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cellence that interested Mr. Audubon. Lucien Bonaparte, Prince of Musignano. With that unselfish kindness which is London: 1838.” (He, too, might have the attendant of a noble devotion to added, “assisted by J. J. Audubon !") science, he endeavored to impress the He says Englishman with his own happy appreciation of what art really demanded, and “ Throughout the list, I have quoted, lent him many valuable hints from his as types of the species under considera. more extended and practical experience. tion, the figures of the great works of Mr.
Gould and Mr. Audubon on the OrnithoHe had, also, the plates of the Birds of America by him in addition. The result logy of the two regions, as they must be
considered the standard works on the subis immediately apparent in the second ject. The merit of Mr. Audubon's work volume. His birds now begin to look yields only to the size of his book; while as if there might be life under their fea- Mr. Gould's work on the Birds of Europe thers ; indeed, they shortly became a -inferior in size to that of Mr. Audubonmarvellous sprightly family—some of is the most beautiful work that has ever them with an air of saucy liveliness about appeared in this or any other country.” them, which made them astonishingly like American birds:
It would undoubtedly be invidious in Is Mr. Gould frankly and honorably us to make any comment upon this—to grateful ? Does he fairly acknowledge even insinuate a wonder that a person. the source from whence his birds had age bearing this world-renowned name caught this sudden vitality ?-does he would consent to resign his reputation register the spell that waked them up? as a man of science, through all time, Yes, he is grateful--grateful as it is to the doubtful association of such an becoming and dignified of an English. expression of mere professional or perman to be to a vagrant from America, sonal spite. We accordingly shall say who had been permitted the honor of no word on this point, though we may making accidental “ suggestions” to the be permitted to urge that, as a fair issue great ornithological illustrator of the is here made, and fairly registered beBritish capital. He introduces him within tween the two-made, too, by a Eurothe halo of his own glory by printing pean-we are at liberty, " sans” the his name with an “ Esquire” to it, in the onerous obligation due to each, to meet preface to his “gorgeous” five-volume it without reserve. This we shall acwork. “J. J. Audubon, Esq.," occurs in cordingly endeavor to do. By contrastthe middle of a list of some twenty other ing the plates of Mr. Gould's four last Honorables, to whom “my thanks are
volumes of the Birds of Europe with likewise due, for the warm interest they Mr. Audubon's Birds of America, it will have at all times taken in the present soon be perceived that we have not overwork.” Affectionate man! Our eyes rated the indebtedness of that gentleman are almost dimmed in reading this touch- to our ornithologist, and that, indeed, ing acknowledgment! How pleasing to Mr. Gould has given an astonishingly Audubon's genial nature it undoubtedly wide interpretation to the “ warm interis, to have been incidentally a cause of est” for which he so eloquently expresses so fine a display of humanity in its more
his gratitude. delightful phases !
We observe, in looking over Gould, With all our zeal for the honor of the that after we get through with the family American, we might possibly have been of Raptores (who are dull, sleepy-look. so far disarmed by such an exhibition, ing perchers on his sheets, but, on Auas to have forborne the “ tale we could dubon's, full of the keen action of their unfold,” but that another, and even more fierce habits), and get among the smaller surprising display of this peculiar gra- tribes figured in the second and third titude, from a different quarter, has put volumes, we are surprised to meet with us upon our best behavior for a suit. one, now and then, exhibiting all the able return in the name of our coun- expressive play of real life. When you try, thus courteously oppressed. We come to Gould's Redbreasted Flycatcher find the following singular passage in (Muscicapar parva), for instance, if you the work of a contemporary ornitholo- will then turn to No. 37, plate 185, gist, who wrote a continuation of Wilson Bachman's Warbler, Audubon, and comIt is from “ Bonaparte's Geographical pare the two, you will find no difficulty and Comparative List of the Birds of in accounting for this marvellous viva. Europe and North America : By Charles city of Mr. Gould's pencil. The Fly
catcher is an exact copy of the Warbler, stooping in the act of taking wing, is with the exception that it is slightly copied from the “ Ground Warbler,” it more stooped upon the twig, so as to being merely reversed. This is the fa. conceal a hair's breadth or so of the vorite trick. If you continue to turn right claw-in other respects there is no the leaves of the second and third vols., shade of difference in outline and posi- you recognise the sprightly and effective tion. But turn over further to Audubon's posture of the Ground Warbler duplicat. Wood Warbler; lay that by the side of ed on every third or fourth plate, with the Flycatcher, and the resemblance is so the most amusing variations from its full, in the minutest point, that you can- original position in the drawing-now not fail to perceive that in this case Mr. higher up—now nearer the middle--now Gould has actually lined his drawing close to the ground, with leaf, twig, and over the other, instead of copying--for flower adjusted ingeniously to conceal there is not the slightest perceptible vari- the transfer. In a word, he has taken ation, except that while the bill of Audu- out this favorite figure, and patched it in. bon's bird is slightly parted, that of to some score of his plates, where it al. Gould's is closed. Was it a guilty con ways looks as if it were ashamed of its sciousness made the Englishman shut company. What is still more diverting his bird's mouth, for fear he should let —though the Englishman seems to posout the secret of the theft? Look at the sess a conscience quite sufficiently ac“ Hooded Warbler, Audubon,” by side of commodating, to have permitted an exthe “ Cirl Bunting, Gould”—attitude the tension of these appropriations to any same. The Warbler has its breast to degree, yet he has been restrained either you, stooping from a twig--Bunting is a by the national trait of prudence, or a copy so closely taken, that even so hard proper estimate of his own genius, which faced a pilferer is a little startled, and to possibly dared not attempt the more escape the charge of over-lining again, active expressions of Audubon. He has he carries the twig from which his bird taken three or four of such quietly ef. stoops, across the body, at a slightly dif- fective and characteristic postures for ferent angle.
