THE MIRROR OF LITERATURE, AMUSEMENT, AND INSTRUCTION
VOL. 17, NO. 488.] SATURDAY, MAY 7, 1831. [PRICE 2d.
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ST. GEORGE'S CHAPEL, WINDSOR.
This venerable structure, as we explained in No. 486 of The Mirror, is situated in the lower ward or court of Windsor Castle. It stands in the centre, and in a manner, divides the court into two parts. On the north or inner side are the houses and apartments of the Dean and Canons of St. George's Chapel, with those of the minor canons, clerks, and other officers; and on the south and west sides of the outer part are the houses of the Poor Knights of Windsor.
The Engraving represents the south front of the Chapel as it presents itself to the passenger through Henry the Eighth's Gateway, the principal entrance to the Lower Ward. The entrance to the Chapel, as shown in the Engraving, is that generally used, and was formed by command of George the Fourth; through which his Majesty's remains were borne, according to a wish expressed some time previous to his death.
The exterior of the Chapel requires but few descriptive details. The interior will be found in our last volume.
It is a beautiful structure, in the purest style of the Pointed architecture, and was founded by Edward the Third, in 1377, for the honour of the Order of the Garter. But however noble the first design, it was improved by Edward the Fourth and Henry the Seventh, in whose reign the famous Sir Reg. Bray, K.G., assisted in ornamenting the chapel and completing the roof. The architecture of the inside has ever been esteemed for its great beauty; and, in particular, the stone vaulting is reckoned an excellent piece of workmanship. It is an ellipsis, supported by lofty pillars, whose ribs and groins sustain the whole roof, every part of which has some different device well finished, as the arms of several of our kings, great families, &c. On each side of the choir are the stalls of the Sovereign and Knights of the Garter, with the helmet, mantling, crest, and sword of each knight, set up over his stall, on a canopy of ancient carving curiously wrought. Over the canopy is affixed the banner of each knight blazoned on silk, and on the backs of the stalls are the titles of the knights, with their arms neatly engraved and emblazoned on copper.
There are several small chapels in this edifice, in which are the monuments of many illustrious persons; particularly of Edward, Earl of Lincoln, a renowned naval warrior; George Manners, Lord Roos, and Anne, his consort, niece of Edward the Fourth; Anne, Duchess of Exeter, mother of that lady, and sister to the king; Sir Reginald Bray, before mentioned; and Charles Brandon, Duke of Suffolk, who married the sister of King Henry the Eighth.
At the east end of St. George's Chapel is a freestone edifice, built by Henry the Seventh, as a burial-place for himself and his successors; but afterwards altering his purpose, he began the more noble structure at Westminster; and this remained neglected until Cardinal Wolsey obtained a grant of it from Henry the Eighth, and, with a profusion of expense, began here a sumptuous monument for himself, whence this building obtained the name of Wolsey's Tomb House. This monument was so magnificently built, that it exceeded that of Henry the Seventh, in Westminster Abbey; and at the time of the cardinal's disgrace, the tomb was so far executed, that Benedetto, a statuary of Florence, received 4,250 ducats for what he had already done; and 380l. 18s. had been paid for gilding only half of this monument. The cardinal dying soon after his disgrace, was buried in the cathedral at York, and the monument remained unfinished. In 1646, the statues and figures of gilt copper, of exquisite workmanship, were sold. James the Second converted this building into a Popish chapel, and mass was publicly performed here. The ceiling was painted by Verrio, and the walls were finely ornamented and painted; but the whole having been neglected since the reign of James the Second, it fell into a complete state of decay, from which, however, it was some years ago retrieved by George the Third, who had it magnificently completed (under the direction of the late James Wyatt, Esq.) in accordance with the original style, and a mausoleum constructed within, as a burial-place for the royal family.
Windsor Castle, as the reader may recollect, was magnificently re-built by William of Wykeham, who was Clerk of the Works to Edward the Third, in 1356. Little now remains of Wykeham's workmanship, save the round tower, and this has just been raised considerably. Wykeham had power to press all sorts of artificers, and to provide stone, timber, and all necessary materials for conveyance and erection. Indeed, Edward caused workmen to be impressed out of London and several counties, to the number of five or six hundred, by writs directed to the various sheriff's, who were commanded to take security of the masons and joiners, that they should not leave Windsor without permission of the architect. What a contrast are these strong measures with the scrutinized votes of money recently made for the renovation of the Castle!
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ORIGIN OF THE WORD ALBION.
(To the Editor.)
To the elucidation of the word Britannia, contained in your 486th number, I beg to add the opinion of the same author on the subject of Albion:—
"Albion (the most ancient name of this Isle) containeth Englande and Scotlande: of the beginning (origin) of which name haue been sundrie opinios (opinions): One late feigned by him, which first prynted the Englishe Chronicle, wherein is neither similitude of trouth, reasone, nor honestie: I mean the fable of the fiftie doughters of Dioclesian, kyng of Syria, where neuer any other historic maketh mencion of a kyng of Syria, so named: Also that name is Greke, and no part of the language of Syria. Moreouer the coming of theim from Syria in a shippe or boate without any marynours (mariners) thorowe (through) the sea called Mediterraneum, into the occean, and so finally to finde this He, and to inhabit it, * * * * is both impossible, and much reproche to this noble Realme, to ascribe hir first name and habitation, to such inuention. Another opinion is (which hath a more honeste similitude) that it was named Albion, ab albis rupibus, of white rockes, because that unto them, that come by sea, the bankes and rockes of this He doe appeare whyte. Of this opinion I moste mervayle (marvel), because it is written of great learned men, First, Albion is no latin worde, nor hath the analogie, that is to saie, proportion or similitude of latine. For who hath founde this syllable on, at the ende of a latin woord. And if it should have baen (been) so called for the whyte colour of the rockes, men would have called called it (I believe this to be a misprint) Alba, or Albus, or Album. In Italy were townes called Alba and in Asia a countrey called Albania, and neither of them took their beginning of whyte rockes, or walles, as ye may read in books of geographic: nor the water of the ryuer called Albis, semeth any whiter than other water. But if where auncient remembraunce of the beginning of thinges lacketh, it may be leeful for men to use their conjectures, than may myne be as well accepted as Plinies (although he incomparably excelled me in wisedome e doctrine) specially if it may appeer, that my coiecture (conjecture) shal approch more neere to the similitude of trouth. Wherfore I will also sett foorth mine opinion onely to the intent to exclude fables, lackyng eyther honestie or reasonable similitudes. Whan the Greekes began first to prosper, and their cities became populous, and wared puissaunt, they which trauailed on the seas, and also the yles in the seas called Hellespontus, AEigeum and Creticu (m), after that thei knewe perfectly the course of sailynge, and had founden thereby profyte, they by little and little attempted to serch and finde out the commodities of outwarde countrees: and like as Spaniardes and Portugalls haue late doone, they experienced to seeke out countries before unknown. And at laste passynge the streictes of Marrocke (Morocco) they entered into the great occean sea, where they fond (found) dyvers and many Iles. Among which they perceiuing this Ile to be not onely the greatest in circuite, but also most plenteouse of every necessary to man, the earth moste apte to bring forth," &c. The learned prelate goes on to enumerate the natural advantages of our country. He continues—"They wanderynge and reioysinge at their good and fortunate arrival, named this yle in Greeke Olbion, which in Englishe signifieth happy."
