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was followed to the grave by her relatives never in the least complained.
the British on condition that the citiHer next letter describes a picnic, at zens, under a general parole, were to be which Thomas Pinckney contrived some left unmolested in their homes and propingenious glasses out of white paper. erty. The terms were not kept in the Then follows another letter, full of a spirit, even if, by a technical interpretamother's pride in the exceedingly becom- tion of the language, they were adhered ing appearance of her son's wig and to in the letter. Domiciliary visits were gown, accompanied by a passing allusion made in search of 'rebels' still in arms; to the solemn day appointed by the Con- the roads were patrolled by troops who gress of the Province for fasting and intercepted all who were not furnished prayer for guidance.
with official permits; houses were plunMen in South Carolina had perhaps dered or burnt; slaves were carried off, made
their minds that war was inevi- not to be freed, but to be sold in the table. General Moultrie, for instance, West Indies; no property
was safe in his ‘Memoirs' describes this service as against the exigencies of public service. an'affecting scene.' 'Every one,' he So the war dragged on. But in 1782 the says, 'knew the occasion, and all joined people knew that its end was near, and in fervent prayer to the Lord to support in December of that year the British and defend us in our great struggle in the troops took to their ships, leaving Charles cause of Liberty and our Country. But Town to be occupied by the Ragged Mrs. Pinckney was still hopeful. A few Continentals.' days later in the year 1775, she writes Mrs. Pinckney survived by ten years to her daughter to tell her of the death the restoration of peace. Happy in her of an old friend in England and of the children, her only sorrow, as she writes latest political news :
in 1785, was the loss of friends. A packet came in on Sunday night, it rained Outliving those we love is what gives the all day yesterday, and I did not know it to in
principal gloom to long protracted life. There form you by Sam. Poor Lady Charles Montagu was never anything very tremendous to me in is dead. She died at Exeter. I can't tell you the prospect of old age, the loss of friends exmuch publick news, but what I have heard is as cepted, but this loss I have keenly felt. This is follows, That ye American affairs wear at hoine all the terror that the Spectre with the Scythe a more hopeful aspect. The King has promised and Hourglass ever exhibited to my view. Nor to receive the petition. Jamaica has petitioned, since the arrival of this formidable period have the rest of the Islands are about to do it, as well I had anything else to deplore from it. I regret as the London Merchants. The Tradespeople no pleasures that I can't enjoy, and I enjoy clamour extremely; Mr. Fox is not so violent some that I could not have had at an early seaas be used to be against us. Capt. Turner is I now see my children grown up, and, also arrived and says there is a prospect of the blessed be God! see them such as I hoped. acts being repeald.
What is there in youthful enjoyment preferable
THE CELT'S CONTRIBUTION TO LITERATURE*
HE Celt as an irresistible in- tain material that is much older. Nor
vader, mighty conqueror, and did the productive period of Irish literamaster of Europe has long ture last more than a few centuries, for ceased to exist; but in spite the language began to recede, and the
of the hostility of the Anglo- literary men to disappear, in the fifteenth Saxon, and the discouraging predictions century. As Ireland, however,
however, was of certain oracles, the Celt as a genius closely connected with Scotland, both in and dominant factor in literature will blood and language, several of its men never die.
His place in the future as in of letters migrated to the North and there the past, however, can never be ascer- gave an impetus to literature which retained by viewing him through English sulted in the composition of Scottish eyes. He must be studied in the light poems and tales embodying in a modified of his own characteristics and institu- form the same original material as had tions. He must be permitted to speak found expression in Ireland. This pefor himself and be accorded a fair hear- riod of literary activity was short-lived, ing before the world's tribunal.
