OR THE LONDON CHARIVARI.
July 18, 1891.
MR. PUNCH'S JUBILEE NUMBER.
"My Reminiscences!" said Mr. Punch, replying to a question put by his Interviewer, ANNO DOMINI EIGHTEEN-NINETY-ONE; "They are already before the World, in exactly One Hundred Volumes! My first 'Number' bore date 'for the week ending July 17th, 1841. My memory is indeed stored with recollections, pleasant, picturesque, pathetic, of the teeming past, memories of my joyous 'Table,' of my well-beloved 'Young Men,' of Great Names, of Genial Comrades, of Bright Wits, of Warm Hearts, of Famous Artists, of Clever Writers, who—in the words of the greatest of them all—
'Perched round the stem Of the jolly old tree.'
"How well the words of the wise wit written in 1847 express our thoughts to-day, Mr. ANNO DOMINI:—
'Here let us sport Boys, as we sit, Laughter and wit Flashing so free. Life is but short— When we are gone, Let them sing on Round the old tree.
Evenings we knew Happy as this; Faces we miss Pleasant to see. Kind hearts and true, Gentle and just, Peace to their dust! We sing round the tree.'
It is one of my proudest memories to recollect that THACKERAY's 'Mahogany Tree,' was my Table."
"To have been Amphitryon to such guests must have been the most pleasant privilege of hospitality," said ANNO DOMINI.
"Very true," responded Mr. Punch, "And of all my Deputy-Amphitryons—if I may use the term—who more fully, fitly, justly, and genially filled the post than the earliest of them all, the kindly and judicious MARK LEMON? Had not he and clever HENRY MAYHEW, and Mr. Printer LAST, and EBENEZER LANDELLS, my earliest engraver, foregathered first with me in furtherance of the 'new work of wit and whim,' embellished with cuts and caricatures, to be called:—
PUNCH; OR, THE LONDON CHARIVARI?
"LEMON, and LAST, and MAYHEW, were they here to-day, would probably agree to divide between them the early honours, as they shared the early responsibility. But doubtless MARK LEMON was the literary shaper of the 'Guffawgraph,' as he jocularly called it in his 'Prospectus,' and, from the first, its guiding spirit. Happily so, for his was a spirit fitted to rule, both by power, and tact, and taste. With 'Uncle MARK' in the chair, I knew there would be neither austere autocracy, nor faineant laxity, neither weakness of stroke nor foulness of blow, neither Rosa-Matilda-ish, mawkishness, nor Rabelaisian coarseness.
"How well I remember my first group of 'Young Men,'" pursued Mr. Punch, musingly. "There was swift and scathing DOUGLAS JERROLD, with his tossed and tangled mane of grey hair. GILBERT ABBOTT A BECKETT, too, the whimsically witty, the drolly satirical, the comically caustic. HENRY MAYHEW, of course, and, a little later, his brother HORACE, the simple, lovable 'PONNY.' HENNING, NEWMAN and BRINE, were my earliest Artists. HENNING drew the first Cartoon, whilst NEWMAN and BRINE, and, later, HINE, between them, were responsible for most of the smaller cuts, head-and-tail-pieces, pictorial puns, and sketchy silhouettes, wherewith Punch's early pages abounded.
"In the fourth Number of Punch, published on August 7th, 1841, first appeared the soon-to-be-famous signature of 'JOHN LEECH.'"
"Ah! JOHN LEECH," cried the attentive ANNO DOMINI. "A name to conjure with! How did that 'Star swim into your ken'?"
"There was a certain clever, scholarly, and genial gentleman," responded Mr. Punch, "who had lately published, under the pseudonym of 'PAUL PRENDERGAST,' an extremely funny Comic Latin Grammar. 'PAUL PRENDERGAST' was, in reality, Mr. PERCIVAL LEIGH, originally a medical gentleman, the well-beloved 'Professor' of later Punch days. The Comic Latin Grammar had been admirably illustrated by a personal friend, and fellow-student, of LEIGH's named LEECH. The services of both of the contributors to the Comic Latin Grammar were soon enlisted in my interests.
