Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB
[blocks in formation]

we

TO THE EDITOR.

Connected with this subject, the pracEffusion, on offering an Address of Con- sunk into an untimely tomb, followed dolence, on occasion of the Death of tions of near and dear friends, but of in the following beautiful lines, extract

not only with the tears and lamenta- tice of embalming is strongly reprobated the ever to be lamented Princess Char.

the whole population of an empire, on ed from an Elegy on the death of the lotte of Wales.

whose flag, unfurled in every quarter of Princess Charlotte. Of late years, we have often met in the habitable globe, the sun never sets, this place to present our congratula- and upon whose grief therefore he can. Which now bears nothing but a splendid name,

Yet what avails it to embalm a frame, tions to the throne, expressive of our not go down. And perhaps there never Or strive to rescue from devouring time joy and satisfaction on account of the was witnessed either in the moral or What Heav'n has doom'd to perish in its prime ? glorious achievements of our fleets and political world, a grander or more sub- Alas! how little can our caution do, armies, and of the happy events which lime movement, than that which we Except to mangle and expose it too! were the consequence of their victorious lately beheld in a great, brave, en- Foul, savage practice, which the modest state career. Now, are assembled in lightened, and affectionate people, with Can spices lend a lustre to that eye, mourning, to offer our condolence on one assent as it were, and spontaneously or teach that heart to beat, that breast to sigh? occasion of a great national calamity, pausing in the midst of their labours, The vanish'd crimson of those lips renew, and severe domestic affliction, which shutting their doors on business and and softly touch them with ambrosial dew ? “ bows down our very spirits to the diversion, and repairing to the temples and play'd in kindness o'er the poor and weak? earth," and has plunged in grief inex- of their God to pour forth their pious Vain, foolish hope! the muse alone can give pressible the Royal family, and the sorrows,—to express their loyal sym- Those beauties life, and make their owner live; whole population of the British empire. pathies,—to seek those present conso. The muse alone will man's past actions scan,

Let us improve this eventful dis- lations, and to cherish those immortal And force her lessons on surviving man. pensation, as an awful and imposing hopes which are the peculiar and blesinstance of the mutability of human sed fruits of our holy religion. “Deep,' affairs, and the instability of all earthly says the Celtic bard, " is the sleep of

On the New Coin. grandeur. Let the people be convin- the dead; low their pillow of dust! ced, that the pains and troubles incident When (he asks) will it be morn in the to humanity are not confined to hum- grave, to bid the slumberer awake?”

Now that gold is again to be seen, I ble stations, but penetrate indiscrimin. We know not when, but we are assured have got a seven-shilling piece of 1800, ately into the palaces of kings and the that the morn of the grave will

arrive, and being rather an amateur of coins, cottages of the poor ; and that for all when our noble, yirtuous, and amiable I cannot repress my surprise at the dethe varied forms of human trial and Princess will arise in her native ma- cline of art, as well as of the titles of affliction, there is only one true and jesty, in the presence of an assembled our monarch, exhibited in so short a time genuine antidote to be found, and that world, to receive on high, at the hands after as the late great coinage 1816. is in patient resignation to the will of of the Eternal, a crown of glory that On comparing a shilling of the latter heaven, and confidence in the wisdom can never fade, and a diadem that can périod with my seven-shilling piece of of the inscrutable decrees of providence. never tarnish.

the former, I really find a wonderful Of these principles, and of every virtue

difference. On the gold, the head, if “ Too pure and perfect still to linger here, that can grace or adorn the human “ Cheer'd with seraphic visions of the blest;

not of bold relief, has at least an elecharacter, the illustrious Princess whose Smiling, she dried a tender husband's tear, gant, not a vulgar and coarse express death we now deplore in the sincerity And poured her spirit forth upon his breast.” | sion, as in the shilling, leaving the halfand anguish of our hearts, afforded an “ He bends not o'er the mansions of the dead, crown entirely out of view, which the admirable and memorable example,

“ Where loveliness and grace in ruins lie; Master of the Mint himself has been which it is to be hoped will prove an

