THE MIRROR OF LITERATURE, AMUSEMENT, AND INSTRUCTION.
VOL. 13., No. 375.] SATURDAY, JUNE 13, 1829. [PRICE 2d.
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CUMBERLAND TERRACE, REGENT'S PARK.
The annexed Engraving completes our Series of Architectural Illustrations of the REGENT'S PARK, and is, withal the most magnificent Terrace in the circuit. It stands considerably above the road, and is approached by a fine carriage sweep, with handsome balustrades; below which, and level with the road, is the garden, or promenade for the residents of the Terrace.
The architect of Cumberland Terrace is Mr. Nash, who appears to have been so lavish of ornament, as to give the whole range the appearance of a triumphal temple. It consists of a centre and wings, connected by two handsome arches, which have a very pleasing and novel effect. The entrance, or ground story throughout, is rusticated, and in the principal parts or masses of the elevation, serves as a base or pediment for handsome Doric columns, above which is a balustrade, on which are placed allegorical figures of the Seasons, the Quarters of the Globe, the Arts and Sciences, &c. Each of these masses has a most imposing appearance, and bears four figures; the figures in the whole range amount to twenty-seven. Above the balustrade rises the attic story. The subordinate fronts of the residences are embellished with Doric pilasters.
Each arch consists of four handsome Doric columns, with an entablature, and blocking course.
The central portion of the terrace is in correspondent style with the wings; and consists of a splendid colonnade of twelve columns and an entablature. Above the attic story rises a pediment surmounted with figures of Painting, Architecture, and Sculpture. This pediment is filled with a basso-relievo, executed by J.H. Bubb, and representing Britannia crowned by Fame, and seated on a throne, the basis of which represents Valour and Wisdom. On one side, Literature, Genius, Manufacture, Agriculture, and Prudence, are bringing youth of different nations for instruction; and on the other side, the guardian-spirit of the Navy, surmounted by Victory, Navigation, Commerce, and Freedom, is extending her blessings to the Africans. The group is terminated on each side by Plenty. This is supposed to be the largest ornamental pediment in the kingdom, with the exception of that of the portico of St. Paul's, which only exceeds it by a few feet.
From the sweep of this terrace may be enjoyed a highly picturesque view of the park, with the crown of Primrose Hill in the distance.
At this close of the Series of Views, and as we are approaching the conclusion of our volume, it may not be amiss to recapitulate the several engravings, with their pages in the preceding and present volumes of the MIRROR, and the order in which they stand in the Regent's Park, which order circumstances have prevented our uniformly following in their publication: thus—
Buildings. Architects. Mirror, Vol. Page.
Ulster Terrace xi 401 York Terrace Nash xiii 129 Sussex Place Nash xiii 273 Cornwall Terrace D. Burton xiii 305 Clarence Terrace D. Burton xii 17 Hanover Terrace Nash x 313 Hanover Lodge xiii 49 Grove House D. Burton xiii 49 Marquess of Hertford's Villa D. Burton xiii 81 Macclesfield Bridge Morgan xiii 351 East (now Gloucester) Gate xi 225 St. Katherine's Poynter xi 273 Master's Residence Poynter xi 289 Cumberland Terrace Nash xiii 401 Chester Terrace Nash xiii 193 Exterior of the Colosseum D. Burton xiii 65 Interior of the Colosseum D. Burton xiii 97
In this Series we have endeavoured to represent all the architectural beauties of the Park, and liable as are all of them to critical objection, they are extremely interesting for pictorial displays of the taste of this castle-building age.
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THE KING'S STAG, &C.
(To the Editor of the Mirror.)
As several of your correspondents have lately interested themselves in the sign of "The Cat and Fiddle;" a few observations may not be thought irrelevant, on the probable origin of the "King's Stag," a description of which, under the signature, Ruris, appeared in the MIRROR, of Saturday, the 30th ult. Its rise may, I conceive, with tolerable certainty, be traced to the stag said to have been taken in the Forest of Senlis, by Charles the Sixth, about whose neck was a collar, with the inscription, "Caesar hoc mihi donavit," which induced a belief that the animal had lived from the reign of some one of the twelve Caesars. This inscription also exists in the following form:—
"Tempore, quo Caesar Roma, dominatus in alta Aureolo jussit collum signare moniti; Ne depascentem quisquis me gramina laedat, Caesaris heu causa, periturae parcere vitae."
which has been thus literally translated in nearly the same words quoted by Ruris—
"When Julius Caesar reigned king, About my neck he put this ring, That whosoever did me take, Should spare my life for Caesar's sake."
It thus appears that Julius Caesar is gratuitously introduced by the English paraphrast, nothing appearing in the original inscription to determine its application, or render it more probable, that the reference should be to Julius Caesar, than to Domitian; and the two first lines given by Ruris, have evidently been introduced by way of transferring the subject to our own country.
Allow me before concluding this communication, one word in reply to E.D.'s observations on the "Cat and Fiddle." It is not impossible that some resemblance (though I am disposed to think it very trifling) may exist between the "tones of a flute" and those of "the human voice;" but I have yet to learn wherein consists the similarity of the notes of the clarinet and those of a "GOOSE;" neither do I imagine performers on the violin, (especially Italians,) will feel themselves obliged by E.D.'s comparison of their favourite instrument, to the vile squall of the feline race. On the whole, I should feel more disposed to concur with him who "has been led away by a love of etymology" that the "Cat and Fiddle" is an "anomalous" sign, and that "no two objects in the world have less to do with each other than a cat and a violin," than to adopt the opposite theories of E.D. or his predecessor, unless better supported than they are at present. IOTA.
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RECOLLECTIONS OF A WANDERER.
(For the Mirror.)
All night the booming minute-gun Had pealed along the deep, And mournfully the rising sun Look'd o'er the tide-worn steep, A bark from India's coral strand, Before the rushing blast, Had vailed her topsails to the sand And bowed her noble mast. The Queenly ship! brave hearts had striven And true ones died with her! We saw her mighty cable riven, Like floating gossamer! We saw her proud flag struck that morn, A star once o'er the seas, Her helm beat down, her deck uptorn, And sadder things than these! MRS. HEMANS
Sweet romantic Cove of Torwich—repository of my youth's recollections!—A mingled gust of feeling crosses over me, rainbow-like,—fraught with the checkered remembrances of "life's eventful history," when I turn to the past, and glance over the scenes of my early life.
