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men have put into circulation many a proverb of doubtful truth and stUl ' more doubtful utility . If we have to be on our guard against such infamousproverbs , we have to be infinitely more on ourguard against the persons who take pleasure m using them , —Korte s German Proverbs . '' . ' ... "¦
LIFE IN SOtrTHBHN ETJ 8 SIA . The Russians call their vast country " Holy ^ Russia /' a ^ d not without right is the name bestowed . The thought of God hallows the whole land ; along . all the roads and field-paths are seen crosses , which every traveller reverently greets . Every where rise up their little green and white churches their bells are sending forth their voice at all times of the day . Companies of pUgrims ^ continually traverse the land , and come from regions the remotest to ^ the holy cities and monasteries , especially to Kief , the Sclavonic Rome . Im ages of the saints are the only ornaments of the dwellings ot-the poor ? and at least one such image , with its glaring colours and its cold ornaments , gleams in the most wretched hut , from a ^ corner pi the dim chamber . Night and day a lamp burns before this
nnimposhio" image , which every one entering salutes with a sign of the cross * and a profound bend of the body . The churches in the towns and villages are always full , though the worshippers are obliged to stand during the service , which lasts for hours . The images and the crucifixes bear the traces of the burning kisses which the devout have lavished on them . The great festivals , all prepared by long fasts , are celebrated with , piety and joy fulness , and many worldly amusements mingle with the ecclesiastical solemnities . At Easter , and tin Christmas Eve , there is divine service at midnight ; every class and every age take part in it , and in the principal cities it is of the most gorgeous character . Easter is the chief festival , and throws a gleam of " joy . on the whole population . With the shout , Crtsios Woskras . Christ is Risen , they salute each other in the streets and m
the houses , expressing the warmest wishes for each other ' s happiness . This takes place not only between relations and friends , but between masters and servants , superiors and inferiors . When uttering the shout they make a gift to each other of eggs , many-coloured , often elaborately painted and adorned . In every house an abundant Easter repast is prepared , consisting of different national dishes ^ and tali cakes crowned with little Easter lambs ; and every one entering and expressing the pious congratulations of the season , and likewise the servants and the poor , partake thereof . At Whitsuntide the churches and the houses are adorned with young birches , which are also planted in the open air round the churches . Iii the cities during Easter week , and . Whitsuntide the people of the cities amuse ¦ 'themselves in the thorougrhfaresi gathering round
swings , carousals , and musicians . At Whitsuntide the much-loved swings also abound in the country . A favourite spot- ' . for them is the birch forests , where they are formed aim ply out of the stems of younjc trees , or from slender boughs .. The young girjs float up and down in ^ them in the warm spring nights . Their white dresses , and the bright , elastic bircli boughs round which they twine their arms , gleam in the moonlight through the dark green of the forest . The young lads set the swings in motion ; children and grown-up persons stand all round , and wait till their turn comes . The voice of the distant nightingale mingles with the laughter , and the shouts which are resounding through the night of spring . In August the chief festival of the Virgin Mary is celebrated by great fa ^ ts , numerous processions , pilgrimages , and divine services . —JPoerster ' s Southern Russia . ¦
rpHERE is no end , and there seems never likely to be one , of com-X mentaries on the great dramatist of the sixteenth and every other century , past or to come . Thirty-six plays , eac h equal in bulk to a modern novel , of the highest poetry , and deepest and subtlest thought , so vilely printed , that if it were not that the copies arc various in their mistakes , there were no understanding hundreds of passages , must always give scope to ' boundless conjectural and speculative oriticism . For the first eighty years after the death of the poet , the world seems to have been contented with the mangled , ' doubtful nnd obscure mode in which his collected works were ushered into the world . A goodly folio appeared seven years after his decease , and the editors , seein to intimate , in their preface that they had furnished a . * book winch would la « t for all ages , and . they probably supposed there would be nothiitg to do but to goon reprinting it to the end of time . It was so well received , and so Httlo fault
was the last of the original folios , and now the booksellers began to find out that the plays required editing , and , determining to do the thing handsomely , engaged the great popular court poet of the day , Nicholas Rowe , Esq ., to edit thein , to write a biography of the great dramatist , and to indite a critical commentary . He < lid this , and thus commenced asystem of criticism and of conjectural enlendation , which has been going on for these hundred and fifty years , and seems by no means exhausted , as the three bulky little volumes before us indicate . They are the last fruit of this everlasting tree of knowledge , and are not the most unworthy . ' Mr , Si d ney Walker was a student , at . Cambridge , and all lovers of elegant scholarship have to regret his early decease . A zealous and painstaking friend , Mr . W . Hanson Lettsom , has gathered his papers together , and edited them with great care and good discretion . Mr . Walker ' s first essay in Shakesperian commentary , was an essay on the versification of Shakespeare , in which he showed great acuteness of perception and delicacy of taste ; and the like qualities are remarkable in the present volumes , with the addition of an elaborate logical system of examination . Of all the investigators into the text of Shakespeare , perhaps none have been so deliberately scientific as Mr . Walker , who seems to . have set himself down to the work as if he thought the entire devotion of a . life were necessary to do it justice . He very quickly perceived that to authorize anything like dogmatic conjecture , it was requisite first of all to be acquainted with the language and phraseology of the poet ' s time ; arid for this purpose he diligently set to work to discover the primitive meanings of the language of the plays . This is indeed very different from the common interpretation accorded to it by a mere knowledge of the colloquial ianguage of our day . In perfecting this scheme he made several divisions of his labours , in order thafc he might group under each heading the species of error which had crept upon and mutilated the great works . Although he left his work incomplete , he had arranged 120 different heads , under which he classified his corrections and suggestions , and which occupy the first two volumes of the work . Some idea of the nature of this scheme may be formed from the following specimens . of the various divisions :-r-l . Passages in which verse has been mistaken for prose . 2 . Passages in which a compound epithet or participle ( or a double substantive ) has been resolved into two simple epithets , or an adverb and an epithet , &c . 3 . Instances of what may be described as an instructive striving after a -natural . arrangement of words , inconsistent , indeed , with modern English-grammar , but perfectly authorised by that" of the Elizabethan age . It will be seen by these examples , that Walker \ yas a most ardent and painstaking student and commentator , and that he had devised a scheme which really would work out the text , and give us many new means of coming nearer to its true meaning . We are not prepared to say that his system is infallible , nor that we feel bound to acknowledge all its results as displayed in these volumes ; but we must say that it is very clearly eoneeiTed , and on the whole very ably carried out ; and that whoever diligently studies his pages cannot fail to become a wore enlightened disciple of the mighty dramatist . It requires care and attention to follow him , but the reader will be amply repaid by the clear and full comprehension the perusal will give him of the text . In truth , Mr . Walker s volumes are a valuable addition to Shakesperian commentary , and are entitled to much consideration , as initiative of a novel and sound method of sifting and examining the text .
