The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction, Vol. 10,
THE MIRROR OF LITERATURE, AMUSEMENT, AND INSTRUCTION.
VOL. 10, No. 275.] SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 1827. [PRICE 2d.
* * * * *
[Illustration: Kew Palace.]
Innumerable are the instances of princes having sought to perpetuate
their memories by the building of palaces, from the _Domus Aurea_,
or golden house of Nero, to the comparatively puny structures of our
own times. As specimens of modern magnificence and substantial comfort,
the latter class of edifices may be admirable; but we are bound to
acknowledge, that in boldness and splendour of design, they cannot
assimilate to the labours of antiquity, much of whose stupendous
character is to this day preserved in many series of interesting
Whilst in the progress of the long decay,
Thrones sink to dust, and nations pass away.
As a record of this degeneracy, near the western corner of Kew Green
stands the new palace, commenced for George III., under the direction
of the late James Wyatt, Esq. The north front, the only part open to
public inspection, possesses an air of solemn, sullen grandeur; but it
very ill accords with the taste and science generally displayed by its
To quote the words of a contemporary, "this Anglo-Teutonic,
castellated, gothized structure must be considered as an abortive
production, at once illustrative of bad taste and defective judgment.
From the small size of the windows and the diminutive proportion of
its turrets, it would seem to possess
"'Windows that exclude the light,
And passages that lead to nothing.'"
Upon the unhappy seclusion of the _royal_ architect, the works were
suspended, and it now remains unfinished. Censure and abuse have,
however, always been abundantly lavished on its architecture, whether
it be the result of royal caprice or of professional study; but the
taste of either party deserves to be taxed with its demerits.
The northern front was intended to be appropriated to the use of
domestics; the whole building is rendered nearly indestructible by
fire, by means of cast-iron joists and rafters, &c., certainly in this
case an unnecessary precaution, since the whole pile is shortly to be
pulled down. The foundation, too, is in a bog close to the Thames,
and the principal object in its view is the dirty town of Brentford,
on the opposite side of the river; a selection, it would seem, of
_family_ taste, for George II. is known to have often said,
when riding through Brentford, "I do like this place, it's so like
A modern tourist, in "A Morning's Walk from London to Kew,"
characterizes the new palace as "the _Bastile palace_, from its
resemblance to that building, so obnoxious to freedom and freemen. On
a former occasion," says he, "I have viewed its interior, and I am at
a loss to conceive the motive for preferring an external form, which
rendered it impracticable to construct within it more than a series of
large closets, boudoirs, and rooms like oratories." The latter part of
this censure is judiciously correct; but the epithet "bastile" is
perhaps too harsh for some ears.
The _old palace_ at Kew formerly belonged to the Capel family, and
by marriage became the property of Samuel Molyneux, Esq., secretary
to George II. when prince of Wales. The late Frederic, prince of Wales,
took a long lease of the house, which he made his frequent residence;
and here, too, occasionally resided his favourite poet, James Thomson,
author of "The Seasons." It is now held by his majesty on the same
tenure. The house contains some good pictures, among which is a set of
Canaletti's works; the celebrated picture of the Florence gallery, by
Zoffany, (who resided in the neighbourhood,) was removed several years
since. The pleasure-grounds, which contain 120 acres, were laid out by
Sir William Chambers, one of the greatest masters of ornamental
English gardening. Altogether they form a most delightful suburban
retreat, and we hope to take an early opportunity of noticing them
more in detail.
The old mansion opposite the palace was taken on a long lease by
Queen Caroline of the descendants of Sir Richard Lovett, and has been
inhabited by different branches of the royal family: and here his
present majesty was educated, under the superintendance of the late
Dr. Markham, archbishop of York. This house was bought, in 1761, for
the late Queen Charlotte, who died here November 17, 1818.
Apart from these courtly attractions, Kew is one of the most
interesting of the villages near London. On Kew Green once stood a
house, the favourite retirement of Sir Peter Lely. In the church and
cemetery, too, are interred Meyer, the celebrated miniature-painter,
Gainsborough, and Zoffany. Their tombs are simple and unostentatious;
but other and more splendid memorials are left to record their genius.
The premature fate of Kew Palace renders
it at this moment an object of public
curiosity; while the annexed engraving
may serve to identify its site, when posterity
"Asks where the fabric stood."
* * * * *
THE NUPTIAL CHARM.
(For the Mirror.)
There is a charm in wedded bliss.
That leaves each rapture cold to this;
There is a soft endearing spell,
That language can but faintly tell.
'Tis not the figure, form, nor face,
'Tis not the manner, air, nor grace,
'Tis not the smile nor sparkling eye,
'Tis not the winning look nor sigh.
There is a charm surpassing these,
A pleasing spell-like pleasure's breeze!
A joy that centres in the heart,
And doth its balmy sweets impart!
'Tis not the lure of beauty's power,
The skin-deep magnet of an hour;
It is--_affection's_ mutual glow,
That does the nuptial charm bestow!
* * * * *
RAPHAEL SANZIO D'URBINO.
In No. 273 of the Mirror, _P.T.W._ has noticed the _Cartoons_
of Raphael; and I therefore solicit the reader's attention to the
subjoined remarks on that master's unsurpassed genius.
Raphael Sanzio d'Urbino was the pupil of Pietro Perugino, but
afterwards studied the works of Leonardo di Vinci and Michael Angelo.
He excelled every modern painter, and was thought to equal the
ancients; though he did not design naked figures with so much
knowledge as Michael Angelo, who was more eminently skilled in
anatomy; neither did he paint in so graceful a style as the Venetians;
but he had a much more happy manner of disposing and choosing his
subjects than any other artist who has lived since his time. His
admirable choice of attitudes, ornaments, draperies, and expression,
can surely never be equalled by the most successful _aspirant_ in the
fine arts. He has an undisputed title to the prince of painters; for,
notwithstanding his premature death, he produced the most enchanting
representations of the sublime and beautiful. A painter will ever
derive much benefit from the study of all Raphael's pictures;
especially from the Martyrdom of Saint Felicitas; the Transfiguration;
Joseph explaining Pharaoh's Dream; and the School of Athens. Among the
wonders of art with which the School of Athens abounds, we may select
that of four youths attending to a sage mathematician, who is
demonstrating some theorem. One of the boys is listening with profound
reverence to the reasoning of his master; another discovers a greater
quickness of apprehension; while the third is endeavouring to explain
it to the last, who stands with a gaping countenance, utterly unable
to comprehend the learned man's discourse. Expression, which was
Raphael's chief excellence, and in which no other master has well
succeeded, may be seen in the above picture to perfection. Besides his
grand historical works, he executed portraits in a good style; and was
also an admirable architect. In person, he was handsome, and
remarkably well made, his manners being polite and unaffected. He
never refused to impart to others what he knew himself; by which
conduct he became esteemed in private, as much as he was adored in
This master's grand works are principally at Rome, in the Vatican; in
the palace, Florence; Versailles; and the Palais Royal, France; the
king's collection, Naples; and in the apartments at Hampton Court
Palace. His best scholars were Julio Romano, Polydore, Giovanni
d'Udine, and Gaudenzio, to all of whom he communicated the grand
_arcana_ of his wonderful art.
