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Not when a gilt buffet's reflected pride
Turns you from sound philosophy aside;
Not when from plate to plate your eye-balls roll,
And the brain dances to the mantling bowl.

Hear Bethel's sermon, one not versed in schools, But strong in sense, and wise without the rules.

Go work, hunt, exercise ! (he thus began) Then scorn a homely dinner, if you can. Your wine lock'd up, your butler stroll’d abroad, Or fish denied (the river yet unthawid), If then plain bread and milk will do the feat, The pleasure lies in you, and not the meat.

Preach as I please, I doubt our curious men Will choose a pheasant still before a hen; Yet hens of Guinea full as good I hold, Except you eat the feathers green and gold. Of carps and mullets why prefer the great, (Though cut in pieces ere my lord can eat) Yet for small turbots such esteem profess ? Because God made these large, the other less. Oldfield, with more than harpy throat endued, Cries, Send me, gods! a whole hog barbecued !" Oh, blast it, south winds! till a stench exhale Rank as the ripeness of a rabbit's tail. By what criterion do you eat, d’ye think, If this is prized for sweetness, that for stink ? When the tired glutton labours through a treat, He finds no relish in the sweetest meat, He calls for something bitter, something sour, And the rich feast concludes extremely poor : Cheap eggs, and herbs, and olives, still we sec; Thus much is left of old simplicity ! The robin-red-breast till of late had rest, And children sacred held a martin's nest, Till beccaficos sold so dev'lish dear To one that was, or would have been, a peer. Let me extol a cat, on oysters fed, I'll have a party at the Bedford-head; Or ev'n to crack live crawfish recommend ; I'd never doubt at court to make a friend.

'Tis yet in vain, I own, to keep a pother About one vice, and fall into the other : Between excess and famine lies a meanPlain, but not sordid ; though not splendid, clean.

Avidien, or his wife (no matter which, For him you'll call a dog, and her a bitch), Sell their presented partridges, and fruits, And humbly live on rabbits, and on roots : One half-pint bottle serves them both to dine, And is at once their vinegar and wine. But on some lucky day (as when they found A lost bank bill, or heard their son was diown'd),

At such a feast, old vinegar to spare,
Is what two souls so generous cannot bear :
Oil, though it stink, they drop by drop impart,
But souse the cabbage with a bounteous heart.

He knows to live, who keeps the middle state,
And neither leans on this side, nor on that ;
Nor stops, for one bad cork, his butler's pay,
Swears like Albutius, a good cook away,
Nor lets, like Nævius, every error pass,
The musty wine, foul cloth, and greasy glass.

Now hear what blessings temperance can bring ;
(Thus said our friend, and what he said I sing)
First, Health : the stomach cramm’d, from every dish,
A tomb of boil'd and roast, and flesh and fish,
Where bile, and wind, and phlegm, and acid jar,
And all the man is one intestine war,
Remembers oft the schoolboy's simple fare,
The temperate sleeps, and spirits light as air.

How pale, each worshipful and reverend guest
Rise from a clergy or a city feast !
What life in all that ample body, say?
What heavenly particle inspires the clay?
The soul subsides, and wickedly inclines
To seem but mortal, ev'n in sound divines.

On morning wings how active springs the mind
That leaves the load of yesterday behind !
How easy every labour it pursues !
How coming to the poet every muse !
Not but we may exceed, some holy time,
Or tired in search of truth, or search of rhyme ;
Ill health some just indulgence may engage ;
And more the sickness of long life, old age ;
For fainting age what cordial drop remains,
If our intemperate youth the vessel drains ?

Our fathers prais'd rank ven’son. You suppose,
Perhaps, young men! our fathers had no nose.
Not so: a buck was then a week's repast,
And ’t was their point, I ween, to make it last ;
More pleased to keep it till their friends could come,
Than eat the sweetest by themselves at home.
Why had not I in those good times my birth,
Ere coxcomb pies or coxcombs were on earth?

Unworthy he the voice of fame to hear,
That sweetest music to an honest ear;
(For faith, Lord Fanny ! you are in the wrong,
The world's good word is better than a song)
Who has not learn’d, fresh sturgeon and ham pie
Are no rewards for want and infamy !
When luxury has lick'd up all thy pelf,
Cursed by thy neighbours, thy trustees, thyself :
To friends, to fortune, to mankind a shame,
Think how posterity will treat thy name ;

And buy a rope, that future times may tell
Thou hast at least bestow'd one penny well.

