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THE MIRROR OF LITERATURE, AMUSEMENT, AND INSTRUCTION.
VOL. X, NO. 279.] SATURDAY, OCTOBER 20, 1827. [PRICE 2d.
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On the borders of Ashdown Forest, in the county of Sussex, stands the above picturesque ruin of Brambletye House, whose lettered fame may be dated from the publication of Mr. Smith's novel of that name, in January, 1826. The ruin has since attracted scores of tourists, as we were, on our recent visit, informed by the occupier of the adjoining farm-house; which circumstance coupled with the high literary success of Mr. Smith's novel, has induced us to select Brambletye House for the illustration of our present number.
Brambletye, or, as it is termed in Doomsday Book, Brambertie House, after the conquest, became the property of the Earl of Mortain and Cornwall, forming part of the barony then conferred upon him, and subsequently denominated the honour of the eagle. Passing into possession of the Andehams, Saint Clares, and several others, it came into the occupation of the Comptons, towards the beginning of the seventeenth century; and from the arms of that family impaling those of Spencer, still remaining over the principal entrance, with the date 1631 in a lozenge, it is conjectured that the old moated edifice (represented in the annexed vignette) which had hitherto been the residence of the proprietors, was abandoned in the reign of James I., by Sir Henry Compton, who built the extensive and solid baronial mansion, commonly known by the name of Brambletye House.
"From their undaunted courage and inflexible loyalty to the Stuarts," says the novelist, "the Comptons had been heavy sufferers, both in purse and person, during the eventful progress of the civil wars. The Earl of Northampton, the head of the family, and nephew to Sir Henry, the presumed builder of Brambletye, had four sons, officers under him, whereof three charged in the field at the battle of Hopton Heath, and the eldest, Lord Compton, was wounded. The Earl himself, refusing to take quarter from the rascally Roundheads, as he indignantly termed them, even when their swords were at his throat, was put to death in the same battle; and the successor to his title, with one of his brothers, finally accompanied the royal family in their exile. Sir John Compton, a branch of this family, having preserved much of his property from the committee of sequestration, displayed rather more splendour than fell to the lot of most of the cavaliers who took an equally conspicuous part against the parliament armies. Although never capable of any regular defence, yet the place being hastily fortified, refused the summons of the parliamentarian colonel, Okey, by whom it Was invested; but it was speedily taken, when sad havoc was committed by the soldiery, all the armorial bearings, and every symbol of rank and gentility, being wantonly mutilated or destroyed."
In the time of the commonwealth, Brambletye was the focus of many a cavalier conspiracy. "From its not being a place of any strength or notice, it was imagined that Brambletye might better escape the keen and jealous watchfulness, which kept the protector's eye ever fixed upon the strong holds and defensible mansions of the nobility and gentry; while its proximity to the metropolis, combined with the seclusion of its situation, adapted it to any enterprize which required at the same time secrecy, and an easy communication with the metropolis."
In the novel just quoted, which is altogether a pleasant assemblage of historical facts, aided by the imaginative garniture of the author, the denouement is brought about by the explosion of a gunpowder vault which destroyed part of the mansion; and on the marriage of his hero and heroine Brambletye House was abandoned to its fate; "and the time that has intervened since its desertion," says our author, "combining with the casualty and violence by which it was originally shattered and dismantled, has reduced it to its present condition of a desolate and forlorn ruin."
A visit to Brambletye was the immediate object of our journey, and though a distance of thirty-three miles, we considered ourselves amply requited by the pensive interest of the scene and its crowded associations. In our childhood we had been accustomed to clamber its ruins and tottering staircases with delight, not to say triumph; heedless as we then were of the historical interest attached to them. After a lapse of a score and —— years, the whole scene had become doubly attractive. A new road had been formed from East Grinstead to Forest Row, from which a pleasant lane wound off to Brambletye. We are at a loss to describe our emotions as we approached the ruin. It was altogether a little struggle of human suffering. Within two hundred years the mansion had been erected, and by turns became the seat of baronial splendour and of civil feuds,—of the best and basest feelings of mankind;—the loyalty and hospitality of cavaliers; the fanatic outrages of Roundheads; and ultimately of wanton desolation! The gate through which Colonel Lilburne and his men entered, was blocked up with a hurdle; and the yard where his forces were marshalled was covered with high flourishing grass; the towers had almost become mere shells, but the vaulted passages, once stored with luxuries and weapons, still retained much of their original freshness. What a contrast did these few wrecks of turbulent times present with the peaceful scene by which they were surrounded, viz. a farm and two water-mills—on one side displaying the stormy conflict of man's passion and petty desolation—and on the other, the humble attributes of cheerful industry. We strove to repress our feelings as we entered the principal porch, where by an assemblage of names of visiters scribbled on the walls, and not unknown to us, we learnt that, we were not the first to sympathize with the fate of Brambletye!
Within these few years, through a sort of barbarous disregard for their associations, the lodge and the greater part of the wall represented in our engraving, has been pulled down! and the moated house has lately shared the same fate—for the sake of their materials—cupidity in which we rejoiced to hear the destroyers were disappointed—their intrinsic worth not being equal to the labour of removing them: the work of destruction would, however, have extended to the whole of the ruins had not some guardian hand interfered. It will be seen that the moated house was furnished with a ponderous drawbridge and other fortifying resources; from the licentious character of its founders it was consequently haunted many years before its removal.
In East Grinstead we learned that the Comptons were a noble family, and traditions of their hospitality are current amongst the oldest inhabitants of that town.
 For the loan of the drawing (made in 1780), whence the first engraving is copied, we are indebted to the kindness of a gentleman of East Grinstead; and for the sketch of the latter to an affectionate relative.
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Imitated from the German of Theodore Korner.
(For the Mirror.)
Father, in mercy hear A youthful warrior's prayer. Thundering cannons are roaring around me: Carnage and death, and destruction surround me; God of eternal power. Guide me in this dread hour! Guide me in this dread hour God of eternal power! Lead me, base Tyranny manfully braving, Onwards to where Freedom's banner is waving— To death—or victory; I bow to thy decree! I bow to thy decree, In death or victory! 'Mid the loud din of the battle's commotion, When Nature smiles, or when storms rend the ocean, Lord of the brave and just In thee I'll put my trust! In thee I'll put my trust, Lord of the brave and just! On thee, the fountain of goodness relying, Whatever ills may come—living and dying I will thy praise proclaim, Blest be thy holy name. Blest be thy holy name, I will thy praise proclaim, 'Tis not for worldly ends we're contending, Liberty's sacred cause we're defending, And by thy might on high, We'll conquer—or we'll die! We'll conquer—or we'll die By the great God on High. When life's red stream from my bosom is swelling, And the last sigh on my faint lip is dwelling, Then Lord in mercy hear A youthful warrior's prayer!
 See "Select Biography," page 199, present Volume of the MIRROR.
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ENGLAND IN 827, 1827, 2827.
(For the Mirror.)
One thousand years have now elapsed since Egbert laid the foundation of England's glory, by uniting the kingdoms of the heptarchy. What was England then? what is it now? what will it be in 2827?
In 827, how confined her empire, how narrow her limits, how few her resources; the lord and his vassals the only classes of society. In 1827, she may exclaim with the Spanish Philip, "The sun never sets upon my dominions." How difficult to mention the bounds of her empire, or to calculate the vastness of her resources! and still more difficult task to enumerate the gradations of society which modern refinement has produced. Where will this extended sway, this power, these resources, and these refinements be in 2827?
