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Title: Chambers's Edinburgh Journal, No. 459 - Volume 18, New Series, October 16, 1852
Author: Various
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Chambers's Edinburgh Journal, No. 459 - Volume 18, New Series, October 16, 1852" ***

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                     CHAMBERS' EDINBURGH JOURNAL

  CONDUCTED BY WILLIAM AND ROBERT CHAMBERS, EDITORS OF 'CHAMBERS'S
  INFORMATION FOR THE PEOPLE,' 'CHAMBERS'S EDUCATIONAL COURSE,' &c.


  No. 459. NEW SERIES.   SATURDAY, OCTOBER 16, 1852.   PRICE 1-1/2_d._



THE WOMAN OF THE WORLD.


We all know that there are certain conventional laws by which our
social doings and seemings are regulated; but what is the power which
compels the observance of these laws? There is no company police to
keep people moving on, no fines or other penalties; nobody but the
very outrageous need fear being turned out of the room; we have every
one of us strong inclinations and strong will: then, how comes it that
we get on so smoothly? Why are there no outbreaks of individual
character? How is it that we seem dovetailed into each other, as if we
formed a homogeneous mass? What is the influence which keeps up the
weak and keeps down the strong, and spreads itself like oil upon the
boiling sea of human passion? We have a notion of our own, that all
this is the work of an individual of the female sex; and, indeed, even
the most unconscious and unreflecting would appear to assign to that
individual her true position and authority, in naming her the Woman of
the World.

Society could never exist in a state of civilisation without the woman
of the world. The man of the world has his own department, his own
_métier_; but She it is who keeps up the general equilibrium. She is a
calm, quiet, lady-like person, not obtrusive, and not easily put out
of the way. You do not know by external observation that she is in the
room; you feel it instinctively. The atmosphere she brings with her is
peculiar, you cannot tell how. It is neither warm nor chill, neither
moist nor dry; but it is repressive. You do not move in it with
natural freedom, although you feel nothing that could be called
_gêne_. Her manner is generally sweet, sometimes even caressing, and
you feel flattered and elevated as you meet her approving eye. But you
cannot get into it. There is a glassy surface, beautiful but hard, of
which you can make nothing, and presently you feel a kind of
strangeness come over you, as if you were not looking into the eye of
a creature of your own kind. What you miss is sympathy.

It is to her want of sympathy the woman of the world owes her
position. The same deficiency is indispensable in the other
individuals--such as a great monarch, or a great general--who rule the
fate of mankind; but with this difference, that in them it is partial
and limited, and in her universal. In them, it bears relation to their
trade or mission; in her, it is a peculiarity of her general nature.
She is accused of inhumanity; of sporting with the feelings of those
about her, and rending, when they interfere with her plans, the
strings of the heart as ruthlessly as if they were fiddlestrings. But
all that is nonsense. She does not, it is true, ignore the existence
of strings and feelings; on the contrary, they are in her eyes a great
fact, without which she could do nothing. But her theory is, that they
are merely a superficial net-work surrounding the character, the
growth of education and other circumstances, and that they may be
twisted, broken, and fastened anew at pleasure by skilful fingers. No,
she is not inhumane. She works for others' good and her own greatness.
Sighs and tears may be the result of her operations; but so are they
of the operations of the beneficent surgeon. She dislikes giving pain,
and comforts and sustains the patient to the best of her power; but at
the most, she knows sighs are but wind, and tears but water, and so
she does her duty.

Although without sympathy, the woman of the world has great
sensitiveness. She sits in the room like a spider, with her web
fitting as closely to the whole area as the carpet; and she feels the
slightest touch upon the slightest filament. So do the company: not
understandingly like her, but instinctively and unconsciously, like a
fly who only knows that somehow or other he is not at freedom. The
thing that holds him is as soft and glossy and thin and small as silk;
but even while dallying with its smoothness and pleasantness, a misty,
indefinite sensation of impending danger creeps over him. Be quiet,
little fly! Gently--gently: slip away if you can--but no defiance, no
tugging, no floundering, or you are lost!

A mythic story is told of the woman of the world: how in early life
she was crossed in love; how she lost faith in feelings that seemed to
exist exceptionally only in her own solitary bosom; and how a certain
glassy hardness gathered upon her heart, as she sat waiting and
waiting for a response to the inner voices she had suffered to burst
forth--

    The long-lost ventures of the heart,
    That send no answers back again!

But this is a fable. The woman of the world was never young--not while
playing with her doll. She grew just as you see her, and will suffer
no change till the dissolution of the elements of her body.
Love-passages she has indeed had like other women; but the love was
all on one side, and that side not hers. It is curious to observe the
passion thus lavished in vain. It reminds one of the German story of
the Cave of Mirrors, where a fairy damsel, with beckoning hand and
beseeching eyes, was reflected from a thousand angles. The pursuing
lover, endeavouring to clasp his mistress, flung himself from one
illusory image to another, finding only the sharp, polished,
glittering glass in his embrace, till faint, breathless, and bleeding,
he sank upon the ground.

The woman of the world, though a dangerous mistress, is an agreeable
friend. She is partial to the everyday married lady, when presentable
in point of dress and manners, and overwhelms her with little
condescending kindnesses and caresses. This good lady, on her part,
thinks her patroness a remarkably clever woman; not that she
understands her, or knows exactly what she is about; but somehow or
other she is _sure_ she is prodigiously clever. As for the everyday
young lady, who has a genius for reverence, she reveres her; and these
two, with their male congeners, are the dress-figures the woman of the
world places about her rooms like ivory pieces on a chessboard.

This admirable lady is sometimes a mother, and she is devotedly fond
of her children, in their future. She may be seen gazing in their
faces by the hour; but the picture that is before her mind's eye is
the fulfilment of their present promise. An ordinary woman would
dawdle away her time in admiring their soft eyes, and curly hair, and
full warm cheeks; but the woman of the world sees the bud grown into
the expanded flower, and the small cradle is metamorphosed into the
boudoir by the magic of her maternal love. And verily, she has her
reward: for death sometimes comes, to wither the bud, and disperse the
dream in empty air. On such an occasion, her grief, as we may readily
suppose, is neither deep nor lasting, for its object is twined round
her imagination, not her heart. She regrets her wasted hopes and
fruitless speculations; but the baby having never been present in its
own entity, is now as that which has never been. The unthinking call
her an unnatural mother, for they make no distinction. They do not
know that death is with her a perfectly arranged funeral, a marble
tablet, a darkened room, an attitude of wo, a perfumed handkerchief.
They do not consider that when she lies down to rest, her eyes, in
consequence of over-mental exertion, are too heavy with sleep to have
room for tears. They do not reflect that in the morning she breaks
into a new consciousness of reality from the clinging dreams of her
maternal ambition, and not from the small visionary arms, the fragrant
kiss, the angel whisper of her lost babe. They do not feel that in
opening upon the light, her eyes part with the fading gleam of gems
and satin, and kneeling coronets, and red right hands extending
wedding-rings, and not with a winged and baby form, soaring into the
light by which it is gradually absorbed, while distant hymns melt and
die upon her ear.

The woman of the world is sometimes prosperous in her reign over
society, and sometimes otherwise. Even she submits, although usually
with sweetness and dignity, to the caprices of fortune. Occasionally,
the threads of her management break in such a way, that, with all her
dexterity, she is unable to reunite them: occasionally, the strings
and feelings are too strong to rend; and occasionally, in rending, the
whole system falls to pieces. Her daughter elopes, her son marries the
governess, her husband loses his seat in parliament; but there are
other daughters to marry, other sons to direct, other honours to win;
and so this excellent woman runs her busy and meritorious career. But
years come on at last, although she lingers as long as she can in
middle life; and, with her usual graceful dignity, she settles down
into the reward the world bestows on its veterans, an old age of
cards.

Even now, she sometimes turns round her head to look at the things and
persons around her, and to exult in the reputation she has earned, and
the passive influence her name still exercises over society; but, as a
rule, the kings and queens and knaves take the place of human beings
with this woman of genius; the deepest arcana of her art are brought
into play for the odd trick, and her pride and ambition are abundantly
gratified by the circumvention of a half-crown.

The woman of the world at length dies: and what then? Why, then,
nothing--nothing but a funeral, a tablet, dust, and oblivion. This is
reasonable, for, great as she was, she had to do only with the
external forms of life. Her existence was only a material game, and
her men and women were only court and common cards; diamonds and
hearts were alike to her, their value depending on what was trumps.
She saw keenly and far, but not deeper than the superficial net-work
of the heart, not higher than the ceiling of the drawing-room. Her
enjoyments, therefore, were limited in their range; her nature, though
perfect in its kind, was small and narrow; and her occupation, though
so interesting to those concerned, was in itself mean and frivolous.
This is always her misfortune, the misfortune of this envied woman.
She lives in a material world, blind and deaf to the influences that
thrill the bosoms of others. No noble thought ever fires her soul, no
generous sympathy ever melts her heart. Her share of that current of
human nature which has welled forth from its fountain in the earthly
paradise is dammed up, and cut off from the general stream that
overflows the world. None of those minute and invisible ducts connects
it with the common waters which make one feel instinctively, lovingly,
yearningly, that he is not alone upon the earth, but a member of the
great human family. And so, having played her part, she dies, this
woman of the world, leaving no sign to tell that an immortal spirit
has passed: nothing above the ground but a tablet, and below, only a
handful of rotting bones and crumbling dust.



MARIE DE LA TOUR.


The basement front of No. 12 Rue St Antoine, a narrow street in Rouen,
leading from the Place de la Pucelle, was opened by Madame de la Tour,
in the millinery business, in 1817, and tastefully arranged, so far as
scant materials permitted the exercise of decorative genius. She was
the widow of a once flourishing _courtier maritime_ (ship-broker),
who, in consequence of some unfortunate speculations, had recently
died in insolvent circumstances. At about the same time, Clément
Derville, her late husband's confidential clerk, a steady,
persevering, clever person, took possession of the deceased
ship-broker's business premises on the quay, the precious savings of
fifteen years of industrious frugality enabling him to install himself
in the vacant commercial niche before the considerable connection
attached to the well-known establishment was broken up and distributed
amongst rival _courtiers_. Such vicissitudes, frequent in all trading
communities, excite but a passing interest; and after the customary
commonplaces commiserative of the fallen fortunes of the still
youthful widow, and gratulatory good-wishes for the prosperity of the
_ci-devant_ clerk, the matter gradually faded from the minds of the
sympathisers, save when the rapidly rising fortunes of Derville, in
contrast with the daily lowlier ones of Madame de la Tour, suggested
some tritely sentimental reflection upon the precariousness and
instability of all mundane things. For a time, it was surmised by some
of the fair widow's friends, if not by herself, that the considerable
services Derville had rendered her were prompted by a warmer feeling
than the ostensible one of respect for the relict of his old and
liberal employer; and there is no doubt that the gentle, graceful
manners, the mild, starlit face of Madame de la Tour, had made a deep
impression upon Derville, although the hope or expectation founded
thereon vanished with the passing time. Close, money-loving,
business-absorbed as he might be, Clément Derville was a man
of vehement impulse and extreme susceptibility of female
charm--weaknesses over which he had again and again resolved to
maintain vigilant control, as else fatal obstacles to his hopes of
realising a large competence, if not a handsome fortune. He succeeded
in doing so; and as year after year glided away, leaving him richer
and richer, Madame de la Tour poorer and poorer, as well as less and
less personally attractive, he grew to marvel that the bent form, the
clouded eyes, the sorrow-sharpened features of the woman he
occasionally met hastening along the streets, could be those by which
he had been once so powerfully agitated and impressed.

He did not, however, form any new attachment; was still a bachelor at
forty-five; and had for some years almost lost sight of, and
forgotten, Madame de la Tour, when a communication from Jeanne Favart,
an old servant who had lived with the De la Tours in the days of their
prosperity, vividly recalled old and fading memories. She announced
that Madame de la Tour had been for many weeks confined to her bed by
illness, and was, moreover, in great pecuniary distress.

'_Diantre_!' exclaimed Derville, a quicker and stronger pulse than
usual tinging his sallow cheek as he spoke. 'That is a pity. Who,
then, has been minding the business for her?'

'Her daughter Marie, a gentle, pious child, who seldom goes out except
to church, and,' added Jeanne, with a keen look in her master's
countenance, 'the very image of the Madame de la Tour we knew some
twenty years ago.'

'Ha!' M. Derville was evidently disturbed, but not so much so as to
forget to ask with some asperity if 'dinner was not ready?'

'In five minutes,' said Jeanne, but still holding the half-opened door
in her hand. 'They are very, very badly off, monsieur, those
unfortunate De la Tours,' she persisted. 'A _huissier_ this morning
seized their furniture and trade-stock for rent, and if the sum is not
made up by sunset, they will be utterly ruined.'

