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Lastly-let the reader take the following as a specimen of something rather more fanciful than the poems we have hitherto transcribed.


"Sweet Peace, where dost thou dwell? I humbly crave
Let me once know.

I sought thee in a secret cave,

And ask'd, if Peace were there.

A hollow wind did seem to answer, ' No-
'Go, seek elsewhere."

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'He sweetly liv'd: yet sweetness did not save
His life from foes.

But, after death, out of his grave

There sprang twelve stalks of wheat: Which many wondering at, got some of those To plant and set.

'It prosper'd strangely, and did soon disperse Through all the earth.

For they that taste it do rehearse

That virtue lies therein;

A secret virtue, bringing peace and mirth.
By flight from sin.

"Take of this grain, which in my garden grows,

And grows for you—

Make bread of it; and that repose
And peace, which every where

With so much earnestness you do pursue,
Is only there.'

To speak of the faults of these poems, faults which abound in a far greater degree in the pieces which remain, than in those we have selected, would be useless to the purposes of our Review. It is our aim to pick out a few flowers which, in this case as in some others, are almost lost amid weeds—yet let it not be inferred that we have done this so completely in the present case, as that nothing but rubbish remains. On the contrary, we think that those who have a real relish for devotional poetry will find passages in Herbert that may refresh and delight them at the same time, no reader of taste, and rational views of religion, but must lament and wonder at the strange and almost incomprehensible turn of some of the poems. What are we to make of the following?

The Quiddity.

"My God, a verse is not a crown:
No point of honour or gay suit;
No hawk, or banquet, or renown;
Nor a good sword, nor yet a lute.
It cannot vault, or dance, or play,
It never was in France or Spain,
Nor can it entertain the day
With my great stable or domain.
It is no office, art, or news;
Nor the exchange, or busy hall-
But it is that, which while I use,

I am with thee, and-most take all."

The quaintness and oddity of the following are, however, compensated for by some excellent lines.

The Pulley.

"When God at first made man,

Having a glass of blessings standing by,
'Let us,' said he, 'pour on him all we can;
Let the world's riches, which dispersed lie,
Contract into a span.'

So strength first made away;

Then beauty flow'd; then wisdom, honour, pleasure:
When almost all was out, God made a stay;

Perceiving that alone, of all his treasure,
Rest in the bottom lay.

"For if I should,' said he,

'Bestow this jewel also on my creature,
He would adore my gifts instead of me,

And rest in nature, not the God of nature,-
So both should losers be.

'Yet let him keep the rest

But keep them, with repining restlessness-
Let him be rich and weary; that, at least,
If goodness lead him not, yet weariness
May toss him to my breast.''

ART. III. The instructive and entertaining Fables of Pilpay, an Ancient Indian Philosopher. The fifth edition. London, 1775.

The Fables of Pilpay have been long since translated into most of the European languages; but, after enjoying a temporary popularity, which is attested by the number of editions that have been published in different countries, they have sunk into unmerited neglect. The cause of this may be easily traced. The great success of the Arabian Nights Entertainments, that mine of oriental imagery and invention, produced a series of imitations, which, under the titles of Chinese, Persian, Turkish, and other Tales, must have sickened the appetites which they were intended to delight; and as Pilpay shared with them the applause of the reading public of that day, he was, also, doomed to partake in the indifference which succeeded the interest they at first excited. Literature has as many changes of fashion as are found in the minor departments of taste; and this alone might explain sufficiently why any book should, after a certain period, cease to entertain; but in the present case we may discover a more obvious reason for the obscurity into which our Indian philosopher has fallen, in the inelegant version of the French translation which was made for the use of English readers. Under this disadvantage, it could hardly be expected that Pilpay should maintain his ground against the hosts of writers who have, in turn, been the admiration of this novel-reading age and country. Even his claim

as the hereditary representative of the oldest fabulist of India would not, when the fate of fashion had otherwise determined, have preserved him from neglect, had the pedigree on which that claim is founded been as deducible as subsequent discoveries have made it, and as from different sources we are about to exhibit it to our readers. The high antiquity of this collection of Fables, and its curious progress from one language to another, together with its various changes of form and matter and even of title, are the most remarkable circumstances in its history; yet as a work of invention it has great merit, and as it would be too much to believe, with one of its eulogists, that it has been held in more universal estimation than any book except the Bible, so its great reputation in the East is assuredly to be attributed to excellence of a very high order.

