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(which are beautifully mottled with white and gold, and weighed on an average a pound) and threw them over the bank to the black girls, who had kindled a fire for cooking them. It seldom cost us half an hour to take enough for twenty people. During the summer I took more than two thousand trout myself, besides pickerel and other fish. The other necessary articles were supplied, as each guest furnished the proportions most convenient to him. I have never made more delightful repasts; nor have I ever passed a summer more pleasantly. A kind of sad presentiment used to hang over my mind, to embitter even this pleasant summer, an impression that, as it was so delightful, it would be the last pleasant one allotted to me on the earth.”—p. 355.
At the close of the summer he returned to his duties at the seminary. A few weeks exertion, however, reproduced his illness, which resisted the powers of medicine, and left him nothing to try but that last, yet best resource of the invalid, change of climate. He left his family, returned up the river, and retracing his former footsteps to the Atlantic States, once more reached in safety his much loved natal soil.
We have borrowed so largely from these interesting letters, that we must now stay our hand. Yet when we look back on what we are compelled to omit, we cannot but feel regret. We feel sorrow at closing the volume and bidding our friend adieu, and cannot refrain from sincerely wishing him a re-establishment of his health, and a long life of happiness and utility in the bosom of his amiable family.
It remains that we say a few words on some of the subjects on which he dwells at large. We find him, though a NewEngland man, like every other candid and intelligent person who has visited the slave-holding states, and remained there long enough to form a true opinion, viewing the subject of slavery under its correct aspect. That there are evils attendant on it he admits, and exclaims, "would to God, there were not a slave on the earth!" But the evils of life are scattered with a pretty equal hand on all conditions of men. He found the negroes, generally, to possess a gentle, susceptible and affectionate nature. He was astonished after hearing so much of cruel masters, to find the slaves of a cheerful countenance, and apparently the happiest people he saw. They seemed to him to be as well-fed and clothed as the labouring poor of the North. In visiting numbers of plantations, he generally discovered in them affection for their masters, and in the masters, a deep impression that humanity is their best interest, and that cheerful, wellfed and clothed slaves perform so much more productive labour, as to unite speculation and kindness in the same calculation. When," says he, "the master is really a considerate and kind
man, the patriarchal authority on the one hand, and the simple and affectionate veneration on the other, render this relation of master and slave not altogether so forbidding, as we have been accustomed to consider it." This voluntary and disinterested testimony of one who is no slave-owner and never was, and who was brought up with all the northern prejudices of his countrymen on this subject, we recommend to their dispassionate consideration. He has heard, and deeply deplores the misrepresentations, inflammatory exhortations and intemperate opinions of the North put forth for political effect, and he solemnly cautions his deluded countrymen against their certain effect on southern feelings. If they believe not him, "neither would they one who rose from the dead."
Our traveller's report on the subject of the manners of the western people is, upon the whole, not unfavourable. As to refinement, that can only exist in large cities having intercourse with the world. He met with individuals from these cities with their families, who were as polished as any they had left behind; but what influence could they have on the multitude? This want of refinement, however, was supplied by a rude yet sincere hospitality. Though a respectable traveller may be received with no demonstrations of cordiality or ceremonious observances, yet his wants will be attentively supplied. Many years must revolve before elegance and politeness obtain a permanent habitation in the west. They are the offspring of social intercourse among those who see each other daily and nightly, and who habitually associate with well-bred strangers, and should not be looked for when this intercourse is impossible.
With respect to literature, they are equally deficient. Kentucky alone makes any pretension to it, and slow must be its progress, where liberal studies are neglected for the tavern and gambling-house. But the sun of science must ere long rise upon the West. The immense provision made for their public institutions must ultimately produce some effect. The constant and persevering efforts of many men of learning and science, settled in different parts of that great country, must be at length blessed with success; though at present their lights shine but a little way in the gloom.
Little is said by our author in favour of the religious feelings of the West, as they existed ten years ago. Since then great, and we trust, beneficial changes have in this respect taken place. In new countries, the erection of churches is not to be looked for except where large numbers of persons are assembled together. In the country where the attention of all is directed to the redemption of the earth from its savage state, both time
and means are wanted for the regular establishment of divine worship. The population must become dense and wealthy before this will be thought of. Their public exercises of religion, therefore, very much depended on the accidental visits of itinerant preachers, who called them together in such court-houses or other large buildings as could be obtained. These occasional performances could do little towards exciting a serious, religious feeling. Nothing but repeated and wholesome instruction on these sacred topics can do this. But we confess we were not prepared for the exhibition of such utter carelessness and levity as was sometimes witnessed: not that the people did not desire to attend public worship, on the contrary, they ran after novelty, and became often quite enthusiastic, but this soon exhaled; but they did not seem to admit the necessity of a minister, even at funerals, and regarded attendance on preaching more as an amusement than a duty. On the first Sunday that our missionary preached at St. Charles, before morning service, directly opposite the house, there was a horse-race; and the horses started just as the minister arrived at the door. At Arkansas, the French people generally came to the meeting in their ball dresses, and went directly from worship to the ball. A billiard-room was near, and parts of the audience sometimes came in for a moment, and after listening to a few sentences, returned to their billiards. "Nor is here," says our author, "the only place where the preacher has to endure the heartwearing agony of having an audience interchanging their attention repeatedly between the sermon and the billiard-room in the delivery of one discourse."
