Imágenes de páginas

and closing with the expulsion of the We now willingly turn from the deTarquins, and the condemnation of fects of this work to its beauty-for it his son--for the author gives him only has but one. This is to be found in one.-Not satisfied, however, with the character of Brutus, which is conthis ample scope of subject, Mr Payne ceived and sustained throughout with has thought proper to falsify history, considerable skill and judgment. There for the purpose of introducing other is a perfect dramatic unity and keepscenes and events in no way accessary ing in all its parts, and a regular proto the progress of the main action, but gression to its one grand aim in all the which, on the contrary, weaken the minor details connected with it. There interest and distract the attention. is nothing strained or superfluous, and Such are the loves of Titus and Tar- nothing wanting to make the portrait quinia, and the unnatural remorse and complete. The sentiments are true death of Tullia. The whole of the to nature and to history, and the lansecond act, too, is quite superfluous; guage in which they are expressed is especially the long and very ill-writ- free, vigorous, and unaffected. We ten scene at the tent of Sextus, where shall give two or three examples of the young princes and Collatinus plan this. the visit to their wives; and, after At the end of a soliloquy, in which wards, that of the same persons with he has been uttering the most fervent Lucretia, at the house of Collatinus.- longings for the time when he may But the chief failure of this tragedy is throw off the mask of folly, and reits total deficiency of character and venge the injuries of his family and his passion, with the single exception of country, he exclaims, the part of Brutus. There is no dis

“ Grant but the moment, Gods! if I am tinguishing any one of the persons

wanting, from any other, but by their names.

May I drag out this idiot-feigned life The language, too (still excepting the To late old age, and may posterity part of Brutus, of which we shall Ne'er hear of Junius but as Tarquin's fool.speak afterwards), is extremely feeble This is a very fine and characteristic throughout. It exhibits all possible expression of Brutus's bitter sense of varieties of dramatic common-place; the degradation he is compelled to and in some few instances it descends suffer, and of his truly Roman aspi(if it can be called a descent,) into rations after immortal renown-which mere vulgarism. As a fair specimen latter feeling, considering the spirit of of the former, we give the first pas- the times in which he lived, may even sage in the work :

be supposed to have mingled with his • Valerius. Words are too feeble to sense of justice and his love of counexpress the horror

try, in inducing the condemnation of With which my soul revolts against this his own sons.*-During an interview Tarquin.

with his son, and at a moment when By poison he obtained his brother's wife,

he has half thrown aside his veil of Then, by a baser murder, grasped the folly, Titus prays the Gods to restore These eyes beheld the aged monarch thrown him to reason, “ Then Titus” he Down from the senate-house, his feeble exclaims, limbs

" then I should be mad with Bruised by the pavement,-histime-honoured locks,

Had I the sense to know myself a Roman; Which from the very robber would have This hand should tear this heart from out

gained Respect and veneration,-bathed in blood!

Ere it should own allegiance to a tyrant. With difficulty raised, and tottering home. If, therefore, thou dost love me, pray the ward,

Gods The murderers followed-struck him—and To keep me what I am. Where all are he died.”

slaves, As examples of the latter, we have None but the fool is happy.Collatinus expressing his conviction of In the last scene, after he has dea thing by saying he “ makes no termined on the death of his son, Tidoubt of it—and Titus, after he has deserted the cause of freedom, fears

* See an Essay on the Influence of the that Brutus will “scorp to father such Love of Fame on Genius, Vol. III. p. 701. a son” as he is.

of this Magazine



my ribs

tus declares that he can meet death vate property,” is even worse than the “ if the Gods will have it so.”-Bru- daw in the fable,

for he had the hotus answers,

nest impudence to go strutting about “ they will, my Titus :

among the living peacocks, decked Nor heaven nor earth can have it otherwise.

with the produce of his knavery; now, The violated genius of thy country

according to Mr Payne, there would Rears its sad head, and passes sentence on

have been nothing • culpable" in this thee!

acquiring at all events” (as SpurzIt seems as if thy fate were pre-ordained heim calls thieving), if the daw had To fix the reeling spirit of the people, waited till the right owners of the feaAnd settle the loose liberty of Rome.

