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LIFE. By Saints and Fathers of the Chxuoh. Translated by the Bev.
Patrick Boyle, O.K. Dublin : H. H. Oill & Son ; Hew Tork : Beniiger
Brothers. 1902. Pp.221.

It is an eminently useful work which brings together for the clerical
reader some of the most important instructions on the subject of
preaching and catechising which are to be found in the treasury of
ecclesiastical literature. Father Boyle, after recalling the legislation
of the Council of Trent making it incumbent upon bishops to see
that their parish priests preach frequently and that they catechise the
children, translates a treatise on Preaching by St. Francis Borgia in
which the Saint points out the way of preparing for a sermon and the
manner of preaching it. The other treatises are : The Method of
Preaching recommended by St. Vincent de Paul, which is simply a
didactic outline of the usual form of composition and mode of delivery
taught in homiletic classes. St. Augustine's "Catechising" {De
Catechizandis Rudibus) is somewhat tedious reading when compared
with modem manuals of catechetical instruction, but it has so long
served as a model of Christian sentiment regarding the art of teach-
ing that a translation is likely to be acceptable to many readers. The
treatise of St. Jerome on the ''Virtues of the Clerical State " is ex-
cellent and especially timely, showing, as it does, that the feults
which are found in the priesthood of to-day are the same of which the
Fathers and Pontiffs of the early Church had need to complain. We
wish the translation of his &mous Letter to Nepotian could have
been made in a style more readable and conformable to the idea
rather than to the words of the original.

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poems; ohabades, aih) nrsoBiPTioirB of pope leo xm.

Induding the BeTised OompontionB of His Early Life in Ohionologioal
Order. With English TranslatdoiiB and ITotes. By H. T. Henrji Lit.D.,
Overbrook Seminary. Hew Tork and Philadelphia: The Dolphin
Press, American Ecclesiastical Beyiew. 1902. Pp. zyi— 321. Price,
$1.60 net.

The choice of verse, in metrical translations from a foreign
language, is as difficult as it is important. Where the original is
Latin, it is quite impossible to attain exact equivalence in English
verse, which depends not on quantity but on accent for the rhythm.
Klopstock, in his German ode An Gotty and Tennyson, in his
**Ode to Milton," employ the Alcaic measure, with unequal suc-
cess ; but in reading them we are sensitive of a halt in the rhjrthm,
until we fall into the scansion and swing of the verses and thus
read through the metre the poet's reason for its selection. Schiller's
rendering into his own tongue of the Latin hexameter and pentameter
—elegiac verse — is a notable achievement; but its translation by
Coleridge has been questioned as a complete success. The metre of
the Iliad has several times been essayed in English, yet the imita-
tion has never been more than partial, and indeed cannot be.
Dr. Henry has wisely recognized this, as is evidenced in his transla-
tion of the poems of His Holiness, and he has given us the very best
equivalent — the first aim of all translation — ^by the adoption of a happy
compromise. English iambics take the place of the Pope's fiivorite
el^;iac metre, and the difficulty of the unequal length of the Latin
hexameter and pentameter is cleverly met by varying the lengths of
the English rendering. The imitation secured by this original scheme
is exceedingly good, and although it may at first seem to run unevenly,
soon the design becomes evident, and the rhythm flows smoothly
along. We believe Dr. Henry deserves the credit for the discovery
of this device, which we have observed nowhere before, and which is
not the least merit of this exquisite volume.

Indeed, the work of the translator is in no respect more satisfying
than in its dose attention to the original rhythms. To take a case in
point— the ** Sigh of the Trustful Soul " (p. 151) :

Ardet pognft ferox ; Lucifer ipse, viden*.,
Horrida monstni furens ex Acheronte vomit
Odus, alma Parens, odus affer opem.
Tu mihi yirtutem, robur et adde novum.

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Contere virgineo monstra inimica pede.
Te duce, Virgo, libens aspera bella geram :
Diflugieiit hostes ; tc duce, victor ero.

It will be observed that each line is divided into two equal parts
by a ccsura. Thus the seven lines of the poem become fourteen half-
lines of equal structure in metre. Dr. Henry ingeniously gives the
English equivalent in the form of a sonnet, thus :

Furious rages the fray :

Lucifer, watching intent

For the uncertain event.
Marshals his hellbh array.
Help me, O Mother, this day ;

List to thy client's lament :

Lo ! I am weak and o'erspent.
Moulded of spirit and clay.

