London Society, Volume 31
– – – –
LONDO Robsox AND SONS, PRINTERS, PANCRAs ROAD, N.W.
Congrabings. DeAWN. By PAGE
Armed for the Fray. – – – – – – – – . 448
Artist discovered, The . – – – . W. L. Thomas . 368
Box at the Pantomime, A – – – . D. H. Friston . . 128
DREAMLAND of LovE, The :
The girl took up her grandmother’s hand,
and touched it with her lips – . W. J. Hennessy . 52
“The treasure, monsieur ! It lies where
Monsieur le Baron and my poor uncle
‘Will you have them 7” she said, holding.
them suddenly out to him . – – jy . 407
Presentation of the wedding-gifts . – jo . 520
Exorcism, The – – – – – . A. W. Bayes . . 224
Hunters, The, Hunted . – – – . Sydney P. Hall . 424
Ivy-Maiden, The . – – – – – – – Frontispiece
Kiss and Try: a Tale of St. Valentine . . J. Nash . – . 97
Landscape, by Hobbema . – – – – – – . 560
Married by Accident – – – . D. H. Friston . . 32
MoDERN ZoDIAc, The; An Artist’s Almanac of
January . – – – – – . Harry Furniss . 48
February – – – – – – ** . 144
March . – – – – – – * * . 193
April – – – – – – – 3 * . .289
May – – – – – – – 12 . 385
June – – – – – – – 22 . 544
Palm-Branch, The . – – – – . M. Antigma . . 272
Private Wiews. – – – – – . W. J. Hennessy . 303
Right Chord at Last, The – – – – – – – . 192
Social Contretemps. – – – – . Adelaide Claxton . 208
Too Susceptible . – – 481
Twin Night and snap-dragon . . . F. Lumley . . so
Window Gardening – – – – – – – . 384
Woodman’s Craft, The . – – – . Corot . – . 336
A Story of a Garden Party . – – – – – – . 481
DREAMLAND of LovE, The a Story of an Heiress. Complete in Twenty-
six Chapters . – – – – . 50, 152, 255, 306, 394, 507
Japanese Love-Story, A . – – – – . 138
Kisanity. Tai of St. Valentine . . . . . . 97
Married by Accident – – – – – – – – . 32
MICHAEL STRogoFF; or the Russian Courier (concluded), 145, 283, 323, 427,
PRoud MAIsIE: a Novel. Chapters I. to XVIII. 1, 110, 226, 837, 449, 488
St. Valentine’s Lottery: in Two Drawings – – – . 170
Story of an April Day . – – – – – – – – . .289
The Two Joneses: a Story of St. David’s Day . – – – . 193
An Afternoon at a Pekin Theatre . – – – – – . 501
BEBIND THE ScKNES IN LONDON SocIETY:
Scene I. The Ghosts of the London Midnight . – – . 25
II. The Stable-side of Mayfair • – – – . 538
DRAWING-Room AMUSEMENTs : PAGE
Private Theatricals—Charades—Proverbs—Tableaux Wivants—
Bouts Rimés • – – – – – – – . 71
Guessing Proverbs—The King’s Coming–Qualifications—The
Farrago . – 105
Forfeits—Making History—Conclusion – – . 364
Examination Horrors – – – – – – – . 221
Fifty Years a Cricketer . – – – – – – . 529
Girl Labour in London . – – – – – – . 369
Gull, Sir William W. – – – – – – – – . 385
Modern Russia – – – – – – – . 209
English Ambassadors at Constantinople—The Development of the
Club-system—New Books on the Eastern Question – . 83
Society at the Winter Watering-places—Charles Kingsley: a
Brief Monograph—A Lover of Nature—Humorous Art—Art
and Science – – – – – – – – . 182
Social Cliques and Clans—New Books: Titian’s Life and Times;
Makers of Florence; Painters of all Schools; Historic Châteaux;
Sports in Many Lands; Life of Sir William Fairbairn; Sir
Edmund Beckett on Building—A New Game – – . 243
The Seaside in Spring—Recent Progress in Sanitary Science—
Railway Improvements—Transparency of Metals—The New
Large Guns – – – – – – – – –
Underground Railways—Science in its IRelation to Food and Culi-
nary Matters—Educational Progress in Reference to Women—
Adulteration of Silk—Optograms—New Ordnance—New Books 467
Mineral Pigments and their Relation to Health—German Silver–
Lighting by Electricity—Protection against Fire—Pioneer
Railways—New Coating for Ships’ Bottoms—The Wanguard—
New Books—The Wagner Festival—Hobbema – – . 548
Prince of Wales’s Indian Tour, The . – – – – 417
Private Views . – – – – – – – – 300
Some Yorkshire Cricket Stories – – – – – . 411
Turkish Society: the Iftar – – – – – . 439
Window Gardening . – – – – – – – 377
WINTER REsorts of LoNDoN SocIETY:
Nice – – – – – – – – – . 20
Monaco—Mentone—Bordighera—San Remo . – – . 129
Sicilian Resorts—Malta . – – – – – – . 272
Armed for the Fray. – . 448 RomancE of OLD LONDON :
Artist discovered, The . . 368 I. The Legend of St. Marie
Box at the Pantomime, A. . 128 Overie – – . 39
Exorcism, The – – . 224 II. The Water-gate by Can-
Four Figures: a Threnody . 416 non-street Station . 180
Ivy-Maiden, The . – . 49 III. A Memory of Old Lon-
Lady-Doctor, The . – … 81 don Bridge – . 545
Lifeboatman’s Yarn, A . . 95 | Social Contretemps: After Sup-
Old Fogy on Christmas, An . 70 per—Waiting for the Gentle-
Right Chord at Last: a Valentine Illell . – – – . 208
for the Harp – – . 192 || Two Artists, The . – . 254
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CHAPTER I. ON THE TILES.
