« EelmineJätka »
tience of restraint; and in 1832, at the age visitor from Europe to America. of forty-nine (the culminating epoch of man's says one of his biographers, “ he passed his intellect, according to Aristotle), on Van Bu- summers, and his winters he spent in New ren's arrival here as minister, he resigned, York, in the streets of which Knickerbocker and returned to enjoy in his native country omnibuses rattled by Knickerbocker halls, the fame which he had earned in the old where Knickerbocker clubs held festivals, world.
and at whose wharves magnificent ships and It was a period of trial for American in- steamers, coming and going every day, also stitutions. South Carolina had just passed bore that immortal name.' His bachelor her " nullification ordinance ; President home was enlivened by the presence and atAndrew Jackson was preparing to enforce by tentions of nephews and nieces in abundance, arms, if need were, the maintenance of the and here he continued his literary labors, but Federal system; and Irving himself soon scarcely with the success of former years, and, found occasion to say, “I confess I see so unfortunately, under the pressure of similar many elements of sectional prejudice, hostil- pecuniary wants with those which had urged ity, and selfishness stirring and increasing in him on in the more elastic period of youth. activity and acrimony in this country, that I For the genius of speculation was always bebegin to doubt strongly of the long existence setting him, and his gains, whenever he of the general union.” He seems to have made any, were pretty sure to be “ locked up had just then the very rare visitation of a fit in unproductive land purchases,” or some of interest in political matters. ". The grave other equally unprofitable investment. “I debates in the Senate,” he says, shortly af- eannot afford any more to travel,” he writes terwards, “occupied my mind as intensely in 1863 ; 'and about the same period the old for three weeks as ever did a dramatic repre- despondency regarding literary success, sentation.” But this fit was too alien from thinking “ the vein bad entirely deserted his natural disposition to last. He refused him," was apt to beset his solitary hours. to stand for New York City on the “ Jackson In one respect, however, he was fortunate. ticket,” or even to give a vote. “ The more Very few literary men as sensitive as himself, I see of political lise here,” he says, 6 the have had so little to endure from hostile critmore I am disgusted with it. There is such icism, or from personal or party spite. His coarseness and vulgarity and dirty tricks min- own inoffensive and genial nature, as well as gled with the rough-and-tumble contest. I his established reputation, seem to have sewant no part or parcel in such warfares.”' cured him this unusual exemption in his own He
gave himself up with increased zest to his country as well as in England. We hardly only favorite occupations—the perpetration trace in the pages of his American life any of long rambling journeys, and the composi- record of this kind of annoyance, except some tion of books there anent. Already in the very insignificant attacks on the ground of first months of his return he had performed too great fondness for England, and one fua tour, gigantic by comparison with his rious onslaught from a jealous North CaroEuropean wanderings, over the western parts linian for “having observed, incidentally, of the Union, including many hundred miles that the Virginians retain peculiarities charof ride through the regions beyond the Mis-acteristic of the times of Queen Elizabeth sissippi ; adventures subsequently turned to and Sir Walter Raleigh,”-historical assoaccount in his - Tour on the Prairies," “As- ciations of which he deemed that his own toria,” and the “ Adventures of Captain Bon- State had the monopoly. Deville.'