* * * * *
Letter from the Princess, afterwards Queen, Elizabeth, to her sister,
Queen Mary, on her being ordered to the Tower, in consequence of a
suspicion that she was connected with Wyat's rebellion:--
"If any ever did try this old saynge, that a kinge's worde was more
than another man's othe, I most humbly beseche your majesty to verefie
it in me, and to remember your last promis and my last demande, that I
be not condemned without answer and due profe: wiche it semes that now
I am, for that without cause provid I am by your counsel frome you
commanded to go unto the Tower; a place more wonted for a false
traitor, than a tru subject. Wiche thogth I knowe I deserve it not,
yet in the face of al this realme aperes that it is provid; wiche I
pray God, I may dy the shamefullist dethe that ever any died, afore I
may mene any suche thinge: and to this present hower I protest afor
God (who shal juge my trueth whatsoever malice shal devis) that I
never practised, consiled, nor consentid to any thinge that might be
prejudicial to your parson any way, or daungerous to the State by any
mene. And therefor I humbly beseche your Majestie to let me answer
afore your selfe, and not suffer me to trust to your counselors; yea
and that afore I go to the Tower, if it be possible; if not, afore I
be further condemned. Howbeit, I trust assuredly, your Highnes to wyl
give me leve to do it afor I go; for that thus shamfully I may not be
cried out on, as now I shalbe; yea and without cause. Let consciens
move your Highnes take some bettar way with me, than to make me be
condemned in al mens sigth, afor my desert knowen. Also I most humbly
beseche your Highnes to pardon this my boldnes, wiche innocency
procures me to do, togither with hope of your natural kindnes; wiche I
trust wyl not se me cast away without desert: wiche what it is, I wold
desier no more of God, but that you truly knewe. Wiche thinge I thinke
and beleve you shal never by report knowe, unless by your selfe you
hire. I have harde in my time of many cast away, for want of comminge
to the presence of ther Prince: and in late days I harde my Lorde of
Sommerset say, that if his brother had bine sufferd to speke with him,
he had never sufferd: but the perswasions wer made to him so gret,
that he was brogth in belefe that he coulde not live safely if the
Admiral lived; and that made him give his consent to his dethe. Thogth
thes parsons ar not to be compared to your majestie, yet I pray God,
as ivel perswations perswade not one sistar again the other; and al
for that the have harde false report, and not harkene to the trueth
knowin. Therefor ons again, kniling with humblenes of my hart, bicause
I am not sufferd to bow the knees of my body, I humby crave to speke
with your higthnis; wiche I wolde not be so bold to desier, if I knewe
my selfe most clere as I knowe myselfe most tru. And as for the
traitor Wiat, he migth paraventur writ me a lettar; but, on my faithe,
I never receved any from him. And as for the copie of my lettar sent
to the Frenche kinge, I pray God confound me eternally, if ever I sent
him word, message, token, or lettar by any menes: and to this my
truith I will stande in to my dethe.
"Your Highnes most faithful subject that hathe bine from the
beginninge, and wylbe to my ende,
I humbly crave but only one worde of answer from your selfe.
_Ellis's Original Letters_.
* * * * *
Had you but seen his pale, pale blanched cheek!
He would not eat.--O Christ!
In the summer of the year 18--, I was the only passenger on board the
merchantman, Alceste, which was bound to the Brazils. One fine
moonlight night, I stood on the deck, and gazed on the quiet ocean, on
which the moon-beams danced. The wind was so still, that it scarcely
agitated the sails, which were spread out to invite it. I looked
round; it was the same on every side--a world of waters: not a single
object diversified the view, or intercepted the long and steady glance
which I threw over the ocean. I have heard many complain of the
sameness and unvarying uniformity of the objects which oppose
themselves to the eye of the voyager. I feel differently; I can gaze
for hours, without weariness, on the deep, occupied with the thought
it produces; I can listen to the rush of the element as the vessel
cleaves it, and these things have charms for me which others cannot
I heard, on a sudden, a noise, which seemed to proceed from the
captain's cabin, and I thought I could distinguish the voices of
several men, speaking earnestly, though in a suppressed tone. I
cautiously drew near the spot from whence the noise arose, but the
alarm was given, and I could see no one. I retired to rest, or rather
to lie down; for I felt that heavy and foreboding sense of evil
overpower me, which comes we know not how or wherefore; and I could
not sleep, knowing that there had been disputes between the captain
and his men, respecting some point of discipline, and I feared to
think what might be the consequences. I lay a long time disturbed with
these unpleasant reflections; at last, wearied with my thoughts, my
eyes closed, and I dropped to sleep. But it was not to that refreshing
sleep which recruits the exhausted spirits, and by awhile "steeping
the senses in forgetfulness," renders them fitter for exertion on
awakening. My sleep was haunted with hideous and confused dreams, and
murder and blood seemed to surround me. I was awakened by convulsive
starts, and in vain sought again for quiet slumber; the same images
filled my mind, diversified in a thousand horrid forms. Early in the
morning, I arose, and went above, and the mild sea breeze dispelled my
During the whole of the day nothing seemed to justify the fears that
had tormented me, and everything went on in its regular course. The
men pursued their occupations quietly and in silence, and I thought
the temporary fit of disaffection was passed over. Alas! I remembered
not that the passions of men, like deep waters, are most to be
suspected when they seem to glide along most smoothly. Night came on,
and I retired to rest more composed than on the preceding evening. I
endeavoured to convince myself that the noises I had heard were but
the fancies of a disturbed imagination, and I slept soundly. Ill-timed
security! About midnight I was awakened by a scuffling in the vessel.
I hastened to the spot; the captain and one of his officers were
fighting against a multitude of the ship's crew. In a moment after I
saw the officer fall. Two fellows advanced to me, and, clapping
pistols to my breast, threatened instant death, if I stirred or spoke.
I gazed on the bloody spectacle; the bodies, which lay around,
swimming in gore, testified that the mutineers could not have
accomplished their aim with impunity. I was horror-struck; a swimming
sensation came over my eyes, my limbs failed me, and I fell senseless.
When I recovered, I found myself lying on a bed. Everything was still.
I listened in vain for a sound; I lay still a considerable time; at
last, I arose and walked about the ship, but could see no one. I
searched every part of the vessel; I visited the place of slaughter,
which I had, at first, carefully avoided; I counted nine dead bodies,
and the coagulated blood formed a loathsome mass around them; I
shuddered to think I was desolate--the companion of death. "Good God!"
said I, "and they have left me here alone!" The word sounded like a
knell to me. It now occurred to me, it was necessary the bodies should
be thrown overboard. I took up one of them, dragged it to the side,
and plunged it into the waves; but the dash of the heavy body into the
sea, reminded me more forcibly of my loneliness. The sea was so calm,
I could scarcely hear it ripple by the vessel's side. One by one I
committed the bodies to their watery grave. At last my horrible task
was finished. My next work was to look for the ship's boats, but they
were gone, as I expected. I could not bear to remain in the ship; it
seemed a vast tomb for me. I resolved to make some sort of raft, and
depart in it. This occupied two or three days; at length it was
completed, and I succeeded in setting it afloat.
I lowered into it all the provision I could find in the ship, which
was but little, the sailors having, as I imagined, carried off the
remainder. All was ready, and I prepared to depart. I trembled at the
thought of the dangers I was about to encounter. I was going to commit
myself to the ocean, separated from it only by a few boards, which a
wave might scatter over the surface of the waters. I might never
arrive at land, or meet with any vessel to rescue me from my danger,
and I should be exposed, without shelter, and almost without food. I
half resolved to remain in my present situation; but a moment's
reflection dispelled the idea of such a measure. I descended; I stood
on my frail raft; I cut the rope by which it was fastened to the ship.
I was confused to think of my situation; I could hardly believe that I
had dared to enter alone on the waste of waters. I endeavoured to
compose myself, but in vain. As far as I could see, nothing presented
itself to my view but the vessel I had left; the sea was perfectly
still, for not the least wind was stirring. I endeavoured, with two
pieces of board, which supplied the place of oars, to row myself
along; but the very little progress I made alarmed me. If the calm
should continue, I should perish of hunger. How I longed to see the
little sail I had made, agitated by the breeze! I watched it from
morning to night; it was my only employment; but in vain. The weather
continued the same. Two days passed over; I looked at my store of
provisions; it would not, I found, last above three or four days
longer, at the farthest. They were quickly passing away. I almost gave
myself up for lost. I had scarcely a hope of escaping.
On the fourth day since my departure from the ship, I thought I
perceived something at a distance; I looked at it intently--it was a
sail. Good heavens! what were my emotions at the sight! I fastened my
handkerchief on a piece of wood, and waved it, in hopes that it would
be observed, and that I should be rescued from my fearful condition.
