« ZurückWeiter »
Never having been personally in America myself, so far as I alone am concerned individually, I had derived my impressions chiefly from a perusal of Mr. Cooper's novels, which you will find as it assisted me in carrying on the dialogue.
None of the Americans, it is true, wore their national dress, which it was rather a disappointment, as I had long wished for to gaze upon these noble children of nature in their native war-paint and other garments; but I am bound to testify as what has been said concerning of their hospitality is no more than the truth.
Very few minutes, in fact, had elapsed before I was asked-in the figurative language of the forest-to put myself outside of something.
"Wagh!" says I. "The Fire-Water of the Pale-faces is good. Nicholas will drink."
For a few moments, nothing was heard but a gentle gurgling sound, soft as the murmur of the evening breeze through the secluded woodlands of the West.
"Does not the buffalo come Does not the blue-bird return
"Wagh!" I once more remarked. again and again to the familiar lick? to her nest? Do not all these things occur, subject only to the Constitution of the United States? And does my pale-faced brother doubt whether Nicholas will take another of the same mixture? Go: -my brother is not a fool."
It was, I think, about the fifth mixture that I really began for to come forth in my true "form," as a grand Intronational Orator and Prophet.
Do you not think, my dear young Friend, as it would be as well for to print my remarks in gold letters? They would give a sort of a tone to THE BROADWAY.
"Citizens of the World," said Nicholas, for representatives of many nations had now begun to congregate around the aged man. "Children of Nature from across the Transatlantic wave-British compatriots-and ye, my lively neighbours-sons of la belle Franceand ye, oh members of all the Germanic Confederations-Italians, Spaniards, Portugals, Polanders, Muscovites, Hollanders, and Ottomans; there are certain points upon which we can most of us agree. I will exemplify as many of these as my health and strength allow, and will still back myself as such against any other Sportive Prophet of my own age and weight, bar none.
"Generous infants of the lovely France, I carry a toast-not as
such is literally the case, it being generally a few biscuits in my pocket along of a small flask of sherry wine, but this is a parenthesis-I carry a toast to ye, in the glorious vintage of Champagne; chorus, my Intronational friends, then let our song have this refrain, the glorious vintage of Champagne! We may have had our little enmities, but who is not ready to drown them in the flowing bowl? Garsong.
"Brothers of the Anglo-Saxonian race, there are many worse things in this world than the cobbler of which I will now partake; but there are not many better. In your beverages, you have proved yourselves nobly indifferent to the traditions of Europe. Your drinks, admirable in quality, are in their variety almost as numerous as the leaves of the primeval forest. I will now partake of such as you may have on hand. I feel that it may do me good.
"The best of the atmosphere in the Intronational Exhibition, gentlemen, is that you can partake of almost any quantity of refreshment without its hurting you :—almost any quantity whatsoever.
"Let us all drink, my dear Friends, to our respective governments; may they all pay a truly Intronational visit to the Exposition, where we can all partake of almost any quantity of refreshment without its hurting them.
"Gentlemen-gentlemen from Germany-my generous German gentlemen, let us wind up with a little Hock-a capital thing is German Hock, when you can get it direct from a German gentleman -in Germany-and if you will all join me, gentlemen, from Germany and otherwise, as we can partake of almost any quantity of refreshment without its hurting us, let us now join in another friendly glass to the solidarity of peoples.
"To the solidarity of peoples, gentlemen!
To the liquidarity of peoples, gentlemen!"
They cheered me to the echo; and I left Paris with the proud consciousness that whilst I had done a good deal to promote friendly feelings amongst the various nations of the earth, of whom we are ourselves one of them, I had likewise given you, on the whole, about as concise and complete an account of the Intronational Exposition as you could reasonably have expected when you sent me over.
AM I forgiven? You smile through your tears, love,
Tell me, O quickly, and quiet my fears, love-
Try to forget, when my fault I've confest.
Am I forgiven? Now dry your eyes, dearest,
Trifling, or trying to cause you a care?
