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dead, in whom common qualities become un. common? Can I forget thee, Henry Man, the wit, the polished man of letters, the author, of the South-Sea House? who never enteredst thy office in a morning or quittedst it in mid-day (what didst thou in an office?) without some quirk that left a sting! Thy gibes and thy jokes are now extinct, or survive but in two forgotten volumes, which I had the good fortune to rescue from a stall in Barbican, not three days ago, and found thee terse, fresh, epigrammatic, as alive. Thy wit is a little gone by in these fastidious days-thy topics are staled by the "new-born gauds" of the time :but great thou used to be in Public Ledgers, and in Chronicles, upon Chatham, and Shelburne, and Rockingham, and Howe, and Burgoyne, and Clinton, and the war which ended in the tearing from Great Britain her rebellious colonies,-and Keppel, and Wilkes, and Sawbridge, and Bull, and Dunning, and Pratt, and Richmond-and such small politics.

A little less facetious, and a great deal more obstreperous, was fine rattling, rattleheaded Plumer. He was descended,-not in a right line, reader (for his lineal pretensions, like his personal, favoured a little of the sinister bend)-from the Plumers of Hertfordshire. So tradition gave him and certain family features not a little sanctioned the opinion. Certainly old Walter Plumer (his reputed author) had been a rake in his days, and visited much in Italy, and had seen the world. He was uncle, bachelor-uncle, to the fine old whig still living, who has represented the

out;

county in so many successive parliaments, and has a fine old mansion near Ware. Walter flourished in George the Second's days, and was the same who was summoned before the House of Commons about a business of franks, with the old Duchess of Marlborough. You may read of it in Johnson's "Life of Cave." Cave came off cleverly in that business. It is certain our Plumer did nothing to discountenance the rumour. He rather seemed pleased whenever it was, with all gentleness, insinuated. But, besides his family pretensions, Plumer was an engaging fellow, and sang gloriously.

Not so sweetly sang Plumer as thou sangest, mild, child-like, pastoral M- -1; a flute's breathing less divinely whispering than thy Arcadian melodies, when, in tones worthy of Arden, thou didst chant that song sung by Amiens to the banished Duke, which proclaims the winter wind more lenient than for a man to be ungrateful. Thy sire was old surly M―, the unapproachable churchwarden of Bishopsgate. He knew not what he did, when he begat thee, like spring, gentle offspring of blustering winter :-only unfortunate in thy ending, which should have been mild, conciliatory, swan-like.

Much remains to sing. Many fantastic shapes rise up, but they must be mine in private :—already I have fooled the reader to the top of his bent ;— else could I omit that strange creature Woollett, who existed in trying the question, and bought litigations?—and still stranger, inimitable, solemn [Maynard-hanged himself.]

Hepworth, from whose gravity Newton might have deduced the law of gravitation. How profoundly would he nib a pen-with what deliberation would he wet a wafer !—

But it is time to close-night's wheels are rattling fast over me—it is proper to have done with this solemn mockery.

Reader, what if I have been playing with thee all this while-peradventure the very names, which I have summoned up before thee, are fantasticinsubstantial-like Henry Pimpernel, and old John Naps of Greece :—

Be satisfied that something answering to them has had a being. Their importance is from the past.

OXFORD IN THE VACATION.

ASTING a preparatory glance at the bottom of this article-as the wary connoisseur in prints, with cursory eye (which, while it reads, seems as though it read not,) never fails to consult the quis sculpsit in the corner, before he pronounces some rare piece to be a Vivares, or a Woollet-methinks I hear you exclaim, Reader, Who is Elia?

Because in my last I tried to divert thee with some half-forgotten humours of some old clerks defunct, in an old house of business, long since gone to decay, doubtless you have already set me down in your mind as one of the self-same college

—a votary of the desk-a notched and cropt scrivener-one that sucks his sustenance, as certain sick people are said to do, through a quill.

Well, I do agnize something of the sort. I confess that it is my humour, my fancy-in the fore. part of the day, when the mind of your man of letters requires some relaxation-(and none better than such as at first sight seems most abhorrent from his beloved studies)-to while away some

good hours of my time in the contemplation of indigos, cottons, raw silks, piece-goods, flowered or otherwise. In the first place

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and then it sends you home with such increased appetite to your books not to say, that your outside sheets, and waste wrappers of foolscap, do receive into them, most kindly and naturally, the impression of sonnets, epigrams, essays-so that the very parings of a counting-house are, in some sort, the settings up of an author. The enfranchised quill, that has plodded all the morning among the cart-rucks of figures and cyphers, frisks and curvets so at its ease over the flowery carpet-ground of a midnight dissertation.It feels its promotion.

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So that you see, upon the whole, the literary dignity of Elia is very little, if at all, compromised in the condescension.

Not that, in my anxious detail of the many com. modities incidental to the life of a public office, I would be thought blind to certain flaws, which a cunning carper might be able to pick in this Joseph's vest. And here I must have leave, in the fulness of my soul, to regret the abolition, and doing-away-with altogether, of those consolatory interstices, and sprinklings of freedom, through the four seasons,-the red-letter days, now become, to all intents and purposes, dead-letter days. There was Paul, and Stephen, and Barnabas—

Andrew and John, men famous in old times

-we were used to keep all their days holy, as long back as I was at school at Christ's. I remember

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