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in the painful delight with which the artist views his model. Some sacrifice their original conception, which might have been striking or grand, to the perfection of execution, well knowing that without great skill in the forms of poetic expression, no strength or tenderness can be pleasing, but forgetting that this facility of art comes not from study for that effect, but from habit unconsciously acquired, while the attention was better employed.
This mistake is trifling, compared with another, from which Mr Mellen is free, that of those writers, who suppose originality also is to be acquired by study, and who make the absurd attempt to say in a manner no one else would have said, what no one else would have thought. This folly is abundantly exemplified in the works of some of our writers. Any man, who chooses so idly to expose himself, may throw together ideas, epithets, and illustrations, in a connection which is new, as any one can cast together a hundred letters of the alphabet in a combination, which was probably never seen, and the exploits are equally honorable. What is it to the world, that an author has hit on a combination of thoughts he considers new? The reader has no interest in the poet, or his discoveries ; but that which he can create by his strength or beauty, and it belongs to the worst delusion, 10 make the public a party in this way to our own fanciful egotism.
Mr Mellen's Ode opens with a highly poetical description of the appearance of both armies. The following is an animated and brilliant passage.
"The patriot blades are out_uplifted high,
Their pennons on the blue
To Telegraph the band
To Death, or Victory!
Appear our banner's flaming bars,
How idle is ambition now-
Upon a world so young and fair!
The feasts of Desolation ;
Will yet illume the nation.
Now deeper roll the maddening drums,
While from the midst a horrid wailing comes,
Woe to the reddening spirits now,
For chains and jewelry'
For FREEDOM's withering frowns
Forth issuing from her stormy hair,
On giant arms and bosoms bare!' There follows a stanza descriptive of the firing of the town, which is perhaps subject to the objection we have alluded to above, of being overwrought. The requiem to Warren is very beautiful, without any of the faults of Mr Mellen's manner.
• But ah! along that trembling steep,
A hero to his dwelling.
In honor's shroud;
His hallow'd clay,
Oh! England, if there ever came
'Twill redden all thy island seas!' The poem is concluded by a few stanzas, full of the generous and noble sentiments, which the occasion of erecting that monument with those auspices must inspire, among which our departed guest, the delight of Liberty, is not forgotten.
2.-A Discourse delivered before the Society for the Commemo
ration of the Landing of William Penn, on the 24th of October, 1825. By C. J. INGERSOLL. Philadelphia. 8vo.
pp. 36. R. H. Small, It is no wonder, that the memory of Penn should be cherished with deep reverence in the state which bears his name, and in the city founded by his enterprise and wisdom. His, indeed, is a name dear to America, and honorable to the best principles of human nature. The records of his deeds in this country adorn the fairest pages of American history, and his first interviews with the natives, on the banks of the Delaware, are among the very few events of the kind, in our early annals, on which the imagination loves to dwell. The first settlers generally lacked discretion and modera
tion, almost as much as they abounded in zeal and enterprise. The colonists in Virginia brought arms and warlike preparations, and soon nade an enemy where they did not find one; and the pilgrims of New England landed with muskets on their shoulders, and presented themselves in the attitude of war, to the first body of natives they encountered. Penn came with the olive branch of peace; he mei the rude sons of the forest as men, having the passions of men, and spoke to them in the accents of humanity and justice. It was a language, which they understood, and its influence was effectual; it tamed the fierce spirit of war, paved the way for an amicable treaty, and procured the unbounded and lasting respect of the Indians, for the founder of the colony of Pennsylvania.
Near the beginning of his discourse, Mr Ingersoll has inserted in a note a curious extract from Penn's writings, which explains the origin of the name given to his colony. The passage is contained in a letter, dated January 5, 1681. *This day,' says Penn, "after many waitings, watchings, solicitings, and disputes, in Council, my country was confirmed to me under the Great Seal of England; with large powers and privileges, by the name of Pennsylvaniaa name the King would give it in honor of my father. I chose New Wales, being a hilly country; and when the Secretary, a Welchman, refused to call it New Wales, I proposed Sylvania, and they added Penn to it; though I much opposed it, and went to the King to have it struck out. He said 'twas past, and he would take it upon him; nor could twenty guineas move the under Secretary to vary the name; for I feared it should be looked on as a vanity in me, and not as a respect in the King to my father, as it really was. Thou may'st communicate my grant to Friends, and expect shortly my proposals. 'Tis a dear and just thing, and my God, that has given it me through many difficulties, will, I believe, bless and make it the seed of a nation. I shall have a tender care to the government, that it be well laid at first.' This pledge was not forgotten ; he spent some time in this country, aud spared no exertions to establish such a system of government, and put such laws in operation, as he believed would be best adapted to ensure the prosperity of the colony.
