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twelve thousand pounds, and might possibly be good for three; that I was very fond of her, and did not want her money (of course not!) and finally implored Tom Taylor, for old apprenticeship's sake, to give me a wrinkle how I might circumvent the enemy, and take Philadelphia!
"Come down to the country with us to-morrow," replied my hospitable friend, and we can see what is to be done. Town is a bad place for giving advice, and a worse for taking it."
"Oh! I see; and when I come up to town again, put a bold face on the matter, and say I've been to Paris. Eh?"
Down to the country we went together the following morning,the Reverend Thomas Taylor, Mrs. Thomas Taylor, and myself. At the expiration of three happy weeks I returned to town with a stock of health and spirits sufficient to last me at least a twelvemonth. My first visit was to Camomile Street, to the Mugginses. On entering the drawing-room, who should meet my embarrassed eyes but Philadelphia, and alone. It was with difficulty that I repressed the quick throbbing of my palpitating heart, and forced my trembling lips to utter, "How's your mother?
"Quite well, I thank you, Mr. Twig."
"And the governor ?
"Laid up with the face-ache. Shocking, isn't it?”
"Ah! very-very glad-very sorry, I mean."
"But, bless me, Mr. Twig, where have you been hiding these three
"Ya!-eh ?-why-the-fact-is-on the Continent,-grand tour, you know, Paris, and all that"
"Have you, really? Delightful, isn't it?"-" Delightful, indeed!” "And the Louvre,-isn't it sweetly pretty?"- "You may say that." "And the statues and pictures, ain't they darlings?"—" Ducks!" "And the Palais Royale? "-" Don't mention it." "And the Tweeleries?"-" Uncommon natty."
"And the beautiful Seine?"-"Say no more!"
"Oh, dear!" exclaimed the sentimental girl, "is there any thing in this world more sweetly pretty than dear delightful Paris?
"There is there is," said I in a tremulous tone, drawing the hand of Philadelphia gently within mine, and gazing intently on her-" there is something in this world more beautiful than Paris, with all its beauties that is, to me; something that surpasses all the — I mean everybody that ever I
"In the name of goodness, Mr. Twig, what is it? tell us!" exclaimed Miss Muggins, colouring to the tips of her fingers.
"Can you ask?-can you ask?" exclaimed I impassionately. ""Tis the loveliest of earthly creations,-'tis Philadelphia!"
"Oh, Twig!" ejaculated the lovely girl, and sank upon my bosom. My business was done. The Governor's face-ache precluded him from coming to close-quarters with me about the sights and lions of Paris: and, by carefully keeping to the windward of Mrs. Muggins, and talking generalities out of my guide-book, (which I had got by rote while at Tom Taylor's,) I effectually bamboozled the old lady, and even Emmeline declared that she thought I travelled to some purpose.
I thought so too when I went to the bank yesterday to touch three thousand pounds sterling - Philadelphia's fortune. To-morrow-(for the family are as cracked as ever about travel,) Mrs. Muggins, Emmeline, my wife and I, are off, per steamer, to Rotterdam and the Rhine!
A PRIZE ESSAY, BY ALBANY POYNTZ.
Unasy is the head that 's got a crown!"-SHAKSPEARE, O'Neil loquitur.
THOSE who have ears to hear must be aware that, every now and then, the concatenation of public events brings into fashion some noun substantive, "more guarded than its fellows," which is bruited from club to coterie, kept in pica by correctors of the press for the use of leading articles, and stereotyped for the pamphlets of budding politicians. Enter the gallery of the House of Commons, and within five minutes you will be struck by the pellet of the word in authority. One session, it is "NON-INTERVENTION;" the next, the "INTEGRITY" of the Ottoman Empire. Of late, the crack word has been "ABDICATION."
During the present year, all the thrones in Europe appear to have been thrown over, just as in Napoleon's time they were overthrown. Royalty has been at a discount; crowns have been going a begging; scarcely a sovereign but has been in want of change!