thers had been dead; because then These thoughts are extremely appro- he would not have violated the aforepriate and well-placed, and very poeti- said personal feelings or private cally expressed

property ;” and, moreover, because It will naturally be asked, Whence such ornaments could not be availarises this total want of relative con able without an effort almost, if not sistency in the different parts of a work altogether, as laborious as original professing to be written by one and composition:" that is to say, because the same person? We shall let Mr it must have been as painful and Payne disclose his own secret. In his troublesome to him to pull the feapreface there is this passage :

thers out of his own tail and stick

others in their places, as to endeavour " In the present play I have had no he.

to make a new tail of an sitation in adopting the conceptions and


composition” for himself. But Mr language of my predecessors wherever they seemed likely

to strengthen the plan I had Payne forgets, that if the daw had prescribed. This has been so done as to cudgelled his brains” till doomsday, allow of no injury to personal feelings or he never could have changed the feaprivate property. Such obligations to be thers of his tail to any other colour culpable must be secret ; but it may be ob- than black: That, in fact,

a silk served, that no assistance of other writers purse cannot be made” of any other can be available, without an effort almost, materials than the produce of a silkif not altogether, as laborious as original worm.-In short, the fabulous daw composition."

was only vain and foolish; but we are In fact, we strongly suspect that the afraid the real one must be considered title-page, which calls this work “ as combining the principal traits in his Tragedy, in five acts, by John How- predecessor's character with still more ard Payne,” is neither more nor less culpable” ones peculiar to himself. than a literary fraud. -As we do not We now take our leave of Mr Payne, pretend to be very deeply versed in for the present, by repeating our conis all such reading as was never read," fession that we have ventured to acwe shall confess that we do not at pre cuse him on presumptive proofs only; sent know to whom certain passages We hope for his sake, the reader's, and of this play do belong; but we are our own, that none of his injudicious pretty certain it would require very friends will compel us to seek for the little critical sagacity, to take a pen and positive proofs. If they should, howmark with inverted commas every line ever, and we are not able to produce which does not belong to Mr Payne, such proofs, the disgrace will recoil upand that the lines so marked would on our own heads. include every passage of merit in the But how shall we proceed to speak play. But even supposing our con, of Mr Kean's performance of Brutus, jecture to be true, if Mr Payne had in terms that shall, at once, convey done this himself no one would have our own impressions of it, without had cause to complain,-especially as shocking those who have not the same the writers to whom we suspect all the feelings, and who would not dare to passages of any merit to belong are express them if they had ! though dead, both in law and fact--that is to we are aware how loose and indefi. say, they have, in Mr Payne's lan- nite, -how very uncriticalthe epi. guage, neither personal feelings or thet, Beautiful, will sound, as applied private property !" But, really, his to such a performance, yet it is the only pillaging people, because they are dead, one by which we could express our deand making the spoils administer to light at the time we witnessed it, and

personal feelings and prie we seek in vain for a better by which VOL. IV.



his own

to characterise it now. “ Beautiful !” per, and make them glitter as they was our silent exclamation to our fell. selves, over and over again, during The rest of the performers of this the course of the performance; and tragedy must excuse us if we do not “ beautiful !” we repeat now, as we say any thing about them. Indeed, think of it. If, from the nature of if they know or care any thing for our the character, Mr Kean's Brutus was opinion they will not desire to hear without those overwhelming tran- it immediately after we have been thinksports of passion-those involuntary ing of the noblest ornament their proplunges into the depths and dungeons fession perhaps ever had. The eye that of the human heart—which render turns to other objects immediately afhis Othello the noblest and most af- ter looking at the sun will have little fecting dramatic exhibition in the chance of appreciating their forms and world, -it was the same exquisite colours justly. We must even defer genius working with different tools our remarks on Mrs W. West till a and on different materials, and pro- more favourable moment-for we would ducing a result not less perfect or less willingly think and say the best we true. In the two first acts the half can of her. Her fair face has ingrasilly, half sarcastic part of the charac- tiated her with us for though far ter was given with the most entire from being what is called well or reunconsciousness, and yet with an in- gularly formed, it is beautified by a effable expression that produced all striking resemblance to some of the the desired effect, without using the Magdalenes of Guido. slightest apparent effort towards it, and without belying the name and character of Brutus. Afterwards, his

