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purpose. There are some novelists effect of these last on the beauty of who write for the mere love of the women and the strength of the discoursing agreeably and analys- men in Ireland. ing wittily. There are others who It is curious to read the notes do not care to digress or linger, of Wakefield, or Buchanan, or wherever they are tempted so to M'Culloch, on the “ Wealth of do; they cut and fit so as to pro- Nations,” and observe how upon duce a rounded, perfect plot. So every chapter of the text they-at there are philosophers who love to least the first* and last-have cordabble in facts-to worm out rections to record. These correccuriosities of history, to make a tions are not all satisfactory; many museum, and leave others to form of them are untenable contradican opinion on what they produce. tions. But they discountenance Adam Smith certainly had his own the notion reigning in some minds, opinion on what he observed, but that the “ Wealth of Nations” is he was first of all the observer. In the standard by which all other short, his forte was analysis, not systems are to be judged. synthesis. And so the chief charm If a lecturer were appointed for of his book is description. In the the special purpose of publicly very first chapter he wins the examining that book in the light attention of the very child by of modern speculation, he would rambling through a pin manufac- be sure—no matter whether he tory, and finding all the marvels belonged to the school of Ricardo, of industry in a single pin. So in or Mill, or Bastiat-to find faults that wonderful chapter on Rent. in every chapter. We are not like His theorising is not very good, or the middle - age pedants, who very convincing ; but each page is covered the face of the earth with turned faster than the other, as we commentaries on Aristotle, all skip from the price of corn to the assuming at the outset the infalliprice of butcher's meat in Prince bility of that philosopher. We Henry's time; from that to affairs now judge Adam Smith as we in Holland; from that to ancient judge Aristotle. We point the Italy; then to Columella and the finger at every error they made ; extravagant gentleman - farmers; and yet we call one the father of then to Maryland through Cochin ancient political economy, and the China; then to kitchen gardens, other the father of modern polivineyards, sugar plantations, tical economy. tobacco, rice, potatoes, and the
ÉRIC S. ROBERTSON.
* The first, Wakefield, so far as he annotates at all.
CHARLES LAMB AT EDMONTON.
To whatever region the Christ's ture and composition; a mural or Hospitallers may migrate, it is to sculptural record.” By another, be hoped that they will not forget who wrote at the same time, it the grave of their old school-fellow, was suggested that granite was the Charles Lamb. The sexton at proper material for the headstone, Edmonton will tell you that a and that a bust and tablet might party of “ Blues” pay periodical find a place in the neighbouring visits to the churchyard, and, wind. church. Surely the man had never ing through a grove of memorial entered Edmonton Church-fusty, masonry of the usual ugliness, and beetling with galleries! And proceed to do honour to the narrow did he suppose that Lamb ever resting-place of the Lambs. What entered it? The end of all unclean beasts, with appetites more these proposals has been better ghoulish than the ghouls, are sup. served by the several editions of posed to browse in English church. Lamb's works published since 1875, yards, that the monuments of the among which is the good and dead should be fenced off with cheap “ Popular Centenary Edi. iron railings? The grave of tion,” edited by Charles Kent. Charles and Mary Lamb is neither It is said at Edmonton that walled nor hurdled off ; it has the Americans in large numbers visit simple green coverlid that, one the grave. Lamb has certainly fancies, gives sounder sleep than been fully appreciated across the any other—a grass mound kept Atlantic. It is to the “ Eliana” first free from weeds by the blue-coat collected by Mr. J. E. Babson, of boys, among others. The head. Boston, U.S., that we owe the stone bears Cary's inscription, the completeness of our recent editions footstone the initials and dates, of the works; and articles from “ C. L., 1834, M.A.L. 1847.”
