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'Your afflictions have made you neither humble nor grateful, Miss Annesley,' Miss Bellingdon contemptuously remarked, writhing bitterly under a question which she felt to be unanswerable.
They have not made me servile, madam,' Ruth rejoined; but you are mistaken in supposing that they have blunted my sense of gratitude, for my heart was never so keenly alive to kindness. But I am detaining you from your evening amusement, where voices will whisper far different language in your ear,' she added, stepping aside as she spoke, to let the footman pass and open the door for his mistress. Miss Bellingdon drew more closely around her the rich Indian shawl which her lady's-maid had just placed upon her shoulders, to shield her from the cold night air, and then hurried into the carriage, whilst her fragile and exhausted companion set out unprotected, to walk a distance of more than three miles to her miserable home.
Ruth had, in the foregoing scene, acted in opposition to the natural gentleness of her character. Her feelings had been powerfully wrought upon by injustice, and the sufferings of one dearer to her than her own existence; but when again alone, she shed a torrent of tears, which in some measure relieved her overcharged heart.
We leave the inhabitants of the narrow garret-one of whom appeared to be on the confines of eternity -to accompany the fair heiress to an elegant party assembled at the mansion of Mrs Mapleton. The usual circle of admirers and flatterers attended her steps, and hung upon her smiles, but she was this evening abstracted and spiritless. The once musical but now hollow voice of the young seamstress seemed ever and anon to sound in her ear, and the form of her dying relative was present to her mental vision. She was selfish and inconsiderate, but not heartless, and bitterly did she now repent having neglected the young creature she had professed to serve. Her painful reminiscences were augmented by the presence of Celia Howard, whom she had not met since the day that Ruth had been first introduced to her.
Miss Howard had that morning arrived at the house of her cousin, Mrs Mapleton, with the intention of again making it her home for a few days. She had not forgotten the circumstance; and when alone with Miss Bellingdon for a few minutes, she asked, with much concern, what had become of the young needlewoman whom Dr Penrose had taken her to visit on the day on which she had left town. The question caused a flush of crimson to suffuse the cheek of the gay beauty, and she was for a few moments incapable of replying. Rallying, however, she murmured something about having lost sight of her for some time, of having met with her that very evening, and of an intention to call upon her on the morrow. Will you allow me to accompany you, Adelaide ?' Miss Howard asked; I purposed spending the morning with you.' Miss Bellingdon would gladly have dispensed with her society on such an occasion, but as she could think of no pretext for preventing her, she was compelled to acquiesce.
The morning came, and the two ladies set out in Miss Bellingdon's carriage for the apartment Ruth and her annt occupied at Whitechapel. Twelve months previously, the fair heiress had entered this neighbourhood with self-gratulations, now she felt like a culprit about to appear at the bar of justice; and had not her cousin been her companion, it is doubtful whether she would have proceeded on her errand, though she was now really desirous of making some reparation for the misery she had caused. Her inquiries for the young seamstress were answered by the mistress of the lodging-house, who, supposing that they were come to visit the sick woman, and feeling much for the orphan girl and her aged relative, politely said she would show them up into their room. The two ladies followed their guide up the stairs, till she stopped at a low door, at which she gently knocked. Supposing that Ruth was from home on business, and knowing that Mrs
Jones was not able to leave her bed, the good woman quietly lifted the latch; but the visitors drew back on beholding the scene which the chamber presented. The invalid lay stretched on her low pallet, to all appearance in the last stage of dissolution. Her sightless eyes were closed, and her livid lips were firmly compressed with strong convulsions; but there was no signs of terror in her aspect-her gentle spirit seemed ready for its departure. By her side, in a kneeling attitude, was the emaciated and almost broken-hearted Ruth, in earnest but mute devotion.
The scene was too sacred to be intruded upon, and the woman gently closed the door, unperceived by the occupants of the chamber. The ladies returned in silence to the carriage; and no sooner had they entered it, than Miss Bellingdon burst into a flood of penitential tears. Keenly alive to sudden impulses of feeling, she had been impressed in no small degree by the sight she had just witnessed. Had she, she mentally inquired, been the means of hastening the aged woman's death?-of further blanching the wan cheek of that fair girl who was but in the first blush of womanhood? And she now unhesitatingly related the whole affair to her cousin, who, seeing that she was already so deeply moved, strove to soothe and comfort her.