 Alba, the city of Romulus, the founder of Rome, was called so from a white sow found there by AEneas.—Vide Livy, lib. i
Cum tibi sollicito secreti ad fluminis undam Litoreis ingens inventa sub illicibus sus, Triginta capitum foetus enixa jacebit, Alba, solo recubans, albi circum ubera nati: Is locus urbis erit ei.
Virgil AEneid, lib. iii. v. 390.
When, in the shady shelter of a wood And near the margin of a gentle flood, Thou shalt behold a sow upon the ground, With thirty sucking young encompassed round; The dam and offspring white as falling snow: These on thy city shall their name bestow, &c.
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(For the Mirror.)
"Preach to the storm, or reason with despair, But tell not misery's son that life is fair" H.K. WHITE.
I mark'd his eye—it beam'd with gladness, His ceaseless smile and joyous air, His infant soul had ne'er felt sadness, Nor kenn'd he yet but life was fair. His chubby cheek with genuine mirth Blown out—while all around him smiled, And fairy-land to him seemed earth, I envied him, unwitting child.
I look'd again—his eye was flush'd With passion proud and deep delight, But often o'er his brow there gush'd A blackened cloud which made it night, But still the cloud would wear away, (His youthful cheek was red and rare,) And still his heart beat light and gay, Still did he fancy life was fair.
Again I looked—another change— The darkened eye, the visage wan, Told me that sorrow had been there, Told me that time had made him man. His brow was overcast, and deep Had care, the demon, furrow'd there, I heard him sigh with anguish deep, "Oh! tell me not that life is fair."
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BIRTHPLACE OF LOCKE.
(To the Editor.)
The philosopher was born in the room lighted by the upper window on the right, in your Engraving No. 487. It is a small, plain apartment, having few indications of former respectability.
In the garden of Barley Wood, near Wrington, the residence of the religious and sentimental Hannah More, stands an urn commemorative of Locke, the gift of Mrs. Montague, with the following inscription:
To JOHN LOCKE, Born in this village. This memorial is erected by Mrs. Montague, and presented to HANNAH MORE.
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THE SELECTOR, AND LITERARY NOTICES OF NEW WORKS.
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A FUNERAL AT SEA.
We quote the following "last scene of poor Jack's eventful history" from Capt. Basil Hall's Fragments of Voyages and Travel, a work, observes the Quarterly Review, "sure sooner or later, to be in everybody's hands."
"It need not be mentioned, that the surgeon is in constant attendance upon the dying man, who has generally been removed from his hammock to a cot, which is larger and more commodious, and is placed within a screen on one side of the sick bay, as the hospital of the ship is called. It is usual for the captain to pass through this place, and to speak to the men every morning; and I imagine there is hardly a ship in the service in which wine, fresh meat, and any other supplies recommended by the surgeon, are not sent from the tables of the captain and officers to such of the sick men as require a more generous diet than the ship's stores provided. After the carver in the gun-room has helped his messmates, he generally turns to the surgeon, and says, 'Doctor, what shall I send to the sick?' But, even without this, the steward would certainly be taken to task were he to omit inquiring, as a matter of course, what was wanted in the sick bay. The restoration of the health of the invalids by such supplies is perhaps not more important, however, than the moral influence of the attention on the part of the officers. I would strongly recommend every captain to be seen (no matter for how short a time) by the bed-side of any of his crew whom the surgeon may report as dying. Not occasionally, and in the flourishing style with which we read of great generals visiting hospitals, but uniformly and in the quiet sobriety of real kindness, as well as hearty consideration for the feelings of a man falling at his post in the service of his country. He who is killed in action has a brilliant Gazette to record his exploits, and the whole country may be said to attend his death-bed. But the merit is not less—or may even be much greater—of the soldier or sailor who dies of a fever in a distant land—his story untold, and his sufferings unseen. In warring against climates unsuited to his frame, he may have encountered, in the public service, enemies often more formidable than those who handle pike and gun. There should be nothing left undone, therefore, at such a time, to show not only to the dying man, but to his shipmates and his family at home, that his services are appreciated. I remembered, on one occasion, hearing the captain of a ship say to a poor fellow who was almost gone, that he was glad to see him so cheerful at such a moment; and begged to know if he had anything to say. 'I hope, sir,' said the expiring seaman with a smile, 'I have done my duty to your satisfaction;' 'That you have, my lad,' said his commander, 'and to the satisfaction of your country, too.' 'That is all I wanted to know, sir,' replied the man. These few commonplace words cost the captain not five minutes of his time, but were long recollected with gratitude by the people under his orders, and contributed, along with many other graceful acts of considerate attention, to fix his authority.
"If a sailor who knows he is dying, has a captain who pleases him, he is very likely to send a message by the surgeon to beg a visit—not often to trouble his commander with any commission, but merely to say something at parting. No officer, of course, would ever refuse to grant such an interview, but it appears to me it should always be volunteered; for many men may wish it, whose habitual respect would disincline them to take such a liberty, even at the moment when all distinctions are about to cease.
"Very shortly after poor Jack dies, he is prepared for his deep-sea grave by his messmates, who, with the assistance of the sailmaker, and in the presence of the master-at-arms, sew him up in his hammock, and, having placed a couple of cannon-shot at his feet, they rest the body (which now not a little resembles an Egyptian mummy) on a spare grating. Some portion of the bedding and clothes are always made up in the package—apparently to prevent the form being too much seen. It is then carried aft, and, being placed across the after-hatchway, the union jack is thrown over all. Sometimes it is placed between two of the guns, under the half deck; bat generally, I think, he is laid where I have mentioned, just abaft the mainmast. I should have mentioned before, that as soon as the surgeon's ineffectual professional offices are at an end, he walks to the quarter-deck, and reports to the officer of the watch that one of his patients has just expired. At whatever hour of the day or night this occurs, the captain is immediately made acquainted with the circumstance.
"Next day, generally about eleven o'clock, the bell on which the half-hours are struck, is tolled for the funeral, and all who choose to be present, assemble on the gangways, booms, and round the mainmast, while the forepart of the quarter-deck is occupied by the officers. In some ships—and it ought perhaps to be so in all—it is made imperative on the officers and crew to attend the ceremony. If such attendance be a proper mark of respect to a professional brother—as it surely is—it ought to be enforced, and not left to caprice. There may, indeed, be times of great fatigue, when it would harass men and officers, needlessly, to oblige them to come on deck for every funeral, and upon such occasions the watch on deck may be sufficient. Or, when some dire disease gets into a ship, and is cutting down her crew by its daily and nightly, or it maybe hourly ravages, and when, two or three times in a watch, the ceremony must be repeated, those only, whose turn it is to be on deck, need be assembled. In such fearful times, the funeral is generally made to follow close upon the death.
"While the people are repairing to the quarter-deck, in obedience to the summons of the bell, the grating on which the body is placed, being lifted from the main-deck by the messmates of the man who has died, is made to rest across the lee-gangway. The stanchions for the man-ropes of the side are unshipped, and an opening made at the after-end of the hammock netting, sufficiently large to allow a free passage. The body is still covered by the flag already mentioned, with the feet projecting a little over the gunwale, while the messmates of the deceased arrange themselves on each side. A rope, which is kept out of sight in these arrangements, is then made fast to the grating, for a purpose which will be seen presently. When all is ready, the chaplain, if there be one on board, or, if not, the captain, or any of the officers he may direct to officiate, appears on the quarter-deck and commences the beautiful service, which, though but too familiar to most ears, I have observed, never fails to rivet the attention even of the rudest and least reflecting. Of course, the bell has ceased to toll, and every one stands in silence and uncovered as the prayers are read. Sailors, with all their looseness of habits, are well disposed to be sincerely religious; and when they have fair play given them, they will always, I believe, be found to stand on as good vantage ground, in this respect, as their fellow-countrymen on shore. Be this as it may, there can be no more attentive, or apparently reverent auditory, than assembles on the deck of a ship of war, on the occasion of a shipmate's burial.
