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the white and the black cockades; in holding | Guards, already getting saluted with stones,
think it reasonablest to open a passage; and,
We hasten to the catastrophe, which arrives on the morrew. It is related elsewhere, in another leading article:
So far Camille on veto, scarcity, and the Insurrection of Women, in the end of 1789. We terminate with a scene of a very dif ferent complexion, being some three years farther on, that is to say, in September, 1792! Félémhesi, (anagram for Méhée Fils,) in his "Vérité toute entière," a pamphlet really more veracious than most, thus testifies, after a good deal of-preambling :
"At break of day the women rush towards the Hotel de Ville. All the way, they recruit fresh hands, among their own sex, to march with them; as sailors are recruited at London: there is an active press of women. The Quai de la Ferraille is covered with female crimps. The robust kitchen-maid, the slim mantuamaker, all must go to swell the phalanx; the ancient devotee, tripping to mass in the dawn, sees herself for the first time carried off, and shrieks help! whilst more than one of the younger sort secretly is not so sorry at going without mother or mistress to Versailles to pay her respects to the august Assembly. At the same time, for the accuracy of this narrative, I must remark that these women, at least the battalion of them which encamped that night in the Assembly Hall, and had marched under the flag of M. Maillard, had among themselves a Presidentess and Staff; and that every woman, on being borrowed from her mother or husband, was presented to the Presidentess or some of her aids-de-camp, who engaged to watch over her morality, and insure her honour for this day.
"Once arrived on the Place de Grêve, these women piously begin letting down the Lanterne; as, in great calamities, you let down the shrine of Saint Genevieve. Next they are for mounting into the Hotel de Ville. The Commandant had been forewarned of this movement: he knew that all insurrections have begun by women, whose maternal bosom the bayonet of the satellites of despotism respects. Four thousand soldiers presented a front bristling with bayonets; kept them back from the step: but behind these women there rose and grew every moment a nucleus of men, armed with pikes, axes, bills; blood is about to flow on the place; the presence of these Sabine women hindered it. The National Guard, which is not purely a machine, as the Minister of War would have the soldier be, makes use of its reason. It discerns that these women, now for Versailles, are going to the root of the mischief. The four thousand
"I was going to my post about half past two," (Sunday, the 2d of September, tocsins all ringing, and Brunswick just at hand;) "I was passing along the Rue Dauphine; suddenly I hear hisses. I look, I observe four hackney-coaches, coming in a train, escorted by the Fédéré's of the departments.
"Each of these coaches contained four persons: they were individuals" (priests) rested in the preceding domiciliary visits. Billaud-Varennes, Procureur-Substitute of the Commune, had just been interrogating them at the Hotel de Ville; and now they were proceeding towards the Abbaye, to be provisionally detained there. A crowd is gathering; the cries and hisses redouble: one of the prisoners, doubtless out of his senses, takes fire at these murmurs, puts his arm over the coachdoor, gives one of the Fédéré's a stroke over the head with his cane. The Fédéré, in a rage, draws his sabre, springs on the carriagesteps, and plunges it thrice over into the heart of his aggressor. I saw the blood come out in great jets. Kill every one of them; they are scoundrels, aristocrats!' cry the people. The Fédéré's all draw their sabres, and instantly kill the three companions of the one who had just perished. I saw, at this moment, a young man in a white nightgown stretch himself out of that same carriage: his countenance, expressive, but pale and worn, indicated that he was very sick; he had gathered his staggering strength, and, though already wounded, was crying still, Grace, grace, pardon!' but in vain a mortal stroke united him to the lot of the others.
"This coach, which was the hindmost, now held nothing but corses; it had not stopped during the carnage, which lasted about the space of two minutes. The crowd increases, crescit eundo; the yells redouble. The coaches are at the Abbaye. The corpses are hurled into the court; the twelve living prisoners dismount to enter the committee-room. Twe
are sacrificed on alighting; ten succeed in entering. The committee had not had time to put the slightest question, when a multitude, armed with pikes, sabres, swords, and bayonets, dashes in; seizes the accused, and kills them. One prisoner, already much wounded, kept hanging by the skirts of a Committee-member, and still struggled against death.
