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and guards the gates of that dwelling, with which he has nought to do. Mammon at the gates of the garden of Death! Nay, worse still, parcelling out that very garden-dividing it, as he does all other things below, with grovelling injustice between the rich and POOR, perpetual repose for the pampered remains of the children of pomp. Yes, marble monuments, and flattering records for the Rich; and five years allowed for the paupers' bodies, huddled together, unmarked and unheeded-five years, in which we are told that it is calculated these bodies will deeompose and make way for other paupers to perish in their turn.
At the Bureau of the Cemetery is a regular depôt of the gaudy crowns of yellow immortelles, with which the French love to decorate the tombs of their dead. Formal and artificial-looking, and just the sort of apology French taste prompts for French heartlessness. We can all enter into the feeling with which fresh flowers may be flung upon the grave of some dear one who would have loved them in life, and there is a fanciful, but yet a comprehensible pleasure, in forming a little garden around the grave of the dead,—the flowers that die to bloom again, whisper of immortality; and there is so much of this earth and its delusions, even in the wisest, that we cannot look on the actual though lifeless form we have so loved and cherished, as mere dust. Where the treasure is, there will the heart be also. But these formal, purchased, and frippery chaplets, sold by avarice and bought by vanity, have nothing in common with the tributes of grief and love; and, in proof of this, the tomb of Abelard and Eloisa is more inundated by such offerings than that of any lost friend or lamented relative. This monument-namely, that of Abelard and Eloisa—is decidedly the most picturesque, and to Parisian taste the most interesting in the Cemetery; it is, indeed, a “shrine where their vigils pale-eyed votaries keep,”—and the tale of "passionate shame” connected with the false nun and perjured monk, is calculated to awaken all the echoes of those hearts which have no sympathy with the sublime struggle and glorious conquest of virtue over passion, but pant with, and melt at, the exciting but feeble conflict of inclination with principle, and the luring, demoralizing triumph of love over virtue. Yes, as the conquest of passion over virtue now forms the subject of all Parisian poetry, romance, and drama, so, to the weak grisette of the “sliding heart,” the false husband and the perjured wife of a higher class—all, in short, who trample on vows and duties, and make passion their god—to all such, the tomb of Abelard and Eloisa is a shrine where false vows are breathed, false tears shed, and purchased garlands hung!
Still, looking upon it as a mere work of art, the sepulchral chapel of the pointed style of the thirteenth century-formed by Lenoir out of the ruins of that Abbey of the Paraclete, founded by Abelard, and of which Eloisa was first abbess——is exquisite of its kind; and the statues of the victims of passion seem to sleep calmly, side by side, at last.
All will eagerly seek out the tomb of dear La Fontaine-instructor of our childhood, and delight of a maturer age; a fox, in black marble, crowns his cenotaph, appropriately ornamented with two bas-reliefs in bronze-one, representing the fable of the wolf and the stork; and the other, the wolf and the lamb. And oh! how the old nursery time comes back upon the heart, while we murmurVOL. VI.
Une Grenouille vit un bæuf,
Qui lui sembla de belle taille,
S'enfle, se goufle, et se travaille.” And so on, through the bright world of beguiling Fable. Here are to be found the tombs of Monsieur and Madame Reveillon; the latter interesting as being the first victim of the Revolution. Cuvier, the great naturalist, has a tomb remarkable in itself; but his name is sufficient epitaph; his best monument - his works! Talma, as if wearied out with false show while living, rests under a plain tomb without an inscription; the essence of his sublime genius was its chaste repudiation of florid ornament, and this simple tomb speaks volumes without a word. Molière lies near him, but a solemn sarcophagus denotes the grave of the High-priest of Comedy, and for the first time in our lives, Molière's name is unmixed with thoughts of mirth and joy. Here, too, rests at last, the once restless Madame de St. Julien, well-named by Voltaire, the Papillon Philosophe; and the brave devoted Marquis de Clermont Gallerande, who, on the memorable 10th of August, placed himself between Louis XVI. and the mob, and won a place in all loyal hearts by the daring and devoted deed. La Place!-how small a space now suffices the speculator on THE BOUNDLESS! His tomb, near Molière's, is of white marble, and from it rises an obelisk, surmounted by an urn, ornamented with a star encircled by palm branches, and inscriptions alluding to the great astronomer's works—"Mecanique Céleste," “ Système du Monde," “ Probabilités.”. Probabilities! Poor La Place, with thee they are certainties now.