Next day the visitors returned, accompanied by Dr Penrose; but interference was now too late. Mrs Jones had died the preceding night, and Ruth was confined to bed, her disease a combination of low fever and consumption, brought on by cold, want, and neglect. Everything which skill could imagine was attempted, but in vain; and useless also was the almost incessant watching of Andrew Crawford by the bedside of the sufferer, from the day he had heard of her illness. In seventeen days from the death of her aunt, the body of poor Ruth Annesley was carried from the same obscure dwelling, and laid in the same obscure grave-her fate nothing uncommon, except in so far as it exemplified the hollow delusions of not an ill-meaning, but only an inconsistent and giddy PATRONESS.
'GATHERINGS FROM SPAIN.'
MR MURRAY'S Home and Colonial Library,' one of the best of the popular serials, has been enriched by no work of greater interest than that which has just appeared, 'Gatherings from Spain.' Abounding in much new matter, gleaned not from books, but from actual journeys over the country, and written in a lively and suitable style, the volume possesses an original merit, and may appropriately occupy a place in all those libraries now forming for general instruction and entertainment. A few odds and ends of sketches from its pages may amuse our readers.
Spain, as the author begs us to understand, is not one, but a collection of countries, differing very considerably from each other in social and physical features; and to this cause he ascribes their ruin from the beginning-a bundle of small bodies, tied together with a rope of sand, and which, being without union, is also without strength, has been beaten in detail.' This, however, can only be a secondary cause of national disaster. A people with radically good faculties would surely have long since dropped petty distinctions, and united for the general benefit, had circumstances permitted such a course. At present, Spain may be said to be in a process of fusing down to one general whole. It is losing its separate individualities and its old usages, and it remains to be seen whether there be a sufficient leaven of intelligence to carry it forward in a new and respectable career. Our own impression is, that it must go through a furnace of long tribulation before it realises the ardent expectations of its admirers.
One thing remarkable about Spain, is its hatred of France, contiguity in this instance producing only jealousy and contempt. The Pyrenees, which form the dividing boundary, are inhabited by a race of highlanders as impracticable as their granite fastnesses.
'Here dwell the smuggler, the rifle sportsman, and all who defy the law: here is bred the hardy peasant, who, accustomed to scale mountains and fight wolves, becomes a ready raw material for the guerrilleros; and none were ever more formidable to Rome or France than those marshalled in these glens by Sertorius and Mina. When the tocsin bell rings out, a hornet-swarm of armed men-the weed of the hills-starts up from every rock and brake. The hatred of the Frenchman, which forms "part of a Spaniard's nature," seems to increase in intensity in proportion to vicinity, for as they touch, so they fret and rub each other: here it is the antipathy of an antithesis; the incompatibility of the saturnine and slow with the mercurial and rapid; of the proud, enduring, and ascetic, against the vain, the fickle, and sensual; of the enemy of innovation and change, to the lover of variety and novelty; and however tyrants and tricksters may assert in the gilded galleries of Versailles that Il n'y a plus de Pyrénées, this party-wall of Alps, this barrier of snow and hurricane, does and will exist for ever. Placed there by Providence, as was said by the Gothic prelate Saint Isidore, they ever have forbidden, and ever will forbid, the banns of an unnatural alliance.'
