Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

BENTLEY'S
MISCELL A N Y.

NOVEMBER, 1842.

Contents.

Page MR. LEDBURY'S ADVENTURES AT HOME AND ABROAD, BY AL

BERT SMITH, . . . . . 429 PLACING A NAWAB ON THE MUSNUD, BY H. R. ADDISON 445 THE YOUTH'S DEATH,

BY MRS. HOWITT 448 HER FIRST VISIT AFLOAT. A DIALOGUE OF THE DECK,

BY THE AUTHOR OF THE 'NAVAL SKETCH-BOOK,' ETC. 449 THE LIFE AND SONGS OF ANACREON, PART THE FOURTH,

EDITED BY BARNEY BRALLAGHAN 452 A TRAITOR'S DOOM, .

BY H. R. ADDISON 464 THE HAUNTED M THE HAUNTED MINE, . .. . BY R. B. PEAKE 466 A MONUMENTAL PIC-NIC, . . . . . 477 BALLAD LITERATURE OF ANCIENT GREECE,

BY W. COOKE TAYLOR, LL.D. 480

BY R. B. PEAKE

A CAMPAIGN WITH THE CHRIST

THE DYING CHILD,

BY CHARLES F. FYNES-CLINTON 484

. BY K. J. 500 PADDY CARROLL, THE PIPER, BY BRYAN O'HALLORAN 501 EYES, . .

BY T. J. OUSELEY 514 RICHARD SAVAGE, . . BY CHARLES WHITEHEAD 515 A JUNIOR BARRISTER, . . . . . THE PERSIAN SPY,

BY J. BAILLIE FRASER, AUTHOR OF THE KUZZILBASH,'ETC. 521 THE PHILOSOPHY OF FIGHTING,

EDITED BY ALFRED CROWQUILL 529 MALAY VENGEANCE,

. BY H. R. ADDISON 533

520

The Publishers of the DUBLIN UNIVERSITY MAGAZINE announce that the number for January, 1843, will contain

the first portion of

The Loiterings of Arthur O'Leary,

BY

HARRY LORREQUER.

To be continued Monthly in the pages of the University Magazine,

exclusively.

The Second Series of " Our Mess” will commence with a New Tale

on the 1st of January, 1843, entitled

Tom Burke, of "Qur's."

MR. LEDBURY'S ADVENTURES AT HOME AND

ABROAD.

BY ALBERT SMITH.

CHAPTER III.

of the manner in which Mr. Ledbury was examined by the Municipal Guard,

and of his interview with the Prefect of Police.

The cold grey light of morning crept sluggishly, as though it feared to enter through the rusty bars in the apertures of the cell that served for windows, and the rumble of vehicles in the adjacent streets began a prelude to the round of noise, traffic, misery, happiness, and crime, which a day in a great city gives birth to, when the luckless Mr. Ledbury woke up, and allowed a clear perception of his not very enviable situation to burst upon him. His slumbers during the night had been confused and broken. Occasionally wild screeches and convivial yells had sounded from contiguous cells; but when these rose to an unpleasant height, or tended in any way to disturb the nerves of the garde municipale, (who dozed upon luxurious inclined planes of oak and iron in the outer room), a visit from one of them generally quelled the riot for a short period, only to return, in most cases, as soon as the functionary's departing footsteps were heard outside the door.

All the excitement of the champagne and vin ordinaire which sparkled from Mr. Ledbury's eyes the night before,-all his rapid defiance and valorous demeanour had passed away. A head-ache, which appeared likely to split his brain into two, had succeeded to his gay imaginings of the previous evening. His eyelids smarted wilh inflammation and the want of legitimate rest; and moreover he had broken one of the pebbles of his spectacles. His mouth was dry and parched; his hands red and swollen, and looking about the nails as if he had been excorticating millions of new walnuts; whilst his mind revolted at everything he thought of or per: ceived about him. Two or three companions of his imprisonment, of the lowest class of society, and of whose presence he had hitherto been entirely unconscious, were disposed about the cell. One was still snoring heavily with the stertor of intoxication; another was smacking his lips with thirst, or the lack of the usual morning stimulus from the marchand de vin 10 settle bis irritable and depraved stomach; and a third, awake, but scarcely returned to his proper intellects, was gazing listlessly at the window, which quivered in his disturbed vision, or indulging in occa. sional unmeaning wailings, half melodious, half lachrymose. Mr. Ledbury's mild temperament was ill calculated to bear up against the first terrible consciousness of his position as he awoke. The whole reality by which he was surrounded faded away in the appal. ling visions of the galleys, the mines of Siberia, impalement, underground cells in the Bastile, laden" with heavy chains, the guillotine, and other continental modes of punishment, which rapidly crowded upon his imagination. Suppose, by the mild intervention of the law, he should only be imprisoned for two or three years in a fort

VOL. X.

56

ress! Gracious pouvers! how would his family, who lived at Isling. ton, bear the shock when they came to hear of it!— what desolation would droop on the hearth, or rather the Chunk s tove, of his office! What would Miss Mitchell, Miss Hamilton, and all his young-lady friends of bygone evening parties think of him, when they were informed of his disgrace !---and how would the Saturday-night organ, that always played · As I view these scenes so charming' out of tune, contrive to do without the hebdomadal penny which purchased ils retreat to an inaudible distance? These were fearful things to reflect upon, and he cried as he thought about them, or rather gave a very good imitation of having a very bad cold in his head. He envied the very flies, that few in and out of the bars just as they pleased, without asking permission of anybody.