The Bay of Torwich, on the southern coast, unites in its fullest extent the singularly wild and picturesque, with the softer features of the landscape. The bay consists of two headlands, about four miles apart. On the eastern side a lofty range of rocky heights extends for a considerable way, almost equalling those of Dovor in sublimity, and juts out into the sea, on the assaults of which they seem to frown defiance, terminating in a bold headland. The violence of the sea has caused extensive and picturesque excavations and caverns; and at the end of the cliff, two sharp rocks called the Needles, raised their heads at low water, connected by a low, sunken reef. In a westerly gale these rocks were very dangerous to homeward-bound ships, and I have often sat with admiration in the heights above, watching the grotesque forms and silvery spray of the gigantic breakers, which after being broken in their progress, heaved their expiring rage with a shock like thunder, against the base of the cliffs, causing a prolonged echo in the huge caverns above. About midway between these cliffs and the western side there was another lofty headland, which terminated the Cove of Torwich; as the sea, except at low-water in high spring tides, washed the foot of this promontory, it was only fordable at ebb-tide. In the middle of the intermediate space, three rocks which might truly be called "forked promontories" from their sharp pyramidical shape, jutted abruptly out of the beach, and were connected by a sort of natural causeway to the main land. Beyond, a wild and rocky valley ran inland, and the time-worn ruins of —— Castle, beetling over the heights, terminated the view in this direction. This valley formed the bed of a small stream, which ran by the end of the rocks, composing a channel by which coasting vessels could run up and discharge their cargoes for the village of Torwich, only part of which was visible at this spot. A natural cleft in the vein opened through the centre of these singular rocks, resembling a lofty gothic arch, and it was my favourite pastime to sit here in the most perfect seclusion, reading "sermons in stones" and watching the progress of the tide till it kissed my feet, and often surrounded me, for the flood came in with great velocity. Between these rocks and the heights on the eastern side, there was another little retired creek, renowned in the village annals, for the adventures of Jack Covering, a noted smuggler on this coast, some forty years ago, with the locality of which the reader will erewhile become better acquainted. The magnificence of the convulsed scenery, and yawning chasms around, the deep intonation and ceaseless roar of the ocean, all combined to awaken in the mind of the spectator, mingled sensations of admiration and awe.
The coast receded between the eastern point of the cove to that which terminated the Bay of Torwich, embracing what may be almost termed a champaign country, compared with the barren scenery I have described; and displaying the uneven surface of the richly wooded Park of Dovedale, with the ruins of two castles.
The village of Torwich which stood on a declivity, with an opening descent to the shore, about half a mile from the entrance of the cove, had little communication, from the nature of its site, with the neighbouring country, except when the all-powerful attraction of a wreck existed. Its inhabitants were chiefly sailors or fishermen, barring a few useless individuals like myself. I loved to study life in all its gradations—the "March of Intellect" was yet unknown here! and though the situation afforded such numerous advantages for smuggling, there were, rather unaccountably, only three persons in the village connected with the coast blockade; and it was whispered that relying on the entire seclusion of the cove, these persons too often winked when they ought to have been astir on their duty.
The day was far spent, when towards the close of the month of October, 18—, I wandered out to the shore to watch the flow of the evening's tide. The weather had been unsettled for some time previous, and the rain had fallen in torrents, with a moderate breeze, during most part of the day. Towards evening the rain ceased, though large heavy masses of black clouds were flying about, and backing up to seaward, accompanied with a short gusty gale of wind. I never recollect a more dismal night. A thick haze overspread the lower parts of the landscape, throwing the bloated masses of clouds higher up in the horizon, into a sort of sombre relief. As I passed a little look-out house on my way to the beach, I sauntered to a group of sailors at their usual council, who were gazing with deep interest at a solitary vessel dimly discernible through the fog in the offing. As she neared us we found her to be a barque of apparently considerable burthen, making a tack to weather the Torhead, which lay several miles under her lee, with a strong breeze from windward. She was evidently quite out of her reckoning from the indecision and embarassment displayed in her movements; and the captain seemed not sufficiently aware of the hazard he ran. I waited sometime at this place watching the movements of the ship. The tide came roaring in with a broken swell increased by a high spring flood; and there was that in the "wind's eye" which betokened approaching disaster; while the gloom was increasing, and the harsh cries and hurried flight of the sea-birds indicated tempestuous weather.
"An ugly looking night this, Mr. —— as I have seen for many a-day," remarked Harry Covering, one of the oldest of the group of sailors, and a crony of mine. "Sink the Customs! if yon ship weathers Torhead this night, may I never pull an oar again." "It is, indeed, a fearful-looking night, messmate, and no time ought to be lost in the present state of the tide in putting off to her—for if the wind holds in this part, it is great odds indeed, that she does not go upon the Needles."
The breeze was freshening every moment; indeed the situation of the strange ship must soon become imminently dangerous. The crew seemed at last to have awakened from their lethargy, and were apparently making every effort to enable her to gain an offing and weather Torhead, before the combined force of wind and flood should render that impracticable. It was a moment of deep interest. I am not acquainted with any event, notwithstanding the frequency of its recurrence, that appeals more directly to our sympathies, than a shipwreck. The mighty power of the ocean is thus brought before us in its most striking sense, and the general scene of disaster it occasions is almost always varied with instances of individual sympathy for some of the wrecked. We were now joined by the resident officer of the coast-blockade, and a party of men were dispatched to pull off to the ship in distress, while the rest of us hurried towards the Torhead, accompanied in our rear, (for the news had reached the village) by a turn-out of most of its inhabitants, influenced both by the passion of curiosity and that of expected plunder. Many of the older class looked upon wrecking as legitimate a trade as fishing for herrings or pilchards; while perhaps nearly all from the force of habit and long-practised example, regarded a wreck as a booty sent them by the elements; the scattered contents of which it was no more crime to take than it would be to pick up any other thing cast by accident on the beach.
The sea was breaking over the needles with frightful violence when we reached Torhead—the spray dashing almost to the summit of the cliffs. We were now almost opposite the vessel, which appeared to be French built; but the increasing darkness prevented our distinguishing her minutely. The, flash of a gun from her side, amidst the deepening gloom, redoubled my interest. A more interesting object than a solitary vessel in danger, I cannot well conceive. I have always looked upon a ship as a living creature—the companion of man—a thing instinct with life, walking the waters—and our feelings are not only excited for the safety of the crew, but for that of the vessel itself, to which we attach a degree of interest as for a friend. A gale was now up; the boat put off to their aid was in danger of being swamped by the surf, and found it impracticable to make way against a violent head-wind and tide united. Nothing short of a miracle could now save the ship; however the wind suddenly shifted a little, and I began to hope that if she was to be wrecked, it might be farther on the shore; as in case of her striking on the Needles, she must almost immediately go to pieces under our eyes, without the most remote chance of the escape of one of the crew. A sheet of light flashed occasionally from her sides, calling for aid out of the power of man to grant. There was a sudden lull in the wind, which sometimes happens in the most violent tempests, though often succeeded by increased fury; and a strong shower of sleet and rain drove most of our followers home. As it had now become quite dark, and it was morally impossible to yield the ship any aid till daylight, I returned to the village with melancholy forebodings, having placed beacons on the heights.
I hastily proceeded again to the shore just before daybreak. The distant moaning of the sea, the harsh screams of the cormorants with the desolate nature of the spot, chilled my spirits. I had passed a sleepless night, and the storm rose again, and raged till near daybreak with increased fury, but the wind was now greatly hushed. The sea, however, showed marks of its violence; the bay was white with foam, and as I proceeded, the tide, which was just beginning to flow, roared loudly, and advanced in short breakers wreathed with spray. The sky also looked dismally, and gave token that the gale had not entirely passed away, though its violence had temporarily abated. I advanced with deep interest by the peaked group of rocks, and passed the wreck of a brig lying high and dry on the sand just before me. The whole of the shore between the Heads, was strewed with her contents. I never witnessed so total a wreck in so short a space of time. The violence of the surf had completely beaten her sides out, leaving stem and stern hanging together as by a thread, while her ribs and broken cordage and sails, completed the picture, had any thing been wanting to perfect it. I could moralize any day on a single bit of plank on a shore—each fragment seems to tell its tale, and awakens a train of thoughts and feelings in the mind; but "grim desolation" was here visibly before me.