w « s found with jt ( there wore not then a couple of thpusand newspapers and critical periodicals to full upon and detect its munorona errors , or to puff it into notice ) , that in nine years a second edition was required . A poot , who was alsd u critic , had been reading this book with moro attention than most roadem , and pointed out numerous blunders of the printers , who it ia supposed engaged him ( rare JJen Jonson ) to correct it . If he did not do his spir iting gently , he did it very loosely ; and only removed some of tho most obvious literal blunders . From tho date of tho appearanqo of tho second folio to that of tho third , elapsed thirty-two years of tho fiercest civil broil , in which tho contemnors of art and literatures , and particularly of the theatre , hud tho upper hand . Whether tho third folio would have gone off aa well us tho two former cclitious <> hnnot bo known , for the greater part of it was destroyed in the Fire of London ; and it was not till nearly twenty yenm after , that a still move bulky e < litio , n , aallod tho fourth folio , was issued . Thin
* A Orftio <* lJS . vaminati < nioftha Text ( ifShaA'osfwar <<; -with liomarka an his lam / uauo and that of his contompumrios , toaothor with , Ifotoa on his . / Vn . ys and Poems , W . Sidney Walker , formerly Follow of Trinity Gylltfyo , Cambridge . 8 vole . Fon . 8 vo . kondon : John Kussoll Smith .
A NEW year should give a new , apariicuiwriy to periodical literature , the nature of which is to reflect ] the changes of the passing time . We have our friend Blackwood , however , still weaving the old face , and attired in the old costume ; yet with one singularity . Tho number commences with the first part of a poem , intended to be completed in three . It is of the didactic order , and is entitled " Sfc- Stephens ; " tho purpose being to _ give sketches in verse of parliamentary orators , commencing with iiihot nnd closing with Peel . Suffice ib to add , that the heroic couplets are terse , correct , and telling . A new tale , entitled " Norman Sinclair , " also invites attention . We note that it is carefully written , and that tho viait of Georgo IV . to Edinburgh forms one of the prominent incidents . Louis Napoloon in . a song , and Mr . Ruskin in an « rticlo , comu in > for a nharo of abuse . Next comes a French novel , " Tho last French Hero ; " a sutiricul attempt at humour , losing its point in its exaggeration . The romanider ot
tho number is in tho usual strain . —Frasor is censurable lor a vain effort at popular style . In this spirit' Mr . Collier ' s emendated Shakspere is unduly attacked , not , only ungenerously , but somewhat u " isingeimon » ly . Thus , we mo told that " the spelling of the woi'ds in the modern pencil-writing' was modern , while tho spelling' m the protended old ink was also old . " Only one instance of tho kind , said to bo under the ink , has been detected . Not in much better tanto is Mr . Peucoek ' s paper on Shelley , which contains a correction of cerhuzo of doubt favour
tain ftfots that had hitherto flouted in an paathotic - able to pootio portraiture . Thoro is nlwuyn lulont in this t ho . younger sister ol Mnini , but wo have found her more fascinating . A ho JJuOttn Universit y aiill reioiuca in The Season Tickot , " which continuesi in unabated i . uinpur . ' In tho political department , the Tope is tr . eatefl ns ihe political puppet of the French emperor . One of the paper * , has n talon * title , to wit , "A ttniny Day with Tennyson and wr Vaeta , und he contenta aro worthy of ilio liim * HiW . —gu t ofall the ' » W »»> ™ of the month , commend u « ' to McwmilUm's . Such » t ^**^ ™ & every article in it , that we have been . compelled to ro » d every woia .
Jan . 7 , I 860 . ] The Leader and Saturday Analyst . 19
More Of Shakespeare.*
MORE OF SHAKESPEARE . *
Leader (1850-1860), Jan. 7, 1860, page 19, in the Nineteenth-Century Serials Edition (2008; 2018) ncse.ac.uk/periodicals/l/issues/vm2-ncseproduct2328/page/19/