« AnteriorContinuar »
all human tales'—the melancholy monument poem was finished. The second edition, puband memento of mortal grandeur and mortal lished in 1842, was much enlarged, and in vanity-the City of the dead, who erst was later editions it has been still further ang. Queen of Nations—the Time-swept, but Time mented, toabout three times its original length. conquering, Capitol—Imperial Rome.
It contains many exquisite passages of genuine * All through the lorn
poetry, and is one of the most remarkable Vacuity winds came and went, but stirr'd
books of the present century. Only the flowers of yesterday. Upstood The hoar unconscious walls, bisson and
bare, Like an old man, deaf, blind, and grey, in
BRYAN WALLER PROCTER. whom
“Bryan Waller Procter, born about 1790, The years of old stand in the sun, and
a modern English poet, generally known under murmur
the pseudonym of Barry Cornwall. He was Of childhood and the dead. From
educated for the legal profession, and, doring parapets
many years, held an important appointment Where the sky refts, from broken niches
as one of the commissioners of lunacy. His -each
first volume of poems was produced in 1819, More than an Olympus,-for gods dwelt under the title of 'Dramatic Scenes, and other in them,
Poems. His 'English Songs,' Memoir and Below, from senatorial haunts and seats
Essay prefixed to an edition of Shakspere, Imperial, where the ever-passing fates • Marcian Colonna,' and others, evinced, in Wore out the stone, strange hermit birds their author, the possession of a graceful and croak'd forth
refined order of mind. Some of his songs Sorrowful sounds, like watchers on the became popular ; and one of his tragedies heights
(that entitled “Mirandola') which was proCrying the hours of ruin. When the
duced at Covent Garden Theatre, was highly clouds
successful. A collection of some charming Dress'd every myrtle on the walls in
essays and tales in prose by him was pubmourning,
lished in America."-Beeton's "Dict. Univ. With calm prerogative the eternal pile Biog." Impassive shone with the unearthly light Of immortality. When conquering suns Triumph'd in jubilant earth, it stood out
CHARLES SWAIN. dark With thoughts of ages : like some mighty “Charles Swain, born at Manchester, 1803, captive
a modern English writer, known as the ManUpon his deathbed in a Christian land,
chester Poet,' was educated for commercial And lying, through the chant of Psalm pursuits;
but after spending fourteen years and Creed,
in the office of his uncle, the proprietor of Unshriven and stern, with peace upon his large dye-works, he abandoned commerce to brow,
acquire the art of engraving, which he afterAnd on his lips strange gods.'
wards practised as a profession. His first
essay in poetry was made in 1828, at which “ Ashes to ashes-dust to dust: we will
time he produced a collection of lyrics, upon not disturb the majestic repose, nor break the subjects of history and imagination. His silence which broods above the princely se
later works were, Beauties of the Mind,' pulchre ; but we will be
Dryburgh Abbey, an Elegy upon the Death ‘Like some village children of Sir Walter Scott,' 'English Melodies, Who found a dead king on a battle-field, * Dramatic Chapters,' and 'Rhymes for ChildAnd with decorous care and reverent pity hood.' To evince their respect for him his Composed the lordly ruin, and sat down fellow-townsmen presented him with a testiGraver without tears.'”
monial.”—Beeton's "Dict. Univ. Biog." -Lester's “ Criticisms,” 3rd edit., pp. 4-40462.
"Alfred Tennyson, born 1810. He received P.J. Bailey, born 1816, a member of the the ‘Laurel' after the death of Wordsworth bar, son of the proprietor of the “Nottingham in 1850. He first appeared as a poet under Mercury,” is the author of "Festus,” “ The his own name in 1830, in his twentieth year. Angel World,” and “ The Mystic." Few A second volume of poems was issued in 1833, poems upon their first appearance have ex and in 1842 he re-appeared with two volumes cited so much attention as "Festus." Bailey of Poems, many of which were his early was but about twenty years of age when this pieces altered and retouched. His other
works are, The Princess, a Medley,' 1847 ; giant finger, to the bright, glorious, and * In Memoriam,' 1850 (the latter a series of joy-inspiring HEAVENS!”
