THE MIRROR OF LITERATURE, AMUSEMENT, AND INSTRUCTION.
VOL. X, NO. 272.] SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 8, 1827. [PRICE 2d.
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DUBLIN POST OFFICE.
The general post-office, Dublin, was at first held in a small building on the site of the Commercial Buildings, and was afterwards removed to a larger house opposite the bank on College Green (since converted into the Royal Arcade;) and on January 6, 1818, the new post-office in Sackville-street was opened for business.
The foundation-stone of this magnificent building, which is built after a design of Francis Johnson, Esq., was laid by his excellency Charles, Earl of Whitworth, August 12, 1814, and the structure was completed in the short space of three years, for the sum of 50,000l.
The front, which extends 220 feet, has a magnificent portico (80 feet wide), of six fluted Ionic columns, 4 feet 6 inches in diameter. The frieze of the entablature is highly enriched, and in the tympanum of the pediment are the royal arms. On the acroteria of the pediment are three statues by John Smyth, viz.—Mercury on the right, with his Caduceus and purse; On the left Fidelity, with her finger on her lip, and a key in her hand; and in the centre Hibernia, resting on her spear, and holding her shield. The entablature, with the exception of the architrave, is continued along the rest of the front; the frieze, however, is not decorated over the portico. A handsome balustrade surmounts the cornice of the building, which is 50 feet from the ground. With the exception of the portico, which is of Portland stone, the whole is of mountain granite. The elevation has three stories, of which the lower or basement is rusticated, and in this respect it resembles the India House of London, where a rusticated basement is introduced, although the portico occupies the entire height of the structure.
Over the centre of the building is seen a cupola, containing the chimes and bell on which the clock-hammer strikes. The bell is so loud, that it is heard in every part of the city.
The interior is particularly remarkable for the convenience of its arrangement, and the number of its communicating apartments. The board-room is a very handsome apartment, furnished with two seats, which are for the postmasters-general. Over the chimney-piece, protected by a curtain of green silk, is a bust of Earl Whitworth, in white marble, by John Smyth.
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A Roman Station—the Camp of Claudius—Manners, Customs, and Dialects of the people of the District.
About two miles to the west of Little Claybrook, in the hundred of Luthlaxton, in Leicestershire, is a place called High Cross, which, according to some antiquarians, was the Benonce or Vennones of the Romans. Dr. Stukely describes this station as situated at the intersection of the two great Roman roads, "which traverse the kingdom obliquely, and seem to be the centre, as well as the highest ground in England; for from hence rivers run every way. The foss road went on the backside of an inn standing here, and so towards Bath. The ground hereabout is very rich, and much ebulus (a herb much sought after for the cure of dropsies,) grows here. Claybrooklane has a piece of quickset hedge left across it, betokening one side of the Foss; which road in this place bears exactly north-east and south-west as it does upon the moor on this side of Lincoln. In the garden before the inn abovementioned, a tumulus was removed about the year 1720, under which the body of a man was found upon the plain surface; as likewise hath been under several others hereabout; and foundations of buildings have been frequently dug up along the street here, all the way to Cleycestre, through which went the great street-way, called Watling-street; for on both sides of the way have been ploughed and dug up many ancient coins, great square stones and bricks, and other rubbish, of that ancient Roman building, not far from a beacon, standing upon the way now called High Cross, of a cross which stood there some time, upon the meeting of another great way."
At the intersection of the roads is the pedestal, &c. of a cross which was erected here in the year 1712; on which are the two following Latin inscriptions. On one side is—
Vicinarum provinciarum, Vervicensis scilicet et Leicestrensis, ornamenta, proceres patritiique, auspiciis, illustrissimi Basili Comitis de Denbeigh, hanc columnam statuendam curaverunt, in gratam pariter et perpetuam memoriam Jani tandem a Serenissima Anna clausi A.D. MDCCXII.
Which is thus translated,
The noblemen and gentry, ornaments of the neighbouring counties of Warwick and Leicester, at the instances of the Right Honourable Basil Earl of Denbeigh, have caused this pillar to be erected in grateful as well as perpetual remembrance of Peace at last restored by her Majesty Queen Anne, in the year of our Lord, 1712.
The inscription on the other side runs thus—
Si Veterum Romanorum vestigia quaeras, hic cernas viator. Hic enim celeberrimae illorum viae militares sese mutuo secantes ad extremes usque Britanniae limites procurent: hic stativa sua habuerunt Vennones; et ad primum ad hinc lapidem castra sua ad Stratam, et ad Fossam tumulum, Claudius quidam cohortis praefectus habuisse videtur.
Which may be thus rendered,
If, traveller, you search for the footsteps of the ancient Romans, here you may behold them. For here their most celebrated ways, crossing one another, extend to the utmost boundaries of Britain; here the Vennones kept their quarters; and at the distance of one mile from hence, Claudius, a certain commander of a cohort, seems to have had a camp, towards the street, and towards the foss a tomb.
The ground here is so high, and the surrounding country so low and flat, that it is said, fifty-seven churches may be seen from this spot by the help of a glass.
The following judicious remarks on the customs, mariners, and dialects of the common people of this district by Mr. Macauley, who published a history of Claybrook, may be amusing to many readers.—The people here are much attached to wakes; and among the farmers and cottagers these annual festivals are celebrated with music, dancing, feasting, and much inoffensive sport; but in the neighbouring villages the return of the wake never fails to produce at least a week of idleness, intoxication, and riot. These and other abuses by which those festivals are grossly perverted, render it highly desirable to all the friends of order and decency that they were totally suppressed. On Plow Monday is annually displayed a set of morice dancers; and the custom of ringing the curfew is still continued here, as well as the pancake bell on Shrove Tuesday. The dialect of the common people is broad, and partakes of the Anglo-Saxon sounds and terms. The letter h comes in almost on every occasion where it ought not, and it is frequently omitted where it ought to come in. The words fire, mire, and such like, are pronounced as if spelt foire, moire; and place, face, and other similar words, as if spelt pleace, feace; and in the plural you sometimes hear pleacen, closen, for closes, and many other words in the same style of Saxon termination. The words there, and where, are generally pronounced theere and wheere; the words mercy, deserve, thus, marcy, desarve. The following peculiarities are also observable: uz, strongly aspirated for us; war for was; meed for maid; faither for father; e'ery for every; brig for bridge; thurrough for furrow; hawf for half; cart rit for cart rut; malefactory for manufactory; inactions for anxious. The words mysen and himsen, are sometimes used for myself and himself; the word shoek is used to denote an idle worthless vagabond; and the word ripe for one who is very profane. The following phrases are common, "a power of people," "a hantle of money," "I can't awhile as yet." The words like and such frequently occur as expletives in conversation, "I won't stay here haggling all day and such." "If you don't give me my price like." The monosyllable as is generally substituted for that; "the last time as I called," "I reckon as I an't one," "I imagine as I am not singular." Public characters are stigmatized by saying, "that they set poor lights." The substantive right often supplies the place of ought, as "farmer A has a right to pay his tax." Next ways, and clever through, are in common use, as "I shall go clever through Ullesthorpe." "Nigh hand" for probably, as he will nigh hand call on us. Duable, convenient or proper: thus "the church is not served at duable hours." Wives of farmers often call their husbands "our master," and the husbands call their wives mamy, whilst a labourer will often distinguish his wife by calling her the "o'man." People now living remember when Goody and Dame, Gaffer and Gammer, were in vogue among the peasantry of Leicestershire; but they are now almost universally discarded and supplanted by Mr. and Mrs. which are indiscriminately applied to all ranks, from the squire and his lady down to Mr. and Mrs. Pauper, who flaunt in rags and drink tea twice a day."
