« ForrigeFortsett »
EDWARD GEORGE EARLE LYTTON BULWER LYTTON. 465
dead faces shall express what their spirits
EDWARD GEORGE EARLE were, and are to be, by a lingering smile of
of | LYTTON BULWER LYTTON, memory and hope.
LORD LYTTON, Ahem! Dry work, this speechifying ; especially to an unpractised orator. I never was born at leydon Llall, Norfolk, Eng. conceived till now what toil the temperance land, 1805, graduated at Trinity IIall, Camlecturers undergo for my sake. Hereafter, bridge, 1826, made a baronet, 1838, Lord they shall have the business to themselves. Rector of the University of Glasgow, 1856, Do, some kind Christian, pump a stroke or Secretary of State for the Colonies, 1858, two, just to wet my whistle. Thank you, raised to the peerage as Baron Lytton, 1866, Sir! My dear hearers, when the world shall died 1873. have been regenerated by my instrumen- / Novels and Romances: London, Saunders tality, you will collect your useless vats and & Otley, 1840-45, 14 vols. p. 8vo; Chapman liquor casks into one great pile, and make & Ilall, 1848–53, 20 vols. cr. Svo; Edina bonfire in honour of the Town Pump. / burgh, 1859-60, 43 vols. 12mo; author's And when I shall have decayed, like my last revised library edition, London, 48 vols. predecessors, then, if you revere my mem-cr. 8vo: contents : Rienzi, Paul Clifford, ory, let a marble fountain, richly sculptured, Pelham, Eugene Aram, Last of the Barons, take my place upon the spot. Such monu Last Days of Pompeii, Godolphin, Pilgrims ments should be erected everywhere, and of the Rhine, Night and Morning, Ernest inscribed with the names of the distin- Maltravers, Alice, Disowned, Devereux, Za. guished champions of my cause. Now lis- | noni, Leila, Calderon the Courtier, Ilarold, ten; for something very important is to the Last of the Saxon Kings, Lucretia, Tho come next.
Caxtons, My Novel, What will lIe do with There are two or three honest friends of It? Strange Story, Kenelm Chillingly, The mine-and true friends I know they are- Parisians, The Coming Race; new edition, who, nevertheless, by their fiery pugnacity Lond., 27 vols, cr. 8vo: contents : same as in my behalf, do put me in fearful hazard the 48 vols. edition, excepting Calderon the of a broken nose, or even a total overthrow Courtier, which is omitted. There is an ilupon the pavement, and the loss of the treas-lustrated edition, with 16 engravings, of ure which I guard. I pray you, gentlemen, Leila and Calderon, Lond., 1838, r. 8vo, and let this fault be amended. Is it decent, another of The Pilgrims of the Rhine, with think you, to get tipsy with zeal for tem- a portrait and 27 engravings, Lond., 1866, perance, and take up the honourable cause cr. 8vo. of the Town Pump in the style of a toper Miscellaneous Prose Works, Lond., 1868, fighting for his brandy bottle? Or can the 3 vols. 8vo; England and the English, excellent qualities of cold water be no other | Lond., 1833, 2 vols, 12mo; The Student, wise exemplified than by plunging, slap- Lond., 1835, 2 vols. 8vo (papers from The dash, into hot water, and wofully scalding New Monthly Magazine); Athens, its Rise yourselves and other people? Trust me, and Fall, Lond., 1837, 2 vols. 8vo; The they may. In the moral warfare which you Lost Tales of Miletus, Lond., 1867, p. 8vo: are to wage,-and, indeed, in the whole con Speeches, with Memoir by his Son, Lord duct of your lives, you cannot choose a Robert Lytton, Lond., 1874; Pausanius the better example than myself, who have never Spartan, edited with a Preface by Lord perinitted the dust and sultry atmosphere, Robert Lytton, Lond., 1876, p. 8vo. the turbulent and manifold disquietudes of Poetical and Dramatic Works, Lond., the world around me, to reach that deep, calm 1852–53-54, 5 vols. p. 8vo: contents : vol. well of purity, which may be called my soul. i., Beacon, Constance, or, The Portrait; And whenever I pour out that soul, it is to Eva; Fairy Bride ; Lay of the Minstrel's cool earthi's fever, or cleanse its stains. | Ileart; Milton; Narrative Lyrics, or, The
