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tion : for the word demand must always be considered as embracing the offer of an adequate compensation for the thing demanded.
Although we have been obliged to pass unnoticed a variety of subjects which invite our attention, the present article has already perhaps exceeded its due limits. M. de SISMONDI, however, is no ordinary writer; and, when he fails to carry on his readers to conviction, he still obtains a willing homage to the powers of his mind and the benevolence of his heart. With a short passage from the introductory chapter to the last book, we must close our account of these volumes :
• I have defined political economy to be an inquiry concerning the means by which the greatest number of men, in any given state, may be enabled to partake in the highest degree of that moral and physical well-being which depends on government. Two elementary principles should always be considered in connection by the legislator ; namely, the increase of human happiness in intensity, and its diffusion among all classes. He seeks wealth as it may be subservient to population : he promotes population in order that it may participate in the wealth ; and he desires not any portion of either which does not contribute to the general happiness of those who are placed under his care. It is thus that political economy becomes, in fact, the theory of beneficence; and nothing belongs to this science which is not immediately or ultimately connected with the welfare of man.'
ART. III. Νικήτας Ευγενειανος και Κωνσταντινος Μανασσης. Nicete Euge
niani Narrationem Amatoriam, et Constantini Manassis Frage menta ; edidit, vertit, atque notis instruxit Jo. Fr. BOISSONADE. 2 Vols.
Paris. 1819. Imported by Treuttel and Würtz. Price il. is. Ito
T may possibly be a gratifying piece of intelligence to our increasing their class of Erotica by the purchase of an author now for the first time laying claim to immortality through the press, and escaping from the ignoble rest to which, in a nearly neglected manuscript, he has been so long condemned. His merits as a poet have, of course, little connection with the value of his book, where new examples of a species are required to complete a literary cabinet: - but, as there may possibly be some inquiries as to the point who the said Nicetas Eugenianus was, we will attempt to provide an answer for the sake of such future purchasers of his poem, as may not deem it necessary to make so superfluous a research.
Theodorus Prodromus was a Greek writer of an age not very exactly defined, but presumed to be the early part of
the twelfth century. A romance is, we believe, the only extant produce of his pen, treating on the loves of Rhodanthe and Dosicles. It was edited at Paris nearly two centuries since, and whether it has ever been reprinted we cannot say. Nicetas appears to have been an imitator of this Theodorus, and is presumed to have lived after him at no long interval. From the language and age in which he wrote, it seems probable that he was a Byzantine, but on this head we have no information. One of the Byzantine historians, whose works are comprehended in the large edition of those authors collectively published at Paris in 1648, bears the same name, but is, we imagine, a writer of anterior date.
Previously to the labours of M. de BoissonADE, Nicetas did not lie under any very weighty obligations to modern critics; who have mentioned him only cursorily, while engaged with other authors, and usually with expressions of contempt and dislike. Villoison, in his notes on Longus, calls him “ Græculus loquar, et inepte verbosus,” and has no patience with the effrontery with which he commits the deadly sin of plagiarism. On another occasion, describing his verses, he observes, “ Ils ont l'air d'être écrits dans la langue Tatare, dont ils ont toute la dureté.” Coray *, in his prolegomena to the erotic writer Heliodorus, treats him still more hardly: but, from the language in which that critic delivers his opinion, it is difficult to collect more from him than that he imagines some poetical deity of the shades below to have conferred inspiration on the said Nicetas, rather than the Apollo whom poets worship. Levesque is the most favourable in his criticism, but it is hardly such as would encourage a scholar to undertake the editing of such a writer : “ J'ajoute que ce qui a chez lui quelque apparence de beauté, est le plus souvent déplacé ; qu'il manque de méthode et de gout ; qu'il néglige trop souvent les lois de la versification ; et que ses vers ne sont quelquefois que des syllables comptées.”
It has been fairly observed by the present editor that Levesque's metrical knowlege could have been of no very high cast when he made this remark on the versification ; had he imagined it to have belonged to the legitimate iambic of the antients, his accusation of occasional error would have indeed been a mild 'censure for the performance before us; and of the more modern and spurious sort he was probably altogether ignorant.
* Some account of this learned modern Greek will be found in the appendix to Lord Byron's first canto of Childe Harold, where the noble author is treating of Romaic literature.
Ву By this time, all surprize will have ceased that the Charicles and Drosilla of Nicetas should so long have remained inedited in its resting-place in the Royal Library of Paris ; occasionally, indeed, taken down by some French critic, in hopes of affording illustration to some other erotic writer whom he was editing, and then again enjoying one of those long sleeps of which we read in oriental romance.
The learned may now possibly expect some notice of the Codices of Nicetas : but, alas! he appears to have been almost as much neglected by copyists and librarians as he has been reviled by critics. We hear only of one in the Parisian library, which is very imperfect; and another, more modern but more correct, originally preserved at Venice, now in the possession of the well-known M. Silvestre de Sacy: but this last, if we correctly understand the author, is a more modern transcript of the Venetian copy. Finally, the present editor appears to rest his defence in undertaking such a work in abundant precedents of learned men, who have mis-spent some portion of their time in a similar way; and in the old saying of Pliny, “ Nullum esse librum tam malum, ut non aliqua ex parte prodesse posset.”