In 1842, Daniel Webster, under the presiIn 1835, Washington Irving established dency of Tyler, obtained for Washington Irvhimself at a cottage on the Hudson close to ing a nomination as American Minister to the legendary "Sleepy Hollow," and among Spain : an unexpected but not ungrateful the favorite scenes of his youth. This dwel- honor, as, like other men, he seems to have ling-an old mansion of the Van Tassel fam- found the fascinations of that country, when ily, at first called 6. Wolfert's Roost,” once he had become familiar with it, irresistafterwards christened by the fancy name of ible. He remained there three years, during “Sunnyside,” was well known in after years which he witnessed many a strange revoluas the resort of almost every distinguished tion in the politics of the Peninsula, includ
ing the downfall of Espartero and the tri- | throws a soft coloring on the past, until the umph of Maria Christina over the Constitu- very roughest places, through which I strugtional party, the rise and the fall of Narvaez; gled with many a heart-ache, lose all their of all which very graphic accounts are given sixty-second birthday finds me in fine health,
asperity in the distance. in his correspondence contained in these in the full enjoyment of all my faculties, with volumes. The " consumption of ministers in my sensibilities still fresh, and in such buxthis country,” he says, “is appalling. To om activity that, on my return yesterday from carry on a negotiation with such transient the Prado, I caught myself bounding up-stairs functionaries is like bargaining at the windows three steps at a time, to the astonishment of of a railway car : before you can get a reply the porter, and checked myself, recollecting to a proposition, the other party is out of that it was not the pace befitting a minister sight.” “But it was scarcely a happy period retain such health and good spirits, I should
and a man of my years. If I could only of his life. He missed alike the domestic be content to live on to the age of Methuseenjoyments of Sunnyside, and the sparkling lah."--Vol. iii., p. 307-8. society and agreeable flatteries of London and Paris. Spanish politics suited him no better of President Polk and the Democratic party
In consequence (we fancy) of the accession than American :
to power, he gave up his appointment in “I am wearied,” he writes, “ and at times 1846, and Romulus M. Sanders, of North heart-sick of the wretched politics of this Carolina, reigned in his stead. In August country, where there is so much intrigue, that year he paid his last fleeting visit to falsehood, profligacy, and crime, and so little England, and in September “ bade adieu forof high honor and pure patriotism in politi- ever to European scenes.” cal affairs. The last ten or twelve years of
With his return to his native country from my life have shown me so much of the dark side of human nature, that I began to have Spain the present volumes end. The advenpainful doubts of my fellow-men and look turous portion of his life had ceased. His back with regret to the confiding period of later years were chiefly spent in executing the my literary career, when, poor as a rat, but task of collecting and republishing his varirich in dreams, I beheld the world through ous works, and in the production of his the medium of my imagination, and was apt “ Life of Washington,” which has no doubt to believe men as good as I wished them to its merits, but is not one of those composibe.”
tions by which he will be ultimately rememBut these melancholy fits were counteracted bered. He enjoyed to a very advanced age by a full appreciation of what no man esti- his quiet domestic happiness at Sunnyside, mated better than himself—the rich substi- dying in 1859. His countrymen honored him tute which Memory affords in advanced life in life, and are justly proud of the more cos. for decayed Imagination :
mopolitan honors which he achieved in the
We do not quáram now,” he says, at sixty-two, w at general world of literature. that time of life when the mind has a stock rel with Mr. Rufus William Griswold, author of recollections on which to employ itself : of “ The Prose Writers of America,” when and though these may sometimes be of a mel- he reminds us that “ Irving's subjects are as ancholy nature, yet it is a “sweet-souled mel three American and two Spanish to one Eng. ancholy,' mellowed and softened by the lish ; the periods of his residence in Ameroperation of time, and has no bitterness in it. My life has been a checkered one, crowded ica, Spain, and England, in the years of his with incidents and personages, and full of literary activity, bear to each other about the shifting scenes and sudden transitions. All same proportion ; and the productions which these I can summon up and cause to pass have won for him the most reputation, even before me, and in this way can pass hours in Europe, are not only such as had no models together in a kind of reverie. When I was in the literature of the Old World, but such young my imagination was always in the ad- as could only have been written by one inticastles in the air: now memory comes in the mately acquainted with the peculiar life and place of imagination, and I look back over
manners by which they were suggested ;" the region I have travelled. Thank God! nor even for informing us that his style the same plastic feeling which used to deck has the ease and purity and more than the all the future with the hues of fairy-land, grace and polish of Franklin ; without the
intensity of Brown, the compactness of Cal- will assert for him rather a modest place houn, or the strength and splendor of Web- in that great Parthenon of literary renown ster.” But, leaving these special causes of which will one day arise when the political admiration to his countrymen, and withdraw- distinctions which now divide the great Briting, for our part, any claim to appropriate ish race are forgotten, or become of secondary him on the ground of his intense fondness for import, in comparison with that pervading the domestic life, the society, the traditions, unity of language, usages, and associations the classical writers of our little England, we which fuses it all in one.
