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THE DIPLOMATIC AND OFFICIAL PAPERS OF
kind. He commonly replied to these hints by say- | dream of such fame as that of Watt and Arking, that he was still an "apprentice" in science, wright. It is much to the honor of his townsand must learn more and do more before he could men that Perkins was from his earliest days held abandon his studies for mere money-making pur- in the highest esteem by them. They fully apsuits. Still he never affected to think meanly of preciated his genius and were proud to honor him. his own capacity, but always cherished a modest In the latter years of his life, when far removed and manly hope that the world would do him jus- from the land of his birth, his thoughts and feeltice by a reasonable compensation in fame and for- ings always turned homeward, and he never ceased tune. In this manner, with a mind constantly ac- to express the hope of returning to lay his bones tive, and an undiminished ardor in the pursuit of in his native soil. His wish has not been gratiknowledge, prodigal of his labors for the advance-fied, but his memory will remain forever connected ment of science and the public good-yet never with the spot. complaining of the neglect of the world, he passed the remainder of his life. We are not able to speak positively as to his private affairs, but we believe he secured the benefit of some of his numerous inventions in such a manner as to enjoy a moderate competence to the end of his days. The inventor of a cork-screw or a quack sugar-plum, has realized a princely fortune. Perkins, whose whole life was devoted to the enlargement of human knowledge, got merely bread to eat. Fame is his great reward. He gave to mechanism new powers, a new importance, and a new dignity. Speculative and practical science are both indebted to his genius. A writer well qualified to judge, says of him, regarding his experiments in high pressure steam : "Viewing his exertions from first to last, no other mechanic of the day has done more to illustrate an obscure branch of philosophy by a series of dangerous, difficult, and expensive experiments." We refrain from copying other testimonials of the regard in which he is held by men of scientific and philosophical acquirements; these would suit a much more extended biography.
A RECENT number of the London Morning Chronicle contains, under the above title, the following notice of Mr. Webster, which has been called forth by the publication in London of a volume of documents from the pen of our distinguished countryman. These remarks, coming from a quarter in which Americans and their institutions have not been accustomed to receive hasty or indiscriminate commendation, will be read with much interest, as showing the rank which Mr. Webster occupies in the estimation of the people of Europe. Some passages towards the close refer to Mr. Webster's conversational peculiarities, of which an Englishman is perhaps little qualified to judge. We have, however, printed the writer's remarks entire. As Gibbon says of the magnificent eulogy pronounced upon him by Porson," the sweetness of his praise is tempered by a reason
able mixture of acid."-Boston Courier.
Few of the living statesmen of America have ocHe died in London, July 30th, 1849. The cupied so prominent a position in the history of their name he leaves behind him is that of the Ameri- country as Daniel Webster. A native of Massacan Inventor. It is one which he deserves, and chusetts, he early distinguished himself in that which is his true glory. He was entirely self-legal career which is, in America, the shortest and the surest road to political distinction. He was but educated in science, and the great powers of his a very young man when his voice was first heard in mind expanded by their innate force. For half a the councils of the nation, and he took his seat in century from the hour of his birth, he lived in the federal senate, the most august assembly in the the town of Newburyport. Here he grew up, Union, as soon as he had attained the age at acquired his knowledge, applied his genius to which such an honor can constitutionally devolve action, perfected his inventive powers, and gained upon a citizen. As one of the senatorial represenall his early reputation. At the present day, turned to that body for five consecutive terms, each tatives of the state of Massachusetts, he was rewhen books are in the hand of every man, woman, term embracing a period of six years. It was and child, and the rudiments of scientific knowl- during the progress of the fifth term that he quitted edge are presented to us in thousands of student's the Senate, to exchange, for a brief period, his manuals, cyclopedias, periodicals, public lectures, legislative for administrative duties, having been &c., we can form no adequate notion of the ob- called, in 1841, as Secretary of State to the cabistacles which lay in the way of a young man be- net of General Harrison. For many years previous ginning his scientific