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known, but under that of' Melanges Historiques.' The work originally entitled ' Melanges d'Histoire et de Litterature, recueillis par De Vigneul Marville,' but afterwards printed under the name of the ' Marvilliana,' was no report of any person's sayings, but was written by a Noel Bonaventure d'Argonne, and first published by himself at Rouen in 1699. In the same manner, the critic John le Clere published at Amsterdam, in 1699 and 1701, two miscellaneous volumes, under the title of 'Parrhasiana, or Remarks and Opinions of Theodore Parrhase,' by which, according to the Greek etymology of the term, he seems to mean us to understand Theodore the Plain-dealer. A volume of thoughts on a variety of subjects by Huet, the learned Bishop of Avranches, was also published at Paris in 1722, the year after his death, from his own papers, under the title of the ' Huetiana.' Urbain Chevreau, when towards the end of his life he published two volumes of miscellanies (first at Paris in 1697, and again atAmsterdam in 1700),even gave them himself the title of' Chevraeana.' If the reader will try to elongate his own name in this fashion, he will feel what a piece of impudence it is in any man to put such a title on the front of a book.
Another of the Ana, which consists not of notes taken by a reporter, but of miscellaneous remarks prepared by the person himself after whom it is named, is the ' Casauboniana,' published at Hamburgh in 1710 by Christopher Wolf, from the papers of the great scholar, Isaac Casaubon, who had then been dead for some years. In a preface of above fifty pages in length, which he has inserted in this publication, Wolf has entered with great learning and minuteness into the history of such collections as the modern Ana, the origin of which he traces to a very remote antiquity indeed, alleging the Proverbs of Solomon as one of his early examples. Besides the various classical specimens we have noticed above, he enumerates Xenophon's Memorabilia of Socrates, the Biographies of Plutarch and Diogenes Laertius, the Facetiae of Hierocles, the Meditations of Marcus Antoninus, together with the various other collections now lost, of anecdotes respecting eminent individuals, and of sayings, witty or wise, attributed to them. In his own day, he remarks, the practice of forming such collections, generally under the name of Ana, had become so common that a whole library might almost be made up of books of that kind.
A sketch of the history of books of this class is also given in the preface to the early editions of the ' Menagiana, or Bons-Mots and Remarks, Critical, Historical, Moral, and relating to matters of erudition, of M. Menage, collected by his friends.' This is one of the best, if not the very best of all the Ana, and is not untruly described by its last editor, Dc la Monnoye, as " a treasure of bons-mots, of pleasant historiettes, and of slight notices in literature and philosophy." It was not only that Menage was really a man of wit and of brilliant colloquial powers, as well as a very variously accomplished and accurate scholar; his remarks made in conversation and here collected had been carefully recorded at the time by certain of his friends, who were also persons of eminent literary acquirements, and quite capable of preserving the full amount and spirit of what he said. This accordingly is a miscellany as full of sound learning as it is lively and entertaining.
Menage, during a great part of his life, used to see all his friends who chose to come to him at his house every Wednesday evening: this he called holding his Mercuriale (from the Latin name for Wednesday). Towards the end of his life, after he had met with an accident which prevented him from going abroad, he was accessible to all who called upon him at all hours of the day. He had the faculty of writing his letters and going on with any similar occupation without being at all disturbed by the noise of his friends conversing around him. He was in all this very different from another eminent person who has given name to one of the Ana, M. Huet, who buried himself so constantly among his books that he was scarcely ever to be spoken to. A countryman, who had repeatedly applied for an audience, at length, one day when he received the usual answer that the bishop was in his library and could not be disturbed, exclaimed, that the learned editor of Rabelais; the ' Santoliana,' to the Latin poet Santuul, or Santolius; the' Colomesiana,' and the ' Sealigerana.' The second volume is compiled from the ' Menagiana,' the ' Chevraeana,' the ' Lutherana,' the 'St. Evremoniana,' the ' Huetiana,' and the ' Boiaeana' (relating to the poet Boileau). This list may serve for a sort of catalogue of the most famous of the Ana.
