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November 26, 1922 - Image 14

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The Michigan Daily, 1922-11-26
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0

-4'

PAGE FOUR

THE MICHIGAN DAILY

SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 26, 1922

SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 26, 1922

THE MICHIGAN DAILY

Henley, Victorun Realist

The University's Rare Manuscri

(Kurt E. Rosinger)
Looking over some of my old books,
I came across the collected poems of
William Ernest Henley. Not having
heard him mentioned for several
years, I again read the poems which,
at one time, had filled me with such
delight, to see whether they would
again have for me the old charm. I
was not disappointed. They still are,
in my estimation, among the finest in
the English language. Nevertheless,
they are almost unknown to the
American reader.
Only one of his poems has been giv-
en prominence since I can remember.
This was brought before the public in
the form of sub-titles, when the mov-
ing picture, "Male and Female," was
being shown inthe theaters. Most of
my readers doubtless remember that
exquisite poem, so filled with aesthetic
emotion, which begins:
Or ever the knightiy years were gone
With the old world to the grave,
I was a king in Babylon
And you were a Christian slave.
and which ends with the verse:
Yet not for an hour would I have un-
done
The deed beyond the grave,
When I was a King in Babylon
And you were a Virgin slave.
The power and emotion which are
released with eery word of this poem
is characteristic of all of Henley's
poetry.
The reader who has ventured thus
far into this article, doubtless wishes
to know something about the poet be-
fore reading a further criticism of
him. This I shall do in a few words.
William Ernest Henley was one of
the most interesting prsonalities in
England, in the latter half of the 19th
century. He was born.in 1149 and
died in 1903. Although a huge man
with a wonderful personality, he was
a. cripple, and ill a great part of his
life..This accounts for his "In Hos-
pital" group of poems.
In spite of his fifty-four years, he is
preserved to u3 only in a few small
volumes of poetry and prose. These,
however, represont a wide range of
study and thought. They are "In Hos-
pital: Rhymes and Rhythms," "Book
of Verses," and "Song of the Sword."
His essays have been compiled and
published as "Views and Reviews." Be-
sides these. he has collaborated with
Robert Louis Stevenson in publishing
a book of plays, the best known of
which is "Beau Austin."
The greatest reason for the obscur-
ity of Henley is his decidedly modern-
istic tendency. It sounds strange to
say this of a Victorian poet, yet were
he among the most radical of our liv-
ing poets, his style could not be more
modern. He was misplaced in the
nineteenth century. Judge for your-
selves--his "Invictus," the other poem
which is sometimes found in an anth-
ology of verses is a good example:
OW~ of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from er0s to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.
In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody but unbowed.
Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the horror of theshade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find, me unafraid.
It matters not how straight the gate,
How charged with punishments the
scroll
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of fmy soul.

mercilessly and brutally, caring little
whether he hurt his audience in doing
so. He believed that the main fea-
tures of criticism is to increase the
powers of deprecation rather than of
appreciation.
Always around him was a -group of
young men--disciples they might be4
called--who composed the rest of the
staff of his paper. They followed him
everywhere, absorbing each word he
uttered, meanwhile championing his
every idea. This is one of the most
picturesque phases of Henleys life.
Henley has combined two of the.
highest attributes to the mind. He is
both poet and philosopher. Nor does
the one suffer through the other.
His outlook on life is disposed to
take the least hopeful view of things,
yet we find him calm and determined
not to give way under the stress, but
to fight back. His pessimism is tinged
'with optimism, for to him death is not
the culminating blow from a sinister
I fate, but the reward we get for having
endured life. For illustration I give
"I am the Reaper."

Pale roses touched with the spring,
Tall corn in summer,
Fruits rich with autumn, and frail
winter blossoms-
Reaping, still reaping-
All things with heedful hook
Timely I gather.
I am the Sower.
All the unbodied life
Runs through my seed-sheet.
Atom with atom wed,
Each quickeningthe other,
Fall through my hands ever chang-
ing, still changeless
Ceaselessly sowing,
Life, incorruptible life,
Flows through my seed-sheet.
Maker and breaker,
I am the ebb and the flood,
( Here and Hereafter,
Sped through the tangle and coil
I Of infinite nature,
Viewless and soundless I fashion all
being:
I Traker and giver,
I am the womb and the grave.
The Now and theEver.
Such is the Henlian philosophy.
It is but natural that some of Hen-
ley's work does not come up to the
high standard Henley has created for

himself. - One part of the collected
poems which does not come up to the
rest is the group ."In Hospital."
Henley was, a sick man for many
years, and his reactions to hospital
life are brought out in these poems.
An important feature of true poetry
is that it stimulates in the reader the
same general emotions held by the
poet at the time of his creating. I,
and fortunately most of us, have never
been ill long enough for the emotions
expressed in these poems to find a re-
sponse in us. This may be the reason
I do not appreciate the "In Hospital"
group as much as the others. Not-
withstanding, these, like his others,
express the beauty, yet deadly pessi-
mism of a great mind.
George Jean Nathan will have a new
book published in January by Alfred
A. Knopf. It will be called "The
World in Falseface," and, will deal to
a less extent with the stage than Mr.
Nathar.'s previous books.
"The Quest," Pio Baroja's novel
which Alfred A. Knopf published last
week, is one of the Spanish author's
most famous books and is the first of
his trilogy "The Struggle For Life."

