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treme. Now an amanuensis has ever bring a knowledge of his calamity slowbeen our abhorrence. A great greasy ly upon him, and by merciful degrees; gawpus,
squat on his posteriors at so that on finishing the perusal of our your elbow, fixing on you during your letter, he should be able faintly to disintervals of exhaustion, a pair of eyes tinguish whether he had read it on his in their sockets, gravy as the open- head or his heels, and to perceive a ings of putrid oysters, and then put- glimmering of hope through the gloom ting down into his scrawl, with red of despair. The letter was also humanehairy fingers tipped with a circle of ly sealed with black wax, to prepare earthy horn, your lucubrations, in his mind for something funereal, and which the happiness or misery of so
delivered to him not by young Mr large a portion of the Christian popu- Steele, in his usual modest and polite lation of the world may be involved, is style, but by a sauley with an aspect an infliction which we would fain spare most especially cadaverous, as if sent even our dearest foe. We never, there- into the world for the express purpose fore, shall dictate to any individual. of being a messenger of evil tidings. But besides this evil, our rheumatism On going into the back shop for the had attacked us in the tenderest point. letters to the London post, about four We felt the most excruciating pain o'clock in the afternoon, it appears that whenever we sat down ;-just as if it John Lesslie found our worthy publishhad been on a cushion of cats. If Ebo- er extended five feet seven inches upon ny, or a printer’sdevil, came in upon us the floor. The consternation thatimmeat such moments, we had great diffi- diately spread all along Prince's-street, culty in preventing or rselves from as far as St John's chapel, across the flinging at his head the first article Mound and the Bridges, up the Castlethat came to hand. It is impossible hill, and down Leith Walk, is more eafor us to express the horror and dise sily imagined than described. We had gust wbich such intrusions, at other some sort of presentiment of what times so pleasant, then excited in our might happen-and looking from the breast. The world thought us blest window of our pensive citadel, with an --measuring our happiness by our excellent spy-glass which we purchamerits,---while, on the contrary, we sed some years ago at Whitehaven from would have paid handsomely to have the old half-pay naval officer described got Ballantyne's printing office blown by Mr Wordsworth in his Lyrical Balup, and our worthy publisher put to lad, The Thorn, we beheld all the peothe Apoplexy,
ple in Edinburgh running about to Now there is a mixture of motives and fro, like bees on a board when they in all human conduct. In sending in have lost their queen. We felt in a our resignation, we were partly swayed moment that THE PROPRIETOR was no by the conviction that we had placed more. Still watching the scene below, our country in a condition in which she through a tear, we saw Odoherty issue might be able to take henceforth care like a gleam of lightning from the meof herself, and partly by those feelings nagerie on the Mound, where he had now alluded to, which seemed to us a been engaged, we have since underfundamental objection to our occupy- stood, in a study for his “Great Picture ng any longer the seat of government of the Seven Lions,” and disappear in
We tendered our resignation on the No. 17. While all around were stupifi24th of November. Then was the mo- ed with grief, the Adjutant forced his ment to have put Mr Blackwood to way to the body of his friend, and death. And heaven forgive us, but raising it up, placed our Publisher on the idea shot across our brain ! Re- his usual stool at his accustomed desk. membering, however, that he had a The Standard-bearer was not long in large and increasing family, and that ascertaining that the vital spark was by the lives or the happiness of upwards no means extinct, and calling the Odonof twenty thousand subscribers were tist, whose presence of mind had whollinked with his, we relented; and in- ly forsaken him, and who was standing stead of inflicting instant death, by in a corner blubbering like a child, the the sudden communication of an un- right vein was opened, and our Pubconditional resignation in propria per- lisher at last, but with great difficulty, sona, we worded it in such a way as to was made to bleed freely. He opened
* See Dr Jamieson.