"Oh! for the glance of prophet's eye, To scan thy depths, futurity."
Judging by the fate of nations, they will have passed away like a morning cloud. Look at the fame of Nineveh levelled in the dust. Search for the site of Babylon, with its walls and gates, its hanging gardens and terraces! Contemplate the ghost of the enlightened Athens, stalking through the ruins of her Parthenon, her Athenaeum, or Acropolis. Examine the shadow of power which now remains to the mighty Rome, the empress of the world. Even so will it be with England; ere ten centuries have rolled away, her sun-like splendour will illume a western world. Our stately palaces and venerable cathedrals, our public edifices and manufactories, our paintings and sculpture, will be fruitful subjects of conjecture and controversy to the then learned. And a fragment of a pillar from St. Paul's, or a mutilated statue from Westminster, will be as valuable to them as a column from the Temple of Belus, or a broken cornice from the Temple of Theseus, is now to us!
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(For the Mirror.)
Hark to the robin—whistling clear— The requiem of the dying year— Amidst the garden bower. He quits his native forest shade, Ere ruin stern hath there display'd Its desolating power.
He sings—but not the song of love— No,—that is for the quick'ning grove— The brightly budding tree. And tho' we listen and rejoice; In melody that sweet-ton'd voice Implores our charity.
The birds of passage take their flight To other lands—of warmth and light— Where orient breezes blow. While here the little red-breast stays, And sweetly warbles out his lays, Amidst the chilling snow.
When the keen North congeals the stream That sparkled in the summer-beam— Chink—chink—the Robin comes. His near approach proclaims a dearth Of food upon the ice-bound earth;— He whistles for our crumbs.
But, like the child of want, he hails Too oft where avarice prevails— Devoid of charity;— Where hearts 'neath rich-clad bosoms glow, Yet never feel the inspiring throe Of tender sympathy.
Tho' pleas'd with wildly-warbled song, The minstrel's life will they prolong With food and shelter warm? No,—see, to shun the cruel snare, Again he wings the frozen air, And dies amidst the storm.
How sweeter far it were to see The bird familiar, fond, and free, With confidence intrude;— To see him to the table come, And hear him sing o'er ev'ry crumb A song of gratitude.
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BUYING AND SELLING THE DEVIL.
(For the Mirror.)
"Every thing may be had for money," is an old remark, and perhaps no less true.
There have been also proverbial sayings of buying and selling the devil; but that such a traffic was actually ever negociated will appear incredible. Blount's "Law Dictionary," under Conventio, gives an instance of a sale; it is extracted from the court rolls of the manor of Hatfield, near the isle of Axholme, county of York, where a curious gentleman searched for it and found it regularly entered. There then followeth an English translation for the benefit of those who do not understand the original language.
"Curia tenta apud Hatfield die Mercurii Prov post Festum. Anno II Edw. III."
Robert de Roderham appeared against John de Ithon, for that he had not kept the agreement made between them, and therefore complains, that on a certain day and year, at Thorne, there was an agreement between the aforesaid Robert and John, whereby the said John sold to the said Robert the devil, bound in a certain bond, for threepence farthing; and thereupon the said Robert delivered to the said John one farthing as earnest-money, by which the property of the said devil rested in the person of the said Robert, to have livery of the said devil on the fourth day next following, at which day the said Robert came to the aforementioned John, and asked livery of the said devil, according to the agreement between them made. But the said John refused to deliver the said devil, nor has he yet done it, &c. to the grievous damage of the said Robert to the amount of sixty shillings; and he has therefore brought his suit, &c.
The said John came, &c., and did not deny the said agreement; and because it appeared to the court that such a suit ought not to subsist among Christians, the aforesaid parties are therefore adjourned to the infernal regions, there to hear their judgment; and both parties were amerced, &c.—by William de Scargell Snesclal.
The above is an exact translation of the original Latin; and if this is inserted in your entertaining work, I will make inquiries respecting the proceedings.
 Notwithstanding our correspondent's equivocal title to this article, we beg to assure our readers, who may suspect us of diablerie, that we are not a party to the purchase or sale. Could an ejectment in this case be effected by common law?
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PREVENTION OF EFFLUVIUM.
(To the Editor of the Mirror.)
Sir,—The choruret of lime is recommended for preventing bad smells from water-closets, &c. Can any of your correspondents oblige me and the public by communicating the least expensive method of preparing it ready for use, and also to state the proper quantity to be used?
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(A CASTLE BAYNARD LYRIC.)
(For the Mirror.)
My peace is fled—I cannot rest,— The tale I tell most true is; My heart's been stolen from my breast, By lovely Nancy Lewis.
Fair is the blossom of the thorn, And bright the morning dew is; But sweeter than the dewy morn The smiles of Nancy Lewis.
The eye that's sparkling black I love, Ay, more than that which blue is; And thine are like two stars above, And sloe black—Nancy Lewis.
Alas! alas! their power I feel; My bosom pierced right through is: In pity, then, my bosom heal, My charming Nancy Lewis.
Oh! bless me with thy heaven of charms, And take a heart that true is, While circling life my bosom warms In thine dear Nancy Lewis.
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A MOUNTAIN STORY.
In one of the most picturesque parts of the western Highlands of Scotland stands an inn, which is much frequented by travellers. This inn itself adds considerably to the beauty of the landscape. It was formerly a manor-house; and the sedate grandeur of its appearance is in such good keeping with the scenes in its neighbourhood, and so little in accordance with its present appropriation, that travellers more commonly stop at the gate to inquire the way to the inn, than drive up at once through the green field which is spread before its windows, and its fine flight of stone steps. Very few dwellings are to be seen from it; and those few are mere cottages, chiefly inhabited by the fishermen of the loch. One of these cottages is my dwelling. It stands so near to the inn, that I can observe all that goes forward there; but it is so over-shadowed and hidden by trees, that I doubt not the greater proportion of the visiters to the inn are quite unaware that such a cottage is in existence; and of the thousand sketches which artists and amateurs have carried away with them, perhaps not one bears any trace of the lowly chimneys, or the humble porch of my dwelling.
On one fine evening in the month of August, seven years ago, I was depositing my watering-pot in the tool-house, when I observed a gig drive up to the inn; it contained a young lady and a gentleman. According to my usual habit of conjecture, I settled in my own mind that they were husband and wife: bride and bridegroom they could not be, as they were in deep mourning. They seated themselves by an open window till it grew dark, and I saw no more of them that night. In my early watch the next morning, I passed them twice, and changed my opinion respecting them. They were evidently brother and sister: there was a strong resemblance between them, and a slight difference in years—the young man appearing to be about eighteen, his sister one or two and twenty. She was not handsome; but the expression of melancholy on her countenance, and an undefinable air of superiority about her, engaged my attention. The brother was handsome—very handsome. His features were fine, but their expression was finer still. He had taken off his hat, and I had a full view of him. What an intellect did that forehead bespeak! what soul was in those eyes! "Why," thought I, "does she look so melancholy, while leaning on the arm of such a brother?" But a glance at her dress let me into the cause of her sorrow. A father or a mother, or perhaps such another brother, has been taken from her. Whatever the cause of their common grief might be, it seemed only to knit them more closely together; for never did I see a brother and sister so attached. They were inseparable: and during the many days which they spent at the inn, the interest of their conversations never seemed to flag. They were always talking; and always, apparently, with animation and sympathy.