however, as the Reformation gave it a The Celt has had his faults, and to check from which it never recovered. Of some extent has them still, but Philis- the productions handed down to us few tinism is not among them. He had his except those known as Ossian's Poems literature when the Saxon was a rov- exist. Nor are these as extensive as ing savage, and his literary productions, Mr. Macpherson's so-called translations judged in the light of the writings still would have us believe they are, as has extant, reflect no little credit upon his been conclusively shown by those who genius. Leaving the question of the have looked into the matter. antiquity of the various manuscripts to Cornish literature is more limited than be settled by men eminently qualified for that of the Scottish Highlands , while that the work it is not too presumptuous on of Brittany is still less extensive. A our part to say that some of them evi- few writings in both, chiefly of a relidently date back to a period close upon gious character, are all that remain. the withdrawal of the Roman forces from This fact is not so surprising with Britain, and that every subsequent pe- regard to Cornwall, since the Cornish riod, with very few exceptions, are repre- dialect died in the last century; but sented by the others. Nor are these a language like that of Brittany, which literary remains as inconsiderable as is still spoken, and, I believe, written, many suppose. Irish writings, including ought to have been more productive of ancient laws and historical and imagi- literary results. native tales, constitute a vast amount of Any consideration of Celtic literature literature, the printed edition of the would be incomplete without giving “Annals of the Four Masters" alone prominent, and in some respects preëmiembracing seven large quarto volumes, nent, place to Welsh literature. As immaking an aggregate of 4,215 closely portant as it is extensive, as varied as it printed pages. To this must be added is interesting, it deserves more than a the vellum and paper manuscripts be- brief notice. It embraces a wide range longing to Trinity College, Dublin, and of literary production, such as glossaries to the Royal Irish Academy, which con- and grammars, historical and genealogtain reading matter enough to fill nearly ical writings, poems, tales, laws, med50,000 pages of the size just mentioned. ical treatises, and, if we include modern In these writings almost every detail in compositions, a large collection of theoGaelic life and manners is touched upon, logical and miscellaneous works. Until while glimpses are had of ancient tradi- the last decade or two, but little of this tions and of the origin of the Irish mon- mass of literature had made the acquaintuments.
ance of printer's ink, and even now much None of the Irish manuscripts now of it remains unpublished. It is no extant dates further back than the eley- wonder, therefore, that a general misconenth century, though many of them con- ception of the extent and intrinsic worth * See the article on Celtic Literature in the
of Welsh literature should exist. Many Encyclopædia Britannica, Vol. V. page 297–328. of the original manuscripts have found
their way into the British Museum, and acquaintance with Welsh literature the libraries of Jesus College, Oxford, through the medium of the language in and the University of Cambridge; while which it was written, a few extracts the remainder are preserved in private from sources differing widely in age and collections in various parts of the Princi- character may not only be permissible pality. Some idea of the immense bulk but imperative, though Welsh prose in of this literature may be inferred from some respects is untranslatable and the fact that the Hengwrt collection Welsh poetry much more so. As the alone consists of about four hundred Triads are acknowledged to be the oldvolumes. The Myvyrian collection is est form of the former we cite the folnot quite so extensive, but it comprises lowing, translated by Charles Wilkins, forty-seven volumes of poetry and fifty- Ph.D., from the “ Archæology of Wales," three volumes of prose, making in all an as an instance both of the wisdom of the aggregate of over 31,000 pages. While ancient Britons and of their terse mannone of the manuscripts now extant ner of expressing themselves : are considered older than the ninth cen
“There are three branches of wisdom : wistury, they contain material of much
dom towards God, wisdom with respect to every greater antiquity, some of the traditions
fellow-man, and wisdom with respect to one's even ante-dating the Christian era.
self.” Though written in Latin rather than “The three recognitions that produce wisin Welsh, the works of Gildas, Geoffrey
dom : the knowledge of God, the knowledge of of Monmouth, Giraldus Cambrensis, and
the heart of man, and the knowledge of one's
own heart." a few others, belong to Welsh literature,
“The three indispensables of wisdom: sciand though they are not always reliable
ence, genius and discrimination.” as historical authorities they contain “The three stabilities of wisdom : what is much valuable information, and reflect right, beautiful and possible.” the manners, customs, and traditions of “Three things will be obtained by wisdom : the earlier Britons.
the good (things) of the world, mental comfort,
and the love of God, etc., etc.” From the data now in our possession we cannot determine for certain whether
As among other nations proverbs have the Welsh had any literature to speak had a prominent place among the Welsh. of previous to the sixth century. That
Here are a few of them translated from they had their oral traditions and poet
a long list : ical effusions we have positive evidence of in the works of Roman writers, who
“Truth against the world.” characterize the Celts as being “wiser
“Without God, without anything." than their neighbors.” But the fact “The baby grows, but not its clothes." that the Druids committed nothing to
"Who sows thorns let him not go barewriting forbids the supposition that any
footed." literature existed in Britain so long at
“Who feeds not a cat must feed mice." least as Druidic influences were dominant.