- Excelsior," p. beautiful elegiac poems on the death of his 23. young friend Arthur Hallam, son of the his So classical, so full of refined beauty, torian); Ode on the Death of the Duke of breathing all the spirit of loveliness. How Wellington,' 1852; and Maud, and other exquisite his Enone—“Dear Mother Ida, Poems, 1855. The popularity of Mr. Tenny hearken, ere I die.” How the plaintive son has been steadily on the increase, and he language breaks on the air in delicious achas a band of devoted worshippers. His cents! We think we see the gentle Enone chief defect is obscurity of expression, with a and the three fair deities of Olympus, with certain mannerism. The characteristics of the sunbeam darting through the vine-leaves, his poetry lie rather in its external dress of and the olive upon their 'finely-chiselled' imagery and language, than in any bias to forms, so moulded to perfect symmetry. She wards a particular line of thought or subject. recals all the tenderness of her love-“Dear His pieces might be classed, in the manner of Mother Ida, hearken, ere I die!” The sylvan Mr. Wordsworth, into Poems of the Affections; shades, and the clear streams, and the grassy Poems of the Fancy; Studies from Classical meads, and the flowery banks, and the modest Statuary and Gothic Romance, &c. Many of violet, and the golden crocus, seem to echo in them, from the apparent unintelligibility of softest whispers to the melancholy prayertheir external shape, have been supposed to " Dear Mother Ida, hearken, ere I die.” And bear an esoteric meaning. The Princess,' the rippling of the waters, and the light blue especially, apparently a Gothic romance in a of heaven, and the fleecy clouds, and the rich drawing-room dress, has been supposed to perfumes of rose and hyacinths, re-echo in figure forth not merely the position which tones of deep, still witchery—“Dear Mother women and their education hold in the scale Ida, hearken, ere I die.” The dulcet cadence of modern civilization, but to indicate also floats over the dark waves of ocean; and the results of modern science on the relations, faithful Enone, with her clustering hair and affections, and employments of society. The serene countenance, lifts her dewy eye to the verse of Mr. Tennyson is a composite melody, i broad canopy of midnoon, and once more it has great power and large compass ; throbs out—"Dear Mother Idu, hearken, ere original, yet delightfully mingled with the I die!” notes of other poets. His mind is richly stored with objects which he invests sometimes with the sunny mists of Coleridge,
THOMAS AIRD.. sometimes with the amiable simplicity of Wordsworth, or the palpable distinctness of
“ Thomas Aird, born at Bowden, RoxburghHood. His late works reflect the thought and
shire, 1802, an original poet of considerable contemplation of the age.” — Scrymgeour's
power, a contributor to periodical literature, “Poetry and Poets of Britain," p. 503-4.
and author of the Old Bachelor in the Old Orton says of Tennyson :-"Not exactly
Scottish Village, Religious Characteristics,'
and · The Devil's Dream,' a poem pronounced cypress, but a wreath of weeping willow, should encircle his name. He is enamoured
' a wonderful piece of weird, supernatural imawith ideal beauty and purity of soul, and he
gination. He was editor of the 'Edinburgh sings the praises of holy and exalted friend
Weekly Journal,' the ' Dumfries Herald,' and ship more than the warmer passion of Love.
of an edition of the poems of Dr. Moir, the He may be characterized as an elevated phi
· Delta' of 'Blackwood's Magazine.'”. losopher with a poet's expression, which a
Beeton's "Dict. Univ. Biog." See Allibone's delicate perception of the beautiful and true
“Crit. Dict. Eng. Lit." has given him.