In sure and certain hope he lifts his head, ashamed of. Then, the name of the

“ And faith presents her in her native sky." monarch is expressed with the classical useful and instructive moral lesson to all ranks in the united empire, and in That Heaven may grant every conso-termination VS. not cut short as if to the dominions over which, to all hu- lation, divine and human, to the royal avoid a difficulty, as on the silver. But man appearance, she was destined on and afflicted parents of our beloved and in these days, when innovation of any some future day to sway the sceptre. departed Princess, to her illustrious and kind is held in such horror, I am chiefly But, alas! this fond and adored object disconsolate consort, (who to the glory struck with the wonderful alteration in of an empire's hopes, snatched in the of the hero adds the virtues of the man,) the titles on the reverse. "In the gold bloom of youth and health from the and to the whole royal family, is the uni- appears the fine sounding legend, Mag. highest honours, riches, and delights, versal prayer of a loyal, dutiful, and af- Bri. Fr. et Hib. Rer.-a legend but which were strewed in her path, has fectionate people.

poorly supplied by the modern Britt.

66

218
Letters of David Hume.--Epitaphs.

February 7, 1818. even with the double 7. the frippery of But this will be sufficient for a man of letters, soon as it is fixed, and as long before it is executed the Garter, and the w. w.p. in the cor-who surely needs less money both for his enter- as possible, that I may previously adjust matters so

tainment and credit than other people. as to share the compliments with other of my ner, both of which last, by the bye, are

friends, particularly the Hertford family, who may innovations. I wish, too, the present

April 17, 1775. reasonably expect this attention from me. Master of the Mint had copied the fine You are mistaken, my dear madam, I am sufi - Can I beg of you to mention my name to the twisted milling on the rim of the old ciently of an age to feel the decline of life, and I Prince of Conti, and assure him that the world coin, rather than favoured us with his feel it sensibly. I have, however, been always, does not contain any person more devoted to him,

and still am very temperate. I have not

or more sensible of the obligations which he imown invention in the new.

The only debauches I ever was guilty of were posed on me. I suppose Madem. de Barbantane yet been fortunate enough to obtain a those of study; and even these were moderate

, is very agreeably situated with her pupil, the crown-piece of the late coinage, but fear for I was always very careful of my health by us Dutchess of Barbantane ; will she be pleased to from what I have already seen that, as it ing exercise. I own that this country does not accept of the respects of an old friend and seris larger, its faults will be but the more entirely please me, particularly the climate. I vant.

I beg to be remembered to M. de Viereville. apparent, especially if the mint artist sometimes entertain the notion of returning to

France; but as I could not now, at my years, If Miss Becket be still with you I wish you to should attempt to pourtray a naked bear the tumult of Paris, and all provinciel towns make her my compliments. am, with the greatshoulder, as in the late half-crown. are unknown to me, I shall never probably carry est truth and sincerity, ever yours I am, Sir, yours, &c. this idea into execution.

DAVID HUMË.
Simon.
Edinburgh, 25th January 1772.

Edinburgh, 20th August 1776.
I am truly ashamed, dear madam, of your hav. Though I am certainly within a few weeks,
David Hume.

ing prevented me in breaking our long silence, dear Madam, and perhaps within a few days of

but you have prevented me only by a few days; my own death, I could not. forbear being struck We

now conclude the Extracts for I was resolved to have writ to you on this com- with the death of the Prince of Conti, so great we intend making from the inedited mencement of the year, and to have renewed my a loss in every particular.

professions of unfeigned and unalterable attach- My reflections carried me immediately to your Letters of Mr Hume. There is some- ment to you. While I was at London 1 had con- situation, in this melancholy incident. thing to our minds very pleasing in the tinual opportunities of hearing the news of Paris, What a difference to you in your whole plan contemplation of this distinguihed au- and particularly concerning you; and ever since of life. Pray write me some particulars, but in thor, in the greater familiarity of epis

I had settled here, I never saw any body who such ternis, that you need not care, in case of

cảme from your part of the world that I did not decease, into whose hands your letter may fall. tolary correspondence with an elegant question concerning you. The last person to My distemper is a diarrhoea, or disorder in my female. It is obvious, however, that whom I had the satisfaction of speaking of you bowels

, which has been gradually undermining the idea of having his letters preserved was Mr Dutens. But there were many circum- me these two years; but within these six months and published, was never entirely ab- stances of your situation which moved my anxie- has been visibly hastening me to my end. I ste sent from the writer ; if we except, in- ty, and of which none but yourself could give me death approach gradually without any anxiety

information. You bave been so good as to enter or regret. I salute you, with great affection and deed, the last-melancholy, interesting, into a detail of them much to my satisfaction; regard, for the last time. and most affecting of our present selec- and I heartily rejoice with you, both on the res

David HUME. tion. This single note refutes all the toration of your tranquillity of mind, which time foolish stories respecting the dying re- and reflection have happily effected, and on the

He died, as

domestic satisfaction which the friendship and morse of David Hume.

