TRATvosrur.s England, Ireland, and France, in 1828 and 1823. twilson. In a Series of Letters. By a German Prince. 2 Vols I
Rough Sketches of the Life of an Old Soldier. By-Lieu-1) Longman and Co. tenant-Colonel J. Leach, C.B. .
The False Step—The Sisters. 3 Vols. Bull. Frankenstein; by Mary W. Shelley. The Ghost-Seer, from the German of Schiller. (Standard Novels, No.} Coltman & Bentley. IX.).
The Cottager's Friendly Guide in Domestic Economy. By - • Sherwood & Co. an Economist .
THE SPECTATOR'S LIBRARY.
THE Tour in England, Ireland, and France, by a German Prince, is a book which rewards us for the perusal of a great deal of trash, which, in our critical vocation, duty compels us to get through. It is an original, lively, and sensible collection of remarks on England and Ireland, by a person peculiarly well qualified to form a sound judgment : it is an agreeable mixture of sketches of scenery, of manners, of character, with philosophical observations, showing the man of many lands and many thoughts. Pleasant it is, or at least gratifying to the curiosity, to see ourselves as others see us; peculiarly, however, is it gratifying when the observer is one whose judgment is to be respected, and who clothes his decisions with a rich store of fancy and illustrative remark ; still more is it agree. able, when the character of the writer also is so far disclosed as to attract the involuntary good-will of the reader. Such a man is Prince PUCKLER MUSCAN, and such is his book. We are grati- fied by his praise, the more flattered on account of its discrimina- tiveness ; we are amused, and even instructed, by his descriptions ; and we become attached to him as the most amiable and sensible traveller it has been lately our lot to fall in with. The advantage to be derived from this work is great. The Prince is a man of sound sense, experience of the world, know- ledge of various governments and people, and moreover an aris- tocrat by birth and education ; and here may be seen his opi- nions. Like all other foreigners, he considers this the most aristocratic country in the world, and wonders at the pa- tience and long-suffering of a people who have for ages per- mitted themselves to be farmed. We will not, however, in this corner, which Literature vindicates hardly and with pain from the overwhelming encroachments of Politics, in these times of danger and doubt, Cholera, Riot, and Reform,—we will not dwell on the part of this writer's work which is perhaps the most important, but turn to those portions which will act as a relief to the overstrained ear of the public. We have long been of opinion, that Englishmen who went abroad in search of the beautiful and the picturesque, were acting with more than their usual absurdity, and under a degree of delusion of an extreme kind. Our experience had miserably un- deceived us ; and certain we are, that if travelling in England were not so expensive to foreigners, the men of taste of Europe would invariably select the wilder and more romantic parts of our own island for the purpose of indulging the eye in scenery and the mind in the pleasures of the imagination. Of the trea- sures of our manufactures, of the curiosity and marvellousness of our machinery, of the vastness and excellence of our institutions, we say nothing; they are universally granted. Full justice is here done to the beauty of the country, the picturesqueness of the ruins, and the wealth and splendour of the mansions that stand in grace- ful contrast to the memorials of the past. The Prince appears to have had universal access ; and when he had it not by his letters, he acquired it by his manners and information. We have, as a proof, a most agreeable incident of a bookseller at Monmouth, of whom he was buying " a Guide' " dragging him in to tea withhis family ; and when they found he had lost his pocket-book, fancy- ing it contained all his travelling money, of their offering him the loan of a five-pound note, in the most delicate manner, " just to relieve him from any little embarrassment, and to be returned any time when he came that way." The invitation to the family hearth might elsewhere have been given, but in what other country than England would the feelings have so far expanded as to open the strings of the purse in a manner so generous ? Other instances of the Prince's popular and winning manners are numerous ; he seems to have derived information from every source, and never to have disdained a sensible or an amusing person, whatever may have been his condition in life.
