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Beside his rosy sleep, hath vanish'd all
Before that pallid shadow! Whence ?-0 Heaven !
Is it thy mute reproach unto my silence ?
To break it-how? To say unto my father,
I am a Christian ! Oh, 'twere easier far
To speak those words unto assembled Carthage
Than one should even raise a doubt in him !
I cannot, while he stands full in the sun,
A child for hopefulness, a man for strength,
I cannot play the tempest to his joy,
And smite him to the earth.”—p. 19.

In the main part of the poem, and “in the development of character and motive,” as the author expressly intimates, dramatic effect has been made a secondary object. Perpetua is unreal in her calmness. She is raised above the passionate emotions, the subduing tenderness of our nature, and a sense of coldness, of something statue-like in the effect, is left upon the admiring but unsympathizing mind. Neither is this compensated for by a rich flow of verse. In the style there is strength and simplicity, and it is so delightful to meet with this that we advert with reluctance to the inharmonious effect of the constant occurrence of the ellipsis, and the serious liberties with our language which occasionally obscure the meaning, and cannot be considered consistent with strict correctness, either grammatical or lexicographal.

We must enter our protest against such easy negligence as the conversion of “ apart” into a noun-substantive, and the faulty ellipsis in the last line.

“ Yon niche, where an apart was sought, alone

From crowds that own'd no reverence for him
They nam’d their God—is still the God they name!"-p. 50.

In the same passionate address to Jupiter Olympus we have the following negligences of a similar kind.

" Jove! give back-
Give back those tears were shed in vain to thee;
Give back those trembling vows were made to thee;
Give back the sacrifice was paid to thee,
That I may render all to that dear God
Hath freed me from those agonies of fear
Thou reckonest for worship.”

We cannot be guilty of the injustice of stopping our quotation where our censure ends, and withholding the beautiful passage that follows,—even though with some awkwardness we shall have to return to our interrupted criticisms.

“Oh! to him
Vows upward rise like springing flowers, from whom
Sweet mercy first hath dropp'd the precious seed;
And sacrifice, that ceaseth, while it maketh,
So much of love doth mingle with the deed ;
And blessed pray'r, that wings the trusting soul
At once into the heaven where He dwells;
And while we hallow his almighty name,
Doth teach us say, Our Father. Hear me now;
Hear, thou great God of love; hear blessed Christ!
Ye, dwelling not in temples made with hands,
Up in the eternal greatness of the heav'ns-
Bear witness, all ye myriads of angels,
That, like to radiant stars, cluster in heav'n ;
Thus, on my knees,-thus—thus, before the Lord,
I solemn vow,-record it, all ye hosts,-
Never again to come within this temple,
Whate'er the penalty,-or death to me,
Or agony-worse death-to those I love.
Upon my head so let it come, O God!”

We go back ungracefully to our unexhausted instances of unallowable ellipsis.

“Ay, you may jest ; 'tis none.”—p. 3. The selfish and ambitious father speaks thus of the power of Perpetua to aid his projects :

“For Vivia, mark !
Beneath the gentleness that you call child,
There is a depth, nor you nor I can sound.
Thus much can I ; to know there haunts the power
Shall aid the hopes stretch o'er yon heaving sea,

E’en to the Tiber's mouth.”—p. 16.

The last defect of this nature we are about to cite, we find surrounded by such beauty that we extract the whole passage, and we shall rejoice if our criticism is utterly forgotten and lost in the excitement of higher and better sentiments.

“ O love, that shone so bright o'er all the world,

That every man seem'd image of a God!
He dwelleth not in temples made with hands ;
The temples of the living Lord are ye ;

His kingdom is within you. Thus for me,
From that time forth, did every human form
Stand for a living shrine of deity.
How dark soe'er, no fire upon the altar,
Still was it man-man capable of God!
Each blacken'd criminal for me became
A hope towards an angel; for I felt
The meanest slave or birth or crime doth own
Is yet a brother unto him was lift,
By promise of the Lord of life and light,
Up to a paradise from off a cross !
O grand redemption-true equality-
Beheld in Christian love! Nor least nor greatest ;
Master and slave, rich, poor, all come alike,