GORTSCHAKOFF TO GREAT BRITAIN. Whilst our emperor's intentions must in contemWe have pleasure in observing that Lord Russell
plation rest, owns the fact
An armistice is, of all things, an impossible That a barren controversy it is idle to protract ;
request, From unnecessary argument we're glad that he 'Twould amount to a concession which we really abstains.
couldn't stand ; And a practical solution of the question that re- Bayonet we cannot lay by, hold artillery and mains
brand, With us wishes to arrive at-much we thank him Drop the scourge, take down the gallows, stay. for his pains.
the hangman's busy hand. Every party to a treaty—let us grant what's very We can let no European Congress those six points
discuss Has a right that same to construe from that With irrelevant palaver, most impertinent to us, party's point of view;
Dignity forbids us, too, with France and England That's to say, provided always its construction's
to debate so far fair
On administrative details, special to the Russian As to rest within the limits of the sense the text
State, will bear.
Ordered all by an omniscient autocratic potenBootless is that right exerted ; act upon't, for
tate. aught we care.
But two other States there are with us indissoluOf a government the basis, if the governors are
bly bound, wise,
In a solidarity so strict we share one common In the confidence not only of the governed, mind
ground, you, lies;
Since we three divide that kingdom which we But as much, and, I may rather say, in fact, a
three combined to seize ; great deal more,
Them we shall be very happy to accept as refIn respect for its authority, which force must first restore :
We'll arrangements make with Austria and with Then pacific moral virtues we may try, but not
Prussia, if you please. before.
But, until the Polish rebels to submission shall Those demands which you invite us so politely to
We shall shoot them, hang them, flog their woBut express our august master's gracious will ; men, waste, destroy and burn. they do, indeed.
So excuse us if we don't accept your liberal inviThey're ukases long ago decreed in his imperial
tation ; brain :
To do nothing of the kind it is our fixed deterThat is where they are at present ; that is where
mination : they must remain.
You may all accept the assurance of our high Ere we can say more about them order must in consideration. Warsaw reign.
Punch, 1 Aug. You for Poland ask a charter, framed with points in number six,
THE lava-stream from Etna has now reached Much his majesty thinks of them, but that they'll the well-known Casino degli Inglesi
, which it enresult in “nix,”
tirely destroyed, together with the materials for Wont restore the reign of order, wont appease repairing it, lately conveyed thither.
unquiet souls, Wont keep down a population, whom, save terror, naught controls,
“ LES Amours de Mr. Gilfil, par George Eliot, For they don't express the wishes of the sanguin- traduit de l'Anglais par E. Pasquet,” is among ary Poles.
the recent announcements of Lacroix in Brussels.
From The Spectator, 8 Aug. fuse with disdain to accept the oligarchy as THE OPPORTUNITY OF THE NORTH.
