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for Baiæ, that they might interchange frequent visits during their retirement, he commences his journey at the fifth hour. On the route, our author contents himself with a somewhat expanded paraphrase of the first part of Horace's journey to Brundusium.* Then follows a minute and graphic description of the grounds and villa of Gallus, and of his reception by the well-fed and strongly attached members of his rural family.
Pomponius intercepts and suppresses the letter to Lycoris, and, presenting himself in disguise at her door, is introduced to her apartment, and attempts to excite her jealousy. But she has previously received through a faithful freedman a message of current tenor with the letter, and money for her journey, and, by going to Baiæ, leaves an opening for a detailed and vivid sketch of that most celebrated watering-place of antiquity. After Gallus has paid Lycoris a visit there, and on the day appointed for her reception at his villa, a courier arrives from Pomponius informing him of the continuance of Cæsar's anger, representing the severest decrees against him as impending, and urging his immediate presence in Rome that he may take measures for his own preservation. He finds on his arrival, that he has been forbidden to enter the palace of Augustus, or to reside in any of the provinces ; but his estate and his city residence are still untouched. His confidential freedman, who, as well as Lycoris, has in vain endeavoured to open his eyes to the true character of Pomponius, urges him to propitiate the tyrant by outward marks of submission, and by the intercession of Virgil ; but a visit from the false friend confirms him in the opposite counsel. He determines publicly to brave the emperor's anger, and makes the circuit of the forum in unusually sumptuous attire, and with a lofty and defiant bearing. In the evening, he sups by previous appointment with Lentulus, an
* We are inclined to dissent from Becker's criticism on viator, (Sat. I. 5, 16), which he supposes to denote one of the passengers, and not the mule-driver, alleging that the boatman at once managed the boat and the mule, and referring to vv. 18, 19, where the nauta ties the mule to a rock and goes to sleep. To us the very etymology of viator seems to denote one who works his passage ; and that the weary driver should have first gone to sleep, and left his charge to be tethered by the boatman, only adds a new trait of grotesqueness to the incidents of the night, and reminds us of like interventions which have fallen under our own observation, when the poppy-crowned god has glided along the tow-path for miles before he could be wooed on board the suffocating boat. VOL. LXVI. - No. 139.
exquisite and epicure of the inmost initiation; and the supper, of which we have a minute description, presents rather too complete a catalogue for probability of all the refinements of dietetic luxury and display named or hinted at by Horace, Juvenal, Martial, and Petronius. Pomponius brings to the banquet two unknown umbræ, who contrive to draw from Gallus, in the excitement of deep drinking, treasonable speeches against Augustus, then leave the house abruptly, and the next morning appear in the Senate as witnesses against Gallus, on the charge of high treason. At the same time, Gallus receives a letter from Lycoris, giving him the whole history of her connection with Pomponius, and apprising him too late of the fatal errors into which he had been hurried by his misplaced confidence. News of the decree of banishment and confiscation reaches him through a friendly source ; and before the official messenger arrives at his door, he has written his last mandates, and fallen upon the sword that hung upon the wall as a memorial of the victories to which he owed his brief wealth and splendor. The relenting and grief of Augustus leave room for a public and honorable funeral, the ceremonies of which constitute the concluding chapter.
The revolting catastrophe of Gallus's suicide was not only demanded for the story by fidelity to fact, but claimed a prominent place in any faithful sketch of Roman manners in the Augustan age. Suicide seems then to have first become the reigning fashion of humbled heroism and disappointed ambition. It was never an indigenous custom in Greece, and was discountenanced alike by the principal legislators and philosophers of Athens ; and though frequent in Judea after its political connection with Rome, there are but two instances of it on record in all that part of Jewish history that precedes the Christian era ; nor is there the slightest reference to it in the didactic portions of either the Old Testament or the New, which could hardly have been the case, had the crime often fallen under the cognizance of the sacred writers. Nor does there occur more than here and there a solitary instance of this crime in the early portions of Roman history, and then only, as in the case of Lucretia, under such a pressure of outward circumstances as essentially to modify the moral complexion of the deed. Its frequency seems to have resulted from the action of Stoicism upon the previously in
flexible elements of Roman character. The stern, harsh doctrines of the Porch could only mould the fickle, pliant Athenian into a decent tenacity of purpose, while the most absolute fatalism could not quench bis hope under misfortune, or subdue the elasticity of his spirit. But the Roman, when Stoicism had given the last degree of tension to the rigid fibres of his moral nature, could not bend, and was constrained to break, under the weight of severe calamity. Hence suicide, which, under the sanction of Zeno's example, was at first only a permitted act, became, under the emperors, an absolute duty for the desperately unfortunate, and is repeatedly referred to by Seneca as the climax of heroic virtue. The excursus appended to Gallus cover almost every
department of private life, the banquet and the funeral, dress and games, education and literature ; and as every statement is confirmed by the citation of original authorities or existing monuments, the question of their accuracy and trustworthiness ceases to be debatable. The story, however, is full of real or probable anachronisms, which are not indicated with any degree of distinctness in the excursus. Gallus died forty years before the death of Augustus, - at an age when the wealth of conquered kingdoms, the contagion of foreign manners, and the overthrow of Roman liberty were only commencing their work of corruption. Luxury was far below its climax, and both the memory of early simplicity, and a public sentiment not yet wholly silenced or perverted, set bounds to the extravagance and ostentation of individuals, while Augustus himself, with many odious traits of character, was yet a very anchorite, compared with most of his succes
Horace's darkest pictures of society and manners are rose-colored by the side of Juvenal's. But the larger part of the materials of the story of Gallus are derived from Juvenal and Martial, who wrote a full century after the death of the hero, and from the excavations at Pompeii, which bear valid testimony with reference to no earlier date. This blending of ages so near in themselves, and made so much the nearer by the remote perspective in which we view them, was perhaps unavoidable, certainly allowable, in what was professedly a work of fiction ; but might not the author, in the critical part of his work, have taken more diligent note of time, and presented under every prominent head, by a chron
ological arrangement of his authorities, a sketch of the growth of Roman luxury and profligacy under the earlier emperors ?
