Sheridan. Both are capital likenesses in face and figure, and yet, by the peculiar genius of successful caricature, they are so managed that an irresistibly comic and laughter-moving appearance is given to two of the most brilliant men of the age. The first number of these caricatures is not happily selected. The pictures of private life, which from time to time Gilray sketched, and which make up half the number, are not by any means his happiest; and one of the best of his political caricatures,

Making Decent,” which it contains, is on so reduced a scale that much of the point is lost. But the inimitable picture of George III. with Buonaparte on his hand, perhaps the most successful caricature ever engraved, and that of Buonaparte making gingerbread kings, with Talleyrand by his side kneading dough for his master, are beyond all praise in their peculiar department. The sly sarcasm conveyed in the latter, in which, on the shelf where the little, yet unbaked kinglings stand awaiting the final process of the imperial oven, Sheridan and Fox are painted crowned, the former brandishing the sceptre of the king of clubs, is capital and Hogarthian.

The accompanying letter-press, which is, we understand, supplied by Mr. Pyne, is amusing and explanatory, though, occasionally, rather too laboriously fine. There is something absurd in the solemnity of the tone in which he descants on the enormity of ladies' wearing muslin dresses, and the importance he confers on using a quire of gilt post paper at a friend's expense. These are hardly objects of sufficient consequence to be made into miseries of human life. He ought also to take a little care of his Latin. It is not quite according to Hoyle to say, that old Sheridan laboured under an “argentum paucitas," (p. 3) and we are sure Porson would not be particularly pleased if such a phrase as “concinus ense,”. (p. 14), were attributed to his pen. In the same song in which this blunder occurs, we have another.

[blocks in formation]

“ Manus” is but a dubious rhyme to “afford us.” In the copy which we have seen it runs rather better ; thus

Nunc let us amici join manus snd corda,

And use all the vires Di Boni afford-a."

The second Number is better than the first, but we have not room here for further notice. We intend, when the Series is finished, to give a glance over the whole.

Histoire de la régénération de la Grèce par F.C.N. L. Porqueville,

Paris, Didot, 1824.

[ocr errors]

It would appear as if M. Pouqueville was ambitious of being considered the Thucidydes of modern Greece; he writes with the zeal of one who was a candidate for the Olympic prize. No work so full and so elaborate has been called forth by the recent struggles of Greece. It consists of four large volumes, and comprises a period from 1740 to the commencement of the present year. As the author considers the existing condition of Greece to have resulted in a great measure from the events which the ability and ambition of Ali Pacha originated, he commences his narrative with the birth of that crafty barbarian. He gives a sketch of the state of the country at that time, and traces the gradual progress of events to the revolution, which, if Ali did not create, he certainly accelerated. It was the peculiar destiny of Ali to have been the most inveterate enemy, and the most efficient friend of the Greeks. If there was one chief in the service of Turkey, who more than another could augment the hatred which the Greeks bore to barbarism, and make freedom appear a matter of necessity, that chief was the Pacha of Janina. He had talents that made him formidable, and vices that rendered him no less odious. The violence and perfidy of his ambition were such as to keep all the Greek tribes, with whom he came in contact, in the continual exercise of arms and stratagem. He thus trained a school of warriors in the mountains and fortresses of Greece; where, but for him, the spirit of the people might have been mouldering away in peaceful avocations or sullen inactivity. Himself

vigilant and indefatigable, he taught his enemies, the necessity of being always on the alert; and his repeated violations of his engagements, and the remorseless cruelty of his nature, made them perfectly sensible that none who had ever resisted his power, could place confidence in his oaths. Those whom he attacked knew that there was but one way of safety, resistance: for submission was sure ruin.

The Greek mountaineers had no resource but in their courage and activity ; they fought, were sometimes beaten and sometimes victorious; and out of those conflicts arose a race of soldiers, the very sinews of his


when Ali found it expedient to resist the mandates of the Porte ; and since his downfall by a treachery like his own, the instruments of signal service in the cause of Greece.