There is one point on which we have no patience with the German Prince—his joy in once more landing in France, and his talk about its climate, its sociability, the freedom and politeness of its manners, &c. We have no hesitation in pronouncing the whole of this prejudice, or rather cant. The climate of the North of France is not better than that of England, but worse ; the people are not more sociable ; the manners are not better ; and politeness is a thing avant la Revolution. But France has so long dictated this opinion to the rest of Europe, that it will require a century and more to disenchant it from the imaginary charms of " la belle France"—without dispute the ugliest country ins Europe. The Prince, after dwelling with delight on the comforts and ele- gancies of England (which are pretty nearly a thousand years in refinement before our neighbours), says he felt, on entering the country, as if let loose from prison. A Prussian entering. France with raptures of liberty I This is certainly somewhat strangtI We can, however, fully account for the sensation, for we have ex- perienced it, and are surprised that the cause did not occur to so reflective a person as our German friend. It was the prison of the English language which held him down : the painful effort and constraint felt by an individual who, conversing in a foreign tongue imperfectly known, cannot express himself with as much freedom as he thinks, are so irksome, that scarcely any gratifica- tion arising froM other sources can compensate for it. When the Prince entered France, familiar with French from his youth, like all court Germans, he felt at home : no expression could pass that he was not master of—not a shade of meaning flit across a conversation that he could not detect.
If proof were wanting of the inferiority of France, look at the part of the book which relates to it, and compare it with that re- specting England : there is not one subject in the French part that calls forth a single remark, observation, or description, that is worth its ink: all—except the account of his visit to Beau Bauai- MELL, which is exact and clever—is commonplace routine, of theatres, exhibitions, Palais Royal, millinery, bon-bons, and si- milar miseries.
But Ireland is the country for an observer ; and if the descrip- tion of it by Prince PUCKLER does not astonish all Europe, we are very much mistaken. It will be a revelation—a chapter of wonders and marvels without end. The author will be accused of caricature ; while at the same time curiosity will be so far piqued, that we are certain the Continental tourists will set out to Holy- head the moment they land at Dover, just as they used to inquire the way to Edinburgh before they had fairly got into London. WALTER SCOTT made them Highland-mad, and now Prince PUCKLER will bite them with an Irlando-mania. Ireland, indeed, may well astonish them : it is an enigma to every Englishman of reflection. It is a land of savages joined to the most civilized kingdom of the world—it is inhabited by the wildest, the rudest, and at the same time the shrewdest and most imaginative people in Europe—the most generous, yet the most blood-thirsty —the most incapable of restraint, and yet the most oppressed—a nation of individuals who are animated by feelings of the most ro- mantic and noble description at one moment, and the next breath- ing the most horrible denunciations of revenge, and as soon again sunk in all the agonies of remorse. And all this within a few hours' sail of steady and liberal England, and what is more, in the thrall and under the scourge of this same enlightened country. A Ca- tholic population and a Protestant Church—a spirit of nationality and a foreign and oppressive government—a people that spurn the yoke and starve under it—talent, nay genius, as common as the green grass, and yet without a literature—gallantry and generosity joined with coarseness and vulgarity of manner—admirable speeches and weak reasoning—the finest orators and the worst statesmen—these are but a very few of the anomalies of this ex- traordinary land.
But let us to our Prince: his adventures will prove more enter- taining than we could hope to be, even on his own ground. First, we will give a specimen of the neighbourhood of Dublin, or rather of its inhabitants—the beggars.
" Having seen enough of the city, I have begun my rides in the neigh- bourhood, which is much more beautiful than its appearance at my first approach, on the least favourable side, led me to expect. A road com- manding charming views,—first of the bay, which is intersected by a mole five miles in length, and bounded at either extremity by the two light-houses of Dublin and Howth, rising like columns in the distance ; then of the mountains of Wicklow, some clothed with wood, some rising like sugar-loaves high above the others ; and lastly, along an avenue of noble elms by the side of a canal,—brought me to the Phoenix Park, the Prater of Dublin, which in no respect yields to that of Vienna, whether we regard its expanse of beautiful turf for riding, long avenues for driv- Inc"a, or shady walks. A large but ill-proportioned obelisk is erected here Lo the Duke of Wellington. I found the park rather empty, but the streets through which I returned full of movement and bustle. The dirt, the poverty, and the ragged clothing of the common people often exceed all belief. Nevertheless they seem always good-natured, and sometimes have fits of merriment in the open streets which border on madness ;— whiskey is generally at the bottom of this. I saw a half-naked lad dance the national dance in the market-place so long, and with such violent exertion, that at last he fell down senseless amid the cheers of the specta- tors, totally exhausted, like a Mahommedan dervise." " The streets are crowded with beggar-boys, who buzz around one like flies, incessantly offering their services. Notwithstanding their extreme poverty, you may trust implicitly to their honesty; and wretched, lean, and famished as they appear, you see no traces of melancholy on their open, good-natured countenances. They are the best-bred and most ,contented beggar-boys in the world. Such a little fellow will run by your horse's side for hours, hold it when you alight, and go on any errand you like; and is not only contented with the few pence you give him, but full of gratitude, which he expresses with Irish hyperbole. The Irish- man appears generally more patient than his neighbours, but somewhat degraded by long slavery.