There is something strangely ad captandum in the magnanimity of such an act. Ever since, in our days of birchhood, we inclined our little schoolboy eyes over the frontispiece of Robertson's History of Charles V, instead of "minding our book," we have retained a fond impression of the very great superiority of that Emperor, standing awful and imperious in his cuirass and tin-pantaloons, over the pale pitiful Philip, in his ermine tippet, kneeling before his father, and about to be translated to a higher see; the abdicator looking exceedingly like "possum up a gum-tree," and the abdicatee like "racoon in a hollow," watching below. Abdication, for the use of schools, could not have been more edifyingly set forth.
But we own we fancied this regal sacrifice in five syllables one of the heroics of the middle ages. We had the weakness to imagine that, unless, like Napoleon at Fontainbleau, with a hundred thousand bayonets at his throat and fifty pieces of cannon at his gates,-modern princes were fonder of laying down the law than laying down the sceptre,- that is, laying down the law instead of the profits. It never occurred to us that, in this matter-of-fact century, this age of calculating machines,-this era, of which Josephus is the historian (meaning Hume, not Adam but Joseph,)—this epoch of utilitarianism and go-a-headism, - potentates could be found sufficiently soft to quarrel with their bread and butter, and indulge in the amiable weakness of ABDICATION.
Nothing else, however, is heard of among the capitals of civilized Europe. Scarcely have we opened a paper since January last, but the word ABDICATION has occupied an honourable station in the Foreign Intelligence, or "own correspondent" department. Week after week, Kings have been accepting unattached majorities on half pay; and Queens going out, receiving the difference!
In more than one instance, it appears that "All for love, or the throne well lost," should have been the title of these singular performances.-"All for love" in the nineteenth century !-A very great writer has observed that "were honour driven from the earth its
refuge should be the breast of Kings;" and romance appears to have taken shelter in the same retreat:-Romance is marked with the broad arrow:- romance is regalized! Cupid, on finding his torch broken by the rollicking spirit of the times as though it were a watchman's lantern, has thought fit to lighten his darkness with a royal spark; for his Majesty King William is said to have flung aside the flats of Holland in favour of a maid of honour, "fat, fair, and forty," unquestionably deserving to be made titular King of Cyprus by way of compensation.
The universal acclamations lavished upon this truly royal action began at length to fill our minds with alarm, lest the example should become contagious. The epidemic of ABDICATION was raging, and "by the simplicity of Venus' doves!" we trembled lest our own little throne of England should be weighed in the balance and found wanting by those who honour it with all the graces and virtues of royalty. We looked out with anxiety in every Saturday's Gazette, and our breath came short whenever her most gracious Majesty's First Lord of the Treasury opened his lips as if he had something to say. A mere hint of the word ABDICATION from such a quarter, would have put three kingdoms into crape and bombazine, and the colonies into weepers!
Judge, therefore, oh! sympathizing public! what was our consternation, when one day last summer, as we panted our way up the steep ascent of St. James's Street, while the clubs sneered at our peripatetic philosophy from under their cool awnings, a general buzz and murmur issuing from the portals of those temples of gossipry, concentrated in appalling accents the fatal word ABDICATION!-It was not of William those idlers were talking. It was not of Christina. Neither King nor Kaiser occupied their minds; or if Kings and Queens mingled in any degree in their calculations, it was as regarded the odd tricks of a pack which hath no record in the Almanack of Saxe Gotha. There was a sound of lamentation; but its ohs! and ahs! were under no sort of control from the pursuivants of the Herald's Office.
"What will become of us!" cried one.
"Where shall we hide our diminished heads!" exclaimed another. "Where shall we breakfast?" sighed a third. "Where shall we dine?" a fourth.
"Where sup?" a fifth.
"What shall I do with my mornings? said A. "What shall I do with my evenings?" said B. "What shall I do with my nights?" yawned C.
