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means to strike it out. He warned me I should soon be aware of the rectitude of
this' advice; and, as I have always gone : FIFTEEN DAYS IN PARIS..
wrong when I have run counter to this
gentleman's opinion, I shall, however loth, ..... LETTER I. . l restrain myself from the use of a great
number of the '« felicities of language" To the Conductor of the Sale-Room.
wherewith I had provided myself from the Paris, December, 1816.
various Letters, Journals, Guides, Visits, SIR. . ,
and Re-visits, on, of, and to Paris, which I Since my arrival here, I had been cogita- | thought it needful to read previous to my ting the shape and designation under which departure. Still, however, I may not have to throw the travelling memoranda I prodone enough; and should you, in peru. mised you of this journey, when I luckily sing the proofs, find any thing that strikes met, in strolling through the Palais Royale, you as being fine, I think, on the whole, a French publication, entitled, ". Quinze you had better also follow our friend's opiJours a Londres, a la fin de 1815;" a good nion, and score it out without mercy. . translateable title, I thought, and not unfit Your readers, thus, must be content to for my own lucubrations : Therefore, with find my Paris and Parisians much more your leave, I shall entitle them, FIFTEEN usual and ordinary persons and places than Days in Paris at the end of 1816; al. they have been accustomed to have them though the time it has cost, and must cost represented. I am interdicted the « glanme, to acquire half the information respecto cing brilliancy" of the Parisian air, which ing this capital, which my great coadjutor, gives a “ startling distinctness" to every Monsieur Quinze Jours, attained in that object; and the whole “ floating and short period regarding ours, will rather ex- swarming vivacity, variety, gaiety, burst, ceed the limit. When I become tiresome, whirl, and shew of French existence;" as you will, of course, cease to give me inser. | well as the “ red handkerchiefs that shoot tion; and I, besides, commit my work to about the streets," and the “ sprawling you under the same impression, that a dra- baths that stretch their leviathan forms on per sends his cloth to an experienced fa- the green crystal water," (all of which flow. shioner, to be cut, framed, and trimmed ers a less-fettered tourist has given you in into a garment, suitable to the taste of his two pages,) are to me as the grapes in the customers, of which he, the said fashioner, fable. must be the best judge.
I must also plead guilty to some facts of A very judicious friend of mine, in re. omission which may take from the interest lation to this undertaking, advised me of my narrative; but you shall have in ve. to beware of any attempt at being bril. racity what you want in imagination. I liant; and, whenever I imagined I had shall only describe what I have seen ; lest turned a sentence with peculiar happiness | Monsieur Quinze Jours s of phraseology, or elegance of style, by all ' “ Je crois qu'il n'a pénétré que dans nos
anti-chambres, et a fait d'imagination le | English merchant that employed him, at tableau des salons et des boudoirs, comme the price of four hundred guineas, to paint l'abbé de Vertot le récit du siège de a family-piece, in which the said merchant Rhodes."* Were one allowed the latitude was to represent Agamemnon ; his daugh. of French fancy indeed, it were something; ter, Iphigenia ; and his two sons, Calchas but with you the demand for truth, all the and Achilles. Nay, it was truth, and nothing but the truth, operates as ted, after the picture was half-finished, that a terrible cramper of genius. My friend, Agamemnon should have a round wig, and Quinze Jours, in fifteen days, besides all Achilles be dressed in a colonel's uniform. that is usually to be met with during such One day the house next his lodgings was a period in London, witnessed a boxing. burned to the ground; which, however, match at Primrose Hill, where part of the gave Monsieur an opportunity of saying ring was composed of English women of fa. the happiest things on the subject of Eng. shion. He went to the play, and saw grave- lish sans-froid. Another day a suicide diggers in King Lear, a bottle thrown at banged himself in the chamber above him, the performers, and a man precipitated and this, although a distressing case, fortufrom the gallery into the pit. He was at nately enabled him to witness and describe ehurch, when a fat Englishman, in pulling a coroner's inquest.' off his cocked-hat, dragged a large bushy Adventures in such variety, and in so wig along with it, coolly replaced both, the short a space, fall to the lot of few; and, hind part before, and then marched up the were an Englishman to narrate them, they aisle with a lady on each arm, all three un would, in all likelihood, be called by his conscious of the misfortune, till the risibility ) unceremonious countrymen, improbable, if of the spectators obliged the clergyman to not impossible ; and yet, I assure you, this suspend his discourse! This was luck, but book has reception and belief in Paris. It Monsieur had also his misfortunes : He is time, however, to dismiss this prelimina had to relieve from starving, a painter, his ry matter, and close my first Letter. countryman, who had been cheated by an ! :
D. Cei ,
I believe that he has penetrated no farther than our anti-chambers, and draws from imagination the picture of our saloons and boudoirs, as the Abbe Vertot did the story of the siege of Rhodes..