Spanish authors, it appears, either dare not or cannot tell what is the cause of national ruin. They ascribe it to the depopulation of the country by the drain of adventurers for America. But colonisation never produced a vacuum of this sort. Our author's theory goes nearer the mark. The real permanent and standing cause of Spain's thinly-peopled state, want of cultivation, and abomination of desolation, is bad government, civil and religious; this all who run may read in her lonely land and silent towns. But Spain, if the anecdote which her children love to tell be true, will never be able to remove the incubus of this fertile origin of every evil. When Ferdinand III. captured Seville, and died, being a saint, he escaped purgatory, and Santiago presented him to the Virgin, who forthwith desired him to ask any favours for beloved Spain. The monarch petitioned for oil, wine, and corn-conceded; for sunny skies, brave men, and pretty women- allowed; for cigars, relics, garlic, and bulls-by all means; for a good government—" Nay, nay," said the Virgin; “that never can be granted; for were it bestowed, not an angel would remain a day longer in heaven." A nation which can console itself with a joke, is perhaps more to be pitied than if it were aware of its own infamy. Bad government is only a result of a cause. Universal dishonesty is at the root of the evil. From the first minister of the crown to the lowest official, every one is a born cheat. Where robbing and jobbing are the universal order of the day, one rascal keeps another in countenance. A man who does not feather his nest when in office, is not thought honest, but a fool. The magic influence of a bribe pervades a land where everything is venal, even to the scales of justice. Here men who have objects to gain begin to work from the bottom, not from the top, as we do in England. In order to insure success, no step in the official ladder must be left unanointed. A wise and prudent suitor bribes from the porter to the premier, taking care not to forget the under-secretary, the oversecretary, the private secretary, all in their order, and to regulate the douceur according to each man's rank and influence. If you omit the porter, he will not deliver your card. If you forget the chief clerk, he will mislay your petition, or poison his master's ear. In matters of political importance, the sovereign, him or herself, must have a share; and thus it was that Calomarde continued so long to manage the beloved Ferdinand and his counsels. He was the minister who laid the greatest bribe at the royal feet. Sire, by strict attention and honesty, I have just been enabled to economise L.50,000 on the sums allotted to my department, which I have now the honour and felicity to place at your majesty's disposal." "Well done, my faithful and good minister; here is a cigar for you!" Peculation
in collecting the taxes is universal, and there seems no possibility of making the revenue meet the national expenses. Recourse has therefore been had to usurious loans and wholesale confiscations. Public securities have been "repudiated," interest unpaid, and principal sponged out. No country in the old world, or even new drab-coated world, stands lower in financial discredit. Let all be aware how they embark in Spanish speculations!'
With the example of universal peculation before them, and favoured by the weakness of the police, highwaymen in Spain do not stand on trifles, and carry on a large and thriving trade. Travelling with an armed diligence, or in armed bands, seems a general precaution; Spaniards, with all their boasting, not liking to encounter firearms. When not well provided with these appliances, our author recommends submission with a good grace. Those who have a score or so of dollars (four or five pounds), the loss of which will ruin no man, are very rarely ill-used; a frank, confident, and good-humoured surrender not only prevents any bad treatment, but secures even civility during the disagreeable operation. Pistols and sabres are, after all, a poor defence compared to civil words, as Mr Cribb used to say. The Spaniard, by nature high-bred, and a caballero, responds to any appeal to qualities of which he thinks his nation has reason to be proud; he respects coolness of manner, in which bold men, although robbers, sympathise.'
There are, however, other kinds of robbing in Spain. One consists in the exaction of certain dues at city gates, similar to the octroi in France; and as these dues are generally farmed out, they are exacted from the peasantry with great severity and incivility. There is perhaps no single grievance among the many, in the mistaken system of Spanish political and fiscal economy, which tends to create and keep alive, by its daily retail worry and often wholesale injustice, so great a feeling of discontent and ill-will towards authority as this does: it obstructs both commerce and travellers. The officers are, however, seldom either strict or uncivil to the higher classes, and if courteously addressed by the stranger, and told that he is an English gentleman, the official Cerberi open the gates and let him pass unmolested, and still more if quieted by the Virgilian sop of a bribe. The idea of a bribe, however, must be carefully concealed; it shocks their dignity, their sense of honour. If, however, the money be given to the head person, as something for his people to drink, the delicate attention is sacked by the chief, properly appreciated, and works its due effect.' The worst of all robbers, however, are the lazy, do-nothing keepers of country inns or ventas. These ventas have, from time immemorial, been the subject of jests and pleasantries to Spanish and foreign wits. Quevedo and Cervantes indulge in endless diatribes against the roguery of the masters, and the misery of the accommodations, while Gongora compares them to Noah's ark; and in truth they do contain a variety of animals, from the big to the small, and more than a pair of more than one kind of the latter.... Many of these ventas have been built on a large scale by the noblemen or convent brethren to whom the village or adjoining territory belonged, and some have, at a distance, quite the air of a gentleman's mansion. Their walls, towers, and often elegant elevations, glitter in the sun, gay and promising, while all within is dark, dirty, and dilapidated, and no better than a whitened sepulchre.'