its masters, decline without fear to take them
back as equals, and impose a boundary on THE public mind is swinging round once their action which will render the triumph more a little too fast. The Confederate loan, of freedom ultimately secure. There can be which just before Gettysburg was quoted at no reasonable doubt that the North, if it a fractional premium, has this week been pleases, may now secure the boundaries of Bold as low as thirty-five discount, and the the Potomac and Mississippi. The retreat tremendous fall is a true index of the decline of Lee renders another attempt at the offenof confidence among the friends of the South. sive a most dangerous undertaking. The loss Observers, as usual, are watching events in- of Vicksburg and Port Hudson brings the stead of studying the forces which produce line of blockade close to the very heart of the them, and give to the capture of Vicksburg Confederacy, and releases 130,000 men, who, the importance which, with much less reason, undoubtedly, if the Washington Cabinet they assigned to the rout of Bull Run. Tbere please, can clear the western bank. They seems to us, we confess, a dangerous exag- may do even more than that. If the Presigeration in this view. The special strength dent's proclamation is carried out steadily.to of American democracy—the lax organization its logical conclusion, i.e., the freedom of which makes it, like other fluids, hardly com- every black man, they may re-organize socipressible, has, indeed, preserved the North ety from the Mississippi to the Rio Grande. from a most serious danger. Imagine the They may so fill the country with free setresult of a French encampment for three days tlers, so ally themselves with the classes who in Kent, and contrast it with the result of dislike slavery as a competing form of labor Lee's weeks of unresisted invasion. The per--like the Germans of Texas-80 completely Beverance of the North, the dully grand per- beat down the power of the very small caste sistence which is the attribute only of men which is really devoted to the institution," who are at once Anglo-Saxon and free, has, that they may turn the vast regions between it is true, at last asserted its superiority over the great river and the Pacific into sources thearistoeraticcoherence which is the strength of strength. We are not certain, the infinite of the South. While the latter is reeling contingencies of war being considered, that with fatigue, feeling day by day the loss of this would not be their wiser course. The the nervous force which has supplied the North would possess a vast and coherent docomparative deficiency of muscles, its rival is minion large enough for all ambitions, and but gathering strength-only beginning to growing every day in the strength and the feel that heat of the blood which enables quiet riches derived from immigration and toil. men to display their full activity. The South The South, always dangerous as a subjugated is bleeding at every pore, while the North is enemy, would as an independent State within only sweating; and if the contest continues those bounds be at worst but a weak foe, under its present conditions, victory more or with its dreams all over, its leaders discredless complete is only a question of time. For ited, its society slowly disintegrating under the thousandth time in history observers will the influence of the freedom hemming it all be compelled to acknowledge that when the around. No fugitive slave law would be concontest is one between climates victory never ceded in the treaty, and the North, without remains with the children of the sun. But a Slave State within its limits, would soon the time is not yet, and as yet there is no learn to feel that pride in protecting a fugiproof that the conditions of the contest will tive slave which it already feels in defending always remain the same. The triumph of the a fugitive Hungarian, -ă pride of national North is the more reasonable probability, but strength wholly apart from philanthropy. it is not as yet the fact
Slavery might then be inserted, like herediWhat has been gained, as it seems to us, tary titles or offices, among the institutions -who are friends of the North not for the probibited even to the individual States, and cause they are striving to secure, but for the the extension of that great evil would be once cause which is bound up in theirs,-is simply for all forbidden. A powerful North, ruled this. Amidst almost incessant defeat, and in by a completely free society, a weak South spite of every adverse circumstance, of un- tending always towards freedom, slavery lucky generals and incompetent statesmen, of placed in bonds tightening with every suc the grossest treachery within and the most ceeding year, free society enabled to extend strenuous ability without, the incoherent but itself south and west-this will seem to Engfree society of the North has advanced thus lishmen, at least, no inglorious conclusion far; it can dictate the permanent boundary even to so vast a contest, and this may, we between free and slave institutions, it can, as believe, be enforced. The South, it is true, it were, chain up the South within limits in asserts that rather than submit to such terms which its social system must rot. It can re- it will perish in the field ; but it has little
option. If the North can once be persuaded to be watched by the old, trades left to perto make up its mind to a defensive war, the form themselves, and the whole manhood of South will but beat itself to death against the the country flung at once into the field. The bars. The hope of foreign assistance will be order may not be obeyed, but if Mr. Davis at once at an end, for Europe will not inter- can plead that the only alternative is subfere to defeat terms at once so liberal and so mission the probability is that it will. There satisfactory. The fierce enthusiasm which is no government on the earth so strong as has filled her armies will decline, for peace an oligarchy backed by a mob, and that is has its blessings even for slaveholders, and the position of the Government of the South. men with their independence secured will not The appeal, too, is made to men now thorfight on forever for a mere dream of empire. oughly excited by the war, contemptuous of Guerilla bands, however powerful as a means labor, and disinclined to strife only from a of defence, are utterly useless as weapons for reluctance to accept the restraints of discithe invasion of a civilized State, and the pline. There is a powerful army to enforce North has only to wait patiently to compel the draft, unscrupulous leaders to direct its the South into submission to terms like these. efforts, and the form of patriotism so careThus much, we believe, the North could, fully cultivated in the South, to give a sancwithout another battle, secure-an immense, tion to any act which may seem expedient for indeed almost an incredible, advance on her the defence of “ State rights.” The draft, position six months ago.