One o'clock! Nay, then, if the dinner- | Parcæ ; New Timon. Vol. ii., King Arbell begins to speak, I may as well hold my thur. Vol. iii., King Arthur; Corn Flowpeace. Ilere comes a pretty young girl of ers; Earlier Poems. Vol. iv., Duchess de my acquaintance with a large stone pitcher | la Vallière ; Lady of Lyons ; Richelieu. for me to fill. May she draw a husband, Vol. v., Money ; Not so Bad as We Seem. while drawing her water, as Rachel did of Poetical Works, complete, Lond., 1860, cr. old. Hold out your vessel, my dear! There 8vo, new edit., 1865. Dramatic Works, it is, full to the brim : so now run home, complete, 1863, 12mo; The Rightful Heir, peeping at your sweet image in the pitcher, I a Play, 1868; Walpole, 1869. as you go ; and forget not, in a glass of my | Other publications : Ismael, an Oriental own liquor, to drink-"Success to the Town Tale, 1820, 12.no, was published when he Puup!!
was fifteen. Trice-Told Tales.
In 1831 he succeeded Campbell as editor 466 EDWARD GEORGE EARLE LITTON BULWER LYTTON.
of The New Monthly Magazine, and held smiling, and yet at the same time hurrying this post until 1833.
his goods into his box, and carefully turning
the key—“ No, sir; I am only a bearer of “Edward Lytton Bulwer has vigorous and va
other men's goods; my morals are all that ried powers: in all tbat he has touched on he has shown great mastery; his sense of the noble, the
I can call my own, and those I will sell you beautiful, or the ludicrous, is strong; he can move at your own price.” at will into the solemn or the sarcastic; he is “You are candid, my friend," said I, equally excellent in describing a court or a cot " and your frankness, alone, would be inestage, and is familiar with gold spurs and with timable in this age of deceit, and country of clouted shoon. ... Bulwer is devoted to the cause hypocrisy." of literature: all his speeches allude to it; his motions in Parliament refer to it; and in private
"Ah, sir !" said my new acquaintance, as well as public life he is its warm and eloquent
“I see already that you are one of those peradrocate."-ALLAN CUNNINGHAM: Biog. and Crit. sons who look to the dark side of thinys : Hist. of the Lit. of the Last Fifty Years, 1833. | for my part, I think the present age the best See also Bayne's Essays on Biography and Criti that ever existed, and our country the most cism ; Essays, by George Brinley; Essays on Fic
virtuous in Europe." tion, by N. W. Senior; Essays, by W. C. Roscoe; Sir A. Alison's Essays, 1850, iii. 113, and his His
"I congratulate you, Mr. Optimist, on tory of Europe, 1815-1852, chap. v.; Edir. Rev., your opinions," quoth I; “but your obJuly, 1837; Fraser's Mag., Jan. 1850; Blacku. servation leads me to suppose that you Mag., Feb. 1855, and March, 1873; (Lond.) Quar. are both an historian and a traveller: am Rev., Jan. 1865. Selections from the Correspondence I right?'' oj the Late Macvey Napier, Esq., Loud., 1879, 8vo. "Why," answered the box-bearer, “I
have dalibled a little in books, and wandered The Candip MAN.