Though I was early astir, I found that the prospect of booty had been sufficiently powerful already to draw out not only the inhabitants of Torwich, but great numbers of the neighbouring peasantry. But where was the ship, about whose fate we had been so greatly interested the preceding evening? This was manifestly not her; but I distinctly saw a large, black hull lying under the western cliffs, half a mile distant, towards which the people were rapidly moving. She had come ashore a little after high water, during the night. I picked my way through the wreck strewn around—to a small group of persons standing near me; five of them were strangers, the crew of the brig. I learnt that my surmises were right concerning the ship in the distance, and that the brig which was laden with crockery came ashore about the same period.
I left these poor fellows endeavouring to rescue their little articles of property, and took a route apart from the course of the crowd towards the other ship. I had not gone far, when I almost stumbled over the dead body of a young female, lying with her face uppermost, half buried in the sand—
Her very tresses clung All tangled by the storm.
The bodies of a gentleman of foreign aspect, and that of a lad about seventeen, (their hands still firmly clasped together, undivided even in death,) lay close by. It was a melancholy scene. They had evidently been a father and his children. The long boat of the vessel, which had I suppose, taken ground here, being staved and swamped by the surf, was close beyond, near which I observed the bodies of several other men. It was with pain and horror I remarked that some wretches who had been here before me, had partly stripped the bodies of the lady and others in their search after plunder, besides rifling the contents of some cases of valuables, which had been put into the boat. I hastily turned towards the principal scene of disaster, and addressed myself to one of the survivors, whom I found to be the supercargo. The vessel was La Bonne Esperance of Brest, of 550 tons, homeward bound, with a mixed cargo of rum, cotton, and colonial produce, from the West Indies. It appeared that the captain, mate, and passengers had left the ship just as she struck, and taken to the long boat, the fatal result of which has been seen. As I surmised, the bodies I had seen consisted of one family, the only passengers on board, a colonel in the army, with his son and daughter, returning to his country after long service in foreign parts. The supercargo, in the confusion which took place, could not get into the long boat in time, and remained with the rest of the crew on board; several of the seamen were washed off the decks and dashed against the rocks, and my narrator and three others were all that survived "to tell the tale."
The ship's hull lay jammed between two small rocks near the foot of the cliffs; she was still almost outwardly entire, as the tide receded just after she came ashore in the night; but there was a hole knocked in her side from whence a portion of the cargo had been washed out. The two principal masts had gone by the board, but a part of the mizen-mast was still standing; and the rocks were covered, far and near, with tattered portions of her sails and cordage pasted against their sides, disposed by the sea, in a grotesque manner.
As the principal station of the preventive corps was at a considerable distance, some time would elapse before they could lend their aid in the protection of the property; and the mob from the neighbouring country, disappointed at finding little else but broken crockery at the other wreck, seemed disposed to make the most of their time, and were proceeding with all the violence and rapacity of professed wreckers. In spite of the exertions of the officer from Torwich and his assistants, they were mounting the sides, and had spread themselves over the vessel like a pack of hungry wolves on the dead carcass of a horse, when I arrived. A scene of greater confusion and singularity cannot be described.
It was not long before their attention was awakened by the tapping of a cask of rum, which with many more had been washed out of the hold. This beverage presented a powerful attraction; the ship was soon, in some measure, deserted, and the mob concentrated like a swarm of wasps round the casks. All distinctions were now at an end; the better sort of farmer or shopkeeper, scrambled with the pauper for a cup or cap (or shoe) full of the mellow liquid; while the supercargo and his men, aided by myself and a few others, were occupied in hastily putting into some carts the more valuable articles rescued from plunder. As the parties had been immoderate in their potations, so the effects were equally speedy. Women lay on the sand, dead drunk, beside the booty they had collected, while unable to stir, it was snatched from their powerless grasp by others stronger or more sober than themselves. Several pitched battles were also taking place, both amongst boys and men, which generally terminated by each of the combatants falling prostrate martyrs to Bacchus. The infection was universal, and even the three "mounseers," the surviving crew of the Bonne Esperance, could not resist an occasional sly pull at the liquor. These men, though they had only just escaped sudden death, seemed not to be cast down; but with their characteristic agility, one minute assisted to roll the casks into carts, and then ran off perhaps to whisper a compliment to some pretty girl, shrugging up their shoulders at the unceremonious repulse they met with from mademoiselle.
But this scene was not to last long: for the tide had been imperceptibly making way and closing. I had always observed that after coming to a certain place, its velocity was greatly accelerated, and it was with feelings of alarm that I saw the danger which the almost unconscious people incurred. From regard to our own safety we had to retreat rapidly towards the shingles, carrying as many of the helpless as time would admit out of danger, in which we were aided by many of the sailors from Torwich, who had assisted in rescuing a portion of the cargo. The peasantry, at last aware of the hazard they ran, took to their heels also; but from the state they were in, many were forgotten or left behind. The roar of waters came rapidly onward, and amid the foaming eddy created by its advance, the stifled death-cry, mingled with the harsh and piercing shrieks of some of the half drowning victims—one moment awakened to the consciousness of their situation, and the next hurried to eternity—burst on the ear; and such was the advance of the spring-flood, that a few minutes after the rush of people had reached the shingles, the curling breakers rolled the bodies of several of the sufferers almost to their feet. The most lively interest was now excited towards a small rock, which jutted out of the sand a little distance from the wreck. The two poor children of a fisherman's widow in the village, were playing in a cavity of this rock, when the tide surrounded them. Their voices were drowned by the roaring of the waters, and their fate would have been unknown, had not the wild appearance and frantic screams of the mother—come in search of her children—attracted notice. When they were discovered, only a ledge of the rock was discernible; and the little sufferers were seen imploring for help amidst the spray with which the waves, fanned by a stiff breeze from windward, covered them. Several brave fellows swam off towards the rock, but before they could reach it, a sudden rush of tide swept over, and engulfed the children amidst the fragments of wreck hurled forward in its advance. One of the sailors seized the youngest of the children and bore him safely to shore. The body of the other was found when the tide ebbed, under a ledge of rocks on the eastern side. Upwards of fifteen persons were amongst the missing. It was an impressive scene, and read a powerful lesson to all.
"Wrecking" has long been deservedly a national reproach. It is, however, rarely accompanied with the cruelty and violence by which it was formerly characterized; and such aggravated scenes now seldom occur. The people of our coasts have become, generally, much more civilized, and probably the "march of improvement" will ultimately eradicate so inhuman a custom. In Cornwall it was carried to such an excess that the example was even given from the pulpit; and there is a story related of a Cornish parson, who upon information being brought to his congregation of a wreck whilst they were at church, exhorted them to pause as they were rushing out en masse in the midst of the service; and having gained the door, took to his heels saying, "Now, my lads, it is but fair we should all start alike!" and reached the wreck first. The people view the plunder of a wreck as a right, and it is in vain to attempt to persuade them otherwise. However it is but justice to say that they have frequently risked, and even sacrificed, their own lives in endeavouring to preserve those of others; though some recent instances, especially in Wales, prove that the old disposition still lurks amongst the people, and sometimes breaks out with unabated violence.
