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agrunt in sensual sleep, with its snout snoring across the husk-trough, is, as a physical, moral, and intellectual being, superior to you, late Major in his Majesty's regiment of foot, now dram-drinker, drunkard, and dotard, and self-doomed to a disgraceful and disgusting death ere you shall have completed your thirtieth year. What a changed thing since that day when you carried the colors, and were found, the bravest of the brave, and the most beautiful of the beautiful, with the glorious tatters wrapped round your body all drenched in blood, your hand grasping the broken sabre, and two grim Frenchmen lying hacked and hewed at your feet! Your father and your mother saw your name in the "Great Lord's" Despatch; and it was as much as he could do to keep her from falling on the floor, for "her joy was like a deep affright!" Both are dead now; and better so, for the sight of that blotched face and those glazed eyes, now and then glittering in fitful frenzy, would have killed them both, nor, after such a spectacle, could their old bones have rested in the grave. Let any one who has had much experience of life, look back upon the ranks of his friends, companions, acquaintances, and persons whom he knew but by name or not even by name-although he had become informed of something of their habits and history. How many drunkards among them have drunk themselves to death, and, before their natural term, disappeared-first into disgraceful retirement in some far-off hut, and then into some church-yard apart from the bones of kindred!
But these are not, bad as they are, by any means the worst cases. Scotland-ay, well-educated, moral, religious Scotland, can show, in the bosom of her bonny banks and braes, cases worse than these; at which, if there be tears in heaven, "the angels weep." Look at that grey-headed man, of threescore and upwards, sitting by the way-side! He was once an Elder of the Kirk, and a pious man he was, if ever piety adorned 25 ATHENEUM, VOL. 9, 2d series.
the temples,-"the lyart haffets, wearing thin and bare," of a Scottish peasant. What eye beheld the many hundred steps, that, one by one, with imperceptible gradation, led him down-down-down to the lowest depths of shame, suffering, and ruin? For years before it was bruited abroad through the parish, that Gabriel Mason was addicted to drink, his wife used to sit weeping alone in the spence, when her sons and daughters were out at their work in the fields, and the infatuated man, fierce in the excitement of raw ardent spirits, kept causelessly raging and storming through every nook of that once so peaceful tenement, which for many happy years had never been disturbed by the loud voice of anger or reproach. His eyes were seldom turned on his unhappy wife, except with a sullen scowl, or fiery wrath; but when they did look on her with kindness, there was also a rueful self-upbraiding in the expression of his eyes, on account of his cruelty; and at sight of such transitory tenderness, her heart overflowed with forgiving affection, and her sunk eyes with unendurable tears. But neither domestic sin nor domestic sorrow will conceal from the eyes and the ears of men; and at last Gabriel Mason's name was a byword in the mouth of the scoffer. One Sabbath he entered the kirk, in a state of miserable abandonment, and from that day he was no longer an elder. To regain his character seemed to him, in his desperation, beyond the power of man, and against the decree of God. So, he delivered himself up, like a slave, to that one appetite, and in a few years his whole household had gone to destruction. His wife was a matron, almost in the prime of life, when she died; but as she kept wearing away to the other world, her face told that she felt her years had been too many in this. Her eldest son, unable, in pride and shame, to lift up his eyes at kirk or market, went away to the city, and enlisted into a regiment about to embark on foreign service. His two
Origin of Dean Swift's Meditations upon a Broomstick.
sisters went to take farewell of him, but never returned; one, it is said, having died of a fever in the Infirmary, just as if she had been a pauper; and the other-for the sight of sin, and sorrow, and shame, and suffering, is ruinous-gave herself up, in her beauty, an easy prey to a destroyer, and doubtless has run her course of agonies, and is now no more. The rest of the family dropped down, one by one, out of sight, into inferior situations in far-off places; but there was a curse, it was thought, hanging over the family, and of none of them did ever a favourable report come to their native parish; while he, the infatuated sinner, whose vice seemed to have worked all the woe, remained in the chains of his tyrannical pas sion, nor seemed ever, for more than the short term of a day, to cease hugging them to his heart. Semblance of all that is most venerable in the character of Scotland's peasant ry! Image of a perfect patriarch, walking out to meditate at even-tide! What a noble forehead! Features how high, dignified, and composed! There, sitting in the shade of that old way-side tree, he seems some religious missionary, travelling to and fro over the face of the earth, seeking out sin and sorrow, that he may tame them under the word of God, and change their very being into piety and peace. Call him not a hoary hypocrite, for he cannot help that noble--that venerable--that apostolic aspect-that dignified figure, as if bent gently by Time loath to touch it with too heavy a handthat holy sprinkling over his furrowed temples, of the silver-soft, and the snow-white hair-these are the gifts
of gracious Nature all-and Nature will not reclaim them, but in the tomb. That is Gabriel Mason—the Drunkard! And in an hour you may, if your eyes can bear the sight, see and hear him staggering up and down the village, cursing, swearing, preaching, praying,--stoned by blackguard boys and girls, who hound all the dogs and curs at his heels, till, taking refuge in the smithy or the pot-house, he becomes the sport of grown clowns, and after much idiot laughter, ruefully mingled with sighs, and groans, and tears, he is suffered to mount upon a table, and urged, perhaps, by reckless folly, to give out a text from the Bible, which is nearly all engraven on his memory, so much and so many other things effaced for ever-and there, like a wild Itinerant, he stammers forth unintentional blasphemy, till the liquor he has been allowed or instigated to swallow, smites him suddenly senseless, and, falling down, he is huddled off into a corner of some lumber-room, and left to sleep,
better far, for one so pitiably mi serable, were it to everlasting death!
