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This last surname refers to a signal deliverance which Pan had wrought for the lovers. Chloe had been carried off with all her flocks by an invading army of the Methymnæns; but when the plunderers took up their station for the night, Pan, by strange portents, infused into them what is termed a panic terror, and directed in a dream the release of his votary as the propitiation of his offended divinity. This incident may serve as a specimen of the events with which the story is filled up, but of which we have not thought it necessary to give an account, as they contribute nothing to its final developement.
We have thus conducted our readers to the union of these affectionate and innocent lovers ; and we trust that they will not be so fastidious as to be displeased at the short glimpse which Longus has given us of the simple and tranquil mode in which their later days were passed.
In our translations we have endeavoured to retain every turn of thought by adhering closely to the original; but all persons familiar with the ancient writers must be aware how impossible it is to convey at the same time any notion of the beauty of the language. We have already alluded to the allegorical narrative of Philetas as one of the most fanciful passages of the work. It is literally translated in the Liberal; but it possesses so much poetical beauty, that we will venture to present as close and simple a version of it as we can, in the stanza which the custom of our own poetry has consecrated to allegory.
Then in their joyaunce came a man of eld,
Or filled this grotto of the nymphs with song ;
avail him to plead that he borrowed his quotations from Bayle ; for Bayle, where he introduces the remarks on the indecency, opus alioqui tam obscænum est, &c., has taken the trouble expressly to explain the reference of alioqui to the criticisms which went before on the conduct of the plot.
Another curious instance of literary carelessness relative to Longus, which harsh judges have considered as literary dishonesty, is noticed in a note in the Museum Criticum, No. III. p. 409. It relates to a lacuna, which unfortu. nately occurs just at the point where Chloe and Daphnis fall in love.
And now, he said, fair children, ye shall hear
And summer apples weigh my branches down; And now are grapes and figs and myrtle-berries brown.
When morning sparkles through the misty air,
And, but for fence around the garden made,
And there at noontide as I went to-day,
For much I feared, that little naked boy
But lightly he escaped, and laughing fled;
But never kid or calf from place to place
All breathless therefore on my staff I lean
And asked whose child he was, and what he meant,
he was so fair a child, That, angry as I was, my anger was beguiled.
More lovely seemed he as he laughed, I wis :
pears and apples I would give him store,
More sweet than nightingale in wild wood bowers,
His laughing voice so musically rung:
No child am I; though child I seem, more old
“ And thee I know, how in thy budding days
full fit the kine to feed, Around thy hearth-stone throng with gladsome face: So Daphnis with like care and Chloe now I grace.
now a race
“ I lead them till they meet at peep of day,
Or revel in thy fountain's fresh’ning flow :
Nor thou of me as wasteful rifler deem,
“ Farewell; for thou alone canst tell the tale,
Between his wings a little bow he bore;
THE STAFFORDSHIRE COLLIERIES.
Many of my readers must recollect crossing, in the route from London to Holyhead, a miserable tract of country commencing a few miles beyond Birmingham and continuing to Wolverhampton. If the volumes of sulphureous vapour which I shall not compliment with the name of smoke, permitted them at intervals to “ view the dismal situation waste and wild,” they would observe the surface of the desert around them scarred and broken, as if it had just reposed from the heavings of an earthquake. Now and then they would shudder as they passed the mouth of a deserted mine left without any guard but the wariness of the passenger. Sometimes they would see a feeble and lambent flame, (called by the miners the wild fire,) issue from chaps in the parched earth. It is self-kindled by a process familiar to the chemist, and feeds on gas evolved by the refuse of the coal, that has been left in immense caverns hollowed by the labours of ages, over which the carriage of the unconscious traveller rolls for many miles. They would be struck also with the sight of houses from which the treacherous foundations have gradually shrunk, leaving them in such a state of obliquity with the horizon, as if they stood only to evince the contempt of themselves and their inhabitants for the laws of gravitation.
If the traveller, in addition to these attacks on his organs of smell and of vision, has nerve to inspect more closely the tremendous operations which are going on around him as far as the eye can reach, he must learn to endure the grating of harsh wheels, the roaring of the enormous bellows which, set in motion by the power of steam, urge the fires of the smelting furnace till they glow with almost the white brilliance of the noon-day sun. He must learn to care little for the sparks which fly from the half-molten iron, under the action of the forge, in torrents of burning rain, while the earth literally trembles beneath the strokes of a mightier hammer than Thor himself ever wielded against the giants.
But my present business is with the human part of the spectacle. The miners, or, as they call themselves, the colliers, are a curious race of men, and the study of their natural history would be replete with information and entertainment. Nothing can well be more uncouth than their appearance. Their figures are tall and robust in no ordinary degree, but their faces, when, by any accident, the coating of black dirt in which they are cased is partially rubbed off, show ghastly pale, and even at an early age they are ploughed in the deepest furrows. Their working dress consists of a tunic, or short frock, and trowsers of coarse flannel. Their holiday clothes are generally of cotton velvet, or velveteen as I believe the drapers call it, decorated with a profusion of shining metal buttons ; but they seem principally to pique themselves on their garters, which are made of worsted, and very gay in colour : these they tie on, so that a great part, as if by accident, appears below the knee. Their labour is intense. They stand, sit, or crouch for hours, often in the most irksome posture, undermining rocks of coal with a pickaxe. Not unfrequently they are crushed beneath the weight of the superincumbent mass, or suffocated by a deleterious exhalation, which they call by the expressive name of the choke damp *, and sometimes they are scorched by the explosion of the hydrogen which is generated in the depths of the mine a disaster from which the beautiful invention of Sir Humphrey Davy, the safety-lamp, does not always preserve them. This evil is not however attributable to any imperfection in the instrument, but to the astonishing recklessness of the men, who are with difficulty prevailed upon to observe the plainest and most simple directions even in matters of life and death.
The high cheek bones and the dialect of these people seem to argue them of northern descent. Perhaps in some remote age they may have swarmed from the Northumbrian hive to seize on the riches of the less adventurous or intelligent
* Often I believe carbonic acid gas.