« VorigeDoorgaan »
and in forming plans for the future. Mrs L had no sooner cast her His father had supplied him liberally eyes upon, than she exclaimed to the with money and letters of credit, and servant in attendance, “ Thomas ! he resolved to take advantage of his Thomas ! what have you been about? bounty, and live and travel in what, why did you bring this here ?-carry ever style he happened to find most it away before the Doctor comes down
stairs. Thomas did as he was orderVanderbrummer, on turning over ed ; and Mrs L-, turning to Vanhis letters of introduction, found one derbrummer, said, “You will be at a addressed to DrL-, a medical man, loss to understand the meaning of all who resided about twenty miles from this. The truth is, my husband has the coast. He determined to visit him the greatest aversion to all sorts of immediately, and therefore took a place pastry-we dare not present it when in a mail-coach that passed through he is at home. He is very particular his place of destination. It was about in his notions about diet." - What six in the evening when Vanderbrum- is this I hear about diet ?” cried the mer reached the Doctor's house, which Doctor, entering the room abruptlywas situated in the outskirts of a small “Mr Vanderbrummer, you may feartown. A servant ushered him into an lessly sit down at my table, for I never apartment, fitted up like a study, and allow any article to be placed upon it Dr L- soon entered, wiping his that is of an injurious nature. My mouth with a table napkin, and said, wife and daughter would have had us “What do you want?" Vanderbrum- all dead long ago, had not I interfered. mer made no reply, but presented his I don't exactly know how you live in letter of introduction, which the for- Holland, Mr Vanderbrummer, but I mer having read, he cried, “Oh, I beg believe you deal chiefly in oleaginous your pardon--I had no idea who you substances--these I rather disapprove were I'm so tormented with consulta- of; but when you see my countrymen tions-I rejoice to see you—I'm afraid hurrying on towards premature death, you have dined-I hope you havn't.” by making their stomachs a receptacle _“Yes," replied Vanderbrummer, for deletereous substances of all kinds, “ I had dinner on the road, and sup- you will begin to understand my feelposed that meal would have been over ings, and also sympathize with me.” with you before I reached this.”- At a late hour, the party separated “ Then,” said the Doctor, “ you shall for the night. The window of Vandergo into the drawing-room, and I'll brummer's room overlooked a rich send up my daughter Caroline to en- shrubbery, through which a rivulet tertain you."
glided with gentle murmurings; a A servant now conducted Nander- level expanse of cultivated country brummer into an elegant apartment, stretched all around to the horizon; where he was soon joined by Miss and the white cottages scattered upon L-, with whom he conversed till its surface gleamed unassumingly in her father and mother came to them. the moonshine, which was bright, but Dr L
was a short, stout, corpu- at the same time mellow. There was lent man, bold and assuming in his no appearance of animation, except manners, and impatient of contradic. when a light happened to gleam for a tion, though very liberal in using it moment through the windows of some towards others. He delighted to keep of the rural abodes that diversified the his wife and daughter under controul, prospect. Vanderbrummer sat down and was anxious to convince every one to meditate, and recurred to his fathat he was completely master of his yourite metaphysical notions, but could own house. He had once practised in not help feeling a degradation in bethe village near which he now resided, lieving that the lowest, stupidest, and but having acquired a competency, he basest individuals were entirely of the had given up business, that he might same stuff as himself ; for hitherto he live at his ease, and be at leisure to had not been displeased to own an aldecry the labours and characters of his liance with inanimate nature. His reprofessional brethren.
tired life at Leyden had prevented him When the evening was pretty far from witnessing instances of human advanced, a servant announced supper. ignorance, grossness, and depravity. The supper-table presented, among He remained at the window nearly an other things, a dish of pastry, which hour, and finding it impossible to solve
his doubts for the time, he retired to quired, as he hoped to prove at dinner sleep.
