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OUR CONTINENTAL CORRESPONDENCE
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"THE PEN IS NWOTIER THAN THE SWORD."
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MAY 15, 1866.
OUR CONTINENTAL CORRESPONDENCE.
We have had some interesting particulars of the domestic life of Chateaubriand which a gentleman obtained from poor M. Danielo, whose death I recently recorded. Chateaubriand's private secretary almost pardoned M. L. Larchey his misfortune in not being a pigeon, and treated him with almost as much confidence as if he wore feathers instead of broadcloth. M. Larchey has given us scraps of M. Danielo's conversations. The most interesting passage relates to Mme. de Chateaubriand: "Another cause of trouble was his wife, whose causticity sometimes annoyed the husband and his secretary. She would tease them both, and say to her husband: 'You really have no brains, and I really cannot imagine what put it into your head to write.' Danielo said Chateaubriand would reply, with a capital gape: 'Neither can I, my dear, and I am very sorry the idea ever entered my head. I am punished for it as severely as you are. I would I had never written two lines. If you did not inspire me, I would not write another word.' At other times Mme. de Chateaubriand would exclaim: 'I have just paid the taxes; they are outrageous, and make me furious.' 'Patience, dear; we only pay 2,000,500,000 francs taxes, and we are informed France can pay 4,000,000,000 francs, and will pay them.' 'Not! I will not pay them. I will refuse to pay taxes, though they sell my clothes by auction in the street.' 'You seem to me, my dear, to be a legitimist Hampden.' 'You mean to say I am a Republican! What is to prevent me from being so? I have no past political career; I can accept the Republic the moment it appears; and depend upon it you statesmen of the present and past have done and do so many stupid things the Republic will be sure to come.' 'My darling, you have the gift of second sight; you speak and prophesy like the great Druidesses whose voice raised the sea and produced tempests. But, by your refusal to pay taxes nobody would trouble you, nothing would be said to you. I would be put in prison.' 'What do I care for that? You have friends. Besides, you have been in gaol often enough, and that has not killed you.'" It was notorious Chateaubriand's domestic life was far from being happy; but I did not know before his wife was such a virago.
I have been cautions of late in accepting French assertions. I told you the other day one of our penny papers offered M. Victor Hugo $100,000 for the privilege of publishing "The Laborers of the Sea" in its feuilleton; the real price offered was 100,000 francs ($20,000). I said some time since M. Mame, of Tours, had made money by the first edition of the Bible illustrated by Gustave Doré. It was a mistake: the first edition did not entirely cover expenses; M. Mame reckons upon making a great deal of money by the second edition, now in course of publication; but he is not so enthusiastic about M. Doré as might be supposed, and keeps as clear of the latter's illustrated Shakspeare as scalded cats of cold water. An instance of French love of exaggeration came a few days since under my observation. You know M. Doré now asks $100,000 for his illustration of Shakspeare. He was not satisfied with $80,000, at which price it is said Messrs. Hachette were disposed to buy them. It is asserted M. Doré is in negotiation with an English, an American, and a French firm for their purchase. The appearance of the American firm on the field has taken place since a visit paid M. Doré by our American publisher; but, as I have reason to know, the interview had not the former's illustrated Shakspeare for its object. It is simply an exaggeration to increase M. Doré's reputation and influence publishers. I rather think M. Doré's Shakspeare will scarcely find a purchaser this season. am sure it would not were the Great Exhibition not near, when our publishers would be glad to have some such striking work in their cases; for the Messrs. Hachette are occupying the market with a Shakspeare illustrated by English artists. Since Shakspeare's name is on my pen, let me mention the sixth edition of M. Guizot's eight vol. 8vo. edition has been published. Is that not great success for so voluminous a work, of which several translations exist?
A rumor about M. Guizot is current which gives great pain to his friends. It is said he will abjure the Protestant religion and become reconciled to Rome Easter Sunday. I am unable to say if this report be built on good ground of truth.
