« EelmineJätka »
Review of Books.
THE BOW IN THE CLOUD; or the Negro's me
morial, a collection of original contributions, in Prose and Verse, illustrative of the evils of Slavery, and commemorative of its abolition in the British Colonies. Jackson and Walford.
* This little work,' the preface informs us,
was projected more than seven years ago, when the state of affairs rendered it in the highest degree desirable to engage, by every legitimate effort, the thoughts and feelings of the British nation, on this momentous question. The happy change which has recently passed on the prospects of our poor African brethren, has indeed set a bow in the cloud ; and considerably altered the tenor of some part of this collection : but many contributions are retained, well calculated to keep alive in the reader's mind the long affliction of the slave, the accumulated sin of our oppression, and the wretchedness under which millions of our fellowcreatures are yet left to groan-not under our direct power, but with our guilty and active connivance at the atrocities of other countries. We are well pleased to see so elegant a volume boldly put forth at this interesting crisis, to fan the embers of a zeal which has by no means achieved its professed objects. Emancipation, in a modified form, has been conceded, it is true; and we are not among those who would scorn the precious boon, because we have it not exactly on terms of our own dictation : but we seriously regard it as giving only the first step towards the infinitely more important work of enfranchising the soul of the negro from a darker bondage. We really consider the volume before us well calculated to effect the object of stirring up minds, by way of remembrance; and a more suitable gift, in commemoration of this happy epoch, we could scarcely imagine. It is got up in a superior style of printing; and when, among a host of original contributors, we specify James Montgomery, Allan Cunningham, Josiah Conder, Fowell Buxton, with B. Barton, Edmeston, and others who have obtained an acknowledged station in the literature of the day, we guarantee the general character of the volume. Our readers may desire a specimen : we will give one from the pen of Edneston, and entitled
Over Afric's golden plains,
Golden visions seem to rise;
Freedom's sun shall light the skies.
Tuned to touch the inmost soul,
Holding hearts in its control, -
Scenes all beauteous and sublime;
To express the deeds of time.
When thy villages shall shine
Glorious with a Saviour's name, And his Spirit, all divine,
Kindle there a heavenly flame:
When beneath the palm-tree's shade
And the tropic free-bird's song, As the rapid evenings fade
In swift-coming night along :
Where the lion now awaits,
And the murderer lurks to slay, Praise shall dwell in all thy gates,
And thy children kneel to pray.
Sable queen of injured men,
God shall come and dwell in thee; Where is now the robber's den,
Shall his holy temple be.
Nor thine earthly greatness less,
Come it will—it is decreedGod will deign thy land to bless,
And thou shalt be blest indeed.
Armies through thy realms shall rise,
Navies ride upon thy seas, Senates, virtuous and wise,-.
Thine, thou sable Queen, are these.
Then, perchance, along thy roads,
Shall the tyrants' children roam; (He who now thine exile goads,)
Friendless, and without a home.
Then be mindful of the land
That was first to set thee free; She who burst thine iron band,
BRITAIN, NURSE OF LIBERTY.
When each heart now beating rests,
And each hand can do no more, Give back into our children's breasts
The boon their fathers gave before.
A NARRATIVE of the Sufferings and Martyrdoms
of Mr. Robert Glover, of Mancetter, a Protestant Gentleman, burnt at Coventry, A.D. 1555; and of Mrs. Lewes, of the same place ; a Lady burnt at Lichfield, A. D. 1557, &c. By the Rev. B. Richings, Vicar of Mancetter. Seeleys. 28. 6d.
We are utterly ashamed of a feeling that came over our mind, when transcribing the above title: a consciousness that some ingenuity might be required to recommend a work which, in this day, would be denounced by too many, as a needless raking up of smothered ashes - a rekindling of fiery resentment, on ground long since abandoned, as we are told, by the now enlightened and very liberal church of Rome: that church which is coming so much fashion among us, that we cannot presume to say, until informed by the Monday newspaper, whether the first officers of state have paid their sabbath devotions in a protestant temple, or a popish mass-house. God be praised for any portion of genuine protestantism that still ventures to rear its head, above the stagnant mantle of this levelling liberalism.
Mr. Richings has rescued from oblivion, and placed before us, some very interesting memorials, principally culled from the fruitful tomes of John Fox, and relating to several most blessed servants of Christ—the Glovers, Mrs. Lewes, and Augustine Bernher; intermixed with endearing fragments of Ridley, Bradford, Careless, and others of bright name, among the noble army of martyrs. The volume contains nothing acrimonious—nothing offensive to charity: always excepting that base counterfeit of the excellent gift, whose characteristic it is to cry,
" Peace” where God hath denounced perpetual war; to call evil, good; and to put sweet for bitter. We do, indeed, desire to be instant, in season and out of season, in warning our friends against the fatal snare, so rapidly overspreading the land.
Four months ago, we cursorily noticed a little book, which, we rejoice to perceive, has now reached a third edition—“Dr. M‘Hale's Letter to the Bishop of Exeter dissected, &c. by the Rev. E. Nangle, referring our readers to it, for a valuable exposé of the specious deceptions of modern Popery, and its undeniable aim, in the subversion of all that bears the character of Protestantism. We now beg their attention to Mr. Riching's Narrative, presenting, as it does, not so much a vivid picture of the perser cuting cruelty exercised against them, as a lovely and touching display of that heavenly temper wherewith our martyrs met it. There are some beautiful letters, full of the holy simplicity which adorned, as a fair chaplet, those who were pressing forward to the more dazzling crown of martyrdom ; evidently proving, in the sight of all men, that not for strife or vain-glory did they engage in the fiery conflict. The tendency of the book is practical ; exemplifying the author's prefatory remark, that “ Whatever changes may follow the pulling down of that Protestant constitution, which, under God, had so long been the defence and glory of our land, it is the consolation of the Christian to know that his faith centres in One who changeth not; and that he need not be afraid of any evil tidings, so long as his heart is fixed, trusting in the Lord.”-P. xiv.