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honest portrait of reality, and it is per- a beautiful, placid countenance; a strikvaded by a charming sentiment. Ob ing marine by Isabey; a Willems; two serve how well the girl is posed—how elaborate landscapes by Herzog; a landfrank and actual her aspect. It is one scape by Helbreth, and a delightfully of the gems of Mr. Johnston's gallery, quaint figure by Worms. and by an artist that, next to Millet, has Most of our New York painters are best understood the grave and strong represented in Mr. Johnston's gallery. poetry of the country, and rendered the First and best of the American figurepeasant an actuality in modern paint pictures is Winslow Homer's “Prison. ing. And is it not due to Geoge Sand ers at the Front.” Lambdin, W. Hart, to say, that she first introduced the Hazeltine, Huntington, Grey, Leutze, peasant in modern art, in a humane and McEntee, E. Johnson, Boughton, Beard, poetic, in a picturesque and tender Baker, Guy, Gifford, Kensett, Church, and form ? Before her stories, was not the Hennessy, are represented by charactertiller of the soil understood, by French istic pictures. But the representation painters and writers, as a brute too of American art may be said to be most coarse for art ? And did they not mock satisfactory, in Mr. Johnston's gallery, in labor with the immorality and artifi- Allston's “Spalatro," Church's “Niagciality of Boucher's fanciful and mere- ara" and "Twilight," Kensett's “Brook," tricious work? George Sand, Millet, and Homer's “ Prisoners at the Front.” and Breton, have understood and ren- A thoroughly satisfactory gallery of dered the peasant in a noble man- American art, perhaps, could only be ner and sometimes with a religious composed of the best pictures of our sentiment-always in a natural, hu- annual Academy exhibitions. It cermane, and poetic fashion. They make tainly cannot be made to order; it must you venerate or love the subject of be sought for incessantly. A gallery their work.
furnished with adequate examples of We will now briefly enumerate the American art, would be a source of just most remarkable pictures, -not yet men- pride to its owner, and of national intioned,-in Mr.Johnston's gallery. First, terest to all of us. But such a gallery he has Gerome's “ Death of Cæsar;” a can only be made by a man wholly inbeautiful and celebrated picture by Bou- terested in art, and capable of discrimiguereau-a young girl carrying a little nating between the fashionable and the boy to the bath. He has Brion's “Brit- meritorious, between the popular and tany Peasants at Prayer" -a very fine the good. picture. He has a spirited Schreyer ; In conclusion, let us repeat the retwo Meissoniers; two Freres; a strong mark, that Mr. Johnston's gallery is secpiece of expression and a most painful ond to none in New York. It represtory in a picture by Hubner; the fa- sents many of the strongest and latest mous “Wine-Tasters," by Hasenclever; European artists; it has been selected an Achenbach ; a fine cattle-picture by with as much discrimination, and reachTroyon; one by Van Marke; a beauti- es as high a level of art-appreciation, as ful Bauguiet, called “Improving the Mr. Belmont's gallery; while, on the Eyelids; à Venice by Zeim ; a large side of American art, it is creditable, if picture by Muller, after the original in not liberal, and it is certainly superior the Luxembourg Gallery; two Trayers; to either of the galleries which have an interior of a church by Madrazo, a been made the subject of comment in sketchy but good picture; a Zamacois this magazine. No gallery in New
; from the salon of '69; and a little pic- York offers us any thing more interestture of a nude figure by Delaroche. ing, any thing more genuine and sig. He has a specimen by Blaise Desgoff; & nificant than Mr. Johnston's, in Winslow Plassan; a fine picture by Duverger; a Homer's “ Prisoners at the Front"-the specimen of Daubigay; a pretty exam- best record, the most striking characple of Landelle—an Oriental girl with terization in art of the elements in our great struggle with slavery, that has as than Mr. Johnston's does in the fine exyet been made by any American painter. ample of Allston known as “Spalatro's No gallery in New York gives us & Vision of the Bloody Hand ; " none can more interesting example of the retro- show any example of Church's talent spective genius of early American artsuperior to his first “Niagara."
DISRAELI AS STATESMAN AND NOVELIST.
