DRED; A TALE OF THE GREAT DISMAL SWAMP. By HARRIET BEECHER STOWE, author of "Uncle Tom's Cabin." Boston: Phillips, Sampson, & Co. 1856. 12mo. pp. 329, 270.
Perhaps we ought not to speak at all of this work, for we confess we have not read it through, though we sat down with that intent. But the work is too tedious for us. As a work of art its faults are glaring. The story has no beginning and no end. "Dred," or the character drawn under that name, is an unreality; no such character ever did live, or ever will. Its description of Southern Christians is a most gross caricature, conceived in ignorance or prejudice; and there is, throughout, an undercurrent of vulgarity and indelicacy which may possibly pass for genius among those whose morbid appetites crave such pabulum. What possible good such a work can do, either at the North or the South, we cannot imagine. Its only effect will be, to keep alive an irritated and mischievous state of feeling at home, and to present a most perverted view of the subject abroad. The book we see has a large sale, while works of standard worth are multiplying on the shelves of the book-stoes.
It is a little funny that just as her book is in press Mrs. Stowe, and Mr. Stowe, hasten to England to receive again the greetings of English nobility and aristocracy, who imagine themselves thus administering a terrible rebuke on American slavery. But this time, Mrs. Stowe finds a rival. An English paper says, "The same ladies who, in a storm of indignation, would, with their scissors, cut the offending Jonathan into as many pieces as his flag has stars—the same gentlewomen courtesy low to Mirza Wallee Ahud Bahador, and admire the 'ladies' of his harem amazingly."