The vessel pressed on its course; I shouted;--I knew they could not
hear me, but despair impelled me to try so useless an expedient. It
passed on--it grew dim--I stretched my eyeballs to see it--it
vanished--it was gone! I will not attempt to describe the torturing
feelings which possessed me, at seeing the chance of relief which had
offered itself destroyed. I was stupified with grief and
disappointment. My stock of provisions was now entirely exhausted, and
I looked forward with horror to an excruciating death.
A little water which had remained, quenched my burning thirst. I
wished that the waves would rush over me. My hunger soon became
dreadful, but I had no means of relieving it. I endeavoured to sleep,
that I might for awhile, forget my torments; and my wearied frame
yielded for awhile to slumber. When I awoke I was not, however,
refreshed; I was weak, and felt a burning pain at my stomach. I became
hourly more feeble; I lay down, but was unable to rise again. My limbs
lost their strength; my lips and tongue were parched; a convulsive
shuddering agitated me; my eyes seemed darkened, and I gasped for
The burning at my stomach now departed; I experienced no pain; but a
dull torpor came over me; my hands and feet became cold; I believed I
was dying, and I rejoiced at the thought. Presently I lost all thought
and feeling, and lay, without sense, on a few boards, which divided me
from the ocean. In this situation, as I was afterwards informed, I was
taken up by a small vessel, and carried to a seaport town. I slowly
recovered, and found that I alone, of all who were on board the vessel
in which I had embarked, had escaped death. The crew, who had departed
in the boats, after murdering the captain, had met their reward--the
boats were shattered against a rock.
* * * * *
THE SELECTOR, AND LITERARY NOTICES OF NEW WORKS.
A STORM IN THE INDIAN SEAS.
While the sun was setting with even more than its usual brilliancy,
and leaving its path marked with streaks of gold, a bird hovered over
our heads, and suddenly alighted on our taffrail: it was one of
"Mother Carey's chickens," which by mariners are considered as
harbingers of ill, and generally of a furious storm. At a warning of
this kind I did not then feel disposed to take alarm; but there were
other warnings not to be slighted--the horizon to the east presented
the extraordinary appearance of a black cloud in the shape of a bow,
with its convex towards the sea, and which kept its singular shape and
position unchanged until nightfall. For the period too of twenty
minutes after the setting of the sun, the clouds to the north-west
continued of the colour of blood; but that which most attracted our
observation was, to us, a remarkable phenomenon--the sea immediately
around us, and, as far as the eye could discern by the light of the
moon, appeared, for about forty minutes, of a perfectly milk white. We
were visited by two more chickens of Mother Carey, both of which
sought refuge, with our first visiter, on the mainmast. We sounded,
but found no bottom at a hundred fathoms; a bucket of the water was
then drawn up, the surface of which was apparently covered with
innumerable sparks of fire--an effect said to be caused by the
animalculae which abound in sea-water: it is at all times common, but
the sparks are not in general so numerous, nor of such magnitude, as
were those which then presented themselves. The hand too, being dipped
in the water, and immediately withdrawn, thousands of them would seem
to adhere to it. A dismal hollow breeze, which, as the night drew on,
howled through our rigging, and infused into us all a sombre,
melancholy feeling, increased by gathering clouds, and the altogether
portentous state of the atmosphere and elements, ushered in the first
watch, which was to be kept by Thomson.
About eight o'clock, loud claps of thunder, each in kind resembling a
screech, or the blast of a trumpet, rather than the rumbling sound of
thunder in Europe, burst over our heads, and were succeeded by vivid
flashes of forked lightning. We now made every necessary preparation
for a storm, by striking the top-gallant-masts, with their yards,
close reefing the topsails and foresail, bending the storm-staysail,
and battening down the main hatch, over which two tarpaulins were
nailed, for the better preservation of the cargo. We observed
innumerable shoals of fishes, the motions of which appeared to be more
than usually vivid and redundant.
At twelve o'clock, on my taking charge of the deck, the scene bore a
character widely different from that which it presented but three
hours before. We now sailed under close-reefed maintopsail and
foresail. The sea ran high; our bark laboured hard, and pitched
desperately, and the waves lashed her sides with fury, and were
evidently increasing in force and size. Over head nothing was to be
seen but huge travelling clouds, called by sailors the "scud," which
hurried onwards with the fleetness of the eagle in her flight. Now and
then the moon, then in her second quarter, would show her disc for an
instant, but be quickly obscured; or a star of "paly" light peep out,
and also disappear. The well was sounded, but the vessel did not yet
make more water than what might be expected in such a sea; we,
however, kept the pumps going at intervals, in order to prevent the
cargo from sustaining damage. The wind now increased, and the waves
rose higher; about two o'clock A.M. the weather maintopsail-sheet gave
way; the sail then split to ribbons, and before we could clue it up,
was completely blown away from the bolt-rope. The foresail was then
furled, not without great difficulty, and imminent hazard to the
seamen, the storm staysail alone withstanding the mighty wind, which
seemed to gain strength every half-hour, while the sea, in frightful
sublimity, towered to an incredible height, frequently making a
complete breach over our deck.
At four A.M. I was relieved by Thomson, who at daylight apprized me
that the maintopmast was sprung, and that the gale was increasing.
Scarcely had I gone on deck, when a tremendous sea struck us a little
"abaft the beam," carrying every thing before it, and washing
overboard hencoops, cables, water-casks, and indeed every movable
article on the deck. Thomson, almost by miracle, escaped being lost;
but having, in common with the lascars, taken the precaution to lash a
rope round his waist, we were able, by its means, to extricate him
from danger; at the same time the vessel made an appalling lurch,
lying down on her beam-ends, in which position she remained for the
space of two minutes, when the maintopmast, followed by the
foretopmast, went by the board with a dreadful crash; she then
righted, and we were all immediately engaged in going aloft, and with
hatchets cutting away the wreck, each of us being lashed with a rope
round the waist; ropes were also fastened across the deck, in parallel
lines, to hold on by; for such was the violence of the vessel's
motion, that without such assistance it would have been impossible to
stand. As for my Virginia, she was in her cot, hearing all that was
going forward on deck,--sensible of her danger, and a prey to the
apprehension of meeting a death similar to that of her prototype, and
A drizzling shower now came on, and having continued for some time,
was at length succeeded by heavy rain, which having been converted
into sleet, was carried in flakes swiftly along the tops of the
towering mountains of sea; while the cold sensibly affected the
already exhausted lascars, at once disinclining them from exertion,
and incapacitating them from making any; some of them even sat down
like inanimate statues, with a fixed stare, and a deathlike hue upon
their countenances: the most afflicting circumstance was, their being
destitute of warm clothing, which they had neglected to provide
themselves with, as they ought to have done, out of the four months'
advance they received in Calcutta. All that I could spare was given to
Thomson; but unable to endure the sight of their misery, I distributed
among them many articles which I could ill spare,--sheets, shirts,
and blankets, except one of the latter, which I had reserved as a
provision against any further extreme of suffering which might yet
await us. There was one poor lascar, a simple inoffensive youth, about
nineteen, who was an object of the liveliest commiseration; he was
nearly naked, and in that state had been continually drenched by the
sea and rain, during the whole of the day and night; he was holding
his hands up to heaven in a supplicating attitude, and shaking
in an aguish fit; the tears fell in torrents down his cheeks,
while he uttered his plaints in loud and piercing lamentations.
Unable, at last, to witness his misery any longer, I rushed
down to my cabin--"Can you, Virginia, spare me this blanket without
feeling the cold too much yourself?--it is to save the life of a
fellow-creature."--"Yes, take it; but stay with me, or, under the
horrors I feel, I shall die in this cabin, and alone. I know we must
perish, and why not die together?" I entreated her to support herself
with all the fortitude she could collect, urged the impossibility of
my keeping her company, as every moment called for my assistance; and
assuring her there was no real danger, I hurried on deck with the
blanket, and wrapped the poor wretch in its folds. I thought he
would have worshipped me.