M. Clément Derville took several hasty turns about the room, and the
audible play of his fingers amongst the Napoleons in his pockets
inspired Jeanne with a hope that he was about to draw forth a
sufficient number for the relief of the cruel necessities of her
former mistress. She was mistaken. Perhaps the touch of his beloved
gold stilled for a time the agitation that had momentarily stirred his
heart.

'It is a pity,' he murmured; and then briskly drawing out his watch,
added sharply: 'But pray let us have dinner. Do you know that it is
full seven minutes past the time that it should be served?'

Jeanne disappeared, and M. Derville was very soon seated at table. But
although the sad tidings he had just heard had not been able to
effectually loosen his purse-strings, they had at least power utterly
to destroy his appetite, albeit the _poulet_ was done to a turn.
Jeanne made no remark on this, as she removed the almost untasted
meal, nor on the quite as unusual fact, that the wine _carafe_ was
already half emptied, and her master himself restless, dreamy, and
preoccupied. Concluding, however, from these symptoms, that a fierce
struggle between generosity and avarice was going on in M. Derville's
breast, she quietly determined on bringing an auxiliary to the aid of
generosity, that would, her woman's instinct taught her, at once
decide the conflict.

No doubt the prosperous ship-broker _was_ unusually agitated. The old
woman's news had touched a chord which, though dulled and slackened by
the heat and dust of seventeen years of busy, anxious life, still
vibrated strongly, and awakened memories that had long slept in the
chambers of his brain, especially one pale Madonna face, with its
soft, tear-trembling eyes that---- '_Ciel_!' he suddenly exclaimed, as
the door opened and gave to view the very form his fancy had conjured
up: '_Ciel_! can it be---- Pshaw!' he added, as he fell back into the
chair from which he had leaped up; 'you must suppose me crazed,
Mademoiselle--Mademoiselle de la Tour, I am quite certain.'

It was indeed Marie de la Tour whom Jeanne Favart had, with much
difficulty, persuaded to make a personal appeal to M. Derville. She
was a good deal agitated, and gladly accepted that gentleman's
gestured invitation to be seated, and take a glass of wine. Her errand
was briefly, yet touchingly told, but not apparently listened to by
Derville, so abstracted and intense was the burning gaze with which he
regarded the confused and blushing petitioner. Jeanne, however, knew
whom he recognised in those flushed and interesting features, and had
no doubt of the successful result of the application.

M. Clément Derville _had_ heard and comprehended what was said, for he
broke an embarrassing silence of some duration by saying, in a pleased
and respectful tone: 'Twelve Napoleons, you say, mademoiselle. It is
nothing: here are twenty. No thanks, I beg of you. I hope to have an
opportunity of rendering you--of rendering Madame de la Tour, I mean,
some real and lasting service.'

Poor Marie was profoundly affected by this generosity, and the
charming blushfulness, the sweet-toned trembling words that expressed
her modest gratitude, were, it should seem, strangely interpreted by
the excited ship-broker. The interview was not prolonged, and Marie de
la Tour hastened with joy-lightened steps to her home.

Four days afterwards, M. Derville called at the Rue St Antoine, only
to hear that Madame de la Tour had died a few hours previously. He
seemed much shocked; and after a confused offer of further pecuniary
assistance, respectfully declined by the weeping daughter, took a
hurried leave.

There is no question that, from the moment of his first interview with
her, M. Derville had conceived an ardent passion for Mademoiselle de
la Tour--so ardent and bewildering as not only to blind him to the
great disparity of age between himself and her--which he might have
thought the much greater disparity of fortune in his favour would
balance and reconcile--but to the very important fact, that Hector
Bertrand, a young _menuisier_ (carpenter), who had recently commenced
business on his own account, and whom he so frequently met at the
charming _modiste's_ shop, was her accepted, affianced lover. An
_éclaircissement_, accompanied by mortifying circumstances, was not,
however, long delayed.

It occurred one fine evening in July. M. Derville, in passing through
the _marché aux fleurs_, had selected a brilliant bouquet for
presentation to Mademoiselle de la Tour; and never to him had she
appeared more attractive, more fascinating, than when accepting, with
hesitating, blushing reluctance, the proffered flowers. She stepped
with them into the little sitting-room behind the shop; M. Derville
followed; and the last remnant of discretion and common-sense that had
hitherto restrained him giving way at once, he burst out with a
vehement declaration of the passion which was, he said, consuming him,
accompanied, of course, by the offer of his hand and fortune in
marriage. Marie de la Tour's first impulse was to laugh in the face of
a man who, old enough to be her father, addressed her in such terms;
but one glance at the pale face and burning eyes of the speaker,
convinced her that levity would be ill-timed--possibly dangerous. Even
the few civil and serious words of discouragement and refusal with
which she replied to his ardent protestations, were oil cast upon
flame. He threw himself at the young girl's feet, and clasped her
knees in passionate entreaty, at the very moment that Hector Bertrand,
with one De Beaune, entered the room. Marie de la Tour's exclamation
of alarm, and effort to disengage her dress from Derville's grasp, in
order to interpose between him and the new-comers, were simultaneous
with several heavy blows from Bertrand's cane across the shoulders of
the kneeling man, who instantly leaped to his feet, and sprang upon
his assailant with the yell and spring of a madman. Fortunately for
Bertrand, who was no match in personal strength for the man he had
assaulted, his friend De Beaune promptly took part in the encounter;
and after a desperate scuffle, during which Mademoiselle de la Tour's
remonstrances and entreaties were unheard or disregarded, M. Derville
was thrust with inexcusable violence into the street.

According to Jeanne Favart, her master reached home with his face all
bloody and discoloured, his clothes nearly torn from his back, and in
a state of frenzied excitement. He rushed past her up stairs, shut
himself into his bedroom, and there remained unseen by any one for
several days, partially opening the door only to receive food and
other necessaries from her hands. When he did at last leave his room,
the impassive calmness of manner habitual to him was quite restored,
and he wrote a note in answer to one that had been sent by
Mademoiselle de la Tour, expressive of her extreme regret for what had
occurred, and enclosing a very respectful apology from Hector
Bertrand. M. Derville said, that he was grateful for her sympathy and
kind wishes; and as to M. Bertrand, he frankly accepted his excuses,
and should think no more of the matter.

This mask of philosophic indifference or resignation was not so
carefully worn but that it slipped occasionally aside, and revealed
glimpses of the volcanic passion that raged beneath. Jeanne was not
for a moment deceived; and Marie de la Tour, the first time she again
saw him, perceived with woman's intuitive quickness through all his
assumed frigidity of speech and demeanour, that his sentiments towards
her, so far from being subdued by the mortifying repulse they had met
with, were more vehemently passionate than ever! He was a man, she
felt, to be feared and shunned; and very earnestly did she warn
Bertrand to avoid meeting, or, at all events, all possible chance of
collision with his exasperated, and, she was sure, merciless and
vindictive rival.

Bertrand said he would do so; and kept his promise as long as there
was no temptation to break it. About six weeks after his encounter
with M. Derville, he obtained a considerable contract for the
carpentry work of a large house belonging to a M. Mangier--a
fantastic, Gothic-looking place, as persons acquainted with Rouen will
remember, next door but one to Blaise's banking-house. Bertrand had
but little capital, and he was terribly puzzled for means to purchase
the requisite materials, of which the principal item was Baltic
timber. He essayed his credit with a person of the name of Dufour, on
the quay, and was refused. Two hours afterwards, he again sought the
merchant, for the purpose of proposing his friend De Beaune as
security. Dufour and Derville were talking together in front of the
office; and when they separated on Bertrand's approach, the young man
fancied that Derville saluted him with unusual friendliness. De
Beaune's security was declined by the cautious trader; and as Bertrand
was leaving, Dufour said, half-jestingly no doubt: 'Why don't you
apply to your friend Derville? He has timber on commission that will
suit you, I know; and he seemed very friendly just now.' Bertrand made
no reply, and walked off, thinking probably that he might as well ask
the statue of the 'Pucelle' for assistance as M. Derville. He was,
naturally enough, exceedingly put out, and vexed; and unhappily betook
himself to a neighbouring tavern for 'spirituous' solacement--a very
rare thing, let me add, for him to do. He remained there till about
eight o'clock, and by that time was in such a state of confused
elation from the unusual potations he had imbibed, that Dufour's
suggestion assumed a sort of drunken likelihood; and he resolved on
applying--there could not, he thought, be any wonderful harm, if no
good, in that--to the ship-broker. M. Derville was not at home, and
the office was closed; but Jeanne Favart, understanding Bertrand to
say that he had important business to transact with her master--she
supposed by appointment--shewed him into M. Derville's private
business-rooms, and left him there. Bertrand seated himself, fell
asleep after awhile, woke up about ten o'clock considerably sobered,
and quite alive to the absurd impropriety of the application he had
tipsily determined on, and was about to leave the place, when M.
Derville arrived. The ship-broker's surprise and anger at finding
Hector Bertrand in his house were extreme, and his only reply to the
intruder's stammering explanation, was a contemptuous order to leave
the place immediately. Bertrand slunk away sheepishly enough; and
slowly as he sauntered along, had nearly reached home, when M.
Derville overtook him.

'One word, Monsieur Bertrand,' said Derville. 'This way, if you
please.'

Bertrand, greatly surprised, followed the ship-broker to a lane close
by--a dark, solitary locality, which suggested an unpleasant
misgiving, very pleasantly relieved by Derville's first words.

'Monsieur Bertrand,' he said, 'I was hasty and ill-tempered just now;
but I am not a man to cherish malice, and for the sake of--of
Marie--of Mademoiselle de la Tour, I am disposed to assist you,
although I should not, as you will easily understand, like to have any
public or known dealings with you. Seven or eight hundred francs, I
understood you to say, the timber you required would amount to?'

'Certainly not more than that, monsieur,' Bertrand contrived to
answer, taken away as his breath nearly was by astonishment.

'Here, then, is a note of the Bank of France for one thousand francs.'

'Monsieur!--monsieur!' gasped the astounded recipient.

'You will repay me,' continued Derville, 'when your contract is
completed; and you will please to bear strictly in mind, that the
condition of any future favour of a like kind is, that you keep this
one scrupulously secret.' He then hurried off, leaving Bertrand in a
state of utter amazement. This feeling, however, slowly subsided,
especially after assuring himself, by the aid of his chamber-lamp,
that the note was a genuine one, and not, as he had half feared, a
valueless deception. 'This Monsieur Derville,' drowsily murmured
Bertrand as he ensconced himself in the bed-clothes, 'is a _bon
enfant_, after all--a generous, magnanimous prince, if ever there was
one. But then, to be sure, he wishes to do Marie a service by secretly
assisting her _futur_ on in life. _Sapristie!_ It is quite simple,
after all, this generosity; for undoubtedly Marie is the most
charming--charm--cha'----

Hector Bertrand went to Dufour's timber-yard at about noon the next
day, selected what he required, and pompously tendered the
thousand-franc note in payment. 'Whe-e-e-e-w!' whistled Dufour, 'the
deuce!' at the same time looking with keen scrutiny in his customer's
face.

'I received it from Monsieur Mangier in advance,' said Hector in hasty
reply to that look, blurting out in some degree inadvertently the
assertion which he had been thinking would be the most feasible
solution of his sudden riches, since he had been so peremptorily
forbidden to mention M. Derville's name.

'It is very generous of Monsieur Mangier,' said Dufour; 'and he is not
famous for that virtue either. But let us go to Blaise's bank: I have
not sufficient change in the house, and I daresay we shall get silver
for it there.'

As often happens in France, a daughter of the banker was the cashier
of the establishment; and it was with an accent of womanly
commiseration that she said, after minutely examining the note: 'From
whom, Monsieur Bertrand, did you obtain possession of this note?'

Bertrand hesitated. A vague feeling of alarm was beating at his heart,
and he confusedly bethought him, that it might be better not to repeat
the falsehood he had told M. Dufour. Before, however, he could decide
what to say, Dufour answered for him: 'He _says_ from Monsieur
Mangier, just by.'

'Strange!' said Mademoiselle Blaise. 'A clerk of Monsieur Derville's
has been taken into custody this very morning on suspicion of having
stolen this very note.'

Poor Bertrand! He felt as if seized with vertigo; and a stunned,
chaotic sense of mortal peril shot through his brain, as Marie's
solemn warning with respect to Derville rose up like a spectre before
him.

'I have heard of that circumstance,' said Dufour. And then, as
Bertrand did not, or could not speak, he added: 'You had better,
perhaps, mademoiselle, send for Monsieur Derville.'