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TUNE,—"Love was once a Little Boy."
(For the Mirror.)
Beauty once was but a girl— Heigho! heigho! Coral lips and teeth of pearl; Heigho! heigho! Then 'twas hers, her arms to twine Round my neck, as at Love's shrine, Soft I zoned her waist with mine, Heigho! heigho! Beauty's grown a woman now, Heigho! heigho! Haughty mein and haughty brow, Heigho! heigho! Tossing high her head in air, As if she deems her charms so rare, Will ever be what once they were, Heigho! heigho! Beauty's charms will quickly fade, Heigho! heigho! Beauty's self, erelong, be dead, Heigho! heigho! And should Beauty haply die, Shall we only sit and sigh? No, Bacchus, no—thy charms we'll try! Heigho! heigho!
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ORIGINS AND INVENTIONS.
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During the period of the great plague the office of searcher, which is continued to the present day, was a very important one; and a noted body-searcher, whose name was Snacks, finding his business increase so fast that he could not compass it, offered to any person who should join him in his hazardous practice, half the profits; thus those who joined him were said to go with Snacks. Hence "going snacks," or dividing the spoil.
St. Ambrose is considered as the first who introduced the antiphonant method of chanting, or one side of the choir alternately responding to the other; from whence that particular mode obtained the name of the "Ambrosian chant," while the plain song, introduced by St. Gregory, still practised in the Romish service, is called the "Gregorian," or "Romish chant." The works of St. Ambrose continue to be held in much respect, particularly the hymn of Te Deum, which he is said to have composed when he baptised St. Augustine, his celebrated convert.
 Mems., Maxims, and Memoirs. By W. Wadd, Esq.
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"I HAVE DONE MY DUTY."
A Tale of the Sea.
She would sit and weep At what a sailor suffers; fancy, too, Delusive most where warmest wishes are, Would oft anticipate his glad return.
"I dearly love a sailor!" exclaimed the beautiful and fascinating Mrs. D——, as she stood in the balcony of her house, leaning upon the arm of her affectionate and indulgent husband, and gazing at a poor shattered tar who supplicated charity by a look that could hardly fail of interesting the generous sympathies of the heart—"I dearly love a sailor; he is so truly the child of nature; and I never feel more disposed to shed tears, than when I see the hardy veteran who has sacrificed his youth, and even his limbs, in the service of his country—
"Cast abandoned on the world's wide stage, And doomed in scanty poverty to roam."
Look at yon poor remnant of the tempest, probably reduced to the hard necessity of becoming a wanderer, without a home to shelter him, or one kind commiserating smile to shed a ray of sunshine on the dreary winter of his life. I can remember, when a child, I had an uncle who loved me very tenderly, and my attachment to him was almost that of a daughter; indeed he was the pride and admiration of our village; for every one esteemed him for his kind and cheerful disposition. But untoward events cast a gloom upon his mind; he hastened away to sea, and we never saw him more."
By this time the weather-beaten, care-worn seaman had advanced toward the house, and cast a wistful glance aloft; it was full of honest pride that disdained to beg, yet his appearance was so marked with every emblem of poverty and hunger, that, as the conflicting feelings worked within his breast, his countenance betrayed involuntarily the struggles of his heart. There was a manly firmness in his deportment, that bespoke no ordinary mind; and a placid serenity in his eye, that beamed with benevolence, and seemed only to regret that he could no longer be a friend to the poor and destitute, or share his hard-earned pittance with a messmate in distress. A few scattered grey locks peeped from beneath an old straw hat; and one sleeve of his jacket hung unoccupied by his side—the arm was gone. "I should like to know his history," said the amiable lady; "let us send for him in." To express a wish, and have it gratified, were the same thing to Mrs. D——, and in a few minutes the veteran tar stood before them. "Would you wish to hear a tale of woe?" cried the old man, in answer to her request. "Ah, no! why should your tender heart be wounded by another's griefs? I have been buffeted by the storms of affliction—I have struggled against the billows of adversity—every wave of sorrow has rolled over me; but," added he, while a glow of conscious integrity suffused his furrowed cheek, "I have always done my duty; and that conviction has buoyed me up when nearly overwhelmed in the ocean of distress. Yet, lady, it was not always thus: I have been happy—was esteemed, and, as I thought, beloved. I had a friend, in whom I reposed the highest confidence, and my affections were devoted to one;—but, she is gone—she is gone! and I—Yes! we shall meet again:"—here he paused, dashed a tear from his eye, and then proceeded:—"My friend was faithless; he robbed me of the dearest treasure of my heart, and blasted every hope of future happiness. I left my native land to serve my country; have fought her battles, and bled in her defence. On the 29th of May, and glorious 1st of June, 1794, I served on board the Queen Charlotte, under gallant Howe, and was severely wounded in the breast—but I did my duty. On that memorable occasion, a circumstance occured which added to my bitterness and melancholy. The decks were cleared—the guns cast loose, and every man stood in eager expectation at his quarters. It is an awful moment, lady, and various conflicting emotions agitate the breast when, in the calm stillness that reigns fore and aft, the mind looks back upon the past, and contemplates the future. Home, wife, children, and every tender remembrance rush upon the soul. It is different in the heat of action: then every faculty is employed for conquest, that each man may have to say, 'I have done my duty.' But when bearing down to engage, and silence is so profound that every whisper may be heard, then their state of mind—it cannot be described. Sailors know what it is, and conquering it by cool determination and undaunted bravery, nobly do their duty. I was stationed at the starboard side of the quarter deck, and looked around me with feelings incident to human nature, yet wishing for and courting death. The admiral, with calm composure, surrounded by his captains and signal officers, stood upon the beak of the poop, while brave Bowen, the master, occupied the ladder, and gave directions to the quarter-master at the helm. They opened their fire, and the captains of the guns stood ready with their matches in their hand, waiting for the word. The work of destruction commenced, and many of our shipmates lay bleeding on the deck, but not a shot had we returned." "Stand by there, upon the main deck," cried the first lieutenant. "Steady, my men! Wait for command, and don't throw your fire away!" "All ready, sir," was responded fore and aft. At this moment a seaman advanced upon the quarter-deck, attended by a young lad (one of the fore-top men) whose pale face and quivering lip betrayed the tremulous agitation of fear. The lieutenant gazed at him for a few seconds with marked contempt and indignation, but all stood silent. The officer turned towards the admiral, and on again looking round, perceived that the lad had fainted, and lay lifeless in the seaman's arms, who gazed upon the bloodless countenance of his charge with a look of anguish and despair. "Carry him below," said the lieutenant, "and let him skulk from his duty; this day must be a day of glory!" The poor fellow seemed unconscious that he was spoken to, but still continued to gaze upon the lad. The officer beckoned to a couple of men, who immediately advanced, and were about to execute his orders, when the seaman put them back with his hand, exclaiming, 'No! she is mine, and we will live or die together!' Oh! lady, what a scene was that! The frown quitted the lieutenant's brow, and a tear trembled in his eye. The generous Howe and his brave companions gathered round, and there was not a heart that did not feel what it was to be beloved. Yes! mine alone was dreary, like the lightning-blasted wreck. We were rapidly approaching the French admiral's ship, the Montague: the main decks fired, and the lower deck followed the example. The noise brought her to her recollection; she gazed wildly on all, and then clinging closer to her lover, sought relief in tears. 