Зображення сторінки
PDF
ePub

most powerful energies of the most the plainest language. It is unquesgigantic mind and extensive imagi- tionable, too, that in this way he will nation. But it ought never to be reach the bosom of the learned in a forgot, that the world does not whole much more effectual manner than ly consist of philosophers or of poets, by imitating them in their scholastic and that, on the contrary, the great and metaphysical disquisitions. But majority are humble, sober-minded this is too important a point to be followers of the Cross, who have an entered upon at present. With your equally important interest at stake permission, I shall resume the subin the discussion of this most import- ject at some future period, and I ant of all subjects. It is to them chief. shall then take an opportunity of ly that the preacher ought to address suggesting a few hints to young himself, and in doing so, he ought preachers, both as to the composition to choose the simplest method and and delivery of their sermons. M.

A SLAP AT PUBLIC CONVERSATIONS, BY A PEDANT. MR EDITOR,

I Am, Sir, what some persons three orders of mankind to a cask of would denominate a good-tempered fine old October, in which the top is quiz, because I very often amuse all froth, the bottom dregs, but the myself with the eccentricities, and middle wholesome, enlivening, exsometimes laugh at the expense of cellent beverage. My situation in life my neighbours. Give me leave to gives me an opportunity of mixing tell you, that a great deal of valuable with all sorts and conditions of men; information may be acquired by ob- I am one evening with a noble lord; serving the world as it rolls uniform- another at the house of a bishop of ly forward, -by noticing the order my acquaintance; another at the viand disorder, the agreements and the carage. I sometimes spend my time squabbles, the hugs and jostlings, at an inn or an hotel, and the next with the various contentions and day you find me at a tavern. Somestrifes, of the mixed multitude, as it times I go for a fortnight into the isurged onwards; that is, as the whole country, and hunt with the bummass of the people are hurried on in kins, yclept the gentry; and not untheir several vocations, either as im- frequently I may be met with at the mersed in business, or absorbed in theatre, or amid parties of theatrical pleasure. While thus employed, in heroes and heroines, the kings and the society of mechanics you are some queens, lords and ladies, and gentletimes disgusted with vulgarity ; but men commoners of the little stage then you have, generally, nature be- by whom the vices and follies of fore your eyes ; candour shines in al- the actors on the great stage of the most every face; every one utters his world are said to be held up in mithoughts as they arise; there is little mic ridicule, to the few who attend or no dissimulation, nor any cloak- such exhibitions, and who can, moreing of sentiments. Among the flut- over, afford to pay for such instructerers in high life, you are fatigued tive entertainments. with the flat, dull monotony of never- My friend Batty is at this time a varying pride and nonsense; here first-rate actor,-a good comic perfor. every thing is governed by fashion mer,--an excellent Monsieur Tonson, and etiquette ; the features must be good, in short, at any thing. We screwed up into gravity ; you must drove, a few days ago, into the counsmile by rule, and to laugh is vulgar; try, to dine with our common friend the conversation is restrained and Pearson, who is a great man also in his artificial ; every one acts his part; way; very pompous, quite rich,and, in spontaneous thoughts are concealed, his own opinion, exceedingly learned. and the mind is constantly bewilder After dinner, the following edifying ed in the labyrinths of form and and instructive dialogue took place. ceremony. The middling class of “Yours,” said Pearson to Batty; every community is, in my opinion, " is a fagging sort of life; a great deal much the best. I often compare the of drudgery, and not well rewarded

L

VOL. XV.

for your labour." “ True, Sir, very ceive four pounds ten a-week; I true ; but, however, nine pounds a- think it a good week if I act four week, and a benefit of two hundred nights, but the average is three only; pounds. once a-year, is not to be and then, you know, there are the snuffed at. I acknowledge that such summer months, that produce little wages, for men of high talents, are ra- or nothing, and our benefits are very ther scrubby, but we make shift to precarious-yes, Sir, very fluctuating exist." “ To exist, indeed !” replied and uncertain.

