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For some little gift on my birth-day. — September My head swam around - the wretch smil'd, I The thirtieth, dear, I'm eighteen, you remember
believe, That Bob to a shop kindly order'd the coach, But his smiling, alas, could no longer deceive(Ah, little I thought who the shopman would I fell back on BoB—my whole heart seem'd to prove,)
witherTo bespeak me a few of those mouchoirs de poche, And, pale as a ghost, I was carried back hither! Which, in happier hours, I have sigh'd for, my I only remember that Bob, as I caught him, love
With cruel facetiousness said, “Curse the Kiddy! (The most beautiful things-two Napoleons the “A staunch Revolutionist always I've thought him, price-
“ But now I find out he's a Counter one, BIDDY!” And one's name in the corner embroider'd so nice!)
Only think, my dear creature, if this should be Well, with heart full of pleasure, I enter'd the shop, known But-ye Gods, what a phantom !—I thought I To that saucy, satirical thing, Miss MALONE ! should drop
What a story 'twill be at Shandangan for ever! There he stood, my dear DOLLY — no room for a What laughs and what quizzing she'll have with doubt
the men ! There, behind the vile counter, these eyes saw It will spread through the country -- and never, him stand,
oh, never With a piece of French cambric, before him rolla Can BIDDY be seen at Kilrandy again! out,
Farewell — I shall do something desp'rate, I fearAnd that horrid yard-measure uprais'd in his And, ah! if my fate ever reaches your ear, hand!
One tear of compassion my DOLL will not grudge Oh-Papa, all along, knew the secret, 'tis clear - To her poor— broken-hearted—young friend, 'Twas a shopman he meant by a “Brandenburgh,”
BIDDY FUDGE. dear! The man, whom I fondly had fancied a King, Nota bene— I am sure you will hear, with delight,
And, when that too delightful illusion was past, That we're going, all three, to see BRUNET to-night, Asa hero had worshipp'd—vile, treacherous thing- A laugh will revive me—and kind Mr. Cox
To turn out but a low linen-draper at last! (Do you know him?) has got us the Governor's box.
FOR THE HOLY ALLIANCE.
Tu Regibus alas
Clip the wings
VIRGIL, Geong. lib. iv.
into notice, that it is the rule of this Society to LORD BYRON.
return no other answer to such assailants, than is
contained in the three words “ Non curat HippoDEAR LORD BYRON,
clides,” (meaning, in English, “ Hippoclides does
not care a fig,") which were spoken two thousand Though this Volume should possess no other merit in your eyes, than that of reminding and have ever since been adopted as the leading
years ago by the first founder of Poco-curantism, you of the short time we passed together at Venice,
dictum of the sect. when some of the trifles which it contains were
THOMAS BROWN. written, you will, I am sure, receive the dedication of it with pleasure, and believe that I am,
My dear Lord,
T. B. FABLES FOR THE HOLY ALLIANCE.
THE DISSOLUTION OF THE HOLY ALLIANCE
A DREAM. should prefix my name to the following Miscel
I've had a dream that bodes no good lany, it is but fair to them and to myself to state,
Unto the Holy Brotherhood. that, except in the “painful pre-eminence” of
I may be wrong, but I confess being employed to transcribe their lucubrations, my
As far as it is right or lawful claim to such a distinction in the title-page is not
For one, no conjurer, to guess — greater than that of any other gentleman, who has
It seems to me extremely awful. contributed his share to the contents of the volume.
I had originally intended to take this oppor- Methought, upon the Neva's flood tunity of giving some account of the origin and A beautiful Ice Palace stood, objects of our Institution, the names and charac- A dome of frost-work, on the plan ters of the different members, &c. &c. — but, as I
Of that once built by Empress Anne,' am at present preparing for the press the First Which shone by moonlight — as the tale isVolume of the “ Transactions of the Poco-curante
Like an Aurora Borealis. Society,” I shall reserve for that occasion all further details upon the subject; and content myself In this said Palace, furnish'd all here with referring, for a general insight into our
And lighted as the best on land are, tenets, to a Song which will be found at the end I dreamt there was a splendid Ball, of this work, and which is sung to us on the first Given by the Emperor Alexander, day of every month, by one of our oldest members, To entertain with all due zeal, to the tune of (as far as I can recollect, being no Those holy gentlemen, who've shown a musician,) either “ Nancy Dawson” or “ He stole Regard so kind for Europe's weal, away the Bacon.”