This proposition elicited a wild, desperate cry from the bewildered
young man, who rushed distractedly out of the banking-house, and
hastened with frantic speed towards the Rue St Antoine--for the moment
unpursued.

Half an hour afterwards, Dufour and a bank-clerk arrived at
Mademoiselle de la Tour's. They found Bertrand and Marie together, and
both in a state of high nervous excitement. 'Monsieur Derville,' said
the clerk, 'is now at the bank; and Monsieur Blaise requests your
presence there, so that whatever misapprehension exists may be cleared
up without the intervention of the agents of the public force.'

'And pray, monsieur,' said Marie, in a much firmer tone than, from her
pale aspect, one would have expected, 'what does Monsieur Derville
himself say of this strange affair?'

'That the note in question, mademoiselle, must have been stolen from
his desk last evening. He was absent from home from half-past seven
till ten, and unfortunately left the key in the lock.'

'I was sure he would say so,' gasped Bertrand. 'He is a demon, and I
am lost.'

A bright, almost disdainful expression shone in Marie's fine eyes. 'Go
with these gentlemen, Hector,' she said; 'I will follow almost
immediately; and remember'---- What else she said was delivered in a
quick, low whisper; and the only words she permitted to be heard were:
'Pas un mot, si tu m'aime' (Not a word, if thou lovest me).

Bertrand found Messieurs Derville, Blaise, and Mangier in a private
room; and he remarked, with a nervous shudder, that two gendarmes were
stationed in the passage. Derville, though very pale, sustained
Bertrand's glance of rage and astonishment without flinching. It was
plain that he had steeled himself to carry through the diabolical
device his revenge had planned, and the fluttering hope with which
Marie had inspired Bertrand died within him. Derville repeated slowly
and firmly what the clerk had previously stated; adding, that no one
save Bertrand, Jeanne Favart, and the clerk whom he first suspected,
had been in the room after he left it. The note now produced was the
one that had been stolen, and was safe in his desk at half-past seven
the previous evening. M. Mangier said: 'The assertion of Bertrand,
that I advanced him this note, or any other, is entirely false.'

'What have you to say in reply to these grave suspicions?' said M.
Blaise. 'Your father was an honest man; and you, I hear, have hitherto
borne an irreproachable character,' he added, on finding that the
accused did not speak. 'Explain to us, then, how you came into
possession of this note; if you do not, and satisfactorily--though,
after what we have heard, that seems scarcely possible--we have no
alternative but to give you into custody.'

'I have nothing to say at present--nothing,' muttered Bertrand, whose
impatient furtive looks were every instant turned towards the door.

'Nothing to say!' exclaimed the banker; 'why, this is a tacit
admission of guilt. We had better call in the gendarmes at once.'

'I think,' said Dufour, 'the young man's refusal to speak is owing to
the entreaties of Mademoiselle de la Tour, whom we overheard implore
him, for her sake, or as he loved her, not to say a word.'

'What do you say?' exclaimed Derville, with quick interrogation, 'for
the sake of Mademoiselle de la Tour! Bah! you could not have heard
aright.'

'Pardon, monsieur,' said the clerk who had accompanied Dufour: 'I also
distinctly heard her so express herself--but here is the lady
herself.'

The entrance of Marie, accompanied by Jeanne Favart, greatly surprised
and startled M. Derville; he glanced sharply in her face, but unable
to encounter the indignant expression he met there, quickly averted
his look, whilst a hot flush glowed perceptibly out of his pale
features. At her request, seconded by M. Blaise, Derville repeated his
previous story; but his voice had lost its firmness, his manner its
cold impassibility.

'I wish Monsieur Derville would look me in the face,' said Marie, when
Derville had ceased speaking. 'I am here as a suppliant to him for
mercy.'

'A suppliant for mercy!' murmured Derville, partially confronting her.

'Yes; if only for the sake of the orphan daughter of the Monsieur de
la Tour who first helped you on in life, and for whom you not long
since professed regard.'

Derville seemed to recover his firmness at these words: 'No,' he said;
'not even for your sake, Marie, will I consent to the escape of such a
daring criminal from justice.'

'If that be your final resolve, monsieur,' continued Marie, with
kindling, impressive earnestness, 'it becomes necessary that, at
whatever sacrifice, the true criminal--whom assuredly Hector Bertrand
is not--should be denounced.'

Various exclamations of surprise and interest greeted these words, and
the agitation of Derville was again plainly visible.

'You have been surprised, messieurs,' she went on, 'at Hector's
refusal to afford any explanation as to how he became possessed of the
purloined note. You will presently comprehend the generous motive of
that silence. Monsieur Derville has said, that he left the note safe
in his desk at half-past seven last evening. Hector, it is recognised,
did not enter the house till nearly an hour afterwards; and now,
Jeanne Favart will inform you _who_ it was that called on her in the
interim, and remained in the room where the desk was placed for
upwards of a quarter of an hour, and part of that time alone.'

As the young girl spoke, Derville's dilated gaze rested with
fascinated intensity upon her excited countenance, and he hardly
seemed to breathe.

'It was you, mademoiselle,' said Jeanne, 'who called on me, and
remained as you describe.'

A fierce exclamation partially escaped Derville, forcibly suppressed
as Marie resumed: 'Yes; and now, messieurs, hear me solemnly declare,
that as truly as the note was stolen, _I_, not Hector, was the thief.'

''Tis false!' shrieked Derville, surprised out of all self-possession;
'a lie! It was not then the note was taken; not till--not till'----

'Not till when, Monsieur Derville?' said the excited girl, stepping
close to the shrinking, guilty man, and still holding him with her
flashing, triumphant eyes, as she placed her hand upon his shoulder;
'not till _when_ was the note taken from the desk, monsieur?'

He did not, could not reply, and presently sank, utterly subdued,
nerveless, panic-stricken, into a chair, with his white face buried in
his hands.

'This is indeed a painful affair,' said M. Blaise, after an expectant
silence of some minutes, 'if it be, as this young person appeared to
admit; and almost equally so, Monsieur Derville, if, as I more than
suspect, the conclusion indicated by the expression that has escaped
you should be the true one.'

The banker's voice appeared to break the spell that enchained the
faculties of Derville. He rose up, encountered the stern looks of the
men by one as fierce as theirs, and said hoarsely: 'I withdraw the
accusation! The young woman's story is a fabrication. I--I lent, gave
the fellow the note myself.'

A storm of execration--'_Coquin! voleur! scélérat!_' burst forth at
this confession, received by Derville with a defiant scowl, as he
stalked out of the apartment.

I do not know that any law-proceedings were afterwards taken against
him for defamation of character. Hector kept the note, as indeed he
had a good right to do, and Monsieur and Madams Bertrand are still
prosperous and respected inhabitants of Rouen, from which city
Derville disappeared very soon after the incidents just related.



CHEAP MINOR RAILWAYS.


'On the day that our preamble was proved, we had all a famous dinner
at three guineas a head--never saw such a splendid set-out in my life!
each of us had a printed bill of fare laid beside his plate; and I
brought it home as quite a curiosity in the way of eating!' Such was
the account lately given us by a railway projector of that memorable
year of frenzy, 1845. A party of committee-men, agents, engineers, and
solicitors, had, in their exuberance of cash, dined at a cost of some
sixty guineas--a trifle added to the general bill of charges, and of
course not worth thinking of by the shareholders.

These days of dining at three guineas a head for the good of railway
undertakings are pretty well gone; and agents and counsel may well
sigh over the recollection of doings probably never to return.

'The truth is, we were all mad in those times,' added the individual
who owned so candidly to the three-guinea dinner. And this is the only
feasible way of accounting for the wild speculations of seven years
ago. There was a universal craze. All hastened to be rich on the
convenient principle of overreaching their neighbours. There was
robbery throughout. Engineers, landholders, law-agents, and jobbers,
pocketed their respective booties, and it is needless to say who were
left to suffer.

Looking at the catastrophe, the subject of railway mismanagement is
somewhat too serious for a joke, and we have only drawn attention for
an instant to the errors of the past in order to draw a warning for
the future. It must ever be lamented that the introduction of so
stupendous and useful a thing as locomotion by rail, should have
become the occasion of such widespread cupidity and folly; for
scarcely ever had science offered a more gracious boon to mankind. It
is charitable to think that the foundation of the great error that was
committed, lay in a miscalculation as to the relation between
expenditure and returns. We can suppose that there was a certain faith
in the potency of money. To spend so much, was to bring back so much;
and it became an agreeable delusion, that the more was spent, the
greater was to be the revenue. Unfortunately, it does not seem to have
occurred to any one of the parties concerned, that all depends on how
money is spent. There are tradesmen, we imagine, who know to their
cost, that it is quite within the bounds of possibility to have the
whole of their profits swept away by rent and taxes. Curious, that
this plain and unpleasant and very possible result did not dawn on the
minds of the great railway interests. And yet, how grave and
calculating the mighty dons of the new system of locomotion--men who
passed themselves off as up to anything!

Wonderfully acute secretaries; highly-polished chairmen; directors
disdainful of ordinary ways of transacting business. A mystery made of
the most common-place affairs! We may be thankful that the world has
at last seen through these pretenders to superhuman sagacity. With but
remarkably few exceptions, the great railway men of the time have
committed the grossest blunders; and the stupidest blunder of all, has
been the confounding of proper and improper expenditure; just as if a
shopkeeper were to fall into the unhappy error of imagining that his
returns were to be in the ratio, not of the business he was to do, but
of his private and unauthorised expenses.

The instructive fact gathered from railway experience is, that there
is an expenditure which _pays_, and an expenditure that is totally
wasteful. Directors have made the discovery, that costly litigation,
costly and fine stations, fine porticos and pillars, fine bridges, and
finery in various other things, contribute really nothing to returns,
but, on the contrary, hang a dead weight on the concern. No doubt,
fine architecture is a good and proper thing in itself; but a railway
company is not instituted for the purpose of embellishing towns with
classic buildings. Its function is to carry people from one place to
another on reasonable terms, with a due regard to the welfare of those
who undertake the transaction. How carriages may be run well and
cheaply, yet profitably, is the sole question for determination; and
everything else is either subordinate or positively useless. A
suitable degree of knowledge on these points would, we think, tend
materially to restore confidence in railway property. Could there be
anything more cheering than the well-ascertained fact, that _no
railway has ever failed for want of traffic_? In every instance, the
traffic would have yielded an ample remuneration to the shareholders,
had there been no extravagant expenditure. Had the outlays been
confined to paying for the land required, the making of the line, the
laying down of rails, the buying locomotives and carriages, and
working the same, all would have gone on splendidly; and eight, ten,
twenty, and even a higher per cent., would in many instances have been
realised. At the present moment, the lines that are paying best are
not those on which there is the greatest amount of traffic, but those
on which there was the most prudent expenditure. In order to judge
whether any proposed railway will pay, it is only necessary to inquire
at what cost per mile, all expenses included, it is to be produced. If
the charge be anything under L.5000 per mile, there is a certainty of
its doing well, even if the line be carried through a poorly-populated
district; and up to L.20,000 per mile is allowable in great
trunk-thoroughfares; but when the outlay reaches L.50,000 or L.100,000
per mile, as it has done in some instances, scarcely any amount of
traffic will be remunerative. In a variety of cases, the expenditure
per mile has been so enormous, that remunerative traffic becomes a
physical impossibility. In plain terms, if the whole of these lines,
from end to end, were covered with loaded carriages from morning to
night, and night to morning, without intermission of a single moment,
they would still be carried on at a loss! Gold may be bought too
dearly, and so may railways.

As there seems to be an appearance of a revival in railway
undertakings, it will be of the greatest importance to keep these
principles in view; and we are glad to observe that, taking lessons
from the past, the promoters of railway schemes are confining their
attention mainly to plans of a simple and economical class. Hitherto,
railways have, for the most part, been adapted to leading
thoroughfares, by which certain districts have been overcrowded with
lines, leaving others destitute. Branch single lines of rail appear,
therefore, to be particularly desirable for these forgotten
localities. These branch-lines may prove exceedingly serviceable, not
only as regards the ordinary demands of trade and agriculture, but
those of social convenience. Among the prominent needs of our time, is
ready access for the toiling multitudes to places rendered interesting
by physical beauty and romantic association--fit objects for holiday
excursions. The _excursion train_, suddenly discharging its hundreds
of strangers at some antique town or castle, or in the neighbourhood
of some lovely natural scenery, is one of the wonders of the day--and
one, we think, of truly good omen, considering the importance that
seems to be connected with the innocent amusements of the people. We
rejoice in every movement which tends to increase the number of places
to which these holiday-parties may resort, as we thoroughly believe,
that the more of them we have, our people will be the more virtuous,
refined, and happy.

