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A cheaper species of this medicine has,
however, now been found, and the skimming
of the alum is used and crystallised
for artificial manure. The alum is once
more dissolved, run off into casks, and left
to crystallise, which it does, taking the form
of the cask, and hardening into numerous
beautiful stalactites. Then the casks are
unhooped and taken to pieces, and the alum,
broken up into large lumps, is despatched
by train to the various works where it
is used. About eighteen tons a week are
produced at these works, and the price,
which at one time was twenty-five pounds
a ton, is now about six pounds ten shillings.
About forty men are employed in the works,
and each visitor is charged sixpence, which
goes towards a school-fund for the
workmen's children.

There are excursions of every kind to
places of interest in the neighbourhood.
Old castles, broad bleak moors, smiling
Yorkshire dales, dotted here and there
with old farm-houses and finely timbered,
grand seascape, with big vessels on the
horizon and fishing-smacks in the
foreground.The visitors with antiquarian and
arch├Žological tastes, the men with good
pedestrian powers, or those whose temperament
leads them to fraternise with others
and make up excursion parties, will rejoice
in Whitby. But, judged by the ordinary
watering-place standard, it is excessively
quietnot to say painfully dull.


THE statement which we ventured to make
in our recent remarks on the Latin poets and
dramatists,* that the world is indebted for
these great geniuses to the Greek culture
of which the Romans were the recipients,
cannot but excite a desire to learn something
also of the poets and the poetry that
had proved so fruitful, as the destined
exemplars to the people of another age and
country. The poets and the poetry of
Greece were devoted to the beautiful, even
as the Eastern sages and bards had been
to the sublime, in art. In the presence of
Greek literature, that of the Latins has a
decided utilitarian air; and the two together
go far to prove the gradual descent from
Oriental transcendentalism, and the order
of culture, from the theological to the
human and natural. Those elevations of
thought, toward which we have in these
modern times to climb or soar, were the
natural level of those favoured minds
which, in the earliest ages, became the
teachers of the race. The world's educators
have had to condescend to lower
forms of conception, to move within
narrower limits, and thus to adapt themselves
to their humbler fellows, whose way
of life confined them to sensuous observation,
governed a little by a few rules
supplied by the reflective powers. Or
rather, as we think, we should recognise
in this downward process an actual
development, a real progress, whereby the
more spiritual principle was assisted in its
application to daily life and the familiar
habits of a physical condition;  through
which application it became a common guide
to men of every grade of intellect. Among
the Romans, the light penetrated to the
lowest and most practical usages, and
invested the meanest symbols with a certain
sacredness, despite the general ignorance
which perverted them to objects of idolatry.
The Greek cultivation stopped short of
this, and appealed to an intellectual class
that still prided itself on being separated
from the herd, and having privileges in
which the uninstructed might not partake.

* See ALL THE YEAR ROUND, New Series, vol. iii.,
pp. 104 and 135.

We have, therefore, to assign a middle
station to Greek literature, between that
of the sublime and the useful, expressly
calculated, as it were, to delight the tastes
of that large number of persons who recede
from the too abstract on the one hand,
and avoid the too vulgar on the other.
The forms of Greek poetry hover between
these extremes, and sometimes seem to seek
their reconciliation;  but they remain apart,
notwithstanding, by a law which permits
their mutual recognition but not their

It is in the inter-play between these dual
poles that the beauty of the Greek intelligence
accomplishes its manifestation. Two
ages had preceded the era of this development.
The pre-historic in which the true
and the known were accepted as identical,
and the commencement of the historical,
in which we find attempts at realising the
good and the pious in conduct and character.
The third age recognised the ideal
in beauty and in art;  and aimed at their
reproduction in the actual. In this aim
consists the life of Greek poetry. In the
first period, the light is indistinguishable
from the darkness, and there is a total
absence of colour. In the second, the
simple absolute alone is recognised;  but in
the third its polarity is also appreciated.