not a little among men. I am just returned One bright laughing day I threw down from Germany, and am now going to my my book an hour sooner than usual, and friends in London. I am charged with this sallied out with a lightness of foot and ex- box of goods: God send me the luck to dehilaration of spirit to which I had long been liver it safe.”' a stranger. I had just sprung over a stile “Amen," said I, “and with that prayer that led into one of those green shady lanes and this trifle I wish you a good mornwhich make us feel that the old poets who ing." loved and lived for nature were right in "Thank you a thousand times, sir, for calling our island - the merry England," both," replied the man, but do add to when I was startled by a short, quick bark your favours by informing me of the right on one side of the hedge. I turned sharply road to the town of — " round; and, seated upon the sward was a “I am going in that direction myself: man, apparently of the pedlar profession; a if you choose to accompany me part of great deal box was lying open before hiin; the way I can insure you not missing the a few articles of linen and female dress were rest." scattered round, and the man himself ap- “ Your honour is too good !" returned he peared earnestly occupied in examining the of the box, rising, and slinging his fardel deeper recesses of his itinerant warehouse.across him, “it is but seldom that a gentleA small black terrier flew towards me with man of your rank will condescend to walk no friendly growl. “Down !" said I: “All three paces with one of mine. You smile, strangers are not foes,-though the English sir, perhaps you think I should not class generally think so."
myself among gentlemen; and yet I have The man hastily looked up; perhaps he as good a right to the name as most of the was struck with the quaintness of iny re-set. I belong to no trade-I follow no monstrance to his canine companion; for, calling: I rove where I list, and rest where touching his hat civilly, he said, " The dog, I please: in short, I know no occupation sir, is very quiet; he only means to give me but my indolence, and no law but my will. the aları by giving it to you; for dogs seem Now, wir, may I not call myself a gentleto have no despicable insight into human man ?" nature, and know well that the best of us « Of a surety !" quoth I. "You seem to may be taken by surprise."
me to hold a middle rank between a balf"You are a moralist," said I, not a little pay captain and the king of the gipsies." astonished in my turn by such an address * You have it, sir,'' rejoined my companion, from such a person. “I could not have ex- with a slight laugh. Ile was now by my pected to stumble upon a philosopher soside, and, as we walked on, I had leisure easily. Ilave you any wares in your box more minutely to examine him. lle was a likely to suit me? If so, I should like to middle-sized and rather athletic man; apparpurchase of so inoralising a vender."
ently about the age of thirty-eight. He was "No, sir," said the seeming pedlar, attired in a dark blue frock coat, wliich was
EDWARD GEORGE EARLE LYTTON BULWER LYTTON. 467
neither shabby nor new, but ill-inade, and even while I liked my companion : perhaps, much too large and long for its present pos indeed, he was too frank, too familiar, too desessor ; beneath this was a faded velvet waist- gagé to be quite natural. Your honest men coat, that had forinerly, like the Persian soon buy reserve by experience. Rogues are ambassador's tunic, “ blushed with crimson, communicative, because confidence and openand blazed with gold;" but which mightness cost them nothing. To finish the denow have been advantageously exchanged scription of my new acquaintance, I should in Monmouth Street for the lawful sum of observe that there was something in his two shillings and ninepence; under this was countenance which struck me as not wholly an inner vest of the Cashmere shawl pattern, unfamiliar ; it was one of those which we which seemned much too new for the rest of have not, in all human probability, seen bethe dress. Though his shirt was of a very fore, and yet which (perhaps from their very unwashed hue, I remarked with some sus commonness) we imagine we have encounpicion, that it was of a very respectable fine-| tered a hundred times. ness; and a pin, which might be paste, or We walked on briskly, notwithstanding could be diamond, peeped below a tattered the warmth of the day; in fact, the air was and dingy black kid stock, like a gipsy's so pure, the grass so green, the laughing eye between her hair.
