THE MIRROR OF LITERATURE, AMUSEMENT, AND INSTRUCTION.
VOL. 13, No. 351.] SATURDAY, JANUARY 10, 1829. [PRICE 2d.
This picturesque structure crosses the Canal towards the Northern verge of the Regent's Park; and nearly opposite to it is a road leading to Primrose Hill, as celebrated in the annals of Cockayne as was the Palatino among the ancient Romans.
The bridge was built from the designs of Mr. Morgan, and its construction is considered to be "appropriate and architectural." Its piers are formed by cast-iron columns, of the Grecian Doric order, from which spring the arches, covering the towing-path, the canal itself, and the southern bank. The abacus, or top of the columns, the mouldings or ornaments of the capitals, and the frieze, are in exceeding good taste, as are the ample shafts. The supporters of the roadway, likewise, correspond with the order; although, says Mr. Elmes, the architect, "fastidious critics may object to the dignity of the pure ancient Doric being violated by degrading it into supporters of modern arches." The centre arch is appropriated to the canal and the towing-path, and the two external arches to foot-passengers, and as communications to the road above them. Mr. Elmes sums up the merits of the bridge as follows:—"It has a beautiful and light appearance, and is an improvement in execution upon a design of Perronet's for an architectural bridge, that is, a bridge of orders. The columns are well proportioned, and suitably robust, carrying solidity, grace, and beauty in every part; from the massy grandeur of the abacus, to the graceful revolving of the beautiful echinus, and to the majestic simplicity of the slightly indented flutings." He then suggests certain improvements in the design, which would have made the bridge "unexceptionably the most novel and the most tasteful in the metropolis. Even as it is, it is scarcely surpassed for lightness, elegance, and originality by any in Europe. It is of the same family with the beautiful little bridge in Hyde Park, between the new entrance and the barracks."
We are happy to quote the above praise on the construction of Macclesfield Bridge, inasmuch as a critical notice of many of the structures in the Regent's Park would subject them to much severe and merited censure. The forms of bridges admit, perhaps, of more display of taste than any other species of ornamental architecture, and of a greater means of contributing to the picturesque beauty of the surrounding scenery.
 Letter-press to Jones's "Metropolitan Improvements."
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TRIBUTES TO THE DEAD, &c.
(For the Mirror.)
"When our friends we lose, Our alter'd feelings alter too our views; What in their tempers, teazed or distress'd, Is with our anger, and the dead at rest; And must we grieve, no longer trial made, For that impatience which we then display'd? Now to their love and worth of every kind, A soft compunction turns the afflicted mind; Virtues neglected then, adored become, And graces slighted, blossom on the tomb."
"It was the early wish of Pope," says Dr. Knox, "that when he died, not a stone might tell where he lay. It is a wish that will commonly be granted with reluctance. The affection of those whom we leave behind us is at a loss for methods to display its wonted solicitude, and seeks consolation under sorrow, in doing honour to all that remains. It is natural that filial piety, parental tenderness, and conjugal love, should mark, with some fond memorial, the clay-cold spot where the form, still fostered in the bosom, moulders away. And did affection go no farther, who could censure? But, in recording the virtues of the departed, either zeal or vanity leads to an excess perfectly ludicrous. A marble monument, with an inscription palpably false and ridiculously pompous, is far more offensive to true taste, than the wooden memorial of the rustic, sculptured with painted bones, and decked out with death's head in all the colours of the rainbow. There is an elegance and a classical simplicity in the turf-clad heap of mould which covers the poor man's grave, though it has nothing to defend it from the insults of the proud but a bramble. The primrose that grows upon it is a better ornament than the gilded lies on the oppressor's tombstone."
The Greeks had a custom of bedecking tombs with herbs and flowers, among which parsley was chiefly in use, as appears from Plutarch's story of Timoleon, who, marching up an ascent, from the top of which he might take a view of the army and strength of the Carthaginians, was met by a company of mules laden with parsley, which his soldiers conceived to be a very ill boding and fatal occurrence, that being the very herb wherewith they adorned the sepulchres of the dead. This custom gave birth to that despairing proverb, when we pronounce of one dangerously sick, that he has need of nothing but parsley; which is in effect to say, he's a dead man, and ready for the grave. All sorts of purple and white flowers were acceptable to the dead; as the amaranthus, which was first used by the Thessalians to adorn Achilles's grave. The rose, too, was very grateful; nor was the use of myrtle less common. In short, graves were bedecked with garlands of all sorts of flowers, as appears from Agamemnon's daughter in Sophocles:—
"No sooner came I to my father's tomb, But milk fresh pour'd in copious streams did flow, And flowers of ev'ry sort around were strow'd."
Several other tributes were frequently laid upon graves, as ribands; whence it is said that Epaminondas's soldiers being disanimated at seeing the riband that hung upon his spear carried by the wind to a certain Lacedaemonian sepulchre, he bid them take courage, for that it portended destruction to the Lacedaemons, it being customary to deck the sepulchres of their dead with ribands. Another thing dedicated to the dead was their hair. Electra, in Sophocles, says, that Agamemnon had commanded her and Chrysosthemis to pay this honour:—
"With drink-off'rings and locks of hair we must, According to his will, his tomb adorn."
It was likewise customary to perfume the grave-stones with sweet ointments, &c.
* * * * *
(For the Mirror.)
I've roam'd the thorny path of life, And search'd abroad to find. Amid the blooming flowers so rife, That germ called peace of mind. At length a lovely lily caught My anxious, longing view, With all the sweets of "Heartsease" fraught, That fragrant flower was YOU.
Thy smile to me is Heaven divine, Thy voice the soul of Love— In pity, then, sweet maid, be mine, My "heartsease" flow'ret prove. Nor wealth nor power would I attain, Though uncontrolled and free— All other joys to me are pain, When sever'd, love, from THEE.
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CHARLES BRANDON, AFTERWARDS DUKE OF SUFFOLK.
(For the Mirror.)
An event in the life of this nobleman gave Otway the plot for his celebrated tragedy of "The Orphan," though he laid the scene of his play in Bohemia. It is recorded in the "English Adventures," a very scarce pamphlet, published in 1667, only two or three copies of which are extant. The father of Charles Brandon retired, on the death of his lady, to the borders of Hampshire. His family consisted of two sons, and a young lady, the daughter of a friend, lately deceased, whom he adopted as his own child.
This lady being singularly beautiful, as well as amiable in her manners, attracted the affections of both the brothers. The elder, however, was the favourite, and he privately married her; which the younger not knowing, and overhearing an appointment of the lovers to meet the next night in her bed-chamber, he contrived to get his brother otherwise employed, and made the signal of admission himself, (thinking it a mere intrigue.) Unfortunately he succeeded.
On discovery, the lady lost her reason, and soon after died. The two brothers fought, and the elder fell. The father broke his heart a few months afterwards. The younger brother, Charles Brandon, the unintentional author of all this family misery, quitted England in despair, with a fixed determination of never returning.
Being abroad for several years, his nearest relations supposed him dead, and began to take the necessary steps for obtaining his estates; when, roused by this intelligence, he returned privately to England, and for a time took obscure lodgings in the vicinity of his family mansion.
While he was in this retreat, the young king, (Henry VIII.), who had just buried his father, was one day hunting on the borders of Hampshire, when he heard the cries of a female in distress in an adjoining wood. His gallantry immediately summoned him to the place, though he then happened to be detached from all his courtiers, where he saw two ruffians attempting to violate the honour of a young lady. The king instantly drew on them; and a scuffle ensued, which roused the reverie of Charles Brandon, who was taking his morning walk in an adjoining thicket. He immediately ranged himself on the side of the king, whom he then did not know; and by his dexterity, soon disarmed one of the ruffians, while the other fled.