Epitaphs. society of your daughter-in-law afford you. These he lived, a philosopher; and whatever last consolations go near to the heart, and will make we may think of his principles, it is but you ample compensations for your disappointments

In one of your late Numbers, was a fair to allow, that they were consistent in those views of ambition which you so naturally collection of burlesque Epitaphs, such to the last, and sustained him even in entertained, but which the late revolutions in as I have often grieved to see disgracgaiety before the certain approach of France might perhaps have rendered more full ing our prominent church-yards. This death.

For my part I have totally and finally retired idea which has more than once occur

paper brought to my recollection an December 23, 1768. From the world, with a resolution never more to There was a report here which got into the appear on the scene in any shape. This porpose red to me,-that a little volume of orinewspapers, that I was going over to France in arose not from discontent but from a satiety. 1/ginal and selected poetry of this class, my former station, but it never had the least foun. have now no object but to sit down and think and would not be uninteresting, and might dation. The truth is, I would rather pay you a die in peace.

serve to introduce a better taste than visit voluntarily, than in any public character, What other project can a man of my age en that generally displayed by the parishthough indeed the prospect of affairs here is so tertain ? Happily I found my taste for reading clerk or stone-mason on these occastrange and melancholy as would make any one return, even with greater avidity, aiter a pretty desirous of withdrawing from the country at any long interruption. But I guard myself carefully sions. I have always been fond of virate. Licentiousness, or rather the frenzy of li- from the temptation of ever writing any more; siting village burying-grounds. I acberty has taken possession of us, and is throwing and though I have had great encouragement to quired this inclination before I can reevery thing into confusion. How happy do I es- continue my history, I am resolved never again teem it, that in all my writings I liave always to expose myself to the censure of such factious member how; but I do not forget how kept at a proper distance from that tempting ex- and passionate readers as this country abounds often in youth have a few appropriate treme, and have maintained a due regard to ma-with. There are some people here conversible and tolerably written lines produced gistracy and established government, suitably to enough. Their society, together with my books, in my mind that feeling, “ pleasing yet the character of an historian and a philosoplier. Gills up my time suficiently,

so as not to leave any mournful,” whose impression faded not daily; and indeed have now no reason to com- of building, which has given me some occupation with the last view of the sacred and plain of the public, though your partiality to me I hearken attentively to the hopes you give me of simple dwelling of the rustic dead. made you think so formerly.

seeing you once more before I die. I think it be. How often have I seen the mirth of a Add to this

, that the king's bounty puts me in comes me to meet you at London; and thongh 1 giddy party, which was excited by some a very opulent situation. I must, however, ex- have frequently declared that I should never more pect, that if any great public convulsion happen, see that place, such an incident as your arrival stranger " lame of a foot,” suddenly my appointments will ccase, and reduce me to there would be sufficient to break all my resolu- melted into tearfulness and sensibility my own revenue.

tions. I only desire to hear of your journey asl by an unadorned, unaffected sketch of

February 7, 1818.]
Epitaphs-On Frauds in Bankruptcy.

219 “ the short and simple annals of the

From the same.

Mother-sweet Mother, tho' I knew thee not, poor !"-and for these emotions the The grave of a beautiful warrior, by whose hand I feel that one I love is buried here ;

And iho' this grave by others is forgot, heart is the better,—the heart which Fell many a combatant,

Ere he became silent,

To me it shall be thro' life dear-most dear. every circumstance of life seems to har

Beneath this stone, den-every circumstance of death to Llachan, the son of Rhun, ameliorate. A well epitaphed church- Is in the vale of Cain.

On Frauds in Bankruptcy. yard might have no small influence on

From the same. the mind of the neighbouring peasantry: To whom belongs the square grave,

TO THE EDITOR. The Burying-ground is the lounge of With the four stately stones at its corners ?