his eyes-and seeing himself surround- friend under our care in the Sanctum, ed by his best friends, gave one long with orders to keep him quiet :-and deep groan at the sight of the vast shewing themselves on the steps in quantity of blood that had been taken front of No. 17, the Standard-bearer, from him, and then resumed his wont- in a short and pithy speech of about a ed benignity and composure.
dozen words, conveyed to the vast mulIt was at this interesting moment titude assembled an assurance, that we entered the Sanctum Sancto- Ebony, though as white as ivory, was rum; and never shall we forget our out of pearl. Some little conception Publisher's upbraiding, yet forgiving of the shout that then arose may be smile. He stretched out his unbanda- formed from this simple fact—that the ged arm ; and when we felt that hand repercussion of sound tumbled down so cold and trembling, our heart smote several stones, each weighing about us, and gladly would we have exchan- two tons, from Lord Melville's Moged places with the pale man, whom nument in St Andrew's Square ; but we had thus brought to the brink of there were no lives lost, as all the the
grave. Then rose a great thought workmen had, of course, joined the in our heart-never, but with life, other inhabitants assembled before to relinquish the editorship. We approached the patient, and whispered In a few hours the inhabitants had this into his ringing ear ; and now had retired to their respective places of sudden joy proved almost as erous abode; then the Publisher was put into as that sudden grief. Mr Blackwood his carriage, and accompanied by ourasked faintly for a glass of water. We selves, Odoherty, the Odontist, A and say faintly—and thinking that cold Wastle alone, (who were apprehensive water might not agree well with that that a greater number might incomstate of his stomach, we opened, with mode the Patriot,) reached Newington our own hand, the little aumry,* and just as the fainily were sitting down bringing forth a bottle of our very to tea. The Adjutant, with that self-rebest Madeira, which had twice seen collection, and consideration for others, India in wood, and once in crystal, we which so delightfully distinguish his handed it to the kindly officious Adju- character, had taken means to keep the tant, who, first turning up his little family in ignorance of all that was finger to ascertain if the fluid was of passing; and in opposition to the evia proper temperature, administered dence of butter toast and muffins disabout a quarter of a pint to the revi- appearing with an alacrity on the part ying bibliopole, chaunting, at the same of our bibliopole, with which Hebe in time, that well-known hymn,
vain tried to keep pace, the story of “ Here's a health to jolly Bacchus,
his illness could not be expected to Bacchus, Bacchus,
gain much credit from those who were Here's a health to jolly Bacchus, now witnessing its miraculous cure, Ye ho! ye ho! ye ho!”
and who, therefore, fortunately for In the chorus of which we all joined their own feelings, considered the with faultering voices, that of the whole as an ingenious fable or fiction Odontist being choked with sobs- of the Odontist. “ See how it runs down his gizzard, So great had been our agitation at His gizzard, his gizzard,
No. 17, that not one of us all ever See how it runs down his gizzard,
thought of burning our letter, which Ye ho! ye ho ! ye ho!”
had so nearly proved fatal to the Trade. Meanwhile the Rumour of our Pub- How it's contents got wind has never lisher's death had spread over the been ascertained, and probably never whole city. The flag was hoisted half- will, for the imprudent and thoughtpole high on the Castle, and minute- less man on whom suspicion fell of haguns gave solemnity to the expres- ving perused our letter, during the sion of a people's grief. But there is crisis, has since been found dead near no occasion to describe the effect of the Figgate Whins, under very suspithe proprietor's supposed death in as
cious circumstances. Be that as it may, detailed a manner as we shall do the grand secret of our resignation eswhen that event does actually occur. caped, and reached the ears of the Odoherty and the Odontist left our guard of the London Mail, just as the leaders were prancing to get free, and like a sow playing on a trump:
* Vide Jamieson.
