13 FEBRUARY 1909, Page 25

Chatterton. By Alfred de Vigny. Edited by E. Lauvriere, D.-es-L.

(The Clarendon Press. 3s. net.)—This volume belongs to the "Oxford Higher French Series," meant, we suppose, for the use of schools and Colleges. A better choice might have been made than de Vigny's drama. We can quite understand that its success on the stage may have been assisted by the introduction of Kitty Bell, a young married woman who falls in love with Chatterton and drops dead upon his corpse, while "le Quaker," " vieillard de quatre-vingt ans," cries " Dans ton rein, Seigneur, rocois ces deux martyrs " ; that the contrast of Kitty Bell's husband, a John Bull of the French type, "rouge de visage, gonfli cl'alo, do porter, et de roast beef," was effective ; and that the triumph was completed by the introduction of Lord Bockford, " vieillard, riche, important," with his "collier do lord maim au cou." But these things do not impress the average English student, and Dr. Lauvriere's instructive account of the author might have been used to bettor advantage.