Page images
PDF
EPUB

mam.

carriage wheel. That's the stuff for fever and back-bitin' to boot, only by corns, I tell ye ! capital too for razor rubbin' it over the minister's wig-mor. straps! addressing himself now to one tal fine stuff for the hair !-turns it all and now to another of the bystanders, manner o colours there; letting the and either by accident or design so as to limb go and lifting the poor man up with hit rather hard here and there, and raise a bandage on it about as big as a modera good-natured laugh at the expense of ate-sized pillow-see there! enough's a little somebody with pinched feet, and enough, I tell ye-boo-hoo-boo-hoo! a cross-looking old woman with a beard. If yer don't stop your blartin' an' booClear grit as ever you see! gut sech a hooin, you'll take cold inside, and that'll thing as a jacknife about ye marm?- to take all the varter out o' the greesen the latter, who stood stooping over the and then arter that's done, I defy yer to box with a most inquisitive air, eyeing stop— I call it greese; but it 's no more him through her golden-bowed specta. greese than you air (to a very fat man cles, and occasionally touching the con- who had been laughing at all the others tents of the box, and then smelling her in succession--it was their turn now), an' fingers in a way that he didn't appear to what's more (to the nigger) your foot relish—with a red-haired girl in very 'll turn all the colours of a peacock's tight shoes on one arm, and a sleepy

tail. looking coxcomb with mustachios on the Here the poor negro began to hobble other-clear grit, I tell ye !--take a off, saying as he moved away—Tanka notch out of a broad axe whoa; (to massa, tanka berry mush.” the nigger,) who-a! there, there !-best “I say tho,' mister, cried the Yankee, furnitoor-polish ever you come across calling after him—might ask what's to

There, there, stiddy-stiddy! pay; or buy a box o' the hair-powderdon't kick--plastering the foot all over that's the least you can do. with his furniture polish, and wrapping “ Why lor a bressa massa; massa so it up with a bandage of loose oakum good, he neber tink o'takin' notin' o' ah, hah! begin to feel nicely aready, poor nigger, hey? don't it mister ?

Try me." “O, yessa massa, groaned the poor negro_him peel berry moodch nicealy ; tankee massa —

-berry mudch-boo-hoo ! METROPOLITAN RAMBLER. -gorrigh !

No. V. “ Told ye so ! slickest stuff ever you see, aint it mister ? snatching up a rag COURSE OF THE THAMES THROUGH of tarred canvass and a bunch of spun

LONDON-CONTINUED. yarn, that somebody held near-good The grand sweep of the Thames from for the lock jaw-tried it on myself ; Westminster bridge to that of Blacknobody talks faster 'an I do now, do they friars, almost at our feet, now demands marm? fuss chop to for yeller-fever, an our attention. This is the most remarkmoths, and lip-salve, and bed bugs—try able bend of the river that we find in the a leetle on't, mister (to the youth in nearer portion of the view, and is the mustachios), or may be you'd like a box broadest part of it in its course through or yer own-some call it a new sort o' the metropolis. The stream coming here tooth paste with more varter in't than suddenlyin contactwith the steep northern nineteen sea hosses; only a quarter verge of the valley in which it more imdollar a box at retail, or two dollars a mediately flows, makes a rounded angle dozen box in all, and take your pay in rather than a curve, presenting to our most anything marm (to the red-haired view a deep indentation on its left shore, girl); boxes worth half the money, and and on its right a remarkable, acutemore too, marm-take 'em back at looking projection of the Lambeth disdouble price, if you aint satisfied, if I trict of the town, shooting far into the ever come across you agin-sell ye the watery expanse; the Surrey ends of the privilege right out for any o' the States, Westminster and Blackfriars bridges so't your son there could make his for- forming the two extremities of its base; tin' by sellin' it for bear's greese ; don't while from its apex the level line of the kick, I tell ye !-to the nigger-sartin Waterloo bridge seems cure for the itch-help yourself, mister directly across to the corresponding -why if you'll believe me, but I know angle of the stream on the opposite bank. you wunt, I've seen it cure a whole Let us first consider the objects on this neighbourhood so privately, they did'nt latter verge. know it themselves--chincough-striped I must here call the spectator's atten

THE

to run

out

tion to a point of division in the line distinguish the small central dome, with under consideration. Let him fix his St. James's park and its tufted avenues eye just on this side of the right-hand stretching away behind it. extremity of Waterloo bridge, and of Coming on, down the same line, carry. the great fore-shortened façade and ing our eye.over the high buildings about terrace immediately adjoining it, upon the nearer extremity of Whitehall, over those tree tops which peep out from which, through our telescope, we may among those long, lofty, and for the most discover the telegraph on the roof of the part old-looking ranges of building. That Admiralty; we may next discern, in the spot is the Temple,--the uses of which, picture, almost among the chimney tops, for centuries past, have been so different the stone lion over the gateway of from those original ones of which its Northumberland House, the princely crusading name, as well as the mail-clad town residence of the head of the house effigies within its venerable church, of Percy, and the only one of the great remain a memorial. I point to that mansions that once lined the whole bank locality on this occasion, because it marks of the river from that point down to the the confines of the city of London, Temple, which is still appropriated to its extending on this side of it, and that of original use, and which, with its great Westminster, the southern limit of court on the town side and its gardens which stretches up the river side be- towards the water, has alone resisted, as yond it.

