« ForrigeFortsett »
night; and to any one who only heard admitted his visitants. A synod of the din it seemed that the whole wise men and women sat upon the onstead was in a blaze, and horses and woman of timber, and she was finalcattle perishing in the flame. All ly ordered to be devoured by fire, and wiles, common or extraordinary, were that in the open air. A fire was soon put in practice to entice or force the made, and into it the elfin sculpture honest farmer and his wife to open was tossed from the prongs of two the door; and when the like success pair of pitchforks. And the blaze attended every new stratagem, silence that arose was awful to behold; and for a little while ensued, and a long, hissings, and burstings, and loud loud, and shrilling laugh wound up cracklings, and strange noises, were the dramatic efforts of the night. In heard in the midst of the flame; and the morning, when Laird Macharg when the whole sunk into ashes a went to the door, he found standing drinking cup of some precious metal against one of the pilasters a piece of was found; and this cup, fashioned black ship oak, rudely fashioned into no doubt by elfin skill, but rendered something like human form, and harmless by the purification with which skilful people declared would fire, the sons and daughters of Sandie have been clothed with seeming flesh Macharg and his wife drink out of to and blood, and palmed upon him by this very day.” elfin adroitness for his wife, had he Lammerlea, Cumberland.
VERSES WRITTEN IN AN ALBUM.
The blessings that to earth are sent,
Like Angel guests, but come and go;
And brief the date of bliss below.
Thy flower has bloom'd, thy light has shone;
I feel thy grasp, and thou art gone.
In hopes that chase the hour-glass sand,
The beckonings of a Father's hand.
Those stern, kind monitors, repeat
The bourne where kindred spirits meet.
Of him, whom we no more may see,
But tells of those that yet shall be.
Shall waft the parted friend away ;
The soul shall spurn its perish'd clay.
While change and chance their link disscver,
A SENTIMENTAL JOURNEY, FROM ISLINGTON TO WATERLOO
BRIDGE, IN MARCH, 1821.
The son of Cornelius shall make his own legs his compasses : with those he shall measure continents, islands, capes, bays, streights, and isthmusses.-Memoirs of Martinus Scriblerus.
“ I should like very much to tra- England has, to be sure, its national vel,” said a young cockney, with his character; but it gives birth to many feet on the fender. “ London is a mongrels, who belong rather to the vast place; but the world is ten Spanish, Dutch, or other breeds :times bigger, and, no doubt, a many there are foreigners born here, as strange things are to be seen in it.” well as others who visit us, and why
“ And pray, young man,” said an should we go abroad to study them, old gentleman, whom he called the when we have them all in epitome at philosopher, “ pray are you so fami- home? Different nations, like differliar with the features of your own ent men, are only compounds of the country; are you so well acquainted same ingredients, but in varied prowith its men and manners, that you portions. We shall find knaves and must go out of it for matter of inves- honest men in every state, and a tigation and speculation ?”