that same day. Next morning after breakfast, Dr Accordingly, when they sat down
led Vanderbrummer through at table, Vanderbrummer was prehis garden and grounds, and endea- sented with some soup made from the voured to shew that he was happier sawings of beech timber, which had and more comfortable than any other been first baked three several times in being in the world. He was interrupt- an oven, and then boiled fourteen ed by the arrival of a messenger, who hours and a half over a gentle fire. requested him to visit a dying person Doctor L_stated that a dog had at a cottage not far off. The Doctor, been fed upon the
soup during three accompanied by Vanderbrummer, went days, withoutany loss of flesh, strength, to the house, where they saw a man or spirits. He then directed the atstretched on a bed, in the last stage of tention of his guest to a pudding, a consumption. His family, friends, which consisted of powdered ox bones, and relatives stood around him. A and a small proportion of plum-tree genteel looking young man paced back- gum, declaring, at the same time, that wards and forwards at one end of the it was highly nutritious, and even &room, and returned a contemptuous greeable to the taste. “All articles are glance to the consequential nod which equally nourishing, and equally conwas directed to him by Dr L- vertible into chyle,” said Doctor who, seizing the patient's arm, held it “Some are indeed more quickly so than for a few moments, and then dropped others, and this has given rise to the it carelessly, and shook his head. The prevailing mistake respecting diet. people looked at him with an expres- This turkey, and the knife that cuts sion of anxious inquiry, but he turned it, are both equally calculated to afford towards a table, and began to examine nourishment to the human frame; but some medicines that lay upon it. A the flesh of the turkey will do so a cry from the attendants soon announ- few hours after it is swallowed ; while, ced that the sick man was no more. on the other hand, the knife would reThis was the first time Vanderbrum• quire to remain in the stomach seves mer had witnessed death, and it seem- ral years before it could be of use in a ed to him different from what he had similar way." On hearing this, Vanbelieved it to be. As he gazed on the derbrummer said, “ Allow me to re corpse, he felt sensations of horror, mark, that your practice seems inconuneasiness, and gloomy fear, which he sistent with your theory. If all subcould not account for. DrL-touch-stances are equally capable of afforded him on the shoulder, and told him ing nourishment to the human frame, it was time to return home.
why have you such an aversion to Their walk was rather an unsocial pastry?" This led to a dispute conone, for Vanderbrummer allowed his cerning diet. Vanderbrummer comcompanion to support the conversation bated the Doctor's assertions and arhimself, his mind being entirely en-guments with such success, that the grossed by what he had recently wit: latter lost temper, and began to abuse nessed. Þr informed him that Dutch people and Dutch physicians. he had for some time past been making Vanderbrummer at first bore these atexperiments to shew how small a quan- tacks with patience; however, Nature tity of nutriment was sufficient for the soon asserted her rights, in spite of support of the animal economy; and him,-he retorted upon the Doctor, that he had discovered a way of sup- and such reciprocations ensued, that plying the lower classes with food, at he found it necessary to take leave of a cheap rate, during times of scarcity his entertainer early in the evening, or famine. He then alluded to the He went to the neighbouring vilsubstances in use as articles of diet lage, with the intention of immediamong various nations, and mentioned ately proceeding on his tour, but found some northern savages, who lived up- that he could not obtain any means of on moss and the bark of pine-trees. conveyance till the following mornHe concluded by asserting that such ing. He therefore secured accoinmoproductions would form very good dations at the tavern, and then saun. substitutes for bread and animal food tered out, and entered a small bookin this country, when occasion re- seller's shop on the opposite side of
the street. Here he met with the beat and shuffled with their feet, threw. young man whom he had previously pieces of paper at each other, and seen at the cottage, and found him to leaped over the benches, while waits be of the medical profession. Vander- ing for the entrance of the Professor. brummer informed him, that his chief When he did appear, a general hiss object in coming to England was to took place. Vanderbrummer was hor. inquire into the state of medicine and ror-struck, and inquired of his commedical practice there. " You will panion what it meant. " Oh, this is learn little that is to our credit,” said nothing remarkable," replied Dr Prachis companion, whose name was Win- tic. “They are offended at the Professor ter; “ medical science is at a low ebb because he yesterday gave notice that in this country. There is no such thing he intended lecturing on Saturday, in as theory now. When any dispute order to enable him to complete his occurs, a man instantly refers you to course within the prescribed time. his practice. When any of his pre- The students conceive this plan to be scriptions appear to produce good ef- an encroachment upon their hours of fects, he instantly sets them down as recreation, and express their resentbeing suitable in all similar cases, and ment in the manner you have just administers them accordingly, often witnessed.”. However, the tumult to the cost and destruction of the pa- soon subsided, the Professor com
tient, without knowing how, why, menced his lecture, and his auditors ; wherefore, or whether they are right drew out their paper books, to take or wrong. Dr L-is one of the such notes as they could. After the practitioners I have endeavoured to lapse of an hour, Vanderbrummer was describe. Thank Heaven, I cannot startled by a loud ringing. All the be classed with them. I never was in students sprung from their seats by an hospital in my life, yet I flatter one impulse, clapped on their hats, myself I know more of medicine than run along the benches, and rushed out hundreds of those who have the charge tumultuously towards the class-room of such establishments.”—“Theory is door, near which they became so closevaluable,” replied Vanderbrummer, ly wedged, that no one could move “ when a man is capable of applying faster than another; while occasional it to practice. May I ask where you groans, screams, and exclamations, were educated ?"-" At Edinburgh, proved that some individuals - were sir,” answered Winter. " There the threatened with suffocation. “ Dreadscience of medicine is taught in all its ful! dreadful !” cried Vanderbrumpurity. I would strongly advise you mer ; “ what can have happened. Is to visit that city; you will find the the building on fire?"-"No, no," medical students every way superior returned Dr Practic, laughing," don't to what they are any where else.” be alarmed. Professor 's lec
Vanderbrummer now took leave of ture commences at this hour, and the Mr Winter, but while walking back students are hurrying out, that they to the tavern, reflected upon what he may secure front seats in his classbad heard, and determined to go to room.” The two friends waited till the Edinburgh. He accordingly engaged door-way became tolerably clear, and a place in the mail-coach that same then went out. While passing through night, and went off next morning. the area in front of the College, they
After reaching Edinburgh, his first observed a crowd of young men tubusiness was to deliver his letters of multuously encircling some one, and introduction, most of which were ad- stretching out their arms as if they dressed to medical men.
