صور الصفحة
PDF
النشر الإلكتروني

mence by calling on the god who presides over | gerations are softened into something which this vocation.-So-begins:

at least resembles poetic harmony. We give this drama a high praise, when we say that more than once it has reminded us of Cal

deron.

Bangputtis! Bangputtis! Bangputtis!

-Brief pause!-Incipient stare in the audience!-and from a fellow in the corner comes a small clear voice: My dearest, most valued

friend! my best of poets! If thy whole dear opera is written in that cursed language, no soul of us knows a syllable of it; and I beg, in the Devil's name, thou wouldst rather have the goodness to translate it first!" "*

Of this Kreuz an der Ostsee our limits will permit us to say but little. It is still a fragment; the Second Part, which was often promised, and, we believe, partly written, having never yet been published. In some respects, it appears to us the best of Werner's dramas: there is a decisive coherence in the plot, such as we seldom find with him; and a firmness, a rugged nervous brevity in the dialogue, which is equally rare. Here, too, the mystic dreamy agencies, which, as in most of his pieces, he

The "Cross on the Baltic" had been bespoke by Iffland for the Berlin theatre; but the complex machinery of the piece, the "little flames" springing, at intervals, from the heads of certain characters, and the other supernatural ware with which it is replenished, were found to transcend the capabilities of any merely Germany, was himself a dramatist, and a man terrestrial stage. Iffland, the best actor in of talent, but in all points differing from Werner, as a stage-machinist may differ from a man with the second-sight. Hoffmann chuckles in secret over the perplexities in which the shrewd prosaic manager and playwright must have found himself, when he came to the back a refusal, full of admiration and expostu"little flames." Nothing remained but to write lation: and Iffland wrote one which, says Hoffmann, "passes for a master-piece of theatrical diplomacy."

66

In this one respect, at least, Werner's next play was happier, for it actually crossed the and reached, though in a maimed state, the Stygian marsh" of green-room hesitations, Elysium of the boards; and this to the great joy, as it proved, both of Iffland and all other Parties interested. We allude to the Martin Luther, oder die Weihe der Kraft, (Martin Luther, or the Consecration of Strength,) Werner's Berlin in 1807, and soon spread over all Germost popular performance, which came out at

has interwoven with the action, harmonize more than usually with the spirit of the whole. It is a wild subject, and this helps to give it a corresponding wildness of locality. The first planting of Christianity among the Prussians, by the Teutonic Knights, leads us back of itself into dim ages of antiquity, of superstitious barbarism, and stern apostolic zeal: it is a scene hanging, as it were, in half-ghastly chiaroscuro, on a ground of primeval Night: where the Cross and St. Adalbert come in contact with the Sacred Oak and the Idols of Romova, we are not surprised that spectral shapes peer forth on us from the gloom. In the constructing and depicting of charac-many, Catholic as well as protestant, being ters, Werner, indeed, is still little better than a acted, it would seem, even in Vienna, to overmannerist: his persons, differing in external flowing and delighted audiences. figure, differ too slightly in inward nature; and no one of them comes forward on us with a rightly visible or living air. Yet, in scenes and incidents, in what may be called the general costume of his subject, he has here attained a really superior excellence. The savage Prussians, with their amber-fishing, their bearhunting, their bloody idolatry, and stormful untutored energy, are brought vividly into view; no less so the Polish Court of Plozk, and the German Crusaders, in their bridal-feasts and battles, as they live and move, here placed on the verge of Heathendom, as it were, the vanguard of Light in conflict with the kingdoms of Darkness. The nocturnal assault on Plozk by the Prussians, where the handful of Teutonic Knights is overpowered, but the city saved from ruin by the miraculous interposition of the "Harper," who now proves to be the spirit of St. Adalbert; this, with the scene which follows it, on the Island of the Vistula, where the dawn slowly breaks over doings of wo and horrid cruelty, but of wo and cruelty atoned for by immortal hope,-belongs undoubtedly