From such imperfect pictures we return with satisfaction to the Treatise. The chapter "On the Pathology of Drunkenness" is one of the most striking in this singularly able work. Among the consequences of drunkenness which the author has here given, are many of the most painful diseases which flesh, is heir to.
We have room only to add, that to those who stand in need of advice and warning, Mr. M.'s Treatise is worth a hundred sermons. As a literary composition, its merits are very high.
ORIGIN OF DEAN SWIFT'S MEDITATIONS UPON A BROOMSTICK.
SW WIFT was in the habit of going to visit Lady Berkeley, his patron's consort. She was a great admirer of " Boyle's Pious Meditations," and used often to request the Dean to read aloud some portion
from them. Such occupation, however, was too little congenial with the Dean's humour, and soon he resolved to revenge himself upon Boyle for the irksome task thus imposed upon him. In short, he wrote a pa
rody upon him, which he got printed, and entitled "Meditations upon a Broomstick." This he sewed into the copy of Boyle from which her Ladyship was accustomed to read. It was exactly the same paper, type, and so ingeniously inserted, that no one was likely to conjecture the deceit. So, the next time, he opened the book at the "Meditations upon a Broomstick," which, with a very grave countenance, he read aloud. Lady.-"No jesting, if you please, Mr. Dean, upon so grave a subject." Swift. Jesting! I vow, my Lady, I read it as I find it,-here it Meditations upon a Broom stick." "
Lady.-"So it is-upon my word, it is a Meditation upon a Broomstick.' What a singular subject But let us see; Boyle is so full of ideas, that I am persuaded he will make it extremely edifying, though it looks so odd."
With great gravity, Swift proceeded to read a very original comparison between a broomstick and a man, and contrasting the destiny of man kind with that of the broomstick "This stick," he continued, in a solemn tone, "this stick, that you see thrown thus ignominiously into a corner, was once flourishing in the woods," &c. &c. "Oh, excellent Boyle!" exclaimed her Ladyship, "how admirably he has drawn the moral from so trifling a subject. But
whatever he touches he turns to gold." The Dean, preserving his gravity, made signs of assent, as if he quite agreed with her Ladyship, and then took his leave. In the evening her Ladyship had a party, and one of the first topics started was Boyle's excellent "Meditations upon a Broomstick." Some of the company began to laugh.
"You may laugh," exclaimed her Ladyship," but I am astonished you should not have heard of it; it is quite worthy the pen of this great moralist." Others, however, ventured to question its existence; when her Ladyship, in triumph, points out the part, which they saw sure enough. "Have I convinced you, gentlemen; I see you are quite confounded: but to tell you the truth, so was I at first. Indeed, I should still have been ignorant of the fact, but for Mr. Dean Swift, who was so good as to point it out to me, only to-day."
"What!” cried some of the party," was it Swift? this is one of his tricks then, let us have another copy of Boyle. They went and looked, and looked, but no " Meditation upou a Broomstick" was to be found it was plain that the whole had been interpolated. The lady concealed her chagrin; but, henceforth, she never imposed upon the author of " Gulliver" the reading of these edifying lectures. And this was what he wanted.
POLICE OF FRANCE.
A RICH merchant of Lyons was very lately robbed in that city, to a very large amount and, after using every exertion in his power, was led to believe that the thief had fled to, and was resident in Paris, whither be directed his course, without the least delay. On his arrival in the metropolis, he communicated to one of his friends, (a literary character, and whose political writings had assured him some months' detension in prison, and an acquaint
ance with the police,) the history of his loss, and his suspicions regarding its author. "If he be in Paris," replied his friend, "I engage he shall be forthcoming. Follow me." They were soon in the presence of an officer of the gendarmerie, who, having listened composedly to the merchant's narration, ordered him to return on the morrow. The next day, the merchant having presented himself, the officer informed him that he had discovered the thief; that
he was in Paris, and his residence known. "Let us lose no time, Sir," exclaimed the eager and expectant merchant, in the fear he should escape. "Do not alarm yourself," said the other; "he is strictly watched, and is even associated with the Police." "I shall in stantly hasten for an order of arrest from the Procureur du Roi," continued the merchant, in preparing to depart. "Not quite so hasty, if you please," replied the apathetic officer; "that you will obtain the order you propose, I pretend not to deny; or that it will be imperative on me to show it obedience; but you will decidedly defeat your object; and the man you seek will be unattainable." "I do not understand you, Sir." "Listen for a moment, and I shall explain the matter. My responsibility as a police-officer is great, and extends to the interests of the community in general. I require many hands, and the means accorded me of satisfying them are trifling; yet if I do not pay well I shall want assistance; and if they whom I employ can gain more on their own account than in executing my orders, it would be impossible for me to act. I therefore, of necessity, conform to the long established usages of my department. A criminal, you may be aware, is ever upon the alarm; but so long as he is not directly and publicly charged with a particular offence, I accept a compromise with him; and he pays me in return a monthly sum, which goes to the remuneration of my subalterus. The very man in question relies at this
moment upon the faith of our treaty, assured of not being molested until I have special orders regarding him. In that event, I am bound in honour to advise him that our agreement is at an end, and that he must look to his own safety. He will then use his best attempts to escape, and I to entrap him. The person you inquire for is in the situation I have mentioned; and, if you will follow my counsel, before you proceed judicially, you had better try conciliatory measures. I shall direct him to be to-morrow, at a certain hour, in the Ruc Monconseil, and you will meet him there. Two of my men shall be near you for your protection. You will enter into an explanation with the robber; and I shall be greatly surprised if, after the hints I shall convey to him, you do not come to a satisfactory arrangement in respect to the stolen property."