* * * * *
It was about four o'clock, on the fifth morning, that I ventured
into my cabin, to repose myself on my cot until daylight, more with
the persuasion that my presence would inspire Virginia with fresh
hopes, and, in consequence, better spirits, than that the storm had
in the least abated, or that the peril had become less imminent.
At six, Thomson, whom I had left in charge of the deck, aroused
me by bawling, in a voice necessarily raised to the highest pitch,
to make itself heard amidst the howling, or rather screaming of the
elements--"Naufragus!" I instantly jumped up, without waiting any
specific communication, and, on reaching the deck, found the pumps at
work, and was informed that we had five feet water in the hold, and
that the water was gaining upon us fast, notwithstanding the pumps had
been kept constantly going.--"Well," said Thomson, in a low tone, not
to be heard by the crew, "we'll do our best, as long as she floats,
but that cannot now be much longer--it's all over with us, depend upon
it!" There was no time for argument; the pumps were now the chief
object of our attention; and Thomson and myself, with the secunnies,
plied them incessantly, until we were ready to drop down with fatigue.
In a short time we found that the water brought up by the pumps bore a
brownish colour, and, on tasting it, that it was sweet; so that it was
evident we were pumping up the sugar, which being contained in
baskets, was but ill protected against water. Such is the fondness for
life, that on the appearance of any sudden or immediate cause of
dissolution, any consideration unconnected with the paramount one of
preservation, is set at naught; thus, although I was sensible that my
valuable cargo was momentarily diminishing, and my property wasting
away, I then felt no disposition to regret my loss, the powers of my
mind, and the affections of my heart, being all engaged on higher
Those lascars who could at all be brought to the pumps were in so
wretched and debilitated a state, as to require constant reliefs. For
one day and two nights, except a few short intervals, Thomson and
myself, with the secunnies, were at the pumps: at the end of that
time, our hands were blistered to such a degree, that the skin having
peeled off, the raw flesh appeared; our arms, thighs, and legs were so
dreadfully swelled, and our loins in such tormenting pain, as to make
it impossible for us to continue the exertion, without suffering
extreme agony; and nothing but the melancholy conviction that we must
continue our labour, or perish, could possibly have sustained us under
such hardships--hardships, however, which we had the heartfelt
satisfaction to find were so far from being useless, that on perusing
the sounding-rod, when pulled up from the well, (which we did under
feelings of extreme anxiety and eagerness,) we were convinced that the
water did not gain upon us. Our spirits, however, received no
encouragement from the appearance of the elements; the clouds were
black and frowning, and all around still bore a threatening
appearance, the hurricane indeed having rather increased than in the
slightest degree abated.
The circumstance of our having on board so perishable and light a
cargo as soft sugar, it is remarkable, was the very means of our
preservation. Had it consisted of almost any other article, either of
pepper or of dead wood, we must inevitably have perished. To have
thrown overboard any heavy cargo, would, from the constant and heavy
breaches which the sea made over us, have been impossible. Neither
could the masts have been cut away, for the purpose of lightening the
vessel, in consequence of the imbecile condition of the crew; a
recourse to so hazardous a measure would, under our circumstances,
most likely have proved the cause of our destruction. As it was, from
constant pumping for three days, we found our vessel as light and
buoyant as a cork, and, with the exception of the baskets in which the
sugar had been stowed, as empty as when I first purchased her.
Night approached, bringing with it additional horrors. The secunnies,
who had hitherto borne their hardships with admirable fortitude, now
began to droop, and to express a violent inclination for more rum,
although as much had been given them as they could possibly bear;
indeed, rum, with dough, half-baked, had formed their only sustenance
during the whole period of our sufferings. As for the pumps, we were
now so lightened, they did not require to be worked at all; but the
greatest dread we laboured under was from the dangerous condition of
the main and fore masts, that tottered to and fro, threatening to go
by the board every minute. Before the hour of sunset, a large bird,
called the albatross, with wings the length of four to five feet each,
skimmed along the surface of the waves, close to and around us; this
inspired the crew with hopes, as they supposed it to be a good omen.
It remained hovering near our unfortunate wreck for some minutes,
until it alighted on the waves, where it was seen riding perfectly at
ease, and with the majesty of a fine large swan, now on the summit of
a tremendous mountain of waters, and now in the ravines of a wide and
deep abyss. At length darkness once more encompassed us around, and
seemed to shut us out from even a ray of hope; the desponding few,
whose senses were still left them, apparently felt with more acuteness
than before, the desperation and horrors of their condition. At the
hour of eight P.M., however, the wind suddenly changed from south-east
to south-west, and soon appeared to be dying away. At this happy
circumstance, whereby a prospect of deliverance from the very depths
of despair was opened to us, the feelings manifested by the crew were
as singular as they were various; some shouted for joy--some
cried--others muttered prayers--while a few were still despondent,
presenting wild and savage-looking features, and seeming to regret
that the billows had not swallowed them up.--_Adventures of
* * * * *
Clean sheets are not remarkably common at common inns, where, I am
informed, that the practice is to take them from the bed, sprinkle
them with water, to fold them down, and then put them in a press. When
they are wanted again, they are, literally speaking, shewn to the
fire, and in a reeking state laid on the bed. The traveller is tired
and sleepy, dreams of that pleasure or that business which brought him
from home, and the remotest thing from his mind is, that from the very
repose which he fancies has refreshed him, he has received the
rheumatism. The receipt, therefore, to sleep comfortably at inns, is
to take your own sheets, to have plenty of flannel gowns, and to
promise, and take care to pay, a handsome consideration for the
liberty of choosing your beds. Damp beds are oftenest found in inns
that are least visited; they ought to be carefully avoided, for they
not only produce dreadful disorders, but have often proved the death
of the person who has had the misfortune to sleep in them. Especially
in winter, not only examine the beds, to see whether they are quite
dry, but have the bedclothes in your presence put before the fire.
Just before you go to bed, order a pan of hot coals to be run through
it, then place a clean tumbler inverted between the sheets, and let it
remain there for a few minutes;--if on withdrawing it the slightest
cloud is observable on the inner surface, be certain that either the
bed or the sheets are damp: sleeping in the blankets is a
disagreeable, but the safest way of escaping such danger: there are
many persons in the habit of travelling, who make it a constant
practice. A wash leather sheet, about 8 feet by 5, is not an
unpleasant substitute for linen. But the only absolutely safe plan is,
to sleep in a bed which you are sure has been occupied the night
before; and that, must be the best-aired bed which was slept in by the
best-aired person!--Qy. The cook?--_The Traveller's Oracle_.
* * * * *
The Burmans used to approach, on dark nights, on their hands and
knees, and often crawled close up to the sentinels, before they were
discovered; sometimes they carried off knapsacks and arms, and went
away with their booty unperceived.
A laughable instance of their dexterity took place in the Great
Pagoda, on the night of the 2nd July. The soldiers, for several nights
previous, had missed some arms, although a sentry was before the door,
and they generally slept with their firelocks by their sides. This
evening, every one was on the alert, extra sentries were posted, and
every precaution taken to secure the marauders. When, on a sudden, the
alarm being given, the officer on duty, who was reposing in one of the
little temples, ran to the door and inquired what had occurred,--but
hearing that only a knapsack had been found in the grass, and that no
other traces existed of the depredators, he turned round to lie down
again, and, to his infinite astonishment, found his bed had vanished!
A light was in the room, and a servant sleeping near it, yet,
notwithstanding, the impudent thieves had also ransacked a basket, and
escaped with the contents! We since heard that the robbers were Burman
soldiers belonging to the camp at Kumaroot, whither they carried their
spoils. They certainly deserved infinite credit for the ingenuity they
manifested, and for the manner in which they turned the laugh against
us, by showing, that the very moment they chose for their
depredations, was one when a strict search was making after them.