If instant acceptance, therefore, were a rank high among that class of works. Nevermeasure of dramatic merit, this play should theless, to judge from our own impressions, the sober reader of Martin Luther will be far from finding in it such excellence. It cannot be named among the best dramas: it is not much scenic exhibition, many a "fervid sentieven the best of Werner's. There is, indeed, ment," as the newspapers have it; nay, with all its mixture of coarseness, here and there but, as a whole, the work sorely disappoints a glimpse of genuine dramatic inspiration; us; it is of so loose and mixed a structure and falls asunder in our thoughts, like the iron and clay in the Chaldean's Dream. There is an in the First Act; but, unhappily, it goes on deinterest, perhaps of no trivial sort, awakened clining, till, in the Fifth, an ill-natured critic might almost say, it expires. The story is too wide for Werner's dramatic lens to gather into a focus; besides, the reader brings with him an image of it, too fixed for being so boldly being ornamented with tinsel and gilt pastemetamorphosed, and too high and august for plentifully furnished as it is with sceptres and board. Accordingly, the Diet of Worms, armorial shields, continues a much grander Neither, with regard to the persons of the play, scene in History, than it is here in Fiction. excepting those of Luther and Catharine, the Nun whom he weds, can we find much scope

to Werner's most successful efforts. With

much that is questionable, much that is merely

common, there are intermingled touches from the true Land of Wonders; indeed, the whole is overspread with a certain dim religious light, in which its many pettinesses and exag

Hoffmann's Serapions-Brüder, b. iv. s. 240.

for praise. Nay, our praise even of these two must have many limitations. Catharine, though carefully enough depicted, is, in fact, little more than a common tragedy-queen, with the storminess, the love, and other stage-heroism, which belong prescriptively to that class of dignitaries. With regard to Luther himself, it is evident that Werner has put forth his whole strength in this delineation; and, trying him by common standards, we are far from saying that he has failed. Doubtless it is, in some respects, a significant and even sublime delineation yet must we ask whether it is Luther, the Luther of History, or even the Luther proper for this drama; and not rather some ideal portraiture of Zacharias Werner himself? Is not this Luther, with his too assiduous flute-playing, his trances of three days, his visions of the Devil, (at whom, to the sorrow of the housemaid, he resolutely throws his huge ink-bottle,) by much too spasmodic and brainsick a personage? We cannot but question the dramatic beauty, whatever it may be in history, of that three days' trance; the hero must before this have been in want of mere victuals; and there, as he sits deaf and dumb, with his eyes sightless, yet fixed and staring, are we not tempted less to admire, than to send in all haste for some officer of the Humane Society? Seriously, we cannot but regret that these and other such blemishes had not been avoided, and the character, worked into chasteness and purity, been presented to us in the simple grandeur which essentially belongs to it. For, censure as we may, it were blindness to deny that this figure of Luther has in it features of an austere loveliness, a mild, yet awful beauty: undoubtedly a figure rising from the depths of the poet's soul; and, marred as it is with such adhesions, piercing at times into the depths of ours! Among so many poetical sins, it forms the chief redeeming virtue, and truly were almost in itself a sort of atone

ment.

two half-ghosts and one whole ghost,-a little fairy girl, Catharine's servant, who impersonates Faith; a little fairy youth, Luther's servant, who represents Art; and the " 'Spirit of Cotta's wife," an honest housekeeper, but defunct many years before, who stands for Purity. These three supernaturals hover about in very whimsical wise, cultivating flowers, playing on flutes, and singing dirge-like epithalamiums over unsound sleepers: we cannot see how aught of this is to "consecrate strength;" or, indeed, what such jack-o'-lantern personages have in the least to do with so grave a business. If the author intended by such machinery to elevate his subject from the Common, and unite it with the higher region of the Infinite and the Invisible, we cannot think that his contrivance has succeeded, or was worthy to succeed. These half-allegorical, half-corporeal beings yield no contentment anywhere: Abstract Ideas, however they may put on fleshly garments, are a class of charac ters whom we cannot sympathize with or delight in. Besides, how can this mere imbodyment of an allegory be supposed to act on the rugged materials of life, and elevate into ideal grandeur the doings of real men, that live and move amid the actual pressure of worldly things? At best, it can stand but like a hand in the margin: it is not performing the task proposed, but only telling us that it was meant to be performed. To our feelings, this entire episode runs like straggling bindweed through the whole growth of the piece, not so much uniting as encumbering and choking up what it meets with; in itself, perhaps, a green and rather pretty weed; yet here superfluous, and, like any other weed, deserving only to be altogether cut away.

As for the other characters, they need not detain us long. Of Charles the Fifth, by far the most ambitious,-meant, indeed, as the counterpoise of Luther, we may say, without hesitation, that he is a failure. An empty Gascon this; bragging of his power, and honour, and the like, in a style which Charles, even in his nineteenth year, could never have used. "One God, one Charles," is no speech for an emperor; and, besides, is borrowed from some panegyrist of a Spanish opera-singer. Neither can we fall in with Charles, when he tells us, that "he fears nothing,-not even God." We humbly think he must be mistaken. With the old Miners, again, with Hans Luther and his Wife, the Reformer's parents, there is more reason to be satisfied; yet in Werner's hands simplicity is always apt, in such cases, to become too simple, and these honest peasants, like the honest Hugo in the "Sons of the Valley," are very garrulous.

