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all things.” It would be difficult to find in the The pursuit of truth, not the attainment of an whole range of English literature a more humane ideal, the knowledge of the actual rather than the and generous utterance than that contained in the enjoyment of the illusive is the aim of such minds. opening of the second part of the Religio Medici. The ruling passion is liberal curiosity. They It is a quaint elaboration of the maxim of Terence, question the facts of each day not to force them and a prosaic expression of Burns', “ a man's a into the support of a cherished theory or to exman for a' that." How noble his sentiments in re-aggerate and embellish them by the light of their gard to mental acquirements and in what pitiful own imagination, but simply to assay them in the contrasts appears the miser-like economy of ideas balance of truth, to glean from them whatever which narrows the converse of modern authors ! genuine import they afford, or arrange them among " I intend no monopoly, but a community in learn- unexplained problems for future combination and ing; I study not for my own sake onlv, but for inference. The mental position ordained by this theirs who study not for themselves. I envy no very constitution is that of inquiry. The truth atman who knows more than myself, but pity them tained is only one of a series of progressive conthat know less. I instruct no man as an exercise victions which, like the different elevations of a of my knowledge, or with an intent rather to keep mountain-range, open new and successive vistas. alive in mine own head than beget and propagate The philosopher does not climb the heights of it in his; and in the midst of all my endeavors knowledge to collect rare pebbles to arrange into there is bot one thought that dejects me, that my brilliant pictures for immediate effect, as Sheridan acquired parts most perish with myself, nor can be gathered fragments of wit for his comedies and legacied among my honored friends." These noble figures for his rhetoric; nor to pick wild flowers for sympathies which distinguish the genuine philo-elegiac garlands, such as Gray wove to cast on the sophic character, are not at all incompatible with sepulchre, but to reach a more bracing atmosphere, discrimination of taste and individuality of feeling. behold more vast prospects, and draw nearer to the Perhaps they throw the mind more directly back stars! upon primal resources and detach conscious identity from outward relations more thoroughly than sympathies apparently less diffuse. This "general and indifferent temper” in Browne, was allied to marked peculiarities both of disposition and opinion. He was no radical believer in human equali

THE OLD IRON POKER. ty as the phrase is generally regarded. He had

BY SIDNEY DYER, gone too near the heart of nature not to have faith in what he terms “ a nobility without heraldry ;" | The heart has some heirloom enshrined in its core, and, like all thoughtful observers, was sceptical as

Which oft to contemplate it turns from the throng, to the miracles attributed to education and circum- And as each loved feature is viewed o'er and o'er, stances in their influence on character. What de- And thus pleasing mem'ry now leads me to stray

It swells into rapture and breaks into song; serves that name he thought inborn, original and

'Mid the scenes dearly loved in my youth's sunny prime, prevailing; and hence deemed it a “happiness to And as each treasured object I pause to survey, grow up from'the seeds of nature, rather than the The heart feels a union unsevered by time: inoculation and enforced graff of education."

But of all youth's mementos I still most admire Sir Thomas Browne knew how to reconcile fidel. The old iron poker which stands by the fire! ity in detail to excursiveness. Opinion plumed This alone of the relics of time long ago, instead of clipping the wings of his thought. He Has grown old without change in its form or its place, felt that in all the facts of humanity there was a While others have taught me this lesson to know, germ at least of truth which sanctioned to his


That time changes all in its swist onward pace : even her incongruous aspects and superstitious er

The cottage is gone which my infancy knew,

The grove has been selled by the woodman's strong arms, rors. He begins his confession of faith by an- My friends are all sleeping beneath the old yew, nouncing himself a christian, but adds that pity And the home of my childhood is stript of its charms, rather than hate fills his heart towards Turks, In- But thou still appearest as when my grandsire fidels and Jews—" rather contenting myself to en- First placed thee, old poker, to stand by the fire !; joy that happy style than maligning those who re- Ah! thou art the same as in youth's early hour fuse so glorious a title.” In accordance with this

1 saw thee installed in thy corner of stone, spirit he thought "a resolved conscience could and learned my first lesson from thy glowing power, adore her creator anywhere;" that “it is the meth- That all was not golden though brightly it shone ! od of charity to suffer without reaction,” and that O! others may sing of their friends, wealth and lovers, " there is yet, after all the decrees of councils and

And breathe forth their praises in soul-stirring song, the piceries of the schools, many things untoucht,

