1 MARCH 1873, Page 23

Boseohel; -or, the Royal Oak. By William Harrison Ainsworth. 3

vols. (Tinsley.)—The fashion of Mr. Harrison Ainsworth's historical novels is by this time sufficiently familiar; nor does Boscobe/ differ materially from its predecessors. Mr. Ainsworth studies his history -carefully, and is laudably minute and accurate. His scenery, too, and his costumes are correct. The geography of the battle of Worcester is plainly set out, and we have faithful pictures, whether drawn by pencil or by pen, of the chief scenes of the great escape. The language of the 3b5riod is not preserved with so much dramatic propriety. Charles indeed scarcely opens his mouth without saying 'Odzooks 1" and Cromwell talks about "the sword of the Lord" with much more frequency and unction than, as we believe, he was in the habit of doing. But the historical personages, anti the minor characters who mix with them, and give the story what, we suppose, would be called a human interest, talk much about as they do in this nineteenth century. One does uot, of course, look for profound views of history or life, but a certain external veriehnilitude helps to maintain the illusion ; nor is it difficult te catch the knack of writing a seventeenth or eighteenth- centney style, according as the exigencies of the story may require. A little more pains taken in this respect would have improved Boscobel ; at any rate, it may take a fairly high pla'e among books of its class.