"I shall have twelve hours of the twenty-four thrown on my hands!" swore his Grace.
"I, fifteen!" simpered his lordship.
"I, twenty!" lisped Sir Henry.
Decidedly, if he persist in his project of abdication I will break up my establishment, and fly the country!" faltered one, who shall
In horror-struck suspense, we gazed upon this new Caius Marcius, listening anxiously to the murmurs of the ingenuous youth and middle age of Britain, till our souls grew still more and more disquieted!
"What can he mean, pray?" resumed the first speaker. "What
can be his projects? Is he going into Parliament, or into La Trappe-or what?"
"It will be the greatest loss this nation ever sustained!" added the second, with oracular solemnity.-"What a patron has he been to the arts!-The marmite perpetuelle has bubbled ever since his accession!-Truffles have been imported by him, under a treasury warrant; and his Sillery came direct from Epernay, under an escort of the municipal guard!"
"I once encountered a caravan in crossing Mount Cenis," faltered a third, in querimonious accents, "and, from the importance of the convoy, conceived that it must contain some royal corpse, or a copy of the Transfiguration for the National Gallery.-My lords and gentlemen, it was a Parmesan cheese-a cheese FOR HIM!"
"An argosy is annually freighted for him from Bourdeaux," cried another.
"He keeps a frigate to cruise in the Yellow Sea with his Madeira," rejoined the first.
"Jamaica forwards him her first turtle," cried his Grace.
“A*** Park its last buck," rejoined his Lordship.
"Petersburg presents its compliments to him with a pot of ca
"Marseilles, with a jar of tunny-"
"Java sends him soy and birds' nests-" "India, her buffalos' humps-"
Iceland, her reindeer's tongues"Archangel, her Sterlet soup-"
"All the kingdoms of the earth bring tribute to him!" moaned a chorus of voices ;-and by this time, not only were tears in my eyes, but water was in my mouth.
"And then, such a financier!" resumed one of the mourners ;"in his own person a consolidated fund !—I have been drawing upon him at sight these six months.”
"I have not paid him a guinea for these two years!" whispered his Grace.
"Nor I for three!"
"Nor I for five!"
"What other Chancellor of the Exchequer would accept our I. O. U.s, instead of L. S. D.s?"
"What other find our names in his books, without putting them in his bad books?"
"He has no bad books!" exclaimed the most energetic of the group. "I swear I never knew him give us a bad thing—except his grammar!"
By Jupiter! he shall not abdicate!"-cried the Duke, stamping his cane on the pavement.
And the rejoinder was so much in the tone of the oath sworn by my Uncle Toby that the lieutenant should not die, that, like the recording angel, we dropped a tear upon the word, and blotted it
out for ever.
"What can be the meaning of all this!" we exclaimed, staggering towards the palisades before White's window, with the consciousness that some terrible consummation was impending, to endanger the happiness and tranquillity of the country at large. But at that moment, gasping for breath with excess of emotion, we chanced to raise
THE VILLAGE BLACKSMITH.
and the rubber!-No more talk of ABDICATION!-stand to your post. After a reign of fifty years, we promise you a jubilee; and in the year 1880, a grave in the last new cemetery,-probably on Epsom Downs,-having over it your effigy in bronze, from the foundry of the last new Westmacott, in the robes of estate of Pam, under the title of Earl of Deal.
An thou lovest us, not a word more of ABDICATION!
How in her grave she lies, And with his hard, rough hand he wipes A tear from out his eyes. Toiling, rejoicing, sorrowing, Onward through life he goes; Each morning sees some task begin, Each evening sees it close; Something attempted, something done, Has earned a night's repose. Thanks! thanks to thee, my worthy friend, For the lesson thou hast taught! Thus at the sounding forge of Life Our fortunes must be wrought, Thus on its sounding anvil shaped, Each burning deed and thought.