A writer recently gave the following excellent sketch of M. Victor Hugo's habits and his friends' ridiculous hero-worship: "While I was yesterday I have heard this week a pleasing anecdote of lounging at Lacroix & Co.'s, I noticed on a desk a M. Thiers. He rarely gives dinners, because he great many small bits of paper on which I read : eats little and that quickly, and does not like to sitTo my friend *** Victor Hugo.' These prelong at table. Until within the last fifteen years sentation notes are intended to be pasted on the he had a guest at his dinner-table the first day of first page of the numerous copies of the 'Laborers every month. He called her la mère Gregorine of the Sea' which the illustrious poet sends to the (Aunt Gregorine). She was the keeper of humble press. The same formula is used towards everyfurnished lodgings near the Law School where M. body, for great writers, for little writers, and for Thiers lived when he came to Paris without a cent infinitely little writers. Victor Hugo forgets nobody. in his pocket. He had made up his mind to leave The eagle from his lofty eyrie glances to earth and the capital in despair of making his way here. He says: Don't let us get on bad terms with the ant; gave her notice to quit. She persuaded him to stay, it may injure me in its neighborhood.' Ah! if it and offered to board and lodge him until he could sufficed to show my admiration for a great poet to earn his livelihood. When he became rich his first prove in every circumstance the sovereign respect care was to provide his humble, useful friend a raised in me by one of the most potent intellects of sufficient pension, and to make her dine with him the world, with what joy I would enlist in the regimonthly until her death. While repeating this ment which has inscribed on its banner Victor story to you, memory has been busy, and leads me Hugo's effulgent name! But alas! enthusiasm to disbelieve the whole adventure. M. Thiers's for genius avails little; to be admitted into the first residence here was not near the Law School, poet's literary guard one must lavish a great many but near the Passage Vero Dodat, where he and M. of his bravos upon everybody and everything Mignet lived together; besides, he was a lawyer about the great man-upon his cousins, his friends, when he came up from Aix, and he brought letters his speaking acquaintances, and accept without of introduction which secured him at once employ- reserve talents and the rest, the sublime and the ment, not very lucrative it is true, but enough to grotesque. One must not discuss such a one keep him from such humble dependence. The because he is Hugo's relation; another must not story is told and believed here, so I repeat it to be joked because he is the great man's friend; a third must be respected because he is the cousin
MAY 15, 1866.
of the brother of a man who once came very near being introduced to the illustrious writer. I remember one day a friend of Victor Hugo showed me, upon his return from England, a photograph of the poet. How do you find him?' he asked. I replied, "He seems to be getting old.' My friend' said, 'You won't say that in a newspaper! I answered, 'Why not?' and was told, 'Because 'twould be committing a bad deed.' I was still wondering how one could commit a bad deed by saying newspaper time no more spared the immortal writer than common mortals, when last year I ate a plain omelette at the Chateau d'Eberstein, near Baden. At a neighboring table was a Parisian publisher and another traveller. It was Victor Hugo. As soon as I recovered from my stupefaction I went towards the publisher and whispered, indicating his companion: 'Isn't that Victor Hugo?' 'No.' 'You are joking, it is he!' 'My dear fellow, think what you please, but you will not make me confess it is Victor Hugo.' 'I beg of you do me the honor to introduce me to the great man. Recently I wrote an article on "Les Miserables," and he sent me his photograph; it does not look like the original, but never mind that; let me thank Hugo for the honor he has done me, an honor I have, it is true, with a great many writers and journalists of high and low degree.' 'Hush, he may hear you!' Then 'tis really Hugo! You confess it at last?' 'Yes, but I beg you do not seem to recognize him, for if you do, he will feel obliged to return instantly to England.' 'Why does not Hugo want to be recognized?' 'You don't comprehend it yet?' 'No.' 