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Presently the moon rises, large and round,
leaning her breast against the sharp black
peak of a jagged pile of rock. Then a
yellow train of brightness shimmers on
the blue waters. On the dark flank of
Pilatus, a crimson beacon light flames up,
looking lurid in the gloom of the
mountain's mighty shadow. Belated rowers
quicken the rhythmic plash of their oars,
and snatches of song are borne landward
by the evening breeze; which carries also
the ineffably sweet breath of mountain
pastures and newly-mown hay. In the
distance, close down to the water's edge, so
that shadow and substance show like one
point of brightness, gleams the Fest-hütte,
all ablaze with lights. It seems a splendid
jewel, scintillating as the slight wind
touches its flickering jets of flame.

Hurrah! hurrah! hurrah!

How they shout! But the distance and
the water sweeten and soften the sound.

Then breaks forth a jubilant strain:
"For God, Freedom, and Fatherland!"
The full notes are wafted across the placid
lake. The amber moon soars up over the
rocks; away from the jagged point that
pierced her. She looks peaceful in her
azure heights, as though a black earth-
shadow had never darkened her purity.
And thus the last song dies away in the

"For God, Freedom, and Fatherland!"


A RESPECTED correspondent, whose
interest has been strongly kindled in the
matter of the amicable controversy carried
on in our columns between the Vindicator
of Prose and the Apologist for Verse,* has
done us the honour to suggest the Necessity
for the Novel as a desirable theme for
discussion. Assuredly the subject is one
for serious consideration, and not without
bearing on the present state and prospects
of society; it has also many relations both
with prose and verse. Long ere the former
was employed in composition, whether
written or oral; long ere states were
founded, or even society formed; the
culture of nations was dependent on what
we should now call nursery tales, or rather
on similar stories which the more learned
have since relegated to the nursery, and
stupidly banished from their libraries. Long
ere the Vêdas were written or Arabian
traditions spoken; long before the earliest
theogonies or cosmogonies, the mythical
fable, or the Homeric poem; the lessons
of wisdom were preserved in the family
narrative, which, in its transition from
parent to child, attained a rhythmical
flow, a tuneful cadence, a manner of speech
that, as a poet tells us, was "far above
singing." Fortunately these domestic
utterances were unrestricted, while those of a
more public character, falsely supposed to
be more important, were sacredly guarded.
If any other than a Brahmin were to have
dared to read the Vêdas or to hear them
read, boiling oil would have been poured
into his ears; but full liberty was allowed
to the popular lore, and it might be spoken
or listened to gladly and without fear by
the simple and the vulgar. Gradually
losing its private application, it became
the parable, brief in form but pregnant in
results, and gathering importance as it
travelled onward. Such " household words"
circulate from clime to clime. Anon, we
find them developing themselves, with
additions, into allegories and types, and
embellishing themselves with metaphors,
similes, and emblems. They finally came
down into the latest time as well-dressed
episodes in elaborate epics, or startling
incidents in the sensational romance.
* See ALL THE YEAR ROUND, New Series, vol. i.,
p. 346 ; vol. ii., p. 65.

As soon as these narratives assumed the
dignity of art, they were seized on by the
poetic spirit of the early time and clothed
in the attire of verse. Greece and India
both present us with examples of great but
not equal excellence, alike admirable as
works of imagination, but differing much
in spirit and in form. Fantastical and
indeterminate in its material, the method of the
Indian epic becomes measureless and
formless, or mean and contracted. Greek art is
the opposite of this, being remarkable for its
subjection to rule and its agreement with
reason. It gains in beauty what it may
lose in sublimity. The introduction of
history and prose brought it to a lower
level. The heroes had become imperfect
men even in Euripides, but with the
historical Ionian the human varieties are
numberless. Herodotus can even afford to
be sceptical, and Thucydides abounds in
individual types which admit of free
criticism, whether for their virtues or their
errors, their merits or their defects.
Sometimes during meals a story-teller
would be permitted to feed the mind
also by means of some long yarn, fall
of wonder and sentiment: a custom
which still prevails in the East. As in