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The any-way encroaching pride of Spain,
“ But,” resumed Egeria, “ it is not my intention to analyze the play ; I shall therefore only read to you one or two of the similes. The state of a man whose fortunes have shot beyond the foundation of his merits is thus magnificently compared :"
“ As you may see a mighty promontory,
“ And I think the following description of a horse very spirited :-it is Byron's comparison of his own manner.'
“ To whom I came, methought, with such a spirit
have seen a lusty courser shew, That hath been long time at his manger
tied, High fed, alone, and when, his head-stall broken, He runs his prison, like a trumpet neighs,
Cuts air in high curvets, and shakes his head ;
“ Henry's blessing upon his infant son is also a very fine passage, and much deserves to be better known.”
“ Hen. Have thy old father's angel for thy guide;
beasts knew the alarum-bell,
ONE morning as the Bachelor's Wife, having no other household care, was reading the backs of his books, she paused before a goodly range of reviews and magazines, and said to him,
“I do not think it has been half considered by the world how much has been added to our pleasures by the invention of periodical publications. It has domesticated learning, deprived it of all its formality, put the shovel-hat, the square cap, the wig, the gown, and all those antique trappings and devices, which were wont to inspire so much wonder and awe, quite out of fashion. It has made gentlemen of authors, and authors of gentlemen. For this, as well as for its other singular merits, the Edinburgh Review stands pre-eminent. You cannot open a volume without finding some topic of science, or of erudition, treated in a much more popular and engaging form than it was ever done before.”
In saying this she put forth her hand, and taking down the tenth volume, opened it, and read aloud the following excellent condensed account of the religious sentiments of the Turks.
MAHOMETANISM. “ The religion of the Turks is Mahometanism in its utmost purity, and in complete preservation from the days of its founder. They believe in one God, and in the divine mission of his prophet. They scrupulously follow, as the rule of their conduct, his precepts con-. tained in the Koran, and his example; together with certain sayings not recorded in that book, but handed down by tradition. The leading maxims thus delivered and religiously observed, are, the maintenance of the faith, the performance of certain outward ceremonies, and hatred of other sects. Their belief is inculcated as so necessary to eternal salvation, and so sure of working this end without the aid of good works, that we need not be surprised to find scarcely one freethinker in the whole of the Turkish population. A few reasoning men may
here and there be found, who hold that a life of sanctity, independent of faith, is sufficient; but the church condemns this as the worst of heresies, and those persons must keep their doctrines carefully to themselves.. The inducements to hold the faith of their fathers are so strong among an indolent and sensual people, that any doubt or scruple is likely to be rejected as a present injury. Whatever happens during this life is well; God ordains it. If we live, we shall smoke so much tobacco, enjoy so many Circassians, saunter away so many hours in our baths. If death comes tomorrow, we have kept the faith, and shall inevitably sup in paradise,—with better tobacco, fairer women, and more voluptuous baths.' A notion of this sort, once rivetted in the mind, at an early period of society, will account for the horror with which every question relative to articles of belief must afterwards be received. It will account for the exclusive attention of those true believers to the concerns of the present moment, and their carelessness about futurity; for their implicit obedience to the easy injunctions of the Koran, and their steady rejection of all more unpleasant doctrines. Besides holding this faith, they have only to perform the
ceremonies of prayer, ablution, and fasting,--troublesome, indeed, in some respects, from their frequent recurrence, but far more easy than the restraint of a single wicked inclination, the sacrifice of an interested to a principled view, or the fulfilment of any active duty; and their lives are pure before Allah.
“As the object of the founder of this religion was power, he carefully enjoined such an implicit obedience to himself or his successors as might ensure his divine authority in the state, and such a hatred of unbelievers as might both keep alive the faith among his followers, and prepare the way for the conquest of foreign nations. The most unresisting and passive obedience to the sacred person
of him who is at the head both of the church and state is inculcated as a primary religious duty. He is the Zil-ullah, or shadow of God; the Padishah-islam, or emperor of Islamism; the Imam-ul-musliminn,* or pontiff of Mussulmans; the Sultandinn, or .protector of the faith. The title of Caliph was first acquired on the conquest of Egypt; but the prerogatives annexed to it, of sovereign pontiff and depositary of the divine will, as handed down from Mahomet, had all along been exercised by the Turkish emperor. He is further, in his temporal capacity, denominated Hunkiar, or the manslayer; it is the name commonly given him, and denotes the absolute
which he has over the life of each of his subjects, in virtue of his divine commission. Whoever submits without resistance to death inflicted by his order, is looked upon as sure of that eternal felicity of the highest order which belongs to martyrdom. His edicts, always received with religious veneration, are welcomed with peculiar awe, when accompanied by a note under his hand enjoining obedience; and whatever
* “ Muslim is the singular, Mussulman the dual, and Musliminn the plural : it signifies resigned to God.””