The king, charmed with this act of gallantry, so congenial to his own mind, inquired the name and family of the stranger; and not only repossessed him of his patrimonial estates, but took him under his immediate protection.
It was this same Charles Brandon who afterwards privately married Henry's sister, Margaret, queen-dowager of France; which marriage the king not only forgave, but created him Duke of Suffolk, and continued his favour towards him to the last hour of the duke's life.
He died before Henry; and the latter showed, in his attachment to this nobleman, that notwithstanding his fits of capriciousness and cruelty, he was capable of a cordial and steady friendship. He was sitting in council when the news of Suffolk's death reached him; and he publicly took that occasion, both to express his own sorrow, and to celebrate the merits of the deceased. He declared, that during the whole course of their acquaintance, his brother-in-law had not made a single attempt to injure an adversary, and had never whispered a word to the disadvantage of any one; "and are there any of you, my lords, who can say as much?" When the king subjoined these words, (says the historian,) he looked round in all their faces, and saw that confusion which the consciousness of secret guilt naturally threw upon them.
Otway took his plot from the fact related in this pamphlet; but to avoid, perhaps, interfering in a circumstance which might affect many noble families at that time living, he laid the scene of his tragedy in Bohemia.
There is a large painting of the above incident now at Woburn, the seat of his Grace the Duke of Bedford; and the old duchess-dowager, in showing this picture a few years before her death to a nobleman, related the particulars of the story.
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* * * * *
(For the Mirror)
The best or north-east view of Carmarthen comprises the bridge, part of the quay, with the granaries and shipping, and in the middle is seen part of the castle. Few towns can, perhaps, boast of greater antiquity, or of so many antiquarian remains as Carmarthen, South Wales; although, I am sorry to say, that their origin and history have not been, I believe, clearly explained or understood by the literary world. One would conclude, that as a Welshman is almost proverbially distinguished for deeming himself illustriously descended, and relating his long pedigree, he would naturally boast of, and exhibit to the public, some account of these vestiges of his ancestors; but such is not the case, and to their shame be it spoken, these ruins are scarcely noticed with any degree of interest by the inhabitants of Carmarthen. But to my subject. The name is derived from caera, wall, and marthen, a corruption of Merlyn, the name of its founder, who was a great necromancer and prophet, and held in high respect by the Welsh. There is a seat hewn out of a rock in a grove near this town, called Merlyn's Grove, where it is said he studied. He prophesied the fate of Wales, and said that Carmarthen would some day sink and be covered with water. I would concur with the author of a "Family Tour through the British Empire," by attributing his influence, not to any powers in magic, but to a superior understanding; although some of his predictions have been verified. The town of Carmarthen is pleasantly situated in a valley surrounded by hills; it has been fortified with walls and a castle, part of which remain; so that it appears to have been the residence of many princes of Wales. It has also been a Roman station, and has the remains of a Roman praetorium. Amongst its other antiquities are the Grey Friars, (a monastery,) the Bulwark, (a trench on the side of the town that fronts the river,) and the Priory. Its modern buildings are, the monument erected to Sir Thomas Picton, the Guildhall, the two gaols, a fish and butter market-place, over which is the town fire-bell; the slaughter-house, similar to the abattoir at Paris, and excellent shambles, with poultry and potato market-places annexed. The church, which is an ancient one, has an unattractive exterior; but when you enter it, I think you will say it can compete with any church for ancient beauty and ornament. Amongst the tombs in the chancel are those of Sir Rhys ap Thomas, with the effigies of him and his lady, affording a specimen of the costume of the reign of Henry VII.; and Sir Richard Steele, whose remains are discovered by a small, simple tablet. There is a promenade here, called the Parade, which commands a fine and extensive view of the surrounding picturesque scenery and of the Towy, where the coracles may be seen plying about. The town consists of ten principal streets, noted for being kept clean, and lighted with gas. It is governed by a mayor, two sheriffs, and twenty councilmen; sends a member to Parliament, and gives title of marquess to the family of Osborne. It carries on a great trade in butter and oats; and traffics much with Bristol by the river Towy, which runs into the sea; whence ships of two hundred tons burden come up to the town. The bay is very dangerous, owing to the bar and the quicksands. Its chief manufacture is tin, which is esteemed the best in the kingdom. It has a small theatre, in appearance a stable; but it is in contemplation to build a new one, as also a church; so that you will perceive the march of improvement is rapidly spreading into Wales, as well as other places.
P.S. Since I sent you an account of Picton's Monument at Carmarthen, it has been altered. The statue, bas-reliefs, and ornaments of the Picton Monument, have been bronzed by the direction of Mr. Nash, on his late visit to this town. Elegant as this column was before, the effect of the bronze, and a few other alterations, have so improved its appearance, as to make it seem a different structure. Nothing now remains to complete the outside but the names of the different actions in which Sir T. Picton was engaged during his honourable career. These are to be placed in bronzed letters on the base. A Latin inscription, already prepared, together with the arms and a bust of Picton, will ornament the inside of the building. It certainly is a monument worthy of the hero to whose memory it has been erected, and of the country by which it has been raised.
* * * * *
THE SKETCH BOOK.
* * * * *
WATERLOO, THE DAY AFTER THE BATTLE.
By an eye witness.
[For the following very interesting Narrative, our acknowledgments are due to the United Service Journal,—a work which has just started with the year, and to which, in the "customary" phrase, we wish "many happy returns."]
The summer of 1815 found me at Brussels. The town was then crowded to excess—it seemed a city of splendour; the bright and varied uniforms of so many different nations, mingled with the gay dresses of female beauty in the Park, and the Allee Verte was thronged with superb horses and brilliant equipages. The tables d'hote resounded with a confusion of tongues which might have rivalled the Tower of Babel, and the shops actually glittered with showy toys hung out to tempt money from the pockets of the English, whom the Flemings seemed to consider as walking bags of gold. Balls and plays, routs and dinners were the only topics of conversation; and though some occasional rumours were spread that the French had made an incursion within the lines, and carried off a few head of cattle, the tales were too vague to excite the least alarm. I was then lodging with a Madame Tissand, on the Place du Sablon, and I occasionally chatted with my hostess on the critical posture of affairs. Every Frenchwoman loves politics, and Madame Tissand, who was deeply interested in the subject, continually assured me of her complete devotion to the English.—"Ces maudits Francois!" cried she one day, with almost terrific energy, when speaking of Napoleon's army. "If they should dare come to Brussels, I will tear their eyes out!"—"Oh, aunt!" sighed her pretty niece; "remember that Louis is a conscript!"—"Silence, Annette. I hate even my son, since he is fighting against the brave English!"—This was accompanied with a bow to me; but I own that I thought Annette's love far more interesting than Madame's Anglicism.
On the 3rd of June, I went to see ten thousand troops reviewed by the Dukes of Wellington and Brunswick. Imagination cannot picture any thing finer than the ensemble of this scene. The splendid uniforms of the English, Scotch, and Hanoverians, contrasted strongly with the gloomy black of the Brunswick Hussars, whose veneration for the memory of their old Duke, could be only be equalled by their devotion to his son. The firm step of the Highlanders seemed irresistible; and as they moved in solid masses, they appeared prepared to sweep away every thing that opposed them. In short, I was delighted with the cleanliness, military order, and excellent appointments of the men generally, and I was particularly struck with the handsome features of the Duke of Brunswick, whose fine, manly figure, as he galloped across the field, quite realized my beau ideal of a warrior. The next time I saw the Duke of Brunswick was at the dress ball, given at the Assembly-rooms in the Rue Ducale, on the night of the 15th of June. I stood near him when he received the information that a powerful French force was advancing in the direction of Charleroy. "Then it is high time for me to be off," said the Duke, and I never saw him alive again. The assembly broke up abruptly, and in half an hour drums were beating and bugles sounding. The good burghers of the city, who were almost all enjoying their first sleep, started from their beds at the alarm, and hastened to the streets, wrapped in the first things they could find. The most ridiculous and absurd rumours were rapidly circulated and believed. The most general impression seemed to be that the town was on fire; the next that the Duke of Wellington had been assassinated; but when it was discovered that the French were advancing, the consternation became general, and every one hurried to the Place Royale, where the Hanoverians and Brunswickers were already mustering.
