Yet the spare Cassius,'

• Who seldom smiled, and smiled in such a sort
As if he mocked himself, and scorned his spirit

That could be moved to smile at anything,' was the most dangerous of the whole party to jest withal, and the least deserving of contempt. We confess, with all due reverence for the name, and for the deadly stroke' dealt by Brutus, his character always reminds us of Mirabeau's clever soubriquet for Lafayette—the Cromwell-Grandison. Brutus was a kind of philosopher-patriot, who affected to preserve his stoic impassiveness while he was addressing an exasperated mob. Nothing can be more amusing, or at the same time less calculated to raise our respect for Brutus, than the vanity of authorship, which induced him to submit bis famous speech to the people, on which hung the destiny of Rome, to Cicero, to be touched up previous to its publication; which speech, however, Cicero found so flat and lifeless that he declined meddling with it. Yet such were the best confederates whom Cicero could command to fight the battle for the liberties of Rome. It was, in fact, from the first, and could not but eventually be—a contest between the unarmed and the armed, of eloquence against power, of the orator who exercised a doubtful sway over a feeble and timid audience, and one who

gave the word of command to legions of veterans. The Philippics, whether they were all publicly spoken or not, contain the genuine expression of Cicero's feelings ; and they have always read to us as the elaborate invectives of an orator, conscious that his cause is desperate. There is none of that bold superiority, that forcible thundering from on high, which animates the Catilinarians and some of his other orations—the contidence of success, the anticipated ovation, the trampling on the neck of a prostrate adversary. It is the death-struggle of fierce animosity -the hopeless determination of wreaking all the vengeance yet in his power—to perish, as it were, with his talons deep in the blood of his antagonist. Even when affairs appear to brighten, when Decimus Brutus seems to be master of Gaul, and Octavianus Cæsar is still true to the senate, a sudden misgiving, a dark despondency, comes over the exultation of the orator's spirit; if we fall, let us fall like noble gladiators, with dignity— quod gladiatores nobiles faciunt, ut honestè decumbant, faciamus nos, principes orbis terrarum gentiumque omnium, ut cum dignitate potius cadamus, quam cum ignominiâ serviamus.'

It is manifest that Cicero had a prophetic consciousness of the peril, though he did not or could not shrink from the responsibility of his position. The conspicuæ divina Philippica famæ,' were nothing against the swords of Antony.' VOL. LVI. NO. CXII.

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In the treaty of union, or rather of the division of the empire between Lepidus, Antony, and Octavius, what respect was paid to the leader of the constitutional party? The triumvirate was formed of those who had armies, not votes, at their command. He was only not forgotten, because revenge has a memory which nothing can escape. With Cicero, it may be said, fell the liberties of Rome; yet it was not so much the danger which the whole triumvirate apprehended from his abilities, or his patriotism,-it was the personal vindictiveness of Antony which demanded the victim. He might have been safely left to enjoy the philosophic repose of his Tusculan retreat; the throne of Augustus would not have been endangered by the orator.

Cicero himself, no doubt, conscious, from melancholy experience, of the hopeless decay of the republic, would have acquiesced in the inevitable destiny. The republic had passed away; the empire of the world remained—and that empire, to endure, must become a monarchy.

We thus conclude our notice of a work, which, we repeat, cannot but be imperfectly judged by the examination of any particular passage or insulated fact. Our object has not been 30 much to expose our own opinions on this period of the Roman annals, as to make known to the English reader a work, which in the flood of new publications annually poured forth on the continent, more particularly in Germany, might not command, even among our scholars, the atteniion which it merits. Europe is becoming more and more one great literary community. That which in former times was called the · Republic of Letters' was after all but a narrow oligarchy; it maintained its intercourse chiefly through a language foreign to all, the Latin ; it is

now, however, growing, we trust, into a real federal union. We know no service more valuable to the cause of letters, than to promote, and still more, to direct the movements of this amicable commerce. We gladly avail ourselves, therefore, of every opportunity, which our limits will allow, of directing our readers to the more distinguished productions of ihe continent. In so doing, we are but making an inadequate return for the extraordinary vigilance and activity with which English literature is hailed and welcomed and disseminated throughout Europe by the journals of France and Germany. We can only regret, crowded as we are with subjects of imniediate, or of English interest, that we have not more space to devote to this nationalization of foreign literature; that we cannot hope, that it is in fact almost impossible, to keep pace with the rapidity of production throughout Europe. The facts of science may be communicated with almost telegraphic celerity, from one part of the world to the other, particularly since each department has its peculiar votaries, constantly on the look out


for every new discovery, or original view of admitted truths ; but the boundless range of literature, comprehending works of imagination, of history, antiquities, classical learning, theology, while it impresses us with the impossibility of keeping up a complete account even of the most eminent of the continental writers, at the same time enforces the expediency of neglecting no opportunity to introduce a name, deserving of reputation, to the readers of our Journal. While we regret that we can do no more, we feel satisfaction in doing all that we can--in promoting at once the general interests of literature, and gathering, as it were, into one familiar circle, the most intelligent, imaginative, and learned writers of all countries; and the more co-operators we find starting up around us, the greater, we can sincerely say, will be our satisfaction.