Turning from these things of the world of thought, who have obtained such bloodless triumphs o'er the realms of time, a few turnings and windings, and a somewhat steep ascent, brings one among those less enviable conquerors, whose laurels were bathed in the blood of the brave, and the tears of the widow and the orphan. The marshals of Napoleon lie here. How terrible once! What are they now? The conquered, and we will hope, the forgiven; for they were the brave. They lie to the west of the avenue, while, from a rising ground to the east of the Cemetery, we gained a lovely view over Vincennes.
It was a bright Spring day, towards the end of March, the distant country was bathed in a sunny mist, Nature wore her calm eternal smile, and as we looked on the scene around, the new-made graves and the sobbing mourners, the contrast of the perishing and the lasting forced itself on the heart. A volume would not suffice to describe and expatiate on all the monuments worthy of note; suffice it then to say, that all that science, art, valour, wealth, rank, philanthropy, and beauty, vain glory, or vanity, have rendered remarkable in Paris, are here complimented, not merely by storied urn and animated bust, but often by colossal pyramids and giant obelisks, as if in mockery of the handful of dust beneath.
But Bernardin de St. Pierre, all will surely seek his tomb, for the sake of his “ Paul and Virginia.” It is pleasant to dwell on the resting-place of the dead, who have made themselves immortal! Near him lies Brequet, the celebrated watchmaker; for him, Time (the regulating of which was the occupation of his life) is now no more! Boieldieu and Bellini, too, who woke such sweet echoes, are silent here;
but those echoes survive the gifted ones that awakened them. Madame Blanchard's fate is here somewhat absurdly recalled, by a cippus surmounted by a globe in the flames! And Madame Dufresnoy, surnamed the “ Tenth Muse,” the admired of the fanciful, lies by that practical genius, the great chemist Fourcroy, (a strange neighbour for her!)
There is one part of the Cemetery, beyond the straight road that is formed by the brow of the hill, deeply interesting to all English pilgrims; for there, under monuments generally beautiful and chaste, lie our own dead
“ There is a tear for all who die,”
says the poet, but surely all have a tear for those who die on a foreign land, and may not rest by the side of those who loved them, and whom they loved.
After gazing at the celebrated David's tomb, we came again to the fosses communes, and at a part where the worn nature of the little wooden tablet shewed that the brief lease of five years was almost expired, and that the living mourner and the lamented dead were to be outraged ere long.
A young man, a poor artisan in appearance, was musing, with folded arms, eyes swollen, and cheeks blistered with weeping; the grave he stood by was ornamented by little plots of violets and heartsease; and on the board, the one line—“Cecile, agée de dix huit ans,” told in itself a tale of love and sorrow. Cecile, perhaps the hope, perhaps already the reality, of that poor artisan's sad life of toil—the love, or the wife, no matter which, evidently his all, by the care bestowed for nearly five years on that little grave—and the grief which, after five years was wild and deep, as when they laid her there for the first time. And that grave to be disturbed—the shrine of that heart to be made desolate - the object of the daily pilgrimage of love to be rudely laid waste, and the hallowed relics scattered abroad — no marvel that a stern and almost vindictive despair was on that young man's tear-stained cheek; and, oh! Mammon, Mammon! I sighed again.
There was another tomb which I remember, though with different feelings. The simple inscription, “A ma Mère,” awoke some of the holiest and sweetest echoes of my heart; and had it stopped there, it would have been sublime (the true sublime of simplicity); but, alas! on a gaudy pedestal, a bronze head of the departed was raised, the hair frizzed and tricked out in formal modern fashion, while round this head one of the odious yellow garlands had been recently placed in a most coquettish style, and a string of berries, by way of necklace, was twined around the throat!
In such wretched taste were many others—little peep-shows, reposons, on which stood waxen virgins, tinsel saints, flower-pots, and in some, articles that looked very like our salt-cellars and castors, while all were littered by the chaplets, some fresh, some decaying.
