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CHAMBERS'S EDINBURGH JOURNAL.
middle of November, and the trees had abundance of and on so very few, it cannot be expected that it can money are annually spent in the United Kingdom. It
THE HOUSE OF DISASTER,
one of the finest and richest. The beauties of its elaabout the country, and came upon no fewer than thir- compete with that nation in cheapness of produce, borately sculptured front of wood, and its oaken doors, teen træts. A Dewaniah who assisted me to hunt out nay, we might and ought to undersell them ; for if have been defaced and removed by the influence of these tracts, and who was well acquainted with the each tract or garden had its own tea-maker and la- time, chance, and change. Still, the incidents which loaf, as he had been in the habit of drinking tea during bourers, the collecting of the leaves would not perhaps connected the mansion with the Flemish people, and his residence with the Singphoes, informed me that he occupy more than twelve days in each crop; after gave to it the title of their " House of Disaster," are had scen a large tract of tea-plants on the Naga moun- which the men might be discharged, or profitably em- not yet consigned to oblivion, though they may be tains, a day's journey west of Chiridoo. I have no ployed on the tea-grounds. But now, for the want of known, indeed, to few of those who have the traditionreason to doubt the veracity of this man ; he offered a sufficient number of labourers and tea-makers, there ary designation most commonly in their mouths. to point out the place to me, or any of my men, if is a constant gathering of leaves throughout the Michel Watremetz, a native of Flanders, was the they would accompany him ; but as the country be- month ; and, as I said before, those gathered last can occupant of this mansion some centurios ago. Like longed to Raja Poorunda Sing, I could not examine only make inferior teas; besides the great loss by the many other Flemings, he had come to Paris to exerit. I feel convinced the whole of the country is full leaves getting too old, and thereby unfit for being cise his trade or profession, which was that of a tranof tea.
made into any tea, and all this entirely for want of scriber or manufacturer of bibles, and he had risen Again, in going farther to the south-west, just be hands to pluck the leaves. It is true we have gained in the course of time to be the most wealthy and fore I came to Gabrew hill, I found the small hills twelve black tea makers this year, in addition to the famous artisan in that department in the French adjoining it, to the eastward, covered with tea-plants. last; and twelve more native assistants have been ap- capital. He had fifteen apprentices or assistants, who The flowers of the tea on these hills are of a pleasant pointed, who may be available next year to manufac laboured continually in transcribing copies of the delicate fragrance, unlike the smell of our other tea- ture tea independently, as they were learning the art all sacred writings, and also in painting them, for the plants; but the leaves and fruit appear the same. last year. We have also had an addition to our esta majority of bibles in those days were illuminated, as This would be a delightful place for the manufacture blishment of two Chinese green tea manufacturers, it was called, or, in other words, illustrated by figures of tea, as the country is well populated, has abundance and twelve native assistants have been placed under painted on the margins. The copies executed by these of grain, and labour is cheap. There is a small stream them to learn ; but what are these compared to the assistants were carefully revised by Michel himself, called the Jhamgy river, at a distance of two hours' vast quantity of tea, or the ground the tea-plants that the text might be preserved in perfect correctness. walk; it is navigable, I am informed, all the year cover, or might be made to cover, in three years, but in this task Watremetz was always aided by his young round for small canoes, which would carry down the a drop of water in the ocean? We must go on at a and pretty danghter Odette, who, whilst her father toa, and the place is only one and a half day's journey much faster pace in the two great essentials--tea had the new manuscript copy before him, read aloud from Jorehaut, the capital of Upper Assam. Southi- manufacturers and labourers-in order to have them from an old and standard transcription, that no forwest of Gabrew Purbui (about two days' journey) there available at each garden, when the leaves come into gotten words or mutilated passages might remain is a village at the foot of the hill, inhabited by a race season.”
unnoticed. Yet Odette herself was often the source called Norahs ; they are Shans, I believe, as they came Mr Bruce has been engaged in extensive operations and origin of such errors, seeing that, when she was from the eastward, where tea abounds. I had long in introducing tea-plants from China, and transplant- present, the young transcribers were apt not only to conversations with them, and the oldest man of the ing those which are indigenous. Many, from various make ungainly spots upon the vellum, but also to copy village, who was also the head of it, informed me, that causes, have failed; but he mentions his belief, that incorrectly the words of the work before them. Though when his father was a young man, he had emigrated the tea-plant is so hardy that it will live in almost any idolised by some of these youths, Odette, however, did with many others, and settled at Tipum opposite Jai- soil
, provided it be planted in deep shade, and with not expend a thought on them. The cause was, that pore, on account of the constant disturbances at Mur- plenty of water near the root. The reason for these she had fixed her whole heart and affections on a kum; that they brought the tea-plant with them, and transplantations seems to be that
the tea-tree is only of stranger, a young German who had come to Paris, and planted it on the T'ipum hill, where it exists to this use within a certain age. Many of the indigenous treos requested work from her father as a transcriber of day, and that when he was about sixteen years of of Assam are beyond this age and otherwise unsuitable. bibles. In making this request, he had stated one age, he was obliged to leave T'ipem, on account of the On the other hand, planting seed is not calculated to condition necessary to be conceded ero he could accept wars and disturbances at that place, and take shelter be immediately satisfactory, as until the third year work from Michel Watremetz. This condition was, at the village where he now resides. This man said they produce nothing, and are only in maturity when that Michel should allow him to work at home, at his he was now eighty years of age, and that his father about six years old. Mr Bruce argues for the pro- own lodgings. Michel, knowing the professional skill died a very old man. How true this story is, I cannot priety of burning or cutting down the old trees, in of the Germans, agreed to the terms of the stranger, say, and do not see what good it would do the old man order to have fresh shoots from the stock, which he who left in the other's hands a massive gold chain by to fabricate it. This was the only man I met with in thinks would add greatly to their productiveness, and way of security for the vellum which he of course my journeys about the country who could give any cause them to afford a fine and delicate leaf.
received to work upon. account of the tea-plant, with the exception of an He confirms the fact lately made known, that the Gaspard Hautz, as the young German was named, in Ahum, who declared to me that it was Sooka, or the black and green tea are gathered from the same plant, place of passing the whole of his daily time in toiling first Kacharry raja of Assam, who brought the tea- and that the difference is entirely owing to the diffe- like the rest of Michel's operatives, seemed as if he had plant from Munkum ; he said it was written in his rent states of the leaves and the different modes of little else to do but to walk about and enjoy himself Putty, or history. The Ahum-Putty I have never been preparation. His account of the manufacture of green like a gentleman of fortune. With his handsome person able to get hold of ; but this I know, that the infor- tea by his Chinamen is extremely curious, but too long elegantly attired, he strolled much about the city, mation about the tea-plant pointed out by the old to be here admitted.
viewing all its curiosities and wonders. He even came Norah man, as being on the Tipum hill, is true; for I The demoralisation produced by opium, and a liking often to the very workshop of Michel Watremetz, and have cleared the tract where it grew thickest, about for independent labour which characterises the Assa- there, seated on the corner of a table, he smiled upon 300 yards by 300, running from the foot of the hill to mese, throw difficulties in the way of a large produc- Odette, and murmured in her ear words which were the top. The old man told me his father out the tion of tea in Assam. Mr Bruce looks to the intro- to her 'a lasting pleasure and a trouble. Every now plant down every third year, that he might get the duction of workmen from other parts of India, for and then, on making these visits, Gaspard Hautz young leaves.