"The land service for the burial of the dead contains the following words: 'Forasmuch as it hath pleased Almighty God, of his great mercy, to take unto himself the soul of our dear brother here departed, we therefore commit his body to the ground; earth to earth, ashes to ashes, dust to dust; in sure and certain hope,' &c. Every one I am sure, who has attended the funeral of a friend—and whom will this not include?—must recollect the solemnity of that stage of the ceremony, where, as the above words are pronounced, there are cast into the grave three successive portions of earth, which, falling on the coffin, send up a hollow, mournful sound, resembling no other that I know. In the burial service at sea, the part quoted above is varied in the following very striking and solemn manner:—'Forasmuch,' &c.—'we therefore commit his body to the deep, to be turned into corruption, looking for the resurrection of the body, when the sea shall give up her dead, and the life of the world to come,' &c. At the commencement of this part of the service, one of the seamen stoops down, and disengages the flag from the remains of his late shipmate, while the others, at the words 'we commit his body to the deep,' project the grating right into the sea. The body being loaded with shot at one end, glances off the grating, plunges at once into the ocean, and—
"'In a moment, like a drop of rain, He sinks into its depths with bubbling groan, Without a grave, unknelled, uncoffined, and unknown.'
"This part of the ceremony is rather less impressive than the correspondent part on land; but still there is something solemn, as well as startling, in the sudden splash, followed by the sound of the grating, as it is towed along under the main-chains.
"In a fine day at sea, in smooth water, and when all the ship's company and officers are assembled, the ceremony just described, although a melancholy one, as it must always be, is often so pleasing, all things considered, that it is calculated to leave even cheerful impressions on the mind."
(Even Captain Hall, however, admits that a sea-funeral may sometimes be a scene of unmixed sadness; and he records the following as the most impressive of all the hundreds he has witnessed. It occurred in the Leander, off the coast of North America.)
"There was a poor little middy on board, so delicate and fragile, that the sea was clearly no fit profession for him; but he or his friends thought otherwise; and as he had a spirit for which his frame was no match, he soon gave token of decay. This boy was a great favourite with every body—the sailors smiled whenever he passed, as they would have done to a child—the officers petted him, and coddled him up with all sorts of good things—and his messmates, in a style which did not altogether please him, but which he could not well resist, as it was meant most kindly, nicknamed him Dolly. Poor fellow!—he was long remembered afterwards. I forget what his particular complaint was, but he gradually sunk; and at last went out just as a taper might have done, exposed to such gusts of wind as blew in that tempestuous region. He died in the morning; but it was not until the evening that he was prepared for a seaman's grave.
"I remember, in the course of the day, going to the side of the boy's hammock, and on laying my hand upon his breast, was astonished to find it still warm—so much so, that I almost imagined I could feel the heart beat. This, of course, was a vain fancy; but I was much attached to my little companion, being then not much taller myself—and I was soothed and gratified, in a childish way, by discovering that my friend, though many hours dead, had not yet acquired the usual revolting chillness.
"In after years I have sometimes thought of this incident, when reflecting on the pleasing doctrine of the Spaniards—that as soon as children die, they are translated into angels, without any of those cold obstructions, which, they pretend, intercept and retard the souls of other mortals. The peculiar circumstances connected with the funeral which I am about to describe, and the fanciful superstitions of the sailors upon the occasion, have combined to fix the whole scene in my memory.
"Something occurred during the day to prevent the funeral taking place at the usual hour, and the ceremony was deferred till long after sunset. The evening was extremely dark, and it was blowing a treble-reefed topsail breeze. We had just sent down the top-gallant yards, and made all snug for a boisterous winter's night. As it became necessary to have lights to see what was done, several signal lanterns were placed on the break of the quarter-deck, and others along the hammock railings on the lee-gangway. The whole ship's company and officers were assembled, some on the booms, others in the boats; while the main-rigging was crowded half way up to the cat-harpings. Over-head, the mainsail, illuminated as high as the yard by the lamps, was bulging forwards under the gale, which was rising every minute, and straining so violently at the main-sheet, that there was some doubt whether it might not be necessary to interrupt the funeral in order to take sail off the ship. The lower deck ports lay completely under water, and several times the muzzles of the main-deck guns were plunged into the sea; so that the end of the grating on which the remains of poor Dolly were laid, once or twice nearly touched the tops of the waves, as they foamed and hissed past. The rain fell fast on the bare heads of the crew, dropping also on the officers, during all the ceremony, from the foot of the mainsail, and wetting the leaves of the prayer-book. The wind sighed over us amongst the wet shrouds, with a note so mournful, that there could not have been a more appropriate dirge.
"The ship—pitching violently—strained and creaked from end to end: so that, what with the noise of the sea, the rattling of the ropes, and the whistling of the wind, hardly one word of the service could be distinguished. The men, however, understood, by a motion of the captain's hand, when the time came—and the body of our dear little brother was committed to the deep.
"So violent a squall was sweeping past the ship at this moment, that no sound was heard of the usual splash, which made the sailors allege that their young favourite never touched the water at all, but was at once carried off in the gale to his final resting-place!"
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TRAVELLING NOTES IN SOUTH WALES.
(For the Mirror.)
Either shore Presents its combination to the view Of all that interests, delights, enchants;— Corn-waving fields, and pastures green, and slope, And swell alternate, summits crown'd with leaf, And grave-encircled mansions, verdant capes, The beach, the inn, the farm, the mill, the path, And tinkling rivulets, and waters wide, Spreading in lake-like mirrors to the sun.
Swansea Bay:—Scenery and Antiquities of Gower.
The coast scenery of the western portion of Glamorgan is of singular beauty. We shall ever recall with delight our recollections of Gower, and we believe the future tourist will thank us for the outline of the more prominent beauties in the circle of the district, which we now give. Let us suppose ourselves at Swansea, and start on an excursion to the Mumbles and Caswell Bay. A road has been formed within these few years to the village of Oystermouth, about five miles from Swansea. It is perfectly level, bounded by a tram-road, and runs close to the sea-beach, forming the western side of Swansea Bay. The encroachments of the sea have been very extensive here; at high water shipping now traverse what was fifty years ago, we are told, a marshy flat, bordered by a wood near the present road, the stumps of which yet appear on the sandy beach. We have several times on riding to low water mark (about three quarters of a mile out) been nearly involved in a quick-sand adventure. Landward, the ground is broken and elevated, and thickly studded with gentlemen's seats the whole distance; many of which are embosomed in wood, and have a beautiful effect. Marino, an extensive new mansion in the Elizabethan or old English style of architecture, belonging to Mr. J.H. Vivian, and Woodlands Castle, the seat of General Warde, which is very picturesque, are particularly deserving of attention. After passing the hamlet of Norton, you near Oystermouth Castle, an extensive and splendid Gothic ruin, in fine preservation, which rears its "ivy-mantled" walls, above an eminence adjoining the road. Some suppose it to have been built by Henry de Newburgh, Earl of Warwick, in Henry the First's reign; others ascribe it on better authority to the Lords Braose, of Gower, in the reign of John; it is now the property of the Duke of Beaufort, whose care in its preservation cannot be too much commended. The inspection of this interesting ruin will repay the traveller:
By the grim storm-clouds overcast, Even like a spectre of the past,— Of rapine, feudal strife, and blood, Thou tellest an old, wild, warlike story, When squadrons on thy ramparts stood, With spear and shield in martial glory!