If there ever was a novel the full is so little understood by Americans of comprehension of which requires at average, or even superior, intelligence. least some general knowledge of the For even those who have taken suffiauthor's career and some tolerable in- cient interest in English politics to read sight into the author's character, it is the English papers and periodicals, are “Lothair.” It is the ripe fruit of the extremely likely to have imbibed an most eventful and interesting life which undefined, but strong, prejudice against has been lived by any politician of our this dazzling, “clever," pugnacious, feartimes. It suggests, where it does not less, indomitable politician. The Libepositively embody, the results of well- rals regard him with a mixture of apnigh half a century of hard thinking prehension for his boundless resources, on all the perplexing problems that have and of hatred for his keen thrusts at entered into the recent political and re- their many inconsistencies. Those who ligious agitations of England and of have adopted our principles of governEurope. It betrays much of the inner ment as the ideal of all their aims have life of a man who has fought his way no tolerance for a man whose politics to supremacy under circumstances that are as much bound up in sacred tradiwould have appalled and kept down tions as is his religion. The extreme ninety-nine out of a hundred of Eng- Tories admire the ability of the man land's bravest and most adventuresome who has so often led them to power, spirits. And it breathes the very at- when no one else could have combined mosphere of that elegant patrician life the heterogeneous forces needed to acwhich has charmed even so stalwart a complish the task; but the country lords Democrat as Mr. Emerson, and which and squires, who have obeyed his orders, has furnished Disraeli with a constant have had about the same feeling toward inspiration, never degraded by unwor- their all-accomplished chieftain that we thy fawning on his part.
might imagine would pervade a lot of Moreover, it has been a peculiarity of rural curates led to victory over the Mr. Disraeli's, that he has rarely replied champions of popery and infidelity by to personal attacks on himself, but has a Spurgeon or a Newman Hall. availed himself, from time to time, of Undoubtedly, there have been many opportunities to develop the objects he “noble lords, of high degree,” who have has sought, the means he has seen fit to chafed inwardly as they were obliged to use, the spirit in which he has worked, submit to the control of a mere advenand the motives which have inspired turer-to use their own dialect-a man him. “Lothair" is no exception to of the people, and, what is far worse, a this rule, and it contains many allusions member of that mysteriously hated race which can have their full significance which aristocratic England has perseonly for those who bear the events of cuted so cruelly for centuries, and to his life in their minds.
which it has only of late given politiIt has been a remarkable career—more cal privileges. remarkable than we Americans can So it has happened that, from either readily bring ourselves to conceive. side and from all sides, Disraeli has Perhaps no other eminent Englishman been more persistently misrepresented,
abused, and even calumniated, than any feel against a stalwart foe to Demo other public man of England. Through cratic ideas. For our own complete whatever English source of information self-satisfaction and enlightenment, we as to his character and career we look, must study him amid his surroundings we are almost certain to find some ob- and from his own standpoint. This wee structing prejudice, which prevents us propose to do with the greatest possible from seeing the man as he undoubtedly brevity. strives to appear to bimself, and as, per- He has been called “a son of the haps, posterity will see him. Besides people," and so he was, in one sense, this inherent difficulty of obtaining a but not in others and more important. fair statement from English authorities. The son of Isaac Disraeli was born into we labor under natural prejudices of the aristocracy which is directly or
We comprehend and do jus- dained of God. A Jew and a foreigntice to such a man as John Bright, for er, the elder Disraeli nevertheless needed he is a firm believer in American ideas, no act of naturalization or letters of and he is steadily introducing them, nobility to enable him to assume a posiunder practical modifications, into Eng- tion of equality among the best of English politics. But Disraeli believes that land, or to introduce his son among the the fundamental principles of the Eng- surroundings most favorable to the lish Constitution are sound, and ought quickening of a noble ambition, of all to be immutable. He accepts the con- his latent thirst for acquisition, or of all crete realities of the English form of his aptitudes for culture. Moreover, the government as finalities, or as only to young Disraeli enjoyed the rare advanbe changed in the way of adapting its tage, for a member of a race outlawed