With regard to Constantinus Manasses, we have very scanty information to offer. He is also of the erotic class, but a more maimed or mutilated “tenerorum lusor amorum” never fell under the hands of a commentator. His works, as here edited, are merely a collection of detached fragments ascribed to him as the author; and presumed, we conceive, rather than proved to be all parts of a poem, originally in nine books, on the loves of Aristander and Callithea ; pretty and meaning names as ever came from the mint of a romance-writer. As former critics seem to have left him nearly undisturbed, his present editor (et tu Brute !) has kindly undertaken the task of heaping up a decent share of abuse on his literary fame: “ Nec omnes puto illum legere pænitebit:" but mark what follows: "etenim, quamvis Manasses stylo utatur, ut in Chronico, prænimis turgido, atque vaná verborum et vocum abundantia luxurietur, portentosaque composita molestè et odiosè confabricatus sit, sensus tamen sunt usquequaque optimi.” Heaven defend us from the officious zeal of such a panegyrist ! Nicetas having luckily called Theodorus Prodromus “ ò pakepilns," a happy guess has been made that he must be nearly cotemporary with that writer, and a little later only. We have no such clue to guide us to the æra of Manasses, and leave that question to more learned and curious persons.
Merit may clearly be displayed in an editor, though little or none resides in the author edited, and such is the case in the present instance: but
« Quis gremio Enceladi, doctique Palæmonis, affert,
Quantum grammaticus meruit labor?” So we fear must it be with the commentator. The labour of translating the whole of these productions into prose Latin must have been considerable; and the version seems, where we have examined it, not only to be fair and faithful, but in some few places, to which chance has led us, by no means inelegant. The Greek text is in general sufficiently easy of interpretation : but some passages in it require a knowlege of inferior authors rather than of those of name and date; and we imagine that M. Boissonade's studies have given him a facility in this point, of which many equally learned persons in other respects would have felt the loss; so that they might possibly have suffered the disgrace of being plucked, were they ever called forth to be examined in the “ Auctores pessimi ævi ac note.”
The notes, which entirely occupy the largest of the two volumes, if not very lively or entertaining, are written in the approved style of such appendages. Of comparisons of MSS. there could not indeed be much, when only two or three exist: but such as could be instituted are here to be found. Unfortunately, the different readings from early editions are also very scanty, simply from the circumstance of no previous edition having ever existed : but fate has nevertheless in some measure mended this chance; since, though Nicetas has never been printed before, as we understand, passages from him have been cited by Villoison and others; and some lines thus quoted very luckily require the manus medica of the present editor, so that he is not altogether without materials for his labour in this branch of his office. Let it not, however, be imagined, whatever our opinion may be of the application of them, that we undervalue M. BoissonADE's learning and talents. He is clearly possessed of a considerable share of both, aided by great industry, though his style of Latinity in the preface and notes is liable to some objections; among which the error of suffering his prose not unfrequently to run into dactylic metre has a very unpleasing effect. The version of the poems appears less laboured, but is to our taste much more pure and perspicuous. We have also sufficient proof of a good store of philological knowlege in these notes; and of a familiarity not merely with English critics on classical subjects, but with the poets of our own language.
It can scarcely be expected of us to place on record our opinions of the present poets 'themselves, since a lapse of six centuries and more may offer them a fair claim to an exemption from our jurisdiction. To be candid, also, let us confess that we have not had the hardihood of the editor; and, although we have read through a few pages in different parts of the book, our examination of the authors themselves has gone no farther. If a specimen be expected, we will take one of the terrible cast, from the sacking of a city.
Γυναικας έλκον, αι συνείλκον τα βρέφη
Els ciuclosáraxlov opßpov érpónn. - Lib. i. v. 30. “ Trahebantur mulieres, quæ et ipsæ trahebant puellulas ; flebant matres miseræ ; adflebant matribus puelluli ubertate lactei roris carentes : mammarum enim alimentarius liquor in sanguineas guttas converterat."
Ferdinand Count Fathom had better beverage than this when tied to the back of his redoubted mother.
Arr. IV. Moeurs Francaises L'Hermite en Province, &c.; i. e.
French Manners. The Hermit in the Provinces. By M. de JOUY.
The hermit continues his journey through the southern provinces of France; stops at Montauban, proceeds to Toulouse, embarks on the canal of Languedoc, lands at Carcassonne, visits Narbonne and Beziers, and, after some irregular excursions, reaches Montpelier. A description of Nismes and its antiquities closes this part of the tour; which is not less valuable than those that preceded it, for its faithful and lively characterization of French provincial manners.
Of the floral games of Toulouse, many antiquarian particulars occur.. They were instituted in 1496 by Clementia Isaure, and consisted in public repetitions of short original Provençal poems, the best of which were rewarded by distributions of flowers. Clementia, says the author, (p. 117.) was born in 1464, at her father's villa near Toulouse; and at five years of age she was left to the exclusive care of her devout mother, the father having accompanied a French army into distant parts. She was destined to be devoted to the Virgin, and spent the intervals of pious exercises in cultivating at home the flowers that embellished a large walled garden. One day, when she was resting with her watering-pot be