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effort by the knowledge that this fund would materially help them. In supplying churches, schools, mission buildings, as well as living agents to minister in them, the Bishop of London's Fund has done untold good, and in our opinion the establishment of this Fund is the brightest spot in the episcopal life of Archibald Campbell Tait.
ART. III.- JENNY LIND. Memoir of Madame Jenny Lind-Goldschmidt: Her Early
Art, Life, and Dramatic Career, 1820-1851. From Original Documents, Letters, MS. Diaries, &c., collected by M. Otto Goldschmidt. By HENRY SCOTT HOLLAND, M.A., Canon and Precentor of St. Paul's, and W. S. ROCKSTRO, Author of A General History of Music, Life of Handel, Life of Mendelssohn, &c. (London, 1891.)
THE name of Jenny Lind is still a household word in England. Half a century has passed away since the great singer made her first appearance among us and took all hearts by storm, but the memory of her triumphs is still fresh in the minds of this generation. We have all of us heard that wonderful tale of her singing, of the furore which she created wherever she went, of the mad rush to hear her, of the struggle for places in which strong men were thrown down and narrowly escaped with their lives. We have seen the eyes of grey-headed men kindle, and noticed their tremulous tones as they recalled the bird-like sweetness, the moving pathos of that marvellous voice which had spoken to them as none other before or since. It was not only admiration, it was love which Jenny Lind inspired. Her name was treasured in the humblest cottage homes; her portrait was seen on penny prints and match boxes; verses in her praise were hawked about the streets ; horses and dogs and singing birds were named after her. And in all this we see not only the homage paid to the famous singer, but a far deeper and more permanent feeling, due to the magic of her personality. It was that 'beauty of the soul finding its expression in song, that mastery,' to quote the expression of a distinguished German critic, wielded by this anima candida,' the wonder of herself, which lay behind the wonder of her singing and was the secret of its power. ‘After all,' wrote Mrs. Stanley at Norwich in 1847, 'I would VOL. XXXIII.—NO. LXV.
rather hear Jenny talk than sing ;' and again,'Her singing is the least part of her charm; she has the simplicity of genius. Every morning when she got up, she told me, she felt that her voice was a gift from God, and that perhaps that very day might be the last of its use' (ii. 79). It was this high sense of an artistic mission of great and serious responsibility which never left her, and lay at the root of all her actions. It was the motive of her untiring industry and of her splendid charities. It kept her humble through all her triumphs, and bore her safe through all dangers. It was the secret alike of her goodness and of her charm, the spring of that delicious freshness and childlike simplicity which enchanted all. Great and low, rich and poor, men of every country and nationality in turn owned the spell. Kings and queens were proud to enjoy her intimacy; poets and authors, sculptors and painters were among her closest friends. Hans Andersen and Thorwaldsen, Tieck and Grillparzer, Kaulbach and Fredrika Bremer all wrote and spoke of her with the same enthusiasm. Meyerbeer and Taubert composed operas and songs for her ; Robert Schumann said that to hear her sing his songs was to feel the sun shine ; Mendelssohn told Mr. Grote, 'She is as great an artist as ever lived, and the greatest I have known' (i. 288). * What shall I say of Jenny Lind ?' wrote Moscheles at the time of her first visit to London. 'It is impossible to find words adequate to describe the impression she has produced. This is no short-lived fit of public enthusiasm. So much modesty and so much greatness united are seldom, if ever, to be met with' (i. 5). And Madame Schumann, after a visit from her at Hamburg in March 1850, writes in her diary, • What a grand, heaven-inspired being she is ! What a pure, true artist's soul! How all she says refreshes one! How she always hits upon the right thing and expresses it in few words! . Never, perhaps, have I loved and reverenced a woman as I do her' (ii. 389). 'I feel towards her as a brother,' wrote Hans Andersen, ‘and I think myself happy that I can know and understand such a spirit. Through her I first became sensible of the holiness of art. Through her I learned that one must forget oneself in the service of the Supreme. No books, no men, have had a more ennobling influence upon me as a poet than Jenny Lind’(i.5). And, on the other hand, we have young Arthur Stanley, afterwards Dean of Westminster, who had no ear for music and on whom her singing in itself produced no impression, writing of her in these words to a college friend on the evening after Jenny's departure from his father's house :
'Great as was the wonder of seeing a whole population thus bewitched by one simple Swedish girl, it sinks into nothing before the wonder of herself. You have seen her, and therefore you can appreciate the grace, the dignity, the joyousness, the touching pathos of her entrance, her attitude, her curtsies, her voice. For, whatever much beside—as I doubt not there is—may be seen in her acting, all this is seen in her singing. Twice did I go to the concert, mostly for the sake of this ; for the music, so far as it could be separated from the charm of her manner and the wonder of her voice, which I, alas ! could only admire as a natural phenomenon, was to me wholly lost. But now you must conceive a character corresponding to all this, and transpiring through a thousand traits of humility, gentleness, thoughtfulness, wisdom, piety; the manners of a princess-as I have written to Donkin-with the simplicity of a child and the goodness of an angel. She is very much plainer and more homely than you would suppose from her countenance as you see it when animated in public; but her smile at all times is only equalled by Pusey's. She came on Tuesday night and is gone this evening, and it seems quite a blank, as if a heavenly visitant had departed' (ii. 172).