Not a he carried the appalling Rumour south- Bull but himself was visible ; he alone, the ward at the lately increased rate of atlas of the Stock Exchange, braved the nine miles per hour, stoppages inclu- impending calamity. The
Bears were all ded. The mail coach arrived at the
cock-a-hoop. Never was such gladness seen, usual hour on the morning of November Nore. I need not tell you, that the Bears
no, not even in the time of the mutiny at the the 27th, at the White Horse, Fetter
are all to a man Whigs, and of the most Lane, London, and though at that inveterate kind ; many of them are indeed hour“ the very houses seemed asleep, Radicals. You may therefore picture to yet before nine o'clock they were all yourself their joy at hearing of such an not only broad awake, but up and event, as that Mr Christopher North was dressed and receiving visitors.
dead. The effect produced by the rumour At the opening, the three per cents were of our resignation on the inhabitants at ten less than the close of the preceding of London, is, we understand, but day ; but it was soon after reported, that faintly described in the following short
an express had reached the Home Departand hurried letter, written on the ment with the important intelligence, that
Mr North was not actually dead,—that he evening of the day on which the fatal
had but resigned, although it was feared Mr intelligence reached town.
Blackwood had fallen a victim to the event; LONDON, Nov. 27, 1821. and upon this rumour, stocks rose oneI write to you, my dear friend, in a eight per cent, with a tendency to look state of the greatest agitation. The most upward. alarming news reached town this morning In would be in vain to describe the efby the Edinburgh mail. Just as the coach fects of this calamity in other directions. was setting off, a universal wail was heard Richardson's shop was in a state of anarto ascend from the one end of Princes' chy. He himself was speechless ; and Street to the other. The guard inquired two political doctors were seen at his side, what had happened, and was told, that using their best art to recover him. WestChristopher North was dead. Some said, ward, all things wore the most mournhe had resigned the editorship of Black- ful appearance. The new ball and cross, wood's Magazine. The journey being which was to have been placed to-day on timed, he could not stop the coach to as- St Paul's, was supended. But Waithman's certain the fact; but no doubt is enter- shop was adorned with white ribbons, and tained that the greatest possible calamity boughs of holly, and every thing there in. has happened in the literary world. In dicated jubilee and triumph. Dr Stoddart, every town through which the coach pass- of the New Times, closed his shutters, in ed, the distressing intelligence produced the token of his sorrow, but declared that the most mournful sensations; and sighs and event was only a new incitement to perse. sobs were the echoes of all places to the
I speak not of the Old Times. direful news.
Every member in the great establishment By some extraordinary reverberation, the of the first journal in the solar system was woeful tidings, it is said, even outran the decorated with a cap made of foolscap; mail, notwithstanding the recent improved and the very devils themselves were allow. rate of going ; and it is reported, that be- ed a pot of porter a-piece, the better to fore the coach reached Newcastle, all the qualify them to cause an illumination as Radical coal-miners had struck work, and general as when her late Majesty arrived. were above ground, with clean faces, and
The Editor of the Courier was seen shed. bearing green boughs of triumph in their ding tears at his window, when he beheld hats. They offered to take the horses out his opposite neighbour, the Morning Chroof the coach, and drag it to the inn. Some nicle, stringing lanıps for the evening—for accidental strangers, who were then in the thew ord “ personalities” was the splendid town, on hearing their joyful tumults, ran device. But it was in the neighbourhood of to the windows, and supposed that nothing Charing Cross that the wound struck deepless than Sir Robert Wilson returning from est and deadliest ;-all the public offices, Mr Lambton's, could have caused such were ordered to be washed with Day and exultation. But I cannot dwell on these Martin's blacking. The Telegraph on particulars, which I have learnt from an the Admiralty was seen most active all outside passenger, who came with the day, conveying the most cheering excoach. I hasten to describe the sensation hortations to the outports, assuring them produced here.
from time to time, that the news were not The news being early known, the Royal true. The Levee at Carlton-palace was put Exchange was as crowded by eight o'clock off; a vasť crowd assembled in front of as at four in the afternoon.
Lord Londonderry's house in St James'swas seen, to use the phrase of a great square. But the generosity of Englishmen Scotch money lender, hanging his lip sympathizing with his Lordship's feelings,
did not on this occasion break his windows. ment's reflection shewed us the folly Lord Roslyn and the Duke of Bedford's of any such suspicion. For we had servants in the corner, were busily in the only to compare the account therein meantime preparing for an illumination, given, with the reality before our eyes and Mr Byng's, on the other side of the square, were no less active. Blessington syllable of it was true, human nature
in Edinburgh, to be assured that every adorned his balconies with evergreens. The mob in front of the Club-houses was
being the same in Edinburgh and so great, that I did not venture into St London, and, indeed, all the world James's-street, but stepped into Ridge over, exceptin Caffraria and Cockaigne. way's, where I heard that Lord **** was Edinburgh was drowned in tears. The haranguing the people from Brookes's, and windy suspiration of forced breath that Mr Cam, mounted upon a lamp post, swept along the bridges—and the gave the signal to applaud. Mr **** ankles of the young ladies were disthat brilliant saveall of oratory, stood with played in all their native and massive his new silver cider tankard, and as often beauty, by gales swollen by the conas Mr ****** got warm in his effusions, gregated sighs of the loveliest of their and was like to lose his temper, supplied
sex. The first day of the Rumour was him with a cool sip. After listening to the gratulations of the like a general Fast-not a soul to be
seen from Nicholson Street to Coates Whigs at Ridgeway's, I went over to Albemarle-street-never shall I forget the im
Crescent. Every window was shutpression up stairs—Hugo Foscolo was en
tered, and many families, needlessly deavouring to look sentimental
, exclaiming, afraid of being disturbed by visits “ che cosa che cosa !” The great publisher from others, at that time domesticated himself was sitting writing notes at his ta- like themselves by the common afflicble, unable to join in the conversation. Mr tion, had used the idle precaution of Milman was more afflicted than with the tying up the beil at the front door, as fall of Jerusalem. Gifford sat by the bust in cases of lyings-in. At the corner of Byron, which some wag, whom we do not
of a cross street would some solitary know, was slyly crowning with laurel. D'Is- caddie appear for an instant on the raeli, in the meantime, had appropriately look-out, and then taking a “ sneesh veiled Sir Walter's with crape.
out of his mull,” dive down in despair in vain for me to depict the several vari. ed expressions of sorrow which darkened into an area, and evanish among a the visages of all those sons of light. heap of oyster shells. When the But the most extraordinary occurrence of Glasgow mail drove along Prince's the day was the conduct of the Cockney Street, it looked as if it had been poets. They all ran fluttering like so bringing letters from the living to the many lewdish sparrows, to the Examin- dead; and the faces of four insides er's office, where it was agreed they should from the West Country, beaming of commemorate the event. About half- boiled beef, and redolent of the punchpast five in the evening, they began to bowl, seemed a strange mockery of assemble at White-Conduit House; and human suffering. Had all the people being resolved to evince a philosophic been dead or dying, it would have temperance in their good fortune, agreed
been nothing What made it so to indulge only in tea and muffins, while the organ played, “ Taste life's glad mo
shocking, was to know that they were But, after tea, some of the more
all in excellent health, but that in the jovial spirits among them proposed, that, hey-day of their happiness, a cloud according to the good old times of Eng- had come across them, and that they land, before port and punishment came knew and felt that the gaiety of nainto fashion, they should indulge in a tions was eclipsed for ever. In the crown bowl of punch, with which, as midst of all this stillness of sorrow, as their heads are rather weakly, they soon if to render that sorrow more ghastly, became so disguised, that, forgetting their the old pensioner whose business it is philosophic resolutions, they became so mad with mirth, that the landlord was
to play on the music bells in St Giles
Steeple, at the stated hour of One, playobliged to send them all to the watchhouse. The moment I learn farther parti
ed up Maggy Lauder ; nor could any culars, you shall hear from me again.
thing be more thrilling than when, at Yours, &c.