Fables have been employed as the vehicles of instruction from the earliest ages. It is not easy to trace from what peculiarity of the human mind the love of allegory proceeds, but it is certain that the earliest dawning of intellect in every nation of the earth has been and is shewn by the use of this embellishment of language; and here, without doubt, is to be found the source of moral fable. For we may judge, from modern experience, that the first advisers of any race of mankind would find that all the admonition liberally bestowed in their honest zeal for the improvement of the species, would be but ill received, unless mixed with something that should render it more palatable. The personification of the passions of man appears to have been introduced long after the members of the irrational or inanimate creation had assumed their parts in these little dramas; or, if the deities of ancient mythology were originally the representatives of their respective attributes, the minds of the vulgar were unprepared to understand the more refined applications of allegorical writing, and mistook the metaphorical gods for real divinities. The most popular and the most ancient specimens of this kind of composition have usually animals, sometimes plants, as the actors of the piece; and of this species there are two schools, which may be respectively named after Æsop and Pilpay. Æsop's fables are short tales, in each of which, from the conversation or adventures of the actors, a single moral is readily extracted; Pilpay's are a series of fables, each incumbered with a string of morals, woven one within another, and all connected together by a leading story which is only introduced for the purpose of this connexion. The apparent aim of Æsop is to instruct without fatiguing the reader; the intention of Pilpay is to allure his attention by adopting an arrangement from which the mind may be induced, without a pause in the narrative, to master his whole system of ethics. There is great uncertainty in the history of the Phrygian's

works. It is generally believed that they were not committed to paper, but to the memory of the people, and that it was by this means that they reached the time of Socrates, who, under the supposed command of a superior power, employed some of his last moments in versifying them. But there can be no doubt that their principal characteristic must have been the simple construction just mentioned, which is, indeed, preserved in every edition ancient and modern, while the labyrinthine intricacy of his Indian rival is equally apparent in every translation and imitation.

The great charm of this manner of conveying instruction is, that it enlists the vanity of those admonished on the side of morality. It is an old observation, that the mind of the reader is flattered by the discovery of the moral application of a story, and gives more attention to the lessons which are prompted by its own ingenuity, than to the more offensive intrusion of a stranger's counsel. To this end the least complex fable seems best adapted, and we, therefore, find the most ancient apologues in this class. It may seem extraordinary that the oldest fable extant should give life and reason to the inanimate creation: it is Jotham's Fable of the Trees, in the Book of Judges. This, as well as that addressed by Nathan to David, is of a very simple construction. Though Æsop is often considered as the father of this style of writing among the Greeks, it was probably in continual use long before his time: indeed, Hesiod affords us an instance of its employment at least two hundred years before him, and in the very form that marks his compositions.


The Hawk and the Nightingale.

High in the clouds a mighty bird of prey
Bore a melodious nightingale away;

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And to the captive, shivering in despair,

Thus, cruel, spoke the tyrant of the air;

Why mourns the wretch in my superior power?

Thy voice avails not in the ravish'd hour.

Vain are thy cries; at my despotic will

Or I can set thee free or I can kill.'
Unwisely who provokes his abler foe,
Conquest still flies him and he strives for woe.

Εργ. καὶ Ἡμ. 186.

Cooke's Hesiod-Works and Days; I. 270.*

Ωδ ̓ ιρηξ προσέειπεν αηδονα ποικιλογηρυν,
Ὑψι μαλ' εν νεφεεσσι φερων ονύχεσσι μεμαρτως,
Ἡδ ̓ ελεον γναμπτοισι πεπαρμένη αμφ' ονύχεσσι

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