20 DECEMBER 1845, Page 19


From December 12th to December 18th.


The Letters and Dispatches of John Churchill, First Duke of Marlborough, from 1702 to 1712. Edited liv General the Right Honourable Sir George Murray, Grand Cross of the Most Honourable Military Order of the Bath, and of several Foreign Orders, Colonel of the Royal Regiment of Foot, &c. Volumes IV. and V.

Letters from the Bye-Ways of Italy. By Mrs. Henry Stisted. With Illus- trations by Colonel Stisted. The Fitness of Holy Scripture for Unfolding the Spiritual Life of Men; the Hulsean Lectures for the year 1845. By the Reverend It. Chenevix Trench, MA., Vicar of lichen Stoke, Hants, &c. The Citizen of Prague. Translated by Mary Hoeft. In three volumes.

Sketches from Flemish Life; in three Tales. Translated from the Flemish of Hendrick Conscience; and illustrated with one hundred and thirty En- gravings on wood, from designs by Flemish Artists. [Hendnck Conscience is a popular Flemish writer, whose main object is to Un- frenchify the Flemings, and arouse the old nationality, which made Flanders so celebrated in the middle ages. The above specimens of the author are not taken from his more ambitious works, but from the class of literature to which he is now applying himself, stories descriptive of actual Flemish life. Of the three tales in the volume before us, the first alone, " Siska Van Roosemael," can be said strictly to bear upon his purpose; which he there attempts to forward by display- ing the misery and ruin that are produced in the families of humble tradesmen by imitating the French style of doing things. " The Progress of a Painter," the next tale, represents the son of a workman struggling with poverty and difficulty in the pursuit of art, and at last emerging to competence and fame: and this story is chiefly remarkable for the manly way in which the wonderful is thrown over, and the time and labour necessary to make the artist distinctly brought for- ward. The third tale, "What a Mother can Endure," is a picture of the distress of honest poverty among the Flemings; and its relief by that charity which dis- tributes its own bounty, giving kindness as well as words. The subjects, it will be seen, are Flemish in their character- and they are strictly Flemish in their treatment: but there seems a want both of die force and buoyancy we expect in a national author. Perhaps some of the spirit has evaporated in the translation. At all events, Sketches from Flemish Life are somewhat literal. The volume is profusely illustrated by interspersed wood-cuts—fancy portraits of the persons, or sketches of the incidents.] The Fairy Ring; a new Collection of Popular Tales. Translated from the German of Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm, by John Edward Taylor. With twelve Illustrations by Richard Doyle. [This selection of fairy tales from the German, that have never before been trans- lated, differs from other books of a similar kind chiefly by the unity that pervades the whole thirty-six tales; which, however varied in subject and story, possess that homely simplicity and pleasing marvellousness which delight childhood and attract age; though, perhaps, none of the gems in the Fairy Ring are equal in interest and moral to "Cinderella," or in conduct to "Little Red Riding Hood." Mr. Murray has also contributed his part to the volume, by the richly fanciful yet staid style in which he has clothed it, so as to form the very thing for a Christmas present or New Year's gift to the little folk, and enable the old ones to read it without compromise of dignity.] The Earl of Gowrie; a Tragedy. By the Reverend James White, Bon- church.

[Of the written story of the Gowrie Conspiracy there is not much distinct enough to bear dramatic representation. The alterations in this drama, whilst they destroy the historica verity, do not add to the dramatic interest. Variety is sought to be imparted by the introduction of a daughter of Restalrig, the prime agent of the conspiracy, between whom and Gowrie there exists an attachment: a sort of theatrical air is given to the style of the dialogue; which does not seem to be of difficult attainment, for we often meet. with it: but the speeches are wanting in dramatic propriety and purpose—mere remark, instead of direct application to the business in hand. It may be said in defence, that there is no business to apply to; a want of action being the great drawback of the drama.] A Brief Plea for the Old Faith and the Old Times.