There was much difference in this respect between the country and towns, for in the latter, a considerable number of permanent societies existed, composed chiefly of Baptists, Presbyterians and Methodists. But disputes between these, too often ruffled the religious atmosphere. Nor were the Catholics wanting in these regions; but our author found them more united in faith, spirit and purpose, than the Protestants.
In no country of the world, are bigotry and enthusiasm seen in more absurd forms. Where many are congregated together in the wilderness, and the preachers are desirous of achieving a great deal at once, their vociferations are often accompanied with groans, cries, fallings down and spasms in their hearers; these are not unknown in the Atlantic States, but they have in the West one improvement which we have yet to adopt, to equal their extacies, and this is the "Holy Laugh;" which our author describes as an idiot or spasmodic laugh often indulged in on these occasions! He gives a singular account (too long for
insertion here) of a set of fanatics, who styled themselves Pilgrims, and who marched, headed by their prophet, from Lower Canada, where the madness originated, through Vermont and New-York to the Mississippi, gathering as they rolled, and who miserably perished in the desert wild.
We would notice our author's judicious reflections on emigration; on the wise and benevolent conduct of our government towards the Indians; his remarks on the antiquities of the West, particularly on the pigmy race of mankind, whose bones have been discovered; his observations on Florida; on the hospitalities of the planters of Louisiana; on the neighbouring province of Texas; and many other topics full of interest; but our space will not permit us, and we must refer to the work itself, which will amply repay the reader for the time he may bestow upon it.
ART. VII.-Chronicles of the Canongate. Second Series, by the Author of "WAVERLY," &c. 2 vols. Philadelphia. Carey, Lea & Carey. 1828.
WE did not read the first series of these tales, but the disappointment so generally expressed in relation to them, on this side of the Atlantic, excited our curiosity as to the present volumes to the highest pitch. We were impatient to see and feel for ourselves, whether the author of "Waverly"-like the great captain, whose fortunes he had so lately recorded—were about to astonish mankind as much by his fall as by his triumphs and dominion over them-whether the wand of the enchanter were indeed broken, and the sources of what has always appeared to us an almost superhuman inspiration, had been, at length, exhausted, like those of the Delphic tripod, by too much use or by time, or, in short, by the departure of the god. Every body knows that there was an immense falling off in the later poetry of Sir Walter Scott; and, in truth, that to call things by their right names, he had begun to indite insufferable doggerel-when fortunately for himself and for the world, his good genius interposed, as a Morgana or an Armida might have done for a favourite knight in a Romance of chivalry, and bearing him off a
field where he lay vanquished and fainting, transported him to the Amaranthine Bowers and magical magnificence and beauty of another "Faery Land." Few spectacles are more humiliating for poor human nature than the premature decay of a great mind-such a blight, for example, as seems to have fallen at a comparatively early age upon the genius which had produced Polyeucte and the Cid. For some two or three hours, we had sad misgivings in the present instance. We found the first hundred pages of the novel excessively heavy-partly, no doubt, because the reader does not well perceive the author's drift in them until he has made considerable progress in the story, but still more certainly, because this part, in fact, is very unequal to the rest of the work, and especially to some passages of it to which we shall, hereafter, more particularly, call the attention of our readers. But just as we began to sink under the combined effects of weariness and the heat of a summer's evening, we reached a point in the narrative at which a new prospect opened before us, and from which we pursued our way to the end with a still increasing interest and alacrity, amidst such scenes as no hand can conjure up but Sir Walter Scott's.
Not being very profoundly versed in the legendary lore of Scotland, nor having access to Hector Boethius and the trusty guides whom he follows, we have been fain to content ourselves with what information we could gather from Buchanan-himself, however, no contemptible dealer in the marvellous. His account* of the period embraced within this story, whilst it has satisfied us of the general fidelity of the copy, shews that our author has selected one of the most admirable subjects that can be imagined for an historical romance. We do not refer only to the striking and even poetical character of those times, of which it is difficult to record the events, even in the shape of a meagre chronicle, without appearing to the men of these degenerate days to be indulging in fiction. This is a great, indeed, but a common advantage of that age, considered with a view to works of imagination. But, in the instance before us, the history of Scotland afforded facilities of a peculiar kind for such a work. The dangerous power and stern character of the black Douglas; the intrigues of the ambitious and hypocritical Albany; the meekness and imbecility of the poor old king, more fit for his book and beads than for the throne; the rashness, the levity, and the melancholy fate of Rothsay; the ferocious hostility of the two Highland Clans, and the carnage