, or to most part, very natural, and such as, discern pure esteem from the fawning we may easily suppose, to be passing of flatterers.
through their minds, we should be as Such is here, and must be every much shocked with the clumsiness of where, the condition of a lion. Who the contrivance even in his hands, as can therefore wish for fashionable ce we invariably are when we meet with lebrity? Not certainly your friend, it in less highly-gifted poets. There
JOHN JENNINGS. is something, however, infinitely more hazard an observation
skilful in bringing out a character by
degrees in the natural course of the upon this last letter, we think Mr Jennings concludes too seriously. The should it all be made plain at once? It
dialogue and of the incidents. Why state of lion is so transitory, that we submit to our readers whether it be its peculiar traits in our way, inex
is much finer to drop, as if by accident, not desirable to pass through it, in plicable as they may be at the moorder to see the panorama, the raree show of society. For our own parts, serving to rouse our attention, come
ment of their occurrence, but which, we have seen so many bright sıiles, afterwards to be perfectly understood so many approving glances, lavished when the whole tissue of the character on the lions we have occasionally be- is laid before us. held, that as we know that statues,
An instance of this occurs in that pictures, medals, and books, do some- singular silence which Clytemnestra times undergo that state of trial, we have no higher ambition than that this trance of the messenger who brings
observes for some time after the enour valuable miscellany should figure her the information of the immediate as the lion of our native town, even for a longer time than poor Mr Jen- the violent protestations, which, upon
approach of her husband ; and then, in nings suffered at Ispahan.
being awakened from her reverie, she
instantly makes of her attachment to OBSERVATIONS ON THE AGAMEMNON him, and which she scarcely would
OF ESCHYLUS, ILLUSTRATED WITH have made, if she had not been conTRANSLATIONS.
scious that she deserved to be suspect(Continued from Page 306.)
These traits, though perfectly
natural, are not explained at the moIn submitting to the reader some ment; and, accordingly, they may observations on this very interesting somewhat startle us; but their very
If we may
peculiarity keeps our attention fixed The time is long since past
Borne by the gales,
Yea its return these eyes have seen nestra, nothing has appeared that could No voice of joy will forth, tuned to our justly excite any strong suspicion of lyres, her intentions. , 'We left her receiving But dark Erinnys all our gloomy songs her husband in a strain of great ap inspires ! parent affection, and urging him with Something within there is what seemed to be mere female vani. Darkens my spirit, ty, (though, in truth, with the fana- And seldom do they miss, tical idea of calling down upon his These inward visitings, head the vengeance of insulted hea. Whatever brings ven,) to enter his palace with much Them on-true issues to inherit ! triumphant display. Agamemnon, O yet, may these fallacious be, though greatly averse to it, at last And may I never see yields to her fancy ; but, before he The forethought of my heart, before my goes in, he gives us a proof of the eyes kindness of his nature. Cassandra, Standing in the horror of its bodily size ! the prophetic daughter of Priam, ac- All now seems in good health, companied him as a captive, (a per. But health soon changing, sonage whom we shall afterwards find Disease creeps on by stealth ! acting a very great and terrific part in The ship may spread her sails the tragedy,) and he says to the queen, O'er the smooth ocean freely ranging,
With prosperous gales,
Nor know that it is near the shock
Yet even then, the cargo bravely toss'd chains,
lost ! Heavy in themselves to bear_She follows
And though above an house
Of sinking fortune, Jove
Stretch out his hand, he still is master I pace along on purple !
And call the fruitful soil to save Clytemnestra follows him in with (Like making smooth the wave)
From the pale form of Poverty, with cheeks a seeming virtuous, but, in reality, Of famine, when the ruin of that house she most impious prayer,
seeks! Jove, do thou grant my prayers,-prosper 'Tis very true,---et blood
them, Jove, And be the event as thy high wisdom
From a man dying, orders!
Gushing in purple flood,
If once it reach the ground A dark presage again comes over Will ne'er be found the minds of the Chorus, which they Again to course the veins :~One trying express in an abrupt and hurried strain Life to restore, received a check of poetry
From Jove, and made a wreck Chor. What 'tis, I cannot tell,
Of all such vain attempts !-Fate ties my But some dark vision,
tongueWith a resistless spell,
But-0 my thoughts are black, and my Clouds my prophetic soul !
heart's strings are wrung. It will not roll
These forebodings of the Chorus, Away, but clings with close adhesion ! Not like the troubled dreams of night
however, appear to be merely proThat fly before the light !
phetic, and not founded upon any obMy hope and trust are greatly fallen, I servation; and although, in the scene
which follows, and which, 25 we shall own, Nor will my bosom's lord sit lightly on his throne.