Edinburgh, printed by James Ballantyne is Co.
Por John Ballantyne, Hanover-Street . *'
SAL E-RO O M.
Saturday, January 18, 1817.
A Periodical Paper, published weekly at No. 4, Hanover-Street, Edinburgh.
THE sketch of our friend Peter Grie. | rits ; but, being a man of an alert mind, vance's character having met with good and a good deal of comfortable self-conceit, acceptance from our readers, we are tempt (which, let the reader be assured, is like a ed to fill up the following pages with a shirt of mail against the shafts of fortune,) conversation which that unfortunate gen he has not permitted his disappointment to tleman held with another worthy of our abate his spirits or render his conversation acquaintance a few days since.
less lively. Indeed, the sole effect of the Peter, who, among his other mishaps, is failure of his hopes has been to exasperate seldom without a fit of the rheumatism or a natural humour of contradiction, and toothache, had crept into a bookseller's sharpen his polemical talents. He seldom shop, well-flannelled on the body, and his lets a proposition pass unchallenged; and neck, as well as long thin peaked chin and is said to have been engaged in a duel in meagre jaws, muffled in a large double Bar- his youth, merely from having habitually. celona handkerchief. It was here his for.made use of the unlucky phrase, “ I deny tune to meet with his old acquaintance, that,” when an officer of dragoons was de. Andrew Pismire, whose temper forms a scribing the battle of Minden. He took whimsical contrast with his own. Andrew warning from this incident; and now, when is, what Allan Ramsay describes in a sin the party whom he engages wears a coat gle line,
of any other colour than black, contents
himself with observing, “ that is not be A short-hough'd man, but full of pride, yond challenge,” or, " that may be dispu
ted.” As Andrew, besides great alertness He does not, any more than our friend and promptitude of language, has some Grievance, consider himself as being ex- / reading and information, he often carries actly promoted in life according to his me. | the victory with a high hand, walks from
the scene of dispute upon tiptoe, and di- of my life, and what's more, I never knew gests his beef-steak in as much triumph as any one who was." if he had won the battle of Waterloo. “ What, my old friend, Mr Grievance?”
Pismire was sitting with his face to the said Andrew, whirling his chair round; fire, and his back to the other people in for, by having extorted an answer, he felt the shop ;-an attitude which he assumes that he had involved his unwary opponent with the caution of those wild animals who without passibility of retreat, " It is no are aware that their presence would startle wonder, my old friend, if you complain of the objects of their pursuit. For Pismire, the weather, with as much flannel about whose object it is to spring upon the first your face as would make an under-petti. unguarded proposition which may admit of coat, were such things worn now.a-days. challenge, has observed, that the very sight For shame, man ; case-harden your system, of his contentious visage is apt to alarm souse your head into a bason of cold those quiet persons who love to speak their | water." simple minds without being called upon to “ And where am I to get one?" said. Per defend each word so soon as it is beyond ter, exalting his querulous voices; or the limit of their mouth. Some have indeed who would be-such-a-foot-as-to use a whole suspected, from the uniformity with which bason of cold water at once, till the cursed Andrew maintains this posture, tliat he as. dispute about the Crawley Spring is fairly sumes it in consequence of some private settled ? For my part, I almost grudge myarticle of treaty with the master of the self the glass of water I drink at dinner.” warehouse of learning, who is supposed to ! 6 Send to your brewer then," said Pishave observed his custom slacken when the mire, “ and you will get plenty of water acute visage of Andrew Pismire was. pre under the denomination of small-beer.” sent too obviously to those who.were about « There was such a thing as two-penny to enter the premises. But this may be once,” said Peter, endeavouring to back considered as idle slander. Proceed we to out of the controversy, by assenting to his the matter. "