The arrival of a party of the Preventive Service that evening, in some measure proved a check to the plunder of the peasantry; but the guards themselves were not proof against the prevailing infection, and similar scenes to that related, prevailed as long as there was any thing left to drink or pick up; however, a considerable part of the cargo was safely stowed, though there were few of the rum casks that did not afterwards turn out impregnated with bilge water.
On a fine grey morning, about a week after these events occurred, I wandered out towards the shore: there had been rough weather in the channel, and many wrecks, and the turbulence of the ocean had not yet subsided. It was about half-flood when I reached the Bonne Esperance. She had disappeared by piece-meal under the repeated assaults of the sea, but the principal part of the hull was still hanging together. Each wave as it struck her tattered timbers, seemed to sap away her strength and threatened to shake her to fragments. I sat with the supercargo for about an hour, watching the flow of the tide. Her timbers cracked louder and louder at each shock of the breakers; when a heavy sea struck her, her joints loosened, and she broke up at last, scattered into fragments, and whelmed in a gulf of boiling waters which foamed like an immense cauldron over the place she had occupied a minute before. We had watched the progress to this final disaster with the deepest interest—I may almost say sympathy—for we could hardly help looking upon the ship as a friend in need, hovering as it were over destruction without an arm being stretched forth to save her, and it was not without a real feeling of pain and sorrow that we witnessed her destruction.
About half-ebb we descended to the shore—it was covered as far as the eye could reach with her ruin and materials; and one could almost imagine it had been the destruction of a fleet. Thus ended the fate of La Bonne Esperance of Brest, and the occasional appearance of a solitary fragment on the beach, was soon all that recalled her history to the remembrance of the passers-by.
 The scenes and events in tins sketch are drawn from nature, and real occurrences on the southern coast.
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Wretched is he who thinks of doing ill. His evil deeds long to conceal and hide; For though the voice and tongues of men be still, By fowls and beasts his sins shall be descried. And God oft worketh by his secret will, That sin itself, the sinner so doth guide, That of its own accord without request, He makes his wicked doings manifest.
SIR J. HARRINGTON.
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Death is a port whereby we reach to joy, Life is a lake that drowneth all in pain, Death is so near it ceaseth all annoy, Life is so leav'd that all it yields is vain; And as by life to bondage Man was brought, Even so likewise by death was freedom wrought.
EARL OF SURREY.
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Nought under Heaven so strongly doth allure The sense of man and all his mind possess, As Beauty's lovely bait that doth procure Great warriors oft their rigour to repress, And mighty hands forget their manliness. Driven with the power of an heart robbing eye, And wrapt in flowers of a golden tress, That can with melting pleasance mollify Their hard'ned hearts enur'd to blood and cruelty.
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——But that Learning in despite of fate Will mount aloft and enter Heaven's gate; And to the seat of Jove itself advance, Hermes had slept in Hell with Ignorance. Yet as a punishment they added this, That he and Poverty should always kiss. And to this day is every scholar poor, Gross gold from them runs headlong to the boor.
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——The feeling power which is life's root, Through every living part itself doth shed, By sinews which extend from head to foot, And like a net all over the body spread. Much like a subtle spider, which doth sit In middle of her web which spreadeth wide, If aught do touch the outmost thread of it, She feels it instantly on every side.
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So foul a thing, O thou injustice art, That torment'st the doer and distrest; For when a man hath done a wicked part, O how he strives to excuse—to make the best; To shift the fault t' unburden his charg'd heart, And glad to find the least surmise of rest; And if he could make his, seem other's sin, O what repose, what ease he'd find therein.
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Vessels of brass oft handled brightly shine. What difference between the richest mine And basest earth, but use? for both not used Are of little worth; then treasure is abused, When misers keep it; being put to loan, In time it will return us two for one.
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THE IDIOT LOVER.
(DRAWN FROM LIFE.)
(For the Mirror.)
"That man that hath a tongue, I say, is no man, If with his tongue he cannot win a woman."
John Laconi was born in the romantic country of Switzerland. He was educated tolerably well; he was a good musician, and could draw excellently. He possessed a small, though independent fortune. However, notwithstanding his advantages and acquirements, he proved, when he became a lover, to be an idiot.
At a certain period of his life, he fell violently in love with a beautiful young Swiss lady. She was considerably younger than our hero, was much taller, and her elegant refinements rendered her a very desirable object. John had a sister, to whom the young lady paid frequent friendly visits, and upon such occasions, owing probably to that mauvaise honte, with which he was cursed, he was usually absent from home. I will not disgust my fair readers with a minute description of all his absurdities; one example, or so, shall suffice.
One fine evening, in the month of June, after spending the day with Laconi's sister, the young lady prepared to return alone to her father's chateau, at the distance of about a mile; and on this occasion, John determined to give a specimen of his gallantry in escorting the fair one home, resolving likewise to declare his passion in plain terms. Accordingly, having put on his hat and cloak, and stationed himself at the gate, he appeared as formidable as any doughty knight in the days of romance, ready to offer his protection to some forlorn damsel. No sooner, however, did the lady appear, than he became so confused as not to be able to answer her greeting. She was also confused for a moment at his manner, but immediately began her walk with much disgust and nonchalance; while he, like a silly valet de chambre, followed behind, leaving his dear mistress' questions unanswered, and gazing with a vacant stare at the moon. At length, to the lady's infinite satisfaction, the white gate of her father's chateau appeared in view, and John, finding they had nearly reached their destination, articulated, in a half suffocated tone, "I—I beg pardon, ma—madam, I have been considering—." "You have, indeed, Mr. John," quickly returned the smiling damsel, "but I think you might have chosen another opportunity, more seasonable than the present, to consider the moon!" To this retort, he said nothing, but looked extremely foolish and ridiculous. However, when they had actually gained the gate of the chateau, he boldly resolved to kiss his fair enslaver; but, after a moment, his resolution failed, and his legs tottered under him. Without hearing the lady's sweet "good night," as she tripped gaily from him, he exclaimed, "Madam, can you love me?" This appeal was not heard by the flying maiden, who hastily ascended the steps to her father's door, which opened and concealed her lovely form from the sight of the amazed lover, who had not courage sufficient to follow her.
Whether our idiot did not comprehend the behaviour of his mistress, I cannot say; certain it is, he went home well contented with the success he imagined he had gained towards winning her heart. But, in reality, she was disgusted with his foolery, and ceased paying any more visits to her female friend, in order to avoid the sight of so strange a lover.
John, however, was a kind of philosopher, and calmly sustained his love misfortunes. A particular occurrence happened which will somewhat account for this passive resignation. One evening, during a solitary walk, he saw his identical mistress in company with a young French officer. He walked sullenly home, wrote some verses on the inconstancy of women, drew from recollection a portrait of the cruel fair, which he hung in his study, and banished his former pretences. Report says, that he lived the remainder of his days in a state of celibacy. G.W.N.
* * * * *
SIR HUMPHRY DAVY.