large proportion of fools and dunces “ As for men,” replied the cock- in them all. We shall find every ney, “we may see them any where. where the same passions, the same I've seen Cribb, and Spring, and the virtues and vices, but altered in their best good ones that ever peeld ;-and, proportions, by the influences of eduas for manners, I learned them at the cation, laws, and religion ; which in dancing school. I have not been all some parts tend to improve, and, in over England, to be sure, like my others, to pervert the common nature father's riders ; but I've been to of mankind. It is in their civil and Margate, Brighton, and Moulsey religious institutions that we are to Hurst; so that what I have not seen look for the grand causes effecting by sack I have seen by sample. Be- those distinctions which constitute sides, London is the very focus of national character,-but before we England, and sure I am, that I know go to investigate them, we should, it from Wapping to Hyde Park cor at least, understand a little of our ner, and have seen all that is in- own.” structive in it. I've been up the Mo « Pshaw !” said the cockney, nument, and down St. Paul's, over who began to grow tired of this hathe bridges, and under the tunnel. rangue, “ there are sights to be seen I've seen the king and court--Mrs. abroad which can't be brought over Salmon's royal waxwork too, and the here; and as for men being the same wild beasts at Exeter 'Change-I've all the world over, it's all my eye,seen Drury Lane and Covent Garden an't there the Hottentots that have play-houses, besides the houses of noses like your Pug's, and heads as Lords and Commons- the Soho Ba- black and woolly as my poodle's? zaar,—and both Bartlemy Fair, and An't the Frenchmen all skinny, and the Brighton pavilion. I never miss- have'nt the Spaniards large whised a Lord Mayor's show, nor any kers? There are the Patagonians too, thing that is worth seeing; and I that are all as big as the Irish giant, know, by sight, Lord Castlereagh, and Laplanders no bigger than Miss Jack Ketch, Sir William Curtis, Bil. What's-her-name, the dwarf?” ly Waters, and many other public
« Pshaw!" said the philosopher, and distinguished characters." in his turn; “ all these are minor
“ If you have seen no more than distinctions, and shrink as it were to you say,” said the philosopher, “you nothing, when compared with the have seen a great deal more than is immeasurable distances between the English ; and if you only wish to minds of men:—whether I be Englishstudy mankind, it is at least a reason man or Hottentot, a Laplander, or a against your leaving the country. Patagonian,
If I could stretch from pole to pole, in the centre of the village, or rather
And grasp the ocean in a span, town of Islington, when I observed I must be measured by my soul; that the steps which led down to the The mind's the standard of the man.'
door, had become the seat, or rather “ There is, no doubt, a consider the couch, of an unfortunate female. able difference between a Hottentot's She had, like Sterne's Maria, her nose, and my own, which, as you dog, and her pipe, and like her too, observe, is a fine Roman one, and she was evidently beside herself. very like Cæsar's; but there is, I “ Poor unfortunate and interesting flatter myself, a much greater differ- Maria,” said I, “ as she came into ence between our understandings. my mind, exactly as Sterne had The first is only a difference in the drawn her. I had touched a string conformation of matter, but the last at the name of Maria, the female for is a gradation in mind, which, to the first time raised her head, and I speak in common language, is the caught a glance of her uncommon most material matter of the two." countenance. The rose had not fled
Here the cockney was quite out of from it, nor the bloom, for this was patience ; he did not care, he said, damson, and that was damask; there about mind and matter; and as to was a fixedness in her gaze, and althe difference of men's minds, why though she quickly turn'd her head men would differ, but he meant to be away, she could not hide from me of his own mind, and the philosopher that she had a drop in her eye. might be of his, and so they parted. “ It won't do,” said I, shaking my
As I was present at this conver- head, “ Maria found Sterne's handsation, it occurred to me that if men kerchief, and washed it with tears, were so much alike every where, or and dried it in her bosom; but if I rather, if every soil produced the lose mine here, it's ten to one if I see same varieties, I could see as much it again; and if this Maria should of them in a walk through the popu- wet it with her eyes, methinks it lous streets of London as in a hasty would dry best again at her nose. journey all over the Continent: 0! There is nothing to sympathize with I will not travel, said I, for in the in her bewilderment--she's rather first place, it's unnecessary; and, se bewitched than bewitching-she's a condly, I do not feel equal to its fa- dry subject,” and so I left her. tigues and dangers, and, lastly, said My eyes, however, were full charge I, (for we always get to the true ed with the tears, and my bosom reason at last) I can't afford it. Be- with the sighs, which I had expected sides, I had not seen Waterloo to mingle with those of the supposed Bridge, and we ought to see our own unfortunate. Some sentimentalists bridges, before we go to see the would have vented them upon the bridges of others.
