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BONG. By WII.U VM BROWNE For h< r gait, if she be walking; };.• she sit i in?, 1 desire her For her state's sake; and admire her For her wit il she be talking; <;ait and st ite and wit approve her; For which all and each I love h r. T:.- she sull( n, I commend her For a modi st Be she merry. For a kiml one her prefer I. Briefly, everything doth lend hor So much grace, and s.> approve l^r. That for everything 1 love her. ©j£ S^^xrrft ®rilmw& SUNDAY, OCTOBER K5, I'.MtT. Mr. Henry James has played many a fearful and wonderful prank with the language, but at least lie has never indulged In mere preciosity. Jlis diction may be tortured, but it is honest (There is a Bhrewd note on the Bubject In »*Seribner's" this month, made by the writer of •'The Point of View." Speaking of Mr. James's |tj le be says: It is a styl in which usual, and mostly h >rae spun, words are fearlessly repeated many times ov.r. The general effect la not homespun; it is of great elaboration, because Mr. James's mean | re nol prii tary, aud lie Hashes them upon us undirectly through the maze of many phrases. But each phrase, taken l>y Itself, la made up of the sort of simple, wellbred words that made no preti i ■ ; This is written apropos of tM" remarks made by Mr. James on the speech of Americans nn.l the commentator devotes himself to that subject, but the point is applicable, of course, to matters of authorship. "Being genuine," ©to | tvcs the critic, "is next to being distinguished, Mien it does not come before." This is pre riseiy what is forgotten by nine out of ten of the Innumerable writers who have tried to bor row the method of Mr. James. They arc bad enough when they merely ape his sinuosities and obscurities. They become flatly intolerable ■when, with :i queer misapprehension of their model, they wreak themselves on all manner of purely verbal preciosities. There la no satisfying Mr. A. 0. Benson, the endless essayist, who has unquestionably done a quantity of good work, but who haa iv t yet learned the art of leaving well enough alone A year or so a^-D ho was absurdly plaintive, In print, over the shortcomings of t:.« i critics, and now he has returned to the Bubject with the Fame sensitiveness and Indiscretion. It appears that Mr. Randell Charlton, a writer In our Lon don namesake, recently alluded to Mr. Benson's work with something less than veueratlon. Promptly thereupon Mr. Benson wrote a letter to the paper asking "why a harmless essayist should thus have bis «-.trs boxed In public l>y another harmless essayist, and why Mr. Chart ton should not extend to a fellow author the cour esy and consideration which I am sure hi would extend to me in a drawing-room." Was there ever a more humorl< ; :i<ni placed ;•: >re the v. ivin^ tribe? It seems incredible t.it an author of Mr. Benson's Intel] should need to ! aye explaini d to him bo obvious a distil tion. If pi . crii in Is to Ik "aai nessed t>> the conventions "f the drawing room bt as well go out >f business. We doubt if that would be pleasing to the authors. Even Mr. Benson might regret it. Th >re is >,!ie point, tuo, which authors who turn v] >n their arc absurdly apt to forget They are not bunted down in their privacy by ruthless intrutlers. Through their publishers they de liberately send their bo >ks to the t>re<s. and t.; 1 itly. it' not explicitly, ask to have them pub licly criticised. NoUung remains, then, but for them to play the game and accept uith a g 1 grace Ihe thin:.'-; that are said about their work in 'rS^ -I faith. They cannot eal their cake aud have ir too. When criticism la malicious or in competeni they have a just comphiint, hut for them to denounce severe criticism, cast in vehe ment or satirical terms, as a breach of draw lii^-p».m decorum, is mere nonsense. The human race is in luck It possesses at least sixteen humorists. That at all events is the conclusion of Mr. J. A. Elammerton, who has written a book on "English Humorists of To-day," and actually finds sixteen writers to prove, as be thinks, bis case. Incidentally he makes the reader sigli for the impossible, wlii<!i la to K.