"Another of LEECH's medical student friends was ALBERT SMITH, and he before long was penning his 'Physiology of London Evening Parties' (illustrated by PHIZ—HALBOT KNIGHT BROWNE—NEWMAN, and others) for my pages. KENNY MEADOWS, WATTS PHILLIPS, ALFRED 'CROW-QUILL' (FORRESTER), JOHN GILBERT, and others, drew also for the young Journal, the printing of which had been taken over by the Whitefriars firm of BRADBURY AND EVANS, with whom as proprietors and fast friends, Punch has ever since been happily associated.
"As early as my Fourth Volume," pursued Mr. Punch, "it became obvious that, in the person of 'Our Fat Contributor,' a certain 'MICHAEL ANGELO TITMARSH' was writing and drawing for Punch.
(Continued on Page 4.)
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FAC-SIMILE OF FIRST PAGE OF "PUNCH."
PUNCH, OR THE LONDON CHARIVARI.
FOR THE WEEK ENDING JULY 17, 1841.
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THE MORAL OF PUNCH.
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As we hope, gentle public, to pass many happy hours in your society, we think it right that you should know something of our character and intentions. Our title, at a first glance, may have misled you into a belief that we have no other intention than the amusement of a thoughtless crowd, and the collection of pence. We have a higher object. Few of the admirers of our prototype, merry Master PUNCH, have looked upon his vagaries but as the practical outpourings of a rude and boisterous mirth. We have considered him as a teacher of no mean pretensions, and have, therefore, adopted him as the sponsor for our weekly sheet of pleasant instruction. When we have seen him parading in the glories of his motley, flourishing his baton (like our friend Jullien at Drury-lane) in time with his own unrivalled discord, by which he seeks to win the attention and admiration of the crowd, what visions of graver puppetry have passed before our eyes! Golden circlets, with their adornments of coloured and lustrous gems, have bound the brow of infamy as well as that of honour—a mockery to both; as though virtue required a reward beyond the fulfilment of its own high purposes, or that infamy could be cheated into the forgetfulness of its vileness by the weight around its temples! Gilded coaches have glided before us, in which sat men who thought the buzz and shouts of crowds a guerdon for the toils, the anxieties, and, too often, the peculations of a life. Our ears have rung with the noisy frothiness of those who have bought their fellow-men as beasts in the market-place, and found their reward in the sycophancy of a degraded constituency, or the patronage of a venal ministry—no matter of what creed, for party must destroy patriotism.
The noble in his robes and coronet—the beadle in his gaudy livery of scarlet, and purple, and gold—the dignitary in the fulness of his pomp—the demagogue in the triumph of his hollowness—these and other visual and oral cheats by which mankind are cajoled, have passed in review before us, conjured up by the magic wand of PUNCH.
How we envy his philosophy, when SHALLA-BA-LA, that demon with the bell, besets him at every turn, almost teasing the sap out of him! The moment that his tormentor quits the scene, PUNCH seems to forget the existence of his annoyance, and, carolling the mellifluous numbers of Jim Crow, or some other strain of equal beauty, makes the most of the present, regardless of the past or future; and when SHALLA-BA-LA renews his persecutions, PUNCH boldly faces his enemy, and ultimately becomes the victor. All have a SHALLA-BA-LA in some shape or other; but few, how few, the philosophy of PUNCH!
We are afraid our prototype is no favourite with the ladies. PUNCH is (and we reluctantly admit the fact) a Malthusian in principle, and somewhat of a domestic tyrant; for his conduct is at times harsh and ungentlemanly to Mrs. P.
"Eve of a land that still is Paradise, Italian beauty!"
But as we never look for perfection in human nature, it is too much to expect it in wood. We wish it to be understood that we repudiate such principles and conduct. We have a Judy of our own, and a little Punchininny that commits innumerable improprieties; but we fearlessly aver that we never threw him out of window, nor belaboured the lady with a stick—even of the size allowed by law.