Under thy virginal heel

Crushing the serpent of old.
Ah I to thy servant reveal
' Power the prophets foretold :
Then shall my spirit, tho' weak,
Only of victory speak I

We need go no further than this poem for a fair specimen of
the translator's grace and skill in the volume before us. Despite the
difficulties of the crabbed sonnet form and its many strict laws, and
the added distress when the iambics are replaced by dactyls, and the
number of feet is reduced from five to three, the rare blend of fidelity
and felicity of this English rendering is the best possible guaranty of
the qualifications which he brought to his task.

The many poems dealing with subjects of general interest have
naturally attracted the attention of the secular reviewers. We prefer
to direct attention to those having a religious or spiritual significance.
Among these latter we would single out especially the hymns in honor
of the Holy Family. Too much praise cannot be given these, both
in the originals and in the translations, for the Holy Father in these
poems displays the rare enough gift of the hymn -writer, and his
poems are hymnal in structure, in thought, in devotion. Witness the
tenderness and beauty both in thought and expression of these stanzas,
and their faithful and happy rendering :

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O gente felix hospita, O House of Nazareth the blest,
Augusta sedes Nazarae, Fair hostess of the Lord,

Quae fovit alma Ecclesiae The Church was nurtured at thy breast,
£t protulit primordia. And shared thy scanty hoard.

Sol qui pererrat aureo In all the spreading lands of earth
Terras iacentes lumine, The wandering sun may see

Nil gratius per saecula No dearer spot, no ampler worth,
Hac yidit aede aut sanctius. Than erst was found in thee.

Ad hanc frequentes convolant We know thy humble tenement

Caelestis aulae nuntii. Was heaven's hermitage :

Virtutis hoc sacrarium Celestial heralds came and went

Visunt, revisunt, ezcolunt. In endless embassage.

In the poems of the Rosary we get pleasant glimpses of the
interior piety of the Holy Father. Space is not ours to cite here a
few stanzas of the admirable translation. Neither do our limits per-
mit us more than a passing word of direction to the Notes at the end
of the text. In the charming style of the essayist Dr. Henry there
furnishes us with a copious commentary, full, accurate, scholarly, and
brimful of literary allusion. The 'critic is disarmed before a work
that is so thoroughly satisfactory from whatever standpoint viewed.
It is a book for all, for the man who can read only the English lan-
guage as well as for the literateur, for the cultured Christian home
as well as the library. E. G.

Literary Cbat^

Speaking of Father Henry's translation of the Poems of Pope Leo XIII^ a critic
in the Public Ledger (Philadelphia) writes : *' In this work Dr. Henry contests the
palm with the foremost men of letters in England and America. Notably is this the
case in the translation of the * Ode on the Opening Century*. The translator's note
upon this ode is of peculiar value to literary students in its comparison between the
various translations made by eminent writers and poets. Dr. Henry's own transla-
tion bears comparison with the best in its successful linking of the idea and thought
to the classic limits of the Alcaic original." This is a splended tribute from a com-
petent judge. Indeed the secular press everywhere has spoken in high terms of the
translation, whibt there are comparatively few critics who can appreciate the classical
value of Pope Leo's muse to which Dr. Henry found it possible to adapt his poetical

St, Stephen* s University College Record for June publishes an interesting paper,
by the author of My New Curate, on the formation of character. Whilst Dr. Sheehan

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recognizes the influence of heredity and associations, as derivative elements in the
upbuilding of character, he justly considers education to be the true and decisively
formative element •* No matter what we are,*' says Edward Scherer, ** what we
shall be depends on the accidents of education." Setting aside for a moment all
supernatural influences, such as come to us through prayer and the Sacraments, the
author believes with Tennyson, that self-knowledge, self-reverence, and self-oootrol
constitute the essential task involved in the perfection of the natural man. Hence
no education can dispense with eflbrts to reach these ends. But of course in practice
the development of true self-knowledge and government are inseparable from morality
and therefore from actual religion, which is only the approved form by which moral
truth is applied to the aims of life.