M. Pouqueville gives the life of Ali from his earliest days

with great minuteness. He had a right to know his character, for he resided ten years at his court as Consul-general of France, and the information which he has collected, bears the stamp of individual experience. Independently of his political system, the life of this magnificent barbarian is extremely interesting, as part of the history of human character. The bold and original lineaments of genius and courage, however degraded by savage peculiarities, are among the most absorbing of all human contemplations.

Where personal hardihood and intellectual power urge their way through hazard and obscurity up to renown, our most natural desire is, that of being told, by what daring activity, by what effort of mind, circumstances were forced into the material and instrument of success, till the result was achieved.

Our later travellers have made us sufficiently acquainted with the general biography of the Pacha. But when the weariness of this perpetual tale of the tourists shall have been forgotten with their works, we should not be surprised to find Ali a hero of poetry. No character of the Iliad is a more poetic invention than this historic reality. The truth of his story has all the strangeness of romance; it is a perpetual picture of desperate exploit, rude adventure, ferocious vengeance, stratagem of the deepest subtility, hair-breadth escape, wild triumph, and remorseless desolation. He might fill the place between the Ulysses and the Ajax, a compound of both; yet without the cultivated policy of the one, or the generous courage of the other. Some future Plutarch will describe him as another Aratus; born for a leader, but with powers and qualities of that oblique kind, which fitted him rather for secret enterprise and state circumvention, than for the open, honourable, struggles of the field.

“Quelque similitude avec celle que les Muses d'Hérodote ont transmise à la postérité. Suivant de bien loin les traces du père de l'Histoire, je montrerai comment les Grecs, dechus de leur splendeur, subjugués par les Romains, qu'ils amollirent, dégradés sous le sceptre de leur Césars théologiens, conquis par les Turcs, qu'ils ne purent civiliser, limant insensiblement leur chaines, enveloppant le despotisme dans ses propres filets, s'emparèrent de l'héritage de la tyrannie et dų crime pour remonter au rang des nations. Cet exposé me conduit à mettre sur le premier plan de mon tableau un homme long-temps dominant dans la Grèce, et qui en remplissait à lui seul la scène, tandis qu'elle préparait ses hautes destinées à l'ombre de l'ambition de ce tyran. On verra dans mes récits ce que put le génie fatal d'un Scythe mahometan qui n'employa les calculs de la raison, que pour troubler l'ordre public; et les talents extraordinaires qu’une nature sauvage ne

lui avait départis, qu’afin de s'élever, de forfaits en forfaits, au rang des souverains qu'il osa braver en se croyant leur égal. Mélange d'esprit et d'ignorance, de naiveté et de perfidie, de prudence et d'audace, de bravoure et de circonspection, d'impiété et de superstition, de tolérance et de fanatisme ; je dirai comment Ali Tébél Veneli Zadé, après s'être créé une de ces effrayantes réputations qui retentiront dans l'avenir, est tombé du faîte de la puissance, en leguant à l'Epire, sa patrie l'héritage funeste de l'anarchie, des maux incalculables à la dynastie tartare d'ottoman, l'espérance de la liberté aux Grecs, et peut-être de longs sujets de discorde a l'Europe."

“Inaperçu comme les germes de l'indépendance qui se développaient dans la Gréce, Ali Tébélen naquit avec eux vers l'année 1740. Les descendants malheureux d’Hellen comptaient alors trois cents ans d'esclavage, et vingt-cinq siècles de traditions historiques conservées parmi eux, pour leur rappeler leur origine. Ils étaient comme ces dieux bannis de l'olympe, reduits à la condition des patres et des manøvres, en servage, mais libres de toute antiquité, et du sang des héros. Ils foulaient la cendre des Romains, qui leur avaient legué leur nom ; et ils etaient parvenus à échapper au naufrage, parce qu'ils avaient jeté leur ancre d'espérance au sein d'une religion à laquelle le Très-haut a promis la durée des temps. Il n'en était pas ainsi de leurs oppresseurs. L'empire des Turcs fondé et maintenu par la violence, caractérisé par l'injure envers les vaincus, puisant sa force dans l'injustice et la terreur ne devait avoir que le cours des fleaux qui s'épuisent en vieillissant. Son despotisme s'usait et se serait enselevi sous les decombres amoncelés autour de son trône s'il n'avait pas eu ceux qu'il foulait aux pieds pour l'alimenter. Ainsi tombèrent Ninive, Suze, Ecbatane, Babylone; mais il n'en devait pas être de même d'un peuple, quoique asservi, qui conservait son langage et ses maurs.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

