“With the increasing influence of monarchical ideas in certain circles, the women seem to be returning to the traditions of monarchy, and are throwing themselves into the business of making memoirs. Hardly have George Sand’s Confessions been announced, and already new enterprises in the same line are set on foot. The European dancer, who is perhaps more famous for making others dance to her music, and who has enjoyed a monopoly of cultivated scandal, Lola Montes, also intends to publish her memoirs. They will of course contain an interesting fragment of German federal politics, and form a contribution to German revolutionary literature. Lola herself is still too beautiful to devote her own time to the writing. Accordingly, she has resorted to the pen of M. Balzac. If Madame Balzac has nothing to say against the necessary intimacy with the dangerous Spanish or Irish or whatever woman—for Lola Montes is a second Homer—the reading world may anticipate an interesting, chapter of life. No writer is better fitted for such a work than so profound a man of the world, and so keen a painter of character, as Balzac.
“The well-known actress, Mlle. Georges, who was in her prime during the most remarkable epoch of the century, and was in relations with the most prominent persons of the Empire, is also preparing a narrative of her richly varied experiences. Perhaps these attractive examples may induce Madame Girardin also to bestow her memoirs upon us, and so the process can be repeated infinitely.”
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AUTHORS AND BOOKS.
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Parke Godwin has just given to the public, through Mr. Putnam, a new edition of the translation made by himself and some literary friends, of Goethe’s “Autobiography, or Truth and Poetry from My Life.” In his new preface Mr. Godwin exposes one of the most scandalous pieces of literary imposition that we have ever read of. This translation, with a few verbal alterations which mar its beauty and lessen its fidelity, has been reprinted in “Bohn’s Standard Library,” in London, as an original English version, in the making of which “the American was of occasional use,” &c. Mr. Godwin is one of our best German scholars, and his discourse last winter on the character and genius of Goethe, illustrated his thorough appreciation of the Shakspeare of the Continent, and that affectionate sympathy which is so necessary to the task of turning an author from one language into another. There are very few books in modern literature more attractive or more instructive to educated men than this Autobiography of Goethe, for which we are indebted to him.
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