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an imagination of a singularity, nay on the whole, of a truth and grandeur, unexampled elsewhere. In his Dreams there is a mystic complexity, a gloom, and amid the dim gigantic half-ghastly shadows, gleamings of a wizard splendour, which almost recall to us the visions of Ezekiel. By readers who have studied the Dream in the New-year's Eve we shall not be mistaken. Richter's Philosophy, a matter of no ordinary interest, both as it agrees with the common philosophy of Germany and disagrees with it, must not be touched on for the present. One only observation we shall make: it is not mechanical, or sceptical; it springs not from the forum or the laboratory, but from the depths of the human spirit; and yields as its fairest product a noble system of Morality, and the firmest conviction of Religion. In this latter point we reckon him peculiarly worthy of study. To a careless reader he might seem the wildest of infidels; for nothing can exceed the freedom with which he bandies to and fro the dogmas of religion, nay, sometimes, the highest objects of Christian reverence. There are passages of this sort, which will occur to every reader of Richter; but which, not to fall into the error we have already blamed in Madame de Stael, we shall refrain from quoting. More light is in the following: 'Or,' inquires he, in his usual abrupt way,' Or are all 'your Mosques, Episcopal Churches, Pagodas, Chapels of 'Ease, Tabernacles, and Pantheons, anything else but the 'Ethnic Forecourt of the Invisible Temple and its Holy of 'Holies ?'l Yet, independently of all dogmas, nay perhaps in spite of many, Richter is, in the highest sense of the word, religious. A reverence, not a self-interested fear, but a noble reverence for the spirit of all goodness, forms the crown and glory of his culture. The fiery elements of his nature have been purified under holy influences, and chastened by a principle of mercy and humility into peace and well-doing. An intense and continual faith in man's immor1 Note to Schmekle'a Journey.
tality and native grandeur accompanies him; from amid the vortices of life, he looks up to a heavenly loadstar; the solution of what is visible and transient, he finds in what is invisible and eternal. He has doubted, he denies, yet he believes. 'When, in your last hour,' says he,1 'when, in 'your last hour (think of this), all faculty in the broken 'spirit shall fade away and die into inanity, — imagination, 'thought, effort, enjoyment, — then at last will the night'flower of Belief alone continue blooming, and refresh with • its perfumes in the last darkness.' To reconcile these seeming contradictions, to explain the grounds, the manner, the congruity of Richter's belief, cannot be attempted here. We recommend him to the study, the tolerance, and even the praise, of all men who have inquired into this highest of questions with a right spirit; inquired with the martyr fearlessness, but also with the martyr reverence, of men that love Truth, and will not accept a lie. A frank, fearless, honest, yet truly spiritual faith is of all things the rarest in our time. Of writings which, though with many reservations, we have praised so much, our hesitating readers may demand some specimen. To unbelievers, unhappily, we have none of a convincing sort to give. Ask us not to represent the Peruvian forests by three twigs plucked from them; or the cataracts of the Nile by a handful of its water! To those, meanwhile, who will look on twigs as mere dissevered twigs, and a handful of water as only so many drops, we present the following. It is a summer Sunday night; Jean Paul is taking leave of the Hukelum Parson and his wife; like him we have long laughed at them or wept for them; like him, also, we are sad to part from them:
'We were all of us too deeply moved. We at last tore ourselves asunder from repeated embraces; my friend retired with the soul whom he loves. I remained alone behind with the Night.