And upward may soar where the wild eagle hovers

Their notes as the waves of the ocean prolongunimagined, wherein the liberty of an honest rea- But I will still sing, while a thought can inspire, son may play and expatiate with security.” Of the old iron poker which stands by the fire !

ed me mightily. But there is no greater enemy to BETTIE, SALLIE AND MOLLIE.

all affectation than that same Mr. Scott: if he ever (To the Messenger.)

writes another novel, I shan't be surprised at his

ridiculing American girls, in it, for giving each Mr. Messenger,

other Scotch names. Why, sir, one of them has Have you noticed the way our girls have lately even called my son Sam, Sammie. got, of altering such good old names as Betty

Your friend, and Sally, to Betlie and Sallie ? First it began

DOROTHY DUMPLING. with Beltie-it was Bertie this, and Bettie that, everywhere. Said my husband to me, they'll soon

P. S. If you print this, please put the spelling be writing Sallie, and I should not be surprised if and stops right. they came at last to Mollie. We all laughed at the notion of "Mollie," and thought affectation never would go that far. But it was not a month before our newspaper published that Mr. David Dickson was married to Miss Sallie Dobbs. And in a lit

GREEK ODES-AGAIN. tle while after, comes out a notice of Mr. John Smith's marriage to Miss Mollie Muggins. Then In relation to some passages in the article on it was Sallie, and Mollie, and Bellie, every thing. Greek Odes, in our December No., we have reLet any Mary, or Elizabeth, go to a boarding. ceived the following note: school, and about the third or fourth letter written

(To the Editor of the Messenger.) home would be signed Mollie So-and-so, or Bettie Such-a-one.

" Philadelphia, Dec. 17, 1847. My daughter Dolly had two or three correspon- " Dear Sir, dents at Mrs. Knowall's great school, (Skimsurface “Never having had the advantages of a classAcademy :) one was Pattie Bunch, another was ical education, I always endeavor to pick up what Sallie Grigg, and a third was Bettie Johnson. All information I can respecting ancient authors from their lives, at home, they had been Martha, Sarah translations and reviews. In this I have been freand Betsey. Their letters were full of other quently aided by your most excellent publication. names, disguised like their own. Presently they You will, therefore, I am sure, excuse the liberty began to direct to “Miss Dollie Dumpling." As which I now take with you in regard to an article soon as I and my old man saw that, we told her which appeared in your last number. You therethat if we ever caught her signing her name so, or in state that Sir William Jones' fine ode, beginning if she did not write back to her friends and make What Constitutes a State ?' is imitated from them quit such foolery about her, she should not · Alcman,' and that the Hymn, in honor of Harwrite to them, or take their letters out of the post-modius and Aristogiton, is the production of • Cala office; and that she should be called either Doro-limachus.' Now, in looking into the volume of thy or Dull, and sign her name so too. The girl the ancient poets of Greece and Rome, lately pubhad shewn some fondness for the new-fangled folly. lished in this city, I see those poems ascribed, the Not long before I had found our black maid, Sukey, first to · Alcæus,” and the latter to · Callistratus." carrying a note directed in my daughter's hand, to As I have no means myself of determining which “Miss Beckie Jones"-by Sukie.”

of the above statements is the correct one, and as Sometime ago, an opposite affectation was all the authorities on both sides are thought by many the rage. Then, it was, to make names as fine as persons to be nearly equal, will you have the kindpossible. Nothing would do but some name end-ness to afford me, (as well as some others of your ing in ina—Angelina, Seraphina, Celestina, and so readers here,) further information and evidence on on; which they called Angeleena, Serapheena, the subject ? and Celesteena. Then our Dolly caught the pre

Trusting that you will pardon this trouble, vailing fever, and was always writing her own

I am, Dear Sir, with greatest respect, name Dorothea, and getting her acquaintance to

Yours, do the like. We put a stop to this, also, by threat

A CONSTANT READER. ening to let her be called nothing but plain Doll, unless she would be content with Dolly, or Dor- In answer to our gentlemanly questioner, whose othy.

