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A TURKISH TALE.
Two days had passed, and Karabeg had not dared to make another attempt at seeing his mistress, when the whole city were alarmed by a stoppage of the water that supplied their houses ; in vain the reason was enquired into, no one could solve the wonder, and at last it was deemed most adviseable to examine the grand reservoir. After some labour and much expence, they broke open the works, and the cause of the stoppage was found to be-Bakarak's slippers. When he heard of it, his rage almost threw him into convulsions; “ Some Genie or some Devil possesses them to work my woe,” exclaimed he. He soon received a summons to appear, and was demanded how he dared attempt such a
treason to the state as closing the pipes. Bursting with vexation, he repeated what he had done to make away with the slippers, (though they had proved so diabolical, he almost feared that might cause a charge of murder to be brought against him) the breaking the perfume jar, and the putting them in the sewer, from whence they had been carried into the public reservoir. The judges felt inclined to laugh at his misfortunes; however as the damage was unintentional, he was allowed to go, on repaying the treasury what it had cost them in pulling down and rebuilding. He scarcely found his way home, so stung was he by resentment, and so mortified by the loss of his money. He muttered as he went along, “ Karabeg shall not have my daughter, though heaven seems to predict it.” His mishaps had made him more obstinate than ever, and when he arrived, Zelica was so much frightened at his appearance, that she retired in dismay to her chamber. He ordered a large fire to be prepared instantly, and throwing the slippers in, “ At last,” said he, “ I'm determined to see ye no more; when I cast you in the river, ye were fished out again, when I put you in the sewer, ye made the whole town suffer, but I'll defy any one to relieve ye now !" The slippers seemed as obstinate as Bakarak in giving him the lie, for the leather had imbibed the moisture to such a degree, that they would not burn. Bakarak found his anger useless, and that he must give up the idea of consuming them till dry: a lead extended over the portico of the house, and placing them there, he ejaculated, “I see I must be plagued with ye some time longer, but I shall bless the hour the
sun has sufficiently hardened ye, that I may commit ye to the flames again; and by Allah! when ye are destroyed I will give a public rejoicing !"
The vexations Bakarak had endured, had prevented his visiting the mass-he now determined to go, and throwing on his cloak, went out, but as Fortune, or rather Fate would have it, as he passed the threshold, the slippers, by some means, fell from the leads, and came tumbling on his head. Though the blow had confused his ideas a little, he managed to look up, hoping to find out who had done it, and saw a cat running along, he took the slippers from the ground, and sent them, one after another, at the animal's head; however, he missed his aim, and they went in at one of the windows. He was beginning to curse, and re-entered the house to stop the blood which issued from his nose, when a loud shriek pierced his ears; not knowing the reason, he ran quickly up to his daughter's chamber, and beheld her on the floor, with the slippers by her. She had fainted, and while Bakarak called her slaves, he attempted to revive her, but finding it in vain, began to tremble. “Oh, merciful Allah,” cried he,“ protect your faithful Mussulman, and let not my daughter's blood sink on this head.” The attendants had now come, but their endeavours were also vain to bring Zelica to life; though no wound appeared, the cursed slippers had certainly struck her somewhere on the head ; and Mesroud consoled his master by repeated exclamations that she was murdered, “ You cruel man!" said he, “it serves you properly, had you but united my poor, dear, beautiful dead mistress to the man she loved, all would have been well : to be sure you did swear that when those slippers ruined you, their marriage should take place, and though that has happened (for ruined he certainly is who kills his own duughter) yet alas, 'tis of no avail !"-Drops of perspiration stood on Bakarak’s brow, his joints trembled, and he fell on his knees. « Oh Mohammed, restore my Zelica, and I vow by all my hopes of Paradise, since 'tis clearly your wish, that I will no longer oppose her union with Karabeg, the Cadi's son,” He arose, “ Oh those cursed, cursed slippers, they have indeed proved my ruin, and I find 'tis impious to war against Fate.” Zelica now began to recover, though slowly, (for know, gentle reader, though apparently dead, she was as much alive as you who honour these pages by a perusal, and my only fear is, that their contents may not have made you so merry as her father's vow made her); thinking it unnecessary to feign longer, she in a short time was perfectly revived, to Bakarak’s great joy, who did not suspect the trick practised on him; for though when Zelica saw the slippers enter her window, she was not touched by them, an idea struck her, that answered her purpose equally well. Bakarak’s vow had been heard by Mesroud and the rest of the slaves, so that an attempt to deny would have been fruitless; he therefore sent for old Mustapha, who was too good a man to object to a reconciliation, and had his son's happiness too much at heart, to find obstacles to the proposed union. He soon prepared the necessary papers, nor had he reason to complain of his friend Bakarak, whose miserly disposition the late events had completely turned; and who, having promised to give a public rejoicing whenever he got rid of his slippers, performed his promise on the day that saw the lovers united; for Karabeg joyfully accepted them as a remembrance of the means by which his inarriage had been brought about, and what was wonderful, long as he lived to enjoy the beauteous Zelica, he never beheld them but with gratitude for the blessing they had been the humble instruments of Providence in bestowing on hiin.