'And I walked without aim through woods, through valleys, and 1 Levana, p. 251. over brooks, and through sleeping villages, to enjoy the great Night, like a Day. I walked, and still looked, like the magnet, to the region of midnight, to strengthen my heart at the gleaming twilight, at this upstretching aurora of a morning beneath our feet. White night-butterflies flitted, white blossoms fluttered, white stars fell, and the white snow-powder hung silvery in the high Shadow of the Earth, which reaches beyond the Moon, and which is our Night. Then began the -Solian Harp of the Creation to tremble and to sound, blown on from above; and my immortal Soul was a string in that Harp. — The heart of a brother, everlasting Man, swelled under the everlasting heaven, as the seas swell under the sun and under the moon. — The distant village clocks struck midnight, mingling, as it were, with the ever-pealing tone of ancient Eternity. — The limbs of my buried ones touched cold on my soul, and drove away its blots, as dead hands heal eruptions of the skin. — I walked silently through little hamlets, and close by their outer churchyards, where crumbled upcast coffin-boards were glimmering, while the once-bright eyes that had lain in them were mouldered into gray ashes. Cold thought! clutch not like a cold spectre at my heart: I look up to the starry sky, and an everlasting chain stretches thither, and over, and below; and all is Life, and Warmth, and Light, and all is Godlike or God. . . .
'Towards morning, I descried thy late lights, little city of my dwelling, which I belong to on this side the grave; I returned to the Earth; and in thy steeples, behind the by-advanced great midnight, it struck half-past two: about this hour, in 1794, Mars went down in the west, and the Moon rose in the east; and my soul desired, in grief for the noble warlike blood which is still streaming on the blossoms of Spring: "Ah, retire, bloody War, like red Mars; and thou, still Peace, come forth like the mild divided Moon."'1 Such, seen through no uncoloured medium, but in dim remoteness, and sketched in hurried transitory outline, are some features of Jean Paul Friedrich Richter and his Works. Germany has long loved him; to England also he must one day become known; for a man of this magnitude belongs not to one people, but to the world. What our countrymen may decide of him, still more what may be his fortune with posterity, we will not try to foretell. Time has a strange contracting influence on many a wide-spread fame; yet of Richter we will say, that he may survive much. 1 End of Quinlui Firlein.
There is in him that which does not die; that Beauty and Earnestness of soul, that spirit of Humanity, of Love and mild Wisdom, over which the vicissitudes of mode have no sway. This is that excellence of the inmost nature which alone confers immortality on writings; that charm which still, under every defacement, binds us to the pages of our own Hookers, and Taylors, and Brownes, when their way of thought has long ceased to be ours, and the most valued of their merely intellectual opinions have passed away, as ours too must do, with the circumstances and events in which they took their shape or rise. To men of a right mind, there may long be in Richter much that has attraction and value. In the moral desert of vulgar Literature, with its sandy wastes, and parched, bitter and too often poisonous shrubs, the Writings of this man will rise in their irregular luxuriance, like a cluster of date-trees, with its greensward and well of water, to refresh the pilgrim, in the sultry solitude, with nourishment and shade. STATE OF GERMAN LITERATURE.1
These two Books, notwithstanding their diversity of title, are properly parts of one and the same; the Outlines, though of prior date in regard to publication, having now assumed the character of sequel and conclusion to the larger Work, — of fourth volume to the other three. It is designed, of course, for the home market; yet the foreign student also will find in it a safe and valuable help, and, in spite of its imperfections, should receive it with thankfulness and goodwill. Doubtless we might have wished for a keener discriminative and descriptive talent, and perhaps for a somewhat more catholic spirit, in the writer of such a history; but in their absence we have still much to praise. Horn's literary creed would, on the whole, we believe, be acknowledged by his countrymen as the true one; and this, though it is chiefly from one immovable station that he can survey his subject, he seems heartily anxious to apply with candour and tolerance. Another improvement might have been, a deeper principle of arrangement, a firmer grouping into periods and schools; for, as it stands, the work is more a 1 Edinburgh Review. No. 92. — 1. Die Poesie und Beredsamkeil der Deutsche*, run Luthers Zeit bit zur GegenwarU Dargestellt con Franz Horn. (The Poetry and Oratory of the Germans, from Luther's Time to the Present. Exhibited by Franz Horn.) Berlin, 1822, '23, '24. 3 vols. 8vo 2. Umrisse zur Geschichte und Kritik der trhonen Litterntur Deutschlands wahrendder Jahre 1790-1818. (Outlines for the History and Criticism of Polite Literature in Germany, during the Years 1790-1818.) By Franz Horn. Berlin, 1819. 8vo.