There is one portion of the drama we wish was omitted, for it always saddens us—we allude to the prison scene. PUNCH, it is true, sings in durance, but we hear the ring of the bars mingling with the song. We are advocates for the correction of offenders; but how many generous and kindly beings are there pining within the walls of a prison, whose only crimes are poverty and misfortune! They, too, sing and laugh, and appear jocund, but the heart can ever hear the ring of the bars.
We never looked upon a lark in a cage, and heard him trilling out his music as he sprang upwards to the roof of his prison, but we felt sickened with the sight and sound, as contrasting, in our thought, the free minstrel of the morning, bounding as it were into the blue caverns of the heavens, with the bird to whom the world was circumscribed. May the time soon arrive, when every prison shall be a palace of the mind—when we shall seek to instruct and cease to punish. PUNCH has already advocated education by example. Look at his dog Toby! The instinct of the brute has almost germinated into reason. Man has reason, why not give him intelligence?
We now come to the last great lesson of our motley teacher—the gallows! that accursed tree which has its root in injuries. How clearly PUNCH exposes the fallacy of that dreadful law which authorises the destruction of life! PUNCH sometimes destroys the hangman: and why not? Where is the divine injunction against the shedder of man's blood to rest? None can answer! To us there is but ONE disposer of life. At other times PUNCH hangs the devil: this is as it should be. Destroy the principle of evil by increasing the means of cultivating the good, and the gallows will then become as much a wonder as it is now a jest.
We shall always play PUNCH, for we consider it best to be merry and wise—
"And laugh at all things, for we wish to know, What, after all, are all things but a show!"—Byron.
As on the stage of PUNCH's theatre, many characters appear to fill up the interstices of the more important story, so our pages will be interspersed with trifles that have no other object than the moment's approbation—an end which will never be sought for at the expense of others, beyond the evanescent smile of a harmless satire.
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There is a report of the stoppage of one of the most respectable hard-bake houses in the metropolis. The firm had been speculating considerably in "Prince Albert's Rock," and this is said to have been the rock they have ultimately split upon. The boys will be the greatest sufferers. One of them had stripped his jacket of all its buttons as a deposit on some tom-trot, which the house had promised to supply on the following day; and we regret to say, there are whispers of other transactions of a similar character.
Money has been abundant all day, and we saw a half-crown piece and some halfpence lying absolutely idle in the hands of an individual, who, if he had only chosen to walk with it into the market, might have produced a very alarming effect on some minor description of securities. Cherries were taken very freely at twopence a pound, and Spanish (liquorice) at a shade lower than yesterday. There has been a most disgusting glut of tallow all the week, which has had an alarming effect on dips, and thrown a still further gloom upon rushlights.
The late discussions on the timber duties have brought the match market into a very unsettled state, and Congreve lights seem destined to undergo a still further depression. This state of things was rendered worse towards the close of the day, by a large holder of the last-named article unexpectedly throwing an immense quantity into the market, which went off rapidly.
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Many of our readers must be aware, that in pantomimic pieces, the usual mode of making the audience acquainted with anything that cannot be clearly explained by dumb-show, is to exhibit a linen scroll, on which is painted, in large letters, the sentence necessary to be known. It so happened that a number of these scrolls had been thrown aside after one of the grand spectacles at Astley's Amphitheatre, and remained amongst other lumber in the property-room, until the late destructive fire which occurred there. On that night, the wife of one of the stage-assistants—a woman of portly dimensions—was aroused from her bed by the alarm of fire, and in her confusion, being unable to find her proper habiliments, laid hold of one of these scrolls, and wrapping it around her, hastily rushed into the street, and presented to the astonished spectators an extensive back view, with the words, "BOMBARD THE CITADEL," inscribed in legible characters upon her singular drapery.