'If it was known Hugo was at Baden, the Government, to avoid misunderstanding with its neighbors, would have him carried to the frontier. Therefore you agree to seem not to know Victor Hugo is here, and especially to avoid speaking to him.' I was saddened by this interdiction, a simple earth-worm like me does not willingly renounce talking, were it but for an instant, with a man of genius. When I was alone I said to myself: A great man has come to visit this little country, and the government, instead of receiving him with proper courtesy, would arrest him and send him to the frontiers! What an abomination! In the evening before Conversationhall nothing was talked of but Victor Hugo; ten or twelve people had seen him during the day. In the saloons everybody met, saying: 'Hugo is here!' A society has been formed here to bring out a The Commissary of Police heard it, and he ex-new translation of the Bible. M. Amedée Thierry claimed: What, Victor Hugo here!' I felt sure he presided at the last meeting, and a Protestant, Rowas going to run to the Grand Duke, when, to my man Catholic, and Hebrew clergyman respectively great astonishment, he added: 'I'd give ten florins promised to do all they could to further this design. to see him!' I said to myself: If a Baden Commis- There were some 3,000 persons present. . . . . Herr sary of Police would give ten florins to see a great Grosse, a Berlin publisher, has been sentenced to poet, the reason is his government has offered 1000 a month's imprisonment for insulting the French florins for the poet's arrest. But he added: Ay! Emperor, in a novel published by him, and entitled I would willingly give ten florins to see the great "Louis Napoleon, or the Struggle between Destiny man; what genius he has; I have just read "Les and the Imperial Crown." The publishing. Miserables," it is superb!'" office of the Dramatic Authors and Composers will be opened between the 1st and 15th of May; the two agents are M. Louis Lacour, a librarian of Ste. Genevieve Library, and M. Felix Delore, Secretary of the Lyrical Theatre. Prince Louis Lucien Bonaparte, the learned philologist, is now here; he has just returned from a residence of several months on the frontiers of Spain, where he has been engaged in investigating the formation of the Basque dialect. . . . . The Academy of Moral and Political Science has decided no memoir sent in to compete for the prize offered for the best memoir on paper currency merits the prize offered. M. Trécul has been elected (the vote stood Trécul 39, Chatin 14) a member of the botanical division of the Academy of Sciences in the place of the late M. Chatin. . . M. Poupart Davyl, the printer of M. Proudhon's
M. Victor Hugo read this article, and at once wrote its author the following adroit note: "Sir-If my good fortune should some day bring you to Guernsey, you will see I would have been happy to shake your hand at Baden. I have never in my life thought of the Baden gendarmes, for I do not think them in the service of petty bad humors. The Duke of Baden is known to me only by his extreme politeness. If I did somewhat run away from Baden, 'twas because there were too many people there. A long absence from Paris has made me reserved and shy; I feel ill at ease in crowds, and I fly them. As for the select few, especially those few represented by men like you, I love and I seek them. It is true I likewise love my friends, and I defend them, and I should be angry if anybody spoke
ill of you in my presence. The page you have been good enough to write about me is excellent and charming, and I thank you for it. Forgive me. VICTOR HUGO."
Cardinal Rosti, librarian of the Vatican, is dead. . . M. Edouard Mazères has departed life. He began life as a play writer, and was for many years the colaborer of Picard, with whom he obtained great successes, which were cruelly punished by an epigram at Picard's death:
"Picard is dead,
Let's weep Mazères !",
He then began to write with Scribe and with M. Empis. After the revolution of 1830, he turned his attention to public life, and became a prefect. His old friends regretted his absence; Bayard more than once said: “Mazères is wrong to quit literature; he would have an excellent place in our sun." The revolution of 1848 proved Bayard right. Mazères was put aside, and he lost everything by the political tempest. He tried to return to the stage; but during eighteen years' absence he lost the tone of dramatic literature. Scribe himself, who kept constantly on the stage, began to lose it. New men appeared, bringing with them new dramatic methods. Therefore, although M. Mazères appeared on the scene of his old successes, the Gymnase, with a beautiful comedy, 'Le Collier de Perles,' it failed to please the general public. He wrote another comedy which was not more successful, and then he abandoned hope of retrieving fortune by his pen. He might, it is said, have re-entered political life after the Coup d'Etat, had not conscientious scruples restrained him. Poverty pressed hard upon him, and at last he was driven to accept a pension on the Emperor's privy purse. The clouds which darkened the last part of his life saddened and embittered his character. He thought himself treated badly. He thought the French comedy should play his works oftener (he had two works which still keep possession of the stage 'Le Jeune Mazi and Chacun de son Coté), and it seemed to him the French Academy ought to have given him a seat. He was repeatedly a candidate, and once came near being elected, but fortune deserted him afterwards, and he obtained at subsequent elections only one vote, which was given by M. Viennet.