"Three yet remained; one of whom was the Abbé Sicard, teacher of the deaf and dumb. The sabres were already over his head, when Monnot, the watchmaker, flung himself before them, crying, 'Kill me rather, and not this man, who is useful to our country!' These words, uttered with the fire and impetuosity of a generous soul, suspended death. Profiting by this moment of calm, Abbé Sicard and the other two were got conveyed into the back part of the room."
the villains in this prison, whom other villains outside will open the doors to, shall go and kill my wife and children in the mean while! I have three boys, who I hope will be usefuller to their country one day than these rascals you want to save. Any way you have but to send them out; we will give them arms, and fight them number for number. Die here or die on the frontiers, I am sure enough to be killed by these villains, but I mean to sell them my life; and, be it I, be it others, the prison shall be purged of these sacres gueux la. He is right!' responds the general cry."—And so the frightful" purgation" proceeds.
"At five in the afternoon, Billaud Varennes, Procureur-Substitut, arrives; he had on his sash, and the small puce coat and black wig we are used to see on him: walking over carcasses, he makes a short harangue to the peoAbbé Sicard, as is well known, survived; ple, and ends thus: People, thou art sacrificand the narrative which he also published ex-ing thy enemies; thou art in thy duty.' This ists-sufficient to prove, among other things, cannibal speech lends them new animation. that "Félémhesi" had but two eyes, and his The killers blaze up, cry louder than ever for own share of sagacity and heart; that he has new victims :-how to staunch this new thirst mis-seen, miscounted, and, knowingly or un- of blood? A voice speaks from beside Billaud; knowingly, misstated not a little, as one poor it was Maillard's voice: There is nothing man, in these circumstances, might. Félémhe- more to do here; let us to the Curmes! They si continues, we only inverting his arrange-run thither: in five minutes more I saw them ment somewhat:trailing corpses by the heels. A killer, (I cannot say a man,) in very coarse clothes, had, as it would seem, been specially commissioned to dispatch the Abbé Lenfant; for, apprehensive lest the prey might be missed, he takes water, flings it on the corpses, washes their blood-smeared faces, turns them over, and seems at last to ascertain that the Abbé Lenfant is among them."—Vol. xviii. p. 169.
This is the September massacre, the last scene we can give as a specimen. Thus, in these curious records of the “Histoire Parlementaire," as in some Ezekiel vision become real, does scene after scene disclose itself, now in rose-light, now in sulphurous black, and grow ever more fitful, dream-like,-till the Vendemiaire scene come, and Napoleon blow forth his grape-shot, and Sansculuttism be no more!
"Twelve scoundrels, presided by Maillard, with whom they had probably combined this project beforehand, find themselves by chance' among the crowd; and now, being well-known one to another, they unite themselves in the name of the sovereign people,' whether it were of their own private audacity, or that they had secretly received superior orders. They lay hold of the prison registers, and turn them over; the turnkeys fall a-trembling; the jailer's wife and the jailer faint; the prison is surrounded by furious men; there is shouting, clamouring the door is assaulted, like to be forced; when one of the Committee-members presents himself at the outer gate, and begs audience: his signs obtain a moment's silence; the doors open, he advances, gets a chair, mounts on it, and speaks:- Comrades, friends,' said he, you are good patriots; your resent- Touching the political and metaphysical ment is just. Open war to the enemies of the speculations of our two editors, we shall say common good; neither truce nor mercy; it is little. They are of the sort we lamented in a war to the death! I feel like you that they Mignet, and generally in Frenchmen of this must all perish; and yet, if you are good citi-day-a jingling of formulas; unfruitial as zens, you must love justice. There is not one that Kalmuck prayer! Perhaps the strangestof you but would shudder at the notion of looking particular doctrine we have noticed is shedding innocent blood.' 