first dead dog, or lame chicken, they A traveller, said I, should have all might meet with, but I held them his wits about him, and so will I. too valuable to be wasted upon such He should let nothing escape him, no objects. I hate the weeping-willow more will 1–he should extract re set, who will cry over their pug dogs, flections out of a cabbage stump, and canaries, till they have no tears like sun-beams squeezed out of cu- to spare for the real children of miscumbers; so will 1, if I can—and he fortune and misery,—but sensibility should converse with every and any is too scarce, and too valuable, not to one, even a fish-woman. Perhaps I be often imitated, and these therefore will, and perhaps I will not, said 1. are the ways in which they advertise Who knows but I may make a sen- their counterfeit drops. They should timental journey, as good as Sterne's; be punished like any other impostors, but, at any rate, I can write it, and and they might be made of some use send it to the London MAGAZINE. to society at the same time ; for as
I had hardly left the threshold of other convicts are set to beat hemp, my door, ere I met, as I thought, and pick oakum, so I would set with an adventure. I had just reach- these to perform funerals, and to chop ed that ancient and grotesque house onions. These reflections, and the which is said to have been a summer incidents which gave rise to them, I seat of Queen Elizabeth, though now resolved to treasure up, for they
would perhaps have their use in he had only half a crown in it. some part of my journey. They will “ Thank your honour,” said he, lookwarn me against being too sentimen- ing full in my face, and then looking tal, said I. In the first place, it's ric down upon my boots, he thanked me diculous-secondly, it's useless-and, again, and still more emphatically. lastly, it's inconvenient, for I just “ It's very true," said I, entering into recollect that there's a very large hole his feeling—"it's very true and if I in my pocket handkerchief.
too had looked upon my boots you These reflections brought me probably had not had it.” He thought, into Colebrook Row, or rather into a no doubt, with certain philosophers, heap of mud that stood at the end that man's main spring is selfishness, of it, for street reveries are very sub- and perhaps he was not quite wrong; ject to such sudden terminations. but, at all events, to decide it, I re
They say that Englishmen have a solved to watch his customers, and rusticity about them, that only rubs analyze his profits. “A plague take off by a little travel ; but that must the fellow !” said an old gentleman, certainly be erroneous, for I had whom he had hunted fifty paces for hardly gone a quarter of a mile, ere a halfpenny ; “ you ought to be reI lost, in the mudding of my boots, ported to the Mendicity society.” the little all of polish that I wore He gave it him to get rid of his imabout me. Barring the first agony portunity, thought I ; he would have of mortification, I bore it, however, kept his halfpenny by walking a little with uncommon fortitude, for I knew faster-but he walks very lame, poor that travellers must expect to meet, as old gentleman, and that perhaps I did, with sad and serious accidents. makes him pettish. The next halfThere passed, moreover, a young penny he got from a lady, who had gentleman, in very tight trotter-cases, walked a long way down the road to but whilst his feet gave evident signs avail herself of his labour. 'Twas of suffering, I observed that his coun- rather for her upper leather's than tenance was calm, vacant, and stoical. her soul's sake, said l; and as for Pshaw! said I, if he can bear his that old lady that followed her, I can pinches so well, I may surely put up read in his face that she has given with my splashes--this pain of mine him a pocket-piece-but they all go exists only in imagination, whereas in charity, as it is call’d, and I have his poor feet, - like Shakspeare's learn’d, by the bye, what to do with stricken deer, “distend their leathern a forged or flash note. As nobody coats almost to bursting.” What a else seemed inclined to give him any felicity there is in a happy appli- thing, I summ'd up my calculation; cation of words! I was so pleased one third had been given from inconwith the resemblance whicho I had venience, and one third for convediscovered between the foot of a nience, and the rest, or the pocketdandy and a stricken deer, that I piece, was the gift of pure charity. quite forgot my vexation, and its We may say of charity, as Hamlet cause. I found, as I thought, that I Travestied, does of death-that it's had a genius for apt quotations, and truly a fine thing to talk of. We all resolved not to be sparing of them; preach it-we all praise and admire, they would give to my travels an air but when we come to the practise of of great learning, and, if learning it, we “ leave that to men of more be better than riches, there would be learning,” and are as careful of our no more harm in showing it thus, pence, as of our lives, when we than in pulling out a large purse, as is find they've no chance of returnsome do, to give a poor beggar a ing.”. halfpenny.