• That certainly Pearson: “ why, Sir, nine pounds a- alters the case, Mr Batty; however, week, with a benefit of two hundred. as you have no family—no mouths pounds, is six hundred and fifty that want bread, nor feet that want pounds a-year; and this, I can as- shoes, I still think that—" " That sure you, is a very handsome income. I shall soon be rich by my savings Let ine see-our Vicar has two hune out of my earnings ? But 1,” said dred and fifty pounds, and the Batty, " think quite the contrary: Teacher one hundred pounds a-year; and now, if you please, we will sink now you make twice as much as both, the shop altogether; give me leave and they are both men of considere to inform you, Mr Pearson, that I able talents, and great information. detest it. This is,” he continued, You are well rewarded indeed : why, very good whisky; there is no you cannot lay up less than three liquor I like so much as whisky ; it hundred a-year, Mr Batty ; so that, makes heavenly punch! and what a in a short time, you will accumulate charming dram after dinner, or when an independent fortune. I suppose, one is ready to faint, after great ex. too, from long practice, that you ertion on the stage ! But I can tell commit to memory very quick?" you an excellent story about whisky. “Very rapidly, Sir," said "Batty; Several years ago, I became acquaint“ I have, on a push,

got by rote two ed with an officer in the Excise ; he hundred lines, in an hour and twenty did then, and still continues to do, a minutes, and performed them in high little in the smuggling line: he is style, the same evening, on the from Ireland, you see, and he supboards of Drury Lane." " And you plies me with some of the very best are frequently invited to great men's Irishone-prime stuff, as ever touchtables?”.“Oh yes, very often; I dined ed a lip-real mountain dew-I never not a month ago with Lord G- get any thing like it. This, however, and a fortnight back with Sir A. (sipping at his glass,) this is not CM, and I am hand and glove very bad, but it is nothing like mine, with the Lord Mayor-mostly sup as I am sure you will say when you with him twice a-week, and when he taste it. Gentlemen, you will dine is at the theatre, he always takes me with me on Monday week-aye, let home with him in his coach. I knew me see, on Monday, I think I have him, you see, Sir, when we were no engagement for that day and boys, and Tom Batty was then, let then you will say you have tasted me tell you, the richest and best whisky, such whisky as you had fellow of the two.” “I am glad,” never before tasted-Oh! what a flasaid Pearson, “ that you have such vour! but shall I have the felicity of respectable connections, and when entertaining you, in my poor way, in you get rich"

Rich ! yes, a fine my little cottage at Lambeth ?" We thing that," replied the Thespian; all promised. “Then,” said he, “ I “but when will that come to pass ?" am a lucky fellow in two things, as “Why, from your income, Sir, it is you shall hear; first, because I shall impossible but that you must in a be honoured with your good comshort time be in very easy circum- pany; with respect to the next, why, stances.” “Ah ! Mr Pearson, you gentlemen, you must know that, two are not aware of our immense ex- days ago, I received a note from the penses, and know nothing about our Lord Mayor ; ' Batty,' said he, 'send heavy mulctures. I have, as I said, me all the whisky you have got in nominally nine pounds a-week; that your cellar, and remember you dine is, when I perform every night ; but with me on the tenth instant, and sometimes I only get three nights.” let me have none of your silly ex“Well, but—"' " Why, then, I re- cuses, but come without farther ceremony; and he concluded with, Sir," replied the doctor, “ for discip

dear Batty, 'I am yours, &c. &c. line makes a scholar, and discipline Now, what do you think I did ? why makes a gentleman; and the want of I sent his lordship twenty dozen, discipline has made you what you leaving only five bottles behind; but are. Now, my friends," said that will serve us for Monday, and Batty, “this was throwing the sledgeperhaps before that time I shall ob- hammer with a vengeance'; no pertain a fresh supply.”

son is, in my opinion, proof against You may think, perhaps, Mr Edi- such unwieldy weapons, nor deserves tor, that my friend Batty has made a to be smitten in such a manner. The tolerable swell; and I think myself doctor, however, is a great man, and that his conversation smells very may sometimes presume upon his strongly of egotism; but I assure you greatness, to assist his arguments. I have softened it down very consi- Believe me, gentlemen, I do not like derably; and believe me, Sir, I hear any great men, except those upon every day similar bragging from the stage ; and we never rely upon braggadocios similarly situated to my our greatness, to beat down an antafriend Batty; and, what is still worse, gonist, nor do we ever attempt to as you may perceive, all is not truth brow-beat an inferior,-no! we which they utter-I seldom quote should scorn such a subterfuge. them as authority. But, without fur- Well, I was just about to answer ther comment, let us proceed. Dr Strap in his own way, but I was