This drama of "Martin Luther" is named likewise the "Consecration of Strength;" that is, we suppose, the purifying of this great theologian from all remnants of earthly passion, into a clear heavenly zeal; an operation which is brought about, strangely enough, by

Our general opinion of "Martin Luther," it would seem, therefore, corresponds ill with that of the "overflowing and delighted audiences" over all Germany. We believe, however, that now, in its twentieth year, the work may be somewhat more calmly judged of even there. As a classical drama it could never pass with any critic; nor, on the other hand, shall we ourselves deny that, in the lower sphere of a popular spectacle, its attractions are manifold. We find it, what, more or less, we find all Werner's pieces to be, a splendid, sparkling mass; yet not of pure metal, but of manycoloured scoria, not unmingled with metal; and must regret, as ever, that it had not been refined in a stronger furnace, and kept in the crucible till the true silver-gleam, glancing from it, had shown that the process was complete.

Werner's dramatic popularity could not remain without influence on him, more especially as he was now in the very centre of its brilliancy, having changed his residence from Warsaw to Berlin, some time before his Weihe der Kraft was acted, or indeed written. Von Schrötter, one of the state-ministers, a man harmonizing with Werner in his "zeal both for religion and freemasonry," had been persuaded by some friends to appoint him his secretary. Werner naturally rejoiced in such promotion; yet, combined with his theatrical success, it perhaps, in the long run, did him more harm than good. He might now, for the first time,

be said to see the busy and influential world | Rigi, at sunrise, he became acquainted with the Crown-Prince, King of Bavaria; was by him introduced to the Swiss festival at Interlacken, and to the most "intellectual lady of our time, the Baroness de Staël;" and must beg to be credited when, after sufficient individual experience, he can declare, that the heart of this high and noble woman was at least as great as her genius. Coppet, for a while, was his head quarters, but he went to Paris, to Weimar, again to Switzerland; in short, trudged and hurried hither and thither, inconstant as an ignis fatuus, and restless as the Wandering Jew.

with his own eyes: but to draw future instruction from it, or even to guide himself in its present complexities, he was little qualified. He took a shorter method: "he plunged into the vortex of society," says Hitzig, with brief expressiveness; became acquainted, indeed, with Fichte, Johannes Müller and other excellent men, but united himself also, and with closer partiality, to players, play-lovers, and a long list of jovial, admiring, but highly unprofitable companions. His religious schemes, perhaps, rebutted by collision with actual life, lay dormant for the time, or mingled in strange union with wine-vapours, and the "feast of reason, and the flow of soul." The result of all this might, in some measure, be foreseen. In eight weeks, for example, Werner had parted with his wife. It was not to be expected, he writes, that she should be happy with him. "I am no bad man," continues he, with considerable candour; "yet a weakling in many respects, (for God strengthens me also in several,) fretful, capricious, greedy, impure. Thou knowest me! Still, immersed in my fantasies, in my occupation: so that here, what with playhouses, what with social parties, she had no manner of enjoyment with me. She is innocent. I, too, perhaps, for can I pledge myself that I am so?" These repeated divorces of Werner's at length convinced him that he had no talent for managing wives; indeed, we subsequently find him, more than once, arguing in dissuasion of marriage altogether. To our readers one other consideration may occur: astonishment at the state of marriage-law, and the strange footing this "sacrament" must stand on throughout Protestant Germany. For a Christian man, at least not a Mohammedan, to leave three widows behind him, certainly wears a peculiar aspect. Perhaps it is saying much for German morality, that so absurd a system has not, by the orders resulting from it, already brought about its own abrogation.