the means of carrying on the manufacture on a large would carry off some of the apprentices with him to To the west of Gabrew I did not find any tea ; but scale. He also thinks it not impossible that the supper, and entertain them gallantly. All thuis sort to the westward of the Dhunseeree river I found a leaves may be sent home in a certain state to this of work Master Michel Watremote noticed, and interspecies, though not the same as that we use. If the country, and here subjected, by the cheap means of nally felicitated himself on having in pledge the chain people on the west side of the Dhunseeree river were machinery, to those nice and tedious processes which of Gaspard, as the vellam which the latter had got acquainted with the true leaf, I think tea would be they have to undergo from manual labour in China. seemed to the Fleming to be most decidedly lost. In found. I planted it all along the route I went, which “ After a year's instruction under Chinamen,” says this conclusion he was far wrong: Scarcely had ono may lead to its eventual discovery; but people should he, “it might be left to the ingenuity of Englishmen month passed away, when Gaspard Hautz arrived one be sent to search for the plant who are really ac- to roll, sift, and clean the tea by machinery, and, in morning with his bible finished. Never had the quainted with it. I think a vast quantity of tea would fact, reduce the price of the green tea nearly one-half, characters presented such regularity; never had there be brought to light if this were done.”
and thus enable the poor to drink good unadulterated been fewer errors in any copy. As he counted out his Mr Bruce has also been engaged in experiments on green tea by throwing the indigo
and sulphate of lime golden crowns, Michel shook his head, and exclaimed, the character of the tea produced in Assam. Ninety overboard."
“ This bible, young man, was surely never wrought by chests of the article prepared by him and his assistants Five tea tracts were under culture in Assam in your hands. A whole year would scarce have sufficed were imported into London in 1838, and found, we 1838, the produce of which amounted to 5274 pounds. for such a labour in the hands of the most experienced are told, to be of good quality. In his report we find Seven new tracts will be under culture in 1840, when workinan, and you bring it complete in a month !" some notices respecting these operations :
Mr Bruce thinks the total produce will be 11,160 “ The work is so certainly mine," said Gaspard, “ that “Until lately, we had only two Chinese black tea pounds. These operations are at the cost of the com- I will produce you another ere fifteen days be over.” makers. These men have twelve native assistants ; pany; but it is designed ere long to throw the busi- Michel accepted the offer. In fifteen days the young each Chinaman, with six assistants, can only super- ness open to private speculation. Mr Brnce enters into German produced a second bible, not less perfect than intend one locality, and the tea-leaves from the various some calculations to show the probable profits of the first. other tracts, widely separated, must be brought to private adventures in this line. He takes ten tracts, Old Watremetz had found in the first Bible but these two places for manufacture. The consequence each 400 by 200 yards, and reckons the whole expenses three errors, and in the second he found the very saine. is, that an additional number of labourers must always of cultivation the first year at 16,591 rupees (which we But this did not strike Michel with any great surbe employed to bring the leaves from so great a dis- believe is the same as £1659), of which 4304 will prise, as he knew how apt the hand is to get into a tance. The leaves suffer when brought in large quan- not need to be repeated the second year; and the habit of making fixed slips. At the end of a year tities from a distance, as they soon begin to ferment, value of the produce he estimates at 35,554 rupees, Gaspard had furnished to Michel thirty bibles, being and the labour of only preparing them so far in pro- thus giving a protit of upwards of cent. per cent, as much work as thirty other workmen could have cess, that they may not spoil by the morning, is ex- Upon the whole, there seems little reason to doubt executed. On account of this new and every way cessive. "The men have often to work until very late that Assam is physically capable of producing that im- superior source of supply, Watremetz dismissed several to accomplish this. When labour falls so very heavy, ' portant article, on which eight or nine millions of of his ordinary assistants, who in consequence wero
discontented, and menaced Gaspard with their bitterest give thee thanks! Woe upon that house," continued quently conceived and executed more in a spirit of vengeance.
Gaspard, raising his hand and pointing to the dwelling sheer wantonness, than with any deliberate intention After their connection had subsisted for the time of Michel,"woe upon it! I need not say woe upon of annoying the parties upon whom they are practised. mentioned, Michel proposed that Gaspard Hautz thee, Michel Watremetz, for it is come already on thee Yet it is obvious that this must always be their effect, should come and reside at his house. Gaspard yielded and thine ; but woe upon all of thy race who shall and it is on this ground that we condemn the practo this request the more willingly because he loved enter or dwell beneath that roof, for ever and ever! tice. We confess we cannot understand how persons Odette tenderly and deeply, and because she had ac- | Now, lead on to the funeral pile !"
addicted to this habit can derive any gratification knowledged an equal affection for him in return. The Three months afterwards, Michel Watremetz wept from its exercise, seeing its evil tendency, and that unsuspicious young German was not aware of the and tore his hair over the tomb of a broken-hearted they cannot, from the fear of exposing themselves, motives of the old Fleming for giving the invitation, girl, his daughter, his only daughter. Six months even enjoy the reputation of the authorship of the fun Michel had become perfectly assured that Gaspard's afterwards, a fire destroyed the dwelling and all the which they occasion. Nor could we ever join in the bibles were not transcribed by him as they were done effects of Michel Watremetz. The growing insanity laugh raised at jokes of this kind, though we have by others ; he saw that there was a secret-a mystery, or fatuity of the old Fleming was the cause of the fire, been often called upon to do so. On such occasions and it was to have it in his power. to act as a spy on and by the same agency he was soon brought to the we have thought only of the state of the feelings of Gaspard, that he brought the latter to stay with him. streets, where he passed the remainder of his days, a persons thus wantonly and maliciously outraged, espeWhen that step had been for some time effected, the beggar and an idiot. The prediction of Gaspard cially when we found that one of them was a female, old Fleming watched Gaspard by night and by day. Hautz was certainly strangely realised by this and which, in the case of a marriage or a birth, must The young German said always that he wrought while other events that signalised the future history of the always be the fact. Sorrow and pain, by whatever others slept, and, in reality, a lamp was kept continu- house of Michel Watremetz. Being a spot where cause produced, are sacred subjects, and it were in ally burning in his chamber. But Watremetz soon Flemings loved to abide, in the same manner as we the highest degree indecorous and unfeeling to make discovered this to be a mere feint, by watching at the find localities taken up by Jews and by other parti- them matter for indecent levity. Would every one youth's chamber door. Gaspard was always motion- cular races, the dwelling under notice was repeatedly regard the practice in question in this light, we feel less--in fact, asleep. Not being able to penetrate the inhabited by Flemings after the occurrence of the convinced that this would deprive the individuals mystery notwithstanding all these discoveries, Michel events related. Eleren Flemings, says the tradition addicted to it of half their encouragement, and, therebegan openly to press the young man for an explana- of the neighbourhood, came successively to occupy the fore, tend to put a stop to it in some degree. tion, till at length Gaspard said, “ Well! it is true “Maison de Malheur des Flamands,” and of all the To their want of respect for, or their reckless indifthat there is a secret; a secret which may make the eleven not one escaped a sudden and violent end. ference to, the feelings of others, the individuals who fortune of any man, or perhaps of two men. Give me Some who have paid especial attention to the circum- practise this habit, as might be expected, add cowardice, your daughter Odette's hand, and I will tell you my stances, can enumerate the various modes in which accompanied frequently by crime. In order to succeed socret, and we may soon become rich enough to re- the doom fell upon the inhabitants of this House of in the execution of their hoax, without at the same quire to sell no more bibles.”