“ The cat loves fish, but not to wet her feet." The new burst of national life which fol- “A son's promise is froth.” lowed close upon the Roman withdrawal,
“Selling honey to buy sweets." however, and the new rallying of the “If not strong, be shrewd.” British forces against the Saxon invader “The mill that grinds needs water." ushered in a literary era that gave the
Where in the literature of any people nation such poetical geniuses as Aneurin, Taliessin, and Llywarch Hên. In
can anything more beautiful be found
than the following from the story of the twelfth century, when the Welsh
Kilhwch and Olwen : were stirred up anew to make another tremendous effort to regain their liberties, “ The maiden was clothed in a robe of flameanother and a more lasting period of liter
colored silk, and about her neck was a collar of ary activity commenced, which gave us a
ruddy gold, on which were precious emeralds
and rubies. More yellow was her head than the veritable army of poets and writers. And
flower of the broom, and her skin was whiter this mental activity in Wales was unique, than the foam of the wave, and fairer were her the twelfth century Welsh, according to hands and fingers than the blossoms of the anemThierry, being the most civilized and
one amidst the spray of the meadow fountain.
The eye of the trained hawk, the glance of the intellectual people of that age.
three mewed falcon, was not brighter than hers. In the presumed absence of the reader's Her bosom was more snowy than the breast of
the white swan; her cheek was redder than the Turning from the consideration of reddest rose. Whoso beheld her was filled with her love. Four white trefoils sprang up where
Celtic literature to that of Celtic influshe trod."
ences upon English literature, we find a
richer field than many suppose. I have intimated that Welsh poetry is
who have written their works in Enguntranslatable. This is due, as one Eng
lish belonged to the Celtic race. Oliver lishman expresses it, to the fact that the Welsh language is absolutely inap- James Lever, and Samuel Lover were
Goldsmith, Thomas Moore, Charles proachable by any Continental tongue so
Irish; Charlotte Brontë was Irish and far as the relation of sound to ideas is concerned. The secret of this inap
Cornish; James Macpherson and Robert
Burns were Celtic Scotch; and Henry proachableness is a rich vocabulary developed during centuries of poetical Vaughan, George Herbert, and John Dyer
were Welsh. Even Shakespeare, Milton, training guided by the most intricate
Ben Jonson, Scott, Byron, and Macaulay rules. Any attempt at translation, there
had Celtic blood in their veins. Of the fore, must be attended with grave difficulties. Here, however, we shall partly
vast army of living writers and poets avoid these difficulties by taking our ex
many are wholly or in part Celtic. There
is some reason then for the recent asseramples only from the free metres. The
tion of a learned professor that considerfirst quoted by Dr. Wilkins from a poem ably more than one half of all that is called "Gododin" is by Aneurin, a bard of the sixth century.
great in English literature owes its exist
ence to Celtic blood and genius. The “Gilded by no illustrious fame, A sea, a saddening sea of blood,
antiquarians are thus playing havoc with That poured adown in one grim flood! some of the pet notions of the AngloThis gave to Cattræth its name
Saxon. The physiologists and philolA name at which humanity will mourn, ogists have also done their share to And friends of Wallia's warriors weep, For those that in their fated sleep,
dissipate the delusion that but little No more to their dear land return."
if any Celtic blood had mingled with Two brief extracts from the works of
that of the Saxon. Physical types and Davydd ab Gwilym, the Cambrian Pet- names of places cannot belie their orirarch will serve to illustrate the poetry of gin. If the Britons were exterminated the Middle Ages. The first is from a
or driven out so thoroughly as some poem on the Stars; the second from a
would have us believe, these characterispoem on “Thunder."
tics of form and speech would not have “Hailstones of the sunbeams made,
survived in every county but one
in Those golden treasures of the sky,
England. Grand coinage of the Diety.'
In addition to what has been said it
is an incontestable fact that much of “Clanging armor of the heaven,
the material incorporated into English Fire and wave in conflict driven; Flame of wrath, and waves that tame,
literature has been taken from Celtic By their mighty gush, the flame;
sources. Without the Arthurian LegGiant Echoes of dismay,
ends what would much of English literTrumpet of the whelming spray, Like a thousand voices blending,
ature have been? As the enemy of the From the stars of heaven descending;
Saxon King Arthur (if he was ever anyLike the crash of forests hurled,
thing but a myth), reigned less than From the welkin to our world."
half a century ; as the chief hero in Eng- From “ Wales, Past and Present."
lish literature he has wielded his sceptre One selection taken from Watcyn
from Geoffrey of Monmouth to Tennyson. Wyn's beautiful poem on “Silence” will
He made the “Idylls of the King” suffice as an instance of modern Welsh
possible. Other Celtic material is also poetry.
found in abundance in the works of Eng“Thy stillness deep beyond my comprehend- lish authors. Chaucer drank from the
ing, The bounds of thy enjoyment so unending;
fountains of Celtic literature, and so did The soul in thy communion lost forever,
Spenser and Shelley, as is evidenced by While to thy bosom pressing closer, closer. the "Faerie Queen" and "Queen Mab." O underived and everlasting greatness, At least two of Shakespeare's playsSome independent nothing in thy essence; Upon unruffled swells thy silent fulness
"King Lear” and “Cymbeline and Bears to thy sea of charms the soul in pa
several of his heroes are Celtic. Gray's tience."