noonday so full of the hum, the motion, and Ilis trousers were of a light gray, and the life of creation, that the feeling produced the justice of Providence, or of the tailor, was rather that of freshness and invigoraavenged itself upon them for the prodigaltion than of languor and heat. length bestowed upon their ill-assorted com - We have a beautiful country, sir," said panion the coat ; for they were much too my hero of the box. “It is like walking tight for the muscular limbs they concealed, through a garden, after the more sterile and and, rising far above the ankle, exhibited sullen features of the continent. A pure the whole of a thick Wellington boot, which mind, sir, loves the country; for my part, I was the very picture of Italy upon the am always disposed to burst out in thanksmap.
giving to Providence when I behold its The face of the man was commonplace and works, and, like the valleys in the psalm, I ordinary: one sees a hundred such every day am ready to laugh and sing." in Fleet Street, or on the 'Change: the feat-! « An enthusiast," said I, " as well as a phiures were small, irregular, and somewhat losopher! perhaps (and I believed it likely) I flat; yet, when you looked twice upon the hare the honour of addressing a poet also."' countenance, there was something marked “Why, sir," replied the man, “I have and singular in the expression, which fully made verses in my life ; in short, there is atoned for the commonness of the features. little I have not done, for I was always a The right eye turned away from the left in lover of variety ; but, perhaps, your honour that watchful saint which seeins con- / will let me return the suspicion. Are you structed on the same considerate plan as not a favourite of the muse?! those Irish guns made for shooting round a | “I cannot say that I am," said I. “I corner ; his eyebrows were large and shaggy, value myself only on my common sense,and greatly resembled bramble bushes, in the very antipodes to genius, you know, acwhich his fox-like eyes had taken refuge. cording to the orthodox belief." Round these vulpine retreats was a laby “Common sense!” repeated my comrinthean maze of those wrinkles vulgarly panion, with a singular and meaning smile, called crows' feet: deep, intricate, and in and a twinkle with his left eye. “Common tersected, they seemed for all the world like sense! Ah, that is not my forte, sir. You, the web of a Chancery suit. Singularly I dare say, are one of those gentlemen whom enough, the rest of the countenance was it is very difficult to take in, either passively perfectly smooth, and unindented ; even the or actively, by appearance, or in act ? For lines from the nostril to the corners of the my part, I have been a dupe all my life,-a inouth, usually so deeply traced in men of child might cheat me! I am the most unhis age, were scarcely more apparent than suspicious person in the world." in a boy of eighteen.
"Too candid by half," thought I. “ This His smile was frank,-his voice clear and man is certainly a rascal; but what is that hearty,-his address open, and much supe to me? I shall never see him again ;' and rior to his apparent rank of life, claiming true to my love of never losing an opporsomewhat of equality, yet conceding a great tunity of ascertaining individual character, deal of respect; but, notwithstanding all I observed that I thought such an acquaintthese certainly favourable points, there was ance very valuable, especially if he were in a sly and cunning expression in his perverse | trade; it was a pity, therefore, for my sake, and vigilant eve and all the wrinkled de- that my companion had informed me that he mesnes in its vicinity, that made me distrust followed no calling.
468 EDWARD GEORGE EARLE LYTTON BUL WER LYTTON.
" Why, sir," said he, “I am occasionally -persererance and ingenuity. To give you in employment; my nominal profession is an idea of my ill-fortune, know that I bare that of a broker. I buy shawls and hand- been taken up twenty-three times on suskerchiefs of poor countesses, and retail them | picion ; of my perseverance, know that to rich plebeians. I fit up new married twenty-three times I have been taken justly; couples with linen at a more moderate rate and of my ingenuity, know that I have been than the shops, and procure the bridegroom twenty-three times let off, because there was his present of jewels at forty per cent. less not a tittle of legal evidence against me!" than the jewellers ; nay, I am as friendly to “I venerate your talents, Mr. Jonson," I an intrigue as a marriage ; and when I can- | replied, "if by the name of Jonson it pleaseth not sell my jewels, I will my good offices. you to be called, although, like the heathen A gentleman so handsome as your honour deities, I presume that you have many titles, may have an affair upon your hands; if so, whereof some are more grateful to your you may rely upon my secrecy and zeal. ears than others." In short, I am an innocent good-natured "Nay," answered the man of two virtues, fellow, who does harm to no one or nothing, “I am never ashamed of my name ; indeed, and good to every one for sometbing." I have never done anything to disgrace me.