Woe. One perished by assassination, another by the time affording any means by which they themselves Gaspard received the old man's promise, and then waters of the Seine, a third was broken on the wheel, may be discovered and punished, they have recourse told him that a wonderful art had been invented in a fourth died within the walls of starvation, and so on. to the anonymous by way of protection, or, rather than Germany, which enabled any one to produce bibles One of the last of the unfortunate Flemings who be baffled in their enterprise, they adopt a fictitious and other books with inconceivable rapidity, and that tenanted the house of disaster, was Jean-Paul Labadie, name, or counterfeit a real one. By this means they the mobility of the stamps or characters employed a man whose fate was particularly hard, and who lived impose upon the genius who presides over the broadpermitted the easy correction of any blunders." I so recently that his story could have been authenti- sheet, and effect their unworthy purpose, without, in have yet thirty bibles thus made,” said Gaspard, “ in cated but a short time ago by living persons. He was by far the majority of cases, being so unfortunate as the keeping of a friend ; I may have a hundred, when- a flourishing man. A large sum of money which he to draw down upon themselves the retributive conseever I wish them, from the same friend who made the had brought with him from his native Flanders had quences of their guilt. others. Not daring to sell the works myself, because been embarked by him in trade, which he carried on The writer of these obseryations lately resided in they here punish, as magical, all that they do not com- in “La Maison de Malheur.” He married a most an English country town, and knows that hoaxes of prehend, I applied to you, and became ostensibly a beautiful girl, who commonly received the title of the the kind of which he speaks are there of constant and transcriber.” Gaspard at the same time told Michel" belle” of the neighbourhood. But, soon after his
In that town, indeed, the itch that the name of the fabricator of the bibles was marriage, he was arrested, and thrown into the Bas- for personal public attacks of all kinds is beyond all Schoeffer, and pointed out the means which had been tille. There he lay for tưenty years, totally ignorant bounds. We believe, in this respect, we decidedlyout-do established for carrying on a correspondence with him, of the crime for which he was thus punished. At the Americans, who are notorious for black-balling their and procuring as many bibles as might be required, length a great person who chanced to visit his cell was public men. The English Corporation Reform Bill, at such a price as would leave the second venders á seized with pity, and got Jean-Paul liberated, when he as is well known, changed our municipal constitution, princely profit.
learned for the first time the cause of his confinement. and called into power a new order of men. Since Michel only consented to the immediate marriage A court marquis had seen and admired his wife, and then, party spirit of the bitterest kind has been exhiof Gaspard and Odette, on receiving a load of bibles had taken the way related of getting the husband bited in the above hitherto peaceful borough, and the which had been sent for from Schoeffer, who lived disposed of. Subsequently, Jean-Paul had merely privacy of domestic life is daily invaded. In corroborawithout the bounds of France. Thus satisfied, old lain in prison because the marquis had utterly forgot tion of the truth of these observations, we may mention, Watremetz gave permission for the celebration of the him.
that the common council of the place recently clected wedding within eight days. But two or three morn- These stories of misfortune befalling the occupants from among their number an individual to fill the ings cre the day came, one of Michel's former appren of the fated house, may be connected or not by our
office of mayor, who is a master painter and glazier tices entered his house inagnificently dressed, and readers, just as they please, with the dying words of in the town. This circumstance occasioned the informed the old Fleming that he-the apprentice-| Gaspard Hautz. We have our own ideas about the following paragraph in a local newspaper, evidently had recently got a handsome fortune by the death of matter, and, no doubt, they will also have theirs. written by a partisan. After reciting the fact of the a relation, that his father had just been named “Mas- Enough has been said, however, to explain satisfac- person mentioned having been elected to the office of ter of the Merchants,” and that he himself had come torily the origin of the name of the Flemings' House mayor, the paragraph goes on as follows :-" The to place his wealth and hand at the disposal of Odette. of Disaster.
mayor of every borough is, during his office, and for one The dark shade in Watremetz's composition was ava
year after, a justice of the peace; and formerly it used rice. He grew pale at the thought of his being under
to be the opinion that such an office ought to be filled the necessity of renouncing an alliance with so rich a
by a person moving in a respectable station of life, family-with the son of the chief of the merchants.
and who could fill the duties of it with impartiality Almost audibly he cursed the cause of all this, poor
and dignity. Whether Mr
will do either Gaspard. “ Gaspard !" cried the enriched apprentice, There is prevalent in small towns a frequent and mis- the one or the other, remains to be proved. comprehending the truth at once ; " what I have I á chievous practice of holding private individuals up to Really, to raise such a man to the magistracy, is too rival in Gaspard, the miserable wretch who has sold public ridicule, by which the inhabitants in general bad. Fancy , Esq. dressed in a fustian his soul to the devil for the power of multiplying are grievously annoyed. The practice to which we
jacket, daubed with all the colours of the rainbow, a
paper cap on his head, and a paint pot in his hand, and will crush him soon! You, too, were accused of allude, consists chiefly in conceiving reports of births, working at his business all day, and refreshing himself being his accomplice, Michel ; happily, through my deaths, and marriages (which, of course, are matters with a pot of ale in the kitchen of the Bay Nag's father's credit, I got the charge against you suppressed; of pure fiction), and in sending them under fictitious, Head in the evening, discussing the proceedings of but as for Gaspard, nothing can save him !" and frequently forged signatures, to the conductors of the Commons; and the same
Esq., the next All this, unhappily, proved but too real. Gaspard local newspapers, for publication. We seldom take day, dressed in his Sunday, clothes, seated on the against him was supported by the former workmen of up a newspaper in which we do not find the editor before the eyos of his admiring fellow-townsmen.” Watremetz.
In vain did the poor young German intimating to his “ readers and correspondents,” that Now, is not this as base as any thing which could invoke the testimony of Michel ; Michel kept an the report of a particular birth, marriage, or death, to
be told of the American press, and which Mrs Trollope obstinate silence. In vain did Gaspard wish
that his which he had previously given insertion in his journal, and others have taken care to trumpet ! Such per judges was, " The torture !--confess!” And when is a fabrication, and stating (by way, we suppose, of and cannot meet with sufficient reprobation from subjected to the horrors of the question, poor human satisfying the aggrieved parties) that he will ondeavour, every right-thinking person. nature sank under it, and to ensure a speedy death by every possible means, to discover and punish the This species of mean party warfare is, of course, a and the cessation of his agonies, Gaspard Hautz ad- fabricator. But we seldom hear of any instance of different kind of anonymous writing with reference mitted his association with the devil. Ile was condemned to death, and also to make an amende honorable; learn that a young man in Perth was a short time ago directed against public men, who are, or at least ought this editorial search proving successful. However, we
to its objects, from that with the consideration of
which we began these observations, inasmuch as it is before his execution, in front of the house of Michel Watrenietz, whom he had endeavoured, his judges committed to jail, and afterwards held to bail
, for to be, prepared to lay their account for annoyances of said, to implicate in a matter where the Fleming was imposing on the conductors of the “ Perth Constitu- this kind. It is, nevertheless, highly objectionable, perfectly guiltless. All the Bibles which had been tional,” by causing them to announce the demise of a as is every other kind of anonymous writing, the object found in Gaspard's possezsion were given to the convent of the Benedictines, who exorcised, blessed, and
well-known gentleman in Edinburgh. The fraud, it of which is to ridicule or slander individuals, on the then sold them for high sums. appears, was accomplished by forging the signature of towards our neighbour, whom we are enjoined not to
ground that it is an obvious violation of our duty When the day of execution came, Gaspard IIautz was
an official gentleman in Perth. Wo mention this by hurt by word or deed. carried to the front of the house of Michel Watremetz, way of warning to those individuals who are addicted We cannot help giving our opinion that the conand there the cavalcade stopped. The doomed youth to the practice now under notice, and who shall read ductors of newspapers, and others connected with arose from his seat, pale and wasted, with the irons this paper. They occupy a conspicuous position writers of anonymous attacks themselves, in giving
the printing-press, are nearly as blameable as the rattling still on his limbs. But in place of making the expected amende, which the solemnity of the ceremo- amongst the “ monsters of society,” those reporters of publicity to them. We are well aware that in nial had compelled Michel to appear for the purpose of births, deaths, and marriages.