I was much struck with the cases of -the scene of the meditations of the Inscription on a Stone in the English the idlers—the rendezvous of the lovers It is the tomb of Madoc --Tax Fierce Knigur. bankruptcy alluded to in your last

Number. You may perhaps think the thoughtful—and the assemblage place

following remarks, which are chiefly for the gossips of the village. It would

Burying-ground at Bourdeaux.

drawn from my own observation, wornot be a difficult task to convert it into

There was a sweet and nameless grace,

thy of insertion, as illustrative of the a species of rustic mental school. Yet That wander'd o'er her lovely face;

same subject. a step further :-Would not the church- And from her pensive eye of blue,

The evils which arise from banke yard be turned into a “ biographical li. Was magic in the glanco wbich flew. ruptcies, in the statutory sense of the brary” for the lower orders, were each

Her hair of soft and gloomy shade,

word, are slight in comparison with

In rich luxuriance curling stray'd ; deceased's exact character to be en

But when she spoke or when she sung,

the effects of those insolvencies, stoppagraven on the stone which covers his Enchantment on her accents hung.

ges, or suspensions of payment, as they virtues or vices? Might pot a strong

Where is she now?- Where all must be are called, which are settled on the plan feeling of emulation be excited ? This Sunk in the grave's obscurity.

of a conveyance of property, by means could be arranged by the clergyman of

Yet never-never slumber'd there

of a trust-deed for behoot of creditors.

A mind more pure-a form more fair! the parish. We are none of us indiffer

Numerous complaints are made, and ent to the regards of posterity. “Vic

From the French.

perhaps justly, against the inefficacy of

Ona Tomb-stone in Auvergne. tory or Westminster Abbey !” was the

the laws. It is not indeed possible to battle-shout of one of our greatest he

Marie was the only child of her mother, frame laws applicable to every case, in

* And she was a widow.” roes. This “ love of fame" this “uni

Marie sleeps in this grave

our present extended system of comversal passion,” pervades all human And the widow has now no child.

mercial intercourse ; but, I believe, it minds, in a greater or less degree. With

will be found, that, in bankruptcies at

In a Church-yard in Northumberland. what pride would the children of the

least, there is not so much reason to virtuous poor man read on his tomb- The world has long since wearied me, complain of the weakness of the law, as stone the epitome of his worth ;-and And now, my appointed task is done, of the failure in its application, in the what a lesson would the offspring of a

Parting it without enmity,

wilful attempt to oppose its operation.

I'll take my staff and journey on. different character receive, from the

If people must legislate for themselves, “ stigmatised,” even in death ! But e

On a Tomb-stone in an Irish Country or allow themselves to be duped, by

Church yard. nough-more than enough from me on

designing and artful knaves, they ought

A little Spirit slumbers here, this subject. I subjoin a few epitaphs,

to learn to be satisfied with the conse

Who to one heart was very dear. brought to me by some of the members

Oh! he was more than life or light,

quences of their error. of a youthful group who were with me

Its thought by day-its dream by night! It is not my intention to enter into a when your burlesques were read. The chill winds came—the young flower faded, comparison of the advantages that at

And died;—the grave its sweetness shaded. tend the different systems which are

Fair Boy! thou should'st have wept for me,
Epitaph from the Greek.

followed in the management of bank

Nor I have had to mourn o'er thee: Pillars of death : carv'd syrens' tearful urns ! Yet not long shall this sorrowing be.

rupt estates; but I may observe, that in In whose sad keeping my poor dust is laid, Those roses I have planted round,

such cases as have fallen under my obTo him that near my tomb his footsteps turns, To deck thy dear sad sacred ground, servation, I have found, that trust-deeds

Stranger or Greek, bid hail ! And say, a maid When spring-gales next those roses wave, Rests in her bloom below; her Sire the name

afforded room for deceptions, which

They'll blush upon thy mother's grave. Of Myrtis gave; her birth and lineage high :

could not have been practised with the And say her bosom friend Errina came,

Epitaph on Himself,

same impunity under a sequestration. And on the marble graved her elegy.

BY THE CHEVALIER BOUFFLERS. In some instances of trust management, From the Modern Greek,

Ci git un Chevalier, qui sans cesse courut, I have heard of the grossest misappliOn a Tomb in the Island of Zante.

