« PreviousContinue »
Not so her gracious,graceful.gracelessGrace, And much was talk'd on all sides on that The full-grown Hebe of Fitz-Fulke, whose
But Juan, when cross-question’d on the If she had any, was upon her face,
vision, And that was of a fascinating kind. Which some supposed (though he had not A little turn for mischief you might trace
avow'd it) Also thereon,-but that's not much; we find Had stirr'd him,answer'd in a way to cloud it. Few females without some such gentle
leaven, For fear we should suppose us quite in And then, the mid-day having worn to one,
The company prepared to separate:
Some wondering 'twas so early, some so late. I have not heard she was at all poetic,
There was a goodly match too, to be run Though once she was seen reading the Between some grey-hounds on my Lord's “Bath Guide,"
estate, And “Hayley'sTriumphs,” which she deem'd And a young race-horse of old pedigree,
Match'd for the spring, whom several went Because, she said, her temper had been tried
to see, So much, the bard had really been prophetic of what she had gone through with,
since a bride.
There was a picture-dealer who had brought But of all verse,what most insured her praise A special Titian, warranted original, Were sonnets to herself, or “bouts rimés." So precious that it was not to be bought,
Though princes the possessor were besiegTwere difficult to say what was the object The King himself had cheapen'd it, but Of Adeline, in bringing this same lay
thought To bear on what appear'd to her the subject The Civil List (he deigns to accept, obligOf Juan’s nervous feelings on that day. Perhaps she merely had the simple project His subjects by his gracious acceptation) To laugh him out of his supposed dismay; Too scanty, in these times of low taxation. Perhaps she might wish to confirm him in it, Though why I cannot say - at least this
But as Lord Henry was a connoisseur,
The friend of artists, if not arts,- the owner, But so far the immediate effect
With motives the most classical and pare, Was to restore him to his self-propriety,
So that he would have been the very donor,
Rather than seller,had his wants been fewer, A thing quite necessary to the elect, Who wish to take the tone of their society:
So much he deem'd his patronage an
honour, In which you cannot be too circumspect, Whether the mode be persiflage or piety,
Had brought the Capo-d'opera, not for sale, But wear the newest mantle of hypocrisy, But for his judgment,-never known to fail. On pain of much displeasing the Gynocrasy.
There was a modern Goth, I mean a Gothic And therefore Juan now began to rally
Bricklayer of Babel, callid an architect, His spirits, and without more explanation, Brought to survey these grey walls, which To jest upon such themes in many a sally.
though so thick, Her Grace too also seized the same occasion, Might have from time acquired some slight
defect; With various similar remarks to tally, But wish'd for a still more detail'd narration Who, after rummaging the abbey through
thick of this same mystic Friar's curious doings, About the present family's deaths and And thin, produced a plan, whereby to erect
New buildings of correctest conformation,
toration. of these few could say more than has been
said ; They pass’d, as such things do, for super- The cost would be a trifle-- an “old song
Set to some thousands ('tis the usual burthen With some, while others, who had more of that same tune, when people hum it in dread
long) The theme, half credited the strange tra- The price would specdily repay its worth in
An edifice no less sublime than strong,
By which Lord Henry's good taste would | And knew no better in her Immorality
go forth in
Than to wax white -- for blushes are for Its glory, through all ages shining sunny,
quality. For Gothic daring shown in English money.
Her black, bright, downcast.yet espiègle eye There were two lawyers busy on a mortgage Had gather'd a large tear into its corner, Lord Henry wish'd to raise for a new Which the poor thing at times essay'd to dry,
purchase ; For she was not a sentimental mourner, Also a lawsuit upon tenures burgage, Parading all her sensibility, And one on tithes, which sure are Discord's Nor insolent enough to scorn the scorner,
But stood in trembling, patient tribulation Kindling Religion till she throws down her To be call'd up for her examination.