We lately had much pleasure in examining and learning some particulars
of a short branch-railway which has added the ancient university city
of St Andrews, with its many curious objects, to the number of those
places which may become the termini of excursion trains. We find from
Lord Jeffrey's Life, that in this town, fifty years ago, only one
newspaper was received; a number (if it can be called a number) which
we are assured, on the best authority, is now increased to _fifteen
hundred per week_! Parallel with this fact, is that of its having, ten
years ago, a single coach _per diem_ to Edinburgh, carrying six or
seven persons, while now it has three trains each day, transporting
their scores, not merely to the capital, but to Perth and Dundee
besides. Conceiving that there is a value in such circumstances on
account of the light which they throw on the progress of the country,
we shall enter into a few particulars.

The St Andrews Railway is a branch of the Edinburgh, Perth, and
Dundee, and extends somewhat less than five miles. Formed with a
single line only, over ground presenting scarcely any engineering
difficulties, and with favour rather than opposition from the
proprietors of the land, it has cost only L.25,000, or about L.5000
per mile. The main line agrees to work it, and before receiving
payment, to allow the shareholders 4-1/2 per cent. for their money;
all further profits to be divided between the two companies, after
paying working expenses. It was opened on the 1st July last, and
hitherto the appearances of success have been most remarkable. On an
assumption that the traffic inwards was equal to that outwards, the
receipts for passengers during each of the first six weeks averaged
L.52, 14s. This was exclusive of excursion trains, of which one
carried 500 persons, another between 500 and 600, a third 1500; and so
on. It was also exclusive of goods and mineral traffic, which are
expected to give at least L.1000 per annum. The result is, that this
railway appears likely to draw not much under L.4000 a year--a sum
sufficient, after expenses are paid, to yield what would at almost any
time be a high rate of percentage to the shareholders, while, in the
present state of the money-market, it will be an unusually ample
remuneration.

We have instanced this economically-constructed line, because we have
seen it in operation, and can place reliance on the facts connected
with its financial affairs. Other lines, however, more or less
advanced, seem to have prospects equally hopeful. A similar branch is
about to be made from the same main line to the town of Leven. One is
projected to branch from the Eskbank station of the North British line
to Peebles--a pretty town on the Tweed, which, up till the present
time, has been secluded from general intercourse, and will now, for
the first time, have its beautiful environs laid open to public
observation. The entire cost of this line, rather more than 18 miles
in length, is to be only L.70,000, or about L.3600 per mile. Another
branch from the same line is projected to go to Lauder. One, of the
same cheap class, is to connect Aberdeen with Banchory on the Dee.
Another will be constructed between Blairgowrie and a point on the
Scottish Midland. For such adventures, St Andrews is a model.[1]

The time is probably not far distant when single branch-lines will
radiate over the country, developing local resources, as well as
uniting the whole people in friendly and profitable intercourse. To be
done rightly, however, rational foresight and the plain principles of
commerce must inspire the projectors. It will be necessary to avoid
all parliamentary contests; to do nothing without a general movement
of the district in favour of the line, so that no parties may be
sacrificed for the benefit of others; to hold rigorously to an
economical principle of construction; to launch out into no
extravagant plans in connection with the main object contemplated.
These being attended to, we can imagine that, in a few years hence,
there will be a set of modest little railways which will be the envy
of all the great lines, simply because they enjoy the distinction
denied to their grander brethren, of _paying_, and which will not only
serve important purposes in the industrial economy of the country, but
vastly promote the moral wellbeing of the community, in furnishing a
means of harmless amusement to those classes whose lot it is to spend
most of their days in confinement and toil.


FOOTNOTES:

[1] Since the materials of this brief paper were obtained, another
short line has been opened, extending between Elgin and Lossie-mouth.
It is said to have also enjoyed in its first few weeks an amount of
traffic far beyond the calculations of the shareholders.



THE HUMOUR OF SOUTHEY.


Some of the critics of 'Robert the Rhymer, who lived at the lakes,'
seem to be of opinion, that his 'humour' is to be classed with such
nonentities as the philosopher's stone, pigeon's milk, and other
apocryphal myths and unknown quantities. In analysing the character of
his intellect, they would assign to the 'humorous' attribute some such
place as Van Troil did to the snaky tribe in his work on Iceland,
wherein the title of chapter xv. runs thus: 'Concerning Snakes in
Iceland' and the chapter itself thus: 'There are no snakes in
Iceland.' Accordingly, were they to have the composition of this
article, they would abbreviate it to the one terse sentence: 'Robert
Southey had no humour.' Now, we have no inclination to claim for the
Keswick bard any prodigious or pre-eminent powers of fun, or to give
him place beside the rollicking jesters and genial merry-makers, whose
humour gives English literature a distinctive character among the
nations. But that he is so void of the comic faculty as certain potent
authorities allege, we persistently doubt. Mr Macaulay affirms that
Southey may be always read with pleasure, except when he tries to be
droll; that a more insufferable jester never existed; and that, often
as he attempts to be humorous, he in no single occasion has succeeded
further than to be quaintly and flippantly dull. Another reviewer
warned the author of the _Doctor_, that there is no greater mistake
than that which a grave person falls into, when he fancies himself
humorous; adding, as a consolatory corollary to this proposition, that
unquestionably the doctor himself was in this predicament. But Southey
was not so rigorously grave a person as his graver writings might seem
to imply. 'I am quite as noisy as ever I was,' he writes to an old
Oxford chum, when in sober manhood. 'Oh, dear Lightfoot, what a
blessing it is to have a boy's heart! it is as great a blessing in
carrying one through this world, as to have a child's spirit will in
fitting us for the next.' On account of this boyish-heartedness, he is
compared by Justice Talfourd to Charles Lamb himself: 'In a certain
primness of style, bounding in the rich humour which overflowed it,
they were nearly akin; both alike reverenced childhood, and both had
preserved its best attributes unspotted from the world.' In the
fifty-fifth year of his age, he characterised himself as a man

                ----by nature merry,
    Somewhat Tom-foolish, and comical, very;
    Who has gone through the world, not unmindful of pelf,
    Upon easy terms, thank Heaven, with himself,
    Along bypaths, and in pleasant ways,
    Caring as little for censure as praise;
    Having some friends, whom he loves dearly,
    And no lack of foes, whom he laughs at sincerely;
    And never for great, nor for little things,
    Has he fretted his guts[2] to fiddle-strings.
    He might have made them by such folly
    Most musical, most melancholy.

No one can dip into the _Doctor_ without being convinced of this
buoyancy of spirit, quickness of fancy, and blitheness of heart. It
even vents its exuberance in bubbles of levity and elaborate trifling,
so that all but the _very_ light-hearted are fain to say: Something
too much of this. Compared with our standard humorists--the peerage,
or Upper House, who sit sublimely aloft, like 'Jove in his chair, of
the sky my lord mayor'--Southey may be but a dull commoner, one of the
third or fourth estate. But for all that, he has a comfortable fund of
the _vis comica_, upon which he rubs along pleasantly enough,
hospitably entertaining not a few congenial spirits who can put up
with him as they find him, relish his simple and often racy fare, and
enjoy a decent quantum of jokes of his own growing, without pining
after the brilliant banquets of comedy spread by opulent barons of the
realm.

To support this apology for the worthy doctor by plenary proof, would
involve a larger expenditure of space and letter-press than befits the
economy of a discreet hebdomadal journal. We can but allude, and hint,
and suggest, and illustrate our position in an 'off-at-a-tangent' sort
of way. Look, for instance, at his ingenious quaintness in the matter
of _onomatology_. What a name, he would say, is Lamb for a soldier,
Joy for an undertaker, Rich for a pauper, or Noble for a tailor; Big
for a lean or little person, and Small for one who is broad in the
rear and abdominous in the van; Short for a fellow six feet without
his shoes, or Long for him whose high heels barely elevate him to the
height of five; Sweet for one who has either a vinegar face, or a foxy
complexion; Younghusband for an old bachelor; Merryweather for any one
in November or February, a black spring, a cold summer, or a wet
autumn; Goodenough for a person no better than he should be; Toogood
for _any_ human creature; and Best for a subject who is perhaps too
bad to be endured. Amusing, too, are the doctor's reasons for using
the customary _alias_ of female Christian names--never calling any
woman Mary, for example, though _Mare_, being the sea, was, he said,
too emblematic of the sex; but using a synonyme of better omen, and
Molly therefore was to be preferred as being soft. 'If he accosted a
vixen of that name in her worst mood, he _mollified_ her. Martha he
called Patty, because it came pat to the tongue. Dorothy remained
Dorothy, because it was neither fitting that women should be made
Dolls nor Idols. Susan with him was always Sue, because women were to
be sued; and Winifred Winny, because they were to be won.' Or refer to
that pleasant bit of erudite trifling upon the habits of rats,
beginning with the remark, that wheresoever Man goes Rat follows or
accompanies him, town or country being equally agreeable to him;
entering upon your house as a tenant-at-will--his own, not
yours--working out for himself a covered-way in your walls, ascending
by it from one storey to another, and leaving you the larger
apartments, while he takes possession of the space between floor and
ceiling, as an _entresol_ for himself. 'There he has his parties, and
his revels, and his gallopades--merry ones they are--when you would be
asleep, if it were not for the spirit with which the youth and belles
of Rat-land keep up the ball over your head. And you are more
fortunate than most of your neighbours, if he does not prepare for
himself a mausoleum behind your chimney-piece or under your
hearthstone, retire into it when he is about to die, and very soon
afford you full proof that though he may have lived like a hermit, his
relics are not in the odour of sanctity. You have then the additional
comfort of knowing, that the spot so appropriated will thenceforth be
used as a common cemetery or a family-vault.' In the same vein, homage
is paid to Rat's imitation of human enterprise: shewing how, when the
adventurous merchant ships a cargo for some foreign port, Rat goes
with it; how, when Great Britain plants a colony at the antipodes, Rat
takes the opportunity of colonising also; how, when ships are sent out
on a voyage of discovery, Rat embarks as a volunteer; doubling the
stormy Cape with Diaz, arriving at Malabar with Gama, discovering the
New World with Columbus, and taking possession of it at the same time,
and circumnavigating the globe with Magellan, and Drake, and Cook.

Few that have once read will forget the Doctor's philological
contributions towards an amended system of English orthography.
Assuming the propriety of discarding all reference to the etymology of
words, when engaged in spelling them, and desirous, as a philological
reformer, to establish a truly British language, he proposes
introducing a distinction of genders, in which the language has
hitherto been defective. Thus, in anglicising the orthography of
_chemise_, he resolves that foreign substantive into the home-grown
neologisms, masculine and feminine, of Hemise and Shemise. Again, in
letter-writing, every person, he remarks, is aware that male and
female letters have a distinct sexual character; they should,
therefore, be generally distinguished thus--Hepistle and Shepistle.
And as there is the same marked difference in the writing of the two
sexes, he proposes Penmanship and Penwomanship. Erroneous opinions in
religion being promulgated in this country by women as well as men,
the teachers of such false doctrines he would divide into Heresiarchs
and Sheresiarchs. That troublesome affection of the diaphragm, which
every person has experienced, is, upon the same principle, to be
called, according to the sex of the patient, Hecups and Shecups;
which, upon the above principle of making our language truly British,
is better than the more classical form of _Hicc_ups and _Hoe_ccups;
and then in its objective use we have Hiscups and Hercups; and in like
manner Histerics should be altered into Herterics, the complaint never
being masculine.

None but a 'humorist' would have announced the decease of a cat in
such mingled terms and tones of jest and earnest as the
following:--'Alas! Grosvenor,' writes Southey to his friend Mr Bedford
(1823), 'this day poor old Rumpel was found dead, after as long and
happy a life as cat could wish for, if cats form wishes on that
subject. His full titles were: "The Most Noble the Archduke
Rumpelstiltzchen, Earl Tomlemagne,[3] Baron Raticide, Waowhler and
Skaratch." There should be a court mourning in Catland; and if the
Dragon [a cat of Mr Bedford's] wear a black ribbon round his neck, or
a band of crape _à la militaire_ round one of the fore-paws, it will
be but a becoming mark of respect.... I believe we are, each and all,
servants included, more sorry for this loss than any of us would like
to confess. I should not have written to you at present had it not
been to notify this event.' The notification of such events, in print
too, appears to some thinkers _too_ absurd. Others find a special
interest in these 'trifles light as air,' because presenting
'confirmation strong' of the kindly nature of the man, taking no
unamiable or affected part in the presentment of _Every Man in His
Humour_. His correspondence is, indeed, rich in traits of quiet
humour, if by that word we understand a 'humane influence, softening
with mirth the ragged inequalities of existence'--the very 'juice of
the mind oozing from the brain, and enriching and fertilising wherever
it falls'--and seldom far removed from its kindred spirit, pathos,
with which, however, it is _not_ too closely akin to marry; for pathos
is bound up in mysterious ties with humour--bone of its bone, and
flesh of its flesh.