On the fourth day after their arrival, I was sitting at work, at a window which commands a view of the head of the loch, and of the mountains on the opposite side. It was then between four and five in the afternoon; the sun was bright, and the weather as fine as possible. The tide was out, and, as usual, many groups of children were busied in collecting shells and sea-weed. Among them were my two friends (for so I must call them.) They seemed in gayer spirits than I had yet seen them; they picked up a basket-full of shells; they set up a mark by which to watch the receding waters; they entered into conversation with a boatman, and strolled on till they came to the little bridge which spans a rivulet at the head of the loch. I saw them lean over the parapet, to watch the gurgling brook beneath. Then they turned, to survey the high mountains above them; and after awhile, they directed their steps to the base of one of them. I saw them gradually mount the green slope, turning every now and then to gaze at the scene below, until I could but indistinctly discern their figures, amidst the shadows which were beginning to spread over the valley and the lower parts of the mountain. I knew that the mountain which they were ascending was not often tried either by natives or by strangers, for it was boggy and pathless; though tempting to the eye by its verdure, and by a fine pile of rocks, which stood like a crown on the brow of the first grand ascent.
The richest glow of the evening sun was upon the mountain's brow; light crimson clouds were floating, as it seemed to me, just over the head of the youth, as he mounted higher and higher—springing from one point to another. I saw his slight form on the very ridge, though lessened almost to a point by the distance, yet conspicuous by its motion, and by the relief of the glowing sky behind. He disappeared. I looked for his sister: she was still sitting on her sunny seat, while all below was wrapped in a deep grey shadow. I laid down my glass, and resumed my work for awhile. I looked again; she was still there, and alone—but the sun-light was gone! I thought she looked forlorn; and I wished her brother would return to her. Again the sun burst forth on the mountain-top—it had only been obscured by a cloud. I saw the lady start from her seat, and turn round. An eagle had sprung from among the rocks: she was watching its flight—it ascended into the blue sky, and was lost to sight. She sauntered a few steps on one side of her seat, then on the other, and looked around her. "I wish her brother would return to her," thought I again. She shaded her eyes with her hand, and looked up: but vainly! The shadows had crept apace up the mountain side: her seat was no longer sunny, but she sat down again.
I had by this time become, I knew not why, rather nervous: my hand shook so, that I could not fix the glass. I laid it down, and went to take a turn in my garden. I came back presently to the window, and once more turned my glass in the direction of the mountain. The seat was vacant. "They are coming down together, I hope," thought I. "It is high time they should; it is becoming dark and chilly!" But I could not trace them. At length I saw something white fluttering in the breeze. It was so small that I should not have discerned it, if my very power of sight had not been sharpened by the anxiety I began to feel for these young people. By intently gazing—by straining my sight to the uttermost, I made out that the young lady was standing on a point of rock, lower down, and more conspicuous than that on which she had been seated. She had tied her handkerchief to her parasol, and was waving it, no doubt, as a signal to her brother. My heart turned sick, and I could see no more. I looked at my watch, and found that it was nearly three hours since they had begun their ascent. The next consideration was, what I ought to do. If I had been certain that the brother had lost his way, it was, no doubt, my duty to send persons from the inn, to find him. But how did I know that any peril existed, excepting in my own imagination? He might have ascended before, and be perfectly acquainted with the descent; he might be gone in search of some particular view, and have prepared his sister for the length of his absence, as she was too much fatigued to accompany him. In this case, any interference of mine would be impertinent. What should I do? I leaned out of my window, as if in the hope of seeing some object, which should help me to a decision. Such an object was just before me, in the person of an old fisherman, a next-door neighbour, and very honest friend of mine. "Come hither, John," said I; and I stated the case to him. He thought we need not fear any danger. The mountain was not very high; he knew of no dangerous places on it; and was of opinion that there would be light enough to guide their steps half an hour longer. He advised me to leave them alone, for that time at least. I determined to do so, and sat down to my tea-table, on which I had not yet bestowed a thought. I drew it close to the window, and looked as earnestly as ever; but it was now too dark to see anything but the indistinct outlines of the mountains, and the loch gleaming in the twilight. The half-hour passed, and I had not seen them return; they might have returned without my having seen them; but I could not bear uncertainty any longer. I sent my servant to the inn, to inquire if they had arrived, and whether they had ordered tea, or given any expectation as to the time of their retain.
She brought word, that though tea had been ready for an hour past, the lady and gentleman had not returned; and that the landlady would be glad to know whether I could give her any intelligence of them.
"Let me pass!" said I, hastily opening the gate.
"Your bonnet, ma'am! shall I fetch your bonnet?" said my maid.
At that moment some one rushed past me. It was the young lady—running, or attempting to run, but with faltering and unequal steps. I followed her. At the first of the flight of steps before the inn, she stumbled and fell. She was trembling and sobbing violently; whether from breathlessness or agony, I could not tell. I raised her, and assisted her to mount the steps. "My brother! my brother!" she exclaimed incessantly. I could get no words but these from her. No time was to be lost. I sat down beside her, and took both her hands; and speaking as calmly as I could, said, "Compose yourself, and tell us what we must do. Have you missed your brother, or has any accident befallen him before your eyes?"
"He is on the mountain there! He left me, and did not come back. He said he should not be gone twenty minutes."
"Now I know all," replied I. "I will take some people from the inn with lights, and we will find him. You must stay and compose yourself, and be patient; he has only missed his way."
She insisted upon going too; and declared that this was necessary, in order to point out the track which her brother had taken. I explained to her how I had watched their progress, and was therefore able to direct their search. But she was resolute in her determination to go; and finding her to be so, I gave up my intention of accompanying the party, believing that I should only retard their progress.
I arranged with the landlady, that in case of any fatal accident having happened, the young lady should be brought to my house, where she would be in greater quiet and retirement than amid the bustle of an inn.
Hour after hour did we wait, listening to every sound, trembling at every breath; and so shaken and weakened by intolerable suspense, that we were ill-fitted to think and to act as occasion might require. It was a dark, cloudy, and windy night. We often looked out, but could see nothing, scarcely even the outline of the mountain. We listened, and our hearts beat thick, when there was no sound but the rising gust! I dwell on these circumstances too long, because I recoil from relating the catastrophe, as if it were but recent—as if my thoughts had not been familiarized with it for years.
It was as we feared; he was found lying at the bottom of a rock, no more than ten feet high—but lifeless. His neck had been dislocated by the fall. There were no external bruises—no signs of any struggle—nothing painful in his appearance. I cannot relate every circumstance of that dreadful night. I thought she was gone too; she was brought in, insensible, and remained so for hours. She was taken immediately to my house, and put to bed. The body of her brother was also carried there, for I knew she would not be separated from it. I sat beside her, watching her faint breathing, anxious for some sign of returning consciousness, but dreading the agony which must attend it. If she had died, I could hardly have grieved for her; but there might be parents, brothers, and sisters! Oh, that I knew, that I could bring them to her! Alone, among strangers! how was she to bear her solitary grief?—how was she to sustain the struggle which awaited her in the first hour of her awakening? I could not banish the remembrance of them as I had seen them in the afternoon; happy in each other, and thinking not of separation; then, as he was when I last saw him, full of life and acuity, and apparently unboundedly happy, in the contemplation of scenes which a soul like his was fitted to enjoy.
