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Luckily I can dress my own hair, for the first thing that occurr'd,
Was that the famous French artiste was unable to keep his word.
He came sauntering in, at one o'clock, (having promised to come at eleven,)
Saying he felt quite weak and tired, having dress’d at least thirty-seven :
And Lady Gooseberry's daughter's hair was taken down five times,
Though he made remonstrances, now and then, on hearing the quarter-chimes.
I wish you had seen my cousin's face; the sort of amused surprise,
Which play'd round her sweet expressive mouth, and her large dark kindly eyes,
When she found her “ little Nobody," (as she calls me when we jest,)
Standing looking at the hairdresser,—with her hair already drest !
Then I practised my famous curtsey,—again, and yet again,
Without treading on the roses that trimm'd my moirée train;
Curtseying laughing to my cousin,—who curtsey'd back to me,-
But I can tell you other folks were’nt half so gay as we;
For when Lady Crawl and her daughters,—the Ladies Creepy, came,
(Poor little shy fair creatures, who seem always bow'd with shame,)
She was so cross, and they so grave, that our smiles all died away;
Jane Creepy's eyes were red with tears, and I heard her sister say,
“What with dressing and with scolding, they were both of them half dead,
And she felt as if hot skewers pinn’d her lappets to her head.”
Then we got into the Dowager's coach,—and down St. James's street
Old Lady Crawl took to scolding me,-as I sate on the opposite seat;
Calling me vulgar and countrified, because I look'd eagerly out
At the gaily-dress’d balconies, and the crowds of people about.
Oh! the massive silver harnesses, that glitter'd in the sun !
The painted panell’d carriages, that follow'd one by one!
The proud, sleek, handsome horses, that were forced to step so slow,
The liveries and hammercloths, in the long, long moving row !
Embroidery, colour, silver lace, bouquets of fresh sweet flowers,
Stuck even in the servants' coats—what luxury was ours !
And over all, the broad bright sun ! My dearest Fanny Law,
How shall I conjure up for you, the picture that I saw?
You, who only see the curate's gig, and the little pony-chair,
And the two postchaises which are kept at the Nelson's Head, in Clare,
How is it possible that you, the sight should understand
Of two thousand Cinderellas,-fresh from Fairy's dazzling wand !
At length we pass'd the Palace-gates—and the gallery, where sempstresses,
And milliners, and maids, get leave to stand and watch the dresses ;
And up the great wide staircase,-and through a narrow room,
Where people write their names on cards, to be given as they come,
And call'd out, most distinctly,—that the Queen may know who's who,
When the motley crowd file slowly by, all curtseying as they go.
Then, through a larger, statelier room, where rails and ropes they place,
As they do upon a race-course—(but you never saw a race !)
And such pushing, and such squeezing, and such tearing lace with spurs
From the gentlemen in uniform, (old Lady Crawl tore hers ;)
Such scratching with wide epaulettes, my shoulder or my cheek,
Such elbowing and pummelling, the strong against the weak,
I never could have dream'd among so fine a set to see, -
I thought the world of fashion must be full of courtesy;
But oh! the tumult and the strife,—the angry word and frown-
I assure you they did all, my dear, but knock each other down.
saw the famous Lady Clack, (once leader of the fashion,
Now hanging on by Fashion's skirts—) in a sort of bustling passion,
Because she and her daughter, the fair Magnolia Loud,
Had got confused in what she chose to call the “ common crowd ;"
And with the common crowd and herd, she doesn't choose to mix,
A Fancy-Bazaar value,-on herself she seems to fix;
And still with restless clatter, and many curtseying dips,
Swims in the wake of Princes,—as sharks swim after ships.
Indeed I heard a story,- I don't know if it's true,-
That when her house was burning, a servant rushing through,
Cried, “Where's the Duke of Cambridge ?” “ Do you want him ?" "No," he cried
“But I want to tell Milady,—and I'm sure she's at his side.”
The Marchioness of Paramount was also pointed out,
Fat, colourless, and glittering with jewels sew'd about
On sleeves, and skirt, and stomacher,--some real and some of paste;
A plentiful profusion there of everything but taste;
For really she was only like the story Sinbad told,
Of the piece of flesh the eagles brought, stuck full of gems and gold ;*
And with a cold, hard, fishy stare, she welcomed friend and foe,
With a dumb conceit of stateliness,-like waxwork at a show.
I saw the Lady W— ; lovely beyond compare !
Like a Grecian statue, or a nymph, by magic conjured there;
I saw the Queen of Beauty,—and a beauteous sight it was,
And where she pass’d there ever rose a murmur of applause;
I saw the swan-like Duchess, whose kindliness was told
In the verses you remember, which we read in days of old.
• Vide Arabian Nights. S, S. -- VOL. III.
Hundreds of fair young faces, and some old scraggy forms,
With necklaces like icicles round leafless trees in storms.
But I really havn't time to tell one-half of what was seen,
For, at last, my dearest Fanny, I paused, and saw-the QUEEN
My heart beat, when I saw her! The centre of a throng,
Ranged in a semicircle the whole room's length along :
Ambassadors, and princes, and ministers of state,
With their fair and noble ladies,—some gracious, and all great :
There, like the moon among the stars,--surrounded, yet alone,-
She stood as one should stand whose birth brought heirdom to a throne.
Not tall; yet so majestic, it seem'd a vulgar thought
That height could add, or take away, one grace that nature wrought :
Well did her perfect shapely head, seem form'd a crown to wear,
As the sunbeams fell with shifting light upon her gleaming hair ;
Well did her throat's proud graceful turn,-white arm,-and taper hand,
Th’instinctive evidence convey, of feminine command:
And conscious power was in the glance of her blue watchful eye,
Bent on the quick-succeeding forms that swept in homage by.
But oh! her smile :-how to describe, to you that have not seen,
The blended beauty of that smile,-half woman and half Queen!
Cordial, yet unfamiliar,—a welcome without words,
It beam'd upon me as I came, until my heart's deep chords
Thrilld, as I know the garden flowers must thrill when first they feel
The warm rays of the summer-sun among their blossoms steal.
Fanny, I'm not ashamed to own, I closed my weary eyes,
While a sort of day-dream of that smile (which took me by surprise,)
Came back again, in vision'd light, while Lady Crawl still scolded,
All the way home, because my ways, were “not by fashion moulded.”
Unsadden'd by her lecturing, I thank'd her; quite contented;
And then sate down, to write you word, that I had been "presented.”
QUEEN ADELAIDE'S LODGE, BUSHY PARK.
Bushy PARK, distinguished by the residence of the Duke of Clarence and his Duchess before the Duke's accession to the throne by the title of William IV., is situated chiefly in the parish of Teddington, and is distant from London about eleven miles. This royal park, which consists of above eleven hundred acres, comprises all the enclosures appertaining to Hampton Court, excepting that which is known by the name of the