modesty and deference, we suspect, veil much I am told, sir, that the girls got the present non- more learning than he claims credit for,—we bave sense from Scotch books, in which old English to say, names that end in y are tortured into ending with 1. “That our only authority for ascribing the oriie. I like some of those books as much as any ginal of Sir William Jones' ode to Alcman, is its body. Dolly and son Sam have read me a good being quoted as Alcman's in one among a volume deal from a Mr. Burns and a Mr. Scott, that pleas- of letters, written from London, by William Austin,

of Boston, in 1801-3, and now in our possession :/ and

2. That our attributing the Hymn in honor of Harmodias and Aristogiton to Callimachus, was a mere lapse of pen and memory, without any special excuse. That we did once deem Callistratus the right author, is proved by a short article of our writing, in Vol. 2, No. 1, of the Messenger, p. 38; where, in a preface to our former translation of the same ode, (differing slightly from the recent one,) we said, “The learned are not agreed as to the author of this noble specimen of classic minstrelsy; though by most it is ascribed to Callistratus. Some have set it down to Alcæus; misled, perhaps, by the tyrant-hating spirit it breathes,—so fully in unison with the deep, trumpet tones of his 'golden lyre.' Unhappily for the paternity of this ode he died eighty years before the event it celebrates," We do not doubt that Callistratus is the true author: and we thank our courteous correspondent for correcting our error.



The soperstition upon which the annexed poem is founded, is almost universal.

HOOT FIRST. “Ho! bird of the strong and rapid wing,

Wbither away so fast?
While the groaning pine trees creak and swing

And the sail flaps on the mast?
For the night is mirk on land and sea,

And the storm-fiend's breath is strong!"
Still steadily onward struggleth he,

Croaking his mournful song.
'Tis the Hornéd Owl, that bird of dread,

Grim messenger of woe-
That scents from afar the destin'd dead

And heralds the Carrion Crow -
A strange and ominous weird he owns,

From the light he cowers away,
And where arise his boding tones

The sick heart strives to pray.
In his glassy eye, there shines a gleam

Of unholy mystic light,
Unearthly, and wild, as a sick-man's dream

In bis fever-troubled night.
Of all the feathered things that cleave

With winnowing wings the air, 'Tis bis alone the soul to grieve

With boding doubts and fear.
From barren heath and darkling town

Now rapidly hurries he,
"Till be folds his wings and settles down

On the blasted old Oak Tree. Beneath that tree in days of old,

When its boughs were fresb and green,
Full many a Lover's tale was told

Under its leafy screen.
But many a year hath hurried by,
Since spectral, grim, and bare,
Vol. XIV-23

He hath stretched his wither'd arms on high

To greet the summer air.
Meet resting place for the bird of doom,

Whose sad and eyrie cry
Tells of the shroud, and the cold damp tomb,

Where corpses festering lie.
But look! from yon casement gleams a light,

Bright as the Evening star,
That gem in the coronet of Night

Lone shining from afar,-
It shines from a peaceful happy home,

Remote from the angry strife,
That dogs the footsteps of those who roam

'Mid the paths of crowded lise; And if the snowy wing of Peace,

In this dim and troubled sphere,
Could its rapid flight one moment cease,

It well might linger here,
For the light pours down, from a lamp above,

On a crone of aspect wild,
And a mother, gazing with looks of love

On a sleeping Infant child:-
With that placid smile in its cherub face,

A babe's can only wear,
The wee hands with unconscious grace

Folded as if in prayer.
Long gazed the mother with straining eye

On her slumbering infant child,
While her bosom heaved with a stifled sigh-

But her face with fear grew wild,
With listening ear, and bristling hair,

And blood in her veins that froze,-
Like a voice of doom, through that silent room

An ominous sound uprose,
A blended cry of wrath and woe,

With anguish keen and fell,
Like the wail of a soul in the pit below,

Condemned to the nethermost hell.
It rises above the tempest's wail,

It rings on the midnight air,
While cold as a statue, fixed and pale,

Stands that mute mother there!
Upstarts with a shriek the aged crone,

And wrings her shrivellid hands,
While her tears fall fast with wailing moan,

Like rain upon the sands.
“ Alas! alas for my darling child !

Alas for its mother dear!
Well do I know that warning wild,

So full of wrath and fear.
'Tis the messenger-bird of the Nameless One

The grisly Hornéd Owl,
The lonely and the tameless one,

So gaunt, and grim, and soul;
And where'er comes he, oh, daughter dear?

The shadow of coming woe,
Follows his footprints fast and near;-

God grant it be not so !”
From her trance of terrors the mother breaks ;

And clasps unto her breast
The screaming Infant as it wakes,

And soothes it into rest,
Then, sinking on her trembling knees,

With reverential air,
Pours forth in broken words like these,

A mother's heartfelt prayer.
"A spell there is, 'gainst all evil things,

Lent by the power above, That shall guard my child as with Angel's wings,

The spell of a Mother's Love! Yet if this warning comes from thee

Oh Lord, thy will be done,
Yet be the summons sent to me

Not to my guiltless son."
A clang of wings on the silence broke,

And away flew the Evil Bird,
As though he knew, from his blasted oak,

That the mother's prayer was heard.