Charicles, as a story, is in every respect greatly inferior to Gallus. Its hero is a young man of no definite traits of character, and the whole plot is laid among “ people whom nobody knows " ; nor are we introduced to a single real or imaginary personage of any consideration in literature, philosophy, or political life. Indeed, the scene is laid at the period, so barren alike of genius and of virtue, which succeeded the battle of Chæronea. Why this era should have been selected it is hard to say, especially as all the authorities most relied on belonged to the preceding century, and might have been more justly cited in illustration of the age of Pericles. We suppose that we have in Charicles and his associates a very faithful picture of Athenian cockneyism, its manners, haunts, occupations, and vices, but hardly relieved by any distinct view of domestic life, for which the materials lay ready at the author's hand. There is, indeed, a lovely female figure led two or three times across the stage, and finally, in youthful widowhood, married to the hero ; but her story is so awkwardly got up, and the passion for her sits so ungracefully on the insipid bridegroom, as to authorize the suspicion that she was invented only to furnish opportunity for the description of a Greek wedding. We could have wished to see more of the beautiful Cleobule, and would at the same time have gladly missed from a tale specially designed for the instruction of ingenuous youth the adventure of Charicles with the Corinthian harlot, however true it may be to the prevalent style of manners and morals in that metropolis of luxury and lust.
The excursus appended to this volume are full and explicit on most of the subjects to which they relate ; but, while we could dispense with that on the Hetæræ, and while we could hardly have expected Charicles to take us to the Academy or the Stoa, we should have been glad to go with Becker himself to resorts no less intimately connected with Athenian life than the barbers' shops or the gymnasia.
Not having seen these books in the original German, we can pass no judgment on the general fidelity of the transla
But his work bears marks of the rawest juvenility and the coarsest taste; and, contrary to what might have been ex
pected, these marks are tenfold more frequent in Charicles than in Gallus, though in the interval between the publication of the two the translator had acquired his clerical prænomen, and had emerged from his baccalaureate Master in Arts and Fellow of Lincoln College, Oxford. There is hardly a page of Charicles on which we do not find, in the mouths of the interlocutors or in describing their doings, either mere Anglicisms, which could not be written in Greek, or phrases appropriate to exclusively modern ideas, or the most idiomatic colloquialisms, which, as applied to objects and customs of remote antiquity, have the effect of the grossest burlesque. We will justify this criticism by a few instances taken at random. We have in a single sentence “ intellectual sagas,” and “fairy-tales full of superstition and glamoury,” as the staple of nursery instruction for Athenian children, p. 9. Two friends, after breakfasting together under a tree,“ broke up their bivouac,” p. 16. Phorion has in his library a collection of “historic souvenirs,” p: 43 ; and “ delicate objects of wax-work” are “ his especial hobby,' A
young men amuse themselves with " nundrums,” p. 83. Charicles visits the “ spa of Ædepsos,"
We have " a round table veneered with maple,” p. 118. The heroine of the story is duly provided with an
abigail," p. 171. We have also a great deal of the slipshod French, which may add a grace to the dialect of cockneydom, but always disfigures à printed page. Thus we have “recherché unguents," " malgré his refusal,” “ passing the cortége” (in which, by the way, a “parasol,” a "chaise," and a “breakfast equipage” were prominent objects). At a banquet, which forms one of the principal and best described scenes in the volume, the Sicilian cook is an artiste, a danseuse " throws a summersault [a word neither French nor English] right into the centre of a hoop, and then out again,” after which, a boy, who had long been her fellow-performer, “ made his debut.” In several of these cases, it will be seen that Mr. Metcalfe has not only violated good taste in his choice of words, but that he is entirely ignorant of the actual power of such words as he uses. But his most surprising feat of Gallicism occurs in the translation of one of the Prefaces, in which he makes his author say, “ It cannot be denied that some chapters have been elaborated with more penchant than others.” Now Mr. Metcalfe