Hume is so annoyed at his late defeat at Leeds, that he vows he will never make use of the word Tory again as long as he lives. Indeed, he proposes to expunge the term from the English language, and to substitute that which is applied to his own party. In writing to a friend, that "after the inflammatory character of the oratory of the Carlton Club, it is quite supererogatory for me to state (it being notorious) that all conciliatory measures will be rendered nugatory," he thus expressed himself:—"After the inflammawhig character of the orawhig of the nominees of the Carlton Club, it is quite supererogawhig for me to state (it being nowhigous) that all conciliawhig measures will be rendered nugawhig."
A correspondent to one of the daily papers has remarked, that there is an almost total absence of swallows this summer in England. Had the writer been present at some of the election dinners lately, he must have confessed that a greater number of active swallows has rarely been observed congregated in any one year.
LORD MELBOURNE TO "PUNCH."
My Dear PUNCH,—Seeing in the "Court Circular" of the Morning Herald an account of a General Goblet as one of the guests of her Majesty, I beg to state, that till I saw that announcement, I was not aware of any other general gobble it than myself at the Palace.
Yours, truly, MELBOURNE.
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Yes, the lion THACKERAY had joined the Table, and thenceforth for many years he illumined my pages with his keen wit and ripe wisdom, his graceful prose, his polished verse, and his characteristic pictures.
"The frontispiece to Volume V. (1843) was by RICHARD DOYLE, a plain foreshadowing of the celebrated design which was ever after to form the familiar Cover of the Punch Number. DOYLE had now joined the Staff, and for many years his fine fancy was allowed full play in my pages.
"At the end of the same Volume, upon page 260 of a supplement, entitled, 'Punch's Triumphal Procession,' appeared TOM HOOD's never-to-be-forgotten 'Song of the Shirt.' It is one of Mr. Punch's pleasantest Reminiscences that this gentle genius, this true poet, contributed this famous masterpiece to his pages.
"The scholarly, accomplished, and warm-hearted TOM TAYLOR was the next to join the Table, and his 'Spanish Ballads' (in 1846), admirably illustrated by DOYLE, made their mark, as did later his 'Unprotected Female.' In Volume XVI. PERCIVAL LEIGH commenced his 'Mr. PIPS, his Diary, or, Manners and Customs of ye Englyshe in 1849,' characteristically illustrated by RICHARD DOYLE at his graphic best. The same year was remarkable for the appearance of LEECH's most delightful character, the simple-minded, sport-loving, philistine paterfamilias, Mr. BRIGGS, first met with in connection with 'The Pleasures of Housekeeping,' though subsequently associated especially with humorous sporting scenes.
"The frontispiece to Volume XIX., for the second half of the year 1850, was by a 'new hand,' none other than JOHN TENNIEL the 'Cartoonist' par excellence, whose work henceforth was to be—as happily it still is—the pride of Mr. Punch and the delight of the British Public. TENNIEL's first Cartoon, 'Lord JACK the Giant-Killer,' graced Mr. Punch's 499th Number, he having taken, at short notice, the place of RICHARD DOYLE, who after many years of excellent work had voluntarily withdrawn from the Table, owing to certain religious scruples, not wholly unconnected with the subject of his successor's first 'Big Cut.'
"Another member of my little army about this time was GEORGE SILVER, and my next recruits were the polished and witty SHIRLEY BROOKS, and, one who was to develop into the greatest master of Black-and-White Art this country has produced, CHARLES KEENE to wit, our dear, picturesque, unsophisticated 'CARLO,' lost to the Table—an irreparable loss!—but a few months ago.
"At the opening of Volume XXVII. for the second half of the year 1854, you will observe, Mr. ANNO DOMINI, a Picture by JOHN TENNIEL (reproduced above), in which the then existing Staff of Punch are humorously sketched. They are engaged in somewhat varied sports and pastimes. Mr. Punch is keeping wicket in a game in which THACKERAY wields the bat, and PERCIVAL LEIGH is bowling; MARK LEMON, and GILBERT A BECKETT are playing at battledore and shuttlecock, and DOUGLAS JERROLD is having a solitary game of skittles, the 'pins' being the CZAR of RUSSIA, &c. SHIRLEY BROOKS, MAYHEW, and TOM TAYLOR are playing at Leapfrog, TOM TAYLOR 'overing' MAYHEW, whilst SHIRLEY BROOKS is following up. In the background JOHN TENNIEL is sketching the Good Knight Punchius upon a wall, whilst in the immediate foreground JOHN LEECH, upon a hobby-horse, is leaping over an easel. These were the chief of my 'Young Men' at this time. In front of the tent are two gentlemen, one in a black, the other in a white, hat. The first is WILLIAM BRADBURY, the second is 'Pater' EVANS, our 'proprietors and friends' of that day.
