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I used to singe his powdered wig,
To steal the staff he put such trust in, And make the puppy dance a jig,
When he began to quote Augustine.
Alack the change ! in vain I look
For haunts in which my boyhood trifled, The level lawn, the trickling brook,
The trees I climbed, the beds I rifled : The church is larger than before ;
You reach it by a carriage entry ; It holds three hundred people more,
And pews are fitted up for gentry.
Sit in the Vicar's seat : you'll hear
The doctrine of a gentle Johnian, Whose hand is white, whose tone is clear,
Whose phrase is very Ciceronian. Where is the old man laid ?-look down,
And construe on the slab before you, “ Hic jacet GVLIELMVS BROWN
Vir nulla non donandus lauru."
Near a small village in the West,
Where many worthy people Eat, drink, play whist, and do their best
To guard from evil Church and steeple,
There stood_alas ! it stands no more !
A tenement of brick and plaster,
My good friend Quince was lord and master.
To maids and matrons, peers and peasants ;
By making puns, and making presents.
He kept his counsel, and his carriage,
And shrank from Chancery suits-and marriage.
Warm was his double ale--and feelings;
That he was saultless in his dealings :
Yet Dr. Poundtext always found him
And liked to see his friends around him.
He used to swear, were made to cozen ;
And he subscribed to half-a-dozen:
Were always able, never willing ;
Had first abuse, and then—a shilling.
But was no flatterer, nor fretter ;
And said. “I cannot make them better!”
And much he loathed the patriot's snort,
And much he scorned the placeman's snuffle ; And cut the fiercest quarrels short
With—“Patience, gentlemen—and shuffle!” For full ten years his pointer Speed
Had couched beneath her master's table ; For twice ten years his old white steed
Had fattened in his master's stable ; Old Quince averred, upon his troth,
They were the ugliest beasts in Devon; And none knew why he fed them both,
With his own hands, six days in seven. Whene'er they heard his ring or knock,
Quicker than thought, the village slatterns Flung down the novel, smoothed the frock,
And took up Mrs. Glasse, and patterns; Adine was studying baker's bills;
Louisa looked the queen of knitters; Jane happened to be hemming frills ;
And Bell, by chance, was making fritters. But all was vain; and while decay
Came, like a tranquil moonlight, o'er him, And found him gouty still, and gay,
With no fair nurse to bless or bore him, His rugged smile and easy chair,
His dread of matrimonial lectures, His wig, his stick, his powdered hair,
Were themes for very strange conjectures. Some sages thought the stars above
Had crazed him with excess of knowledge ; Some heard he had been crost in love
Before he came away from college;
Some darkly hinted that his Grace
Did nothing, great or small, without him ; Some whispered, with a solemn face,
That there was something odd about him ! ” I found him, at three score and ten,
A single man, but bent quite double ; Sickness was coming on him then
To take him from a world of trouble : He prosed of slipping down the hill,
Discovered he grew older daily ; One frosty day he made his will,
The next, he sent for Doctor Bailey.
When last I sat beside his pillow
“Penelope must wear the willow. Tell her I hugged her rosy chain
While life was flickering in the socket; And say, that when I call again,
I'll bring a licence in my pocket. “I've left my house and grounds to Fag,
I hope his master's shoes will suit him ; And I've bequeathed to you my nag,
To feed him for my sake, -or shoot him. The Vicar's wife will take old Fox,
She'll find him an uncommon mouser,And let her husband have my box,
My bible, and my Assmanshauser. “Whether I ought to die or not,
My doctor cannot quite determine; It's only clear that I shall rot,
And be, like Priam, food for vermin.
My debts are paid :--but Nature's debt
Almost escaped my recollection :
I cannot leave you my direction !"
THE BELLE OF THE BALL-ROOM.
“Il faut juger des femmes depuis la chaussure jusqu'à la coiffure exclusivement, à peu prés comme on mesure le poisson entre queue et těte."-La BRUYERE.
YEARS—years ago,-ere yet my dreams
Had been of being wise or witty,
Or yawned o'er this infernal Chitty ;-
Was in my fowling-piece and filly,–
I fell in love with Laura Lily.
I saw her at the County Ball:
There, when the sound of flute and fiddle
Of hands across and down the middle,
Of all that set young hearts romancing ;
And then she danced-0 Heaven, her dancing!
Dark was her hair, her hand was white;
Her voice was exquisitely tender;
I never saw a waist so slender !