it were, to the present day, the inundaThe whole sweep of that shoré, from tion of ordinary buildings, and of Westminster bridge down to the Temple, business-like purposes, in which all the now so irregularly crowded with build- others have been submerged. ings of such various uses and aspects, is Northumberland House marks the not less crowded with interesting his- situation of the great opening of Charingtorical recollections. It has undergone cross, just at the right of which we disa strange alteration within the last two tinguish the spire of the elegant church centuries, and that portion of the river of St. Martin, with its fine ring of bells. view has assuredly much decreased in It also shews us the commencement of beauty. The whole line of buildings the well-known line of street, called the towards the water, which was occupied, Strand, from the circumstance of its in its higher part by the buildings and running along at a short distance from gardens of the ancient royal palace of the river side, and which, in the view, Whitehall

, and in its lower by a long we can pretty distinctly trace, to its range of mansions of the principal nearer extremity at Temple-bar, our eye nobility with their ornamented lawns and being guided, first by the elegant taperterraces, now presents but few objects of ing steeple of St. Mary-le-Strand, and picturesque interest.

then by that of St. Clement's, both of Carrying our eye downwards from which it embraces, while a dense interWestminster bridge, we distinguish the minable mass of town lies on the right lofty roof of the Banqueting House, the of it. only striking remnant of the buildings of The only striking objects towards the Whitehall palace, which, só famed and water, in this southern belt of Westminso frequented under the Tudors and the ster, as seen in this prospect, are, the Stuarts, seems almost identified in his- extremely fore-shortened front of the torical remembrance with the assertion modern Adelphi terrace, of elegant priof high prerogative and divine right, and vate houses, just above the Waterloo were fated not long to survive the revo- bridge, and that of Somerset place, as it lution which exploded those pretensions is now called, just below the bridge, both for ever, being destroyed by an accidental raised high upon their vaulted basements fire in the reign of William the Third. above the surface of the water, and the The site of those buildings will be found latter filling up with its immense quadto be now occupied, towards the water, rangle the space between the river and by a number of excellent mansions the Strand, from which street it is entered. irregularly ranged, to several of which This fine and extensive stone edifice, ornamental gardens are attached, but though looking more like a palace than none of which have anything imposing any other of the buildings that now overin their exterior. Behind them we can look the river, and than most of those just trace the line of the wide street now existing in the metropolis, has long which still bears the name of Whitehall, been converted, as the spectator is running just by the front of the War- probably aware, into a variety of office or Horse-guards, of which we may government offices, certain portions being

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

appropriated to the use of the Royal against the gleaming surface of the river. Society and of the Royal Academy,whose That modern tower, like a tapering yearly exhibition of works of living square one of inferior elevation, which British artists, held here, is one of the stands a little to the left of it, rather less most attractive public resorts in the height conspicuously, just on this side of the same of the London season.

extremity of the bridge, forms an imporThe name of the Waterloo bridge, as tant part of a shot-manufactory. In a well as its aspect, is sufficiently indicative picturesque view, they are quite precious, of its very recent date. Magnificent and on so flat a locality and among so ordiunique as it is, as a specimen of civil nary a range of buildings as crowd that architecture, yet to the eye, its flat, aque- part of the river's bank. To the left of duct-looking line is less attractive than them, we can trace the Waterloo road either the statelyelevation of the Westmin- running out in a direct line, past the ster, or the graceful sweep of Blackfriars. steeple of the Lambeth new church, Its name, too, is a sort of solecism,— towards the Obelisk in St. George's and, we cannot help thinking, an affecta- fields. tion, not quite worthy of the solid and Reverting to the Middlesex side of the lasting dignity of that metropolis which water, we find, in bringing our eye acquired in the erection of this structure downwards from the Temple, nothing, one more noble feature in addition to the apparently, but the roofs of great waremany which it had already accumulated. houses and similar erections, till we The names of all the other great bridges reach the fine opening and handsome of the capital, have grown out of their buildings of Chatham place at the foot respective localities ; so that their per- of Blackfriars bridge, consisting of manence is not liable to be affected either elegant private houses and commodious by political changes or by changes of offices; from which we perceive Bridge opinion. Those names are intimately street, running up into the heart of the associated with the steady rise, the splen- western portion of the city. At the did progress, and magnificent prospects opposite extremity of Blackfriars bridge of the capital itself: their continuance is we see the nearly corresponding range not dependent on the judgment which of Albion place, commencing the fine future generations, or even the present, straight avenue of Surrey street or the may form as to the degree of public Blackfriars road; this one, of all the benefit that may have resulted from a bridges, happening to possess, on each particular political or military achieve- side of the river, the finest and most ment. But even had British history had commodious approaches. time to pass its final verdict upon the From the point where we stand, we transactions in question, the taste would see in fine perspective the elegant curve still have been very questionable which of this bridge, and eight of its nine suggested the introducing of a name in- arches, the nearer one almost disappearseparably associated with all the darkest ing behind the lofty range of building horrors of wholesale butchery, among forming the eastern side of Chatham those of the Westminster bridge, &c. place. This bridge is a younger sister which hold their steady, quiet place in of the Westminster, having been comthe mind, linked with ideas of cheerful pleted about twenty years subsequently, business, of peaceful pomp, and tranquil adding not less to the beauty than to the pleasure. And once more let me repeat, commodiousness of the growing metrothat, of all cities that are or have been, polis. our own great capital may most fairly We come now to that portion of the claim the right, before all other localities river line which lies immediately at our upon earth, to furnish names for her own feet, extending from the Blackfriars to magnificent bridges.