On arriving at one of these ventas, the inexperienced traveller is a little surprised to find that the host remains unmoved and imperturbable, as if he never had had an appetite, or had lost it, or had dined. Not that his genus ever are seen eating, except when invited to a guest's stew: air, the economical ration of the chameleon, seems to be his habitual sustenance; and still more as to his wife and womankind, who never will sit and eat even with the stranger; nay, in humbler Spanish families, they seem to dine with the cat in some corner,
and on scraps. This is a remnant of the Roman and Moorish treatment of women as inferiors. Their lord and husband, the innkeeper, cannot conceive why foreigners on their arrival are always so impatient, and is equally surprised at their inordinate appetite. An English landlord's first question, “Will you not like to take some refreshment?" is the very last which he would think of putting. Sometimes, by giving him a cigar, by coaxing his wife, flattering his daughter, and caressing Maritornes, you may get a couple of his pollos or fowls, which run about the ground-floor, picking up anything, and ready to be picked up themselves and dressed.' Travellers are therefore in the habit of taking a part in hastening things forward in the great open kitchen-"One eye to the pan, the other to the real cat," whose very existence in a venta, and among the pots, is a miracle. By the way, the naturalist will observe that their ears and tails are almost always cropped closely to the stumps. All and each of the travellers, when their respective stews are ready, form clusters and groups round the frying-pan, which is moved from the fire hot and smoking, and placed on a low table or block of wood before them; or the unctuous contents are emptied into a huge earthen reddish dish, which in form and colour is the precise paropsis, the food platter, described by Martial and by other ancient authors. Chairs are a luxury. The lower classes sit on the ground, as in the East, or on low stools, and fall to in a most Oriental manner, with an un-European ignorance of forks, for which they substitute a short wooden or horn spoon, or dip their bread into the dish, or fish up morsels with their long-pointed knives. They eat copiously, but with gravity-with appetite, but without greediness; for none of any nation, as a mass, are better bred or mannered than the lower classes of Spaniards.' Whether by robbing, taking bribes, or plundering guests at inns, when a man has made a purse, the difficulty consists in knowing where to put it. Consequently there is much hoarding and hiding in secret places. The idea of finding hidden treasures, which prevails in Spain, as in the East, is based on some grounds; for in every country which has been much exposed to foreign invasions, civil wars, and domestic misrule, where there were no safe modes of investment, in moments of danger property was converted into gold or jewels, and concealed with singular ingenuity. The mistrust which Spaniards entertain of each other often extends, when cash is in the case, even to the nearest relations to wife and children. Many a treasure is thus lost from the accidental death of the hider, who, dying without a sign, carries his secret to the grave, adding thereby to the sincere grief of his widow and heir. One of the old vulgar superstitions in Spain is an idea that those who were born on a Good-Friday, the day of mourning, were gifted with a power of seeing into the earth, and of discovering hidden treasures. One place of concealment has always been under the bodies in graves: the hiders have trusted to the dead to defend what the quick could not. This accounts for the universal desecration of tombs and churchyards during Bonaparte's invasion.'
From all we can understand, there seems to be but one class of habitually honest men in Spain, and that is the muleteers. With a number of loaded mules marching slowly in single file, these men act as carriers all over the country. The muleteer either walks by the side of his animal, or sits aloft on the cargo, with his feet dangling on the neck, a seat which is by no means so uncomfortable as it would appear. A rude gun, loaded with slugs, hangs always in readiness by his side, and often with it a guitar..... The Spanish muleteer is a fine fellow he is intelligent, active, and enduring; he braves hunger and thirst, heat and cold, mud and dust; he works as hard as his cattle, never robs or is robbed; and while his betters in this land put off everything till to-morrow except bankruptcy, he is punctual and honest, his frame is wiry and sinewy, his costume peculiar. Many are the leagues, and long,
which we have ridden in his caravan, and longer his robber yarns, to which we paid no attention; and it must be admitted that these cavalcades are truly national and picturesque. Mingled with droves of mules and mounted horsemen, the zig-zag lines come threading down the mountain defiles, now tracking through the aromatic brushwood, now concealed amid rocks and olive-trees, now emerging bright and glittering into the sunshine, giving life and movement to lonely nature, and breaking the usual stillness by the tinkle of the bell and the sad ditty of the muleteer-sounds which, though unmusical in themselves, are in keeping with the scene, and associated with wild Spanish rambles, just as the harsh whetting of the scythe is mixed up with the sweet spring and newly-mown hay meadow.'
