Зображення сторінки
PDF
[blocks in formation]

faded, still, to the lovers of the fine arts, she has many attractions, in the display of the great talent of the artist. They are both extraordinary pictures.

21. Theweather.—A morning as beautiful as May—bright, mild, and exhilarating as good news. We are just on the threshold of spring, and it is delightful to think how many fine months are before us.—Went to Primrose-hill, meeting numerous school parties, whom the fineness of the day had procured a promenade. It was aVurious morning; when I had climbed the Cockney Alps, the great metropolitan hive, or, as Cobbett calls it, the "wen," looked on" fire! It was obscured with a misty, reddish, furnace like glare, which I had never seen before. I thought of the bubble men, thinking how busy they were.—It is said Mr. Fry, the banker.'has purchased the whole silver-mine of Pasco for 300,000/. I can't think it is true.

WlttM$ Calendar, dfcbruaru XXVI.—Saturday.

High Water.Morn. VII. 10 m. Even. VII.40 mIncrease in day's length 2h. 54 m.

Natural History.—In the present month the principal objects worthy of attentioa in the vegetable kingdom are the various species of mosses,which are many of them in full bloom, exhibiting, like some evergreens, their flower and fruit at the same time. Trifling and insignificant as the mosses appear, their uses are by no means inconsiderable: they thrive best in barren places, and most of them love cold and moisture : they protect the more tender plants as they begin to expand in the spring, as the experience of the gardener can testify; which teaches him to cover with moss the soil and pots which contain his tenderest plants; for it equally defends the roots against the scorching sunbeams, and the severity of the frost. Several species of mosses grow upon marshes, and in process of time occupy the space formerly tilled with water; forming in their decayed state immense beds and masses of ;«a/,which,where coal and wood isscarce, is of great use as fuel.

Anniversary Chronology.—On this day, 1723, died Thomas d'Urfey, more generally spoken of by the familiar name of Tom. He wrote several dramatic pieces, songs, satires, and odes. His wit and facetious manners caused him to be familiarly noticed by Charles II.

1797. An order in council was issued to prohibit the Bank of England from paying in specie.

1802. Expired Dr. Geddes, at his house in the New Road, Paddington; a man no less distinguished for his superior abilities, and high attainments, than for his amiable and manly virtues.

dftbruarg XXVII.—Sunday.

High Water, Morn. VIII. 15 m. Even. VIII.

50 m. Sunday Lessons, Morn. Gen. 27. Luke 1.10 v.

Even. Gen. 34. Ephesians 4.

Anniversary Chronology.—1706. Died, in the 86th year of his age, John Evelyn, author of " Sylva," one of the greatest natural philosophers England ever produced. He was buried at his native place, Wotton, in Surrey. An inscription upon his tomb expresses, according to his own intention, that, '* Liviug in an age of extraordinary events and revolutions, he had learnt from thence this truth, which he desired might be communicated to posterity : That all is vanity which is not honest; and. that there is no solid wisdom but in real piety."

dTebruarl? XXVIII.—Monday.

High Water, Morn. X. 28 m. Even. X. 7 m.
Sun rises VI. 37 m.; sets V. 23 m.

Appearance Op The Swallow.—In Italy a few straggling swallows usually make their appearance by this time. In England, France, and most northern countries, the appearance of these birds is a month later at least.

Hare-hunting ceases with February, and sportsmen now turn their attention to the breed of their hounds.

ifHardj I. St. David.Tuesday.

High Water, Morn. X.45 m. Even. XI. 22 m.

St. David, celebrated by the Christians this day, and styled patron of Wales, was bishop of St. David's, in which office he died in 544. He founded many monasteries and religious houses, and formed a hermitage and chapel in the vale of Llanthony, near the Black Mountain.

On St. David's Day.

Why, on St. David's day do Welchmen seek, *

To beautify theirhats with verdant leek

Of natiEeous smell ?" For honour" 'tis, they

say, "Duke el decorum eit pro patria."

The custom is said to have originated in a victory they gained over the.Saxons on St. David's day, when every Welchman distinguished himself by wearing a leek in his hat. The king, it is said, is so complaisant as to bear them company. An old distich respecting St. David, relating probably to some ancient legendary story, says:

"Tasfy wad born on a moonshiny night, With his head ina pond and his heels upright."

ffiatci) II.—Wednesday.

H igh Water, Morn. XI. 56 m. Even. 0.0.