Flagani's admirable work, The Science of the Saints ^ is being republished, and
will be issued very shortly in this country by the Benziger Brothers. There is one
volume for each of the four seasons. The plan of making the brief chapters of spir*
itual reading selected for every day of the month bear upon the exercise of some
definite virtue is of great assistance to those who strive after perfection. Thus Mild-
ness and Firmness, Diligence and Edification, Confidence and Peace, form the three
groups for the summer months, and suggest continuously renewed resolutions bearing
on the same point The edition, of which the first part has reached us in advance
sheets, gives on an average four pages to each day's reading.

Professor James, of Harvard, who can hardly be called a Christian in the sense
that he accepts even the noost fundamental truths of revelation through the New Tes-
tament, admits nevertheless two (acts as established by common experience, and
which naturally account for the actual religious beliefs of the world. The first of
these fiKts is " M^ sense thcU there is something wrong about us as we naturally siandy
The second is the sense that we are saved from the consequences of this defect ** by
making proper connection tvith the higher powers.*^ That would seem to be equiva-
lent to the Catholic belief in the necessity of atonement and in the general accept*
ance of the fact that such atonement has, according to the exigencies of our state and
the fitness of our condition, been made, as it could only have been adequately made,
through the Incarnation, which connects man intimately with God. Herein faith
and modem rationalistic psychology seem after all to agree. And it is a confession
of the existence of a difficulty which is adequately answered in the Catholic Church

In an appreciative critique (Dublin Review) of Rosmini's Letters, recently
published by the Washbotimes, of London, Father W. H. Kent, O.S.C, says:
<< Rosmini must remain one of the lights of modem Catholic literature. His spiritual
influence was a potent force in the Catholic life of the last century." Yet it is trae
that outside the circle of his own spiritual children the founder of the Institute of
Charity is little known to Catholics of the present generation. '< And to some of
those who know nothing of his saintly life and zealous labors, his name is chiefly
associated with a painful philosophical controversy and certain condemned propo-

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The CvoUid, CattoKca is publishing a series of articles on the education of the
clergy in our higher seminaries (<< DelFeducazione del giovane clero * '). The author
surveys and examines the preyailing methods of study adopted in the ecclesiastical
disciplines, and takes occasion to warn especially against the adoption of the seductive
programme of studies which, under the plea of fostering modem progress in science,
inculcates theories that vitiate the pure atmosphere of fiiith by creating a S3rmpathy
with rationalistic sentiments and tendencies. It is often difficult to mark with pre-
cision the line of demarcation that separates the proper use and the abuse of reason as
an illustration of the claims of faith ; the thorough study of Catholic philosophy and
practical exercise in locating and applying the fundamental principles of truth to test
the theories of modem science are the surest means of preserving a proper attitude
toward revelation and human knowledge respectively.

An American priest sends us the following request : <' Would you kindly assist
me in selling an old * Incunabula ' for the benefit of my school ? It is called '' Quod-
libet S. Thomae/' printed in Cologne on St. Catherine's Day, 1483, by John Koelhoef,
one of Gutenberg's associates (by the by, the real inventor of the art of printing).

" The book was given to me by a biblic^hile in Germany years ago — ^bought for
^50 from a penurious person. The librarian of the Stuttgart Poljrtechnicum says it
is worth 2,000 marks, about I500.

<< I see in the < Literary Chat ' that I500 was given for a similar work printed
in i486.''

Two more novels based on the Old Testament have appeared, making four that
have been issued in six months. The preemption of the greater part of the New
Testament probably accounts for the author's choice of subjects, for all appear to be
hastily written, the first, '< Nehe," excepted. St John the Evangelist appears in a
novel describing the persecutions of the Christians in Ephesus ; but this story is rather
less Christian than any of the others, dwelling upon the horrors, pleasing to Ephesians
but repulsive to Christians.

Commenting on Mr. Montgomery Carmichael, the English Catholic author whose
three books appeared almost simultaneously this season, Mr. Douglas Sladen notes
with surprise that when he speaks of a miracle he does not defend it, but takes it as
proved. A Catholic is almost as great a mystery to a Protestant as he was to Festus
and Felix.

The new work promised from the pen of Marie Corelli will bear the title.
Temporal Power, We are informed, however, that the volume does not deal with
the territorial sovereignty of the Holy Father, as one might be inclined to suppose
from the first reading of the title.

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Recent popular Books.

Harper, I1.50.

