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wherever the systems of public instruction are good. Translating is a large industry, as any English reviewer of the last ten years can testify, though in English it is often a coarse disguise of the originals; and such achievements as the English version of the Comédie Humaine,' made some years ago by Miss Ellen Marriage and Mrs Clara Bell, under Professor Saintsbury's guidance,

On the other hand, the famous German translation of Shakespeare was the gift of a few men to the whole of their race. All around there is probably more translating than there has ever been since the age of Locke. This is true of poetry and fiction, though it is always truer of science and philosophy, since the craving for knowledge and thought is commoner among men than the craving for style and beauty, and since translating, seen by Goethe to be necessary for the fulfilment of his dream, is too nice an art to be often practised well.

The whole manner of writing literary history must alter, the more clearly these impulses, national or federal, are perceived to be at work. The older critics, Dryden,

, Boileau, Johnson, were seldom historians at all, but judged half by canon and half by mother-wit, caring little how books grew. Even Lessing judged greatly by canons, though by fresher and deeper ones. Imagination and tact were the birthright of Lamb; gusto and acuteness that of Hazlitt; while Coleridge had the philosophic power to recall and re-word the creative process of the poet. They all have their scornful or reproachful message to the learned who merely hunt for tendencies and are blind to the work of art. But they themselves lived before the historic sense had reached criticism, and they did not try to write history at all. This task, in England, fell to men of learning rather than to men of genius; for neither Gray nor Pope carried out the wish to write a chronicle of English poetry; and Warton's was the first. It broke fresh ground, and showed the wealth of old romance; but its contribution, being mainly one of knowledge, has been absorbed; it was not philosophic; and its vindication of romance soon became unnecessary. The first history in English that covered both verse and prose, and was written spaciously and with due knowledge, was Hallam's 'Introduction to the Literature of Europe during the Fifteenth, Sixteenth, and Seventeenth Centuries.' In Hallam's pre


face are named the encyclopædic Germans who had tried such tasks before. Hallam divides his theme, not by nations, but by the branches of literature, or rather of knowledge, each chapter treating of the history of one branch between certain dates. We certainly get from this ordering the sense of Europe as a great and productive society of minds. But Hallam's real subject is not the monuments of the art of writing, but the culture recorded in books. He admits almost every printed thing that furthered knowledge; and a numismatist is as good a quarry to him as a poet. Thus the literature of knowledge and that of power are confounded, and the systematic study of the mutual debts of nations is but dimly recognised. Yet his book is not dead, being learned, clear, and honest; and his chilly ray of impartial daylight is worth more than any sham-patriotic idolatries.

Hallam shows that a critical method which had already come into flower had failed to reach him. Sainte-Beuve, the greatest of literary historians, never wrote a history of letters; for his Tableau' of French letters in the sixteenth century was done in youth; and the masterpiece, 'Port-Royal, chronicles a spiritual movement and its apostles rather than literature. Yet the Causeries' revealed a new task for all future historians. SainteBeuve had erudition, science, method; but his sensitiveness, his judgment, kept pace with his science; he accepted all writers, but surrendered to none; and his insight into the lesser minds that people literature has never been excelled. He left criticism in a state of disquiet by showing that its work is not to judge by preformed canons of artistic, and still less of ethical, excellence; and that it must never be content with the mere study of outward conditions, sources, and influences, but must use these only to press on to the discovery of what each artist, inalienably, uniquely, brings-of that within him which determines what influences he shall accept. On this track Sainte-Beuve advanced in triumph; and he has shown us his motive power as a critic in his remarks on a book that, with all its blindnesses, yet remains the most quick and real one on the subject, Taine's History of English Literature.' Taine spoke as though he could deduce the artist and his work from a study of the milieu,' or personal, social, and racial environment. Sainte-Beuve vindicates what may

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be called the artist's freewill, which remains when all the conditions of his growth have been analysed. He says: . However well the net is woven, something always remains outside and escapes it; it is what we call genius, personal talent. The learned critic lays his siege to attack it like an engineer. He trenches it about and hems it into a corner, under colour of surrounding it with all the outward conditions that are necessary to it. And these conditions really do serve personal originality; they incite it, they tempt it forth, they place it in a position to act and react, more or less; but they do not make it. This particle which Horace entitles divine (divinæ particulam aure), and which, in the primitive, natural sense of the term, really is such, has never yet surrendered to science, and abides unexplained. That is no reason for science to throw down her weapons and renounce her daring enterprise. The siege of Troy lasted ten years; and there are problems which perhaps may last as long as human life itself. (Nouveaux Lundis,' May 30, 1864.)