pursuits at the time when to this he had been regarded as one of the competitors for the Presidency, but party exigencies and Perkins was a youth. Imagine the state of popu-party manoeuvring have prevented him from even selar science in 1787, and some faint notion may be curing a nomination. In addition to his legislative obtained of the difficulties which the young artist and administrative renown, Mr. Webster stands was compelled to encounter in the preliminary high as a jurist, and the character which he has steps of every undertaking. The exact sciences achieved as a profound constitutional lawyer will were but slightly regarded, even by those who form no insignificant ingredient in his reputation with posterity. made pretensions to complete learning in those days, and a great proficient in the mechanic arts could only hope to be considered in the light of a clever carpenter or blacksmith. Men did not
The work now before us has reference chiefly, if not exclusively, to the brief episode of his life during which it was his lot to exercise executive functions. The evanescence of his ministerial ca
tions; but, when carried in any great degree into private life, it disfigures the general character. This is the flaw in Mr. Webster's mind. In the ordinary relations of life he is distant, reserved, and ambiguous to a degree, keeping his auditor constantly ill at ease, lest he should have misapprehended the real drift of his words. A set match
country, at present not a hundred miles from Downing-street, would be an intellectual strugglo of no ordinary interest. Mr. Webster can both write and speak clearly, when he chooses; it is his habit to be studiously obscure. His correspon dence with Lord Ashburton furnishes us with spec imens of diplomatic literature well worthy of study. There is more earnestness displayed throughout it than is generally to be met with in documents like those of which it is composed, arising from the anxiety under which the negotiator evidently labored for the speedy and amicable arrangement of the dispute. But notwithstanding this, his communications display neither precip itancy nor carelessness in their composition. Like his oratory, they are massive, studied, and stately, and show the extent to which he combines the qualities of a diplomatist with the attributes of a jurist and lawgiver.
reer was attributed to circumstances which neither he nor his colleagues could control. The sudden death of General Harrison completely dislocated the whig cabinet which he had called around him within a brief month after its formation. His successor got rid, one after another, of the advisers of the deceased President, and Mr. Webster would have been one of the first to retire, but that, as Sec-between Mr. Webster and a diplomatist of this retary of State, he thought he had a mission to fulfil which he was anxious to bring to a peaceful termination before the government had passed entirely into the hands of Mr. Tyler and his nominees. The negotiations concerning the northeastern boundary, and the capture, detention, and trial of McLeod, were still in progress; and Mr. Webster, bent on a peaceful solution of the dispute, was not disposed to deliver, unadjusted, into possibly unskilful hands, questions at once so delicate and dangerous. He therefore remained in the cabinet for several months after his political friends had, one after another, fallen away from it, and after the principles which had presided at its formation had been abandoned for an imbecile policy, which developed itself in the form of a protracted intrigue. During the period for which he thus remained at the head of the foreign department of the government, an isolated relic of the then short-lived ascendency of the whigs, he was in constant communication with the British plenipotentiary, with whom he at length concluded a convention, which brought the dispute between the two countries to an amicable issue. Having thus, as he conceived, fulfilled his mission, he retired from the cabinet, and left Mr. Tyler to his fate. Being thus once more eligible to the Senate, he was again, on the first vacancy in the representation of Massachusetts occurring, returned by that state to the body of which he had been so great an ornament, and which he had so recently quitted. His time is therefore once more divided between his senatorial duties and his legal pursuits.
the oddity of seeing Mr. Webster charged with being ob[We copy the foregoing into the Living Age partly for
scure and ambiguous! In our opinion, he is of all our the ablest and most sagacious. Had the whigs cast off statesmen the most clear and unmistakeable, as well as their party leaders, and followed his lead after Harrison's election, they would probably have acquired California without the war, and have settled the Oregon dispute without coming so near a rupture with England. And, perhaps not !-for John Bull would not attend to his part of the business till strongly pressed-and our affairs with Mexico were a Gordian knot.]
