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THE MONK AND THE SHEPHERD. The “ Landlady's Daughter" is one of
the most popular of German songs, and is
said to be a great favorite among the stuWhy stand'st thou thus, in silent grief? dents of the various universities. We Oh! shepherd, tell to me;
have either read somewhere, or the idea is Beats there e'en here, a wounded heart, That draws me unto thee ?"
our own, that a political meaning is couched
in these verses, the dead daughter repreSHEPHERD.
senting the spirit of German freedom, and “And dost thou ask? oh! look below
the exclamations uttered by the three stuOn my beloved vale;
dents respectively, the sentiments with The wide expanse is flowerless all,
which its loss is regarded by different The woodland sere and pale.”
Once over the Rhine three students strayed, “ Yet sorrow not—what is thy grief?
At our landlady's door a halt they made.
“Oh! landlady, hast thon good beer and wine, The trees with blossoms beam.
And where is that fair little daughter of thine ?" “ Then plant the cross, to which I kneel,
My wine and beer are fresh and clear; Within the verdant grove;
My daughter lies stretch'd on her cold deathIt boasts nor fruit nor How'r, but bears
bier." The sign of deathless love."
As into the chamber they took their way,
In a sable coffin the maiden lay. The “ Robber seems like a sketch of one of the bold outlaws of Sherwood For- Then quickly putting the death-veil by, est. The portrait would be no disgrace to The first look'd on with a mournful eye: Robin Hood himself.
“Oh! would thou wert living, fair maiden," 'Twas on a pleasant day in spring,
said he ; A robber left the greenwood shade,
“Forever henceforth, my beloved thou should'st When lo! along the rugged path,
be." Came tripping by a gentle maid.
The second the veil o'er the features cast,
And turn'd away, while his lears fell fast: “Jf 'stead of these wild flowers of May," Thus spoke the forest's dauntless son,
“ Alas! that thou li'st on thy cold death-bier“ Thy basket bore the wealth of kings,
Thou whom I've loved for so many a year." Thou should'st in safety journey on.” The beauteous pilgrim's parting form
The third quickly lifted again the veil, He followed long with eager eye:
And press'd a kiss on that mouth so pale: Thro' meadows fair, she wander'd on, And sought the quiet hamlet nigh.
“I love thee to-day, as through all the past
I will love thee hereafter while time shall last." Soon ’mid the garden's lavish blooms, Concealed, her lovely figure stood;
Here is a ballad of the days of the Then turned the robber back and sought
Northmen, containing more strength and A shelter in the dark pine wood.
nerve than is commonly found in Uhland's
THE BLIND KING.
Forth from his cavern, fierce and tall, the robber stood reveald,
Returning now they're bringing back thy son with spear and shield-
shalt place my sword that rings so clear, And thou, Gunild, my dirge shalt sing, oh! ransomed maiden dear.” “ Lines to a Nameless One” are some
dead but sceptred sovereigns what sentimental, and decidedly German Who still rule our spirits from their urns ;" A spirit ; but pure in feeling and pleasing and while his songs preserve the records n expression.
of the past, which else had perished from
mortal memory, they afford the surest Upon a mountain's summit,
pledge of his own exemption from oblivion. Oh! might I stand with thee, Where vales and crested forests
THE MINSTREL'S RETURN.
There on his bier the poet lies,
His pallid lips are songless now,
A wreath of Daphne's golden hair
Adorns that once inventive brow.
They place around, in fair, white scrolls, My heart's unfathom'd secret,
His minstrel lays, the last he sang,
And in his arms all silent lies
The harp that late so clearly rang.
Tho'sunk in death's oblivious sleep,
Round ev'ry ear still floats his lay,
And bitter grief it wakens still,
the lordly, past away. The dead poet, though his earthly voice
When months and years had rollid their
course, 5 hushed forever, “ still speaketh.” The Around his tomb the cypress, grew, mmortality of genius is his lot-he be
And they who sadly mourn’d his fate, ongs to that glorious company of
Slept in the grave's deep slumber too.
Yet, as with quicken'd strength and power,
Returns the year's delightful prime, So now, with youth and grace renewid,
The minstrel roams in his new time.
His blooming looks had flown. “ These sunken eyes, these cheeks eo white, Become thee well, thou faithful knight
I love thee more than ever."
The gentle maid the armor loosed,
Which he, the wronged one, wore. “What see l here? a sable garb?