At the fountain life's "golden' bowl,
And craven fear should never shake

The pure and upright soul."
She ceased--but a soft and silvery tone

Chimed in with her accents stern,
As coos the dove in the forest lone,

By the wimpling summer burn; 'Tis the voice of the Bride, as her blushing face

On her husband's breast she bides, And with a sweet unconscious grace

His quailing spirit chides.
“At the altar's foot this hand I gave

In love and maiden pride,
And fiercely though life's storms may rave,

Will cling unto thy side.
A mother's love, who can compare

With that which I have given,
With thee this earth an Eden were, -

Without thee what were Heaven?
And if her love in days long past,

Preserved thine infant life.
A better safeguard now thou hast,

The love of a faithful wife-
Whose love but brighter burns in wo,

Nor ebbs with ebbing breath,-
No woman's heart but well doth know,

That love can conquer death."
She turned her face towards the oak,

Lit up with a lofty scorn,
But e'er her parting words she said,

That dismal thing had gone.


Long years have passed-the aged crone

Has been gathered to her rest,
And the Mother sits in that room alone,

As the son sinks in the west:
But where is the boy of her hope and pride,

The nursling of her care?
He brings to his home a blooming brice

Joyous and young and fair.
The shades of evening slowly fall

Over the village green,
And Night is dropping her sable pall

Upon the smiling scene,
When a troop of gay and laughing girls,

Lead on in the bridal train
The Bride, with moist eyes 'neath her curls,

Like violets after rain-
And sounds of careless joy and mirth,

Rise in a mingled hum,
As tripping o'er the flow'ry earth,

The bridal party come.
What shape is that on the old oak tree

In the misty twilight seen?
A guest no Bridegroom loves to see

On his nuptial eve I ween!
'Tis the Hornéd Owl!-and as the foot

of the Bride is at the door, Uprises in sad and solemn hoot

His warning voice once more.
A sense of cold and sickening dread

Creeps shuddering through the crowd,
As though the voice of the sheeted dead

Came rising from the shroud;--
And the glassy eyes of the evil Bird

Gleam with a baleful light,
As louder and louder his voice is heard

'Mid the gloom of the gathering night. On the Bridegroom's face, is the pallid trace

Or fears the soul that stir,
As with lips apart, and beating heart,

His gaze is fixed on her.
Not for himself, but for his bride,

Those spectral doubts appal,
On her, who trembles at his side,

That death voice seems to call :-
For the lover's heart must ever beat

With restless shadowy fear,
While death, with noiseless stealthy feet,

Comes creeping ever near;-
Trampling down with ruthless (read

The beautiful and brave.
And twining round each living head

The blossoms of the grave.
But calm the aged woman stands,

While the hideous sounds arise,
Raising on high her wither'd bands,

And her dim old sightless eyes. “ Long years ago," she slowly said,

" My soul in the midnight hour, Shook at the sounds of that summons dread,

But the fiend bad no further power, For a greater than he, alone can break

The wintry winds are sighing

The dirge of the dying year,
On the earth the leaves are lying

All withered, brown and sere,
The moon, with wan and pallid face,

Looks down from the cloudy sky,
On a strong man who hath run his race,

And lain him down to die.
Few and thin are the silvery hairs

On his temples bare outspread,
And no fond seinale breast is near

To pillow his aching head,
As he losses abrupt from side to side

In weariness and pain,
And the thought of his Bride in her virgin pride,

Comes back to his failing brain,
Like the strains of a long forgotten tune,

By the drifting seaman heard,
In the quiet hush of the sultry noon,

By the Cape of far De Verde ;
As in the hush of the ocean's swell,

While the warring winds are mute,
He lists to the Angel Israfel,

Whose heart-strings are a lute.”
He ponders o'er his wasted years,

By pride and passion tossed,
And thinks with fresh and gushing tears

of the loved ones and the lost.
But the messenger Bird of the grisly death,

The Night Owl, where is he?
He grimly watches the ebbing breath,

Fiom the stump of the old oak tree.
The baleful light of his eye gleams bright,

And he shrieks with a dismal din,
As he marks the strise, 'lwixt death and life,

For the aged man within.

added, since then, to the Library of the jurist. And in our The sound has caught his dying ear,

own country, the kindred minds of the lamented Story and The third time and the last,

Kent, whose shades yet hover around the temple of our And mingled shades of hope and fear Flit o'er his features fast.