"In 1856 an obituary notice showed that the Table had experienced one of its earliest losses, that of GILBERT ABBOTT A BECKETT. And on June 8th, in the following year, the boding black border appeared 'In Memoriam' of DOUGLAS JERROLD. Ah, me, Mr. ANNO DOMINI, the jingling of the cap-and-bells, howsoever merrily it may sound, is perforce interrupted now and again by the chiming of a bell of deeper note and sadder tone.
"Volume XXXIX. for 1860 saw the artistic advent of the Society Satirist of the Victorian Era, GEORGE DU MAURIER; and in Volume XLIV. for the year 1863, the presence of another 'New Boy' at my Table, was evidenced by the appearance of the burlesque London-Journalish Novel, 'Mokeanna,' in which FRANCIS COWLEY BURNAND parodied the 'Penny Dreadful.'
"The very first page of my Volume for 1864, Mr. ANNO DOMINI, recorded a great, a grievous, an irreparable loss to me and to the world. WILLIAM MAKEPEACE THACKERAY, the greatest of my contributors, had gone for ever from my Table. And a little later—only a little later—in my Number for November 12th, 1864, appeared an obituary notice—alas the day!—of the great, the genial, the loved, the lamented JOHN LEECH.
"In the Volumes for this year, 1865, appear for the first time the fanciful, ingenious, elaborately symbolical designs of CHARLES H. BENNETT, who unhappily did not long enrich my pages with his facile execution and singular subtlety of fancy. He died on the 2nd April. His place at my Table was soon after taken by LINLEY SAMBOURNE.
"On the 23rd May, 1870, he who had sat at the head of my Table ever since its first establishment, 'who wrote the first article in this Journal, who from its establishment had been its conductor,' left empty the chief seat at my board.
"'If this Journal has had the good fortune to be credited with habitual advocacy of truth and justice, if it has been praised for abstention from the less worthy kind of satire, if it has been trusted by those who keep guard over the purity of womanhood and of youth, we, the best witnesses, turn for a moment from our sorrow to bear the fullest and the most willing testimony that the high and noble spirit of MARK LEMON ever prompted generous championship, ever made unworthy onslaught or irreverent jest impossible to the pens of those who were honoured in being coadjutors with him.'
"This, Mr. ANNO DOMINI, was the high and merited tribute which the spokesman of his surviving colleagues paid to the beloved memory of MARK LEMON.
"SHIRLEY BROOKS succeeded him in the editorial chair, which he filled fittingly and faithfully for—alas!—only four years. In 1874 I lost my second Editor. TOM TAYLOR was his successor, taking up with the Editorship, the extraction of that weekly 'Essence of Parliament,' so long and so delightfully distilled by the deceased Chief.
"Meanwhile, on April 30th, 1872, HORACE MAYHEW, had departed from our midst. A little later the Table received a further accession in the person of ARTHUR WILLIAM A BECKETT, ('Mr. BRIEFLESS Junior,') son of that GILBERT ABBOTT A BECKETT who was one of my earliest 'Stars.' His brother, a second GILBERT A BECKETT, took his seat at the Table a few years later. In Volume LXVIII. for 1875, E.J. MILLIKEN made his first appearance as a Punch Writer. The Author of the 'ARRY papers, 'CHILDE CHAPPIE's Pilgrimage,' &c., joined my Table two years later.
