The Knickerbocker, Or New-York Monthly Magazine, June 1844 Part 16
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THE EKKALAEOBION is the name given to an establishment opposite the Washington Hotel, in Broadway, where the formation of chickens, _ab initio_, is 'practised to a great extent.' And really, it is in some respects an awful exhibition, to a reflecting mind. It is as it were a visible exposition of the source of life. You see the pulse of existence throbbing in the yet unformed mass, which assumes, day after day, the image of its kind; until at length the little creature knocks for admittance into this breathing world; steps forth from the shell in which it had been so long 'cabined, cribbed, confined, bound in;' and straitway walks abroad, 'regenerated, disenthralled,' and ready for its 'grub.' By all means, reader, go and see this interesting and instructive exhibition.
It is provocative of much reflection, aside from the mere contemplation of it as a matter of curiosity. THE correspondent who sends us the following, writes upon the envelope containing it: 'I have endeavored to preserve the measure of the original, and at the same time to present a literal translation.' It will be conceded, we think, that he has been successful in his endeavor. Perhaps in some lines (as in '_Pertransivit gladius_') the translation is a little _too_ literal:
Stabat mater dolorosa, Near the cross the Mother weeping Juxta crucem lacrymosa, Stood, her watch in sorrow keeping Dum pendebat filius: While was hanging there her SON: Cujus animam gementem, Through her soul in anguish groaning, Contristantem et dolentem, O most sad, HIS fate bemoaning, Pertransivit gladius. Through and through that sword was run.
O quam tristis et afflicta Oh how sad with woe oppressed, Fuit illa benedicta, Was she then, the Mother blessed, Mater unigeniti: Who the sole-begotten bore: Quae moerebat, et dolebat, As she saw his pain and anguish, Et tremebat, cum videbat She did tremble, she did languish, Nati poenas inclyti. Weep her holy Son before.
Quis est homo qui non fleret, Who is he his tears concealing, Christi matrem si videret Could have seen such anguish stealing In tanto supplicio? Through the Saviour-mother's breast?
Quis posset non contristari, Who his deepest groans could smother, Piam matrem contemplari, Had he seen the holy Mother Dolentem cum filio? By her Son with grief oppressed!
Pro peccatis suae gentis Christ for Israel's transgression Vidit Jesum in tormentis, Saw she suffer thus oppression, Et flagellis subditum; Torment, and the cruel blow: Vidit suum dulcem natum Saw Him desolate and dying; Morientem, desolatum, Him she loved, beheld Him sighing Dum emisit spiritum. Forth His soul in deepest woe.
Eja mater, fons amoris, Source of love, thy grief, O Mother, Me sentire vim doloris Grant with thee to share another-- Fac, ut tecum lugeam. Grant that I with thee may weep: Fac ut ardeat cor meum, May my heart with love be glowing, In amando Christum Deum, All on Christ my God bestowing, Ut sibi complaceam. In His favor ever keep.
Saneta mater, istud agas, This, oh holy Mother! granting, Crucifixi fige plagas In my heart the wounds implanting Cordi meo valide: Of His cross, oh let me bear: Tui nati vulnerati, Pangs with which thy Son when wounded Jam dignati pro me pati, Deigned for me to be surrounded, Poenas mecum divide.  Grant, oh grant that I may share.
Fac me vere tecum flere, Be my eyes with tears o'erflowing, Crucifixo condolere, For the crucified bestowing, Donec ego vixero: Till my eyes shall close in death: Juxta crucem tecum stare, Ever by that cross be standing, Te libenter sociare Willingly with thee demanding In planctu desidero. But to share each mournful breath.
Virgo virginum praeclara, Thou of virgins blest forever, Mihi jam non sis amara Oh deny I pray thee never Fac me tecum plangere; That I may lament with thee: Fadut portem Christi mortem, Be my soul His death enduring, Passionis ejus sortem, And His passion--thus securing Et plagas recolere. Of His pains the memory.
Fac me plagis vulnerari, With those blows may I be smitten, Cruce hac inebriari, In my heart that cross be written, Ob amorem filii: For thy Son's dear love alway: Inflammatus et accensus Glowing, burning with affection, Per te, virgo, sim defensus Grant me, Virgin! thy protection, In die judicii. In the dreaded judgment-day.
Fac me cruce custodiri, May that cross its aid extend me, Morte Christi praemuniri, May the death of Christ defend me, Confoveri gratia: With its saving grace surround; Quando corpus morietur, And when life's last link is riven, Fac ut animae donetur To my soul be glory given, Paradisi gloria. That in Paradise is found.
_St. Paul's College._ G. H. H.