Day dawned, and no change was perceivable; but in two hours afterwards she opened her eyes. I crossed the room, to see whether she observed my motion. She did; and I therefore opened the curtain, and spoke to her. She gazed, but did not reply. Presently she seized my arm, muttering some words, of which "my mother!" was all I could understand. I took the opportunity of saying, that I was going to write to her family, and asked how I should address them.
"My family!" said she, "I have none. They are all gone now!"
I thought her mind was wandering. "Your father and mother," said I, "where are they?" My heart smote me as I uttered the words, but the question was necessary.
"I have no father and mother!"
"Nor brothers and sisters? Pardon me, but I must ask."
"You need not ask, because I will tell you. There were many of us once, but I am the last!"
I could not go on, yet it must be done.
"But you have friends, who will come to you?"
"Yes; I have a grandfather. He lives in Hampshire. He is very old, but he will come to me, if he still lives. If not!"——
"He will come," said I, "I will write to him directly."
"I will write myself!" exclaimed she, starting up. "He will not believe the story unless I write myself. Who would believe it?"
I assured her she should write the next day; but I positively forbad such an exertion at present. She yielded; she was indeed in no condition for writing. Her mind seemed in an unnatural state; and I was by no means sure that she had given a correct account of herself. I wrote to her grandfather, on the supposition that she had; and was quite satisfied when, in the evening, she gave me, in few words, her family history. She had been relieved, though exhausted, by tears; and her mind was calm and rational. She was indeed the last of her family. Her mother had died a few weeks before, after a lingering illness; and the sole surviving brother and sister had been prevailed on to take this tour, to recruit their strength and spirits, after their long watching and anxiety. They were always, as I discovered, bound together by the strongest affection; and now that they had been made by circumstances all in all to each other, they were thus separated! Will not my readers excuse my attempting to describe such grief as her's must have been?
Her grandfather arrived on the earliest possible day. He was old, and had some infirmities; but his health was not, as he assured us, at all injured by his hurried and painful journey. Nothing could be more tender than his kindness to his charge; though he was, perhaps, too far advanced in this life, and too near another, to feel the pressure of this kind of sorrow, as a younger or weaker mind would have done.
I could not help indulging in much painful conjecture as to the fate of this young creature, when she should lose her last remaining stay: a period which could not be far distant. But on this point I obtained some satisfaction before her departure.
A few days before she left me, a gentleman arrived at the inn, and came immediately to my cottage. She introduced him to me as "a friend." No one said what kind of a friend he was; but I could entertain no doubt that he was one who would supply the place of her brother to her.
"Her mind will not be left without a keeper," thought I, as I saw them direct their steps to the brother's grave. "Thank God, her grandfather is not her only remaining stay!"
They quitted the place together; and many a sympathizing heart did they leave behind them—by many an anxious wish and prayer were they followed. The last promise required from me was, that I would see that the grave of her brother was respected. What a pang did it cost her to leave that grave?
I heard tidings of her three times afterwards. Her letters pleased me; they testified a deep, but not a selfish or corroding grief—a power of exertion, and a disposition to hope and be cheerful. The last letter I received from her, arrived more than five years ago. She had taken the name which I conjectured would in time be her's. She had lost her grandfather; but the time was past when his departure could occasion much grief. She was then going abroad with her husband, for an indefinite period of time. If they were spared to return to their native country, they proposed visiting my little dwelling once more, to gaze with softened emotions on scenes sadly endeared to them, and to mingle their tears once more over a brother's grave.
Perhaps that day may yet arrive.
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ARCANA OF SCIENCE.
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It is known by the experience of all former voyages to the arctic circle, that towards the end of the season, in consequence of the heat radiating from the lard, the ice is detached from the shores of these seas, and floats southward. Ice, therefore, does not detach from other ice, but from the coast. Taking this principle with us, when we find that our expedition traversed a surface of some hundred miles, we conclude, whatever was the extent of that mass drifting south, it must have left an equal extent of open water in its original place in the north. We also infer, that there must be land at the north pole, from which this body was separated; and that if it could have been entirely crossed, Captain Parry and his companions would have found a clear sea for the boats, and had little difficulty in reaching Polar Land.—Literary Gazette.
This substance (mentioned in our recent abstract of the Polar Expedition as part of the provision for the crew) consists of meat prepared in the same way that the Indians prepare their provision of buffalo or deer. The flesh, beef in this case, is cut into stripes, and dried by the smoke of wood. It is then beaten into a powder, and an equal proportion of fat being melted, the whole is mixed up together into a solid mass. It is evident that more of real sustenance from animal matter cannot be combined in any less bulky or burdensome compound. It makes an excellent and very nutritious soup.
It is somewhat surprising, that among the crowd of novelties, and very especially of attempts to depart from the received models of architecture, the Egyptian has not taken its share. It is true that some very partial attempts have been made; in the metropolis, we believe, not exceeding two; and if we add to these a school recently erected at Devonport, a mausoleum at Trentham for the Stafford family, and an iron-manufactory now erecting in Wales, we have probably enumerated the whole. Such as the examples have been, they have not spread; and, indeed, we may say, that they have scarcely attracted any notice, whether for good or evil; though the publicity and singularity of aspect of the most accessible specimen in Piccadilly might have at least been expected to distinguish it, in the general eye, from the buildings by which it is surrounded. As to the public, we find no difficulty in accounting for this. This style has not been pointed out to them, and they have not been desired either to admire or dislike it. Why the architects have neglected it, they must themselves explain, since we believe there have been but two in that profession who have been concerned with the buildings to which we have alluded, the last named of these being an attempt of a dillettante in the art. As to the specimens where it has been thought fit to introduce the Egyptian window or doorway in churches of a Greek design, we consider the attempt faulty and censurable. This is a false and misplaced ambition after novelty, which marks far too much of what has recently been effected in our new churches.—Westminster Review.
Coins are generally completed by one blow of the coining-press. These presses are worked in the Royal Mint by machinery, so contrived that they shall strike, upon an average, 60 blows in a minute; the blank piece, previously properly prepared and annealed, being placed between the dies by part of the same mechanism. The number of pieces which may be struck by a single die of good steel, properly hardened and duly tempered, not unfrequently amounts at the Mint to between 3 and 400,000. There are eight presses at the Mint, frequently at work ten hours a day, each press producing 3,600 pieces per hour; but making allowance for occasional stoppages, the daily progress of each press may be reckoned at 30,000 pieces; the eight presses, therefore, will furnish a diurnal average of 240,000 pieces.—Quarterly Journal.
This remarkable animal, which forms the link between the bird and beast, has a bill like a duck, and paws webbed similar to that bird, but legs and body like those of a quadruped, covered with thick, coarse hair, with a broad tail to steer by. It abounds in the rivers of New Holland, and may be seen bobbing to the top every now and then, to breathe, like a seal, then diving again in quest of its prey. It is believed to lay eggs, as a nest with eggs in it of a peculiar appearance was some time ago found. It bears a claw on the inside of its foot, having a tube therein, through which it emits a poisonous fluid into the wounds which the claw inflicts; as, when assailed, it strikes its paws together, and fastens upon its enemy like a crab.—Cunningham's New South Wales.
