Text: “R,” The Daily Globe (Washington, DC), vol. IX, no. 80, September 16, 1839, p. 3, cols. 5-6


[page 3, column 5, continued:]


The press cannot better subserve its legitimate purposes than in bringing to notice such publications as are calculated innocently to amuse, or beneficially to instruct; and I have long held it an obligation which the publisher of a journal owes to his readers to look up for them, so far as his opportunities allow, whatever brings itself within the cope of either of the purposes above indicated. To aid you, Mr. Editor, somewhat in discharging this obligation, I would beg leave to remind you that BURTON, of the Philadelphia “GENTLEMAN'S MAGAZINE,” is still catering with his accustomed taste for the palates of his patrons, and that his last No. presents a treat, rich enough for the appetite of a thorough-bred epicure — indeed, a treat made up of such diversified ingredients that I mistake me greatly, if every one who takes the trouble to look into it, will not be made to believe that his especial fancy has been most particularly consulted. For my part, I have been inspecting its contents, until, like the hypothetical animal who came near starving between two bundles of straw equally attractive, I was not far from depriving myself of a most delicious entertainment, lest I should be surfeited with the “good things” spread before me, but at last I summoned up sufficient fortitude to “raise the crust,” and, to drop the figure, was most agreeably entertained by the perusal of a variety of well written, interesting, and valuable articles.

The “Biography of Richard Penn Smith,” accompanied by a well engraved portrait of that gentleman, is drawn by the hand of a master. Mr. Smith has written much, and, in the main, has written well. How far he kept up to a correct standard, however, when he occupied himself with inditing “Col. Crockett's Tour,” we must leave to his biographer to determine, without compromising our own taste in the matter by the expression of a different opinion.

The Privateer,” the continuation from previous numbers of a tale of the late American war, contains much of interest. Its author is evidently in his element, and brings a scene of shipwreck so vividly before us, that we almost see the angry elements at war, and hear the thunder of the billows, and the howling of the terrific blasts, from the astounding effects of which we are presently soothed down by the

Lays of the Early Martyrs,” two beautiful poetical gems from the pen of the Rev. Thomas Dale.

The Infernal Box” I have not opened, leaving its investigation to some one of a more sulphuric temperament than myself.

A Morning's Meditation in a Burial Place,” is replete with sentiment, and invests the last long resting place of all the dead with a calm tranquillity that takes away the “bitterness and pain of dying.”

The Dying Wife,” by Miss Waterman, possesses the genuine characteristics of poetry, and comes home to the soul with a thrilling power.

Sketches from the Log of Old Ironsides,” from the pen of our townsman, J. E. Dow, will be read and treasured up by all who have the soul to appreciate a graphic description of the interesting and exciting scenes through which that gallant ship has passed. The author speaks “from the book” with regard to many of the incidents which he details; and in a history so fraught with interesting events as is that of the noble vessel, which is emphatically the pride of our navy, it is no marvel that in his hands she is made to “fight all her battles o’er again” in gallant style. The “sketches,” it is understood, will not be abandoned until Old Ironsides is left floating upon the sea without a tale untold that belongs to her eventful career. Without more ado, however, I must be permitted to say of the article on which I am commenting, as was once said in reference to the execution of a musical piece — “it is a very good song, very well sung.”

The fall of the House of Usher,” is the only article we find in this No. from the accomplished pen of our old literary acquaintance Edgar A. Poe, who is now associated in the editorial conduct of the Magazine. To say that it is in his best style is to give it all the praise which our pen is capable of conferring. Nevertheless, it is a gloomy subject which has been chosen for the material of the article, and to one of the weak nerves — writing, as I am, at midnight — his ghostly figures assume a bodily form and fashion, which incline me to pass on as rapidly as possible to some more pleasing contemplation.

A Rummage in my old Bureau” is one of Burton's best, “cabbaged, in advance,” from the forthcoming Literary Souvenir.

The article on “Gymnastics,” which, with the exception of notices of new publications, winds up the Magazine, is judicious and sensible. It is decidedly [column 6:] worth a reading, and its precepts merit consideration.

The “Review” is interesting, and in some points decidedly amusing. Our fellow-citizen, Mr. Glenn, who has been firing paper pellets at the Magazine, gets some hard knocks by way of set-off, and a few others of the scribbling tribe are dealt with secundum arem.





The identity of “R.” is unknown, but he does not appear to be one of the editors.



[S:0 - GDC, 1839] - Edgar Allan Poe Society of Baltimore - Bookshelf - Review of Narrative of Burton's Gentleman's Magazine for October (Anonymous, 1839)