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warmest acknowlegements of Britons. That the fame of Charles James Fox is not a national object, no man will now be hardy enough to question : but had it required evidence, it would have been furnished by the universal feeling which every where manifested itself, in a distinguished assembly, on occasion of a late most extraordinary attempt to taunt and insult his mighty shade.
M O N T H L Y CATALOGUE,
For JANUARY, 1807.
POETRY and the DRAMA. Art. 15. Calista e or a Picture of Modern Life. A Poem in three Parts. By Luke Booker, LL. D. 4to.
26. Od. stitched. Button. W 7HEN the Muse is employed in the cause of virtue, she demands to
be received with peculiar respect; especially when she courageously raises her voice in opposing vices and immoralities that are sanctioned by Fashion and the example of the great. We wish, as far as our influence extends, to encourage those writers who, like Dr Booker, endeavour not so much by satire as by serious expostulation, to resist the torrent of iniquity which is deluging the land ; and especially to hold up to the Fair Sex the tremendous consequences which attend their departure from the paths of rectitude. Yet it is almost hopeless to preach to a woman who is hurried round in the vortex of a pleasurable life; for alas, she is not only dead while she liveth (as the apostle say3) to all the important ends of existence, but she is commonly dead also to shame and reproof. If, however, Dr. B.'s Calista should have no effect in reclaiming our fashionable dames, the picture may be of use as a caution to others, and may serve to shew the kind of education which females should receive in order to fit them for the characters of wives and mothers. In this poem, the author describes the virtuous rapture which a mother derives from nursing her own infants, and contrasts this picture with that of a dissipated female, who abandons her children during infancy, and plunges into scenes of fashionable dissipation. The effects of gaming on the moral principle, and on the female character in particular, are next exhibited. . Calista loses her honour; advances in delinquency, and elopes with her seducer; they are overtaken by a storm and shipwrecked on a rock; here the husband,who was returning from abroad, accidentally comes to their succour ; Calista, on seeing him, plunges into the sea and is drowned ; and the husband, in a subsequent encounter, (a conclusion which we do not approve,) falls by the sword of the seducer. On this representation, the Senate is addressed respecting the crime of Adultery, which Dr. B. thinks should be restrained, if all other means fail, by coercion; and he recommends the trial of close solitary confinemeat for bush the criminals.
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shall offer no remark on his new mode of repressing this growing vice, but we suggest it as our opinion that we should rather consult its prevention by the education and formation of moral habits in our females, than its punishment. If they are encouraged to tread ia the paths of vice, it is no wonder that they fall.
Dr. B.'s stanzas are flowing and impressive : but negligencies occasionally present themselves. Wide-widowing war' is a heavy alliteration. • To where is not grammar, as also may be said of the line
bitter pang her hcart was made endure.' We have no such rerb as to stalue, yet, for the grandeur of the effect, we must tolerate ‘Statued with horror,' applied to the husband on discovering Calista with her seducer: but Dr. B. might have found à more pleasing name for the adulterer than Mạchus, and have helped out his line with something better than • Mạchus reply made none.' In the last stanza but oné, Sinai is made three into syllables,
• In thunders from Judean Sinai.'' These spots, however, will be lost in the general effect. We offer to the reader the following stanzas as a specimen. Having represented the strong affection of savages and even brutes towards their young, the poet proceeds :
• What magic, ther, congeals the cordial tide?
To more than brute, can FASHION's idle lure
From wedlock's holy path and pleasure pure ?
Pleasures, for which the gentlest dames endure
While in her feverish breast she painful bears
Of her untended infant, drown'd in tears ?
But its lamenting sobs she never hears!
Along the flambeau'd streets do her swift wheels
Her milk swol'n bosom?--Eagerness reveals
The darling wishes that rack'd bosom feels;
She sita, the victim of their specious wiles ;
Ruin, close hov'ring o'er her, grimly smiles,
And soon of wealth,perverted wealth, beguiles
• Reproaching morn now blughes in the skies,
And dims the wasted taper's needless ray;
And breathes deep curses on the coming day, -
ANGUISH her sole companion by the way.
No : far from its loud plaint she pillows her pale cheek. • But Sleep his balm oblivious there denies.