the Southwark bridge, and sweeping The portion of the Surrey shore lying horizontally through the picture along between the

Westminster and Blackfriars the southern border of the city. In this bridges, presents little that is striking to extent, there is little to arrest the eye on the eye, except the bold projection, either shore. On the hither side, we look already mentioned, of its own area into almost plumb down upon the long, broad the course of the Thames. Exactly from roofings of the immense range of great the apex of that angle, and from the ex- warehouses that occupy the whole length tremity of the Waterloo bridge, there of shore, and to which Thames street shoots up a remarkable-looking, slender, forms the access. The foundations of lofty round tower, of which, from this St. Paul's itself being laid upon the elevation we see the whole length relieved summit of this one of the range of hills

[ocr errors]

seum.

immediately inclosing the basin of the the current with two piers only, supThames, we consequently look down porting its vast central arch of eighty here from a most comma

manding elevation yards span, and its five or six thousand upon this part of the river, and the in- tons of iron, which seem to float rather tervening portion of the City; which, than weigh upon the bosom of the river however, offers little to our observation swis one of the great modern triumphs but a dense aggregation of roofs and of mechanical skill and power—such a angles of buildings of a similar character work as only British genius has yet been to those already mentioned as bordering able to achieve. the river side with their wharfs and Now again, the river, which has been quays; diversified, it is true, by the gradually contracting its breadth from steeples of several of the city churches, Blackfriars bridge downwards, is gently which, however, present little that is receding in the view and widening by striking except by dint of the contrast degrees, as if to shew us old London their grey elevations afford to the flat ex- bridge to greater advantage. The new panse of roofings chequered with slaty London bridge, opened but the other blue and dingy red. Some little relief, day, we shall not fail to visit on a future also, to this dull uniformity, is afforded occasion : but for the present let us be by the range of tree tops shading the content to look upon the aspect of the long narrow garden of Doctors' Com- old one, the image of which is here more mons, which lies beneath our eye, pa vividly presented to us than it can be by rallel with the river, as we look towards any other mode. This, we conceive, is the nearer extremity of Blackfriars the finest original full-length portrait of bridge. One solitary tree, too, we ob- the latest that remained of the greater serve, towards the lower extremity of features of the gothic city, the London this portion of the river's brink, appa- of the middle ages; and the sight of it rently overhanging the water, at the ex- alone is well worth a visit to the Colostremity of a long range of warehouses at the spot called Queenhithe-an object The coffer dams, &c. (preparing for in itself ordinary enough, but refreshing the erection of the new bridge) which to the eye, as presenting one soft green we see encroaching upon the surface of spot amid that close hard mass of brick, the river just above its further extremity, and tile, and slate.

already announce to us that its doom is The further or Surrey side of the sealed to the affliction of the antiquary, river, towards the water's edge, is still the disturbance of numerous traders more devoid of either picturesque or carrying on business at each of its historical interest. Along that level line approaches, the greater security and are ranged, besides timber yards, iron satisfaction of all quiet navigators or wharfs, &c., the buildings belonging to passengers upon the river, and the evera great variety of manufactures,