"His harp is not strung with strings whose wild, loud notes shall first awaken, and then petrify the snoring World, but with silken,
EDWIN ATHERSTONE. silvery, gossamer chords, whose fairy melody Edwin Atherstone, a truly great poet. He is heard only by the delicate spiritual ear. has published “The Last Days of Hercula
" Yet keeps he perhaps too close to the neum,” “ Abradates and Panthea,” “The shores of Time, and dares not, or will not, Fall of Nineveh," and other works. His sail the mighty oceans of mind, and bring us, productions display“ power and vigour, like golden fruit, from beyond their distant splendid diction, and truly poetic feeling." shores sublime and inspiriting ideas of Futurity. He keeps his wings too closely furled, when we consider his poetical powers ! “May Time give him courage and bear him
ALARIC A. WATTS. happiness ;--root up the willow which points, with its thousand drooping and nerveless “ Alaric Alexander Watts, born in London, arms, to the cold EARTH, and transplant the 1799, a modern English poetical writer, who, Poplar, which ever points, with its one firm, in early life, became the literary assistant to
Crabbe, the writer of the Technological &c. In 1840 a volume of her poems was Dictionary,' and having put forth a small published in London, and was reproduced in collection of poems in 1822, which obtained New York, in 1844, under the title of "Melain, some success, he was appointed editor of the and other Poems." Many editions of her * Leeds Intelligencer,' and subsequently of the poems have since been published in England
Manchester Courier.' In 1825 he commenced and America. “ The Old Arm Chair," "The the publication of the Literary Souvenir,' Old Farm Gate," " Home in the Heart," which was continued as an annual until 1836. “ The Last Good-bye,” and “I miss thee, ray This work contained contributions by Camp Mother!” are known and loved by thousands, bell, Wordsworth, and Coleridge, and was both old and young. In September, 1849, illustrated by Turner, Leslie, Roberts, and appeared the first number of “ Eliza Cook's other eminent artists, the engravings being Journal.” Professor Cleveland says: “ The executed by Heath, assisted by the best en characteristics of her poetry are great freegravers of the day. He also attempted to dom, ease, and heartiness of sentiment and establish a fine-art journal, called "The expression ; and she makes you feel at once Poetical Album ;' but it ceased to appear that her whole heart is in all she writes; that after the second year. In 1833 he commenced she gives full utterance to the depths of her the United Service Gazette,' of which he soul-a soul that is in sympathy with all that remained the editor until 1843.
is pure and true."--Cleveland's "Eng. Lit. subsequently connected with the Standard' 19th Cent." See Allibone's “ Crit. Dict. Eng. and other newspapers. A collected edition of Lit." his poetical pieces appeared in 1851, with the title of Lyrics of the Heart,' and two years subsequently, he received a pension of £100
WILLIAM AND MARY HOWITT. per annum from the Government."-Beeton's “ Dict. Univ. Biog."
“ William Howitt, born at Heanor, Derbyshire, 1795, a living English littérateur, the son of a member of the Society of Friends,
who educated him and his five brothers in the LORD HOUGHTON.
principles of Quakerism. Although he had “Lord Houghton, born 1809, modern been sent to several schools kept by Quakers, English politician, poet, and prose writer. A his education was almost entirely owing to few years after concluding his university
his own perseverance. Up to his twentycareer at Cambridge, he was elected Member eighth year, when he married and commenced of Parliament for Pontefract, and distinguished
with his wife a career of literature, his time himself therein as a zealous supporter of all had been spent in acquiring mathematical and questions relative to popular education and scientific knowledge, in studying the classical complete religious equality. His literary
authors, and in mastering the German, efforts were various in kind and of an excellent French, and Italian tongues. His studies character. As a poet, he produced “Poems
were varied by rambles in the country, of Many Years,' 'Memorials of Many Scenes,' shooting, and fishing; and these again led
Poems, Legendary and Historical,' and · Palm him to obtain an amount of information Leaves.' His Life, Letters, and Literary
relative to English rural life and nature, Remains of John Keats' was an appreciative
which was afterwards reproduced in his works. and delightful commemoration of departed The lady who became his wife was, like himgenius. He was understood to have been the self, a member of the Society of Friends, and writer of several interesting articles in the strongly imbued with literary tastes. In 1823,
Westminster Review.' He published several the first year of their marriage, they published of his speeches, delivered from his place in the together a volume of poems, entitled, "The House of Commons, and wrote a number of Forest Minstrel,' and followed it up by conpolitical pamphlets, the most important of
tributions to the “Amulet,' 'Literary Souwhich were
Thoughts on Party Politics,' venir,' and other annuals then in vogue. 'Real Union of England and Ireland,' and These contributions, with some original pieces, The Events of 1848.'"-Beeton's " Dict. were collected and published, in 1827, under Univ. Biog."
the title of “The Desolation of Eyam,' &c. "The Book of the Seasons,'. Popular History
of Priestcraft,' Tales of the Pantika; or, TraELIZA COOK.
