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form

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lish prose, or the prose

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any other language, and at the same time preserving the power and spirit of the original.

Bayard Taylor's translation of Goethe's Faust is a masterpiece in this, that it is a remarkably successful attempt to

Bayard Taylor transfer from one language to another not merely the on thoughts, the sentiment, and the exact meaning of the poetry. author, but also the form and rhythm. Mr. Taylor argues very forcibly, and we think truly, that “the value of form in a poetical work is the first question to be considered. Poetry," he observes, “is not simply a fashion of expression; it is the form of expression absolutely required by a certain class of ideas. Poetry, indeed, may be distinguished from prose by the single circumstance that it is the utterance of whatever in man cannot be perfectly uttered in any other than a rhythmical form. It is useless to say that the naked meaning is independent of the form. On the contrary, the form contributes essentially to the fulness of the meaning. In poetry which endures through its own inherent vitality, there is no forced union of these two elements. They are as intimately blended, and with the same mysterious beauty, as the sexes in the ancient Hermaphroditus. To attempt to represent poetry in prose is very much like attempting to translate music into speech.

How impossible to translate perfectly into any other form the following passage from Milton:

Now storming fury rose,
And clamour such as heard in Heaven till now
Was never; arms on armour clashing brayed
Horrible discord, and the maddening wheels
Of brazen chariots raged; dire was the noise
Of conflict; overhead the dismal hiss
Of fiery darts in flaming volleys flew,
And flying vaulted either host with fire.
So under fiery cope together rushed
Both battles main, with ruinous assault
And inextinguishable rage. All Heaven
Resounded, and had earth been then, all earth
Had to her centre shook. What wonder? when
Millions of fierce encountering angels fought
On either side, the least of whom could wield
These elements, and arm him with the force

Of all their regions.
The

very form of this passage, as it stands before the reader's eye, contributes not a little to the emotions produced by it in the

1 Preface to Translation of Goethe's Faust.
'Paradise Lost, Book vi, lines 207-223.

soul of a man of taste. Change the order of the words, or attempt to state their naked meaning in prose, and the very ideas will seem to vanish. The grandeur and beauty of the passage are due as much to the rhythm, the emphatic collocation of words, the expressiveness of the form in which the whole is placed before us, as to the sublime conceptions they embody. But if so much is due to the form of poetic writing, much must be lost from any noble poem when transferred to another language shorn of these elements of power. The least we can do is to make prominent in our translations the measured forms of the original. So far as it may be done without too great violence to the idioms of our own tongue, we should preserve the same order of words, emphatic forms of statement, and abrupt transitions. In these respects Hebrew poetry is Hebrew spirit probably more capable of exact translation than that of and form may any other language. For there is no rhyme, no metric served in trans- scale, to be translated. Two things it is essential to lation.

preserve—the spirit and the form, and both of these are of such a nature as to make it possible to reproduce them to a great extent in almost any other language.'

No man, perhaps, has shown a greater power to present in English the real spirit of Hebrew poetry than Tayler Lewis. The following version of Job iv, 12-21, while not exactly following the Hebrew collocation of the words, and giving to some words a meaning scarcely sustained by Hebrew usage, does, nevertheless, bring out the spirit and force of the original in a most impressive way:

To me, at times, there steals a warning word;
Mine ear its whisper seems to catch.
In troubled thoughts from spectres of the night,
When falls on men the vision-seeing trance,
And fear has come, and trembling dread,
And made my every bone to thrill with awe,-
'Tis then before me stirs a breathing form;
O'er all my flesh it makes the hair rise up.
It stands; no face distinct can I discern;
An outline is before mine eyes;
Deep silence! then a voice I hear:
Is mortal man more just than God?
Is boasting man more pure than he who made him ?
In his own servants, lo, he trusteth not,
Even on his angels doth he charge defect.
Much more to them who dwell in homes of clay,
With their foundation laid in dust,
And crumbled like the moth
From morn till night they're stricken down;
Without regard they perish utterly.
Their cord of life, is it not torn away?

They die still lacking wisdom. See the notes on this rhythmical version, in which Lewis defends the accuracy of his translation, in Lange's Commentary on Job, pp. 59, 60. See also Lewis' articles on The Emotional Element in Hebrew Translation, in the Methodist Quarterly Review, for Jan., 1862, Jan. and July, 1863, and Jan., 1864.

HEBREW PARALLELISM.

149

Structural form

allelism.

While the spirit and emotionality of Hebrew poetry are aue to a combination of various elements, the parallelism of sentences is a most marked feature of its outward form. of Hebrew parThis it becomes us now to exhibit more fully, for a scientific interpretation of the poetical portions of the Old Testament requires that the parallelism be not ignored. Joseph Addison Alexander, indeed, animadverts upon Bishop Lowth's “supposed discovery of rhythm or measure in the Hebrew prophets," and condemns his theory as unsound and in bad taste.' But his strictures seem to proceed on the assumption that the theory of parallelism involves the idea of metrical versification analogous to the prosody of other languages. Aside from such an assumption they have no relevancy or force. For it is indisputable that the large portions of the Hebrew scriptures, commonly regarded as poetical, are as capable of arrangement in well-defined parallelisms as the variety of Greek metres are capable of being reduced to system and rules.

