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The Continental Monthly, Volume V. Issue I
Author: Various
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Meantime we advise the admirers of 'Charles Anchester' to read 'Rumor;' it is a book of wider knowledge and deeper intuitions.

GENERAL BUTLER IN NEW ORLEANS. History of the Administration of the Department of the Gulf, in the year 1862; with an account of the Capture of New Orleans, and a sketch of the previous career of the General, civil and military. By JAMES PARTON, Author of the 'Life and Times of Aaron Burr,' 'Life of Andrew Jackson,' etc., etc. New York: Mason Brothers, 5 and 7 Mercer street. Boston: Mason & Hamlin. Philadelphia: J. B. Lippincott & Co. London: D. Appleton &. Co., 16 Little Britain, 1864.

Nothing is more difficult than, amid the whirl of passing events, to form just estimates of living men. Either our knowledge of the facts may be incomplete, or, if the external facts be known, we may be ignorant of the character and motives of the individual. No public man has made warmer friends or more bitter enemies than General Butler. History will probably, in the future, pronounce a just and impartial decision in the case. Meantime all that the public can learn regarding his political and military career will be eagerly examined.

TALES OF A WAY-SIDE INN. By HENRY WADSWORTH LONGFELLOW. Boston: Ticknor & Fields. For sale by D. Appleton & Co., New York.

The mere announcement of a new book by H. W. Longfellow, is sufficient to secure for it the attention of all who read or love poetry. Long before the critic can pronounce upon its merits, it will be found in the hands of thousands. Longfellow is perhaps the most popular among American poets. His rhythm is always varied and musical, his diction in good taste, his treatment ever adapted to the subject he has in hand. If he seldom strikes the deepest chords of being, his touch is always true, tender, and sympathetic. 'The Birds of Killingworth' is full of beauty. If the 'Tale of a Poet,' it is also a song of the sage. The 'Children's Hour' is charming in its home love and naive grace. 'Weariness' is simple as a child's song, but full of natural and true pathos. Let it pleasure our poet that in this sweet, sad chant of his, he has the warm sympathies of his fellow men. Let him not weary thinking of the task yet before the 'little feet,' but rather rejoice in the sunshine he has himself been able to throw o'er the path in which the 'little feet' must walk.

THE THOUGHTS OF THE EMPEROR M. AURELIUS ANTONINUS. Translated by GEORGE LONG. Boston; Ticknor & Fields. For sale by D. Appleton & Co., New York.

Antoninus was born at Rome, A. D. 121, embraced the Stoic philosophy from conviction, and, though an emperor, lived in accordance with its stern spirit. This little book has been the companion of many of our greatest men. That it still lives, and is still read by all who delight in bold and vigorous thought, is sufficient proof of its excellence. It has been rendered into English, French, Italian, and Spanish. It was translated by Cardinal Francis Barberini, nephew of Pope Urban VIII. as he said, 'in order to diffuse among the faithful the fertilizing and vivifying seeds he found within it.' He dedicated this translation to his own soul, to make it, as he says, 'redder than purple at the sight of the virtues of this Gentile.' The strong pages act like a tonic upon the spirit, and give the reader courage to endure.

REVERIES OF A BACHELOR; or, A Book of the Heart. By IK. MARVEL. A new edition. New York: Charles Scribner, 124 Grand street.

DREAM LIFE: A Fable of the Seasons. By IK. MARVEL. A new edition. Charles Scribner, 124 Grand street, New York.

The old type of these books has from constant use grown so worn and battered as to be unfit for further use, and it has been found necessary from the constant demand, to issue entirely new editions. And beautiful editions indeed we have before us. Print and paper alike excellent, and pleasant binding in vivid green and lustrous gold. It were surely useless to commend Ik. Marvel now to our readers, since no one ever attained to more rapid popularity. His sketches are always graceful and genial, his style of singular elegance. He wins his way to our heart and awakens our interest we scarcely know how, for he is marvellously unpretending and simple in his delineations of life. Our author says in his Preface to the new edition of the 'Reveries of a Bachelor:' 'The houses where I was accustomed to linger, show other faces at the windows; bright and cheery faces, it is true; but they are looking over at a young fellow upon the other side of the way.'

We would whisper to him: 'Nay, not so. Humanity is ever grateful to its true and earnest friends, and have borne thee over in triumph to the fair clime of the Ideal, where undying affections await thee; and ever-yearning loves shall keep thee ever young. Spring flowers are forever blooming in our hearts as thou breathest upon them, and age is but a name for thy immortal youth, O friend of dreamy hours and tender reveries.'

MY FARM OF EDGEWOOD: A Country Book. By the Author of 'Reveries of a Bachelor.' Eighth Edition. New York: Charles Scribner.

