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is intensely cold, principally in the winter nights. In the Australian day and night in winter are often concentrated the four seasons of the year; it is deep winter a little before the dawn, spring breathes about you about nine or ten o'clock in the forenoon, fierce summer scorches you in the afternoon, and the gloom of evening comes down upon you with an autumnal feeling." Though its agricultural capacity is small, as has been shown, its mineral resources are very good. Captain Sturt informs us that the mines of iron are productive, and those of copper and lead very abundant. Its coal must lay undisturbed for want of a market. The great wealth of the country is its gold, in the abundance of which it is not exceeded in the world, so far as known, unless it be in California. This is, at least, the present appearance. Though, as gold is usually found most abundantly on or near the surface, it is not yet certain to what amount it may be obtained; or whether it will hold out correspondently with present expectation.
w. J. A. B.
Art. III. – MEMORIES.
A SELF-CONFERENCE AT THREESCORE.
A GREAT deal has been written and said of the pleasures of memory; a thousand times more has been felt of its pains. I have sometimes thought, not only that its pains greatly exceed its pleasures, but that it can hardly be said, in serious strictness, to have any thing in it that deserves to be called by the name of pleasure. My mind has been strongly impressed with this idea for a long time; - not as if this were something peculiar to my temperament, or attaching itself to my time of life, but as if the fact was one of general experience, and would be found true, not merely on the ground of personal considerations, but from an attentive examination* of that faculty itself. It would be better, so far as mere enjoyment is concerned, — mere enjoyment, — if we had no such power; if there were no dark background behind us, from which thoughts and events steal forth into
the light of their dependent and retrospective life; if the past could be past and fall into utter forgetfulness; if we could exist from hour to hour only, provided the present could be beautifully filled, and the future could shine towards us in hope and desire. I am aware that such a provision for us is scarcely conceivable, except in the wildest fancy. I am sensible that it would be a mean thing to desire such an enjoyment, because it would cut us off from the appointed happiness of an intellectual and moral nature. We would not forfeit that. We should rather try to live up to our noble necessity. We must float on between the two eternities, as God has decreed, though it is a solemn consciousness that we must. I wish to look a little more closely at this endowment of Memory, with single reference to the point now indicated. Its sorrows, — how gloomy, how disturbing, how desperate, how deathly! Its pleasures what hollow ghosts and mocking shadows!
It seems to me, as I meditate, that Memory has three distinct offices; if I ought not rather to say, that it is to be looked at from three distinct points of view. First, there is what I would call the Constitutive Memory. It is that which is elemental in us, a part of our intellectual composition, mingled with our other capacities, and thus constituting us what we are. The second is the Pictorial or Imaginative Memory; that which restores to us vividly the scenes of a former time, so as to make us live in them again. The third is the Reflective Memory, that which does more than behold afresh the figures that Time has swallowed up, and converse with them as if they still existed; which carries with it also the reason and moral judgment to bear directly upon them.
With regard to the first of these, the memory considered simply as a component part of our being, it leaves untouched all question either of pleasure or pain. It has no more to do with the sensibilities than the understanding has. It is a province of the human mind, and nothing further. As such, it is so indispensable, that, without it, no course of regulated conduct could be pursued, and no process of reasoning of any kind would be possible. The simplest sum in arithmetic could not be computed, nor the plainest logical conclusion drawn, nor a consistent step taken forward in the world. It min1854.] The Constitutive and the Pictorial Memory.
gles with all our crowding thoughts. It guides all our judgments. It retains for us and is continually repairing such knowledge as we possess, and leads forward to more knowledge. Though it does not create our personal identity, it manifests that identity. It is the only voucher we have that we continue to be the same persons we formerly were. On this account, it is of immense moral importance. But, thus far, it only shows its extreme value to us in our intellectual and practical life. It does not yet profess to be a treasury of sensations, whether of one kind or another.