Are bred to an immense extent in New South Wales. In 1813, the number of sheep in the colony amounted to 6,514; in 1821, to 119,777. The exportation of wool to England during the last year exceeded a million of pounds, and at the same rate of increase, in 1840, will reach to between 30 and 40 millions of pounds. Bullocks are recommended for draught in preference to horses, and the speed of a well-taught, lively, strong bullock is little short of that of a horse.—Ibid.
To force garden rhubarb, sow the seed on a rich moist border in the beginning of April. Thin the young plants during the summer; in the end of October, carefully transplant them into forcing-pots, five or six in each pot. Place them in a northern aspect, to recover the effect of their removal from the seed-bed, and in a month they are fit for forcing.
The canals are the most striking internal improvements in the United States. The Great Erie canal is 360 miles in length, with an average breadth of 40 feet. It connects the great line of lakes with the ocean by the Hudson. Another to connect the Hudson with Lake Champlain is also complete. Above 2,000,000l. have been expended on them; and the annual returns from the tolls alone have already amounted to 120,000l. In the state of Ohio, another canal is in progress, almost equal in magnitude to the Erie canal. On the rivers which it connects with the lakes, there is a steam-boat navigation of 5,000 miles. In Pennsylvania, the Schuylkill navigation works comprise an extent of 108 miles, of which 62 are canal, and 46 the river made navigable. These works are complete. The Union canal, a line of 74 miles, to connect the Schuylkill with the Susqueannah, is in progress, and will be completed within the present year. These, however, are but a few of the gigantic strides which America is making in the march of nations.
Between August 1, 1826, and August 1, 1827, 212 vessels have passed through the Caledonian canal from sea to sea. 295 vessels have made partial passages through one end of the canal, to and from various ports; 74 boats, not above 15 tons burden each, have been employed in the carriage of articles to the fishery stations; and 91 steam-boats have passed through the canal, all within the period abovementioned.
A respectable contemporary journal gives the following calculations on the relative state of the medical profession in London and Paris. The French have long objected to the multitude of our professors, and the drugs they employ; and it would seem by this comparative statement that their objection is not ill-founded:—
In London there are 174 physicians, or 1 physician to 700 inhabitants; 1,000 surgeons, or 1 surgeon to 1,200 inhabitants; 2,000 apothecaries, or 1 apothecary to 600 inhabitants.
In Paris there is 1 physician to 1,300 inhabitants; 1 surgeon to 6,000 inhabitants; 1 apothecary to 4,450 inhabitants.
Being in the proportion of 1 physician in Paris to 5 in London; 5 surgeons in London to 1 in Paris; 7 apothecaries in London to 1 in Paris.
Supposing, on an average, each of these persons to receive 1,000l. a year, the whole income of the medical profession in London would be 3,474,000l. annually.
About the close of the seventeenth century, the poors' rates of England and Wales were stated, on the authority of parliamentary documents, to amount to 665,362l.; and the population of both to 5,475,000. In 1821, the poors' rates amounted to about 7,000,000l., and the population to 12,218,000. Dividing the greater rates 7,000,000l. by the lesser 665,362l., we have about 10-1/2 to 1, which is the proportion in which the poors' rates have increased in the last 127 years. And dividing the greater population 12,218,000 by the lesser 5,475,000, give about 2-1/2 to 1, which is the proportionate increase of population during that space of time.
Van Dieman's Land Wasp.
The wasp of Van Dieman's Land is a smaller but much more splendid insect than the English wasp; it has four orange-coloured wings, and horns and legs of the same colour, a hard body, and a formidable sting. It is an inhabitant of the forest, and is at war with a spider that makes its hole in the sandy places, and which is armed with a cap or door, which it pulls over on the approach of its enemy, or in rainy weather. The wasp hovers close over the ground, prowling from one hole to another. Having seized its prey, it immediately kills the spider, and carries it off to its own hole, when it is said to devour the limbs, and to deposit its egg in the body to be hatched by the putrefaction that ensues, and which furnishes food for the young insect produced.
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There is an extraordinary superstition connected with the M'Alister family. Ages ago,—for I have never yet got a date from a Highlander as to the transactions of long past times,—but many generations back, in the days of a chief of great renown in the clan, called M'Alister More, either from his deeds or his stature, there was a skirmish with a neighbouring clan that ended fatally for the M'Alisters, though in the contest at the time they were victorious.
A party of their young men set out once upon a foray; they marched over the hills for several hours, and at last descended into a little glen, which was rented as a black cattle farm by a widow woman and her two sons. The sons were absent from home on some excursion, and had carried most of their servants with them, so that the M'Alisters met with no resistance in their attempts to raise the cattle. They hunted every corner of the glen, secured every beast, and, in spite of the tears of the widow, they drove her herd away. When the sons returned, and heard the story of the raid, they collected a strong party of their friends, and crossing the hill secretly by night, surprised the few M'Alisters who were left in charge of the spoil, vanquished them easily, and recovered their cattle. Such a slight to the power of M'Alister More could not go unpunished. The chief himself headed the band which set out to vindicate the honour of the clan. He marched steadily over the rugged mountains, and arrived towards sunset in the little glen. To oppose the force he brought with him, would have been fruitless; the sons and their few adherents were speedily overpowered, and led bound before him; they were small in number, but they were gallant and brave, and yielded only to superior strength. M'Alister More was always attended by four and twenty bowmen, who acted as his body guard, his jury, his judges, and his executioners. They erected on the instant a gibbet before the door of the wretched mother, and there her sons were hung.
Her cottage was built at the foot of a craggy, naked rock, on a strip of green pasture land, and beside a mountain torrent; the gibbet was a few paces from it, on the edge of the shelf; and the setting rays of a bright summer sun fell on the bodies of the widow's sons. They were still warm when she came and stood beside them. She raised her eyes on the stern chief, and his many followers, and slowly and steadily she pronounced her curse:—
"Shame, shame on you, M'Alister! You have slain them that took but their own; you have slain them you had injured! You have murdered the fatherless, and spoiled the widow! but he that is righteous shall judge between us, and the curse of God shall cling to you for this for ever. The sun rose on me the proud mother of two handsome boys; he sets on their stiffening bodies!" and she raised her arm, as she spoke, towards the gibbet. Her eye kindled, and her form dilated, as she turned again to her vindictive foe. "I suffer now," said she, "but you shall surfer always. You have made me childless, but you and yours shall be heirless for ever. Long may their name last, and wide may their lands be; but never, while the name and the lands continue, shall there be a son to the house of M'Alister!"
The curse of the bereaved widow clung steadily to the house of M'Alister. The lands passed from heir to heir, but no laird had ever been succeeded by a son. Often had the hopes of the clan been raised; often had they thought for years that the punishment of their ancestor's cruelty was to be continued to them no longer—that the spirits of the widow's sons were at length appeased; but M'Alister More was to suffer for ever; the hopes of his house might blossom, but they always faded. It was in the reign of the good Queen Anne that they flourished for the last time; they were blighted then, and for ever.