were aiming blows at him. He apphysician, named Dr Practic, volun- peared to be driven from side to side, teered his services in shewing him the and forced to stagger along at the will University, and conducting him to of those who surrounded him, while the different Lecture-rooms.
he spoke at intervals in a tone of enDuring a visit to one of these, Van- treaty, which his persecutors entirely derbrummer was a good deal astonish- disregarded. “Incredible !” exclaimed at the levity of eportment which ed Vanderbrummer; are such in. the students exhibited, and which human assaults permitted within the was a strong contrast to the solemnity courts of the University ? What has and sedateness that characterized the the man been guilty of? Will no one same class of persons at Leyden. They step forward to his assistance ?” Dr
Practic laughed again, and then told ed impetuously past them." What him, that the person for whom he felt can this mean?” cried Vanderbrumso much concern, was a street porter mer; “I wish we had stopped one of in the act of distributing hand-bills them to inquire.”—“He would not among the students who encompassed have answered you," returned Dr him.
Practic. “ These are members of the In the evening, Dr Practic carried Medical Society. You must know, Vanderbrummer to a meeting of the that, at the conclusion of the debate, members of the Royal Medical So- the secretary calls over the names of ciety, that he might shew him the state all who ought to attend its meetings, of medical disputation in Edinburgh. and any one who is not present to anThere were about ninety persons pre-, swer is fined a sixpence. Those who sent, and the President sat in a sort lately passed us have been out amuof pulpit, holding a hammer in his sing themselves. They now hurry hand. He proceeded to read an Essay back to the Hall, that they may be in that had been written by one of the time to save their sixpences.”_" I members of the Society. Having fi. would rather pay many sixpences," nished it, he said he would be happy said Vanderbrummer,“than again pass to hear observations upon the subject such a wearisome evening as this has from any gentleman in the room. A been.”—“ All who can afford to do dead silence ensued, and continued so will agree with you,” returned his nearly half an hour. He then flourish- friend. ed his hammer, and cried, “ I will be Next day was Saturday. In the particularly happy to hear some obser- furenoon, Dr Practie and Vanderbrumvations upon this important subject." mer walked along Prince's Street, and A tall young man then stood up, and there met a young man genteelly dresshaving requested the indulgence of his ed. He immediately entered into conauditors, proceeded, with a strong Irish versation with Dr Practic, and said, “I accent, to criticize the production that saw you at the Hall last night-What bad just been read. Several of his fel- an excellent debate we had !-Chair low members soon rose from their scats, well filled-many new theories started. and advanced to a table where a num- Your friend must become one of usber of visitors' tickets lay, and each He shall have my interest.”—“ He is taking one, they returned to their pla- much obliged to you," returned De ces; they next pull out their pen- Practic; “ but I believe he, at present, cils, and Vanderbrummer saw that they has no intention of soliciting for adwere preparing to take notes of what mission into the Medical Society.”the speaker said. A long debate en- “ Indeed! why that's strange,” cried sued, but those who engaged in it, ge- the young man. “ He must have nerally wandered from the subject; heard of us abroad, -we made one of while the President was evidently too the most celebrated Dutch physicians ignorant to perceive this, or to correct an honorary member, and I wish you them when they did so. All that was had seen his letter of thanks,-he was advanced by the disputants on either very grateful for the honour ;-but, side of the question, had evidently good bye.-Will you and Mr Vanderbeen gleaned from books; and he who brummer sup with me on Monday remembered most, enjoyed the repu- night?” Dr Practic had a previous tation of speaking best. Vanderbrum- engagement, but Vanderbrummer acmer soon became tired of hearing pla- cepted the invitation. “Behold a spegiarisms, absurdities, and common- cimen of an Edinburgh medical stuplace remarks, and left the Hall, ac- dent,” said Dr Practic, when their accompanied by Dr Practic, who joined quaintance had left them. “ He is him in ridiculing the assembly in miserably poor, but vain and assuming. which they had spent the evening. While attending the classes during five “ I am indeed a member of the insti- days of the week, he dresses so shabtution,” said the latter, “ but became bily that I am ashamed to speak to so that I might have the use of its li- hin; but this day being Saturday, brary.” He had scarcely made this he has got on his holiday clothes, and remark when a confused thundering thinks himself a man of fashion. He noise struck their ears; and, next mo- now struts along the public walks, and ment, twenty or thirty young men rush- courts the observation of every one.
