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Mighty the troubled spirit to inthral !

And let me breathe my dower

Of passion and of power
Full into that deep lay—the last of all !

The last !- and I must go

From this bright world below, This realm of sunshine, ringing with sweet sound !

Must leave its festal skies,

With all their melodies,
That ever in my breast glad echoes found !

Yet have I known it long :

Too restless and too strong Within this clay hath been th’ o’ermastering flame;

Swift thoughts, that came and went,

Like torrents o'er me sent,
Have shaken, as a reed, my thrilling frame.

Like perfumes on the wind,

Which none may stay or bind,
The beautiful comes floating through my soul:

I strive with yearnings vain

The spirit to detain
Of the deep harmonies that past me roll !

Therefore disturbing dreams

Trouble the secret streams
And founts of music that o'erflow my breast;

Something far more divine

Than may on earth be mine, Haunts my worn heart, and will not let me rest.

Shall I then fear the tone

That breathes from worlds unknown ?Surely these feverish aspirations there

Shall grasp their full desire,

And this unsettled fire
Burn calmly, brightly, in immortal air.

One more then, one more strain;

To earthly joy and pain
A rich, and deep, and passionate farewell !

I pour each fervent thought,

With fear, hope, trembling, fraught, Into the notes that o'er my dust shall swell.




We feel certain that every admirer of the genius of Mrs. Hemans will be obliged to us for here reprinting, almost at length, the admirable Critique on her writings which appeared in the XCIXth Number of the Edinburgh Review. The acumen, the clear-sightedness, the taste, and elegance of Lord Jeffrey, are evident throughout.

“ Women, we fear, cannot do every thing ; nor even every thing they attempt. But what they can do, they do, for the most part, excellently- and much more frequently with an absolute and perfect success, than the aspirants of our rougher and more ambitious sex. They cannot, we think, represent naturally the fierce and sullen passions of men—nor their coarser vices--nor even scenes of actual business or contention — and the mixed motives, and strong and faulty characters, by which affairs of moment are usually conducted on the great theatre of the world. For much of this they are disqualified by the delicacy of their training and habits, and the still more disabling delicacy which pervades their conceptions and feelings; and from much they are excluded by their actual inexperience of the realities they might wish to describe-by their substantial and incurable ignorance of business of the way in which serious affairs are actually managed—and the true nature of the agents and impulses that give movement and direction to the stronger currents of ordinary life. Perhaps they are also incapable of long moral or political investigations, where many complex and indeterminate elements are


to be taken into account, and a variety of opposite probabilities to be weighed before coming to a conclusion. They are generally too impatient to get at the ultimate results, to go well through with such discussions; and either stop short at some imperfect view of the truth, or turn aside to repose in the shadow of some plausible error. This, however, we are persuaded, arises entirely from their being seldom set on such tedious tasks. Their proper and natural business is the practical regulation of private life, in all its bearings, affections, and concerns; and the questions with which they have to deal in that most important department, though often of the utmost difficulty and nicety, involve, for the most part, but few elements; and may generally be better described as delicate than intricate — requiring for their solution rather a quick tact and fine perception than a patient or laborious examination. For the same reason, they rarely succeed in long works, even on subjects the best suited to their genius; their natural training rendering them equally averse to long doubt and long labour.

“For all other intellectual efforts, however, either of the understanding or the fancy, and requiring a thorough knowledge either of man's strength or his weakness, we apprehend them to be, in all respects, as well qualified as their brethren of the stronger sex; while, in their perceptions of grace, propriety, ridiculetheir power of detecting artifice, hypocrisy, and affectation—the force and prompitude of their sympathy, and their capacity of noble and devoted attachment, and of the efforts and sacrifices it may require, they are, beyond all doubt, our superiors.

“Their business being, as we have said, with actual or social life, and the colours it receives from the conduct and dispositions of individuals, they unconsciously acquire, at a very early age, the finest perception of character and manners, and are almost as soon instinctively schooled in the deep and dangerous learning of feeling and emotion; while the very minuteness with which they make and meditate on these interesting observations, and the finer shades and variations of sentiment which are thus treasured and recorded, trains their whole faculties to a nicety and precision of operation, which often discloses itself to advantage in their application to studies of a very different character. When women, accordingly, have turned their minds

as they have done but too seldom—to the exposition or arrangement of any branch of knowledge, they have commonly exhibited, we think, a more beautiful accuracy, and a more uniform and complete justness of thinking, than their less discriminating brethren. There is a finish and completeness about every thing they put out of their hands, which indicates not only an inherent taste for elegance and neatness, but a habit of nice observation, and singular exactness of judgment.

“ It has been so little the fashion, at any time, to encourage women to write for publication, that it is more difficult than it should be to prove these truths by examples. Yet there are enough, within the reach of a very careless and superficial glance over the open field of literature, to enable us to explain, at least, and illustrate, not entirely to verify, our assertions. ·No man, we will venture to say, could have written the letters of Madame de Sevigné, or the novels of Miss Austin, or the hymns and early lessons of Mrs. Barbauld, or the conversations of Mrs. Marcet. These performances, too, are not only essentially and intensely feminine, but they are, in our judgment, decidedly more perfect than any masculine productions with which they can be brought into comparison. They accomplish more completely all the ends at which they aim, and are worked out with a gracefulness and felicity of execution which excludes all idea of failure, and entirely satisfies the expectations they may have raised. We might easily have added to these instances. There are many parts of Miss Edgeworth's earlier stories, and of Miss Mitford's sketches and descriptions, and not a little of Mrs. Opie's, that exhibit the same fine and penetrating spirit of observation, the same softness and delicacy of hand, and unerring truth of delineation, to which we have alluded as characterising the pure specimens of female art. The same distinguishing traits of a woman's spirit are visible through the grief and the piety of Lady Russel, and the gaiety, the spite, and the venturesomeness of Lady Mary Wortley. We have not as yet much female poetry; but there is a truly feminine tenderness, purity, and elegance, in the Psyche of Mrs. Tighe, and in some of the smaller pieces of Lady Craven. On some of the works of Madame de Staël-her Corinne espe

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