Musicians, (those who from true feelings of the powers of musie to soothe and compose the mind to peace and serenity) are in general long-lived.
Instances of longevity in the under-named professors and amateurs. Geminiani, 80 and upwards. Faustina,
80, et seq. Sartini, Do.
Dr. Creighton, ... 90 Antoniotto, .. Do.
A. Scarletti, ......... 87 Leveridge, 90
Dr. Pepusch, 87 or upwards. St. Andre, ..... Do.
Rosengrave, sen.. Do, Corelli, 96
Tallis, sen, Do. Handel, Do.
Several of the HarCorvetti, Do.
rington Family, 80 Hasse,
seq. Col. Blaythwayte, 80 Farinelli,
REVIEW OF LITERATURE.
Qui monet quasi adjuvut.
An Analytical Inquiry into the Principles of Taste, by Richard
Payne Knight, 8vo. pp. 471. Payne. 1805. “Good taste,” says a clebrated writer, “is not confined to the sciences, but influences, as it were, imperceptibly, all the arts, such as architecture, painting, sculpture, music. It is that discernment which introduces universally the same elegance, the same symmetry, the same order in the disposition of parts; which insures a due attention to the noblest simplicity, to natural beauties, and to a judicious choice of ornament."
Good taste, indeed, wherever it is found, is not limited to any particular object, but prevails in the examination and management of all things, and as it undoubtedly enters into all things, Mr. Knight has, in this its intellectual sense, pursued it through a great variety of its most distinguished ramifications.
“ Taste is a subject," Mr. K. observes, in his introduction,“ upon which it might naturally be supposed that all mankind would agree; since all know instinctively what pleases, and what displeases them; and as the organs of feeling and perception appear to be the same in the whole species, and only differing in degrees of sensibility, it should naturally follow that all would be pleased or displeased, more or less, according to those different degrees of sensibility, with the same objects.” P. 1.
“ This is, however, so far," he continues, “ from being the case, that there is scarcely any subject upon which men differ more than concerning the objects of their pleasures and amusement;" and he then points out many instances of mental taste in which mankind differ, but none in which they appear naturally to agree. Certainly, however, there are cases that might have been advanced in which the tastes of men, both in a natural and improved state, when operating together, have in all ages invariably produced an unity of sentiment. “ Numquam," says Cicero in Brut. “ de bono oratore, aut non bono, doctis hominibus cum populo dissensio fuit.”
“ Il en est ainsi,” Rollin remarks, “ de la musique et de la peina ture. Un concert, dont toutes les parties sont bien composées et bien exécutées tant pour les instrumens que pour les voix, plait générale
ment. Qu'il y survienne quelque discordunce, quelque cacophonie, elle révolte ceux même qui ignorent absolument ce que c'est que musique. Ils ne savent pas ce qui les choque, mais ils sentent que leurs oreilles sont blesseés. C'est
la nature leur a donné du goût et du sentiment pour l'harmonie. De même un beau tableau charme et enléve un spectateur, qui n'a aucune idée de peinture. Demandez-lui ce qui lui plait, et pourquoi cela lui plait ; il ne pourra pas aisément en rendre compte, ni en dire les véritables raisons : mais le sentiment fait à peu près en lui ce que l'art et l'usage font dans les connoisseurs."
Mr. Knight concludes his “Introduction with these observations :
“ The sense of taste is equally impartial; being equally unconnected with, and uninfluenced by, the higher faculties of the mind : it is also the first that is employed in preserving life by selecting nourishment; and that which hath consequently given a name to that rule or criterion of just exertion in all the rest, which is the subject of the present inquiry : wherefore I shall examine it first; and, after comparing it with those of its two kindred organs of smell and touch, in order to ascertain the principles of sensation in general, proceed to the examination of the remaining two, whose objects are the proper objects of taste in the more general sense of the word, as used to signify a general discriminative faculty arising from just feeling and correct judgment implanted in the mind of man by his Creator, and improved by exercise, study, and meditation."
Here Mr. K. distinctly states his opinion respecting mental taste as possessed by men in various degrees; to which we shall add that of M. Rollin and Quintilian. The former thinks that rules and precepts may be laid down for the acquirement of this discriminating quality; but the latter appears to believe that it is entirely the gift of nature; for, says he, non magis arte traditur, quàm gustus aut odor. Lib. 6. c. 5.
It is impossible for us, from the portion devoted to our review of literature, to pursue Mr. K. through all his numerous disquisitions, which, with a plentiful sprinkle of dogmatical absurdities, exhibits some learning, ingenuity and research. The second chapter of part II. Of Imagination, is, from its occasional acuteness and intelligence, particularly deserving of attention. On the whole, however, there is little estimable novelty in this work, and the author frequently differs from other writers on the same subject with more hardihood than judgment, with more sophistry than truth. His strictures on Milton's verse are certainly weak and unjust. The objections that he starts to the pauses of this divine bard, which