An hour or two passed miserably away until about pine o'clock, when the bolts were withdrawn, and he was summoned to the front office of the guard-bouge, and confronted with the chief officer of the force to be interrogated; his extreme state of convivialily on the preceding evening having quite precluded the possibility of getting anything like a correct answer from him.

. Mou sieur,' gruffly demanded the guard, in a voice made ten times more terrible by its transmission through a pair of formidable mustachios, dites-moi votre nom, s'il vous plait ??"

• Not guilty,' replied Ledbury, who had some faint idea that a species of judicial inquiry was going on.

The supposed cognomination was immediately written down, as near as they could catch it.

Où est votre passeport ?'

Je non pas,' answered Ledbury, slightly comprehending the ques tion, and endeavouring to answer it in French.

A very suspicious look from the guard followed this declaration. The truth was, that our hero, having been so short a time in Paris, had not yet got his provisionary passport exchanged for his travelJing one; but this he could not explain. The officer, not understanding him, gave orders that his pockets should be investigated.

One of the corps forth with began to search Mr. Ledbury,-a process which was exceedingly interesting to the others. The first article they turned out upon the bench was his pocket-handkerchief, covered all over with a representation of the flags of different pations, and a large Union Jack in the middle. This was evidently considered a most important discovery, and immediately entered in the police-sheet as a code of private signals. The standard of Algiers strengthened the belief, and the whole of the garde pointed it out immediately with great exultation ; for, ever since the French won the battle of Constantina, they have formed a singular idea ihat there never was another victory in the world, and have framed all their toys, bonbons, sports, and public shows accordingly, wherein •les sacrés Bedouins' are always represented as getting ten to one the worst of it. Then from the other pocket was produced a most suspicious list of the General Steam Navigation Company,-evi. dently in correspondence with the pocket-handkerchief; iogether with his keys, his lille French dictionary, some crumbs of biscuit, and some nuis, which he had pocketed froin the dinner-table, having heard such proceedings were customary in France, and proper to be done. His waistcoat gave up ail of the cosmétique that he had not eaten at Boulogne, a half-crowo pencil-case which he had been lucky enough to win for eight shillings at a Ramsgate library last year, a few francs, an old pass.check of Covent Garden theatre, with the word • Comus' on it,-another proof of some secretly.organized society, and two or three jujubes melted into one congiomerate.

As soon as the search was completed the guard got under arms, and Mr. Ledbury prepared to accompany them to the prefect of police, comparatively, much in the same state of mind as a condemned criminal who takes his last look at the coppers and stew-pans of the Newgate kitchen on his dreary journey to pass through the hatch of the debtors' door, and ascend the fatal scaffold to

danser une danse Où il n'y a pas de plancher.'

There is generally a crowd of loiterers round the door of the Corps de Garde, to see what delinquents make their appearance in the morning; and when Mr. Ledbury emerged from the portals pertaining 10 the establishment of · LIBERTE, ORDRE PUBLIC,' between two of the municipal guard with fixed ba yones, he would have given worlds to have become the inmate of one of his own short Wellingtons,-in other words, he wished, like the charity-boys immortalized in the · Wreck Ashore' by the late Mr. John Reeve; of glorious memory, "to have shrunk into his very half-boots with fear. The little boys, and sad impudent fellows indeed are those Parisian gamins,-pleased at his woe-begone, yet withal benevolent, aspect, ran by his side and huzzacd: the grisettes who were on their way to market or to work smiled at his general tournure, as some of them recollected his waltzing exploits of the previous night; and a few idlers at the doors of the wine-shops addressed a few speeches to him in slang French,—1he argot of the Courtille, - which, as they were not very consolatory, it is fortunate he did not understand.

They had not a very great way to go, and Mr. Ledbury soon found himself at the Prefecture, in the presence of the acting official, who somewhat re-assured hiin by being very like an ordinary man after all. Moreover he spoke a little English, and could sufficienıly understand Mr. Ledbury's desence of the suspicious pocket-handkerchief and other articles, to perceive that there was no great sedition brewing through their means. The charge was entered into, and the master of the guinguette appeared to complain of his broken glass; but, as none of the French students were present to speak of the assault, the case was finally disinissed,-a few francs only being demanded in payınent for the broken articles at Tonnelier's. This sudden deliverance quite overwhelmed Mr. Ledbury. He would have entered into a long speech expressive of his gratitude at the leniency of the court; but another case came on, and the sergent de ville in attendance told him be might depart. Whereupon he left the office, and was not sorry to meet Jack Johnson at the door, who had not ventured inside, for fear that he might be recognized, and declared as one of the off-nders.

Mr. Ledbury's first feeling was to treat Jack Johnson with a cool disdain, as if he deeply felt the inhumanity of the latter gentleman in deserting him at his hour of trial. But his better nature prevailed, and he shook hands with his companion, just as if nothing had

« AnteriorContinuar »