REGALIA OF SCOTLAND.
see, lays open, by a most poetical and Lord Treasurer, protesting, that they astonishing machinery, the deep mys- should on no account be removed tery of wickedness which we have hi- without due intimation given to the therto been contemplating, in its con- family of the Earl Marischal. From coction, almost without a suspicion of the instrument taken on this occasion, what it is to be-although, in this it appears that the regalia, together scene, we are referred to former looks with a particular description of the parts, and gestures on the part of Clytem- were then deposited in a chest in the nestra as being full of meaning and Crown-room of the Castle, to be there signification, yet these dumb signs kept agreeably to the act of Union. would very naturally be misinterpret. It is now upwards of a century since ed by the spectators until the expla- these procedings took place, and we are nation was suggested. In all this still utterly in the dark as to whether contrivance, there seems to be a deli- Mr Wilson's protest has been duly recate observation of nature, of which, garded; though, it is well known, perhaps, there is no other instance in that many doubts and unfavourable dramatic poetry, in any degree, so surmises have been long prevalent on perfect.
the subject. (To be Continued.)
An incomplete, and, we will be para doned for saying, a very unsatisfactory search of this apartment took
place in the year 1794. The records MR EDITOR,
of Scotland having at one time been As the fate of these emblems kept in the Castle of Edinburgh, it of the ancient independence of this was supposed that valuable papers part of the island, has given rise might be recovered, by a search in the to many conjectures; and as many Crown-room. A royal warrant of of your readers cannot fail to partake search was accordingly obtained, auof the national anxiety, to ascertain thorizing the Lord Lieutenant of the what has become of them, I beg county, the heads of our Supreme leave, through the medium of your Courts, and other eminent indivivaluable Journal, to offer a few re- duals, to investigate this mysterious marks on this interesting subject. apartment, and to report the state of
The regalia of Scotland consisted of it; and, in consequence of this, an exa crown, a sceptre, and a sword of pectation was excited, that the scepstate, each of them enriched with a ticism of the people would be speedily profusion of precious stones of various removed. This investigation took descriptions. These were complete in place, and the report of the search is 1578; at least an inventory of King very full and very precise upon every James the Sixth's jewellery, taken in point, save that one, on which it was that year, states the crown as “ with anxiously hoped some light was about out any appearance of inlaik or di- to be thrown. The report expresses, minishing: And it is not said, that that the eminent personages specified the sword and sceptre were in any in the warrant, did, with the assistparticular defective. These, our read- ance of his Majesty's wright and ers know, were, by the 24th article smith, break open the well-secured of the treaty of Union, provided door and window of the Crown-room, “to be kept as they are, within that by which laborious operation they part of the united kingdom called were enabled to survey the interior Scotland, and that they shall so re of the apartment; that the apartment main in all time coming."
was found to be so many feet long, vision was formally complied with, and so many feet broad ; that the roof and it is on record, that, on the 26th is arched ; that it measures a certain March 1707, Mr William Wilson, de- number of feet from the floor to the pute-clerk of Session, the deputy of spring of the arch, and so many more Earl Marischal, heritable keeper of feet from the spring of the arch to the the regalia of Scotland, did, in the roof; that no records were found in presence of a number of persons of the the room ; but that a chest, six feet highest respectability, convened with three inches long, two feet six inches in the Castle of Edinburgh, deliver and a half wide, and two feet six and over the crown, the sceptre, and the a half inches deep, was there discover sword of state of Scotland, to the ed. That the searchers felt diffiden t.
of their power, under their warrant, to ed and shook the chest above describrummage this repository; that they ed, in order to ascertain if it contained left the chest untouched ; and that any thing, and that he was convinced they, on taking leave of the Crown- by the experiment, that it was quite room, put the door and window of the empty. He stated further, that though apartment in a state of security equal the chest was not opened, a box lined to that in which they found them. with velvet, which he conjectured to The report concludes with a very in- have once contained the crown, was genious supposition, that this chest found lying open beside it, the lid of contains the regalia of Scotland, be- which appeared to have been wrenchcause Mr Wilson's instrument bears, ed off by violence at some former pethat they were deposited in this a- riod, and carelessly thrown to another partment.
