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We desire to express ourselves duly sensible of the honour and kindness we have received in the numerous and favorable notices which our first number has elicited from many metropolitan and provincial journals.
We respectfully apprise our Correspondents that we cannot engage to return short articles.
Several contributions we are unable to avail ourselves of, in consequence of their being unsuitable to our pages, although as talented as those selected.
An OXFORD M.A.'s papers on the “ Ethics of the Great English Bard” are expected ; the plan is unexceptionable.
“Sketches of Character” must be sent before we can pass an opinion on their suitability.
C. C.'s “Spring Song" is thankfully acknowledged, but respectfully declined.
E. D._* “ The Oblata” have been received. We should prefer original articles.
Mr. Hoy's letter is gratefully acknowledged; it is valuable to the Editor, not only for the kindly spirit which it breathes throughout, but for the appreciation of the purposes of the Magazine, which has the merit of obtaining Mr. H.’s approbation. We are proud of the favorable notice of Mr. Hoy's young friend, R. R. We hope to hear again from both parties.
The sketches of “Sydney Smith,” “ Thomas Moore,” and “ Dr. Abercrombie,” are spirited, but we fear the subjects are too stale for the “ Home Magazine.” The essay on “ Chemistry also would not suit. Our Correspondent's kindness, however, is duly appreciated, and we should receive other communications with pleasure.
MR. HALL, of Shrewsbury, is thanked for his good-natured epistle. The light and graceful verses he enclosed came too late for insertion in the present number, and will be out of date in June.
CHARLES A.–We are gratified by this gentleman's well-expressed opinion. He is right in considering that this Magazine is not published merely to afford amusement. A much higher aim is ours.
MR. P.'s Essay on “ Education” lacks power. Let him, however, not be discouraged ; we advise him to take another subject, and try again.
All Literary Communications and Books for Review to be addressed to the Editor, care of the Publisher, 154, Strand.
In order that Advertisements may be advantageously displayed, parties are requested to send them not later than the 25th of the current month.
OUR THINKINGS, No. 1.
Good men live in hope of the world's moral elevation. The sorriest sceptic on earth will not question the great need of it. For nearly six thousand years, men have been toiling and playing, laughing and weeping, sinning and sorrowing, in a way that renders contemplation very mournful. The uncertain light of History beams on the waves of Time, and with troubled eye we gaze on the fearful wrecks beneath. How mankind have suffered! How many millions have died in lingering torment, with shattered skull, ball-pierced limb; and mangled frame, on the field of battle! How many have sickened slowly, and crawled in sadness to the grave! How many have sunk ’neath the assassin's knife! How many a widow and orphan have wailed o'er the fate of the husband and father who in the wild night-storm has sunk to his resting-place in the deep waters! How many have been swept away by pestilence! How many have pined away in famine! And then the unhappy Mad! and the millions whose lives have been spent in desperately struggling to live; and those who have endured all the other frightful ills that for ages have afflicted the bodies and minds of men !-0 dreadful retrospection!
Again : look at the world as it now is. Our statists say there are seven hundred millions of beings living on this globe. And these beings of flesh, blood, and bone, wherein passion and intellect hold varying sway, will be in a few short years food
for worms, fishes, and kites. In one century will the stern King of Terrors have subdued the strong man, and frozen the blood, rich with wine, whose easy current lightly slips through the well-fleshed veins.
But to what tendeth all this? What prevention? What cure ? None!
Worse than profitless would it be to follow this subject, which by the mere light of nature inevitably leads either to Atheism or to the frightfullest form of Superstition, if hope of better issue recommended not the duty we have to enforce and illustrate, that is, RESPONSIBILITY.
Let it be that, as an hireling, man must accomplish his work, yet let him remember he is the servant of the ONLY BEING who having all things can be, and disposing all things, delights to be, the ONLY GOOD.
The one great duty of man consists in finishing the work he hath to do-in the habit of realising his responsibility. If this be a true thing, why fear we to insist upon it?
Why feel ashamed to act on it? Why lessen the nature and character of this responsibility ?
A servant “ to his own master standeth or falleth.” Why, then, is this servant to be solicitous to please everybody, or to occupy himself about everything except his master?