'T——,' said his lordship, mildly, 'this must not be—Go, go, my lad; see her safe in the cockpit, and then I know that you will do your duty.' A smile of animation lighted up his agitated face. 'I will! I will!' cried he, God bless your lordship, I will! for I have always done my duty;'—and taking his trembling burthen in his arms, supported her to a place of safety. In a few minutes he was again at his gun, and assisted in pouring the first raking broadside into our opponents stern. Since that time I have served in most of the general actions; and knelt by the side of the hero Nelson, when he resigned himself to the arms of death. But, whether stationed upon deck amidst the blood and slaughter of battle—the shrieks of the wounded, and groans of the dying—or clinging to the shrouds during the tempestuous howling of the storm, while the wild waves were beating over me—whether coasting along the luxuriant shores of the Mediterranean, or surrounded by ice-bergs in the Polar sea,—one thought, one feeling possessed my soul, and that was devoted to the being I adored. Years rolled away; but that deep, strong, deathless passion distance could not subdue, nor old age founder. 'Tis now about seven years since the British troops under Wellington were landed on the Continent. I was employed with a party of seamen on shore in transporting the artillery and erecting batteries. A body of the French attacked one of our detachments, and, after considerable slaughter on both sides, the enemy were compelled to retreat. We were ordered to the field to bring in the wounded and prisoners. Never—never shall I forget that day: the remembrance even now unmans me. Oh, lady! forgive these tears, and pity the anguish of an old man's heart. Day had just began to dawn when we arrived upon the plain, and commenced our search among the bodies, to see if there were any who yet remained lingering in existence. Passing by and over heaps of dead, my progress was suddenly arrested, and every fibre of my heart was racked, on seeing a female sitting by the mangled remains of an English soldier. She was crouched upon the ground, her face resting on her lap, and every feature hid from view. Her long black hair hung in dishevelled flakes about her shoulders, and her garments closed round her person, heavy with the cold night-rains; one hand clasped that of the dead soldier, the other arm was thrown around his head. Every feeling of my soul was roused to exertion—I approached—she raised herself up, and—and—great Heaven! 'twas she—the woman whom I loved! She gazed with sickly horror; and, though greatly altered—though time and sorrow had chased away the bloom of health—though scarce a trace of former beauty remained, those features were too deeply engraven on my memory for me to be mistaken; but she knew me not. I forgot all my wrongs, and rushing forward, clasped her to my breast. Oh, what a moment was that! she made an ineffectual struggle for release, and then fainted in my arms. Some of my shipmates came to the spot, and, turning over the lifeless form before us, my eyes rested on the countenance of him who had once been nay friend. But death disarms resentment; he was beyond my vengeance, and had already been summoned to the tribunal of the Most High. When I had last seen them, affluence, prosperity, and happiness, were the portion of us all. Now—but I cannot, cannot repeat the distressing tale; let it suffice, lady, that she was carried to a place of safety, and every effort used to restore animation, in which we were eventually successful. How shall I describe our meeting, when she recognised me?—it is impossible; I feel it now in every nerve, but to tell you is beyond my power. Through the kindness of a generous officer, I procured her a passage to England, and gave her all that I possessed, with this one request, that she would remain at Plymouth till my return to port. In a few months afterwards we anchored in the Sound, and, as soon as duty would permit, I hastened to obtain leave to go on shore; it was denied me—yes, cruelly denied me. Stung to madness, I did not hesitate; but as soon as night had closed in, slipped down the cables and swam to land. With eager expectation I hurried to the house in which I had requested her to remain. I crossed the threshold unobserved, for all was silent as the grave, and gently ascended the stairs. The room door was partly open, and a faint light glimmered on the table. The curtains of the bed were undrawn, and there—there lay gasping in the last convulsive agonies of nature—Oh, lady! she was dying—I rushed into the room, threw myself by her side, and implored her to live for me. She knew me—yes, she knew me—but at that very instant an officer with an armed party entered the apartment. They had watched me, and I was arrested as a deserter—arrested did I say? Ay! but not till I had stretched one of the insulting rascals at my feet. I was handcuffed, and bayonets were pointed at my breast. Vain was every entreaty for one hour, only one hour. The dying woman raised herself upon her pillow—she stretched forth her hand to mine, manacled as they were—she fell back, and Emma—yes, my Emma was no more. Despair, rage, fury, worked up the fiends within my soul! I struggled to burst my fetters, dashed them at all who approached me; but overcome at length, was borne to the common gaol. I was tried for desertion, and, on account of my resistance, was flogged through the fleet. I had acted improperly as a seaman, but I had done my duty as a man. It was not my intention to desert my ship, but my feelings overpowered me, and I obeyed their dictates. Yet now I felt indignant at my punishment, and took the first opportunity to escape; but whither could I go?—there was no protection for me. One visit, one lonely visit was paid to the grave of her who was now at rest for ever; and I again entered on board the ——, bound to the West India station. I fought in several actions, and lost my arm. But the R* for desertion was still against my name, and though I obtained a pension for my wound, I could obtain none for servitude. I cannot apply to the friends of my youth, for they believe me dead; and who would credit the assertions of a broken-hearted sailor?—No, no: a few-short months, and the voyage of life will be over; then will old Will Jennings be laid in peace by the side of Emma Wentworth, and wait for the last great muster before Him who searches all hearts, and rewards those seamen who have done their duty." Here he ceased, while D—— turned to his wife, whose loud sobs gave witness to the sympathy of her heart; but the agony increased to hysteric convulsions—she sprang hastily on her feet—shrieked, "'Tis he! 'tis William! 'tis my uncle!" and fell upon his neck!—Literary Magnet.
 Founded on facts which actually occurred in Devonshire, a short time after the peace of 1815.
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(For the Mirror.)
Oh! poverty, thou tyrant of the mind, How eager would I shun thy cold embrace, And try some hospitable shore to find! Some welcome refuge; some more happy place.
But ah! the stars shone adverse at my birth, Tho' boyish pleasures all my youth beguil'd, And little thought amidst those scenes of mirth, That I was doom'd to be misfortune's child.
At last the haggard wretch is come; and I, Like some poor hark, toss'd by the mighty wave, Am solitary left, nor have wherewith to fly Her dread embrace, save to man's friend—the grave.
No hope, alas! possesses now my mind, Plung'd in the deepest gulf of penury; No earthly friend, to pity none inclined; To soothe the bitter pang of misery.
'Tis hope that raises us to heaven, While pure affection breathes no other love, And makes to those to whom it's given A something like a paradise above.
Alas! for me no earthly paradise awaits; No true affection nor no friendly tear; Spurn'd at by friends, and scorned at by the great; And all that poverty can bring is here.
Then hail thou grateful visitant, oh death, And stop the troubled ocean of my breast: Lull the rude waves; nor let my parting breath E'er cause a sigh, or break one moment's rest.
