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woman prefers the man before all others, as his service must be distinguished in the same manner. Where this is approved of by the governours or elders, if the woman insists on her demands, 'tis an inviolable law, that that man must be her husband. Their hands first are joined together in public, then they clasp each other in the closest embrace, in which posture the Elder of the place puts a circle of the finest tempered steel, to shew that this union is never to be dissolved. It is all woven with flowers, and first laid over their necks, as they are thus clasping each other, then round their waist, and last of all, round their breasts or hearts, to signify that the ardency of their love must terminate in an indissoluble friendship, with infinite acclamations and congratulations of the whole assembly. I believe the world cannot furnish such examples of conjugal chastity as are preserved between them by these means. Widowers and widows never marry single persons, and but rarely at all, except left young, when they are to gain each other as before. By such prudent precautions infinite disorders are prevented, proceeding not only from disproportionate and forced marriages, but from the licentiousness of idle persons, who either marry for money, or live on the spoil of other people, till they can get an advantageous match, which often occasions great misfortunes in a commonwealth."
The above is a summary of the constitution of this primitive government, in which the author has depicted the highest degree of perfection and happiness attainable by the light of nature alone. Abstractly considered, a plan more coherent in its parts, and more symmetrical in the whole, cannot well be imagined. The simple patriarchal dependency-the unanimity and singleness of purpose which circulate through all the veins of the nation, animating it, as it were, with one common pulse of kindness and love-the paternal nature of the laws, and of the punishment for their violation, are in perfect harmony with each other. No law disproportionate to the offence, no sanguinary punishment of the offender, disfigures this imaginary system. On the contrary, it exhibits a most exhilarating picture of legislative simplicity and human benignity. What can be more beautiful, and at the same time, more removed from commonly received notions, particularly at the time our author wrote, than the principle, that it is highly criminal to shed the blood of any human being, either with or without the authority of the ruling power? Or what more purely benevolent than his extension of this principle to the total rejection of the art of war? Nor are the punishments assigned to crime less singular and characteristic. The most heinous crime, the taking of the life of another, is punished by the privation of social intercourse during life and disgraceful treatment of the body after death. This species of punishment is a beautiful illustration of the Egyptian practice of sitting in judgement upon the dead previous
to allowing them the right of sepulture. The crime of adultery is punished in a similar manner to that of murder; but for common offences the only punishments are public disgraces.
The scheme of our author is founded on truer and more disinterested principles of liberty, and on larger and more benevolent views of the destiny of man, than the Utopia of Sir Thomas More. The Mezoranians have no such thing as slavery in their commonwealth; virtue is their only distinction, and honour their only reward. They neither shed the blood of brethren at home, nor of enemies abroad. It is also less impracticable than the Utopia, not being incumbered with such trifling and foolish regulations as that celebrated work. How far indeed any such system is practicable, is another question; but whether practicable or not, it may still be delightful as an ingenious speculation, or valuable as a means of conveying useful knowledge. Indeed, the work which we are now reviewing is as valuable for the hints thrown out for the improvement of man in his social character, and for the simplifying and softening down the too harsh laws supposed necessary to keep him in peace and subjection, as it is beautiful as an Utopian scheme. And yet it is in some measure modelled after a government which actually existed, refined and improved it is true, but still bearing strong resemblance to its prototype. Ancient Egypt, the inhabitants of which appear to have arrived at great perfection in their civil polity, as well as in arts and sciences, was the model the author seems to have taken for the kingdom of Mezorania. From that country he has derived the polished race, with which he has peopled his delightful settlement. But he has assigned to them a country superior, in natural beauty and fertility, even to Egypt itself, once "the finest country in the world, the most fertile by nature, and the best cultivated by art." The towns of the Mezoranians are as magnificent, and their temples as superb, as those of the Egyptians, and, like them, they seem as if they intended to "wrestle a fall with time" in the perpetuity of their edifices. He represents the Mezoranians to have the same serious disposition, and to be distinguished by the same inventive mind-to have the same equal respect for all employments which contributed to the public service, and to be imbued with the same ardent love of country. Their legal institutions were as simple as those of the Egyptians, and their observance of them as scrupulous and exact. They had a similar preference for such arts as were most useful, and a similar dislike of any one being idle or useless to the commonwealth. And from the Egyptians he has borrowed the peculiar custom of punishing criminals after death. His plan for the regulation of marriages and the intercourse of the sexes is as charming and disinterested as it is uncommon,
and, in some of its parts, fanciful. As, for instance, his mode of courtship, which is this:
"If the man be the person the woman likes, he presents her with a flower just in the bud, which she takes and puts in her breast. If she is engaged before, she shews him one, to signify her engagement; which if in the bud only, shews the courtship is gone no further than the first proposal and liking; if half blown, or the like, 'tis an emblem of further progress; if full blown, it signifies that her choice is determined, from whence they can never recede; that is, she can change the man that presents it, but he cannot challenge her till she has worn it publickly."
As a romance, it is also worthy of admiration, the incidents being well contrived and most agreeably related. In short, it contains such just principles of benevolence, is adorned with so rich and playful a fancy, and is composed in such a clear, simple, and unconstrained style, that it has not only our approbation but our perfect love.