gage, "Untying" squires to fight against the
Of course these groups were scatter'd here There was a prize-ox, a prize-pig, and
and there, ploughman,
Not nigh the gay saloon of Ladies gent. For Henry was a sort of Sabine showman. The lawyers in the study; and in air
The prize-pig, ploughman, poachers ; the
men sent There were two poachers caught in a steel- From town, viz. architect and dealer, were
Both busy (as a General in his tent Ready for jail, their place of convalescence; Writing despatches)in their several stations, There was a country-girl in a close cap
Exulting in their brilliant lucubrations. And scarlet cloak (i hate the sight to see,
since Since since – in youth, I had the sad But this poor girl was left in the great hall,
While Scout, the parish guardian of the frail, But luckily I have paid few parish fees since) Discussd (he hated beer yelept the "small") That scarlet cloak, alas! unclos'd with rigour, A mighty mug of moral double ale : Presents the problem of a double figure. She waited until Justice could recal
Its kind attentions to their proper pale, A reel within a bottle is a mystery,
To name a thing in nomenclature rather One can't tell how it e'er got in or out,
Perplexing for most virgins_a child's father. Therefore the present piece of natural
history, I leave to those who are fond of solving For the Lord Henry, link'd with dogs and
You see here was enough of occupation
doubt, And merely state, though not for the Con
There was much bustle too and preparation Lord Henry was a Justice, and that Scout, Below stairs on the score of second courses, The Constable, beneath a warrant's banner, Because, as suits their rank and situation, Had bagg’d this poacher upon Nature's Those who in counties have great land
resources, Have “public days,” when all men may
carouse, Now Justices of peace must judge all pieces Though not exactly what's call?d - open Of mischief of all kinds, and keep the game
house." And morals of the country from caprices Of those who have not a licence for the same; But once a week or fortnight, uninvited And of all things,excepting tithes and leases, Perhaps these are most difficult to tame: (Thus we translate a general invitation) Preserving partridges and pretty wenches All country-gentlemen,esquired or knighted, Are puzzles to the most precautious benches. May drop in without cards, and take their
At the full board, and sit alike delighted The present culprit was extremely pale, With fashionable wines and conversation; Pale as if painted so; her cheek being red And, as the isthmus of the grand connection, By nature, as in higher dames less hale Talk o'er themselves, the past and next 'Tis white, at least when they just rise
election. from bed. Perhaps she was ashamed of seeming frail, Poor soul! for she was country born and Lord Henry was a great electioneerer,
Burrowing for boroughs like a rat or rabbit.
But county contests cost hiin rather dearer, Sooner "come place into the civil list
would keep it, Had English influence, in the self- same Till duly disappointed or dismiss'd :
sphere here; Profit he cared not for, let others reap it; His son, the Honourable Dick Dicedrabbit, But should the day come when place ceased Was member for the “other Interest”
to exist, (meaning
The country would have far more cause to The same self-interest, with a different
For how could it go on? Explain who can!
Courteous and cautious therefore in his
He was as independent-ay, much moreHe was all things to all men, and dispensed Than those who were not paid for indeTo some civility, to others bounty,
pendence, And promises to all -- which last commenced As common soldiers, or a common-Shore, To gather to a somewhat large amount, he have in their several arts or parts ascendance Not calculating how much they condensed; O’er the irregulars in lust or gore, But what with keeping some, and breaking Who do not give professional attendance.
Thus on the mob all statesmen are as eager His word had the saine value as another's. To prove their pride, as footmen to a beggar.
A friend to freedom and freeholders-yet All this (save the last stanza) Henry said, No less a friend to government-he held, And thought. I say no more-I've said too That he exactly the just medium hit
much ; 'Twixt place and patriotism -- albeit com- For all of us have either heard or read
Of-or upon the hustings- some slight such Such was his Sovereign's pleasure (though Hints from the independent heart or head
Of the official candidate. I'll touch He added modestly, when rebels rail'd), No more on this--the dinner-bell hath rung, To hold some sinecures he wish'd abolish’d, And grace is said ; the grace I should have But that with them all law would be de
But I'm too late, and therefore must make He was "free to confess"-(whence comes
play. this phrase? 'Twas a great banquet, such as Albion old Is't English ? No— 'tis only parliamentary) Was wont to boast-as if a glutton's tray That innovation's spirit now-a-days Were something very glorious to behold. Had made more progress than for the last But 'twas a public feast and public day,
and He would not tread a factious path to praise,
dishes cold, Though for the public weal disposed to Great plenty, much formality, small cheer,
venture high; And every body out of their own sphere. As for his place, he could but say this of it, That the fatigue was greater than the
The squires familiarly formal, and
The very servants puzzling how to hand Heaven, and his friends, knew that private Their plates-without it might be too much life
bending Had ever been his sole and whole anıbition; From their high places, by the sideboard's But could he quit his King in times of strife
stand Which threatend the whole country with Yet like their masters fearful of offending;
perdition? For any deviation from the graces When demagogues would with a butcher's Might cost both men and master too-their knife
places. Cut through and through (oh! damnable
incision!) The Gordian or the Geordi-an knot, whose There were some hunters bold, and courstrings
sers keen, Have tied together Commons, Lords, and Whooo hounds ne'er err'd, nor grey-hounds Kings.
deignd to lurch;
Some deadly shots too, Septembrizers, seen , From those who have few resources of Earliest to rise, and last to quit the search
their own, Of the poor partridge through his stubble And only think, or act, or feel with reference
To some small plan of interest or ambitionThere were some massy members of the Both which are limited to no condition.
church, Takers of tithes, and makers of good matches, And several who sung fewer psalms than But“en avant!" The light loves languish o'er
A slight repast makes people love much There were some country-wags too, - and
Bacchus and Ceres being, as we know, Some exiles from the town, who had been Even from our grammar upwards, friends
driven To gaze, instead of pavement, upon grass, With vivifying Venus, who doth owe And rise at nine in lieu of long eleven. To these the invention of champagne and And lo! upon that day it came to pass,
truffes: I sate next that o'erwhelming son of Heaven, Temperance delights her, but long fasting The very powerful parson, Peter Pith,
ruffles. The loudest wit I e'er was deafen'd with.