The Dandy Club. rooted hatred of the oppression The Christmas pantomime, proof his country, and his earnest duced on Saturday the 26th of Decemaspirations after her freedom, were ber, at this theatre was, not to exage expressed with an intense fervour gerate, the very worst of its kind we that was worthy of a noble Ro ever saw; and the managers were man without being unfitted for the compelled to withdraw it after three or severe and still-minded Lucius Junius. four nights, and to promise another in -But the finest part of the perfor- its place. It was called the DANDY mance was in the last act, where his CLUB, or 1818. As it is probable that parental affection has to struggle with persons at a distance from the metrohis deep sense of justice, and his pure polis may not yet have heard any parand ardent love of country. Mr ticulars respecting the new race of aniKean's inimitable powers of silent mals called Dandies, from which this acting were never before so strongly call- pantomime derived its name, and which ed forth as in the scene with Valerius, have lately appeared in considerable and the last scene at the tribunal. numbers in various parts of our island, Every part of his bodily frame was we shall endeavour to collect for the made to move in exquisite unison with information of our readers all that has the internal working of his soul. hitherto been observed of the habits, Every nerve and muscle was played character, &c. of these singular creaupon by the cunning hand of Fantasy, tures. We understand that some naand made to “discourse most eloquent turalists are disposed to rank Dandies music." But it was “the still, sad as a new and distinct species of the gee music of humanity.”—Indeed the nus Man--the homo of Linnæus, and whole of this part of the character belonging to the mammalia class of was considered and given in the truest animals. But it must be observed that spirit of lofty tragedy. The pity ex- that so justly celebrated writer allows cited by the agonizing woe of the fa- of but one species in the genus homo, ther was always kept subservient to a which he designates by way of emifine moral purpose. To our imagina- nence, Sapiens. This, as will be seen tions, TY, with her severe and aw- hereafter, at once excludes the newly ful brow, sat throned above all. But discovered animal from the species in smiles were round her lips, and the question. It is not impossible, howlight from her eyes seemed to beauti- ever, that the Dandy may belong to a fy the parental tears of her worship- doubtful species that in some early

editions of the Systema Naturæ were pole, but is equally shunned by both. added to the genus homo, under the The Dandy is a gregarious animal. denomination of Troglodytes. This The particular spots in which they herd species have, in later editions, been together in this city are, for the most very properly deposed from their rank part, in the neighbourhood of Bondof Primates, and arranged under the street, where they walk backwards and genus Simia,--for a description of forwards, two or three linked together, which see Sys. Nat. From our own on that part of the pavement which is personal observations, however, we are appropriated to foot passengers, to the enabled to state that if the Dandy be- great annoyance of the industrious part longs to any variety of the genus man, of the community who are obliged to pass it must be to Falstaff's imaginary that way in the prosecution of their ordi

men in buckram.". The truth is, it nary business. The Dandy is supposed is very difficult, at present, to deter- to be endowed with speech, and to have mine the species of this animal at all; a language which is intelligible to its as the most experienced naturalists kind. Indeed by a diligent attention have not yet had an opportunity of to the sound which it utters, words properly examining one. This has, no may frequently be detected which are doubt, arisen from the singular cire familiar to us in our own language ; cumstance of the Dandy never having but no connexion can be made out bebeen observed to die. Hence it is con tween them. The words which most jectured, and with great shew of pro- frequently occur are damn, damned, bability, that at a certain age they un- and damnation. Indeed it may be obdergo a change similar, or rather op- served that these words alone make up posite, to that which takes place in nearly nine-tenths of all that the butterflies—passing into the state of a Dandy utters. The method employed grub instead of out of it. This, how- to take this animal alive is very singuever, is the only particular in which lar; and seems to have originated in they resemble that gay and happy crea an old tradition of the nursery, with ture: for they have no grace or light- respect to birds ; viz. that they will ness in their movements; they appear let you catch them if you can get near to care nothing at all about the sun- enough to them to be able to throw shine-and so far from having a pas some salt on their tails. A very simision for flowers, it inay be safely af- lar method is employed with success firmed that they do not know a lily of in taking Dandies. You are sure to the valley from a stinging-nettle. It catch them if you can get near enough is very remarkable, too, that there is to throw salt on their tails, supposing not known to exist a female of the them to have tails. But on account of species. This favours another conjec- the artificial covering with which they ture which we shall venture to hazard, envelope themselves, it has not yet viz. that they do not only pass into been ascertained whether they are supanother state instead of dying, but plied with this appendage. So that from another state into their present, the method usually adopted is this: A instead of being born. In fact we person employed for the purpose, and ourselves have observed them in both who is accustomed to the business, the intermediate conditions ; and the fixes on the one he chooses to take, and reader who has never seen one may approaches it very cautiously, till he gain a very lively idea of a half-formed gets near enough to place his right Dandy, by examining any dirty shal- hand upon that part of the creature's low pond on a common, during the body which in Man answers to the left autumn of the year ; when he will not shoulder. If he succeeds in this, the fail to discover certain living and mov- animal quietly yields itself up his priing substances, which on further ex

