« AnteriorContinuar »
whose manner is simply the off- patient for the day when they too spring of their own overchanged shall send a congregation away minds.
overcome with hysteric emotion, They denounce without force, panting with religious excitement, they'entreat without persuasion. and thirsting for more. These men, They paint without colour, and like all imitators, only copy the they mould, and leave no form faults of their models. Like the after them. They rant, rave, and gentleman who in reading Locke riot, sob, shudder, and weep ; and mistook the peculiarities of style all the result is stunned ears to the for points in the argument, they congregation and sore throats to treasure up all the eccentricities of themselves. They are ineffective some popular preacher, and retail because they are not natural. It is them as excellencies. Such are the their own intense unreality destroys victims of Parsonitis. These are the all their usefulness, and mars all men that an austere Nemesis sends their efforts at good.
over the Alps mute and voiceless ; The very fact that a man is ad- and, to my thinking, far more per dressing you in a counterfeit voice suasive in the eloquence of their impugns his sincerity ; for be it silent gentleness than ever they were remembered these are not the men in this rapt and erratic oratory. . who carry you away by the magic Let the Rev. Paul Slowcoach power of their eloquence, bearing cease to emulate the Rev. Hugh you aloft to a region high above all Highflier ; let him be simple, nayou have ever soared in, and en- tural, and unaffected ; let him emchanting you with visions that only ploy the same earnestness in the Genius discloses to mortal eyes. pulpit to save sinners that he would The men I mean here are taken make use of to exhort Mrs. S, to from the common heap of human- some act of domestic economy, or ity: they have few gifts, they have to restrain a restive son from indisno graces; and whenever they bor- cretion. Let him be real, earnest, row an illustration or steal a figure and truthful to his own nature. from their more ornate brethren, In one word, let him aroid all menthey use it as awkwardly as the tion of Mesopotamia, and I'll warOtaheitian chief who wore his cop- rant him he'll suffer very little from per sauce-pan as a helmet.
the pangs of Parsonitis. A perverse ambition to be some But one word more. Should any thing that nature never meant them impartial layman imagine that the for an insensate desire to emulate cause I have here stated is insufwhat is far and away beyond their ficient for the effect-should he reach-stirs them up to these furi- maintain that a mere affectation ous efforts; and there is a some- could scarcely produce a malady,thing in the effect of a man's voice I only ask him to perform & walk upon himself—a sort of reduplica- of say ten miles daily on the tips of tion of self-esteem--that is posi- his toes. Let him try this for a tively intoxicating. They fancy month; and if his back-sinews do that they have discovered the se- not admonish him to return to orcret, caught the trick of success, dinary progression, my name isn't and they are madly eager and im- Cornelius.
"THE DIGNIFIED ATTITUDE." There is a story told of Sheridan, of ducks in a pond, and a labouring which all of us have heard, how man at work hard by. Determined one day, when returning unsuccess. if possible to have something to fully from shooting, never having show for his day's sport, he asked bagged a single bird, he saw a flock the man for how much he would
allow him to have one shot at the Bad-moral boots better than the brood? The fellow replied, "A trimmest Parisian ankles. I go in to crown." Sheridan fired, and tum- admire Buckstone and bitter beer, bled seven of them. “ Well, my and all that is English; but honest friend, how do you like your and this I resist to the deathbargain ?" asked he, triumphantly. nothing shall persuade me that the **Well enough," muttered the other; Emperor of the French is other than " the dooks is nane o' mine."
a third-rate man, who might have History, they tell us, repeats it- possibly distinguished himself as a self, and I am disposed to believe police functionary or a solicitor, it; for this story of the ducks is but has as much claim to high stateprecisely the story of the French craft as Jem Mace to be an authopolicy in Italy. The Emperor no rity on the Pentateuch. Let any of more owned the duchies of Modena, us humble folk only enjoy that nice Parma, and Tuscany, than the clown privilege I have just spoken of — let owned the ducks, but he gave us only sell what doesn't belong to Victor Emmanuel a “shot at them” us and what a snug little competin exchange for Nice and Savoy. ence we should lay up for our deLike the country fellow, too, he clining years! His last coup of this went off grinning, and saying, kind was the Franco-Italian treaty. " They be none o' mine," thereby This time it is indeed a very choice hinting that there might come a day lot he submits to public competiof reckoning with the owner which tion. “No reserve, gentlemen ; His might be far from agreeable.