The hero, by simple honesty and the
constant practice of charity, sets forces
in motion that outwit those who would
beggar him and his family, redeems a
drunken idler, and gains the sweet-
heart of whom his rival wishes to de-
prive him. The introduction of an
entirely unnecessary doubter of such
religion as the other characters possess
makes the book unpleasant, for he in-
variably outtalks the nominal Chris-

ALIENS: Mary Tappan Wright ScHb-
ner. I1.50.

The misunderstandings of the na-
tives of a Southern college town and
the Northern bride of one of the pro-
fessors, and the mischief wrought by
injudicious Northern teachers of negro
schools are shown with impartiality
yet with vividness, in a story exhibit-
ing many strongly marked types. The
woman of mixed blood ap]>ears as
the South knows her, not as certain
Northern writers present her for par-
tisan purposes, and although the sub-
ject is treated with more delicacy than
is bestowed upon it in anti-slavery
novels, the book is not to be recom-
mended to young girls.

OrrKenyon. Stokes.


This story of the early Christians
describes without the least reserve all
the tortures inflicted upon martyrs, and
energetically describes the pagan sins
of a convert, but becomes tame and
unimpressive in passages dealing with
good Christians.

BELSH AZZAR : William Steams Davis.
Doubleday, I1.50.

The glories of Babylon and the cus-
toms of the time are not allowed to
overweigh the love stories of a ficti-
tious daughter of Daniel and a youth-

ful prophet named Isaiah, and of Da-
rius and Atossa. The Persians and Jews
being the only persons not miserly in
the use of truth, the course of events
is very erratic and the turbulence of
the ill-governed populace is matched
by the perfect unscrupulousness of the
powerful. The author's general good
taste is especially shown by his absten-
tion from any description of the tre-
mendous scene of the feast.

Penn Shirley. Lee, |o.6o net.

The "hero,** Donald's brother,
saves the child's life canyinghim from
a burning house. California is the
scene of the story, which incidentally
gives some idea of the agricultural in-
dustries peculiar to the State. [Four
to six years. 1

Farmer. Macmillan, I1.50.

A Revolutionary novel introducing
Franklin during his mission to Paris,
Louis XVI, and the British Ambassa-
dor at Versailles. Baron Steuben, Na-
than Hale, Arnold, and Andri appear,
and also the gay little circle of Phila-
delphia belles, and there is much
glorification of Yale College and some
pleasant description of its customs, to-
gether with a considerable spice of ob-
solete words. The book lacks light-
ness, but is otherwise agreeable.

CATHOLIC: Anonymous. Lane,

The vagaries of a domineering Eng-
lish woman who fancies herself in search
of religion although really desiring
nothing but a channel for her selfish
wilfulness, and the mischief wrought
by her conduct both before and after
her nominal conversion, are the sub-
stance of the story. The priests afflict-
ed with the care of her soul are possi-
ble if not too probable ; and the Car-
dinal's treatment of her case satisfies

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the readers* sense of justice, while it
lasts, and one well-bred high-minded
Catholic la3mian appears amid the
author's large collection of typical silly
Catholics ^m and converted. The
story is likely to harm the weak-
minded unable to perceive that the
personages are fiiulty in spite of their
faith, not because of it

Norris. Appleton, I1.50.

A wife's momentary unfiuthlulness,
a husband's just anger, the determina-
tion of a chance spectator to turn the
matter to his own profit, and the efforts
of some half score of innocent persons
to conceal it and to manage the spy,
are so treated as to interest the reader,
and to keep him in uncertainty. The
ending b rather flat, the husband's
placation being entirely unreasonable.

Lee. ^.80 net,

A motherless child is adopted by a
rich woman, and gradually trained to
good manners and neatness until she is
a fit playmate for Dorothy, her daugh-
ter. [Four to six.]

Translated by Ge<n^ Kennan. Out-
look Co,

Two histories of Napoleon : one
from the Russian of Alexander Am-
phitemtrof, supposed to be related by a
Russian peasant, and full of grotesque
misinterpretations and wild Guides;
the other from Balzac, a French vet-
eran's iMography of his beloved com-
mander, loth are literary studies,
but each may be said to embody the
spirit of real folk tales.