About one o'clock in the morning of the 16th, the whole population of Brussels seemed in motion. The streets were crowded as in full day; lights flashed to and fro; artillery and baggage-wagons were creaking in every direction; the drums beat to arms, and the bugles sounded loudly "the dreadful note of preparation." The noise and bustle surpassed all description; here were horses plunging and kicking amidst a crowd of terrified burghers; there lovers parting from their weeping mistresses. Now the attention was attracted by a park of artillery thundering through the streets; and now, by a group of officers disputing loudly the demands of their imperturbable Flemish landlords; for not even the panic which prevailed could frighten the Flemings out of a single stiver; screams and yells occasionally rose above the busy hum that murmured through the crowd, but the general sound resembled the roar of the distant ocean. Between two and three o'clock the Brunswickers marched from the town, still clad in the mourning which they wore for their old duke, and burning to avenge his death. Alas! they had a still more fatal loss to lament ere they returned. At four, the whole disposable force under the Duke of Wellington was collected together, but in such haste, that many of the officers had not time to change their silk stockings and dancing shoes; and some, quite overcome by drowsiness, were seen lying asleep about the ramparts, still holding, however, with a firm hand, the reins of their horses which were grazing by their sides. About five o'clock, the word "march" was heard in all directions, and instantly the whole mass appeared to move simultaneously. I conversed with several of the officers previous to their departure, and not one appeared to have the slightest idea of an approaching engagement. The Duke of Wellington and his staff did not quit Brussels till past eleven o'clock; and it was not till some time after they were gone, that it was generally known the whole French army, including a strong corps of cavalry, was within a few miles of Quatre Bras, where the brave Duke of Brunswick first met the enemy:
"And foremost fighting—fell."
Dismay seized us all, when we found that a powerful French army was really within twenty-eight miles of us; and we shuddered at the thought of the awful contest which was taking place. For my own part, I had never been so near a field of battle before, and I cannot describe my sensations. We knew that our army had no alternative but to fly, or fight with a force four times stronger than its own: and though we could not doubt British bravery, we trembled at the fearful odds to which our men must be exposed. Cannon, lances, and swords, were opposed to the English bayonet alone. Cavalry we had none on the first day, for the horses had been sent to grass, and the men were scattered too widely over the country, to be collected at such short notice. Under these circumstances, victory was impossible; indeed, nothing but the stanch bravery, and exact discipline of the men, prevented the foremost of our infantry from being annihilated; and though the English maintained their ground during the day, at night a retreat became necessary. The agony of the British, resident at Brussels, during the whole of this eventful day, sets all language at defiance. No one thought of rest or food; but every one who could get a telescope, flew to the ramparts to strain his eyes, in vain attempts to discover what was passing. At length, some soldiers in French uniforms were seen in the distance; and as the news flew from mouth to mouth, it was soon magnified into a rumour that the French were coming. Horror seized the English and their adherents, and the hitherto concealed partizans of the French began openly to avow themselves; tri-coloured ribbons grew suddenly into great request, and cries of "Vive l'Empereur!" resounded through the air. These exclamations, however, were changed to "Vive le Lord Vellington!" when it was discovered that the approaching French came as captives, not conquerors.
Between seven and eight o'clock in the evening, I walked up to the Porte de Namur, where the wounded were just beginning to arrive. Fortunately some commodious caravans had arrived from England, only a few days before, and these were now entering the gate. They were filled principally with Brunswickers and Highlanders; and it was an appalling spectacle to behold the very soldiers, whose fine martial appearance and excellent appointments I had so much admired at the review, now lying helpless and mutilated—their uniforms soiled with blood and dirt—their mouths blackened with biting their cartridges, and all the splendour of their equipments entirely destroyed. When the caravans stopped, I approached them, and addressed a Scotch officer who was only slightly wounded in the knee.—"Are the French coming, sir?" asked I.—"Egad I can't tell," returned he. "We know nothing about it. We had enough to do to take care of ourselves. They are fighting like devils; and I'm off again as soon as my wound's dressed."—An English lady, elegantly attired, now rushed forwards—"Is my husband safe?" asked she eagerly.—"Good God! Madam," replied one of the men, "how can we possibly tell! I don't know the fate of those who were fighting by my side; and I could not see a yard round me." She scarcely heeded what he said; and rushed out of the gate, wildly repeating her question to every one she met. Some French prisoners now arrived. I noticed one, a fine fellow, who had had one arm shot off; and though the bloody and mangled tendons were still undressed, and had actually dried and blackened in the sun, he marched along with apparent indifference, carrying a loaf of bread under his remaining arm, and shouting "Vive l'Empereur!" I asked him if the French were coming.—"Je le crois bien," returned he, "preparez un souper, mes bourgeois—il soupera a Bruxelles ce soir."—Pretty information for me, thought I. "Don't believe him, sir," said a Scotchman, who lay close beside me, struggling to speak, though apparently in the last agony. "It's all right—I—assure—you—." The whole of Friday night was passed in the greatest anxiety; the wounded arrived every hour, and the accounts they brought of the carnage which was taking place were absolutely terrific. Saturday morning was still worse; an immense number of supernumeraries and runaways from the army came rushing in at the Porte de Namur, and these fugitives increased the public panic to the utmost. Sauve qui peut! now became the universal feeling; all ties of friendship or kindred were forgotten, and an earnest desire to quit Brussels seemed to absorb every faculty. To effect this object, the greatest sacrifices were made. Every beast of burthen, and every species of vehicle were put into requisition to convey persons and property to Antwerp. Even the dogs and fish-carts did not escape—enormous sums were given for the humblest modes of conveyance, and when all failed, numbers set off on foot. The road soon became choked up—cars, wagons, and carriages of every description were joined together in an immovable mass and property to an immense amount was abandoned by its owners, who were too much terrified even to think of the loss they were sustaining. A scene of frightful riot and devastation ensued. Trunks, boxes, and portmanteaus were broken open and pillaged without mercy; and every one who pleased, helped himself to what he liked with impunity. The disorder was increased by a rumour, that the Duke of Wellington was retreating towards Brussels, in a sort of running fight, closely pursued by the enemy; the terror of the fugitives now almost amounted to frenzy, and they flew like maniacs escaping from a madhouse. It is scarcely possible to imagine a more distressing scene. A great deal of rain had fallen during the night, and the unhappy fugitives were obliged literally to wade through mud. I had, from the first, determined to await my fate in Brussels; but on this eventful morning, I walked a few miles on the road to Antwerp, to endeavour to assist my flying countrymen. I was soon disgusted with the scene, and finding all my efforts to be useful, unavailing, I returned to the town, which now seemed like a city of the dead; for a gloomy silence reigned through the streets, like that fearful calm which precedes a storm; the shops were all closed, and all business was suspended. During the panic of Friday and Saturday, the sacrifice of property made by the British residents was enormous. A chest of drawers sold for five francs, a bed for ten, and a horse for fifty. In one instance, which fell immediately under my own observation, some household furniture was sold for one thousand francs, (about 40 l.) for which the owner had given seven thousand francs, (280 l.) only three weeks before. This was by no means a solitary instance; indeed in most cases, the loss was much greater, and in many, houses full of furniture were entirely deserted, and abandoned to pillage.
