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successful in presenting a lively, and in the main a just character of each to the mind. Sometimes, indeed, his own views color his judgment of the men, and blend with his analysis of their pursuits and opinions. He does not always resist the temptation, natural to every biographer, and almost inevitable for the panegyrist, to use the characters which he describes as a medium for the transmission of his own light. The manner, for instance, in which Dr. Channing's views on certain great social questions are expounded, though far from unjust, has a strong savor of the address on the "True Grandeur of Nations." Manifesting a zeal and sincerity with which no one can fail to sympathize, the orator delights to exhibit the superiority of Christian mildness and benevolence over the ferocity of barbarous and civilized heathenism. His eagerness, however, to avail himself of every opening for an assault on the principle of force, as a part of the social machinery of the world, has sometimes, we think, an injurious effect upon his critical judgment. Mr. Allston, for example, is made to decry all" battle-pieces " in the abstract; and this supposed aversion is used as the text for a short homily on the duty of artists to avoid those subjects. But if we are rightly informed, Mr. Sumner has here generalized into a moral sentiment what was a mere expression of professional contempt for such scenes of that class as are too barren to call out the highest powers of art. We suspect, moreover, that his pacific eye has dwelt too exclusively on the "feminine" traits of Allston's genius. Force of character is a Christian no less than a masculine attribute, and may be necessary to the complete development of Christian excellence, which often demands courageous and energetic action, to fulfil a mild and benevolent intention. We do not believe that the "higher sentiments" are all of one gender, notwithstanding the washy criticism that has been vented of late about feminine traits of character and genius. Allston's Belshazzar's Feast, the last work of a genius which, according to Mr. Sumner, became more feminine with advancing years, is as bold and masculine in conception as it is delicate in execution.
In the notice of Mr. Pickering's attainments and tastes, a discussion of rather disproportionate length is introduced respecting the value of classical studies. Mr. Sumner is a man of too cultivated a taste and too liberal a judgment, to join in the malignant cry of the vulgar detracters of such pursuits. Yet, while he freely and gratefully acknowledges the wholesome influence of ancient letters on the intellect, he shrinks from the moral effects of a class of writings which "want the highest charm of purity, of righteousness, of elevated sentiments, of love to God and man." He bestows very hard names on writers who are not used to such
"The torrent of Demosthenes, dark with self-love and the spirit of vengeance," has quenched the recollection of his patriotic fire. "Fitful philosophy" is about as appropriately ascribed to Tully as "intemperate eloquence," with which it is coupled. Mr. Sumner speaks with implied censure of "Homer's inspiring tale of blood,” apparently not remembering the parting of Hector and Andromache, or the domestic beauty of the patriarchal scenes of the Odyssey; and the blame is extended even to "the marvellous teachings of Socrates," and "the mellifluous words of Plato." This disparaging picture is concluded with these words: "Greek poetry has been likened to the song of the nightingale as she sits in the rich, symmetrical crown of the palm-tree, trilling her thick-warbled notes; but even this is less sweet and tender than the music of the human heart." There is no charitable footnote here to inform us of the source from which the comparison is drawn. This nightingale, of course, is not Milton's, which trilled its thick-warbled notes in "the olive-grove of Academe," and whose song is not compared to Greek poetry. Nor do we clearly understand what is meant by the music of the human heart; but if the chords of that love which is stronger than death have power to breathe such music, the ear must be dull indeed which cannot detect it in the Alcestis and the Antigone.
Our remarks have been drawn out to an unseemly length, so that we have no room for a particular notice of the rhetorical execution of this Address. Its style is sometimes open to verbal criticism, and the metaphors and comparisons will not always bear too rigorous an analysis. But the Address has high merits. It is masculine (with Mr. Sumner's leave), genial, and ornate; full of life, and seldom flagging; sometimes eloquent, and always dignified. Its very extravagances grow out of noble and generous sympathies; and it is unsullied by an opinion or sentiment for which its author has reason to blush.
2. Report of a Minority of the Special Committee of the Boston Prison Discipline Society, appointed at the Annual Meeting, May 27, 1845. [By S. G. HowE.] Boston: W. D. Ticknor & Co. 1846. 8vo. pp. 90.
WE expect, almost as a matter of course, to find the name of Dr. Howe connected with every liberal and benevolent enterprise of the day. He has done more for the education of the blind than any individual living, either in Europe or America; and as
a mere episode in his labors for this end, he has twice succeeded in what it is hardly too bold a figure to call the creation of a moral and intelligent soul within one of those dark and desolate tabernacles of flesh, from which, the windows of three of the senses being for ever closed and barred, it seemed as if wisdom was at every practicable entrance quite shut out. But his active philanthropy has not been limited to the accomplishment of these brilliant results, though they would have far surpassed the ambition, or even the most sanguine dreams, of De l'Epée or Sicard. Numerous other objects of benevolent enterprise have kindled his zeal, and profited largely by his unflagging exertions. Common schools, hospitals for the insane, asylums for the deaf and dumb, and prisons, have either been founded at his instance, or sustained by his efforts, or improved by his suggestions. In the Old and the New World he has richly earned his fame as one of the ablest and most efficient philanthropists of the age.