We must now return to the personal history of Gaudentio di Lucca himself, the remainder of which we shall state in very few words. The Pophar, now elevated to the dignity of Regent, took Gaudentio into his own family, as his constant companion, treating him with the most distinguishing marks of his favour. Our adventurer, after a due probation, marries the divine Isyphena, the Pophar Regent's daughter, with whom he lives very happily, and has several children by her. But his wife and all his children paying the debt of nature, he sets out on his return to his native land, accompanied by the Pophar Regent, who has resolved to enquire into the truths of Christianity at the fountain-head. They arrive in due course at Alexandria, where they embark on board a ship bound for Venice. Shortly after they have embarked, the good Pophar falls ill and dies. The ship touched at Candy, where, as Gaudentio is walking on the seashore, reflecting on the loss he has sustained by the death of the Pophar, he has the happiness of shewing his gratitude to the fair Persian, to whom he owed his own life, by saving her's from the fury of the pirate whom she had married. They fly, are pursued, and made prisoners. Being conveyed to Constantinople, our hero's interest with the Grand Sultaness, whom he discovers to be no other than the Bassa's daughter mentioned in the early part of his memoirs, procures the release of the ship and crew. After staying a month at Constantinople, receiving the greatest possible marks of distinction from the Grand Sultaness, he departs for Venice with the Persian lady, and finally settles at Bologna, as before related.
Such of our readers as have not read these memoirs, should know, that the Persian lady, being seized by the officers of the
Holy Inquisition at the same time with her companion, turns out, on her examination, to be the twin-sister of Gaudentio's mother. They will also, we are quite sure, have great satisfaction in learning that our hero, being found a good catholic, obtains his liberty, after a residence of nearly three years in the cells of the Inquisition.
This work has been generally attributed to Bishop Berkeley; but Mr. Chalmers, in the sketch of his life in the General Biography, asserts that it was certainly not written by him, without however producing any authority for such an assertion. We are not aware of the existence of any extrinsic evidence of Berkeley's being the author of Gaudentio di Lucca, except general report.* In the absence, therefore, of all other positive testimony on the subject, we are disposed, from internal evidence, to think that it has been properly assigned to that virtuous character. There are not many minds capable of conceiving a scheme of action so beautiful and so pure, so simple and so benevolent, as that developed in the book before us. The mind of Berkeley was one of these-there is nothing beautiful or grand or useful which his mind was not only capable of comprehending, but of carrying into effect, from the meanest mechanical art to the most sublime sciences. He united in his character qualities which are seldom found in the same person. A finished gentleman, he possessed manners the most sweet and fascinating, and knowledge the most extensive and profound, talents the most acute and ingenious, and an imagination the most chaste and beautiful. Those whom his eloquence and enthusiasm delighted, his disinterestedness and kindness unalterably attached to him. His mind was the seat of the noblest thoughts, and his heart of the purest benevolence for his species. The self-love and self-interest, which would have preferred personal security and a rich benefice to hazardous exertions, accompanied with comparative poverty, for the good of the human race, were alike strangers to his breast. Such innocence and such exalted goodness are rather of the nature of angels than of men. If to be a visionary, is to be such a character, would that all men were visionaries.
The internal evidence on which we rely, as corroborating our opinion that this book was written by Bishop Berkeley, is the agreement between the feelings and opinions developed in it, and in his acknowledged works. Such as his preference of simplicity of manners, and his detestation of luxury. His respect of men according to their personal merit, and his con
Gentleman's Magazine for January, 1777. Biographia Britannica. Art. Berkeley.
tempt of mercenary feelings. His wishes for the encouragement of architecture and for the erection of national buildings. The ardent love of country and its institutions, which he inculcates as a general obligation in many of his writings, and which is, in a peculiar manner, characteristic of the Mezoranians. His proposal to stimulate the public spirit of this nation, by means similar to those employed in the Utopian commonwealth, namely, by making the love of fame and reputation subservient to promoting this principle. Thus he would inspire magnanimity and virtue, by commemorating services done to the public by statues, columns, inscriptions, and other monuments,* which is the custom of the Mezoranians. To these may be added, the general benevolence of his views, and, in particular, his noble project for civilizing America, which is almost as far removed from common notions as his imaginary kingdom. Nor should we omit to remark, that Gaudentio di Lucca is distinguished by the same purity of imagination, and chasteness and simplicity of style, as the other works of this most excellent man. So that, upon the whole, we think, there
every reason to suppose it has been properly attributed to him.
ART. IX. Bussy D'Ambois. A Tragedie, as it hath been often presented at Paule's. London, 1607.
The Conspiracie and Tragedie of Charles, Duke of Byron, Marshall of France. Acted lately in two playes, at the BlackFriers. Written by George Chapman. London, 1608.
Casar and Pompey. A Roman Tragedy, declaring their Warres. Out of whose events is evicted this proposition; only a just man is a free man. By George Chapman. London, 1631.
A Tragedie, by George Chapman.
Revenge for Honour.
London, 1654. The Tragedy of Alphonsus, Emperor of Germany. By George Chapman, Gent. London, 1654.
After Shakspeare, George Chapman may be considered the first, in point of time, of the great fathers of the English drama, who flourished in the latter years of Queen Elizabeth and
*See particularly his Essay towards preventing the Ruin of Great Britain.