Full in her view stalk Ruin's ghastly train ;
Point to her life, and shew its every
Her children lost, abandon'd by her care :--
various Pieces in Verse : serious, theatric, epigrammatic, and miscellaneous. By William Meyler. 8vo. pp. 220. 6s. Boards. Bath, printed by the Author; and sold by Robinson, &c. London. 1806.
We have derived little amusement from the first section of these fugitive compositions. A paraphrase of St. Paul's sublime description of charity is the first in the collection ; and what ghyming imitation can ever equal the original prose? Mr. Meyler's expansion is cold and lifeless:- The Sorrows of a favourite Spaniel are vented with disgusting coarseness : but the • Monody on the death of Garrick' possesses some poetical merit, and conveys us, by an easy and natu: ral transition, to the second part, in which the author appears to much greater advantage. In most of his prologues, epilogues, and occasional addresses, which are varied with due discrimination, we discern much ease, and are now apd then treated with a neat or witty allusion. We are inclined to particularize the Epilogues delivered by Mr. Jackson, Mr. Brunton, and Mr. Blisset, the apologetical ad. dress spoken by Mrs. Didier, and that which is intitled. Old Crop.'
The epigrammatic specimens are generally well turned: as for ex. ample :
The Fair Equivoque.
The fairest of the beauteous throng,
The pending bet he soon reveald,
• The Retort Simple.
• To Sleep, imilated from the Latin
Friend of my pillow! o'er my eyelids creep;
Live without life, and without dying die!' Mr. Meyler apologizes for blending with the Miscellaneous effusions several pieces which should have been placed under their proper heads. "The Sonnet at page 161, and · Billy Burrows,' for instance, belong, of right, to the first division; and they are sufficient to con. vince us that the author, with a little pains, might succeed even in the graver walks of poetry; for both are characterized by tenderness of sentiment and simplicity of diction. The performance, indeed, on the whole, makes such a pleasing olla podrila, that it is with much re. luctance we notice such imperfect rhymes as seat and gate, frame and gleam, came and beam, taste and feast, wake and bespeak, seen and lane, &c. We cannot, also, recognize the meritorious worth of the followe ing lines :
• Celestial charity, generous and kind.'
• With such a charge for worlds I had not sell.' In works of length and transcendant mcrit, we are enjoined by high authority to overlook the pauca macula : but short composia tions, not hastily published, have no claims to similar indulgence. Several of the present juvenile productions, though honoured with myrtle wreaths at Bath-Easton villa, will bear revision ; and some might have remained in the author's repositories, without subtracting from the value of the collection : but from the charge of high crimes and literary misdemeanours, we willingly absolve Mr. Meyler, and he is hereby absolved accordingly. Art 17. Corruption, a Satire, with Notes. By Thomas Clio Rickman, &c. &c. 8vo.
Author, Upper Mary-lebone Street. * Somne levis ! quanquam certissima mortis imaga,
Consorlem cupio te tamen esse tori.
Whether it be a bad or a good symptom, we leave to the decision of our readers, but the fact is that the lynx-eyed observer of the defects of governments and of the faults of men in power is become a character which very few are disposed to caress. The orthodox political faith is that Ministers must be right, that their adherents and satellites cannot be very wrong, and that to expose them to the shafts of satire is a measure truly jacobinical. An acceptable satirist must now choose his game with discretion; he may hold up to derision a fine lady or a Bond-street lounger, if he will be content with " breaking such butterflies upon the wheel :" but he must not venture to charge Corruption on our rulers, nor hint at the existence of
roitenness in the state.” Mr. Rickman, therefore, is not a fashionable censor ; for he takes liberties with the Great, and tries to persuade us, (though by-the-bye no man who sees his own interest will believe it,) that modern statesmen and senators are capable of the vile obliquity of sacrificing the public good for their own private aggrandizement. Can he think that such heresy as his will be tolerated ?
• England ! at that dear name my heart's blood warms,
A deadly stream from foul Conruption's source;
To keep expiring liberty alive.' &c. &c. Granting, however, that Corruption exists to the full extent of the Satirist's ideas, we do not think that he has exposed it with that energy and poetic vigor which we are justified in expecting in poems of this character. He applies the rod with a feeble arm; and many of his couplets are so tame and vapid, that they are more like sing song than satire: E.G.
To conjure in his brain the silly whim