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and may, perhaps, recognize the sen- framing me; seasoned me hastily with timents of Carlos, Castalio, and Jaf- all the most violent inclinations and fier, expressed in the poet's own cha- desires, but omitted the ornaments that racter, with the vivacity and energy should make those qualities become me. of natural affections. p. 313.
I have consulted too my lot of fortune, One of these curious memorials of and find how foolishly I wish possesinfatuation we shall insert, and ad- sion of what is so precious, all the duce, in corroboration of Mr. Thorn- world's too cheap for it; yet still I ton's remark, the corresponding sen- love, still I doat on, and cheat myself, timents in Otway's plays. The ill suc- very content, because the folly pleases. cess of Otway is less surprising, if we · me." It is pleasure to think how fair
you are, though, at the same time, consider that he had instructed the
worse than damnation to think how obiect of his attachment, in the cha- cruel. Why should you tell me you racter of Monimia, how to repel the have shut your heart up for ever? It advances of a libertine. The ardor is an argument unworthy of yourself, of his feelings occasionally bursts sounds like reserve, and not so much forth, almost in the language of
sincerity, as sure I may claim even
from a little of your friendship. Can poetry; and it is curious to observe
your age, your face, your eyes, and ihat the habit of composition has,
your spirit bid defiance to that sweet - in a few places, betrayed him into
power? the metre of blank verse,
No, you know better to what end heaven 1 TO MADAM
made you ;
Know better how to manage youth and 'In value of your quiet, though it would be the utter ruin of my own, I
than to let them die and pall upon have endeavoured this day to persuade
your hands. 'Tis me, 'tis only me you myself never more to trouble you with have barred your heart against. My a passion that has tormented me suf sufferings, my diligence, my sighs, ficiently already; and is so much the
complaints, and tears, are of no power more a torment to me, in that I per
with your haughty nature: yet sure, ceive it is become one to you, who are
you might at least vouchsafe to pity much dearer to me than myself. I them, have laid all the reasons my distracted Not shift me off with gross, thick, homecondition would let me have recourse spun friendship, to, before me: I have consulted my pride, whether, after a rival's posses
the common coin that passes betwixt sion, I ought to ruin all my peace for
worldly interests: must that be my a woman that another has been more
lot ? Take it, ill-natured, take it; blest in, though no man ever loved as
give it to him who would waste his I did : but love, victorious love! o'er
Fortune for you; give it the man throws all that, and tells me, it is his
would fill your lap with gold, court nature never to remember;
you with offers of vast rich posses
sions; give it the fool that hath noHe still looks forward from the present
thing but his money to plead for him: hour,
[happiness; love will have a much nearer relation, Expecting still new dawns, new rising
or none. I ask for glorious happiness; never looks back, never regards what you bid me welcome to your friendis past, and left behind him, but ship: it is like seating me at your buries and forgets it quite
side-table, when I have the best preIn the hot fierce pursuit of joy before
tence to your right-hand at the feast,
I love, I doat, I am mad, and know him.
no measure; nothing but extremes I have consulted too my very self,
can give me ease; the kindest love, and find how careless nature was in or most provoking scorn: yet even
Matted like furies' tresses-my poor limbs
[delights Chain'd to the ground, and, 'stead of the Which happy lovers taste, my keeper's stripes,
[dish A bed of straw, and a coarse wooden Of wretched sustenance-when thus thou
see'st me, Prythee have charity and pity for me: Let me enjoy this thought.
vol. ii. Orphan, p. 261.
your scorn would not perform the cure: it might indeed take off the edge of hope, but damned despair will gnaw my heart for ever. If then I am not odious to your eyes, if you have charity enough to value the well-being of a man that holds you dearer than you can the child your bowels are most fond of, By that sweet pledge of your first softest
love, I charm and here conjure you To pity the distracting pangs of mine; pity my unquiet days and restless nights ; pity the frenzy that has half possest my brain already, and makes me write to you thus ravingly : the wretch in Bedlam is more at peace than I am! And if I must never possess the heaven I wish for, my next desire is, (and sooner the better) a clean-swept cell, a merciful keeper, und your compassion when you find me there. Think and be generous.
Vol. iii. pp. 317, 318. The first passage, which is printed in Italics, may be compared with another in Venice Preserved :
Jaf. — tell me why, good heav'n, Thou mad'st me what I am ; with all the
spirft, Aspiring thoughts and elegant desires, That fill the happiest man? Ah! rather
why Didst tliou not form me sordid as my fate, Base-minded, dull, and fit to carry burdens ?
[on me? Why have I sense to know the curse that's Is this just dealing, Nature ?
vol. iii. Ven. Pr. p. 22.
The most remarkable of Otway's prose-writings are these letters to Mrs. Barry, and his Dedications. The latter are in general disgraced by that servility which was a characteristic of the age. The prologues and epilogues are mostly indifferent productions ; but the prologue prefixed to Caius Marius has, on the whole, more of the attributes of poetry. We cannot pass much approbation upon the minor poems; but The Complaint, a song, vol. iii. p. 306. is pretty, simple, and interesting.