the case of false reports of births, deaths, and mar. listening to, Gaspard exclaimed, “ I am the victim of
The object, of course, of jokes of this kind, is to pro- riages, they are frequently imposed on, and cannot treachery and ingratitude, and this thou knowest well , duce a general laugh at the expense and pain of private always
avoid being entrapped into the publication of who strugglest to appear composed. Glad woulds: individuals ; and what makes them the more cruel is, great carefulness, and should on no account insert thou have been had my judges spared thee this last that in nine cases out of ten a female is made the reports which are not properly authenticated, or interview. But I am here to say farewell, and to victim. We believe that such jokes are most fre- which have not come through the hands of their
ANONYMOUS WRITING IN COUNTRY TOWNS.
CHAMBERS'S EDINBURGH JOURNAL.
agents, or of parties above all suspicion. With reference, Auld Maysie bade the lads tak tent,
Folks were as good then, and friends were as leal,
Though coaches were scant, wi' their cattle w-cantrin; however, to slanderous paragraph-writing, they can
But soon the fool his folly kent,
Right air* we were tell't by the housemaid or chiel, easily put a stop to it; and it is earnestly to be wished,
For-Jenny dang the Weaver.
Sir, an ye please, here's your lass and a lantern. for the advantage of all parties, that they would.
In ilka countra dance and reel
Wi' her he wad be babbin';
-Whar is true friendship, and whar will ye see actuated by tlie desire to put down such practices, and
When she sat down, then he sat down,
A'that's gude, honest, and modest, and thrifty ? we sincerely hope that what we have written may And till her wad be gabbin';
Tak auld age and wrinkles and hirple wi' me,
And think on the seventeen hundred and fifty.
Whare'er she gaed, or butt or ben, have this effect in some degree.
The coof wad never leave her,
In 1810, he followed up and expanded these ideas, in
Aye cacklin' like a clockin' hen,
But Jenny dang the Weaver.
a poem which he then published in a small volume,
under the title of “ Edinburgh or the Ancient Royalty,
a Sketch of Former Manners, by Simon Gray.”+ We
Gude haith I needna swither, Some of the fugitive compositions of the biographer of
Ye've bonny een, and gif ye're kind,
have here some highly humorous and quaint recollecJohnson were lately adverted to in this work: we now
I needna court anither."
tions of the circumstances which characterised the propose to give some notices of the humorous poetry
He humm'd and haw'd—the lass cried pheugh,
old town in its days of glory, and of the manners of of his eldest son, the late Sir Alexander Boswell, of
And bade the fool no dea ve her,
its strangely mixed inhabitants-for example, the folAuchinleck, Baronet. The claims of this gentleman
Then crack'd her thumb, and lap, and leugh,
lowing description of the High Street :to a place amongst the poets of Scotland are by no
Tier upon tier I see the mansions rise, means inconsiderable ; yet his name is not nearly so
Whose azure summits mingle with the skies; much known as it deserves to be, and no collection of
I met four chaps yon birks amang,
There, from the earth the labouring porters bear his many clever verses has as yet been given to the
Wi' hingin' lugs and faces lang ;
The elements of fire and water high in air ; world. Sir Alexander was the eldest son of James
I speer'd at neebour Bauldy Strang,
There, as you scale the steps, with toilsome tread,
The dripping barrel madifies your head ;
Quo' he, ilk cream-fac'd, pawky chiel,
Thence, as adown the giddy round you wheel, brother, the late Mr James Boswell, barrister (well
Thought himsel' cunnin' as the de'il,
A rising porter greets you with his creel ! known as one of Shakspeare's many commentators), And here they cam, awa to steal
Here, in these chambers, ever dull and dark, were, in consequence of the high-church preposses
The Lady gay received her gayer Spark,
Who, clad in silken coat, with cautious tread,
The first, a captain till his trade, sions of their father, educated at Westminster School
Trembled at opening casements over head;
Wi' skull illlin'd, and back weel clad, and the University of Oxford. The subject of this
But when in safety at her porch he trod,
March'd round the barn and bye the shed, notice succeeded his father at his death in 1795,
He seiz'd the ring, and rasp'd the twisted rod. I
And pap'd on his knee. and, for the ensuing twenty-seven years, no country
“ No idlers then, I trow, were seen to meet,
Quo' he, “My goddess, nymph and queen, gentleman of the county of Ayr was more generally
Link'd, six a-row, six hours in Princes Street ;"
But, one by one, they panted up the hill,
And picked their steps with most uncommon skill; santry and good humour, great kindness of nature
Then, at the Cross, each joined tbe motley mobtowards all dependent on him, and a certain lively A lawyer niest, wi' blathrin' gab,
“ How are ye, Tain? and how's a' wi' ye, Bob?" enthusiasm which pervaded all he said or did, made
Wha speeches wove like ony wab,
Next to a neighbouring tavern all retir'd,
And draughts of wine their various thoughts inspir'd.
And a' for a fee :
O'er draughts of wine the Beau would moan his love; those beneath it. He was a zealous literary antiquary,
Accounts he had through a' the town,
O'er draughts of wine the Cit his bargain drove; and long kept a printing-press in his own house, And tradesmen's tongues nae mair could drown;
O'er draughts of wine the Writer pen'd the will : from which emanated many curious reprints, as well Haith now he thought to clout his gown
And Legal Wisdom counsel'd o'er a gill. as several compositions of his own. He was an ardeni
Wi’ Jenny's bawbee.
Yes, mark the street, for youth the great resort,
A Norland laird neist trotted up, admirer of Burns, and originated the beautiful monu
Its spacious width the theatre of sport.
Wi' bawsen'd naig and siller whup, ment to that poet at Alloway Kirk-a transaction
Cried “ There's my beast, lad, haud the grup,
There midst the crowd the jingling hoop is driven; respecting which a very curious anecdote is related.
Full many a leg is hit, and curse is given.
Or tie't till a tree.
There, on the pavement, mystic forins are chalked,
What's gowd to me?-I've waith o'lan';
Defaced, renewed, delayed--but never balked ;
There romping Miss the rounded slate may drop,
And kick it out with persevering hop. to be held on a particular day in the town of Ayr.
Wi' Jenny's bawbee.