On his mood of mind during all this period, Werner gives us no direct information; but so unquiet an outward life betokens of itself no inward repose; and when we, from other lights, gain a transient glimpse into the wayfarer's thoughts, they seem still more fluctuating than his footsteps. His project of a New Religion was by this time abandoned: Hitzig thinks his closer survey of life at Berlin had taught him the impracticability of such chimeras. Nevertheless, the subject of Religion, in one shape or another, nay, of propagating it in new purity by teaching and preaching, had nowise vanished from his meditations. On the contrary, we can perceive that it still formed the master-principle of his soul, "the pillar of cloud by day, and the pillar of fire by night," which guided him, so far as he had any guidance, in the pathless desert of his now solitary, barren, and cheerless existence. What his special opinions or prospects on the matter had, at this period, become, we nowhere learn; except, indeed, negatively, for if he has not yet found the new, he still cordially enough detests the old. All his admiration of Luther cannot reconcile him to modern Lutheranism. This he regards but as another and more hidedis-ous impersonation of the Utilitarian spirit of the age, nay, as the last triumph of Infidelity, which has now dressed itself in priestly garb, and even mounted the pulpit, to preach, in heavenly symbols, a doctrine which is altogether of the earth. A curious passage from his preface to the "Cross on the Baltic" we may quote, by way of illustration. After speaking of St. Adalbert's miracles, and how his body, when purchased from the heathen for its weight in gold, became light as gossamer, he proceeds:

66

Though these things may be justly doubted; yet one miracle cannot be denied him, the miracle, namely, that after his death he has extorted from this Spirit of Protestantism against Strength in general,-which now replaced the old heathen and catholic Spirit of Persecution, and weighs almost as much as Adalbert's body, the admission, that he knew what he wanted; was what he wished to be; was so wholly; and therefore must have been a man, at all points diametrically opposite both to that Protestantism, and to the culture of our day." In a Note, he adds: "There is another Protestantism,

Of Werner's further proceedings in Berlin, except by implication, we have little notice. After the arrival of the French armies, his secretaryship ceased; and now wifeless and placeless, in the summer of 1807," he felt himself," he says, "authorized by Fate to indulge his taste for pilgriming." Indulge it accordingly he did; for he wandered to and fro many years, nay, we may almost say to the end of his life, like a perfect Bedouin. The various stages and occurrences of his travels, he has himself recorded in a paper, furnished by him | for his own Name, in some Biographical Dictionary. Hitzig quotes great part of it, but it is too long and too meagre for being quoted here. Werner was at Prague, Vienna, Munich, -everywhere received with open arms; "saw at Jena, in December, 1807, for the first time, the most universal and the clearest man of his age, (the man whose like no one that has seen him will ever see again,) the great, nay, only GOETHE; and, under his introduction, the pattern of German princes," (the Duke of Weimar;) and then, "after three ever-memorable months in this society, beheld at Berlin the triumphant entry of the pattern of European yrants" (Napoleon.) On the summit of the

It was here that Hitzig saw him, for the last time, in 1809, found admittance, through his means, to a cour festival in honour of Bernadotte; and he still recollects, that sovereign standing front to front, engaged in the with gratification, "the lordly spectacle of Goethe and liveliest conversation."

however, which constitutes in Conduct, what | assisted at certain "Spiritual Exercitations" Art is in Speculation, and which I reverence (Geistliche Uebungen;) a new invention set on so highly, that I even place it above Art, as foot at Rome for quickening the devotion of Conduct is above Speculation at all times. But the faithful, consisting, so far as we can gather, in this, St. Adalbert and St. Luther are-col- in a sort of fasting-and-prayer meetings, conleagues and if God, which I daily pray for, ducted on the most rigorous principles, the should awaken Luther to us before the Last considerable band of devotees being bound Day, the first task he would find, in respect of over to strict silence, and secluded for several that degenerate and spurious Protestantism, days, with conventual care, from every sort of would be, in his somewhat rugged manner, to intercourse with the world. The effect of these -protest against it." Exercitations, Werner elsewhere declares, was edifying to an extreme degree; at parting on the threshold of their holy tabernacle, all the brethren "embraced each other, as if intoxicated with divine joy; and each confessed to the other, that throughout these precious days he had been, as it were, in heaven; and now, strengthened as by a soul-purifying bath, was but loath to venture back into the cold week

A similar, or perhaps still more reckless temper, is to be traced elsewhere, in passages of a gay, as well as grave character. This is the conclusion of a letter from Vienna, in