Respecting the superintendence of this edition, Mr. Thornton speaks thus at the commencement of vol. i.
When dramatic amusements are pursued with so much avidity as at present, and the works of our chief benefactors to the stage are so extensively diffused, it is somewhat surprising, that those of Otway, whose powers in tragedy are of such acknowledged excellence, should be less conspicuous. The most correct edition of Otwav's Works is that of 1757, in 3 vols. 12mo. but in this several of his poems are omitted, and it discovers, besides, many errors which a proper attention to the early copies would have prevented. It has also become extremely scarce. To remedy this inconvenience, and to present to the public an accurate and complcte collection of the works of this eminent author, have been the obJects for which this edition has been undertaken. The editor has bestowed no inconsiderable pains upon the text, which has been collated with the quarto copies and earliest editions. He
The second powerfully reminds us of Monimia's pathetic appeal to her brother, in the Orphan: Oli, shouldst thou know the cause of my lamenting,
[scorn me; I'm satisfied, Chamont, that thou would'st Thou would'st despise the abject lost Monimia,
[beauty: but. No more would'st praise this hated When in some cell, distracted, as I shall be,
flocks Thou see'st me lic ---- tliese unregarded
has followed the modern example, of should recommend a slight alteraprefixing a short critical introduction tion in the Tempest, which might
preserve the sense of the line, withtime, political allusions, or the revo
out injuring its metre. The playlutions in manners and customs, have obscured the text, explanatory notes
house editions of Shakspeare have are introduced. In some places, re
exercised such freedoms with his semblances between the author and drama, that an inviolable adherence other writers have been pointed out; to the text, which must here prove not that the editor considers every offensive either to the ears of critics, instance of this kind to be a plagia
be a plagia- or to the majority of the audience, rism, but because it is interesting to
can only proceed from the stubborn observe the peculiar form which a thought assumes, when produced by
affectation of pedantry. Why not the same train of reflection, or gene
insert the copulative and, and prorated by the same object, in different nounce aches as one syllable? minds. To the whole is appended an extract from a scarce novel, which is Their bloody ensigns all display'd appear, an object of no small curiosity, since And hold an am'rous combat with the air : it was the mine from whence Otway Loosely they fly, and with a wanton play, drew so rich a treasure as “ The Seem to salute the sun-beams in their Orphan.”—pp. i.-iii.
Alcib. vol. i. p. 26. We do not always approve of the so, in Shakspeare's King Jonn. punctuation or the division of the “Mocking the air with colors idly blank verse in these volumes; but in
spread.” observing thus much, as no two per- As stars in a dim senate rule the night, sons will, in these respects, exactly But vanish at the sun's more potent light. agree, we cannot intend to convey
Alcib. vol. i. p. 27. any censure of the editor. The notes Mr. Thornton quotes some verses of Mr. Thornton, although appo- of Sir H. Wootton : we may also site, are few; and we should have produce the well-known lines of been gratified to see them in more Lucretius on Epicurus : abundance from the same able hand.
Præstrinxit, stellas exortus uti ætherius We shall now state the apparent imitations of other writers, which
Tho' thus confin'd, my agile thoughts
may fly have passed unnoticed by the edi- Thro all the regions of variety.-P. 35. tor; or coincidencies of sentiment
- namque istuc mens animusque in the juvenile plays of Otway, and
Fert, et amat spatiis distantia rumpere his matured productions. Some claustra.-HOR. passages we may also refer to, initated from Otway by later authors. Why should dull law rule Nature, who
[tray'd? Kind heav'n, let heavy curses
That law by which herself is now beGall his old age; cramps, aches, rack his Ere man's corruptions made him wretchbones! Ven. Pr. p. 28. ed, he
[most free :
Was born most noble that was born The opponents of Mr. Kemble's
Each of himself was lord, and uncondissyllable aches should be referred fin'd, to this author, of later date than Obey'd the dictates of his godlike mind. Shakspeare. But as the jus et nor
When fools began to love obedience, ma loquendi refuses to acquiesce in
And call their slavery, safety and defence. the pronunciation of antiquity, we
Don Carl. p. 96. VOL. I.
The sentiments of Pierre. in How often, on the brink of some dis-' Venice Preserved, are here visible in
Have we stood tottering, yet still kept embryo; and some lines uttered by So well, the busiest searchers ne'er could Tissaphernes (Alcib. p. 37.) will re follow
spicion. cal the memory of the same cha- Those subtle tracks which puzzled ail sus
Ven. Pr. p. 54. racter.
Shakspeare has ascribed a similar There's something in them leads my soul speech to Brutus, in Julius Cæsar,
astray, As be who in a necromancer's glass,
on the subject of conspiracy; and Beholds his wish'd-for fortune by him Addison, in Cato, has followed the pass.