A book of farm experience from Ik. Marvel cannot fail to awaken the interest of the community. If the author sees with the eye of the poet, his imagination is no ignis-fatuus fire to mislead and bewilder him when moving among the practical things of life. He begins with the beginning, the search and finding of the farm. Every page is pregnant with valuable hints to the farmer as well as to the gentleman and scholar. The book is a real picture of country life, its pains, trials, pursuits, and pleasures, and the most varied information is given with respect to what it might be made, what it should become. A single glance at the varied table of contents would be sufficient to convince the reader of the great interest of the topics so pleasantly treated in the volume before us. We extract a few of them: Around the House; My Bees; What to do with the Farm; A Sunny Frontage; Laborers; Farm Buildings; The Cattle; The Hill Land; The Farm Flat; Soiling; An Old Orchard; The Pears; My Garden; Fine Tilth makes Fine Crops; Seeding and Trenching; How a Garden should look; The lesser Fruits; Grapes; Plums, Apricots, and Peaches; The Poultry; Is it Profitable? Debit and Credit; Money-making Farmers; Does Farming Pay? Agricultural Chemistry; Isolation of Farmers; Dickering; The Bright Side; Place for Science; AEsthetics of the Business; Walks; Shrubbery; Rural Decoration; Flowers; L'Envoi.

LETTERS TO THE JONESES. By TIMOTHY TITCOMB, Author of 'Letters to Young People,' 'Gold Foil,' 'Lessons in Life,' etc., etc. Eighth edition. Charles Scribner, 124 Grand street, New York.

A work evincing strong practical common sense, and acute discrimination. Our author is a poet, but no mysticism or sentimentalism disfigures his pages; he is a clear, keen observer and analyzer of human nature, lashing its vices, discerning its foibles, and reading its subterfuges and petty vanities. He says: 'The only apologies which he offers for appearing as a censor and a teacher, are his love of men, his honest wish to do them good, and his sad consciousness that his nominal criticisms of others are too often actual condemnations of himself.'

He addresses himself in a series of letters to the Joneses of Jonesville, each Jones addressed being a typal character and such as is of frequent occurrence in our midst. Homely and excellent advice, appropriate to their faults and needs, is administered to each individual Jones in turn, as he falls under the salutary but sharp scalpel of this keen dissector. There are twenty-four letters, consequently twenty-four studies from life, true to reality and detailed as a Dutch picture. We feel our own faults and foibles bared before us as we read. While these pages are very interesting to the general reader, the divine may learn from them how best in his preaching to aim his shafts at personal follies, and the novelist find models for his living portraitures and varied pictures.

THE WATER BABIES: a Fairy Tale for a Land Baby. By the Rev. Charles Kingsley, Author of 'Two Years Ago,' 'Amyas Leigh,' etc. With illustrations by J. Noel Paten, B. S. A. Boston: T. O. H. P. Burnham. New York: O. S. Felt, 36 Walker St., 1864.

A lively tale, dedicated to the author's youngest son, and calculated to entertain the elders who read aloud, as well as the children who listen. There are in it many tender touches, and numberless satiric blows administered in Mr. Kingsley's own peculiar way.

ADVENTURES OF DICK ONSLOW AMONG THE RED SKINS. A Book for Boys. With Illustrations. Edited by William H. G. Kingston. Boston: J. E. Tilton & Co. 1864.

Stories of the Western wilderness, and of life among the Indians, are sure to meet with favor in the eyes of American boys, the descendants of a race of pioneers.

MY DAYS AND NIGHTS ON THE BATTLE FIELD. A Book for Boys. By 'Carleton.' Boston: Ticknor & Fields, 1864. For sale by D. Appleton & Co., New York.

This is a useful book, containing sundry items of military information, and many vivid descriptions of land and naval engagements during the present war—all interesting to young people.

LOUIE'S LAST TERM AT ST. MARY'S. By the author of 'Rutledge,' 'The Sutherlands,' 'Frank Warrington,' etc. New York: Carleton, publisher, 413 Broadway, 1864.

A book of school life, intended not less for teachers than for the youthful maidens whose various typal forms act, love, hate, and suffer through its very natural and interesting pages.

MILTON'S PARADISE LOST. In Twelve Books. New York: Frank H. Dodd, 506 Broadway, 1863.

The text is a literal reprint from Keightley's Library edition. Print, binding, and size all render the tasteful little book a pleasant form in which to possess the greatest epic in the English tongue.

THE GAME OF DRAUGHTS. By HENRY SPAYTH, Author of 'American Draught Player.' Buffalo: Printed for the Author. For sale by Sinclair Tousey, New York.