[Nominally an attempt to show the masses of England why they have not now the means of living " merrie "; in reality, a review of the history of the Romish Church and the Reformation, done in the style of the most violent and vulgar Papist. It is said that the nation was much greater, happier, and so forth, under the supremacy of the Pope; and that all our troubles are traceable to the Reformation. There is not a particle of philosophy or taste, and scarcely of com- mon sense, in the Brief Plea-' but the preface has touches of the tender unction which belongs to the Romish Church, and a slight air of elegance. Probably it is not written by the author of the book.] Parish Settlements and the Practice of Appeals containing the law and

evidence of each class of settlement, and the grounds of objection inciden- tal to them; with the law and new statutes relating to bastards; and forms for all proceedings. By Jelinger C. Symons, Esq., Barrister-at-law,

of the Middle Temple. Second edition, greatly enlarged, and rewritten. [This new edition embodies all the recent decisions upon Settlements et cetera, and contains a sketch of the Bastardy Law, with the new statutes upon the sub- ject. It may be said that the system of Mr. Symons is to ahn at establishing a principle from cases, rather than to thrust a heap of cases before the reader and let him deduce from them what he can.] The Golden Treasury of Life; or Old Sayings and True Ones; with many original proverbs and moral reflections. By Edward Clare.

[A rather commonplace collection of proverbs and maxims.] ILLUSTRATED WORKS.

Poems and Pictures; a Collection of Ballads, Songs, and other Poems. With one hundred Illustrations on wood, by English Artists.

[This handsome volume, of small quarto size, consists of a selection of fragments and fugitive pieces, chiefly by modern English poets, with a few extracts from older writers, and some translations from the German,—gems of poesy, set and linked together with fanciful designs, full of graceful and tender feeling. Every page is surrounded by a rustic framework; and the margin is enriched with a pictorial illustration of the subject or an ornamental scroll of flowery or Arabesque foliage in the Gothic style. These scrolls are both elegant and original; com- bining the simplicity of natural character with the symmetrical arrangement of art in a felicitous manner, emulating the flowing outline of Italian ornament. The figure groups of Messrs. Cope, Corbould, Dyce, Franklin, Horsley, Pickers- Selous, and Tenniel junior, are the most numerous and effective, though nearly a score of clever artists in different ways contribute to the century of

The subjects of the poetry admit of a wide range of invention on the part of the artists : domestic, religious, and chivalrous themes, are treated with congenial sentiment; and the scenes, whether of homely or stately character—modern or ancient times—English or foren costume—arc delineated feelingly, with con- scientious care, and often with spirit and effect. Of the drawings, Callcott Hershey's are the most delicately finished, Dyce's the most forcible, Cope's the most elaborate, Selons's the most striking compositions, and Corbould's the most artificial. The few little bits of landscape are so delightful that one wishes there Were more of them. The poems appear to have been selected on account of their moral and religious sentiment; for although some humorous and romantic pieces are interspersed, they mostly breathe a plaintive, mournful strain, and inculcate the passive virtues of contentment, patience fortitude, and resignation.The principal wood-engravers are Messrs. W. J. Linton, T. Thompson, and C. Gray; who have each exerted their best skill in executing the cuts.]


The Horary, or Hourly Record. 1846. [A little gem of the oblong kind fitted for a coat-pocket, and forming a valuable memento of the Italian philosopher's motto, " Time is my estate." The Horary contains an almanack, stamps and fire-insurance particulars, with an essay on life assurance; but the feature is a diary with a page to each day, where our hours are literally numbered. The compiler contemplates that the busy world rises at eight; but there are blank lines previous to that hour for early men. From 8 to 10 a. m. one line is supposed to suffice per hour; from 10 till 4 he grants two lines; and then one again, till 8 p.m. There are blanks to till in Rose at," " Retired at "•' and the compiler is liberally inclined towards refresh- ment, having lines for breakfast, dinner, tea, and supper. In the case of a busy great man, what a strange record would this truly filled-up volume be, even for a year!] The Peace Almattack and Diary, for 1846. Under the superintendence of the Manchester Peace Society. [Besides a calendar and a diary for memorandums and accounts, after the usual fashion of business pocket-books, except that the Quaker mode of " 1st month" precedes the usual names, the Peace Almanack contains a variety of original articles both in prose and verse. The most immediate subject of the argument is Oregon; the most distinguished contributors are Bernard Barton and Mont- gomery. The tone is not equal to that of some American publications we have seen. Peace is urged in a militant spirit. A sheet almanack accompanies the book.]