The short and vivid sentences which are a peculiar characteristic of Hebrew speech would lead, by a very natural proc- The process of ess, to the formation of parallelisms in poetry. The forming paral, desire to present a subject most impressibly would in Hebrew. lead to repetition, and the tautology would show itself in slightly varying forms of one and the same thought. Thus the following, from Prov. i, 24-27:

Because I have called, and ye refuse;
I have stretched out my hand, and no one attending;
And ye refuse all my counsel,
And my correction ye have not desired;
Also I in your calamity will laugh;
I will mock at the coming of your terror;
At the coming—as a roaring tempest--of your terror;
And your calamity as a sweeping whirlwind shall come on;

At the coming upon you of distress and anguish. Other thoughts would be more forcibly expressed by setting tnem in contrast with something of an opposite nature. Hence such parallelisms as the following:

They have kneeled down and fallen;
But we have arisen and straightened ourselves up. Psa. xx, 9.
The memory of the righteous (is) for a blessing,
But the name of the wicked shall be rotten.
The wise of heart will take commands,

But a prating fool shall be thrown down. Prov. x, 7, 8. See the Introduction to his Commentary on The Earlier Prophecies of Isaiah, pp. 48, 49. New York, 1846.

Such simple distichs would readily develop into more complex examples of parallelism, and we find among the Hebrew poems a great variety of forms in which the sacred writers sought to set forth their burning thoughts. The more common and regular forms of Hebrew parallelism are classified by Lowth under three general heads, which he denominates Synonymous, Antithetic, and Synthetic. These, again, may be subdivided, according as the lines form simple couplets or triplets, or have measured correspondence in sentiment and length, or are unequal, and broken by sudden bursts of passion, or by some impressive refrain.

1. SYNONYMOUS PARALLELISM. Here we place passages in which the different lines or members present the same thought in a slightly altered manner of expression. To this class belong the couplets of Prov. i, 24–27 cited above, where it will be seen there is a constant repetition of thought under a variety of words. Three kinds of synonymous parallels may be specified:

a) Identical, when the different members are composed of the same, or nearly the same, words:

Thou wert snared in the sayings of thy mouth;
Thou wert taken in the sayings of thy mouth. Prov. vi, 3.
They lifted up, the floods, O Jehovah;
They lifted up, the floods, their voice;
They lift up, the floods, their dashing. Psa. xciii, 3.
It shall devour the parts of his skin,
It shall devour his parts, the first-born of death. Job xviii, 13.
For in a night is spoiled Ar, Moab, cut off.
For in a night is spoiled Kir, Moab, cut off. Isa. xv, 1

6) Similar, when the sentiment is substantially the same, but language and figures are different:

For he on seas has founded it,
And on floods will he establish it. Psa. xxiv, 2.
Brays the wild ass over the tender grass ?
Or lows the ox over his provender? Job vi, 5.

c) Inverted, when there is an inversion or transposition of words or sentences so as to change the order of thought:

The heavens are telling the glory of God,
And the work of his hands declares the expanse. Psa. xix, 2.
They did not keep the covenant of God,
And in his law they refused to walk. Psa. lxxviii, 10.

HEBREW PARALLELISM.

151

For unto me is he lovingly joined, and I will deliver him;
I will exalt him, for he has known my name. Psa. xci, 14.
Strengthen ye the weak hands,
And the feeble knees confirm. Isa. XXXV, 3.

2. ANTITHETIC PARALLELISM. Under this head come all passages in which there is a contrast or opposition of thought presented in the different sentences. This kind of parallelism abounds in the Book of Proverbs especially, for it is peculiarly adapted to express maxims of proverbial wisdom. There are two forms of antithetic parallelism:

a) Simple, when the contrast is presented in a single distich of simple sentences:

Righteousness will exalt a nation,
But the disgrace of peoples is sin. Prov. xiv, 34.
The tongue of wise men makes knowledge good,
But the mouth of fools pours out folly. Prov. xv, 2.
For a moment in his anger:
Lifetimes in his favour.
In the evening abideth weeping;
And at morning, a shout of joy. Psa. xxx, 5. (6.)

b) Compound, when there are two or more sentences in each member of the antithesis:

The ox has known his owner,
And the ass the crib of his lord ;
Israel has not known,-
My people have not shown themselves discerning. Isa. i, 3.
If ye be willing, and have heard,
The good of the land shall ye eat;
But if ye refuse, and have rebelled,
A sword shall eat-
For the mouth of Jehovah has spoken. Isa. i, 19, 20.
In a little moment I forsook thee,
But in great mercies I will gather thee.
In the raging of wrath I hid my face a moment from thee;
But with everlasting kindness have I had mercy on thee.

Isa. liv, 7, 8. 3. SYNTHETIC PARALLELISM. Synthetic or Constructive Parallelism consists, according to Lowth's definition, “only in the similar form of construction, in which word does not answer to word, and sentence to sentence, as equivalent or opposite; but there is a correspondence and equality

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