Then when my clay-cold form shall bid adieu, Hid in its parent's bosom, kindred earth, Let not the errors e'er appear in view, But turn from them, and only speak his worth.
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THE SKETCH BOOK.
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THE CONVERSATION OF ACTORS.
Actors are rather generally esteemed to be what is commonly called "good company." For our part, we think the companionable qualities of the members of the corps dramatique are much overrated. There are many of them, we know full well, as pleasant and agreeable spirits as any extant; but the great mass of actors are too outrageously professional to please. Their conversation is too much tainted with theatricals—they do not travel off the stage in their discourse—their gossip smacks of the green-room—their jests and good things are, for the most part, extracts from plays—they lack originality—the drama is their world, and they think nothing worthy of argument but men and matters connected with it. They are the weakest of all critics, their observations on characters in plays are hereditary opinions of the corps, which descend as heir looms with the part to its successive representatives. There are, doubtless, some splendid exceptions—we could name several performers, who talk finely on general subjects, who are not confined to the foot-lights in their fancies, who utter jests of the first water, whose sayings are worth hearing, and whose anecdotes are made up of such good materials, and are so well told withal, that our "lungs have crowed like chanticleer" to hear them. Others, we have met with, who are the antipodes of those drama-doating gentlemen whom we have noticed above, who rarely, unless purposely inveigled into it, mention the stage or those who tread it. One highly gifted individual, when alive, enjoyed a discourse on the merits of Molyneux, the small talk of the P.C., or a vivid description of an old-school fight; another has a keen relish for all matters connected with the Great St. Ledger—the state of the odds against the outside fillies for the Oaks—the report of those deep versed in veterinary lore, upon the cough of the favourite for the Derby; you cannot please a certain excellent melo-dramatic actor better than by placing him alongside of an enthusiastic young sailor, who will talk with him about maintops and mizens—sky-scrapers and shrouds—
of gallant ships, Proudly floating o'er the dark blue ocean.
The eternal theme of one old gentleman is his parrot, and another chatters incessantly about his pupils. Some of the singers—the serious order of singers—are as namby-pamby off the stage as they are on it, unless revelling in "sweet sounds;" they are too fond of humming tunes, solfaing, and rehearsing graces in society; they have plenty to sing, but nothing to say for themselves; they chime the quarters like "our grandmother's clock," and at every revolution of the minute index, strike up their favourite tune. This is as bad as being half-smothered in honey, or nearly
Washed to death in fulsome wine.
There is one actor on the stage who is ever attempting to show the possibility of achieving impossibilities; he is one of the most pleasant visionaries in existence; his spirit soars aloft from every-day matters, and delights in shadowy mysteries; a matter-of-fact is a gorgon to him; he abhors the palpable, and doats upon the occult and intangible; he loves to speculate on the doings of those in the dogstar, to discuss on immortal essences, to dispute with the disbeliever on gnomes—a paradox will be the darling of his bosom for a month, and a good chimera be his bedfellow by night and theme by day for a year. He is fickle, and casts off his menial mistress at an hour's notice—his mind never weds any of the strange, fantastic idealities, which he woos for a time so passionately—deep disgust succeeds to the strongest attachment for them—he is as great a rake among the wayward "rebusses of the brain" which fall under his notice as that "wandering melodist—the bee of Hybla"—with the blossoms of spring. He has no affection for the schemes, or "vain imaginations" of other men—no one can ridicule them more smartly—he loves only "flowers of his own gathering"—he places them in his breast, and wears them there with miraculous constancy—flaunts them in the eyes of his friends—woos the applause, the admiration of every one at their charms—and the instant he discovers that another feels a budding fondness for their beauties, he dashes them from him, and abuses them for ever after, sans mercy.—Every Night Book.
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THE WORKS OF CANOVA.
(For the Mirror.)
Canova, while living, was thought to be the first sculptor of the age, and his works are still greatly admired—for their exquisite finishing, and for their near resemblance to real life. They are certainly very attractive, and may be contemplated a considerable time with delight; but they never impose upon the beholder, and never raise in his mind any of those sublime ideas which he invariably experiences while contemplating the works of the ancients, or the modern productions of Michael Angelo Buonarotti. Canova, in fact, though he possessed the grace, the elegance, and the liveliness of the greatest masters of Italy, could never surmount a certain degree of littleness, which failure predominates in most of his works. The calm, tranquil, and dignified pathos of Leonardo di Vinci cannot be traced in Canova's countenances, which rather approach to those represented by Charles le Brun, Eustache le Seur, and other French artists. Though his men were generally deficient in dignity, the faces of his females were always pleasing, notwithstanding
"The sleepy eye, that spoke the melting soul,"
peculiar to most Italian women, is never found in his productions. It does not appear likely that Canova, although his present admirers are very numerous, will be greatly idolized by posterity. Indeed, if we may be allowed to predict, his name, unlike that of his countryman, Buonarotti, will sink into oblivion. He, however, enjoyed a high reputation as an artist while he lived, and his sculpture is now eagerly sought for by the lovers of the fine arts, both in Great Britain, and on the continent.
Canova died at Venice, in the month of October, 1822. His death was heard with extreme regret in Europe, and indeed in all parts of the globe where his works were known.
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ANECDOTES AND RECOLLECTIONS.
Notings, selections, Anecdote and joke: Our recollections; With gravities for graver folk.
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THE COCK AFLOAT IN THE BOWL.
Many attempts have been made to explain why the cock is sacred to Minerva; and his claims to her protection are often founded on an assumed preeminence of wisdom and sagacity. This brings to our mind a story related by a gentleman, late resident in the Netherlands, of a cock in a farm-yard somewhere in Holland, near Rotterdam, whose sagacity saved him from perishing in a flood, occasioned by the bursting of one of the dykes. The water rushing furiously and suddenly into the village, swamped every house to the height of the first story, so that the inhabitants were obliged to mount, and had no communication for awhile, except by boats. The cattle and other animals and many fowls perished. Our friend chanticleer, however, had the adroitness to jump into a large wooden bowl, containing some barley, in which he eat, and quietly floated, till the flood had subsided, having not only a good ship to carry him, but provision on board during his voyage.
Forster's Perennial Calendar.
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The minds of some men are so elevated above the common understanding of their fellow-creatures, that they are by many charged with enthusiasm, and even with madness. When George II. was once expressing his admiration of Wolfe, some one observed that the general was mad. "Oh! he is mad, is he?" said the king with great quickness; "then I wish he would bite some other of my generals."—Thackery's Life of the Earl of Chatham.
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An amateur practitioner wishing upon one occasion, in the court of king's-bench, to convince Lord Ellenborough of his importance, said, "My lord, I sometimes employ myself as a doctor."—"Very likely, sir," said his lordship drily; "but is any body else fool enough to employ you in that capacity?"—Mems., Maxims, and Memoirs.
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"FOUR THIEVES' VINEGAR."
A report of the plague in 1760 having been circulated, Messrs. Chandler and Smith, apothecaries, in Cheapside, had taken in a third partner, (Mr. Newsom,) and while the report prevailed, these gentlemen availed themselves of the popular opinion, and put a written notice in their windows of "Four Thieves' Vinegar sold here." Mr. Ball, an old apothecary, passing by, and observing this, went into the shop. "What," said he, "have you taken in another partner?"—"No."—"Oh! I beg your pardon," replied Ball, "I thought you had by the ticket in your window."—Ibid.
