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Juhn. O take into your spirit-piercing praise
My scene of sorrow.
I have well-clad woes,
Pathetic epithets to illustrate passion,
And steal true tears so sweetly from all these,
[Peruses the Motto and Emblems on the hearse. | "To Piety and Purity" and "Lillies mix'd with Roses"
How well you have apparell'd woe! this Pendant,
Insinuates a chaste soul in a clean body,
To make our griefs ingenious. Let all be dumb,
John. Hail Maid and Martyr! lo on thy breast,
I offer (as my guilt imposes)
Thy merit's laurel, Lillies and Reses;
Lillies, intimating plain
Thy immaculate life, stuck with no stain
Roses red and sweet, to tell
How sweet red sacrifices smell.
Hang round then, as you walk about this hearse,
John. Arabian spices, quick'ning by their scent; Fitzwater. Numidian marble, to preserve her praise, John. Corinthian ivory, her shape to praise: Fitzwater. And write in gold upon it, In this breast Virtue sate mistress, Passion but a guest.
John. Virtue is sweet; and, since griefs bitter be, Strew her with roses, and give rue to me.
Bruce. My noble brother, I've lost a wife and son ; You a sweet daughter. Look on the king's penitenc>; His promise for the public peace. Prefer
A public benefit. When it shall please,
Fitzwater. Do any thing;
Do all things that are honorable; and the Great King
Shall at any time reflect upon your follies,
John. Back unto Dunmow Abbey. There we'll pay
• Also cruelly slain by the poisoning John. ti. e. of peace; which this monstrous act of John's in this play comes to counteract, in the same way as the discovered Death of Prince Arthur is like to break
the composition of the King with his Barons in Shakspeare's Play.
The Dauphin of France, whom they had called in, as in Shakspeare's Play.
Matilda, now go take thy bed
In the dark dwellings of the dead;
Rest there, chaste soul, fix'd in thy proper sphere,
This scene has much passion and poetry in it, if I mistake not. The last words of Fitzwater are an instance of noble temperament; but to understand him, the character throughout of this mad, merry, feeling, insensible-seeming lord, should be read. That the venomous John could have even counterfeited repentance so well, is out of nature; but supposing the possibility, nothing is truer than the way in which it is managed. These old playwrights invested their bad characters with notions of good, which could by no pos sibility have coexisted with their actions Without a soul of goodness in himself, how could Shakspeare's Richard the Third have lit upon those sweet phrases and induce ments by which he attempts to win over the dowager queen to let him wed her daughter. It is not Nature's nature, but Imagination's substituted nature, which does almost as well in a fiction. (To be continued.)
GLANCES AT NEW BOOKS ON MY TABLE. "CONSTABLE'S MISCELLANY of original and selected Publications" is proposed to consist of various works on important and popular subjects, with the view of supplying certain chasms in the existing stock of useful knowledge; and each author or subject is to be kept separate, so as to enable purchasers to acquire all the numbers, or volumes, of each book, distinct from the others. The undertaking commenced in the first week of the new year, 1827, with the first number of Captain Basil Hall's voyage to Loo-Choo, and the complete volume o that work was published at the same time.
"EARLY METRICAL TALES, including the History of Sir Egeir, Sir Gryme, and Sir Gray-Steill." Edinb. 1826. sm. 8vo. 9s. (175 copies printed.) The most remarkable poem in this elegant volume is the rare Scottish romance, named in the title-page, which, according to its present editor, "would seem, along with the poems of sir
David Lindsay, and the histories of Robert the Bruce, and of sir William Wallace, to have formed the standard productions of the vernacular literature of the country." In proof of this he adduces several authorities; " and yet it is remarkable enough, that every ancient copy should have hitherto eluded the most active and unremitting research." The earliest printed edition is presumed to have issued from the press of Thomas Bassandyne, "the first printer of the sacred Scriptures in Scotland." An inventory of his goods, dated 18th October, 1577, contains an item of three hundred Gray Steillis," valued at the "pece vid. summa £vII. X. o." Its editor would willingly give the sum-total of these three hundred copies for "one of the said GraySteillis, were he so fortunate as to meet with it." He instances subsequent editions, but the only copy he could discover was printed at Aberdeen in 1711, by James Nicol, printer to the town and university; and respecting this, which, though of so recent date, is at present unique, "the editor's best acknowledgments are due to his friend, Mr. Douce, for the kind manner in which he favoured him with the loan of the volume, for the purpose of republication." On the 17th of April, 1497, when James IV. was at Stirling: there is an entry in the treasurer's accounts, "Item, that samyn day to twa Sachelaris that sang Gray Steil to the King, Ixs." In MS. collections made at Aberdeen in 1627, called a "Booke for the Lute," by Robert Gordon, is the air of "Gray-Steel ;" and a satirical poem in Scottish rhyme on the marquis of Argyle, printed in 1686, is "appointed to. be sung according to the tune of old Gray Steel." These evidences that the poem was sung, manifest its popularity. There are conjectures as to who the person denominated Sir Gray Steel really was, but the point is undetermined.