There, in the dirty current of the strand,
A'spruce, frae ban'boxes and tubs,
Boys drop the rival corks with ready hand, friend assembled, but no one else appeared. Not at
A THING cam neist (but life has rubs),
And, wading through the puddle, with slow pace,
Watch in solicitude the doubtful race!
Ah! waes me!
And there, an active band, with frequent boast, and the other proceeded to act as clerk. Resolutions
A'clatty, squintin' through a glass,
Vault in succession o'er each wooden post. were passed and duly minuted, thanks were voted by
Ile gir'd, “I'faith a bonnie lass!"
Or a bold stripling, noted for his might,
Heads the array and rules the mimic fight.
From hand and sling now fly the whizzing stones,
Unheeded broken heads and broken bones. of collecting the two thousand pounds or thereby, out
She bade the laird gang comb his wig,
The rival hosts in close engagement mix,
The soger no to strut sae big,
Drive and are driven by the dint of sticks.
The fool cry'd “ Tehec,
The bicker rages, till some mother's fears
Ring a sad story in a bailie's ears.
Her prayer is heard ; the order quick is sped,
She prin'd the dishclout till his tail,
And, from that corps which hapless Porteous led, honour much more than a year.
And cool'd him wi' a water-pail,
A brave detachment, probably of two,
And kept her bawbee.
Rush, like two kites, upon the warlike crew, which we have seen, is a translation of Freu't cuch des We copy these pieces from a small volume, which
Who, struggling, like the fabled frogs and mice, libens, executed at Leipsig in 1795, when he was only the author published anonymously in 1803,+ with a
Are pounc'd upon, and carried in a trice.
But, mark that motley group, in various garb-
And brawl, successive, tells disputed loss.
From hand to hand the whirling halfpence pass,
And, every copper gone, they fly to brass.
Those polish'd rounds which decorate the coat,
an Irish air," by the late James Boswell, Esq.," ap- And brilliant shine upon some youth of note,
Now from the faithful button-holes depar..
To sudden twitch the rending stitches yield,
And Enterprise again essays the field.
When thousand after thousand takes its flight,
In the short circuit of one wretched night,
Next shall the honours of the forest fall,
And ruin desolate the Chieftain's hall;
Hill after hill some cunning clerk shall gain;
Then, in a mendicant, behold a THANE !
For there Marg'ret Caroline first charm'd my sight, Or the description of a dancing assembly of former
Then were the days of modesty and mion!
Stays for the fat, and quilling for the lean.
The ribbon'd stomacher, in many a plait,
Upheld the chest and dignified the gait;
Some Venus, brightest planet of the train,
Moved in a lutestring halo prop'd with cane.
Distracted I fled from my dear native shore,
Then the Assembly Close received the fair ;
Order and elegance presided there;
Yet still in some moments enchanted I find
Each gay Right Honourable had her place
To walk a minuet with becoming grace;
No racing to the dance, with rival hurry-not succeed nearly so well as in those of an humorous All the world is a Larghan Clanbrassil to me.
Such was thy sway, oh fam'd Miss Nicky Murray'$ character. Yet he occasionally hits on a good thought,
Each lady's fan a chosen Damon bore,
With care selected many a day before ;
For, unprovided with a favourite beau,
But, previous matters to her taste arranged,
Certes the constant couple never changed ;
Through a long night, to watch fair Delia's will,
filled up by the humble—and a new and less simple The same dull swain was at her elbow still. It was in humorous poetry, in the homely dialect style of manners generally introduced. He alludes to
We would gladly quote more of these curious reof Lowland Scotland, that Alexander Boswell chiefly these circumstances in a song published in the volume miniscences, local as they are, if space permitted. As shone. Some of his songs in this style were written above
described, beginning, “ Hech! what a change the case is, we must pass on to a conclusion, and do little and had attained popularity while the author was ha’e we now in this town!” A verse or two of his more than allude to a facetious tale written by Sir still a very young man-for example the two follow- praises of the past may be quoted :
Alexander Boswell in 1815, and printed by him in the ing, which are set to lively Scotch airs :
Little was stown then, and less gaed to waste,
| Edinburgh, Manners and Miller. At Willie's wedding o' the green,
An ancient and now disused mode of requiring admittance; Her equipage a'-just a gude pair o' pattens. The lasses, bonny witches,
a ring being slung upon a piece of iron rod, which was either Were busked out in aprons clean,
twisted or notched, so as to produce a grating sound when the And snaw-white Sunday's mutches
* Barobce, literally a halfpenny, but here meaning a young ring was drawn up and down alongst it.
lady's fortune. * True or faithful.
$ A venerable sister of the Chief Justice Earl of Mansfield, who † Ding, preterite dang—to overcome or get the better of.
Songs chiefly in the Scottish Dialect. Edinburgh, Manners presided over the Edinburgh assemblies of those days. She died and Miller. 1803. 1 Crumb.
succeeding year at his domestic press, under the title side as inside. Thus, as general improvements ad- / ask for persons by their own name : to say " how is of “ Skeldon Haughs, or the Sow's Flitted.” The vance, small points of etiquette drop into desuetude. your wife ?" is disgustingly vulgar and fanuliar.) incident on which this tale was founded was said to What are we to think of the following! “Nil If you have accepted an invitation to a party, never have occurred in Ayrshire about the close of the admirari (nothing to be wondered at); the precept of fail to keep your promise. Especially do not break fifteenth century,
when the Kennedies of Carrick stoicism is the precept for conduct among gentlemen. your word on account of bad weather. A cloak and were often at war with their neighbours of Kyle, All excitement must be studiously avoided. When you a carriage will secure you from all inconvenience. and particularly with one of these, Crawford of are with ladies, the case is different; among them, won. (Answer a note of invitation immediately; any postKerse. The Kennedies, by way of defying the power der, astonishment, ecstacy, and enthusiasın, are neces- ponement seems as if you were waiting to make a of the Crawfords, determined to fix a sow upon Skel sary, in order to be believed.” Is it to be inferred choice between two invitations.] don haughs, the property of Crawford of Kerse, and from this that American ladies are fools, who can not When you receive company in your own house, you to keep her there, all efforts of the Crawfords to the or will rot comprehend simple narrations of facts, and should never be much dressed (so as not to outdo your contrary notwithstanding. The Crawfords, again, require to be addressed in the language of affectation guests. This is a circumstance of the first importwere determined to perish to a man rather than not and rhapsody?
ance in good breeding. “flit" or remove the sow off their lands, and drive her The rules presented for intercourse and conversa- Avoid the use of proverbs in conversation, and all back across the Doon to the country of the Kennedies. tion in private society, are conceived in a different sorts of cant phrases [also any words of a foreign The poem embraces all these particulars, and at length spirit, and may be read with advantage. “ If you language.] represents the aged Crawford sitting in the open air meet any one whom you have never heard of before The members of a family, in their attentions to a at his gate, waiting anxiously for intelligence of the at the table of a gentleman, or in the drawing-room company, should be very quiet and deliberate. It is contention on Skeldon Haughs. A breathless mes- of a lady, you may converse with him with entire a sure mark that they are unaccustomed to receiving senger appears, whom, while still at a distance, the old propriety. The form of introduction is nothing company, when they are observed flying about, talkman addresses
more than a statement by a mutual friend that two ing in a loud voice, and hoping that every body finds " Is the sow flitted ? --- Tell me, loon,
gentlemen are by rank and manners fit acquaintances every thing agrecable. Is auld Kyle up---an' Carrick down ?"..
for one another. All this may be presumed from the Should you have the misfortune, at a dinner or Mingled wi' sobs, his broken tale The youth began--- Ah! Kerse, bewail
fact, that both meet at a respectable house. This is evening party at the house of another, to break any This luckless day !--- your blithe son John, the theory of the matter.
thing which you take up, or to throw down a waiter Now, wae's my heart! lies on the loan--.
