31 MARCH 1866, Page 22

The Kickleburys on the Rhine. (Smith and Elder.) Fourth edition..

The Rose and the Ring. Fourth edition. (Smith and Elder.)—These two Christmas books of poor Mr. Thackeray's, with their quaintly funny illustrations, are very doer to our heart. We delight to travel along that pleasant Rhine road from London to Baden with a com- panion who is evidently enjoying the trip, quizzes good-humouredly the oddities of all nations that one encounters on the way, and winds up with a glorious description of Rouge-et-Nolrburg itself. In the Rose and the Ring we have some of our author's heartiest fun, and some of the happiest efforts of his pencil ; nothing can be more laughable than Prince Bulbo, whether in his glory or in his grief ; whilst Betsinda is always graceful, from the time she dances before the King in his arbour (a very comic illustration) to her " appearance in her nightgown, with all her beautiful hair falling down her back," in the centre of the amphi- theatre. The tyrants, too, and Grufianuff, the porter, who is screwed up into a knocker, are great figures of fun; but as we look we grow sad,—

" 0 for the touch of that vanish'd hand, And the sound of the voice that is still !"