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To show the extreme desire of sailors for fresh animal food, towards the end of a long voyage, we may mention the following circumstance. A Dutch East Indiaman, after beating about for some time in the Indian ocean, became short of provisions. One day, as the crew were scrubbing the deck, a large sea-snake raised itself out of the water, and sprang or crawled aboard. The sailors, who for some time had not tasted any thing fresh, immediately despatched the snake, and, regardless of consequences, cooked and ate it for dinner—Weekly Review.
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NEW SUSPENSION BRIDGE, HAMMERSMITH.
To the many improvements which have already taken place in the neighbourhood of London, another will shortly be added; a suspension-bridge, intended to facilitate the communication between Hammersmith and Kingston, and other parts of Surrey. The clear water-way is 688 feet 8 inches. The suspension towers are 48 feet above the level of the roadway, where they are 22 feet thick. The roadway is slightly curved upwards and is 16 feet above high water, and the extreme length from the back of the piers on shore is 822 feet 8 inches, supporting 688 feet of roadway. There are eight chains, composed of wrought-iron bars, each five inches deep and one thick. Four of these have six bars in each chain; and four have only three, making thirty-six bars, which form a dip in the centre of about 29 feet. From these, vertical rods are suspended, which support the roadway, formed of strong-timbers covered with granite. The width of the carriageway is 20 feet, and footway five feet. The chains pass over the suspension towers, and are secured to the piers on each shore. The suspension towers are of stone, and designed as archways of the Tuscan order. The approaches are provided with octagonal lodges, or toll-houses, with appropriate lamps and parapet walls, terminating with stone pillars, surmounted with ornamental caps. The whole cost of this remarkable object, displaying the great superiority acquired by British artisans in the manufacture of ironwork, is about 80,000l. The advantages to be derived from this bridge in the saving of distance, will be a direct passage from Hammersmith to Barnes, East Sheen, and other parts of Surrey, without going over either Fulham or Kew bridges.
The annexed engraving may be consulted, in illustration of the foregoing remarks, as it is a correct and perfect delineation, having been taken from an original sketch made by our artist on the spot.
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REAPING IN DEVONSHIRE.
As an illustration of a prevailing harvesting custom, peculiar to more counties than one at this season, and at the opening of this month, we subjoin the following letter which appeared in vol. xxxvii. of the Monthly Magazine:—
The reaping and harvesting of the wheat is attended with so heavy an expense, and with practices of so disorderly a nature, as to call for the strongest mark of disapprobation, and their immediate discontinuance, or at least a modification of the pastime after the labours of the day. The wheat being ready to cut down, and amounting from ten to twenty acres; notice is given in the neighbourhood that a reaping is to be performed on a particular day, when, as the farmer may be more or less liked in the village, on the morning of the day appointed a gang, consisting of an indefinite number of men and women assemble at the field, and the reaping commences after breakfast, which is seldom over till between eight and nine o'clock. This company is open for additional hands to drop in at any time before the twelfth hour to partake of the frolic of the day. By eleven or twelve o'clock the ale or cider has so much warmed and elevated their spirits that their noisy jokes and ribaldry are heard to a considerable distance, and often serve to draw auxiliary force within the accustomed time. The dinner, consisting of the best meat and vegetables, is carried into the field between twelve and one o'clock; this is distributed with copious draughts of ale and cider, and by two o'clock the pastime of cutting and binding the wheat is resumed, and continued, without other interruption than the squabbles of the party, until about five o'clock; when what is called the drinkings are taken into the field, and under the shade of a hedge-row, or large tree, the panniers are examined, and buns, cakes, and all such articles are found as the confectionary skill of the farmer's wife could produce for gratifying the appetites of her customary guests at this season. After the drinkings are over, which generally consume from half to three quarters of an hour, and even longer, if such can be spared from the completion of the field, the amusement of the wheat harvest is continued, with such exertions as draw the reaping and binding of the field together with the close of the evening. This done, a small sheaf is bound up, and set upon the top of one of the ridges, when the reapers retiring to a certain distance, each throws his reap-hook at the sheaf, until one more fortunate, or less inebriated, than the rest strikes it down; this achievement is accompanied with the utmost stretch and power of the voices of the company, uttering words very indistinctly, but somewhat to this purpose—we ha in! we ha in! we ha in!—which noise and tumult continue about half an hour, when the company retire to the farmhouse to sup; which being over, large portions of ale and cider enable them to carouse and vociferate until one or two o'clock in the morning.
At the same house, or that of a neighbouring farmer, a similar scene is renewed, beginning between eight and nine o'clock in the morning following, and so continued through the precious season of the wheat harvest in this county. It must be observed that the labourers thus employed in reaping receive no wages; but in lieu thereof they have an invitation to the farmer's house to partake of a harvest frolic, and at Christmas, during the whole of which time, and which seldom continues less than three or four days, the house is kept open night and day to the guests, whose behaviour during the time may be assimilated to the frolics of a bear-garden.
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SPIRIT OF THE PUBLIC JOURNALS.
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THE BULL-FIGHTS OF SPAIN AND PORTUGAL.
The following particulars were communicated to the Gentleman's Magazine of this month by a witness to a recent bull-fight in the city of Lisbon. Speaking without reference to its humane character or moral tendency, the writer remarks that no spectacle in the world can be compared, for interest and effect, to a Spanish bull-fight, every part of which is distinguished for striking parade or alarming danger.
The grand sweep of the amphitheatre in Cadiz, Seville, or Madrid, crowded with a gay and variegated mass of eager and shouting spectators, and garnished at distances with boxes for the judges, the court, or the music—the immense area in which the combats take place, occupied with the picadors in silk jackets, on horses richly caparisoned, and with the light skipping and elastic bandarilleros, carrying their gaudy silk flags to provoke the rage and to elude the attack of the bull, form of themselves a fine sight before the combat begins. When the door of the den which encloses the bull is opened, and the noble animal bursts in wildly upon this, to him, novel scene—his eyes glaring with fury—when he makes a trot or a gallop round the ring, receiving from each horseman as he passes a prick from a lance, which enrages him still more—when, meditating vengeance, he rushes on his adversaries, and scatters both horsemen and bandarilleros, by his onset, ripping up and casting the horses on the ground, and causing the bandarilleros to leap over the railing among the spectators—or when, after a defeated effort or a successful attack, he stands majestically in the middle of the area, scraping up the sand with his hoof, foaming at the mouth, and quivering in every fibre with rage, agony, or indignation, looking towards his adversaries, and meditating a fatal rush—the sight combines every element of interest and agitation which can be found in contempt of danger, in surprising boldness, and great animal force intensely excited. The horns of the Spanish bull are always sharp, and never covered. An animal of sufficient power and spirit to command popular applause frequently kills five or six horses, the riders taking care to fall over on the side most distant from the enemy, and being instantly relieved from their perilous situation by the bandarilleros, who attract his attention: and the bull himself is always killed in the ring by the matador, who enters in on foot with his bright flag in the left hand, and his sword in the right, and who, standing before the enraged animal waiting the favourable moment when he bends his head to toss him on his horns, plunges his sword into his neck or spine in such a fatal manner that he frequently falls instantaneously as if struck by lightning. This last operation is as dangerous as it is dexterous. At the moment in which the matador hits the bull, the pointed horn must be within an inch or two of his heart, and if he were to fail he must himself be the victim. When he succeeds in levelling to the ground with a single stroke his furious and irresistible enemy, the music strikes up, the applauses of the amphitheatre are showered upon the conqueror, he stalks proudly round the area, strewed with dead horses, and reddened with blood, bowing first to the judges of the fight, and then to the spectators, and leaves the place amid enthusiastic vivas for his successful audacity. The field of slaughter is then cleared by a yoke of horses, richly decorated with plumes on their heads and ribands on their manes, to which the dead bull or horses are attached, and by which they are dragged out at a gallop. That no part of the amusement may want its appropriate parade, this operation goes on amid the sound of a trumpet, or the playing of a military band. The horsemen are then remounted anew, and enter on fresh steeds—the door of the den is again opened—another furious animal is let loose on the possessors of the ring, till ten or twelve are thus sacrificed.