What loved one is no more ?" “For one beloved my sorrows flow, Whom I on earth no more shall know,
Nor ever in the future.”
He mingles with earth's living crowds,
His form no funeral trace displays ; The olden age, that deem'd him
dead, Itself lives only in his lays. * Walter the True Knight " is a ballad of the middle ages, portraying man's fidelity and woman's inconstancy, contrary to the usual burthen of such ditties, and showing that all damsels were not, in those days, quite so devoted as the “nut brown maid " in the old English song, who refused to abandon her lover, even when he informed her
She sank beside his feet, and there
With outstretched arms she lay : “On me, poor, hapless penitent,
Some pity take, I pray; Oh! raise me up, and make me blest, And let me on thy faithful breast
From all my grief recover.” “Forbear, forbear, thou wretched child,
For vain is thy request;
And torpid is this breast.
And never more returneth."
“ That he must to the greenwood goe,
Alone, a bannyshed man.”
Our Lady's church beside ;
By sorrows deeply tried :
That voice of old so welcome ?”
“Whom see I here? the faithless maid,
By me belov'd of yore?
Of gold and gems thy store ?" “ Alas! that I my true one left! For Paradise from me is reft
With thee again I find it.”
Thus have we culled, here and there, a few scattered flowers from the wilderness of sweets in which we have lately been wandering ; but, like all exotics, when transplanted from the parent soil, they have lost in the process much of their native freshness and vigor. And even if all their “original brightness ” has not yet departed, the faint trace of its existence that may still remain, affords but little indication of their beauty when flourishing in a more genial clime. They resemble the plant which, in the masque of
· Comus,” the shepherd gave to the attendant spirit : “The leaf was darkish and had prickles on it, But in another country, as he said, Bore a bright, golden flow'r, but not in this soil."
With pitying hand he raised the maid,
Upon his courser sprung,
With frail, white arms she clung. “Oh! Walter true, this heart, alas! Is beating now 'gainst cold dull brass,
And not upon thy bosom."
To Walter's castle on they rode,
There all was still and lone; The visor from his face she took-
A PLEA FOR PHILOSOPHY.
Some will have it, that all philosophy is system continually surmounting another, vain ; and that the time bestowed upon it, only to be as certainly overwhelmed after in our colleges and elsewhere, is only the same fashion, in its turn? It will be wasted, or worse than wasted, in the pur- time enough to challenge our respect for suit of a phantom that can never be philosophy, when philosophy shall have reached, while it leads us away continu- come to some proper understanding, in the ally from the proper use of life. What first place, of her own mind and meaning. men need in this world, we are told, is not When she shall have become once mistress speculation, but an active apprehension of of herself--a house no longer divided against the living realities with which they are im- | itself, the very cavern of Æolus where all mediately surrounded, and the proper pent-up minds are struggling perpetually practical use of these for the ends of their in fierce conflict—it will be time enough to own existence. The world is a fact, think of proclaiming her mistress of the broadly and palpably spread out before world. Till then, let her be remanded to our senses; and our life is a fact, which her proper dwelling place in the clouds, we are required to turn to right account, the land of far-off shadows and dreams. by making the best of it for ourselves and The world has too much serious business others, in the circumstances in which we on hand, to be interrupted by her pretenmay happen to be placed. Why, then, sions, and may reasonably say, in the lanshould we occupy ourselves with things guage of Nehemiah to Sanballat and Gethat lie wholly beyond the sphere of our shem the Arabian of old : “ I am doing a actual existence, and that can only serve great work, so that I cannot come down ; to disqualify us for understanding and why should the work cease, whilst I leave using the world as it is ? The sense of the it and come down to you?” world is sufficiently clear of itself for such All this is very comfortable doctrine, of as are disposed to take things just as they course, for those who have no disposition are, without troubling their heads about and not much power, possibly, to think what they are pleased to call its inward for themselves, while they have just as spiritual constitution and design. We little wish or will to be bound by the have had ample experiment besides of the thinking of others. Agrarianism, indeed, vanity of philosophy, in the past history we may call it, of the most truly demoof its own achievements. The world has cratic order; for is it not something more been philosophizing since the days of Py- to level thus the aristocracy of mind, than thagoras at least, and from a still earlier it is to bring down simply the aristocracy date, and yet to what has it come in the of birth or fortune ? Is it not a species of end ? Has its philosophy made it any self-exaltation, particularly soothing to the wiser or better? Has it accomplished any sense we commonly have of our own imsolid gain whatever for the