MAY 15, 1866.
Bible, whose sentence to imprisonment I recently | jected by John Peter Lange, D. D., who was born mentioned, has had his sentence entirely remitted. near Elberfeld, in 1802. In 1841 he succeeded . . . M. Lacroix, the publisher of M. Victor Hugo's Strauss as Professor of Theology in the University of later works, has just paid the latter $50,000 on ac- Zürich, and continued there until 1854, when he count.... Messrs. Ticknor & Fields, the eminent received a call to the University of Bonn, where he Boston publishers, have made arrangements by still remains. A sketch of him will be found in which they will receive in advance proof sheets of the first volume of the commentary, also in chapter the best English magazines in order to cull their 35 of Schaff's "Germany, its Universities, etc." In most interesting articles for "Every Saturday," their the preparation of the work, Dr. Lange is assisted weekly periodical. . . . Louis A. Godey, Esq., editor by a number of the distinguished evangelical divines of the Lady's Book," Philadelphia, is in town; he and pulpit orators of Germany, Switzerland, and is on his way to Italy; on his return he will make Holland. The different books of the Old and of the a longer stay in Paris. Mr. Geo. S. Appleton, of the New Testament are assigned to different editors, firm of Messrs. D. Appleton & Co., the well-known but their labors are all fashioned upon the same publishers of New York, is also in town. . . . M. general plan. Among the names of these different Sainte Beuve has delivered his opinion in the con- commentators are those of Oosterzee, Lechler, troversy raised respecting the letters alleged to be Kling, Schmoller, Schenkel, Auberlen, Moll, Fronby Marie Antoinette, which M. Feuillet de Conches müller, Cassel, Bähr, Moll, and Nägelsbach. The published in his "Memoirs of a Curiosity Hunter." American reprint, which is undertaken with the Although it is delivered with all the precautions approval and aid of Dr. Lange, reproduces the the French, and especially M. Sainte Beuve, take comments in separate volumes as well as in a colto avoid committing themselves, he evidently thinks lected form, under the general supervision of Dr. M. Feuillet de Conches was imposed on, and the Philip Schaff, whose eminent fitness for such a duty Germans are right when they declared these letters will be universally acknowledged. The several forgeries. I note an odd phrase, which sets one to volumes are, however, revised and edited by differthinking, in M. Sainte Beuve's last article. He is ent gentlemen, who supply further notes, references, commenting on this sentence: "and where she be- or criticisms. Among the American editors, in lieves she repays herself for the fatigue she believes addition to Schaff, are Shedd, Yeomans, Schäffer, she has felt during the rest of the day." He says: Poor, Starbuck, Hackett, Lillie, Kendrick, Day "If this is not pure negligence, it is delicately ex- Mombert, Lewis, Hurst, and others. In turning pressed." The experienced critic cannot discover to the volumes we first find introductions, both whether it be a fault to be shunned or a beauty to critical and homiletical, to the Bible as a whole, to be admired! . . . . While I touch these intellectual each particular book, and to each section. Then discussions, I may mention another debate closed. we have various readings and emendations of the The Museum of Sovereigns in the Louvre contains text, explained and justified by critical foot-notes. gold, adorned with glass, ornaments of a sword To this succeeds the commentary itself, the pecuwhich tradition says belonged to Chilperic, King of liarity of which is that it is divided into three disthe Franks. The Imperial Library possesses frag-tinct departments. The first of these contains ments of jewels of the same style and epoch which exegetical and critical notes, which are intended to were found at Gourdon in 1845. M. Jules Labarte explain the words and phrases of the text, and to attributed these relics to Byzantine art when he clear up, if possible, every