antagonist's proposition ;“ but the world Peter had just entered the shop, and, | gets worse and worse every day.” withi a mumbling sound, which the swathed “ Better and better you mean," said Pisa state of his jaws rendered scarce intelligi- | mire. ble, was assuring the loungers in the back, “I mean worse and worse, by * room, that this infernal weather would.ruin sạid Peter, with an oath; for the extravas all the world, except doctors and sextons, gance of an assertion so contrary to his, when the sharp voice of Mr Andrew Pis, constant creed, surprised him into unusual inire exclaimed, the speaker still retaining animation of contradiction. his position, " Good. weather, enough if " Then I,” said Andrew, “ assert, that, fools knew how to be contented with it.” by — (retorting the asseveration, you,
• Fools, sir !" retorted Peter, « and Peter Grievance, know nothing of the mat. contented, sir !" for to Mr Grievance both ter, and that the world never went so welly seemed equal insults,—“ I never was fool as at this present moment that we are talkenough to be contented in the whole course ing about it.”
This broad assertion startled the whole when women had half a dozen husbands, company. The bookseller, who was em and men a community of wives, and when ployed in posting his ledger, looked down the tribe never knew the comforts of a good from his three-footed throne with some. dinner unless when they feasted on their thing between a groan and a sigh. Two prisoners of war ?? men in great coats, who were chaffering | « I might say something," replied our for an odd set of the Farmer's Magazine, | Peter, “ concerning the plurality of wives fled one way, and two lairds, whose Mar. and husbands, thanks to our own increatinmas rents had not yet been made forth. sing immorality and the bad example of coming, retreated another. The very shop our neighbours; but I own it probable man and errand-boy were commoved at the that our houses are more comfortable, and extravagance of Pismire's proposition ; and our butcher-market better supplied.” Peter Grievance, encouraged by the tacit “Then,” quoth Andrew Pismire, “ I agreement of the whole company in his fa. presume you do not rest your point of vour, buckled up his courage to attack it. I perfection upon the reign of the Gracious
« The world never went so weh, say Duncan, who was dirked in his bed by his you? When the dwl did it ever go so ill cousin of Glammis ? or in that of his sucbefore ?' Have we not had the whole cessor, when we are assured the Thane of plagues that can affect a people sluiced Fife, an invited guest to the king's table, down on us within this twelvemonth, - had a peck-loaf assigned him for his supwar and rumours of war, scarcity of money, per; and when the said mighty Thane comscarcity of corn, scarcity of every thing manded so little specie, that he was fain to but bad weather and taxes?"
give the said loaf as an equivalent for With a pleasant and complacent smile, transporting him over the ferry at Tay, Andrew advanced from his chimney-cor- / while he was making his escape from the ner. « And with what period of Scottish tyrant's presence ?" history, my dear friend,” said he, in a con. There was, in Pismire's argument, a ciliatory voice, intended to decoy his op sort of affectation of minute information ponent into some specific allegation, calculated to intimidate better scholars " would you compare the present state of than Peter, who, therefore, contented himthe country?”.
self with replying, “ that he did not re. - Peter, aware of the trap, and being, member a word of the peck-loaf or ferry. besides, no great proficient in history, boat, as the play was acted; but, no doubt," whereas Andrew is known to be a black | he added, “ the Theatre has long ceased letter man, replied, in general, “ That no to be the school of useful information,"
could be named in which the condi- “ You would not, then,” said Andrew, tion of Scotland was not better than at pre- “ dispute the point of comparative happisent.” lisas
ness during the subsequent reigns of the “You would not, however, include the Malcolms, the Williams, and the Alexan. most barbarous and early period, I súp- ders, reigns of which,” he added, “ we pose,” said Andrew, " when men wore the know little-(thank God, muttered Peter; skins of beasts, lived in the marshes, or in between his teeth)—and that little not to dens made of loose and uncemented stones ; | the praise of the times, or the credit of the