(Virginha Vaughn Tryon) tone. The time is written by symbolsi
Singular indeed have been the steps placed above the notes, and the words{
by which the University of Michigan of the hymn are put in lighter, finer
has acquired possession of one of the characters below these two lines. It
most valuable collections of early Bib- is not easy to read mediaeval music.
lical and liturgical manuscripts in ex- From another source the University
istence. The story begins back in 1883, has, in the present year, received a
and the last chapter, the most import- notable Greek manuscript of the tenth
ant, has but recently been completed. century. It is exhibited as number 14,
In the early days of Michigan, in and contains a, carefully written copy
1883, upon the occasion of the dedica- of the Homilies of St. Chrysostom on
tion of the old University library, the Acts of the Apostles, which pre-
then considered one of the best librar- sents an exceptionally =good text of
ies of its kind in the country, the Uni- this work. These Homilies quote a
versity was presentd with two vol- considerable portion of the text of the
umes, both very old, and very val.. Acts from an ancient source used by
able. These are on exhibition now in St. Chrysostom in 400 A. D. when the
the corridor of the Library, together Homilies were delivered. This manu-
with sixty-two other similar ancient script disappeared from view at the
manuscripts. The first one was pre- time of the Napoleonic Wars, and was
sented by Dr. George Duffield, a Re- found just before the Great War with
gent of the University at that time. some other manuscripts packed in a
It is a Latin Bible of the Twelfth forgotten chest in the attic of an old
century, hand-written on parchment, castle belonging to an Austrian noble-
and exquisitely hand-illuminated. 'The man. It is one of the most important
other volume, number two in the ex-, manuscripts known for the text of this
hibition, is a Latin treatise on surgery work.
by Theodoric, who died in 1298 A. D. The largest and' most important ad-
The work was transcribed by hand on dition to the Library collection was
parchment in the fifteenth century. It { made late last Spring, when the great-

I am the Reaper.
All things with heedfutl hook
Silent I gather.

I, . .

was given by Dr. Samuel A. Jones, aj
member of the faculty at the time of
the dedication of the Library in 1883.
No more manuscripts in Latin and
Greek came into the possession of-the
University until .1920 when the Li-
brary received a notable accession
through the work of the University
Expedition to the Near East. At this

er and more important part of the col-
lection of manuscripts of the late Bar-
oneps Burdett-Coutts was presented
to the University by an unnamed don-
or in Detroit. And in the circum-{
stance of this gift lies a story all its
own.
The Baroness Burdett-Coutts, whose
given names are Angela Georgina,