'_A Story of Sorrow and Crime_' is an affecting monitory sketch, devoid of that mawkishness which is sometimes the characteristic of kindred performances. The writer's reflections upon the career of his hero, remind us of that beautiful passage in one of BLAIR'S essays: 'Life is short: the poor pittance of seventy years is worth being a villain for. What matters it if your neighbor lies in a splendid tomb? Sleep you with innocence!
Look behind you through the track of time; a vast desert lies open in the retrospect; through this desert have your fathers journeyed on, until wearied with years and sorrows, they sunk from the walks of men. You must leave them where they fell, and you are to go a little farther, where you will find eternal rest. Whatever you may have to encounter between the cradle and the grave, every moment is big with innumerable events, which come not in slow succession, but bursting forcibly from a revolving and unknown cause, fly over this orb with diversified influence.' 'F.
P.'s '_Western Adventures_' have good _points_ about them, but if published entire, would we think disappoint himself perhaps as much as his readers. Here is an anecdote, however, which is worth 'jotting down' in types: 'I met not long after in New-York a man who had just been induced to rent the very hotel in Kentucky which was the scene of the reverses I have been describing. Aware that I had at one time kept the establishment, he was anxious to know my opinion of its pecuniary promise. 'I don't expect to make much the first year,' said he; 'I shall be satisfied if I 'realize' all expenses. But do you think I shall clear myself the first year?' 'I haven't the slightest doubt of it,' I replied; '_I cleared myself_ before the first six months were up, and was d--d _glad_ to get off so; and I rather guess that _you'll_ be too, in about half that time.'
And he was!' Could there be a more affecting picture than that of a fond mother learning for the first time from the tell-tale prattle of her little ones that she is 'given over to darkness and the worm' by her friends, who had disguised from her the fatal truth? Such is the scene depicted in these pathetic lines:
'He speaketh now: 'Oh, mother dear!'
Murmurs the little child: And there is trouble in his eyes, Those large blue eyes so mild:
'Oh, mother dear! they say that soon, When here I seek for thee I shall not find thee--nor out there, Under the old oak-tree;
'Nor up stairs in the nursery, Nor any where, they say: Where wilt thou go to, mother dear?
Oh, do not go away!'
There was long silence, a deep hush, And then the child's low sob: _Her_ quivering eyelids close: one hand Keeps down the heart's quick throb.
And the lips move, though sound is none, That inward voice is prayer.
And hark! 'THY will, O LORD, be done!'
And tears are trickling there--
Down that pale cheek, on that young head; And round her neck he clings; And child and mother murmur out Unutterable things.
_He_ half unconscious, _she_ deep-struck With sudden, solemn truth, That number'd are her days on earth-- Her shroud prepared in youth:
That all in life her heart holds dear GOD calls her to resign: She hears, feels, trembles--but looks up, And sighs 'THY will be mine!''
'I came down from Albany the other evening,' writes a correspondent, 'in that floating palace, the KNICKERBOCKER steamer; I slept in your KNICKERBOCKER state-room; arrived in town, I took after dinner a KNICKERBOCKER omnibus, and rode up to the 'Westminster Abbey Bowling Saloon,' named of KNICKERBOCKER; I called on you with my article for the KNICKERBOCKER Magazine; and on my way down, enjoyed a delightful ablution at the KNICKERBOCKER Bath; stepped into the KNICKERBOCKER Theatre, and 'laughed consumedly' over an amusing play; and finally, closed with a cup of delicious tea, green and black, and anchovy-toast, at KNICKERBOCKER Hall. Every thing, I was glad to see, was KNICKERBOCKER.' Very flattering; yet we dare say our friend was not aware that this Magazine was the _pioneer_ in the use of this popular name in Gotham, and that its example has suggested, one after another, the namesakes to which he has alluded.
Such, howbeit, is the undeniable fact. We remarked the example of _catachresis_ to which 'L.' alludes, and laughed at it, we venture to say, as heartily as himself. It was not quite so glaring however as the confused images of a celebrated Irish advocate: 'I smell a rat; I see it brewing in the storm; and I will crush it in the bud!' We find several things to admire in our Detroit friend's '_Tale of Border Warfare_;' but he can't 'talk Indian'--that is very clear. The 'abrogynes'
are not in the habit of making interminable speeches: they leave that to white members of Congress, who pump up a feeling in a day's speech 'for Buncombe.' Do you remember what HALLECK says of RED-JACKET?
'The spell of eloquence is thine, that reaches The heart, and makes the wisest head its sport; And there's one rare, strange virtue in thy speeches, The secret of their mastery--_they are short_.'