_Two Years in Ava_.
* * * * *
MANNERS & CUSTOMS OF ALL NATIONS.
The people of Kanem, in Central Africa, are known by the name of
Kanemboo, and consist of tribes of Tibboos. The women are
good-looking, laughing negresses, and all but naked. Most of them have
a square or triangular piece of silver or tin hanging at the back of
the head, suspended from the hair, which is curiously and laboriously
trained, and no one of tender years has anything like a perfect head
of hair. From childhood the head is shaved, having only the top
covered; the hair from hence falls down quite round from the forehead
to the pole of the neck, and is then formed into one solid plait,
which in front lying quite flat just over the eyes, and behind being
turned up with a little curl, has just the appearance of an
old-fashioned coachman's wig in London.
The women flock from the neighbouring negro villages to the weekly
fsug, or market, with baskets of gussut, gafooly, fowls, and honey,
which may be purchased by small pieces of coral amber of the coarsest
kind, and coloured beads. Major Denham, in his "Travels in Northern
and Central Africa," says "one merchant bought a fine lamb for two
bits of amber, worth, I should think, about two-pence each in Europe;
two needles purchased a fowl; and a handful of salt, four or five
good-sized fish from the lake (Tchad)."
_Kingdom of Bornou_.
The Shouaa Arabs are a very extraordinary race, and have scarcely any
resemblance to the Arabs of the north; they have fine open
countenances, with aquiline noses, and large eyes; their complexion is
a light copper-colour; they possess great cunning with their courage,
and resemble in appearance some of our best favoured gipsies in
England, particularly the _women_; and their Arabic is nearly pure
The best residences of the Shouaas consist of two enclosures, besides
one for their horses, cows, and goats. In the first of these divisions
is a circular hut, with a cupola top, well thatched with gussub straw,
something resembling that of the Indian corn; the walls are of the
same materials; a mud wall, of about two feet high, separates one part
from the rest, and here their corn is kept; and a bench of like
composition, at the opposite side, is their resting-place; this is
covered with mats; and spears and wooden bowls for water and milk,
hang on pegs, and complete the furniture; here is the master's own
apartment. In the second division are two huts, rather smaller, about
ten paces from each other, in which dwell his wives.
The custom of burying the dead in the floor of dwelling-houses, is
prevalent on the Gold Coast of Africa, as far as that country is known
to Europeans. The ceremony is purely Pagan, and without any form,
except that of the females of the family of the deceased and their
friends making a mournful lamentation; and in some instances they work
their feelings up to such a degree of apparent sorrow, that their
conduct has every symptom of insanity. This scene of revelry is not a
little heightened by the profuse use of ardent spirits, which has so
powerful an attraction, that drummers, flute-players, bards, and
singing men come from great distances to partake of the libations; and
as the savage uproar lasts often for a week, it leads to every kind of
dissolute practice in both sexes. Another custom, or repetition of
this barbarous usage, frequently takes place seven years after the
demise of persons of consequence, which is still more expensive than
the former: as such are the baneful prejudices in favour of these
habits, that families have too frequently pawned their relatives to
raise money to defray the expense; they purchase cattle, sheep, goats,
and poultry, and with the assistance of what is brought by their
friends and acquaintances, they are enabled to keep up a scene of riot
for many days. The carcasses of animals sacrificed are not burned and
sown in the wind as in times of old, but the Fantees more wisely, eat
them, greater attention being paid to the flavour of the viands and
the fragrance of the strong liquor than to the manes of the dead.
* * * * *
SPIRIT OF THE PUBLIC JOURNALS.
WILLY M'GEE'S MONKEY.
I dinna think that in a' nature there's a mair curiouser cratur than
a monkey. I mak this observe frae being witness to an extraordinar'
event that took place in Hamilton. Folk may talk as they like about
monkeys, and cry them down for being stupid and mischievous, I for
ane will no gang that length. Whatever they may be on the score
of mischief, there can be nae doubt, that, sae far as gumption is
concerned, they are just uncommon; and for wit and fun they would beat
ony man black and blue. In fact, I dinna think that monkeys are beasts
ava. I hae a half notion that they are just wee hairy men that canna,
or rather that winna speak, in case they be made to work like ither
folk, instead of leading a life of idleness.
But to the point: I ance had a monkey, ane of the drollest-looking
deevils ye ever saw. He was gayan big for a monkey, and was hairy
a' ower, except his face and his bit hurdies, which had a degree of
bareness about them, and were nearly as saft as a lady's loof. Weel,
what think ye that I did wi' the beastie? Odds, man, I dressed him up
like a Heelandman, and put a kilt upon him, and a lang-tailed red
coat, and a blue bannet, which for security's sake I tied, woman-like,
below his chin wi' twa bits of yellow ribbon. I not only did this, but
I learnt him to walk upon his twa hinder legs, and to carry a stick
in his right hand when he gaed out, the better to support him in his
peregrinations. He was for a' the world like a wee man in kilts.
Weel, it turned out in this manner, as ye shall hear. Ae afternoon
towards the glomin' I was oblegated to tak' a stap doun to the cross,
wi' a web under my arm, which I had finished for Mr. Weft, the muslin
manufacturer. By way of frolic, a gayan foolish ane I allow, I brocht
Nosey (the monkey's name,) alang wi' me. He had on, as for ordinar',
his Heeland dress, and walkit behint me, wi' the bit stick in his
hand, and his tail sticking out frae below his kilt, as if he had been
my flunky. It was, after a', a queer sicht, and, as may be supposed, I
drew a haill crowd of bairns after me, bawling out, "Here's Willy
M'Gee's monkey," and gi'eing him nits and gingerbread, and makin' as
muckle of the cratur as could be; for Nosey was a great favourite in
the town, and everbody likit him for his droll tricks, and the way he
used to girn, and dance, and tumble ower his head, to amuse them.
On entering Mr. Weft's shop, I faund it empty; there wasna a leeving
soul within. I supposed he had gane out for a licht; and being gayan
familiar wi' him, I took a stap ben to the back shop, leaving Nosey in
the fore ane. I sat for twa or three minutes, but naebody made his
appearance. At last the front door, which I had ta'en care to shut
after me, opened, and I look't to see wha it could be, thinking that,
nae doubt, it was Mr. Weft, or his apprentice. It was neither the ane
nor the ither, but a strong middle-aged, red-faced Heelandman, wi'
specks on, and wi' a kilt and a bannet, by a' the world like my
monkey's. Now, what think ye Nosey was about a' this time? He was
sittin' behind the counter upon the lang three-leggit stool that stood
fornent Mr. Weft's desk, and was turning ower the leaves of his
ledger, wi' a look which, for auld-fashioned sagaciousness, was
wonderfu' to behold. I was sae tickled at the sight that I paid nae
sort of attention to the Heelandman, but continued looking frae the
back shop at Nosey, lauching a' the time in my sleeve--for I jealoused
that some queer scene would tak' place between the twa. And I wasna
far wrang, for the stranger, takin' out a pound frae his spleuchan,
handed it ower to the monkey, and speered at him, in his droll norlan
deealect, if he could change a note. When I heard this I thocht I
would hae lauched outricht; and naething but sheer curiosity to see
how the thing would end made me keep my gravity. It was plain that
Donald had ta'en Nosey for ane of his ain countrymen--and the thing
after a' wasna greatly to be wondered at, and that for three
Firstly, the shop was rather darkish.
Secondly, the Heelandman had on specks, as I hae just said; and it was
likely on this account that he was rather short-sighted; and
Thirdly, Nosey, wi' his kilt, and bannet, and red coat, was, to a'
intents and purposes, as like a human creatur as a monkey could weel
Nae sooner, then, had he got the note, than he opened it out, and
lookit at it wi' his wee glowrin', restless een, as if to see that it
wasna a forgery. He then shook his head like a doctor, when he's no
very sure what's wrang wi' a person, but wants to mak' it appear that
he kens a' about it--and continued in this style till the Heelandman's
patience began to get exhausted.