Whatever comes from the pen of such a person, especially if it relates to any of the noble purposes to which his life has been devoted, is entitled to immediate and respectful attention. In the pamphlet before us, he appears as the strenuous advocate of a system of prison discipline which has been received with great favor in Europe, though it has not been widely adopted in this country, and, except in two of the States, the great majority of voices is decidedly against it, and in favor of a rival system. It is quite unfortunate that the philanthropists of our day will quar rel very bitterly with each other about the respective merits of the several plans which are devised for carrying their benevolent intentions into effect. Here is a notable instance; the Philadelphia and the Auburn systems of prison discipline, as they are called, have both accomplished a vast amount of good; the refor mation effected by them has been so manifest, that this country, where they had their origin, has become the teacher of the civilized world as respects the proper mode of confining and managing criminals, and nearly all the great powers of Europe have recently sent commissioners hither to take lessons of us in this matter, and, if possible, to carry home with them some of our improvements. Formerly, our State prisons were loathsome and hideous dens, in which it was hard to say whether the physical or the moral nature of the convict suffered the greater degradation and wrong. Now our best managed institutions on either plan, that at Charlestown, for instance, and that at Philadelphia, command the respect and admiration of every intelligent and unprejudiced foreigner by whom they are visited. But the founders and supporters of the two systems are not willing to share the glory of this great reform. The Boston Prison Discipline Society,
the great advocate of the Auburn system, under whose auspices the prison reform has been made in most of the States, devotes a large portion of its annual reports to belaboring most stoutly the Philadelphia plan; and our friends from the good "city of brotherly love," not willing to be left behind in any of the works of Christian kindness, return the blows with all vigor in a periodical got up for the purpose, in pamphlets, and in penitentiary reports. "You drive the prisoners mad," cries Boston," by the long continued horrors of solitary confinement"; "You subject the crimi nals to the cruel and degrading punishment of the lash," shouts Philadelphia. "Your own statistics," exclaims the former, "show a fearful amount of insanity and mortality in your prisons"; "Figures prove nothing, and there is a mistake in your calculations," retorts the latter. And so it goes; the quarrel is a very pretty quarrel, and if we had the Irishman's disposition to be "any body's customer in a row," we might be tempted to engage in it, having an opinion of our own to support; and in this matter, certainly, we could not find a more courteous and gallant opponent with whom to break a lance than Dr. Howe. But for the present, at least, we decline the contest.
Though a member of the Boston Society, Dr. Howe is a seceder from its doctrines, and it is as the author of a Minority Report, which he is obliged to publish for himself, because most of his colleagues refuse to give it any sanction, that he now appears before us. Thus disowned and discountenanced, not allowed a hearing, and constantly voted down, he yet struggles on, contending against a host with as much gallantry as he formerly showed in fighting the Turks. Whoever desires to see an able, energetic, sweeping vindication of the Philadelphia plan may find it in this pamphlet. If further desirous to know how far one may be carried in the support of a favorite theory, when once excited by opposition, we commend to him the following thesis, which is gravely propounded and maintained in this Report:- that "the Separate System is, for all moral and intellectual purposes, more truly social in its nature than the Congregate System." This proposition, to those who are acquainted with the distinctive features of the two systems, here called the Separate and the Congregate, may serve as a measure of the strength of Dr. Howe's attachment to the Philadelphia plan. His Report is evidently ex parte in its character, and may be consulted with great advantage by those who wish to know what can be said on that side of the question. For a statement of arguments and facts of an opposite character and tendency, we may refer to the Annual Report of the Rhode Island State Prison for 1844, an extract from which may be found on page 218 of the American Almanac for 1846.
This prison was built, and managed at first, on the Philadelphia plan; but this was given up in 1843, and the general features of the Auburn, or silent, system were adopted; the change being recommended by the warden, "after a careful observation, extending through a period of more than four years, of the injurious and alarming effects of solitary imprisonment upon the mental and physical condition of those who were the subjects of it."
3.- A Greek-English Lexicon, based on the German Work of Francis Passow. By HENRY GEORGE LIDDELL, M. A., and ROBERT Scott, M. A. With Corrections and Additions, and the Insertion in Alphabetical Order of the Proper Names occurring in the principal Greek Authors. By HENRY DRisler, M. A., Adjunct Professor of the Greek and Latin Languages in Columbia College, New York. Harper & Brothers. 1846. 8vo. pp. 1705.
THE editor of this volume is said to be a very laborious and accurate teacher. He is Adjunct Professor of Languages in Columbia College, where, as we judge from the Dedication, he received his education under the care of Professor Anthon. With this latter gentleman's productions we have had occasion at times to find serious fault; Mr. Drisler is a production that bids fair to do him great honor. He is evidently one of that class of men, few in any country, who "scorn delights and live laborious days," for the sake of accumulating learning and advancing the cause of knowledge among men. Dr. Anthon may well look with pride upon the promise of his young pupil and friend.
The relation existing between these two gentlemen justifies, perhaps, the somewhat exaggerated and parasitical terms in which Professor Anthon is spoken of, both in the Dedication and the Preface; but it hardly justifies the publishers in advertising a work of Mr. Drisler as forming one of Dr. Anthon's series, unless he may be considered a sort of grandfather to the volume in question.
We had intended to prepare an article upon the Lexicon of Mr. Pickering, and this American reprint of Liddell and Scott, and perhaps we may still recur to our original design. At present, however, we shall offer our readers only a brief notice of Mr. Drisler's labors. We have used his edition of Liddell and Scott for some time with pleasure and profit, and on the whole can safely commend it as a well executed work. We are not told by