– A ROMANTIC INCIDENT.
In the summer of 1819, while on a strolling excursion through Perthshire, I chanced one day to ramble to the top of a considerable eminence, from which I beheld one of the most charming scenes that had ever met my eye in the course of my wanderings. Directly before me lay a small vale, or rather a portion of a vale, finely cultivated, and plentifully besprinkled with trees. A large mountain stream winded along the centre of the dale; and from the vantage ground I occupied, its waters were visible here and there, glistening in the sun. The day was remarkably fine, and accordingly the scene presented every sight and sound of busy rural life, appropriate to the season. The object, however, which attracted my attention most particularly, was a mansion-house, in which, as I concluded, the proprietor of the vale resided. Chance had led me to the very spot from which I could view this seat most favourably. An avenue of fine old trees ran exactly parallel with the line of vision, and disclosed at its farther end an irregular house, of no great size, and evidently of ancient architecture, but contrasting most pleasingly with the green earth ald dark foliage around. Behind the mansion at some distance rose the height which formed part of the opposite boundary of the vale; and this being covered with thick pine-wood, heightened greatly the fine effect of the antique walls. Every point of this prospect seemed to my eye perfect, and all was distinctly visible, as the vale could not be much more than a mile in breadth.
Pleasure being then my only business, I resolved to walk down from the heathy ridge, and examine more closely, if practicable, the beauties of this Arcadian spot. Seeing a small porter’s-lodge-looking tenement near the foot of the avenue, I made my way towards it; and being unchallenged in my conversion of parks into paths, I soon reached it. A porter’s lodge it turned out to be, and my knock at the gate brought out a tidy young matron, who, in answer to my question, told me the name of the mansion and of its proprietor. The reader, for certain reasons, must permit me to call the former Glendale, and its master Mr Grant. After an apparently satisfactory glance at my attire, the porteress further informed me, to my great gratification, that Mr Grant permitted any gentleman to view his pleasure-grounds and dwelling. Thus licensed, I entered immediately, and commenced a leisurely walk up the fine old-fashioned avenue.
It is unnecessary to detail to the reader how many natural beauties, and tasteful supplements of art, I observed on closer inspection of Glendale. Suffice it to say, that in this instance distance had lent no false enchantment to the scene. Pleased with all I saw, I was about to depart by the road I came, when near the head of the avenue I was met by a gentleman and lady, with a little girl of three or four years old walking between them. They passed me very closely, and gave me an opportunity of observing fully their appearance, as far, at least, as decorum would permit. The gentleman had a manly, handsome figure, and seemed about forty years of age. But the lady cannot be described in such tame language. She was strikingly beautiful in face, and in person faultlessly elegant. That grace which perfect symmetry only can impart, and which is discernible at a glance, betrayed itself in every movement of her form. Even without the countenance of the pretty little child to act as an index, I should have surmised at once that the parties were husband and wife. They had scarcely passed me when another pair came into view, a gentleman and lady also. They were walking arm-and-arm, and in close converse. As they approached, I observed in the lady a most remarkable resemblance to the one who had already passed me. The second was indeed a little younger, and less matured in form, but in other respects was an exact counterpart of the first, possessing the same beauty of features and elegance of person.
What I have taken so much time to describe, I was not a moment in gathering. But rapidly as these personages flitted before my eyes, they did not soon depart from my mind. The beautiful countenances of the two ladies—sisters evidently— haunted my mind’s eye; and being somewhat given to romantic, or, as my friends are occasionally rude enough to term them, absurd speculations, I was occupied all the way back to the village inn, with fancies respecting the situations of the parties I had seen. The first pair, I had determined, were Mr Grant of Glendale and his lady, and the other pair were most certainly lovers. For what reason had they lingered behind but to enjoy their sweet love-converse 2 The thing was plain and undeniable. At the inn, to which I got back about the hour of dinner, I found that a respectable member of the commercial body, a traveller from Leeds, was to be the companion of my meal. Down we sat to table, the traveller’s mind too much engrossed with the important business of the moment, and mine ruminating too deeply on the Arcady of my thoughts, Glendale, to talk any more than was necessary to each other. The great matter, however, was at last got over, and speech became almost indispensable. The reader, knowing the peculiar direction of my thoughts, may easily guess how much I was surprised with the turn our conAversation took at the very first. I asked the traveller § listlessly, and scarcely, indeed, heeding what I uttered, “If he had ever seen Glendale 2″ “No, sir,” was his reply; “I have never seen Mr Grant’s property; but I know some curious matters regarding him and his family.” “Indeed!” exclaimed I, in astonishment. “You are amazed,” said my companion, with a smile, “at the idea that a Leeds traveller should know any thing of a Perthshire gentleman’s affairs. But that is easily explained. You shall hear, if you please, a story, nnd a romantic one too, about Glendale and its inhabitants.” It is impossible to tell how interesting a person the traveller became in my eyes by these words. A story ! and that a romantic one, about the paragons I had seen The thought was delightful. “Several years ago,” said my communicative acquaintance, “there resided in a small town to the west of Glasgow, a worthy man of the name of Penman. He was in business as a cloth-merchant, and by prudence and industry had earned a high character, and maintained his family in comfort. Two daughters and their mother constituted Mr Penman’s little household. One of the merchant’s greatest anxieties was to educate his daughters well; and as far as common and elementary instruction was concerned, this he was easily enabled to effect. But those higher intellectual accomplishments, which mark the refined portion of the sex, it was above his means to procure for them. Under these circumstances, when his eldest girl reached the age of seventeen, he resolved to take advantage of an invitation that had been frequently made to him from his two maiden sisters, who wished one of his daughters to come and reside with them. These ladies kept a highly respectable boarding-school in Perth, and it was only because the affectionate parents could not bear to send their children so great a distance away, that the opportunity had not been made use of before. Now, however, Mr and Mrs Penman saw that they should neglect their duty, did they not take advantage of the offers of their relations. Every thing was prepared for the departure of the eldest girl, Mary; and after taking farewell of her parents, she entered the stage-coach for Glasgow, whence she was to proceed immediately to Perth. On reaching Glasgow, where she had frequently been before, Miss Penman took the opportunity of the hour that intervened before the departure of the Perth stage, to make some purchases. While passing along the street, she became the unconscious object of observation to a young gentleman, walking in the same direction. Mary was both beautiful and handsome, more so, the gentleman thought, than any woman he had ever before seen. He followed her footsteps on the street; and when she entered a shop for the purpose we have mentioned, he walked into it also, and, as an excuse, made purchase of a pair of gloves. He had thus the gratification of standing for a moment by Miss Penman’s side; but before he had received his change from the shopman, she had concluded her bargain and left the place. On issuing to the street, all the anxious glances which the gentleman sent in every direction, in search of the form and face which had fascinated him so much, were in vain. The place was the Trongate, and Miss Penman had stept into the Perth coach, which was standing, ready to start, only a few paces from the shop she had entered. So that, whilst her admirer of the moment was parading the street fruitlessly, she was whirled rapidly on her way to a distant city. Two years passed away, and the gentleman, among many beauties who fell under his observation, never saw one who was able to drive from his memory the image of the fair unknown. Her he had looked for in all societies, in all the haunts of the fair and gay, to no purpose. At the expiry of these two years, he chanced again to be in Glasgow; and in passing one day along the streets, he again saw, to his great delight, the features and the form which had formerly impressed his mind so deeply. Determined not to lose sight of the lady as he had done before, he followed closely in her footsteps, and saw her direct her course once more towards the Trongate. No shop, however, was entered on this occasion. The lady, passing up before her admirer’s eyes to the coach-stand, entered the Perth coach, which was preparing to start, and in a few minutes was driven, with her chance compamions, out of sight.