Sunday morning was ushered in by one of the most dreadful tempests I ever remember. The crashing of thunder was followed by the roar of cannon, which was now distinctly heard from the ramparts, and it is not possible to describe the fearful effect of this apparent mockery of heaven. I never before felt so forcibly the feebleness of man. The rain was tremendous—the sky looked like that in Poussin's picture of the Deluge, and a heavy black cloud spread, like the wings of a monstrous vulture, over Brussels. The wounded continued to arrive the whole of Saturday night and Sunday morning, in a condition which defies description. They appeared to have been dragged for miles through oceans of mud; their clothes were torn, their caps and feathers cut to pieces, and their shoes and boots trodden off. The accounts they brought were vague and disheartening—in fact, we could only ascertain that the Duke of Wellington had late on Saturday taken up his position at Waterloo, and that there he meant to wait the attack of the French. That this attack had commenced we needed not to be informed, as the roar of the cannon became every instant more distinct, till we even fancied that it shook the town. The wounded represented the field of battle as a perfect quagmire, and their appearance testified the truth of their assertions. About two o'clock a fresh alarm was excited by the horses, which had been put in requisition to draw the baggage-wagons, being suddenly galloped through the town. We fancied this a proof of defeat, but the fact was simply thus: the peasants, from whom the horses had been taken, finding the drivers of the wagons absent from their posts, seized the opportunity to cut the traces, and gallop off with their cattle. As this explanation, however, was not given till the following day, we thought that all was over; the few British adherents who had remained were in despair, and tri-coloured cockades were suspended from every house. Even I, for the first time, lost all courage, and my only consolation was the joy of Annette. "England cannot be much injured by the loss of a Single battle," thought I; "and as for me, it is of little consequence whether I am a prisoner on parole, or a mere wanderer at pleasure. I may easily resign myself to my fate; but this poor girl would break her heart if she lost her lover, for he is every thing to her." In this manner I reasoned, but in spite of my affected philosophy, I could not divest myself of all natural feeling; and when about six o'clock we heard that the French had given way, and that the Prussians had eluded Grouche, and were rapidly advancing to the field, I quite forgot poor Annette, and thanked God with all my heart. At eight o'clock there was no longer any doubt of our success, for a battalion of troops marched into the town, and brought intelligence that the Duke of Wellington had gained a complete victory, and that the French were flying, closely pursued by the Prussians. Sunday night was employed in enthusiastic rejoicing. The tri-coloured cockades had all disappeared, and the British colours were hoisted from every window. The great bell of St. Gudule tolled, to announce the event to the surrounding neighbourhood; and some of the English, who had only hidden themselves, ventured to re-appear. The only alloy to the universal rapture which prevailed, was the number of the wounded; the houses were insufficient to contain half; and the churches and public buildings were littered down with straw for their reception. The body of the Duke of Brunswick, who fell at Quatre Bras, was brought in on Saturday, and taken to the quarters he had occupied near the Chateau de Lacken. I was powerfully affected when I saw the corpse of one, whom I had so lately marked as blooming with youth and health; but my eyes soon became accustomed to horrors. On Monday morning, June 19th, I hastened to the field of battle: I was compelled to go through the forest de Soignes, for the road was so completely choked up as to be impassable.—The dead required no help; but thousands of wounded, who could not help themselves, were in want of every thing; their features, swollen by the sun and rain, looked livid and bloated. One poor fellow had a ghastly wound across his lower lip, which gaped wide, and showed his teeth and gums, as though a second and unnatural mouth had opened below his first. Another, quite blind from a gash across his eyes, sat upright, gasping for breath, and murmuring, "De l'eau! de l'eau!" The anxiety for water, was indeed most distressing. The German "Vaser! vaser!" and the French "De l'eau! de l'eau!" still seem sounding in my ears. I am convinced that hundreds must have perished from thirst alone, and they had no hope of assistance, for even humane persons were afraid of approaching the scene of blood, lest they should be taken in requisition to bury the dead; almost every person who came near, being pressed into that most disgusting and painful service. This general burying was truly horrible: large square holes were dug about six feet deep, and thirty or forty fine young fellows stripped to their skins were thrown into each, pell mell, and then covered over in so slovenly a manner, that sometimes a hand or foot peeped through the earth. One of these holes was preparing as I passed, and the followers of the army were stripping the bodies before throwing them into it, whilst some Russian Jews were assisting in the spoilation of the dead, by chiseling out their teeth! an operation which they performed with the most brutal indifference. The clinking hammers of these wretches jarred horribly upon my ears, and mingled strangely with the occasional report of pistols, which seemed echoing each other at stated intervals, from different corners of the field. I could not divine the meaning of these shots, till I was informed, that they proceeded from the Belgians, who were killing the wounded horses. Hundreds of these fine creatures were, indeed, galloping over the plain, kicking and plunging, apparently mad with pain, whilst the poor wounded wretches who saw them coming, and could not get out of their way, shrieked in agony, and tried to shrink back to escape from them, but in vain. Soon after, I saw an immense horse (one of the Scotch Greys) dash towards a colonel of the Imperial Guard, who had had his leg shattered; the horse was frightfully wounded, and part of a broken lance still rankled in one of its wounds. It rushed snorting and plunging past the Frenchman, and I shall never forget his piercing cry as it approached. I flew instantly to the spot, but ere I reached it the man was dead; for, though I do not think the horse had touched him, the terror he felt had been too much for his exhausted frame. Sickened with the immense heaps of slain, which spread in all directions as far as the eye could reach, I was preparing to return, when as I was striding over the dead and dying, and meditating on the horrors of war, my attention was attracted by a young Frenchman, who was lying on his back, apparently at the last gasp. There was something in his countenance which interested me, and I fancied, though I knew not when, or where, that I had seen him before. Some open letters were lying around, and one was yet grasped in his hand as though he had been reading it to the last moment. My eye fell upon the words "Mon cher fils," in a female hand, and I felt interested for the fate of so affectionate a son. When I left home in the morning, I had put a flask of brandy and some biscuit into my pocket, in the hope that I might be useful to the wounded, but when I gazed on the countless multitude which strewed the field, I felt discouraged from attempting to relieve them. Chance had now directed my attention to one individual, and I was resolved to try to save his life. His thigh was broken, and he was badly wounded on the left wrist, but the vital parts were untouched, and his exhaustion seemed to arise principally from the loss of blood. I poured a few drops of brandy into his mouth, and crumbling my biscuit contrived to make him swallow a small particle. The effects of the dose were soon visible; his eyes half opened, and a faint tinge of colour spread over his cheek. I administered a little more, and it revived him so much that he tried to sit upright. I raised him, and contriving to place him in such a manner, as to support him against the dead body of a horse, I put the flask and biscuit by his side, and departed in order to procure assistance to remove him. I recollected that a short time before, I had seen a smoke issuing from a deep ditch, and that my olfactory nerves had been saluted by a savoury smell as I passed. Guided by these indications, I retraced my steps to the spot, and found some Scotch soldiers sheltered by a hedge, very agreeably employed in cooking a quantity of beefsteaks over a wood tire, in a French cuirass!! I was exceedingly diverted at this novel kind of frying-pan, which served also as a dish; and after begging permission to dip a biscuit in their gravy for the benefit of my patient, I told my tale, and was gratified by the eagerness which they manifested to assist me; one ran to catch a horse with a soft Hussar saddle, (there were hundreds galloping over the field,) and the rest went with me to the youth, whom we found surprisingly recovered, though he was still unable to speak. The horse was brought, and as we raised the young Frenchman to put him upon it, his vest opened, and his "livret" fell out. This is a little book which every French soldier is obliged to carry, and which contains an account of his name, age, pay, accoutrements, and services. I picked it up, and offered it to my patient—but the young man murmured the name of "Annette," and fainted. "Annette!" the name thrilled through every nerve. I hastily opened the livret, and found that it was indeed Louis Tissand whom I had saved! The rest is soon told. Louis reached Brussels in safety, and even Madame's selfishness gave way to rapture on recovering her son. As to Annette—but why perplex myself to describe her feelings? If my readers have ever loved, they may conceive them. Louis soon recovered; indeed with such a nurse he could not fail to get well. When I next visited Brussels, I found Annette surrounded by three or tour smiling cherubs, to whom I was presented as le bon Anglais, who preserved the life of their papa.