Monday at length® arrived, and prevented by my friend Mr FieldBatty's dinner was served up in ing, who sat on my right. This gengrand style, in his neat little cottage tleman is, you know, an author, a at Lambeth: no ox's cheek, no liver poet, a reviewer, and a great classic and bacon, no!' every thing was withal ; but he is a peaceable man, good, and of the right kind. The and he begged me to refrain, 'for,' soles, our host assured us, were fried said he, it is well known that Dr in oil fresh from Italy, a present from Strap has a mind truly gigantic, and his friend General B, who had his learning is perfectly colossal ; just arrived in England—the turkey we little stars must hide our diwas from Kent-the ham from Wes- minished heads. I had, however, phalia—the oysters from Melton- never a better mind in all my life to the mutton from the Welch moun- eat my dinner, than I now had to tains—the wines from Franceand trounce the Doctor. But, gentlethe whisky, as the reader already men,” said he, looking round the knows, was from Irishone. Suppose table, “ you forget the whisky,-how now, Sir, that the dinner is over, the do you like my whisky ?-is it not ladies withdrawn, the King's health the most delicious of all delights ? having already been drunk, and all wine of every description is, in my the company in high glee ; Mr Batty opinion, mere slip-slop to it. Yes, proceeded to inform us, that, on the said he, sipping at his glass, “it is tenth, às per invitation, he dined nectar, and the gods must at this with the Lord Mayor; but that he was moment envy us our bliss !” We far from being comfortable—no! he assured him that his panegyric was was vexed, confoundedly vexed ; and not too lavish in its praise, for that he proceeded to vent his complaints. it was certainly above all commenda“ The great Dr Strap," said he,

tion.

“ Well, as I was saying," he there, and he seemed determined continued, “I had great difficulty in rather to dispute every thing, than to restraining my anger; it was so rude, acquiesce in any assertion that ap- you know,-it was so ungentlemanly, peared the least doubtful. A friend you know,-upon my word, if I had of mine," continued he, “ Mr Gaw- been the object of his ridicule, I think ky-you know him very well, he is I should have called him out. Oh! I a porter-brewer in the borough, very cannot bear ridicule, of all things ; & rich, and very respectable. This gen- joke may be borne with, or a rap on tleman wishing to pay him a com- the knuckles, but my friend's rebuke pliment, obseryed to this Dr Strap, was the severest of any ever given ; that he had no doubt he was a great hang me if I could have forgiven disciplinarian.” “ You are right, him. No! I would rather have been

was

condemned to commit to memory proverbial expression, “ that a still twenty lines from the ' Curse of Ke- tongue makes a wise head;" this hama,' where there is neither rhyme suits my case very well ; but to shew Hor reason,-not one single poetical you that I am not vain, I must beg image,-not one scintillation of ge- leave to declare that I think the renius, nor one idea worth remember. verse proposition is more to be deing !" " But where,” said Mr Pear. pended upon, namely," that a wise son, smiling, “where, Mr Batty, head makes a still tongue.” This is would you, in that elegant poem, my opinion ; but as different people meet with twenty lines such as you think and judge differently on the mention?” “ Find them !" rejoined same subjects, I do not, you must our enraged host ; "why, in fifty, in observe, give it as my positive opi. a hundred, in a thousand places; nion, from which there is no apany where, all over, in every page peal ; no! and to shew you, at the twenty such lines may be discovered. same time, that I am possessed of a But pardon, excuse me, friend Pear- large portion of candour to those son ; I am vexed, you see, horridly who may differ from my decision, I vexed ; and what I was obliged to beg permission to refer it to the fu. conceal at my Lord Mayor's table ture consideration of Dr Strap, or my has now burst from me like a volca- friend Batty, or, if you think it would nic eruption ; but my mind is a little be better, to the majority of the good relieved from its tormenting state of people of this happy nation, who will perturbation ; its ebullitions will now probably treat it as a public question, cease,-the whirlwind of passion has and adopt that mode of reasoning subsided, and I am now calm ; yes, commonly made use of by the ladies calm as the unruffled deep after a at their tea-parties, or by the gentleviolent storm, when scarcely a ze, men after dinner, over a glass of wine, phyr ripples its placid bosom. or a bumper of whisky punch; and

“Besides,” he resumed, "Dr Strap this will certainly be the best maningrossed nearly the whole of the ner possible ; for reasoning, every one conversation; nobody could be heard knows, is a very dry subject; where, but himself; I hate such rudeness; then, can it be so well managed as in one could not squeeze a word an hour places where there is plenty of drink? in edgeways. He bored the company At a late hour, Mr Pearson obfor a full hour about Greek particles served that it was, he thought, nearand Latin terminations; I thought ly time for him to depart, for as it he would never have ended; then he would be high tide at two o'clock in gave us a dissertation on the origin the morning, he should have to rise of the Celtic, Erse, and Gaelic lan. from his bed at that hour to bathe. guages, which, he contended, all “ To bathe !” exclaimed Batty, “ at came from the same root.” “ But,” two o'clock in the morning! Why, said Mr Pearson, " did the company. Sir, you'll be then fast enough asleep; believe him, on his bare assertion ?" I warrant you." “ I intend, Sir, “ Certainly," replied Batty, “ for no rejoined the other, “ to bathe at two one had the temerity to contradict o'clock; and let me tell you, Mr him. Why, Sir, he would have drag- Batty, I can rise at what hour I ged you back through the dark ages, please, because I have accustomed to the time of the confusion of myself to do so ; and custom, you tongues at the building of Babel; I know, is a kind of second nature, assure you I wished such learned which enables one to perform wongibberish, and the reciter of it, both ders.” “ Wonders indeed !” said at Old Nick. He was so affected, too; our host; “ pray pardon me, but it and pomposity, affectation, and ego- must be, not a wonder, but a miracle, tism, I hold them, you know, in that would drag me from my bed at utter detestation !"