The only portion of the published correspondence before us, which is of much interest to us in this country, is that which relates to the settlement of the international dispute just alluded to. This is evidently not the place in which to discuss the merits of the convention itself, by which that If it should so happen that, as regards me, any dispute was finally adjusted. It has been said that one should wish to cast a kind glance behind the the best proof that an arbitrator can afford of his hav- curtain which conceals a somewhat uneventful life, ing dealt fairly by both parties, is to have them both he may discover that I was born on the banks of dissatisfied with his award. Such was the case the Aura, a river which flows through Abo, and with the treaty of Washington. If some of the that several of the venerable and learned men of provisions excited considerable dissatisfaction on the university were even my godfathers. At the this side of the Atlantic, it was certainly far from age of three, I was removed, with my family, from obtaining a universal approval on the other. Both my native country of Finland. Of this part of my the negotiators, not unwisely perhaps, conceded, life, I have only retained one single memory. This and it was for this mutual concession that they were memory is a word, a mighty name, which, in the both assailed in their respective countries; and one depths of Paganism, was pronounced by the Finof Mr. Webster's last great efforts in the Senate nish people with fear and love; and is still so prowas devoted to a vindication of the treaty in its ap-nounced in these days, although perfected by Chrisplication to American interests. But our present business, instead of being with the merits of the treaty, is with the character of the correspondence, so far as Mr. Webster bore a part in it, and with the literary and diplomatic attainments which it demonstrates him to possess. Of the correspondence it is impossible to speak but in terms of the highest praise. Mr. Webster's mind is cast in an eminently diplomatic mould. He possesses all the qualities which are considered as essential to successful diplomacy-astuteness, forethought, reserve, self-possession, and, to an eminent degree, the talent of ambiguity. The last mentioned gift may sometimes be very serviceable in state transacLIVING AGE. VOL. XXIII. 9
tianity. I still fancy that I often hear this word spoken aloud over the trembling earth by the thunder of Thor, or by the gentle winds which bring to it refreshment and consolation. That word isJumala; the Finnish name for God, both in Pagan and Christian times.
If any one kindly follows me from Finland into Sweden, where my father purchased an estate after he had sold his property in Finland, I would not trouble him to accompany me from childhood to youth, with the inward elementary chaos, and the outward, uninteresting, and commonplace picture of a family, which every autumn removed, in their covered carriage, from their estate in the country
to their house in the capital; and every spring so is it also in the midnight hours of great suffertrundled back again from their house in the capital ing; the human soul opens itself to the light of the to their country seat; nor how there were young eternal stars. daughters in the family who played on the piano, sang ballads, read novels, drew in black chalk, and looked forward, with longing glances, to the future, when they hoped to see and do wonderful things. With humility, I must confess, I always regarded myself as a heroine.
Casting a glance into the family circle, it would be seen that they collected, in the evening, in the great drawing-room of their country house, and read aloud; that the works of the German poets were read, especially Schiller, whose Don Carlos made a profound impression upon the youthful
mind of one of the daughters in particular.
If it be desired to hear anything of my writings, it may be said that they began in the eighth year of my age, when I apostrophized the moon in French verses, and that during the greater part of my youth I continued to write in the same sublime strain. I wrote under the impulse of restless youthful feelings-I wrote in order to write. Afterwards, I seized the pen under the influence of another motive, and wrote-that which I had read.
At the present time, when I stand on the verge of the autumn of my life, I still see the same objects spring, and I am so happy as still to possess, out which surrounded me in the early days of my of many dear ones, a beloved mother and sister. The mountains which surround our dwelling, and upon which Gustavus Adolphus assembled his troops, before he went as a deliverer to Germany, appear to me not less beautiful than they were in the days of my childhood; they have increased in interest, for I am now better acquainted with their
A deeper glance into her soul will show that a heavy reality of sorrow was spreading, by degrees, a dark cloud over the splendor of her youthful dreams. Like early evening, it came over the path of the young pilgrim of life; and earnestly, but in vain, she endeavored to escape it. The air was dimmed as by a heavy fall of snow, darkness in-grasses and their flowers. creased, and it became night. And in the depth of that endless winter night, she heard lamenting voices from the east, and from the west; from plant and animal; from dying nature and despairing humanity; and she saw life, with all its beauty, its love, its throbbing heart, buried alive beneath a chill covering of ice. Heaven seemed dark and void;—there seemed to her no eyes, even as there was no heart. All was dead, or, rather, all was dying excepting pain.