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NOTES OF A READER
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A law respecting schools has existed, more or less, in the states of the south of Germany, for above a century, but which has been greatly improved within the last thirty years. By this law, parents are compelled to send their children to school, from the age of six to fourteen years, where they must be taught reading, writing, and arithmetic, but where they may acquire as much additional instruction in other branches as their parents choose to pay for. To many of the schools of Bavaria large gardens are attached, in which, the boys are taught the principal operations of agriculture and gardening in their hours of play; and, in all the schools of the three states, the girls, in addition to the same instruction as the boys, are taught knitting, sewing, embroidery, &c. It is the duty of the police and priest (which may be considered equivalent to our parish vestries) of each commune or parish, to see that the law is duly executed, the children sent regularly, and instructed duly. If the parents are partially or wholly unable to pay for their children, the commune makes up the deficiency. Religion is taught by the priest of the village or hamlet; and where, as is frequently the case in Wurtemberg, there are two or three religions in one parish, each child is taught by the priest of its parents; all of which priests are, from their office, members of the committee or vestry of the commune. The priest or priests of the parish have the regular inspection of the school-master, and are required by the government to see that he does his duty, while each priest, at the same time, sees that the children of his flock attend regularly. After the child has been the appointed number of years at school, it receives from the schoolmaster, and the priest of the religion to which it belongs, a certificate, without which it cannot procure employment. To employ any, person under twenty-one, without such a certificate, is illegal, and punished by a fixed fine, as is almost every other offence in this part of Germany; and the fines are never remitted, which makes punishment always certain. The schoolmaster is paid much in the same way as in Scotland; by a house, a garden, and sometimes a field, and by a small salary from the parish, and by fixed rates for the children.
A second law, which is coeval with the school law, renders it illegal for any young man to marry before he is twenty-five, or any young woman before she is eighteen; and a young man, at whatever age he wishes to marry, must show, to the police and the priest of the commune where he resides, that he is able, and has the prospect, to provide for a wife and family.—London's Mag. Nat. Hist.
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EATING AND WRITING.
Ovid, Horace, and Virgil all frequented the tables of the great; Cato warmed his virtue with wine; Shakspeare kept up his verve with stolen venison; Steele and Addison wrote their best papers over a bottle; Sir Walter Scott is famed for good housekeeping; and I know authors who love to dine like lords. Even booksellers do their spiriting more gently for good fare, and bid for an author the most spiritedly after dinner.
There is not a more vulgar mistake than that of confounding good eating with gluttony and excess. It is not because a man gets twenty or five-and-twenty guineas per sheet for a dashing article, and has taste to expend his well-earned cash upon a cook who knows how to dress a dinner, that he is necessarily to gorge himself like a mastiff with sheep's paunch. On the contrary, if he means to preserve the powers of his palate intact, he must "live cleanly as a nobleman should do." The fat-witted people in the City are not nice in their eating, quantity being more closely considered by them than quality. There is, I admit, something in the good man's concluding conjecture, that "the sort of diet men observe influences their style." I should know an "heavy-wet" man at the third line; and I can tell to a nicety when Theodore Hook writes upon claret, and when he is inspired by the over-heating and acrimonious stimulus of Max. Hayley obviously composed upon tea and bread and butter. Dr. Philpots may be nosed a mile off for priestly port and the fat bulls of Basan; and Southey's Quarterly articles are written on an empty stomach, and before his crudities, like the breath of Sir Roger de Coverley's barber, have been "mollified by a breakfast."—New Monthly Mag.
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Songs and hymns, in honour of their Gods, are found among all people who have either religion or verse. There is scarcely any pagan poetry, ancient or modern, in which allusions to the national mythology are not so frequent as to constitute the most copious materials, as well as the most brilliant embellishments. The poets of Persia and Arabia, in like manner, have adorned their gorgeous strains with the fables and morals of the Koran. The relics of Jewish song which we possess, with few exceptions, are consecrated immediately to the glory of God, by whom, indeed, they were inspired. The first Christians were wont to edify themselves in psalms and hymns, and spiritual songs; and though we have no specimens of these left, except the occasional doxologies ascribed to the redeemed in the Book of Revelation, it cannot be doubted that they used not only the psalms of the Old Testament, literally, or accommodated to the circumstances of a new and rising Church, but that they had original lays of their own, in which they celebrated the praises of Christ, as the Saviour of the world. In the middle ages, the Roman Catholic and Greek churches statedly adopted singing as an essential part of public worship; but this, like the reading of the Scriptures, was too frequently in an unknown tongue, by an affectation of wisdom, to excite the veneration of ignorance, when the learned, in their craftiness, taught that "Ignorance is the mother of devotion;" and Ignorance was very willing to believe it. At the era of the Reformation, psalms and hymns, in the vernacular tongue, were revived in Germany, England, and elsewhere, among the other means of grace, of which Christendom had been for centuries defrauded.—Montgomery.
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Grievously are they mistaken who think that the revival of literature was the death of superstition—that ghosts, demons, and exorcists retreated before the march of intellect, and fled the British shore along with monks, saints, and masses. Superstition, deadly superstition, may co-exist with much learning, with high civilization, with any religion, or with utter irreligion. Canidia wrought her spells in the Augustan age, and Chaldean fortune-tellers haunted Rome in the sceptical days of Juvenal. Matthew Hopkins, the witch-finder, and Lilly, the astrologer, were contemporaries of Selden, Harrington, and Milton. Perhaps there never was a more superstitious period than that which produced Erasmus and Bacon. —Blackwood's Mag.
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A "certain exalted personage," as the newspapers would say, commanded the attendance of a physician, who was only a Licentiate, and, thereby, struck consternation throughout the whole body of "Fellows." The great men already in attendance were dreadfully alarmed and confounded by this terrible subversion of established College etiquette. "Sire!" said one of them, "we humbly acquaint your Majesty, with all dutiful submission that as Dr.—— is not a Fellow, it is contrary to rule and custom to meet him in attendance here."—"A Fellow?" asked his Majesty; "what mean ye?" The learned physician explained. "Well, make him a Fellow, then," was his Majesty's quick reply; and he was accordingly made one!
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CULTIVATION OF WASTE LANDS.
