17 NOVEMBER 1866, Page 21

Croquernitaine. Freely translated by T. Hood. Illustrated by Gustave Dor&

(CasselL)—Not the best of Gustave Dore's works. Some of the many scores of small illustrations are specimens of his moat grotesque mood, but in the larger plates he seems to us to have fallen into the mistake he is always in danger of making—a confusion between the grotesque and the merely ghastly. There is no grotesquerie whatever, nor, that we can see, any other quality, in the corpse candles (p. 210); and, moreover, they are not corpse candles, which are either corpses emitting the light of putrefaction, or candles made from corpses, but merely corpse candlesticks. The "shriek of Timidity," again, is only ghastly, and if Timidity is to be personified as differing from Fear, as she is here, she would not make that frightful row, but cower sobbing. In others, however, M. Dore has exerted himself—there is a most eerie idea in that sketch of Roncesvalles, the bodiless arm trying to cut off the bodiless head—aud the book is worth its value to all who collect M. Dore's drawings. In itself M. L'Espin6's legend does not seem to us deserving all the encomiums Mr. Hood bestows upon it.