"Can ye no change the note, old shentleman?" quo' Donald. Nosey gi'ed
his head anither shake, and looked uncommon wise.
"Is the note no goot, sir?"' spak the Heelandman, a second time; but
the cratur, instead of answering him, only gi'ed anither of his wise
shakes, as much as to say, "I'm no very sure about it." At this Donald
lost temper. "If the note doesna please ye, sir," quo' he, "I'll thank
ye to gie me it back again, and I'll gang to some ither place." And he
stretchit out his hand to tak hand o't, when my frien' wi' the tail,
lifting up his stick, lent him sic a whack ower the fingers as made
him pu' back in the twinkling of an ee.
"Got tamn ye, ye auld scounrel," said the man; "do ye mean to tak my
money frae me?" And he lifted up a rung big eneuch to fell a stot, and
let flee at the monkey; but Nosey was ower quick for him, and jumping
aside, he lichted on a shelf before ane could say Jock Robinson. Here
he rowed up the note like a baw in his hand, and put it into his coat
pouch like any rational cratur. Not only this, but he mockit the
Heelandman by a' manner of means, shooting out his tongue at him,
spitting at him, and girning at him wi' his queer outlandish
physiognomy. Then he would tak haud of his tail in his twa hands, and
wag it at Donald, and steeking his nieves, he would seem to threaten
him wi' a leatherin'. A'thegither he was desperate impudent, and
eneuch to try the patience of a saunt, no to spak o' a het-bluided
Heelandman. It was gude for sair een to see how Donald behavit on this
occasion. He raged like ane demented, misca'ing the monkey beyond
measure, and swearing as mony Gaelic aiths as micht hae sair'd an
ordinar man for a twalmonth. During this time, I never sterr'd a foot,
but keepit keeking frae the back shop upon a' that was ganging on. I
was highly delighted; and jealousing that Nosey was ower supple to be
easily catched, I had nae apprehension for the event, and remained
snug in my birth to see the upshot.
In a short time, in comes Mr. Weft wi' a piece of lowing paper in his
hand that he had got frae the next door to licht the shop; and nae
sooner did Donald see him than he ax'd him for his note.
"What note, honest man?" said Mr. Weft.
"Got tamn," quo' Donald; "the note the auld scounrel, your
grandfather, stole frae me."
"My grandfaither!" answered the ither wi' amazement. "I am thinking,
honest man, ye hae had a glass ower muckle. My grandfaither has been
dead for saxteen years, and I ne'er heard tell till now that he was a
"Weel, weel, then," quo' the Heelandman, "I don't care naething about
it. If he's no your grandfaither, he'll be your faither, or your
brither, or your cousin."
"My faither or my brither, or my cousin!" repeated Mr. Weft. "I maun
tell ye plainly, frien', that I hae neither faither, nor brither, nor
cousin of ony description on this side of the grave. I dinna
understand ye, honest man, but I reckon that ye hae sat ower lang at
the whisky, and my advice to ye is to stap awa hame and sleep it aff."
At this speech the Heelandman lost a' patience, and lookit sae awfully
fairce, that ance or twice I was on the nick of coming forrit, and
explaining how matters really stood; but curiosity keepit me chained
to the back shop, and I just thocht I would bide a wee, and see how
the affair was like to end.
"Pray, wha are you, sir?" said Donald, putting his hands in his sides,
and looking through his specks upon Mr. Weft, like a deevil incarnit.
"Wha are you, sir, that daar to speak to me in this manner?"
"Wha am I?" said the ither, drapping the remnant of the paper, which
was burnin' close to his fingers. "I am Saunders Weft, manufacturir In
Hamilton--that's what I am."
"And I am Tonald Campbell, piper's sister's son to his grace the
great, grand Tuke of Argyle," thundered out the Heelandman, wi' a
voice that was fearsome to hear.
"And what about that?" quo' Mr. Weft, rather snappishly, as I thocht.
"If ye were the great, grand Duke of Argyle himself, as ye ca' him,
I'll no permit you to kick up a dust in my shop."
"Ye scounrel," said Donald, seizing Mr. Weft by the throat, and
shaking him till he tottered like an aspen leaf, "div ye mean to speak
ill of his grace the Tuke of Argyle?" And he gi'ed him anither
shake--then, laying haud of his nose, he swore that he would pu't as
lang as a cow's tail, if he didna that instant restore him his lost
property. At this sicht I began to grew a' ower, and now saw the
needcessity of stapping ben, and saving my employer frae farther
damage, bodily and itherwise. Nae sooner had I made my appearance than
Donald let go his grip of Mr. Weft's nose, and the latter, in a great
passion, cried out, "William M'Gee, I tak ye to witness what I hae
sufferit frae this bluid-thirsty Heelandman! It's no to be endured in
a Christian country. I'll hae the law of him, that I will. I'll be
whuppit but I'll hae amends, although it costs me twenty pounds!"
"What's the matter?" quo' I, pretending ignorance of the haill
concern. "What, in the name of Nebuchadnezzar, has set ye thegither by
the lugs?" Then Mr. Weft began his tale, how he had been collared and
weel nigh thrappled in his ain shop;--then the ither tauld how, in the
first place, Mr. Weft's grandfather, as he ca'd Nosey, had stolen his
note, and how, in the second place, Mr. Weft himsell had insulted the
great, grand Duke of Argyle. In a word, there was a desperate kick-up
between them, the ane threeping that he would tak the law of the ither
immediately. Na, in this respect Donald gaed the greatest lengths, for
he swore that, rather than be defeat, he wad carry his cause to the
house of lords, although it cost him thretty pounds sterling. I now
saw it was time to put in a word.
"Houts-touts, gentlemen," quo' I, "what's the use of a' this
clishmaclaver? Ye've baith gotten the wrang sow by the lug, or my
name's no William M'Gee. I'll wager ye a pennypiece, that my monkey,
Nosey is at the bottom of the business."
Nae sooner had I spoken the word, than the twa, looking round the
shop, spied the beastie sitting upon the shelf girning at them, and
putting out his tongue, and wiggle-waggling his walking-stick ower his
left elbow, as if he had been playing upon the fiddle. Mr. Weft at
this apparition set up a loud lauch; his passion left him in a moment,
when he saw the ridiculous mistake that the Heelandman had fa'en into,
and I thocht he would hae bursted his sides wi' evendown merriment. At
first Donald lookit desperate angry, and judging frae the way he was
twisting about his mouth and rowing his een, I opined that he intended
some deadly skaith to the monkey. But his gude sense, of which
Heelandmen are no a'thegither destitute, got the better of his anger,
and he roared and lauched like the very mischief. Nor was this a', for
nae sooner had he began to lauch, than the monkey did the same thing,
and held its sides in precisely the same manner, imitating his
actions, in the maist amusin' way imaginable. This only set Donald a
lauching mair than ever, and when he lifted up his nieve, and shook it
at Nosey in a gude humoured way, what think ye that the cratur did?
Odds man, he took the note frae his pouch, whare it lay rowed up like
a baw, and, papping it at Donald, hit him as fairly upon the nose, as
if it had been shot out of a weel-aimed musket. There was nae
resisting this. The haill three, or rather the haill four, for Nosey
joined us, set up a loud lauch; and the Heelandman's was the loudest
of a', showing that he was really a man of sense, and could tak a joke
as weel as his neighbours.
When the lauchin' had a wee subsided, Mr. Campbell, in order to show
that he had nae ill wull to Mr. Weft, ax'd his pardon for the rough
way he had treated him, but the worthy manufacturer wadna hear o't.
"Houts, man," quo' he, "dinna say a word about it. It's a mistak
a'thegether, and Solomon himsell, ye ken, whiles gaed wrang."
