Published Works


About this Item

Title: ["Pastourel," by Frederick Soulie]

Creator: Walt Whitman [unsigned in original]

Date: September 28, 1847

Whitman Archive ID: per.00619

Source: Brooklyn Daily Eagle 28 September 1847: [2]. Our transcription is based on a digital image of a microfilm copy of the original issue. For a description of the editorial rationale behind our treatment of the journalism, see our statement of editorial policy.

Editorial note: This piece is unsigned. However, Whitman was the editor of the Brooklyn Daily Eagle when this editorial was written, and it was first attributed to Whitman by Cleveland Rodgers and John Black in Walt Whitman, The Gathering of the Forces: Editorials, Essays, Literary and Dramatic Reviews and Other Material Written by Walt Whitman as Editor of the Brooklyn Daily Eagle in 1846 and 1847 (New York: G.P. Putnam's Sons, 1920). The piece was also included by Herbert Bergman in Walt Whitman, The Journalism. Volume I: 1834–1846 (New York: Peter Lang, 1998). The Whitman Archive editors agree that the style and content of the piece are consistent with other known Whitman writings of this period.

Contributors to digital file: Ruth L. Bohan, Hannah Fink, and Kevin McMullen

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"Pastourel," by Frederick Soulie, translated from the French by Samuel Spring, published by Williams, 24 Ann st. N. Y: and 'the "Countess of Morion," by the same author, translated by Henry Wm. Herbert, (same publishers,) are works of that school of novels, exciting, dashy, full of incident, with not a little improbability, but whose vein suits so well with the florid appetite of youth and impulse. The translators have executed their duty fairly, and there is no denying that the books are interesting. We understand that the demand for these works is large. The price is 50 cents per volume.

The Union Magazine1 for October is really one of the best collections of original reading, 'useful and ornamental,' that we have seen for years—much better than we supposed a 'fashionable monthly' capable of giving. We are sorry to see, however, the old style of namby-pamby in the pictures.2 Give us fresh originals, Mr. Post!3 fit to precede the fine writing of the after pages, and worthy the best editor of any of its class of magazines—all of which we think Mrs. Kirkland. . . . . . . . The Columbian has a couple of quite fair pictures, "little rogues in trouble," and "rural pastime," the latter rather milk-and-waterish, however.4 The usual writers contribute to its pages.—(Ormsby & Hackett, 116 Fulton street, New York.)


1. The Union Magazine of Literature and Art, edited by Caroline M. Kirkland (1801–1864), began publication in 1847. The following year publication was transferred to Philadelphia and the title changed to Sartain's Magazine of Literature and Art. [back]

2. "Namby–pamby," meaning weak or maudlin, well describes the illustrations which appear overly sentimental and more exaggerated than in other periodicals of the period. [back]

3. Israel Post was the publisher. He had formerly published The Columbian Magazine. [back]

4. The magazine's full title is The Columbian Lady's and Gentleman's Magazine, Embracing Literature in Every Department, Embellished with Fine Steel and Mezzotint Engravings. Whitman had reviewed an earlier issue in "The monthly Magazines," July 28, 1846, Brooklyn Daily Eagle. Little Rogues in Trouble is a rural genre scene by artist W. L. Grimsby (dates unknown); Rural Pastime, which represents a woman sketching in nature, was by artist Henry Smith (dates unknown). The background of this work is not well defined, appearing more like a stage set, and perhaps what Whitman was referring to when he described it as "milk–and–waterish." [back]


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