“Right,” cries his lordship, “ for a rogue in need
To have a taste, is insolence indeed :
In me 'tis noble, suits my birth and state,
My wealth unwieldly, and my heap too great."
Then, like the sun, let bounty spread her ray,
And shine that superfluity away.
Oh, impudence of wealth! with all thy store,
How dar'st thou let one worthy man be poor?
Shall half the new-built churches round thee fall ?
Make quays, build bridges, or repair Whitehall :
Or to thy country let that heap be lent,
As M * * o’s was, but not at five per cent.

Who thinks that fortune cannot change her mind,
Prepares a dreadful jest for all mankind.
And who stands safest ? tell me, is it he
That spreads and swells in puff'd prosperity
Or blest with little, whose preventing care
In peace provides fit arms against a war ?

Thus Bethel spoke, who always speaks his thought,
And always thinks the very thing he ought :
His equal mind I copy what I can,
And, as I love, would imitate the man.
In South-Sea days not happier, when surmised
The lord of thousands, than if now excised;
In forests planted by a father's hand,
Than in five acres now of rented land.
Content with little, I can piddle here
On broccoli and mutton, round the year ;
But ancient friends (though poor, or out of play)
That touch my bell, I cannot turn away.
'Tis true, no turbots dignify my boards,
But gudgeons, flounders, what my Thames affords :
To Hounslow Heath I point, and Banstead Down,
Thence comes your mutton, and these chicks my own:
From yon old walnut-tree a shower shall fall ;
And grapes, long lingering on my only wall ;
And figs from standard and espalier join ;
The devil is in you if you cannot dine:
Then cheerful healths (your mistress shall have place);
And, what's more rare, a poet shall say grace.

Fortune not much of humbling me can boast : Though double tax’d, how little have I lost ! My life's amusements have been just the same, Before and after standing armies came. My lands are sold, my father's house is gone; I'll hire another's ? is not that my own, And yours, my friends! through whose free opening gate None comes too early, none departs too late ; (For I, who hold sage Homer's rule the best, Welcome the coming, speed the going guest.)

« Pray Heaven it last ! (cries Swift) as you go on ;
I wish to God this house had been your own :
Pity ! to build, without a son or wife ;
Why, you'll enjoy it only all your life.”
Well, if the use be mine, can it concern one,
Whether the name belong to Pope or Vernon ?
What's property ? dear Swift ! you see it alter
From you to me, from me to Peter Walter ;
Or, in a mortgage, prove a lawyer's share ;
Or, in a jointure, vanish from the heir ;
Or, in pure equity (the case not clear),
The Chancery takes your rent for twenty year:
At best, it falls to some ungracious son,
Who cries, “My father's damn’d, and all 's my own.”
Shades, that to Bacon could retreat afford,
Become the portion of a booby lord;
And Helmsley, once proud Buckingham's delight,
Slides to a scrivener or a city knight.
Let lands and houses have what lords they will,
Let us be fix'd, and our own masters still.

.1

47.—CRITICISM ON DON QUIXOTE.

HALLAM. (MR. HENRY HALLAM is one of our most distinguished living authors. His View of the State of Europe during the Middle Ages,' and his Constitutional History of England, have established his eminent rank as an historian. Of his merits as a scholar and a critic, we have only to open his 'Introduction to the Literature of Europe,' and see the extensive range of his information and the soundness of his judgment.]

The first part of Don Quixote was published in 1605. We have no reason, I believe, to suppose it was written long before. It became immediately popular ; and the admiration of the world raised up envious competitors, one of whom, Avellenada, published a continuation in a strain of invective against the author. Cervantes, who cannot be imagined to have ever designed the leaving his romance in so unfinished a state, took time about the second part, which did not appear till 1615.