“ Bard” was a Welshman.
Speaking of Celtic influence upon Eng- style though he was, was bored by the lish poetry in general we must not fail grand and romantic scenery of Switzerto indicate that rhyme was first derived land. Chaucer, Spenser, Shakespeare, from the Celts. Anglo-Saxon poetry was and Milton had a more appreciative sense as devoid of rhymes as was classical Latin, of nature's beauty. They had enough and rhyme found its way into Teutonic of the Celt in them to give us beautiful and Scandinavian tongues only through word-pictures of natural objects, yet the Romance languages. Rhyme, how- none of them loved nature for her own ever, abounds in the works of the oldest sake. In respect to Shakespeare Prof. Welsh poets, and hence must have existed Dowden, of Trinity College, Dublin, has even prior to the sixth century among this to say: "Nature in Shakespeare, the Celts. Every reader of Welsh poetry itself joyous and free, ministers to what to-day must be impressed with the ease is beautiful, simple or heroic in man, with which delightful assonance and while nature alone is never anywhere rhyme are wedded to thought, while the conceived as sufficient to satisfy the heart stiffness and lack of adaptability of the or the imagination of a human being." English language is never so keenly felt It was in Wordsworth that the awakas when one is hunting for an appropri- ening which has permeated the English ate rhyme.
literature of the nineteenth century beTo the Celtic contributions already gan. Why the Celtic element in the mentioned must be added the love of English genius did not lead to this awaknature, a contribution which has greatly ening earlier is difficult to understand. enriched English poetry. The Celt has Perhaps the absence of strikingly roalways lived close to nature's heart. He mantic scenery in England had somehas felt her magic touch more deeply, thing to do with it. But it is sigand entered into her varying moods nificant that Wordsworth himself was more heartily, than any of his brethren. taught to appreciate the beauties of naSensitive and imaginative to a superlative ture by the poetical works of Henry degree he has communed with the spirit Vaughan and John Dyer, two Welsh of the storm and compelled even the poets, for whom, especially the latter, the hard-hearted rocks to yield up their English poet expressed great admiracharm. Under the sway of his genius tion. the brook babbles more merrily and the What we have thus designated the love sea lashes itself more terribly, the sun of nature Matthew Arnold in his work shines more brightly and the sky lowers “On the Study of Celtic Literature” calls more darkly, the flowers smile more the magic of nature, and he cites several sweetly and the rocks frown more men- examples of its absence as well as its acingly, the cataract leaps more wildly presence in English and other literature and the thunder peals more loudly. In- not essentially Celtic. What he found deed, there is a dash, an abandon, an so rare in the works of the earlier poets, irresistibleness about the Celtic genius however, we find in abundance in those that at one moment seems to tickle nature of the later poets in America as well as into a hearty laugh and the next to pro- in England. Longfellow had caught the voke her into a towering passion.
true Celtic note when he sang of AuThe Saxon also has his admirable char- tumn thus: acteristics, but naturally the love of
“Morn on the mountain, like a summer bird, nature is not one of them. Germanic in
Lifts up her purple wing; and in the vales its origin the Saxon genius is more dull The gentle wind, a sweet and passionate than sensitive, more persistent than wooer, imaginative, more steady than dashing,
Kisses the blushing leaf, and stirs up life
Within the solemn woods of ash deep-crimmore industrious than brilliant, and more
soned, rationalistic than spirituel. As we know And silver beach, and maple yellow-leafed.” it to-day, however, the Saxon genius has been modified not a little by the infusion Nor did Whittier, Bryant, and Lowell of Celtic and Latin blood. But even in
strike an unfamiliar key when they sang this modified, and, we think, greatly im- of Nature. And poets yet unborn as proved, form, it showed but little of the well as those who now flourish will not love of nature previous to the eighteenth cease to feel the Celt’s magic spell. century. Addison, master of literary
MORGAN P. JONES.