human race? portance, to be able in this way to comIs the world improved in any respect by pare ourselves so favorably with what has the long exploded systems of Greece, by generally been counted the highest order the profound lucubrations of the school of the world's intellect, and the true nobilmen in the middle ages, or by the vast up-Jity of its life ? The man who can say of heavings of thought which have had place all philosophy, It is mere wind, must needs since the days of Immanuel Kant, in the feel himself in this respect somewhat sumodem metaphysics of Germany? Is it perior to the great minds which, in differnot, in fact, a history of contradictions and ent ages, have counted it worthy of their confusions, from beginning to end-one attention and study. It is much, surely, for any one to have the thought clearly modern German philosophy has given present in his own consciousness : “ Py- birth. Philosophy and infidelity are found thagoras was a fool, Plato was a fool, Ar- to have, in all ages, a close inward affinity istotle was a fool; all the old Greek phi- for each other. The first may be conlosophers were fools; the seraphic, irre- sidered the elder sister, if not in fact the fragable doctors of the school divinity, proper natural mother of the second. Thomas Aquinas, Bonaventura, Duns Sco- That state of the church accordingly is to tus, the whole of them together, were be accounted the most prosperous, in fools; and the same character belongs which religion is as little as possible the most eminently to the modern German subject of speculation; and the man who thinkers, Kant, Fichte, Schelling, Hegel, meddles least with the contents of his and all who think it worth while to waste faith, in the way of inward thought and any time upon their speculations : but I reflection, is likely to show himself the am wise ; for I have sense enough to best Christian, and make his way most sucknow that all philosophy is nonsense, and cessfully to heaven. that the less the world is troubled with it But now, in opposition to all such popthe better. My life is more rational, and ular cant,—that can hardly be said for the likely to be of far more account at last, most part to understand its own meaning than theirs.” This, we say, is comforta- it is at once an ample reply to say, that ble; and it is not much wonder, perhaps, philosophy belongs to the very constituthat philosophy should be in bad credit tion of our life, and cannot be expelled with so many persons, when so fair a pre- from it therefore without the greatest viomium in this way is made to rest on un- lence and wrong. For what is it at last, thinking ignorance and sloth.
more or less than the endeavor to know And then, the case becomes still worse, ourselves and the world, and the form in of course, when the prejudice of religion which, at any given time, this knowledge comes in, as it is always ready to do, in reflects itself in our consciousness? favor of the same conclusion. It is bad And can it be a question at all, whether it enough, we are told, that philosophy should be proper and right for us to seek the pretend to interfere with the actual world, knowledge of ourselves in this way? It in its common life, abstracting men's lies in the idea of humanity itself, that it minds from its practical realities, and should comprehend within itself such a amusing them with its own theoretic mode of existence, just as it necessarily dreams; but when the evil is made to includes also the life of art or the law of reach over, in the same form, to the sphere social, or political organization. The quesof religion and faith, it is something still tion whether philosophy is to be tolerated inore difficult to be endured. And is there and approved, is precisely like the quesnot in fact an original, necessary opposi- tion whether we should approve and toletion between revelation and philosophy ? rate government or art. These are all Is not faith the simple contrary of specu- so many several spheres only of our hulation ? Is it not written, “Let no man man existence itself, which are necessary spoil you through philosophy ;” plainly to make it true and complete, and which implying that we should have nothing .to cannot be sundered from it, without overdo with it, in the business of Christianity ? throwing, at the same time, its essential And is not the history of the church from constitution. It is not by any arbitrary the beginning full of instruction and warn- option or will of ours, that they come to ing, in the same direction ? Have not all have the right of being comprehended in corruptions and heresies sprung from phi- the organic structure of the world ; their losophy, undertaking to rule and set aside right is as old as the world itself, and must the simple doctrine of God's word ? Wit- stand as long as man and nature shall be ness the flood of Gnostic speculations in found to endure. If any number of men, the second century ; the subsequent errors for instance, in vast world-convention asof Origen and his school; the scholastic sembled, should pretend to sit in judgment subtleties of the Aristotelian theology, at on the right and title of the fine arts, mua still later period ; and above all, the ra- sic, sculpture, poetry and the rest, to re
Nie, pantheistic systems, to which the tain their place in the world, and at last