Qui, sur les grands chemins naquit, vecut, mourut, cation of funds, and even of fraud,
Pour prouver ce que dit le sage,

which, in place of being visited by the The Maid who in this grave is sleeping,

Que notre vie est un voyage. Has left her young companions weeping;

TRANSLATION

most exemplary punishment, have not And thoughts of her have plunged in sadness

Here slumbers one, who rest till now ne'er tried; only been passed over without censuré, Hearts to whom they once gave gladness :

Born on the great roadthere he lived and died, or even particular notice, but the chief Lovely in form--- in mind excelling--More to prove the wisdom of the sage,

actors have succeeded, by various conA spirit pure in heavenly dwelling. Who said that life was but a pilgrimage.

trivances, to appropriate to themselves She died---and we again shall never

From the French, in the Burying-ground the property entrusted to their manageSee one like her---now lost for ever!

of Mont-Louis, in Paris.

ment, and to gain all that distinction From the Welsh. He whose grave is on this cliff, Mother-sweet Mother, thou canst never know

and credit from their success, which His hand was the foe of many :

were denied to the honest industry and That yearly thus I deck thy mossy bed His name shall sleep in peace. With the first roses of the Spring that blow,

moral worth of some of their deluded Mercy be to him And tears of fond affection shed.

and ruined creditors.

220
On Frauds in Bankruptcy.

[Felruary 7, 1818. The bankrupt, in some cases, it will eyes to some obvious features in this of the common funds to improve certain be observed, avails himself of a tempo- case ;---after many out’s and in's, and other parts which had become, by varary embarrassment under which trade vicissitudes of hope and disappoint. rious means, more or less circuitous labours, though its effects may never ment, it appeared that L.45,000 had their own individual property. have reached him; he talks loudly of dwindled down to something less than It is easy to perceive the length to the badness of the times, and of the one halt of that sum; and none of the which such a system would be carried desperate state of the country, while he creditors, so far as I could learn, ever when it was once begun, and how difis trading all the time on other people's received more than one-half of the a- ficult it is for men to lay any restraint money. The next step is to make out mount of their debts ! Now, how could upon their actions, when they have a flattering view of the state of his af. this happen, some of your readers will once overstúpped the limits of strict fairs, to shew that he is perfectly sol- probably be ready to exclaim? There justice. There was some reason to vent, and that he is entitled to the ma- must, doubtless, have been some great suspect, indeed, that in the case alluded nagement of his own estate. To gain loss, during the trust management from to, there had been so much jostling of this point, which is one of the first im other bankruptcies,-or from the de- interests, and so many shifts and expeportance to himself, every endeavour is vouring flames or merciless ocean,-or dients employed, with so many breaches exerted, by increasing the number of from the sudden depreciation in the of promise, that it ended in maturing a nominal creditors by means of relations price of goods, the produce perhaps of disposition in those chiefly concerned, or friends, who being joined by others, the West Indies,—or from some other to convert every thing to their own purharing little interest in pushing the unforeseen but equally overwhelming pose, and to elude the payment of every examination of matters very far, pre- casualty.—No, none of these misfortunes just demand which could be made upon sent something like an example to those visited the property in question. So them. This much, however, is certain, who are not unwilling to find a plausi- far, indeed, from any real loss having that in place of a large surplus fund, ble pretence for indulging their bene- happened, it was shown by the partners there ultimately appeareda shortcoming volent feelings, in treating the unfortu- themselves, that by trading during the nearly double the amount of that alnate man with indulgence. English period of the trust management, a gain leged surplus ; while there was nothing creditors seldom prove troublesome, had actually been made. As the cause, in the nature of the stock or funds and the last class, those who think they then, of such an enormous shortening which could have prevented any man perceive some grounds for inquiry, be- must be a subject of much curiosity to of ordinary understanding and common fore surrendering again every thing in- most persons, I shall briefly detail such honesty from fixing a valuation, within to the hands of men whose conduct, facts as came to my knowledge, which a few hundred pounds at inost, of the whether fair or otherwise, had brought may serve to throw a faint light on the sum for which the whole might at any their affairs to an unfortunate issue, are history of a case involving so much mys. time have been sold. Nor is there less in consequence not unfrequently over- tery, even to those who were most deep- doubt as to the effects of the system of ruled, and even stigmatized as severe, ly concerned. First, then, there was a management now alluded to, in another vindictive, or self-interested, in putting clear shortcoming, to a considerable a point of view ; I mean in its influence down a rival in trade.