I was the daughter of a clergyman “vicar for ten years of Mudford-in-the-Marshes on 200l. a year. He died, leaving a widow and seven children totally unprovided for.” I was ten years old at the time, and the above urgent appeal nearly secured my election to a clergy orphan asylum. Very nearly; not quite. Appeals more urgent still, more clamorous at least, carried the day, and I was left to education, or rather spontaneous evolution, at home, a misfortune which I could never be induced to look back upon with sufficient conCern. The seven unprovided-for children went their seven ways. A fairy godmother, in the unromantic form of amoneyed maiden aunt, came to the rescue, helped to start the two eldest boys in the colonies and the two eldest girls in society, where they drifted swiftly and smoothly into matrimony, the haven where they would be. Four from seven and three remain—Maisie and the twins Ethel and Claude. WOL. XXXI, NO, CLXXXI.
The twins were fine forward children of the period, to whose education and general spoliation the whole of my mother’s and a good deal of my own time was devoted. They were pre-Raphaelite in appearance, wearing strange coloured picturesque dresses, and their fair hair clipped short on their foreheads, but in every other respect even ahead of the age.
Maisie was the imp of the family. Ours perhaps really required such an item, by way of contrast or relief, to enliven the picture when it became too conventional, an exception to prove or set off the rule. She might have been a changeling, so hopelessly did she put family likeness, mental and physical, to defiance; a small, agile, gipsy-like thing,
dark, with large brown eyes like
a Spaniard, and a disposition of which the good and the evil seemed equally to run in the 1I]. Maisie, I should add, before going farther, was myself. When I was about seventeen my aunt died, leaving all her property to us, her poor relations; an important change for the clergyman’s widow, for the heritB
age included—not to dwell upon a most valuable pug-dog, one parrot, two Persian cats, and a tortoise—what to our economical souls appeared a comfortable in
come, and a lease of an old house in a part of London once quiet and obscure, but now rapidly becoming fashionable.
Thither we removed, and there for four years we had been leading a perfectly unexceptionable sort of life, but dull even as female lives go. A little study, a little gaiety, a little art, a little religion, a little society, a little charity—so ran the burden of time from day to day. It was a liliputian existence altogether.
I found it not unpleasant, though now and then a trifle unsatisfactory. But I knew no other, nor was likely to know. Was it not the life led by girls of my class in general? And those who are launched without oars, or rudder, or sail, or spy-glass, or compass, must drift on in the regular old channels, though ready enough to drift out of them, should new currents and new winds arise; as they will do suddenly, imperceptibly, without warning, driving the pretty cockle-shell of a boat out to sea, on the rocks, into port, or swamping it, as the chance may be.
One April afternoon I had just come in from a walk, and was sauntering up-stairs, talking aloud to my goldfinch, whose cage hung on the landing. Having no companions of my own age I frequently fell back on the dumb creation, and have occasionally held forth at some length to a tree, a China rose, or to Jock my bird, of whom it must be said that his answers, whether given in silence or in song, always seemed to me twice as satisfactory as those of my mother or the twins.
“Jocky mine, you little bird butterfly,’ I chattered, ‘I wonder how you contrive to keep your gold feathers so bright in this kingdom of fog | Flowers, colours, complexions, everything spoils but you. How do you manage it, Jock Ah, you hold your tongue. I don’t believe you’re a bird at all. There’s the lost and wandering soul of Narcissus, Adonis, or some other lovely stupid boy lurking somewhere underthat plumage you’re so proud of. I always thought so, Jock, from the first day when I picked you up, runaway and thief, pecking at the cherries in a fruiterer’s shop, until—’ I stopped short as I reached the cage. The door stood open ; the window also, alas ! “He has eloped, ah, the little scamp “with a sudden drop from fondness to disgust. “I do believe he is amusing himself on the roofs over there, flirting with his neighbours’ canaries’ wives.” I scrambled out on the sill to reconnoitre, thence on the tiles. What an odd vista of slate roofs, leaden pipes, and gurgoyles, shapeless windows, bristling chimney-stacks, and telegraph-wires, a mass of architectural lumber all huddled together, and lit up by the lurid saffron glow of a Lon– don afternoon sun The fronts of these same houses were mathematically symmetricalandstraight, but here behind the scenes, where successive landlords had built on as seemed right in their own eyes, there was no attempt at keeping up appearances. Not a sign of the truant. But those tiles were irresistible. Already I had started on an aerial voyage of discovery, not unattended with danger, over those tempt— ing forked roofs, prompted less, I fear, by zeal for Jock’s salvation than by the charm of the scramble. Never before had I
Eliza Cook’s Journal, Volume 3
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window gazing out upon the blue heavens, wrapped in deep thought.
“Victory! victory!” cried Magloire, dancing round the room.
“Said I not he would come ?” replied Theresa, rising with panting heart and radiant face, to be clasped next instant in the arms of the happy and fortunate soldier.
Paul Chenier had resolved from the first to win fortune with his sword, and to let his parents and mistress hear of him only when success crowned his efforts. On several occasions he distinguished himself under the Emperor’s own eye, and at last, at the battle of Austerlitz, before which he was a lieutenant, received his promotion. The cross of the Legion of Honour was offered him; but he told his story, and asked for a permission to marry instead. The Emperor, with a sardonic smile, which he could assume often when amused, gave both; and in a few days after the scene above recorded, Theresa was Madame Chenier. Paul found her a noble wife, and often felt shocked to think how a hasty appreciation of her conduct might have ruined so much happiness. Magloire remained single, but when after the negotiation General Chenier retired to his well-earned property, he became the factotum of his old friends, and the indefatigable nurse of a little blue-eyed Theresa of five years old.