I had hardly ended these uncha“Give a poor beggar a halfpenny,” ritable reflections when I was obliged said a man, as if he had heard and to retract and repent them. I had echoed the last part of my thought. begun to read a very conspicuous The City Road was excessively dirty, hand-bill, which was pasted on some but he had swept a cleaner passage palings near Sadler's Wells, and inover it, and as I'trod across his little vited the admirers of fisty-cuffs to a track of Terra Firma, I dropped the grand sparring benefit, at the Fives merited coin into his hat, for I saw Court. But I had hardly got fara
ther than the noble science of self- conclusion; and, taking advantage defence, when it was for the most therefore, of a general pause, the efpart eclipsed by a new hand bill, fect of exhausted rage, I was infresh from the pole of the bill-stick- duced to offer my aid as a mediator er,-and, altogether, they then ap- between the two sexes. Now, it so peared as follows :-To the Fancy- happens, that when persons are angry on such a day-a Sermon will be or ridiculous, they like to make parpreached by such a bishop-at such ties of all the spectators, and as I a church, for the benefit of such a had taken no part in the fray, but charity, and as a little piece of the had been strictly neutral, the proother bill, expressed at the bottom posal was generally agreed to; espethat real good ones were expected, I cially as I had the appearance of one applied it, of course, to the exclusion of the meek among men. Getting of pocket-pieces. I had a fresh sub therefore upon one of the benches, I ject, besides, in this piece of waggery stretched forth my hand, and proof the bill-sticker's, which had af ceeded as follows: « Ladies and forded me no little entertainment. Gentlemen, the question which you Shakspeare was right, and so was the have referred to me is of the greatphilosopher, in my estimation, for I est importance, not only to me, but saw that what they had represented to you,--not only to you, but to all was correct, that certain characters the world. It requires to know which are confined to no class, condition, of the sexes was born for dominionnor country. We may meet with whether woman should rule,-[“ or dull pedagogues and authors, and man should be ruled,” said an Irishwith sensible clowns and witty bill- man.] It not only questions whestickers; and I doubt not that we ther wife should rule husband, or shall as readily meet with blunt husband rule wife, but also if Frenchmen, with shuffling English- queens should ascend the throne, or men, and honest and brave Italians. if kings should sit on it; for which
I met with no other incident worth ever may be unfit to command a relating, or reflecting upon, till I family, must be equally unqualified came to a public house near Lady to govern a nation. The conclusion Huntingdon's chapel, and there 1 of this sentence was followed by met with matter of interest and a- shouts of applause from both parties, musement, inasmuch as it involved a
each applying to the other the unfitquestion upon national and domestic ness to which I alluded. “ If,” said government.
I,“ we may judge from a law which It was no less than a quarrel be- exists, and has existed, I should say tween a man and his wife, who had that the softer sex are unqualified just ejected him from his seat in the for the thrones, from which by that parlour ; and the argument was, not very law they stand excluded." Here whether he should go there at all, but I was obliged to bow to the applause whether he should go there without of my male hearers, and also to the her permission, first sought and ob- ladies, in order to avoid the force of tained. There were not wanting a flying patten. auxiliaries and allies upon each side, « But there is one circumstance," and there were as many advocates I continued, “ and it certainly goes for the rights of woman, as there strongly against such a conclusion; I were supporters of the doctrine of mean that in that instance, the men the free-will of man.
were the law makers.” Here again I besides, a third party, composed chief had to bow to the ladies, and duck to ly of young persons, perhaps spin- the gentlemen.“ I will say, moreover, sters and bachelors, who, by siding that if we refer to the history of a sometimes with one, and sometimes nation where that law was unknown, the other, seemed inclined to provoke we shall find that the reigns of two the opposing parties to a general thirds of her queens have been happy combat. It was evident, from the or glorious. (Loud applause from the clamour of the females, and from the females.) This fact, however, goes swearing of the men, that the argu- no further in support of this side of ment, if such it might be called, the question, than the Salic law on would never arrive at any legitimate the other; for, allowing that the