Sincerely do we regret to announce the death of this great and good man—the most celebrated philosopher of our times, who has done more for the happiness of his species than any associated Academy in Europe. He died at Geneva, May 29, aged 51. We shall endeavour to do justice to his talents and amiable character, in a Memoir to be published at the close of this volume of THE MIRROR—prefixed to which will be a fine Portrait of the illustrious deceased.
* * * * *
SPIRIT OF DISCOVERY.
* * * * *
DISCOVERY OF THE FATE OF LA PEROUSE.
Abridged from the United Service Journal.
The fate of this celebrated French navigator, which for upwards of forty years has remained enveloped in mystery, has at length been satisfactorily ascertained, a result that is owing to the active and spirited exertions of our gallant and enterprising countryman Captain Dillon.
It is a remarkable circumstance, that the discovery of the relics of La Perouse, arose out of the massacre of the ship Hunter's crew, at the Feejee Islands, in 1813.
In this unfortunate affair, fourteen persons in all, from the ship Hunter, lost their lives. The two that escaped with Mr. Dillon, were William Wilson and Martin Buchart, a Prussian, who resided for two years at Bough. The latter entreated captain Robson to give him and his Bough wife a passage to the first land at which he might arrive, as they would certainly be sacrificed if they returned to the island. Having made Tucopia on the 20th of September, Buchart, his wife, and a Lascar, were put on shore, and the Hunter proceeded on her voyage to Canton.
On the 13th of May, 1826, while in command of the St. Patrick, bound from Valparaiso to Pondicherry, captain Dillon came in sight of the island of Tucopia. Prompted by curiosity, as well as regard for old companions in danger, he lay to, anxious to ascertain whether the persons left there in 1813, were still alive. A canoe, in which was the Lascar, soon afterwards put off from land and came alongside. This was immediately succeeded by another canoe, containing Martin Buchart, the Prussian. They were both in excellent health, and exceedingly rejoiced to see him. They informed him, that the natives had treated them very kindly; and that no ship had touched at the island from the time they were first landed, until about a year previous to his arrival, when an English whaler visited them, and was soon after followed by a second. The Lascar had an old silver sword-guard, which he bartered for a few fishing-hooks. Captain Dillon inquired where he had obtained it; the Prussian informed him, that on his arrival at the island, he saw it in the possession of the natives, also several chainplates belonging to a ship, a number of iron bolts, five axes, the handle of a silver fork, a few knives, tea-cups, glass beads and bottles, one silver spoon with a crest and a cipher, a sword, &c. As soon as he became sufficiently acquainted with the language, he asked the natives how they obtained those articles, as they said that the Hunter was the first ship with which they had ever held communication. They replied, that about two days' sail in their canoes to leeward, there was a large group of islands, known generally by the name of Manicolo, to which they were in the habit of making frequent voyages, and that they had procured these articles from the inhabitants, who possessed many more of a similar description.
Buchart proceeded to state, that the Tucopians asserted that a great number of articles were on the Manicolo Islands in a state of preservation, and such articles were evidently obtained from the wreck of a vessel. About seven months before captain Dillon touched at Tucopia, a canoe had returned from Manicolo, and brought away two large chain plates, and an iron bolt, about four feet in length. He spoke with some of the crew of the canoe which had last made the voyage to Manicolo. They told him that there was abundance of iron materials still remaining on the island. Those which Martin Buchart saw were much oxydized and worn. The only silver spoon brought to Tucopia, as far as captain Dillon could learn, was beaten out into a wire by Buchart, for the purpose of making rings and other ornaments for the female islanders. Upon examining the sword-guard minutely, captain Dillon discovered, or thought he discovered, the initials of Perouse stamped upon it, which circumstance prompted him to be more eager in his inquiries.
The Prussian said he had himself never made a trip to Manicolo with the Tucopians, but the Lascar had gone once or twice. He positively affirmed, that he had seen and conversed at Paiow, a native town, with the Europeans who spoke the language of the islanders. They were old men, he said, who told him that they had been wrecked several years ago in one of the ships, the remnants of which they pointed out to him. They informed him also that no vessel had touched at the islands since they had been there; that most of their comrades were dead, but they had been so scattered among the various islands, that they could not tell precisely how many of them were still living.
On hearing so many circumstances all tending to confirm his suspicions, from the moment he saw the silver sword-guard with the cipher, captain Dillon determined to proceed as quickly as possible to the Manicolo Islands, examine the wrecks himself, and, if practicable, bring off the two men with whom the Lascar had spoken, and whom, he said, were Frenchmen. For this purpose he begged the latter to accompany him, but as he was married and comfortably settled on the island, neither promises nor threats were of any avail, although captain Dillon offered to bring him back to Tucopia. Martin Buchart, on the contrary, was tired of the savage life he had led for the last fourteen years, and gladly acceded to the wishes of captain Dillon, who after prevailing with a Tucopian also to come on board, sailed for the island. Unfortunately, as the ship neared the land, it fell a perfect calm, and continued so for seven days. At this time the stock of dry provisions was nearly exhausted, and there was no animal food to be procured on Tucopia. The crew lived principally on New Zealand potatoes and bananas. The vessel became every day more leaky from a long continuance at sea; and a person on board, who was interested in the cargo, had, during captain Dillon's stay in the islands, shown himself particularly discontented, and had frequently and warmly remonstrated at what he considered an unnecessary and useless delay; for these reasons, therefore, captain Dillon determined, though with the greatest reluctance, to take advantage of a breeze which sprang up, continued his voyage, and arrived at Bengal with much difficulty, his ship being in a very leaky condition.
Unwilling to abandon his favourite object, captain Dillon now applied to the Asiatic Society, and to the Bengal Government; and in consequence of his representations, his suggestions were at length carried into effect. He was appointed to the command of one of the Company's cruisers, of sixteen guns and eighty-five men, called the Research; and on the 27th of January, 1827, he sailed from Bengal, visited Van Dieman's Land, New South Wales, New Zealand, the Friendly Islands, Ro-Thoma, or Granville Island of the Pandora, Tucopia, and arrived at Manicolo on the 27th of September. This island (Manicolo, or Vanicolo) is not the Mallicolo of captain Cook, being situated only 118 miles to the leeward of Tucopia, in latitude 11 deg. 47 min., whilst the former lies in south latitude 16 deg. 15 min.
Captain Dillon personally visited the reefs on which the French ships are ascertained to have struck and gone to pieces, according to the accounts of the natives, from which the following particulars have been obtained of that disastrous event:—"Many years ago two large ships arrived at the islands; one anchored off the island of Whanoo, and the other off that of Paiow, a little distance from each other. Soon after, and before they had any communication with the natives, a heavy gale arose, and both vessels were driven ashore. The ship off Whanoo grounded upon the rocks. The natives came in crowds to the sea-shore, armed with clubs, spears, bows and arrows, and discharged some arrows into the vessel; the crew in return fired, and killed several of the islanders. The vessel continued to strike violently against the rocks, and soon went to pieces. Some of the crew took to their boats, but were driven on shore, and murdered by the natives; others threw themselves into the sea, and such as reached the land, shared the fate of their unfortunate companions, so that not a single soul belonging to this vessel escaped alive."