This book has been pronounced by the highest authorities on checkers, both in the Old and New World, the best work of the kind ever written. It is said to contain 'lucid instructions for beginners, laws of the game, diagrams, the score of 364 games, together with a series of novel, instructive, and ingenious critical positions.'

PECULIAR. A Tale of the Great Transition. By EPES SARGENT. New York: Carleton, publisher, 413 Broadway.

Mr. Sargent has given us a tale of the times—his scenes are laid in our midst. He grapples with the questions of the hour, handling even Spiritualism as he passes on. Abraham Lincoln, Jefferson Davis, George Saunders, Senator Wigfall, &c., are sketched in these pages. The story is founded on the social revelations which Gen. Butler, Gov. Shepley, Gen. Ullman, the Provost-Marshal, &c., authenticated in New Orleans after the occupation of that city by the United States forces. These materials have been skilfully handled by the author of 'Peculiar,' and the result is a novel of graphic power and sustained interest. It will make its own way, as it has the elements of success. We must, however, give a caution to our readers: 'Kunnle Delaney Hyde' and 'Carberry Ratcliff' are true as individuals of the South, but it would not be fair to regard them as typal characters. Let the magnanimous North be just, even to its enemies. Slavery is a great wrong, as well as a great mistake in political economy; men are by no means good enough to be trusted with irresponsible power; slaves have been treated with savage cruelty, and the institution is indeed demoralizing: all this, and a great deal more, we readily grant our writer; and yet we cannot help wishing he had shown us something to love, to hope for, in our enemy. He makes an earnest and able protest against a great wrong, and as such we gladly accept his book; but as a work of art, we think his tale would have held a higher rank had he given us some of the softer lights of the picture. In this we may be wrong, for a dread Nemesis stalks even through the plains of the Ideal. To stand up truly for the Right, we must comprehend the Wrong; meanwhile an important end is answered. We are taught, a lesson we should all learn, compassion for the negro, and enabled to understand some of his latent traits. For the ability and tenderness with which this has been done, we have reason to thank Mr. Sargent. The tale of Estelle is one of pathos and beauty, and 'Peculiar,' the negro, shines in it like a black diamond of the purest water. The book cannot fail to interest all who trace the cause of the mighty transition through which we are passing to its true source, the heart of man.

POEMS BY JEAN INGELOW. Boston: Roberts Brothers.

Many of these poems are vague and incomplete, others evince maturity of thought, and are of singular beauty. We are quite charmed with the 'Songs of Seven.' It is highly original and tender. The rhythms vary with the chimes of the different ages, always in tune with the joys and sorrows sung. The poem is full of nature and simple pathos. There is a dewy freshness on these leaves, as if a young soul were thus pouring its spring carols into song, Jean Ingelow has been highly commended by the English critics. In regard to her poems the London Athenaeum says: 'Here is the power to fill common earthly facts with heavenly fire; a power to gladden wisely and to sadden nobly; to shake the heart, and bring moist tears into the eyes through which the spirit may catch its loftiest light.'

ALICE OF MONMOUTH, an Idyl of the Great War, with Other Poems. By EDMUND C. STEDMAN. New York: Carleton, publisher, 413 Broadway. London: Sampson Low, Son & Company.

With the many stirring events passing around us, the heroic deeds enacted in our midst, it is fitting that the poet should begin to find his scenes in his own country. Mr. Stedman has so done in his 'Alice of Monmonth.' The story of the Poem leads us from the fruit fields and plains of New Jersey, from love scenes and songs, to the din of battle, and the sufferings of hospitals in Virginia. There are various changes rung in the rhythm, so that it never becomes monotonous; and many of the descriptive passages are full of beauty.

DEEP WATERS. A Novel. By ANNA H. DRURY, Author of 'Misrepresentation,' 'Friends and Fortune,' &c. Boston: Published by T. O. H. P. Burnham, No. 143 Washington street. New York: H. Dexter Hamilton & Co., 113 Nassau street. O. S. Felt, 36 Walker street.

Never having before met with a work by Miss Drury, we were quite surprised to find 'Deep Waters' a novel of so much power. The plot is original, and well managed throughout, the characters well conceived and sustained, the morals entirely unobjectionable, the style pure, simple, and unaffected, and the interest uninterrupted. The tale is indeed one of singular beauty.

IN WAR TIME, and other Poems. By JOHN GREENLEAF WHITTIER. Ticknor & Fields, Boston. D. Appleton & Co., New York.