“So 1′ cried the gentleman to himself, “here is some clue ! But how uncertain a one ! since I know neither name nor anything else about this apparition which has a second time dazzled me !” It chanced, however, that the gentleman belonged himself to Perthshire; and therefore, as soon as he could conclude his business in Glasgow, he posted home, in the hope that, by diligent personal search in the old city of St Johnstoun, he might fall in with his nameless mistress. This gentleman was no other than Mr Grant of Glendale, whose property you have mentioned to-day. Every day for many weeks, after returning to Glendale, did Mr Grant ride into Perth, and, on horseback or on foot, wander up and down the streets. The second glimpse of the young lady had revived the original impression with increased force. All was in vain for a time; his eye never lighted on the face it sought. At last, while standing, on one of these visits, in a bookseller’s shop, the individual he was in quest of came in, and inquired for a book. Mr Grant’s heart beat quickly while the object of his admiration stood beside him; and the instant she left the place, he inquired of the bookseller if he knew her. The reply was, “Perfectly well. She is the niece of two respectable ladies, who conduct a boarding-school close at hand.” “Are you upon visiting terms with these ladies 2″ asked Mr Grant, almost incapable of concealing his agitation. ‘ I am, sir, replied the bookseller; “they visit my family frequently.” “I am most anxious,” said Mr Grant, “to meet these ladies. Would you oblige me by inviting them on an i. day, and including me in the party ” The bookseller, proud of such an honour from a man of Mr Grant’s station, assented readily, and fixed the party for the following day. It is a curious circumstance, that the young lady whom Mr Grant thus tracked out, and identified in his own mind with the lady he had seen in Glasgow two years before, was really not the same person—not Mary Penman. She was Miss Penman’s sister, however, and bore a striking resemblance to her. Mr Grant, on seeing them together at the bookseller’s party, discovered his mistake at once; and, though grateful for the similarity which had been so strangely serviceable to him, he almost wondered how any form or face could supply the place in his eye of that which had first charmed him. Throughout the evening he attached himself closely to Mary, and was delighted to find her mind in every respect equal to her personal advantages. It is unnecessary now to linger over the story. A short time after this meeting, the aunts of Miss Penman received Mr Grant with pleasure as their niece’s avowed suitor, his character being as honourable and excellent as his circumstances were above their highest expectations. The consent of the parents was in such a case easily obtained, and Mr Grant and Miss Penman were married within a few months after their meeting in Perth. The marriage,” said the traveller to me, in conclusion, “has been, I understand, an exceedingly happy one. Many a time have I heard these circumstances which I have now related, from old Mr Penman, whom I always call upon, though he has now retired from the business which first led to our acquaintance.” “And the second daughter, sir, what has become of her ?” “She now resides with her sister, and is, it is said, about to be married to a younger brother of Mr Grant, an officer in the army.” So, reader, after all, my speculations were neither romantic nor absurd ; that is to say, not absurd at all, and not too romantic to be natural or true. In fact, it turns out that there is much more romance about Glendale than I had imagined. The true sometimes goes beyond the fanciful, and is often the most untrue in appearance, as must be well known to many, even from their own experience of the affairs of daily life.
THE BLACKSMITii’S BOTTLE. A BLAcks Mith, in extensive business, had a bottle that held exactly a pint, and in the large village where he resided, it was soon known in its various trips to the stores as an exact guage for that quantity, and on its appearance for replenishing, was filled without recourse to the measure. This bottle became celebrated. Eighteen years it performed the drudgery of being the medium of conveying the ruinous beverage to the owner and his workmen. During this long course of service, the shop in which it was so conspicuous an appendage, was three several times consumed by fire, but each time the bottle was found among the ruins uninjured. Phoenix-like it rose, and was taken again into active service. It was kept in motion like a weaver’s shuttle; and such zealous devotees, at the bacchanalian altar, were its possessors, that it has been known to convey Fount EEN shi LLINGs worth of the poison IN A sing LE DAY to the occupants of the shop. The bottle has survived its owner, who has recently passed into the grave at the age of sixty, a veteran toper; although he originally possessed a constitution, that, under different habits, promised to carry him to the period attained by Inany a temperate pilgrim, that of eighty years or more : and instead of competence to his survivors, has left the little bottle, emptied of its contents, as their only legacy. This veteran bottle has been the medium of conveying more wealth from its owner and his workmen, than would have sufficed to purchase the most extensive and valuable farm the country can boast of. As well might the occupants of the shop have heaped up coals on their forge, and put their utmost exertions in exercise
-upon their bellows to put out the fire, as to undertake to quench alcoholic thirst with ardent spirits. The more frequent the recurrence to the little bottle for supplies, the more powerful is the desire to embrace it again and again; and the more frequent the embrace, the greater and more certain the necessity of return.
Are there not many more little bottles that are con. veying the wealth, by daily, small, certain, and sure steps, out of the possession of the owners, and pouring into their systems a tide of ruin which will never cease to flow, and which will finally overwhelm them in a destruction that has eternity for its duration ?
[The above is from the Irish Temperance and Literary Gazette, a cheap newspaper, recently established in Dublin for the promotion of temperance among all classes of the people. Publications of this description, in general, commit the serious error of attacking the practice of drinking spirituous fluids too broadly and coarsely—we should almost say, ill-naturedly. This does no good. Drunkards are a species of lunatics—their craving for liquor is a kind of mental dcrangement; they should therefore be treated precisely as madmen; gently, and with a humane consideration of their infirmities. We hope this useful miscellany will not fall into the same blunder.]