Nor can we assent to the assertion, that in his ballads, metrical
tales, and rhyming _jeux-d'esprit_, Southey's essay to be comic
results in merely 'quaint and flippant dulness.' Smartly enough he
tells the story of the Well of St Keyne, whereof the legend is, that
if the husband manage to secure a draught before his good dame, 'a
happy man henceforth is he, for he shall be master for life.' But if
the wife should drink of it first--'God help the husband _then_!' The
traveller to whom a Cornishman narrates the tradition, compliments him
with the assumption that _he_ has profited by it in his matrimonial
experience:--

    'You drank of the well, I warrant, betimes,'
      He to the Cornishman said;
    But the Cornishman smiled as the stranger spake,
      And sheepishly shook his head.

    'I hastened as soon as the wedding was done,
      And left my wife in the porch;
    But, i' faith, she had been wiser than me,
      For she took a bottle to church.'

And with all their extravagances of expression and questionable taste,
the numerous stories which Southey delighted to versify on themes
demoniac and diabolical, from the _Devil's Walk_ to the _True Ballad
of St Antidius_, are fraught with farcical import, and have an
individual ludicrousness all their own. That he could succeed
tolerably in the mock-heroic vein, may be seen in his parody on
Pindar's _ariston men hydor_, entitled _Gooseberry Pie_, and in some
of the occasional pieces called _Nondescripts_. Nor do we know any one
of superior ingenuity in that overwhelming profusion of epithets and
crowded creation of rhymes, which so tickle the ear and the fancy in
some of his verses, and of which we have specimens almost unrivalled
in the celebrated description of the cataract of Lodore, and the
vivaciously ridiculous chronicle of Napoleon's march to Moscow.


FOOTNOTES:

[2] Southey was no purist in his phraseology at times. The not very
refined monosyllable in the text may, however, be tolerated as having
a technical relation to the fiddle-strings by hypothesis.

[3] This patrician Bawdrons is not forgotten in Southey's verse;
thus--

    Our good old cat, Earl Tomlemagne,
      Is sometimes seen to play,
    Even like a kitten at its sport,
      Upon a warm spring-day.



TRACKS OF ANCIENT ANIMALS IN SANDSTONE.


Many of our readers must have heard of the interest excited a few
years ago by the discovery, that certain marks on the surface of slabs
of sandstone, raised from a quarry in Dumfriesshire, were the
memorials of extinct races of animals. The amiable and intelligent Dr
Duncan, minister of Ruthwell, who had conferred on society the
blessing of savings-banks for the industrious poor, was the first to
describe to the world these singular chronicles of ancient life. The
subject was afterwards brought forward in a more popular style by Dr
Buckland, in his lively book, the Bridgewater Treatise on Geology.
Since then, examples of similar markings have been found in several
other parts of Europe, and a still greater number in America.

Dumfriesshire is still the principal locality of these curious objects
in our island; and they are found not only in the original spot--the
quarry of Corncockle Muir, but in another quarry at Craigs, near the
town of Dumfries. Ample collections of them have been made by Sir
William Jardine, the famed naturalist, who happens to be proprietor of
Corncockle Quarry, and by Mr Robert Harkness of Dumfries, a young
geologist, who seems destined to do not a little for the illustration
of this and kindred subjects. Meanwhile, Sir William Jardine has
published an elegant book, containing a series of drawings, in which
the slabs of Corncockle are truthfully represented.[4]

The Annandale footmarks are impressed on slabs of the New Red
Sandstone--a formation not long subsequent to the coal, and remarkable
for its comparative deficiency of fossils, as if there had been
something in its constitution unfavourable to the preservation of
animal remains. It is curious to find that, while this is the case, it
has been favourable to the preservation of what appears at first sight
a much more accidental and shadowy memorial of life--the mere
impression which an animal makes on a soft substance with its foot.
Yet such fully appears to be the fact. The sandstone slabs of
Corncockle, lying in their original place with a dip of about 33
degrees to the westward, and separating with great cleanness and
smoothness, present impressions of such liveliness, that there is no
possibility of doubt as to their being animal foot-tracks, and those
of the tortoise family. A thin layer of unctuous clay between the beds
has proved favourable to their separation; and it is upon this
intervening substance that the marks are best preserved. Slab after
slab is raised from the quarry--sometimes a foot thick, sometimes only
a few inches--and upon almost every one of them are impressions found.
What is very remarkable, the tracks or series of footprints pass,
almost without exception, in a direction from west to east, or upwards
against the dip of the strata. It is surmised that the strata were
part of a beach, inclining, however, at a much lower angle, from which
the tide receded in a westerly direction. The animals, walking down
from the land at recess of tide, passed over sand too soft to retain
the impressions they left upon it; but when they subsequently returned
to land, the beach had undergone a certain degree of hardening
sufficient to receive and retain impressions, 'though these,' says Sir
William, 'gradually grow fainter and less distinct as they reach the
top of the beds, which would be the margin of drier sands nearer the
land.' He adds: 'In several instances, the tracks on one slab which we
consider to have been impressed at the same time, are numerous, and
left by different animals travelling together. They have walked
generally in a straight line, but sometimes turn and wind in several
directions. This is the case in a large extent of surface, where we
have tracks of above thirty feet in length uncovered, and where one
animal had crossed the path of a neighbour of a different species. The
tracks of two animals are also met with, as if they had run side by
aide.'

With regard to the nature of the evidence in question, Dr Buckland has
very justly remarked, that we are accustomed to it in our ordinary
life. 'The thief is identified by the impression which his shoe has
made near the scene of his depredations. The American savage not only
identifies the elk and bison by the impression of their hoofs, but
ascertains also the time that has elapsed since the animal had passed.
From the camel's track upon the sand, the Arab can determine whether
it was heavily or lightly laden, or whether it was lame.' When,
therefore, we see upon surfaces which we know to have been laid down
in a soft state, in a remote era of the world's history, clear
impressions like those made by tortoises of our own time, it seems a
legitimate inference, that these impressions were made by animals of
the tortoise kind, and, consequently, such animals were among those
which then existed, albeit no other relic of them may have been found.
From minute peculiarities, it is further inferred, that they were
tortoises of different species from any now existing. Viewing such
important results, we cannot but enter into the feeling with which Dr
Buckland penned the following remarks:--'The historian or the
antiquary,' he says, 'may have traversed the fields of ancient or of
modern battles; and may have pursued the line of march of triumphant
conquerors, whose armies trampled down the most mighty kingdoms of the
world. The winds and storms have utterly obliterated the ephemeral
impressions of their course. Not a track remains of a single foot, or
a single hoof, of the countless millions of men and beasts whose
progress spread desolation over the earth. But the reptiles that
crawled upon the half-finished surface of our infant planet, have left
memorials of their passage, enduring and indelible. No history has
recorded their creation or destruction; their very bones are found no
more among the fossil relics of a former world. Centuries and
thousands of years may have rolled away between the time in which
those footsteps were impressed by tortoises upon the sands of their
native Scotland, and the hour when they were again laid bare and
exposed to our curious and admiring eyes. Yet we behold them, stamped
upon the rock, distinct as the track of the passing animal upon the
recent snow; as if to shew that thousands of years are but as nothing
amidst eternity--and, as it were, in mockery of the fleeting,
perishable course of the mightiest potentates among mankind.'

The formation of the slabs, and the preservation of the footprints,
are processes which the geologist can easily explain. A beach on which
animals have left the marks of their feet, becomes sufficiently
hardened to retain the impressions; another layer of sand or mud is
laid down by perhaps the next tide, covering up the first, and
protecting it from all subsequent injury. Thousands of years after,
the quarryman breaks up the layers, and finds on the one surface the
impression of the animal, while the lower face of the superincumbent
layer presents a cast of that impression, thus giving us in fact a
double memorial of one event. At Wolfville, on the Bay of Fundy, Sir
Charles Lyell some years ago observed a number of marks on the surface
of a red marly mud which was gradually hardening on the sea-shore.
They were the footprints of the sand-piper, a bird of which he saw
flights daily running along the water's edge, and often leaving thirty
or more similar impressions in a straight line, parallel to the
borders of the estuary. He picked up some slabs of this dried mud, and
splitting one of them up, found a surface within which bore two lines
of the same kind of footprints. Here is an example before our living
eyes, of the processes concerned in producing and preserving the
fossil footprints of the New Red Sandstone.

Some years after the Annandale footprints had attracted attention,
some slab surfaces of the same formation in Saxony and England were
found bearing an impression of a more arresting character. It
resembled the impression that would be made by the palm and extended
fingers and thumb of the human hand, but a hand much thicker and
flabbier than is commonly seen. The appropriate name of
_Cheirotherium_ was proposed for the unknown extinct animal which had
produced these marks. The dimensions in the several examples were
various; but 'in all cases the prints of what appear to have been the
hind-feet are considerably larger than those of the fore-feet; so much
so, indeed, that in one well-preserved slab containing several
impressions, the former measures eight inches by five, and the latter
not more than four inches by three. In this specimen, the print of the
fore-foot is not more than an inch and a half in advance of that of
the hinder one, although the distance between the two successive
positions of the same foot, or the length of a pace of the animal, is
fourteen inches. It therefore appears, that the animal must have had
its posterior extremities both much larger and much longer than the
anterior; but this peculiarity it possessed in common with many
existing species, such as the frog, the kangaroo, &c.; and beyond this
and certain appearances in the sandstone, as if a tail had been
dragged behind the animal, in some sets of footsteps, but not in
others, there is nothing to suggest to the comparative anatomist any
idea of even the class of Vertebrata to which the animal should be
referred.'[5] Soon after, some teeth and fragments of bones were
discovered, by which Professor Owen was able to indicate an animal of
the frog-family (Batrachia), but with certain affinities to the
saurian order (crocodiles, &c.), and which must have been about the
size of a large pig. It has been pretty generally concluded, that this
colossal frog was the animal which impressed the hand-like
foot-prints.

At a later period, footprints of birds were discovered upon the
surfaces of a thin-bedded sandstone belonging to the New Red formation
on the banks of the Connecticut River, in North America. The birds,
according to Sir Charles Lyell, must have been of various sizes; some
as small as the sand-piper, and others as large as the ostrich, the
width of the stride being in proportion to the size of the foot. There
is one set, in which the foot is nineteen inches long, and the stride
between four and five feet, indicating a bird nearly twice the size of
the African ostrich. So great a magnitude was at first a cause of
incredulity; but the subsequent discovery of the bones of the Moa or
Dinornis of New Zealand, proved that, at a much later time, there had
been feathered bipeds of even larger bulk, and the credibility of the
_Ornithichnites Giganteus_ has accordingly been established. Sir
Charles Lyell, when he visited the scene of the footprints on the
Connecticut River, saw a slab marked with a row of the footsteps of
the huge bird pointed to under this term, being nine in number,
turning alternately right and left, and separated from each other by a
space of about five feet. 'At one spot, there was a space several
yards square, where the entire surface of the shale was irregular and
jagged, owing to the number of the footsteps, not one of which could
be distinctly traced, as when a flock of sheep have passed over a
muddy road; but on withdrawing from this area, the confusion gradually
ceased, and the tracks became more and more distinct.'[6] Professor
Hitchcock had, up to that time, observed footprints of thirty species
of birds on these surfaces. The formation, it may be remarked, is one
considerably earlier than any in which fossil bones or other
indications of birds have been detected in Europe.

In the coal-field of Westmoreland county, Pennsylvania, there were
discovered in 1844, slabs marked with footprints bearing a
considerable resemblance to those of the Cheirotherium, and believed
to have been impressed by an animal of the same family, though with
some important points of distinction. The hind-feet are not so much
larger than the fore; and the two on each side, instead of coming
nearly into one row, as in the European Cheirotherium, stand widely
apart. The impressions look such as would be made by a rudely-shaped
human hand, with short fingers held much apart; there is some
appearance as if the fingers had had nails; and a protuberance like
the rudiment of a sixth finger appears at the side. This was the
first indication of reptile life so early as the time of the
coal-formation; but as the fossil remains of a reptile have now been
found in Old Red Sandstone, at Elgin, in Scotland, the original
importance of the discovery in this respect may be regarded as
lessened.