In commemorating the landing of William Penn, it was thought by Mr Ingersoll, that he could not render a more grateful tribute to his memory, than to enumerate some of the remarkable features in the growth of Philadelphia. The increase, and the present flourishing condition of that city, are most gratifying mementos of the labors and foresight of its great founder. Mr Ingersoll has given us a highly graphic picture of the progress of Philadelphia in arts, commerce, manufactures, internal police, wealth, refinement, literary, scientific, and benevolent institutions, and in whatever contributes to advance the numbers, prosperity, and happiness of a
people. His delineations are those of a close and thoughtful observer not only of events, but of the springs of social action, and the principles which regulate the economy of life. We have not space to dwell on particulars, and must content ourselves with the following extract, which is clothed in a style, and expresses sentiments, peculiarly characteristic of the author.
In the crucible of liberty, all the languages of Europe have been melted into one. In the temple of toleration, all religions have been sanctified. The forests of a continent have been weeded with sturdy hands, till its wilds have become the ways of pleasantness, and the paths of peace. With stout hearts and apt genius, the ocean has been tamed till it is part of the domain.
Plenty empties her full horn into the lap of tranquillity. Commerce fetches riches from every latitude. The earth and mountains are quick with inexhaustible productions. Domestic industry contributes its infinite creations. Poetry, history, architecture, sculpture, painting, and music, daily add their memorials. Yet these are as nothing. Vix ea nostra voco-enjoyments scarcely acknowledged-all local advantages would be disregarded, if they were not recommended by the religious, social, and political principles we enjoy with them.
"Let us cultivate, and vindicate, and perpetuate this country, not only by the power and sympathies of heroic exploits, but by the nobler attractions of all the arts of peace.
Ours is the country
of principles, not place; where the domestic virtues reign, in union with the rights of man; where intense patriotism is the natural offspring of those virtues and rights; where love of country is a triple tie, to birthplace, to state, and to union, spun in the magic woof that binds calculation to instinct. Aloof, erect, unmeddling, undaunted, it neither envies nor fears, while justly estimating, the splendid and imposing ascendency of the continent it sprung from. It sends on every gale to Europe the voice, not of defiance or hostility, but of an independent hemisphere of freemen. It sends to Asia the riches of commerce, and the Gospel with healing on its wings. It sends to Africa the banner spangled with stars, to awe the tyrant and protect the slave. It sends to all benighted quarters of the globe, the mild but divine radiance of an irresistable example. It invites the oppressed of all nations and degrees, from dethroned monarchs and banished princes, to fugitive peasants and destitute laborers, to come and rest within these borders.
May the sciences and refinements which enabellish and enlighten, the charities that endear, and the loyalty that ennobles, forever flourish here on the broad foundations of peace, liberty, and intelligence. And among increasing millions of educated, moral, and contented people, may the disciples of Penn, Franklin, and Washington, meet together in frequent and grateful concourse, to render
thanksgivings to the Almighty for the blessings we enjoy by his dispensation. pp. 33–36.
On former occasions we have given our opinion of Mr Ingersoll's style of composition, and habits of thought. These are in many respects peculiar. His language is strong and pointed, disdaining ornament and studied elegance, loaded with no superfluous epithets, and attracting rather by the force of its expression and richness of facts, than by its embellishment or rhetoric. It inclines a little to the hyperbolical, particularly in descriptions, and the choice of words is not always consistent with good usage. In the present discourse we have, among other anomalies, centrality, and pioneering; and the author speaks of the water brought into Philadelphia, as 'vouchsafing it from extensive conflagrations. This looseness we are sorry to see in such a writer. Men of literary intelligence and attainments should be the last, to deviate from the established use of words; corruptions will creep in fast enough from other quarters ; and this is one of the cases, in which the wise and the learned should keep far behind the multitude.
3.—Annals of Portsmouth, comprising a Period of two hundred
Years from the first Settlement of the Toron ; with Biographical Sketches of a few of the most respectable Inhabitants. By NATHANIEL ADAMS. Portsmouth. Published
by the Author. 1825. 8vo. pp. 400. The form of Annals is the most unpretending, but by no means the least useful or agreeable mode of writing history. Besides enbracing a greater variety of facts, and finding a place for minute particulars, which would be necessarily passed over in a connected narrative, it has a more striking appearance of life and reality by uniting the great and the small, the grave and the gay, in the same chronological series. The historian, like the landscape painter, selects a few prominent objects, groups them together for effect, and places them in the foreground in a strong light; while the annalist presents us with drawings of individual plants and trees. We look to the one for the results of thought, and to the other for the materials of thinking.
The character and views of the first settlers of Portsmouth were materially different, from those of the founders of Plymouth and Massachusetts colonies. They were men of business, sent out by Mason and his associates for the purposes of trade; and though they soon acquired a portion of the religious zeal of their neighbors, they were never thoroughly imbued with the spirit of the Puritans. There is an amusing account of this difference given in page 94. 'A. D.