A publication professing to be a reprint of a number of the old French Ana without abridgment, appeared at Amsterdam in 1799, in ten octavo volumes. The first volume contains the ' Furetieriana ' and ' Poggiana;' the second, third, and fourth, the ' Menagiana;' the fifth and sixth, the ' Vigneul-Marvilliana ;' the seventh, the ' Carpenteriana' and ' Valesiana;' the eighth, the ' Huetiana;' the ninth, the ' Chevraeana;' and the tenth, what is designated the 'Sevigniana* (being merely a number of extracts from the letters of Madame de Sevigne), and the 'Bolaeana.' This collection appears to be but a catchpenny book, and we suspect that but little confidence is to be placed in the correctness, not to say the honesty, of the reprints it affects to give. In the case of the ' Menagiana,' for instance, the editor, in a short advertisement which he has prefixed, is very careful to inform us that he has made various additions even to De la Monnoye's corrections and other notes, which he has distinguished by a particular mark; but neither here, nor anywhere else, as far as we have been able to discover, does he give us any intimation of another kind of doctoring to which he has also subjected the book,—namely, the entire omission of various parts of it. For the curtailments themselves there might perhaps have been a sufficient reason ; but the fact of their having been made ought not to have been thus industriously concealed. The principle which may have directed the selection of the Ana reprinted in this publication is not very obvious. It seems also to have been brought to a close in haste; even the services of the index-maker, who had been employed for the first eight volumes, being dispensed with in the two last.
Mr. Disraeli began his ' Curiosities of Literature' on the scheme of deriving a principal part of his mateterials from the various Ana, as he tells us in the preface to the original publication, which appeared in a single octavo volume in 1791. Subsequent additions enlarged the first series of the work to three volumes, the last of which appeared in 1817. A second scries followed, in three volumes more, in 1823: and since then the two works have been incorporated, and published together in one series of six volumes. The popularity that has been enjoyed by the' Curiosities of Literature' is sufficiently attested by the fact, that the last is the ninth edition of the book. It is indeed by far the most lively and exciting work of its kind in our language. In proceeding with his labours under the encouragement of the public approval, the author gradually extended his plan, and by both taking a wider range for his materials, and indulging in greater detail and excursiveness of observation, set before his readers a much richer and more attractive banquet than he ventured to treat them with when he began to cater for them. The second series, indeed, was a collection rather of essays than of detached anecdotes; the stories for the most part being strung together in illustration of some general observation or principle, and the meagreness of the mere fact being for the most part clothed with an application, or having new force and point given to it by some sharpening inuendo of the narrator. The author, though possessing no faculty of accumulating power and then discharging it in those grand massive efforts by which the highest effects are produced, has yet a very happy endowment of that fragmentary energy which is sufficient for a succession of such popgun explosions as we look for in an after-dinner practitioner of the art of pointing morals and adorning tales. Another well-known publication of Mr. D'Israeli's, which may be mentioned in connexion with his ' Curiosities of Literature,'•and indeed may be considered as a part of the same work, is his ' Calamities of Authors.' This appeared first in three volumes octavo, in 1812— 13. The work, being much less miscellaneous than the other, has not enjoyed the same popularity ; but to bookish minds it is fully as interesting. The subject, as Mt. D'Israeli himself notices, is one that had been repeatedlytreated of. The best known of the old works is that of Valeriano Bolzani, or, as he called himself in Latin, Joannes Pierius Valerianus, entitled' De Infelicitate Literatorum ' (On the Miseries of Literary Men), in two books. But this is a lifeless compilation, compared with Mr. Disraeli's work, consisting as it does, not like his for the most part of curious histories and facts not generallyknown, but rather of a mere accumulation of instances, the generality of which are of the most commonplace description, in proof of the position announced in the title. The work of Valerianus, who was an Italian, appeared first at Venice in 1620; and a supplement to it, by Cornelius Tollius, a Dutchman, was published at Amsterdam in 1647.
Mr. D'Isracli's ' Essay on the Manners and Genius of the Literary Character' (8vo. 1795), and his 'Miscellanies, or Literary Recreations' (8vo. 1796), are in the main the same kind of books with his' Curiosities of Literature.' They may be all called collections of anecdotes. Such also, for the most part, is a slight and forgotten performance of this author, a ' Dissertation on Anecdotes,' which appeared in an octavo pamphlet in 1793. A portion of it has been since incorporated with the ' Curiosities of Literature.'
There is a work which contains a good deal of information, of a kind interesting to literary persons, entitled 'Anecdotes of Literature and Scarce Books,' by the late Reverend William Beloe, the translator of Herodotus and Aulus Gellius: it consists of six octavo volumes, the first two of which appeared in 1807, and the last in 1812. But Beloe had none of Mr. D'Israeli's vivacity and happy art of animating a dry subject by the manner of handling it; nor was his knowledge of any subject much more than skin-deep. The illustration of title-pages and rare editions has been since prosecuted in a much more imposing style (though not "with absolute wisdom") by Dr. Dibdin in his ' Bibliographical Tour in France and Germany,'and other publications; while the ' Censura Literaria' and the ' Restituta' of Sir Egerton Brydges,