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Bernardin de St. Pierre. By Arvède Barine. (Fisher Unwin.)
ST. PIERRE was so typical a Frenchman that he finds a place by right in a series of representative French writers. A very Thoreau in his enthusiasm for nature, as unpractical as Goldsmith, and as visionary almost as Blake, he was a lifelong dreamer of dreams and seeker of Utopias. He yearned for a world entirely governed by sentiment and emancipated from the dull restraints of reason. Feeling, not reason, was for him the true guide of life and religion. The best source of our pleasures is ignorance, the mother of mystery, and the upholder of poetry against science. Crazy as St. Pierre knew himself to be, he nevertheless aspired to the role of philosopher and social reformer. It is not generally remembered that his pretty little romance of 'Paul and Virginia' was originally only an episode or digression introduced in an elaborate treatise, 'Études de la Nature,' the object of which was to demonstrate that the happiness of man consists in living according to nature and virtue. His young hero and heroine were intended to serve as lay figures to exhibit his philosophy to advantage, to prove the natural goodness of man and the futility of science, and in general to set out the great truths propounded in bis more serious work. M. Barine's sketch, to which Mr. A. Birrell contributes an introduction, is nicely proportioned to his subject, and readable. Mr. J. E. Gordon's translation runs freely; but he should not make things" differ to one another.
The Poetical Works of George Mac Donald. 2 vols. (Chatto & Windus.)
MR. MAC DONALD is a genuine and an imaginative poet, and his shorter lyrics have often much tenderness, grace, and beauty. He elects to be didactic, and so narrows his audience and to some extent impairs his influence. We are glad, however, to see and possess a collected edition of works with a portion only of which we were previously familiar.
WE have received from Sir Charles S. King, Bart., Henry's Upper Lough Erne in 1739, edited with notes and appendices (Dublin, McGee). The author of this interesting sketch was an Irish clergyman of the Established Church named William Henry. He seems to have been a man of considerable scientific attainments, as he was one of the very few Irishmen who was in those days a Fellow of the Royal Society. He died, an old man, we gather, in 1768. The manuscript from which Sir Charles King has printed this interesting fragment is preserved among the Birch Collections in the British Museum. Why it was written does not seem clear. Had it been a communication to the Royal Society it would, we imagine, have found a place in the Philosophical Transactions, for in 1739 the Royal Society did not strictly confine itself to papers relating to physical science. Mr. Henry was a careful observer, and his account of the beautiful lake which he undertook to describe reads as if it had been written in the early years of this century. The writer was, however, more interested in the works of man than in unaided nature. He has given what must be to those who dwell in the neighbourhood a most interesting account of the AngloIrish families settled in the neighbourhood of Lough Erne. To these the editor has added a series of notes which are of considerable importance. He seems to value them much less highly than they deserve. Irish genealogy, even of the modern time, is a most intricate subject-at all events, for Englishmen. We cannot, therefore, be too grateful for these notes, which are lucidity itself. We would especially direct attention to the account of the Maxwells, Lords Farnham; the Wolseleys, one branch of which is represented by Viscount
Wolseley; and that of the fighting parson, John Leslie.. D.D., who raised a company of foot and a troop of heavy armed horse. When in command of the latter he is. stated to have rendered important service to the Protestant cause. In the appendix we find several lists which will be most useful to those who are interested in the Anglo-Scotch settlers in Ireland. There is a catalogue of the burgesses of Enniskillen in 1612; an address of the inhabitants of that town, sent to William and Mary in 1689, which seems to have been signed by the greater part of the householders; and, what is perhaps still more important, a list of the Crown tenants holding lands in Fermanagh in 1678. A catalogue of the chief British families in Fermanagh in 1718 indicates that the majority of the settlers were of Scottish extraction.
A NEW annual edition (the twenty-ninth) of Mr. Herbert Fry's Guide to the London Charities has been issued by Chatto & Windus.
LONG use has convinced us that The Author's Hairless Paper-Pad of the Leadenhall Press-upon which, indeed, these very lines are being written-is a comfort to the writer. Anxious further to improve it, the publishers have now added to it a back made of thick and very serviceable blotting-paper.
MR. ELLIOT STOCK announces a verbatim reprint of Walker's True Account of the Siege of Derry.' The volume will be a small quarto, and will be accompanied by original documents, historical references, and notes will be illustrated by facsimile views, maps, &c. concerning the events of 1689, by Canon Dwyer, and
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monachism an aggregation of separate cells, under the T. ("What are Lauras?").-Gr. λaúpa. In early control of a superior, in which monks dwelt apart, meeting only on special occasions at worship or food. Consult Smith, Dict. Christ, Antiq.'
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ERRATUM.-8th S. ii. p. 317, col, 2, 1. 27, for "Mbuka" read Mbula.
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