"The ship which grounded on Paiow, was driven on a sandy beach, and the natives came down and also discharged their arrows into her; but the crew prudently did not resent the aggression, but held up axes, beads, and toys, as peace-offerings, upon which the assailants desisted from farther hostilities. As soon as the wind had moderated, an aged chief, in a canoe, put off to the ship. He was received with caresses, accepted the presents offered to him: and upon going ashore, pacified the islanders by assurances that the ship's crew were peaceably inclined towards them. Upon this, several natives went on board, and were all presented with toys. In return, they supplied the crew with yams, fowls, bananas, cocoa-nuts, hogs, &c. and confidence was established between them. The ship was now abandoned, and the crew went on shore, bringing with them part of her stores. Here they remained for some time, and built a small vessel with the materials from the wreck. When it was ready to put to sea, as many as could conveniently, embarked in her, being plentifully supplied with fresh provisions by the islanders. The commander promised those who were left behind, to return immediately with presents for the natives, and to bring them off; but, as the little vessel was never afterwards heard of, the men sought the protection of the neighbouring chiefs, with whom they lived. Several muskets and some gunpowder had been left them by their comrades, and by means of these, they proved of great service to their friends, in encounters with the neighbouring islanders."
The natives of Manicolo are not cannibals; but when an enemy falls into their power he is immediately killed, and his body is deposited in sea-water, and kept there until the bones become perfectly bare. The skeleton is then taken up, the bones of the extremities scraped and cut into various forms, to point arrows and spears. Their arms consist of heavy clubs, spears, and bows and arrows. They poison the latter with a kind of reddish gum, extracted from a species of tree peculiar to the island. When any one is struck by a poisoned arrow in any of the limbs, the part is quickly cut out, and his life is sometimes saved; but if the wound happens to be in the body, where it cannot be easily excised, he resigns himself quietly to death without a murmur, though he frequently lingers for four or five days in excruciating agony.
The Manicolans differ from almost all the other islanders in the South Sea; they are as black as negroes, have short woolly hair, and resemble them in their features. Their religion also is different; in every village in the island there is a house dedicated to the Deity. At the principal chapel, the skulls of all the people who were killed, belonging to the ship that grounded at Whanoo, are still preserved. The natives of Tucopia, unaccustomed to the sight of human bones, avoid, as much as possible, when they visit the island, approaching the sacred house where the skulls are deposited.
* * * * *
THE SELECTOR; AND LITERARY NOTICES OF NEW WORKS.
* * * * *
The new edition, (of which Waverley has just appeared,) is, without exception, the handsomest book of the day, in editorship, literary and graphic embellishment or typography. Perhaps little persuasion was necessary for a second reading of so delightful a novel as Waverley, but the author's piquant notes to the present edition would alike tempt the matter-of-fact man, and the inveterate novel reader to "begin again." The prefatory anecdotes to Waverley are extremely interesting—and the little autobiographic sketches are so many leaves from the life of the ingenious author. We hope to introduce a few of the notes of the Series; but content ourselves for the present with the following: being the original of the legend of Mrs. Grizel Oldbuck:
Mr. R——d of Bowland, a gentleman of landed property in the vale of Gala, was prosecuted for a very considerable sum, the accumulated arrears of teind (or tithe) for which he was said to be indebted to a noble family, the titulars (lay impropriators of the tithes.) Mr. R——d was strongly impressed with the belief that his father had, by a form of process peculiar to the law of Scotland, purchased these lands from the titular, and therefore that the present prosecution was groundless. But after an industrious search among his father's papers, an investigation of the public records, and a careful inquiry among all persons who had transacted law business for his father, no evidence could be recovered to support his defence. The period was now near at hand when he conceived the loss of his lawsuit to be inevitable, and he had formed his determination to ride to Edinburgh next day, and make the best bargain he could in the way of compromise. He went to bed with this resolution, and with all the circumstances of the case floating upon his mind, had a dream to the following purpose. His father, who had been many years dead, appeared to him, he thought, and asked him why he was disturbed in his mind. In dreams men are not surprised at such apparitions. Mr. R——d thought that he had informed his father of the cause of his distress, adding that the payment of a considerable sum of money was the more unpleasant to him, because he had a strong consciousness that it was not due, though he was unable to recover any evidence in support of his belief. "You are right, my son," replied the paternal shade; "I did acquire right to these teinds, for payment of which you are now prosecuted. The papers relating to the transaction are in the hands of Mr. ——, a writer (or attorney,) who is now retired from professional business, and resides at Inveresk, near Edinburgh. He was a person whom I employed on that occasion for a particular reason, but who never on any other occasion transacted business on my account. It is very possible," pursued the vision, "that Mr. —— may have forgotten a matter which is now of a very old date; but you may call it to his recollection by this token, that when I came to pay his account, there was difficulty in getting change for a Portugal piece of gold, and that we were forced to drink out the balance at a tavern." Mr. R——d awaked in the morning with all the words of the vision imprinted on his mind, and thought it worth while to ride across the country to Inveresk, instead of going straight to Edinburgh. When he came there, he waited on the gentleman mentioned in the dream, a very old man; without saying any thing of the vision, he inquired whether he remembered having conducted such a matter for his deceased father. The old gentleman could not at first bring the circumstance to his recollection, but on mention of the Portugal piece of gold, the whole returned upon his memory; he made an immediate search for the papers, and recovered them; so that Mr. R——d carried to Edinburgh the documents necessary to gain the cause which he was on the verge of losing. The author has often heard this story told by persons who had the best access to know the facts, who were not likely themselves to be deceived, and were certainly incapable of deception. He cannot therefore refuse to give it credit, however extraordinary the circumstances may appear. The circumstantial character of the information given in the dream, takes it out of the general class of impressions of the kind which are occasioned by the fortuitous coincidence of actual events with our sleeping thoughts. On the other hand, few would suppose that the laws of nature were suspended, and a special communication from the dead to the living permitted, for the purpose of saving Mr. R——d a certain number of hundred pounds. The author's theory is, that the dream was only the recapitulation of information which Mr. R——d had really received from his father while in life, but which at first he merely recalled as a general impression that the claim was settled. It is not uncommon for persons to recover, during sleep, the thread of ideas which they have lost during their waking hours. It may be added, that this remarkable circumstance was attended with bad consequences to Mr. R——d, whose health and spirits were afterwards impaired by the attention which he thought himself obliged to pay to the visions of the night.—Notes to the Antiquary.
* * * * *
ROAD-BOOK OF FRANCE.
People who are bound for the Continent should provide themselves with the new edition of Mr. Leigh's descriptive Road Book of France—even before they get their passports at the French ambassador's, or if they only intend to visit Calais, Boulogne, or Dieppe—and the chances are that they will be induced to travel beyond these places, which, in truth, give an Englishman no more idea of France than Dovor would afford a foreigner of England. A few years since, comparatively speaking, people only knew their way from York to London, much less the objects on the road—now, by the economy of guide books they may know every good inn in France, and carry the ichnography of the kingdom in their coat pocket. In the present edition of the "Road Book of France," attention has been paid to the description of the delightful South, especially of Bordeaux, the mineral springs and bathing-places of the Pyrenees, the navigation of the Rhone from Lyons to Avignon, as well as of Marseilles, Toulouse, &c., and some of the principal towns have been illustrated with plans. Dipping into the Itinerary from Calais to Paris, we were reminded of a curious coincidence: Julius Caesar is supposed to have sailed from Boulogne on his expedition against the Britons; and in later times, Napoleon Bonaparte there prepared to carry into execution the invasion of Great Britain. But how different have been the results!