“I admire your code,'' quoth I, “and, I have never indulged in low company, nor whenever I want a mediator between Venus profligate debauchery: whatever I have exand myself, will employ you. Have you ecuted by way of profession has been done always followed your present idle profession, in a superior and artist-like manner; not or were you brought up to any other?"! in the rude, bungling fashion of other ad
“I was intended for a silversmith," an- venturers. Moreover, I have always had swered my friend : “but Providence willed a taste for polite literature, and went once it otherwise : they taught me from childhood as an apprentice to a publishing bookseller, to repeat the Lord's prayer: Heaven heard for the sole purpose of reading the new works me, and delivered me from temptation,- before they came out. In fine, I have never there is, indeed, something terribly seducing neglected any opportunity of improving my in the face of a silver spoon."
mind; and the worst that can be said against "Well," said I, " you are the honestest me is, that I have remembered my catechism. knave that ever I met, and one would trust and taken all possible pains to learn and you with one's purse for the ingenuousness labour truly to get any living, and to do iny with which you own you would steal it. duty in that state of life to which it has Pray, think you, is it probable that I have pleased Providence to call me !" ever had the happiness of meeting you." I have often heard," answered I, "that before? I cannot help fancying so,-as yet there is honour among thieves; I am happy I have never been in the watch-house or the to learn from you that there is also religion : Old Bailey, my reason tells me that I must your haptismal sponsors must be proud of so be mistaken."
diligent a godson." "Not at all, sir," returned my worthy:"1 "They ought to be, sir," replied Mr. Jonremember you well, for I never saw a face son, " for I gave them the first specimens like yours that I did not remember. I had of my address : the story is long, but, if the honour of sipping some British liquors you ever give me an opportunity, I will rein the same room with yourself one evening : | late it." you were then in company with my friend " Thank you," said I: “meanwhile I Mr. Gordon."
must wish you good morning: your way " IIa !" said I, “ I thank you for the hint. now lies to the right. I return you my best I now remember well, by the same token thanks for your condescension in accomthat he told me you were the most ingenious panying soundistinguished an individual gentleman in England, and that you had a as myself," happy propensity of mistaking other people's “Oh, never mention it, your honour," possessions for your own: I congratulate my- rejoined Mr. Jonson. “I am always too self upon so desirable an acquaintance." happy to walk with a gentleman of your com
My friend smiled with his usual bland mon sense. Farewell, sir; may we meet ness, and made me a low bow of acknowl-again!" So saying, Mr. Jonson struck into edgment before he resumed: “No doubt, his new road, and we parted. sir, Mr. Gordon informed you right. I flat- I went home, musing on my adventure, ter myself few gentlemen understand better and delighted with my adventurer. When than myself the art of appropriation, though I was about three paces from the door of I say it who should not say it. I deserve my home, I was nccosted in a most pitifal the reputation I have acquired, sir; I have tone by a poor old beggar, apparently in always had ill-fortune to struggle against, the last extreme of misery and disease. and always have remedied it by two virtues, Notwithstanding iny political economy, I
EDWARD GEORGE EARLE LYTTON BULWER LYTTON. 469
was moved into alms-giving by a spectacle Leonard rose respectfully, and coloured so wretched. I put my hand into my pocket, deeply as he surrendered the tract to Riccamy purse was gone; and on searching the bocca. other, lo, my handkerchief, my pocket-book, The wise man read the first page attenand a gold locket which bad belonged to tively, the second more cursorily, and only Madame D'Anville, had vanished too. ran his eye over the rest. He had gone
One does not keep company with men of through too vast a range of problems polittwo virtues, and receive compliments uponical, not to have passed over that venerable one's common sense for nothing! The beg- Pons Asinorum of Socialism, on which Fougar still continued to importune me.