Greenleaf Darling. Lee,

This b a sequel to " We Four Girls,"
and relates some experience of one of
them at Radcliffe, and of her courtship
by a man deddedly averse to her theo-
ries of femine independence. It b
sensible and womanly. [Fifteen to

HOUSE OF DAYS : Christian Binkley.
Robertson, I1.25 net,

Thb volume of sonnets and Ijrrics b
noteworthy as a Pacific Coast produc-

tion, and also for its genuine merit of
thoughtfulness and excellent form.

mous. Lane, I1.50 net.

Pleasant stories of years spent in
efforts to reconcile English ideas with
Italian domestic service, incidentally
revealing a vast number of Tuscan
manners and customs. The author b
not quite sure of the Pope's ortho-
doxy m the matter of kindness to ani-
mals, and b much grieved by Cardinal
Newman*s opinions on the same sub-
ject, but otherwise the book is very
pleasant gossip.

JEZEBEL: Emily Lafayette McLaws.
Lothrop, 1 1. 50.

An ingenious amplification of the
Bible narrative, put in the mouth of
an Eg3rptian captive, the Samaritan
court recorder. The sniqx>sed story-
teller's nationality precludes just dis-
tinctibn between the Chosen People
and the idolaters, so that the story
needs some commentary if given to
young persons, and some of the au-
thor's additions to the recorded fact
are infelicitous.

Chambers. Harper. I1.50.

As some of the short stories com-
posing thb volume describe sin and
nearly all the others describe some
morbid mental condition, the book b
wholesome for neither mind nor soul.
The author has wasted enough ability
upon it tP produce really beautifnl

LENOX : R. De Witt Mallary. Put-

The town commemorated in thb
book b the residence of the Sedg-
wicks, one of the most conspicuous
among New England literary £unilies,
the temporary home of Bryant, Haw-
thorne, Fanny Kemble, and scores of
other persons of well deserved fiune ;
the centre of a region once abounding
in excellent private schools, and still
the chosen summer home of many
representative New England and New
York families. The book b valuable
to the student of American manners,
and b well bound and illustrated.

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Edwin Carlile Litscy. Barnes. |l.20
net, y,

A first novel, excellently intended,
and perfectly innocent, but crude in
every way.

G. Rowe. Little. I1.50.

A simple story of Mount Desert life,
beginning not long before the trans-
formation of the place from rural con-
tent to fashionable contention. The
heroine is of the old-fashioned species,
gentle, courteous, pretty and clever,
and the villain's fault is avarice lead-
ing to dishonesty. It is not a great
bcK>k, but it is innocent, and interest-
ing to those who know the island and
the islanders.

Tschudi. Dutton. I2.50.

An unsympathetic biography, con-
demning the queen in her days of pros-
perity, not crediting her with any gift
desirable for a princess, and making
her sorrows sordid, by undue dwelling
* upon the squalor in which they were

MORCHESTER : Charles A. Datchet.
Putnam, I1.50.

The wealthy and clever heroine
endeavors secretly to aid the hero, an
honest young manufacturer whom cer-
tain politicians and financiers are
leagued to ruin. Her skill in out-
generaling them passes the limits of
probability, although she has two ex-
cellent masculine advisers, but her
conversational powers indicate an un-
common mind, and she is possible.
The political passages are admirable,
and as a sober, solid piece of litera-
ture, the book is far above the aver-

MRS. TREE: Laura E. Richards.
Estes, 1 1. 00.

A bit of pleasant light comedy in
which the chief part is played by a
sharp- tongued, warm-hearted nona-
genarian, impatient with the faint-
heartedness of a pair of elderly lovers.

OLDFIELD: Nancy Huston Banks.
Macmillan, 1 1 . 25.

An elaborate study of a Kentucky
village dominated by a poor and aged
gentlewoman of exquisite manners,
perfect unselfishness, and delicate con-
scientiousness. An originally planned
love story and many quaint subordi-
nate characters are introduced, and if
the tale be somewhat prolonged, its
readers are detained in a pleasant

jamin Howard. Appleton, I1.50.

The author of this book really in-
spected the island prison of the worst
class of Russian criminals, and de-
scribes their government and condi-
tions fairly and temperately. He com-
pares Russian methods with those
pursued in States in which prison
labor is forbidden, and his praise is
given to Russia, speaking both as a
physician and as a penologist. The
work is worth a library of melodra-

Online LibraryCatholic University of AmericaAmerican ecclesiastical review, Volume 27 → online text (page 26 of 78)