No man at all acquainted with the principles of fertility and the present state of British tillage, can for a moment doubt that a very large quantity of waste land is scattered over the different districts of this country, which is not only susceptible of improvement, but which would yield an ample return for any amount of labour which could, for centuries to come, be spared from the cultivation of our own land. To be fully convinced of this fact, no man need do more than ride twenty miles in any direction from the metropolis. Let him select whatever road he may choose for his excursion, and he will find tracts of land, forming in the aggregate a very considerable quantity, which at this moment remain in the hands of nature—which man has never made the slightest effort to reclaim. Even the hebdomadal excursions of the citizen will conduct him over or near many such scenes. What Gilpin, living within the sound of Bow-bells, does not know Epping and Hainault Forests, Hounslow, Putney, and Black Heaths, Brook Green, Turnham Green, Wandsworth, Esher, Sydenham, Hays, and various other Commons? Within a circle of twenty miles around the largest and most opulent city in the world, we thus discover a large quantity of land, which cultivation would render highly productive, but which, in its present state of waste, is of little or no value to the public. And this land, situated in the very outskirts of the metropolis, continues to be utterly neglected, if not entirely overlooked, at a moment when the whole kingdom resounds with the groans of those who argue that the population of this country has outrun the means of subsisting them. As the traveller advances in his journey from the metropolis, the waste becomes more extensive, if not more numerous. The English wastes, which amount to about five millions of acres, are more valuable than those of Ireland; and these again are more improvable than, the Scotish wastes.—Quarterly Rev.
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The character of the Chinese novels is the same with that of the better parts of Don Quixote, Gil Blas, Tom Jones, and Cecilia. Their authors address themselves to the reason rather than the imagination of their readers. The other Asiatic nations, led away by a passion for the marvellous, have often disfigured the most respectable traditions, and converted history itself into romance. The Chinese, on the other hand, may be said to have given their romances the truth of history.—N. American Review.
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The Canadian Indian females are described as passionately fond of their children, as submissive slaves, and at the same time affectionately attached to their husbands. This they evince by self-immolation, after the manner of eastern wives. Among the few poisonous plants of Canada, is a shrub, which yields a wholesome fruit, but contains in its roots a deadly juice, which the widow, who wishes not to survive her husband, drinks. An eye-witness describes its effects; the woman having resolved to die, chanted her death song and funeral service; she then drank off the poisonous juice, was seized with shivering and convulsions, and expired in a few minutes on the body of her husband.
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SPIRIT OF THE PUBLIC JOURNALS.
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TWENTY-EIGHT AND TWENTY-NINE.
"Rien n'est change, mes amis!" CHARLES DIX.
 I have taken these words for my motto, because they enable me to tell a story. When the present King of France received his first address on the return from the emigration, his answer was, "Rien n'est change, mes amis; il n'y a qu'un Francais de plus." When the Giraffe arrived in the Jardin des Plantes, the Parisians had a caricature, in which the ass, and the hog, and the monkey were presenting an address to the stranger, while the elephant and the lion stalked angrily away. Of course, the portraits were recognisable—and the animal was responding graciously, "Rien n'est change, mes amis: il n'y a qu'un bete de plus!"
I heard a sick man's dying sigh, And an infant's idle laughter; The old Year went with mourning by, The new came dancing after; Let Sorrow shed her lonely tear, Let Revelry hold her ladle; Bring boughs of cypress for the biel. Fling roses on the cradle; Mates to wait on the funeral state! Pages to pour the wine! And a requiem for Twenty-eight,— And a health to Twenty-nine.
Alas! for human happiness, Alas! for human sorrow; Our Yesterday is nothingness, What else will be our Morrow? Still Beauty must be stealing hearts, And Knavery stealing purses; Still Cooks must live by making tarts, And Wits by making verses; While Sages prate and Courts debate, The same Stars set and shine; And the World, as it roll'd through Twenty-eight, Must roll through Twenty-nine.
Some King will come, in Heaven's good time, To the tomb his Father came to; Some Thief will wade through blood and crime To a crown he has no claim to; Some Suffering Land will rend in twain The manacles that bound her, And gather the links of the broken chain To fasten them proudly round her; The grand and great will love, and hate, And combat, and combine; And much where we were in Twenty-eight, We shall be in Twenty-nine.
O'Connell will toil to raise the Rent, And Kenyon to sink the Nation; And Sheil will abuse the Parliament, And Peel the Association; And the thought of bayonets and swords Will make ex-Chancellors merry— And jokes will be cut in the House of Lords, And throats in the County Kerry; And writers of weight will speculate On the Cabinet's design— And just what it did in Twenty-eight, It will do in Twenty-nine.
Mathews will be extremely gay, And Hook extremely dirty; And brick and mortar still will say "Try Warren, No. 30;" And "General Sauce" will have its puff, And so will General Jackson— And peasants will drink up heavy stuff, Which they pay a heavy tax on; And long and late, at many a fete, Gooseberry champagne will shine— And as old as it was in Twenty-eight, It will be in Twenty-nine.
And the Goddess of Love will keep her smiles; And the God of Cups his orgies; And there'll be riots in St. Giles, And weddings in St. George's; And Mendicants will sup like Kings, And Lords will swear like Lacqueys— And black eyes oft will lead to rings, And rings will lead to black eyes; And pretty Kate will scold her mate. In a dialect all divine— Alas! they married in Twenty-eight,— They will part in Twenty-nine!
John Thomas Mugg, on a lonely hill, Will do a deed of mystery— The Morning Chronicle will fill Five columns with the history; The Jury will be all surprise, The Prisoner quite collected— And Justice Park will wipe his eyes, And be very much affected; And folks will relate poor Corder's fate, As they hurry home to dine, Comparing the hangings of Twenty-eight With the hangings of Twenty-nine.
A Curate will go from the house of prayer To wrong his worthy neighbour, By dint of quoting the texts of Blair, And singing the songs of Weber; Sir Harry will leave the Craven hounds, To trace the guilty parties— And ask of the Court five thousand pounds, To prove how rack'd his heart is: An Advocate will execrate The spoiler of Hymen's shrine— And the speech that did for Twenty-eight Will do for Twenty-nine.
My Uncle will swathe his gouty limbs, And tell of his oils and blubbers; My Aunt, Miss Dobbs, will play longer hymns, And rather longer rubbers; My Cousin in Parliament will prove How utterly ruin'd trade is— My Brother at Eton will fall in love With half a hundred ladies; My Patron will sate his pride from plate. And his thirst from Bordeaux vine— His nose was red in Twenty-eight,— 'Twill be redder in Twenty-nine!
And oh! I shall find, how, day by day. All thoughts and things look older— How the laugh of Pleasure grows less gay, And the heart of Friendship colder; But still I shall be what I have been, Sworn foe to Lady Reason, And seldom troubled with the spleen, And fond of talking treason; I shall buckle my skait, and leap my gate, And throw, and write, my line— And the woman I worshipped in Twenty-eight, I shall worship in Twenty-nine!
New Monthly Magazine.
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MORAL EFFECT OF ROME UPON THE TRAVELLER.
Those only who have lived in Rome can duly estimate the potent and lasting impression produced upon the mind of a thinking man, by a residence in this capital of the ancient world. The daily contemplation of so many classical and noble objects elevates and purifies the soul, and has a powerful tendency to allay the inconsiderate fervours and impetuosities of youth, to mature, and consolidate the character. I am already so altered, and, I have the vanity to think, so improved a man since my arrival here, that there are times when I almost doubt my own identity, and imagine that, by some preternatural agency, I have been born over again, and have had new blood and new vitality infused into my frame.
The gratifications of a residence in Rome are inexhaustible. At every turn I discover some new evidence of the power and magnificence of her ancient inhabitants, and vivid sensations of delight and awe rapidly succeed each other. This venerable metropolis is the tomb and monument, not of princes, but of nations; it illustrates the progressive stages of human society, and all other cities appear modern and unfinished in comparison.
