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Of Pope's own singular diffidence, the following is a memorable circumstance, though we believe that Dr. Warton has alluded to it:
• I never could speak in public: and I don't believe that if it was a set thing, I could give an account of any story to twelve friends together, though I could tell it to any three of them with a great deal of pleasure. - When I was to appear for the Bishop of Rochester, in his trial, though I had but ten words to say, and that on a plain point, (how that bishop spent his time whilst I was with him at Bromley,) I made two or three blunders in it: and that notwithstanding the first row of lords (which was all I could see) were mostly of my acquaintance. — P.' (Ib. p. 156.)
We cannot omit a very characteristic anecdote of the famous Lord Halifax:
· The famous Lord Hallifax (though so much talked of) was rather a pretender to taste, than really possessed of it. When I had finished the two or three first books of my translation of the Iliad, that lord " desired to have the pleasure of hearing them read at his house." Addison, Congreve, and Garth, were there at the reading In four or five places, Lord Hallifax stopped me very civilly ; and with a speech, each time much of the same kind: “ I beg your pardon, Mr. Pope, but there is something in that passage that does not quite please me. Be so good as to mark the place, and consider it a little more at your leisure. I am sure you can give it a better turn.” — I returned from Lord Hallifax's with Dr. Garth *, in his chariot; and as we were going along, was saying to the Doctor, that my Lord had laid me under a good deal of difficulty, by such loose and general observations; that I had been thinking over the passages almost ever since, and could not guess at what it was that offended his Lordship in either of them. Garth laughed heartily at my embarrassment; said, I had not been long enough acquainted with Lord Hallifax, to know his way yet : that I need not puzzle myself in looking those places over and over when I got home. “ All you need do (said he) is to leave them just as they are ; call on Lord Hallifax two or three months hence, thank him for his kind observations on those passages; and then read them to him as altered. I have known him much longer than you have, and will be answerable for the event.” I followed his advice; waited on Lord Hallifax some time after : said, I hoped
6 * This is lengthened from the short hints in the first memorandum paper. Such fillings up, and this in particular, should be Aung into notes ; for one can't answer for the particular circumstances at such a distance of time. For instance, according to my memory, it was Garth he returned home with; but in my paper, Congreve's name has a particular mark under it ; and so it might be he, and not Garth, that let Mr. Pope into this part of Lord Hallifax's character. This must be hinted at above, and enlarged upon in the notes. - Note in pencil on the margin by Spence.'
he would find his objections to those passages removed, read them to him exactly as they were at first ; his Lordship was extremely pleased with them, and cried out, “ Ay, now, Mr. Pope, they are perfectly right! nothing can be better.” – P.' (Singer, p. 134.)
We would select more of these extracts concerning Pope : but they have been so diligently gleaned, that we are fearful of fatiguing our readers by quoting matter with which they are already acquainted from the life of the poet by Johnson, and the notices which Dr. Warton has inserted in his Essay. We have not room to detail any of the remarks or criticisms, of other personages, with which Mr. Spence has filled the lumber-room of his collection.
As to the merits of the rival editions, we shall only say farther that Mr. Singer's volume is unnecessarily copious, and treats us at the end with a bundle of letters which have but little interest: while the other edition has a preface which it would be difficult to assign to any known language. For the honour of our native tongue, we cannot call it English; and the editor does not seem to be intimately acquainted with the Latin; otherwise, we think, he would scarcely have put into the mouth of Pope the quotation which occurs in the following sentence: “ Nil admirari is as true in relation to our opinion of authors, as it is in morality; and one niay say, O admiratores verrum picus !” — which, we humbly presume, ought to have been, " () admiratores, servum pecus.
We must add that Mr. Singer's appendix, in addition to the letters, is swelled out with some execrable verses by the celebrated Lord Melcombe, (Bubb Doddington,) who was a most unpoetical personage; and by a love-song from the pen of Mr. Robert Dodsley, compared to which the common effusions of a lady's maid on Valentine's day would be tender and poetical.
Art. V. The Transactions of the Linnéan Society of London.
Vol. XII. Part II. 4to. Pp. 316. 21. 25. sewed. Longman and Co. &c. n proceeding to notice this additional part of the present
publication, we have only to premise that the uncommon brevity of some of the articles will justify a proportionate degree of despatch in our intimation of their contents.
Observations on the Linnéan Genus Juncus, with the Characters of those Species which have been found growing wild in Great Britain. By James Ebenezer Bicheno, Esq. F.L. S. - Mr. Bicheno has skilfully removed much of the vagueness Rev. March, 1829.
and confusion in which this family of plants has been long involved; a task which was very imperfectly performed by Rostkov, in his Monograph of the Genus, published so lately as 1801. Under the weighty sanction of Willdenow, Lamarck, Decandolle, Desvaux, and Brown, he adopts the genus Luzula ; a term which Cæsalpinus applied to Juncus campestris, and which he borrowed from the Italian Luciola, from the circumstance of the flower-heads shining in the dark. He has, moreover, singularly contributed to the elucidation of his subject, by having recourse to the natural division of the species into those which have leafless stems, those with channelled leaves, and those with jointed leaves. In pursuance of these principles, he has distinctly characterized twenty-one legitimate British Junci, and five British Luzula, or Wood-rushes; indulging, at the same time, in a variety and acuteness of critical commentary, which bespeak his diligence and discriminating judgment, and which eminently contribute to the extrication of the references.
As Juncus bulbosus of Linné had given rise to much perplexity of synonyms, and its trivial name was wholly inap. propriate, Mr. Bicheno has separated it into two species, and cancelled the epithet bulbosus. The rare species Biglumis has hitherto been found only in Scotland, particularly on Ben Lawers. • The old botanists were unacquainted with it; and even Lightfoot suspected it might be a variety of J. triglumis, The two species are, however, perfectly distinct, and may be recognized at once by observing that one of the bractes in J. biglumis is much longer than the flowers, and the capsule turbinate. The seeds are remarkably distinguished by their covering.'
