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generous advice was acted upon, for by his will dated 31st May, 1845, he directed "the residue of the proceeds of his personal estate, capable of being bequeathed for charitable purposes, to be paid to the trustees for charitable purposes thereinafter appointed," and he appointed as his first trustees for those purposes the Mayor of Manchester, the Dean of Manchester, the Representatives in Parliament of the Borough of Manchester, George Faulkner, Samuel Alcock, William Nield, James Heywood, Alexander Kay, Samuel Fletcher, Richard Cobden, John Benjamin Smith, John Frederick Foster, and Mark Philips. The objects to which the fund was to be applied was declared by the testator in the following terms :
As concerning my said residuary charitable trust fund, hereinbefore directed to be paid and transferred to my said trustees for educational purposes, I do hereby declare that they shall be possessed of and apply the same, and the annual income to arise therefrom, upon trust, and to the intent that they may carry into effect, so far as the amount of such fund will reasonably admit, my earnest desire and general object to be found within the said Parliamentary Borough of Manchester, or within two miles from any part of the limits thereof, an institution for providing or aiding the means of instructing and improving young persons of the male sex (and being of an age not less than fourteen years) in such branches of learning and science as are now, and may be hereafter, usually taught in the English Universities, but subject, nevertheless, to the two fundamental and immutable rules and conditions hereinafter prescribed, namely: First, that the students, professors, teachers, and other officers, and persons connected with the said Institution, shall not be required to make any declaration as to, or submit to any test whatsoever of, their religious opinions, and that nothing shall be introduced in the matter or mode of education or instruction in reference to any religious or theological subject which shall be reasonably offensive to the conscience of any student, or of his relations, guardians, or friends, under whose immediate care he shall be. Secondly, That if, and as often as the number of applicants for admission to such Institution as students shall be more than adequate to the means of the Institution, a preference shall in all cases be given, to the children of parents residing, or who, if dead, or the survivor of whom, resided when living within the limits now comprised in the Parliamentary Borough of Manchester aforesaid, or within two miles from any part of such limits; and secondly, to the children of parents residing, or who, or the survivor of whom when living resided within the limits comprised in the Parliamentary district or division of South Lancashire; but the subject as aforesaid, the said Institution shall be open to all applicants for admission without respect to place of birth, and without distinction of rank or condition in society.
We believe that there was a marriage projected between John
Owens and a Mrs. Tidswell, of Upper Brook Street, but this lady died a few years before the death of Owen Owens, and by some it is thought not unlikely that had John Owens lived a longer time than he did, he might have married the elder of the two daughters of Mrs. Tidswell, both of whom are legatees under his will. Two years before his death he broke a blood-vessel in his head which caused him a severe illness. From this, however, he recovered in about a month's time. The cause of his death was the rupture of another blood-vessel, from the effects of which he never rallied.
We have been favoured with the following statement of his effects at the time of his death, which has never before been published :
of great com
The following year after his death, 1847, was one mercial depression, and this amount was therefore not quite realized. Roughly stated he left it in the following way :Relatives, £35,500; friends, £14,250; charities, £1,350; servants, £350; balance, being a little over £100,000, for the College. To his friend George Faulkner, in a codicil, he left £10,000 in the following terms: "To my friend George Faulkner, in my said will named, the sum of ten thousand pounds, as a slight manifestation of my affection, esteem, and regard.”
We will now bring to a close our remarks on John Owens. they have been dry or tedious, generously remember that it is
almost impossible to give a roseate hue to a life spent in moneygrubbing and obscurity; but seeing what he accomplished in a life devoid of both sweetness and light, let us hope that some foretaste of the thankfulness and gratitude of the thousands he was about to benefit was vouchsafed to him, to cheer his heart ere he turned over to face the inevitable journey through the Valley of the Shadow of Death.
DRYDEN AS LYRIST.
BY GEORGE MILNER.
[Read on the Dryden Night, February 18, 1878.]
DRYDEN'S lyrics are not numerous.
The pieces included
in most editions under the head of lyrical are not more than fifteen. To these, however, I think there should be added two poems which usually come under the title of Elegies and Epitaphs, the "Elegy on the Death of Mr. Purcell," and the ode "To the Pious Memory of Mrs. Anne Killigrew." If the consideration of this latter poem were omitted in an estimate of Dryden as lyrist, his claim upon our admiration would be seriously reduced. It should also be said that there are, of course, many songs scattered through his plays; but they are not usually collected, and for this there is good reason. They are better where they are-buried in the obscurity of unread and, on more accounts than one, unreadable acts and scenes. These songs are for the most part devoid of either natural sweetness or literary merit; they are either drivelling or lascivious, sometimes both; and the theme is nearly always the same-love in its lowest and most bestial aspect. In Jacob Tonson's editions of the Plays a Death's-head grinning upon the top of an insipid-looking classic vase is a frequent tail-piece : the embellishment is curiously appropriate. These songs may therefore be at once dismissed. In the Elizabethan dramatists it would be easy to find a score of lyrics any one of which is worth infinitely more than all the songs in all the plays of Dryden put together.
As the lyrics are not numerous, so neither are any of them, even the best, of the highest kind. No poet of the English classic
school is equal to Dryden; and if I am to read the poetry of that school at all, I should choose to take it from his pages; but the classics were not lyrists; lyric poetry was in itself alien to their method. The true prototype of the lyric is the carol of the larkrounding itself, it may be, in artistic cadences, but born of impulse, sustained by impulse, and ceasing when the afflatus, or the imaginative realisation of it, is no longer present as a motive. In a word, the true lyric is interior; classic work is exterior; the first is nature itself—passion and emotion, singing or speaking with consummate art, perhaps, but with art born of the occasion; the second is nature, regarded from without, as a subject for artistic treatment, or an object to be adorned by artistic skill.
Mr. Palgrave selects for his Golden Treasury-and with him selection is criticism-only two pieces from Dryden, the "Song for St. Cecilia's Day," and "Alexander's Feast." If we exclude the elegiac piece already alluded to, these are undoubtedly Dryden's best, indeed the only ones worth preservation. Common-place situations, twisted conceits, mythological machinery, characterise the bulk of the pieces we are considering. The song, "Farewell, fair Armida," and "In Answer to the Preceding," both published in the Covent Garden Drollery, in 1672, are fair specimens:
Farewell, fair Armida, my joy and my grief!
And then the reply :
Blame not your Armida, nor call her your grief;
Abuse not her virtue, nor call it severe ;
Who loves without honour must meet with despair.
Only the most original treatment could prevent even the measure of this poem from producing the effect of childishness. The next is the "Tears of Amynta for the Death of Damon”—an impossible situation, an unreal sentiment, a touch of lasciviousness, and an absurd ending:
On a bank beside a willow,
Heaven her covering, earth her pillow,