Anniversary Chronology. — The second of March is memorable for the death of eminent men. — 1711. Died Nicholas Boileau, a celebrated French poet.—1788. Died, at his native place, Zurich, Solomon Gesner, author of " The Death of Abel," and many other elegant and admired works.—1791. The Rev. John Wesley, the founder of the methodists, expired in London.—1797. Expired, in Berkeley-square, Horace Walpole, earl of Oxford, youngest son of the celebrated sir Robert Walpole.—1802. Expired'at Woburn, in Bedfordshire, at the early age I of thirty-seven years, Francis duke of Bedford, whose name will long continue to be respected as the promoter of. useful science, and the patron of agriculture.

Pfardj III.—Thursday.

High Water, Morn. 0. 29. in. Even.0 59 m.

Natural History.—The rookery is now all in. motion with the labour of building and repairing nests; and highly amusing it is to observe the tricks and artifices of this thievish tribe, some to defend, and others to plunder the materials of their new habitations. Rooks are accused of doing much injury to the farmer, by plucking up the young corn, and other springing vegetables; but some think this mischief fully repaid by their diligence in plucking up the grubs of various insects, which, if suffered to grow to maturity, would cause much greater damage. For this purpose they are frequently seen following the plough, or settling in flocks on newly turned up lands; and often, when they have gone out to feed in the morning, they may be seen returning home at night in immense flocks, flying over our heads at a great height.

fflntcl) IV.—Friday.

High Water, Morn. I. 28 m. Even. I, 55 m.
Full Moon, IX. 22 m.night.

Garden.—Sow radishes, spinage, and salad every week. Finish pruning; dig between raspberries, and clear plantations of strawberries. Sow asparagus, broccoli, and all sorts of flower-seeds. Graft apples, pears, &c.

Emigration Of Birds.—Some birds,

[merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small]
[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][graphic][merged small]

The court of chancery, like the screech of an owl, is a sound of direful import with which is associated ideas of miseries and calamities, of delays and disappointments, of broken hearts, and ruined purses! It is, however, a very curious and interesting place, well worthy of illustration; and we propose conducting our readers through its precincts, and showing them not only the brick and mortar, but we will take them into Chancery itself, and introduce them to a sight of lord Eldon, and the "grave and reyerend signiors" by whom he is surrounded.

Well, then, suppose we are strolling up Chancery-lane from busy Fleet-street,

passing Serjeant's Inn, the Affidavit-office, and Capes's print shop, a few yards further, on the left hand, we come to an oldfashioned gateway, over which are the arms of Lacy, earl of Lincoln, and sir Thomas Lovell. This is the entrance into Lincoln's Inn, in which is the awful and far-famed court of chancery. Lincoln's Inn was the town residence of the ear) of Lincoln; about the year 1310, he is first supposed to have introduced here students in law: these inns were, doubtless, formerly nothing more than as the name expresses, the inns, hostery, or hotels, where young men of family, and others attached to the courts of law were wont to reside. In process.of time, the residents began to associate themselves into fraternities of a collegiate description, and they now form societies, consisting of benchers, barristers, members, and students; the government is vested in the benchers, who have a power to admit students to the bar, that is to qualify them to plead and manage causes in the courts. Entering the gateway we debouche into an area, surrounded by ranges of buildings of a most uncouth and mixed character; before you is the hall in which the lord chancellor sits, which has been lately modernized, and is'sadly out of keeping with the rest; on the right and left are the chambers of counsellors; these have a most ignoble appearance, they look like penitentiaries or dovecots, and their interior is no better than the exterior. The doorways are low, the staircases narrow and tortuous, and the rooms—chambers we should say—are worse than the attics in Grub-street. These disagreeables, however, are compensated by the golden harvest reaped in them; many of the learned gentlemen, perhaps, netting there eight or ten thousand a year by consultations, drawing of answers to bills, reading affidavits, petitions, briefs, &c. However, let that pass.