1807

"We have Tragedies here which contain so many edifying maxims, that you might use them instead of Jesus Sirach, and have them read from beginning to end in the Berlin Sun-day world." The next step from these Taborday-schools. Comedies, likewise, absolutely feasts, if, indeed, it had not preceded them, was bursting with household felicity and nobleness a decisive one: "On the 19th of April, 1811, of mind. The genuine Kasperl is dead, and Werner had grace given him to return to the Schikander gone his ways; but here, too, Bigotry | Faith of his fathers, the Catholic!" and Superstition are attacked in enlightened Journals with such profit, that the people care less for Popery than even you in Berlin do; and prize, for instance, the Weihe der Kraft, which has also been declaimed in Regensburg and Munich to thronging audiences,-chiefly for the multitude of liberal Protestant opinions therein brought to light; and regard the author, all his struggling to the contrary unheeded, as a secret Illuminatus, or at worst an amiable Enthusiast. In a word, Vienna is determined, without loss of time, to overtake Berlin in the career of improvement; and when I recollect that Berlin, on her side, carries Porsten's Hymn-book with her, in her reticule, to the shows in the Thiergarten; and that the ray of Christiano-catholico-platonic Faith pierces deeper and deeper into your (already by nature very deep) Privy-councillor Mamsell,-I almost fancy that Germany is one great madhouse; and could find in my heart to pack up my goods, and set off for Italy to-morrow morning;-not, indeed, that I might work there, where follies enough are to be had too; but that, amid ruins and flowers, I might forget all things, and myself in the first place."-LebensAbriss, s. 70.

Here, then, the "crowning mercy" had at length arrived! This passing of the Rubicon determined the whole remainder of Werner's life, which had henceforth the merit, at least, of entire consistency. He forthwith set about the professional study of Theology; then being perfected in this, he left Italy in 1813, taking care, however, by the road, "to supplicate, and certainly not in vain, the help of the Gracious Mother at Loretto; and after due preparation, under the superintendence of his patron, the Prince Archbishop von Dalberg, had himself ordained a Priest at Aschaffenburg, in June, 1814. Next, from Aschaffenburg he hastened to Vienna; and there, with all his might, began preaching; his first auditory being the Congress of the Holy Alliance, which had then just begun its venerable sessions. "The novelty and strangeness," he says, "nay, originality of his appearance, secured him an extraordinary concourse of hearers." He was, indeed, a man worth hearing and seeing; for his name, noised abroad in many-sounding peals, was filling all Germany from the hut to the palace. This, he thinks, might have affected his head; but he "had a trust in God, which bore him through." Neither did he seem anywise anxious to still this clamour of his judges, least of all to propitiate his detractors: for already, before arriving at Vienna, he had published, as a pendant to his "Martin Luther, or the Consecration of Strength," a pamphlet, in doggrel metre, entitled the "Consecration of Weakness," wherein he proclaims himself to the whole world as an honest seeker and finder of truth, and takes occasion to revoke his cl¿ " Trinity," of art, religion, and love; love hav ing now turned out to be a dangerous ingredient in such mixtures. The writing of this Weihe der Unkraft was reckoned by many a bold but injudicious measure, a throwing down of the gauntlet when the lists were fnl. of tumultuous foes, and the knight was bu weak, and his cause, at best, of the most ques tionable sort. To reports, and calumnies, and criticisms, and vituperations, there was n‹ limit.

To Italy accordingly he went, though with rather different objects, and not quite so soon 's on the morrow. In the course of his wanderings, a munificent ecclesiastical Prince, the First Primas von Dalberg, had settled a yearly pension on him; so that now he felt still more at liberty to go whither he listed. In the course of a second visit to Coppet, and which lasted four months, Madame de Staël encouraged and assisted him to execute his favourite project; he set out, through Turin and Florence, and "on the 9th of December, 1809, saw, for the first time, the capital of the world!" Of his proceedings here, much as we should desire to have minute details, no information is given in this narrative; and Hitzig seems to know, by a letter, merely, that "he knelt with streaming eyes over the graves of St. Peter and St. Paul." This little phrase says much. Werner appears likewise to have

In imitation, it is thought, of Lipsius, he bequeathed his Pen to the treasury of the Virgin at Mariazell," as a chief instrument of his aberrations, his sins, and his repentance." He was honourably interred at Enzersdorf on the Hill, where a simple inscription, composed by himself, begs the wanderer to "pray charitably for his poor soul;" and expresses a trembling hope that, as to Mary Magdalen, "because she loved much," so to him also, "much may be forgiven."

