Изображения страниц
PDF
EPUB

more.

VI.

66

and we should not have been brought into contact Rose's suitor had amassed a considerable sum till after the marriage ceremony, when the dis- in this manner, with which he had retired, as I covery would only have aggravated the suffering. have described. He was evidently deeply in love

In a few days after, Mr. Faber and his family re- with her. He was a tall, fine man, and extremely turned, when all Rose's story was confirmed. He well-informed. The neighboring gentry even were put her in the way of discharging her last duties glad of his society. to her eccentric friend. She was at once engaged At length he made Rose a formal offer of marat a handsome salary by " Aunty,” with whom, riage. She wrote him a very kind and considerin a week or two, she departed for the place of ate answer, but firmly declined. He propitiated the latter in -shire.

“ Aunty,” who at length brought about an interAs for Eliza, her pride supported her. Had view. she loved Crayford more, she would have suffered Rose spoke frankly to him. She was by no

She has found a more worthy partner. means indifferent to his worth or his attentions ; Mary has long been mine.

she could even have entertained the idea of marriage with him ; but she entreated him not to press

his proposals, yet not to deprive her of his society. Two more

“ Coincidences,” and I will weary There were circumstances which rendered it imyou, good reader, no more.

possible that she could marry him. Aunty" and Rose got on capitally together. He took her hand. He begged permission to “Aunty,” who was the best-tempered, most del-speak. His love would bear down all obstacles. icate-minded creature possible, took care that Rose Would she only say one word? Would she only should never feel that she was a dependant. She afford him the right to persuade her ? was a little “ blue,” too, and was proud of Rose, She did not withdraw her hand, but, blushing who could play and sing well, and spoke many deeply, she murmuredlanguages, besides having read a great deal. I No, no, sir! it is impossible !" have already said that she was handsome. Is it Oh! I can bear it no longer. Rose! Rose! surprising, then, that she had many admirers ? I know all. You have forgotten me ; but I have

One there was who paid her special attention. ever remembered you. Years ago, when you were He was what is called a gentleman farmer, in the little more than a child, I loved you ; but I dared neighborhood ; and he had the reputation of being not tell you of my love, for I was only a poor copywealthy. He was comparatively a new comer; ing clerk, and you were so beautiful. Then that and it was understood that he had made money in villain, Crayford, crossed your path, and I thought London, with which he had come down and bought you were lost to me forever!” the property on which his father had been a very “And yet, knowing this, you would marry small tenant. The gossip was, that he had been me?" a barrister's clerk. A barrister's clerk is a mys 6 Yes !" terious personage, with no known local habitation. “ Then, my life shall be devoted to rendering His only apparent resting-place, for any time, is in myself worthy of such a noble heart !" some: gloomy chamber in Lincoln's-Inn, or the The gentleman-farmer was the young man who Temple, whither dingy-looking, sallow-faced vota- had saved me from being soundly thrashed by ries continually make their way, as if to consult Crayford in the tavern in

Another some oracle. At other times, he glides about the “ Coincidence,” good reader, which will, I hope, courts, a dark, shadowy nonentity, without a name, impress you as strongly as it did me. and seemingly without an occupation, unless, in This morning they were married—married by deed, for some sins, he is condemned to bear about Mr. Faber. Myself and Mary, Eliza and her husforever a stupendous bag. He is a being without band, my mother-in-law and “ Aunty,” were presan identity. He is Mr. So-and-so's clerk—noth-ent at the ceremony. Mary and I were obliged to ing inore. No man ever suspected that he had a leave for town by an early train ; and I sent her name, or, perchance, that he ate or slept. It seems home from the station in a cab, having an unusual that he is a sort of jackal to that proud beast of professional visit to pay. Not far from Covent prey, the barrister. In their first association, he Garden market I was accosted by one who dehelps to mark and hunt down the quarry: later, manded alms, but not in quite an ordinary tone. when, perchance, the young lion becomes the lord The man was emaciated, and in tatters, but his of the forest, and crowds of willing victims flock clothes had once been of good make ; and there to his den in the Temple, the jackal is allowed was an undefinable something in his manner. My his share of the prey. Every fee, every refresher face was shrouded in a cloak. given to the barrister, is accompanied by a delicate “I assure you, sir," said he, “ I am not a comwhet to the appetite of the clerk. Sometimes mon beggar!” these clerks are wise men, and amass money, either And the bow with which he put in, what had by saving, or lending at interest, or by advantageous once been his waistcoat pocket, the piece of silver buying and selling on information acquired during I gave him, proved it. He shuffled away. I professional pursuits. Many a barrister would watched him. He entered the nearest gin-palace, gladly exchange his yearly revenue for that of the challenging three or four of the lowest girls, who clerk of a Wilde, or a Follett, or a Thesiger. were at the door, to come in for a “ treat."