"On the 12th July, 1880, another great loss befel me. TOM TAYLOR, my third Editor, left that honourable post vacant, after occupying it with credit and distinction for six years. Mr. F.C. BURNAND, author of 'Happy Thoughts,' &c., reigns in his stead. R.F. SKETCHLEY, who had a seat at my Board for several years, resigned it a little later.
"The same year, 1880, saw the introduction of a new Artist, in the person of HARRY FURNISS; and the next introduced HENRY W. LUCY, the 'TOBY' of Mr. Punch's remodelled Essence of Parliament.
"In 1887, the appearance of 'Mr. Punch's Manual for Young Reciters,' gave evidence of the fact that the Author of Vice Versa, Mr. F. ANSTEY, had joined my Table. He, with R.C. LEHMANN, Author of 'Modern Types,' &c., and E.G. REED, the Artist, are the very latest additions thereto. That Table has, within the last two years, sustained yet two other losses: PERCIVAL LEIGH, last survivor of the 'Old Guard,' dying on 24th October, 1889, whilst, early in the present year, the inimitable CHARLES KEENE, universally acknowledged to be the greatest master of 'Black-and-White' technique who ever put pencil to wood-block, was taken away from me.
"Merely to mention all the bright pens and pencils which have occasionally contributed to my pages, would occupy much space. Amongst Writers may be named MAGUIN HANNAY, STIRLING COYNE, COVENTRY PATMORE, MORTIMER COLLINS, GEORGE AUGUSTUS SALA, ANDREW LANG, JAMES PAYN, and Lord TENNYSON; amongst Artists, HOWARD (whose signature, a trident, was at one time familiar to Punch readers), Miss BOWERS, RALSTON, BRYAN, BARNARD, W.S. GILBERT (who illustrated several of his own articles), CORBOULD, CALDECOTT, RIVIERE, H.S. MARKS, FRED WALKER, SIR JOHN MILLAIS, and Sir FREDERICK LEIGHTON.
"The present Staff, Mr. ANNO DOMINI, you may see assembled 'round the old Tree' in the accompanying Cartoon. Around on the walls are the counterfeit presentments of their illustrious and honoured predecessors. My guests, you perceive, are drinking a toast. That toast is, 'Mr. Punch, his health and Jubilee!'"
"In which I am delighted to join!" responded ANNO DOMINI. "Mr. Punch, you must be as proud of your 'Mahogany Tree,' and its many memories, as King ARTHUR of his Table Round."
"'For dear to ARTHUR was that hall of ours, As having there so oft with all his Knights Feasted,'"
quoted the Sage, musing deeply of many things. Many of my Knights have 'gone before,' but they have not
"'Left me gazing at a barren board.'
"Their monograms are carven on this Table, their memories abide with us as we drink to Punch's Jubilee, and will abide when, as I hope, yet another fifty years hence, our successors drink with equal heartiness to Punch's Centenary!"
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PAST AND PRESENT.
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ESSENCE OF PARLIAMENT.
EXTRACTED FROM THE DIARY OF TOBY, M.P.
House of Commons, July 14th, 1891.—Things going on here much as usual. Rapidly winding up Session amid familiar surroundings. OLD MORALITY in seat of Leader of the House; Mr. G. opposite; SPEAKER in Chair; Sergeant-at-Arms on guard by the door; and WINDBAG SEXTON on his feet.
Brings back to my mind the first time I saw House. Wasn't in the House then; a mere puppy, which, indeed, some say I remain to this day. The date was August the 19th, 1841, and from seat where Strangers were admitted in the old House (the temporary building occupied whilst BARRY was erecting this lofty pile) I looked on at the opening of the first Session of the Fourteenth Parliament of the then United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, appointed to meet at Westminster in the fifth year of the Reign of HER MAJESTY QUEEN VICTORIA.