We have thus, in hurried movement, travelled over Zacharias Werner's Life and Works; noting down from the former such particulars as seemed most characteristic; and gleaning from the latter some more curious passages, less indeed with a view to their intrinsic excellence, than to their fitness for illustrating the man. These scattered indications we must now leave our readers to interpret each for himself: each will adjust them into that combination which shall best harmonize with his own way of thought. As a writer, Werner's character will occasion little difficulty. A richly gifted nature; but never wisely guided, or resolutely applied: a loving heart; an in

What remains of this strange eventful his- | the household, and it was found that Werner tory may be summed up in few words. Wer- had already passed away." ner accepted no special charge in the Church; but continued a private and secular Priest; preaching diligently, but only where he himself saw good; oftenest at Vienna, but in summer over all parts of Austria, in Styria, Carinthia, and even Venice. Everywhere, he says, the opinions of his hearers were "violently divided." At one time, he thought of becoming Monk, and had actually entered on a sort of noviciate; but he quitted the establishment rather suddenly, and, as he is reported to have said, "for reasons known only to God and himself." By degrees, his health grew very weak; yet he still laboured hard both in public and private; writing or revising poems, devotional or dramatic; preaching, and officiating as father-confessor, in which last capacity he is said to have been in great request. Of his poetical productions during this period, there is none of any moment known to us, except the Mother of the Maccabees (1819); a tragedy of careful structure, and apparently in high favour with the author, but which, notwithstanding, need not detain us long. In our view, it is the worst of all his pieces; a pale, bloodless, indeed quite ghost-like affair; for a cold breath as from a sepulchre chills the heart in perus-tellect subtile and inquisitive, if not always ing it: there is no passion or interest, but a clear and strong; a gorgeous, deep, and bold certain wo-struck martyr zeal, or rather frenzy, imagination; a true, nay, keen and burning and this not so much storming as shrieking; sympathy with all high, all tender and holy not loud and resolute, but shrill, hysterical, and things;-here lay the main elements of no bleared with ineffectual tears. To read it may common poet; save only that one was still well sadden us: it is a convulsive fit, whose wanting, the force to cultivate them, and uncontrollable writhings indicate, not strength, mould them into pure union. But they have but the last decay of it.* remained uncultivated, disunited, too often struggling in wild disorder: his poetry, like his life, is still not so much an edifice as a quarry. Werner had cast a look into perhaps the very deepest region of the Wonderful; but he had not learned to live there: he was yet no denizen of that mysterious land: and, in his visions, its splendour is strangely mingled and overclouded with the flame or smoke of mere earthly fire. Of his dramas we have already spoken; and with much to praise, found always more to censure. In his rhymed pieces, his shorter, more didactic poems, we are better satisfied: here, in the rude, jolting vehicle of a certain Sternhold-and-Hopkins metre, we often find a strain of true pathos, and a deep, though quaint significance. His prose, again, is among the worst known to us: degraded with silliness; diffuse, nay, tautological, yet obscure and vague; contorted into endless involutions; a misshapen, lumbering, complected coil, well nigh inexplicable in its entanglements, and seldom worth the trouble of unravelling. He does not move through his subject, and arrange it, and rule over it; for the most part, he but welters in it, and laboriously tumbles it, and at last sinks under it.

Werner was, in fact, drawing to his latter end: his health had long been ruined; especially of later years, he had suffered much from disorders of the lungs. In 1817, he was thought to be dangerously ill; and afterwards, in 1822, when a journey to the Baths partly restored him; though he himself still felt that his term was near, and spoke and acted like a man that was shortly to depart. In January, 1823, he was evidently dying: his affairs he had already settled; much of his time he spent in prayer; was constantly cheerful, at intervals even gay. "His death," says Hitzig, "was especially mild. On the eleventh day of his disorder, he felt himself, particularly towards evening, as if altogether light and well; so that he would hardly consent to have any one to watch with him. The servant whose turn it was did watch, however; he had sat down by the bedside between two and three next morning, (the 17th,) and continued there a considerable while, in the belief that his patient was asleep. Surprised, however, that no breathing was to be heard, he hastily aroused

* Of his Attila, (1-08.) his Vier-und-zwanzigste Februar, (1809.) his "enemuide, (1814,) and various other pieces written n his wanderings, we have not room to speak. It is the less necessary, as the Attila and Twenty-fourth of Febrer by much the best of these, have already been forcibly, and, on the whole, fairly characterized by Madame de stel. Of the last-named little work we might

say, with double emphasis, Nec pueros coram populo Medea trucker: u has a deep and genuine tragic interest, were it not so painfully protracted into the regions of pure horror. Werner's Sermons, his Hymns, his Preface to Thomas & Kempis, &c., are entirely unknown to us.

As a man, the ill-fated Werner can still less His feverish, inconstant, and content us. wasted life we have already looked at. Hitzig, his determined well-wisher, admits that in practice he was selfish, wearying out his best friends by the most barefaced importunities; a man of no dignity; avaricious, greedy, sensual, at times obscene; in discourse, with all his

« السابقةمتابعة »