pets, as could be most readily slided into That these are not mere coincident re. his
groups, without too much startling semblances you will be satisfied, by by the contrast. By a sagacious duplicontinuing this comparison. Turn now cation of these so as barely to avoid the to “ Morton's Finch, (male), Audubon” penalties consequent upon a direct in-observe it closely so that the eye will fringment of copyright, he has managed take in perfectly the character of the to give his last four volumes a partial. drawing. Then open to “Water Finch ly spirited tone, altogether foreign to the (male), Gould,”--you immediately recog- first. There are yet one or two instannize the American Bird transferred. There ces of this cunning latrociny which oc. is no mistaking this for the peculiari- cur to us as too rich not be noted. Turn ties of attitude and expression are broadly to “ Scaup Duck (male and female), distinctive. Here, too, you detect the Audubon”-you perceive them
to be miserable shifts to which Mr. Gould has bo:h upon the land þut near the water. been compelled to resort, for the purpose The female in the foreground, asleep, of throwing off the eye from this recog. while the male stands alert beyond her; nition he so much dreads. His bird, for now refer to “ Redheaded Pochard (male instance, is the largest,—then he has re and female,) Gould, 5th vol,”—you reversed its position on the plate, set it cognise your first acquaintances the lower down, and so grouped the ac Scaup Ducks at a glance—though, cessories as to confuse a critic. The with the usual maneuvre they are turned other figure of the female in the same the other way; and instead of being both plate is dull enough to be all his own, on land—which would have been rather while the male is as much out of place too palpable—the female rests on the in such company, as the chiselled cornice water, while the male, though at preof a Doric Temple under the eaves of a cisely the same relative distance, is made mud hut. Another instance of this. to stand upon the ground. Here the
Macgillivary's Ground Warbler (male), trick is so shallow, that detection can Audubon”—compare with “Scarlet Gros- not be for a moment at fault. You see beak-Gould.” You perceive the po- that the Scaup Ducks have been accusition of the Grosbeak, which is that of rately overlined, then lifted up from the
original “grounding” and let down up- side of the waters. Mr. Gould, whose on a new one, by Gould, who found it work scarcely contains a single legitimate safer for his pencil, to adjust earth and and original trait of ornithological chawater differently beneath them, than to racter, who, even as a copyist, cannot tamper in the slightest degree with the place his figures right upon either earth proportions of the figures themselves. or water*—to which he has been necessi.
Again: Audubon’s “ Golden Plover" tated to transfer them-is to be considered is standing in a very characteristic posi- as at the head of ornithological science. tion, on one leg, the other gracefully half The “ ipse dixit” of Charles Lucian Bodrawn up. On looking at it, you feel naparte, Prince of Musignano, being rethat the bird is at ease, resting naturally: ceived as authority, his“ is the most beauGould, in his “ Bastard Plover,” endea. tiful work that has ever appeared in this vors to appropriate this position, which or any other country.” Pshaw! we is very peculiar, but in his awkward fear shall be rather pitiful than contemptuous of detection, he has just altered it enough towards such misguided persons to destroy the centre of gravity in his have hearkened to this voice,” not picture, and produce the ludicrous effect“ from the wilderness.” Shall we remind of a bird in the very act of falling over, you that Audubon has elevated illustrative as if it were nodding on one leg, with its Ornithology from a state little short of a eyes wide open.