Remember it as if it were yesterday. It was MELBOURNE's Ministry; but he of course sat in another place. On the Treasury Bench, distinctly visible under his hat, was JOHNNY RUSSELL, Colonial Secretary and Leader of the House of Commons. At a safe distance from him sat PAM, then in the prime of life, and at the time holding the post of Foreign Minister, in which he was able to make a remarkably large number of people uncomfortable. There was Sir GEORGE GREY, Chancellor of the Duchy, whilst a sturdily built gentleman, then known as the Right Hon. THOMAS BABBINGTON MACAULAY, was Secretary for War; HENRY LABOUCHERE (not the SAGE OF QUEEN ANNE'S GATE) was President of the Board of Trade, and Master of the Mint; whilst FRANCIS BARING was Chancellor of the Exchequer, all untroubled by the necessity of constructing a Budget since he knew he would never be called on to bring one in.
On the Front Bench opposite was Sir ROBERT PEEL with JAMES GRAHAM at his right elbow. In modest retirement at the end of the Bench sat a young man, of full height, and good figure, with a mass of black hair crowning a large, well-shaped head. Remember noticing how carefully the hair was parted down the middle, in a fashion then unusual with men. His face was pleasant to look upon, even mild in its expression; but from time to time, more particularly when he spoke, there flashed from beneath his dark and bushy eyebrows a pair of eyes that shone like stars. This was the Mr. G. of those days, whose highest Ministerial office, as yet, had been the Under-Secretaryship for the Colonies, held for a few months six years earlier.
Big House on this first night, as Houses were counted then, when the number of Members was considerably less. First business was to choose SPEAKER. SHAW-LEFEVRE (not the Member for Bradford, but a forbear) had been SPEAKER in last Parliament; re-elected now, PEEL, who, by the lifting of a finger, could have put his own nominee in the Chair, graciously consenting.
Of all who filled the House on that night, only two have seats in the present Parliament—Mr. G., and the humble person who, by favour of the Electors of Barkshire, is permitted to pen these lines. (CHRISTOPHER TALBOT, then represented Glamorganshire, but he just failed to live into this Jubilee time.) Yet, when I look round on the Benches now, I see a score of men who bear the names, and are, in many cases, descendants, of Members who sat in the Parliament that will ever have a place in history, if only because it was born in the same year, almost in the same month, as Mr. Punch. There was a THOMAS DYKE ACLAND, representing Devonshire; there were two HENEAGES, one representing Devizes, and the other, EDWARD, sitting for Grimsby, as EDWARD HENEAGE sits to-day for the same borough. There was a BORTHWICK, Member for Evesham. There was a PHILIP STANHOPE, Member for Hertford. STANSFELD sat for Huddersfield, and MARJORIBANKS for Hythe, a LAWSON for Knaresborough, a BECKETT for Leeds, a CHILDERS for Malton, a MANNERS for Newark-upon-Trent, having a certain WILLIAM EWART GLADSTONE for colleague. He was the Lord JOHN, well known to students of poetry, who now wears a Ducal coronet.
Of course there was a SMITH, VERNON by Christian name, Member for Northampton; a HOULDSWOTH representing Nottinghamshire, a MACLEAN for Oxford, a HARCOURT for Oxfordshire—nay, in this happy Parliament there were two HARCOURTS, GRANVILLE HARCOURT VERNON sitting for East Retford. A VIVIAN sat for Penrhyn—HUSSEY VIVIAN's father, JOHN HENEY, sat in the same Parliament for Swansea. Lord EBRINGTON sat for Plymouth, and CHARLES RUSSELL for Reading. ORMSBY GORE represented North Shropshire, long a possession of his family. The Markiss o' GRANBY sat for Stamford, with a CLARK for colleague. FREDERICK VILLIERS (not our present Father) kept the name green at Sudbury, and there was a WYNDHAM for Sussex. The HENRY LABOUCHERE of those less lively days sat for Taunton, and Sir ROBERT PEEL, our SPEAKER's father, for Tamworth. There was a HAYTER, GOOD-ENOUGH: for Wells, one LOWTHER represented Westmoreland, and another York. A WALTER LONG sat for North Wilts, STUART WORTLEY sat for the West Riding, and JAMES DUFF for Banffshire. We had a BALFOUR for Haddington, and Lord DALMENY of that day, happier than the present head of the family, sat in the Commons for Inverkeithing, a place long since swept off the electoral board. These surnames, with one or two others I can't recall—yes, there was a DALRYMPLE for Wigtonshire—are familiar on the Roll of Parliament to-day.