mount, in place of a surplus fund, at the on the fortunes of the bankrupts. To I have known a case of the most des- date of the trust-deed; in other words, a close observer it soon appeared, that perate bankruptcy, involving extensive the company were bankrupt, a fact these bankrupts, or partners, or by interests, where all those arts had been which had been well known for several whatever name they may now choose employed, and had so far succeeded, years to the partners themselves, and to be distinguished, if they be yet alive, that, with the exception of two or three those immediately connected with them; while their interest was rapidly advan creditors, all parties either believed, or but that, for the sake of obtaining the cing, that of the creditors was proceedaffected to believe, that nothing had oc- management of their funds, they re-ing, by equally certain and quick steps, curred, in what was delicately called jected the statements of their clerks, in an inverse ratio. Long before the 2 suspension of payment, deserving of and exhibited a most exaggerated view insolvent affairs were finally wound up, reproach, or of suspicion, or which in. of the state of their funds. Secondly, they not only found themselves in betdeed demanded any thing like the ex- From the delusive appearances of sol. ter circumstances than ever they had ercise of an ordinary degree of circum- vency, the partners were permitted by been in before, but continued in possesspection in watching the proceedings of the creditors to follow their own course sion, for how long I cannot venture to the unfortunate men in the management of management-a management which, say, of a business which no talents they of their estate. The delusion was car- even in its best aspect, was no other possessed, anıl no exertion of honest inried so far, on this occasion, that on a than that which brought their affairs dustry on their part, could ever have ruined creditor referring to the bank- into a state of bankruptcy. Thirdly, enabled them to form. It must excite rupts, he was checked, with all the spirit The partners being permitted, during the most painful feelings, when we come of offended pride, and requested to their management of the trust funds, to contrast the splendid establishment, measure his words ; for, that gentlemen to carry on business on their own indi- and luxurious mode of living, of men who were in a condition to pay 30 shil. vidual account, they made large pur- in such circumstances, with the condilings in the pound ought not to be so chases, after due preparation, of their tion of some of their ruined and deluded stigmatized; that partners-partners, own property, or rather, the property creditors. The present case exhibited was the proper term! But a few years entrusted to their management. But a striking example of what may be management brought about a useful dis

this was not all. It was clearly. disco- done, and what may be endured-of covery to those creditors who had sa- vered that they had solely and delibe- the triumph of audacious villainy over crificed their judgment or shut their rately sacrificed more than one branch all the obligations of gratitude and jus

[ocr errors]

upon others.

February 7. 1818.]
Sketches of Society.-- Twelfth Day.

221 tice. How all this happens how such, called from its being the twelfth day, ed, a bowl of spiced wine, which being men are again allowed to take their after the nativity of our Saviour, and presented with the Saxon words just place in society, to enter again into all the day on which the Eastern Magi

, mentioned, was therefore called a IVasthe intercourses of life, and to be again guided by the star, arrived at Beth- sail-bowl. A bowl or cup of this desreceived into the confidence of their lehem, to worship the infant Jesus. cription was also to be found in almost neighbours,—may at first sight appear “ This festive day, the most cele- every nobleman's or gentleman's house, a problem of no easy solution. Igno- brated of the twelve for the conviviali-| (and frequently of massy silver,) until rance or want of reflection in some, and ty of its rites, has been observed in this the middle of the seventeenth century, self interest in others, as we often find Kingdom ever since the reign of Alfred; and which was in perpetual requisition out, must do a good deal towards weak-in whose days,' says Collier, a law during the revels of Christmas." ening the recollection of such acts of was made with relation to holidays, by Hence we have the word Wassel, sy. moral delinquency, and of inducing a virtue of which, the twelve days after nonymous for carousing and joviality. forgetfulness of the proofs of utter in the Nativity of our Saviour were made “ During the reigns of Elizabeth and sensibility to the sufferings and calami- Festivals.