Art. IV.-1. A Commentary on the Memoirs of Theobald Wolfe

Tone, fic. By Colonel Philip Roche Fermoy. Paris, 1828. 2. Life of Theobald Wolfe Tone, Founder of the United Irish

Society. A new edition. Washington, 1826. 3. Full and Accurate Report of Debates in the Parliament of

Ireland, &c. Dublin, 1793. 4. Ireland : the Policy of reducing the Established Church, and

paying the Roman Catholic Priests. By J. C. Colquhoun,

Esq., of Killermont. Glasgow, 1836. THERE were in Ireland, of late years, two societies, not simul

taneous but successive-one denominated the Comet Club, the other the Irish Brigade ; both instituted, it was said, for the accomplishment of the same great work — national independence ;' both suspected of having been concerned in some occupations which shunned the light, and each known to have exhibited public proofs that its labours were not frivolous or unproductive. The Comet,' a weekly newspaper, was the visible presence in which the spirit of the former was discernible—the manifestations of the other were monthly. When we say " the other,' we are not to be understood as intimating that the second apparition was substantially different from its predecessor. The • Comet' had shaken from its horrid hair’a too portentous and too significant monition ; vulgar minds interpreted it into an advice to the Irish peasantry to massacre the Protestant clergy, -the enterprising and judicious discovered that the advice was given rather prematurely, --and a court of law was illiberal enough to pronounce it a seditious libel. The rebuked Comet' withdrew, and the Comet Club dissolved. But, if we may borrow the expression from well-known optical illusions, it dissolved itself into a new society; 2 B 2


and, with an altered name, and its periodic time extended,' alter et idem'the eclipsed luminary came forth from temporary occul. tation, to lighten, as the Irish'or the Catholic Magazine' we believe, the same projects and purposes over which, when bearing a bolder name, it had shed a disserviceable, because too full and threatening an illumination.

Of the private proceedings of the societies which dispensed light through these organs, little is known, and of that little the matter of most consequence, and most pertinent to our purpose, is, that the ordinary business of some stated meetings included the reading a lecture which comprised or consisted of a portion of commentaries of Colonel Roche Fermoy. A few brief extracts will show the objects and tendency of this production.

• The publication, by his son, of General Tone's Memoirs will form an era in the civil and military departments of international policy. The subject of the book rises into an almost universal interest. The object of Tone's labour and of his life was the dismemberment of a great empire, which, in all its extent, he considered as having oppressed the energies and corrupted the morals of a large portion of the human race. One effort of his was eminently near to successbaffled only by the opposition of the elements, an opposition which human wisdom could not have foreseen, and human means could not have overcome. The means which Tone applied was a direction, towards his native country, of the military power of a mighty people then at war with and overpowering the rest of Europe. His influence in directing that power arose from his intercourse with some of the towering spirits which then, in the fulness of their energy, had overturned the most ancient and, in appearance, the most solidly-founded governments of the world.'-Roche Fermoy, p. 1.

• From the book of Tone one awful lesson may be learned, and ought to be inculcated to all nations that may be desirous of seeking relief from oppression either real or supposed. I say to all nations, because I wish to frame the rule generally, and without any particular reference to Ireland. If any nation think itself aggrieved, and seek relief, let it look at home for the cultivation of those powers which may be equal to the end—let it not repose upon foreign assistance. The elements, which human sagacity or human force cannot direct or control,—the winds and the waves—fire, or, by its absence, frost, may destroy the best calculated hope. Foreign expeditions are ever precarious ; the Spanish armada-Deus afflavit, et dissipanturCharles XII.—Napoleon arrested by frost-Cambyses and his million buried in burning sand

awhile the living hill Heaved with convulsive throes, then all was still !" Let oppressed nations therefore look at home. Tone, when he sailed from Brest, had all human means in his favour.'--Ibid. p. '1. • Tone, in his life-time, asserted the capability of his native country


p. 14.

to preserve an independent station, and to sustain a domestic government. Sir James Mackintosh, in the speech attributed to him, in 1825, throws out an assertion directly the reverse of that which Tone bad published. Both are mere assertions. Sir James, however, seems to offer at something more. Tone declined-and, for reasons very well known to himself, purposely declined—any explanation. Sir James commenced with a flourish of trumpets, which seemed to announce that a mass of force was to be deployed on the stage :“ Small in extent, feeble in means, Ireland could look for no higher destiny among surrounding nations,” &c. (hear, hear, hear!)'-Ibid.

• In the situation and with the designs of Tone, in 1791, it was his policy to be well acquainted with all his means, but to conceal them carefully from others. To disclose means would have been to furnish instruction for counteraction. But, in 1825, the object of Sir James was directly the reverse. Sir James wished to discourage in Ireland any attempt at her liberation. Such an object would have been well followed by a complete disclosure of how the smallness of her extent contributed to injure her strength, and to show by what other circumstances her means of resistance must be enfeebled. Sir James declined this disclosure. He could have been so guided by one of two reasons. Either he was profoundly ignorant of the particular facts necessary to support the opinion he had pronounced, or he was apprehensive that a resort to facts would not have supported him. The first is suspected as the real reason.'-Ibid. p. 17.

. An attempt at a solution of the important question of the powers of Ireland having been, by Tone and Sir James, declined or avoided, has become, from the state of public feeling, on both sides of the Atlantic, of paramount necessity. The speech of Sir James was, in the year 1825, received by repeated cheers of “ hear, hear!” The book of Tone has been received, in North America and in Europe, by a public feeling as encouraging to the author as the sound of hear, hear!” was to the speaker, Sir James. The subject should be entered into with fairness, but it ought to be searched with boldness. The smallness of the extent of Ireland is alleged as a cause of her weakness. This proposition is announced by Sir James in a positive, not in a relative, form. A mere smattering of the knowledge of an engineer would have shown to Sir James the absurdity of his proposition.'-Ibid. p. 18.

• To a calm investigation of it, the following divisions of the subject seem to be necessary :

' Ist. Whether Ireland, in her physical capacities of position and of form, exterior and interior, be not a natural fortress of the first order.

* 2nd. Whether Ireland, in her moral capacity, conjunctly with her physical powers, possess not a garrison of the first order of military population, of sufficient number to man all her defences, together with a power within herself of perpetually recruiting and maintaining such a garrison.

• 3rd.

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