street.

[ocr errors]

It was Crayford-true to his character to the So much for “Coincidences.” I repeat, that last!

the foregoing is but a string of facts. Let the Subsequent inquiries confirmed my expectations. reader draw a moral if he will. I do not presume He had gambled and squandered away all his to do so ; but of this I am certain, that there are money, had then become an habitual drunkard, many more such events in life, had we the insight and now lived on the chance charity of those on or the faith to see and to appreciate them. whom his gentlemanly manner mighi impose.

he saw,

PUNCH.

“ The works they prepare, suit us to a hair,

And Typhus declares, in each sewer he
KING DEATH'S DISCOMFITURE.

Has the run of a sort of poison-retort
Cruel Death woke up. t' other day,

On the scale of Barclay's brewery ; And his pale horse he bade saddle;

“ Where of knock-me-down gases each other surAnd Plague and Pain, with the rest of his train,

passes, Set his majesty a-straddle.

Till he's puzzled his judgment in fixing, For his old-fashioned skeleton suit, he

Between very fine hydrogen' and . curious old Took the dress of a sewer-commissioner;

nitrogen,'

And • sulphurets, extra for mixing."" Or, perhaps, it might be the livery of a homeopathic practitioner.

When, by Gwydyr House door, his friend Typhus His scythe was pared down to a lancet,

In a state of the utmost prostration, And, riding along, his orisons

“ Why, how now!” quoth Death, pulling up out On a chaplet he sung, where, alternate, were strung of breath, A Parr's Life Pill and a Morrison's.

“What 's the meaning of this consternation?" First he rode to the east, where, unto a feast, “ You may say 'consternation,' for our occupation,” His friends had lately invited him,

Sighed Typhus, " is gone like Othello's; And saw Chulera at work, on Russian and Turk, Our roaring trade has been knocked on the head In a style that quite delighted him.

By these sanitary fellows. He'd fain have asked Cholera to England; “ They've persuaded the chancellor the commisBut finding him busy, pens a

sions to cancel, or Short note to say, if he can't step that way,

At least in the Times I've just read he has Perhaps he'll send Influenza.

Sent the writ that suspends our worthy old friends,

Called a writ of • Supersedeas.' “Though, indeed,” thought Death, as he sent it,

“ I shall scarce know how to receive her ; “And the twenty new brooms, just stuck up in For on every spot where there's rent to be got,

their rooms, I've my resident agent, Fever.

For clean-sweeping are all in a hurry;

We shall soon find no quarter on this side the Apropos, why not ride towards London,

water, To see how my business is thriving?

And must leave our snug lodgings in Surrey ! For Typhus and Co., my agents, I know, A roaring trade are driving.'

From each sewer and drain they 'll wash out,

might and main, So he turned his pale horse's head round,

Any hard-working Fever that haunts it ; Who sniffed the fat British Malaria,

Soon, a poor Plague wont know where the dickens And was off like the wind, leaving Cholera behind, To his spare meal of Serf and Pariah.

For a drop of good gas when he wants it. And the pale horse kicked, and Death he licked “A way out of the mess I can't think of, unless His chaps, in anticipation

Yourself with Lord John you could closet, Of the glorious whet he was certain to get And get from him an act, making sewers banks, in From the liberal British nation.

fact,

Of plague-issue and poison-deposit.”
He thought of each drain-a dunghill ;
Each sewer—a sludge and slime-house ;

Sighed Death, “ I ne'er looked for such treatment Of Whitechapel, St. Giles' and Westminster,

From a whig administration ; Of Poplar, and Lambeth, and Limehouse.

