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Louder, louder chant the lay,
Waken, lords and ladies gay;
Tell them youth, and mirth, and glee,
Run a course as well as we;
Time, stern huntsman, who can baulk,
Staunch as hound, and fleet as hawk ?
Think of this, and rise with day,
Gentle lords and ladies gay.


SIR WALTER Scott. HUNTSMAN, rest! thy chase is done, While our slumb'rous spells assail ye, Dream not with the rising sun, Bugles here shall sound reveille.

Huntsman, rest! Sleep! the deer is in his den, Sleep! thy hounds are by thee lying, Sleep! nor dream in yonder glen How thy gallant steed lay dying.

Huntsman, rest! Huntsman, rest! thy chase is done, Think not of the rising sun, For at morning to assail ye, Here no bugles sound reveille.

Huntsman, rest!

THE smiling morn may light the sky,
And joy may dance in beauty's eye,

Aurora's beams to see;
The mellow horn's inspiring sound,
May call the blithe companions round,
But who shall waken thee,

Ronald ?
Thou ne'er wilt hear the mellow horn,
Thou ne'er wilt quaff the breath of morn,

Nor join thy friends with glee;
No glorious sun shall gild thy day,
And beauty's fascinating ray,
No more shall shine on thee,

Ronald !


T is worth attention," says Dr. Percy, in

his "Relics of English Poetry," "that
the English have more songs and bal-
lads on the subject of madness than any
of their neighbours. Whether there
be any truth in the insinuation that we
are more liable to this calamity than
other nations, or that our native gloomi.
ness hath peculiarly recommended sub-
jects of this class to our writers, we
certainly do not find the same in

the printed collections of French and

Percy presents his readers with six mad songs, as specimens of the English taste for this peculiar class of

Italian songs.

compositions. Of those which follow in the present collection only two are included in his “Relics of English Poetry." It is certainly remarkable how much the genius of English writers loves to dally with, to philosophize upon, and to adorn the subject of madness. Of all Shakspeare's plays, Hamlet is undoubtedly the most popular, and it is difficult to decide whether the half craze of Hamlet himself, or the utter prostration of the mind of the luckless Ophelia, is the more painfully and irresistibly attractive, or which of the two excites the most sympathy. The snatches of song sung by the mad Ophelia invariably melt an English audience to tears; and the terrible madness of Lear, whenever it is represented on the stage-touches a chord in every heart. Sir Walter Scott, in his matchless fictions, has also made powerful use of madness, and of that state of mind- not actual lunacy, but not far removed from it—when reason trembles on the balance, and the spectator or the reader watches with excited and painful curiosity the moment when the tottering intellect shall be finally overthrown, and the madness—which was more than suspected-shall be completely revealed. Many of our song-writers have from an early period availed themselves of the popular interest in subjects of this kind; and musical composers have done their best to aid the efforts of song-writers in rendering them attractive. The literature of other countries, as Percy has remarked, offers no such examples, and we seek in vain among the songs of the northern or the southern nations of Europe for similar specimens. Even the genius of the Germans, so akin to our own, fails to cope with us in the delineation of the picturesque horrors and touching sorrows of the mad. allusion be made to the subject in the writings of the continental critics, it is but to give additional currency to the old joke about Englishmen, which Shakspeare has put into the mouth of the clown in Hamlet:

If any

Hamlet : Ay, marry! why was he sent into England ?

Clown : Why-because he was mad: he shall recover his wits there; or if he do not, 'tis no great matter there.

Hamlet: Why?

Clown : 'Twill not be seen in him there; there the men are all as mad as he.

Many modern French poets and critics think that our English madness regularly returns with the month of November, and that suicides in that month are as plentiful as strawberries in June, or blackberries in September. It is our “sky" that does it, if we are to believe the French theory, and Waterloo-bridge was built on purpose to accommodate ladies and gentlemen afflicted with the national malady, and to render suicide both facile and agreeable. “ Oh, Bedlam!" exclaims Auguste Barbier, in his " Lazare:"

“Oh Bedlam! monument de crainte et de douleur
D'autres pénétreront plus avant dans ta masse ;
Quant à moi, je ne puis que détourner la face,
Et dire que ton temple aux antres étouffans
Est digne pour ses dieux d'avoir de tels enfans,

le ciel brumeux de la sombre Angleterre

Peut servir largement de dôme au sanctuaire." Leaving the French to their joke, and declining to speculate whether English madness be not perhaps the consequence of that great wit of which Pope speaks :

“ Great wit to madness surely is allied,

And thin partitions do their bounds divide," in which case the English nation 'might bear the gibes of their continental friends with more equanimity for the sake of the compliment involved ;-the following specimens of our ancient and modern lyrics of madness may be permitted to speak for themselves


ROBERT HERRICK, born 1591.

GOOD-MORPow to the day so fair,

Good-morrow, sir, to you ;
Good-morrow to mine own torn hair,

Bedabbled all with dew.

Good-morrow to this primrose too;

Good-morrow to each maid, That will with flowers the tomb bestrew

Wherein my love is laid.

Ah, woe is me—woe, woe is me,

Alack and well-a-day !
For pity, sir, find out that bee

Which bore my love away.

I'll seek him in your bonnet brave ;

I'll seek him in your eyes ; Nay, now I think they 've made his grave

In the bed of strawberries.

I 'll seek him there, I know ere this

The cold, cold earth doth shake him; But I will go, or send a kiss

By you, sir, to awake him.

Pray hurt him not ; though he be dead,

He knows well who do love him, And who with green turfs rear his head,

And who so rudely move him.

He's soft and tender, pray take heed;

With bands of cowslips bind him, And bring him home; but 'tis decreed

That I shall never find him.

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