Another oddity is the Spanish barber-the Figaro. The profession of this personage is one of great importance in all the towns of the peninsula. There is no mistaking his shop; for, independently of the external manifestations of the fine arts practised within, his threshold is the lounge of all idlers, as well as of those who are anxious to relieve their chins of the thick stubble of a three days' growth. Here is the mint of scandal; and all who have lived intimately with Spaniards, know how invariably every one stabs his neighbour behind his back with words-the lower orders occasionally using knives sharper even than their tongues. Here, again, resort gamblers, who, seated on the ground with cards more begrimed than the earth, pursue their fierce game as eager as if existence was at stake; for there is generally some well-known cock of the walk, a bully, or guapo, who will come up and lay his hand on the cards, and say, "No one shall play with any cards but with mine." If the parties are cowed, they give him a halfpenny each. If, however, one of the challenged be a spirited fellow, he defies him,' and a fight is the consequence. The interior of the barber's shop is curious. France may boast to lead Europe in hairdressing and clipping poodles, but Figaro snaps his fingers at her civilisation, and no cat's ears and tail can be closer shaved than his ones are. The walls of his operating room are neatly lathered with whitewash; on a peg hangs his brown cloak and conical hat; his shelves are decorated with clay-painted figures of picturesque rascals, arrayed in all their Andalusian toggery-bandits, bull-fighters, and smugglers. The walls are enlivened with rude prints of fandango dancings, miracles, and bull-fights, in which the Spanish vulgar delight, as ours do in racing and ring notabilities. The barber's implements of art are duly arranged in order; his glass, soap, towels, and leather strap, and guitar, which indeed, with the razor, constitutes the genus barber. Few Spaniards ever shave themselves; it is too mechanical; so they prefer, like the Orientals, a razor that is hired;" and as that must be paid for, scarcely any go to the expensive luxury of an every-day shave. Indeed Don Quixote advised Sancho, when nominated a governor, to shave at least every other day if he wished to look like a gentleman. The peculiar sallowness of a Spaniard's face is heightened by the contrast of a sable bristle. Figaro himself is all tags, tassels, colour, and embroidery, quips and quirps: he is never still; always in a bustle; he is lying and lathering, cutting chins and capers, here, there, and everywhere. If he has a moment free from taking off beards and making paper cigars, he whips down his guitar, and sings the last seguidilla: thus he drives away dull care, who hates the sound of merry music: and no wonder; the operator performs his professional duties much more skilfully than the rival surgeon, nor does he bungle at any little extraneous amateur commissions; and there are more real performances enacted by the barbers in Seville itself, than in a dozen European opera-houses.'