T H E FUR TRADE.
OUR readers are most probably aware, that the furs with which the British and European markets are supplied, are chiefly brought from North America. When Canada was a province of France, the colonists of that nation carried on an extensive and lucrative fur trade, and the British, eager to participate in so advantageous a traffic, established, so early as the year 1670, a company, termed the Hudson’s Bay Company, which exists under the same name till the present day, and has always possessed a large share of the traffic. Numerous other companies have sprung up from time to time with the same views; of which the NorthWest, the North American, and the Columbian Companies, have been the most important and successful. In all these establishments, the natives of America are the principal collectors of the furs, which they barter for arms, and such other commodities as civilised nations can alone manufacture. It would be useless to enter into the particular history of these several companies. Only two, indeed, properly speaking, now exist; the Hudson’s Bay Company having been of late years incorporated with the North-West one. The shareholders of this establishment are almost all of them British merchants, resident in London. With respect to the other companies, the North American was composed of a body of New York merchants, and the Columbian likewise was supported by the inhabitants of the United States. The latter of these companies confined its operations to the Mississippi and St Peter’s River, while the American company held possession of the trade on the Upper Mississippi, Missouri, and the great lakes. After existing separately for many years, these establishnemts were united, and still continue so. The Hudson’s Bay Company, again, as its name implies, trades in the more northern regions of the new world, occupying with its numerous branches and stations, the whole range of country between the lakes and the arctic
sea. Private adventurers, and smaller firms, are to
be found, besides, engaged in many quarters in the fur trade, but it can only be carried on efficiently by an enlarged combination both of men and capital. It is from this cause, rather than from privileges and charters, that the large companies have always enjoyed a monopoly, which smaller associations, rising now and then, could never disturb. Lord Selkirk and Sir Alexander Mackenzie have both left full descriptions, from personal observation, of the manner in which the details of fur-dealing are conducted ; and though some time has elapsed since these accounts were written, the plan of operations continues unchanged till the present hour. During Sir Alexander’s connection with the trade in Canada, the North-West Company were in the habit of penetrating to the great distance of four thousand miles to the westward of Montreal. In the service of the establishment were fifty clerks, seventy-one interpreters, and one thousand one hundred and twenty canoe men. A great number of these individuals were Indians, or halfbreeds, and their wives and children, who generally accompany the expeditions, amounted to about seven hundred persons. This great body of people embarked every spring, in different divisions, in slight canoes of bark, upon rivers newly freed from the ice, and coursed along them, encountering at every step difficulties and dangers, from rocks, rapids, and other natural obstacles. The slender boats were always heavily laden with provisions for the party, and goods of various kinds, particularly arms and clothing, to exchange for the furs. On reaching Lake Superior, where the company had their chief winter stations, the expedition met parties who had spent the winter there, engaged in collecting the furs, and two months were spent in the settlement of debts and other affairs. The furs were then packed in August, and embarked in a portion of the canoes for Montreal: while the remainder proceeded, with the articles necessary for the traffic, to different posts in the Indian country, there to remain in log-huts for the winter, and collect a fresh stock of skins. Sir Alexander Mackenzie spent many years of his life in this employment, and made those discoveries respecting the geography of the regions to the north-west of the lakes, which revived the prospect of a north-west passage. The annual quantity of skins collected by the North
West Fur Company, during Sir Alexander’s connection with it, is stated by him as follows:–Skins of the beaver, 106,000; the bear, 2100; the fox, 5500; the otter, 4600 ; the musgreash, 17,000 ; the marten, 32,000; the mink, 1800; the lynx, 6000; the wolverine, 600; the fisher, 1650; the racoon, 100; the wolf, 3800; the elk, 700; the deer, 1950. All these skins are brought to Britain, before being sent, either in a dressed or undressed condition, to the continental market. The purposes to which the different kinds of skins are put are exceedingly various, only a few of them being actually used as furs in clothing. Beaverskins, for example, are in this country devoted nowa-days almost entirely to the manufacture of hats. One portion, besides, of an animal’s fur, is applied to purposes which the remainder is inapplicable to ; and hence, in order to distinguish these different parts of the same animal’s skin, new names are often bestowed on them. Thus the furs best known and most valued in this country, are ermine, lynx, sable, fitch, American squirrel, chinchella, and silver bear, some of which are derived from animals mentioned in Sir Alexander Mackenzie’s list, while others are from animals which do not appear to have been then in use in the trade. Of all these furs, ermine is the finest, and one of the most expensive. A skin, purely white in the body, and black at the end of the tail, is considered as of the best quality. Many attempts, of course, are made to imitate ermine, by dyeing inferior skins. Fitch, sable, and lynx, are the most durable of furs, and bear a high o: The squirrel and chinchella furs are exceedingly elegant, but do not last very long. They are of a greyish tint. Fine bear-skins are of great value in the fur trade, and are manufactured into articles of much beauty as well as durability. It ought to be mentioned, that the fur companies trade extensively in buffalo-skins, though no furs are derived from any animal of that class. An immense number of animals of other kinds are also frequently killed in the arctic regions, the bodies of which serve as food to the hunting parties. A party of eighty men killed and consumed, in one winter, ninety thousand white partridges, and twenty-five thousand hares. The friths and shores of Hudson’s Bay are stocked with the grampus, seal, narwal, sea-horse, and other creatures, of which many hundreds are killed annually, and their skins, particularly those of the seal tribe, added to the general store. We may state here the account given by Mackenzie of the time occupied in the fur trade, before the neces..i. exchanges are completed, and the skins brought to London. Though the years alluded to are in the last century, the system pursued at present is, as we have already mentioned, in every respect the same:— The orders for goods are sent to Britain, 25th October 1796.-The goods arrive in Montreal, June 1797. —They are made up in the course of the summer and winter, and are sent from Montreal, May 1798, to the Indian country, and are exchanged for furs which come to Montreal, September 1798. — The furs are then to. and shipped for London, where they arrive in ay or June 1799. It is scarcely necessary to say, that, as this system goes on continually, there is an annual supply of furs in the British market. Our readers, perhaps, may be anxious to know something more respecting the consequences of this trade to the natives, or Indians, as they are termed, of the northern regions of America. They are the principal hunters of the animals whose skins are used, though those servants of the fur companies, who spend the winter in remote log-stations, are continually end likewise in this pursuit. Next to guns, hatchets, nives, powder, and other hunting implements, the articles coveted by the Indians are coarse blue and red cloth, and fine scarlet, coarse cottons, hoes, beads, vermilion, ribbons, kettles, &c. The course of a private trader to the North-West is thus given in the American Encyclopaedia (Article Fur Trade), and we fear that the remarks made regarding the effects of the intercourse on the natives are but too true :—“The trader starts from