There is a significant picture, at the commencement, in every mythology. In the beginning, there is a bright, and warm, and divine principle, which allies itself to darkness; and from this union of light and darkness-of fire and tears-proceeds a God. I believe that something similar to this takes place in every human being who is born to a deeper life; and something similar took place in her who writes these lines.
The Home; The H. Family; Strife and Peace; Fredrika Bremer's works are: The Neighbors; The President's Daughter; Nina; The Diary; In Delecarlia; Brothers and Sisters; The Midnight ble number of tracts and papers, published at variSun; together with smaller tales, and a consideraous times, in the Swedish journals. All these works I have, with the assistance of my husband,
From the New York Evening Post.
Lacon: or, Many Things in Few Words. By the
FEW books have ever earned the fame and the study which have been bestowed upon them, more fairly than Lacon. It is difficult to foresee that period in the progress of our race, when its sententious wisdom and eloquence, all compact with thought, may not be profitably pondered by the children of men. It is now about thirty years since the first volume appeared, and within that period it has been republished in every form, to accommodate the taste and means of every class of readers. It has been translated into many dif
Looking at her a few years later, it will be seen that a great change has taken place in her. Her eyes have long been filled with tears of unspeakable joy; she is like one who has arisen from the grave to a new life. What has caused this change? Have her splendid youthful dreams been accomplished? Is she a heroine? Has she become vic-ferent languages, and has been more read and torious in beauty, or in renown? No; nothing of this kind. The illusions of youth are past-the season of youth is over. And yet she is again young; for there is freedom in the depth of her soul, and "let there be light" has been spoken above its dark chaos; and the light has penetrated the darkness, and illumined the night, whilst, with her eye fixed upon that light, she has exclaimed, with tears of joy, "Death, where is thy sting? Grave, where is thy victory?"
Many a grave since then has been opened to receive those whom she tenderly loved; many a pang has been felt since then; but the heart throbs joyfully, and the dark night is over. Yes, it is over; but not the fruit which it has borne; for there are certain flowers which first unfold in the darkness;
quoted than almost any book of its size, from the pen of an English writer. And yet of the author himself, scarcely anything is known. It is more difficult to find persons unacquainted with the contents of Lacon, than to find those who know any of the few particulars which have been preserved of its author's life. Under these circumstances, we venture to assume that a rapid sketch of Mr. Colton's life will be more interesting to most of our readers, than anything we can say of the work to which he owes his fame.
Mr. Caleb Colton was educated at Eton and Kings College, Cambridge. He graduated B. A. in 1801, and M. A. in 1804. In 1801 he was presented by the college to the perpetual curacy of Tiverton Prior's Quarter in Devonshire, which
he held with his fellowship, and where he con- sity of reflection than of any cynical severity of tinued to reside for many years, and until presented disposition. His nose was aquiline, or (to speak to the vicarage of Kew and Petersham, in 1818. more correctly, if less elegantly) hooked; his The eccentricities and irregularities by which cheek bones were high and protruding, and his he was afterwards distinguished, were not en- forehead by no means remarkable either for its tirely unknown here. On one occasion he was expansiveness or phrenological beauty of developsent to read the "Visitation of the Sick," to a dy-ment. There was a singular variability of expresing parishioner, who had amassed great wealth in sion about his mouth, and his chin was precisely the Indies. The visit occupied him until another what Lavater would have called an intellectual clergyman had concluded reading the afternoon chin. Perhaps the shrewdness of his glances was prayers in the church at Tiverton. Colton rushed indicative rather of extraordinary cunning, than from the dying man's bedside into the pulpit, and of high mental intelligence. His usual costume for above an hour poured forth an extemporaneous was a frock-coat, sometimes richly braided, and a flood of eloquence in favor of strict morals, to the black velvet stock in short, his general appearno small surprise of his crowded auditory, and ance was quite military; so much so, that he was closed at length as follows: often asked if he was not in the army. I am half-inclined to believe that he courted this kind of misconception, as his reply was invariably the same: No, sir, but I am an officer of the church militant.""