Blest by redeeming love, into heav'n's kingdom.”—p. 63. There is an occasional tendency in our author to yield to the temptation of what is called fine writing. This consists chiefly in the use of glittering and imposing, but unmeaning and inappropriate figures. In the following passage Christ is not exalted, but lowered, when he is called “the immortal Poet of Humanity." Such an expression infallibly suggests ideas and comparisons of the most inappropriate kind,—and to our feeling there is a levity in the term which the sacredness of Christian sentiment rejects. Though his character was the divinest of creations, yet in no sense can we call Christ a Poet, except as we might call God a Poet, and by so doing offend all right feeling. Nothing again can be more hard and material, glittering but unmeaning, than the comparison of Christ's mind to a stylus, a dead instrument for tracing impressions on dead substances,—and to a classical reader who has but one idea of a stylus, it must be “ confusion worse confounded” to have to think of it as “ diamonded with light." Yet we have seen this very faulty passage quoted with high praise.

“ Bow down to him, a mightier one than all,

The immortal Poet of Humanity!
Whose mind, a stylus diamonded with light,
Jllumes the while it graves its radiant truths
Upon the fleshly tables of the heart.”—p. 65.

But we gladly turn to the more gracious office of presenting to our readers some of the many beauties of this poem. Saturus is the Christian instructor of Perpetua,—and here is their first meeting in the drama. Vivia had been communing with her divided heart, on her child, her duty and her death, when

Enter Saturus.

Peace be within this house !


Now all is well.

Peace, even in death ?--You thought of Him
Whose legacy was 'peace' even in death ;
Whose first immortal blessing on the Twelve,
When he had overcome the conqueror,
Was, 'peace be unto you!'- You thought of Him:
Why are you silent ?


Under thy rebuke,
Which mine own conscience sharpens to rebuke,
Not thy intent; myself and mine own sorrow
Usurp'd the place of Him thou wilt restore.

Lives there a sorrow that Christ cannot heal ?
Nay, sorrow dies; and dying, she bequeaths
A rich endowment for a noble joy ;
Dissolves in light, to bid us hold her tears
As precious dews that visit us from heav'n,
To nurture up the soul to richer growth;
Our light afflictions are but for a moment :
Is there a sorrow that Christ cannot heal ?"-p. 55.

We know not that the power of Faith to live a life of peace, and to look into the heart of things for the hidden workings of the love of God, has ever been more truly stated than in the following passage. We are aware that a more sparing use of the Fancy would have given to it more of depth and power.

" Vivia.
There is a thought-say, would it be a sin
To track a mystery?


Woe for the truth,
Had every mystery remain'd untrack'd !

There are some mysteries, I scarce begin
To thread them, but from out them up springs love,
Flies through them like a bird along a grove,

And sings them to forgetfulness in joy.
But one e'en now doth come to hold her mute :
Oppression yet doth crush with iron foot,
And tyranny makes strong iniquity,
Though a Redeemer hath appear'd for man,
Who bade us look to heaven for a God
Who made us, loves us, bids us love each other;
Our will is happiness for those we love,-
Our power is so much weaker than our will ;
But Love omnipotent ? -


I do believe, Were love omnipotent within ourselves, Woe were extinct. I cannot answer theeI am but man, while He is God o'er all. Yet as a man show manliness in this, That I will trust the Pow'r hath given me all, Nor meanly scant my thankfulness with doubt. The mystery sleeps, while Faith, with arms afold, Over a trusting heart, sits smiling by. It sleeps, o'er-canopied by starry heavens, And cradled in earth's beauty. Let it rest : While sunshine comes to herald in the day ; While flow'rs and breezes intermingle sweets ; While birds still warble gladness out, like light Athwart the azure heav'ns; while mountains standThose silent, shadowy chroniclers of timeTo wake within our eyes and hearts a worship; While yon great joy of God, the ocean, heaves To seek the skies that mate it in his glory; While stately pageants throng the heav'ns by day, And multitudinous brightness crowds the night; While the calm interposing twilight comes, Tender and gracious, hand in hand with these Her grander sisters-(see, yon unmatchable star Now decks her dusky forehead into light !); While man, the fine epitome of all, Is master made of all, yea, more than allHath given to him a mind that can create Worlds endless out of this, with leave of choice Of what or seemeth good or ill to him ; While love, the crowning gift that comes from heav'n, A ray that streams direct from forth the Godhead, Lights up an earthborn man into an angel, Who wings his way to heaven upon the track ; While for each sorrow, high and strong soe'er, There lives a stronger good may ride the wave,

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