Michillimackinac, or St Louis, late in the summer, with a Mackinac boat, laden with goods. He takes with him an interpreter, commonly a half-breed, and four or five engagées (boatmen or servants). On his arrival at his wintering ground, his men build a store for the goods, an apartment for him, and another for themselves. These buildings are of rough logs, . plastered with mud, and roofed with ash or linden slabs. The chimneys are of clay; and though these habitations are rude in appearanee, there is much comfort in them. This done, the trader gives a great portion of his merchandise to the Indians on credit. These credits are from twenty to two hundred dollars in amount, according to the reputation of the applicant as a hunter. It is expected that the debtor will pay in the following spring, though, as many neglect this part of the business, the trader is compelled to rate his goods very high. Thus the honest pay for the dishonest. The skins are dried with care, being occasionally exposed to the sun, and rubbed with salt and alum, to keep the hair attached. This is partly done by the natives, and partly by the purchasers. Ardent spirits were never much used among the remote tribes. It is on the frontier, and in the immediate vicinity of the white settlers, that the Indians get enough to do them Physical injury, though in the interior the traders, in the heat of opposition, employ strong liquors to induce the savages to commit outrage, or to defraud their
creditors. By this means the moral principle of the aborigines is overcome, and often eradicated. Spirit is commonly introduced into their country in the form of high wines, they being less bulky, and easier of transportation, than liquors of lower proof. Indians, after having once tasted, become extravagantly fond of them, and will make any sacrifice, or commit any crime, to obtain them. An interpreter is necessary to a fur trader, whether he speaks the language of the tribe with which he deals, or not. It is the duty of an interpreter to take charge of the house, and carry on the business in the absence of the principal. He also visits the camps, and watches the debtors. In the prairie regions, dog-sledges are used for the transportation of skins and goods in winter. The sledge is merely a flat board turned up in front like the runner of a sleigh. The dogs are harnessed and driven tandem, and their strength and powers of endurance are very great.” The same writer goes on to remark, “The fur trade demoralises all engaged in it. The way in which it operates on the Indians has been already partially explained. As to the traders, they are, generally, ignorant men, in whose breasts interest overcomes religion and morals. As they are beyond the reach of the law (at least in the remote regions), they disregard it, and often commit or instigate actions which they would blush to avow in civilised society. In consequence of the fur trade, the buffalo has receded hundreds of miles beyond his former haunts. Formerly an Indian killed a buffalo, made garments of the skin, and fed on the flesh Now he finds that a blanket is lighter and more convenient than a buffalo robe, and kills two or three animals with whose skins he may purchase it. To procure a gun, he must kill ten. The same causes operate to destroy the other animals. Some few tribes hunt on the different parts of their grounds alternately, and so preserve the game, but § far the greater part of the aborigines have no suc regulations.” Regarding the evils of competition in the fur trade, Lord Selkirk relates many circumstances strongly corroborative of the observations just quoted. When the North-West …} was threatened with the competition of a new establishment, the murder of a gentleman belonging to the latter was actually traced to the instigation of the European or white servants of the old firm. Competition, however, has now in a great measure ceased, and it is to be hoped that the evils referable to it have died with it. The American Company and the Hudson’s Bay Company have the trade now in a great measure to themselves, and their business lies in quarters so far asunder, that their rivalry can produce no mischief. The animals which supply the furs used in the civilised world, are certainly becoming every year more scarce. The plan followed by some of the native tribes of hunting in different grounds every season, is the only one, if it could be followed, capable of preserving a supply. Private trading would be a great obstacle to this, were there no other.
THE EDUCATION OF A GENTI,EMAN.
THE undue preference long given to Greek and Roman literature in education, is rapidly declining, and in this we recognise the indisputable progress of reason. From time to time, however, attempts are made by the patrons of these studies to maintain their importance; and among the numerous fallacies by which they are defended, one of the latest has been the argument that Greek and Roman literature constitutes the true education of a gentleman. It is said that the ancient classics not only improve the memory, expand the intellect, and sharpen the judgment, but that they communicate to the mind that nameless grace—that sympathy with all that is delicate and exalted—that high-toned dignity and vigour, which must be acquired by all those individuals of humble parentage, who, by the exercise of their talents and their virtues, aspire to obtain an exalted station. Seminaries for Greek and Latin, therefore, it is said, ought to be supported as the places in which embryo gentlemen may meet and associate with embryo gentlemen, while their minds are yet delicate and their manners uncontaminated, that they may preserve their quality pure. They ought to be maintained also, it is added, by parents in the middle ranks, whose breasts are fired by a laudable ambition of promoting the rise of their children in the world ; because in such schools only can they obtain access to those examples of noble bearing, and realise that refinement, tact, and mental delicacy, which they must possess before they can reach the summit of social honour. This argument is a grand appeal to the vanity and the ignorance of those to whom it is addressed. We yield to no class of educationists in our estimate of the value of acuteness and vigour of mind, combined with taste, delicacy, and refinement of manners; but we differ widely from the patrons of ancient literature in our estimate of the best means of imbuing the youthful mind with these qualities. We regard the qualities themselves as the results of two causes—First, the decided ascendancy of the moral feelings over the lower passions of our nature; and, secondly, the vigorous activity of a well-trained and truly enlightened intellect. The basis of all real refinement lies in pure and generous affections, just and upright sentiments; with
Fa lively sensibility to the intrinsic excellence of beauty and grace, both physical and mental, wherever these exist. Now, we humbly, yet confidently, maintain, that the pages of classic literature are not those in which these dispositions are presented in their strongest colours and most inviting forms to youthful minds, or in a way calculated to engage their sympathies, captivate their imaginations, or subdue their understandings in their favour. On the contrary, many ancient works are remarkable for the o: of their subjects—veiled only occasionally by brilliancy of fancy and playfulness of wit, and thereby rendered more deleterious and seductive to the youthful mind ; for the base selfishness of their heroes ; for the profligacy of their men of rank and fashion; for an utter contempt of the people; and, although among their philosophers and sages, some truly great men are to be found, yet their writings do not constitute the burthen of classical literature taught in schools; nor are their manners in any respect patterns which could be followed with advantage by young men of modern times. In Greek and Roman literature there is an almost entire destitution of interest in mankind as a progressive race ; the idea seems never to have entered the imaginations of ancient authors, that the day could ever come when slavery should cease—when the common people should be enlightened and refined—and when social institutions should be arranged not for the advantage of a patrician class, but to promote the general enjoyment of all. In short, scarcely one of the more important practical principles of Christianity, enlightened policy, or true philanthropy, is to be discovered in their pages.