Holiness must be knocked down to Now we are in the daily habit of the highest bidder, for the place is hearing the most fulsome praises of already disposed of to the party this great Prince; and so success- next door.' i' What a condition for ful is success, that even the journals a Pope! Garibaldi's Hymn thun- } which once took a fairer and juster dering at the Vatican! infallibility measure of his capacity, are now, going, one may say, for a song! simply by force of the fact that he Austria would like, if she dared, sleeps nightly at the Tuileries, dis- to make a bid. She would like posed to accord him all the pre- better still to protest against the science of a statesman and all the sale, but how can she? The Pope skill of a great general.
was not true to the Holy Roman I declare I have an ardent desire Empire once before, and he canalways to agree with the people not be trusted ; besides, Austria is around me. I am never so well weak. pleased as when I can concur with Sheridan--I go to him once more a prevailing opinion; and I'm not for an illustration - coming home sure that I wouldn't rather put a full of wine from a dinner, heard a little mild coercion on my con- voice from the channel of the street, science than dissent from the judg- in tones of evident ebriety, saying, ments of “the company.” But here "Lift me up-lift me up." "No," I own I cannot. I could no more said Brinsley, “that's impossible; believe in the greatness of Louis Na- but I'll tell you what I'll do: I'll poleon than in spirit-rapping. Our lie down beside you." Such is the credulity is sorely taxed in England : answer Austria gives the Holy See we have to believe Lord Palmerston -"We can't lift you up, but we'll a wit and Mr. Cobden a sage; we lie down beside you." have to swallow Carlyle's English, It is very consoling to us small and affect to like it, and when I fry in the world's fish-pond that land at Dover I do each and all of these leviathans only repeat in their these things. I prefer the mutton- policy what we blunder out in our chop at the Lord Warden to my little potations. dinner at the Cadran Rouge. I like But this is not all. When by the red-petticoated damsels in the any accident there is a European
rumpus, in which France takes no have the "zero" for themselves, and active part, maintaining what the the advantage is estimated at about Parisian papers call the “Dignified eight or ten per cent on all the Attitude that becomes her," the sums staked at the table. Of Emperor, who naturally feels he course, the more money that is cannot give away that for which played the more is their gain. You others have fought and conquered, and I may wage a fierce war on coolly steps in and declares that each other in black and red, but whoever obtains it will have be- the Messrs. Benasset, who look on, come, by the added territory, in- have only to wait for their zero; and conveniently strong for France, and eventually, by a mathematical certhat, in consequence, he himself taitty, if we only play long enough, must have something somewhere of we shall both be ruined, and they somebody else's to redress the bal- acquire all that we once possessed. ance, and enable France to go on This is precisely what the Emperor maintaining the “Dignified Atti- does. He seldom plays, but merely tude” aforesaid. Now, when these contents himself with the zero. two elements constitute a policy, I Ten per cent on the game, gentlecannot but think that the rest of men, and the aprés. Ah, these the world must fare ill at every aprés ; these are my perquisites. attempt they make to recolour the “Faites votre jeu," and you'll see map of Europe.
what will come of it. This is in reality, in our own I don't wonder John Bull sulked, age, very little else than the prac- and took an oath against play. He tice of feudal times. It is black- used to like his game once well mail over again, and Louis Napo- enough; he was generally lucky, leon is the Gregor Macgregor of and though he was not always goodEurope. The Prussians have let humoured when he lost, he booked it get abroad that they mean to up like a gentleman, and nobody annex some of the Danish spoils. ever called him defaulter. Now, Austria, who lent her aid to win however, this newfangled game irthem, sulks ; but France, the gen- ritates him. It's not on the square. erous France - that country which That "Mossoo" there knows more alone of Europe enters the arena about the balls than he ought, and for glory, and not for gain - steps in he charges, besides, too much for and says, “The price of this piece the “ tables." of Jutland is Sarre-Louis; don't My own impression is “Bull” is higgle. This is the prix fixé es- right. A respectable tradesman cantablishment, and we neither come not mind his shop in the day if he down nor give credit."
passes his nights in a hell. We all Last of all, where he cannot know where the business would go take territory he takes patronage. if he were to do so; and for this If he can't absorb the estate, he at reason I say, Keep away from that least names the agent, as we saw a French roulette-table; or if you few days back in Mexico.
must play, play low-never "stake How pleasant it must be to work a Sovereign." under such a master! How it sim If the Italians could learn a little plifies all the details of office! of this prudence it would stand How straight and clear it makes them in good stead; but they have the path of duty! Let the repre- got a greedy fit on them just now, séntative of France be at Cochin- and their fingers are itching for China or Lancaster Sound, he gain. Surely they might see that, knows, he “ appreciates," as the even if they succeed to the inheritphrase_is, “the benign intentions ance, the legacy-duty will run away of the Emperor.” Messrs. Benasset, with one-half of it - ay, and Louis of the gaming-tables at Baden and Napoleon will have it too, and Homburg, stipulate that they are to suffer no one to “tax his costs.",
This man is the Benasset of out into Hoch--something or other, politics, and nothing more. The but made one great “Beer-land," game pays admirably, for it is a that could smoke all its tobacco at gambling era just now. All the the same tariff ? lethargic laziness of a long peace I declare it looks and sounds has been succeeded by a spirit of perfectly incredible, but it is all venture and hazard.' Italy has had true we have seen it; and though a run, and wants to back her luck it did not last very long, yet, like to the end. Cautious Prussia, that table-turning and spirit-knocking, never risked a groschen, has gone there are respectable witnesses in for a coup at Holstein. Even ready to aver that they "assisted" Spain-dreary, old, repudiating, dis- at the séance. reputable Spain--has managed to
That a green - surfaced pond, get a few gold pieces together, and duck - weeded and frog - spawned, been trying a little game with stagnant for ages, and unmoved by Morocco. France, the bland crou- every air of heaven, should sudpier, everywhere cries, "Try your denly imagine itself to be a great luck, gentlemen!" "Faint heart,” fluid of strong elements and incal&c. Even John, businesslike old dog culable power, and should set to that he is, jingles his half-crowns work to lash itself into fermentation in his pocket and longs to be at it. by way of becoming brandy, would Was there ever such a time for a not be one whit stranger or more hell-keeper as this? It is only ne- absurd than this great German decessary to light the rooms and open monstration. the doors, the company fill the That such movements are utterly place immediately. All 'honest in- abnormal, that they lie neither in dustry, in such an age, is the pace the genius nor in the instincts of of the tortoise over the course at the nation, we may see by the simNewmarket; it is a theory by- ple fact that none of the statesmen gone, out of place, unthought of. of the country knew in the least No wonder is it that the careful, how to deal with them. They plodding, unambitious course of stood there, panic-stricken and conEngland should seem degenerate founded, like the doctors of Europe and mean amidst all these high- at the first visitation of Oriental spirited bloods, flinging their stakes cholera ! so boldly on the table, and reckless, What fun it must have been for to all seeming, whether they win the grand Charlatan of the Tuileor lose.