riers and St. Simons sit straddling, and cry "Give him some food and half-a-crown," aloud that they have arrived at the last said I to my landlady. Two hours after-boundary of knowledge! wards she came up to me,
“All this is as old as the hills," quoth “O sir! my silver tea-pot—that villain Riccabocca, irreverently; "but the hills the beggar !!!
stand still, and this--there it goes !" and A light flashed upon me," Ah, Mr. Job the sage pointed to a cloud emitted from his Jonson! Mr. Job Jonson !" cried I, in an in- page. "Did you ever read Sir David Brewdescribable rage; "out of my sight, woman! ster on Optical Delusions? No! Well, I'll out of my sight!" I stopped short; my lend it to you. You will find therein a story speech failed me. Never tell me that shame of a lady who always saw a black cat on is the companion of guilt,—the sinful knave her hearth-rug. The black cat existed only is never so ashamed of himself as is the in her fancy, but the hallucination was innocent fool who suffers by him.
natural and reasonable-eh-what do you Pelham, or, The Adventures of a Gentleman. I think?"
" Why, sir," said Leonard, not catching RICCABOCCA ON Revolution.
the Italian's meaning, “I don't exactly see
that it was natural and reasonable." Out of the Tinker's bag Leonard Fairfield “Foolish boy, yes! because black cats are had drawn a translation of Condorcet's things possible and known. But who ever “ Progress of Man," and another of Rous- saw upon earth a community of men such as seau's “Social Contract." Works so eloquent sit on the hearth-rugs of Messrs. Owen and had induced him to select from the tracts in Fourier? If the lady's hallucination was the Tinker's miscellany those which abounded not reasonable, what is his who believes in most in professions of philanthropy, and such visions as these ?'' predictions of some coming Golden Age, to Leonard bit bis lips. which old Saturn's was a joke,--tracts so “My dear boy," cried Riccabocca kindly, mild and mother-like in their language, that the only thing sure and tangible to which it required a much more practical experi- these writers would lead you, lies at the first ence than Lenny's to perceive that you step, and that is what is commonly called a would have to pass a river of blood before Revolution. Now, I know what that is. I you had the slightest chance of setting foot have gone, not indeed through a Revolution, on the flowery banks on which they invited but an attempt at one." you to repose,-tracts which rouged poor Leonard raised his eyes towards his masChristianity on the cheeks, clapped a crown ter with a look of profound respect, and of innocent daffodillies on her head, and set her to dancing a pas de zephyr in the pas " Yes," added Riccabocca, and the face on toral ballet in which St. Simon pipes to the which the boy gazed exchanged its usual groflock he shears; or having first laid it down tesque and sardonic expression for one anias a preliminary axiom that
mated, noble, and heroic, “ Yes, not a revo
lution for chimeras, but for that cause which “ The cloud-capt towers, the gorgeous palaces, The solemn temples, the great globe itself,
the coldest allow to be gooil, and which, Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve,"
when successful, all time approves as divine,
--the redemption of our native soil from the substituted in place thereof Monsieur F011-| rule of the foreigner! I have shared in such rier's symmetrical phalanstere, or Mr. Owen's an attempt. And," continued the Italian architectural parallelogram. It was with mournfully, “recalling now all the evil passome such tract that Lenny was seasoning sions it arouses, all the ties it dissolves, all the his crusts and his radishes, when Ricca blood that it commands to flow, all the healthbocca, bending his long dark face over the ful industry it arrests, all the madmen that student's shoulder, said abruptly.-
it arms, all the victims that it dupes, I ques"Diavolo, my friend ! what on earth have tion whether one man really honest, pure, you got there? Just let me look at it, will and huinane, who has once gone through
such an ordeal, would ever hazard it again,