At Troppau, Laybach, and Verona. It may be as well also to state, for the information of those critics, who attack with the hope of of ice on the Neva, in 1740, which was fifty-two feet in length,
1 " It is well known that the Empress Anne built a palace being answered, and of being, thereby, brought and when illuminated had a surprising effect." - PINKERTON.
The thought was happy-and design'd
And all were pleas'd, and cold, and stately,
Shivering in grand illuminationAdmir'd the superstructure greatly,
Nor gave one thought to the foundation.
To all plebeian fears a stranger,
Had pledg’d her word there was no nger. So, on he caper'd, fearless quite,
Thinking himself extremely clever, And waltz’d away with all his might,
As if the Frost would last for ever.
Just fancy how a bard like me,
Who reverence monarchs, must have trembled To see that goodly company,
At such a ticklish sport assembled.
Were seiz'd with an ill-omen'd dripping,
Their Holinesses took to slipping. The Czar, half through a Polonaise,
Could scarce get on for downright stumbling ; And Prussia, though to slippery ways
Well used, was cursedly near tumbling.
“ Run, France—a second Waterloo “ Is come to drown you — sauve qui peut!”. Why, why will monarchs caper so
In palaces without foundations ? —
Crowns, fiddles, sceptres, decorations
With double heads for double dealings — How fast the globes and sceptres glided
Out of their claws on all the ceilings ! Proud Prussia’s double bird of prey Tame as a spatch cock, slunk away; While - just like France herself, when she
Proclaims how great her naval skill is Poor Louis' drowning fleurs-de-lys
Imagin’d themselves water-lilies. And not alone rooms, ceilings, shelves,
But — still more fatal execution-
Seem'd in a state of dissolution.
To issue a sublime Ukase,
Dissolv'd to nothing in its blaze. Next Prussia took his turn to melt, And, while his lips illustrious felt The influence of this southern air,
Some word, like “ Constitution” — long Congeal'd in frosty silence there
Came slowly thawing from his tongue. While Louis, lapsing by degrees,
And sighing out a faint adieu To truffles, salmis, toasted cheese
And smoking fondus, quickly grew,
Himself, into a fondu too ;Or like that goodly King they make Of sugar for a Twelfth-night cake, When, in some urchin's mouth, alas, It melts into a shapeless mass ! In short, I scarce could count a minute, Ere the bright dome, and all within it, Kings, Fiddlers, Emperors, all were gone
And nothing now was seen or heard But the bright river, rushing on,
Happy as an enfranchis'd bird, And prouder of that natural ray, Shining along its chainless wayMore proudly happy thus to glide
In simple grandeur to the sea, Than when, in sparkling fetters tied, 'Twas deck'd with all that kingly pride
Could bring to light its slavery!
Yet still 'twas, who could stamp the floor most,
This precious brace would, hand in hand, go ; Now-while old Louis, from his chair, Intreated them his toes to spare —
Calld loudly out for a Fandango. And a Fandango, 'faith, they had, At which they all set to, like mad ! Never were Kings (though small the expense is Of wit among their Excellencies) So out of all their princely senses. But, ah, that dance - that Spanish dance
Scarce was the luckless strain begun,
Shot from an angry Southern sun,
Astonishing old Father Frost,
* A thaw, by Jove - we're lost, we're lost ;
Such is my dream-and, I confess,
WHERE Kings have been by mob-elections
Rais'd to the Throne, 'tis strange to see
Men have requir'd in Royalty.
Have chos’n their Sovereigns by the weight ;Some wish'd them tall, some thought your dumpy,
Dutch-built, the true Legitimate.1 The Easterns in a Prince, 'tis said, Prefer what's called a jolter-head: ? The' Egyptians wer'n't at all particular,
So that their Kings had not red hairThis fault not even the greatest stickler
For the blood royal well could bear. A thousand more such illustrations Might be adduc'd from various nations. But, ’mong the many tales they tell us,
Touching the acquir'd or natural right Which some men have to rule their fellows,
There's one, which I shall here recite :
Your Peers were decent— Knights, so so
But all your common people, gorgons ! Of course, if any knave had hinted
That the King's nose was turned awry, Or that the Queen (God bless her!) squinted —
The judges doom'd that knave to die. But rarely things like this occurr'd,
The people to their King were duteous, And took it, on his Royal word,
That they were frights, and He was beauteous. The cause whereof, among all classes,
Was simply this -- these island elves Had never yet seen looking-glasses,
And, therefore, did not know themselves. Sometimes, indeed, their neighbours' faces
Might strike them as more full of reason, More fresh than those in certain places
But, Lord, the very thought was treason! Besides, howe'er we love onr neighbour,
And take his face's part, 'tis known
As when the face attack'd's our own.