In its second aspect, as pictorial or imaginative, Memory begins to enter the realm of sensibility, and touches some of the coarser springs of pleasure and pain. I say some of the coarser, because it is connected as yet only with that faculty of the mind which spontaneously and often unconsciously repeats and reproduces the subjects of a former experience. It partakes of the nature of dreams and visions, and can hardly be said to be more substantial than they. Sometimes of its own accord, but oftener involuntarily, it calls up events or scenes that were once delightful to us. According to the vividness of these paintings, and almost in direct proportion to our forgetfulness of their real nature, they affect us with a lively sensation of enjoyment. Some men love to live upon this old, perished capital, and in this dreamy way. But if they do, it is because they are unwilling to remem. ber that they are bankrupts, and that they have something to be employed about awake. It is from mere sluggishness, as of one who prefers to lie in half-slumber, divided between fantasies and oblivion, rather than rouse himself thoroughly, and bathe in fresh water, and see the sun rise, and dress himself for the occupations and ear. nest service in which he is to find his real joy. So much for these images when they are of an agreeable kind, when they are the true and undistorted copies of past enjoyments. There is no genuine life in them, and they impart no life. They are but idle phantasms. But these images will not always be thus pleasant. They will be much the reverse very often. And in that case they are not merely shadows, with their sides colored by the mock hues of reality, but altogether spectral and ghastly. They are so many supernumeraries added to the amount of disagreeable impressions.
We are apt, I think, to confound in idea two very different faculties, hope and imagination. Naturally enough. They are close companions, and hope can live only in what it fancies. They are nevertheless separate endowments. Great account was made of the imagination in the philosophy of certain Stoics. One of them, Musonius Rufus, becomes almost unintelligible in the excess of his praise, when he says : “ Of the things that exist, God has put some in our power and has withheld others. In the number of the first is a gilt, the most beautiful and useful that could be bestowed upon man, - a gift which alone can render him happy. If well employed, it assures to us liberty, tranquillity, firmness, joy." Ah! an overstrained philosophy or a poetical rapture may celebrate it ever so much. All the boast fades before that splendid answer of the banished Bolingbroke to his father Gaunt, in Richard II., which thus sums up its denial:
“O no! the apprehension of the good
Gives but the greater feeling to the worse." Akenside wrote a poem, that used to be read many years ago, on the “ Pleasures of the Imagination.” It does even less to render its subject attractive, than the excel. lent Mr. Rogers has done for the “ Pleasures of Memory.” I can think of but two passages of it that left their mark upon my young mind. One of them is quite losty, beginning, —
“Say, why was man so eminently raised
Amid the vast creation ? " The other is a fervid eulogy, that has been often repeated, of that musty conspirator, Marcus Brutus, – the most short-sighted of patriots, and the most ungrateful of men.
I come now to the Reflective Memory, — the memory in its full stature and activity, and all its offices, - conscious of itself, and questioning and sometimes wrestling with the shapes that itself creates. Here lies the great stress of the subject. Every thing that I have thought before is only the door-way to it. The whole moral nature is now concerned in what it unfolds. What we call sentiment comes in. What we feel to be conscience comes in. And a great entrance does each of them make, with its long train of attendants. I must look at each of these in succession. In this way I may hope to inclose in outline my entire view, and define it with something like distinctness to my own mind.
And first, of the domain of Sentiment, by which word I think I mean our sensitive and thoughtful nature simply as such, and apart from all ideas of praise and blame, and the effects produced upon it, whether mournful or cheerful, by our acts of recollection not considered strictly as moral acts. Will the mournful or the cheerful be the more likely to prevail here? Not the latter, I think. We are apt to suppose that the memory of every pleasure, moral judgments being by supposition excluded, will be a pleasure itself. This is by no means so. Poor Francesca says, in Dante :
“ Nessun maggior dolore Che ricordarsi del Tempo felice Nella miseria."
There is no greater sorrow
Every one must be struck with the pathetic justice of this complaint. But take away the word “misery," and substitute for it merely loss or destitution, and the thought will be a just one still. Not only is it an aggra
vation of a grief to remember the opposite joy that once · stood in the place of it, but it is a grief of itself to reflect
that we possess no longer the objects of past delight. The example I have just cited may seem to be not ex. actly in point, because Francesca had been guilty, and the scene is laid in the realms of penal woe. But the poet does not here introduce any idea of penitence; and his expressions are equally true without it, and much more touchingly beautiful. But I reflect upon another scene in the under-world, described in holier writ, into which that idea does enter largely. It is forced painfully upon my thought, so that I must speak of it, though it does not belong to this part of my theme. Never was so terrible a rebuke couched in such gentle language as we read in that parable : “ Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime hadst thy good things.”
I am aware that there are some circumstances and vol. LVI. -4TH. S. VOL. XXI. NO. 11. 19