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relish a little quiet gossip. I hope and that we must encounter critics, you will go home with me and par- who will measure the size of our untake my family fare.
derstanding as well as of our trowsers, R. I meant to dine in a Coffee- and the sharpness of our wit, as well house : but when I am popt upon by as of our swallow-tails. We are, in these accidental and extempore invi- short, like one accoutering himself tations, which the laws of ceremony for a grand review, at which, not the permit, nay, persuade me, to decline, limbs only, but the thoughts, words, I am generally such an outlaw as to and feelings, must be cased in the accept them. I will accompany you buckram uniform of the corps he is to with pleasure, and hope, by doing join, and must execute the stated maso, to reimburse myself, in part, for næuvres of the day, according to the the tax which I have lately paid, by last regulations in the orderly-book attending several superb and formal of fashion. banquets.
C. All this I have felt. But after C. It is strange that these should the laborious process of external and be so frequent, since most people dis- internal stiffening, let us take a peep like them; and that society, when at the drawing-room, the awful porch tasking its invention to turn the hours (or purgatory, if you will) by which of pleasure to the best account, should we pass to the temple, and what may have missed its object so egregiously. be most emphatically termed the so
R. It has certainly contrived to lemnity of the festival. blend with its gratification so many R. The opening scene, indeed, desagréments (pardon me-I can think is universally allowed to be the of no equivalent English word), as gloomiest in the whole piece. The to shew that its advisers are woe most unkindly portion of the day is fully ignorant of the human mind, that when we are appetized for dinand of the associations by which its ner, but made to wait for it, without feelings are influenced. What think any interim occupation to divert our you, for example, of having a writ- impatience. A craving stomach frets ten obligation hanging, for weeks, the temper at all times, and certainover your head, to do what you know ly not least, when the expression of may be impossible? You promise our feelings is checked, by the greater and engage, on this day month, to evils of forcing smiles and fishing for present your self át Mr A. B's, in conversation. In this frame, we engood health, good spirits, good appe- ter a company of strangers, where tite, and good talk, without all of extreme reserve is requisite, at least which, what is expected of you can till we have sounded and buoyed our not be performed ; nay, you under- track. Even in our common places take to controul the course of Provi we are circumscribed, for the news dence; for should an accident, in the of the day is interdicted, lest it ofmeantime, occur to disquiet you, and fend some party feeling; and, when impair your power of giving and re the few on which we venture are exceiving pleasure, your pledge is not hausted, we look with envy on the redeemed.
insignificant cyphers, who, by more C. True: and as we naturally practice, have learned the art of shrink from granting promissory- speaking much, yet saying nothing. notes, unless for value received, I C. There must really be something believe the first thought that occurs ludicrous in the scene ; for I have to many men, on receiving an invi- often been tempted to smile at the tation, is how it may be most civilly total change of manner produced by declined.
the dressing and drawing-rooms. I R. But let us suppose it accept- have, at four, been amusing myself ed, and the day arrived, and see with a few young friends, all of whom whether any thing then tends to di were cordial and communicative, and minish our constraint. The very la- full of “ quips, and cranks, and wanbours of the toilette are a bad pre- ton wiles;" and, an hour after, I paration. They remind us that we have met with the same group atmust dress our minds, as well as our tired for their parts in the tragipersons ; that, with our best coat, we comedy, with their natures as starch. must put on our best conversation ; ed as their neckcloths, and their
hearts locked up as close as the C. By the way, that stated hour is breast which contains them, the another deduction from the freedom whalebone of their boddice, like the which is requisite for enjoyment. iron of Sterne's captive, appearing Whether you are amused or not, cito have “ entered their souls.' But vility obliges you to appear so; and the miseries of the drawing-room however impatient you may be for the require no other proof, than the re time of dismission, you are hermetilief which every one feels on the cally sealed till it arrive. The same summons to quit it. Perhaps, how- sort of civility to your entertainers ever, you will allow that, in sitting tempts you to give proofs, very pernidown to table, there is pleasure of a cious to yourself, that their labour for less negative kind than what consists your gratification has not been vain. in the mere removal of pain.