But our vested right, sure, in cesspool and sewer, '

Gives us claim to compensation." And he blessed his friends, the wiseacres,

“ I tried that already," quoth Typhus, Who at centralization grumble, While they 'll die with delight for a vested right, Though I sent my schedule in, when they first took

“But no justice whatever they 'd do to me, And bow down to an autocrat Bumble.

to meddling, “ Ha! ha!” chuckled Death, as he drew in the Of ten thousand deaths yearly due to me. breath

“ No-we're turned adrift, for ourselves to shift; From foul court and stinking alley,

Best bear our hard fate with patience !" “ That's the wholesome scent of self-government,' " 'T was n't so in old days," growled Death, going

The true reek of · Laissez-aller!' “ A fig for yonr Smiths and your Chadwicks,

“ But these are your innovations !" With their Health of Towns petitioners ; So King Death and Lord Typhus, disgusted They may write, rave, and roar, while I've still to With sanitary ravages, the fore

Determined on quitting ungrateful Great Britain, Seven hundred good sewer commissioners. And settling among the savages.

65

to go

his ways;

PATRIOTIC MEETING OF THE TAXES.

ness.

his readiness to be offered up to the pious wrath of

the sanitary commissioners. They had, it apLast week a meeting of a great many of the peared, made their report—a report, which was, in Taxes—known to Englishmen—was held at No. 17, fact, his death warrant. He was glad of it; he Old Bond street, the office of the Society for the received the intelligence with a solemn cheerfulProtection of Agricultural and British Industry. It And it might be asked—Wherefore ? He is not for us to attempt to anatomize the whimsical would at once declare it. He was devoured by motive that induced the parties composing the meet- remorse and horror. He could not count the deaths ing to choose such a place of gathering --we have, that might be lawfully laid at his door. He could as chroniclers, only to state the fact. The room not wash away the engrained mortal dye that stained was found to be quite large enough for the Taxes his hands. (Great sensation.) Had he not been attending; for, if all the Taxes known throughout made the foster-father of fever? Had not his whole the country had determined upon.coming together, existence been passed in overt acts of darkness ? perhaps no space short of that of Salisbury Plain When he appeared in courts and alleys, he was would have comfortably accommodated them. burnt with blushes ; not so much for the money he

The room was copiously sprinkled with the deo- received for light-as though sunbeams were to be dorizing fluid, in consequence of the folly—that, it weighed in the scales of government like shekels in was feared, right be infectious-remaining from a the scales of the mint-( Cheers)—but for the gloom recent meeting of the Protection Society.

and consequent filth that his tyranny everywhere The chancellor of the exchequer took the chair; en ed. If he blushed to take money for the and, as it appeared to us, very unwillingly addressed | windows that remained, how much more did he the meeting. He said he had consented to the wishes blush for the windows that his oppression had expressed by a deputation, by presiding that day ; caused to be stopped up—(Cheers)—for the winbui he should be wanting in candor, did he not at dows that, out of dread of him, had never been once declare that he expected no practical good pierced ? (Loud cheers.) Knowing the sickness whatever from the present meeting. It appeared he had brought upon the poor, he was weary and that a great many Taxes—touched with remorse and ashamed of his life. He however felt it impossicompunction for the cruelty, extortion, and worry ble that his existence could continue with any sinthey were in the daily habit of exercising upon the cere endeavor of the government to amend the comfort and industry of the country-wished to sac-household condition of the people. He gave them rifice themselves; in a word to patriotically render fair warning. Cholera was coming. He had up their existence for the prosperity and happiness helped the fiend before—and it was not for him to of the people in general. Now, however laudable declare how much he would assist the demon now. their intention might be-however romantically beau- In fact, he hardly knew himself. But this he knew titul in theory—it was iinpossible, he thought, to that if he helped Cholera in the courts and alleys reduce it to practice. The tas-gatherer was no of the poor, Cholera would reward him for the other than a soldier out of uniform; it was his assistance by working with added energy in the business to bleed, and despoil, and entertain no squares and crescents of the rich. He would no Jackadaisical feelings on the matter. His sword longer be made a boon companion with gloominess. was his pen, and his musket his inlihorn. He (the It should no longer be said of Window Tax and chancellor) had, however, in obedience to a gen- Black Obscurityeral wish, taken the chair, and would endeavor to

“ And so, between his darkness and his brightness ihe best of his ability to go through the business of the meeting.