which English newspapers do not censure, Beyond this, however, she is not, despite the though loud in their denunciation of the far recent successes, as yet in a position to go, lighter draft of the North, may be resisted in and if, impatient of any terms except uncon- isolated districts, in places where Union feelditional surrender, she clings to the project ling survives, in mountainous regions where of effecting a complete and visible subjuga- resistance or evasion are comparatively easy; tion, she will once again be exposed to all but the net will catch, we fear, the mass of the the chances of war. Her position is, it is white population, and every man in the South true, favorable on many points for the pros- will be, as Calhoun hoped, either a slaveecution of the campaign. Mr. Lincoln need holder or a soldier. At the same time the no longer divert one half his strength in order States are urged to increase President Davis's to secure the Mississippi, and with it the cor- powers, to enable him to appoint and dismiss, dial adherence of the populous States of the to control all trade, to use all wealth, to make West. Grant can now commence with a fair him, in fact, dictator throughout the South. prospect an invasion of Alabama, and of the Many of these powers will be refused, but many great section of the Confederacy hitherto ex- more will be taken, and it is a despot governempt from most of the evils of war. Mobile ing an armed nation that the North will have can now be attacked with a reasonable chance to meet. That they will defeat him is probof success, and the Charleston expedition able ; but to be forced once more to crush arwill, in all probability succeed. At least, mies as strong as those which the South arthe Federal troops, unless disheartened by rayed in January of this year, and this after some overwhelming disaster at the commence- two years of bloodshed, expenditure, and exment of their attack, have hitherto always ertion, is a frightful obligation. Moreover, succeeded. Rosecranz has a fair chance of the North, supreme in the west, and dangerdriving General Bragg from Chattanooga, ous on the coast, is at one point still only on and with the Confederacy split in twain, Al- an equality, that point being the one which, abama entered by a successful army of a in prestige, outweighs all. The story that hundred thousand men, South Carolina par- General Lee is already threatening Maryland alyzed, North Carolina discontented, and the is, we think, visibly fabulous ; but General key of the last great delta safe in Northern Lee may be reinforced, may turn, and may hands, the war must perforce decline into an once more remind the North that its best vicinsurrection. Still, these are only the results tories in the East have been gained upon its which may in time occur, and when they own ground. A defeat in Virginia would bave occurred an insurrection is still the sec- undo half the work of the year, bring every ond most dangerous evil that a republic can Southerner into the ranks, and enable every have to face. It is evident that Mr. Davis Democrat once more to clamor for peace. and the coherent body of slaveholders who That the North amidst new defeats would are the support and the agents of his rule, still in the end prevail is, we think, the leshave resolved on a last desperate effort. Re- son taught by the history of the two years. lying, as he has always relied, on the fact But it is a matter of doubt whether the difthat the poor population of the South is not ference between the South held like a Poland, also that which labors, the Southern Presi- and a dependent South limited by the Missisdent has ventured on the extreme step of sippi, with its evil “ institution” decaying, calling out the levy en masse. The slaves are its dream of empire ended, its political weight