If bold, varied, musical rhythm; high and tender thought; hatred of oppression; warm sympathy with suffering; correct and flowing diction; intense love of nature and power to depict her in all her moods, joined with a glowing imagination and devout soul, entitle a man to be classed with the great poets, then may we justly claim that glorious rank for John Greenleaf Whittier. All honor to him, who, while he charms our fancy and warms our heart, strengthens our souls, ennobles our views, and bears us, on the wings of his pure imagination, to the gates of heaven. We are ready to accord him the highest rank among our living poets. No affectations deform his lines, no conceits his thoughts, no puerilities his descriptions. His 'Huskers,' should be graven on every American heart; his 'Andrew Rykman's Prayer' on that of every Christian. We regard this poem as one of the noblest of the age. Humble devotion and heavenly grace are in its every line. We pity the being who could read it unmoved. We deem 'the world within his reach' is indeed

'Somewhat the better for his living, And gladder for his human speech.'

It seems useless to us to commend this volume to our readers; the name of its author must be all-sufficient to attract due attention. Has not this truly national and patriotic poet a home in every American heart? If not, he deserves it, and we for one offer him our grateful homage. Not only shall the refined and cultivated in the coming ages praise the noble singer, but the 'dark sad millions,' whose long 'night of wrong is brightening into day,' shall bless him, as,

'With oar strokes timing to their song, They weave in simple lays The pathos of remembered wrong, The hope of better days,— The triumph note that Miriam sung, The joy of uncaged birds: Softening with Afric's mellow song Their broken Saxon words.'

MENTAL HYGIENE. By J. RAY, M. D. Ticknor & Fields, Boston.

This work is not offered as a systematic treatise on Mental Hygiene. Its purpose is to expose the bad effects of many customs prevalent in modern society, and to present practical suggestions relative to the attainment of mental soundness and vigor. Many important facts are clearly stated, and sound deductions drawn from them. The law of sympathy is clearly traced in the propagation of tastes, aptitudes, and habits. Many curious and startling examples of its effects are detailed. The author traces the laws of mind, exhibits the consequences that flow from obeying or disobeying them, in a succinct and able manner. The art of preserving the health of the mind against incidents and influences calculated to deteriorate its qualities; the management of the bodily powers in regard to exercise, rest, food, clothing, climate; the laws of breeding, the government of the passions, the sympathy with current emotions and opinions, the discipline of the intellect—all come within the scope of the work. It is designed for the general reader, and will interest all who care for the preservation of mental or physical health.

The subject is one of great importance in our excitable country, where so many minds are overtasked, so many brains too early stimulated, and insanity so rapidly on the increase. We heartily commend it to all readers interested in the subjects of which it treats.

* * * * *

[Continuation of Literary Notices prepared for the present issue unavoidably crowded out; they will however appear in our next number.]

* * * * *



FOOTNOTES:

[1] Since the above was written, the speech of Earl Russell, in Scotland, indicates a disposition on the part of the British Government to do us justice, at least in the future; and it is to be hoped that a satisfactory adjustment of all differences on the whole matter may be peacefully made.

[2] In the 'Letters to Professor Morse,' in the November number of THE CONTINENTAL, a sentence on page 521, relating to the Confiscation Law, was left incomplete. The whole sentence should have been as follows: 'As to the Confiscation Acts—it is enough to say that the Constitution gives Congress power 'to declare the punishment of treason';—or if the constitutionality of the Confiscation law cannot be concluded from the terms of that grant—about which there may be a doubt—it is undoubtedly contained in the war powers vested in Congress.'

I have here put in italics the clause omitted in that article, and hope my readers will insert it in the proper place. The sentence, as thus completed, contains all I cared then to say on the point—my object being mainly to vindicate the justice and conformity to public law of the policy of confiscation. In the present article I have gone more at length into the question of the constitutionality of the law of Congress, and have come to the conclusions herein expressed.

[3] Our whole area is more than sixty times as large as England.

[4] One hundred years have elapsed since that treaty, and the London Times proclaims that England will not fight for Canada now.

[5] See Alison's History, chap. xxxvii, p. 269.

[6] Kinglake's Crimea Invasion, p. 250.

[7] Kinglake.

[8] See Kinglake's remarks on the design of Louis Napoleon in making St. Arnaud commander-in-chief of the French army in the Crimean war, p. 321.

[9] Written in August, 1863.

[10] Pansclavism

[11] The following story, in substance, is to be found in Joinville's Memoirs.

[12] There may be extreme cases, few and far between, when the evil contained in laws may justify their overthrow by revolutionary force—witness our own separation from Great Britain; but the doctrine is one most unsafe when lightly broached, and we doubt not the Constitution and laws of the United States offer a basis broad enough for the legal as well as the most judicious mode of settlement under the present difficulties.—ED. CON.

THE END

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