I was witness among other things to this :—A young man had pasted up a wrong play-bill : the manager of the theatre came up and hit him a slap on the face, and otherwise ill-treated him, without his making any resistance :—an Englishman would have made instant reprisals."
Now for another trait of national manners, first in a lady, and next in a road-side peasant; both of which are truly characteristic.
" Another friend, of yet older date, Mr. W—ts, to whom I had once an opportunity of rendering some service in Vienna, paid me a visit this morning, and offered me his country-house as a residence. He had scarcely quitted me, when I was told that Lady B—, an Irish peeres', And one of themost beautiful women in the country, whose acquaintance /had cultivated during the last season in the metropolis, was in: her car- riage below, and wished to speak to me. As I was still in the most absolute nee"' I told the waiter, (a perfect Jocrisse,Ewhose Irish blunders' daily amuse me), that I ins not dressed, as he saw' but that would toe:ready immediately. 'Hemmouficed the state'of my toilet; but added, '
de son chef,' that my Lady had better come meat when he came back and told me that Lady B— had laughed very much, and had bid him say that she would willingly wait, but that to pay gentlemen morning visits in their chambers was not the custom in Ireland.
" In this answer appeared the cordial, frank, and good-natured cha- racter of the true Irishwoman, which I had already learned to love and admire. A prudish .Englishwoman would have driven away in high dis- pleasure, and perhaps have ruined the reputation of a young man for such a qui pro quo' as this : for in English society people do not only stumble at things which in other countries produce quite a contrary effect, but the 4 it is said' in the mouth of an influential person is a two-edged sword. ' He has a bad character' is sufficient to shut a hundred doors against a stranger. An Englishman is much less guided by his own observation than is generally imagined : he always attaches himself to some party, with whose eyes he sees.
" In the afternoon I went to dine at my friend's villa. The road was very agreeable. It began with the Phoenix Park, and followed the course of the Liffey, the river which flows through Dublin, where its beautiful quays, stone and iron bridges, add so much to the embellishment of the town. Here it has a rural and romantic character, bordered with the broad leaves of the tussilago, and enclosed by soft hills and verdant
thickets. I asked a beggar whom I met, how far it was to park, and whether the road continued equally beautiful all the way. Long life to your honour !' exclaimed he, with Irish patriotism, only keep right on, and you never saw any thing more, beautiful in this world!"
Next follows, in a few lines, a very comic description of an Irish Cicerone.
" This 'cicerone' was a pretty, and, as usual, half-naked, boy of about eleven ; his dress was a specimen of an Irish toilet, worthy of mention. He wore the coat of a grown man, which, besides many dia- phanous places, was deficient in a sleeve and a half, and one flap, while the other streamed after him like the tail of a comet. Neckcloth, waist- coat, and shirt were dismissed, as wholly superfluous; and to make amends, the remains of a pair of red plush breeches made a most magnificent appearance, though in somewhat strong contrast with the naked legs beneath. To see this figure scramble over the rocks like a squirrel, sing- ing all the while bits of Tommy ' Moore andWalter Scott, was certainly characteristic. As he led me to the cave, at a point where the passage was rather slippery, he cried, Oh you can come on very well ; I brought Sir Walter Scott here, and he climbed over the worst places, though he had a lame foot' He could talk of nothing else ; and recited rapidly four lines which Scott or Moore, I forget which, had composed in the cavern. These people are so exactly suited to the wild and ruin-clad country, that without them it would lose much of its romantic interest."