-iy Uiat conclusive definition of humor which the ages have sought in vain to produce. Of cour c we arc aware of the fact that no one with a sense of tttunor would dream of trying t<» define humor. But ttio instinct of man to arrive at some sort of classification in this matter is undying; and books liko Mr. Uammerton'a will nhv:iys provoke argument. On what legitimate hypothesis, for example, can he justify his In clusion of Mr. 11. <;. Wells in a gallery of humorists? He has indubitably a certain sense of humor, but then so have scores of other writers, who would be overwhelmed with aston ishment if any one discovered that th<-y were bumorista. The truth is that we find the scheme of the '.xjok In question amusing as an example of tlie looße construction which is placed upon Ideas in tVis ngo of incessant scribbling. The practice of commercial bodkmaking has som» tbJng la do with it. Chapters are thrown to pother not because they belong together, but because some one wants t;» make n volume, and Btispccts that if it is to be saleable It musi lmv« •continuity of Interestf find be Bent forth with tv "arresting title." ' NEW-YORK DAILY TRIBUNE. SUNDAY. OCTOBER 13, 1907. FRENCH LITERATURE. A History of Its Growth and a Life of Rabelais. A T.TTKUARY HISTORY OF FRANCE. Iv Kmile Faguet. iThe Library of Literarj tory.) Bvo, pp. rii, 690. Charles Scrlbner*a Sons. FRANCOIS RABELAIS. By Arthur Tllley, M A. (French Men ■;" Uettersj 12roo, pp. :>v Phil adelphia: J. P. Ljppincott Company. M. Faguet has in perfection the French sn f t f«.r the con< Lse and orderly treatment of a liter ary subject made up of many details. In the series to which he has contributed the present volume some excellent books have appeared, but nono of them has shown <;uite the deft craftsmanship that marks his pa^os. it should be noted in passing, t ■". thai hla merits in thid regard have bad to make headway against a translation which is sadly lacking in distin< ti n and charm. However, we get the author's sub stance and that, in a work of the port, is the main thing. The intioduction promises a bo«>k of a somewhat philosophical turn. M. Faguet THH ABBB FILULSTRB OFKKRINO TTTR "CHRONIQTTES DE ST. DENTS" TO PHILIPPE US BON. (From the manuscript in the Horary at St. Petersburg.) has observed tho re Iprocal relations of the Fr. ti. h and Engll h literatures, and. with a careful particularity In which we somehow dis f< m an < lemi :.: of i oliteness ratl;. r than of pro found Inti rest, he i Ites the authors or: in.th .-ides of the Channel who in one way or another trite the point. But when ha takes up his main task h" attends In businesslike fashion to his chronology, seta f..rth his descriptions and cora ■i! i. 1:1 ■ iiort, aims simply at k— ' - lucid and not at all dogmatic '>r speculative account of his theme His book la a repository of r.-iet.s well arranged, clearly Interpreted, and Illuminated hen and there by an apl or fresh opinion. We like < p. ri.iiiy this author's avoidance <>f cul and dried theory. He la not one of those ■ riana who make a rigid application of the evolutionary hypothesis to literature. Hla free dom from this often useful but often very dan gerous aid to study cornea out early in the nar rative. Speaking of the thirteenth century, and of the fact that Prance was then "the intellectual queen of Europe," he goes on to say: "She Is to fall fr..m this throne In the succeeding ages to which we are just coming, but .she ascenda later, and she is once mure to fall. It Is facts liko these that help us to believe that there i.s no such thing as birth, growth, maturity, decadence, but merely alternations or outbursts, and that periods of decadence, when they occur, are but temporary." In other words, while Quick to rec ognise the Influence <'f one writer upon another. or of a tendency of thought upon a period, he is not concerned to prove that French literature, from tiie old "Chansons" to the modern novel, is an affair n Bembling a lons chain without a single broken link. One result of the openneaa of mind which ha brings to his work i.s a sympathy disclosing itself in his treatment of nearly every type he has to discu a. He has his likes and dislikes. it is obvious t:...t as between Corneille and Ra i mc bi 1 1 rsoi al f< cling tenda toward the latter. X( vertbelcss, be persuades us as he passes the Innumen bio authors of France In review that hi uj worming himself into tho secret of each one of them, grasping its intrinsic character anJ estimating it for its own sake. His broad in stinct for his subject as a whole remains as it were a kind of steadying force in the back ground. How effectively he can bring this re source to the front when occasion requires is w< I] illustrated by the hint he gives to the reader at the <md of his study of the Middle Ages. The warning which many students, and some his torians, too, need against taking a rather un g. neroua view of that period has never been bet ter put than In this brief passage: The astounding glory of that age was Ita | art. which -. , not belong to our subje. t: Its archltert ure, absolutely incomparable, the spontaneous th 2 oii-irv! product «>f France, and ret-osniaed b> the w&te?