In this volume there are thirteen poems. 1. Sir Gray-Steill above spoken of. 2. The Tales of the Priests of Peblis, wherein the three priests of Peebles, having met to regale on St. Bride's day, agree, each in turn, to relate a story. 3. Ane Godlie Dreame, by lady Culross. 4. History of a Lord and his three Sons, much resembling the story of Fortunatus. 5. The Ring of the Roy Robert, the printed copies of which have been modernized and corrupted. 6. King Estmere, an old romantic tale. 7. The Battle of Harlaw, considered by its present editor "as the original of rather a numerous class of Scotish historical ballads." 8. Lichtoun's Dreme,
printed for the first time from the Bannatyne MS. 1568. 9. The Murning Maiden, a poem "written in the Augustan age of Scotish poetry." 10. The Epistill of the Hermeit of Alareit, a satire on the Grey Friers, by Alexander earl of Glencairn. 11. Roswall and Lillian, a "pleasant history," (chanted even of late in Edinburgh,) from the earliest edition discovered, printed in 1663, of which the only copy known is in the Advocates' Library, from the Roxburghe sale. 12. Poem by Glassinberry, a name for the first time introduced into the list of early Scotish poets, and the poem itself printed from "Gray's MS." 13. Sir John Barleycorn, from a stall-copy printed in 1781, with a few corrections, concerning which piece it is remarked, that Burns's version cannot be said to have greatly improved it." There is a vignette to this ballad, "designed and etched by the ingenious young artist, W. Geikie," of Edinburgh, from whence I take the liberty to cut a figure, not for the purpose of conveying an idea of this "Allan-a-Maut," who is surrounded with like "good" company by Mr. Geikie's meritorious pencil, but to extend the knowledge of Mr. Geikie's name, who is perfectly unknown to me, except through the single print 1 refer to, which compels me to express warm admiration of his correct feeling, and assured talent.
Besides Mr. Geikie's beautiful etching, there is a frontispiece by W. H. Lizars from a design by Mr. C. Kirkpatrick Sharpe, and a portrait of Alexander earl of Eglintoune 1670, also by Mr. Lizars, from a curiously illuminated parchment in the possession of the present earl.
Ran up, and with a duelistic tear,
SAYING NOT MEANING.
Two gentlemen their appetite had fed,
That anchovies on terrâ firmâ grew."
"Grew!" cried the other, "yes, they grow, indeed, Like other fish, but not upon the land;
You might as well say grapes grow on a reed,
"Why, sir," return'd the irritated other, "My brother,
When at Calcutta,
Beheld them bonâ fide growing;
He wouldn't utter
A lie for love or money, sir; so in
This matter you are thoroughly mistaken." “Nonsense, sir! nonsense! I can give no credit To the assertion-none e'er saw or read it;
Your brother, like his evidence, should be shaken."
“Be shaken, sir! let me observe, you are
"Sir," said the other, sucking his cigar,
If you will say impossibles are true,
"Then you force me to say, sir, you're a fool,"
Language like this no man can suffer cool;
Who had the impudence to tell it you." "Zounds! then d'ye mean to swear before my face That anchovies don't grow like cloves and mace?" "I do!"
Disputants often after hot debates
Leave the contention as they found it-bone, And take to duelling, or thumping tétes ;
Thinking, by strength of artery, to atone For strength of argument; and he who winces From force of words, with force of arms convinces !