Last year, some slabs from Potsdam, in Canada, were brought to
England, and deposited in the museum of the Geological Society.
Belonging as these slabs do to a formation coeval with those in which
the earliest fossils were hitherto found, it was startling to find
them marked with numerous foot-tracks of what appeared to have been
reptiles. It seemed to shew, that the inhabitants of the world in that
early age were not quite so low in the scale of being as had
previously been assumed from the facts known; and that all attempts to
describe, from positive knowledge, anything like a progression of
being on the face of our globe, were at least premature. Professor
Owen had, at first, scarcely any hesitation in pronouncing the
footprints to be those of tortoises; but he afterwards changed his
views, and expressed his belief that the impressions had been produced
by small crustacean animals. Thus the views previously entertained
regarding the invertebrate character of the _fauna_ of the Silurian
epoch, have ultimately remained unaffected, so far as these Potsdam
slabs are concerned.

Slabs of sandstone and shale often retain what is called the
ripple-mark--that is, the corrugation of surface produced by the
gentle agitation of shallow water over sand or mud. We can see these
appearances beneath our feet, as we walk over the pavement of almost
any of our cities. Such slabs are also occasionally marked by
irregular protuberances, being the casts of hollows or cracks produced
in ancient tide-beaches by shrinkage. In many instances, the
footprints of animals are marked by such lines passing through them,
shewing how the beach had dried and cracked in the sun after the
animals had walked over it. In the quarries at Stourton, in Cheshire,
some years ago, a gentleman named Cunningham observed slab surfaces
mottled in a curious manner with little circular and oval hollows, and
these were finally determined to be the impressions produced by
rain--the rain of the ancient time, long prior to the existence of
human beings, when the strata were formed! Since then, many similar
markings have been observed on slabs raised from other quarries, both
in Europe and America; and fossil rain-drops are now among the settled
facts of geology. Very fine examples have been obtained from quarries
of the New Red Sandstone at Newark and Pompton, in New Jersey. Sir
Charles Lyell has examined these with care, and compared them with the
effects of modern rain on soft surfaces of similar materials. He says,
they present 'every gradation from transient rain, where a moderate
number of drops are well preserved, to a pelting shower, which, by its
continuance, has almost obliterated the circular form of the cavities.
In the more perfectly preserved examples, smaller drops are often seen
to have fallen into cavities previously made by larger ones, and to
have modified their shape. In some cases of partial interference, the
last drop has obliterated part of the annular margin of a former one;
but in others it has not done so, for the two circles are seen to
intersect each other. Most of the impressions are elliptical, having
their more prominent rims at the deeper end [a consequence of the rain
falling in a slanting direction]. We often see on the under side of
some of these slabs, which are about half an inch thick, casts of the
rain-drops of a previous shower, which had evidently fallen when the
direction of the wind was not the same. Mr Redfield, by carefully
examining the obliquity of the imprints in the Pompton quarries,
ascertained that most of them implied the blowing of a strong westerly
wind in the triassic period at that place.' A certain class of the
impressions at Pompton are thought to be attributable to hail, 'being
deeper and much more angular and jagged than the rain-prints, and
having the wall at the deeper end more perpendicular, and occasionally
overhanging.'[7]


FOOTNOTES:

[4] _Ichnology of Annandale._ Lizars, Edinburgh. 1851.

[5] _Ansted's Introduction to Geology_, i. 303.

[6] _Lyell's Travels in North America_, i. 254.

[7] _Quarterly Journal of Geological Society_, April, 1851.



AITON'S TRAVELS.


A work in any department of general literature rarely appears from the
pen of a clergyman in the Church of Scotland, and therefore that to
which we are about to refer, under the title noted beneath,[8] is in
some respects a curiosity. The writer, a minister settled in a
mountainous parish in Lanarkshire, may be said to have made a
remarkable escapade for one in his obscure situation and reverend
calling. With an immense and unclerical flow of animal spirits,
evidently as fond of travelling as old William Lithgow, and as
garrulous as Rae Wilson, of whose class he is a surviving type, Dr
Aiton is quite the man to take a journey to the Holy Land; for no
difficulty in the way of toil, heat, hunger, creeping or winged
insects, wild beasts, or still wilder savages, disturbs his
equanimity. He also never hesitates to use any expression that comes
uppermost. He explicitly observes, that 'no man with the capacity of a
hen,' should fail to contribute such information as he possesses on
the sacred regions he has traversed. Alluding to some circumstances in
the voyage of St Paul, he says he has 'no desire to cook the facts.'
He talks of a supposition being 'checkmated.' And in going along the
coast of Spain, he mentions that he took care to have 'a passing
squint at Cape St Vincent.' Many similar oddities break out in the
course of the narrative; not that we care much about them one way or
other; it is only to be regretted that the author has by this
looseness of expression, and his loquacious dragging in of passages
from Scripture on all occasions, also by his inveterate love of
anecdotic illustration, done what he could to keep down a really
clever book to an inferior standard of taste. We would hope, however,
that candid readers will have a kindly consideration of the author's
intentions, and pass over much that is prosy and ridiculous for the
sake of what is original and interesting. Traversing lands that have
been described a hundred times before, it might be supposed that
little was left for Dr Aiton to pick up; yet every traveller has his
own method of observation. In justice to the doctor, it must be
acknowledged that he made a judicious use of time during his travels
in the East, and has told us many amusing particulars of what he saw.
There is, at least, always a certain graphic painting in his off-hand
descriptions; as, for instance, his notice of an incident that
occurred on his arrival in Egypt.

'On landing at Alexandria I saw a ship unloading, and box by box were
being handed to the lighter, according to the number each respectively
bore. Some mistake, more or less important, had apparently been made
by one of the native operatives on the occasion. Instantly two sticks
were laid on his head with dreadful effect. The poor fellow seemed to
be stunned and stupified for a time. On this account it probably
happened, that he fell into a second similar blunder, when a stick was
thrown, not horizontally, but perpendicularly, and so aimed that it
struck the socket of the eye. In one moment he lost the sight of it,
and the ball hung by a ligament on his cheek. He uttered a hideous
yell, and staggered; notwithstanding of which other two cudgels were
applied to his arm while he had the power to hold it up in protection
of his head. Horror of horrors! I thought, verily in the fulfilment of
prophecy, God has been pleased to curse this garden and granary of the
world, and to permit foreigners terribly to tyrannise over its
degraded people.' Proceeding onward to Cairo: 'What a hurry-skurry
there was in the dark in getting into the vans at the hotel-door to
be conveyed to the Mahmoudie Canal! When I arrived, I found the barge
in which we were to be conveyed both very confined and dirty. But it
proceeded at tolerable speed, drawn by horses which were pursued by
well-mounted Arabs yelling, lashing, and cracking with their whips. We
all passed a fearful night of suffocation and jambing, fasting and
feasted on by millions. Some red-coated bedlamites, unfortunately
infatuated with wine, had to be held from jumping overboard. The
ramping and stamping, and roaring and scrambling for room to sit or
lie, was horrific. At last the day dawned, when matters were not quite
so bad; but we moved over our fifty miles of ditch-water to Atfeh in a
manner the most uncomfortable any poor sinners ever suffered.'

The account given of his entry to Cairo is also strikingly faithful.
'When I landed at Boulac, another Oriental scene of novelty was
presented. Crowds of men and women, all in their shirts only--lazy
looking-on watermen calling for employment, porters packing luggage on
the camels, donkey-boys, little active urchins, offering their asses,
crying: "Here him best donkey"--"you Englese no walk"--"him kick
highest"--"him fine jackass"--"me take you to Cairo." There were also
plenty of custom-house folks demanding fees to which they had no
right, and sturdy rascals seeking buckshish, and miserable beggars
imploring alms. Walking through this promiscuous crowd, with all the
dignity they could muster, there were venerable sheiks, or Egyptian
oolema, with white turbans, and long silvery beards, and tawny
sinister faces. And there were passengers not a few, with a carpet-bag
in the one hand and a lady hanging on the other arm, crowding from the
deck to the shore.

'The moment I mounted the stair at the pier of Boulac, I found myself
in the red dusky haze of an Egyptian atmosphere. It was near noon, and
the rays of the hot sun trembled over the boundless Valley of the Nile
on to the minarets of Cairo, and further still to the sombre Pyramids.
Now, indeed, the scene before me presented a superb illusion of
beauty. The bold range of the Mockattam Mountains, its craggy summits
cut clearly out in the sky, seemed to run like a promontory into a sea
of the richest verdure; here, wavy with breezy plantations of olives;
there, darkened with acacia groves. Just where the mountain sinks upon
the plain, the citadel stands on its last eminence, and widely spread
beneath lies the city--a forest of minarets, with palm-trees
intermingled, and the domes of innumerable mosques rising and
glittering over the sea of houses. Here and there, green gardens are
islanded within that ocean, and the whole is girt round with
picturesque towers, and ramparts occasionally revealed through vistas
of the wood of sycamores and fig-trees that surround it. From Boulac I
was conveyed to the British Hotel at Cairo, the Englishman's home in
Egypt, conducted by Mr Shepherd, the Englishman's friend in the East.
The approach to Grand Cairo is charming and cheering, and altogether
as fanciful as if I had been carried with Aladin's lamp in my hand
through a fairy region to one of the palaces mentioned in the _Arabian
Nights of Entertainment_. I passed along a broad level path, full of
life and fancy, amid groves and gardens, and villas all glittering in
grandeur. At every turn, something more Oriental and magnificent than
anything I had yet seen presented itself. Along the level, broad
highway, a masquerading-looking crowd was swarming towards Cairo.
Ladies, wrapped closely in white veils, were carrying water on their
heads. Long rows of dromedaries loaded with luggage were moving
stately forward. Donkeys at full canter, one white man riding, and two
black men driving and thumping the poor brutes most unmercifully with
short thick sticks, were winding their way through the throng. Ladies
enveloped in flowing robes of black silk, and veiled up to the eyes,
were sitting stride-leg on richly-caparisoned asses, shewing off with
pomp a pair of yellow morocco slippers, which appeared on their feet
from under their flowing robes. And before these, clearing the way,
there were eunuch slaves crying: "Darak ya Khowaga-riglak! shemalak!"
which probably may mean: "Stand back, and let her ladyship pass!"
There were walkers and water-carriers, with goat-skins full on their
back; and fruit-sellers and orange-girls; and ourselves and others
driving at full gallop, regardless of all the Copts, Abyssinians,
Greeks, Turks, Parsees, Nubians, and Jews, which crowded the path. But
curiosity of this sort is soon satisfied, and these novelties are
passed, when I find myself in the midst of the city, more full of mud
and misery, dark, dirty twisting lanes, arched almost over by
verandas, and wretchedly paved or not paved at all, full of smells and
disgusting sights--such as lean, mangy dogs, and ragged beggars
quivering with lice, and poverty-stricken people; all this more than
the whole world can produce anywhere else, not excepting even the
Jewish city of Prague; which astonished me beyond comparison till I
saw the poorer portions of Cairo.'