crude and unrecognized position as a We will not fatigue the reader by a feature,—along with “Cock Robin,” and farther extension of these contrasts, “ Robinson Crusoe” epitomised-of the though we have abundant materials. No unmeaning toy-books of children, into the one with a true eye can glance over the highest rank of Art which has striven two works together, without perceiving truthfully to exhibit nature? Shall we reon almost every other page of Gould's mind you that in addition to having fixed later vols. the fullest confirmation of our it upon the profound basis of science as an positions. He will perceive, in the spirit. illustrator, he has, as an accurate obserless inaptitude, the high but incorrect ver, carried its definition out of sight coloring of the first volume, the heavy above predecessors or cotemporaries, mechanical characteristics of Mr. Gould's into the atmosphere of natural and practinatural style. On further examination cal philosophy—elaborating the delineahe will realize how impossible it is for tions of sex, age, seasons and climate, into dull mediocrity to catch the creative in a precision and reality which must constispiration, even from the contact of asso. tute the firm ground-work of future inves. ciation with genius-for instead of grasp. tigations ?-in a word, that he has created, ing all that it had accomplished by a through Ornithology, the most alluring healthful appropriation, as the suggestion feature yet presented of that cheerful and and basis of still higher efforts of bolder broad philosophy which leads « through and nobler strugglings up toward the nature up to nature's God ?” If you do perfect, it has, in the miserable penury of not know all this, learn more of Audu. its weakness, pilfered and smuggled what bon through his own works, and you it dared not aim to equal, and then, to will recognize it. We must defer to cover its meanness, refused any recogni- another No. a more familiar and pleasing tion of more than remote and general ob- intercourse with the man as well as ligation. This may be in strict conformity naturalist, and with the wild natural with Mr. Goulds, or the English codicil scenes, which are the back-ground of of right, but it is hardly recognized this his subjects.
* It is somewhat curious that his water-fowl are, with scarce an exception, when placed on the surface, at either an incorrect angle with the plane of the horizon, or not characteristically immersed.
MR. EDITOR :
Though by carly predilections and at all periods of my life, I have been a delighted worshiper, either in the chaste Pantheon of classic lore, or in the grand, though incongruous, temple of the moderns, yet, even in boyhood, I was a not incurious observer of the cotemporary history of the country in which and for which I was born and bred. During the last sixteen years, more especially, have I watched with an eye of serious concern the sentiments and measures of the “ progressive” party, to whose influence may mainly be ascribed those sudden and disastrous changes, which have swept the land as with a whirlwind, as well as that general and rapid popular deterioration, which, if not at once arrested by all the wise heads and strong arms in the nation, will soon place us on the brink of evident and utter ruin. With your permission, then, I will hazard through your pages occasional remarks on the more prominent points of our national character, to indicate some of the dangers and safeguards of our order of things, and to suggest whereby we may avoid the one, and retain the other. Careless of notoriety, and desirous only of contributing my mite to the welfare of my countrymen and country, I yet hope that whatever truths I may utter will not fall upon unwilling ears, though I take shelter behind the “ nominis umbra," and conceal a name, which, if published, could not by its celebrity enforce the doubtful to conviction.
If we are not to believe with Jenkin- are, indeed, a nation “ nostri generis" son, in the Vicar of Wakefield, that “ the our own creator-a rule and model for world is in its dotage,” no more are we ourselves. But viewed as the subjects to imagine that it was lately in its infan- of divine and human law, we individutile state of ignorance and weakness, ally and collectively possess the same and now, with intellect just opening and passions, weaknesses, and vices, as have powers that begin to feel their strength, the men of all ages and nations; and is conning the first elements of moral, with us as with them, the demon of popupolitical, and social wisdom. No:—the lar frenzy crouches ever in the dark world has always had the knowledge, cavern of the future, one day, it may be, but not the love of its duty, and pos- to spring forth upon us, like a tropical sessed, from its very birth, the wisdom, tornado, without the wish, to be happy. Almost every truth essential to the well-being of
“ Which, hushed in grim repose, awaits his
evening prey." our race, was promulgated centuries ago. But they have been too weak and change The standard, by which to judge of a ful to live according to their light. Men nation's greatness, is a standard of the have always been too much blinded by mind and heart; a standard which the their eagerness for present pleasure and materialist cannot apply; whose uses the immediate profit, to consider the scope demagogue cannot understand. Her of their whole existence, and attend to power and her grandeur dwell not in the the general and permanent result of their numbers of her people, or the barriers of actions.