The following is a sketch of the same class.
" We arrived very late on the race-course,' and saw little of this day's sport. The sight of the people was however extremely curious and interesting to me. In many points of view this nation is really semi- barbarous. The universal want of decent clothing among the lower classes, even on festivals like the present; their utter inability to resist ardent spirits, so long as they have a penny in their pockets ; the sudden and continual wild quarrels and national pitched bat- tles with the shillelah (a 'murderous sort of stick which every man keeps hidden under his rags), in which hundreds take part in a mi- nute, and do not desist till several are left dead or wounded on the field ; the frightful war-whoop which they set up on these occasions ; the re- venge for an affront or injury, which is cherished and inherited by whole villages : on the other hand, the light-hearted carelessness which never thinks of the coming day; the heartfelt merriment, forgetful of all want and suffering ; the kind hospitality which ungrudgingly shares their last morsel ; the unreserved cordiality with the stranger, who makes any ad- vances to them ; the natural fluency and eloquence which they have ever at command ;—all are characteristics of a half-civilized people. "Hundreds of drunken men accompanied our carriages as we drove from the race-course to the town, and more than ten times, fights arose
among them. The confluence of guests was so great that we with diffi- culty found a miserable lodging:—our dinner was however good, and very abundant."
In the same style, and as a further specimen of the lower class, we give the following sample of native Irish acuteness.
" The beautiful view of yesterday evening enticed me to take a nearer survey of what I had beheld at a distance. My obliging friend speedily fitted out an equipage for this purpose, a little ' char a bane,' which was drawn by two horses tandem (one horse before another). We deter- mined to visit Lake Corrib, Cong and its caverns, and to return in the night. After four hours' smart trotting, and some little accidents to our frail tackle, we reached Cong-, at a distance of twenty miles, where we ate a breakfast we had brought with us, of lobster prepared after the Irish fashion. Knives and forks were not to be had, so that we adopted the Chinese mode of eating. We then set out to the caverns, accom- panied as usual by a half-naked cortege.
" Every one of them was on the watch to do us some service : if I stooped to pick up a stone, ten or a dozen scrambled for it, and then asked for money ; if there was a gate to open, twenty rushed to it, and expected a like reward. After I had given away all my small money, came one who affirmed that he had shown me some trifle or other. I unwillingly refused him, and told him my purse was empty. Oh,' said he, a gen- tleman's purse can never be empty!'—no bad answer ; for under the form of a compliment lurks a sort of reproach. `You look too much like a gentleman' not to have money, but if you are so ungenerous as not to give any, you are not a true gentleman ; and, if you really have none, still less are you one' The crowd felt this, and laughed till I bought my deliverance from him."
Only one more sketch of the poor ; who are too wretched, and too merry, not to be looked on with interest. " We found the ragged potato-eating people everywhere gay and joy- ous. They always beg, to be sure, but they beg laughing, with wit, hu- mour, and the drollest expressions, without importunity, and without rancune' if they get nothing. Most striking, amid such singular poverty, is the no less singular honesty of these people ; perhaps, however, the one arises out of the other, for luxury makes us covetous, and the poor man can often bear the privation of necessaries more easily than the rich of superfluities. " We saw a number of labourers sitting by the road-side on heaps of stone, which they were breaking. My companion said, 'Those are con- querors ; their whole business is to, break in pieces and destroy, and they rise on the ruins they make' Meanwhile our driver blew his horn to announce the post, for which, as with us, every thing must make way.: the tone, however, came forth with such difficulty and sounded so
"I began really to feel uneasy, in earnest,—not half in jest, as the day streamed through the night.
