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hefore felt a strong inclination for visiting London, now saw no necessity, as London was evidently visiting them. The plan of amusements formerly in vogue was completely abolished: amongst other improvements, whist was substituted for Pope Joan. The hour of meeting was changed from five to seven, and to complete all, a dancing master was actually invited from a neighbouring town, as master of the ceremonies for a subscription assembly, which Miss Jones had undertaken to patronise.
Miss Baker was determined not to give up the contest without a struggle ; her plans were much assisted by her father's foreman, who had lived the best part of his life in London, and seen a great deal of genteel society.
As Miss Jones had constituted a dancing assembly, Miss Baker determined to set up a concert room.--She had latterly become very musical, in consequence of her father purchasing a spinett, as a great bargain. The parish clerk, who played on the organ, giving her lessons, not only on the instrument, but also in singing, in which accomplishment it was thought he came up to perfection itself.
The votaries of Thalia practised their orgies at a barn, decorated under Miss Jones's superintendence, while the music-meeting flourished in the large room of the village inn. The latter had already a very formidable band; for in addition to the spinnett, a clarionet, a bassoon, two pipes, and a pitch-pipe, were added to its number; not to say any thing of the bugle of the coachman, who occasionally indulged the Sons of Harmony, as the society was named, with a solo.
But the introduction of refinement unfortunately did not produce harmony; but ill-will and dissension abounded as much as ever. As the rivals increased in power, enmity grew stronger. Their follies, which had at first aroused, now disgusted me; I therefore was glad to bid adieu to S--, with all its beauties and all its improvements, in search of some other retired nook, where neither London nor fashion had ever been heard of, and where happiness and simplicity still remain undisturbed. But this I do not expect to discover, until I find that Utopia or Arcadia, is really a “ local habitation, and not a name.”
TO THE POET'S MISTRESS, WITH A NOSEGAY.
Go, happy flower, and touch the beauteous hand
STANZAS ON VISITING THE GRAVE OF CHARLES GOUGH,
Who perished on the Mountain of Helvellyn in the Spring of 1805
Thy fall on the rocks of Helvellyn, lost stranger,
In elegy plaintive the minstrel has sang,
Since over thy sepulchre flowerets have sprung:
Yes: song be my tribute, the shade of emotion !
Not heroes, who die by the murderous blade,
Nor beauty, for ever in quietness laid,
Far distant from men, and the blaze of parade.
Each day, as bright Phæbus rolld over the mountain,
Ah! did he not see thee slow wasting away ?
Did she not observe thee to night-birds a prey?
A picture how sad of mortality's sway!
But now, midst solemnity, silence, and beauty,
Thy ashes are mingled with those of the just,
Tread mournfully o'er thy unfortunate dust.
the heart tender,
I wander'd alone midst these scenes full of feeling
The birds o'er thy tomb sung their orisons wild,
And flow'rets wav'd over thee, ill-fated child !
* A terrier bitch, his constant companion.
CUTTING IN GENERAL, AND THE CUT FUGACIOUS IN PARTICULAR.
“ Cutting !"--exclaims the fair country novice, in expecting accents, as she turns her
expanding eye upon the ambiguous looking word," Cutting! and flitting Fancy rapidly embodies, from her store of wondrous images, some vision of terrific import; stray heads, and gaping throats,-carved limbs, and dissevered bodies,-sabres, guillotines, and razors,— rise op in mangled and mangling array before the terror-brooding imagination or if these
are too sublimely horrid; if the unromantic ponderings of my fair readers summon not such grisly horrors to the view,--for them, perhaps, inventive fancy scours the range of grosser thought; goodly barons of beef, ready spitted ducklings, or pastry's tempting forms, mock the vainly kindling eye!Alas! one “ long, lingering look” upon the all-disclosing type, and the quaintly whistling spectres“ melt in thin air away;"---for neither heads, nor throats, nor bodies, nor goodly beef, nor roasted ducks of fragrant smell,-no-not even pastry's fragile charms, are doomed to such unfeeling, Sheffield-ware martyrdom, as the phrase at first sight implies : no blood is to be spilt-no larder to be invaded :—for in fact, “Cutting applies only, at present, to the art of decently avoiding, and here displays itself merely as the offspring of a conveniently forgetful memory.