It will appear from the foregoing extract, that the author has a strong feeling in favour of the Greeks. He has been long among them, and has known them practically; he has had experience of the virtues and vices of their disposition the powers and defects of their intellect; he has witnessed their energies, their dissensions, their heroism, privations, and resources; and he expresses a perfect confidence in their ultimate liberation. While he considers the present crisis to have been hastened by the agency of Ali Tebelen, he yet regards it as no ebullition of the passions of slaves impatient of the yoke, but the result of a long meditated plan of regeneration that awaited favourable circumstances, but was not created by them. At the era of Peter the great, the Greeks fixed their hopes on that sovereign, and were prepared, when he should make a serious impression on the ottoman empire, to raise the standard of independence. His unfortunate campaign on the Pruth, however, where he narrowly escaped destruction, dissi

pated their visions of immediate freedom, but did not extinguish their hope of future deliverance. During his reign, the first example of revolt was given by the christian subjects of the Porte, in the instance of the inhabitants of Czerna Gora, or Montenegro, who abandoned the Moslem tyranny to unite themselves to the Russian empire. In the reign of the empress Anne, more than half a century afterwards, emissaries were sent into Greece, by the advice of her minister Munich, who every where struck the chord of the national feeling, by reviving the recollections of their country, religion, and liberty: this was the first step to a war, which the cabinet of St. Petersburg meditated, but which it openly disavowed, while forming a league with Charles VI., emperor of Germany, against the Ottoman throne. This policy was, at length, opposed by Louis XV., whose councils were then directed by cardinal Fleury. Their co-operation with Turkey was, however, languid, and their supplies so tardy, that the Sultan derived little benefit from his alliance with the French king ; but still, Greece was not mingled in any of the commotions of the Turkish empire previously to the peace of Aix-la-Chapelle. Since that time, the Ottoman empire rapidly declining presents but a series of convulsions, amounting almost to perpetual anarchy. All the horrors of insurrection have been continually recurring, not only in the provinces, but in the very heart of her capital; and even the unity of the faith of the Moslem has been menaced by the sect of Wababees, that in 1740 made its first appearance in Arabia. These events M. Pouqueville regards as omens of the total ruin of the ottoman empire, and he proceeds to shew that concurrently with those symptoms of rapid decay in the state of Turkey, have been the increasing signs of the improvement and moral recovery of Greece ; in which he considers their hierarchy, through all its classes, to be mainly instrumental.

“ La Grèce, au contraire, renaissait insensiblement. Economos, religieux de l'ordre de S. Basile, fondait, avec l'autorisation de la Porte un college à Cydonie, pauvre village de l'Asie-Mineure qui ne tarda pas

à devenir une ville florissante. Le Gymnase de Janina acquerait des dotations

pour l'entretien de ses professeurs et d'un certain nombre d'élèves. Chios fondait une académie, mais quelle main devait regir et diriger tant de membres epars et dissemblables d'une société renaissante ? quelle voix pouvait être entendue des peuplades guerrières de l'Epire, de la Thessalie de la Macedonie et des enfans de Tubal-Cain qui epurent dans leurs fournaises ardentes les metaux du mont ? Où se trouvaient les nouveaux Orpheus capables d'adoucir des mours agrestes, de tempérer des passions exaspérées par des siècles d'injures,

« ͹˹Թõ