Page images

the obnoxious qualities for the future; and declare that, as respects the present, I come before the public in sad and real earnestness of regret, to take leave of my indulgent friends for a longer interval than has as yet elapsed between my periodical renewals of acquaintance with them.

Would that, to aid me in the performance of my unpleasant task, I had, if not a sense of merit, at least a feeling of innocence : but I know that I must make my exit with many, a fault both of omission and commission on my head, unless my readers be pleased to grant me a pardon in full for the past, and to trust to my honest, though humble, desires to serve them, for the future.

I need hardly mention that I have consulted my trusty friends, Messrs. Jermyn, Heaviside, and Rice, on the subject of my resuming my literary labours after the Vacation. Mr. Heaviside does indeed desert me: Mr. Rice may

indeed meet an untimely fate in his roamings among the Welch mountains : Mr. Jermyn may break his neck in riding a race, or his heart in writing “Stanzas”

on some cruel fair one : but still I feel within me the desire of a protracted existence, and cannot discover why, while my, strength is spared to me within, and while I have friends to encourage and incite me from without, I should stop short in the race which I have ventured to run;,and should wilfully put an end to my own pleasures, or disappoint my friends' expectations.

However, as my prudence inclines me to view my future prospects in an unfavourable, rather than in a flattering, light, in a grand council lately held at my palace, I left it to my friends to give encouragement, and contented

[ocr errors]

myself with starting objections. Mr. Jermyn was shocked at the idea of desisting, and declared he would rather become another Hercules, and let me play truant like Atlas, than suffer the ponderous and majestic load which it is my good fortune to bear, to fall to the ground unhonoured and unowned. Why, my good friend, what will you write upon ?” said I. “Upon paper, to be sure,” retorted the irritated poet:—“What will you write, I mean,” I exclaimed : “Any thing,” he replied, “ rather than a Last Dying Speech and Confession, before I have been either arraigned or condemned at the tribunal of public opinion.”—“But would it not be prudent, Mr. Jermyn

No, it would not, Mr. Heaviside.” “ Hear me speak, at any rate,

“ It is just what I wish, and have been endeavouring to persuade you to do.-Speak on, I say, and do not bury yourself alive as you threatened.”

“ Would it not be well to retire before the public get tired of us?

By that rule, my good friend, you ought to eat no dinner for fear of a surfeit, and never to go to bed at night, for fear of not awaking early enough in the morning.' Enough is as good as a feast : but in the name of Apollo and the Nine Muses, let us at least go on with our undertaking till we have had enough. In short, if you are determined to be a Trebatius, I tell you that I shall be well content to act the part of Horace in the conference. I concluded by a classical, and as I thought powerful allusion to the rule laid down by Horace, wherein he fixes upon

* HORACE Sat, II, 1,

the number five, which I have now happily attained, as the boundary of a drama. But Mr. Jermyn retorted, that though a play could only have five acts, he really did not see why a Miscellany should not proceed to ten. He quoted his fusticular Majesty, of verberatory, glorious, and immortal memory, as an example and precedent for this most excellent number; and declared he was sure that the redoubted Peregrine would have made use of the instrument from which he derived his title and his kingdom, to belabour the shoulders of any one of his subjects who had recommended an earlier application of the scissors of Atropos to the thread of his glorious exist

Loud cheering from Messrs. Heaviside, Rice, and Willoughby, followed the conclusion of Mr. Jermyn's address.

I rose to wind up the proceedings by a parting address to my friends :

“To you, Mr. Heaviside, who are now about to desert us, at a period too early both for our pleasure and for your glory, I can only give my thanks and my good wishes :

I secundo


[ocr errors]


but I will still express a hope that your broad-shouldered ghost may even hereafter continue to haunt the favourite scenes of the real Antony; may still watch over the interests, and aid the progress, of his friend Bartholomew.

To Mr. F. Willoughby, with whom the public have been acquainted so short a time, I recommend less political reading, and more Miscellany writing : and though an Essay on the British Constitution would unhappily


[ocr errors]

be unfit for the pages of our publication, yet an Ode to Salt-hill, or a Dissertation on Strawberries, would be by no means unacceptable.

“ From you, Mr. David ap Rice, I expect at least three Legends of Snowdon, Lines. to Welch Nymphs, and Elegies for Welch Heroes, without number.

"To you, Mr. Jermyn, I could give a long lecture, but that you would laugh in my face in the middle of it. Do not employ your thoughts on the St. Leger, but on the Miscellany, and be more anxious about hard writing than hard riding. If you must bet, be sure to lay odds on Bouverie.

This, then, is the plan which I have sketched out, and which, if I am spared, it will be my earnest endeavour to execute. Looking forward to the winter as the probable termination of my existence, I hope again to appear in print on the Eighth day of October ; from that time to proceed as heretofore.

Although the vacation does to my limbs as Medea did to those of her brother,

• Dissipat in multis invenienda locis yet, in whatever parts of the globe I may be discovered, I hope that all parts of me will be found exerting themselves in unanimous industry and indefatigable perseverance.”






On Lying, 90
On False Friendship, 165
Imitation, 184

The Parguinote's Farewell, 13
The Prediction, 32, 119
Stanzas to *

*, 73
Pandæmonium, 81
Naïveté, 93
On Pedants, 168
Lines to a Young Lady who acted Helen, in a Charade, 225
The Death of Hoffer, 237

Nothing, 28
Nec tua laudabis studia, aut aliena repréndes, 226

Latter part of the Introduction to No. I., 7
Epilogue, 47
Introduction to No. II., with. Character of Antony Heaviside, 49
Second Letter in “ The Postman," 88
Epilogue, 95
Introduction to No. III., 97
Introduction to No. IV., 145
Chorus from Euripides, 177
Appearance of Virgil in the Upper World, 179
Epilogue, 191
Richard Cour de Lion, 199
View of Lethe, 220
Conclusion, 238

On Names, 21
Remarks on Gifford's Ford, 61, 124, 156
Letters signed Quidnunc and Christopher Chronicle, with Postscript

by Bouverie, 141, 142 The Battle of the Boyne, 136 The Bride of the Lake, 215

« PreviousContinue »