Men of all sorts of occupations meet in society. As loaded with splendid cut-glass, you should not make An' he could sing like ony merle !"...
they go there to unbend their minds and escape from an apology, or appear the least mortified, or indeed ** Is the sow flitted ?" cried the carle--. " Gie me my answer---short and plain--
the fetters of business, you should nerer, in an even- take any notice whatever of the calamity. If you exIs the sow fitted--- yamm'rin' wenn !"*
ing, speak to a man about his profession. The error hibited any regret on such an occasion, you would ** The sow (deil tak her) 's oure the water--
whichi is here condemned is often committed from soem to indicate that the loss was of importance to An' at their backs the Crawfords batter--
mere good nature and a desire to be affable. Sir your entertainer--an extremely poor compliment. The Carrick cowtst are cow'di and bitted !"
Joshua Reynolds once received from two noblemen A high-bred man, if he should break a vase which " My thumb for Jock! The sow is flitted !"
invitations to visit them on Sunday morning. The cost a little fortune, would avoid showing any con
first whom he waited upon welcomed him with the cern, but would toss aside the fragments as common SOME MORE POINTS OF ETIQUETTE. most obsequious condescension, treated him with all rubbish. I need not say that the master or mistress In the small volume, formerly alluded to, defining the the attention in the world, professed that he was so of the house should treat such an event with utter inpoints and principles of American etiquette, we have desirous of seeing him, that he had mentioned Sunday difference, however deeply they may groan in spirit; some amusing examples of what may be styled over- engaged during the week, to spare time enough for the a matter of no consequence," that is to be taken for
as the time for his visit, supposing him to be too much they should not even go the length of saying " that is done politeness. In rules for good breeding, as in purpose, and concluded his compliments by an eulogy granted. rules on other subjects, it is possible to proceed to such on painting, and smiled him affectionately to the door. In mounting a pair of stairs (or climbing a style] extremities as will make the thing which is desired Sir Joshua left him, to call upon the other. That one in company with a woman, run up before her; in either ridiculous or offensive. Our Philadelphian received him with respectful civility, and behaved to coming down, walk behind her. Chesterfield, in his directions for conduct, occasionally him as he would have behaved to an equal in the If a plate be sent to you, at dinner, by the master commits this blunder. Take, for instance, the follow- peerage : said nothing about Raphael or Correggio, or mistress of the house, you should always take it, ing rule for gentlemen standing up as soon as a lady but conversed with ease about literature and men without offering it to all your neighbours. rises to her feet :
This nobleman was the Earl of Chesterfield. Sir When helped to any thing at a dinner table, do not “ It was formerly deemed a requisition of good- spected him, the other had proved that he did, and begun to eat. Joshua felt, that though the one had said that he re-wait, with your plate untouched, until others have
As soon as your plate is placed before breeding for a gentleman, when paying a visit, or when went away from this one gratified
rather than from you, take up your knife and arrange the table furnipresent at a small party, to stand up whenever the the first. Reader, there is wisdom in this anecdote ; ture around you. (And so commence.] lady of the house rose to pass from one part of the and let this be the moral which you deduce, that there You should never ask a gentleman-or lady at table room to another. This custom still lingers among a is distinction in company, but that there are no dis- to help you to any thing, but always apply to the serfew elderly persons, and among some young men who
tinctions. practise the style of manners which prevailed forty
vants. [Never make any remark on any article being years ago. It was a becoming attention, and is worthy should be studied as an art." Style in conversation is
The great business in company is conversation. It good, &c.] to be yet retained in part:
not continued in its rigour, as important, and as capable of cultivation, as style in MR PALMER'S IMPROVEMENTS IN THE but regulated by, good sense. When the lady rises writing. The manner of saying things is what gives near you, especially if she has been previously con- them their value. The most important requisite for
POST-OFFICE. versing with you, you should by all means rise, though succeeding here, is constant and unfaltering attention.
(From the Companion to the British Almanack.) it would be observing a greater degree of ceremony That which Churchill has noted as the greatest virtue We have now to notice one of the most important
of than is accordant with the general system of modern on the stage, is also the
most necessary in company, the events connected with the Post-Office history; we tant part of the room and you are engaged in discourse Your understanding should, like your person, be armed cumstances connected with this affair are deeply with another person; It would, however, be a proper at all points
. Never go into society with your mind interesting, partly from the importance of the effects whenever you are at the house of an elderly woman,
on deshabille. It is fatal to success to be at all absent resulting from Mr Palmer's arrangements, but still
or distrait. The secret of conversation has been said to more from the unparalleled difficulties he had per. whom you know to be fond of keeping up the old consist in building upon the remark of your compa- sonally to encounter at every step in his progress, and forms. At such a house, rise the instant
the lady nion. Men of the strongest minds, who have soli- from the cruel injustice with which he was treated, do not move until you are quite sure that she hasfully tary habits and bookish dispositions, rarely excel in when success was no longer doubtful. At the time the seated herself : this may be very awkward, but on such itself the subject abstractly—instead of attending to attention, he was the manager of the theatres of Bath an occasion as we have mentioned, do it nevertheless.” the language of other speakers, and do not cultivate and Bristol, and in the enjoyment of a considerablelina
This paragraph contains an explicit direction for a rerbal pleasantries and refinements. He who does come. The first circumstance that particularly struck Now it is quite clear that if such a rule were followed, by showing that he has regarded the observation of mission of a letter from London to Bath, a distance of * omiscellaneous company of ladies and gentlemen others. It is an error to suppose that conversation one hundred and ten miles. A letter posted in London and sitting down, and all peace, ease, and agreeable listen discreetly. Silirabeau said, that to succeed in Wednesday afternoon, froquently much later, whilst boranguillity
, which is significant of good society, would the world, it is necessary to submit to be taught many at the very same time coaches were leaving London fohleno : We should bolt round to the back of our chair, nothing
about them. The most rofined and gratifying time the following morning. The postage of a letter lous, and gives one a curious notion of the formalities versation consists more in finding
it in others," says La discovered that the tradesmen continually made
parof high life in America.
Bruyère, than in showing a great deal yourself: ho cels of their letters, the extra speed being of more time to a woman of condition in the open air, intend- and his own wit, is perfectly well pleased with you. vidual specimen of the existing arrangements, Mr me to her of the same ti If you speak for a short who goes from your conversation pleased with himself consequence than the extra expense. From this indi
: ing to leave her immediately, you should remain un- Most men had rather please than admire you, and Palmer carried his inquiries further : he found that cover unless she. desires you twice to put on your seek legs to be instructed—nay, delighted—than
to be the Post-Office was as irregular as it was slow; that hat." This is French, not English manners. stand in the open air, for even a single minute, without is to please another.'” To approved and applauded. The most delicate pleasure its robbery was a matter of continual occurrence; that
the grossest mismanagement, and the most flagrant any covering on the head, might be attended with the Some of the hints which the author proceeds to abuses, pervaded every department; and, in short, most serious consequences to health, and therefore any give, suppose a low condition of manners in those that a thorough reformation was required, both for
“ Never (he observes) ask a the sake of the public accommodation, and the governBesides, the women of England
possess more common question about the price of a thing; this horrible ment revenue. He immediately devoted himself to sense than to require such obeisance. To lift the hat error is often committed by a nouveau riche.” Again the consideration of the remedy, and presented the from the head, with a polite inclination of the body, _“ You should never make use in conversation of the first rude sketch of his plan to Mr Pitt, the minister, both on approaching and leaving a lady, is all that is words genteel or gentility." These admonitions apply in 1782, with an intimation that he was willing to demanded by the strictest etiquette, and is performed to a large class of persons in England as well as in devote his entire time and attention to the carrying it by every well-bred person.