D. Carl. p. 98. traces of his predecessors. One of the happiest passages in a
Oh think what dreadful moments pass late theatrical Address to the public,
The birth of plots and their last fatal displays a strong resemblance: Oh, 'tis a dreadful interval of time,
Fill'd up with horror all, and big with While thus Remembrance borrows Ban
death! quo's glase,
(pass, To claim thé sceptred shadows as they
Although Otway is chiefly known And we the mirror hold, where imag'd as a dramatic poet, by his writings
shine Immortal names, emblazon'd on our line,
in blank verse, these volumes conPause, ere their feebler offspring you tain various essays in the heroic condemn
couplet; as, Alcibiades, Don CarReflect how hard it is to rival them!
los, and Titus and Berenice.
In versification, our poet is of We disclaim the slightest inten
course unable to contest the palm tion of charging Lord Byron, whose,
with Dryden. His works abound genius is too powerful to need such
with triplets, which are very offenaid, with intentional imitation ; but
sive to a correct ear, unless spait is not unwelcome to mark the
ringly introduced; or if the third developement of the same thought
line do not possess some point, or in different minds.
other merit in composition, to atone Juff. -- there's not a heart amongst
for its irregular intrusion. But if them
suature employed with judgment in the heBut's stout as death, yet honest as the roic plays, we think that they may Of man first made ere fraud and rice were be at times better adapted (as in D. fashions.
Carlos, A. 4. vol. i. p. 122.) to Probably suggested by Shak represent the grave and stately speare :
march of tragic sorrow than the
more regular chine of successive - as true as truth's simplicity, And simpler than the infancy of truth.
couplets. The love pourtrayed in
Otway's heroic tragedies is a pasTroilus and Cressida.
sion distinct from the experience of • We find too in Tacitus de Mor. life and nature. We borrow the Germ. c. 19.--" Nemo enim illic words of Mr. Thornton, in his stricvitia ridet, nec corrumpere et cor
tures upon Don Carlos : rumpi seculum vocatur.”
Like all the rhyming, or heroic,
plays of that age, this tragedy varies Renault. Let us remember thro' what from historical truth, for the sake of dreadful hazards
introducing that romantic and metaPropitious fortune hitherto has led us; . physical love which, at that period,
lorded it over the stage, and although
CONTENTS. highly applauded for its sublimity and majesty, appears now, even in its The Philosophy of Melancholy. Part happiest representation, almost a bur- I-II-III-IV.-Notes on the Philoso. lesque upon the passion.-Vol. i. p. 79.
phy of Melancholy.-The spirit of fire.
-Notes on the spirit of fire. We do not think it necessary to
GENERAL ANALYSIS. I. The congive an elaborate abstract of dramas
templation of the universal mutability so universally known and admired of things prepares the mind to enas those of Otway; and we are counter the vicissitudes of life. The compelled to restrict our observa spirit of philosophical melancholy, tions within very confined limits.
which delights in that contemplation, The chef d'auvre of Otway is
is the most copious source of virtue, Venice Preserved. Its pathos, equally
of courage, and of genius. The plea
sures arising from it are the most pure impressive, is not of so tender a de
and permanent that man is capable of scription as that of The Orphan; and enjoying. It is felt in every scene and there are some masculine features in sound of nature; more especially, in the character of Belvidera, which the solemn grandeur of mountainrender her less the object of sym- scenery, and in the ruined magnifipathy than Monimia, the gentle, the
cence of former times.
II. The finest efforts of art, in painthelpless, and the injured. The
ing, music, poetry, and romance, destrong taint of sensuality that infects
rive their principal charms from methe dialogue between Belvidera and lancholy. her husband, was no doubt the III. "The social affections derive consequence of Otway's habitual from this sentiment their most enlicentiousness; and rather presents
dearing ties. It reigns in the interto our minds the idea of a wedded
changed consolations of love; in the mistress than an affectionate matron.
sympathetic charity, which seeks out,
and relieves, affliction; in the retroIt is this circumstance which, in
spective attachment, which dwells on reading the play, tempts us to re the scenes of our childhood, and on gard her sorrows as flowing from the the memory of departed friends. principle of selfishness; but, in the IV. The mind, familiarised to the representation, most of these offen- contemplation of vicissitudes, rises susive passages are omitted. We must,
perior to calamity; perceives, that the however, confess that Belvidera's
existence of a certain portion of evil
is indispensable to the general system claims to approbation, although she
of nature, and to the enlargement of does not entirely conform to our the human faculties; and ascends, model of female perfection, are cer from the observation of apparently tainly of a high order: and the discordant particulars, to the knowscene of her death is perhaps the ledge of that all-perfect wisdom, which most effective in the play.
arranges the whole in harmony.
The author of this poem, like Ben Jonson's Master Stephen, is
“mightily given to melancholy,” THE PHILOSOPHY OF MELAN- and has accordingly sung its praises
CHOLY; a Poem in four parts, in the volume before us. We fear, with a Mythological Ode. By upon the whole, that the bulk of soT. L. PEACOCK. Hookham. ' ciety, immersed in sublunary cares, 1812. royal 4to, pp. 125. Pr. and even the majority of those who 188.
devote themselves to the “ credit