We may close our notice of this amusing volume with the author's account of Spanish dances and music. Spain, whenever and wherever the siren sounds are
heard, a party is forthwith got up of all ages and sexes, who are attracted by the tinkling like swarming bees. The guitar is part and parcel of the Spaniard and his ballads; he slings it across his shoulder with a ribbon, as was depicted on the tombs of Egypt four thousand years ago. The performers seldom are very scientific musicians; they content themselves with striking the chords, sweeping the whole hand over the strings, or flourishing and tapping the board with the thumb, at which they are very expert. The multitude suit the tune to the song, both of which are frequently extemporaneous. The language comes in aid to the fertile mother-wit of the natives; rhymes are dispensed with at pleasure, or mixed, according to caprice, with assonants, which consist of the mere recurrence of the same vowels, without reference to that of consonants; and even these, which poorly fill a foreign ear, are not always observed. There is very little music ever printed in Spain; the songs and airs are generally sold in manuscript. Sometimes, for the very illiterate, the notes are expressed in numeral figures, which correspond with the number of the strings. The best guitars in the world were made appropriately in Cadiz by the Pajez family, father and son. Of course an instrument in so much vogue was always an object of most careful thought in fair Bætica; thus, in the seventh century, the Sevillian guitar was shaped like the human breast, because, as archbishops said, the chords signified the pulsations of the heart, à corde. The instruments of the Andalusian Moors were strung after these significant heartstrings. Zaryab remodelled the guitar by adding a fifth string of bright red, to represent blood, the treble or first being yellow, to indicate bile; and to this hour, on the banks of the Guadalquiver, when dusky eve calls forth the cloaked serenader, the ruby drops of the heart female are surely liquefied by a judicious manipulation of catgut." The Englishman who laughs at all this, and considers the Spanish love of dancing and guitaring to be a species of madness, certainly a cause of poverty, is thought by Spaniards to be habitually mad, from his everlasting working, and also from what is a less equivocal symptom of insanity, lending Spaniards money, and is accordingly laughed at
PLEASANTRIES OF THE BENCH.
'It seems difficult,' says the Law Review in its opening paragraph, in casting our eye over the map of the sciences, not to place jurisprudence in the highest rank, if we do not indeed allow it the first place. None requires more enlarged understandings, more sagacious minds; in its cultivators; none draws its materials from
more various sources; none assumes for its successful study an ampler body of knowledge, whether of books or of men; but, above all, its importance to the interests of mankind is beyond that of every other branch of learning it is more eminently practical than any; its concern is with the whole order, the peace, and the happiness of society."* The object of the work which commences thus, is to promote all discussions connected with this department of science and literature; to extend the knowledge of sound principles; and to further the real improvement of the laws, while checking the mere reckless desire of change. The Law Review is published under the auspices of the Society for Promoting the Amendment of the Law; a body which has Lord Brougham at its head as president, with the Lord Chancellor, the Dukes of Richmond and Cleveland, Lords Devon, Radnor, Ashburton, Campbell, and Mr Lushington as vice-presidents. It includes among its ordinary and honorary members many of the most distinguished men of the day; and not a few of these have enriched with their contributions the pages of the
The Law Review and Quarterly Journal of British and Foreign Jurisprudence. Nos. 1 to 9. London: Richards.
society's literary organ. So much we have thought it necessary to say of the Law Review; although, on the present occasion, we have no intention to meddle with its more serious labours and duties. We have already given our humble aid in the Journal to the cause of law reform, and shall do so again; but just now we mean to go on the Welsh circuit for our own amusement.
The Recollections of a Deceased Welsh Judge' form the most amusing of the lighter papers in this legal periodical; and no wonder; for a regular Welsh judge, before law reform 'let in the judges of England upon the Celtic countrymen of Howel-dha and King Arthur,' had little else to do than to look out for amusement. The courts indeed were more dull than can easily be described, from the excessive stupidity of the people, both witnesses and jurors-the difficulty of getting any thing like English out of them, or putting anything like sense into them-the trifling nature of their endless disputes-the inextricable entanglement of their endless pedigrees: yet the assizes lasted but a couple of days at each place, for the most part; and there was great pleasure in their clear air and fine scenery, especially after the House of Commons and Westminster Hall had fatigued one, and made London intolerable. Their streams were pure and refreshing, to say nothing of their fish; and their hills were wild and sunny, without taking into account the good mutton they fed.' His honour, accordingly, was very sorry when he found himself abolished, with no other compensation than his pension; and it is not surprising that he should have employed the additional leisure thus forced upon him in
recalling the circumstances and characters of so agreeable an official existence.
Among the first of his compeers he brings upon the scene is George Wood,' nicknamed the Wood Demon, from a melodrama then in vogue-a lawyer greatly quizzed for his ugliness, and highly esteemed for his profound knowledge of special pleading, accurate understanding, sound judgment, and inflexible honesty. He was famous for the extreme conciseness of his style, which followed him to the bench; and his brother judge gives us a specimen, a story which, it may well be said, "he used to tell," for I believe he never told any other, and that one he was constantly called upon to tell at the circuit table, and always told it in the same words, and always with the same unbounded applause. It was as follows, for having so often heard it, we knew it by heart:-"A man having stolen a fish, one saw him carrying it away, half under his coat, and said, Friend, when next you steal, take a shorter fish, or wear a longer coat.' In this narrative-which certainly represents the scene perfectly, and gives an epigrammatic speech-there are not quite thirty words, particles included.'