difficulty which presents treated of them in the first volume of his "History itself to the critical student, according to the prinof Industrial Arts." Antiquarians previously were ciples of grammatico-historical exegesis. The second unanimously agreed these relics were made by department is headed Leading Dogmatical and EthiWestern artists. An ardent controversy ensued, cal Thoughts, or Doctrinal and Practical, and presents and had not ended when the Retrospective Museum under a number of distinct heads the fundamental opened its doors. Among the objects sent to that doctrines and moral maxims contained or suggested exhibition was an ear-ring, which, in style, labor, by the text. The third department is entitled and matter, was precisely like the relics above Homiletical Hints or Suggestions, which is intended mentioned, as attributed to Merovingian art. There practically to apply the exposition and understanding was a Greek inscription on the back of the ear-ring of the text to all classes and conditions of society. It which clearly demonstrated its Byzantine origin. contains reflections, themes, suggestions, even catchG. S. words, gathered from the whole body of homiletic commentators, Continental, English, and American. NOTES ON BOOKS AND BOOKSELLERS. We are aware of the insufficiency of this general LANGE'S COMMENTARY.—If it is possible that any indication of the plan of this great work, but if it of our readers, lay or clerical, are unacquainted stimulates the reader to a personal examination of with the merits of this work, they will probably it for himself, our object will be accomplished. thank us for calling attention to it, even with a Three books of the New Testament, "Matthew," brevity far inadequate to its importance. It is in "Mark," and "Luke," treated in this style, have course of publication by Scribner & Co., New York, already appeared in this country. "Matthew" is preand is probably the most elaborate and exhaustive pared by Dr. Lange, and re-edited here by Dr. Schaff; biblical work which has appeared during the pre-"Mark" also is prepared by Dr. Lange, and re-edited sent century. The plan is quite novel. The gen- by Dr.Shedd; "Luke" is prepared by Dr. Oosterzee, eral purpose, as the American editor states, is to Professor of Theology in the Univerity of Utrecht, furnish a comprehensive theological commentary and re-edited by Dr. Schaff and Rev. C. C. Starwhich shall satisfy all the theoretical and practical buck. The publication of so elaborate a work is demands of the evangelical ministry of the present regarded as an event of the greatest importance generation, and serve as a complete exegetical li- even in Germany; and in this country, where brary for constant reference; a commentary learned all the results of recent German criticism are thus yet popular, orthodox and sound yet unsectarian, lib- compactly and cheaply brought together for the eral and truly catholic in spirit and aim, combining first time, it possesses a special value. We are with original research the most valuable results of the not surprised that the enterprise has met with exegetical labors of the past and present, and making such general favor. Scribner & Co. deserve thanks them available for the practical use of ministers for introducing this great work to us in such an and the general good of the church. It was pro- improved form. They have printed the sixth
MAY 15, 1866.
THE American Tract society during the last year, as appears by its annual report, has issued in all 141 new publications, of which 37 are volumes, and has printed during the year 726,880 volumes, or 2,420 per day; 7,898,142 publications. Total printed in forty-one years 20,740,673 volumes, 279,367,055 publications. Printed of the "American Messenger," 154,167 monthly; "Botschafter," or "Messenger" in German, 29,375; "Child's Paper," 308,666; total periodicals, 492,208 monthly. Publications on the Society's list, 3,658, of which 728 are volumes, besides 3,750 in 141 languages approved for circulation abroad. Gratuitous distribution for the year, $59,953,37.