'Yes, yes' reply this: that the French Revolution was at botthe people. Well, then, I ask of you if, with- tom an attempt to realize Christianity, and out inquiry or investigation, you fling your- fairly put it in action, in our world. For eigh selves like mad tigers on your fellow-men-?' teen centuries (it is not denied) men had been Here the speaker was interrupted by one of doing more or less that way; but they set the crowd, who, with a bloody sabre in his their shoulder rightly to the wheel, and gave hand, his eyes glancing with rage, cleaves the a dead-lift, for the first time then. Good M. press, and refutes him in these terms: Tell us, Roux! and yet the good Roux does mean Monsieur le Citoyen, explain to us then, would something by this; and even something true. the sacres gueux of Prussians and Austrians, if But a marginal annotator has written on our they were at Paris, investigate for the guilty? copy-" For the love of Heaven, Messieurs, Would they not cut right and left, as the Swiss humez vos formules:" make away with your on the Tenth of August did? Well, I am no formulas; take off your facetted spectacles; speaker, I can stuff the ears of no one; but open your eyes a little and look! There is, I tell you I have a wife and five children, whom indeed, here and there, considerable rumbling I leave with my section here while I go and of the rotatory calabash, which rattles and rumfight the enemy: but it is not my bargain that bles concerning Progress of the Species, De
trine du Progrès, Exploitations, le Christ, the Verbe, and what not; written in a vein of deep, even of intense seriousness; but profitable, one would think, to no man or woman. In this style M. Roux (for it is he, we understand) painfully composes a preface to each volume, and has even given a whole introductory history of France: we read some seven or eight of his first prefaces, hoping always to get some nourishment; but seldom or never cut him open now. Fighting in that way, behind cover, he is comparatively harmless; merely wasting vou so many pence per number: happily the
MEMOIRS OF THE LIFE OF SCOTT.*
[LONDON AND WESTMINSTER REVIEW, 1838.]
AMERICAN Cooper asserts, in one of his books, that there is "an instinctive tendency in men to look at any man who has become distinguished." True, surely; as all observation and survey of mankind, from China to Peru, from Nebuchadnezzar to Old Hickory, will testify! Why do men crowd towards the improved drop at Newgate, eager to catch a sight? The man about to be hanged is in a distinguished situation. Men crowd to such extent, that Greenacre's is not the only life choked out there. Again, ask of these leathern vehicles, cabriolets, neat-flies, with blue men and women in them, that scour all thoroughfares, Whither so fast? To see dear Mrs. Rigmarole, the distinguished female! Great Mr. Rigmarole, the distinguished male. Or, consider the crowning phenomenon, and summary of modern civilization, a soirée of lions. Glittering are the rooms, well-lighted, thronged; bright flows their undulatory flood of blonde gowns and dress-coats, a soft smile dwelling on all faces; for behold there also flow the lions, hovering distinguished: oracles of the age, of one sort or another. Oracles really pleasant to see; whom it is worth while to go and see: look at them, but inquire not of them, depart rather and be thankful. For your lionsoirée admits not of speech; there lies the speciality of it. A meeting together of human creatures; and yet (so high has civilization gone) the primary aim of human meeting, that soul might in some articulate utterance unfold itself to soul, can be dispensed with in it. Utterance there is not: nay, there is a certain grinning play of tongue-fence, and make-believe of utterance, considerably worse than none. For which reason it has been suggested, with an eye to sincerity and silence in such lion-soirées, Might not each lion be, for example, ticketed, as wiue-decanters are? Let him carry, slung round him, in such ornamental manner as seemed good, his silver label with name engraved; you lift his label, and read it, with
space he takes is small. Whoever wants to form for himself an image of the actual state of French Meditation, and under what surprising shackles a French thinking man of these days finds himself gyved, and mechanized, and reduced to the verge of zero, may open M. Roux's Prefaces, and see it as in an expressive summary.
We wish our two French friends all speed in their business; and do again honestly recommend this "Histoire Parlementaire" to any and all of our English friends who take inte rest in that subject.