There passed a mutual glance of great politeness." Mr. Income Tax rose to make the first remon. Te continue the existence of himself—of Window strance, expressive of a wish that at the end of the Tax-and to profess a desire for sanitary reform, present session of Parliament he should be allowed was the grossest fiscal hypocrisy. It was to make io die with decency. Since begotten by his father, seeming friends of a spirit of light and a fiend of Sir Robert Peel-he wished, as a child, to speak darkness. (Cheers.) In conclusion, Mr. Winif possible with becoming decency of his parent-dow Tax begged to be immolated—if they would, he had passed a most wretched existence. He had by the benevolent hand of Dr. Southwood Smithbeen abused as a tyrant and a despoiler, who had on the hearthstone of the poor. If he was still to compelled respectable people to give up their gigs exist, after any attempted sanitary act, he should —who had been put forward as the scapegoat, by think himself ten times the hypocrite he had been husbands, who had reduced their wives' household all along. (Cheers.) expenses—and had even been accused of keeping The chairman stroked his chin and said—nothing. families all the year in town, when-before his time Mrs. Taxupontea-a draggled, dirty matron, with - they were always permitted to go to Margate or a very bloated, carbuncled face-rose, and said—or Brighton. Young ladies had been denied their rather hiccuped—that she too was tired of her life. boxes at the play-schoolboys had had their pock- The tax upon her was so heavy, that she was comet-money reduced to half-and all the fauli put pelled to go to the gin-shop, when, upon her word upon him. In every parish he was abused as a and honor, and as she wished to be a decent body, contemptible prying rascal-poking his nose into she would much rather prefer to take a dish of every man's pocket, and turning over the leaves of bohea or congou by her own fireside. It was very every man's ledger. In a word, like Curtius, or well to talk about temperance, but it was made to Regulus, or any other heathen patriot, he wished cost too much money. And so the poor went to to be allowed to die for the comfort of the country. the gin-noggin, when otherwise, she was certain

The chairman, with a grim look, shook his head. on it, they would rally round the teapot. Mrs.

Mr. Window Tax then rose. He said he had Taxupontea concluded a very juniper speech with heard a great deal about a sanita

a low curtsey, and a stammering request of the The government, it was said, wishes to come be- chairman, " lo be allowed to die for the benefit of fore the people of England with clean hands. families.” Now, as in the pagan time, the divinities were con A great many other Taxes wished to address the ciliated by the sacrifice of a victim-he expressed chair, but the right hon. baronet said he had sat

movement.

A SEVERE LYRIC.

there Jong enough. He had nothing to say at Scotched, and scored, and lacerated, cauterized, and present, but would give his answer on the floor of

hacked about ; the house of commons. Hereupon many Taxes And though tender as a chick—a Sybarite for queasbecame very boisterous, crowding and pressing

inessabout the right hon. gentleman. He was, how- Flayed alive, unconscious of a feeling of uneasiness. ever, finally rescued by a body of police sent immediately from the home office, by Sir George Grey,

Celsus will witness our deft chirurgeons presently, upon his hearing of the imminent danger of his

Manage operations as he said they should ; cabinet fellow-laborer.

Doing them "safely, and speedily, and pleas

antly,

Just as if the body were a log of wood. THE QUESTIONS ON THE SHELF.

Teeth, instead of being drawn with agonies immeasTo be sung lo Classical Music.

urable, WHERE are the questions of a former day,

Now will be extracted with sensations rather pleas'The agitations of the latter years ?

urable ; How hath the vote by ballot passed away?

Chloroform will render quite agreeable the parting Of universal suffrage now who hears ?

with Where are they to be found?

Any useless member that a patient has been smart-
In the ocean of our troubles,

ing with
With the wrecks of railway bubbles ;
In the Irish gulf profound,

Then of what vast, of what wonderful utility,

Viewed in its relation to domestic bliss,
Drown'd, drown'd, drown'd!