time to time in the Atlantic The stones and grave are as Monthly by the same hand show modest and unpretending as were that Mr. Babson's countrymen the pair they commemorate, and retain their interest in everything it is to be hoped that well-meaning pertaining to the gentle essayist. meddlers will let them continue as Nearly two years were spent by they are. In 1875, the centenary the Lambs at Edmonton, extending of Lamb's birth, Mr. Bell, the then from Charles's fifty-eighth year to head master of Christ's Hospital, his sixtieth, when he died. They proposed to raise a fund for one or were almost barren of literary more of the following objects :“An fruit. For the sister's sake, the English essay prize, in the shape of household gods had been transbooks or medals (which might bear planted from the stir of the great on one face the profile of Lamb); city to the quiet, first of Enfield, a scholarship for the encourage and then of Edmonton, and they ment of the study of English litera- seemed to dwindle, peak, and
pine in this retirement. Not but it was to London that his only did Mary's illness grow upon thoughts turned, measuring the her; but the survivors among her distance in miles and minutes, brother's friends, none of them thinking only of when he should men of leisure, could see very little next go there, and when next his of him at that distance from friends would come to see him. London. In those days you did To the Temple clung memories of not reach Edmonton in half an the time when he and his sister hour from Liverpool-street, but had to live on the salary of a clerk. intrusted yourself to the tender ship in the East India House, bemercies of the stage from the ginning at a bare £70 a year; of “Swan," Snow Hill. By this his first appearance in print as a stage, no doubt, came the parcels sonneteer in Coleridge's company; of of books hot from the press of those famous Wednesday evenings friend and publisher Moxon. The when men met, “ the mere reckonfearful joy of peeping between the ing of whose names is like counting leaves of these-leaves not to be the stars in a constellation"-even. cut, for the books were to be re- ings which Talfourd has compared turned in saleable condition—was to the evenings at Holland House. one of the pleasures of these later Some of us would have enjoyed days. Mary's taste always ran the Wednesday parties most. more after novels than folios, * and Cold beef on the sideboard, the village library was ransacked where everyone helped themselves, in her interest; but for Charles, the prints cut out of all Charles's for whom social intercourse and old books pasted on the walls, troops of friends had taken the darling folios on the shelves, porter, place of close literary studies, the punch, and cards, Hazlitt's bril. time was out of joint. It is not liant talk, with now and then a lay surprising to hear that the hostel. sermon from Coleridge. Even ries about Enfield and Edmonton busier and noisier than the Temple knew him well. To one especially, was that first-floor over the brazier's near Edmonton, bearing the queer shop at the corner of Russell-street, sign of “The Cart Overthrown,”and Covent Garden, the home of the decorated with pictures of the Lambs for six years. Authors and angler's gentle craft, one can fancy actors came and went all day long his steps often directed. But his and after playhouse hours, till even walk, say those villagers who their host unwillingly confessed remember him, was oftenest along that he was too little alone. The the road to London.
removals to Colebrooke Cottage, The field walks between Edmon- Islington — where George Dyer, ton and Enfield are still pleasant, “dear blundering old soul," stepped and Lamb professed to enjoy them; from their door into the New Rivert
*“We are both great readers in different directions. While I am hanging over (for the thousandth time) some passage in old Burton, or one of his strange contemporaries, she is abstracted in some modern tale, or adventure, whereof our common reading. table is daily fed with assiduous fresh supplies.”_" Mackery End, in Hertfordshire," “Essays of Elia."
"I do not know when I have experienced a stranger sensation, than on seeing my old friend G. D., who had been paying me a morning visit, a few Sundays back, at my cottage at Islington, upon taking leave, instead of turning down the right-h and path by which he had entered-with staff in hand, and at noonday, deliberately march right forwards into the midst of the stream that runs by us, and totally disappear." “ Amicus Redivivus," “ Last Essays of Elia.”
-to Chase Side, Enfield, and informant, still living in Edmonton, finally, in the spring of 1833, to remembers a cloud of feathers Edmonton, were for Mary Lamb's blowing across the road, which sake; but the quiet and seclusion poor Mary had torn from the bed of country life did not keep her and was strewing out of the winmalady in check. Absolute re- dow. Another, the late parish straint became necessary, and this clerk of Edmonton, remembered was found at the house of the being startled, as he worked in the Waldens, in Church -street, Ed. next garden, by Mary Lamb ratmonton. The Waldens were used tling at the bars of her window. to such cases, and had taken care These recollections of the villagers of Mary Lamb before. They now give a melancholy significance to agreed to take no other patients, Lamb's words when writing to and the brother and sister lodged Wordsworth in 1833 : “I see little and boarded there till Charles's of her; alas ! I too often hear her. death. Mary stayed with Mrs. Sunt lachrymo rerum ! and you and Walden for several years longer, I must bear it." until she was removed to a similar Let it not be forgotten that establishment in St. John's Wood, when Charles died he had “ borne where she died.