«orM I as being of purely French creation; it, sculpture in stone an 1 wood. niiniatur. on Blais. its marvellous windows, its miniature I*lnt in- in the missals, etc. The Mediasval Age waa a'7>eriod relatively poor in literary production, as tonishins in philosophical thought and scientific research and extraordinary In artistic fee..., rhc Renaissance must b» understood not , as a reaction against the Middle Ages-alt hough; thta has often been held-but ft." an expansion of the artistic sense, already so stror.g at ln:i t period. which found in the literary art and seinr-lure of the classic r>eri..d both new mat) rial to be eagerly seized and an Incentive to new patha of wort Considered by Itsrlf, the art: tic feehng ol the Middle Ages rvon in literature, and more generally in the whole intellectual life of tho time, was ex- traordlnarfly eajrer. enthusiastic and persistent, passionately devoted •, what w*is noM« no less than to what was • ■ autiful anil graceful— much more ■■• .in.i!. it should ba noted, in its quasl oolltude than the Intellectual life or the I«-itin peo pie. who always hud before them l!reek literature, upon which they modelled their own. »ther Instance of the Instructive rehandllng of a familiar subject occurs In the author's sum mary of the sixteenth century. The Invention of tho printing press was, of course, an event having i talismanlc significance which would have been potent In any age. But M. Faguet lays stress upon the importance it derived from the moment at which it was given to mankind. 11. .says: Printing produced the greatest Intellectual r<>vo luttoi the world haa ever known largely because it coincided with the period of the Renaissance It en ati ■! :\r. ab) a bet .•■ ■• -n the Middle Vires ami modern times. Ua.l it been Invented sooner it would, of course, have bad an immense Influence on the human mil I, bul it would not have netv arated so sharply the Middle Ages fr.:n tho mod ern ii^e. for it would have popularized 'he works of the Midilln Ages, and Oie transition would hive been less abrupt. Had printing, on the contrary be. n Invented later, It would have found the bocks of the Mlddla Axes and of antiquity In manuscript form, •■I would have spread both, t»-..Mij;»i pr«.b ably •■ ■■ former lesa thin the latter: but Invent-d Just il the very moment when the classical manu scripts were Bowlnß hack from the Kast to the West, and exciting universal enthusiasm, printing began it.-< work l>y popularizing only the classics and contemporary writings, Ihe books of the Mid die Ages remaining generally (with the exception or those like the Ri man de la Rose. 1 w ) . •>, were modernized) In manuscript Im-onvenUnt to eel if oh cure, rorsaken. for^utten and soon despised' Thus the sixteenth century was either entirely 'I' ■ -il or entirely modern; traditional or carvlne out its own path. ** Tho liberal and just portraits of individual authors which we have mentioned aa character istic of M. Faguet's book belong in the periods prior to the nineteenth century. With men liko rrolssart, Villon. Commines. Rabelais, Montaigne and Ronsard he is safe, as good a guide as he is a draftsman. He Is capital, too. in his vignettes of a Chamfort or an Arnault. But as he ap proaches the more modern world and t-ntt-rs. for example, the epoch of romanticism, we have to reckon with the limitations of the man who la speaking more or less of hl3 contemporaries. Thus, while it is refreshing to find him risinic Superior to the cult of Victor Hugo, of whom he frankly says that "his glory took on a kind of sanctity which it will not retain," and while wa are grateful for the terse severity of his Judgment on the brothers Edmond and Jules de Goncourt, we are disappointed In what he haa to say about certain other writers. To give two appreciative pages to Flaubert, but only one. and that of rather Qualified ndmiratlon, to Balzac, is surely to reveal some want of per spective. It ia hardly fair, either, to Iks Intel lectual character of the younger Dumas, to say in explanation cf his decadent qualities that '"of the society which surrounded him, he knew noth ing but the world of idlers, of fashionable scoun drels and their natural companions." If, too. M. Faguet had resolved upon absolute candor is dealing with comparatively recent aotl he might, in the course of his long note on Mau passant, have been a little more frank on the things in that writer's work «hl a scarcely make for Immortality. Bat the reader wi'l not hold this historian too severely to account for the uneven quality of his closing chapters. 