starving peasantry and fugitives, and cques, showing the figu
was given the Turkish order of Med- tween two saints, in
jidieh, a solitary case of its confer- four silver bosses on
ence on a woman. A very striking maz
In 1870-71 the Baroness made a trip to the beginning of F
to Albania, and found the manuscripts shows'a beautiful illr
which she subsequently bought and beginning of the chap
took back with her to her great li- in size, finely done it
brary in London. These were prob- and blue, in a regular
ably all written by monks in some design. The volume i
Balkan monastery. Among them were pages are written in tl
some of the rarest manuscripts on re- timaginable. Another :
ligious subjects in existence. it must ing copy is one of the
be remembered that the Baroness Greek, on p.;- Thment,
Burdett-Coutts was a scholar as well miniatures of sair
as n philanthropist. ning of each Gu._i
From the time of her death in 1906, a quaint old rep.-,
her library remained intact, until the Luke, a charming z..
beginning of the present year. On man in a flowing gow
May 15, 1922, her entire collection of ing his Gospel on a s
books was put up for sale at auction him.
in London. The announcement in the Two Ethiopic manu
catalogue of the contents of the li- ed as numbers 62 and
brary, as compiled by the official auc- cently come into the -
tioncers reads quaintly as follows- Uni'ersity. The firs'
"Catalogue of the Valuable Library, 18th century parch'.
the property of the late Baroness Bur- the second, and Y-:.
dett-Coutts, Lady of Grace of the Or- collection of r'giou
der of St. John of Jerusalem-Sold by cluding the stci1es of1
auction by Sotherby, Wilkinson, and done som 11e after
Hodge, Auctioneers of literary proper- there i; a ancient le
ty and works illustrative of the Fine much ; sembling a
Arts. Monday, the 15th of May, 1922,i case, x-ith a strap for
and two days following, at one o'clock the shoulder, which e
precisely." iume, and has kept it
This catalogue of the sale was re- It is of no particular
ceived so late that it was necessary ject for scholastic re,
to forward the bids of the University an exceedingly interes
of Michigan by cable. The proceeds Most interesting of z
of the entire sale of the library netted which connects with i
the equivalent of nearly $900,000. The the Library.
42 manuscripts obtained by the Uni- An Armenian, fleein
versity of Michigan cover all the valu- happy country, pack
able items. The reason for this is Said into Abyssinia
that the bids were carefully graded ac- picture show under ca
cording to the value of each item as deserts. Interest was
known from the description of two a laborer earning six
eminent scholars, Scrivener and Gre- day gets on very well
gory, who had examined them. The where he can buy twc
funds for the purchase of the manu-( ens for four cents or
scripts were supplied by a most gen- $1.25, supporting a
erous donor under the conditions that costly importations of
his name be not made public, matter. Failing in thf
There are many manuscripts of spe- he turned to the mod
cial value, as well as beauty, among lion and tiger hunter
those. exhibited in the library corridor. better, and he liked t
Perhaps the loveliest one of them all is no worry," he says
is a tiny little volume, not bigger than like a collar, you no N
fcur- by five inches, of the Four Gos- like good clothes, ne
pels, written in the 12th century in no shave." This wa
Greek, on parchment. The cover is philosophy, and appar
several centuries old, and is made of in good stead until f
blue silk, with enameled silver pla- (Continued on p

KSGIVING-
Fooi-LR

Colonial Days Inspired these Beautiful
Pumps for Thanksgiving Wear

But what a difference between the Colonials of even a few years
years back, and those of today ! Yet the difference has not lessened
the distinctive style of Colonial Pumps! They retain the same
graceful tongue effect which fits so well the Fashions of Today.
An unusually attractive Colonial pump of black satin and brocade
offers Milady footwear that will add the finishing touch to her
Thanksgiving Costume. The vamp of these pumps is of plain satin
while the back and Louis heel is of brocaded satin. They are
very reasonable in price-
Satin-Brocade
Pumps
For those whose Thanksgiving Costume re-
quires a plainer and more conservative style
shoe there are plain satin pumps fashioned from
a good quality black satin. These pumps have
one strap and will look well with any silk or
velvet frock as well as with more tailored dress-
es of woolen fabrics. They are exceptionally
low priced for the quality-
$6.50

time a number of exceedingly valu- was, according to King Edward VII of
able documents was acquired. Most England "after my mother (Queen Vic-
of them are written in parchment, toria) the most remarkable woman in
done laboriously centuries ago by the the kingdom." She died in 1906, at the
monks in old monasteries, in beauti- age of 98, after a long and active life,
ful and precise characters, and with I during which she associated her name
all degrees of fine illumination, and I with practically every sort of endow-
painted miniatures of gold and blue ment for the poor, relief work in all
and red. countries, and assistance to the work-
Particularly noticeable in this ing classes, as well as with a wide and
group, of which numbers 4 to 12 in thej intelligent patronage of the stage, lit-
exhibition are representative, is the erature, and the arts. There was no-
Greek lectionary, number 7, showing thing in which she was not interested
the musical notation in red. The no- -no phase of doing good which she
tations were written in for the conven- I did not attempt.
ience of the priests when they chant- She was honored many times by
ed the words of the Scriptures in their royal recognition. At 23 she was rats-,
services. The musical signs, wholly ed to the peerage. In 1872 she was
unintelligible today, were placed di- presented at the Guild Hall with the
rectly above the words. In another freedom of the city of London, the
volume, not exhibited, a more com-' first case of a woman being admitted
plete idea of the old way of writing to this fellowship. During the Russo-
music can be obtained. The notes arc Turkish War, in 1878, she raised the1
written heavily in black, to denote the I Turkish Compassionate Fund for the
x5
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A practical as well as pleasing Gift
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Priced $1.00 up
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Light in weight; easily packed
THIS small sized toaster stove,
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beats water, tea, chocolate, etc.
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Every girl should own one
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This is Henley; fierce, powerful,:
pesvimistle.
During his life, Henley was known
rather as a journalist than a poet, for
his aesthetic works were not of the
material that "best sellers" are made
of. He was editor of the "National
Observer," one of the fiercest icono-
clastic papers in England at the time.
"It existed," writes one of Henley's
friends, "to protest against everyF
sham in a sentimental, artificial, re-
forming, and ignorant world."
Henley was a keen analyst, who saw'
through the conventionalities and hy-
pocrisies of his time. These he fought

IJ

V

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