The walls are very lofty and not much injured by time; the plan of the various chambers, extensive vaults and chambers in the inner courtyard, can be perfectly distinguished. The general form of the castle, which must once have been very strong, is nearly a square, with a projecting gatehouse to the S.E. which is almost perfect. The keep on the eastern side commands a lovely view. About half a mile further is the village of Oystermouth, clustering with its whitewashed roofs along the foot and declivity of a high mass of rock, which juts boldly out into the sea for half a mile, forming the south-eastern extremity of Gower, and terminating Swansea Bay. The village is celebrated as a bathing place, and for its extensive fishery for oysters, with which it supplies Bristol, Gloucestershire, North Somerset, &c. This trade gives occupation to a considerable number of fishermen who are the chief inhabitants of the place; but in the spring and summer, Oystermouth, in consequence of the great beauty of the situation, and its extreme salubrity, is completely filled with strangers, and high rates are obtained for lodgings; the accommodations are mostly indifferent, though the place is improving fast. The prospect from the summit of the rocks is truly exhilarating and beautiful. On one side, the spectator beholds just below him, the Atlantic rushing with all its majesty up the Bristol Channel—rising over the mixon sands into a really mountainous swell—while on the other, Swansea Bay, glittering with the white sails and varied combinations of a crowd of shipping, seems spread out like a vast and beautiful lake; its eastern shores bounded in the distance by the mountainous and woody scenery of Britton-Ferry, Aberavon, Margam, gradually diminishing towards Pyle.
To the north, beyond the town of Swansea, an immense cloud of smoke is seen suspended over the Vales of Tawy and Neath—an abomination in the face of heaven. Such is the Welsh Bay of Naples, which presents this remarkable appearance at this spot. The anchorage aside this range of cliffs affords, except in an east wind, a very secure road for shipping; sometimes in strong weather there are two or three hundred sail lying here. At the termination of the peninsula are two rocky islands called the Mumbles, and on the farthest is a large light-house; for the support of which a rate is levied on all the shipping up and down channel. Below the light-house an immense cavern called "Bob's Cove" can be seen at low water. We were told that the village under the shadow of the rocks, loses sight of the sun for three months in winter, but this is not "quite correct." Let us proceed westward. About a mile from Oystermouth is Newton; where there are several lodging-houses. There have been many instances of great longevity at this village, which is perhaps the healthiest spot on the coast. The road to Caswell Bay, which passes through Newton, is almost impassable for horses; a new one however is talked of. The rocky valley leading to Caswell Bay, which abruptly comes in sight between two projecting rocks, is singularly wild and romantic. The bay is absolutely a mine of the picturesque—the Lullworth Cove of Wales. A day may be spent delightfully among its rocks and caverns—taking care to visit them at low water. A few miles westward is Oxwich Bay, the main attraction of the coast, along the rocky summit of which the pedestrian should "wend his way," with the ocean roaring far beneath him. We will, however, return to Swansea, and endeavour briefly to recall our first excursion into Gower.
Let us fancy ourselves therefore, on a bright April morning, riding along with a friend—a stranger like ourselves—on the high road from Swansea into the interior of the peninsula. After cantering over about seven miles of hill and valley and common, we entered a woody defile, and at last opened, to use a nautical phrase, the "Gower inn," (eight miles) which was built, we were told, expressly for the convenience of tourists. After ascending a tremendous rocky hill, for road it cannot be called, about a mile onwards, Oxwich Bay bursts at last in all its beauty upon our sight. In our inquiries during the day, of the few passengers we met, as to the distance of the village of Penrice, the intended limit of our day's excursion, we were forcibly reminded of the "mile and a bittock" of the north. The country is very thinly populated here: at last we came in sight of the grounds of Penrice Castle, the beautiful mansion of Mr. Talbot, the member for the county; the entrance to the park is between two of the towers belonging to the extensive and picturesque remains of the ancient Castle of Penrice, which stands close to the road. Sixteen miles from Swansea, after "curses not loud but deep" upon Welsh roads, we reached the sequestered village of Penrice, which stands on a wooded eminence of no easy access, overlooking the eastern shore of Oxwich Bay.
(To be continued.)
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SPIRIT OF DISCOVERY.
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ARCANA OF SCIENCE FOR 1831.
It has been our invariable practice to notice, by extract only, such works as we are connected with, or to which we have contributed; and in the present case we shall do little more.
Now, the reader need not be here told that the plan of an Annual Register of Inventions and Improvements originated in The Mirror about four years since. Our intention there was to quote an occasional page or two of novelties of popular interest in science and art, and leave more abstruse matters to the journals in which they originally appeared. This plan led us through most of the scientific records of the year, in which we began to perceive that the reduction of all subjects of importance was not compatible within a few pages, and sooner than allow many papers of value to every member of society to be locked under the uninviting denomination of philosophy, we undertook the abridgement and arrangement of such papers, upon the plan of an "Annual Register," intending our volume specially to represent the progress of discovery just as the general "Register" is a contribution to history. The cost of the journals for this purpose proved to be upwards of Twelve Guineas, but this outlay only made us more pleased with the design. A single instance will suffice. The Philosophical Magazine, a work of high character, numbers among its purchasers but few general readers: it contains many mathematical, theoretical, and controversial papers, all of which may advance their object, but are not in a form sufficiently tangible for any but the scientific inquirer. Still, in the same Magazine, there may be papers of practical and directly useful character, and of ready application to the arts and interests of life and society. A person wishing to possess these popular papers must therefore purchase with them a quantity of matter which to him would be unintelligible, and the value of which could only be appreciated by direct study, a task of no small import in these days of cheap literature. That the plan has succeeded, and that its intention has been fully recognised, is borne out by the testimony of a score of our contemporaries. Of their praise we have no disposition to make an idle boast; and our only object in the present notice is to do for ourselves what we could not perhaps expect a weekly or monthly critic to do for us, viz. to quote the subjects of a few of the valuable papers in the present volume, and then leave the reader to form his own conclusions of its intrinsic value.
In Mechanical Science there are 100 closely-printed pages, or 90 articles. Among these are papers on novel applications of the gigantic power of Steam in Navigation and Agriculture, and especially in Railway Carriages; the grand invention of the Air Engine; improvements in Printing; machinery in manufactures; and contributions to experimental as well as practical mechanics.
In Chemical Science there are upwards of 60 New Facts. Among these is a valuable paper on Arsenic, by Dr. Christison, (from the Philosophical Magazine;) a method of ascertaining the vegeto-alkali in Bark; the influence of the Aurora Borealis on the Magnetic Needle; Lieut. Drummond's Plan for illuminating Light Houses by a ball of lime, (from the Philosophical Transactions); Laws of electrical accumulation, and the decomposition of water by atmospheric and ordinary electricity; the new Indigo; the spontaneous inflammation of charcoal; the nitrous atmosphere of Tirhoot, one of the principal districts in India for the manufacture of salt-petre; Discovery of a mass of meteoric iron in Bohemia; the chemical composition of cheese; Berzelius on the power of metallic rods to decompose water after their connexion with the galvanic pile is broken; an alkaline principle in Box-wood; Professor Davy on a new method of detecting metallic poisons; Mr. Bennet's new alloy for the pivot-holes of watches; experiments with Aldini's Fireproof Dresses; Dr. Ure on the composition of Gunpowder, and on Indigo; Dr. Bostock on the spontaneous purification of Thames water; Abstracts of Berzelius' statement of the progress of Chemical Science for 1829; Mr. Broughton on the effects of oxygen gas on various animals, &c.