* * * * *
JOURNEY FROM THE BANK TO BARNES.
A lively volume with many shreds of wit and humour, and occasional patches of "righte merrie conceite," has just fallen into our hands, and has afforded us some very pleasant reading. There is fun in the very title, "Personal Narrative of a Journey overland from the Bank to Barnes, &c. with some account of the Regions east of Kensington. By an Inside Passenger. With a Model for a Magazine, being the product of the Author's sojourn at the village of Barnes, during five rainy days." The author is a shrewd, clever fellow, who loves a little raillery on the follies of the day, and joins with our friend, Popanilla in deploring the present artificial state of society; therefore, suppose we give a few flying extracts from his tour, premising that the good people of the little villages through which he passed, are not aware of what good things he has said of them; for his little book would suit every parlour window from Hyde Park Corner to Barnes.
The ancient and nearly deserted barony of Brentford still contains, in its monuments and antiquities, vestiges of former splendour. The horse-trough opposite the "Bell and Feathers" is to the antiquarian a most particularly interesting morceau; the verdure of age has defaced it in part, but enough still remains to prove that our ancestors had made no mean proficiency in the rustic style of architecture. The reservoir, which contains the sparkling element so grateful to that noble animal, is modelled from the celebrated sarcophagus in the British Museum; and the posts which support it are evidently Doric. On the outside of it are several nearly obliterated specimens of carving, as well as drawings in chalk.
Nearly parallel with the horse-trough, as you go down "Maud's Rents," is that useful, and indeed indispensible, triumph of hydraulics, the pump. The taste and science displayed in its execution do credit to the engineer; and the soil in which it is imbedded, being argillaceous, partially encrusted with strontian, reflects equal honour on his geological attainments. This pump, which you approach by three steps, is perpendicular, and of an elegant appearance; and forms the chief ornament of the "Rents." The handle is of wrought iron, highly polished; the snout copper, studded with hobnails. It is neatly coated with white paint, and bears on its front the following inscription, which I have copied for the gratification of the curious in antiquarian research.
This Pump was erected, and Well sunk, A.D. 1824, from the proceeds of a Charity Sermon, preached in the Parish Church of this Parish, by his Grace the Bishop of Bath and Wells. * * * Peter Broddupp, Overseer, Slingsby Stygle, and John Moles, Churchwardens. * * * N.B. Whoever washes Fish at this Pump will be prosecuted.
I cannot take leave of this interesting town without noticing the church. It is surmounted by a neat steeple, cut in wood, in the pointed style of architecture; on the top of which is a goodly key, to indicate the wind,—which, the inhabitants remark, has blown due south for the last ten years. The porch, which is a curious specimen of the Maeso-Gothic, is rather hurt by the simplicity of the scrapers, which, being merely segments of iron hoops, do not harmonize with the otherwise elaborate approach.
The demesne of Tossbury (by Camden written Tossbery) was anciently a grant in feoffment to the College of Physicians by King John. On the spot now occupied by the burial grounds formerly stood their college; and here they flourished until the population, originally abundant, diminished so alarmingly, as to induce them to remove to Warwick Lane.
Mr. P. (the landlord of the inn,) ever ready to shew his guests what at that village are esteemed great curiosities, was indefatigable in explaining the various instances in which he has made science subservient to utility. The staircase, as far as the great dining-room, he has, at considerable expense, macadamized; which, provided it is kept well watered, and scrapers attached to the chamber-doors, our worthy host assured us, was infinitely preferable to marble. He begged us to be under no apprehension as to the dampness of our beds, as they were warmed by a steam-apparatus of his own contrivance. He always keeps a Leyden jar, about the size of a boiler, ready charged, wherewith he kills geese, turkeys, and even lamb; which, he affirms, is a much less shocking method of neutralizing the vital spark than the vulgar butchery of twisting and sticking. He has lost three of his fingers, through incautiously handling a self-acting rat-trap of his own construction; and had his left eye blown out, while investigating the exact interval between combustion and explosion.
* * * * *
I found a difference of about half an hour between the dial of Putney Church and my watch, which a young gentleman "intended for one of the universities" accounted for from difference of latitude. He likewise explained a phenomenon, which rather startled us, near Kew. We saw about half-a-dozen cows galloping furiously towards the river's brink; flirting their tails, and, indeed, conducting themselves with a vivacity perfectly inconsistent with the acknowledged sobriety of that useful animal. He calmed our apprehensions, by informing us they were intended for the East Indies. Every other day they are fed with best rock-salt, instead of green-meat; which, by chemical agency, renders them fat and fit to be killed, and sent on ship-board at a moment's notice; the trouble and delay of salting down being totally unnecessary. These cows, he assured us, had just finished their thirst-inducing meal.
Near Hill's boat-shed is the patent Philanthropical Hay-tosser, a stupendous machine, invented expressly to prevent the degradation and slavery to which thousands of our fellow men are subjected during hay-harvest. It must gratify every friend to the amelioration of his species to learn, that the humane intention of the inventer is likely to be realized, as there are already three thousand Irishmen out of employ.
Here we must halt with our tourist. The result of his lucubrations at Barnes—a Model for a Magazine will be found very serviceable to all prospectus writers, and furnish skeleton articles for a whole volume. We have been amused with the pleasantries of the author, and in return we thank him, and recommend his little book to our readers.
* * * * *
SPIRIT OF THE PUBLIC JOURNALS
* * * * *
In a neat little cottage, some five miles from town, Lived a pretty young maiden, by name Daphne Brown, Like a butterfly, pretty and airy: In a village hard by lived a medical prig, With a rubicund nose, and a full-bottomed wig, Apollo, the apothecary.
He, being crop sick of his bachelor life, Resolved, in his old days, to look for a wife— (Nota bene—Thank Heaven, I'm not married): He envied his neighbours their curly-poled brats, (All swarming, as if in a village of Pats,) And sighed that so long he had tarried.
Having heard of fair Daphne, the village coquette, As women to splendour were never blind yet, He resolved with his grandeur to strike her; So he bought a new buggy, where, girt in a wreath, Were his arms, pills, and pestle—this motto beneath— "Ego opifer per orbem dicor."
To the village he drove, sought young Daphne's old sire, Counted gold by rouleaus, and bank notes by the quire, And promised the old buck a share in't, If his daughter he'd give—for the amorous fool Thought of young ladies' hearts and affections the rule Apparently rests with a parent.
Alas! his old mouth may long water in vain, Who tries by this method a mistress to gain— A miss is the sure termination: For a maiden's delight is to plague the old boy, And to think sixty-five not the period for joy; Alas! all the sex are vexation.
Daphne Brown had two eyes with the tenderest glances! Her brain had been tickled by reading romances, And those compounds of nonsense called novels, Where Augustus and Ellen, or fair Isabel, With Romeo, in sweet little cottages dwell: Sed meo periclo, read hovels.
She had toiled through Clarissa; Camilla could quote; Knew the raptures of Werter and Charlotte by rote; Thought Smith and Sir Walter ecstatic; And as for the novels of Miss Lefanu, She dog's-eared them till the whole twenty looked blue; And studied 'The Monk' in the attic.