a foaming wave chased by the storm sprang upon me like a huge monster,
and scattered the narrow cleft far behind me with its spray. Here was
really a difficult situation. Bare inaccessible rocks surrounded me on in the provinces, we have some very amusing anecdotes of Lady every side,—before me rolled the ocean,—there was nothing for me but to MonoAres society. The exactness and discriminativeness of this retreat. But if I had lost my way, as I could not but suspect, how could sketch of her Ladyship, and the very pleasing account he gives I reckon on meeting my guide, even by returning; and if I did not meet of her domestic life, will, while it amuses, prove the correctness of him, where was I to pass the night ? With the exception of O'Connell's old castle, there was no hope of meeting with the least trace of a shelter the author's observation. We all know Lady MORGAN, and can for twenty miles round. I was already shivering with cold and wet, and pretty well judge of the effect her manners, opinions, and talents my constitution would certainly not carry me through a bivouac in such ought to have on a liberal and well-informed foreigner, of good a night. I had doubtless cause for some alarm. It was useless, however, taste and experience in good society. Irish society is one of the to consider : I must ride back, that was clear ; and as quickly as possible. most fruitful subjects a writer could choose ; and he neither could My horse seemed to have come to the same conclusion ; for, as if inspired with new force, he bore me away from the spot at a have a better text nor a better beacon—we do not say guide— gallop. But would you believe it : a black figure was again destined than the authoress of the Wild Irish Girl. to help me in my difficulty. You will say this is too much. ' Ce n'est We are not sure that Lady MORGAN will be quite content with pas ma faute ; le vrai souvent n'est pas le vraisemblable' In short, I saw the Prince's report of her hospitalities. Assuredly she, who has a black figure glide like a dim phantom across my path, and disappear introduced every foreign title of eminence into her travels, cannot behind. the rocks. Invocations, prayers, promises, were in vain.Was it a smuggler, allured to this coast by the ample facilities it offers ? or a complain of her name being taken a liberty with. The Prince is superstitious peasant, who took my unhappy person for a ghost ? At all quite candid with respect to her, and in tact pays her a greater events it appeared that he did not choose to venture from his hiding- compliment in deeds than in words. He seems to have spent every place, and I began to despair of the help I had thought at hand; when spare moment in Dublin at her house ; though he confesses suddenly his head peeped out close to me from tae cleft of a rock. I soon that Lady MORGAN'S principal charm lay in her nieces. His succeeded in tranquillizing his fears, and- he explained to me the puzzle of the road terminating in the sea. "rhis road was made for low water : reports of the amusement he met with in the society of Lady the tide is now,' he said, ' about half in; a quarter of an hour later it is MORGAN are too entertaining to be omitted; and we are naturally impossible to pass; but now, if you'll pay me well, I will try and bring desirous of learning what foreigners think of one who appears to you through,—but we must not lose a moment.' With these words he think of none but them. seated himself at one, bound on the horse behind me, and we made The following passages contain the Prince's anecdotes of cer- what speed we could back to the sea, which was rolling with great ra- pidity. to inly one of the cleverest and most remarkable women of the pre- " I felt a strange sensation as we now appeared deliberately to sent day. plunge down into the stormy sea, and had to make our difficult way amid " I spent a very pleasant evening to-day at Lady M—'s. The corn- the white waves and the rocks, which looked like ghosts in the dim twi- pany was small, but amusing, and enlivened by the presence of two very light. pretty friends of our hostess, who sang in the best Italian style. I talked " We had the greatest trouble too with the horse : however, the black a great deal with Lady M— on various subjects, and she has talent man knew the ground so perfectly that we reached the opposite coast in and feeling enough always to excite a lively interest in her conversation. safety, though bathed up to the arms in salt-water. On the whole, I think I did not say enough in her favour in my former " Unluckily, the terrified beast shyed again here at a projecting rock, letter; at any rate, I did not then know one of her most charming quali- and broke both the rotten girths directly in the middle,—a mischance ties,—that of possessing two such pretty relatives. for which there was no remedy here. After all my disasters, I had the " The conversation fell upon her works, and she asked me how I liked agreeable prospect of riding the last six miles balancing on the loose sad- her Salvator Rosa? ' I have not read it,' replied I; ' because' (1 added by dle. My black guide had, indeed, given me the clearest directions for the way of excusing myself, ' tent bien que malt) ' I like your fictions so prosecution of my journey ; but it was now so dark that the landmarks much, that I did not choose to read any thing historical from the pen of were no longer visible, the most imaginative of romance writers." 