corner of the apartment. Now, without intending to say any The vulgar belief, we know, is, thing in the slightest degree disre- that the regalia were removed durspectful of the honourable and emi- ing the troublous times that sucnent persons who returned this report, ceeded the Union, and that they were I will take the liberty to assert, that either then carried abroad, or are it is utterly inconceivable that they still in the possession of some of the should have hesitated about opening great Highland families. We do not the lid of this chest, after breaking up well see how such an extraordinary the door and window, unless upon the circumstance could take place since the supposition, that they were themselves Union, without something definite infected by the prevailing popular being known about it. But the matdoubts respecting the fate of the re ter certainly appears worthy of invesgalia; and that from a feeling of deli- tigation, and it no doubt does seem cate expediency, they preferred ques- somewhat curious that so simple a tioning the extent of their powers search should have been so long deto the exertion of them in a way which layed. We have, however, the satismight have exposed “the nakedness faction of informing our readers, upon of the land,” and perchance have led good authority, that a more complete to unpleasant consequences. What- and satisfactory search for these inever may be in this, however, it is teresting national monuments is unevident that this report could have derstood to be now in contemplation, little tendency to settle the popular and may be expected ere long to take doubts on the subject. These doubts place. - Edit. have in fact since that time become still more inveterate ; and without exercising any undue mistrust, or pretending to estimate the matter above its real importance, the people of Scotland may certainly be allowed, after the lapse of a century, to de This rock is one of those belonging mand a more thorough investigation, to the trap series, and which, accordand to have it fully ascertained whe- ing to Jameson, occurs most abunther this clause of the treaty of Union dantly in sandstone and coal districts. has been duly complied with. In many places it is named pebble Edinburgh, Oct. 1817. J. W. rock, from the silicious nodules or
pebbles which it contains. The sub
stance of these pebbles or agates is In addition to the observations of most commonly a matter analogous to our patriotic correspondent, we are flint, nearly equalling it in hardness, enabled to mention a curious fact, and commonly remarkable for the vaupon the authority of the late Major riety and beauty of its colours. To the Drummond, the officer on duty in the circumstance of their colour, we are inCastle at the time of the above search. debted, in a great measure, for the Major Drummond having, in the ex- history of their formation. Sometimes, ercise of his duty, accompanied the however, where colour is wanting, the commissioners into the Crown-room, different hardness of their different assisted in the examination that then parts, serves us equally well as an intook place; and he afterwards men- dication of their natural structure. tioned, that he himself repeatedly mov. But it is not merely when we find
OBSERVATIONS ON THE IGNEOUS ORI
GIN OF THE AGATES OR PEBBLES
these substances enclosed in rocks, Now, if we can prove that these bothat we can thus judge of their for- dies do not owe their rounded form to mation, but every one of them taken attrition, (the only other conceivable individually, contains its own history way,) they must have derived it from within itself, and herein lies the dif- that cause which we supposed, nameference between such, and those for- ly, their having been left more or less tuitous collections of bodies rounded at liberty to separate themselves from by water, which are also called peb- the general mass when in a fluid state. bles, whether they are the remains of Indeed, were these hollows only found stratified bodies, or any other whatso- in these rocks, their appearance would ever. Such are dug from gravel-pits, be sufficient to demonstrate the softand found in the beds of rivers ; ness of the surrounding rock, by show, such are the rolled masses upon the ing, that the rock had been impressed sea shore, with which we pave our by the action of a fluid, were it only streets. But, though the terin pebble of air; and that the matter which was at first exclusively applied to those fills these has been itself in a fluid hard silicious substances which have form, is demonstrable from their peobtained the name of agate, onyx, &c. culiar structure. These pebbles or yet any substance whatever is capable agates consist in general not only of of being similarly formed, whether it numerous coats, but those coats are be hard or soft, provided only that it generally distinguished by as great a shall have been in a fluid form, as variety of colours. It is indeed pose will appear necessary from the struc- sible, from what has already been obture of these stones, when more par- served of the colouring matter of flints, ticularly examined.
that these different coats of colour, as Jameson, in his System of Minera- well even as the coated structure itlogy, and also in his public lectures, self, might have been produced by the maintains that these agates are of a- action of decay, working upon a subqueous formation. The new views he stance more or less penetrable, and has proposed on this subject,--the producing such different degrees of connections he has traced between the hardness in the different coats, as structure of these silicious substances, should make them readily separate and the strata of the globe in general, from one another; and thus a subare important, and may form the sub- stance, originally homogeneous in its ject of a future communication. But structure, would become coated, and my present object is to endeavour to as the decay could proceed only from render it probable that the amygdaloid the outward surface inwards, all the rock and the agates it contains, are of changes of colour would follow the igneous origin.
same direction, affecting the centre The particles of any two fluids last and least of all. But it must be mixed together, would, on their observed, that though colour seems separation, assume a form more or to be thus produced in some flints, less round; such is the appearance decay has not produced that change of fluids distinguished by their co in their structure, but the conchoidal lours on marbled paper, and such fracture remains, and fracture always would be the surface presented by a follows structure. But neither of these section of amygdaloid, -showing 'ei- circumstances can possibly apply to ther hollows, or hollow, partly or en
those instances in which we find the tirely filled with a substance different hollow but half filled, and not only from the rock, and all of these ap- half filled, but containing a variety of proaching to the round form, and substances which have crystallized in rarely angular.
succession, one upon the other. And
there are many instances where there • It is known that when many layers or
is only a thin coating of matter lodged
within the hollow; these hollow aecats of paint of different colours are laid upon each other, that the different particles, gates, of themselves, afford a sufficient in the course of time, assume a variety of refutation of the idea of a nucleus, globular and oval forms, thus presenting round which coats have been succesan appearance very much resembling a sively formed, for here is no centre, gates. There is a specimen of this descrip- and the regular disposition of the tion in the possession of that distinguished few coats that there are in these surgeon Mr Russell.
agates, which are hollow at the cene