ditions of the most Ancient Times,' 'Rural Life
of England,' Colonization and Christianity,' Eliza Cook, born 1817, the daughter of a and several other works, were produced by tradesman in the borough of Southwark, him during the ten following years. In 1839 London, gained considerable reputation, when and succeeding year, he wrote his Boy's in her twentieth year, as a poetical contributor Country Book,' and Visits to Remarkable to some of the higher class of London pe Places. In 1840 he went to Germany for the riodicals-“The New Monthly Magazine," purpose of educating his children, and his "The Metropolitan,” “The Literary Gazette," sojourn there led to the production of the
Rural and Domestic Life of Germany,' her observation of nature accurate and in"German Experiences,' &c. In 1847 and the tense." four following years he published his Homes “Sweet Mary Howitt! her name brings and Haunts of the most eminent English magic with it, let us see it when and where Poets,' The Hall and Hamlet; or, Scenes and we will! It is one crowded with pleasant Characters of Country Life,' The Year-Book associations ; telling of wisdom learned by of the Country, and a novel, Madame Dor. the wayside and under the hedgerows; rington of the Dene. In 1846 he contributed breathing perfumes--not the perfumes of balls to the People's Journal,' and afterwards and routs-of violets and wild flowers; leadbecame part proprietor of it; but a quarreling the mind to pure and pleasant thoughtbetween himself and his partner led him to fulness.”—“New Monthly Mag.” See Rowestablish a rival publication—Howitt's ton's "Female Poets of Great Britain ; Journal,' which, however, like its predecessor, Allibone's " Crit. Dict. Eng. Lit. ;” Mrs. S. was subsequently unsuccessful. In 1852 he, C. Hall; Allan Cunningham's “Biog. and with his two sorfs and Mr. R. H. Horne, sailed Crit. Hist. of Lit. of Last Fifty Years.” for Australia, where he, for some time, worked as a digger.' He also visited Tasmania, Sydney, &c., and communicated his observations in a number of letters to the Times' newspaper, which he afterwards collected and
REV. THOMAS DALE, M.A. published, with some new matter, under the
Rev. Thomas Dale, M.A., Canon of St. Paul's title of Land, Labour, and Gold,' in 1855.” Cathedral and late Vicar of St. Pancras, poet
and popular author, was born at Pentonville,
London, August, 1797. His mother died “Mnry Botham Howitt, born at Uttoxeter,
when he was but three years old; and his Staffordshire, about 1804, an English an
father, having married again, went to the thoress, wife of the above, came of a family
West Indies to edit a public journal there, of Quakers, and commenced her literary
where he also died, leaving his only son. A
presentation to career, shortly after her marriage, with a
Christ's Hospital was volume of poems, called. The Forest Minstrel.'
eventually obtained for him, where, under After having published several volumes of
the late Dr. Trollope, by whom he was most graceful poetry, and a number of books for
kindly treated, he received a superior classical
education. In 1817 he entered the University the young, she, on visiting Germany with her husband, proceeded to acquire the Swedish
of Cambridge, having previously published his and Danish languages, with a view of
“ Widow of Nain," which was speedily foltranslating the novels of Miss Bremer and
lowed by the “ Outlaw of Taurus," and "Irad the tales of Hans C. Andersen. The trans
and Adah, a Tale of the Flood," his first work Lations of Miss Bremer's works were pub
passing through six editions within a very lished between 1844 and 1852;. and the
short period. He was ordained, in 1823, first *Improvisatore,' a reproduction in English of
curate of St. Michael's, Cornhill, London ; Andersen's novel, in 1857. Besides being an
and afterwards, in 1835, by the special favour industrions contributor to the periodicals, she
of Sir Robert Peel, appointed to be Vicar of wrote a volume of 'Ballads, and other Poems;'
St. Bride's. In 1843, through the same inSketches of Natural Histor in Verse ;'
fluence, he became a Canon of St. Paul's; two novels, called 'The Heir of Wast-Way
and, in 1846, Vicar of St. Pancras. He had land,' and · Wood Leighton;' and translated
previously held the Lectureship of St. Mar* Ennemoser's History of Magic' for Bohn's
garet, Lothbury; but resigned it in 1849. Scientific Library. The valuable work en
With the exception of his poems, of which a titled Literature and Romance of Northern
collected edition was published in 1836, his Europe,' published as the joint production of
edition of Cowper, and his translation of herself and husband, is almost entirely her
Sophocles, his later writings are exclusively work."--Beeton's " Dict. Univ. Biog.”
religious, consisting chiefly of Sermons“There can be no surer proof of the
“The Domestic Liturgy and Family Chapgenuineness of the poetical power possessed
lain,” “ The Sabbath Companion,” &c. They by Mary Howitt, than the fact that her fine
display a fine tone of thought, solid erudition, pieces ever recur again and again to the
and the purest taste. memories of all imaginative readers. This can be only owing to their feminine tenderness, their earnest tone, their gentle music, and their simple but genuine nature.”