It is true that Taine often escapes the weakness of his theory. In his last section he turns to portraiture and pierces with justice, even with sympathy, into the spirit of Dickens and Carlyle; the flashes of truth which animate his earlier volumes redouble here. Yet throughout he cast new light upon the English nature. He began with a notion, partly true, that our race is barbaric, and ebullient, and heedless of form, and alien to art; and, slurring the rest, he chose the writers who seemed to answer to this notion. His fault, serious in a man of science, was ignorance of our literature as a whole; indeed he wrote before the modern means of knowledge existed. But he tried his utmost to shake our superstitions about ourselves and our superstitions about Shakespeare and Milton. He wished to eradicate our private belief that our great authors are in some way types from which all others are aberrations. That service for us Taine would have accomplished, were it possible. Were he writing now, he would have a large new laboratory and store of facts, and might have deepened and cleared his theory of the 'milieu' by discarding the accidents of dress or custom of which literature is the record, not the product, and by introducing into it the forces of mind and spirit, often of distant origin, which have been enumerated,


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The later nineteenth century will be remembered, not so much for any young creative power, as for the application of method and the allotment of labour to the study of all history. The roots of this movement lie far back in the record of classical scholarship, which long remained the type of minute and rigid inquiry, and passed its conceptions on to the historian. Probably Bayle's Dictionary' is the chief landmark here; biography and exegesis, whether secular or otherwise, could never be quite uncritical after that. But the transference of method to the treatment

. of the modern literatures is a much later step. It could only be taken when the conviction, long hindered by the Renaissance, was once assured, that the modern as much as the classic masters claim the rigour of the historian and scholar. After the work of Hallam, and still more of Sainte-Beuve, this was more clearly seen; the question was how to apply it in practice. No man's own talent or pains can suffice ; there must be the co-operation of workers. And this can be produced only by schools of learning, which, though they can at most permit genius, and often only annoy it, can at least break-in talent. These schools are most naturally formed in universities, which can train an army of students in method during pupillage and save them from the painful and wasteful forms of self-education. The fabric of historical knowledge, whether literary or political, can only be the work of such an army.

At this point we see the value of the system of monographs that rules in Germany and in some other countries, including America. The monograph submitted for graduation teaches a little method, and may build up knowledge, though it is often, at present, founded on a sorry general culture, is full of rubbish and repetition, and should in most cases not be printed, as in Germany it has to be. But the system is the foundation of national scholarship For instance, Italian literary history has been revolutionised since the days of its doyen, Tiraboschi. It has of late been portioned out amongst a 'society of professors,' each of whom writes on a single epoch. Their work is a great and well-shapen monument, of which every stone is a monograph, edition, collation, biography, or study of sources. The Histoire de la Langue et de la Littérature françaises,' guided by M. Petit de Julleville, is another large and generous venture where the labour is more divided, so that the variety of talent is greater and the total impression of unity is less.

In France and Italy, in Germany and the States, the international side of literature is studied to an extent that England does not realise or imitate. A recent bibliography, 'La Littérature comparée,' by M. Louis P. Betz, contains some three thousand titles of articles and monographs on the relationships between France and Germany, France and England, Germany and England, and so forth, in almost every combination. These dissertations turn out to be of three or four types. In one are examined the sources' of an artist's themes, or thoughts, or forms-an inquiry that may become bitterly mechanical and ignore the step by which borrowing becomes creation. Another traces the influence of a writer, or of a school of writers, at home and abroad; and this fills an enormous chapter. A third deals with the fortunes of a species of literature, the sonnet or picaresque novel or critical treatise—a process which implies a study of the general history of thought and culture. Fourthly, abutting on folklore, comes the study of a particular story, that of Hamlet or Pyramus, in its birth and growth, as it wanders over the world finding new vigour in every soil, until perhaps in the end it dies to live in a masterpiece. Lastly, the literary contact between two or more lands may be investigated and deduced from a multitude of observations in these four kinds. None of the younger school in France, whose names are too many for mention here, had more historic vision, or wrote what is of more concern to ourselves, than the late M. Joseph Texte. The

comparative study of letters—which is only a disciplined effort to carry out the ideal of Goethe-he pursued with somewhat exclusive zeal, but with delicacy of touch, and not at all in the external, indiscriminate style that is the danger of this kind of work. His chief book traces the origins of the international feeling itself. His JeanJacques Rousseau et les Origines du Cosmopolitisme littéraire' could not have been written fifty years ago.

Knowledge of this kind, and the study of literary history, are nowhere worse organised than in England. Good work is produced, as will presently be seen; but that is in spite of our having no organisation, and is largely due to the classical basis of our training. We have

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