America. Except arnong a superior order of people, into operation ; that if he failed, le should not expect If you are walking with a woman who has your arm, conversation respecting the qualities and prices of a shilling for his services, but that, if he succeeded, he and you cross the street, it is better not to disengage furniture and other commonplace articles is exceed expected 24 per cent. upon the increase on the net your arm and go round upon the outside. Such effort ingly common. A well-bred person never makes the revenue. Llis proposal pleased the sagacious premier, erinces a palpable attention to form, and that is always slightest remark upon any article in a house whatso- who returned it to him in order that it might be to be avoided." The practice of giving ladies the in- ever, and, in fact, never seems to be aware that there further developed, stating at the same time that the side of the trottoir is getting into disuse in England, are any objects which can possibly excite attention. pecuniary proposition was fair, and would not be because there is now as much safety and comfort out
The following points which we select and string to objected to.
gether, with an occasional remark in addition, Early in 1773, the plan, prepared as desired, was Waining child. + Colts; a derisire appellation. of importance to constitute good manners :
again presented, and about to be acted upon, when 1 Bitted, in allusion to the bitling of a fractious horse. " Never say, how is your brother to-day pi [Always I the administration was dissolved. The new minis
ters, however, took up the matter, but for the time 1.240,000. And now commences that part of the affair
REMARKABLE CONDUCT OF A LITTLE did no more than transmit the plan to the Post- which is nationally disgraceful. This appointment was
GIRL. Office for the opinion of the authorities. In the delayed upon different pretexts from time to time, and The following extraordinary act was performed by a interim Mr Palnier travelled through the country to clear up fresh doubts that had been expressed, and annuity large in itself, but which was infinitely below child in Lyons not long ago, according to a continental
paper. from this period appears to have determined to pursue the amount Mr Palmer was entitled to, settled upon
An unfortunate artisan, the father of a family, was the affair at every personal risk, satisfied that success him in professed compensation. The first objection was feasible, and that a magnificent fortune would to the legal instrument required, was, that the appoint-deprived of work by the depressed state of his trade ultimately be his reward for all the difficulty, anxiety, ment must be under the Post-Office, or require a new that lie could get a morsel of food now and then for and pecuniary danger he had to undergo. In July act, consequently a treasury warrant was issued for his famished wife and children. Things grew worse following, the Post-Office authorities furnished their the time to prevent any cessation of Mr Palmer's en: and worse with him, and at length, on attempting to declaring generally that the plan was impracticable
, decisively Mr Palmer's position as independent of the in quest of employment, he fell back in a fainting and would be prejudicial to revenue and to commerce. postmasters-general, and establishes beyond question condition beside his wife, who had already been conSome of the objections offered show the extreme ab- the injustice of the subsequent treatment he expe- tined to her bed by illness for two months. The poor surdities into which selfishness or bigotry may lead rienced. The plan was now successful, in some points men, even upon matters with which above all others even more so than its author had ventured to anticipate : Ile had two boys, yet in mere childhood, and one girl
man felt himself ill, and his strength utterly gone. they ought to be the best acquainted. One declared will it be believed, then, that the Post-Office autho- about twelve or thirteen years old. For a long time that the coaches went too fast for the proper transac- rities had by this time grown so desperately shameless tion of the business of the Post-Office in the different as to come forward once more, in 1786, and declare their the whole charge of the household had fallen on this towns, whilst another could not even see why the opinion that, from the trial
which had taken place, had watched over her little brothers with more than
girl. She had tended the sickbed of her mother, and l'ost-Office should be the swiftest conveyance in the plan was and must be prejudicial to the revenue England. It was assorted that the time for the and to commerce ! However, they appear now to parental care. Now, when the father too was taken midnight until two or three o'clock in the morning, so pertinaciously defended ; tlie government treated made by her, young as she was. transmittal of the mails from London, namely, from have been entirely unsupported in the position they had ill, there seemed to be not a vestige of hope for the
family, excepting in the exertions which might be could not be altered without throwing the whole cor- the opinion with the contempt it deserved. The trearespondence of England into confusion. As to the sury warrant we have mentioned was now. sent to for work proportioned to her strength. But that the
The first thouglit of the poor little girl was to seek appointment of a guard, one gentleman observed the Post-Office, but it was not ratified, because the post- family might not starve in the meantime, she resolved pleasantly as well as shrewdly, that “ho might be master-general, Lord Tankerville, had “ doubts about to go to one of the Houses of Charity, where food was waited for at every ale-house he should pass by," the percentage." His doubts were ultimately removed, whilst another could not think a guard to each mail but too late to produce any beneficial effect, for he given out, she had heard, to the poor and needy. The would add to its safety;” but the climax of the argu- quitted office, leaving the appointment unsigned. scribed her name in the list of applicants, and told her ment was reached by a third, who, evidently thinking Lord Clarendon, his successor, had also his doubts, and to come back again in a day or two, when the case there was danger in too much security, lest the robbers endeavoured to induce Mr Pitt to authorise a differ- would have been deliberated upon. Ålas, during this should grow outrageous at such unfair conduct, ob- ent arrangement, but the minister wisely as well as deliberation, her parents and brothers would starve ! served, “ that when desperate fellows had once deter- justly refused, observing, that it would be a spur to The girl stated this, but was informed that the formined upon a mail robbery, the consequence would be exertion, and equitable and beneficial to both sides: malities mentioned' were indispensable. She camo murder in case of resistance !" In conclusion, it was stated generally with respect to the affairs of the Post- limited appointment, which ultimately proved to be again to the streets, and, almost agonised by the knowOffice, « that the constant eye that has long been kept as worthless as it was limited. He now introduced home, she resolved to ask charity from the passengers
ledge how anxiously she was expected, with bread, at toward their improvement in all situations, and under the plan into Scotland. He next went to France to in the public
ways. all circumstances, has made them now almost as per arrange a better system of communication between
No one heeded the modest unobtrusive appeal of fect as they can be without exhausting the revenue that and our own country. From this time until her outstretched hand. Her heart was too full to arising therefrom.” Seeing all this, we may excuse 1792, he continued his exertions, perfecting and con- permit her to speak. Could any one have seen the the merriment apparently produced among these solidating the plan he had already brought into opor torturing anxiety that filled her breast, she must have gentlemen at the absurdity of Mr Palmer's idea, that ration, and preparing new ones, when he was suddenly been pitied and relieved. As the case stood, it is the Bath mail could be brought to London in sixteen suspended by the postmasters-general, Lords Carteret not perhaps surprising that some rude being menaced or eighteen hours. At all events, whether the plan and Walsingham. He denied their authority over her with the police. She was frightened. Shiverwas or was not practicable, there was no denying the him, but discovered that their influence at all events ing with cold, and crying bitterly, she fled home firmness of its author. Instead of listening with was paramount. It would be useless entering into wards. When she mounted the stairs and opened humble conviction to the objections urged, he refuted the details of the alleged causes of this proceeding, for the door, the first words that she heard were the cries them all, and decided government in its favour. Again it is evident that, from the very commencement of his of her brothers for something to eat—“bread! bread!" delay was caused by a change of administration, but exertions, his true opponents were the postmasters- She saw her father soothing and supporting her faintit was Mr Pitt who came into power, and who lost no general. It is perfectly inconceivable that any officer ing mother, and heard him say, "Bread !--she dies time in visiting the Post-Office with Mr Palmer, to of the establishment would have dared for one moment for want of food." make the necessary arrangements. Fresh objections to thwart Mr Palmer, if there had not been generally
“ I have no bread !" cried the poor girl with anguish were here presented to the minister: the authorities were understood impunity for so doing, although, on the in her tones. more than ever convinced that the scheme was imprac- other side, there is no doubt Mr Palmer was somewhat ticable and destructive. Nearly seven more anxious captious and irritable. In fact, when it was discovered at these words from her father and brothers, caused
The cry of disappointment and despair which came months were spent by Mr Palmer in collecting infor- that Mr Palmer was determined there should be no mation to overcome these new obstacles : at last a longer such impunity, by his discharging Mr Bonner, “I have not got it yet,” she exclaimed, “ but I will
her to recall what she had said, and conceal the truth. meeting took place, at which the postmasters-general his deputy, for writing letters against his plan, the post- have it immediately. I have given the baker the and their principal officers were confronted with Mr masters-general restored the contumacious officer, on money; he was serving some rich people, and he told Palmer, who triumphantly answered all their objec- the plea that Mr Palmer had given them no reasons tions ; a trial was peremptorily ordered to be made. for his suspension. Mr Palmer now demanded his per would soon be here."