Say, perchance, that the standard of this master's requirements is so high that man's hurt pride (man coming ever short of the standard) makes constant allusion to it painful. But then, is this "responsibility” a true thing or not? That is the question. Why is the wail of moral woe so long and so loud ? Because the responsibility of man is so deep and so enduring
The world's misery trumpets forth this truth to man as its natural voice. Oh! terrible voice, indeed, were this its only expletive! But in a Christian land to listen to such a roar, such a tempest, such a whirlwind only, is to list with stunned sense, and the heart sinking within, cries, 'Oh ! let me not hear it any more lest I die.' It is the still small voice whose wondrous and unexpected tenderness breathes hope-that elec
trical accent of ineffable love-“ Neither do I condemn theego, and sin no more,” which gives us the heart to entertain our responsibility with calmness, and to gird up our loins to fulfil its requirements ; which, better than the prospect of hire to the labourer makes us wait with patience for our declining day.
Wherefore, in this Christian land, do men propose to themselves and to their children, motives of action which in the issue make of deeper import Life's GREAT LIE?—The world's honour, wealth, and approbation !—To what course can these be promised; by what efforts can these be attained; how are they to be preserved ; what is the worth of them?
Why do mothers, many of them virtuous and well-meaning, propose to their children motives of action which, if written and commented on for a moment, would lose their ridiculousness only to produce shame and terror? “Such an action,” say they, “is not genteel, is vulgar, will excite a neighbour's derision.” As though the world, apprehended by their senses, was so feeble in its effect upon their waxen heart and brain, that such an adventitious aid was required that it might have due effect. Were every hair upon those children's heads a life, it would be madness to fritter away one, by motives so frivolous as these.
Is it thought that the best way to promote religious veneration is to inculcate the doctrine of there being many Gods ? Nay! Then is it not an hypocrisy of the fearfullest dye to believe in our hearts that there is but ONE source of successful action, and yet to propose motives derived from the world's expedient lies, which must fail?
READER! think of these things. What now appeareth dark unto Thee, Meditation will make wholly clear. We believe, that we are God-BORN, GOD-RESPONSIBLE, and IMMORTAL! This belief is impressed on the tablet of our heart in characters of light. The wondrous results that would follow the UNIVERSAL manifestation of such belief, in Thought, Word, and Deed, we have yet to shew.
THE ROYAL MARRIAGE,
AN HISTORICAL INCIDENT OF THE 16TH CENTURY,
THE EVIL RESULTS OF AMATEUR VERSE-MAKING.
It was a late hour, almost eleven o'clock in the forenoon, when the palace gates were thrown open, preparatory to the issuing forth of the gorgeous cavalcade which was to conduct the Princess Mary to the English coast, on her way to Abbeville.
The procession was headed by six mountebank fellows, clothed in parti-coloured, tight-fitting dresses, and carrying in their hands a flat, thin sword of white wood, with which they cleared a passage in the throng of spectators: the method of using these weapons gave to the men the vulgar appellation of “ whifflers.” Their odd attitudes and antics made them not unlike to tipsy Mercuries, over-matched by a third bottle of ambrosial port, and capering about the vestibule of Olympus before starting off for "a night of it."
Next came a fellow, “ bearded like the pard,” bearing a thick, massive headed pole, on a white charger, somewhat in advance of six horn-blowers, dressed in cloth-of-gold coats, made in the fashion of a priest's cope, on which were worked the royal arms of England: two carried trumpets; two, senets ; and two, semicircular cornets. Then came, on a black charger, “the Garter King-at-arms,” preceded, a foot or so, on each side by standard bearers, with the standard of England and Tudorbanner. Then came four mounted deans and doctors, in crimson gowns. After them, the bishops of Ely, Durham, and Rochester, under a canopy drawn by four white horses. Then followed a troop of the royal guard clad in steel. Then, the Duke of Norfolk, with the Earl of Surrey, Sir Edward Howard, marshal of the army at the battle of Flodden; Sir John Seymour, father to Jane Seymour, Henry the Eighth's third wife; Lord Conyers, and the Earl of Worcester ; all splendidly attired and on magnificent animals, caparisoned in cloth of gold, on which, in various hues, were worked their respective arms.
Next to this goodly company came Sir Anthony Denny, purse bearer to the Princess Mary.
When these had proceeded about fifty yards the Princess, mounted on a cream-coloured horse, preceded by two ushers carrying white wands, and accompanied by Ladies Charlotte