Amongst the prominent Members of this Parliament I remember ROEBUCK sitting; for Bath; and PAKINGTON—then plain JOHN all unconscious of the coming marvel of a Ten Minutes' Reform Bill—for Droitwich. STRATFORD CANNING had a seat for King's Lynn, and MONCKTON' MILNES was Member for Pomfret. JOHN BRIGHT was not in the House, but RICHARD COBDEN sat for Stockport, and there was an acidulous person, then known as RALPH BERNAL, who sat for Wycombe. We knew BERNAL OSBORNE in many later Parliaments.
Curious to think how Ireland at this epoch belonged to the classes! DANIEL O'CONNELL was just in his prime, and, in addition to himself returned three of his name. SMITH O'BRIEN was yet far off the cabbage garden, and HENRY GRATTAN sat for Meath. There is a living image of him now among the busts in the corridor leading out of the Octagon Hall; a fiery dramatic speaker in the House, who, as someone said of him at the time, used in his passion to throw up his arms, bend over till he touched the floor with his finger-nails, and thank Heaven he had no gestures. The O'CONNOR DON whom Members younger than I remember as he sat above the Gangway in the Parliament of 1874, then represented Roscommon. But for the most part the Irish Members of those days were Earls, Viscounts, Knights, Baronets, Honourables and Right Honourables.
There were, on the Motion for the Address, big debates in both Houses on this particular night, when I first saw the SPEAKER in wig and gown. The fate of the Ministry could scarcely be said to hang in the balance; they knew they were doomed. In the Lords the shrift was short. Not too late for dinner, their Lordships divided: "Contents 96, Not Contents 168," majority against Government 72. I well remember COVENTRY's speech; worth reciting as a model for these later days. He followed LANSDOWNE, and House wanted to hear NORTHAMPTON. When COVENTRY presented himself, fearful row kicked up. He stood there till silence partially restored, then he said in deep voice, as who should say "My name is—Norval,"—
"I am Lord COVENTRY. A few words from me. I think the country is in a safe state, and I hope to find it placed in the hands of the Duke of WELLINGTON. My Lords, I hope I have not detained you."
Then he sat down.
In the Commons, debate lasted four days; majority against Government 91.
The LABBY of 1841 spoke at length, and was followed by Mr. D'ISRAELI (he spelt it with an apostrophe in those days): a good Disraelian ring about the last sentence of his speech.
"The House," he said, "ought now to act as it had been acted upon in times when Parliament was unreformed, when DANBY found himself in a dungeon, and STRAFFORD on a scaffold. Now the Whigs hold office by abusing the confidence of the Sovereign, and defying the authority of Parliament."
After him came the still budding BERNAL OSBORNE, CHARLES NAPIER, ROEBUCK, JOHNNIE RUSSELL, fighting to the last with his back to the wall; COBDEN, HENRY GRATTAN, PAM, MILNER GIBSON, O'CONNELL, PEEL, and Colonel SIBTHORP.
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FROM W.M. THACKERAY TO MR. PUNCH. (FEBRUARY, 1849.)
MR. PUNCH,—"When the future inquirer shall take up your volumes, or a bundle of French plays, and contrast the performance of your booth with that of the Parisian theatre, he won't fail to remark how different they are, and what different objects we admire or satirise. As for your morality. Sir, it does not become me to compliment you on it before your venerable face; but permit me to say, that there never was before published in this world so many volumes that contained so much cause for laughing, and so little for blushing; so many jokes, and so little harm. Why, Sir, say even that your modesty, which astonishes me more and more every time I regard you, is calculated, and not a virtue naturally inherent in you, that very fact would argue for the high sense of the public morality among us. We will laugh in the company of our wives and children; we will tolerate no indecorum: we like that our matrons and girls should be pure."
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