When her sire introduced our Apollo, he found The maiden in torrents of sympathy drowned— "Floods of tears" is too trite and too common: Her eyes were quite swelled—her lips pouting and pale; For she just had been reading that heartbreaking tale, "Annabelle, or the Sufferings of Woman."
Apollo, I'll swear, had more courage than I, To accost a young maid with a drop in her eye; I'd as soon catch a snake or a viper: She, while wiping her tears, gives Apollo some wipes; And when a young lady has set up her pipes, Her lover will soon pay the piper.
Papa locked her up—but the very next night, With a cornet of horse, the young lady took flight; To Apollo she left this apology— "That, were she to spend with an old man her life, She would gain, by the penance she'd bear as a wife, A place in the next martyrology."
Apollo gave chase, but was destined to fail; The female had safely been lodged in the mail, Now flying full speed to the borders; So the doctor, compelled his sad fate to endure, Came back to his shop, commissioned to cure All disorders but Cupid's disorders.
* * * * *
The origin of this princely establishment may be new to our readers:—One of the owners of the castle, John Forster, member for Northumberland, having joined in the rebellion, and being general of the English part of the rebel army, of course his estates, then valued at 1,314 l. per annum, were forfeited; Crewe, bishop of Durham, purchased them from the government commissioners, and settled the whole, by his will, on charitable uses. Under a clause which left the residue of the rents to such charitable uses as his trustees might appoint, the "princely establishment of Bamborough" has arisen—where
"Charity hath fixed her chosen seat; And Pity, at the dark and stormy hour Of midnight, when the moon is hid on high, Keeps her love watch upon the topmost tower, And turns her ear to each expiring cry, Blest if her aid some fainting wretch might save, And snatch him, cold and speechless, from the grave."
The charitable intentions of a testator have never, in any instance, been better fulfilled than this; the residuary rents, owing to the great increase of rental in the Forster estates, became considerably the most important part of the bequest; and the trustees, who are restricted to five in number, all clergymen, and of whom the rector of Lincoln College is always one, being unfettered by any positive regulations, have so discharged their trust as to render Bamborough Castle the most extensively useful, as well as the most munificent, of all our eleemosynary institutions. There are two free-schools there, both on the Madras system, one for boys, the other for girls; and thirty of the poorest girls are clothed, lodged, and boarded, till, at the age of sixteen, they are put out to service, with a good stock of clothing, and a present of 2l. 12s. 6d. each; and at the end of the first year, if the girl has behaved well, another guinea is given her, with a Bible, a Prayer-book, the Whole Duty of Man, and Secker's Lectures on the Catechism. There is a library in the castle, to which Dr. Sharp, one of the trustees, bequeathed, in 1792, the whole of his own collection, valued at more than 800l.; the books are lent gratuitously to any householder, of good report, residing within twenty miles of Bamborough, and to any clergyman, Roman Catholic priest, or dissenting minister within the said distance. There is an infirmary also in the castle, of which the average annual number of in-patients is about thirty-five—of out-patients above one thousand. There is an ample granary, from whence, in time of scarcity, the poor are supplied on low terms. Twice a week the poor are supplied with meal, at reduced prices, and with groceries at prime cost; and the average number of persons who partake this benefit is about one thousand three hundred in ordinary times, in years of scarcity very many more. To sailors on that perilous coast Bamborough Castle is what the Convent of St. Bernard is to travellers in the Alps. Thirty beds are kept for shipwrecked sailors; a patrol for above eight miles (being the length of the manor) is kept along the coast every stormy night; signals are made; a life-boat is in readiness at Holy Island, and apparatus of every kind is ready for assisting seamen in distress;—wrecked goods are secured and stored, the survivors are relieved, the bodies that are cast on shore are decently interred.
* * * * *
On the day of the unfortunate destruction of the Oxford Street Diorama and Bazaar, by fire, two new views were opened at the Diorama in the Regent's Park. These are the Interior of St. Peter's at Rome, and the Village of Thiers.
We have so often spoken in terms of the highest commendation of the Regent's Park Diorama, that we hardly know in what set of words to point out the beauties of these new views, the merits of which must not alter our meed of praise, however the subjects may its details. The Interior of St. Peter's is by M. Bouton. The point of view is at the east entry, opposite to the choir; the reader, perhaps, not being aware that the choir in this cathedral is situated differently from all others, being at the west end. So beautiful are the proportions of the cathedral itself, that its vastness does not strike at first sight, and this effect is admirably preserved in the Diorama. We think we could point out a few inaccuracies in the drawing; but the projections, capitals of the columns, and some of the medallion portraits which ornament them, are so well painted, that we can scarcely believe ourselves looking on a flat surface. Again, the emmet-like figures of the distant congregation are admirable illustrations of the vastness of the building; and above all, the flood of light shed from the lantern of the dome is a perfect triumph of art.
The other view is the French Village of Thiers in the department of the Puy de Doue, on the bank of the little River Durolle, which is actually made to flow, or rather trickle over large stones; whilst smoke ascends from the chimney of an adjoining cottage. As a romantic picture of still life, its merits can scarcely be too highly spoken of, and when we say it is quite equal to Unterseen, by the same artist, and engraved in our last volume, we hope our readers will not be long ere they judge for themselves. We could have lingered for an hour in the contemplation of this peaceful picture, with the devotional interior of St. Peter's—and in contrasting them with the turmoil of the Great Town out of which we had just stepped to view this little Creation of art.
* * * * *
A snapper up of unconsidered trifles. SHAKSPEARE.
* * * * *
Written impromptu, by Sir Lumley Skeffington, Bart. in the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane, at the Benefit of Miss Foote, on Wednesday, May 10, 1826, the last night of her engagement.
Maria departs!—'tis a sentence of dread, For the Graces turn pale, and the Fates droop their head! In mercy to breasts that tumultuously burn, Dwell no more on departure—but speak of return. Since she goes, when the buds are just ready to burst, In expanding its leaves, let the Willow be first. We here shall no longer find beauties in May; It cannot be Spring, when Maria's away: If vernal at all, 'tis an April appears, For the Blossom flies off, in the midst of our tears.
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THE KING'S SPEECH IN 993.
Sharon Turner, in his "History of the Anglo-Saxons," vol. iv. says, "The King presided at the witena-gemots, and sometimes, perhaps, always addressed them." In 993, we have this account of a royal speech. The King says, in a charter which recites what had passed at one of their meetings, "I benignantly addressed to them salutary and pacific words. I admonished all—that those things which were worthy of the Creator, and serviceable to the health of my soul, or to my royal dignity, and which should prevail as proper for the English people, they might, with the Lord's assistance, discuss in common." P.T.W.
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A very common excuse set up by economists for being too late for dinner is, "There was not a coach to be found."—Uncalculating and improvident selfish idiot, not to send for one till the very last moment; you save nothing by it, and spoil your friend's dinner, in order to save yourself sixpence. Suppose you have a mile and a half to go, the fare is one shilling and sixpence; you will be about eighteen minutes going that distance, and for that sum you may detain the coach forty-four minutes. Always call a coach a quarter of an hour before you want it—i.e. if you do not wish to be too late.
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