In Zoology are papers—on the Fern Owl; Mr. Rennie's interesting Notes on the Cleanliness of Animals; Mechanism of the Voice in Singing; the Vision of Birds of Prey; New species of British Snake; Animalculae in Snow; Habits of the Chameleon; Peculiarity of the Negro Stomach; Growth of Spanish Flies; British Pearl Fishery on the Conway; the cause of Goitre; seat of the sense of touch and taste; stones found in the stomach of Pikes; Learned Poodles at Paris; Faculties of Domestic Animals; Increase of Mankind; Larva of the Gad-fly, which deposits its eggs in the bodies of the human species; Luminousness of the Sea, a valuable contribution; Motions in water caused by the respiration of Fishes; Cannibalism in New Guinea; Heron swallowing a Rat; Mr. Vigors on American Quails; Mr. Yarrell's experiments to preserve White Bait; On the fascination of Serpents; Notes on the Zoological Society, &c.
In Botany, Mineralogy, and Geology, are—a valuable paper on the Flora of Sicily; Supposed sub-marine banks from Newfoundland to the English Channel: Mr. Bakewell, Jun. on the Falls of Niagara: Mr. Bicheno on the Shamrock of Ireland; Effect of Light on Plants; Immense Tree in Mexico; Mr. Murray on Raining Trees; Forms and Relations of Volcanoes; Cuticular Pores of Plants; Volcano of Pietra Mala; Milk Tree of Demarara; Productiveness of Plants and Animals; Height of the Perpetual Snows on the Cordillera of Peru; Gerard's Botanical Journey in the Himala Mountains; Changes of temperature in Plants; Humboldt's account of the Gold and Platina district of Russia; Sir H. Davy on the durability of Stone; Dr. Hibbert's account of a Natural Rocking-stone; Notices of Fossil Organic Remains discovered within the year; Instructions for collecting Geological specimens, &c.
The Astronomical and Meteorological division contains some important observations on Atmospherical Electricity, by Dr. Brewster; a note of the recent Visitation of Greenwich Observatory; Snow of the winters 1829-30; Account of a Water-spout on the Lake Neufchatel; Mr. Herapath and Sir James South on the Comet; On the Rending of Timber by Lightning; Curious account of Hay converted into Glass by Lightning; The Occupation of Aldebaran by the Moon; Aurora Borealis observed during the year; and a Journal of the Weather of the year, by Mr. Tatem, the ingenious meteorologist, which paper we regret is not acknowledged from the Magazine of Natural History; appended to this is a tabular Meteorological Summary of 1830, communicated to the Arcana of Science by Dr. Armstrong.
In Rural Economy there are Abstracts from papers of considerable value and extent—on Pasturages, Chlorides applied to diseased Animals, Quality of Waste Land from the plants growing in it, Malt Duties, Beet Root Sugar, Aliment from Straw, Planting and Pruning, Indian Corn, Mangold Wurzol, &c. In Gardening are upwards of 40 similar Abstracts. In Domestic Economy are some practical papers on Milk, Bread, Sugar, Storing Fruit, Beer from Sugar, &c. In Useful Arts are about half-a-dozen, pages. To these heads are added a List of Patents, Notices of Expeditions of Discovery, and a copious Index. The Illustrations, about twenty in number, represent such inventions as are most attractive by their ingenuity; and by way of Synopsis we may state that the whole contents of the volume are nearly 400 abstracts, including probably three times as many new facts.
The utility of such a yearly volume speaks for itself, and however ungracefully a recommendation might come from our pen we could not refrain from thus introducing it to the readers of the Mirror especially as the Arcana of Science contain scarcely half-a-dozen pages of facts which have been detailed in our weekly columns.
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NOTES OF A READER.
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CALENDAR OF THE CHURCH OF ENGLAND.
This volume professes to be "A Familiar Analysis of the Calendar of the Church of England," by explaining and illustrating its Fasts and Festivals, &c., in the form of Question and Answer. The reader will not look for novelty in such a work. The editors of Time's Telescope, Clavis Calendaria, the Every-day Book, &c., have been too long and too laboriously employed in illustrating every point of the year's history, to lead us to expect any new attraction. Indeed, the preface of the present work does not profess to furnish any such inducement, the editor resting his claim on the cheapness of his book in comparison with the Every-day Book. This is rather an ungracious recommendation: the "Analysis" consists of less than three hundred pages, and is sold for five or six shillings; but these three hundred pages only equal seventy-five pages of the Every-day Book, or less than five sheets, which the public know may be purchased for fifteen-pence. One of the pretensions of the "Analysis" is its condensed form, but we suspect Mr. Valpy's Epitomizing press would reduce the editor's three hundred pages to seventy-five. It is a thankless office to be obliged to speak thus of a book on which some pains have been bestowed. Now, had it been printed within the compass of an eighteen-penny or two shilling catechism, the desired object would have been obtained; but, as it appears, in the type of a large church prayer-book, what may have been gained in arrangement, must be paid for in paper and print, so that no good purpose is ultimately effected.
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Parts 3 and 4 of the Familiar Law Adviser relate to Bills of Exchange and Promissory Notes—and Benefit Societies and Savings' Banks—and will be found extremely useful to very different classes. They have in them all the reforming spirit of the times, and must be of essential service everywhere, since cheap law is as desirable us any other species of economy. Brevity, too, as recommended in these little books, should be the soul of law as it is of wit, for we all know that as the law lengthens so the cost strengthens. Another advantage will be, that the sooner a man is set right, the more time will he have for increasing his good actions in this life.
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Oh God! what a difference throughout the whole of this various and teeming earth a single DEATH can effect! Sky, sun, air, the eloquent waters, the inspiring mountain-tops, the murmuring and glossy wood, the very
Glory in the grass, and splendour in the flower,
do these hold over us an eternal spell? Are they as a part and property of an unvarying course of nature? Have they aught which is unfailing, steady—same in its effect? Alas! their attraction is the creature of an accident. One gap, invisible to all but ourself in the crowd and turmoil of the world, and every thing is changed. In a single hour, the whole process of thought, the whole ebb and flow of emotion, may be revulsed for the rest of an existence. Nothing can ever seem to us as it did: it is a blow upon the fine mechanism by which we think, and move, and have our being—the pendulum vibrates aright no more—the dial hath no account with time—the process goes on, but it knows no symmetry or order;—it was a single stroke that marred it, but the harmony is gone for ever!
And yet I often think that that shock which jarred on the mental, renders yet softer the moral nature. A death that is connected with love unites us by a thousand remembrances to all who have mourned: it builds a bridge between the young and the old; it gives them in common the most touching of human sympathies; it steals from nature its glory and its exhilaration—not its tenderness. And what, perhaps, is better than all, to mourn deeply for the death of another, loosens from ourself the petty desire for, and the animal adherence to, life. We have gained the end of the philosopher, and view, without shrinking, the coffin and the pall.—New Monthly Magazine.
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SCOTT AND COOPER.
An example of Mr. Cooper's appreciation of his illustrious rival, Sir Walter Scott, occurred while he was sitting for the portrait that accompanied the New Monthly Magazine for last month.—The artist, Madame Mirbel, requested of a distinguished statesman.—"No," said Cooper, "if I must look at any, it shall be at my master," directing his glance a little higher, to a portrait of Sir Walter Scott.