These roystering lawyers had a grand court which took cognisance of the misdeeds of its members. One of them, for instance, was guilty of delivering a letter of introduction to an attorney; whereupon he was brought to trial, and forthwith appointed penny postman to the circuit. Another actually dined with one of these proscribed parties, and received the congratulations of the court upon his very select acquaintance, for which he paid so many gallons of claret to the circuit purse. J. Allan Park had somewhat puffed Richardson to an attorney or two as a young man of excellent promise, and stated that he had so high an opinion of him, that he had made him his executor. The attorney-general failed not to note this in his next speech at the grand court, which seriously alarmed Richardson, and drew from him a solemn declaration that he should consider any such recommendations as hostile, and not friendly acts. This, however, did not save him from the title of Executor; till some one, observing the testator's ruddy face of health, and the executor's very pale and emaciated appearance, made the two change places, and gave Richardson the name of the Defunct.' All this, it will be seen, under the guise of merriment, preserved the purity of the bar. Even the jests were subservient
be spent in sleep, were there no chessmen and no backgammon. Sergeant Cockell of our circuit, in the vacation, used to stand fishing for hours, and catch nothing; but the time between his breakfast and his dinner seemed to him a foretaste of eternity, at least in point of duration. I believe Mr Justice Buller never was known to exercise his mind except upon whist, when he was neither judging nor reading in the books." Dampier, a good scholar, used to read a good deal, but I suspect it was chiefly old divinity. Gibbs notoriously had never read anything since he left Cambridge with a very good classical reputation. All lawyers, however, even Topping,' we are told, read a little of Shakspeare, at least as much as enables them to quote, while going upon circuit, Thus far into the bowels of the land.' Topping was the most uxorious of human kind, and daily wrote a long letter to Mrs Topping. The subject of the correspondence we all knew as well as she did herself-it was made up of his grievances. Did a jury give a verdict against him, he wrote and complained to Mrs Topping; did any of the bar offend him, she was instantly informed. He never kept this to himself, but always told us-often threatened us-occasionally rewarded us with some such confidential disclosure as this, made most significantly, and as by one well aware of its value, "I'll assure you I felt so much how kind you were, that I wrote to Mrs Topping." But generally it went thus-" The vile fellow behaved very, very ill: I wrote to Mrs Topping." Nor was the judge spared. I have heard him say that "Mrs Topping felt my lord's behaviour so much, she said she never could forget it." But then he, being perhaps mollified by some more favourable charge of his lordship, would tell us that "he had written to intreat she would think no more of it, and that he hoped he had prevailed." Once, however, I heard him say at Carlisle, "that the sergeant had behaved so ill, that Mrs Topping vowed she never would speak to him again as long as she lived;" and this he uttered as if he were stating that sentence of death had been pronounced upon the sergeant, whom he then regarded as a fallen and lost man.' Topping's irritability of temper gave him frequent occasion to write to Mrs Topping. I once entered the court at Durham when both he and the sergeant were standing with their backs voluntarily turned on the judge. I saw some screw was loose. The first words that I could distinguish was Baron Wood saying, "I think, on the This Law (Ellenburgh) is highly praised by the whole, you are right, Mr Topping," to which he was judge both for his abilities and jokes. I remember one pleased to answer, "I am sure I was very far from askof his chosen subjects (butts, as they might be called) ing what you thought." Another judge of more penewas Sylvester Douglas (afterwards Lord Glenbervie). trable stuff would have been very angry at this bearish There was no end of the laugh ever ready to come at Law's growl; but old George, who well knew his man, only call, and at Douglas's expense. Sometimes he would dub said, "Well, well; who do you caal?" (call); so the him the Solicitor-General, in allusion to his constant ask- cause went on, while there was heard an undergrowl on ing for everything that fell. Then he would swear that the other side from the sergeant, abusing Topping for Douglas kept a Scotchman, at half-a-crown a-week, his insolence and ingratitude, and the baron for his always on the look-out, and to sit up