WINTHROP MACKWORTH PRAED. Moir's “ Sketches of Poet Lit. of the Past Winthrop Mackworth Praed, born 1802, Half Cent.”
died 1839, son of Mr. Sergeant Praed, entered Christopher North, in his “ Noctes Am the House of Commons, and became Secretary Grosiana," says :—“Her language is chaste of the Board of Control. His early life and and simple, her feeling tender and pure, and I writings gave promise of future eminence.
While at Eton, he started " The Etonian," and was one of the chief contributors to “Knight's Quarterly Magazine." His poems, which have been recently published in a collected form, are some of the most remarkable which have appeared in modern times.
many volumes of sermons, and critical memoirs on matters pertaining to ancient history. Owing to his eminent talents as & preacher, he was appointed, by Lori Palmerston, Dean of Canterbury, in 1857.
Archbishop Trench, a scholar, poet, and Coventry Patmore, an English poet, was
divine, was born at Dublin in September, born at Woodford, in Essex, 23rd July,
1807, and graduated at Cambridge in 1829, 1823. His father was in his day a well-known
after which he spent some years in travelling literary celebrity, and in 1846 Mr. Coventry
abroad. While holding the incumbency of Patmore became an Assistant Librarian to
Cardridge, Hants, he published, in 1838, two the British Museum, which office he continues
volumes of poems. These, having been well to hold. He has published three volumes, of
received by the public, were followed by which the second, the “ Angel in the House,”
“Genoveva,” “Elegiac Poems," which also is a poem of undoubted merit ; but the third,
elicited favourable notices. In 1841 he be“Faithful for ever," has been severely
came Curate to the present Bishop of Oxford, criticised. He is understood to be a con
at Alverstoke, and afterwards Rector of tributor to the “Edinburgh Review.”
Itchinstoke. He was also Hulsean Lecturer at Cambridge, and in 1847 he was appointed to the important office of Theological Professor
in King's College, London. On the death of ALEXANDER SMITH.
Dr. Buckland, which caused a vacancy in the
Deanery of Westminster, he was nominated to Alexander Smith, a poet, was born on 31st that office, since which he has been preferred of December, 1830, at Kilmarnock, Ayrshire. to the Archbishopric of Dublin. His sermons His early intention was to qualify himself for are considered eloquent and impressive. the ministry, but circumstances of various Those preached at the special services for the kinds prevented him from entering on the working classes, delivered at Westminster preparatory studies. While following the į Abbey, have been attended by very crowded business of a lace-pattern designer in Glas congregations. He has published several gow, he began to write verses, and sent some works on theological subjects ; among these extracts from his first sustained poem to the are “Notes on the Parables," “ Notes on the Rev. George Gilfillan, of Dundee, then under- Miracles,” “The Sermon on the Mount,” &c.: stood to be one of the writers for the “Critic," and his lectures on the “ English Language" who inserted them in that journal. His " Life and on the “Study of Words” have had & Drama" was afterwards published, and, large circulation. although severely criticised, was admitted on all hands to contain lines of the highest poetical merit. In 1854 Mr. Smith was elected to the secretaryship of the Edinburgh
Gerald Massey, an English poet, was born May, 1828, near Tring, in Herts. His parents were so steeped in poverty that the children
received scarcely any education. When only THE VERY REV. HENRY ALFORD, D.D.
eight years old, Gerald was sent to work in &
neighbouring silk mill; but the mill being The Very Rev. Henry Alford, D.D., Dean burned down, the boy took to straw plaiting. of Canterbury, a poet and Biblical critic, was He had learned to read at a penny school; born in London in 1810, and educated at and, when fifteen, went up to London as an Ilminster Grammar School, and Trinity errand boy, and spent all his spare time in College, Cambridge. He has published reading and writing. When out of a situaseveral poetic productions, which have been tion, he has gone without a meal to purchase well received, has held several University a book. His first appearance in print was in appointments, and various preferments a provincial paper; he published a small in the Church. His editions of the Greek collection of his verses in his native town, New Testament have been carefully prepared and during the political excitement of 1848 He is also the author of several papers, con edited a cheap paper called the "Spirit of tributed to serials and other periodical pub- Freedom.” His writing was so bold and lications, and his work entitled “The Poets vigorous, that his political manifestations cost of Greece" exhibits an intimate and correct him five situations in eleven months. He was knowledge of the language. He has published a warm advocate of the co-operative system,