The bull-fights in Lisbon are a very inferior species of amusement to this, though much better than I was led to anticipate. Here the bulls are generally not so strong or so spirited as the Spanish breed. In the morning of the sport, the tips of their horns, instead of being left sharp, are covered with cork and leather. None but one horseman appeared in the ring at a time—no havoc was of course made among the horses; bulls were introduced and baited without being killed, and the matador, though he sometimes displays the same dexterity, never encounters the same danger as in Spain. In Lisbon the most interesting part of the sport consists in an operation which could not be practised in Spain, and is conducted by performers who are unknown where bull-fighting is more sanguinary. These performers are what they call here homens de furcado, or men of the fork; so denominated from their bearing a fork with which they push or strike the head of the bull, when he throws down a man or a horse. After the bull, not destined to be killed, has afforded amusement enough, these men go up before him, one of them trying to get in between his horns, or to cling to his neck, till the rest surround, master him, and lead him out of the area. The man of the fork, who gets between the bull's horns, is sometimes tossed in the air or dashed to the ground, and in this one of the chief dangers of the fight consists. On Sunday one of them was dashed down so violently as to be carried out of the ring in a state of insensibility. Only four bulls were killed out of the twelve exhibited. The rest being reserved for future sport, were either dragged out of the ring in the manner above described, or, when supposed to be too strong to be mastered by the men of the fork, were tamely driven out among a flock of oxen introduced into the area as a decoy. Another peculiarity of the Lisbon bull-fights is the presence of a buffoon on horseback called the Neto, who first enters the ring to take the commands of the Inspector, and occasionally bears the shock of the bull, to the no small diversion of the lower class of spectators. The Spanish bull-fight is too serious an affair for a buffoon: it is a tragedy, and not a farce.
From these few points of comparison, it is evident that the Spanish exhibition is a much more splendid and interesting spectacle than that of Portugal, and that there is nearly as much difference as between a field of battle and the sham fight of a review. Probably the Portuguese sport has danger enough to excite common interest, and more than enough to be a popular diversion. The place where these entertainments are given at Lisbon, is a large octagon amphitheatre called the Saletre, near the public walk behind the Rocio. It has what is called a pit, into which the bull sometimes, but rarely, jumps, and on one side two tier of boxes, and is capable of containing about 4,000 or 5,000 spectators. The amusements are always exhibited on Sundays, and are generally attended with great crowds. On Sunday last every part of the amphitheatre was full, and the people betrayed such extravagant marks of pleasure as I could not have expected, from their usual sedate and dull habits.
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THE SELECTOR; AND LITERARY NOTICES OF NEW WORKS.
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A TUCUMANESE SCHOOLMASTER.
The following day, July the 5th, we pursued our journey, intending to breakfast at a village very pleasantly situated, called Vinara, six leagues from the river of Santiago, and remarkable for the appearance of industry which it presented. No one here seemed to live in idleness; the women, even while gazing at our carriage, were spinning away at the same time. I observed too, that here the cochineal plant spread a broader leaf, and flourished with greater luxuriance in the gardens and hedge-rows of the cottages around, than at any place I had before visited. "Industry is the first step to improvement, and education follows hard upon it," thought I, as on foot, attracted by a busy hum of voices, we made our way through an intervening copse towards the spot whence it seemed to come. A fig-tree, the superincumbent branches of which shaded a wide circuit of ground, arrested our progress; and looking through an opening among the large green leaves, we espied the village pedagogue, elevated on his authoritative seat, which was attached to the trunk of the tree. He was reading a lecture on the heads of his scholars—a phrenological dissertation, if one might judge from its effects, with a wand long enough to bump the caput of the most remote offender. I began to think myself in some European district, certainly not from the late samples I had seen of the country, in the heart of the Columbian continent. There, however, I was in reality, and in the fine province of Tucuman, with nearly half the globe's surface between Europe and myself. The picture was a very striking one occurring with these reflections. The beautiful vegetable-roofed school-room, too, struck my fancy. What a delightful natural study!—the cool broad leaves overarching it, and heightening the interest of the scene. The striplings were seated, without regular order, on the grass, under a rotunda of this magnificent foliage. Some were cross-legged, bawling Ba, Be, Bi; others, with their knees for a table, seemed engraving rather than writing, upon a wooden tablet, the size of a common slate. One or two, who appeared to be more advanced in their studies, were furnished with a copy-book, an expensive article in that place. Some were busy at arithmetic, while, every moment, whack went the rod upon the crown of the idler or yawner.
To us the sight was curious; we had seen none lately but what were the reverse of carefully educated beings. But we had little time to think, for a laugh burst forth at their perceiving us, which naturally attracted the notice of the pedagogue, who took up his crutch to go and examine the cause, for he was a cripple. We immediately came forward to the only opening among the rich verdure, and meeting him, announced ourselves as the intruders. He was as much surprised as his pupils had been. His magisterial brow, for he was alcade as well as schoolmaster, relaxed into a civil smile. He invited us to walk in, and we accepted his invitation, and entertained ourselves with examining the progress made by his boys in their studies, and in replies to his numerous questions put respecting the battle of Ayacucho, the death of Olaneta, and the termination of the war in Peru. He asked if it was true, that the English were coming to settle in the country, with many similar questions. In answer to our inquiries about himself, he said he was born on the spot, lame as he was, and had never quitted it; he had given his mind to study, but his profession was (as it is everywhere else) "muy pobre;" that the price of a school education there, was from two to four rials a month, according to what the pupil was taught. Just at that moment a boy came up with a pen to be mended. To my surprise, he drew from his old pair of Spanish blues (open at the knees, with a silver buckle appended), what we denominate a Flemish or gardener's knife, and proceeded, with the help of a pair of cracked spectacles, to nib the pen.
"What," said I, "Viejo (old boy), have you no better instrument than that to work with?"
"Nada mas Senor, yo soy muy pobre Senor." (Nothing more, sir, I am very poor.)
"Well," I replied, "I think I can help you to something better than that for the convenience of your calling," and I gave him an old four-bladed English knife, which I happened to have in my pocket at the time. On looking at it, he exclaimed in astonishment, "Que quatro cuchillos en uno!" (what, four blades in one knife!) Ha had never beheld such a machine in his life. I told him it was of English manufacture. "Caramba!" he replied, "los Ingleses son hombres muy habiles;" (the English are very clever.) I told him it was at his service. "Por nada," (for nothing) I answered. He immediately crossed himself, exclaiming "Gracias a Dios," (thank God). He could not have shown more satisfaction had it been a ton of gold or a lottery-ticket of twenty thousand sterling. His urchins crowded around him to see his treasure, and to get a holiday from him on the strength of his satisfaction, which we made him half promise, and left him.—Andrews' Journal from Buenos Ayres.
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WARMING AND VENTILATING HOUSES.
Excellent fuel is so cheap in Britain, owing to the profusion with which beds of rich coal are scattered among the mineral treasures of this favoured portion of the earth, that a careless expenditure has arisen; which, however, instead of securing the comfort and health that might be expected, has led to plans of warming that often prove destructive to both. In cold countries, where fuel is more scarce, as in the north of continental Europe, and where, to retain and preserve the heat once obtained, the inhabitants use thick walls, double windows, close joinings, and close stoves or fire-places, which have no communication with the apartments, but draw their supply of air from without, that the temperate air of the room may not be wasted,—these means, when sufficient ventilation is added, prove very favourable to health, by giving a uniform and temperate warmth, instead of extremes and fluctuations. But in England, the apartments, with their open chimnies, may be compared to great aerial funnels, constantly pouring out their warm air through a large opening, and constantly requiring to be replenished; and where, from the irregularity of the supply or of the discharge, the temperature is constantly fluctuating.
By the close stove and apartment fuel is saved to a great extent—they also produce a uniformity of temperature; first, as regards the different parts of the room, so that the occupiers may sit anywhere; and secondly, as regards the different times of the day; for the stove once heated in the morning, often suffices to maintain a steady warmth until night; the heat can be carried to any required degree, and ventilation is easily effected as desired. * * *
Consumption is the disease which carries off a fifth or more of the persons born in Britain, owing in part, no doubt, to the changeableness of the climate, but much more to the faulty modes of warming and ventilating the houses. To judge of the influence of temperature in producing this disease, we may consider—that miners who live under ground, and are always, therefore, in the same temperature, are strangers to it; while their brothers and relations, exposed to the vicissitudes of the weather above, fall victims—that butchers and others who live almost constantly in the open air, and are hardened by the exposure, enjoy nearly equal immunity—that consumption is hardly known in Russia, where close stoves and houses preserve a uniform temperature—and that in all countries and situations, whether tropical, temperate, or polar, the frequency of the disease bears relation to the frequency of change. We may here remark, also, that it is not consumption alone which springs from changes of temperature, but a great proportion of acute diseases, and particularly of our common winter diseases. In how many cases has the invalid to remark, that if he had not taken cold in such a place, or on such an occasion, he might yet have been well. * * *
The following considerations present themselves in this place.—Small rooms in winter are more dangerous to health than large ones, because the cold air, entering towards the fire by the doors or windows, reaches persons before it can be tempered by mixing with the warmer air of the room—Stoves in halls and staircases are useful, because they warm the air before it enters the rooms; and they prevent the hurtful chills often felt on passing through a cold staircase from one warm room to another. It is important to admit no more cold air into the house than is just required for the fires, and for ventilation; hence there is great error in the common practice of leaving all the chimneys that are not in use, quite open; for each admits as much air as a hole in the wall would do, or a pane deficient in a window. Perhaps the best mode of admitting air to feed the fires is through tubes, leading directly from the outer air to the fire-place, and provided with what are called throttle-valves, for the regulation of the quantity; or the fresh air admitted by tubes may be made first to spread in the room, having been warmed during its passage inwards, by coming near the fire.—In a perfectly close apartment, ventilation must be expressly provided for by an opening near the ceiling, to allow the impure air rising from the respiration of the company to pass away at once; but with an open fire, the purpose is effected by the frequent change of the whole air of the room which that construction occasions.
With a view to have the most perfect security against cold blasts and fluctuation of temperature in rooms intended for invalids, and still to retain the so much valued appearance of the open fire, a glazed frame or window may be placed at the entrance of the chimney, so as completely to prevent the passage of air from the room to the fire. The close room will then be warmed by the fire through the glass, as a green-house is warmed by the rays of the sun. It is true, that the heat of combustion does not pass through glass so readily as the heat of the sun; but the difference is not important. The glass of such a window must, of course, be divided into small panes, and supported by a metallic frame work; and there must be a flap or door in the frame work, for the purpose of admitting the fuel and stirring the fire. Air must be supplied to the fire as described above, by a tube leading directly from the external atmosphere. The ventilation of the room may be effected by an opening into the chimney near the ceiling; and the temperature may be regulated with great precision by a valve placed in this opening, and made to obey the dilatation and contraction of a piece of wire affixed to it, the exact length of which at any time will depend on the temperature of the room. The author first imagined such an arrangement of rooms for the winter residence of a person who was threatened with consumption; and the happy issue of the case, and of others treated on similar principles, has led him to doubt, whether many of the patients with incipient consumption, who are usually sent to warmer climates, and who die there after hardships on the journey, and mental distress from the banishment sufficient to shake even strong health, might not be saved, by judicious treatment in properly warmed and ventilated apartments, under their own roofs, and in the midst of affectionate kindred.
Arnott's Elements of Physics.
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LORD ORFORD'S DESCRIPTION OF THE DEATH OF GENERAL WOLFE.
The rapidity with which our arms had prevailed in every quarter of the globe, made us presume that Canada could not fail of being added to our acquisitions; and, however arduously won, it would have sunk in value if the transient cloud that overcast the dawn of this glory had not made it burst forth with redoubled lustre. The incidents of dramatic fiction could not be conducted with more address to lead an audience from despondency to sudden exultation, than accident prepared to excite the passions of a whole people. They despaired—they triumphed—and they wept—for Wolfe had fallen in the hour of victory! Joy, grief, curiosity, astonishment were painted in every countenance; the more they inquired, the higher their admiration rose. Not an incident but was heroic and affecting! Wolfe between persuasion of the impracticability, unwillingness to leave any attempt untried that could be proposed, and weariness and anxiety of mind and body, had determined to make one last effort above the town. He embarked his forces at one in the morning, and passed the French sentinels in silence that were posted along the shore. The current carried them beyond the destined spot. They found themselves at the foot of a precipice, esteemed so impracticable, that only a slight guard of one hundred and fifty men defended it. Had there been a path, the night was too dark to discover it. The troops, whom nothing could discourage, for these difficulties could not, pulled themselves and one another up by stumps and boughs of trees. The guard hearing a rustling, fired down the precipice at random, as our men did up into the air; but, terrified by the strangeness of the attempt, the French picquet fled—all but the captain, who, though wounded, would not accept quarter, but fired at one of our officers at the head of five hundred men. This, as he staked but a single life, was thought such an unfair war, that, instead of honouring his desperate valour, our men, to punish him, cut off his croix de St. Louis before they sent him to the hospital. Two of our officers, however, signed a certificate of his courage, lest the French should punish him as corrupted—our enterprises, unless facilitated by corruption, being deemed impossible to have taken place. Day-break discovered our forces in possession of the eminence. Montcalm could not credit it when reported to him—but it was too late to doubt, when nothing but a battle could save the town. Even then he held our attempt so desperate, that being shown the position of the English, he said, "Oui, je les vois ou ils ne doivent pas etre." Forced to quit his intrenchments, he said, "S'il faut done combattre, je vais les ecraser." He prepared for engagement, after lining the bushes with detachments of Indians. Our men according to orders, reserved their fire with a patience and tranquillity equal to the resolution they had exerted in clambering the precipice—but when they gave it, it took place with such terrible slaughter of the enemy, that half an hour decided the day. The French fled precipitately, and Montcalm, endeavouring to rally them, was killed on the spot. General Monckton was wounded early, and obliged to retire. The fall of Wolfe was noble indeed. He received a wound in the head, but covered it from his soldiers with his handkerchief. A second ball struck him in the belly, that too he dissembled. A third hitting him in the breast, he sunk under the anguish, and was carried behind the ranks. Yet, as fast as life ebbed out, his whole anxiety centred on the fortune of the day. He begged to be borne nearer to the action; but his sight being dimmed by the approach of death, he entreated to be told what they who supported him saw; he was answered that the enemy gave ground. He eagerly repeated the question, heard the enemy was totally routed, cried, "I am satisfied!"—and expired—Thackeray's Life of the Earl of Chatham.
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SYRIAN LOOKING GLASSES.
The Damascus blades are the handsomest and best of all Syria; and it is curious to observe their manner of burnishing them. This operation is performed before tempering, and they have for this purpose a small piece of wood, in which is fixed an iron, which they run up and down the blade, and thus clear off all inequalities, as a plane does to wood: they then temper and polish it. This polish is so highly finished, that when any one wants to arrange his turban, he uses his sword for a looking-glass. As to its temper it is perfect, and I have nowhere seen swords that cut so excellently. There are made at Damascus and in the adjoining country mirrors of steel, that magnify objects like burning-glasses. I have seen some that, when exposed to the sun, have reflected the heat so strongly as to set fire to a plant fifteen or sixteen feet distant!—Broquiere's Travels to Jerusalem in 1432.
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A young Australian, on being once asked his opinion of a splendid shop on Ludgate-hill, replied, in a disappointed tone, "It is not equal to Big Cooper's," (a store-shop in Sidney,) while Mrs. Rickards' Fashionable Repository is believed to be unrivalled, even in Bond-street. Some of them also contrive to find out that the English cows give less milk and butter than the Australian, and the choicest Newmarket racers possess less beauty and swiftness than Junius, Modus, Currency Lass, and others of Australian turf pedigree; nay, even a young girl, when asked how she would like to go to England, replied with great naivete, "I should be afraid to go, from the number of thieves there," doubtless conceiving England to be a downright hive of such, that threw off its annual swarms to people the wilds of this colony. Nay, the very miserable looking trees that cast their annual coats of bark, and present to the eye of a raw European the appearance of being actually dead, I have heard praised as objects of incomparable beauty! and I myself, so powerful is habit, begin to look upon them pleasurably. Our ideas of beauty are, in truth, less referrable to a natural than an artificial standard, varying in every country according to what the eye has been habituated to, and fashion prescribes.—Cunningham's Two Years in New South Wales.
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The term melancholia is applied to insanity, when attended with depression of spirits, arising commonly from some supposed impending evil; but sometimes it takes place without any such error of judgment, and is altogether unaccountable. As far as I have seen, this depression of spirits is in no wise essentially connected with, far less dependent upon, bodily weakness, as its cause. On the contrary, you will often find such patients to be of full habit, and complaining of throbbing headach, with flushing of the face, a full and strong pulse, though sometimes the pulse is preternaturally slow; the tongue is often white and dry, as in inflammation in general. These symptoms, considered in themselves, would call for antiphlogistic measures, such as bleeding and purging; and these are not at all the less necessary because the patient is in a low and desponding state of mind. In short, I know of no difference in the medical treatment of mania and melancholia, merely as such; you must look to the state of vascular action, both local and general, in order to lay down a proper plan of cure.
Hypochondriasis is a still slighter form of mental derangement, and which is characterized by a preposterous anxiety and solicitude with regard to the patient's own health, which in these cases is often little if at all disturbed, with the exception of occasional uneasiness at the stomach, arising from flatulency and other effects of indigestion. This disorder in the state of the digestive function, is generally considered by the patient as the real and primary disease, though 99 times in 100 it is merely secondary, the result of torpor of the alimentary canal altogether. This torpor is the consequence of an oppressed condition of brain, proceeding, for the most part, from increased arterial action in this organ. Thus the effect is taken for the cause, and a treatment directed in conformity with this mistaken notion. Happily, the practice usually pursued on those occasions, and which is directed to the state of the stomach and intestinal canal, is, as far as it goes, beneficial to the primary disease; for occasional purging, whether with the blue pill or Plummer's pill, and the use of a simple and abstemious mode of living, are as well calculated to relieve affections of the brain, as those of the stomach. But the fault of such a mistaken view of the subject is, that the treatment is confined too exclusively to one organ, and that the one not primarily affected; to the neglect of other means that may be as much or more required for the relief of the head. Where, for example, the patient complains of throbbing headach, with other marks of increased arterial action in and about the brain, it is dangerous to rely solely upon cathartics, and to neglect bleeding, a neglect, which, I have more than once seen reason to believe, has been the occasion of fatal apoplexy ensuing.
The precise difference in the condition of the brain, in the three forms of insanity now mentioned, is not at all known. Dissection hitherto has not thrown any light upon the subject; nor is it probable that it will do so hereafter. The derangement of intellect in all of them, and the mutual convertibility of one into the other, prove that there is no essential or fundamental difference between them; and the same is true with regard to their medical treatment. The moral management of the patient calls for nicer discrimination, and requires much penetration and judgment on the part of the practitioner, as well as extensive experience in mental disorders altogether—Clutterbuck's Lectures on the Nervous System.
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"I am but a Gatherer and disposer of other men's stuff."—Wotton.
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A celebrated comedian dining at a tavern in the neighbourhood of Covent-garden, after asking the waiter several times for a glass of water without obtaining it, rang the bell violently, and swore "He would knock his eye out, if he did not immediately bring some." A gentleman present remonstrated, and said, "He would be less likely of getting it, if he did so." "Oh dear, no, sir; for if you take eye (i) from waiter, you will get water directly."
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Closterman painted the duke and duchess of Marlborough, and all their children, in one picture. The duke was represented on horseback; a position which formed the subject of so many disputes with the duchess, that the duke said, "It has given me more trouble to reconcile my wife to you, than to fight a battle."
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During the time that his late majesty George III. was indisposed at Windsor, it was frequently his custom to amuse himself with a game of cards. On one occasion, while playing at picquet with Dr. Keate, one of his physicians, the doctor was about to lay down his hand, saying, as he wanted but twelve of being out, he had won the game; for, added he, "I have a quatorze of tens."—The king bade him keep his cards. Tens were good for nothing just then; "for," said his majesty, looking significantly at Dr. Keate, and laying down four knaves, "Here are my four physicians."
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A married lady, alluding in conversation to the 148th Psalm, observed, that while "young men and maidens, old men and children," were expressly mentioned, not a word was said about married women. An old clergyman, whom she was addressing, assured her that they had not been omitted, and that she would find them included in one of the preceding verses under the description of vapours and storm.
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