THE IRISH BAR.
LORD Avonmore was subject to perpetual fits of absence, and was frequently insensible to the conversation that was going on. He was once wrapped in one of his wonted reveries; and, not hearing one syllable of what was passing, (it was at a
The interview took place as proposed, and an amicable agreement was entered into. The merchant, when well assured of restitution, presented the officer with a sum far iuferior to what the expense of prosecution on his part would have amounted to; while, even in the latter case, justice might have been probably better satisfied by the result than the merchant himself.
This circumstance, which but recently occurred, and on the truth of which implicit reliance may be placed, tends to prove that the Police (of Paris at least) is less devoid of information respecting the authors of crimes, than it is deficient in zeal, activity, and disinterestedness.
large professional dinner given by Mr. Bushe,) Curran, who was sitting next to lordship, having called on for a toast, gave "All our absent friends," patting, at the same time, Lord Avonmore on the shoulder, and telling him that they had just drunk his health. Quite uncon
scious of anything that had been said for the last hour, and taking the intimation as a serious one, Avonmore rose, and apologizing for his inattention, returned thanks to the company for the honour they had done him by drinking his health.
There was a curious character, a Sergeant Kelly, at the Irish bar. He was, in his day, a man of celebrity. Curran gave us some odd sketches of him. The most whimsical peculiarity, however, of this gentleman, and which, as Curran described it, excited a general grin, was an inveterate habit of drawing conclusions directly at variance with his premises. He had acquired the name of Counsellor Therefore. Curran said that he was a perfect human personification of a non sequitur. For instance, meeting Curran one Sunday near St. Patrick's, he said to him, "The Archbishop gave us an excellent discourse this morning. It was well written and well delivered; therefore, I shall make a point of being at the Four Courts to-morrow at ten." At another time, observing to a person whom he met in the street, "What a delightful morning this is for walking!" he finished his remark on the weather, by saying," therefore, I will go home as soon as I can, and stir out no more the whole day."
His speeches in Court were interminable, and his therefores kept him going on, though every one thought that he had done. The whole Court was in a titter when the Sergeant came out with them, whilst he himself was quite unconscious of the cause of it.
"This is so clear a point, gentlemen," he would tell the jury, "that I am convinced you felt it to be so the very moment I stated it. I should pay your understandings but a poor compliment to dwell on it for a minute; therefore, I shall now proceed to explain it to you as minutely as possible." Into such absurdities did his favourite "therefore" betray bim.
"Study, therefore, the great works of the great masters for ever. Study
as nearly as you can in the order, in the manner, and on the principles on which they studied. Study nature attentively, but always with those masters in your company; consider them as models which you are to imitate, and at the same time as rivals with whom you are to contend."
This precept should be the motto to every work and every criticism on art. It should be inscribed in letters of gold in every academy, gallery, exhibition-room, and painters' study throughout the world. As a proof that it is not a string of unmeaning words founded on blind adoration of antiquity, there should be placed nigh to the inscription, works of Raphael, Michael Angelo, and Titian, as criterions to be reverted to for the guidance of the artist, and as a preservative from the effects of modern exhibitions, and from the "seduction" deprecated by Sir Joshua Reynolds "of the ambition of pleasing indiscriminately the mixed multitude of people who resort to them."
RUSSIAN SOCIETY OF AGRICULTURE.
At the last sitting of the Imperial Society of Agriculture of Moscow, M. Skiadan, proprietor of some fine flocks of Merinos in the Government of Voronige, exhibited an instrument of his invention for ascertaining the thickness or fineness of the wool, with the greatest exactness. This instrument, which is called an Eriometre, excels all others of a similar description, not excepting those of the celebrated Dollond, or of M. Koehler, of Zwickan, in Saxony.
The Number of "Edwards's Botanical Register" for March, contains a figure of the fiue new Air Plant of China, long known to Europeans by the drawings of the Chinese, and celebrated for the splendour of its flowers and the fragrance of its perfume It has for some years been cultivated in the stoves of this country, but no means could be discovered for making it flower, till a new method was pursued by the gardener of his Royal Highness the Prince Leopold at