Descriptions of Two new Shells. By Captain Frederic Marryat, R.N. F.L.S. - These non-descripts, which are very briefly characterized in the text, but well represented in the plate, are denominated Mitra zonata, and Cyclostrema cancellata. The former was taken up near the port of Nice, from very deep water; and the latter was found in a collection of shells chiefly derived from the West Indies. Its generic appellation, suggested by Dr. Leach, includes also the Helix depressa, and H. serpuloides of Montagu.
Descriptions of Five British Species of the Genus Terebella of Linné. By the late George Montagu, Esq. F.L.S. The largest and also the rarest species described in this distinct and interesting communication is the Gigantea, which measures sixteen inches in length. It occurs, though very sparingly, on the coast of Devonshire. The others are denominated Cirrhata, Nebulosa, Constrictor, and Venustula. Their descriptions are illustrated by excellent engravings.
Characters of Two Species of Tordylium. By Sir James Edward Smith, M.D. F.R.S. P.L.S. - The species, to which the learned President of the Society has here principally directed his attention, are the Officinale and Apulum of Linné, and the Humile of Desfontaines. As the synonyms of apulum, adduced by Columna and Rivinus, seem to belong to two, very different plants, and Columna's figure represents only a' starved specimen of the officinale, it is proposed to distinguish the two species by the criterion originally pointed out by Rivinus and Jacquin, but hitherto not adopted by botanists. • In T. officinale the radiant or dilated part of the marginal flowers consists of two neighbouring petals, each of which has one large and one very small lobe; in T. apulum there is only one radiant petal to each flower, whose two very large lobes are equal.' The humile of Desfontaines is an undoubted apulum, to which Scopoli's siiflorum also nearly approaches : but the fruit is bristly, and the flowers are red.
Observations on a Viper found in Cranborne Chace, Dorsetshire. By the Rev. Thomas Rackett, F.R.S. and L.S. -On the faith of Mr. Rackett's memorandum, Coluber Chersea may be admitted, at least provisionally, into the British Fauna. — • I received the viper,' he says, from the Rev. John Tregonwell Napier, Rector of Chettle in Dorsetshire, who killed it in Cranborne Chace. It is extremely rare, but known to the game-keepers under the name of “ The Red VIPER.” A mutilated specimen sent to me last year was, when recent, of a bright red colour inclining to orange. The bite is much more venomous than that of the common viper; as I have been assured that a dog which had been bitten by a red viper expired before he had reached the extremity of a down in his
: Description of select Indian Plants. By Henry Thomas Colebrooke, Esq. F.R.S. and L.S. - The object of this communication, and of others that are promised from the same pen, is to give an account of some Indian plants which have either not been previously described or have been imperfectly noticed. The author's present remarks apply to Sabia lanceolata, Strychnos axillaris, Dischidia Bengalensis, Tylophora exilis, Macrolobium bijugum, and Pygeum acuminatum ; each of which is particularly described, and exhibited in the plates.
The generic appellation Sabia is derived, with scarcely any alteration, from the Indian Sabja. It belongs to the class Pentandria, order Monogynia, and is a native of Silhet, in Bengal, where it flowers in October, and bears ripe seed in May.
-Strychnos axillaris is nearly allied to the species mentioned by Leschenault, in the sixteenth volume of the Annals of the Museum, and, like some others of the family, it is supposed to be intensely bitter and poisonous. — Both Dischidia and Tylophora belong to the natural order of the Asclepiadeæ, so well illustrated by Brown. — Macrolobium bijugum is supposed to correspond to the Viiapa bijuga of Lamarck ; and the acuminate Pygæum may either be the zeylanicum of Gærtner, or a species closely connected with it.
Upon the different Species of esculent Strawberries. By Thomas Andrew Knight, Esq. F.R.S. and L.S. Pres. Hort. Soc. — In consequence of experiments on the nectarine, peach, and bitter-almond tree, on the cultivated plum and sloe, and on some of the family of Salix, Mr. Knight is induced to believe that the species of esculent Strawberry have been needlessly multiplied, and that our gardens possess only three, one of which has sported very widely in varieties. We suspect, however, that a general tendency of culture is to confound both species and varieties ; and that the most characteristic and permanent distinctions should be deduced from the appearance of plants in their native habitations. Mr. Knight does not, indeed, deny the confounding influence of culture: but he lays perhaps too much stress on the competency of his principle to disentangle the original species. His rule is that, when the two sexes breed, without producing mules, they are to be accounted a legitimate species: but the shades between genuine and hybrid vegetable offspring are often so gradual and debateable, and the uniformity of pure genealogy would require to be confirmed by such an extensive induction of cases, that complete accuracy in this respect appears unattainable.
On the Germination of Lycopodium Denticulatum, in a Letter to the Secretary from Richard Anthony Salisbury, Esq. F.R.S. and L. S. — Some circumstances, in addition to those which were formerly known, are here stated with regard to the developement of the embryos of this plant: but the mode of their fecundation remains shrouded in mystery.
Some Account of the Lycoperdon Solidum of the Flora Virginica, the Lycoperdon Cervinum of Walter. By James Macbride, M.D. of South Carolina. — Although Dr. Macbride's observations on this singular vegetable production are still imperfect in various respects, yet its glutinous and nutritious qualities, which he seems to have ascertained, and its long resistance to putrefaction, render it somewhat doubtful whether it should be ranked in the tribe of genuine fungi; while its mode of growth and its 'general aspect certainly