Whereupon the Heelandman bought a Kilmarnock nichtcap, price
elevenpence happeny, frae Mr. Weft, and paid him wi' part of the very
note that brocht on the ferly I hae just been relating. But his gude
wull didna end here, for he insisted on takin' us a'--Nosey amang the
lave--to the nearest public, where he gi'ed us a frien'ly glass, and
we keepit tawking about monkeys, and what not, in a manner at ance
edifying and amusing to hear.--_Blackwood's Magazine_.
* * * * *
The lassie we love and the friend we can trust,
And a bumper to wash from our spirits the rust;
Then let gear-scraping carls make o' life catch-the-plack,
And strod to the de'il wi' the trash on their back.
This life is a garden where all choose their posies:
In the spring of our youth let us gather the roses;
For brief is their bloom like the dews of the morn,
If you seek them too late you will find but a thorn.
If Care steal amang us he's narrowly watch'd,
By a smile or a squeeze of the hand he's dispatch'd;
Or the arm of a friend should the stout villain meet,
One blink of true love lays him dead at your feet.
Then fill up a glass to the absent and dear--
May their lives be serene as their breasts are sincere;
And to crown our true bliss, let us give, ere we part--
May we have in our arms whom we love in our heart.
_London Weekly Review._
* * * * *
MATCHES IN TEENS.
"To marry!--Why, every man plays the fool once in his
life--but to marry is playing the fool all one's life
There is something so satisfactory in knowing at once the limit of
your fortunes--in making yourself secure in the first instance of that
happiness to which all your exertions are directed,--which is in fact
the end and aim of your worldly existence, and of all your worldly
toils--the enjoyment of domestic peace and love;--in quenching that
restless, burning anxiety, which is ever busy within the bosom of the
young and the aspiring. Marrying early, in fact, is taking time by the
forelock, and leading your future destinies after you, instead of
suffering yourself to be led and tossed about by them,--it is tearing
away the black veil from the brow of futurity, and perusing all her
lineaments in her own despite. It is [he continued with an oratorical
attitude] building your fate upon a rock--"
"Ah!" I exclaimed, "stop there--that _rock_ is so commonplace."
Harry laughed and went on with his argument.--"Besides, there is the
gratification of making yourself _considered_ in society--which no
single man is. A single man is a kind of protected or licensed
vagabond--rambling to and fro without stamp or mark, as Witwould might
say,--like a sheep that has been overlooked at tarring time. His home
is a desert to him,--and the love of social converse, which is so
natural, and so amiable at the same time keeps him eternally in a
state of fidgetty restlessness, which precludes all possibility of
serious and persevering labour. Only think of the horrors of a house
without a queen--Yawning servants, negligent housekeepers, extorting
tradespeople,--these and a thousand other annoyances, for which you
have no relief, because you cannot stoop to meddle or make in such
transactions--are the agitations which perpetually infest the domestic
commonwealth of a bachelor.--But turn your eyes into the house of
'Benedick, the married man'--He wears his rue with a difference,
indeed!--There is a sense of life, bustle, mirth, and happiness, in
the very air of the dwelling. To be greeted with smiles at your going
forth and coming in--to know that there is at least one who serves you
without a self-interest--to hear the joyous, feminine laugh, delicate
and temperate in the very whirlwind of its ecstacy, ring through the
mansion from hour to hour--to hear the little foot pattering about you
as you sit at your philosophic studies--to have a friend with whom you
can converse freely and without fear of present offence or future
disadvantage--and whose presence is not without its influence and its
charm, even when the call of a worldly ambition summons you to--
Your tasks, in social silence too,"
with just sense enough to understand all you can say to her--and
nothing so wise as to mortify you at any time by setting you right.
Then, instead of the natty primness of your bachelor's apartment, you
have your eyes feasted by that elegant confusion of the little
sanctuary--the charm of which cannot, unseen, be apprehended, and is
only known to those who are privileged to enter, by the passport of
Hymen. A bit of bobbin here--a thread-paper there--here a hat
feather--there a scrap of silk.--Besides," [drawing his chair closer
to mine and looking very tender] "when you love her, you know--." He
paused and sighed, and I groaned strenuously.--
"And is this all you have to say in defence of an elopement with a
girl of sixteen." ["A beautiful girl," he passionately interrupted]
"well! a beautiful girl--so young, that it is perfectly impossible for
you to form any judgment on her inclinations or her temper--at a time
when her character is undecided--unformed--when that which is mere
caprice, frequently assumes the hue of passion, and wears all its
fervour and intensity. Or if it should continue unabated--as I must
confess [observing him turn himself with an air before a pier glass,]
I see no reason why it should not--you will find the unsophistication
of the young lady as quickly tending to domestic disquiet, as might
have been her inconstancy--She will be unreasonable in her exactions
on your confidence, and you will be compelled to take refuge in fits
of sullenness--perhaps rudeness;--and then what becomes of that
blissful state, where like you, every body expects, and so very--very
few _find_ happiness?--to secure which the most perfect union of taste
and feeling--the utmost kindliness of manner, and a politeness as
habitual as motion itself, are absolute requisites?--Have you no
further arguments to offer in favour of this measure of yours?--"
"Oh, yes," said he, very dryly, "I have one more."
"What may that be?"
"That I WILL marry her."
"Oh!..." said I.
And without exchanging another word, I put on my great coat, and we
sallied forth together to the rendezvous of the lovers. The fair
fugitive was true to her appointment, and at the first sound of the
expected footfall, glided from her concealment into the happy
scoundrel's arms. The action which followed I could not see (though it
was a bright moonlight,) for a breeze lifted the large veil which hung
over the lady's shoulder, in such a manner as to envelope the
countenances of both. What the action _ought_ to have been, perhaps
you, madam, or you, mademoiselle, may inform me?--I only know that
when the modest zephyr passed, and the veil fell back again, the fair
cheek that it revealed glowed with
"A pudency so rosy, the sweet view on't,
Might well have warm'd old Saturn."
Harry gave me his hand (heartily) as he stood on the carriage step,
and the bride wafted me a farewell with the prettiest action of her
fan from the window, and murmured,--"Give me a good wish for the
"Yes," said I; "may you never have occasion to say of the love that
now leads you to him, that
"'Its beacon light is quench'd in _smoke_.'"
[For although naturally grave, and silently given, I often catch
myself endeavouring to sport a bad pun, when I have got the ear of a
fair damsel] The only effect which the witticism produced in the
present instance, however, was an enormous groan, in which the fellows
on the dickey participated. Even the postilion who stood near, set up
a crowing laugh--and the very horses by their snorting and neighing,
seemed to be sensible of the utter and deplorable failure.
And away they went--and they were hotly pursued, and overtaken, _just_
in time to be too late--which left no other course but that of
reconciliation;--and where there is no choice to be made, every body
knows there is but one part to be taken.
That occurrence is now three years since, and it was only the other
day that I again met the pair of turtles. Dropping in rather late at a
card-party, I beheld them sitting vis-a-vis at one of the tables,
playing together against an old lady and gentleman, before whom Mrs.
L---- thought, perhaps, it was not necessary to appear _very_
fashionable towards dear Harry. With the requisite _ceremonious
unceremoniousness_ so popular at present, I took a chair behind him,
and annoyed him every moment by remarks upon his wife; of course all
highly nattering to both.
"My love, you have played that card wrong--very wrong."
"Did I, my dear?" replied Mrs. L. smiling languidly, and looking in
his face more as if she was admiring the elegant turn of his forehead,
and the spirited expression of his dark eye, than as if she minded
what he was saying--"'tis indeed--very."
"Oh! were you not speaking of something? I beg pardon, love--I thought
"And so I did, my dear. I told you that card was played most
"I dare say, my love;--[still gazing in his eyes and smiling]--I know
I'm very stupid,"--[playing a card.]
"Well, you have taken a curious way to mend matters--that last play
was a thousand degrees worse than the other."
"I dare say, my love,--[looking in his face, and continuing to drawl
and simper in the manner which we might imagine of Shakspeare's little
"'Sweet youth chide on--I had rather hear thee chide
Than others woo--'"]
"But tell me, love, when I play wrong," [playing again without taking
her eyes from his, even to look at her card.]