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France, "with all thy faults I love thee still!" No man should travel from his cradle to his grave without paying thee a visit by the way: with a disposition prone to enjoyment, it lightens the journey amazingly. The French are a kind people, and it must be his fault who cannot live happily with them. Pity it is, possessing, as they do, whatever can contribute to the felicity of a people in a state of peace, that war should be indispensable in order to render their idea of happiness complete. La gloire and la guerre form the eternal burden of their song—as if the chief business of life were to destroy life. They would fight to-morrow with any nation on earth, for no better an object than the chance of achieving a victory. Laugh at me, if you please, for uttering what you may consider a foolish opinion, but I look upon it as a serious misfortune to them that the two words Gloire and Victoire rhyme together: they so constantly occur in that portion of their poetry which is the most popular, and the best calculated to excite them in a high degree—their vaudeville songs—that the two ideas they express have become identical in their minds; and he will deserve well of his country who shall discover the means of making glory rhyme to peace.—Ibid.
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The custom of HELPING ONESELF has its sanction in the remotest antiquity, and has been continued down to the present day in the highest places, and by those whom it especially behoves to set example to the world. It was clearly never designed that man should regulate his conduct for the good of others, for the first lesson taught to the first of men, was to take care of himself; had it been intended that men should study the good of each other, a number would surely have been simultaneously created for the exercise of the principle, instead of one, who, being alone, was essentially selfish. Adam was all the world to himself. With the addition of Eve, human society commenced; and the fault of our first mother furnishes a grand and terrible example of the mischief of thinking of the benefit of another. Satan suggested to her that Adam should partake of the fruit—an idea, having in it the taint of benevolence, so generally mistaken—whence sin and death came into the world. Had Eve been strictly selfish, she would wisely have kept the apples to herself, and the evil would have been avoided. Had Adam helped himself, he would have had no stomach for the helping of another—and so, on his part, the evil temptation had been obviated.
The HELP YOURSELF principle has at no time been extinct in society, while it is seen to be a universal law of Nature. The wolf helps himself to the lamb, and the lamb to the grass. No animal assists another, excepting when in the relation of parent to young, when Nature could not dispense with the caprice of benevolence, which in this instance, be it observed, distresses the parties susceptible of the sentiment; for suckling creatures are always in poor condition. Appropriation is the great business of the universe. The institution of property is, on the other hand, artificial.—Ibid.
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BALLET OF KENILWORTH, AT THE KING'S THEATRE.
There is a very curious and ingenious, though not original, exhibition in this ballet. Among the festivities at Kenilworth Castle, in honour of the royal guests, a pantomimic "masque" of the gods and goddesses of Olympus is introduced. The divinities, instead of appearing in genuine Grecian attire, present themselves in the mongrel costume visual on such occasions in the time of Queen Elizabeth. This is droll enough, but more whimsical still is the style of their dancing. This, too, is meant as an imitation of the limited choregraphic savoir faire of the age. It is as if Mons. Deshayes had triumphantly intended to portray the first dawn of an art which he considers to have now reached the summit of perfection. But who knows but the Monsieur Un tel of 1931 may, with equal boldness, parody the pirouettes of Monsieur Deshayes? Even the music to this mythological interlude is borrowed from ancient scores; a happy thought, which deserves commendation.—Ibid.
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SPIRIT OF THE PUBLIC JOURNALS.
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THE NEW MAGAZINE.
Mr. Campbell, the Poet, has seceded from the New Monthly Magazine, and commenced a magazine of his own—The Metropolitan. Without prejudice to the first-mentioned work, he has our best wishes for his new undertaking. The New Monthly Magazine has, however, supplied the Mirror with brighter columns than any of its contemporaries, and we are mindful of the obligation, especially for that gay and lively description of writing which is really the patter of literature. It will soon be seen whether Mr. Campbell and his forces succeed. The Number before us is, for a first, excellent. The Editor's Paper on Ancient Geography, with which it opens, is worth the price of the whole magazine: nay, it is worth more than many a modern quarto. Other papers are attractive; and there is much of the spirit of the times throughout the Number.—Poland, the Political Times, and the Lord Chancellor's Levee—are vividly written. The last is a good specimen of the "keep moving" style of a Magazine. We intend to quote largely from the
Memoirs of the Macaw of a Lady of Quality,
BY LADY MORGAN:
I am a native of one of the most splendid regions of the earth, where nature dispenses all her bounties with a liberal hand; and where man and bird are released from half the penalties to which, in other climes, their flesh is heir. I was born in one of those superb forests of fruit and flowers so peculiar to the Brazils, which stood at no great distance from an Indian village, and was not far removed from an European settlement. This forest was impervious to human footsteps. A nation of apes occupied the interior; and the dynasty of the Psittacus Severus, or Brazilian queen macaw, inhabited the upper regions.—Several subject-states of green and yellow parrots constituted our colonial neighbours. My family held the highest rank in the privileged classes of our oligarchy; for our pride would not admit of a king, and our selfishness (so I must call it) would allow of no rights. We talked nevertheless in our legislative assemblies of our happy constitution, which by tacit agreement we understood to mean "happy for ourselves;" but the green and yellow parrots too plainly showed a strong disposition to put another interpretation on the phraseology. My paternal nest was situated in the hollow of one of the most ancient and lofty trees in the forest. It had once been rich in fruit and flowers, gums and odours, and all in the same season; and though it was now scathed at the top, hollow in the trunk, and was threatened with total ruin from the first hurricane, we still preferred it, because it was the oldest. I owed all my early impressions, and much of my acquired superiority, to my great grandfather, who lived to an extreme old age, and attained a celebrity, of which we were ourselves at that time unaware. He was the identical bird which was brought from Marignan to Prince Maurice, governor of the Brazils, and whose pertinent answers to many silly questions are recorded in the pages of the greatest of English philosophers. My great grandfather was soon disgusted with the folly and cruelty of what is called civilized life; and having seen an Indian roasted alive for a false religion's sake, he thought that some day they might take it into their heads to do as much by a macaw, for the same reason. So he availed himself of an early opportunity of retiring without leave from the service, and returned to his native forest, where his genius and learning at once raised him to the highest honours of the Psittacan aristocracy. Influenced by his example, I early felt the desire of visiting foreign countries. My mother too (who, though fond and indulgent, like all the mothers of our race, was as vain and foolish as any that I have since met with in human society) worked powerfully on my ambition, by her constant endeavours to "push me up the tree," as she called it, in her way. I was already a first-rate orator, and a member of the great congress of macaws; while in our social re-unions I left all the young birds of fashion far behind me: and as I not only articulated some human sounds picked up from the Indians, but could speak a few words of Portuguese and Dutch, learned by rote from my great grandfather, I was considered a genius of high order. With the conceit, therefore, of all my noble family, I was prompted to go forth and visit other and better worlds, and to seek a sphere better adapted to the display of my presumed abilities, than that afforded by our domestic senate and home-spun society. On one of those celestial nights, known only in the tropical regions, I set forth on my travels, directing my course to the Portuguese settlement, which the youthful vigour of my wing enabled me to reach by the break of morning. Having refreshed myself with a breakfast of fruit, after the exhaustion of my nocturnal flight, I ascended a spacious palm tree, which afforded an admirable view of the adjacent country, and a desirable shelter from the ardours of the rising sun. My first impulse was to take a bird's-eye view of the novel scene which lay before me, and I gazed around for some minutes with intense delight; but fatigue gradually obtained the mastery over curiosity, and, putting my head unconsciously beneath my wing, I fell into a profound