0, that is only a romance,' " The road lay, as it appeared to me, across a wide moor, and was at said she; • you may read it, without any qualms of conscience." Very first quite level. After half an hour of rough and stumbling trotting, well,' thought I; ' probably that will apply to your travels to,'—but this during which I pressed my knees as hard as possible together, that I I kept to myself. 'Atli said she, ' believe me, it is only ennui that sets mi.ht not lose my saddle, I remarked that the road turned again to the right into the higher range of mountains ; for the climbing grew steeper I try to forget it in writing.' (Probably the Lord Lieutenant had not in- - and more continual. Here I found a woman, who was passing the night vited her, or some other great personage had failed in his engagement to with her pigs or goats. The road branched off into two divisions, and I . her, for she was quite out of spirits.) '.What a fearful puzzle is this asked her which I must take to reach Derrinane Abbey ? '.0h ! both lead: world 1' said she : 'Is there a presiding power or not 1 And if there be there,' said she; ' but that on the left is two miles nearer.' Of course I one, and he were malevolent 1 what a horrible idea!" But in Heaven's piteously, that we all laughed. A pretty boy, of abolit twelve, looking took this, but soon found to my cost that it was practicable only for like a personification of happiness and joy, though half naked, was sit- goats. I execrated the old witch and her traitorous intelligences—my ting on a heap of stones, hammering. He shouted with mischievous glee, poor horse exhausted himself in vain efforts to climb through the blocks and called out to the angry driver, ' Oh, ho, friend, your trumpet has of stone, and at length, half stumbling, half falling, be threw both saddle caught cold ; it is as hoarse as my old grandmother : cure it directly with and me. It was impossible to keep the saddle on him alone.; it fell down a glass of potheen, or it will die of a consumption before you reach incessantly, and I was obliged to load my own shoulders with it, and to Galway 1' A loud laugh from all the labourers followed as chorus. lead my horse besides. Till now I had kept in pretty good temper ;—the `There,' said my companion, ' there you see our people,—starvation and spirit was still willing, but the flesh began to be weak :—the man on the laughter,—that is their lot. Would you believe that, from the number cliff had said, only six miles further, and you are there ; and now, after of labourers and the scarcity of labour, not one of these men earns half an hour's hard riding, the woman insisted upon it that it was still enough to buy sufficient food ; and yet every one of them will spare some- six miles, the shortest way, to Derrinane. I began to fear that this thing to his priest : and if you go into his cabin, will give you half of his mountain fortress was not to be found, and that I was the sport of last potato and a joke into the bargain ?'" Kobolds, who bandied me from one to another. I seated myself on a The traveller, naturally desirous of seeing the great men of Ire- stone quite out of heart, fevered with alternate heat and cold; when,
like the voice of an angel in the wilderness, the shouts of my guide re-
land, visited O'CONNELL in his castle ; and his enthusiasm was sounded in my ear, and I soon heard the trampling of his horse's hoofs. evidently trial-proof, to bear him through the difficulties of the He had taken quite a different way through the interior of the mountains, approach to the strong-hold of the "descendant of the ancient to avoid the sea, and had luckily met the woman whose direction I had Kings of Ireland." The extract is somewhat long, but the interest followed. of the subject will carry the reader through, as it did the adven- " In the delicious feeling of present security, I forgot all my disasters,
loaded my deliverer with the saddle and my wet cloak, gave up my horse
Curer. to his guidance, and seated myself upon his, thus making what speed I " At length it began to grow dark just as I reached a part of the coast might. We had, in fact, five miles yet to ride, and that through a moun-
which assuredly it would be difficult to parallel. Foreign travellers have tarn pass surrounded by precipices,—but I can give you no further de- probably never been thrown into this desolate corner of the earth, which scription of the road. The darkness was so complete, that I was obliged belongs rather to owls and sea-mews than to men, and of whose awful to strain my eyes to the utmost to follow the man, who appeared only like wildness it is difficult to give an idea. Torn, jagged coal-black rocks, adim shadow flitting indistinctly before me. I perceived by the stumbling with deep caverns, into which the sea breaks with a ceaseless thunder, of my horse that we were on uneven ground ; I felt that it was a con- and then again dashes over the top of the tower-like crags its white foam; tinual alternation of steep ascents and descents ; that we waded through which, drying, is borne by the wind in compact masses, like locks of two deep and rapid mountain-torrents,—but that was all :—now and then, wool, over the highest points of the mountains ;—the wailing cry of the indeed, I suspected, rather than saw, that a bare wall of rock rose by my restless fluttering sea-fowl, piercing through the storm with its shrill side, or the deeper black beneath me betrayed the precipice which monotonous sound ;—the incessant howl and roar of the undermining yawned below.