Am I forgiven? A sin one confesses,
Show me already my fault is condoned :
Love is a-glow in the brightest of eyes! Faith nursed by charity ever has thrivenWhat do you say, darling ?-Am I forgiven?
J. ASHBY STERRY.
Couleur de Bose.
BY MRS. J. H. RIDDELL,
Authoress of " George Geith," etc.
THE meanings we attach to particular words and phrases, and the meanings such words and phrases bear, seem frequently to be in inverse proportion.
There is a lack of exactness in the modern arrangement of men's ideas, which produces a similar want of precision in speech.
We talk by ear instead of by knowledge; and the consequence is that if a man choose to originate any phrase, no matter how erroneous such phrase may be, it is certain, before the year be over, to find its imitators, and defenders.
No form of expression need despair of making its way into society now-a-days, when people accept their language as they do their friends (with infinitely less excuse, however)—on trust.
We import phrases from foreign countries also, regardless of their inapplicability to express our ruder and more forcible ideas.
Not merely are they useless to us, but the charm which hung about them in their own land is lost in transit. Untranslatable, they are inapplicable for dovetailing into an English sentence; but, spite of this, people persist in using them, forgetful that in crossing the Channel they have lost the delicate aroma which, unhappily, caught the fancy of the first man who insisted on bringing the stranger back to Dover with him.
It is of one of these imported phrases "Couleur de Rose," I want to speak to readers of THE BROADWAY.
If we look in a dictionary we find the free translation of "Couleur de Rose" to be "something bright and pleasing;" further, it is stated that "voir quelque chose couleur de rose," means to see a thing in its brightest colours.
This is the wine which is generally presented to us by those who affect such novelties as a genuine, sparkling champagne, and if we object to the beverage, we are considered deficient in a sense. are no judges of foreign vintages, or we should at once perceive that there is no English expression calculated to fill the place of " Couleur de Rose."
Perhaps not; but then, on the other hand, we do not require the
expression at all, since there is no English mental equivalent whatever to that foreign frame of mind which "Couleur de Rose" is intended to imply.
It is precisely because a man is a judge of foreign wines that he objects to champagne so flat that no English bread, wherewith we essay to re-animate its sparkle, can produce even a bead on the surface. Here "Couleur de Rose" tastes dead like Clicquot a week uncorked-it is useless as a foreign delicacy, it is unavailable as an English necessary. The thing was very well in its own country, as a light, meagre way of expressing the self-delusions of a different race; but, in the midst of our own more ponderous language, the expression means-so far as it means anything-humbug.
Because when an Englishman thinks over much of his own prospects, the rose-tint has been laid on by a cleverer and less scrupulous artist than himself.
"Couleur de Rose !"-there was a piece of tinted glass held up to Eve's eyes in Paradise, before the French language or the latest Parisian fashions were thought of, and we have been looking for a few thousand years since then in cool blood at the naked reality, the idealization of which she thought so lovely.
"Ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil," said the serpent, throwing, we may be sure, an exquisite rose-tint over flower and shrub; and thus beguiled, our unfortunate mother ate, to discover that good and evil meant ninety-nine and three-quarters per cent. of evil, and one-quarter per cent. of good.
In a minor degree, the consequences are much the same with us now. We first look through the glass and think everything lovely; then we see the other side, and think nothing comely, whereas were we to take "Couleur de Rose" for what it is worth, we should not feel disappointed when we behold reality face to face.
A blind faith is easier than scepticism, and wholesomer too, some people say; but this proposition is open to question, since there can be little doubt but that "Couleur de Rose" and its accompanying shams are fruitful sources of discontent, envy, jealousy, hatred, and all uncharitableness.
For people accept the false gloss, and knowing how rough a surface life presents to them, each amongst the number cries:
"Why is it that A, B, C, D, and so forth, meet with this good fortune, whilst I, I alone of all the letters of the alphabet, have to earn my living in the sweat of my brow ?"