Dully past o'er the dinner of the day; I knew him in his livelier London-days, And Juan took his place, he knew not where, A brilliant diner out, though but a curate; Confused, in the confusion, and distrait, And not a joke he cut but earn’d its praise, And sitting as if nail'd upon his chair; Until preferment, coming at a sure rate, Though knives and forks clang'd round as (Oh, Providence! how wondrous are thy
in a fray, ways,
He seem'd unconscious of all passing there, Who would suppose thy gifts sometimes Till some one with a groan,express'd a wish
obdurate?) (Unheeded twice) to have a fin of fish. Gave him, to lay the devil who looks o’er
Lincoln, A fat fen vicarage, and nought to think on. On which, at the third asking of the banns,
He started; and perceiving smiles around
Broadening to grins, he colour'd more than His jokes were sermons, and his sermons
And hastily-as nothing can confound But both were thrown away amongst the A wise man more than laughter from a dunce,
Inflicted on the dish a deadly wound, For wit hath no great friend in aguish folks. And with such hurry, that ere he could No longer ready ears and short-hand pens
curb it, Imbibed the gay bon-mot, or happy hoax: He had paid his neighbour's prayer with The poor priest was reduced to common
half a turbot. Or to coarse efforts very loud and long, To hammer a hoarse laugh from the thick This was no bad mistake, as it occurrd,
The supplicator being an amateur;
Were angry-as they well might, to be sure. There is a difference,says the song, “between They wonder'd how a young man so absurd A beggar and a queen,” or was (of late Lord Henry at his table should endure; The latter worse used of the two we've seen And this, and his not knowing how much nats But we'll say nothing of affairs of state) Had fallen last market, cost his host three A difference “twixt a bishop and a dean,"
votes. A difference between crockery - ware and
plate, As between English beef and Spartan broth - They little knew, or might have sympaAnd yet great heroes have been bred by both.
thised, That he the night before had seen a ghost;
A prologue which but slightly harmonised But of all Nature's discrepancies, none With the substantial company engross'd Upon the whole is greater than the difference By matter, and so much materialised, Beheld between the country and the town, That one scarce knew at what to marvel Of which the latter merits every preference
or two things – how (the question rather | Though this was most expedient on the odd is)
whole, Such bodies could have souls, or souls such And usual -Juan, when he cast a glance
On Adeline while playing her grand role,
But what confused him more than smile (Betraying only now and then her soul
By a look scarce perceptibly askance From all the 'squires and 'squiresses around, of weariness or scorn), began to feel Who wonder'd at the abstraction of his air, Some doubt how much of Adeline was real; Especially as he had been renown'd For some vivacity among the fair, Even in the country circle's narrow bound So well she acted, all and every part (For little things upon my Lord's estate By turns—with that vivacious versatility, Were good small-talk for others still less Which many people take for want of heart.
They err-'tis merely what is call’d mobility,
Though seeming 60, from its supposed Was, that he caught Aurora's eye on his
facility; And something like a smile upon her cheek. And false, though true; for surely they're Now this he really rather took amiss :
sincerest, In those who rarely smile, their siniles Who are strongly acted on by what is nearest.
bespeak A strong external motive; and in this Smile of Aurora's there was nought to pique This makes your actors, artists, and roOr hope, or love, with any of the wiles
mancers, Which some pretend to trace in ladies' Heroes sometimes, though seldom—sages smiles.
never; But speakers, bards, diplomatists, and
dancers, 'Twas a mere quiet smile of contemplation, Little that's great, but much of what is clever; Indicative of some surprise and pity; Most orators, but very few financiers, And Juan grew carnation with vexation, Though all Exchequer-Chancellors endeaWhich was not very wise and still less
Of late years, to dispense with Cocker's Since he had gain'd at least her observation,
rigours, A most important outwork of the city And grow quite figurative with their figures. As Juan should have known, had not his
By last night's ghost been driven from their The poets of arithmetic are they
Who,though they prove not two and two to be
Have plainly made it out that four are three, But what was bad, she did not blush in turn, Judging by what they take, and what they Nor seem embarrassid - quite the contrary ;
рау. . Her aspect was as usual, still—not stern - The Sinking-Fund's unfathomable sea, And she withdrew, but cast not down, her That most unliquidating liquid, leaves
The debt unsunk, yet sinks all it receives. Yet grew a little pale -- with what? concern? I know not; but her colour ne'er was highThough sometimes faintly flush'd and While Adeline dispensed her airs and graces,
The fair Fitz-Fulke seemd very much at As deep seas in a sunny atmosphere.
Though too well bred to quiz men to their
faces, But Adeline was occupied by fame Her laughing blue eyes with a glance conld This day; and watching, witching, con
seize descending The ridicules of people in all placesTo the consumers of fish, fowl, and game, That honey of your fashionable bees --And dignity with courtesy so blending, And store it up for mischievous enjoyment; As all must blend whose part it is to aim And this at present was her kind employment. (Especially as the sixth year is ending) At their Lord's Son's, or similar connection's Safe conduct through the rocks of re-elec- However, the day closed, as days must close ;
The evening also waned-and coffee came.