sleep. How long this continued, I know not; but I was suddenly awakened by a strange muttering of unknown voices. I looked, and beheld two creatures whose appearance greatly surprised me. They had nothing of the noble form and aspect of our Indian neighbours. One of them considerably resembled the preacher-monkey in countenance and deportment; his head was denuded of hair, and his person was covered by a black substance, which left no limb visible except his ancles and feet, which were very much like those of an ape. The other had all the air of a gigantic parrot: he had a hooked bill, a sharp look, a yellow head; and all the rest of his strange figure was party-coloured, blue, green, red, and black. I classed him at once as a specimen of the Psittacus Ochropterus. The ape and the parrot seemed to have taken shelter beneath the palm tree, like myself, for the purposes of shade and repose. They had beside them a basket filled with dead game, fruit, and honey; and the parrot had a long instrument near him on the ground, which I afterwards learned was a fowling-piece. They talked a strange jargon of different intonation, like that of the respective chatter of the grey and the green parrots. Both seemed to complain, and, by the expression of their ugly and roguish faces, to interrogate each other. As soon as they went away, I endeavoured to mutter to myself the sounds they had uttered, but could retain only two phrases. The one had been spoken by the ape, and ran thus—"Shure it was for my sweet sowl's sake, jewel;" the other was—"Eh, sirs, it was aw' for the love of the siller." I was extremely amused by my acquisition; and, being convinced that I was now qualified to present myself at the settlement, was about to descend from my altitude, when the two strangers returned: they had come back for the gun, which they had left behind them. As they picked it up, it went off, and I was startled into one of my loudest screams. The strangers looked at me with great delight, he whom I likened to the parrot exclaiming—"Weel, mon, what brought you here?" I answered in his own words, for want of better—"Eh, sirs, it was aw' for the love of the siller." He dropped his piece, and fled in consternation, calling lustily—"Its auld clooty himsen, mon, its auld Horny, I tell ye; come awa, come awa." His friend, who seemed more acquainted with our species, encouraged him to return; and offering me some fruit from his basket, said—"Why, Poll, you cratur, what brought you so far from home?" I endeavoured to imitate his peculiar tone, and replied—"Why thin it was for my sweet sowl's sake, jewel."—"Why then," said my interlocutor, coolly (for I never forgot his words) "that bird bates cockfighting." They now both endeavoured to catch me. It was all I wanted, and I perched on the preaching-monkey's wrist, while he took up the basket in his left hand, and in this easy and commodious style of travelling, we proceeded. On approaching the settlement, a fierce dispute arose between the friends; of which, by each tearing me from the other, I was evidently the object; and I am quite sure that I should have been torn to pieces between them, but for the timely approach of a person who issued from a lofty and handsome edifice on the road side, attended by a train of preacher-monkeys, of which he was the chief. He was quite a superior looking being to either of my first acquaintance, who cowered and shrunk beneath his eagle look. They seemed humbly to lay their cases before him; when, after looking contemptuously on both, he took me to himself, caressed me, and giving me to an attendant, said—"This bird belongs to neither, it is the property of mother church:" and the property of mother church I remained for some years. Of my two friends of the palm-tree, one, the preacher-monkey, turned out to be a poor Irish lay brother, of the convent of which my new master (an Irishman too) was the superior. My yellow parrot was a Scotch adventurer, who came out to give lectures on poleetical economy to the Brazilians: and who, finding that they had no taste for moral science, had become a servant of all-work to the brotherhood. My dwelling was a missionary house of the Propaganda, established for the purpose of converting (i.e. burning) the poor Indians. The Superior, Father Flynn, had recently arrived from Lisbon with unlimited powers. He was clever, eloquent, witty, and humorous; but panting for a bishopric in his native country, he was principally employed in theological writings, which might bring him into notice and hasten his recall to Europe.
Next to the servant's hall of a great English family, the first place in the world for completing the education of a macaw of genius, is a convent. Its idleness and ennui render a monkey, or a parrot, a valuable resource; and between what I picked up, and what I was taught by the monks of the Propaganda, my acquirements soon became stupendous. Always following my kind master from the refectory to the church, assisting at mess or at mass, being near him in the seclusion of the oratory, and in the festivities, he frequently held with his more confidential friends; I had loaded my astonishing memory with scraps of theology and of fun. I could sing a French drinking song, taught me by the sub-prior Frere Jacques, and intonate a "Gloria in Excelsis" with a true nasal twang. I had actually learned the Creed in English; and could call all the brothers by their name. I had even learned the Savoyard's dance from my friend Frere Jacques, and sung "Gai Coco" at the same time, like Scaliger's parrot, from whose history Frere Jacques took the idea of teaching me. I did this, it must be acknowledged, with great awkwardness, turning in my toes, and often tumbling backwards in a clumsy and ludicrous way. But this amused my religious friends more than all the rest; for, like the great, they loved a ridicule as well as a talent; and, provided they were amused, were not nice as to the means. My fame soon began to spread on all sides, and the anecdotes told of the macaw of the Propaganda soon reached the circles of the Governor of the Brazils, who wrote to request the pleasure of my company for a few weeks at the palace. This was a compliment which he had never paid to the learned superior of the order, and my master was evidently hurt. He declined therefore the invitation for me, on the plea that he would soon visit Rio Janeiro himself, when I should accompany him into the vice-regal presence.
This visit shortly took place, not for the object supposed by the community, (who parted with me, even for a short time, with great regret,) but for another purpose. The British ambassador, Lord ——, who had recently arrived at Rio, was a countryman of Father Flynn's. He enjoyed eminent literary celebrity, was a delightful poet, and well acquainted with the Portuguese language. The superior had no doubt that his own literary and theological merits were equally known to his excellency, whom he visited with a view to negotiating a passage in the British man of war; for he had been called on a secret mission to Ireland, and wished to depart without notifying his intention to the subaltern of the Propaganda. I was not included in the muster-roll of this expedition; but anxious to lose no opportunity of seeing the world, and desirous of beholding the Governor, who had shown his taste and politeness by inviting me to his court, I contrived to nestle myself in the carriage without the superior's knowledge, and followed his steps to the very ante-room of the embassy. It was too late to send me back; for I was instantly seized by a company of pretty young animals, the very reverse in appearance of the preacher-monkeys of the Propaganda; they all seemed to find in me a kindred soul: my master was ushered into the cabinet, and I was left with my new acquaintance, who were called "attaches," but whom I at once classed with the secretary-birds, while here and there, I thought, was mingled among them a specimen of the booby, or Pelicanus Sula. Two of these mischievous creatures seemed to delight in tormenting me from mere idleness and ennui, which I bore for some time with great patience, as I saw the boobies pay them much respect. One was called Lord Charles, and the other the Hon. Mr. Henry. I learned these names with facility, and contrived to repeat them, as they had been taught me, by the frequent iteration of one of the boobies.
 "Rhodoginus mentions a parrot which could recite correctly the whole of the Apostle's Creed."—Animal Biography, by the Rev. W. Bingley.
 "The Dutch," says Le Vaillant, "give this bird the name of Secretary, on account of the bunch of quills behind its head."—Bingley, Animal Biography.
(To be continued.)
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A snapper up of unconsidered trifles. SHAKSPEARE.
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We had formerly in the Tower of London, a straight room or dungeon, called, from the misery the unhappy occupiers of this very confined place endured, the Little-Ease. But this will appear a luxurious habitation, when compared with the inventions of Louis XI. of France, with his iron cages, in which persons of rank lay for whole years; or his oubliettes, dungeons made in the form of reversed cones, with concealed trap-doors, down which dropped the unhappy victims of the tyrant, brought there by Tristam L'Hermite, his companion and executioner in ordinary; sometimes their sides were plain, sometimes set with knives, or sharp-edged wheels; but in either cases they were complete oubliettes; the devoted were certain to fall into the land where all things are forgotten.—(Pennant's London.)