•Memoirs of the Life of Sir Walter Scott, Baronet.
Vol. i.-vi. Cadell. Edinburgh, 1837.
what farther ocular survey you find useful, and speech is not needed at all. O Fenimore Cooper, it is most true there is "an instinctive tendency in men to look at at any man that has become distinguished;" and, moreover, an instinctive desire in men to become distinguished and be looked at!
For the rest, we will call it a most valuable tendency this; indispensable to mankind. Without it where were star-and-garter, and significance of rank; where were all ambition, money-getting, respectability of gig or no gig; and, in a word, the main impetus by which society moves, the main force by which it hangs together? A tendency, we say, of manifold results: of manifold origin, not ridiculous only, but sublime;-which some incline to deduce from the mere gregarious purblind nature of man, prompting him to run, as dimeyed animals do, towards any glittering object, were it but a scoured tankard, and mistake it for a solar luminary,” or even, “ sheep-like, to run and crowd because many have already run!" It is, indeed, curious to consider how men do make the gods that themselves worship. For the most famed man, round whom all the world rapturously huzzahs, and venerates as if his like were not, is the same man whom all the world was wont to jostle into the kennels; not a changed man, but in every fibre of him the same man. Foolish world, what went ye out to see? A tankard scoured bright; and do there not lie, of the self-same pewter, whole barrowfuls of tankards, though by worse fortune all still in the dim state?
And yet, at bottom, it is not merely our gre garious sheep-like quality, but something better, and indeed best; what has been called "the perpetual fact of hero-worship;" our inborn sincere love of great men! Not the gilt farthing, for its own sake, do even fools covet, but the gold guinea which they mistake it for. Veneration of great men is perennial in the nature of man; this, in all times, especially in these, is one of the blessedest facts predicable of him. In all times, even in these seemingly
so disobedient times, "it remains a blessed
fact, so cunningly has nature ordered it, that whatsoever man ought to obey he cannot but obey. Show the dullest clodpole, show the haughtiest featherhead, that a soul higher than himself is actually here; were his knees stiffened into brass, he must down and worship." So it has been written; and may be cited and repeated till known to all. Understand it well, this of "hero-worship" was the primary creed, and has intrinsically been the secondary and ternary, and will be the ultimate and final creed of mankind; indestructible, changing in shape, but in essence unchangeable; whereon politics, religions, loyalties, and all highest human interests have been and can be built, as on a rock that will endure while man endures. Such is hero-worship; so much lies in that our inborn sincere love of great men !-In favour of which unspeakable benefits of the reality, what can we do but cheerfully pardon the multiplex ineptitudes of the semblance,-cheerfully wish even lion-soirées, with labels for their lions or without that improvement, all manner of prosperity? Let hero-worship flourish, say we; and the more and more assiduous chase after gilt farthings while guineas are not yet forthcoming. Herein, at lowest, is proof that guineas exist, that they are oelieved to exist, and valued. Find great men if you can; if you cannot, still quit not the search; in defect of great men, let there be noted men, men, in such number, to such degree of intensity as the public appetite can tolerate.
evil or to do no evil; will depend not on the multitude, but on himself. One thing he did decidedly wish; at least to wait till the work were finished: for the six promised volumes, as the world knows, have flowed over into a seventh, which will not for some weeks yet see the light. But the editorial powers, wearied with waiting, have become peremptory; and declare that, finished or not finished, they will have their hands washed of it at this opening of the year. Perhaps it is best. The physiognomy of Scott will not be much altered for us by the seventh volume; the prior six have altered it but little ;-as, indeed, a man who has written some two hundred volumes of his own, and lived for thirty years amid the universal speech of friends, must have already left some likeness of himself. Be it as the peremptory editorial powers require.