From immemorial time they Nature—in her vegetable riches, or her have known their debt to Heaven, their mineral wealth-in the strength of her obligations to their fellows, and their navy, or the discipline of her army-in duties to themselves; and had they car the gold of her treasury, or her muniried out their knowledge in correspond- ments of war. Her opulence and her ent action their advancement would now strength lie in properties deeper than be immeasurably greater in every depart- these, and more inscrutable to the senment of moral as well as physical life, sual eye. They are to be appreciated and the light which in its effects is still only by the moral, the pure, the thoughtbut a glimmering dawn would long since ful, the intelligent. They rest in her have brightened into the fullness of day. moral attributes—the patient industry, In the character of our government, and the reflective wisdom, the inflexible virin the ostensible spirit of our laws, we tue, the unfettered spirit, the proud self
confidence, the rational, but resolute fidence and a kindlier affection. The courage. Well and wisely spake the more the Southrons and Northerners see philosophic poet of England, though of each other, the less will the former with not an altogether appropriate ap- suspect the latter of cold-blooded selfish. plication
ness, and the latter charge the former
with unreasonable heat and disaffection. “The power of armies is a visible thing, Bounded in time, and circumscribed in
But it must be some deeper and more space."
potential cause than this that shall main.
tain good feeling among the citizens of If there be any who think their coun our widely extended land. A confedertry intrinsically and permanently more acy free and popular governments is powerful, prosperous and happy from not to be held together by gross, material her rail-roads and canals, and all her bonds—they must be cemented by a cross-woven system of internal improve. spiritual concord. The basis of our harments, apart from the strength she shall mony must be good sense and muiual gain or lose in her spiritual progress forbearance; a patriotic attachment to surely they are deceived. These men
our country, and a philanthropic sentiforget an internal improvement of a dif- ment towards the world. Ah! friends ferent and far nobler order—the improve and countrymen! if reverence for the ment and exaltation of the inner being, memory of our heroic fathers, and pride without which these material improve in the common inheritance which they ments are but the vanity of vanities, redeemed for us by the effusion of their poor, perishable dust, as are, or will be, common blood, and terror at the utter all the heads that planned and the hands ruin which will visit these disunited that made them. So far as they give States, be insufficient to retain us in the scope, operation, and outlet for the en.
claims of brotherhood, no Gordian knot terprizing spirit of our citizens, they are of corporeal connections, no linked fetsigns and means of good. But in and ters of iron or triple brass, will secure for themselves, they are absolutely no- that holy tie against the sword of some thing: The mainspring of all is mental daring Alexander. When the mass of intelligence and moral worth. Some of our citizens shall have become lawless our writers are disposed to exult in these and dissolute, depraved and reckless, our mere physical achievements, as if they public works and public institutions will were not only the glory, but the safe. be but a feeble barrier against the pas. guard of the country. They speak of sions of the people and the craft of their the various lines of communication, leaders. Like some hanging rock," high which intersect our land in every direc- up among the solitary mountains, around tion, as so many links in a chain of in- which silence has slumbered since the dissoluble union. They say, that by fiat of its Maker, but which a single means of these numerous thoroughfares breath may dislodge from its old foundaof commerce and travel, a constant in- tion, our Union will then be a concourse tercourse will be kept up, engendering of dissilient parts, which the voice of mutual charity and mutual esteem. With some potent demagogue can sunder in a a timorous, and I trust as yet unfounded, moment. distrust of the innate feelings of our peo The age is becoming far too material. ple, they rely on these physical causes The wonderful improvements in physical to maintain our harmony. As well ex. science—the daily discovery of new me. pect, that the preservation of an unob- chanical agencies—the enlistment even structed passage through the arteries of the winds and the lightning in the would cause the blood to course through service of men, seem to have crazed the its accustomed channels, and maintain general mind, and to have drawn attenthe vigor and the functions of our animal tion away from the more practical and life, after “ the pitcher was broken at important department of moral conduct. the fountain.” It is true that the estab. Some appear to regard society, and man lishment of a better acquaintance between himself, as a mere mechanical structure, the different portions of the country, will moved by wheels and levers, and protend to beget between them a deeper con tected from explosion by a few theoretic
Travelers in Switzerland and other mountainous countries, relate that they some. times meet with huge masses of rock and snow, which can be unseated by the discharge of a pistol, or even by the utterance of a word.