"You wonder to hear such things from me, but if you had been where I was just now, and had heard and seen what I did, you would have been convinced it was high time to reform our courses and I, for one, am determined to begin." The very next Sunday he hurried over the reading of a fifteen minutes' discourse, and immediately after was seen placing his pointers in a basket behind, and his guns beside him, in his gig, and driving off towards a distant manor, to be ready for the next day's partridge shooting.
His first publication, in 1810, was also marked by the same characteristics. It was "A plain and authentic Narrative of the Sampford Ghost;" in which he asserted his confident belief in the supernatural agency of the disturbances of Sampford, (rather closely plagiarized from the ghost of Cock Lane,) and wound up all, by placing in the hands of the mayor of Tiverton a bond, by which he engaged to pay £100 to any one who could explain the cause of the phenomenon. It certainly required this proof of his good faith not to provoke a smile at the title of his next publication: "Hypocrisy, a Satirical Poem," which was welcomed but coldly by the public in 1812.
Before they parted, Mr. Colton gave his new acquaintance a pressing invitation to breakfast next morning, and put a card into his hand, in which the name of the street and the number of the house were explicitly mentioned. The describer went and found-a marine-store shop! and thinking that, after all, there must be a mistake, he walked off. On again meeting Mr. Colton, the too fastidious stranger was reproached for his breach of appointment, and invited anew. "The most exaggerated description of the garrets of the poets of fifty years ago," says the visitor, "would not libel Mr. Colton's apartment. Such of the panes
as were entire were begrimed with dirt.
Mr. Colton was always an anti-Bonapartist, both when, in the height of his power, he was the peculiar object of the abuse of the English newspapers, and when, after his fall, he was made the theme of praise which posterity will perhaps regard as equally exaggerated and disgusting. The poem of " Napoleon" followed that of "Hypocrisy," in the same year, and was considered to evince much superior poetical talent. It was while the proof-sheets of this work were preparing for publication, that a writer, who gave an account of him about fourteen years afterwards, in a defunct periodical, "The Literary Magnet," was introduced to Mr. Colton by an equally eccentric personage, the well-known Walking Stewart. who think," a thin, ill-printed seven-shilling oc“The appearance of Mr. C. was," he says, “at once striking and peculiar. There was an indefinable something in the general character of his features, which, without being remarkably prepossessing, fixed the attention of a stranger in no ordinary degree. His keen gray eye was occa- It has been charged that some of the ideas in sionally overshadowed by a scowl or inflection of this popular work may be traced to Burdon's "Mathe brow, indicative rather of an habitual inten- terials for Thinking," a favorite work with Mr.
Towards the end of 1820 appeared "Lacon, or Many Things in Few Words, addressed to those
tavo. It attracted much attention and praise. The name of Colton was henceforth known to all; and when we find that the sixth edition of "Lacon" appeared in 1821, we need not wonder that “Lacon, vol. II." appeared in 1822.
Colton, and that others are taken from Bacon's Es- | Ode on the death of Lord Byron," and left at his says; but after making every deduction, its originality, its wit, its eloquence, and its acuteness, are mainly and undeniably the property of its reputed author.
In 1822, Mr. Colton republished his "Napoleon," with extensive additions, under the title of "The Conflagration of Moscow." The next that is heard of him was in connection with the then notorious murder of Weare by Thurtell. Both were habitual gamblers. So was the Vicar of "Kew, and he had suddenly disappeared. He was known to have been frequently in the company of the murderer and the murdered. It was feared he had fallen a victim to those he had selected as his habitual associates; but Thurtell denied the fact. Some time elapsed before it transpired, to the public at least, that Mr. Colton's disappearance had been voluntary, and that he had fled from his creditors, who gazetted him as a bankrupt merchant.