(As crowds well govern'd always do) Their rulers, too, themselves deceiving
So old the joke, they thought 'twas true. But jokes, we know, if they too far go,
Must have an end -- and so, one day, Upon that coast there was a cargo
Of looking-glasses cast away. 'Twas said, some Radicals, somewhere,
Had laid their wicked heads together, And forc'd that ship to founder there,
While some believe it was the weather. However this might be, the freight
Was landed without fees or duties; And from that hour historians date
The downfall of the Race of Beauties. The looking-glasses got about,
And grew so common through the land, That scarce a tinker could walk out,
Without a mirror in his hand.
There was a land — to name the place
Is neither now my wish nor dutyWhere reign'd a certain Royal race,
By right of their superior beauty. What was the cut legitimate
Of these great persons's chins and noses, By right of which they ruld the state,
No history I have seen discloses.
But so it was- a settled case
Some Act of Parliament, pass'd snugly, Had voted them a beauteous race,
And all their faithful subjects ugly.
As rank, indeed, stood high or low,
Some change it made in visual organs;
Comparing faces, morning, noon,
And night, their constant occupationBy dint of looking-glasses, soon,
They grew a most reflecting nation. 2 " In a Prince a jolter-head is invaluable."
Oriental Field Sports.
1 The Goths had a law to choose always a short, thick man for their King. – MUNSTER, Cosmog. lib. iii. p. 164.
In vain the Court, aware of errors
In all the old, establish'd mazards, Prohibited the use of mirrors,
And tried to break them at all hazards :
When the fleet youths, in long array,
Pass'd the bright torch triumphant on.
I saw the expectant nations stand,
To catch the coming flame in turn; I saw, from ready hand to hand,
The clear, though struggling, glory burn.
And, oh, their joy, as it came near,
'Twas, in itself, a joy to see ;While Fancy whisper'd in my ear,
“ That torch they pass is Liberty!”
And, each, as she receiv'd the flame,
Lighted her altar with its ray ; Then, smiling, to the next who came,
Speeded it on its sparkling way.
From ALBION first, whose ancient shrine
Was furnish'd with the fire already, COLUMBIA caught the boon divine,
And lit a flame, like Albion's, steady.
In vain— their laws might just as well
Have been waste paper on the shelves ; That fatal freight had broke the spell ;
People had look'd — and knew themselves. If chance a Duke, of birth sublime,
Presum'd upon his ancient face, (Some calf-head, ugly from all time,)
They popp'd a mirror to his Grace :Just hinting, by that gentle sign,
How little Nature holds it true,
Must be the line of Beauty too.
Compar'd them proudly with their own,
“ In Beauty's name usurp the throne !” – They then wrote essays, pamphlets, books,
Upon Cosmetical Economy,
But none improv'd his physiognomy.
And small lampoons, so full of slynesses, That soon, in short, they quite be-devil'd
Their Majesties and Royal Highnesses. At length — but here I drop the veil,
To spare some loyal folks' sensations ; Besides, what follow'd is the tale
Of all such late enlighten'd nations ; Of all to whom old Time discloses
A truth they should have sooner knownThat Kings have neither rights nor noses
A whit diviner than their own.
The splendid gift then Gallia took,
And, like a wild Bacchante, raising The brand aloft, its sparkles shook,
As she would set the world a-blazing!
Thus kindling wild, so fierce and high
Her altar blaz'd into the air, That ALBION, to that fire too nigh,
Shrunk back, and shudder'd at its glare !
Next, SPAIN, 80 new was light to her,
Leap'd at the torch—but, ere the spark That fell upon her shrine could stir,
'Twas quench'd- and all again was dark.
Yet, no— not quench'd-a treasure, worth
So much to mortals, rarely dies : Again her living light look'd forth,
And shone, a beacon, in all eyes.
Who next receiv'd the flame? alas,
Unworthy NAPLES — shame of shames, That ever through such hands should pass
That brightest of all earthly flames !
THE TORCH OF LIBERTY.
I saw it all in Fancy's glass —
Herself, the fair, the wild magician, Who bid this splendid day-dream pass,
And nam'd each gliding apparition. 'Twas like a torch-race - such as they
Of Greece perform’d, in ages gone,
Scarce had her fingers touch'd the torch,
When, frighted by the sparks it shed, Nor waiting even to feel the scorch,
She dropp'd it to the earth—and fled. And fall’n it might have long remain'd;
But GREECE, who saw her moment now, Caught up the prize, though prostrate, stain'd,
And wav'd it round her beauteous brow.