Open main menu

Page:Notes and Queries - Series 10 - Volume 12.djvu/124

This page needs to be proofread.


NOTES AND QUERIES, rio s. xn. JULY 31, im

common prudence. Lord Chatham began one of his sentences, 'Your Lordships have all read Thucydides,' and then proceeded to quote in a translation the passage he wanted. I much doubt whether Lord Chatham himself had ever read the original historian ; but the House of Lords seldom laughs."

Hobhouse himself shows ample signs of that knowledge of the classics which used to be the hall- mark of a gentleman.

Pages 191 to 366 are occupied with a long account of the separation of Lord and Lady Byron, a subject we do not care to reopen.

We have left to the reader the large store of remarks and criticism concerning Napoleon. All is of high interest, but the warning should be added that Hobhouse's authorities have been sifted, and in some cases discredited, by modern scientific research concerning the hero ot Elba, the Hundred Days, and St. Helena.

The volumes are printed in admirable type. There are a few odaities in spelling here and there which may be purposely retained. " Ginic du Christianisme" by Chateaubriand (ii. 28) seems certainly wrong. Reproductions of four portraits are given ; and there is a good index.

The Faerie Queen. By Edmund Spenser. 2 vols.

(Cambridge University Press.)

No poem has better right to tine apparel than ' The Faerie Queen ' : a luxurious page is apt to encourage that dignified and leisurely state of mind in which great epics and romances can be best enjoyed ; the sumptuousness of the two volumes prepared by the Camoridge University Press implies, therefore, a sound appreciation of their contents. Assuredly all parsimonious thoughts have been banished from the minds of the publishers, nor is it money only that has been lavished on the fine quartos before us. The editing appears to be excellent, which is more than can be said for many of the reprints that have come from the same press. The first six books follow the 1596 quarto, the fragment of the seventh is from the 1609 folio ; in both cases the texts have been scrupulously respected, though misprints have been corrected with judicious zeal.

The present reviewer has but two objections to raise : in the first place, the volumes are ponderous ; had the work been divided into four or even six slim quartos it would certainly have been more manageable, and therefore, we believe, more accept- able ; in the second place, the reviewer must vent a long-standing grievance against the types selected by the University Press. In this case it is too black and heavy, and tends to diminish the spacious aspect of the page ; the conformation of the letters is somewhat archaic, yet lacks the lineal beauty of Elizabethan print ; while, occasionally, we seem to detect the faint influence of Kelmscott extrava- gances : the foot margins should have been wider. In fact, both in printing and form the work leaves room for improvement, and might have been bettered had the editors paid closer attention to the beautiful, though double-columned edition of 1679.

Nevertheless, those who propose to read or re- read ' The Faerie Queen ' may be advised to provide themselves with' these handsome, yet workmanlike volumes. Only they must provide themselves with some sort of book-rest also, for Spenser is essen- tially a poet to be perused from a comfortable chair.

' The Inns of Court. Painted by Gordon Home.

Described by Cecil Headlam. (A. & C. Black.) THE illustrations are presumably the chief reason for the publication of this volume. Mr. Gordon

j Home has done justice to a fascinating subject, though he sometimes invests ancient buildings with

j a spick-and-span appearance that they have long since ceased to wear, and places them under a Venetian rather than a London sky. He is par- ticularly happy with his interiors, notably that of Middle Temple Hall ; and by judiciously choosing the hour of twilight he has even treated the hideous library of that Inn with the touch of romance.

Mr. Cecil Headlam's letterpress does not help out Mr. Gordon Home's paintings in an altogether satisfactory manner. It lays claim to no originality of material, and a meagre list of authorities fails to include 'The Lives of the Norths,' the book that gives by far the most vivid idea of the Bar after the Restoration. Still, Mr. Headlam's text would have served its purpose, if only it had been purged of sundry errors. Thus, though there are more ways than one of spelling the name of the Duchess of Portsmouth, the favourite of Charles II.. she was certainly not " Louise Ren^ede Perrincourt de Queronaille." Lord Mansfield's house, which the Gordon rioters sacked, was in Bloomsbury Square, not in Lincoln's Inn Fields ; and in 1870, Lord Hatherley, not Lord Westbury, was Lord Chan- cellor. The account of the Inns of Chancery is scrappy and incomplete. Mr. Headlam omits any mention of a certain "mad Shallow" in connexion with Clement's Inn, and of Mr. William Weir, whose throat "they cut from ear to ear," in the few lines he devotes to Lyon's Inn. Of that dingy establish- ment we read, not a little to our surprise, that it disappeared "in the course of the recent Strand improvements." As a matter of fact Lyon's Inn was demolished early in the sixties, and the Globe Theatre rose on part of the site.

t0 (ffomspontonts.

We. must call special attention to the following notices .

ON all communications must be written the name and address of the sender, not necessarily for pub- lication, but as a guarantee of good faith.

Editorial communications should be addressed to "The Editor of 'Notes and Queries ' "Adver- tisements and Business Letters to "The Pub- lishers "at the Office, Bream's Buildings, Chancery Lane, E.G.

To secure insertion of communications corre- spondents must observe the following rules. Let each note, query, or reply be written on a separate slip of paper, with the signature of the writer and such address as he wishes to appear. When answer- ing queries, or making notes with regard to previous entries in the paper, contributors are requested to put in parentheses, immediately after the exact heading, the series, volume, and page or pages to which they refer. Correspondents who repeat queries are requested to head the second com- munication " Duplicate."

J. A. GREENWOOD ("Ram Jam Inn"). See 58. iii. 246; 6 S. i. 414; ii. 49, 116; 7 S. vi. 427; vii. 92, 243.