spirit and traditions to the changed con- by provincial bigotry, of being born in ditions of the present. He thinks that cosmopolitan London-of being eduour experiment of government owes all cated by his wise, catholic, and learned its success to the peculiar circumstances father, instead of submitting to the huunder which it was formed and has miliations of a young Jew at a public been developed, and that no analogies school, until he was mature enough to can be safely drawn between our poli- enter a private academy near London, cies and those of England. Moreover, and of entering into society at an age it is no secret that he believed in the when the instant favor he won would success of our late Rebellion ; but, as have addled the brains of an ordinary many eminent and patriotic Americans youth; but endowed with a stock shared the same opinion at various times of self-reliance, ambition, and purpose during the war, we ought not to feel which enabled him to acquire an adhardly toward him for this error of judg- dress, a knowledge of men and women, ment, and, perhaps, of sympathy, in and a self-poise which he could have which he stood on common ground cultivated so well nowhere else. It is with Gladstone, Lord Russell, and near- very likely that, amid the dazzle and ly all the other leading English states. glare of the brilliant society which web
comed him 80 flatteringly, the young Let us, however, for our own sakes, Disraeli learned other lessons of more endeavor to get some real insight into doubtful value—that he imbibed an un the history and characteristics of this due admiration for a social order which wonderful man, who, at the age of six- blossomed so splendidly, which had ty-five, signalizes his retirement from such romantic and noble traditions, and the rulership of an Empire by pro- which was upheld by such stable founducing the most admirable novel of the dations. At all events, it stimulated, year, to say the least. Let us try to get developed, and enlarged him. clear of all prejudices from the vulgar In 1824-5—that is, in his twentieth and pitiable prejudice against a great year - the young student, attorney's race, to that which noble minds may clerk, and man of fashion, went to Ger
many-not a bad place for getting over inventive, aggressive spirit which genthe mere frivolities of his immediate ius alone can give. He began, the next past—and, in 1825 and 1826, showed year, another novel, the “Young Duke," his creative activity by writing a story and refreshed himself by travel in the which made him famous, in a way, as lands which the traditions of his race rapidly as “ Childe Harold " did Byron. made sacred-in Syria, Turkey, Egypt, Of “ Vivian Grey"—the first flowering and the more westerly countries on the of Disraeli's genius—it is unnecessary Mediterranean. The impressions he now to speak, for almost every one has then formed must have deepened in read it. As the work of a young man
him that reverence for the Jews as the who had just reached legal maturity, it trustees of tradition and the conservais a marvel, and was so regarded at the tors of the religious element,” which he time when it first startled and delighted has so often and so eloquently expressed. the world of novel-readers, nearly half In these travels, made when he was most & century ago.
Like all of his other sensitive to the influences of the Orinovels, it was written from bis own life, ental world, his traditional faith was and was, therefore, a genuine and pow- strengthened, and the young Tory, by erful production. Its very excess of force of early associations, became doubly costume, of superficial characters, and a Tory as he became more thoroughly a of improbabilities, came from a too Jew. To him then, as now, the Hecrowded and premature experience of brews represented “the Semitic princifashionable life, and from the teeming ple”—that is, to use his own definition, fancies and wild dreams of youth. “all that is spiritual in its nature.” It
That, just after “ Vivian Grey” made was doubtless with these associations in him a literary lion, so shrewd a publish- his mind, that he wrote his masterly er as John Murray should have selected defence of the Jews in his Life of Lord so young a man to edit and build up a Bentinck, in which he said: “The Jewdaily political paper, on which were ish race connects the modern populaspent hundreds of thousands of dollars, tions with the early ages of the world, shows that Disraeli must, even then, when the relations of the Creator with have impressed himself quite remark- the created were more intimate than in ably on his elders as a man of rare these days; when angels visited the knowledge of politics and of affairs. earth, and God himself even spoke with The reasons for the failure of this costly
They are a living and enterprise, under such brilliant auspices, the most striking 'evidence of the falwe never saw wholly explained; but the sity of that pernicious doctrine of mopathway of newspaper history is so rich dern times——the natural equality of in wrecks, that no particular explana- man.” tion is necessary.