The laird and the lady had had several daughters born to them in succession, and at last a son: he grew up to manhood in safety—the pride of his people, and the darling of his parents; giving promise of every virtue that could adorn his rank. He had been early contracted in marriage to the daughter of another powerful chieftain in the North, and the alliance, which had been equally courted by both families, was concluded immediately on the return of the young laird from his travels. There was a great intercourse in those days with France—most of the young highland chiefs spent a year or two in that country, many of them were entirely educated there, but that was not the case with the young heir of M'Alister; he had only gone abroad to finish his breeding after coming to man's estate. It was shortly before the first rebellion in the 15, to speak as my informant spoke to me—and being young, and of an ardent nature, he was soon attracted to the court of the old Pretender, whose policy it was to gain every Scotch noble, by every means, to his views. The measures he took succeeded with the only son of M'Alister:—he returned to his native country, eager for the approaching contest, pledged heart and hand to his exiled sovereign. In the troubles which broke out almost immediately on the death of the queen, he and his father took different sides; the old laird fortified his high tower, and prepared to defend it to the last, against the enemies of the House of Hanover. The young laird bade adieu to his beautiful wife, and attended by a band of his young clansmen, easily gained to aid a cause so romantic, he secretly left his duchess, and joined the army of the Pretender at Perth.
The young wife had lived with her husband, at a small farm on the property, a little way up the glen, a mile or two from the castle. But when her husband deserted her, she was removed by her father-in-law to his own house for greater security. Months rolled away, and the various fortunes of the rebels were reported, from time to time, in the remote glen where the chief strength of the M'Alisters lay. News did not travel swiftly then, and often they heard what was little to be relied on, so much did hope or fear magnify any slight success, or any ill-fortune. At last, there came a sough of a great battle having been fought somewhere in the west country, which had decided the fate of the opposing parties. The young laird and his valiant band had turned the fortune of the day. Argyle was defeated and slain, and the Earl of Marr was victorious;—King James had arrived, and was to be crowned at Scone, and all Scotland was his own.
It was on a cold, bleak, stormy, November evening, when this news was brought, by a Brae-Marr-man, to the laird's tower. He was wise and prudent, and he would give no ear to a tale so lightly told: but his beautiful daughter-in-law, sanguine for her husband's sake, cherished reports that brightened all her prospects. She retired to her chamber, almost hoping that another day might see it enlivened by his presence, without whom life to her was a dreary blank. She was lodged in a small apartment on the third story of the tower, opening straight from a narrow passage at the head of the winding stairs. It had two small windows, which looked on the paved courtyard of the castle; and beyond, to what was then a bare meadow, and the river. The moon gave little light, and she turned from the gloomy prospect to the ample hearth, on which the bright logs were blazing. Her heart was full, and her mind so restless, that after her maidens left her, she continued to pace up and down her little chamber, unwilling to retire to rest. At length she threw herself upon her bed, exhausted by the eagerness of her feelings, and in the agitation of her ideas she forgot to say her prayers. Yet she slept, and calmly, but her sleep was short. She awakened suddenly, and starting half up, listened anxiously for some minutes. The wind blew strongly round the old tower, and a thick shower of sleet was driving fast against the casements; but, in the pauses of the storm, she thought she heard distinctly, though at a distance, the tramp of a horse at his speed. She bent forward and watched the sound. It came nearer—it grew louder—it gallopped over the hard ground, and approached with the swiftness of lightning. She gasped and trembled—it was he, it must be he,—she knew the long firm bound of her husband's charger. Its rapid feet struck loud on the pavement of the courtyard below, and in an instant dropt dead below the great door of the castle. She had neither power to breathe, nor to move, but she listened for the call of the porter's name, and the jar of the chains and bolts which secured the door. She heard nothing—she grew bewildered, and tried to rise to call for succour—but a spell was on her to keep her down. At length, from the very bottom of the winding stair, came the sound of a firm foot, ascending regularly step by step, without a pause in its motion, the several stories. It rang on the stone passage adjoining her apartment, and stept with a loud tread at her door. No lock was turned, no hinge was opened, but a rushing wind swept through the room. Her fire had burned away, and she had neither lamp nor taper by her, but as she started up in an agony of terror, the heavy logs in her wide chimney fell of themselves, and lighting by the fall, sent forth a blaze into the chamber. Almost frantic with fear, she seized with one hand the curtains of her bed, and darting a look of horror, she saw, seated by the hearth, a figure in martial array, without a head; it held its arms out towards her, and slowly rose. The scream she tried to utter was suffocated in her throat—she fell motionless; the last sight she saw was an eagle's plume steeped in blood, cast at her feet by the advancing spectre—the last sound she heard was the loud crash of every door in the castle. When her maidens came to her in the morning, she was extended in a swoon upon the floor. She lay for hours cold and insensible, and they thought that she was gone for ever. After many trials she came at last to herself, but she recovered only to hear the true tale of the battle of Sheriff-muir.
The Chevalier de St. George and the Earl of Marr had fled the country; many of their noble adherents had been fortunate enough to secure a retreat with them to France; some had been pardoned; a few had been taken in arms, and these few were executed; amongst them was the young heir of M'Alister—Inspector.
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SPIRIT OF THE PUBLIC JOURNALS
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SADDLED AND BRIDLED.
BY A. CUNNINGHAM.
Saddled and bridled, And booted was he— A plume at his helmet, A sword at his knee;— Toom hame came the saddle At evening to me, And hame came his steed— But hame never came he!
Down came his grey father, Sobbing fu' sair; Down came his auld mother, Tearing her hair: Down came his sweet wife, Wi' her bonnie bairns three— Ane at her bosom, And twa at her knee!
There stood his fleet steed, All foaming and hot; There shrieked his sweet wife, And sank on the spot,— There stood his grey father, Weeping fu' free, For hame came his steed, But hame never came he!
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A furious, and yet unappeased, controversy has lately raged in the newspapers, upon the question of the filthy nuisance of smoking tobacco—segars or pipe; and as in all other cases when men allow their passions to be heated by opposition, has run in great personalities between gentlemen who sign themselves Viator and Tabatiere. Whole columns of the newspapers have been occupied in discussing, in the first place, whether a man who smokes at all is a beast or not; and secondly, the argument has run into the comparative beastliness of smoking and snuffing. A future Hume, on looking over the journals, may thus sum up the merits of the case. About this period great hostilities arose between the advocates of segars and their opponents, which occupied the attention of thousands, who took a lively interest in the successful issue of the controversy. By the advocates for the practice it was urged with some plausibility of statement, that as to the pleasure of a segar, none but those who used them ought to express an opinion upon the point—that to appeal to experience, tobacco was in more universal use among nations than bread corn—that it had been known to stay the plague, and was the friend and companion of rich and poor. These statements were met with undisguised contempt, and it was retaliated, that the practice of using tobacco either by smoke or snuff, was a nuisance to others, thus infringing the very primary principles of civil liberty—that it led to drunkenness and debauch—that snuff spoiled the complexion—stopped the nose to the perception of odours—and that as to the ladies, they would positively spurn any approach of familiar friendship from a snuff-taker. This raised the concealed anger of the snuff-takers, who had hitherto maintained a stubborn neutrality while the argument was kept to smoke. They replied both by wit and invective—they affirmed snuff to have a moral use—"Dust to dust"—would remind them of the brevity of life—that the king and ministers patronized the habit, and gave away L10,000 worth of snuff-boxes in every year—that as to the nose being blockaded, that was a happy circumstance to London residents, and enabled them to acquire the French accent more naturally—that as to the assumed yellowness of complexion complained of, it was only studious and Werter-like—and that as to the ladies refusing to be saluted by snuff-takers, that was a thing which modesty and prudence required them to sneeze at. The historian might add by way of reflection, that nothing could more clearly show the national freedom from anxious cares, when it was thought that the public took interest in the comparative merits of blackened teeth or a snuffy pocket-handkerchief.—The Inspector.