that early hour, to plunge myself How blind are men to their own into cold water.' Because you are failings! You may perceive, Sir, that totally unacquainted, Mr Batty, with I, your faithful correspondent, am no the beneficial effects arising from talker ; no, my business is to observe cold-water bathing; why, Sir, it and to listen, that I may know what is strengthens and braces the nervous haid by others. There is, you know, a system,-prevents obstructions, by

py."

keeping open the pores in the skin,“ skin is perforated by a thousand holes and thus prevents disease, prolongs in the length of an inch. If we estilife, excites health, and renders our mate the whole surface of the body situation here comfortable and hap- of a middle-sized man to be sixteen

" Wonderful indeed! why square feet, it must contain 2,304,000 bathing, according to your creed, pores. These pores are the mouths seems to be the grand panacea,” said of so many excretory vessels, which Batty: "pray, Šir, I hope to give perform that important function in no offence, but are you not employed the animal economy, insensible

perby Bianchi to preach in favour of spiration. The lungs discharge every his baths? Why, you might make a minute six grains, and the surface of fortune, if you had not one already, the skin from three to twenty grains, by writing puffs in favour of quack- the average over the whole body bemedicines :--but now tell me, seri- ing fifteen grains of lymph, consistously, do you positively intend to ing of water, with a very minute adrise at two o'clock, to bathe your mixture of salt, acetic acid, and a limbs, for the good of your health?” trace* of iron. If we suppose this " Most certainly,” replied Pearson, perspirable matter to consist of glo"and I attribute your rudeness to bules only ten times smaller than the your ignorance, Mr Batty; for the red particles of blood, or about the beneficial effects of frequently bath- five thousandth part of an inch in ing in salt water are known to every diameter, it would require a succesperson but yourself,—were known to sion of four hundred of them to isthe ancient Roinans, as well as the sue from each orifice every second.” Greeks; and the custom is recom- Mr Pearson now thanked Mr Jamended as salubrious by every phy. cob for thus illustrating his argu, sician who puts any value upon his ments in favour of bathing. “But," reputation. "Let me request, Sir, that said he to that gentleman, " I think, you will in future pause, before you Sir, the fine discovery which you condemn what you have never prace have lately made is not so well tised.” “Well, well,” replied Batty, known as it deserves to be:" then "I am, if you wish it, as ignorant looking round, “ give me leave, my as a sheep ; I like to bathe in hot worthy friends, to inform you, that weather, but in the month of De this learned gentleman, who is indecember, you must excuse me,-nor fatigable in the cause of science, has do I yet believe, friend Pearson, that lately discovered a new substance, a you are in earnest."

" You are at

sort of pebble, which is different in liberty, my theatrical hero, to be- its composition from any known malieve or to doubt just what you terial. Some of our most profound please ; but I shall bathe if I live, chemists suppose it to belong to the that is certain." Here ended a dia- class of metals,—others are certain logue, interesting, to be sure, but it that it has an alkaline base. Till, contains an abundance of that figure however, its properties shall be better in rhetoric which is denominated known, they have agreed to call it, by me pompous nonsense.

from the name of the discoverer, (in Mr Jacob, a philosopher, and one the new nomenclature,) a Jacobite!” of the party, who, like myself, had All the company expressed a high remained silent to the present time, degree of satisfaction for the honour now took from his side-pocket an oc- thus conferred upon one of the votatayo volume, and begged to be al- ries of science,-ihanked Mr Pearson lowed to read the following article, for the information he had given which, he said, was from a valuable them—and soon after they adjournand profound work, just published ed, each man to his home, and I to by his friend, a professor, and one my chamber, to note down, as I of the greatest men of the present usually do, the transactions of the

“From microscopic observa- preceding day.-Ever yours, tions, it has been computed that the

Peter PedagOGUE, Jun. The chains by which horses are yoked to a plough, or cart, are called traces. Does the above author mean that one of these has ever been found in the lymph?

« НазадПродовжити »