During his stay in Cairo, the doctor visited the Great Pyramid of
Gizeh, the short journey being performed early in the morning, and
with a guide. The toils and pleasures of the excursion are fairly
described. 'I had read so much of the bulk of the Pyramids, and they
now appeared so positively insignificant in their dimensions, that I,
felt mortified; but I remembered that I had the same impression many
years ago when first approaching the Alps; and I began to consider,
that as the extreme clearness of the atmosphere gave them the
appearance of proximity in the far distance, so it would also partly
account for the diminutive aspect they persisted in presenting. I
dismounted, and scrambled up the bold ledge of rock, and found myself
already a hundred feet above the level of the Nile. Here my Arab guide
produced cold fowl, bread, wine, and Nile water in plenty at the foot
of this mountain of stone, which now began to indicate its colossal
magnitude. Standing beside the pyramid, and looking from the base to
the top, and especially examining the vast dimensions of each separate
stone, I thus obtained an adequate impression of the magnitude of its
dimensions, which produced a calm and speechless but elevated feeling
of awe. The Arabs, men, women, and children, came crowding around me;
but they seemed kind and inoffensive. I was advised to mount up to the
top before the sun gained strength; and, skipping like chamois on a
mountain, two Arabs took hold of me by each wrist, and a third lifted
me up from behind, and thus I began, with resolution and courage, to
ascend the countless layers of huge stones which tower and taper to
the top. Every step was three feet up at a bound; and, really, a
perpendicular hop-step-and-leap of this sort was no joke, move after
move continuing as if for ever. I found that the Arabs did not work so
smoothly as I expected, and that one seemed at a time to be holding
back, while another was dragging me up; and this soon became very
tiresome. Perceiving this, they changed their method, and I was
directed to put my foot on the knee of one Arab, and another pulled me
up by both hands, while a third pushed me behind; and thus I bounded
on in my tread-mill of tedious and very tiresome exertion. I paused
half-way to the top, and rested at the cave. I looked up and down with
a feeling of awe, and now I felt the force of Warburton's remark, when
he calls it the greatest wonder in the world. But in the midst of
these common-place reflections, a fit of sickness came over me.
Everything turned dark before me; and now for a moment my courage
failed me; and when looking at my three savage companions--for my
guide and his friend were sitting below finishing the fragments of my
breakfast, and the donkeys were munching beans--I felt myself alike
destitute of comfort and protection; and when they put forth their
hands to lift my body, I verily thought myself a murdered man. When I
came out of my faint, I found that they had gently turned me on my
belly, with my head flat upon the rock, and that they had been
sprinkling my face and breast with water. A profuse perspiration broke
out, and I felt myself relieved. I rested ten or fifteen minutes, and
hesitated for a moment whether to go up or down; but I had determined
that I should reach the top, if I should perish in the attempt. I
resumed, therefore, the ascent, but with more time and caution than
before; and fearing to look either up or down, or to any portion of
the frightful aspect around, I fixed my eye entirely on each
individual step before me, as if there had been no other object in the
world besides. To encourage me by diverting my attention, the Arabs
chanted their monotonous songs, mainly in their own language,
interspersed with expressions about buckshish, "Englese good to
Arabs," and making signs to me every now and then how near we were
getting to the top. After a second _dwam_, a rest and a draught of
water prepared me for another effort at ascending; and now, as I
advanced, my ideas began to expand to something commensurate with the
grandeur and novelty of the scene. When I reached the top, I found
myself on a broad area of about ten yards in every way of massive
stone-blocks broken and displaced. Exhausted and overheated, I laid me
down, panting like a greyhound after a severe chase. I bathed my
temples, and drank a deep, cool draught of Nile water. After inhaling
for a few minutes the fresh, elastic breeze blowing up the river, I
felt that I was myself again. I rose, and gazed with avidity in fixed
silence, north and south, east and west. And now I felt it very
exhilarating to the spirit, when thus standing on a small, unprotected
pavement so many hundred feet above the earth, and so many thousand
miles from home, to be alone, surrounded only by three wild and
ferocious-like savages. The Arabs knew as well as I did that my life
and property were in their power; but they were kind, and proud of the
confidence I had in them. They tapped me gently on the back, patted my
head, kissed my hand, and then with a low, laughing, sinister growl,
they asked me for buckshish, which I firmly refused; then they
laughed, and sang and chatted as before. In calmly looking around me,
one idea filled and fixed my mind, which I expressed at the time in
one word--magnificence!... I remained long at the top of the pyramid,
and naturally felt elevated by the sublimity of the scenery around,
and also by the thought, that I had conquered every difficulty, and
accomplished my every purpose. The breeze was still cool, although the
sun was now high in the sky. I laughed and talked with the Arabs; and
advanced with them holding my two hands, to the very edge, and looked
down the awful precipice. Here again, with a push, or a kick, or
probably by withdrawing their hands, my days would have been finished;
and I would have been buried in the Desert among the ancient kings, or
more likely worried up by hungry hyænas. I looked around at my
leisure, and began carefully to read the names cut out on the stones,
anxious to catch one from my own country, or of my acquaintance, but
in this I did not succeed. Seeing me thus occupied, one of the Arabs
drew from his pocket a large murderous-looking _gully_, and when he
advanced towards me with it in his hand, had I believed the tenth part
of what I had heard or read, I might have been afraid of my life. But
with a laughing squeal, he pointed to a stone, as if to intimate that
I should cut out my name upon it. Then very modestly he held out his
hand for buckshish, and I thought him entitled to two or three
piasters.... In coming down, I felt timid and giddy for awhile, and
was afraid that I might meet the fate of the poor officer from India,
who, on a similar occasion, happened to miss his foot, and went
bouncing from one ledge of stone to another, towards the bottom, like
a ball, and that long after life was beaten out of him. Seeing this,
the Arabs renewed their demand for buckshish, and with more
perseverance than ever; but I was equally firm in my determination
that more money they should not have till I reached the bottom. At
last they took me by both hands as before, and conducted me carefully
from step to step. By and by I jumped down from one ledge to another
without their assistance, till I reached the mouth of the entrance to
the interior. I descended this inlet somewhat after the manner of a
sweep going down a chimney, but not quite so comfortable, I believe.
In this narrow inclined plane, I not only had to encounter sand-flies,
and every variety of vermin in Egypt, but I was afraid of serpents.
The confined pass was filled, too, with warm dust, and the heat and
smoke of the lights we carried increased the stifling sensation. In
these circumstances, I felt anxious only to go as far as would enable
me to fire a pistol with effect in one of the vaults. This is well
worth while, inasmuch as the sound of the explosion was louder than
the roar of a cannon. In fact, it almost rent the drum of my ears, and
rolled on like thunder through the interior of the pyramid, multiplied
and magnified as it was by a thousand echoes. The sound seemed to
sink, and mount from cavity to cavity--to rebound and to divide--and
at length to die in a good old age. The flash and the smoke produced,
too, a momentary feeling of terror. Having performed this marvellous
feat, I was nowise ambitious to qualify myself further for giving a
description of the interior.'

After visiting Suez, the author returned to Cairo, descended to the
coast of the Levant, and took shipping for Jaffa, on the route to
Jerusalem. Every point of interest in the holy city is described as
minutely as could be desired. Next, there was a visit to the Dead Sea,
regarding which there occur some sagacious remarks. The doctor
repudiates the ordinary belief, that the waters of this famed lake are
carried off by exhalation. Six million tons of water are discharged
every day by the Jordan into the Dead Sea; and to suppose that this
vast increase is wholly exhaled, seems to him absurd. He deems it more
likely that the lake issues by subterranean passages into the Red Sea.
The only remark that occurs to us on this point is, that the saltness
of the lake must be held as a proof that there is at least a large
exhalation from the surface.

Dr Aiton also visited Bethlehem, where he saw much to interest him;
and had the satisfaction of being hospitably entertained by the
fathers of the Greek convent. 'I left the convent,' he says, 'soothed
and satisfied much with all that I had seen, and went round to take a
parting and more particular view of the plain where the shepherds
heard the angels proclaim: "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth
peace, good-will towards men!" The plain is still mainly under
pasture, fertile and well watered, and there I saw shepherds still
tending their flocks. These shepherds have great influence over their
sheep. Many of them have no dogs. Their flocks are docile and
domestic, and not as the black-faced breed of sheep in Scotland,
scouring the hills like cavalry. The shepherd's word spoken at any
time is sufficient to make them understand and obey him. He sleeps
among them at night, and in the morning he leadeth them forth to drink
by the still waters, and feedeth them by the green pastures. He walks
before them slow and stately; and so accustomed are the sheep to be
guided by him, that every few bites they take they look up with
earnestness to see that he is there. When he rests during the heat of
the day in a shady place, they lie around him chewing the cud. He has
generally two or three favourite lambs which don't mix with the flock,
but frisk and fondle at his heel. There is a tender intimacy between
the Ishmaelite and his flock. They know his voice, and follow him, and
he careth for the sheep. He gathereth his lambs, and seeketh out his
flock among the sheep, and gently leadeth them that are with young,
and carrieth the lambs in his bosom. In returning back to Jerusalem, I
halted on a rugged height to survey more particularly, and enjoy the
scene where Ruth went to glean the ears of corn in the field of her
kinsman Boaz. Hither she came for the beginning of barley harvest,
because she would not leave Naomi in her sorrow. "Entreat me not to
leave thee: for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest,
I will lodge: thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God. Where
thou diest, will I die, and there will I be buried: the Lord do so to
me, and more also, if aught but death part thee and me." How simple
and tender! Here, when looking around me, honoured I felt for ever be
her memory, not only for these touching sentiments, worthy of our race
even before the fall, and when the image of God was not yet effaced;
but also in respect that she who uttered these words was the
great-grandmother of David, and as of the generation of Jesus. Here
also I looked back to the city of Bethlehem with lingering regret,
uttering a common-place farewell to the scene, but never to its
hallowed recollections.'

We may conclude our extracts with a passage descriptive of the
doctor's departure from the Holy Land, from which it will be seen that
he was not indisposed to keep his part when necessity demanded. 'The
steamer _Levant_ was ordered to sail at midnight on the day it arrived
at Jaffa, and there was a vast crowd and great confusion at the
embarkation. All the villainy of the Arab watermen was in active
operation. With the assistance of Dr Kiat's Italian servant, an
arrangement had been made that I and my friend were to be taken out to
the steamer for a stipulated sum; but while all the boats of the
natives were going off; ours was still detained at the pier under a
variety of flimsy pretences. Then a proposal was made to carry the
luggage back to the shore, and to take away the boat somewhere else, a
promise being given by the Arabs that they would return with it in
plenty of time to take us on board before midnight. By this time, I
was too old a traveller amid ruffians of this sort to permit so simple
a fraud to be perpetrated. The crew insisted on taking hold of the
oars, and my friend and I persisted in preventing them. We soon saw
that nothing but determined courage would carry the day. I therefore
did not hesitate to grasp the skipper firmly by the throat till I
almost choked him, threatening to toss him headlong into the sea. We
also threatened loudly to go back to the English consul, and to have
them punished for their conduct. Awed a little, and seeing that we
were not to be so easily done as they expected, notwithstanding that
we had been so simple as to pay our fare before we started, they did
at last push off the boat; but it was only after a fashion of their
own. Every forty yards their oars struck work, and they demanded more
money. The sea was rough even beyond the breakers, and the gravestone
which I had seen in the garden at Jaffa was enough to convince me,
that the guiding of a boat by savages in the dark, through the neck of
such a harbour, with whirling currents and terrifying waves, was a
matter of considerable danger. There was no remedy for it, but
continuing to set the crew at defiance, knowing that they could not
upset the boat without endangering their own lives as well as ours.
They wetted us, however, purposely, with the spray, and did their best
to frighten us, by rocking the boat like a cradle. First one piaster
(about twopence-halfpenny) was given to the skipper, then the boat was
advanced about a hundred yards, when the oars were laid down once
more. Another row was the consequence, at the end of which another
piaster was doled out to him, and forward we moved till we were fairly
within cry of the ship, when I called out for assistance, and they
pushed us directly alongside, behind the paddle-box. Here again they
detained the luggage, and demanded more buckshish; but I laid hold of
the rope hanging down from the rails of the steamer, and crying to my
companion to sit still and watch our property, I ran up the side of
the ship and called for the master, knowing that the captain was on
shore. Looking down upon them, he threatened to sink them in the ocean
if they did not bring everything on deck in a minute. When I saw the
portmanteaus brought up, and my friend and I safely on board, I
thought that all was well enough, although we had got a ducking in the
surf; but in a little, my friend found that he had been robbed of his
purse, containing two sovereigns and some small money; but nobody
could tell whether this had been done in the crowd on the pier, or
when he was in the boat, or when helped up the side of the ship. The
anchor was weighed about midnight, and we steamed along the coast of
Samaria, towards the once famous city and seaport of Herod.'

Having taken the liberty to be jocular on the doctor's oddities of
expression, we beg to say, that notwithstanding these and other
eccentricities, the work he has produced is well worthy of perusal,
and of finding a place in all respectable libraries.


FOOTNOTES:

[8] _The Lands of the Messiah, Mahomet, and the Pope, as Visited in
1851_. By John Aiton, D.D., Minister of Dolphinton. Fullarton & Co.
1852.



GLEANING IN SCOTLAND.

BY A PRACTITIONER.


Like most other ubiquitous customs, corn-gleaning has been frequently
described by the painter and the poet, yet I much question whether in
any case the picture is true to nature. A certain amount of idealism
is infused into all the sketches--indeed, in the experience of numbers
of readers, this is the sole feature in most of them. Such a defect is
easily accounted for. Those who have depicted the custom were
practically unacquainted with its details, and invariably made the
sacred story the model of their picture, without taking into
consideration the changes induced by time or local peculiarity. Even
the beautiful and glowing description of English corn-gleaning given
by Thomson, is felt by practical observers to be greatly too much of
the Oriental hue, too redolent of the fragrance of a fanciful Arcadia.
It is a pity that this interesting custom is not more faithfully
transcribed into our national poetry; and it is with the hope that a
future Burns may make the attempt, that the writer of this article
ventures to give a short history of his gleaning-days, believing the
subject to be interesting enough to engage the attention of the
general reader.