Wb believe that those who know the world will agree with ns that it is a place brimful of prejudice; not only brimful indeed, but running over; and considering the fact that wherever there is the smallest space unoccupied in the world’s mind some prejudice or other manages to creep in, and fill it, we almost wonder how it is that virtue holds its ground so sturdily as it does.
The worst of these prejudices is that their weight generally falls upon those least able to bear them. The burden is distributed very unfairly and unevenly. The weakest are crushed under them because they are weak, and the strong are left unloaded because they are strong. If these prejudices acted only against the rogues and the fraudulent, we should have nothing to say against them; the higher they were piled up, the more they would discourage roguery and fraud, but even here the idea would be borne out that the weakest are the most heavily taxed, for the successful rogue has not mostly so much prejudice to encounter as the unsuccessful one. The man who fills his pockets by successful arts, escapes the hand of the law, and laughs at the world, and may some day come to be respected and admired. Prejudice sits but lightly upon his broad shoulders; but the defeated rascal, convicted at the bar of a criminal court, has lost all chance or hope of retrieving his position, for prejudice weighs him down as though a mountain was pressing him to the earth.
But it is not only against the faults of men that prejudice is directed, it tells with equal force against their misfortunes. There is a prejudice against a threadbare coat, or a shabby hat, or an empty purse, which attaches itself firmly to the owners of these ill-favoured articles; though we suppose they are not more enamoured with the condition of their wardrobes, or the state of their exchequers, than the rest of the world, and would willingly put them upon a better footing if they found it possible to do so.
Among the worst of prejudices, is that which shows itself against that unfortunate class of the community whose descriptive designation stands at the head of this article. There is no class which has been move plentifully bespattered with the world’s ridicule, abuse, and dislike than old maids, and we think this is one of the prejudices which needs to be put down as soon as may be.
Old maids have been the butt for a very large pro portion of the arrows of satire which have been sho from the bow of ridicule from time immemorial. Wi hardly know, indeed, what our caricaturists, and satirists and fiction writers would have done without them. * OU maids- have been a constant theme, a permanent fount o inspiration for these gentlemen. To serve their purposes they have figured in all the ridiculous or disagreeabli positions into which women can well be introduced. I you happen to see an engraving of an old sour-faced lad] in close companionship with a pug dog, two cats and; parrot, you may be sure that it is meant for an old maid If you happen to hear of an ancient dame who occupiei her whole time in scandalizing and damaging the tail fame of her neighbours, be certain that the story .is fated to end with the circumstance that she is an old maid. I you read of a prude, who is so squeamish that she canuol bear to hear of the slightest friendship between the sexes. you may at once make up your mind that she belongs tc the sisterhood of old maids. If you are told of a guinea* visaged skinflint who starves a pauper servant girl, and works her to death, the chances are twenty to one thai it is an old maid; and if in perusing a sentimental novel you are introduced to a sharp-eyed, vinegar-minded duenna, who acts as a constant wet-blanket to a pair ol fond, but embarrassed and despairing lovers, the authoi will scarcely so far venture to outrage the unities and established proprieties of fiction, as to make her anything else than the affectionate young lady’s aunt, and an ole maid to boot.
And yet, after all this, the old maids are not such t very bad class of persons. They are ridiculed and despised more for their misfortunes than their faults. Thej are quite as worthy as the old bachelors, whom the world generally looks upon as quite a respectable and estimable sot of old fellows. If celibacy be a fault, the men, we arc confident, are far more to blame than the women. The gentlemen usually do much as they like about getting married. They have far more opportunity of putting oil tho state of s’rgle blessedness than the ladies. Thej may, it is true, find a coquette here, and a flirt thereand be jilted in another quarter; but that does not often break their strong hearts, and the road is still open tc them. They never need despair; refused ninety-nine times, they may succeed the hundredth. They havt nothing to do if they want to change then’ condition, bul to go on asking, and like a beggar in search of a penny they will bo pretty sure, in the long run, to find some charitable-minded person to take pity upon their forlorn anc destitute condition. If a man then continues single, wt may fairly presume that it is because he chooses to continue so.
With the ladies, however, tho case is vei,-different They are not the seekers, they must wait till thsy an sought. They cannot ask the gentlemen, but must si; patiently till the gentlemen choose to ask them. Botl the established customs of society, and the natural deli cacy of the feminine nature usually prevent women fron making the first advances. We are aware, indeed, tha’ the ladies are said to have more power in leap-year, than ai any other time, and that they are then justified in putting by their blushes, and bringing a bashful or backwarc swain up to the proper point; but we suppose that th< power, if it be in existence, is very seldom exercised, ant that the fact of its being leap-year would be a very smal excuse for what the world would not fail to designate a; most unfeminine boldness.
Heally wo think that old maids ought to ba pitici rather than disliked or despised, and that their unpro tected condition ought to shield them from, rather thai expose them to, the prejudices of which they are mad< the victims. No doubt if we could get at the real sentiments of the great majority of old maids, we should fint that their celibacy has not been the result of choice, bu! of necessity, or if not exactly of necessity, of feelings which ought to command our admiration and sympathy. Of course, there are some unmarried, elderly ladies, whose prudery or coquetry iu their younger days has prevented them from what is called settling advantageously in life, but far oftener, higher virtues and imperious necessities have kept old maids single. Of course, and in this their decriers bear us out, some old maids are plain, not to say ugly, and therefore they have not found wooers. They may have good, feeling hearts, and powerfully cultivated minds, but their teeth may be irregular, or their eyes dim, or their complexions bad, or the small pox may have scarred and seamed their features, and men looking for beauty have turned away and left their warm hearts to wither in their loneliness. What right have we to despise old maids. for that? Why should we satirize or ridicule them on that account? What reason have we for converting that which should prompt us to pity and sympathy into an excuse for malice? Wo might as well visit our displeasure upon the dumb, or the deaf, or the blind, because they cannot converse, or see, or hear, as upon old maids whose faces have frightened the men away.