We can imagine, “ The Young Duke,” which was pubhowever, how a proud, ambitious, and lished after his return to England, in successful young man like Disraeli must 1831, was followed by“ Contarini Flemhave felt, when, after a fortune had been ing," a novel showing a growing depth swallowed up in the vain enterprise, he of thought, as well as tbe results of his had to stand before the world for the foreign wanderings, and was followed, in first time a failure, and that on a most 1833, by “ Alroy,” a hist
ical romance, magnificent scale. How few young men in which the period of the Jewish capof the finest talent and firmest resolve tivity, under the Caliphs, was vividly but would have given up the struggle and picturesquely sketched. In the after such a rebuff ?
very next year, his fertility and resources But he came of a race which Goethe were shown in the now almost forgotten says was specially chosen by God as His novel of “ Henrietta Temple;” and, in peculiar people, for its persistence. And 1837, the story of " Venetia” betrayed he was not merely possessed of a dogged his continuing tendency to introduce determination, but had that cheerful, real characters, the incidents of the do
mestic troubles of Byron and Shelley was assisted by no faction or family figuring quite largely, in masquerades connection. He was shunned, caricaeasily penetrated.
tured, despised, and almost proscribed. Successful as a novelist, and the idol But he could not be kept down. There of the most brilliant society in Eng- was no relaxation in his energy or in his land, he began, at the age of thirty-two, efforts. He bore insults and rebuffs with the career of a politician. Three times patience, until crowded too far, and he ran for Parliament, and was defeated then scattered his enemies by retorts -the beginning of a long series of tri- which fairly burned. But his more conals and rebuffs. But there was no kill- stant warfare, while the Tories were ing such a man. Reverse not only fail- out, was against the party in power, and ed to crush him; it scarcely dampened no man in the opposition ever wielded his spirits. It was during this dark so many or such various weapons of period, when the road to political emi- offence. Unsuccessful in one direction, nence seemed completely barricaded he turned in another, and if there was against him, that O'Connell uttered the & weak point, he was sure to find and famous epigram that would have snuffed pierce it. out all of Disraeli's courage, had it been When he took the lead of the Tories, of the flickering sort. The great agita- he found them an undisciplined, heterotor said: “For aught I know, Mr. Dis- geneous, impractical, and reactionary racli may be the heir-at-law of the im- set. They were united only by their penitent thief who died on the cross." hatred of the democratizing tendencies Neither this cruel sarcasm from a great of the age. How much tact, knowlman, nor its manifold repetitions by edge of human nature, firmness, courlesser foes, nor even an utter break- age, and fertility of resources were disdown, when he at last attempted his played by him in organizing them into maiden speech in Parliament in 1838, a coherent party, in persuading them to availed to suppress or dispirit this terri- abandon antediluvian notions of politibly earnest and determined young poli- cal economy, and in getting them to tician. And, in 1839, Disraeli at last agree on measures and doctrines that did make Parliament listen to him, ap- would bear discussion, we can but faintplaud him, and acknowledge in him a ly comprehend. Although he has always possible master. For the ten years fól- and consistently opposed the Demolowing, he was steadily working, and cratic theory of government, it is due fighting, and growing in power and in- to him, more than to any other man, fluence. All of the instincts of his na- that the Tory party has been made to ture, the traditions of his race, and the assume the strange position of a rival associations of his youth and early man- to the Liberals in the extension of the hood, drew him into the ranks of the suffrage. party which represented the aristocratic The restricted limits imposed on this and feudal elements of English society. article prevent us from taking more than But the favorite of lords and country a rapid glance at the political and litegentlemen never advanced himself in rary career of Disraeli since he became their good graces by any act of syco- the chosen leader of English conservaphancy. His bitterest enemies admit tism. Four times he has led his party that he always maintained his self-re- to power, and, whether in the Ministry spect, and that his sarcasms were point- or as leader of the opposition, he has ed as readily at a duke as at a com- wielded an influence such as no other
man could have exercised, with such a His fight, up to the time when he following and in behalf of such a cause. succeeded Robert Peel as the accepted In debate, the sole antagonist who has leader of the Tory party, was one which been able to measure swords with him has extorted the admiration of his most successfully for any long period, has jealous detractors. He represented and been Mr. Gladstone. In administration,