jurisprudence, have produced works, that will last as long Feeble at first, his earnest words

as the system, which called them into being. Gain force as they roll along,

With regard to the course of general reading, which Mr. While his soul in its stubborn strength he girds, Jefferson advises, and which may strike some students To answer that funeral song.

with surprise, it may be said that no man, who has risen ** Araunt, grim messenger of Death,

to great eminence at the bar, has ever been a mere lawyer, Back to thy master fly, And tell him with this gasping breath

and that while the way is toilsome and uninviting, it is His mandate I defy.

sometimes permitted to the traveller therein to loiter eren For though, from this decaying clod,

in the primrose paths of belles-lettres and poetry. Cer. My spirit shall be riven,

tainly there should be laid, in the mind of the student, a It pants to mount up to its God,

broad basis of general information in the abstract sciences, Within its native Heaven. Though earthly love has left me long,

or no lasting superstructure of legal acquirement can be Yet Hope is with me still,

built up. A man may labor for years,-indeed pursue the Though Death is pitiless and strong,

viginti annorum lucubrationes of my lord Coke-and yet, if Yet Faith is stronger still

he read nothing but law, his mind may be but a repertorium Upon its wings my soul shall rise

of decided cases, incapable of reflection or of any useful Up to that higher sphere.And those long lost to these dim eyes

application of his knowledge. Such has not been the Blest Angels greet me there."

course of those, in England and America, who have most Of dew the baffled bird of night

adorned the gown of the advocate and the errine of the And whether to biiss or dole,

judge. Such was not the course of Blackstone, of MansAs through the dark he winged his flight,

field, of Sir William Jones or of Legaré. Indeed we canThere fled a parting soul.

not refer to a single name, conspicuous on the roll of legal E. D.

merit, who was deficient in general scholarship, but would Savannah, Georgia.

have been more distinguished in law, had be been better versed in letters. The plodding teacher, who places into the hands of the student only such books as are authority in court, would have censured the late Mr. Scarlett for weaving a bouquet for the Annuals and Talfourd for the

beautiful conception of lon. THE STUDY OF THE LAW.

In what we have said, however, we would not be under

stood as implying that success at the bar can ever be atMS. LETTER OF TH: JEFFERSON.

tained by any temporising course of study. We would

not induce any young man to suppose that in adopting the In the October number of our Magazine for the year Law as his profession, his "yoke is to be easy or his bur1834, (the second number ever published,) there appeared den light :” So far from it, we would, if possible, dissuade a Letter on the Study of the Law, from the pen of the late many of those (and their name is legion.) who from a misMr. Wirt; a production so luminous and presenting so ex. taken sense of their aptitude for the law and urged not uncellent a view of that “noblest of all sciences," that, had frequently by partial and incompetent advisers, are conits author left no other work behind him, it would itself be stantly pressing forward as candidates for admission to the a sufficient and enduring monument of his learning. Be practice. It is a laborious task to prepare one's self for the low we present a letter on the same subject, never before exigencies of the office and the rewards are at best inadepublished, written by Mr. Jefferson, for which we are in-quate and tardy. But if the step has been decided upon, debted to a valued, though too infrequent, correspondent. the student had need be diligent in his application. "The The student of Law will find it useful in shaping his slu- Law," says Dr. Johnson, " is the last result of human wisdies, and to the general reader it will be interesting as dom acting upon human experience for the benefit of the coming from this distinguished source. So long a time has public.” To master it, in its general principles and its elapsed, however, even since the date. when Mr. Jefferson adaptation to the ends of society, requires indeed the most furnished a copy of it to Gen. Mercer, that it cannot be constant and persevering toil. Having stored his mind considered as giving an extended range of scientific or le- with the valuable information that Mr. Wirt and Mr. Jefgal bibliography. Since the year 1815, the labors of a host ferson recommend, let the student determine to lead a lise of writers have illuserated the Law of England. The of abstinence and industry, remembering that “ industry," works of Chitty, the treatise of Sir Edward Sugden on in the expressive language of Dr. South, "for the most Vendors, the delightful dissertation of Mr. Stephen on part opens the way to preferment; and it is the sweat of Pleading, which we regard as the most philosophical we the brow that entitles it to the laurel.” have ever read, the splendid exposition of the Law of Evi. We beg pardon for having extended these remarks, (dedence, by Mr. Starkie, together with the contributions of signed merely as an introduction to Mr. Jefferson's Leier) Paillips, Theobald, Amos, Collyer and others, have all been so far. Always a most unworthy student of the Law our

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