But some old maids have been beautiful. We know more than one who still bear about them the evident remains of great personal attractiveness. What then kept them single? Sometimes, no doubt, their own faults or follies, but oftener circumstances over which they had no control, and the endurance of which reflects honour upon their character. For example, (and most likely the experience of our readers will fully bear us out) some are the daughters of decayed gentlefolks—girls who were brought up in comfortable, perhaps luxurious homes, whose minds were delicately nurtured, and whose education was sedulously attended to. Their poverty has kept back those of their own rank, who, educated in a moneyloving world, look for fortune, as well as beauty and accomplishment with a wife, and they have been left to the alternative either of marrying out of the class in which they have been brought up, or sinking into old maidship. We should be the last to encourage any foolish conventional notions of birth and rank, which so often prevent marriages of pure affection; but we can sympathize with the feelings of an educated woman, and applaud her motives, when, debarred from an alliance in what she has been brought to consider her own class, she shrinks with dread from the idea of taking a partner for life, who has been brought up in a different sphere, and in whom she cannot perceive any of that correspondence of sentiment or congeniality of taste, which she thinks essential to make her future life happy. Such motives demand our respect rathe- lhan our ridicule.
There <ire many old maids, too, whom the high and holy prompting of parental affection have made so. Many a girl, the only child of an otherwise lonely parent, the sole prop of a widowed father or mother, the solitary light of a fast decaying life, has given herself up with the noble devotion of woman, to cheer the last hours of those to whom she owed her life. Living apart and secluded from tho world, her beauty has not shone in the ballroom and the social circle, her virtues have been too silent and hidden to attract attention, she has not been brought into the sphere where affections spring up; and if perchance she has, her affections have been so engrossed by the solitary invalid at home, that no other love has been able to creep in there; or perchance if she has felt her heart throb with a new and nameless feeling she has, impressed with a noble senso of duty, smothered it, sacrificing all to the voice which told her that it was her place to give up all to the task of smoothing and cheering the last hours of those to whom she was bound by the strongest ties of blood.
Many, too, of the old maids whom the world points at, and who are walking the downward path of age, without
a friendly arm to assist their feeble steps, have been young, and rich, and beautiful, and have loved as fervently and well as any of those who are basking iu the warmth of family affection. Some of them have loved below their station, and the world’s prejudices for rank and wealth, acting upon their parents, have barred them from becoming happy wives; others have loved too deeply to love more than once, and after seeing the lifeless form to which they clung so fondly, placed in the cold earth, have been unable to shake off the memory of the dead, have felt that their hearts were buried with them, have turned away widowed in spirit from the merriment and light-heartedness of their companions, and never felt a wish to fill up the void which was once so pleasantly occupied; and others loving and loved again, have been forbidden by prudence to take upon themselves responsibilities which they could not properly provide for, and nobly abstained from gratifying their feelings at the expense of the welfare of infants yet unborn.
Such women as these do not merit dislike, or ridicule, or contempt. They have been actuated by the noblest feelings of our nature, they have shown in their best light devotion, patient endurance, and unselfish self-sacrifice. They have nursed parental affection, undying constancy, and a wise prudence, and deserve to be treated with that sympathizing, respectful affection which is due to forbearance, and grief, and heroism. Subtract such women as these from the class of old maids and there will be very few left to bear the lash of the satirist, and even that small remnant deserve consideration from the fact that their faults are more harmless than faults generally are, and their wrong doing inflicts suffering upon them alone.
Upon the salient points of the character generally assigned to old maids, we would offer a defence for them too. They are said to be addicted to scandal, and to nourish an unnatural sort of fondness for pug dogs, cats, and parrots. It does not, however, seem to us that the old maids monopolize the too prevalent taste for scandal. Wherever half-a-dozen women assemble round the teatable, or for that matter, wherever as many men draw their chairs round the same convivial board, whether they be married or single, their neighbours too generally form the subject of their discourse, and we are pretty sure to hear the history of the l&st faux pas, or the details of the latest rumours of their respective circles. This is a vice which does not belong exclusively or even mainly to old maids or old bachelors, it is a vice of ordinary society; and though the unmarried no doubt have their share of it, by virtue of their being mortal, the married are not in a position to throw stones at them upon that account. Indeed, and they say we should speak of people as we find them, the greater number of gossips of our acquaintance ore married folks, who having brought up a family and got their children “off their hands” feel a lack of occupation, and fill up their leisure by minding their neighbours’ business in order to make up for having but little of their own to attend to.
As to the love of quadrupeds and feathered biped; we make the satirists a present of that feature, and leave them to make the most of it, begging them to remember when they do use it, that if it be a failing, it is a very harmless one; and that the human heart, unless thoroughly careless and hardened, must have something “to love, and we had rather see it expending its affection upon dumb brutes and talking birds than not see it exercised at all. But there are other old maids who in our eyes would redeem ten thousand such foibles as these, and everybody, too, knows some of them; the old maiden aunts round whom the children cluster for picture-books and ginger-bread, who are looked for so anxiously by the nephews and nieces at festivals, and merry-makings, and holidays, who are so much themselves children at heart that they attract children wherever they go, and show
what fond mothers they would have been by the affection they lavish upon the offspring of others.