all night, that he ignorance and partiality, and calling for his clerk to might be called if any one died in place. He had a notion bring him some of the stomach tincture, which we knew that Douglas's age was extremely great-nay, that he would console him, as it was generally brandy with some believed he was the Wandering Jew; and one morn- water added, to give it a name, rather than materially ing, when in court, some doubt arose whether a statute alter its nature. Brandy and water was not the only was made in the fifth or sixth of Elizabeth-"Send," cordial in requisition by the lights of the law. When said Ned Law, "for Douglas in the coffee-house, he is Garrow retired from court after gaining a cause, 'in likely to remember its passing." Nor did this even about half an hour old Humphreys, his clerk, returned cease on Douglas leaving the bar. I well remember, with Mr Garrow's compliments, and begging to have a when the kingdom of Etruria was announced by Bona- small wooden-cased flask which he had left. We had parte, and no one for some time was named, we were all seen the sergeant handling that bottle, and, while speculating who was to have it, Ned Law told us in Garrow was going on before the wind, quietly transfer the morning at Frank's, "Don't you know? Glenbervie it under his own bag, into which he quickly put it. So has asked for it, and has great hopes." when the clerk came, the sergeant said, "What wouldst Lawyers, it would seem, are not always literary men. have, man? Your case is disposed of. Mr Garrow is 'Sergeant Lens, an excellent scholar, and a very consider-gone off to town." Away went Humphreys; but Garable mathematician, is said to have entirely given over row would bear no rival in his own art, and he required reading since he came into business. A brother judge his flask on account of his "exhausted frame." So back of mine, a crack scholar as far as longs and shorts can came Humphreys, and he would not go till the sergeant, make one, is believed to have no book in his house, and, most reluctantly, had to make his bag disgorge the case I will venture to say, never reads anything but a news- -what he valued more than any of the others among paper, nor every day even that. His evenings would which it had forced its way. His comfort was, that the
-ancillary, as we say-to the same end. They kept us ever in mind of the serious visitations ready at any moment to come down upon real offences; they were like the crack of the wagoner's whip, to be followed by the stroke if the ear had been assailed in vain. Then to the mummery of the circuit all were forced to bow. Whoever appeared in coloured clothes, had to pay for it by a fine, following a lecture by the attorney-general, in which the propriety of mode and dressing of the person was the subject of discourse: the rich wardrobes of various leaders were gorgeously described; how Mr Sergeant Cockell might, if he chose, dazzle the astonished sight with whole yards of cloth of gold across his portly paunch; how Mr Law himself could revel in the most flowery satins; how the very crier could appear so bedizened in lace, that he might burn for hundreds of pounds. The sumptuary laws were intended to diminish the expense of the circuit to poorer men. The rest of the rules were meant to prevent malpractices in the profession. The constantly flowing jest about small matters was calculated to beget a habit of not taking offence on grave occurrences, a very necessary thing in a profession the constant practice of which exposes every one to hear things said, and tempts most men to say things, somewhat painful to the feelings. Now and then a man would appear among us who was either too high or too sore to bear with the rude pleasantry of the body. Wo betide him if he showed such feelings! He might, without intending it, be very unexpectedly created a Duke, or even a Grand Duke, for his loftiness; or mayhap an Archdeacon, for keeping slyly out of the way; or a Doctor of the Sorebone, if he testified sensitiveness of jokes. I forget which fate overtook a learned sergeant (Davenport) when he was wroth with Mr Solicitor-General for filing against him an indictment for manslaughter, because a man had fallen out of the gallery during his address to the jury. It set forth that he feloniously did kill and slay J S-, being in the peace of our lord the king, with a certain blunt instrument, of no value, called a long speech. But I think my able, learned, and lamented friend, Ralph Carr, was raised to the doctorate (of the Sorebone), when he took occasion to remark, that "he perceived the whole of the circuit set against him, from Mr Attorney-General Law down to Professor Christian," a joke eminently pleasing to Law, who held his cousin Christian in extreme contempt.'