ries, as, watching it all, he murThere are now and then, in the mured to himself, “They'll never order of nature, disturbing events be able to treat this case; they'll occurring, which
which no forecasting have to come to me." And there could ever have either anticipated is no doubt, if the symptoms had or averted. They are things so not subsided, such would have really out of all calculation, that been the upshot. Grave talking all we have to do is to watch their there was of a new Confederation course, and learn, if we may, some of the Rhine, and small Princes what for future guidance. Now began to reflect whether it might one of this nature was the late not be better to become French burst of enthusiastic nationality Prefects than Imperial or Royal over Germany. Who could have Chamberlains. As for the people, believed this --- who have foreseen they stood like a great flock of it? Is there any creature - one sheep, as they are, staring at the part statesman and three parts poet peril with a steadfastness that look--could have risen to the mere im- ed like daring; but they scampered agination of a frantic Germany --a away at the first crack of Bismarck's Germany eager for liberty, crying whip, and they have never turned wildly aloud not to be parcelled since.
In such an age, with such ele- France" can be preserved, even ments as these around us, greatness though it be represented by a foot is surely not difficult of attainment; upon a friend's throat, and a hand and the “Dignified Attitude of in a neighbour's pocket.
I was very wroth for a consider We used to be disgusted at the able time with that fat man-Mr. aldermanic envy of the beggar Banting I think he is called—who who declared he had not eaten has been boring the world for some for twenty-four hours, expressing months back with accounts of his itself in the outburst, “Oh, if I decrease in size, till | bethought had your appetite !” but what me that possibly I might have shall we say to this mass of heaving been doing him a foul wrong, and blubber that only cries out to be imputing to selfish motives, and a decreased, of repletion that implores taste for notoriety, what in reality to be drained, in the very crisis of might turn out to be very high- cotton-famine, of Irish want, and of minded and elevated patriotism. almost universal destitution! When
My first impression was, Here is the Queen of France suggested a corpulent old humbug, who has giving brioche to the starving popno greater or more ennobling task ulace, she was only ignorant, not in , life than to measure his girth unfeeling. When a Duke of Norround the waist, weigh his fat folk proposed, curry-powder to sides, and keep a register of his the famine-stricken in Ireland, he palpitations as he goes up-stairs to was simply talking like a very kindbed-publishing, too, to the world hearted but addle-headed old genthese experiences, as if they were tleman, who knew nothing of the great boons and blessings to hu- malady for which he was prescribmanity, and proclaiming aloud ing. But here is far worse: here is a how and by what subtle devices man who, in a day of great pressure he contrived to grow thinner; and and want, when the energy of every all this nasty balderdash-nasty it thoughtful man is taxed to think unquestionably is—in a land where by what contrivance the souls and misery and destitution abound, and bodies of some hundred thousand where we read such a heading to people are to be held together, a paragraph in our newspapers as comes forward to tell us, not how "Death by Starvation.” Of what to support life, not how to keep stuff must a man be made who the spark alight with some cheap can see his digestional diary print- substitute for fuel, not how to ed in the same column that re- maintain the faint flicker alive by veals a death from actual want? some newly-found expedient, but Of what, besides "fat," must a crea- how he has contrived to keep down ture be compounded, who can go his own redundant heat-- to put on from day to day recording the slack upon the over-exuberant blaze effects produced upon his heavy of his own personal hearth. carcass by abstention from saccha Can indecency and selfishness go rine matter and suchlike, when farther? the great monster Misery stares us Corpulency is unpleasant, so is a in the face--that there are people tight boot; but don't expatiate on without any food at all—that there either to people who are hungry or are men and women, blue-lipped who go barefoot. Your coat may and gaunt with famine, hollow- be too tight in the sleeve, but don't eyed and jaw - sunken, crawling talk of it in the society of the halfabout in search of garbage and naked. And this is precisely what offal ?
this fat man is doing! Good hea