When the Bastille of France was demolished, three iron cages were discovered, they were made of strong bars of iron, about eight feet high and six feet wide, and such have been used in other prisons in that country. The Bishop of Verdun, according to Mezeray, was the inventer, and was himself the first man confined in them, and remained a prisoner thus for eleven years, so that he could speak practically as to his own invention.
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The Duchess of Chevereux, who was for the first time at the court of England, in 1638, swam across the Thames, in a frolic, near Windsor. On this occasion some verses were composed by a Sir J. M. containing these lines:—
But her chaste breast, cold as the cloyster'd nun, Whose frost to chrystal might congeal the sun, So glar'd the stream, that pilots, there afloat, Thought they might safely land without a boat; July had seen the Thames in ice involv'd, Had it not been by her own beams dissolv'd.
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The observance of a birthday by prayer is not altogether incurious in these days of license; and the following specimen, quoted from the Diary of that truly good man, JOHN EVELYN, may be entertained as the genuine effusion of piety, unmixed with any alloy of fanaticism, or religious enthusiasm:—
Oct. 31, 1689.—My birthday, being now 69 years old. Blessed Father who hast prolonged my years to this great age, and given me to see so great and wonderful revolutions, and preserved me amidst them to this moment, accept, I beseech thee, the continuance of my prayers and thankful acknowledgements, and grant me grace to be working out my salvation and redeeming the time, that thou mayest be glorified by me here, and my soul immortal saved, whenever thou shalt call for it to perpetuate thy praises to all eternity, in that heavenly kingdom where there are no more changes or vicissitudes, but rest and peace, and joy and consummate felicity for ever. Grant this, O Heavenly Father, for the sake of Jesus thine only Son and our Saviour. Amen.
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From a country squire, in the 18th century, to a gentleman in London, who had written to him concerning the character of a Servant.
"Sir—Yours I receiv'd the 24th of this present instant, June, and, at your request, will give you an impartial account of my man, John Gray's character. He is a shoemaker, or cordwainer, which you please to call it, by trade, and now in our town; he is following the carding business for every one that wants him; he served his time at a town called Binstock, in Northamptonshire; and from thence the Great Addington journeyman, to this occupation, as before mentioned, and used to come to my house, and found, by riding my horses to water, that he rode a horse pretty well; which was not at all mistaken, for he rides a horse well: and he looks after a kennel of hounds very well, and finds a hare very well: he hath no judgement in hunting a pack of hounds now, though he rides well, he don't with discretion, for he don't know how to make the most of a horse; but a very harey-starey fellow: will ride over a church if in his way, though he may prevent a leap by having a gap within ten yards of him; and if you are not in the field with himself, when you are hunting to tutor him about riding, he will kill all the horses you have in the stable in one month, for he hath killed downright, and lamed so that they will never be fit for use, no more than five horses since he has hunted my hounds, which is two years and upwards; he can talk no dog language to a hound; he hath no voice; speaks to a hound such as if his head were in a churn; nor neither does he know how to draw a hound when they are at a loss, no more than a child of seven years old. As to his honesty, I always found him honest till about a week ago. I sent my servant that I have now to fetch some sheep's feet from Mr. Stranjan, of Higham Ferrers, where Gray used to go for feet, and I always send my money by the man that brings the feet; and Stranjan told my man that I have now that I owed him money for feet; and when the man came home he told me, and I went to Stranjan, and then I found the truth of the matter. Gray had kept the money in his hands, and had never paid Stranjan: he had along with me once for a letter, in order for his character, to give him one, but I told him I could not give him a good one, so I would not write at all. Gray is a very great drunkard, can't keep a penny in his pocket: a sad notorious lyar. If you send him upon a mile or two from Uphingham, he will get drunk, stay all day, and never come home while the middle of the night, or such time as he knows his master is in bed. He can nor will not keep any secret; neither has he so much wit as other people, for the fellow is half a fool, for if you would have business done with expedition, if he once gets out of the town, or sight of you, shall see him no more, while the next morning he serves me so and so: you must expect the same if you hire him. I use you just as I would be used myself; it I desired a character of you of a servant, that I had design'd to hire of yours, as to let you know the truth of every thing about him.
"I am, sir, your most humble servant to command.
"Great Addington, June 28, 1734.
"P.S. He takes good care of his horses, with good looking after as to the dressing of them; but if you don't take care, he will fill the manger full of corn, so that he will clog the horses, and ruin the whole stable of horses."
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Upon two religious disputants who are interred within a few paces of each other.
Suspended here, a contest see, Of two whose creeds cou'd ne'er agree, For whether they would preach or pray, They'd do it in a different way; And they wou'd fain our fate deny'd, In quite a different manner dy'd! Yet think not that their rancour's o'er, No! for 'tis ten to one, and more, Tho' quiet now as either lies, But they've a wrangle when they rise.
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In St. Michael's churchyard, at Litchfield, an ancient tombstone was lately discovered, which had been buried in the earth a great number of years. Upon it are deeply cut the following inscriptions:—
Here lyes the Body of William Clarke, who was Clarke of this Church 51 years, and buried March 25th, 1525, aged 96.
Here lyes the Body of William Clarke, Clarke of this Church 71 years, who died Septem. 26, 1562, and aged 86.
The father lived in the reigns of six different kings, viz. Henry the Sixth, Edwards the Fourth and Fifth, Richard the Third, and Henry the Seventh and Eighth. The son in seven reigns, viz. from Edward the Fourth to Mary the First.
Morning Chronicle, October 8, 1822.
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Written by a ragged Irishman, a passenger on board a vessel with the Archbishop of Tuam.
If each man had his suum, You would not have Tuam, But I should get meum, And sing a Te Deum.
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The following verses were composed by John Barbour, a poet and divine, who was born at Aberdeen in 1330. They afford a specimen of the poetry in his time:—
"This was in midst of month of May, When birdis sing on ilka spray, Melland their notes, with seemly soun, For softness of the sweet seasoun.
"And leavis of the branchis spreeds, And blomis bright, beside them, breeds And Fieldis strawed are with flow'rs Well savouring of seir colours; And all things wor this, blyth, and gay."
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This Day is published, price 5s.
ARCANA of SCIENCE, and ANNUAL REGISTER of the USEFUL ARTS for 1831.
"This is the fourth annual volume of a most useful compilation of the various discoveries in science or inventions of art during the preceding year. The volume commences, very properly, with an abridgment of what may be termed the greatest work of art which has distinguished the present century—the Liverpool and Manchester Railway. Various other improvements in the different departments of the arts which have appeared in the several scientific journals of the last year, are here presented in a condensed form, so as to render the volume, in reality, an excellent book of reference. The object of the editor seems to have been that of blending entertainment with valuable information, the work being illustrated by many neat engravings relating to the popular branches of science. The volume, therefore, contains a very interesting compendium of information for young people."—New Monthly Magazine.
Printed for JOHN LIMBIRD, 143, Strand;—of whom may be had the Volumes for the three preceding years.
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Printed and Published by J. LIMBIRD, 143, Strand, (near Somerset House,) London; sold by ERNEST FLEISCHER, 626, New Market, Leipsic; G.G. BENNIS, 55, Rue Neuve, St. Augustin, Paris; and by all Newsmen and Booksellers.