it” for nearly forty years. Alone A daughter of Mrs. Walden, a and unaided he had supported his school girl at the time of Charles's sister from the day of their mother's death, and who recalls that event death onwards, to save her from as happening during one of her what John Lamb, the elder brother, Christmas holidays, tells me that thought her proper doom-lifeMary was ill for more than six long confinement in an asylum. months out of the twelve at that His was more than a husband's time. She describes her as a care for her. Through all these troublesome and unhappy patient, forty years he never let her leave her mind constantly running upon him, except when certain signs her mother's death. During a fit of well known to both of them foreinsanity thirty-seven years before told the approach of a severe Mary Lamb had killed her mother attack. On one such occasion they with a table knife. Mrs. Moxon, were met walking hand-in-hand on Lamb's adopted daughter-the the field-path to the asylum, and it “ Emma Isola” of his corre. was noticed that they were crying. spondence-tells an anecdote which After Charles's death his works sadly illustrates the relation in followed him, for Mary was awarded which Mary stood to this tragedy a pension by the authorities of the of her early life. During the whole East India House as if she had of Mrs. Moxon's “residence with been his widow. the Lambs she was completely Bay Cottage, Church - street, ignorant of the terrible event. One Edmonton, stands back from the night Charles and Mary Lamb and road mid-way between the railway herself were seated at table. The station and the church, and nearly conversation turned on the elder opposite a building described on Lamb, when Miss Isola asked why its walls as “a structure of hope she never heard mention of the founded in faith, on the basis of mother. Mary thereupon uttered charity, 1784,” a charity school for a sharp, piercing cry, for which girls. The aspect of the cottage Charles playfully and laughingly has not changed since the Waldens rebuked her, but he made no owned it. Close high iron palings allusion to the cause.” Another and a long strip of garden, crossed
by a flagged pathway, separate it younger friends were left to him, from the road. The houses on Procter, Talfourd, Moxon, John both sides project beyond the Foster, and Cary, the translator of frontage of Bay Cottage, and darken Dante. A dinner with Cary at the the house and garden. There are British Museum every third Wedonly four windows looking to the nesday in the month was a fixture front, two on the first-floor, one in these day—“a zodiac of third with the door on the ground floor, Wednesdays irradiating by glimpses and one in the roof. In the rear the Edmonton dulness.” At other the house is twice as wide, extend times he was very urgent for his ing behind its left-hand neighbour, friends to come to him. To John and opening on to a walled kitchen Foster he writes, “Come down togarden, with apple trees that must morrow or Saturday, be here by have been veterans in the Lambs' two or half after; coaches from time. Mary Lamb's room looked Snow Hill.” And in the same to the back; her brother used the letter, “Come down with Procter small front sitting-room with the and Dante on Sunday.” solitary window on the ground. “The Last Essays of Elia,” col. floor, and (I believe) the bed-room lected from various magazines, above it. The ground floor room were published by Moxon in 1833, is barely twelve feet square, with and Lamb seems to have set hima beam in the low ceiling, and a self no literary work afterwards, deep window seat savouring of content to live and die as “ Elia.” antiquity. It was from here that He never aspired to the fame Lamb wrote to Wordsworth: “Iam of men who keep their names alive three or four miles nearer the great by writing much and often. As city” (than at Enfield); “ coaches a writer for the press he was half-price less, and going always, unknown. The only work he did of which I will avail myself;" and for the Quarterly Review, a review to Mrs. Hazlitt:“I am nearer town, of Wordsworth's “Excursion," and will get up to you somehow undertaken out of love for the before long."
poet, cost him immense labour His thoughts and affections were and mortification. He contriin town. “But town," as he wrote buted to the Morning Chronicle, but from Enfield, “ with all my native only as a manufacturer of jests, and hankering after it, is not what it was that not for long; his articles in The streets, the shops are left; but the Examiner remained many years all old friends are gone! And in buried. Still he thought well of London I was frightfully convinced his own style as a writer of prose, of this as I passed houses and and a certain amount of literary places, empty caskets now. I have fame accrued to him before he ceased to care almost about anybody. died. Unknown admirers sent The bodies I cared for are in graves him presents of game. A second or dispersed. My old clubs, that edition of his earlier essays aplived so long and flourished 80 peared in 1833. The younger men steadily, are crumbled away." of the literary world began to Hazlitt was dead, Coleridge dying; know him.* we hear nothing of Dyer, of Rick. But Charles Lamb was not man, of Manning. A few of his meant for passive pleasures and
* Among these was Macready, who met him for the first and only time at supper in 1834 (the year of his death), and records the following characteristic saying: “I should like my last breath to be inhaled through a pipe and exhaled in a pun."