Not one man in a thousand can talk or write the true 'Indian.' Our friend SA-GO-SEN-O-TA, formerly known as Col. WILLIAM L. STONE, is one of the best Indian writers in this country. His late letter 'To the Sachems, Chiefs, and Warriors of the Seneca Indians,' acknowledging the honor they had done him in electing him a chief, is a perfect thing in its kind. May it be long before the 'MASTER OF BREATH' shall call him to 'the fair hunting-grounds, through clouds bright as fleeces of gold, upon a ladder as beautiful as the rainbow!' Our entertaining '_Dartmoor Prisoner_'
has a pleasant story of a fellow-captive who on one occasion performed that 'cautionary' experiment which is sometimes denominated 'putting your foot in it.' The term is of legitimate origin, it should seem. According to the _Asiatic Researches_, a very curious mode of trying the title to land is practised in Hindostan. Two holes are dug in the disputed spot, in each of which the lawyers on either side put one of their legs, and remain there until one of them is tired, or complains of being stung by the insects, in which case his client is defeated. In this country it is the client and not the lawyer who 'puts his foot into it!' We have commenced in the present, and shall conclude in our next number, a '_Legend of the Conquest of Spain_,' by WASHINGTON IRVING. We derive it from the same source whence we received the 'Legend of Don RODERICK,'
lately published in these pages. We commend its graphic limnings and stirring incidents to the admiration of our readers. A FRIEND and correspondent in a sister city dashes in with a rich brush, in one of his familiar letters to us, a sketch of a boss-painter, who was renovating the writer's house with sundry pots of paint; a conceited, half-informed prig, who having grown rich, talks of 'going to Europe in the steam-boat,' and has a huge fancy for seeing Italy. 'Yes,' said the house-and-sign RAPHAEL, 'I must see Rome and Athens; them Romans allers made a great impression on me; the land of APELLES and XERXES; ah! that must be worth travelling for.' 'Would you not rather run over England?' I asked; but the ass _poohed_ at England, and on the strength of his daubing our house-blinds, claimed an interest in the Fine Arts abroad: 'No, Sir, give me Italy--the Loover and the Vattykin; them's the places for my money! Gods! how I should like to rummage over them old-masters! They beat _us_ all hollow--that's a fact. I'll give in to them. There never was such painters before, nor never will be. I want to study 'em.' 'Yes,' I rejoined; ''twould interest you, doubtless; and after having studied the great painters in Italy, you might return by way of Switzerland, and scrape acquaintance with the _glaciers_.' The booby did not _take_, but only stared and said: 'Oh, they're famous for glass-work there, be they?' This lover of the Fine Arts had a counterpart in the man who having 'made as much money as he wanted by tradin' in Boston,' went 'a-travelling abroad;'
and while in Florence, called on POWERS the sculptor, with a design to 'patronize' him a little. After looking at his 'Greek Slave,' his 'Eve,'
and other gems of art, he remarked that he 'thought they'd look a good 'eal better if they had some clothes on. I'm pretty well off,' he continued, 'and ha'n't a chick nor child in the world; and I thought I'd price a _statty_ or two. What's the damage, now, for that one you're peckin' at?' 'It should be worth from four to five thousand dollars, I think,' answered POWERS. 'What! five thousand dollars for _that 'are_! I cal'lated to buy me a piece of _stattyary_ before I went home, but _that's_ out of the question! _Hasn't stattyary riz lately?_ How's paintin's here now?' Just complaints are made by our city contemporaries of the exorbitant rates of postage upon weekly periodicals.
Mr. WILLIS complains, in the '_New-Mirror_' weekly journal, that country postmasters charge so much postage on that periodical by mail, that in many cases it would make the work cost to its country subscribers something like ten dollars a year! All postage in this country is at too high a rate; and so long as it remains so, the law will continue to be evaded.
'Cheating UNCLE SAM' is not considered a very heinous offence. There is nothing one robs with so little compunction as one's country. It is at the very worst robbing only eighteen millions of people. The lines sent us in rejoinder to the stanzas of 'C. W. D.,' in a late issue, would not be _original_ in our pages; nor could we hope to have many _new_ readers for them, after they have appeared in, and of course been copied from, that exceedingly pleasant and well-edited daily journal, the _Boston Evening Transcript_. HAUFFMAN, the German poet, was recently expelled from the Prussian dominions, and all his works proscribed thenceforth. 'Served him right;' for in one of his works appears the 'word following, to wit:'
'_Sleuerverweigerungsverfassungsmassigberechtig_!'--meaning a man who is exempt by the constitution from the payment of taxes. 'Myscheeves thick'
must needs follow such terrific words. 'We have heard,' says a London critic, in allusion to this jaw-breaker, 'of a gentleman, a member of the _Marionettenschauspielhausengesellschaft_, who was said to be an excellent performer on the '_Constantinopolitanischetudelsackpfeife_!'' We owe a word of apology to our friends the publishers, for the omission of notices which we had prepared of their publications, and which are crowded out by our title-page and index, that were forgotten until the last moment. We shall 'bring up arrears' in our next.
The Knickerbocker, Or New-York Monthly Magazine, June 1844 Part 16
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