Since, in a trice, it can calm irritability,
Where sleep the thunders of thy rising storm,

Surely such a substance will be found as this ! Five-pointed Charter? Where, ah? where art Sculding wife and squalling infant-petulance and thou ?

fretfulness, Whither is fled the spirit of reform?

Lulling, with its magic power, instantèr, in forgetWhere is it all-the rumpus and the row?

fulness ; The hubbub hath been hushed,

Peace in private families securing, and in populous And the struggle for organic

Nurseries, whene'er their little inmates prove“ ob-
Reformation, by the panic

stropolous.”
On the nation that hath rushed,
Crush'd, crush'd, crush'd !

When some vile dun with his little bill is vexing

you; There was a voice that cried " Amend the law!" When the tax collector's knock assails your Why is it silent, brazen-throated Brougham?

door; What is it that haih paralyzed thy jaw?

When aught is troubling, annoying, or perplexAlas! the demon of commercial gloom.

ing you ; He doth enchain thy tongue;

When, in short, you 're plagued with any kind And thy mouth-its vocal member

of bore, Mute as song-bird's in December,

Do not rage and fume and fret, behaving with stuTuneless as a harp unstrung

pidity, Bung, bung, bung !

Take the matter quietly with coolness and placidity,

Don't indulge conduct and in language reprehenAnd where are all the grievances and claims

sibleOf the mechanic and the lab’ring man?

Snuff a little chloroform, be prudent, and insensible.
What has become of certain promised aims
To right the peasant and the artisan,

Ill-paid and over-worked ?
Of the monetary question
They are merged in the digestion,

Colonel Sibthorpe.- Work one observation, con-
Sunk, and swamped, and shelved, and bate on whatever question before the house.

demnatory of railways in the lump, into every deshirked ;

Mr. John O'Connell.--Work the wrongs of IreBurk’d, burk’d, burk'd!

land into a long speech, no matter how irrelevant to the occasion. Spin a yarn of two hours, twist

facts to your purpose; miss one point--the loan of AIR—"Run, Neighbors, Run," foc.

the £10,000,000—repeat, and end where you beOh! what a host, what an infinite variety,

gan. Work the repeal crochet in an endless round Rapt Imagination, in her transports warm,

of abuse. Pictures of blessings conferred upon society

Mr. Feargus O'Connor.-Work the charter in By the new discovery of chloroform!

five points ; make a chain of reasoning with several Applications, amputations, denudations, perforations, hitches; go on till you have worked out the patience Uiterly divested of all disagreeable sensations ;

of the house, and wind up. Like your coat-tail in a crowd-some clever cut

Lord Brougham.-Work all the crochets you can purse stealing it,

think of at one sitting ; work everybody and every Arms and legs are now whipped off without our

thing; miss no opportunity ; take up the thread of ever feeling it.

every other noble lord's discourse—and cut it short. Take but a sniff at this essence anæsthetical, Dropped upon a handkerchief

, or bit of sponge, The steed called lightning, (say the Fates,) And on your eyelids 't will clap a seal hermetical, Is owned in the United States.

And your senses in a trance that instant plunge. 'T was Franklin's hand that caught the horse, Then you may be pinched and punctured, bumped 'T was harnessed by Professor Morse! and thumped, and whacked about,

Chronotype.

CROCHET SAMPLERS FOR MEMBERS.

THE BLESSINGS OF CHLOROFORM.

he walks along, nodding to his future assassins, his THE NEW IRISH PEACE BILL.

body coated with the stiff uneasy consciousness that You refused a coercion bill, says an Irish mem- it is viewed by the eyes of deadly sportsmen. For ber to ministers, when there were fifty murders a in Ireland the landlord is the game on his own month, and now you ask for one when there are preserve. Again, in the house on