On the whole, grand and beautiful as are many of the monuments, sweet as is the situation, and graceful as are the grounds, we returned from Père la Chaise with a feeling of disappointment.
A JAR OF HONEY FROM MOUNT HYBLA.
BY LEIGH HUNT.
FLETCHER'S FAITHFUL SHEPHERDESS.—PROBABLE REASON OF ITS NON-SUCCESS.
-EXQUISITE AND PERFECT PASSAGE ABOUT THE MORNING.-COMUS AND LYCIDAS.—DR, JOHNSON'S WORLD.-ALLAN RAMSAY AND BURNS.
The title and story of the Sad Shepherd of Ben Jonson, in combination with those of the Faithful Shepherd (Pastor Fido) of Guarini, appear to have suggested to Fletcher his Faithful Shepherdess. This is undoubtedly the chief pastoral play in our language, though with all its beauties we can hardly think it ought to have been such, considering what Shakspeare and Spenser have shewn that they could have done in this Arcadian region. The illustrious author, exquisite poet as he was, and son of a bishop to boot, had the misfortune, with his friend Beaumont, to be what is called a “man upon town;" which polluted his sense of pleasure, and rendered him but imperfectly in earnest, even when he most wished to be so. Hence his subserviency to the taste of those painful gentlemen called men of pleasure, and his piecing out his better sentiments with exaggeration. Hence the revolting character, in this play, of a “Wanton Shepherdess,” which is an offence to the very voluptuousness it secretly intended to interest; and hence the opposite offence of the character of the “Faithful Shepherdess" herself, who is ostentatiously made such a paragon of chastity, and values herself so excessively on the self-denial, that the virtue itself is compromised, and you can see that the author had very little faith in it. And we have little doubt that this was the cause why the play was damned, (for such is the startling fact,) and not the ignorance of the audience, to which Beaumont and Ben Jonson indignantly attributed it. The audience could not reconcile such painful, and, as it must have appeared to them, such hypocritical contradictions; and very distressing to the author must it have been to find that he had himself contributed to create that sceptical tone of mind in the public, respecting both himself and the female sex, which refused to take him at his word when he was for putting on a graver face, and claiming their ultra-belief in all that he chose to assume. The “ Faithful Shepherdess” is a young widow, who is always talking of devoting herself to her husband's memory; and her lover Thenot is so passionately enamoured of her, that he says if she were to give up the devotion, his passion would be lost. He entreats her at once to "hear him” and to deny!” This child's play is what the audience could not tolerate. It was a pity; for there are passages in the “Faithful Shepherdess” as lovely as poet could write. We are never tired of hearing
“ How the pale Phæbe, hunting in a grove,
First saw the boy Endymion, from whose eyes
So of the dessert gathered by the Satyr for the nymph Syrinx:
“Here be grapes, whose lusty blood
Is the learned poet's good,
Swifter than the fiery sun." See also the love made by the river-god at the end of the third Act, which we have not room to quote; and the Satyr's account of dawn, which opens with the four most exquisite lines perhaps in the whole play:
“See, the day begins to break,
And the light shoots like a streak
While the morning doth unfold.” Who has not felt this mingled charmingness and chilliness (we do not use the words for the sake of the alliteration) at the first opening of the morning! Yet none but the finest poets venture upon thus combining pleasure with something that might be thought a drawback. But it is truth; and it is truth, in which the beauty surmounts the pain; and therefore they give it. And how simple and straightforward is every word! There are no artificial tricks of composition here. The words are not suggested to the truth by the author, but to the author by the truth. We feel the wind blowing as simply as it does in nature; so that if the reader be artificially trained, and does not bring a feeling for truth with him analogous to that of the poet, the very simplicity is in danger of losing him the perception of the beauty. And yet there is art as well as nature in the verses; for art in the poet must perfect what nature does by her own art. Observe, for instance, the sudden and strong emphasis on the word shoots, and the variety of tone and modulation in the whole passage, with the judicious exceptions of the two o's in the wind “blows cold,” which have the solemn continuous sound of what it describes, and the corresponding ones in “ doth unfold,” which maintain the like continuity of the growing daylight. And exquisite, surely, is the dilatory and golden sound of the word “morning” between them:
“ The wind blows cold, While the mor-ning doth unfold.”