They would be uneasy, by suspecting R. There can be no doubt, that when that you did not relish what they had the folding-doors are thrown open, so carefully provided ; and to prevent the blaze of lights, the glittering of this, you taste a greater variety, and plate, the train of showy attendants, also a greater quantity, both of their and the alluring steam of well-dressed viands and of their liquors, than suits dainties, are circumstances which act your ordinary habits. It is false to agreeably on the nerves. To the say that you are free to do as you corporeal epicure, they give all the please ; for the compulsion of courtedelight of which his narrow power of ous and kindly feelings is perhaps enjoyment is susceptible ; but the the strongest of any. A good man mental epicure, after a momentary will load his stomach, rather than elevation of spirits, soon recollects his conscience; and a good-natured himself, and foresees that, amidst this man will give pain to himself, rather physical superfluity, his better part than to another ; but it is hard that may starve. The luxuries he longs benevolence, by the absurdity of cusfor are an accelerated interchange of tom, should be rewarded with a night thought and of kindness—a scene to of fever, and a morning of crudity. give gentle exercise to the activity of R. Certainly. But though we have his faculties, and the benevolence of agreed that these elaborate dinners his feelings. For these the materiel are a grievance to the receiver as well of a splendid dinner is certainly fa as the giver, yet, like most of the vourable, if the morale be equally so. other evils of life, they have their Nine times in ten, however, this is uses. They are useful to some, for not the case. The mind never acts example, by enabling them to speciwith pleasure, either to itself or others, fy and claim the station in society to unless its possessor have ample elbow- which they think themselves entitled. room for conversation, and be what The fashion, originating with the is called well set. It is so sensitive upper class, is followed by the next, in mixed companies, as to shrink, and propagated downwards ; and he like the mimosa, from the slightest who refuses to adopt it, and occacause; and even when unable to re- sionally to shew a dinner, as he trace the train of thought, or specify would shew a certificate of gentility, to itself the circumstance by which must content himself with the want it was effected. A side-glance from of that consideration, for which he a stranger, or the presence of a per- will not pay the regulated fee. Rank, son whose physiognomy is discoura- when not strictly defined by a title, ging, or of one whose taciturnity gives is equivocal and arbitrary; and it is, him the air of keen and critical ob- therefore, no small convenience that, servation, is enough to benumb the instead of producing periodical testivivacity, and slacken the current of mony of the birth, wealth, or wisyour ideas. You feel the spell, be- dom on which you rest your claim, fore you can explain it, producing a you can both commence and repeat sudden abridgment of your topics, it, by merely submitting to the cost and a sort of instinctive resolution to and ennui of a formal entertainment; check all the gambols of fancy, and and that, like a Templar, you can every aberration, from the dull routine eat your way into one of the higher of dinner tactics, till the stated hour custes of your countryman. of dismissing the parade.
land like this, where different kinds
of respectability may bring the duke at much expence to incommode and and the tradesman to the same board, annoy themselves, by imitating. it is desireable to possess, not only a R. Yes; just as we saw, that when right to this privilege, but also an an exalted personage found it conveeasy method of asserting it. At a nient, for causes affecting himself German court, where the noblesse are alone, to wear, at one time a high colseparated from the rest by a much lar, and at another Turkish trowsers, sharper line than can be drawn by the fashion was instantly adopted by mere optional dinner-giving, you many to whose form they were unsuitwould have to exhibit sixteen quar- able. The frame of polished society, ters of heraldry, for a franchise, and especially of a monarchy like which you can establish here by the ours, will always produce similar efjudicious exhibition to different par- fects. All will copy what they can ties of sixteen quarters of lamb, with in the condition of their superiors, their usual adjuncts. This is in ac- and vanity will plume itself even on cordance with our national character imitating their discomforts. and constitution ; and as few deny Our discourse was interrupted here the dullness of grand dinners, I really by meeting Frederick Vanstricht, a believe that they are given chiefly German gentleman, who had lived from the motive which I am stating. many years in England, and with
C. I have little doubt of it. But whom Carter was on a footing of inhow do you account for the folly of timacy. “ I see, Vanstricht," said the the uppermost class of all, who, ha- latter, “by your indecided and pocoving it in their power to introduce curante air, that you have no enwhat customs they please, impose a gagement. So come along and dine penance upon themselves by intro- with me.” Vanstricht agreed, and ducing one so irksome ?