We remember to have seen, quite recently, in a London paper, an account of the claims established against him by his London creditors on this occasion, and among them was a bill for the paper upon which Lacon was printed.
death a poem of six hundred lines, which was afterwards published, entitled "Modern Antiquity," in which he maintains that the moderns are the true ancients, as belonging to the most advanced period of the world.
Mr. Gowans, to whom the public is indebted for this much-needed edition of Lacon, has discharged the editorial office with great diligence and fidelity. He has added to the work a very complete and convenient index, correcting many typographical and other errors which have crept into the various cheap editions of the work, with which the American readers have been hitherto mainly supplied. We hope Mr. Gowans may find it worth while to publish a second volume, which shall embrace the remaining works of Mr. Colton, which are not at all known in this country, and about which, among scholars at least, sufficient interest exists, we should think, to indemnify the publisher for any expense to which the enterprise would subject him.
THE following memorial, (says the Times,) drawn up by Lord Fitzwilliam, was in course of signature when the late disastrous intelligence arrived from Hungary: it would probably otherwise, in addition to the names of those with whom it originated, have had appended to it the signatures of many other peers and members of Parliament: To the Lord John Russell, First Commissioner of the Treasury, and the Viscount Palmerston, Principal Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs. The undersigned (being peers or members of the House of Commons) desire to express to your lordships, and through your lordships to the rest of her majesty's confidential servants, the deep interest which they take in the contest which is now carried on between the Hungarian nation and the Emperor
In November, 1827, on the latest day allowed by law, he appeared to take re-possession of his living; but in 1828, he finally lost it, by lapse, and the college appointed a successor. For the next two years he was in America, travelling through the United States; from thence he transferred his residence to the Palais Royal-" which is to Paris," says Galignani's Guide, "what Paris is to Europe, the centre of pleasure and vice!" He there expended considerable sums in forming a picture gallery, and every nook of his apartment was filled with valuable paintings. He then became known in the gaming salons of the Palais Royal, and so successful was he, that in a year or It is their anxious wish to see this contest speedtwo he acquired £25,000. But inveterate at-ily terminated in the manner which they conceive tachment to the gaming table again rendered him most conducive to the interests of the Austrian ema beggar, and his excesses brought on a disease, pire-viz., by the recognition of the just demands to remove which a surgical operation became in- of Hungary, the most important of the hereditary dispensable. The dread of this operation pro- dominions of the house of Hapsburg. duced such an effect upon Mr. Colton's mind, that The undersigned are of opinion that it is both he became almost insane, and finally blew out his the interest and the duty of England to contribute, brains, in order to avoid the pain of the opera-Hungary. They are of opinion, however, that this by every legitimate means, to the tranquillity of
He doubtless little supposed, when he was writing Lacon, that he was destined himself to illustrate one of its wisest apothegms. "The gamester," he there says, "if he die a martyr to his profession, is doubly ruined. He adds his own soul to every other loss, and by the act of suicide renounces earth to forfeit heaven."
He put an end to his life at Fontainbleu, while visiting a friend, on the 28th April, 1832.
During his residence at Paris his mode of dress continued unchanged. He had only one room, kept no servant, unless a boy to take charge of his horse and cabriolet; he lighted his own fire, and performed all his other domestic offices himself. He printed at Paris, for private circulation, “An
object, so desirable, cannot be obtained so as to insure its permanence, unless the terms on which it is accomplished be consistent with the ancient laws and constitution of the country.
While so many of the nations of Europe have engaged in revolutionary movements, and have embarked in schemes of doubtful policy and of still more doubtful success, it is gratifying to the undersigned to be able to assure your lordships that the Hungarians demand nothing but the recognition of ancient rights and the stability and integrity of their ancient constitution. To your lordships it cannot be unknown that that constitution bears a striking resemblance to that of our own country. King, lords, and commons, are as vital parts of the Hungarian as of the British Constitution. So far, therefore, from the undersigned being animated by a revolutionary spirit, or being actuated by principles