Though born amid the grandeur and sublimity of Highland scenery, I
was, at a very early age, brought to reside in a small village on the
east coast--small now, but once the most famous and important town in
that part of Scotland. Among the scenes of these times, none stand out
more vividly than the 'gathering-days'--the harvest of the year's
enjoyment--the time when a whole twelvemonth's happiness was
concentrated in the six weeks' vacation of the village-school. I do
not recollect the time when I began to glean--or _gather_, as it is
locally termed--probably I would, when very young, follow the others
to the near farms, and gradually become, as I grew older, a regular
gleaner. At that time the gleaners in our district were divided into
two gangs or parties. One of these was headed by four old women, whose
shearing-days were past; and as they were very peaceable, decent
bodies, it was considered an honour to get attached to their band. The
other was composed of the wilder spirits of the place, who thought
nothing of jumping dikes, breaking hedges, stealing turnips, and
committing other depredations on the farms which they visited.
Fortunately, my quiet disposition, and supposed good character,
procured my admittance into the more respectable gang; and I had the
honour of sharing its fortunes during the five or six years I
continued a gleaner. I was surprised to see one of these old ladies
toddling about the village only a few weeks ago, though her
gathering-days are long since past. She is the last survivor of the
quorum, and is now fast fading into dotage.

Although the two gleaning-parties never assumed a positive antagonism,
they took care to conceal their movements from each other as well as
possible. When one of our party received information of a field being
'ready,' the fact was secretly conveyed to all the members, with an
injunction to be 'in such a place at such an hour' on the following
morning; and the result generally was, that we had a considerable
portion of the field gleaned before the other gang arrived. But we did
not always act on previous information. Many a morning we departed on
the search, and frequently wandered all day without 'lifting a head.'
These were the best times for us young ones, whose hearts were too
light to care for more than the fun of the thing, as we then had a
glorious opportunity of getting a feast of bramble-berries and wild
raspberries in the woods and moors; but to the older members of our
party the disappointment was anything but pleasant.

I have spoken of a field being _ready_. Now, to some readers, this may
convey a very erroneous idea. We learn that in early times not only
were the gleaners admitted among the sheaves, or allowed to 'follow
the shearers,' as the privilege is now termed, but, in a certain
instance, the reapers were commanded to leave a handful now and then
for the gleaner. Now, that custom is entirely changed: the sheaves are
all taken away from the field; and instead of the reapers leaving
handfuls expressly for the gleaners, the farmer endeavours by raking
to secure as much as possible of what they accidentally leave on the
stubble. I am not inclined to quarrel with the condition that requires
the stocks to be removed ere the gleaners gain admittance; because
many would be tempted to pilfer, and besides, the ground on which they
stand could not be reached. But there is no doubt that the custom of
gleaning was originally a public enactment; while the fact that it has
spread over the whole earth, and descended to the present time, shews
that it still exists on the statute-book of justice, in all the length
and breadth of its original signification; and it amounts almost to a
virtual abrogation of the privilege when the stubble is thus gleaned.
At all events, if these sentiments are not in consonance with the new
lights of the day, let them be pardoned in a _ci-devant_ gleaner.

Upon arriving at a field, our first object was to choose a locality.
If we were first on the ground, we took a careful survey of its
geographical position, and acted accordingly. When the field was
level, and equally exposed, it mattered little to what part we went;
but in the event of its being hilly, or situated near a wood, we had
to consider where the best soil lay, and where the sun had shone most.
It was in the discovery of these important points that the sagacity
and experience of our aged leaders were most brilliantly displayed,
and gave to our party an immense superiority over the other, whose
science was much more scanty; it therefore happened that we had
generally the largest quantity and best quality of grain. These
preliminaries being settled--and they generally took less time than I
have done to write--we began work, commencing, of course, at the end
of the field by which we entered, and travelling up or down the rigs.

The process of gleaning may be generally considered a very simple one;
but in this, as in everything else, some knowledge is necessary, and
no better proof of this could be had, than in the quantities gathered
by different persons in the same space of time. A careless or
inexperienced gatherer could easily be detected by the size and
_shape_ of his single. The usual method practised by a good gleaner
was as follows:--Placing the left hand upon the knee, or behind the
back, the right was used to lift the ears, care being taken to grasp
them close by the 'neck.' When the right hand had gathered perhaps
twenty or thirty ears, these were changed into the left hand; the
right was again replenished from the ground; and this process was
continued till the left was full, or rather till the gleaner heard one
of his or her party exclaim: 'Tie!' when the single was obliged to be
completed. Thus it is clear that a good eye and a quick hand are
essential to a good gleaner.

Whenever one of the members of the party found that the left hand was
quite full, he or she could compel the others to finish their singles
whether their hand was full or not, by simply crying the
afore-mentioned word 'Tie!' At this sound, the whole band proceeded to
fasten their bundles, and deposit them on the rig chosen for their
reception. The process of 'tying' it is impossible to explain on
paper; but I can assure my readers it afforded great scope for taste
and ingenuity. Few, indeed, could do it properly, though the singles
of some were very neat. The best 'tyer' in our party, and indeed in
the district, was a little, middle-aged woman, who was a diligent,
rapid gatherer, and generally the first to finish her handful. Her
singles were perfectly round, and as flat at the top as if laid with a
plummet. Having finished tying, we laid down our singles according to
order, so that no difficulty might be felt in collecting them again,
and so proceeded with our labour.

When we got to the end of the field, the custom was, to finish our
handfuls there, and retrace our steps for the purpose of collecting
the deposits, when each of us tied up our collected bundles at the
place from which we originally started. To the lover of the
picturesque, the scene while we sat resting by the hedge-side, was one
of the most beautiful that can be imagined. Spread over the field in
every direction were the gleaners, busily engaged in their cheerful
task; while the hum of their conversation, mingling with the melody of
the insect world, the music of the feathery tribes, and the ripple of
the adjoining burn, combined to form a strain which I still hear in
the pauses of life.

On our homeward road from a successful day's, gathering, how merry we
all were, in spite of our tired limbs and the load upon our heads!
Indeed it was the load itself that made us glad; and we should have
been still merrier if that had been heavier. How sweet it was to feel
the weight of our industry--no burden could possibly be more grateful;
and I question much whether that was not the happiest moment in Ruth's
first gleaning-day, when she trudged home to her mother-in-law with
the ephah of barley, the produce of her unflagging toil.

When harvest was over, and the chill winds swept over cleared and
gleaned fields, our bond of union was dissolved, each retired to his
respective habitation, and, like Ruth, 'beat out that he had gleaned.'
In many cases, the result was a sufficient supply of bread to the
family for the ensuing winter. It was singular that, during the rest
of the year, little or no intercourse was maintained between those who
were thus associated during harvest. They lived together in the same
degree of friendship as is common among villagers, but I could never
observe any of that peculiar intimacy which it was natural to suppose
such an annual combination would create. They generally returned to
their ordinary occupations, and continued thus till the sickle was
again heard among the yellow corn, and the _stacks_ were growing in
the barn-yard. Then, as if by instinct, the members of the various
bands, and the independent stragglers, left their monotonous tasks,
and eagerly entered on the joys and pleasures of the gathering-days.

I might add many reminiscences of the few seasons I spent in this
manner; but I am afraid that, however interesting they might prove in
rural districts, they are too simple to interest the general reader.
Let me observe, however, before concluding, that the great majority of
the farmers at the present day are decidedly unfavourable to gleaning,
although the veneration that is generally entertained for what is
ancient, and the traditionary sacredness which surrounds this
particular custom, prevent them from openly forbidding its
continuance. They have introduced, however, laws and rules which
infringe sadly its original proportions, and which, in many instances,
are made the instruments of oppression.



WOMEN IN SAVAGE LIFE.


The division of labour between the man and wife in Indian life is not
so unequal, while they live in the pure hunter state, as many suppose.
The large part of a hunter's time, which is spent in seeking game,
leaves the wife in the wigwam, with a great deal of time on her hands;
for it must be remembered that there is no spinning, weaving, or
preparing children for school--no butter or cheese making, or a
thousand other cares which are inseparable from the agricultural
state, to occupy her skill and industry. Even the art of the
seamstress is only practised by the Indian woman on a few things. She
devotes much of her time to making moccasons and quill-work. Her
husband's leggins are carefully ornamented with beads; his shot-pouch
and knife-sheath are worked with quills; the hunting-cap is garnished
with ribbons; his garters of cloth are adorned with a profusion of
small white beads, and coloured worsted tassels are prepared for his
leggins. In the spring, the corn-field is planted by her and the
youngsters, in a vein of gaiety and frolic. It is done in a few hours,
and taken care of in the same spirit. It is perfectly voluntary
labour, and she would not be scolded for omitting it; for all labour
with Indians is voluntary.--_Schoolcraft's Indian Tribes_.



LANGUAGE OF THE LAW.


If a man would, according to law, give to another an orange, instead
of saying, 'I give you that orange,' which one would think would be
what is called in legal phraseology 'an absolute conveyance of all
right and title therein,' the phrase would run thus:--'I give you all
and singular my estate and interest, right, title, and claim, and
advantage of and in that orange, with all its rind, skin, juice, pulp,
and pips, and right and advantages therein, with full power to bite,
cut, suck, and otherwise eat the same, or give the same away, as fully
and as effectually as I, the said A. B., am now inclined to bite, cut,
suck, or otherwise eat the same orange or give the same away, with or
without its rind, skin, juice, pulp, or pips, anything heretofore or
hereinafter, or in any other deed or deeds, instrument or instruments,
of what nature or kind soever, to the contrary in anywise
notwithstanding;' with much more to the same effect. Such is the
language of lawyers; and it is gravely held by the most learned men
among them, that by the omission of any of these words, the right to
the said orange would not pass to the person for whose use the same
was intended.--_Newspaper paragraph_.



CHANCES OF LIFE IN AMERICA.


10,268 infants are born on the same day and enter upon life
simultaneously. Of these, 1243 never reach the anniversary of their
birth; 9025 commence the second year; but the proportion of deaths
still continues so great, that at the end of the third only 8183, or
about four-fifths of the original number, survive. But during the
fourth year the system seems to acquire more strength, and the number
of deaths rapidly decreases. It goes on decreasing until twenty-one,
the commencement of maturity and the period of highest health. 7134
enter upon the activities and responsibilities of life--more than
two-thirds of the original number. Thirty-five comes, the meridian of
manhood, 6302 have reached it. Twenty years more, and the ranks are
thinned. Only 4727, or less than half of those who entered life
fifty-five years ago, are left. And now death comes more frequently.
Every year the ratio of mortality steadily increases, and at seventy
there are not 1000 survivors. A scattered few live on to the close of
the century, and at the age of one hundred and six the drama is ended;
the last man is dead.--_Albany Journal_.



A SONG.


    The little white moon goes climbing
      Over the dusky cloud,
    Kissing its fringes softly,
      With a love-light, pale as shroud--
    Where walks this moon to-night, Annie?
    Over the waters bright, Annie?
      Does she smile on your face as you lift it, proud?
    God look on thee--look on thee, Annie!
      For I shall look never more!

    The little white star stands watching
      Ever beside the moon;
    Hid in the mists that shroud her,
      And hid in her light's mid-noon:
    Yet the star follows all heaven through, Annie,
    As my soul follows after you, Annie,
      At moon-rise and moon-set, late and soon:
    Oh, God watch thee, God watch thee, Annie,
      For I can watch never more!

    The purple-black sky folds loving,
      Over far sea, far land;
    The thunder-clouds, looming eastward,
      Like a chain of mountains stand.
    Under this July sky, Annie,
    Do you hear waves lapping by, Annie?
      Do you walk, with the hills on either hand?
    Oh, God love thee, God love thee, Annie,
      For I love thee evermore!



LONGEVITY OF QUAKERS.


Quakerism is favourable to _longevity_, it seems. According to late
English census returns, the average age attained by members of this
peaceful sect in Great Britain is fifty-one years, two months, and
twenty-one days. Half of the population of the country, as is seen by
the same returns, die before reaching the age of twenty-one, and the
average duration of human life the world over is but thirty-three
years; Quakers, therefore, live a third longer than the rest of us.
The reasons are obvious enough. Quakers are temperate and prudent, are
seldom in a hurry, and never in a passion. Quakers, in the very midst
of the week's business--on Wednesday morning--retire from the world,
and spend an hour or two in silent meditation at the meeting-house.
Quakers are diligent; they help one another, and the fear of want does
not corrode their minds. The journey of life to them is a walk of
peaceful meditation. They neither suffer nor enjoy intensity, but
preserve a composed demeanour always. Is it surprising that their days
should be long in the land?--_National Intelligencer_.

       *       *       *       *       *

Printed and Published by W. and R. CHAMBERS, High Street, Edinburgh.
Also sold by W. S. ORR, Amen Corner, London; D. N. CHAMBERS, 55 West
Nile Street, Glasgow; and J. M'GLASHAN, 50 Upper Sackville Street,
Dublin.--Advertisements for Monthly Parts are requested to be sent to
MAXWELL & Co., 31 Nicholas Lane, Lombard Street, London, to whom all
applications respecting their insertion must be made.





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