"I had much better leave you to yourself," said L.
"'_You will be compelled to take refuge in fits of sullenness_,'"
muttered I, quoting from my former prophecy.
"My dear,"--[pronounced just in the same way as he might have said,
'you fool,']--pray open your eyes."
"_Perhaps in rudeness_," I continued.
"There again!" cried poor L----, who seemed in danger of being ruined
by the admiration of his wife. "It is not possible for a card to be
played worse than that. Your head, my dear, must be as confused as
"_A bit of bobbin here--a hat feather there_," I continued, growing
"Sir," cried L----, starting round in a passion. Fixing his eyes for a
moment on my wooden phiz, however, he burst into a fit of laughter,
and then as suddenly assuming a most doleful change of countenance, he
squeezed my hand and said to me apart, in a tragic tone, "Ah, my dear
friend, you were right--you were right."
"He that would lead a happy married life,
First learn to rule, and then to have, a wife,"
say Beaumont and Fletcher--and a pleasant
aphorism it is too--and a wise and
useful--but with a slight alteration, a
periphrasis comprehending advice not less
to the purpose may be presented--
"He that would lead a happy wedded life,
Beware of marrying a _too_ youthful wife."
* * * * *
USEFUL DOMESTIC HINTS.
FININGS FOR WINES.
If wine does not become clear soon enough, for each forty gallons
dissolve an ounce of isinglass in a quart of water. Strain and mix
this with part of the liquor, beat it up to a froth, and pour it into
the rest; stir the whole well, and bung it up, except there should be
an appearance of fermentation; if so, leave the bung out till it has
ceased. Instead of isinglass, some use hartshorn shavings, in rather
larger quantities; red wines are fined with eggs, twelve to the pipe,
beaten up to a froth, mixed with the wine, _and well stirred in_.
Gypsum or alabaster is used to clear cloudy white wines; as also fresh
slaked lime; and the size of a walnut of sugar of lead, with a table
spoonful of sal enixum, is put to forty gallons of muddy wine, to
clear it; and hence, as the sugar of lead is decomposed, and changed
into an insoluble sulphat of lead, which falls to the bottom, the
practice is not so dangerous as has been represented.
MANNER OF USING FININGS.
Put the finings, when ready, into a pail, with a little of what you
are going to fine; whisk them together till they are perfectly mixed,
and then nearly fill up the pail with the liquor, whisking it well
about again, after which, if the cask be full, take out four or five
gallons to make room; take a staff and stir it well; next whisk the
finings up, and put them in, stirring well together for five minutes;
then drive in the bung, leaving the vent-peg loose for three or four
days, after which drive it in tight.
OF FLAVOURING AND COLOURING WINES.
The quality of roughness natural to those red wines in which the skins
and a portion of the stems have been subjected to the process of
fermentation, is readily communicated by astringent substances, and by
none more easily or purely than by catechu and kino, substances free
from injurious flavour; the sloe is also used; similar roughness,
accompanied with flavour, is given by the chips of oak and beech; and
if logwood and walnut peels are used, the astringency will also be
united to a portion of colour and flavour. All these substances may be
rendered highly useful in giving positive qualities to insipid wines.
A simple infusion alone is necessary, in such proportion as the
exigencies may require; care being taken to rack and fine the wine
after the desired effect has been obtained.--_The Vintner's Guide_.
* * * * *
"I am but a _Gatherer_ and disposer of other men's
BIRDS POISONING THEIR YOUNG.
Mr. Holmes, in his "Account of the United States of America," relates
that some of the birds of North America are remarkable for poisoning
their young; but this is only done if they are encaged or confined.
The _robin_ is one of the birds thus noticed. If the young be taken,
and placed in a cage where the parent birds can discover them, they
will attend upon and feed them for a season; but after the lapse of a
few days, or when the young are fledged, the old ones appear very
uneasy, and endeavour to discover some way by which they may escape.
If, however, they perceive that there is no hope of accomplishing
their purpose, they procure for them a sort of berry, which is an
infallible poison; _apparently disdaining the thought that their
offspring should be slaves_!
* * * * *
Vernet relates, that he was once employed to paint a landscape, with a
cave, and St. Jerome in it; he accordingly painted the landscape, with
St. Jerome at the entrance of the cave. When he delivered the picture,
the purchaser, who understood nothing of perspective, said, "the
landscape and the cave are well made, but St. Jerome is not _in_ the
cave."--"I understand you, sir," replied Vernet, "I will alter it." He
therefore took the painting, and made the shade darker, so that the
saint seemed to sit farther in. The gentleman took the painting; but
it again appeared to him that the saint was not in the cave. Vernet
then wiped out the figure, and gave it to the gentleman, who seemed
perfectly satisfied. Whenever he saw strangers to whom he showed the
picture, he said, "Here you see a picture by Vernet, with St. Jerome
in the cave." "But we cannot see the saint," replied the visiters.
"Excuse me, gentlemen," answered the possessor, "he is there; for I
have seen him standing at the entrance, and afterwards farther back;
and am therefore quite sure that he is in it."
* * * * *
BLACK MAN'S DREAM.
A number of years bygone, a black man, named Peter Cooper, happened to
marry a fair lady of Greenock, who did not use him with that
tenderness that he conceived himself entitled to. Having tried all
other arts to retrieve her lost affections in vain, Peter at last
resolved to work upon her fears of punishment in another world for her
conduct in this. Pretending, therefore, to awake one morning
extravagantly alarmed, his helpmate was full of anxiety to know what
was the matter; and having sufficiently, as he thought, whetted her
curiosity, by mysteriously hinting that "he could a tale unfold," at
length Peter proceeded as follows:--"H--ll of a dream last night. I
dream I go to Hebben and rap at de doa, and a gent'man came to de doa
wid black coat and powda hair. Whoa dere? Peeta Coopa.--Whoa Peeta
Coopa? Am not know you--Not knowa Peeta Coopa! Look de book, Sa.--He
take de book, and he look de book, and he could'na find Peeta
Coopa.--Den I say, Oh! lad, oh! look again, finda Peeta Coopa in a
corna.--He take de book, an he look de book, an at last he finda Peeta
Coopa in lilly, lilly (little) corna.--'Peeta Coopa, cook ob de _Royal
Charlotte_ ob Greenock.'--Walk in, Sa. Den I walk in, and dere was
every ting--all kind of vittal--collyflower too--an I eat, and I
drink, and I dance, and I ting, an I neva be done; segar too, by
Gum.--Den I say, oh! lad, oh! look for Peeta Coopa wife. He take de
book, an he look all oba de book, many, many, many a time, corna an
all; and he couldna finda Peeta Coopa wife. Den I say, Oh! lad, oh!
look de black book; he take de black book, and he look de black book,
and he finda Peeta Coopa wife fust page,--'Peeta-Coopa-wife,
* * * * *
Droz, a Genevian mechanic, once constructed a clock which was capable
of the following surprising movements:--There were seen on it a negro,
a dog, and a shepherd; when the clock struck, the shepherd played six
tunes on his flute, and the dog approached and fawned upon him. This
clock was exhibited to the King of Spain, who was delighted with it.
"The gentleness of my dog," said Droz, "is his least merit; if your
Majesty touch one of the apples, which you see in the shepherd's
basket, you will admire the fidelity of this animal." The King took an
apple, and the dog flew at his hand, and barked so loud, that the
King's dog, which was in the room, began also to bark; at this the
Courtiers, not doubting that it was an affair of witchcraft, hastily
left the room, crossing themselves as they went out. The minister of
Marine was the only one that ventured to stay. The king having desired
him to ask the negro what o'clock it was, the minister obeyed, but he
obtained no reply. Droz then observed, that the negro had not yet
* * * * *
_Printed and Published by J. LIMBIRD, 143, Strand, (near Somerset
House,) and sold by all Newsmen and Booksellers._
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