First, therefore, a word on the Life" itself. Mr. Lockhart's known powers justify strict requisition in his case. Our verdict in general would be, that he has accomplished the work he schemed for himself in a creditable workmanlike manner. It is true, his notion of what the work was does not seem to have been very elevated. To picture forth the life of Scott according to any rules of art or composition, so that a reader, on adequately examining it, might say to himself, "There is Scott, there is the physiognomy and meaning of Scott's ap pearance and transit on this earth; such was he by nature, so did the world act on him, so he on the world, with such result and signifi Whether Sir Walter Scott was a great man, cance for himself and us:" this was by no is still a question with some; but there can be manner of means Mr. Lockhart's plan. A plan no question with any one that he was a most which, it is rashly said, should preside over noted and even notable man. In this gene- every biography! It might have been fulfilled ration there was no literary man with such a with all degrees of perfection from that of popularity in any country; there have only the "Odyssey" down to "Thomas Ellwood" or been a few with such, taking in all generations lower. For there is no heroic poem in the and all countries. Nay, it is farther to be ad- world but is at bottom a biography, the life of mitted that Sir Walter Scott's popularity was a man: also, it may be said, there is no life of a select sort rather; not a popularity of the of a man, faithfully recorded, but is a heroic populace. His admirers were at one time poem of its sort, rhymed or unrhymed. It is a almost all the intelligent of civilised countries; plan one would prefer, did it otherwise suit; and to the last, included and do still include a which it does not in these days. Seven volumes great portion of that sort. Such fortune he had, sell so much dearer than one; are so much and has continued to maintain for a space of easier to write than one. The "Odyssey,” for some twenty or thirty years. So long the instance, what were the value of the “Odysobserved of all observers; a great man, or only sey," sold per sheet? One paper of “Picka considerable man; here surely, if ever, is a wick;" or say, the inconsiderable fraction of singularly circumstanced, is a "distinguished" one. This, in commercial algebra, were the man! In regard to whom, therefore, the "in-equation: "Odyssey" equal to "Pickwick" distinctive tendency" on other men's part can- vided by an unknown integer. not be wanting. Let men look, where the There is a great discovery still to be made world has already so long looked. And now, in literature, that of paying literary men by while the new, earnestly expected “Life by his the quantity they do not write. Nay, in sober Son-in-law and literary executor" again sum- truth, is not this actually the rule in all writing: mons the whole world's attention round him, and, moreover, in all conduct and acting? Not probably for the last time it will ever be so what stands above ground, but what lies unsummoned; and men are in some sort taking seen under it, as the root and subterrene element leave of a notability, and about to go their way, it sprang from and emblemed forth, determines and commit him to his fortune on the flood of value. Under all speech that is good for any things,-why should not this periodical publi- thing there lies a silence that is better. Silence cation likewise publish its thought about him? is deep as eternity; speech is shallow as time. Readers of miscellaneous aspect, of unknown Paradoxical does it seem? Wo for the age, quantity and quality, are waiting to hear it wo for the man, quack-ridden, bespeeched, bedone. With small inward vocation, but cheer-spouted, blown about like barren Sahara, to fully obedient to destiny and necessity, the whom this world-old truth were altogether present reviewer will follow a multitude to do strange !—Such we say is the rule, acted on or
not, recognised or not; and he who departs | time be composed, if necessary, by whosoever from it, what can he do but spread himself into breadth and length, into superficiality and saleability; and, except as filigree, become comparatively useless? One thinks, had but the hogshead of thin wash, which sours in a week ready for the kennels, been distilled, been concentrated! Our dear Fenimore Cooper, whom we started with, might, in that way, have given us one Natty Leatherstocking, one melodious synopsis of man and nature in the West, (for it lay in him to do it,) almost as a Saint Pierre did for the islands of the East; and the hundred incoherences, cobbled hastily together by order of Colburn and Company, had slumbered in Chaos, as all incoherences ought if possible to do. Verily this same genius of diffuse-writing, of diffuse-acting, is a Moloch; and souls pass through the fire to him more than enough. Surely if ever discovery was valuable and needful, it were that above indicated, of paying by the work not visibly done!-Which needful discovery we will give the whole projecting, railwaying, knowledge-diffusing, march-of-intellect, and otherwise promotive and locomotive societies in the Old and New World, any required length of centuries to make. Once made, such discovery once made, we too will fling cap into the air, and shout Io Pœan, the Devil is conquered; and in the meanwhile study to think it nothing miraculous that seven biographical volumes are given where one had been better; and that several other things happen, very much as they from of old were known to do, and are like to continue doing.