On Monday he will not be met with, moved. Vanderbrummer expected to except in back lanes and retired streets. hear some professional or scientific disI suspect he did not attend Professor cussion; but his companions had no
's lecture this forenoon, for the relish for any thing of the kind. They fear of getting dust upon his new pan- made their studies a subject of merria taloons. I'm glad you accepted his ment-boasted of their medical ignoinvitation, for I'm sure you'll have rance-ridiculed the Professors--mensome amusement at his lodgings.” tioned how often they slept during
On Monday evening, at the appoint- lecture,--and censured many of the ed time, Vanderbrummer set out for most eminent practitioners in the city. Mr Walnut's lodgings, and reached They at last became so noisy, and them after ascending half a dozen riotous, and disagreeable, that Vanderflights of dark stairs. The house-door brummer took leave of them and went was opened by an old woman, who home. Next morning he received a ushered him into a small apartment, letter informing him that a change had where he found Walnut sitting alone, taken place in his father's circumreading the fourth volume of Peregrine stances. He was desired immediatePickle. He had thrown off his coat ly to return home, and, therefore, from motives of economy, but apolo- had suddenly to leave Edinburgh, and gized to his guest for having done so, embark, at Leith, in a vessel bound for and immediately put it on again. A Amsterdam. violin with three strings hung in one On arriving at Amsterdam, he found corner of the room, and one number affairs even worse than he had expecta of Neil Gow's strathspeys lay upon a ed. Total ruin had come upon the small side-table. Vanderbrummer be- mercantile company in which his faa gan to speak of medical subjects, and ther was the chief partner ; and the inquired what theory of life was then old man had been so much chagrined most prevalent among Scotch physi- at this reverse of fortune, as to be cians.-" To tell you the truth," re- seized with a lethargy or stupefaction,
plied Walnut, “ I know nothing about terminating in an illness of which he I the matter.-I expect to learn all these died. Vanderbrummer had lost his
things from my grinder.“I haven't mother many years before, and only a read ten pages about medicine these few distant relations remained to him six weeks past.--I have even ceased in Amsterdam. They condoled with taking notes.- Confound the classes ! him, and assisted him in gathering to-I wish the session were over !” Van- gether whatever little remnants could derbrummer was hesitating what reply be found of his father's property. he should make to these declarations, These were sufficient to preserve him when his ears were assailed by a singu- from want. But a different kind of
lar noise which seemed to take place grief seized the student on another - in the stair, out of doors." A tumult account; for he had not in any degree
of voices echoed through its recesses, forgotten his early attachment; but and regular concussions proved that no longer stood in the same favourable something was rolling down the steps. circumstances for a suitor as at first. Presently two young men entered the He visited the lady, and found that room, and began to explain the cause change which he expected. Although of the disturbance, which was in con- deeply wounded, he could not help adsequence of their having, when near miring the propriety of her behaviour, the top of the stair, come into collision and that compliance with the vicissiwith a servant girl who was carrying tudes of the world which sits better two pitchers of water. The three in- upon women than upon men, since the dividuals had fallen above each other, female sex ought to be more in bonand received the contents of the pitch- dage to society. When he was shewn ers upon their clothes, and had got down stairs, he found, at the door, a broken shins into the bargain. Wal- carriage, from whence came a gallant nut affected to commiserate the con- and gaily dressed Frenchman, and dition of his guests, but all the while passed Vanderbrummer with a look of made signs expressive of derision, to perfect suavity. This was a more fore Vanderbrummer.
tunate wooer going up to visit the Supper being soon brought in, little young lady. conversation took place till it was re- The friends of Vanderbrummer pity