James I. the celebration of the Twelfth ties which the prosecution of such ini- The Twelfth Cake was almost always Night was, equally with Christmas Day, quitous schemes must inevitably bring accompanied by the Wassail Bowl, a a festival through the land, and was ob

But something more composition of spiced wine or ale, or served with great ostentation and cerewould yet seem necessary to account, mead, or metheglin, into which was mony in both the Universities, at court, not merely for that indiscriminate re- thrown roasted apples, sugar, &c. The at the Temple, and at Lincoln's and spect which is shewn to men of good term Wassail, which in our elder poets Gray's-inn. Many of the masques of and bad principles, but to that respect- is connected with much interesting Ben Johnsor were written for the aful deference which is yielded to the imagery, and many curious rites, ap- musement of the royal family on this latter, when highly successful. It is pears to have been first used in this night; and Dugdale in his Origines Jue often sufficient, that a mau is successful island during the well-known interview dicales, has given us a long and partiin his designs; by what means, it is of between Vortigern and Rowena. Geof- cular account of the revelry at the little consequence to inquire. Let him frey of Monmouth relates, on the au- Temple on each of the twelve days of be guilty of a breach of trust, and abuse thority of Walter Calenius, that this Christmas, in the year 1562. It apthe confidence, which, from a sympathy lady, the daughter of Hengist, knelt pears from this document, that the hosfor his unfortunate situation, was re- down, on the approach of the king, and pitable rites of St Stephen's day, St posed in his integrity—and let the pro- presenting him with a cup of wine, ex- John's day, and the Twelfth day, were Aperfty with which he was entrusted, claimed, " Lord King Wæs heil,' that is, ordered to be exactly alike; and as under such circumstances, be trans- literally, Health be to you.' Vorti- many of them as in their nature, perferred, by a series of tricks and decep- gern being ignorant of the Saxon lan- fectly rural, and where there is every tions, to himself and for his own use guage, was informed by an interpreter, reason to suppose, observed to a cerand let all this happen, as it has done, that the purport of these words was to tain extent in the halls of the country his ill-gotten wealth will yet secure to wish him health, and that he should re- gentry and substantial yeomanry, a him the respect and consideration of ply by the expression, drinc-heil, or short record here, of those that fall unthose even who were loud in their re- drink the health :' aceordingly, on his der this description, cannot be deemed probation of his conduct, so long as the so doing, Rowena drank, and the king inapposite. issue of his selfish exertions remained receiving his cup from her hand, kissed “The breakfast on Twelfth Day is doubtful. I myself have known several and pledged her.

directed to be of brawn, mustard, and instances within these few years of this

malmsey; the dinner of two courses to compromising spirit, and subserviency

Health, my Lord King, the sweet Rowena said; be served in the hall, and after the first to events. This influence of good and Then gaily rose, and 'mid the concourse wide,

Health,' cried the chieftain to the Saxon maid;

course · cometh in the master of the bad fortune upon our moral sentiments, Kiss'd her hale lips, and placed her by his side. game, apparelled in green velvet; and it must be well known to many of your At the soft scene, such gentle thoughts abound, the Ranger of the Forrest alsu, in a readers, is forcibly illustrated by Dr That healths and kisses 'mongst the guests went green suit of satten ; bearing in his hand Smith, by a reference to our opinions From this the social custom took it rise ;

green

bow and divers arrows, with of the characters of some of those men we still retain, and still must keep the prize.

either of them a hunting horn about who acted a conspicuous part in Ro- Paraphrase of Robert of Gloucester. their necks : blowing together three man story

blasts of venery, they pace round a“ Since this period, observes the his-bout the fire three times. Then the Sketches of Society.

torian, the custom has prevailed in Bri- Master of the Game maketh three curtain of using these words whilst drink tesies, kneels down, and petitions to be

ing; the person who drank to another admitted into the service of the Lord TWELFTH DAY.

saying was-heil, and he who received of the Feast. Dr Drake in his recent work, the cup answering drinc-heil.

" This ceremony performed, a hunts. " Shakespeare and his Times," gives It soon afterwards became a custom man cometh into the hall, with a fox the following curious and entertaining in villages on Christmas-eve, New and a purse-net, with a cat, both bound account of this remarkable holiday. Year's Eve, and Twelfth Night, for iti at the end of a staff: and with them

To the rejoicings on New Year's nerant minstrels to carry to the hous- nine or ten couple of hounds, with the tide succeeded, after the short interval, es of the gentry and others, where they blowing of hunting-horns. And the the observance of the Twelfth Day, so were generally very hospitably receiv- fox and cat are by the hounds set

a

« AnteriorContinuar »