Exploring this forenoon the vicinity of Monte Palatino, I discovered in an obscure corner, near the temple of Romulus, the time-hallowed spring of Juturna, rising with crystal clearness near the Cloaca maxima, into which it flows unvalued and forgotten. I refreshed myself in the mid-day heat by drinking its pure lymph from the hollow of my hand, and gazed with long and insatiable delight upon the memorable fountain. This sacred spot is surrounded and obscured by contiguous buildings, and the walls are luxuriantly fringed and mantled with mosses, lichens, and broad leaved ivy. The proud aqueducts of the expanding city diminish the value and importance of this spring, but it was unquestionably the ruling motive which determined Romulus, or possibly an earlier colony of Greeks, to take root here, as within the wide compass of the Roman walls there is no other source of pure water.—Blackwood's Magazine.
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SONG, BY T. CAMPBELL
When Love came first to Earth, the SPRING Spread rose-buds to receive him. And back he vow'd his flight he'd wing To Heaven, if she should leave him.
But SPRING departing, saw his faith Pledg'd to the next new comer— He revell'd in the warmer breath And richer bowers of SUMMER.
Then sportive AUTUMN claim'd by rights An Archer for her lover, And even in WINTER'S dark, cold nights A charm he could discover.
Her routs and balls, and fireside joy, For this time were his reasons— In short, Young Love's a gallant boy, That likes all times and seasons.
New Monthly Magazine.
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SCHOOL AND COLLEGE.
College! how different from school! Never believe a great, broad-faced, beetle-browed Spoon, when he tells you, with a sigh that would upset a schooner, that the happiest days of a man's life are those he spends at school. Does he forget the small bed-room occupied by eighteen boys, the pump you had to run to on Sunday mornings, when decency and the usher commanded you to wash? Is he oblivious of the blue chalk and water they flooded your bowels with at breakfast, and called it milk? Has he lost the remembrance of the Yorkshire pudding, vulgarly called choke-dog, of which you were obliged to eat a pound before you were allowed a slice of beef, and of which, if you swallowed half that quantity, you thought cooks and oxen mere works of supererogation, and totally useless on the face of the earth? Has the fool lost all recollection of the prayers in yon cold, wet, clay-floored cellar, proudly denominated the chapel? has he forgot the cuffs from the senior boys, the pinches from the second master? and, in fine, has he forgot the press at the end of the school-room, where a cart-load of birch was deposited at the beginning of every half year, and not a twig left to tickle a mouse with, long before the end of it? He talks of freedom from care—what a negative kind of happiness! Let him cut off his hand, he will never hurt his nails. Let him enclose an order for all his money even unto us, and no more will he be troubled with cares about the Stocks—no more will he be teased with calculations on the price of grain. All that raving about school-boys is perfect nonsense—it is the most miserable period of a human being's life. Poor, shivering, trembling, kicked, buffetted, thumped, and starved little mortals! We never see a large school but we feel inclined to shoot them all, masters, ushers, and door-keepers included, merely to put them out of pain.
But at College, how different!—There, a man begins to feel that it is a matter of total indifference to him whether he sit on a hard wooden bench, or a soft stuffed chair; there, the short coat is discarded, and he stalks about with the air of a three-tailed bashaw, as his own two, generally, at first, are prolonged a little below the knee; there, his penny tart, which he bought on Saturdays at the door of the school, is exchanged for a dessert from Golding's; his beer, which he occasionally imbibed at the little pot-house, two miles beyond the school bounds, is exchanged for his wine from Butler's.—Books from Talboy's, the most enterprising of bibliopoles, supply the place of the tattered Dictionary he brought to the University, which, after being stolen when new, and passing, by the same process, through twenty hands, is at last, when fluttering in its last leaves, restolen by the original proprietor, who fancies he has made a very profitable "nibble." The trot he used to enjoy by stealth on the butcher's broken-kneed pony, is succeeded now by a gallop on a steed of Quartermain's; and he is delighted to find that horse and owner strive which shall be the softest-mouthed and gentlest charger. The dandy mare, we suppose, has many long years ago made fat the great-grandfathers of the present race of dogs; and old Scroggins, we imagine, has been trod to pieces in boots and shoes, the very memory of which departed long, long before they were paid for. Of old Scroggins—as Dr. Johnson says—and of his virtues, let us indulge ourself in the recollection. Though not formed in the finest mould, or endowed with the extremity of swiftness, his pace was sure and steady—equal to Hannibal in endurance of fatigue; and, like that celebrated commander, his aspect was rendered peculiarly fierce and striking by a blemish in his eye; not ignorant of the way to Woodstock was the wall-eyed veteran; not unacquainted with the covers at Ditchley; not unaccustomed to the walls at Hethrop: but Dandy and Scroggins have padded the hoof from this terrestrial and unstable world—peace to their manes!—Blackwood's Magazine.
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SPIRIT OF DISCOVERY.
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Friction of Screws and Screw-presses.
An examination of the friction in screws having their threads of various forms, has led M. Poncelet to this very important conclusion, namely, that the friction in screws with square threads is to that of equal screws with triangular threads, as 2.90 to 4.78, proving a very important advantage of the former over the latter, relative to the loss of power incurred in both by friction.—Brande's Journal.
According to M. Landgerbe, a mixture of two parts nitre, two parts neutral carbonate of potash, one part of sulphur, and six parts of common salt, all finely pulverized, makes a very powerful fulminating powder. M. Landgerbe adopts the extraordinary error of supposing that these preparations act with more force downwards than in any other direction.—Bull. Univ.
An aurora borealis was seen from North End, Hampstead, near London, from about seven o'clock until eleven, on the evening of Dec. 1. It generally appeared as a light resembling twilight, but shifting about both to the east and the west of north, and occasionally forming streams which continued for several minutes, and extended from 30 to 40 degrees high. The light on the horizon was not more than 12 or 15 degrees in height.—Brande's Journal.
According to the Paris papers, a new invention, called papier linge, has lately attracted much attention. It consists of a paper made closely to resemble damask and other linen, not only to the eye, but even to the touch. The articles are used for every purpose to which linen is applicable, except those requiring much strength and durability. The price is low, a napkin costs only five or six centimes (about a halfpenny), and when dirty, they are taken back at half-price. A good sized table-cloth sells for a franc, and a roll of paper with one or two colours for papering rooms or for bed curtains, may be had for the same price.
Maturation of Wine.
M. de St. Vincent, of Havre, states, from his own experience of long continuance, that when bottles containing wine are closed by tying a piece of parchment or bladder over their mouths, instead of using corks in the ordinary manner, the wine acquires, in a few weeks only, those qualities which is only given by age in the ordinary way after many years.—Nouveau Jour, de Paris.
Indications of Wholesomeness in Mushrooms.
Whenever a fungus is pleasant in flavour and odour, it may be considered wholesome; if, on the contrary, it have an offensive smell, a bitter, astringent, or styptic taste, or even if it leave an unpleasant flavour in the mouth, it should not be considered fit for food. The colour, figure, and texture of these vegetables do not afford any characters on which we can safely rely; yet it may be remarked, that in colour, the pure yellow, gold colour, bluish pale, dark or lustre brown, wine red, or the violet, belong to many that are esculent; whilst the pale or sulphur yellow, bright or blood red, and the greenish, belong to few but the poisonous. The safe kinds have most frequently a compact, brittle texture; the flesh is white; they grow more readily in open places, such as dry pastures and waste lands, than in places humid or shaded by wood. In general, those should be suspected which grow in caverns and subterranean passages, on animal matter undergoing putrefaction, as well as those whose flesh is soft or watery.—Brande's Journal.
Dr. Brookes, in his address to the recent anniversary meeting of the Zoological Society, stated that the Museum already contains 600 species of mammalia, 4,000 birds, 1,000 reptiles and fishes, 1,000 testacea and Crustacea, and 30,000 insects. During the last seven months, the Gardens and Museum have been visited by upwards of 30,000 persons. The vivarium contains upwards of 430 living quadrupeds and birds. The expenses of the past year have been 10,000 l., partly contributed by the admission of the public, and still more largely by the members of the Society, who already exceed 1,200 in number. These are gratifying facts to every lover of natural history, as they serve to indicate the progress of zoology in this country—a study which it has ever been our aim to identify with the pages of the MIRROR.
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The roads of England are the marvel of the world. The improvements which have been effected during a century would be almost miraculous, did we not consider that they had been produced by the spirit and intelligence of the people, and were in no degree dependant upon the apathy or caprice of the ruling power. The first turnpike-road was established by an act of the 3rd Charles II. The mob pulled down the gates; and the new principle was supported at the point of the bayonet. But long after that period travelling was difficult and dangerous. In December, 1703, Charles III. king of Spain, slept at Petworth on his way from Portsmouth to Windsor, and Prince George of Denmark went to meet him there by desire of the queen. In the relation of the journey given by one of the prince's attendants, he states, "We set out at six in the morning, by torchlight, to go to Petworth, and did not get out of the coaches (save only when we were overturned or stuck fast in the mire) till we arrived at our journey's end. 'Twas a hard service for the prince to sit fourteen hours in the coach that day without eating any thing, and passing through the worst ways I ever saw in my life. We were thrown but once indeed in going, but our coach, which was the leading one, and his highnesses body coach, would have suffered very much, if the nimble boors of Sussex had not frequently poised it, or it with their shoulders, from Godalming almost to Petworth; and the nearer we approached the duke's house, the more inaccessible it seemed to be. The last nine miles of the way cost us six hours' time to conquer them; and, indeed, we had never done it, if our good master had not several times lent us a pair of horses out of his own coach, whereby we were enabled to trace out the way for him." Afterwards, writing of his departure on the following day from Petworth to Guildford, and thence to Windsor, he says, "I saw him (the prince) no more, till I found him at supper at Windsor; for there we were overturned, (as we had been once before the same morning,) and broke our coach; my Lord Delaware had the same fate, and so had several others."—Vide Annals of Queen Anne, vol. ii. Appendix, No. 3.
In the time of Charles, (surnamed the Proud,) Duke of Somerset, who died in 1748, the roads in Sussex were in so bad a state, that, in order to arrive at Guildford from Petworth, travellers were obliged to make from the nearest point of the great road leading from Portsmouth to London. This was a work of so much difficulty, as to occupy the whole day; and the duke had a house at Guildford which was regularly used as a resting-place for the night by any of his family travelling to London. A manuscript letter from a servant of the duke, dated from London, and addressed to another at Petworth, acquaints the latter that his grace intended to go from London thither on a certain day, and directs that "the keepers and persons who knew the holes and the sloughs must come to meet his grace with lanterns and long poles to help him on his way."
The late Marquess of Buckingham built an inn at Missenden, about forty miles from London, as the state of the roads compelled him to sleep there on the way to Stow—a journey which is at present performed between breakfast and dinner.
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A snapper up of unconsidered trifles.
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Sir Joseph Banks used to tell a story of his being at Otaheite with Capt. Cook, when it was accidentally discovered to be the king's birth-day, on which it was suddenly agreed to have a jollification; every soul on board got fuddled, except three men who were on duty. The next day they came on deck, and begged to speak to the captain. "Well," said the captain, "what have you got to say?"—"Please your honour, you were all drunk yesterday, all except we three; will your honour be pleased to allow us to get drunk to-day?" Sir Joseph, who was standing by, was so tickled with the oddity of the request, that he begged they might be indulged, and that he would subscribe two bottles of rum and two bottles of brandy. The boon was granted, and in less than three hours, these messmates balanced accounts, being as drunk as their hearts could wish.—Mr Wadd.
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Some time after Napoleon's return to Paris, in 1815, as he was passing the troops in review at the Place Carousel, he happened to see the celebrated Mademoiselle Mars, stationed among the troops, in order to view the imposing military spectacle. The emperor, approaching the spot, and addressing her, said, "What do you do here, Mademoiselle? this is no place for you."—"Sire," answered the witty and animated daughter of Thalia, "I come to behold a real hero; I am tired of seeing mock ones upon the stage."
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Some years ago the following inscription, engraved on the fragment of a stone, was discovered amongst the relics of an antiquarian, and was considered by him as a great curiosity, and enhanced in value by its translation having puzzled the best scholars of the age:—
BENE. A.T.H. T.H. I.S.S.T. ONERE. POS. ET H. CLAUD. COSTER. TRIP E. SELLERO F. IMP IN. GT. ONAS. DO TH. HI S. C. ON. SOR. T. I. A. N. E.
Some supposed it to refer to the Emperor Claudian, till a lad one day spelt it out: "Beneath this stone reposeth Claud Coster, tripe-seller, of Impington, as doth his consort Jane." R. B.
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Captain John Graunt, in his Observations on the Bills of Mortality, says, that of 229,250 persons, who died in twenty years, only two are put to the account of excessive drinking. But, perhaps, if the matter were truly stated, a great many of the dropsies, apoplexies, and palsies ought to have been placed under that head. It is not impossible that those who had the charge of rendering these accounts, might have entertained the opinion of old Dick Baldwyn, who stoutly maintained that no man ever died of drinking. "Some puny things," said he, "have died learning to drink, but no man ever died of drinking!" Now, this was no mean authority; for he spoke from great practical experience, and was moreover many years treasurer of St. Bartholomew's Hospital.—Mr. Wadd—in Brande's Journal.
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The "Sunday Times" of the 28th ult. has the following paragraph inserted:—
The New Times speaks (some time ago) of a "Party given by the Duke of Pork!" Another paper, of "Proceedings in the Court of Common Fleas!" and the Morning Chronicle of Tuesday last speaks of "an atrocious Bobbery!" The cream of this criticism on others is, that the very same paper has the following paragraph:—"Fleet Prison, Dec. 26th. Died last night, about 12 o'clock, the Rev. Mr. Chaundy, in the meridian of life. This makes the ninth death which has happened in the Fleet since the 29th of April last. The free use of spirituous liquors is the cause of so much MORALITY in the prison."
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A "MELTING SUBJECT."
M. Tissot, a celebrated French physician, who was the intimate friend of Zimmerman, relates the case of a literary gentleman, who would never venture near a fire, from imagining himself to be made of butter, and being fearful he should melt.
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"There are whom heaven has bless'd with store of wit, Yet want as much again to manage it."
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LIMBIRD'S EDITION OF THE
Following Novels are already Published:
Mackenzie's Man of Feeling ... 0 6 Paul and Virginia ... 0 6 The Castle of Otranto ... 0 6 Alaeoran and Hamet ... 0 6 Elizabeth, or the Exiles of Siberia ... 0 6 The Castles of Athlin and Dunbayna ... 0 6 Rasselas ... 0 8 The Old English Baron ... 0 8 Nature and Art ... 0 8 Goldsmith's Vicar of Wakefield ... 0 10 Sicilian Romance ... 1 0 The Man of the World ... 1 0 A Simple Story ... 1 4 Joseph Andrews ... 1 6 Humphry Clinker ... 1 8 The Romance of the Forest ... 1 8 The Italian ... 2 0 Zeluco, by Dr. Moore ... 2 6 Edward, by Dr. Moore ... 2 6 Roderick Random ... 2 6 The Mysteries of Udolpho ... 3 6
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