Page images
[graphic][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][subsumed]


behold the moon

manner of the monstrous gods of heathendom, al Chesterfield," that you become so many symbols of things refined and stars." And there are people in the VOL. XVIII. NO. III.


[graphic][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]

1. Critical and Miscellaneous Essays. Five Volumes.
2. Sartor Resartus; or, The Life and Opinions of Teufelsdröckh.
3. Chartism.

4. The French Revolution-a History. Three Volumes.
5. Oliver Cromwell's Letters and Speeches.

MR. CARLYLE'S writings cover a wide field of speculation-and widely different is the estimate formed of them by his contemporaries. So fascinated are some of our reading folk with his performances, that they judge of them after a fashion not a little perplexing to their neighbors. In the view of these persons, his touch suffices to convert the veriest commonplaces into something strikingly novel, and the thinnest superficialities into something wonderfully profound. With such commonplace and superficialities all men must have more or less to do-the humor in this case is, that these simple elements of thought, being rather oddly clothed, should be so commonly mistaken for something differing so very widely from their proper nature. But so it is. With these watchers at the shrine of heroes, everything taken under the patronage of the object of their worship becomes weighty and sacred; and all the possible forms of the grotesque, after the manner of the monstrous gods of heathendom, become so many symbols of things refined


Two Volumes.

| and beautiful. That their prophet should always be intelligible to them is more than their modesty will allow them to expect. They feel that it belongs to him to soar into regions to which they may not themselves hope to ascend, and to go down into deeps where no common footsteps may follow him. But when out of their sight, he is not out of their confidence. Kingly nature as he is, he can do no wrong-he is safe against all possible mistake. "How could you sleep to-day under the discourse of a divine you praise so highly ?" said a simple Southern to a wary Scot. Oh," replied the latter, "I can trust him anywhere." Very much thus is it with a large class of Mr. Carlyle's admirers. When he essays to do anything, they fail not to give him the credit of having done something marvelous, though proof on that point may be somewhat slow in making its appear



"Should the prince at noonday say, It is night, declare," writes Sadi, our oriental Chesterfield," that you behold the moon and stars." And there are people in the


« PreviousContinue »