For example-has a quondam friend become poor and needy-at least, outwardly so,-it is ten chances to one, but by half of those, who once professed a friendship towards him, he is immediately “cut.' Does a fiftieth cousin, or an impoverished relation, appear unbidden to claim the friendship and assistance of their kindred blood; it is still more certain, that both will be immediately cut:'--and in the same manner, gentle reader, should an ao quaintance of yesterday thrust his unwelcome salutation upon your unwił ling notice-should your tailor, your boot-maker, or any other of your well-known 'evil eyed duns and bores, presume to shew any symptoms of recognition in the open street; it is a most expedient, necessary, and proper thing, that they should each, all, and every of them" be cut,'-unseen,
-avoided, -unremembered! There is no art, perhaps, in fashionable life, which comprehends more of the “ utile et dulce" in its practice, than the present one. So
necessary, so essential a part does it form in the polite education of the fashionable man, and so extremely gratifying does it prove to the feelings, when habit has rendered the slight exertion attendant upon its practice, perfectly easy and natural To display a proficiency in the acquirement upon a few of the self-styled friends, one meets with almost every day, becomes a positive pleasure ; and to be enabled to pass by
unknowing, as unknown," like oil over water, all such presumptuous claimants upon your friendly knowledge, as you may wish to keep at a most respectful distance, is really delightful! Unless, however, a perfectly degagée air, an easy, unconstrained step, and a look, expressive of the most vacant unknowingness, can be assumed at command, free from the slightest appearance of embarrassment--it is both useless and impudent to attempt the thorough cuť upon any but very recent acquaintances. It is my unhappy lot, gentle reader, to be one of those unfortunate beings, upon whom nature has too kindly bestowed a more than ordinary share of sheepishness; and yet. I have absolutely attempted to “cut!:-1, who could as soon look at the sun at mid-day with unwatered eyes, as assume a pretended gaze of unknowingness upon the face of any friend I might meet,
without betraying some recognition of bim !--And here let me warn all
A whirl -a shoot-and houses, streets, Snow-hill, and Fleet-ditch, in blended confusion, danced before my bewildered senses, and the next instant, my caput, propelled with the velocity of a cannon ball, in its battering passage through the singing air, flew, like the Roman Aries, full upon the pillowing paunch of an interposing Alderman; and so soon as its wandering intellects resumed their partial sway, I found myself glowing with heat, with one leg and an arm reclining in contiguous oyster tubs, whilst the remainder of my half smoking body, lay stretched in slow length along a bed of empty shells !—There, then, was a climax with a vengeance! And lucky indeed was it for the poor woman who owned the
property I had so unceremoniously invaded, that only such inferior parts of my heated corporation had deposited amongst her living shell fish; had it been otherwise, the poor oysters would certainly have met with an untimely end—and the majority of the old lady's customers might not have preferred their fish boiled. Thus ended my
essay in the sublime art of Cutting ; would to “ Brummagem” it had been my last, for I never can bring myself to face the foe in a proper manner ; running is my only resource, and running generally brings me into more scrapes and troubles than I am flying to avoid. "Oh! I could tell you, gentlest reader, of the many
“ hair breadth 'scapes” I have had, from ducking under horses' heads-of“ antres vast," in the shape of cellar entrances, that yawned to receive me, and of sundry other dismal checks upon my dismal plans. How I run one day from a pestiferous piece of would-be friendship, and fairly knocked as much good flour from the snowy vestments of a baker's boy, as might have been converted into a substantial penny roll—“for the good of the poor:”—and how, after that, resuming my fugitive course, I encountered, full--oh! horror of horrors ! -a Newgate mutton-carrier, in a red cotton cap, and sheep's carcase to match; and how, on reaching home, I extracted from my vari-coloured coat, a sufficiency of patent pomatum to last me for the remainder of the week !--I could tell you, too, how in rainy weather I have fled some approaching nuisance,-ducked, dived, leaped, and finally deposited myself safely and snugly in some sequestered alley, free from the bustling of carriages and the jostling of pedestrians, to take refuge from the rain, where no eye could detect me, and no descending shower invade me:where, in short, pity me, ye gentle hearted! I have found the very man I had all along so assiduously avoided, already conveniently entrenched, and admirably disposed for a friendly tete-a-tete !-But I will spare you the description,-“Sufficient for the day is the evil thereof."--Take warning from this, ye who have hitherto so patiently sympathized in my distresses, and constantly remember to avoid the cut fugacious: and with respect to this same art of cutting, the use whereof is so beneficial and pleasing, you may safely continue in practice thereof until such time as the Government shall think fit to tax it as a luxury too great to be enjoyed without paying for, till the same all-directing body shall be pleased, in its refined feelings of justice, to annex it by a clause to Lord Ellenborough's act, as a new branch of “wilful cutting ;"—then alas ! must the act fall to the ground; and then also will be rendered utterly unavailing the friendly admonitions of
In the arsenal of the palace at Genoa, are some light cuirasses, made purposely for some Genoese ladies, who intended to join a crusade against the infidels. These female warriors, were at length persuaded to give up their designs, by Pope Boniface the Eighth, who himself wrote a letter for