me to wait or come back. I came to tell you that it On the 2d of August 1784, the first mail coach left centage; and had this been given cheerfully, he would
, London for Bristol, and others to different parts fol- still have experienced great injustice in being com- left the house again. A thought had entered her
head, lowed, and before many days had elapsed, it became pelled to depend for his profits on the exertions of and, maddened by the distress of those she loved so would be greatly successful. What was the conduct Perhaps the treasury saw this, and being unwilling to dearly, she had instantaneously resolved to put it in f the Post-Office authorities at this period? Were do what it ought to have done, that is
, restore him she saw a baker's shop in which there appeared to be they anxious to atone for their previous mistaken with full power to his position, it settled upon him an
no person, and then, summoning all her determination, opposition by the most cordial assistance now? Let annuity of L.3000 a-year.
she entered, lifted a loaf, and Hed! The shopkeeper the treasury minute of the 21st of the same month We conclude our notice of this important era in the saw her from behind. le cried loudly, ran out after answer, which Mr Palmer was necessitated to obtain, history of the Post-Office, with a short summary of her, and pointed her out to the people passing by. before he could proceed any further. It was to the the beneficial effects of Mr Palmer's arrangements, The girl ran on. She was pursued, and finally a man effect, “ that every assistance be afforded, and such incomplete as he was compelled to leave them. First, seized the loaf which she carried. The object of her power furnished him (Mr Palmer), as will effectually as to the revenue : for the nine years ending 1774, the desires taken away, she had no motive to proceed, and secure the obedience of the several postmasters to average net amount was L.162,534, 68.; for the nine was seized at once. They conveyed her towards the his direction.” Scarcely any attention was paid to years ending 1783 (prior to the commencement of the office of the police; a crowd, as usual, having gathered this command. Upon the introduction of the system new system), the net amount was only L.149,333, 183., in attendance. The poor girl threw around her deupon any new line of road, every conceivable difficulty showing a decrease of L.13,198, 135. This was the spairing glances which seemned to seek some favourable was thrown in the way; the contractors in particular state of the revenue when Mr Palmer commenced object from whom to ask mercy. At last, when she were rendered unable to fulfil their engagements, and operations ; what was it afterwards? In 1793, that had been brought to the court of the police office, and were in consequence terribly harassed in mind, as well is, the year immediately following that of his sus- was in waiting for the order to enter, she saw before as seriously injured in circumstances. In July follow pension, the net revenue was L.391,508; and in her a little girl of her own age, who appeared to look ing, therefore, Mr Palmer, whose spirit no opposition, 1797, the year in which he petitioned Parliament, it on her with a glance full of kindness and compassion. however malignant or unceasing, could subdue, no was L.541,833! The facilities afforded for the speedier Under the impulse of the moment, still thinking of the injustice, however flagrant, turn aside from the path transmission of correspondence is no less remarkable : condition of her family, she whispered to the stranger he had chosen, was again compelled to appeal to the generally speaking, the mails were conveyed in one-half the cause of her act of theft. treasury for assistance. Their lordships in consc- of their previous time ; in many cases, in one-third of “Father and mother, and my two brothers, are dying quence issued a peremptory order to enforce the further the previous time ; and in soine of the cross posts, for want of bread!” said she. extension of the plan; and circular letters were ad- in one-fourth! Posts were made daily to above five “ Where ?” asked the strange girl anxiously. dressed to the principal postmasters of the kingdom, hundred places, which had before only received them
No. 10" She had only time to requiring that all directions from Mr Palmer or his thrice a-week! Lastly, the delivery of letters became add the name of her parents to this communication, agents should be obeyed as their own, and threatening as conspicuous for its regularity and adaptation to the when she was carried in before the commissary of punishment, should they in future be neglected or public convenience, as it had been previously notorious police. misconstrued. By the autumn of the same year, that for the opposite qualities. The safety enjoyed by Nieanwhile, the poor family at home suffered all the is, within twelve months of the commencement of the correspondents contrasts in an equally extraordinary miseries of suspense. Fears for their child's safety plan, it had been carried into execution with complete manner with the previous insecurity.
Most were added to the other afflictions of the parents. At success on the principal and direct cross roads. important alterations were made in the domestic ma length they heard footsteps ascending the stair. An
Mr Palmer now asked for his reward; he applied for nagement of the Post-Office. Many gross abuses and eager cry of hope was uttered by all the four unforthe legal instruments of the appointment which had equally gross frauds were checked or destroyed for tunates, but, alas ! a stranger appeared, in place of been promised to him, and received a draft thereof, by ever; the health and confort of the clerks were in their own little one. Yet the stranger seemed to them which he was declared Surveyor and ('cmptroller- calculably improved by the abolition of so much mid- like an angel. Her cheeks had a beautiful bloom, and General of the Post-Office during life, with full autho- night employment; and, generally, the entire system long flaxen hair fell in curls upon her shoulders. She rity to suspend any officers for neglect of his own or was simplified and improved. Lastly, whilst the re- brought to them bread, and a small basket of other the postmaster-general's instructions. His salary was venue had increased as we have seen, the number of provisions. “Your girl,” she said, “will not come fixed at L. 1500 a-year, with a commission of 21 per newspapers carried free had increased from 2,000,000 back perhaps to-day; but keep up your spirits ! Seo cent. upon the surplus of the net revenue beyond | to 8,000,000.
what she has sent you !” After these encouraging