Don Quixote is the only book in the Spanish language which can now be said to possess much of an European reputation. It has, however, enjoyed enough to compensate for the neglect of all the rest. It is to Europe in general, what Ariosto is to Italy, and Shakspeare to England; the one book to which the slightest allusions may be made without affectation, but not missed without discredit. Numerous translations and countless editions of them, in every language, bespeak its adaptation to mankind ; no critic has been paradoxical enough to withhold his admiration, no reader has ventured to confess a want of relish for that in which the young and old, in

every climate, have, age after age, taken delight. They have, doubtless, believed that they understood the author's meaning : and, in giving the reins to the gaiety that his fertile invention and comic humour inspired, never thought of any deeper meaning than he announces, or delayed their enjoyment for any metaphysical investigation of his plan.

A new school of criticism, however, has of late years arisen in Germany, acute, ingenious, and sometimes eminently successful in philosophical, or, as they denominate it, æsthetic analysis of works of taste, but gliding too much into refinement and conjectural hypothesis, and with a tendency to mislead men of inferior capacities

of a "

course,

for this kind of investigation into mere paradox and absurdity. An instance is supplied, in my opinion, by some remarks of Bouterwek, still more explicitly developed by Sismondi, on the design of Cervantes in Don Quixote, and which have been repeated in other publications. According to these writers, the primary idea is that

man of elevated character, excited by heroic and enthusiastic feelings to the extravagant pitch of wishing to restore the age of chivalry: nor is it possible to form a more mistaken notion of this work than by considering it merely as a satire, intended by the author to ridicule the absurd passion for reading old romances.” “The fundamental idea of Don Quixote,” says Sismondi, “is the eternal contrast between the spirit of poetry and that of prose.

Men of an elevated soul propose to themselves as the object of life to be the defenders of the weak, the support of the oppressed, the champions of justice and innocence. Like Don Quixote, they find on every side the image of the virtues they worship; they believe that disinterestedness, aobleness, courage, in short, knight errantry, are still prevalent; and, with no calculation of their own powers, they expose themselves for an ungrateful world, they offer themselves as a sacrifice to the laws and rules of an imaginary state of society.”

If this were a true representation of the scheme of Don Quixote, we cannot wonder that some persons should, as M. Sismondi tells us they do, consider it as the most melancholy book that has ever been written. They consider it also, no doubt, one of the most immoral, as chilling and pernicious in its influence on the social converse of mankind, as the Prince of Machiavel is on their political inter

“Cervantes,” he proceeds, “has shown us, in some measure, the vanity of greatness of soul, and the delusion of heroism. He has drawn in Don Quixote a perfect man (un homme accompli), who is nevertheless the constant object of ridicule. Brave beyond the fabled knights he imitates, disinterested, honourable, generous, the most faithful and respectful of lovers, the best of masters, the most accomplished and well educated of gentlemen, all his enterprizes end in discomforture to himself, and in mischief to others.” M. Sismondi descants on the perfections of the Knight of La Mancha with a gravity which is not quite easy for his readers to preserve.

It might be answered by a phlegmatic observer, that a mere enthusiasm for doing good, if excited by vanity, and not accompanied by common sense, will seldom be very serviceable to ourselves or to others; that men who, in their heroism and care for the oppressed, would throw open the cages of lions, and set galley-slaves at liberty, not forgetting to break the limbs of harmless persons whom they mistake for wrong-doers, are a class of whom Don Quixote is the real type ; and that, the world being much the worse for such heroes, it might not be immoral, notwithstanding their benevolent enthusiasm, to put them out of countenance by a little ridicule

. This, however, is not, as I conceive, the primary aim of Cervantes ; nor do I think that the exhibition of one great truth, as the predominant, but concealed, moral of a long work, is in the spirit of his age. He possessed a very thoughtful mind and a profound knowledge of humanity ; yet the generalization which the hypothesis of Bouterwek and Sismondi requires for the leading conceptions of Don Quixote, besides its being a little inconsistent with the valorous and romantic character of its author, belongs to a more advanced period of philosophy than his own. It will, at all events, I presume, be admitted that we cannot reason about Don Quixote except from the book, and I think it may be shown in a few words that these ingenious writers have been chiefly misled by some want of consistency which circumstances produced in the author's delineation of his hero.

In the first chapter of this romance, Cervantes, with a few strokes of a great master, sets before us the pauper gentleman, an early riser and keen sportsman, who “ when he was idle, which was most part of the year,” gave himself up to reading books of chivalry till he lost his wits. The events that follow are in every one's

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