1-. the writing of these he suffered from a natural disability which p< rhapti only a man of genius co 1. in the circumstances, hope to escape. The bulk of the book is as sound aa it L» enter taining. Mr. Tilley's moeograph on Rabelais Is an a■! mirable popular study of a subject on which the nt-ral reader Is likely la be in want of lif,-ht. He traverses, necessarily at no great length, the external facts of the great humorist's car— r. As he says, "the record of Rabelais's lif-?. when It has been stripped of a': legend, is somewhat bare of incident." He makes the most that can be mad of hla author's childhood and education. and the derinijs of his maturity. Of course he shares the doubts of his predecessors as to the truth of the assertion of Rabelais that he was a native of Chinon. "the famous, noble and ancient town of Chinon. the first town in the world." But it does not matter. If he was not born fn the town itself he was born at I.a Devlniere, only three miles away, and indeed. nothing can ever d-prive the town of that glamour which has been ao worthily celebrated In Mr. Frank Taylor's beautiful poem: In that bl>^t nook of bVMd Touraire. Wh>»r<» strays Vi*»r.n- UM the flowers. Mistress of all the goodly plain. Whit* Chinon lifts h-- crowi o? towers Al t>ve the -r- ra and srolden fen. White Chinon by the blue Vier.ne. No vibrant hamrr.*r«» Chinon piles. Nor strident fori;<*. nor murky mill. But ilk ■ a lazy beauty lies Supine upon the sunlit hi!!. And southward smiling seems tr> woo The smiling rleMs of fair Pottou. Tr> ChbMM by the bine VTenn« She c itam th» heavenly hearted Maid, And boys an<l babes she turned to men And men to cr'xi.s through Christ her aJJ, And or-> and all she led them forth To battle In the wasted North. Lilies of gold and sword of fame. Down the steep path -h- 1 r.-><!e s;;M;m«\ And wel] ye know what way she came To Kh>-i«ns and Rouen in due tim^: Wherefore I wot that, when ye stand. A: Chinon. it is holy land. r.ik-^wi-ic for hf«H who Hrst <!rew breath Among the vir.e<3 nt »^h:r.on town, Who laughed the Philistines tr» death An.l m.-efced their dismal Dagons down. F >r Master Kraneoys Rabelais. la Chinon k ••• : hish holiday. Tf., .'..... niirks. he flayed the V^t* ■n •■■ lawyers writhe,i beneath his rod. He gibed the axe. he Jet-red the re;>e. He made a jest of all save God: Wherefore in ''Mnon think to rray y >r Master Prancoys Rabelais. Ar.! yours the loss, if ye should fall To olimh the cliT. when day is .'•■'td. Anil moonlight floods the shadowy v:i!e A.s though Vienna had burst her t«i For best of all is f'hinon then. White •■.■:■:. by the blue YTenne. Mr. Tilley, a loyal Rabelaisian. Is true to th* sentiment of these tinea Foth in his biograr hi cal pages and In his long analysis of the works he goes sensitively to the heart of the rrtattt-r. Hla chapter on the art of Rabelais is full of learning and of true understanding. Ills dis cussion of what is coarse in his author is un commonly sane. It la a defence without s> much as a syl'a' of disingenuous special plead ing. The chapter on Rabelais's philosophy ia equally sagacious and persuasive. Thus he sums it up: Th« mess i»;.» la «.ne of hor**: "f:.v\,! hope ' ; es at the bottom »f ir ■• Rabelais's philosophy however nurh w« majr be mistaken as to its exact imp< -r la essentially an optimistic one It leads i» t> that excellent state of m:r.d to -whi.h he has iriven the name of PaßtaKineMsm, ml which he defines as "a certain gayety ..f spirit bnilt op of disn ir ! >>r things fortuitous." adding in another place lhat -its possessors will never take in bad ;>ar: my tbinj: that they recognize to spring from i rimhl, frank, and loyal courage.* 1 It is of this philosophy that Pantajrruel Is the living embodiment "He took everything in good part, he put a koo<; inter pretation on every act. be rtev.r tormented I Ira self and was never scandalized . . . for all tie treasures that the heaven evrtTeth a~.d the earth oont:dneth. in all th«>ir hei-ht. depth, length and brea.li are rot worthy to stir our affections t>r trouMe our senses anil spirit-*." With this note of unworldllness and o->tiniNm wo may leave il ••: »is. It is one of his greatest merits, as it Is <>ie of his greatest charms, that, having -i clear Insight into the soeku and political evils of his day. he looks forward to the future with a pain and robust confidence- Bon rspoir y f/».if uu fund. This Is ■ stimulating little book. It B fr^>.l to have all the documents of Rabelais*s career assembled. Mr. Tilley bi very Intern i ■ in his study -.f the master's livr.iry sources. We value, too, his bibliographical pages. But ehi •■•• we value his warm, human Interpretation of Kat>e lais, his skill in owimuni. to the reader ■omethina of tho gusto that lies in his theme. OTKRBEAKD AT THE AUTHORS CLUB, From The London Bystander. Author (ruefully) — You didn't say much about my book! Reviewer (blandly)— My dear fellow, pray don't thank me!