-as lasting privation of all those amateurs iron-founders, stone-cutters, dyers, soap of unprofitable risk who delight in run; and oil makers, glass-makers, &c.—with ning the chance of being upset in shoottheir tall, black-mouthed chimneys, ing the old bridge, that is, in descending shooting up at intervals, which, though in a wherry the sort of cataract which they have little to engage the eye, have the excessive obstruction prevented by much, on a closer examination, to inte, such a number of enormously-massive rest an excursive mind, in their varied piers and starlings, compels the river to display of the magical operations and form at every ebbing tide. effects of ingeniously directed mechani. This is the only one of the bridges cal and chemical powers. They exhibit, in before us that can be regarded as an his, short, a fine specimen of that richly va- torical monument; and often in our ried manufacturing industry which is so rambles through the past, shall we find interesting to all but the most frivolous it in our track,-crowded, loaded, and minds, as having contributed so largely overhung with the sharp-angled, fantasto advance Great Britain, in the posses- tically-gabled houses of the gothic pesion of the means of national happiness, riod, projecting story beyond story. so far before every other country of the This was the great and only thoroughold world.

fare over the Thames at London, until The Southwark bridge itself, of the middle of the last century; and recent erection even than the Waterloo, countless have been the trains of warriors, springing lightly from its elevated abut, of traders, of travellers, of pilgrims, that ments on either shore, and obstructing rode over it, before the state of English

re

roads and wheel-carriages would admit the spot where "our host” of the Tabard of any long journey being performed made his company halt. otherwise than on horseback.

Nor, at a future opportunity, shall we In later times, the vast increase of forget, as associated with this locality, the port of London, and the immense Shakspeare's Globe Theatre, Allen's circulation of great depositories for Royal Bear-garden, &c. &c., of a later goods on both sides of the river below period. this the last bridge going down the Towards the opposite or nearer end of Thames, have caused it to be, during London bridge, shoots up across the the hours of business, more densely river's face, the lofty and rather elegant thronged than any other communication steeple of St. Magnus' church, the as. of the like nature in the world, with all pect of which, with its projecting clock, manner of vehicles and passengers, im- and the arched passage under its tower, mediately or indirectly kept in motion is so inseparably associated with the apby the various branches of the amazing proach to London bridge in the mind of commerce of London. This accumu

every passenger that way from the City; lated pressure necessitated an entire me- but which, now that the bridge itself to tamorphosis of the upper line of the bridge which it scemed so necessary an append. by removing all the grotesque and un- age has disappeared, “stands alone in its sightly incumbrances of the land pas- glory," looking, to such as now pass by sage, long before the recent and final it, solitary and comfortless. demolition of the disproportionately To the left of it extends, parallel with massive lower masonry which so seri- the water-side, the long quadrangular ously impeded the water-way.

flat-roofed top of the new Custom-house, The ancient borough of Southwark, erected, on the destruction of the old one to which this bridge forms the grand ap- by fire, in 1814. That immense reposiproach, greets our view with the first tory and revenue office is well worthy of historical interest afforded us by the ob- our visiting it at a future opportunity. jects on that level, banked-in shore, after The lofty summit of the Monument, quitting Lambeth palace. The mean as it is called by distinction, next catches low brick tower of St. Olave's church, our eye, though its base is at some disindeed, almost at the foot of the bridge, tance from the water-side, up the steep looks insignificant 'enough; but carrying bank which we find still bounding the on our eye towards the right in a straight river's verge on this side. There line with the bridge itself, it meets one - London's 'column pointing to the skies, of the finest architectural remnants in London of the gothic times, in the great, Aame upon its summit, literally blazing in

in magnificent elevation, with the golden square, storied and pinnacled tower of St. Saviour's church, as it is now called, the sun, commemorates at once the awful originally that of the great monastery of though eventually beneficial conflagration St. Mary Overies.

of the City in the seventeenth century, This steeple of the fourteenth century, and, like the pile on which we stand, carries us back at once to the days of the splendid genius of its great architecChaucer and Gower, the former of whom tural restorer ; as the English inscription has consecrated this locality by assem

round its base attested, until recently, bling his pilgrims at the Tabard, hard by,

to the most ordinary reader, the almost in the great thoroughfare to Canter: incredibly gross blindness of religious bury; while the bones of the latter lie and party prejudice prevailing in those mouldering in that very church. Differ- times, and justified the sarcasm of Pope in ent indeed in fortune were the courtier the fellow line to the one above quotedpoet, and the reformer!- -as different as

Like a tall bully, rears its head and lies. patronage and affluence are from persecution and poverty. Death has long This finest modern pillar in the world levelled them in fortune ;-but as for will demand our more particular attenfame,-could the fortunate Gower speak tion; and, fortunately for the eye of from the dust, well might he exclaim :- architectural taste and curiosity, the late So were I equalled with him in renown!

City improvements connected with the

rebuilding of London, bridge have, for Even the little mean tower of St. Thomas's the first time, enabled the spectator to church, which strikes the eye just to the contemplate its whole length in one right of that of St. Saviour's, has some view. claim upon our notice, if only as marking

« PreviousContinue »