We will now cross the area into the Court—first taking off your hat—you enter p. spacious hall, covered with mats and farmed with hot air. At the upper end, is a picture by Hogarth of Paul pleading before Agrippa, forming an appropriate subject for the place, where the law s delay is proverbial, and the suitors are often eventually bid to "go their way for that time." That is lord John Eldon—seetel, teternumque sedehit—as the despairing Whigs invariably exclaim on entering the court. In front of the bar, opposite the lord chancellor, are seated the king's counsel. You see that rather handsome looking wig in the corner, that is sir John Singleton Copley, the atterneygeneral. Next to him is Home, who is also a good looking man; his complexion is as clear as that of a child, and one would take him for an Indian bramin, who lived entirely on butter-milk and vegetable diet. In the middle you see that severe looking person—it is Wetherell, the solicitor-general; he has got a sour face, but a merry heart, replete with wit and good humour. You see that cadaverous looking person, just under us here, it is Heald : he looks for all the world like an old Gascon ; he is certainly not of English growth, but has come over at the revocation of the edict of Nantes. Now cast your eye behind the bar, about the middle of the third row, and you will see a rosy, fat-faced, merry looking little barrister,

that is Wakefield, author, editor, compiler, or something, of a " Statistical Account of Ireland." Below in the pit here, on one side the table, are seated solicitors, their clerks and miscellaneous persons, some of whom have fallen into the arms of Somnus, under the influence of the soporific doses of the learned gentlemen. There are many other counsel of eminence not now present; these are the principal, and enjoy a large proportion of the profits and practice of the chancery bar. Let us retire into the recess at the other end of the hall, and you shall hear something about the arcana of the place.

Looking round, you are surprised at the unostentatious and almost republican simplicity of the place, and doubtless are at a loss to account for the delays and expenses of which suitors complain. The lord chancellor sits yonder quite exposed, without attendants or guards, unless we consider as such this usher or something, who is coming down the hall with a bobtail and the rapier by his side, which ha* probably not been qut of its sheath these seven years, and is certainly intended more for ornament than use. Notwithstanding this, the complaints against the court are certainly well founded, though not to be ascribed. altogether to the distinguished individual who presides here. A good deal of the delay, and of course a considerable part of the expense, arises from the mode of practice at the bar. There are, perhaps, between two and three hundred barristers belonging to the court; out of this number, probably, half a dozen with silk gowns," which are no proof whatever of superior ability, monopolize nine* tenths of the whole business at the bar. The consequence is, these individuals are overwhelmed with business; they have not time to make the motions and bring forward the numerous cases put into their hands. Some of them e'en, at this moment, have briefs in their-bags, which they have had there these twelve months or more; the clients and their solicitors may be seen attending day after day, hoping to have their case brought on, and which probably would be decided in a quarter of an hour, but which is postponed for years, because the favourite counsel has not that quarter of an hour to spare. When the case is at last brought on, it is perhaps very indifferently managed; the counsellor has not studied his brief, and he reads it over in such a careless, unintelligible manner, that any schoolboy would be ashamed, or most likely whipped.

Now, whose fault is this? Most assuredly it is the client's,or his first advisers' —the solicitors, in not confiding their'case to one junior counsel, probably equal in la-.

[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][graphic][merged small]

The father of Phoebe Hessel was a drummer in the king's service; he took Phoebe with him to Flanders at an early age, where her mother dying, the father

.disguised the child as a boy, and taught her the fife ; in the practice of which she acquired a great proficiency, so as to be

.admitted into the regiment, where, after a length of time, (for what reason is not stated,) she became of the ranks, and in battle received a wound, in dressing of which the surgeon discovered her sex, and she was invalided on a small pension.

The above sketch was taken from the life, at Bognor, June 9, 1820. The following is a copy of the inscription placed on the tombstone of Phcebe Hessel:

In Memory of
PHCEBE HESSEL,
Who was born at Stepney, in the year 1713.
4 Sue served, for many years,

[ocr errors]

As a Private Soldier in the StJi Regiment of

Foot,

In different parts of Europe,

And in the year 1740, fought under the c

mand

Of the Duke of Cumberland,

At the Battle of Fontenny,

Where.she received a Bayonet Wound in her

arm.

Her long life, which commenced In the

Reign of Queen Ami.*, extended to George the

Fourth,

By whose munificence she received

Comfort and support in her latter years.

She died at Brighton, where she had long

resided,

December 12th, 1821,

Aged 108 years—
And lies buried here.

HEK EPITAPH.

Through fields of war for many a long cam-
paign,
Where fell she sadly wounded by the slain,
Poor Phcebe strove to act the soldier's part,
A female form that held a manly heart.
At length, retiring from the battle's rage,
She liv'd to own a patriarchal age;
Staunch to her king, and to her country true,
May Heaven recruit her at the last review!

« НазадПродовжити »