we soon reached the place of our desR. Because its uses to them are tination, which is in the vicinity of more numerous than to others. A Bedford Square. Carter's house and man of rank is under the necessity of establishment present a scene of perentertaining many persons with whom fect congruity, and both are adjusted he has little intimacy; and in a small to his income with that taste and company of these, the stiffness and judgment in which he excels. The reserve would be still greater than rooms are elegantly neat, but of a in a large one; because the mem- size so moderate, as to make the serbers of the latter contribute, in some vice of a single footman suggest no degree, to each others amusement. idea of wasteness and discomfort. Besides, a person of this description Want of suitableness and reciprocity is much more anxious for the pre- in domestic arrangements is always servation of his dignity, than for so- unpleasant; and this the mind incial enjoyment; and would far rather stantly detects in a spacious dwelling, submit to hours of insipidity, than with which the attendance, the furto the familiarity which easy and niture, and every other concomitant, companionable pleasantry seems to including the manners and appearimply. Among the multitudes, too, ance of the owners, do not exactly whom he must see, there will very harmonise. We perceive in it a man frequently be some blunderer, who aiming at something in which he mistakes general courtesy for per- fails. We see him struggling to rise sonal preference, and who, under the into a higher rank, by adopting its shelter of this idea, pushes into style of living ; but unable, through closer contact with his host than want of means, or want of skill, to “the nose of nice nobility" can advance the whole of his domestic brook. To daunt such forwardness, array equally and simultaneously. and deter any one from daring to be Doing it by detachments, he loses his wittier or wiser than himself, he finds object. The effect of what is done the pomp of the banquet, and the is destroyed by what is undone, since largeness of the assembly, most effec- the latter, like a canvas shirt with tive auxiliaries.
lace ruffles, tells the secret of his C. And thus what he does wisely original humility as plainly as if no for his own personal accommodation part had been altered. This error and defence, others preposterously are
my friend avoids. He knows that
MARY SCOTT OF EDENKNOW.
the charm of consistency and connec Whence comes that dim and shadowy tion is not less in the plan of a fami sprite, ly than in that of a drama ; and that Oft seen to glide at twilight hour,
Like maiden robed in spotless white, Altera poscit opem res et conjurat amice.
With bended head, like drooping flower? In his drawing-room
we found And swains have seen a spectre there every article necessary for comfort A wandering shade in sable weed, and modest decoration, and those so
That wrings its hands in sad despair,
As if it rued some reckless deed; arranged as to shew at once, that the eye of its mistress is quick in the And on that spot, with wild Aowers dress’d, perception, and pained by the ab
With bended knees is seen to creep, sence of symmetry and grace. This And rend its hair, and beat its breast, morality of the senses, (if I may call And wailing loud is heard to weep. it so,) or an instinctive and unstudied taste for the beautiful arrangement
But should the white-robed spectre risc, of objects, which are constantly in
It utters deep and hollow groans ; view, it is gratifying to find in the And then, with wild unearthly cries, sex of which beauty is the charac
It sinks among these moss-clad stones teristic, and a person of ordinary While there a blue and baleful flame tact will detect the want of it, in the Gleams horrible to human sight; position of a single chair or picture, And shrieks that thrill the morial frame, or the corruption of it by fashion, Are mingling with the winds of night. in crowding a small apartment with tables and ottomans of motely pat
Such are the tales by shepherds told;
And this what they have heard and terns. (To be continued.)
When they have watch'd their evening
And darkness dimm'd the daisied green. A Fragment.
“ Long hast thou trode this earthly stage ;
Thy natal spot the neighbouring vale; [In his early years, the author has often Thou canst unroll time's by-gone page,
heard the outline of the following Tale Explain to me this wond'rous tale !” recited by an old woman, who had an inexhaustible fund of traditionary and
'Twas thus a youthful stranger spoke superstitious lore. According to the To one with snowy honours crown'd, relation of this hoary chronicler, the
Who careful watch'd his little tlock, appearance of Mary's mother after Which, wand'ring, browz'd and bleated death was a contrivance of the Abbot,
round. assisted by his Monks, for the purpose of promoting his views in the seduction
The shepherd shook his hoary head, of the daughter.]
And meekly bow'd in humble guise ;
A hectic o'er his pale cheek fled,
And brighter beam'd his faded eyes.
“Stranger,” he said, “ the sun is low, Why is that spot so brown and bare,
And should I now your wish fulfil, And this beside so fair and green?
Before I close, his parting glow
Would fade upon the distant hill.
“ Yet on this mossy bank we'll lean, And there a naked wither'd thorn; If you can rest, and spare the time; That wantons in the winds of May, And, shaded by these birches green,
This mocks the softest dews of morn'! I'll tell the tale in artless rhyme. Why does the linnet love to sing “You see yon noary turrets rise Upon the birch's slender spray ;
In ruin'd, but majestic form; But o'er the thorn, with fluttering wing, And lift their grey heads to the skies,
Affrighted fies, and hastes away ? Defying winter's wildest storm. Why waves the gentle priinrose pale, " Religion claim'd them for her own, The earliest of the infant year?