the next only nineteen murders a month. But Sir George grounds, the dinner-bell has rung when the first Grey had already shown, that if the crimes in all shot is heard—but no one goes to the dining-room, Ireland are fewer than they have been at other for papa is out: there is a running about the lands periods, there is an alarming increase in certain -a bustle in the hall—the lady of the house leaves districis. And statistics fail to make out the whole the room, followed by her daughters—somebody case. If the “ hornicides" (the official euphuism has been hurt : “it is papa!” Yes, there he lies, for murder) were to reach four places of figures, a ghastly sight even for alien eyes, but one that the fact would fail to create any very powerful sen- those gentle eyes never forget. In the agent's sation : the sight of a single bloodstained bullet house not far off, the shot is heard, and people of the hundreds that have been reddened this sea- look to the doors and windows; for this house is son would do more than the most multitudinous not so strongly defended. But the agent has esfigures. Arithmetic is too abstract for eloquence caped this time. The two other great families and feeling. On the other hand, the cases which hasten off, while yet alive, to Dublin : their agents Sir George recites are too few and too meagre in cannot so easily abandon the place on which a livethe narrative to give any adequate idea of the as- lihood depends; although the postman has distribpect presented by the country in which they occur. uted a circular all round threatening death. So The distant reader, for whom these descriptions are the women remain prisoners in the house, for murprepared, must fill up the picture by the exercise der is abroad in the streets and fields. of the fancy. Imagination must vivify the dry sta Mike Doherty there, who is running with one tistics. A Carleton or a Lever can teach more, shoe on, is known to have been a murderer before, in quantity, in vividness, and in truth, than these and looks as if he had just been so again. The dry “ facts ;” the thing wanted being a full idea servants about the house—are they terror-stricken of the social state which pervades the criminal dis- that they cannot see the obvious Doherty, or are trict. It is not because Mr. Roe or Major Mahon they in league with him ? are they too murderers ? has been murdered that we all agree to a coercion how many of them ? which of them? Alas, no one act, but because the bonds of society are loosened ; can tell ; and the family must sleep at nights conand such letters as those received by Mr. and Mrs. tent to run the chance of having a murderer more M'Causland speak more than the actual “homi- or less on the premises. The spectacle of men cides.” The reader, then, must use these raw practising the art of murder, by shooting at an old materials of “facts and figures" to perform for hat, is too common to be a wonderment. So life himself the office of a Carleton or a Lever. goes on, till the sound of shots by day and the

When shots, not all of them aimless, are heard blaze of fires by night grow familiar gossip, like every half hour in the day—when bonfires at night the eruption of the mountain the inhabitants are the illumination for some death actually inflicted near a volcano. -it is not difficult to paint the feelings in which The effectual application of Sir George Grey's those of the victim class must pass the hours. One bill to such a neighborhood would totally alter the can see the family of the landlord gathered round daily aspect of the place. The half-hour guns the dinner-table, start at the sound of the gun out-would cease ; the most familiar object abroad, in side, not merely as sensitive young ladies in Eng-place of ragamuffin idders practising at a mark or land will jump, but as those do who familiarly loitering assassins on the watch for the coming of associate the idea of hurnan death with the sound " their murdered man," would be a number of of the fowling-piece. Just as the butler removes green-coated policemen, with guns on their shoulthe first cover-hark! there 's a gun! All eyes ders—weapons seldom sounding, and always givare turned towards the father of the house, and ing a sense of protection instead of danger : the are reässured by his presence. No shriek or out- ragged felons running about in all the mad excitecry. The dinner goes on : it is half over-another! ment of blood would have retreated, either sulking They listen again ; but all are together, and famil- at home in harmless moodiness, or at last returning iarity makes danger not so fearful. It is otherwise to industrious work. But now the terror would in the house on the next property. The family be transferred to different abodes. Once more the are waiting for dinner : the quick dull blow of a women at the great house would breathe at ease. gunshot on the ear strikes dismay in the assembled If a gun were heard a cheek might be pale, but drawing-room-papa has not yet come in ! But hope would remain ; for papa would be well prohe does come in presently ; though gloomy and tected. It is in the cabin now that the sound disordered, because as he walked among his own would strike terror. The wife would clasp her people, servilely bowing to his “honor," he recog- hands and look out : Oh! is it Mike that has nized in the savage restlessness of their glittering braved the law and brought it down upon himself ? eyes that fierce levity which might make them his is it Mike that is to go to prison, and be hanged, assassins the next instant : it was indeed a toss-up or sent out of the land ? is it Mike that is helping whether he should reach the hall-door alive ; and to keep that terrible police watching the neighbor

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »