« VorigeDoorgaan »
Oman's or the Black Bull, or take up his abode in the neighbourhood of stagnant drains, and next door to a close of cow-feeders.
But I hope better things of the public officers, and from the public spirit of the inhabitants; and I have no doubt, now that the thing is suggested, that if it were properly set about, the Barons of Exchequer would give their aid to its speedy completion. The Palace and its environs have been too long neglected; and I do not flatter myself by saying, that if I, Christopher Columbus, were to be appointed ranger of the King's Park, (and it is my favourite walk,) either with or without a lodging in the Palace, and with any thing of a decentish salary, things would be conducted in quite a different manner. I would, in that case, plant a good deal of the rocky banks; cut many delightful terraces on the acclivities, and strew them with shrubberies ; sweep away all the awkward dikes; cover St Anthony's venerable chapel and hermitage with ivy; totally remove the stiles, and replace them with swing-gates where necessary; and put a final stop to the demolition of that superb natural mural crown -Salisbury Crags. No great sum would be required for this purpose ; and I am quite sure if his Majesty saw the magnificent grounds round his Palace, or if Mr Williams, or that clever young artist Gasteneaux, would take accurate drawings of them in all their delightful points of view, I should not have to wait long for my appointment. I should then take the liberty of writing to the Duke of Atholl, in my official capacity, as ranger of the park, to request the present of a herd of red-deer ; and take measures to let Lord Breadalbane know, that a few scores of fallow-deer would be required to tenant the ornamented
I take it for granted that the chapel royal is to be repaired as projected, and therefore I say nothing on that head; but to compensate the poor owls who would by this reparation be disturbed in “ their silent, solitary reign," I would remove them to St Anthony's Chapel, and even, with the broken fragments, build them a kind of belfry for shelter, and furnish them with one year's supply of mice. The hawks, the ancient inhabitants of the precipitous cliffs, to which they have a prescriptive and indefeasible right, I would not remove, but protect;
and even, by the introduction of different species, have always at command a sufficient number of these graceful animals, for the noble and kingly sport of falconry. Every morning I should mount my poney to see that things were going on to my mind, and every evening I should
I was here interrupted, very much to my regret, by the girl opening my chamber door. “Who's there-What do you want, Betty ?”—“Sir, Mrs Columbus bids me say that she has been waiting supper for you this hour. The eggs are useless already, and the het water's cauld !"-This interruption broke the thread of my ideas; and though I had a great deal more to say on the subject, yet, so difficult is it to recover a train of thought dispelled by other associations, that I must postpone what I have further to urge till another opportunity.
Treason doth never prosper--what's the reason ?
Why, when it prospers, none dare call it treason. We have discovered a plot. Not a so pre-eminently true to his original dark-lantern business of gunpowder fealty, that it was by his means that and matches, like Guy Fawkes's, nor we were made acquainted with, and of hand-grenades and sabres, like the enabled to frustrate, the machinations Cato-street atrocity-nevertheless it of the evil-disposed. He boldly rushis a treasonable conspiracy, having, ed into their conclave, seized upon fortunately, one point of resemblance their papers, and transmitted the pesto the two plots above-mentioned—that tiferous bale to us, shewing himself a it has been discovered and defeated in very Abdiel, time. It was directed against ourselves,
Faithful found, it aimed at the subversion of our su- Among the faithless, faithful only he. premacy in the periodical world, and was intended to bring into contempt
(But this we qualify according to the us, the contributors' Sovereign Lord statement above; nevertheless, he dethe Editor, our Magazine, and dignity.
serves to be reported of as)Readers cannot have forgotten an
Among innumerable false, unmoved, absurd Round-Robin from a shallow
Unshaken, unseduced, unterrified, pated junto of disappointed correspon
His loyalty he kept, his love, his zealdents, who had cockered themselves and perhaps it is solely through him, up by a give-and-take system of self- that we, at this present moment, are eulogy, till they fancied themselves sitting on the throne of these realms constrained by an unanimous feeling of Maga, (scilicet, the great-chair in of their own surpassing merit, to pre- Ebony's back-shop,) and in undisturbscribe to us what we ought to insert. ed control over demi-gods, angels, des We published their appeal, and added vils, and men.-Our demi-gods are notes, by our own individual self, of those Titans of wit and learning, Odothe most soothing and kindly quality. herty, Wastle, Kempferhausen, and These gentlemen and ladies, however, Co. -Our angels are the ladies, whose are so sore in the chest, with catarrhs, crow-quills indite delicate articles on brought on, we presume, by the puffs pink-edged Bath wove, and very pretof flattery, with which they are in the ty reading they are.-
-Our devils fit on inveterate practice of ventilating one sooty pinions around the presses
of another, that even the emulsion of our Messrs Ballantyne ;-and our every notes, soft and tranquillizing, as if dul- day subjects are the myriads in the cified by oil of almonds, could not be three kingdoms, whose half-crowns swallowed by them without causing are, without grumbling, paid monthly strong symptoms of exacerbation in into our exchequer. Yes, to Abdiel, their disordered breasts. Here, how- (for in compassion to some of his parever, it is right that we make a dis- ty he wishes not to be named,) we are tinction-we must not accuse the indebted for all this ; and to a discernwhole of those who joined in the peti- ing public we commit our vindication tion before declared; some were found and defence; so to the end that the still bearing true allegiance to us,-to community at large may see the vilus, their lawful potentate in matters lainy of tħe designs of these conjuracritical, as long as they claim the pri- tors, (not conjurors--we acquit them vileges of that respectable body lite- of all expertness in that way, we shall rate, the contributors to Maga. We hereunder pillory some of the docudo not divulge how many out of the ments in our possession ; thus giving fourteen adhere to their loyalty, be- over to utter scorn the railing inveccause we believe that one or two are in tives of these foul-mouthed chaps, their a wavering state, and will probably, futile imprecations, and their other when they see the disgrace which the impotent attempts against our peace, rebels incur, quit the debateable land, It appears that the lever by which and come over and entrench themselves these Round-Robin men, this Archion the right side, where they shall en- medes corporate, meant to move the joy all the advantages of a plenary am- world of Christopher North’s renown, besty. One of the band, however, was was to be-a book. By means of a
desperate jerk of this paper lever, prop- things he would accomplish, if he ped on the fulcrum of public opinion, could. these our dominions in fame were to
« THE CURSE OF OMICRON. be tilted up and sent
“ I DOOM thy foot Ten thousand leagues away
To the torment of gout, Into the devious air-upwhirl'd aloft,
And may each of its twinges The sport of winds.
Be felt in thy marrow,
Like a sword or an arrow ; So that we, (who, vanity apart, are
Or that crush which constringes without controversy Editorum facile All our nerves in a twist,
When Doctor Scott's wrist princeps,) were to be left as bare of li
A fang'd grinder unhinges. terary reputation, as Jeremy Bentham
This alone shall not slake for instance, or any other unreadable,
The vengeance I'll take. and ergo unread, writer of the present
In tone more emphatic, day. It is not quite clear what was to
Thy great toe I consign be the title-page designation of this To the shrewd discipline declaration of war, and its authors seem
Of a visit rheumatic, to have tampered with a good many A stinging incessant,As far as we can make out from some A gnawing not pleasant,blurred sheets, it looks as if “ Vindi.
Fits hot and fits cold. ciæ Asinine" had been submitted by
No peace when thou’rt sitting, a wiseacre, but had been struck out
No release when thou’rt flitting, by a more clear-sighted colleague-it
But pains manifold ;
For Water and Fire would however have been very appro
Shall together conspire, priate. Another Latin prefix was
And in turn shall beset thee;
all did not understand it, it met with A shower shall aye wet thee.
The roasting shall fret thee,
Damp feet make thee shrug,
If on pavement thou venture!
And if rashly thou enter
Some friend's open door, And there is reason to believe that this
Thou shalt find on the floor might have been adopted, had not the Neither carpet nor rug. snake been scotched, before it was Thou shalt live on, a sightready to issue from its hole. After all, While Omicron shall write, the prosaic enunciation of “ Christo- And Editors woo me, pher's Downfall, or Northern Stolidity
Devoid of thy spite. in disgrace," may have had their votes,
Thou, in swathings of flannel, for it is written in a conspicuous hand.
Thy foot shalt impannel, What was to come first in the far
An object of wonder, rago, and what last, we do not know,
Crumpled over and under,
So that folks keep aloof because the capture of the rebels' goods For fear 'tis a hoof, was made before they were duly dis
So appalling the view ! posed in order--So we must put forth And be what will the weather, our specimens quite at random. We It shall ne'er wear a Shoe first then give the misdoings of Omi- Manufactured of leather. cron, whọ (it will be in the recollec- And thy Boot shall obey me, tion of our friends,) was the fabricator
And cover it never, of a “Celestial Tour." He still has a
And the spell shall be on thee hankering after preterhuman powers,
For ever and ever!” and here assumes the magical influence Don't your teeth chatter with horror of Kebama, making us the Ladurlad and trepidation, like Corporal Trim's,
of the occasion. He is, however, but or Harry Gill's, our pitying Public? * a sorry imitator of that wholesale deal- But, to relieve your apprehensions for
er in phlogistic curses, as his impre- our foot's welfare, (put up your white cations do not take effect-for, (be it pocket-handkerchiets, dear readers of known to him, and we thank him,) we the gentler sex! your sympathy is overhave felt our rheumatism rather less powering, and withal, needlessly extroublesome this autumn than usual. cited,) we can assure you, and we call Notwithstanding, hear what cruel on Mr Blackwood to corroborate our
declaration, that we have both our note which indicates our will that they good, serviceable, thick-soled leathern shall not appear at all; after which he shoes upon our feet at this very epoch cools down into a fit of the sullens, in of being calumniated; so what be- which he attempts to pick holes in comes of his condemnation of us to the No. 54, complaining of “that eternal crippled state of being only able to Steam-boat," whining over the strangewear half a pair at a time? Nay, we ness of our admitting the “ Travels of possess a pair of boots, which we scorn Columbus,” while his own superfine to leave behind whenever we jog over compositions are black-balled. In fine, to Glasgow, and which, indeed, have what with lifting up his hands in conincased these legs, and done good ser- sternation, shewing the whites of his vice, within the last three weeks. So eyes in amazement, and drawing down you see, deeply-interested and partly- the corners of his mouth in affected retearful audience, how wretched a per- probation of all he finds, he works himformer Omicron is in the part of Ke- self into a little heat again, and thus hama, being his first appearance in bursts out:“ This Magazine is fated to that character. But I see, righteous be the destruction of all that is lovely Public, what your opinion is, and what and engaging in the literature of this is his destiny,—you are determined to remarkable era. If infant genius, with hiss him off the stage,-he is slinking the tottering step, and mantling blush away,--well he is done for.
of diffidence, ventures to approach, it The next production is by a conspi- is mercilessly strangled,-if buds of rator of a very white-livered complec- talent shew promise of bloom in its tion, who signs himself Domesticus. neighbourhood, they are rapaciously It is entitled “ A Familiar Essay on the plucked and trampled upon,- if a gem Character and Conduct of Blackwood's is disclosed, which, in proper setting, Magazine, with especial reference to and worn on the finger of beauty, No. LIV.” It opens in this lack-a- would refract the aerial light most daysical tone :-"I was sitting at tea, charmingly, it is smashed to atoms by on the second of September-a balmy Christopher North's heavy hammer, evening, and we had the window open, and mingled with the dust. Oh! sickso that a box of mignonette blended ening thought, said I, as I rose and its fragrance with that of the nine shil- looked out at the open window,and saw ling hyson.- This was extremely plea- not a leaf stirring upon our three popsant; but I cannot say that I think it lars, and all nature, indeed, as tranquil altogether so comfortable as tea-time as if this domineering Editor did notin. in winter, when one nudges close into fest the earth with his hated presence, the corner of the sofa, and has the toast Oh, my poor heart! I ejaculated, nakept hot on the fender ; indeed, we do ture truly has bowels of sensibility, not have toast to tea in the summer, but man has none !" These are riddles; which omission alters the whole fea- but if our refusal to print his articles tures of the thing ; however, in spite be kept steadily in view, the halfof all this, it was agreeable enough, meaning of the shadowy nothings is and so I expressed myself to Kate discoverable: but really we can devote But there is no end to this. In brief, no more space to the spooney and his after wallowing in an ocean of senti- maudlin lamentations. In consideramental small-talk, he tells us that the tion of his imbecility, we shall deal Nos. for August arrive: he falls into a leniently with him. wonderment at not meeting with his The galvaniser of frogs comes next, “ Hearth-Rug Promptings;" then he and he endeavours to give us a shock simmers in a warm-watery transport with a sonnet, but his battery is a poor of rage and grief at discovering the one.
“ To BLACKWOOD's MAGAZINE, No. LIV. “ DRAB-coated book, in quakerly disguise !
Quaker in nought but in thine outward trim,
For neath that sober surtout thou art brim-
No wonder George Buchanan looks so grim,
A-thinking of the stuff that's under him ;
Meet emblem of the lot which Christopher,
Assigns an evil-starr'd Contributor :-
Kit fear’d his sonnets would eclipse his own;
So he suppress'd them, but their thoughts he rifled!” Suppressed !-What d'ye mean ? as matter of merriment. " With all I Didn't we print, (we forget in which the fierce endeavour of his wit," not
No.,) your sonnet “ To the half of a indeed “ making the pained impotent broken pair of Scissars,” beginning“Ah to smile," but seducing the bystanders me, thou helplessestofhelpless things?" to sneer at a soul in agony." To The reading public did not approve of it effect this, he misrepresents us most
-the thermometer of popular opinion shamefully. We complain not of his I was down at 32, under its frigorific in- depicting us as a victim of the gouty 1. fluence, so that we were abundantly and rheumatic virus, for to our sorrow, Ex justified in stuffing no more of Mr 'tis true 'tis pity, pity 'tis ’tis true, h. Twitch's sonnets down the regurgita- that we are enfeebled by its attacks
ting throats of the literary multitude. but he does this by broadly asseveraHe may have a whole quire of his four- ting that our malady deteriorates our teeners by aprlying in Prince's Street; temper; that we do not bear our faand, moreover, as to the charge of culties meekly under the stings and rifling the thoughts they contain, -of arrows of this outrageous foe, that we our enacting the busy bee in the nec- are rendered by it peevish, snappish,
tareous cups of these flowers,--why, testy, tyrannical, unreasonable, and - we can only say this—that Mr Black- unbearable. Instead of likening us,
wood has orders to pay a guinea with when seated in our divan, to a father i every one of these sonnets, in which among a devoted family, or to a pa
Mr Hortensius Twitch shall point out triot king presidling over a united peoto the satisfaction of any chance passer- ple-he makes it appear as if we bore by the shop-window, (whom he and Mr inore resemblance to a sour, crusty B., without collusion before-hand, are pedagogue among an unruly crew of
to lay their paws upon for his purpose,) striplings too big for his management, i that there is actually a thought con- —and who, with every inclination to
tained! It must be a definite thought, wield the rod, is fain, out of prudence, -one which has been regularly brood- to let "I dare not” wait upon “I ed on in Mr T.'s brain, has chipped would.” Can there be an example of the shell in the said sonnet, and there greater malignity ? but fortunately stands visibly and intelligibly fledged, the venom will do no harm, as the and recognizable as a distinct thought point of this libeller's shaft is blunt, by ordinary capacities. If he can only and his arm not so potent as his mapoint symptoms of approximation to- lice. We laugh at the spleen of the wards a thought, Mr B. is, in that case, wretch, and treat our readers to a sight. only empowered to remunerate the dis- of the caricature he has drawn, conconsolate poet at the rate of half a crown scious that not even an approach to a per sonnet so qualified.
ludicrous resemblance can be discoverV. D. B.'s share in the crime is of ed—it is, however, quite as good as a deeper stain. He is diabolically de- any dramatic sketch of his which has sirous of setting forth our infirmities heretofore solicited our approbation.
Scene—Ambrose's. Time-After Supper.
this ale?' 'tis innocent of malt-
The Odontist. Cheer up, my man, the yill is no that badla