With pistols, powder, bullets, surgeons, lint,
Seconds, and smelling-bottles, and foreboding, Our friends advanced; and now portentous loading (Their hearts already loaded) serv'd to show It might be better they shook hands-but no; When each opines himself, though frighten'd, right, Each is, in courtesy, oblig'd to fight! And they did fight: from six full measured paces The unbeliever pull'd his trigger first; And fearing, from the braggart's ugly faces,
The whizzing lead had whizz'd its very worst,
(His ire evanishing like morning vapours,j Found him possess'd of one remaining ear,
Who, in a manner sudden and uncouth,
THE OLD GENTLEMAN.
Our old gentleman, in order to be exclusively himself, must be either a widower or a bachelor. Suppose the former. We do not mention his precise age, which would be invidious;-nor whether he wears his own hair or a wig; which would be want. ing in universality. If a wig, it is a compromise between the more modern scratch and the departed glory of the toupee. If his own hair, it is white, in spite of his favourite grandson, who used to get on the chair behind him, and pull the silver hairs out, ten years ago. If he is bald at top,
the hair-dresser, hovering and breathing about him like a second youth, takes care to give the bald place as much powder as the covered; in order that he may convey, to the sensorium within, a pleasing indistinctness of idea respecting the exact limits of skin and hair. He is very clean and neat; and in warm weather is proud of opening his waistcoat half way down, and letting so much of his frill be seen; in order to show his hardiness as well as taste. His watch and shirt-buttons are of the best; and he does not care if he has two rings on a finger. If his watch ever failed him at the club or coffee-house, he would take a walk every day to the nearest clock of good character, purely to keep it right. He has a cane at home, but seldom uses it, on finding it out of fashion with his elderly juniors. He has a small cocked hat for gala days, which he lifts higher from his head than the round one, when made a bow to. In his pockets are two handkerchiefs, (one for the neck at night-time,) his spectacles, and his pocket-book. The pocketbook, among other things, contains a receipt for a cough, and some verses cut out of an odd sheet of an old magazine, on the lovely duchess of A., beginning—
When beauteous Mira walks the plain. He intends this for a common-place book which he keeps, consisting of passages in verse and prose cut out of newspapers and magazines, and pasted in columns; some
of thera rather gay. His principal other books are Shakspeare's Plays and Milton's Paradise Lost; the Spectator, the History of England; the works of Lady M. W. Montague, Pope, and Churchill; Middleton's Geography, the Gentleman's Magazine; Sir John Sinclair on Longevity; several plays with portraits in character; Account of Elizabeth Canning, Memoirs of George Ann Bellamy, Poetical Amusements at Bath-Easton, Blair's Works, Elegant Extracts; Junius as originally published; a few pamphlets on the American War and Lord George Gordon, &c. and one on the French Revolution. In his sitting rooms are some engravings from Hogarth and Sir Joshua; an engraved portrait of the Marquis of Granby; ditto of M. le Comte de Grasse surrendering to Admiral Rodney; a humorous piece after Penny; and a portrait of himself, painted by Sir Joshua. His wife's portrait is in his chamber, looking upon his bed. She is a little girl, stepping forward with a smile and a pointed toe, as if going to dance. He lost her when she was sixty.
The Old Gentleman is an early riser, because he intends to live at least twenty years longer. He continues to take tea for breakfast, in spite of what is said against its nervous effects; having been satisfied on that point some years ago by Dr. Johnson's criticism on Hanway, and a great liking for tea previously. His china cups and saucers have been broken since his wife's death, all but one, which is religiously kept for his use. He passes his mort ing in walking or riding, looking in at auctions, looking after his India bonds or some such money securities, furthering some subscription set on foot by his excellent friend sir John, or cheapening a new old print for his portfolio. He also hears of the newspapers; not caring to see them till after dinner at the coffee-house. He may also cheapen a fish or so; the fishmonger soliciting his doubting eye as he passes, with a profound bow of recognition. He eats a pear before dinner.