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Of the slip-slop reading, under this denomination, with which the town has lately been inundated, the following is a fair specimen:—
Hyde Nugent.—The book is made up completely of the gossip of drawing-rooms, hotels, dinners, and balls. As to the hero, if any one has a grain of curiosity about him—gratify it. Hyde is the son of a man of family and fortune; he goes to Oxford, fights a duel, and is expelled—prevails upon a marquess to break the matter to the father—falls in love with the marquess's daughter—goes large and loose about town—is every where introduced—and one of every party. Notwithstanding certain warnings, and his own disgusts, he frequents Crockford's—gets plucked, and moreover deeply involved with the Jews. In the meanwhile he does not neglect the marquess's daughter. They soon come to an understanding. He is irresistible—she is an houri. But the consciousness of his embarrassments press heavily upon him, and he is on the point of taking some desperate step, when he is summoned to attend a friend in a duel, who kills his antagonist; and he and Hyde are obliged to fly. This rescues him from his gaming associates; though he gets among others at Lisbon, and narrowly escapes assassination. On his return to England, his sister has married a duke's eldest son, and all the family visit the said duke's, and there also assemble the aforesaid marquess and his beautiful daughter.
But now comes forward more than before, an officer of the guards—a guardsman is now become indispensable—who is also in love with the marquess's daughter, and being not at all scrupulous of the means of accomplishing his point—a very worthless person in short—he plays Iago, and pours into the lady's ear the tale of Hyde's gambling propensities, and his deep involvements; and moreover of a lady whose affection he had wantonly won, and wantonly cut, and who was now actually dying for him. This, however, was not all true; the lady alluded to was the daughter of his father's friend and neighbour; she and Hyde had been brought up together from children, and played and romped together, and once, before Hyde went to Oxford, he had forced from her a kiss. The poor fond girl had treasured up the kiss, and Hyde had thought no more of her, or of it. She, however, pined away, and let concealment feed on her damask cheek; and at this time was at Brighton for change of air. She has a brother, a lancer; he hears, through Hyde's precious rival, of the state of his sister, and for the first time, of the cause. He flies to the duke's—though deeply occupied, at the moment, in seducing the affections of a married woman in Ireland—and calls upon Hyde to meet him forthwith. Hyde's rival is the lancer's second. Hyde falls, and as he is borne bleeding to the house, Lady Georgina, the marquess's daughter, meets him. The shock kills her outright, and the story stops; but hints are given that he slowly recovers, and by still slower degrees is brought to think of the charming girl, who had treasured his boyish kiss, and marries.—Monthly Magazine.
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There is a horrible institution among some of the Indian tribes, which furnishes a powerful illustration of their never-tiring love of vengeance. It is called the Man-Eating Society, and it is the duty of its associates to devour such prisoners as are preserved and delivered to them for that purpose. The members of this society belong to a particular family, and the dreadful inheritance descends to all the children, male and female. Its duties cannot be dispensed with, and the sanctions of religion are added to the obligations of immemorial usage. The feast is considered a solemn ceremony, at which the whole tribe is collected as actors or spectators. The miserable victim is fastened to a stake, and burned at a slow fire, with all the refinements of cruelty which savage ingenuity can invent. There is a traditionary ritual, which regulates, with revolting precision, the whole course of procedure at these ceremonies. The institution has latterly declined, but we know those who have seen and related to us the incidents which occurred on these occasions, when white men were sacrificed and consumed. The chief of the family and principal members of the society among the Miames, whose name was White Skin, we have seen, and with feelings of loathing, excited by a narrative of his atrocities, amid the scenes when they occurred..—North American Review.
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LITERARY NOTICES OF
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SAILING ROUND CONSTANTINOPLE.
Hiring a peramidias, or one of the beautiful boats which ply on the canal, I proceeded, accompanied by my janissary and dragoman, to make the circuit of the city, by rowing round the Seraglio Point into the sea of Marmora, then landing at the Seven Towers, and walking across the isthmus by the famous wall to the Golden Horn, where we again embarked, and returned to Pera. On passing the Seraglio Point, we remarked a number of cannon of different forms, ranged apparently more for effect than defence, as a sloop of war with a commanding breeze might dislodge the men; such is their exposed situation. Although two of the guns appeared to be of the calibre of sixteen or seventeen inches, and calculated to throw some immense stone-balls, which we observed near them, others were of small calibre, but having twelve barrels; over them, were suspended some very large bones, about which I could not get even a marvellous account, both my companions declaring honestly their ignorance of their history. The current sent us, with astonishing rapidity, round the Point, (on which men are always stationed with small lines to track boats upwards,) and we soon landed under the Seven Towers. The town on the west side, towards the sea presents a poor and miserable appearance. We were allowed just to enter the outer court of the castle, as it may be more properly called than the Seven Towers, because there are only two conspicuous towers, and I suspect that the term Seven Towers was originally applied to the whole wall which runs across the isthmus, and which has seven gates, over each of which was formerly placed a tower.
Leaving the castle, we proceeded along the great road which runs parallel to the venerable and highly interesting triple walls, said to have been begun by Constantine, and enlarged by the second Theodosius. They consist of alternate courses of large flat bricks and stones, in some parts perfect, with their battlements and towers; in others partly destroyed by earthquakes or time—the whole rendered venerable by thick ivy or shading trees. The height of the walls is such, that, when near them, the town is completely hid; and as the ditches are well cultivated as gardens or orchards, and the country beyond is clear of houses, it is difficult to fancy one's self so near the thickly populated city, once the mistress of the eastern world. The distance across the isthmus to the Golden Horn, or harbour, is about four miles, and the walls are uninterrupted by the before-mentioned gates. At about two-thirds of the distance, we came to Baloucli, where, in the ruins of a chapel dedicated by Justinian to the Virgin, is a fountain or well of excellent cold water, said to contain fish, black on one side and red on the other, or, according to tradition, half fried.
The Golden Horn, or harbour, terminates by the Valley of Sweet Waters, the sides of which are adorned with pleasure-grounds, and an imperial kiosk, near which, with extremely bad taste, art and expense have been exerted to the utmost to constrain and prune nature, so as to destroy the luxuriance and wildness of the rivulet and its banks, by giving them the appearance of a straight canal, passing through an avenue of formal trees, and occasionally over flights of marble steps, intended to represent cataracts. On gala days, this spot is the scene of festivity and enjoyment for persons of every sect; and before the last dispersion and persecution of the Greeks, is said, in consequence of the number of their women who frequented it, to have presented extraordinary animation and attraction. The sultan was often to be found enjoying the sight. Beyond this valley is another, where his horses are turned out to graze in the spring, and which takes place with extraordinary ceremony and pomp. So much consequence was formerly attached to the noble animals, that petitioners address themselves to the imperial stirrup. Between the Valley of the Sweet Waters and the walls, is the village of Eyub, pleasantly situated, adjoining to which are several palaces, belonging to members of the imperial family. But the most remarkable and interesting monument is the mosque or tomb of Eyub, (a disciple of Mahomet, who was killed in the first siege of Constantinople, in 608,) erected by Mahomet II. after the capture of the city, as is said, in consequence of the place of his sepulchre having been revealed to one of his favourites in a dream; he immediately ordered an excavation to be made, and very soon, either by hazard or imposture, a marble slab was discovered.
The Valley of the Sweet Waters, Eyub, and the country immediately behind the walls, may be considered the only pretty spots near Constantinople; for beyond them, and in other directions, nothing is to be seen but an expansion of unpopulated, and, at this time, sunburnt downs.
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THE CORAL ISLAND.
On a stony eminence, that stood Girt with inferior ridges, at the point, Where light and darkness meet in spectral gloom. Midway between the height and depth of ocean, I mark'd a whirlpool in perpetual play, As though the mountain were itself alive, And catching prey on every side, with feelers Countless as sunbeams, slight as gossamer: Ere long transfigured, each fine film became An independent creature, self-employd, Yet but an agent in one common work, The slim of all their individual labours. Shap'less they seem'd, but endless shape assumed; Elongated like worms, they writhed and shrunk Their tortuous bodies to grotesque dimensions; Compress'd like wedges, radiated like stars, Branching like sea-weed, whirl'd in dazzling rings; Subtle and variable as flickering flames, Sight could not trace their evanescent changes, Nor comprehend their motions, till minute And curious observation caught the clew To this live labyrinth,—where every one, By instinct taught, perform'd its little task; —To build its dwelling and its sepulchre, From its own essence exquisitely modell'd; There breed, and die, and leave a progeny, Still multiplied beyond the reach of numbers. To frame new cells and tombs; then breed and die, As all their ancestors had done,—and rest, Hermetically sealed, each in its shrine, A statue in this temple of oblivion! Millions of millions thus, from age to age, With simplest skill, and toil unwearyable. No moment and no movement unimproved, Laid line on line, on terrace terrace spread, To swell the heightening, brightening gradual mound, By marvellous structure climbing tow'rds the day. Each wrought alone, yet altogether wrought, Unconscious, not unworthy, instruments, By which a hand invisible was rearing A new creation in the secret deep. Omnipotence wrought in them, with them, by them; Hence what Omnipotence alone could do, Worms did. I saw the living pile ascend. The mausoleum of its architects, Still dying upwards as their labours closed: Slime the material, but the slime was turn'd To adamant, by their petrific touch; Frail were their frames, ephemeral their lives, Their masonry imperishable. All Life's needful functions, food, exertion, rest, By nice economy of Providence Were overruled to carry on the process. Which out of water brought forth solid rock.
"Atom by atom thus the burthen grew, Even like an infant in the womb, till Time Deliver'd ocean of that monstrous birth, —A coral island, stretching east and west, In God's own language to its parent saying, 'Thus far, no farther, shalt thou go; and here Shall thy proud waves be stay'd:'—A point at first It peer'd above those waves; a point so small, I just perceived it, fix'd where all was floating: And when a bubble cross'd it, the blue film Expanded like a sky above the speck; That speck became a hand-breadth; day and night It spread, accumulated, and ere long Presented to my view a dazzling plain. White as the moon amid the sapphire sea; Bare at low water, and as still as death, But when the tide came gurgling o'er the surface, 'Twas like a resurrection of the dead: From graves innumerable, punctures fine In the close coral, capillary swarms Of reptiles, horrent as Medusa's snakes, Cover'd the bald-pate reef; then all was life, And indefatigable industry: The artisans were twisting to and fro. In idle-seeming convolutions; yet They never vanish'd with the ebbing surge, Till pellicle on pellicle, and layer On layer, was added to the growing mass. Ere long the reef o'ertopt the spring-flood's height, And mock'd the billows when they leapt upon it, Unable to maintain their slippery hold, And falling down in foam-wreaths round its verge. Steep were the flanks, sharp precipices, Descending to their base in ocean gloom. Chasms few, and narrow and irregular, Form'd harbours, safe at once and perilous,— Safe for defence, but perilous to enter. A sea lake shone amidst the fossil isle, Reflecting in a ring its cliffs and caverns, With heaven itself seen like a lake below."
Montgomery's Pelican Island.
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"I am but a Gatherer and disposer of other men's stuff."—Wotton.
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David Hartley eat two hundred pounds weight of soap to cure the stone, but died of that disease. Bishop Berkeley drank a butt of tar-water. Meyer, in a course of chemical neutralization, swallowed 1,200 pounds of crabs' eyes. In the German Ephemerides, the case of a person is described who had taken so much elixir of vitriol, that his keys were rusted in his pocket by the transudation of the acid through the pores of his skin; another patient is said to have taken argentum nitratum in solution till he became blue. Throw physic to the dogs!
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There are two cardinal points in a man's life, which determine his happiness or his misery; these are his birth and his marriage. It is in vain for a man to be born fortunate if he be unfortunate in his marriage.
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PERVERSENESS OF FOREIGNERS.
"What a rum language they talk in this place!" said an English sailor the other day to his companion, who arrived a few days later than the speaker himself had done at Rochefort—"Why, they call a cabbage a shoe—(choux!)" "They are a d—d set!" was the reply, "why can't they call it a cabbage!"
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In a newspaper, dated January 31, 1746, we find the following theatrical announcement:—
"We are certainly informed that on Monday next, at the Theatre Royal, Drury-Lane, will be performed The Lying Valet, and that Mr. Steevens, at the particular desire of some persons of quality, is to act the part of Justice Guttle; in which character he will devour twelve pounds of plumb cake at three mouthfuls."
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Commercial morality is an unaccountable kind of thing. In the report of a recent trial for the robbery of a watch, it is stated that
"Mr. Beauchamp identified the watch. He was sure that it was not sold; he knew that circumstance from his books; and also because he had the watch for four years, not being able to recommend it; he would not have shown it to a lady, but he would have been glad to have sold it to a gentleman. There was a private mark put on it which meant nine guineas."
There is honour, it is said, among thieves. Is there gallantry in imposition?
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Epigram on the publication by Dr. Wordsworth, master of Trinity College, Cambridge, of his inquiry, "Who wrote Eikon Basilike?" published by Rivington. (A parody.)
Who wrote "Who wrote Eikon Basilike?" I, says the master of trinity,— I am a doctor o' divinity, And I wrote "Who wrote Eikon Basilike?"
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Sir William Jones, so well known for his great acquisitions in oriental literature, was no less remarkable for his piety.—A friend reciting Sir Edward Coke's couplet of
"Six hours to sleep, in law's grave study six, Four spend in prayer, the rest on nature fix,"
he subjoined, rather say,
Seven hours to law, to soothing slumber seven, Ten to the world allot, and all to Heav'n.
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Dr. Arne was once asked by two vocalists of Covent Garden theatre, to decide which of them sung the best. The day being appointed, both parties exerted themselves to the utmost, and when they had finished, the Dr. addressing the first, said, "As for you, sir, you are the worst singer I ever heard in my life." "Ah! ah! (said the other, exulting,) I knew I should win my wager." "Stop sir," (says the Dr.) "I have a word to say to you before you go;—as for you, sir, you cannot sing at all."
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HOW TO EVADE PROOF.
An Irishman, charg'd with a crime, Was told it would be brought home to him: "No, no," quoth Pat, "it sha'nt this time— I'll keep away from home—and do 'em."
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Printed and Published by J. LIMBIRD, 143, Strand, (near Somerset-House,) and sold by all Newsmen and Booksellers.
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