has call to that. As it is, as it was meant to be, we repeat, the work is vigorously done. Sagacity, decision, candour, diligence, good sense: these qualities are throughout observable. The dates, calculations, statements, we suppose to be accurate; much laborious in quiry, some of it impossible for another man, has been gone into, the results of which are imparted with due brevity. Scott's letters, not interesting generally, yet never absolutely without interest, are copiously given; copiously, but with selection; the answers to them still more select. Narrative, delineation, and at length personal reminiscences, occasionly of much merit, of a certain rough force, sincerity, and picturesqueness, duly intervene. The scattered members of Scott's Life do lie here, and could be disentangled. In a word, this compilation is the work of a manful, clearseeing, conclusive man, and has been executed with the faculty and combination of faculties the public had a right to expect from the name attached to it.
One thing we hear greatly blamed in Mr. Lockhart: that he has been too communica tive, indiscreet, and has recorded much that ought to have lain suppressed. Persons are mentioned, and circumstances, not always of an ornamental sort. It would appear there is far less reticence than was looked for! Various persons, name and surname, have "received pain:" nay, the very hero of the biography is rendered unheroic; unornamental facts of him, and of those he had to do with, being set forth in plain English: hence "personality," "indiscretion," or worse," sanctities of private life," &c. &c. How delicate, decent is English biography, bless its mealy mouth! A Damocles' sword of Respectability hangs for ever over the poor English life-writer, (as it does over poor English life in general,) and reduces him to the verge of paralysis. Thus it has been said, "there are no English lives worth reading except those of Players, who by the nature of the case have bidden Respectability good day." The English biographer has long felt that if in writing his Man's Biography, he wrote down any thing that could by possi bility offend any man, he had written wrong. The plain consequence was that, properly speaking, no biography whatever could be produced. The poor biographer, having the fear not of God before his eyes, was obliged to retire as it were into vacuum; and write in the most melancholy, straitened manner, with only vacuum for a result. Vain that he wrote, and that we kept reading volume on volume; there was no biography, but some vague ghost of a biography, white, stainless; without feature or substance; vacuum, as we say, and wind and shadow,-which indeed the material of it was. No man lives without jostling and being jostled; in all ways he has to elbow himself through the world, giving and receiving of fence. His life is a battle, in so far as it is an entity at all. The very oyster, we suppose, comes in collision with oysters: undoubtedly enough it does come in collision with Necessity and Difficulty; and helps itself through, not as a perfect ideal oyster, but as an imper
Mr. Lockhart's aim, we take it, was not that of producing any such highflown work of art as we hint at: or indeed to do much other than to print, intelligibly bound together by order of time, and some requisite intercalary exposition, all such letters, documents, and notices about Scott as he found lying suitable, and as it seemed likely the world would undertake to read. His work, accordingly, is not so much a composition, as what we may call a compilation well done. Neither is this a task of no difficulty; this too is a task that may be performed with extremely various degrees of talent: from the "Life and Correspondence of Hannah More," for instance, up to this "Life of Scott," there is a wide range indeed! Let us take the seven volumes, and be thankful that they are genuine in their kind. Nay, as to that of their being seven and not one, it is right to say that the public so required it. To have done other would have shown little policy in an author. Had Mr. Lockhart laboriously compressed himself, and instead of well-done compilation, brought out the well-done composition in one volume instead of seven, which not many men in England are better qualified to do, there can be no doubt that his readers for the time had been immeasurably fewer. If the praise of magnanimity be denied him, that of prudence must be conceded, which perhaps he values
The truth is, the work, done in this manner, too, was good to have: Scott's Biography, if uncomposed, lies printed and indestructible here, in the elementary state, and can at any