In short, we have a great respect for old maids, we think the world uses them very ill, and makes its illusage and neglect the pretext for ridicule and dislike; while they, although of course they have their faults, for the most part bear it with a patience and endurance which should win esteem, and often requite it with an affection and devotion to the wants and infirmities of others which entitle them to sympathy and admiration.
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The London Magazine, Or, Gentleman’s Monthly Intelligencer
1755 – Snippet view – More editions
The grave doctors of the faculty have been called in to feel the pulse of a lap-dog, and inspect the urine of a squirrel: Nay, I am myself … 491 a lawyer being converted into dotage on a parrot ; and have an old maiden aunt, who once languished for a beau, whose heart is … manner, a lady would take it as an affront to her own person, if you did not pay’ your addresses equally to her pug or her parroquet.
London Society – Volume 31 – Page 1
1877 – Read – More editions
A fairy godmother, in the unromantic form of amoneyed maiden aunt, came to the rescue, helped to start the two … an important change for the clergyman’s widow, for the heritB age included—not to dwell upon a most valuable pug-dog, one.
The Granta – Issues 35-58 – Page 187
1890 – Read – More editions
Maiden aunt falls over my foot warmer, which the grandmother has been usurping, and remarks she … of my baggage on two hansoms into which they hustle an old lady minus her pug dog and a commercial traveller minus his samples.
Watchers: A thriller of both heart-stopping terror and emotional power
Dean Koontz – 2012 – No preview – More editions
What readers are saying about Watchers: ‘This book is a tour de force! An utterly fantastic read with great plot and characterisation’ ‘A dazzling combination of suspense, horror, and romance’ ‘The best book I have ever read’
The ladies of Bever Hollow, by the author of ‘Mary Powell’. – Page 132
Anne Manning – 1858 – Read – More editions
And she read about the country squire’s maiden aunt, with he^r phthisicky pug-dog, her keys at her apron-string, and her cupboards full of cherry and raspberry brandy, seed-cake, washes for the complexion, and physics for the poor ; of ” the …
The Ladies of Bever Hollow: A Tale of English Country Life – Page 88
Anne Manning – 1860 – Read – More editions
And she read about the country squire’s maiden aunt, with her phthisicky pug-dog, her keys at her apron-string, and her cupboards full of cherry and raspberry brandy, seed-cake, washes for the complexion, and physics for the poor ; of ” the …
The Booklist and Subscription Books Bulletin – Volume 29 – Page 18
1933 – Snippet view – More editions
… was driven in his attempts to collect his inheritance—the fortune of an eccentric aunt who made her heir responsible for the lives of seven pug dogs. … 1887 to 1897 are recalled through the memory of a small boy visiting two maiden aunts.
Mrs. Overtheway’s Remembrances
Juliana Horatia Ewing – 1869 – Read – More editions
Eliza Cook’s Journal – Volume 3 – Page 404
Eliza Cook – 1850 – Read
They are said to be addicted to scandal, and to nourish an unnatural sort of fondness for pug dogs, cats, and parrots. … too, knows some of them ; the old maiden aunts round whom the children cluster for picture-books and ginger-bread, who …
The Duke’s Unexpected Bride
Lara Temple – 2017 – Preview – More editions
From country miss…to London duchess!
The Furniture Gazette – Page 86
1892 – Read – More editions
A writer in one of the how-to-tie-a-bow-on-a-pug-dog departments of a society journal assures us that in furnishing the … have to take note of the special characteristics of the lady of the house, and the knowledge of a maiden aunt about the …
Opportunity: Journal of Negro Life – Volumes 3-4 – Page 39
Charles Spurgeon Johnson, Elmer Anderson Carter – 1925 – Snippet view – More editions
He repeats the commonplaces not only about higher and lower races but about upper and lower classes, displaying all the fire and power in his literary style of an irritable maiden aunt whose pug dog has been kicked. He and his kind give lip …
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Lee tells us, to detect resemblances to it in Celia’s description of the cottage which she and Rosalind occupy in the Forest of Arden. The present occupant of the cottage is Mrs. Baker, “A Hathaway of the Hathaways.” Some of her predecessors were less careful of the old furniture which came down from Shakespeare’s time than she has been. It is said that her mother and her mother’s mother sold carved chairs, oak chests, rare ware and pewter with the Hathaway initials. Mrs. Baker would, it is believed, dispose of the remaining furniture for ¿£500, and it will be a great pity if the Shakespeare trustees cannot secure it and the cottage as well. Nearly every visitor to Stratford-on-Avon goes to Shottery. * » *
An Italian—Cristofori by name—invented the piano, and yet there are a few pianos only made in Italy; the bulk of the instruments used in that land come from Germany and France, and any offered must be of very cheap make. The Italians are not piano-playing people; they favor the stringed instruments of the violin school, and the hybrid mandoline – bandoline is used exclusively by the little Germans. The Spaniards use the mandoline and guitar, and a small number of pianos are sold in Spain. The largest piano factory in Spain is located in Barcelona, and they make pianos with German birdcage actions, turning
out about three to four a week.
* * *
A Writer in one of the how-to-tie-a-bow-on-a-pug-dog departments of a society journal assures us that in furnishing the home everything depends upon the woman in the case. He says that no matter how beautiful the furniture the lady of the house must lend the chief charm, and try as he will the furniture man will fail completely to give character to a house where the female element fails to assist. This will necessitate a change in the ordinary procedure of the trade. Instead of looking into the size and shape of the room we shall have to take note of the special characteristics of the lady of the house, and the knowledge of a maiden aunt about the place will be of more interest to us than that the general tone of the decorations is in this style and that color.
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A Singularly ingenious individual was presented at the Greenwich police-court recently. The occasion of his presentation was a specific charge of fraud brought against the gentleman by a furniture dealer, but it was alleged that for fifteen years he had been in the habit of taking furnished houses, living in them for a short time, and then decamping with the furniture. This is certainly a novel and possibly reprehensible way of making a living, but happily it is only the most talented of Jeremy Diddlers who could carry on the game for anything like this length of time.
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It is rather hard lines nowadays for a furniture dealer to lose money because one of his workmen is unable to read. In this latter end of the century we almost take it for granted that every grown-up man can at least read print. A cabinetmaker carrying on business in Curtain-road was summoned by one of his hands for a sum of 28s. as wages in lieu of notice. The complainant had only worked a week, and not having given satisfaction had been dismissed. He admitted that he had seen a notice posted up in various parts of the premises, but he was unable to read and did not know what it was about. As a matter of fact it stated that no notice was given. The case was given against the master, the court remarking that it was for the employer to make sure that the employed understood the terms on
which they were working.
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We are all familiar with the stories which hinge upon desks or cabinets bought at auction being found to contain fabulous sums of money. A rather amusing affair occurred at Redruth the other day which shows that treasure trove does exist in such places still. A certain Mr. Dower was defendant in an action for false imprisonment and judgment was given against him for ^35 in costs. As the result of the proceedings two bailiffs were sent to Dower’s house, but were unable to get in. Seeing a man selling baskets at a neighboring house they requested him to call on Mrs. Dower. He did so, and the bailiffs rushed into the dwelling,
much to Mrs. Dower’s indignation. They found that all the furniture had been removed with the exception of an old clothes chest, and were informed that defendant had left the country. Determined not to be foiled, however, the bailiffs opened the dilapidated chest, and found secreted therein ,£14 10s. in gold and a deposit note for ¿£378 from the Consolidated Bank of Cornwall. The plaintiff thus receives his damages and costs, despite the craftiness of the defendant.
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A Gentleman in New York, on whom the mantle of Mr. Barnum has fallen, has been exhibiting the bark cut from one of the gigantic Californian trees. The Washingtonia Gigantea in question was 96ft. in circumference, and the bark was stripped from it to the height of 20ft. and transported at great cost to New York. Here it was re-formed into the semblance of the tree trunk and set up for exhibition in a hall in Broadway. But much to his disgust it was too big for the New Yorkers. They would not believe that it was a tree. The exhibitor therefore sent back to California and cut a horizontal section about a foot thick from the tree and fitted it into the bark shell. All in vain, the cute Yankees still looked upon it as a humbug and it has been sold to some Englishman, so that we may possibly see it here in London. The exhibitor says: “If I found a mermaid with nine tails I would not exhibit it in New
York.” Why not? The Yankees might believe in it.
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As for the fallen tree they planed it down, built a roof over it, and used it for a bowling alley. There was a staircase of twenty-three steps up the side of this tree, near the large end, which reaches a little above the centre; then notches were cut in for the feet to walk on the top. To look off the butt down was like looking off the stern of the Great Eastern. There were about seventy of these monsters in the grove of about seventy acres, variously named the Twin Sisters, Father and Son, Mother of the Forest, Father of the Forest, etc., etc. The prostrate giant was the largest
in circumference, and hollow for seventy-two feet.
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The members of the furniture trade, especially those who do a large amount of business on the hire system, would do well to keep in their minds the fact that a Bill is now before the House of Commons which has for its object the amendment of the law of hire and conditional sale by
means of a system of registration.
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Should this Bill pass—and there is every likelihood at present that it will, for its object has the support of such well-known firms as Kemp and Stubbs, while the London Chamber of Commerce looks upon it with a very favorable eye — it is asserted that a heavy blow will be dealt at the hire system. The opponents of registration allege that if the exact state of a man’s indebtedness with his furniture dealer is to appear on a register which, like a bill of sale, can be inspected by anyone, there will be an end to all privacy and seclusion in one’s home. No man with any feeling of self-respect would submit to such an inquisition. The result, therefore,
must be plain to everyone.
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Ik a registration system were to become law the hire system would probably be put an end to, for not one person out of a thousand would consent to purchase goods under such mischievous conditions. The objectors to the present system of hire purchase say that the real reason why people do not want such purchase to be known is because they seek to obtain false credit. Surely this is not so in every case. Such an argument can only rebound on those who use it.
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Those persons who cry for registration know well that registration would exhaust the vital forces of the hire system. No one objects to registration in theory; it is the practical effects of registration that business men are afraid of. No doubt there are some large furniture dealers who believe that registration would work well and do good, but for all that the Hire Traders’ Protection Association have done well in calling attention to the blow which they believe will be struck at the hire system of this country should the proposed registration of agreements become law.
—and not only to think, but give us to understand—that we could not do without them, and shipped us any amount of rubbish. Carved mahogany goods for the drawing-room are still selling as well as ever, although marqueterie goods are again being somewhat extensively asked for, and many of the large houses are bringing these goods to the front again, a fine show of which is to be seen at present in Messrs. Maple and Co.’s windows. Good reproductions of Sheraton small tables and cabinets will soon find a purchaser, and not remain long on hand. It is very amusing to see some of the abortions that are dubbed Louis XIV. and XV. Jobs of all shapes and ornamented in all manners are hawked about by the shoddy men and German Jews, bought in by the insignificant retailers, and sold to certain portions of the public as good examples of the prevailing styles, doing much injury to the better class houses and to the trade generally. Genuine French goods of pure
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for the month of considerably over ,£4,000,000. For the four months the imports are returned at ,£145,014,191, which, compared with the corresponding period of last year, shows an increase of nearly ,£4,000,000. The exports for the month of April reach a total of .£17,865,876, showing a decline of over ,£3,000,000 as compared with the return of ,£20,919,066 for April, 1891. For the four months ending April 30th the gross exports, valued at a little over ,£76,000,000, show the enormous decrease of nearly ,£7,000,000 as compared with the corresponding period in the year 1891. A decrease of ,£722,000 for the month and of ,£1,381,000 for the four months, we notice, is observable in articles of general manufacture. With reference to the reduction in exports the large decrease of ,£1,000,000 in the shipment of yarns and textile fabrics during the month, and of nearly ,£2,000,000 during the four months ending April 30th, accounts for a great part of the reduction recorded. The returns for the furniture, cabinet, and upholstery wares have again declined; the figures are ,£36,567, the lowest returns of any month this year, and over ,£6,000 less than the corresponding month in 1891. The returns in this department are gradually getting worse.
individuals or found their way abroad, and it is with feelings of great satisfaction we find that the well-known memorials at Walmer Castle of Mr. Pitt and the Duke of Wellington have been prevented from meeting with a similar fate. These relics were in no way secured to the castle, but became by sale and purchase the private property of the Lord Warden for the time being, it being optional to him to keep or dispose of them as he thought best. When Lord Palmerston became Lord Warden, he hesitated to take over from the representatives of his predecessor the furniture and effects of the castle at the usual valuation ; consequently a sale was contemplated, but fortunately in the end this was averted. The threatened sale, however, had one good effect. The Duke of Wellington of the day could not bear the idea that the furniture of his father’s room in the castle, which up to that time had remained as left at the time of the death of the great general, should be sold by auction, and he obtained leave from Lord Dalhousie’s representatives to remove it to Apsley House, where it has since remained, the original campbed in which the Duke regularly slept at Walmer, the chair in which he died, the campaigning chair, and several other
Royal Academy Pictures: Rough Sketch From Mr. R. S. Wornum’s Drawing (no. 1704).
February is the best month we have had this year, and then only a total of .£45,757 was recorded. For the four months a decrease of over ,£18,000 is shown in comparison with last year, and a decrease of nearly ,£46,000 as compared with the same period of 1890. Considerable progress has been made with the building for the South African and International Exhibition to be held at Kimberley in September next. The site is in the public gardens, one of the two large cricket grounds being entirely given up to the building and its surroundings. Great facilities are given by the laying down of a special siding on the railway which skirts the outside of the gardens, by means of which exhibits can be deposited at the very doors of the building. This exhibition will be the largest undertaking of the kind ever set on foot in South Africa. Kimberley occupying so central a position, it is approachable almost equally well from every South African centre. By the. time the exhibition is open it is hoped that the trains will be running almost, if not quite, into Johannesburg. This exhibition should do a great deal towards stimulating our trade with South Africa, and no doubt several of the large English houses that intend sending out exhibits have that end in view.
Gradually, one by one, many great and valuable historical relics that should have been secured to the nation for the nation’s benefit have been purloined by private
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which had been used by both Mr. Pitt and the Duke yet remained, and during Lord Granville’s term of office other pieces, which had become estranged, were returned and restored to the castle. The late Mr. W. H. Smith, finding it in his power to do so, intended to make all such furniture as could be authentically proved to have belonged to Mr. Pitt and the Duke heirlooms to the Lord Warden for the time being. Death prevented him from fulfilling his promise, but his son, Mr. W. F. D. Smith, M.P., with the approval of the Queen—for Walmer is a Royal castle—and with the concurrence of the Premier and of the Marquis of Dufferin and Ava, the present Lord Warden, has now carried out his father’s wishes. But to complete the gift a generous action was done by the present Duke of Wellington, who, on learning Mr. Smith’s intentions, at once offered to restore to the castle the campbed, chairs, and other articles above mentioned, on condition that they should be replaced in the old Duke’s room, and be included in the heirlooms to the Lord Warden inalienable from WalmerCastle. This offer was at once gratefully accepted. Altogether aboutseventy pieces of furniture and nearly fifty pictures, engravings, etc., known to have belonged either to Mr. Pitt or the Duke, have been scheduled. The sale of the Brixton Bon Marché as a going concern is a notable event of the past month worth recording. It was known almost from the first that an offer had been received from Harrod’s Stores Company, Limited, and it was thought they would purchase the concern at any cost ; but they were outbid by another party, who eventually became the
purchasers. It was bought by Mr. Edwin Jones (late senior partner in the firm of Jones and Higgins, Peckham), on behalf of a syndicate. The price given for the whole— freehold premises, stock, book debts, leases, etc.—was .£72,000. The premises, we are informed, including furniture and fittings, cost ^84,000, but they are saddled with a mortgage of ,£25,000. Other offers were received, but the syndicate and Harrod’s Stores were the only ones any way near the figure. The sale was conducted by the trustee, Mr. P. Mason, 30, King-street, Cheapside, who deserves great praise for the manner in which it was carried out. We give this month a design for an inexpensive sideboard, to be made either in 4ft. 6in. or 5ft. This sketch should be found useful at a time when the cry is for something fresh in this way. It will make a neat and effective
job, and can be produced at a moderate price. Carving that is repeatedly plastered all over these small ;obs in this instance is conspicuous by its absence, and no effect is lost thereby.
Л meriean Decoration and Designs,
Our excellent American contemporary, The Decorator and Furnisher, refers in severe and somewhat sarcastic terms to the way in which Americans fall back on French inspirations for their ideas. 4 he journal states that any decorator and furnisher of experience could not fail to notice this fact
upon examining the specimens of furniture on view at the leading stores. Although a large quantity of Sheraton, Chippendale, and Adam goods are stocked, these are not of pure representation, but chiefly diluted reproductions in the French style. While the turning out of work of this kind is undoubtedly profitable to manufacturers, the lack of inventive and artistic ability on the part of American designers is much to be marvelled at. The Americans, speaking, of course, of the monied classes, appear to tolerate old conceptions in the French style, and to allow no other style to grace their mansions. In other words, they seem to have thoroughly got hold of the idea that Parisian representation is the only refined and highclass decoration recognised by cultivated minds. This is, of course, one of the Yankee’s most laughable blunders. The Decorator and Furnisher suggests that if they will have ancient reproductions they could,
with far better taste, appropriate the styles of the Italian Renaissance, which would be a refined deviance from the hackneyed copyism of the stereotyped French styles. The Italian Renaissance does not altogether fetter originality, and this unrestricted freedom in the work of the old Italian masters should encourage the designer to introduce some of his own ideas in the work and surroundings as far as possible. He has not this chance in any of the French styles. If he once departs from their hard and fast lines and ornaments his design must necessarily be looked upon as bastard in character. The Renaissance is capable of much diversity and originality of treatment, but while the designer can exercise his fancy to a larger extent he must not lose sight of the various phases which have marked, and still mark, the many epochs of this style.
Design For A China Cauinet In Louis XV. Style.
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Tfeumb .Nail Sketches from the Royal Jleademy.
Numerous and various as are the reports respecting the pictures on view this year, we ourselves must certainly say we are disappointed. On arriving at Burlington House we made our way direct to the “Architectural Room” where we expected to find the drawings in which we were mostly interested, but this year drawings most interesting to members of the Furniture Trade are conspicuous by their absence. Many well-known contributors, whose drawings in past years have been most ingenious and fresh, are this year unrepresented, no doubt one of the reasons being the half-hearted attention that is given by the authorities to this particular room. As a matter of fact there are only about half a dozen exhibits this year that apply directly to our particular branch. Some pencil drawings of interiors are shown, but we certainly fail to see where theirespecial merit lies, especially one or two that have fairly good positions given to them, whilst some other drawings that are far above them in execution and design arealso far above them in hanging, so much so that unless one happened to be specially interested like ourselves they would pass altogether unnoticed.
No. 1682 is a clever little drawing in the Elizabethan style by J. Armstrong Stem house (described in the catalogue asa drawing-room, we think this is a missprint and
should read dining-room); this is a small drawing in color, and the effect of light and shade and the minute detail depicted show this artist has a thorough grip of his work. There are few color drawings in this room worthy of special mention, but this is one of them, and we are only sorry that 1682 was the only drawing shown by this artist. No. 1704 is a drawing of the side of a dining-room at St. Sebastian, Spain, by R. Selden Wornum, showing the mantelpiece and panelling, together with table, chair, and chest. The method of color in this drawing is certainly very bold and the effect is good, but going into details this drawing will not bear; one thing we fail to understand is, why part is shown in perspective when it is supposed to be an elevation drawing.
No. 1621, the drawing-room, “Warialda,” Eastbourne, by Louis Ambler, is an ink-toned drawing. How this
picture (?) came to be hung we are at a loss to understand; the only good points in it that we could see were the ceiling and the decoration above the fireplace recess. In this drawing our readers will recognise the well-known “gipsy 71 table and an overmantel that is hawked about the East End by the dozen. No. 1629, “Interior of Hall, Hewell Grange,” by Thomas Garner, is one of the largest water-color drawings in the room, showing an extensive hall with a tremendous flat panelled oak ceiling. This is a very rich and clever piece of work, but in consequence of the variety of colors introduced in the woodwork, marble columns, and tapestry, or, one may say, carpet hangin;s, the coloring seems overdone and the effect somewhat gaudy. If the idea conveyed by this drawing is correct, “Hewell Grange”
entrance hall must be of extraordinary dimensions. To our mind the drawing suggests the entrance hall to some magnificent institution or Continental hotel.
No. 1762, drawing of hall and principal staircase of 191, Queen’s Gate, by F. G. Knight, is one of the best drawings, and shows considerable ability. No. 1731 is a drawing in colors (a variety of blues) of a Turkish bath, by W. Cutler, for Colonel North, at Avery Hill. If this piece of work has been carried out in manner and color as shown in the drawing it is a most splendid piece of work, and such as only a millionaire can afford. No. 1721, diningroom and library for W. S. Salting, Esq., by Messrs. Ernest George and Peto, is a most cleverly – executed drawing in ink and sepia, after Francois I. No. 1703 is interior of a library in London, by George Aitchison, A.R.A. In this drawing we fail to see anything
special either in design or color, and should think the job looked extremely cumbersome and bare. Some very clever drawings by Raffles Davison are to be seen. No. 1630, “The Mount,” near Wolverhampton, by Messrs. Grayson and Ould, is one of his best, showing hall interior. Some very effective nooks and staircase openings will be found in this drawing, but we must certainly disagree with Mr. Davison as to his rendering of the wicker easy-chair in this drawing, or, if correct (P), we fail to see its utility, unless to a person standing some seven or eight feet in height. Nos. 1680, 1619, and 1845 are also drawings by Raffles Davison that will be found interesting to our readers. Being pressed for time only a casual glance was given to other rooms, but we noticed many pieces of furniture amongst the oil paintings that cannot fail to interest those on the look out for same.
Royal Academy Pictures: Rough Sketch From Messrs. Grayson And Ould’s Drawing (no. 1630).