the close of that idle air, was heard exe
cuted, with tolerable skill and spirit, Our first impression on perusing the “ The Devil among the Tailors.' On above letter, was, that it contained an that day we understand the Court of exaggerated picture of the state of the Session did not sit-neither judge, public mind in London. But a mo- advocate, agent, nor client having ap
peared, and the door-keepers being through a telescope, and the calm, all invisible. The Banks were not deep, solemn expression of their after opened, nor, if they had been, would sorrow, to speak the truth, was more any business have been transacted. No gratifying, we will not say flattering, newspaper was published by day, no to our feelings, than their first burst lamps were lighted by night, gas or of outrageous grief. Many wore oil. The watchman's rattle was hush- mournings. Not a few had crape on
Commissioners of Police their hats ; and some sported weepers, were subdued to sorrow-and the The general rate of walking was reScotsman, it is said, shed tears, and, duced, by an unpremeditated social not forgetting his gentlemanly man- compact, about one mile an hour ; and ners in his sorrow, with trembling the arms of the young ladies, which, fingers, blew his nose, and then wiped when they are in ordinary spirits, it on his sleeve. By the Almanack it keep swinging like flails, now dependwas moonlight, but no moon appeared. ed languidly, and with a graceful feckJupiter and Venus had been seen only lessness, * by their sides. The Theatre, the night before in high health and which, with a proper regard to public beauty, but now they were off, nobody feeling, had been closed during the knew where-and, on putting our week, re-opened with the sentimenhead out into the palpable darkness of tal comedy of Mirandola ; and the the night, we felt the force of that churches began again to fill. The passage in Shakespeare, which till then price of butcher meat, which, duhad always seemed fantastical, but ring this fast of sorrow, had fallen which now sounded in our ears like to twopence a-pound, began to look the wild words of a neglected prophe- up--so did cod's head and shoulders; cy at last fatally fulfilled.
while the intention of the Magistrates
and Town Council to reduce the price “ Hung be the heavens with black, yield of the quartern loaf, was relinquished. day to night!
Nay, such is the inconsistency of huComets, importing change of times and
man nature, that many, who at first states,
were stricken deaf and dumb with Brandish your crystal tresses in the sky; And with them scourge the bad revolting have forgotten the blow they had sus
contrition, now seemed entirely to stars, That have consented unto Blackwood's tained, and were abroad, going about death!
their usual avocations, with the same Blackwood the First, too famous to live air of stupidity and vulgar indifference, long!
as if Blackwood's Magazine, instead of Scotland ne'er lost a king of so much worth. being about to cease, had never began Scotland ne'er had a king, until his time. to exist. Virtue he had, deserving to command : The public feeling, however, in His brandish'd sword did blind men with Scotland soon began to express itself
his beams; His arms spread wider than a dragon's natural to the genius of the people,
in a manner more becoming, and more wings ;
than idle lamentation and querulous His sparkling eyes, replete with wrathful fire,
regret. The PEOPLE OF SCOTLAND More dazzled and drove back his enemies,
were determined that we should not Than mid-day sun, fierce bent against their retire from the EDITORSHIP, which, faces.
in their minds, was equivalent to the What should I say? his deeds exceed all death of the work itself, if it was in speech :
their power to prevent it. He ne'er lift up his hand, but conquer’d.” Accordingly, a general meeting of
Several days passed by; and, as it freeholders and inhabitants of the city is not easy for any national calamity was called on the Calton Hill, " to to put a final stop to the movements consider of the best means to be adoptof a considerable metropolis like Edin- ed of inducing Christopher North, Esq. burgh, after it has been set a-going to continue Prime Editor of Great Brifor some centuries, things got again tain,” His Grace in the Chair. It upon their usual footing, and the in- is calculated that upwards of twenty habitants, though sad, seemed resign- thousand persons were present; and, ed. We watched them sedulously after several most eloquent speeches
* l'ide Jamieson.