His dinner at the coffee-house is served up to him at the accustomed hour, in the old accustomed way, and by the accustomed waiter. If William did not bring it, the fish would be sure to be stale, and the flesh new. He eats no tart; or if he ventures on a little, takes cheese with it. You might as soon attempt to persuade him out of his senses, as that cheese is not good for digestion. He takes port; and if he has drank more than usual, and in a more private place, may be induced by some respectful
my lord Rockingham;" for he rarely says simply, lord; it is generally my lord," trippingly and genteelly off the tongue. If alone after dinner, his great delight is the newspaper; which he prepares to read by wiping his spectacles, carefully adjusting them on his eyes, and drawing the candle close to him, so as to stand sideways betwixt his ocular aim and the small type. He then holds the paper at arm's length, and dropping his eyelids half down and his mouth half open, takes cognizance of the day's information. If be leaves off, it is only when the door is opened by a new comer, or when he suspects somebody is over-anxious to get the paper out of his hand. On these occasions, he gives an important hem! or so; and re
In the evening, our Old Gentleman is fond of going to the theatre, or of having a game of cards. If he enjoy the latter at his own house or lodgings, he likes to play with some friends whom he has known for many years; but an elderly stranger may be introduced, if quiet and scientific; and the privilege is extended to younger men of letters; who, if ill players, are good losers. Not that he is a miser; but to win money at cards is like proving his victory by getting the baggage; and to win of a younger man is a substitute for his not being able to beat him at rackets. He breaks up early, whether at home or abroad.
At the theatre, he likes a front row in the pit. He comes early, if he can do so without getting into a squeeze, and sits patiently waiting for the drawing up of the curtain, with his hands placidly lying one over the other on the top of his stick. He generously admires some of the best performers, but thinks them far inferior to Garrick, Woodward, and Clive. During splendid scenes, he is anxious that the little bov should see.
He has been induced to look in at Vauxhall again, but likes it still less than he did years back, and cannot bear it in comparison with Ranelagh. He thinks every thing looks poor, flaring, and jaded. says he, with a sort of triumphant sigh, Ranelagh was a noble place! Such taste, such elegance, such beauty! There was the duchess of A. the finest woman in England, sir; and Mrs. L., a mighty fine creature; and lady Susan what's her name, that had that unfortunate affair with sir Charles. Sir, they came swimming by you like the
A HAPPY MEETING.
And doth not a meeting like this make amends
As smiling and kind as in that happy day!
Though haply o'er some of your brows, as o'er mine,
The snow-fall of time may be stealing-what then
What soften'd remembrances come o'er the heart,
The sorrows, the joys, of which once they were part
Still round them, like visions of yesterday, throng
The Old Gentleman is very particular in
The warmth of a meeting like this brings to light.
My niece, sir, from the country;" and he kisses the niece. The niece, seeing her cousin biting her lips at the joke, says,
My cousin Harriet, sir;" and he kisses the cousin. He never recollects such weather, except during the great frost, or when he rode down with Jack Skrimshire to Newmarket. He grows young again in his little grand-children, especially the one which he thinks most like himself; which is the handsomest. Yet he likes best perhaps the one most resembling his wife; and will sit with him on his lap, holding his hand in silence, for a quarter of an hour together. He plays most tricks with the former, and makes him sneeze. He asks little boys in general who was the father of Zebedee's children. If his grandsons are at school, he often goes to see them; and makes them blush by telling the master or the upperscholars, that they are fine boys, and of a precocious genius. He is much struck when an old acquaintance dies, but adds that he lived too fast; and that poor Bob was a sad dog in his youth; a very sad dog, sir, mightily set upon a short life and a merry one.'
When he gets very old indeed, he will sit for whole evenings, and say little or nothing; but informs you, that there is Mrs. Jones (the housekeeper), —“ She'll alk."-Indicator.
That once made a garden of all the gay shore, Deceiv'd for a moment, we'll think them still ours, And breath the fresh air of life's morning once more
So brief our existence, a glimpse, at the most,
Is all we can have of the few we hold dear;
For want of some heart that could echo it near.
For a smile, or a grasp of the hand, basť'ning on,
But come-the more rare such delights to the heart,
They're ours when we meet-they're lost when we part,
LINES TO HIS COUSIN
BY A WESTMINSTER BOY.
Time rolls away! another year
And great expense of marriage.
His wheel still rolls (and like the river