No system of education which rests on such a basis, can impart true refinement to the youthful mind. It affords no adequate stimulus for the purest and noblest sentiments. It thus trains men up to contemn and stigmatise the immense majority of their fellowmen, and to brand them with one single comprehensive epithet of dislike, embodying so completely every form of offensiveness, as to leave room for neither discrimination nor exception in its application to the people —the word “vulgarity.” “Odi profanum vulgus et arceo”—I hate the profane vulgar, and drive them away—is a maxim too easily imbibed from the classic page.
We have not space at present in our columns to enter on the question of the effects of classical literature on the intellectual faculties. Suffice it to say, that we are far from depreciating the value of the study of Greek and Latin. As a mental exercise, it ranks, in our estimation, along with painting, music, poetry, and sculpture. It is one of the fine arts, and is calculated, when pursued as such, to elevate, improve, and benefit the taste and intellect: but as we would not make the fine arts the staple of education for legislators, and citizens of the world, neither would we make Greek and Latin the grand objects to which the years of training of our children should be chiefly devoted.—Scotsman.
O L D M ER CAN TILE HOUSES.
MERCANTILE firms are sometimes as long-lived as landed families. Longman and Company, the London booksellers, have trade catalogues of their house, dated as far back as 1704. In 1730, the Longman of that day was so important in the trade, as to be one of the publishers of the folio Universal History. In the present firm, there are a father and son of this name, the lineal descendants of the founder of the house. Rivington and Company, so distinguished for their publications connected with the church, are said to be of the seventeenth century. In Edinburgh, a family of Nories has been concerned in the business of housepainting since the beginning of the last century. In the Scots Courant for July 27, 1711, there occurs the following advertisement:—“That all sorts of the finest arras hanging, representing forestry, history, hunting, fields, &c. done upon canvass, which looks as well as any true arras, and better than any mock arras whatsomever, that comes from London or elsewhere, are painted and sold at as easy a rate as any in North Britain, by James Norie and Roderick Chalmers, about the middle of Dickson’s Close, opposite the Bishop’s Land, where all sorts of house-paintings are likewise performed by them.” The James Norie here mentioned practised landscape painting, and a number of his performances in that line still exist on panels above mantel-pieces and doors, within the houses in the Old Town of Edinburgh, having been executed by him, as tradition avers, by way of compliment to those who had employed him to do the common work of his trade upon the walls. Runciman, the distinguished artist, was apprenticed to this or a later member of their family. Robert Norie and Sonstill form acopartnery in the practice of house-painting in the Scottish capital. The business now carried on under the firm of Eagle and Henderson, seed-merchants in Edinburgh, is upwards of a century old, during which time it has always been conducted in one place. It was originated by Mr Archibald Eagle, who died at an advanced age many years ago. In the Caledonian Mercury for February 7, 1746, occurs the following advertisement:—“Archibald Eagle, merchant in Smith’s Land, opposite Blackfriars’ Wynd, and seedsman to the Honourable Society for improving Agriculture, has just now brought from the best places abroad, a curious collection of new and fresh #. and grass-seeds, together with a variety of
ower-seeds, and several kinds of tree-seeds, especially the beech-mast, that’s highly esteemed for its value: so that all who have given commissions for such seeds, may immediately call for them ; and all others that want, may be #on. to their satisfaction, at as cheap and low rates as any where else in town ; likewise may be had every sort of gardeners’ utensils, as also the finest Durham and Isle of May mustard, new Kentish hops, lintseed, and all manner of falcongraith, &c.” In an upper floor of the large building in which Mr Eagle carried on business, the Honourable Misses Murray, daughters of Lord Stormont, and sisters to the Earl of Mansfield, had taken up their abode. A young female friend of theirs from Perthshire, coming to visit them, chanced to enter Mr Eagle’s shop, to inquire the way up stairs; and having thus afforded him an opportunity of performing towards her a common act of civility, an acquaintance took place betwixt them, which, notwithstanding some family pride on her side, was in time ripened into a matrimonial union. As his widow, this lady carried on the business for many years, till it fell under the active management of the late Mr Alexander Henderson, Lord Provost of the city in 1825, whose sons are now in possession of it. In Edinburgh there must be many instances of long-descended business, with which the present writer is not acquainted. The extensive upholstery business carried on by the heirs of the late Mr William Trotter, dates from an early period of the last century; and the bank of Sir Wiliian Forbes and Company was established by the father of the late Mr Coutts, upwards of a century ago.
you RNAL of PROCEEDINGS ON THE FIRST OF
sEPTEMBER, BY JonATHAN DUGGINs, Esq.
[From the Comic Almanack for 1837.]
“Up at six.-Told Mrs D. I’d got wery pressing business at Woolwich, and off to Old Fish Street, where a wery sporting breakfast, consisting of jugged hare, partridge pie, tallyho-sauce, gunpowder tea, and-cattera, vos laid out in Figgins’s warehouse; as he didn’t choose Mrs F. and his younghinfant family to know he vos a-goin to hexpose himself with fire-harms-After a good blowout, sallied forth with our dogs and guns, namely, Mrs Wiggins’s French poodle, Miss Selina Higgins’s real Blenheim spaniel, young Hicks’s ditto, Mrs Figgins’s pet bull-dog, and my little thoroughbred tarrier; all vich had been smuggled to Figgins’s warehouse the night before, to perwent domestic disagreeables.—Got into a Paddington bus at the bank.-Row with tiger, who hobjected to take the dogs, unless paid hextra. Hicks said we’d a rights to take ’em, and quoted the hact.—Tiger said the hact only allowed parcels carried on the lap.–Accordingly tied up the dogs in our pocket-handkerchiefs, and carried them and the guns on our knees.—Got down at Paddington ; and, after glasses round. valked on till ve got into the fields, to a place vich Higgins had baited with corn and penny rolls every day for a month past. Found a covey of birds feeding. Iogs wery eager, and barked beautiful. Birds got up, and turned out to be pigeons. Debate As to vether pigeons vos gaine or not. Hicks said they vos made game on by the new hact. Fired accordingly, and half killed two or three, vich half fell to the ground; but suddenly got up again and flow off. Reloaded, and pigeons came round again. Let fly a second time, and tumbled two or three more over, but didn’t bag any. Tired at last, and turned in to the Dog and Partridge to get a snack. Landlord laughed, and asked how ve vos hoff for tumblers. Didn’t understand him, but got some waluable hinformation about loading our guns; vich he strongly recominended mixing the powder and shot well up together before putting into the barrel; and showed Figgins how to charge his percussion; vich, being Figgins’s first attempt under the new system, he had movie the mistake of putting a charge of copper caps into the barrel instead of sticking one of ’em atop of the touch-hole.—Left the Dog and Partridge, and took a north-easterly direction, so as to have the adwantage of the vind on our backs. Dogs getting wery riotous, and refusing to answer to Figgins’s whistle, vich had unfortunately got a pea in it.—Getting over an edge into a field, I licks’s gun haccidentally hexploded, and shot Wiggins behind ; and my gun going off hunexpectedly at the same moment, singed away von of my viskers and blinded von of my heyes.—Carried Wiggins back to the inn : dressed his wound, and rubbed my heye with cherry brandy, and my visker with bear’s grease.—Sent poor W. home by a short stage, and resumed our sport.—Heard sonne pheasants crowing by the side of a plantation. Itesolved to stop their cockadoodledooing, so set off at a jog trot. Passing thro’ a field of bone manure, the dogs unfortunately set to work upon the bones, and ve couldn’t get ’em to go a step farther at no price. Got within gun-shot of two of the birds, vich Higgins said they vos two game cocks: but Hicks, who had often been to Westminster Pit, said no sitch thing; as game cocks had got short square tails, and smooth necks, and long military spurs; and these had got long curly tails, and necks all over hair, and scarce any spurs at all. Shot at ’em as pheasants, and believe ve killed ’em both ; but, hearing some orrid screams come out of the plantation immediately hafter, we all took to our eels and ran avay vithout stopping to pick either of ’em up.—After running about two miles, Hicks called out to stop, as he had observed a covey of wild ducks feeding on a pond by the road-side. Got behind a haystack and shot at the ducks, vich swam avay hunder the trees. Figgins wolunteered to scramble down the bank, and hook out ae dead uns with the but-hend of his gun. Unfortunately bank failed, and poor F. tumbled up to his neck in the pit. Made a rope of our pocket handkerchiefs, got it round his neck, and dragged him to the Dog and Doublet, vere ve had him put to bed, and dried. Wery sleepy with the hair and hexercise, so after dinner took a nap a-piece.—Woke by the landlord coming in to know if ve vos the gentlemen as had shot the humfortunate nursemaid and child in Mr Smithville’s plantation. Swore ve knew nothing about it, and vile the landlord was gone to deliver our message, got out of the back window, and ran avay across the fields. At the end of a mile, came suddenly upon a strange sort of bird, vich Hicks declared to be the cock-of-the-woods. Sneaked behind him and killed himn. Turned out to be a peacock. Took to our heels again, as ve saw the lord of the manor and two of his servants vith bludgeons coming down the gravel walk towards us. Found it getting late, so agreed to shoot our way home. Tidn’t know vere ve vos, but kept going on.—At last got to a sort of plantation, vere vo saw a great many birds perching about. Gave ’em a broadside, and brought down several. Loaded again, and killed another brace. Thought we should make a good day’s work of it at last, and was preparing to charge again, ven two of the new police came and took us up in the name of the ZoloroRical Society, in whose gardens it seems we had been shooting. Handed off to the Public II office, and wery heavily fined, and wery sewerey reprimanded by the sitting magistrate.—Coming Away, met by the landlord of the Day and Doublet, who charged us with running off vithout paying our shot; and Mr Smithville, who accused us of manslaughtering his nursemaid and child: and, their wounds not having been declared immortal, ve vos
sent to spend the night in prison—and thus ended my last First of September.”
GREAT MEN The resu LT or CIRCU MSTANCES.
A great man is a result, and not a cause; he is created, if we may so speak, by the spirit of the age which he embodies and represents. But on this subject we cannot do better than quote the words of Victor Cousin –“A great man, whatever may be the kind of his greatness, whatever the epoch of the world in which he makes his appearance, comes to represent an idea, such an idea, and not any other idea, at the precise time when that idea is worth representing, and neither before it nor after it; consequently he appears when he ought to appear, and he disappears when nothing is left for him to do : he is born and he dics in due season. When nothing great is to be done, the existence of a great man is impossible. In fact, what is a great in an o’ He is the representative of a power not his own ; for ali power merely individual is pitiful, and no man yields to another man: he yields only to the representative of a general power. When, therefore, no such general power exists, or when it exists no longer; when it fails or falls into decay, what strength can its representative possess 2 Hence also no human power can cause a great man to be born or die before his hour is coine; it cannot be displayed, it can neither be advanced nor put back, for he existed only because he had his work to do. and he exists no more, only because nothing is left for him to do, and to wish to continue his existence would be to wish to continue a part which has been acted to the end and exhausted. A soldier who had seated himself upon a throne was once told : “Sire, the education of your son should be watched over with great attention ; he must be educated so that he may replace you.” “Replace me!’ answered he, ‘ I could not replace myself; I am the child of circumstances.’ T he salue mail was deeply sensible that the power which animated him was not his own ; that it was lent him for a specific purpose, and until a certain hour, the approach of which he could neither hasten nor retard. It is said that he was somewhat given to fatalism. You will remark that all great men have been more or less fatalists; the error is in the form, not at the foundation of the thought. They feel that, in fact, they do not exist on their own account; they possess the consciousness of an immen-e power; and, being unable to ascribe the honour of it to themselves, they refer it to a higher power, which uses them as instruments in accordance with its own ends. Not only are great men given to fatalism, they are also addicted to superstitions peculiar to themselves. Hence also it comes to pass that great men, who in action show decision and an admirable ardour, often hesitate and slumber before they are roused to action; the sentiment of necessity, the evidence of their mission, must strike them forcibly ; they seem to feel that until then they should act only as individuals, and that their power is not present with them.”—Foreign Quarterly Review.
PHILosophy For THE NURSERY.
The exercise of the hobby-horse is pernicious to health, because, the head of the rider being farthest from the centre of motion, the blood is propelled thither by centrifugal force, and, accumulating, produces dizziness, and tends to apoplexy. The common rocking-cradle is unhealthy from the same cause, for the head of the child, being raised on the pillow, is farther from the centre of motion than the rest of the body, and, therefore, as before, the blood, from the motion of the cradle, will have a tendency upwards. Swings and swinging-cradles are on the contrary favourable to health, because in them the head is nearer to the centre of motion than the other parts of the body, and the blood will consequently have a tendency from it. Lees’s Catcchism of Natural Philosophy.—[When science can teach such valuable truths even to nursery-maids, how utterly beyond all endurance appears every kind of opposition which can be made to its diffusion J
A RUIN ED Trades M.A.N.
Some years ago, a Mr Smith, a young gentleman liolding the office of ensign in a marching regiment, being invited to a ball at Turnham Green, ordered a pair of dancing-pumps from Mr IIobv, of St James’s Street. By some accident the pumps were not finished in time, and Ensign Smith was disappointed. The next day, in a furious military passion, he stalked into Hoby’s shop, and desired to see Mr Hoby himself. The autocrat of bootmakers condesecnded to appear. Ensign Smith first eyed him savagely, and, curling his mustachios (I beg pardon—he did no such thing, he had none to curl, for in those days it had not becn discovered how much courage, virtue, vigour, dignity, and resolution, dwell in a little hair upon the upper lip). Nevertheless, he eyed him most savagely, and thus began :-‘‘Mr Hoby, sir, I desire to know, I wish to understand—tell me, sir, directly, why my pumps were not sent home, or I will withdraw my custom—I will, by heaven, I will.” The astonished Hoby said he would inquire, and begged the gentleman to be pacified. “Pacified, sir!” replied the ensign, “I’ll be hanged if I do. Iłring lne my bill, I’ll never deal with you any rhore. I withdraw my custom this moment —this very moment ” The disconsolate bootmaker withdrew two steps, and called in is foreman. “Mr Jones,” said he, “close the shutters, shut up the shop, discharge the workmen, and lock the door—I am ruined, ruined irretrievably—Ensign Smith has withdrawn his custom “-London newspaper.
MARRIAGE AMONG THE ROMANs.
The Romans not only rewarded those who married, but decreed penalties against men who remained in a state of celibacy. Fines were first levied upon unmarried men about the year of Rome 350; and when pecuniary forfeitures failed to ensure their obedience to these connubial edicts, their contumacious neglect of the fair sex was punished by degradation from their tribe. Celibacy continued, however, to gain ground in Rome; and, to counteract its effects, we find that, in the year 518 from the foundation of the city, the censors had recourse to the extraordinary measure of obliging all the young unmarried men to pledge themselves on oath to marry within a certain time. In Babylon, an auction of unmarried ladies used to take place annually. The virgins of marriageable ages, in every district, were assembled on a certain day of every year. The most beautiful was first put up, and the man who bade the largest sum of money gained possession of her. The second in personal appearance followed; and the purchasers gra‘ified themselves with handsome wives according to the depth of their purses. When all the beautiful virgins were sold, the crier ordered the most deformed to stand up; and after he had openly demanded who would marry her with a small sum, she was at length adjudged to the man who would be satisfied with the least; and in this manner, the money arising from the sale of the handsome women served as a portion to those who were either of disagreeable looks, or that had any other fault or imperfection.
Idox: ESTIC HABIT’s of MILTON.
Milton rose at four in the morning during summer, and at five in the winter. He wore almost invariably a dress of coarse grey cloth, studied till noon, dined frugally, walked with a guide, and in the evening sang, accompanying himself on some instrument. !!e understood harmony, and had a fine voice. He for a long time addicted himself to the practice of fencing. To judge by Paradise Lost, he must have been passionately fond of music and the perfunre of flowers. He supped off five or six olives and a littie water, retired to rest at nine, and composed at night in bed. When he haul made some verses, he sang, and dictated to his wife or daughters. On sunny days he sat on a bench at his door. He lived in Artillery Walk, leading to Bunhill Fields.-Chateaubriand’s New Pork—Sketches of English Literature.
CHAMBERS’S EDINBURGH JOURNAL.
In this number, time and custom bring before us the duty of saying a few words respecting ourselves. All who, from whatever cause, feel any interest in the present work, will be glad to learn that it continues to prosper. The united impressions of London and Edinburgh, for immediate sale, which at the beginning of last year amounted to fifty-eight, have now advanced to sixty-two thousand : including new editions of past numbers, the quantity printed in a year makes about sirty-five thousand weekly. So strong a proof of undiminished vitality is the more pleasing, as the number of works following our plan, with greater or less distinction as to matter, and supported by public or corporate bodies of men, is now very great—much greater than ever it was—so that the claims of this comparatively eldern sheet, depending, as it does, on the exertions of two private individuals, must in many cases have yielded to the superior attractions of its neighbours. That, under such circumstances, our aggregate circulation should have increased, seems to imply that the work is constantly finding its way into new fields of sale.
Thus liberally encouraged by the public, we encounter with cheerfulness the labours of another year, determined to intermit no exertion, to overlook no expedient, which may appear calculated to sustain the humble reputation, as an amusing and instructive miscellany, which the work seems already to have attained. While adverting to the success of one of the cheap miscellanies, we may be allowed to express our satisfaction that these works, as a class, have survived all the means put in force for their destruction—both the outcry of interested parties against them, on the score of their tending to injure the interests of literature, and the sneers and contumelies of those who conceived, or professed to conceive, that dignity and merit were inseparable from costliness. It is pleasant to find that many of those who at first denounced these modest disseminators of popular science and literature, as tending to do harm amongst the lower orders of the people, are now so far converted from their error, as to be entering upon the same career, with professions of extreme anxiety that the poor should be by such means enlightened. In thus alluding to the establishment of the democracy of three-halfpence beside the respectable middle classes of sixpence and a shilling, and the aristocracy of half-a-crown and six shillings, we may remind our readers, that, besides the literary labours of the Editors, the Journal has, for some time, presented articles from writers whom public approbation has stamped as of the first class, and that a very large proportion of the matter of the work, such as it is, is of original composition. If, indeed, we could allow ourselves to indulge in a feeling of triumph on anypoint connected with the work, it would be in this—in having led the way to show that the great body of the people, by combining to give sale to a publication meeting their pecuniary circumstances, could secure as much intellectual service as could formerly be obtained only at a price which placed the solacements of literature beyond their reach.
It only remains for us to advert to a series of works, forming parts of a complete Course of Education, physical, moral, and intellectual—theoretical as well as practical—in which we have now been engaged for upwards of twelve months. Our ordinary avocations in conducting the Journal, have permitted us to bring out six separate treatises in the series since last January, making, with the two previously published, eight disferent works, each applicable to sente peculiar department of juvenile instruction. The very rapid sale of several large impressions of each of these volumes, and their introduction into many schools throughout the United Kingdom, are accepted by us as a satisfactory testimony of public approval, and will induce us to proceed, with all the energy we can spare from other pursuits, to carry on the Course to the extent originally contemplated.
coSDUCTED BY WILLIAM AND ROBERT CHAMBERs, EDITORs of “CHAMBERS’s INFORMATION For THE PEoPLE,” “CHAMBERS’S EDUCATIONAL COURSE,” &c.
COUNTRY TOWN SKETCHES. THE aspect of some of our little quiet provincial boroughs, basking, as it were, in the sunshine of a summer day, is very prepossessing. To the dwellers in large cities, or the inhabitants of the woods and fields, a small country town forms equally an object of curiosity : the latter wonder how any body can be found to live constantly in a town at all, and the city folk, how they can live in a small town; and certainly small towns are to active-minded persons more suited for casual visits than for a permanent abode. There are, however, many shades of difference between them; some give an idea of laziness, some of dullness, and some of quietude only; while some are dirty, and some are bustling—characteristics which strongly impress themselves upon the mind of a traveller, even should his sojourn be limited to the change of horses at an inn. In the metropolis, the spectator, as he surveys the crowd which throngs in every thoroughfare, wonders how habitations can be found for the masses of people which seem to choke up the avenues, while, in country towns, he suspects, in spite of some slight indications to the contrary— smoke from the chimnies, and flower-pots in the windows—that the houses are destitute of inhabitants. It seems to be a rule of etiquette among the genteeler sort never to be seen : tiers upon tiers of windows, five in a row, will stretch themselves along some substantial brick mansion, adorned with the whitest of little muslin curtains, and bright with continual cleaning; but not a head, not even the housemaid, appears at one of them. The shops are gaily set out with ribbons and gauds of the most tempting description, but they seem to possess no attraction for the belles of the place; and if there should be a group of young ladies, either lounging at the door, or looking into the windows, ten to one but they belong to the carriage at the corner of the street, which has just brought them in from the country. A knot of two or three gentlemen may sometimes be seen congregating together under the portico of the chief inn, but the ladies are infinitely more secluded. Most of them, nevertheless, contrive not only to hear, but to see, all that is going on. The smallest movement in the place becomes known by a sort of magic. An event, no matter what, occurs at the eastern extremity of the town, and all about it is known in no time at the western boundary; the rapidity with which the intelligence travels, resembling in some respects the velocity of an electrical shock, which is felt at both ends of a wire at the same instant of time. The incoming of any stranger is, in particular, a matter of extraordinary interest; it is as good as meat and drink—bed, board, and washing, for a week —to half a hundred gossips, who are not long in ascertaining his pedigree up to the days of Noah, and his resources even to the odd pounds, shillings, and pence, lying in the hands of his banker. The arrival of a post-chaise is a great affair in these old-fashioned dreamy towns; and even the circumstance of the family carriage of the neighbouring squire having been seen on shopping excursions three times during the week, is a bit of news not to be despised. It is known, beyond the possibility of doubt, that there will soon be a marriage in the family of the Barringers at the Lodge; that the postman has called at the cottage of Captain Riley five times within the last fortnight with letters, some of them with large red wax seals stamped with a coat of arms—crest, a stag passant; that Miss Humphries has sported a new bonnet, which must have come from London; and that all the Creswells have gone into mourning—facts, the two latter, at least, which, but
SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 4, 1837.
for some extraordinary degree of vigilance, could not have transpired until the following Sunday, when the church bells would of course bring out the whole population, and, should the weather prove fine, all attired in their very best. There is generally very great diversity in the buildings of a small town: one tall mansion will have minikin neighbours on each side, little better than stalls; others are low, and occupy a large portion of ground; and some are oddly squeezed into corners, as if every inch of land was of the greatest consequence. Upon walking down the principal streets, we see through the shops, and back-parlour windows, pretty gardens filled with many-coloured flowers, or a sudden opening gives a bright glimpse of country. The rural air, and the excessive cleanliness of those shops, render them very attractive; even that of the butcher losing all its of. fensiveness in the absence of many of the appurtenances connected with the trade in larger places. The servants belonging to a provincial town form one of its curiosities; they are distinguished alike from those domesticated in the country families, and those who are found in the metropolis. The women perhaps have an advantage in the comparison; they are fresher looking, and dress quite as gaily, but in a more picturesque style; the crowns of their caps reach a higher altitude, and the ribbons are of a more gaudy description. The male servitors are, on the other hand, any thing but smart, either in appearance or manners. Their awkwardness seems to bid defiance even to the powers of a drill-serjeant; and though as much addicted as their metropolitan brethren to standing at street-doors, they never acquire the indolent lounge of the latter. If out of livery, there is no mistaking the man for the master, unless the latter be a very vulgar person indeed. Now, in London the butler is sometimes the finer looking gentleman of the two, while the footmen perform the duties of their office with a grace which seems perfectly marvellous. Nothing incommoded by their long canes, they open the carriage doors, let down the steps, and present their arms to the ladies with the greatest possible ease and facility; they glide about dressingrooms amongst the bijouterie, without raising alarm in the breasts of the beholders, performing the offices required of them with perfect command of countenance and action : the most ridiculous circumstance occurring in their presence would fail to move them to laughter, and they never speak except in the most respectful manner, and upon occasions of absolute necessity. In fact, they are so well bred in their official capacity, that it is rather a puzzle to know how they conduct themselves in private life, and whether the servants’ hall is not equally as decorous as the drawingroom. Country servants, on the contrary, find it impossible to contain their merriment when any thing ludicrous is said or done; they are loquacious upon every occasion, and, nine times out of ten, are tolerably certain of extinguishing the candles should they attempt to snuff them, and of spilling the coals out of the skuttle when called upon to make up the fire. It is but justice, however, to recollect that what may be wanting in dexterity and polish, is compensated by fidelity and attachment—virtues of greater value. The country-town servant, who brews the beer, milks the cow, works in the garden, grooms the horse, drives the pony chaise, and waits at table, forms another species of person, an active hard-working man of much respectability. But it is the show-servants of some of the superior establishments who afford the best subjects for caricature, and may generally be ranked amongst the absurdities of the place.