But like the silly hare, the amination he will find to be half-frog, Dandy is very cunning when it has half tad-pole, without being either one reason to suspect an intention of this or the other ; not having had time or kind. In fact it seems generally to be strength to complete their transforma- supplied with a kind of instinct by tion. It may be remarked, too, as a which it can judge from the appearfurther point of resemblance, that the ance of the person approaching it, whecreature in this intermediate state is ther he has a design of this nature; not considered as fit company for either and it shuns him accordingly. It has the complete frog or the complete tada been noticed that the persons who em



ploy others to take the Dandy in this did not play the first part of Marmion way are usually tailors, or boot-makers. as we could have wished, it must be We are not able to say what use they confessed that he threw a good deal of put them to.

With respect to the in- vigour into his death scene. If he tellectual qualities of these animals, was rather dead when he should have it is pretty certain that they are not been alive, he made up for it by being endowed with any moral feelings at very lively when he might have been all ; and it has even been doubted by dead. The piece is interspersed with some whether they have any physical songs, dances, processions, &c. and ones; for the experiment is said to was received with very general aphave been tried of running pins into plause ; but it cannot long continue to various parts of their bodies, such as be attractive. the legs, shoulders, breast, &c. without their discovering any signs of pain or uneasiness. From this circumstance there are not wanting persons bold

A Word to the Ladies. enough to assert that the thing is not

A COMEDY with the above title was an animal at all, but neither more nor produced at this theatre on Thursday less than a suit of clothes, endowed by Dec. 17th, It is attributed to Mr some unknown species of magic or Kenny—a gentleman who appears to mechanism, with habits and faculties analagous, in appearance, to some of possess considerable talents for comic those which belong to animal life. writing, if he chose to employ them These, they say, are chiefly confined properly: but he has not hitherto done to a locomotive power, a kind of mock value of his powers, by making them

so--He fritters away the strength and instinct by which it distinguishes and

turn aside to administer to the vain congregates with its kind, and a faculty and selfish views of particular actors, of uttering articulate though unmean

instead of letting them take their own ing sounds.

For our own parts, we are not at present disposed to admit road of a fair and honourable fame.

straight-forward course along the high this hypothesis. Meagre and incon- So far from writing for the next age, clusive as the foregoing account must he does not even write for the next be considered, in defiult of further information on the subject we are com

year—but only for to-day: and ac,

cordingly none of his productions repelled to close it here.

tain possession of the stage, except

one or two very droll farces. In the Murmion, or Flodden Field. comedy before us, Mr Kenny has act

ed like an unskilful general who enFrom all the accounts that we hear, lists more soldiers than he can find the affairs of poor old Drury are gets either pay or employment for, so that ting worse and worse every day; and they stand in each other's way, and yet she is always bringing forward every one encumbers the movements novelties—just as the poorest soils al- of all the rest. In some cases half is ways produce the finest crops of weedis.

more than the whole. There would Marmion, or Flodden Field, was play- be more characters in this play if there ed for the first time on Thursday Dec. were not half so many characters. The 31st. It is the chief incidents of Wal- following is the official circular of the ter Scott's poem, dramatised by Mr plot :S. Kemble. There is little to be said

“ The chief interest of the piece turns about such pieces as these. The stir

upon the distress of Young Winterland, ring and romantic tale of the original who, having incurred the displeasure of an is broken into dull and disjointed uncle on whom his fortunes depended, is scenes—the animated and picturesque disinherited, and hides from his creditors in language is diluted into maukish dia a fisherman's cottage. His sister, who shares logue, - and the haughty and reckless his misfortunes, is attached to Young DorMarmion is enacted by Mr H. Kem- rington, his sworn friend, to whom he has blema gentleman who will perhaps been to the West Indies to take possession,

formerly made great sacrifices, and who has think it no disparagement to his per

as he believes, of a rich inheritance On son and talents, when we say that he his return, the Winterlande depend on his is not at all like one's ideal of the fulfilling their hopes—both of marrying « Falcon knight-Marmion of Fon- Clara, and relieving her brother. His con. tainaye.” But though Mr Kemble duct, however, becomes mysterious and

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