Words like these make us realize the personal fascination which attracted so many different classes of minds, and gave her a position altogether unique among the famous singers of the Victorian age. And we who knew her in her later days, when her public life was over and her triumphs were only memories of bygone years, can bear witness to the greatness and nobleness of a character which retained to the last its originality and its charm. This is why the appearance of Jenny Lind's Life has been awaited with more than ordinary eagerness and welcomed with peculiar interest by the public, not only in England, her adopted country, but in America and Germany, and in her own native land. And readers will not be disappointed in their expectations ; for the two big volumes before us, whatever their defects may be, at least give us a full and complete record of the early training and public career of the great singer during the first thirty years of her life. More than this, they offer us a vivid and faithful picture of Jenny Lind both as an artist and a woman, a picture drawn, we feel, with unerring truth and penetration. If the tone in which the work is written is one of ardent enthusiasm, if it is rather an éloge than a critical biography, the authors in this do but reflect the impression which this incomparable artist made on the best and highest minds of her generation. Both of them were personal friends of Madame Lind-Goldschmidt. Canon Holland, whose share in the memoir is limited to the account of her early life in Sweden, together
with the concluding chapters which follow her farewell to the stage, was her intimate friend during the last twenty years of her life ; and M. Rockstro, the well-known musician, who describes her operatic career, had known her in Germany at the height of her fame, and had himself witnessed many of her triumphs both abroad and in England. The materials at their disposal have been collected by M. Otto Goldschmidt, the husband of this distinguished lady, and include a large number of unpublished letters, extracts from diaries and contemporary memoirs, newspaper critiques, and similar documents. Many of these, such as the correspondence with Mendelssohn and the records kept by Madame Schumann and Hans Andersen, are of the deepest interest. Another very valuable source of information is the MS. Memoir of the Life of Jenny Lind, written by Mrs. Grote, widow of the historian, and carried down to the year 1848. As the sister of Mademoiselle Lind's old and valued Stockholm friend, Madame von Koch, as having herself been intimately associated with her operatic career in England, Mrs. Grote had exceptional opportunities of obtaining trustworthy information, and her unfinished sketch throws light on many passages in Jenny's early life. The vivid reminiscences supplied by Queen Marie of Hanover will be read with great pleasure, while our own Queen, besides showing her special interest and sympathy in the work by accepting its dedication, has graciously lent the authors the use of notes from her own diary on the eventful evenings of Mlle. Lind's first season at Drury Lane. On the other hand, it must be confessed, there are a good many newspaper extracts, lists of performances, complimentary addresses, &c., which might with advantage have been curtailed or left out altogether. Again, letters of theatrical managers and librettists occupy too large a space in the central part of the book, and most readers will agree with us in thinking that the dissertations on the Mozartian tradition and the elaborate analyses of such comparatively unknown operas as Verdi's I Masnadieri or Meyerbeer's Vielka, might have been spared us. If, instead of these unnecessary details, which fill so many chapters, we had been given a larger proportion of Jenny Lind's own letters--those letters so full of originality, of brilliancy and tenderness-if, instead of having three or four separate accounts of her appearance in the same character, we had been allowed a fuller account of the American tour, as to which Madame Goldschmidt herself had so much that was amusing and entertaining to tell, or, better still, a glimpse of her in the long and happy years of her married life, the value
of the book would have been immensely increased. A good deal of repetition in the more interesting portions of the memoir is no doubt the result of divided authorship, and of the consequent want of form and loss of unity from which a work is bound to suffer. But putting these defects aside, this record of the artist life of Jenny Lind is a fitting monument of one who, both in her public and her private life, as an artist and a woman, was a shining example of all that is good and beautiful.
The story of her life has all the charm of romance. She was born in Stockholm on October 6, 1820, and christened Johanna, but always called Jenny. Her parents were of humble birth. Her father, the son of a lace-maker, and himself an accountant in a merchant's office, appears to have preferred singing songs and keeping company with his friends to regular work, and her mother was the bread-winner of the family. As she had another daughter by a former marriage to support, and as she first kept a school and then went out as governess, she had little time to spare for her child, and Jenny saw little of either parent, but spent most of her early years with her maternal grandmother, who occupied rooms in the Home for Burghers' Widows in Stockholm. This old lady, whose nature was gentler and more sympathetic than that of Jenny's mother, first noticed the child's musical gift, and heard her, when only three years old, strumming the fanfare of the soldiers' bugles on the piano. But the child's genius was too evident to remain hidden long. “As a child,' wrote Madame Goldschmidt many years afterwards, 'I sang with every step I took and with every jump my foot made.' And one day, as she sat with her favourite cat in the window seat of a room in the Widows' Home, Mademoiselle Lundberg, a dancer at the Royal Opera, who was passing in the street, heard her singing to her cat, and stopped to listen to the beautiful voice. That child is a genius and must be taught to sing,' she said, and with some difficulty she induced Jenny's mother, who had the greatest horror of all that was connected with the stage, to take her to Herr Crælius, the singing-master at the theatre. At first Count Puke, the director of the theatre, refused to look at her, being then, as she describes herself, a small, ugly, broad-nosed, shy, gauche, altogether undergrown girl ;' but when he had heard her sing he changed his tone, and from that moment the child was taught to sing, and educated at the Government expense in the school of the Royal Theatre. For some years Jenny boarded at her mother's house. But Fru Lind's temper had