COLLIER'S ACCOUNT OF RARE BOOKS.-Mr. Francis and Messrs. Scribner & Co., New York, have just ready a limited edition of this important work in four vols. small 8vo., price $16. It is a valuable and curious work upon early English literature. It has not been stereotyped, and only a sufficient number have been printed to supply the probable demand; those desiring copies therefore are requested to make early application. Seventy-five copies have been printed in a superior manner on large paper, price $32.
COMIC AUTHORSHIP.-The peculiar success which the works of Artemus Ward, Orpheus C. Kerr, Private Miles O'Reilly, and other humorous authors, have met with, has induced their fortunate publisher, Mr. Carleton, of New York, to gather together the writings of another American humorist, yclept Josh Billings, whose queer letters, quaint proverbs, and bright sayings have been floating through the newspapers very extensively. The book is about ready for publication, and will be richly illustrated with comic drawings by various artists. Mr. Carleton will publish at the same time a new English novel that is having a great run in London just now, entitled “ Beyminstre," by the author of "The Silent Woman."
send, the publisher of the American edition of
THE SIZE OF TRADE CATALOGUES.-To the Editor of AMERICAN LITERARY GAZETTE AND PUBLISHERS' CIRCULAR: In your number for October 2, 1865, page 238, under "Notes and Queries," is a brief article that I wish you would reprint. It is a proposition from some sensible person that publishers "should agree on a uniform size for their circulars or book lists." I think both readers and dealers would be glad if
they would do this; and I beg leave to suggest that the size of the CIRCULAR AND GAZETTE is probathe world-the Harpers-issue their trade list on a bly as good as any. One of the largest houses in page nearly the size in question, and we submit it to the trade and the reading public, if it is not much more convenient for reference than the thick 18mo. and catechism style of some publishers, and the inconvenient folio and 4to. sheets of others. The facility with which they, if uniform in size, laid aside for reference, is a very important concould be arranged, alphabetically or otherwise, and sideration. Will you please call the attention of those interested, and oblige a country Bookseller. W. B. KELLY, Dublin, has just issued "The Sham Squire; the Rebellion in Ireland and the Informers of 1798," third edition, with many important additions, hitherto unpublished documents, and contemporary illustrations, by W. J. Fitzpatrick, biographer of Archbishop Whately, Lady Morgan, Bishop Doyle, and Lord Cloncurry. The former editions of the work have attracted commendation abroad, and the interest in Irish affairs will doubt
less secure increased attention for the revised edition.
SHAKSPEARIAN.-Messrs. Hurd & Houghton have in press, and will soon publish, a small volume of Essays entitled "Shakspeare's Delineations of Insanity, Imbecility, and Suicide," written by Dr. A. O. Kellogg, Assistant Physician at the State Lunatie Asylum, Utica, N. Y. Part 1st treats of the Insane-Lear, Hamlet, Ophelia, etc. Part 2d treats of the Imbeciles-Bottom, Malvolio, Pistol, Bardolph, Nym, Dogberry, Launce, Caliban, etc. Part 3d, of Suicide-Othello, etc. These essays seek to exhibit a phase of the intellectual character of the great dramatist which has been little considered hitherto. They have heretofore appeared from time to time, during the last few years, in the "American Journal of Insanity."
LITERATURE OF THE CUISINE.-No doubt remember
SPORTING.-The President of the New York Sportsman's Club-Mr. Robert B. Roosevelt, an American gentleman of wealth and leisure-is nowing the old proverb that "There is reason in roastin England, where he has excited much admiration ing eggs," and the philosophical aphorism that of Yankee skill and dexterity, and rather astonished "Man is the only animal that roasts eggs," Miss the sporting fraternity by his displays of fly-fishing Georgina Hill, an English writer, has published a voland rifle-shooting. He has just written, and Mr. ume, entitled "How to Cook or Serve Eggs in a Carleton, of New York, will soon publish, a work Hundred Ways." She says that in the circle of entitled "The Game-Birds of the North." French cookery no less than 685 ways of preparing BRAITHWAITE'S RETROSPECT.-Mr. W. A. Town- eggs are recognized.