The sacred fane for praise and prayer ; Beneath the bleak and stormy galc But priestly Pride had fix'd her throne, The purple violet blossoms here!
And Monks and Friars fatten'd there.
“ They had their herds in every stall, “ But not a nymph who trod the green
Their lambs in every fold around ; Could such transcendent beauty shew, Earth gave her treasures at their call, Or launch the shafts of love so keen,
Their brows with rosy chaplets bound. As Mary Scott of Edenknow! “ Though Hymen had no worship there, “ The evening sun, whose parting beam
Nor known the chaste connubial chain, Resplendent shone on Dickmount Law, For love, and wine, and women fair, Or softly-dimplid Brothock's stream,
They seldom knew to sigh in vain ; A fairer maiden never saw. “ But mass was said, and anthems sung, The stars that gem the azure sky, And orisons at early morn,
Shed brilliant lustre o'er the night ; And vesper bells were nightly rung, But brighter far was Mary's eye,
And cowls and humble vestments worn. And lovelier shone its gentle light. « And many a matron they confess'd, 4 Who has not seen the morning break?
And sooth'd the mourning widow's sigh; And, joyous, hail'd the orient glow;. Shed balm in many a maiden's breast, Such was the blush that warm'd the cheek
And wip'd the tear from beauty's eye. Of Mary Scott of Edenknow. “ To soothe a jealous husband's ire, “ There was a sweetly witching smile, They bore a never failing spell ;
Which play'd around her dewy mouth, For they could doom to future fire, That spoke a heart devoid of guile,
And curse with candle, book, and bell ! The seat of innocence and truth. “ And magic keys, hung at their belt, “ Sweet is the breeze at evening hour, Could every bolt below remove;
Which o'er a bank of violets blows; And they for gold their passports dealt, And sweet at morn the breathing flow'r, That open'd all the gates above.
When zephyrs kiss the dewy rose; “ Thus wealth and power were in their “ But ne'er did love such nectar sip, hands;
From ought that breathes perfume beAll trembl'd if they sternly spoke;
low, Ev'n monarchs bow'd at their commands, Like that which linger'd on the lip
And bent beneath their priestly yoke. Of Mary Scott of Edenknow. “ And there an Abbot once bore sway, “ The circling arch above her eye,
(Tradition has not told his name,) Adorn'd her forehead full and white; Whose life was like a day in May, The rainbow, when it spans the sky,
He knew no care, and fear'd no shame. Seems not more perfect to the sight. « Laid on the lap of sensual bliss, “ In graceful ringlets, careless twin'd,
High season'd food and sparkling wine; Light flow'd her glossy, auburn hair; The blooming cheek, and wanton kiss, Or sported in the gentle wind,
Were deem'd by him delights divine. That took delight to wanton there; “ Nature had been benignly kind,
“And wave it round her slender neck, And he improv'd her gifts by art;
So fair, it mock'd the mountain snow; With manly form, capacious mind,
For ev'ry grace combin'd to deck But cold and selfish coward heart.
The beauteous flower of Edenknow. “ Erect and tall on earth he trode,
“ Her bosom, shaded from the sight, On all around look'd proudly down;
So softly heav'd—so gently fell, With fate impending in his nod,
That Fancy gaz'd with fond delight, As he might deign to smile or frown.
Where love and beauty seem'd to dwell. “ He deem'd the loveliest female flower
“ And soft as coos the turtle dove, But as the blossom of the morn,
Or strains by airy minstrels sung ; To breathe its sweets one little hour,
Sweet as the whisper'd vows of love, At eve lie withering and forlorn.
The accents of her gentle tongue. “And many a bud his breath had stain'd, “ Her slender hand was soft and fair,
Blanch'd many a cheek in early bloom; And smoothly round her polish'd arm; "And seen them fade without a friend,
There was a grace in every air ; Or sink neglected in the tomb.
Each motion had a secret charm. 6 Around the venerable pile
“ Was there a face by all admir'd, The sons of toil and trade had place; That lighted up love's raptur'd glow, And modest beauty's winning smile Or envy's secret pangs inspir'd,
Was seen on many a maiden's face. 'Twas Mary Scott's of Edenknow,