waves, which sometimes suddenly dashed over my horse's hoofs, and then "At length,—at length a bright light broke through the darkness ; the ran hissing hack again ;—the comfortless removal from all human help ; road grew more even ; here and there a bit of hedge was visible ; and in the ceaseless pattering rain, and the coming on of night on an uncertain a few minutes we stopped at the gate of an ancient building standing on
and entire ly unknown road. the rocky shore, from the windows of which a friendly golden radiance before. Your eager search for the romantic will turn out as ill for you, " The tower clock was striking eleven ; and I was, I confess, somewhat as for the Sorrowful Knight, thought I, and urged on my tired horse to anxious as to my dinner, especially as 1 saw no living being, except a man his utmost speed. He stumbled every moment over the loose stones, in a dressing-gown at an upper window. Soon, however, i heard sounds and with great difficulty I at length brought him into a heavy trot. My in the house; a handsomely-dressed servant appeared, bearing silver anxiety was increased by O'Connell's letter. He had written to me that candlesticks, and opened the door of a room, in which I saw with astonish- the proper approach to his house was from Killarney,—that carriages merit a company of from fifteen to twenty persons sitting at a long must cross thence by water ; but that the road from Kenmare was the table, on which were placed wine and dessert. A tall handsome man, of
most difficult, and that I must therefore be sure to provide myself with a cheerful and agreeable aspect, rose to receive me, apologized for having safe guide. And, as is generally the case when we pursue one train of given me up in consequence of the lateness of the hour, regretted that I thoughts with great pertinacity, a popular tale of Croker's which 1 had had made such a journey in such terrible weather, presented me in a cur- lately read came into my mind. ' No land,' says he, 'is better than the sory manner to his family, who formed the majority of the company, and coast of Inveragh to be drowned in the sea ; or if you like that better, then conducted me to my bedroom. This was the great O'Connell. to break your neck on shore.' Yet thought I—and here my horse sud- " On my return to the dining-room I found the greater part of the denly stumbled, shycd, and turned with such a leap as I had hardly given company there assembled. I was most hospitably entertained ; and it the old mare credit for. I now found myself in a narrow pass. It was would be ungrateful not to make honourable mention of Mr. O'Connell's still light enough to see several steps before me clearly, and I could not old and capital wine. As soon as the ladies had quitted us, he drew his understand what had struck this panic into my horse. Making all the re- seat near me, and Ireland was of course the subject of our conversa- sistance he could, and only in obedience to the admonitions of my shille- tion. He asked me if I had yet seen many of the curiosities of Ireland t lah, he at length went on again ; - but in a few steps I perceived with asto- whether I had been at the Giant's Causeway ?—' No,' replied I, laughing, nishment that the path, which had appeared pretty well tracked, termi- ' before I visit the Giant's Causeway, I wished to see Ireland's Giants P- rated directly in the sea. The bridle nearly dropped out of my hand, as and therewith drank a glass of claret to his high undertakings."
In addition to a great many admirable sketches of Irish society guide—
. my pen in motion ; our destiny in this world is such a wretched one thit
name,' replied I, how can a woman of sense, like you,—forgive me,— utter such nonsense ?" Ah, I know well enough all that you can say on that subject,' said she ; certainty no man can give me.' This obscurity in a most acute mind was unintelligible to me, even in a woman. (` Ne vous en fachez pas, Julie 1')
" Lady M—'s husband, formerly a physician, now a philosopher and author, and what the French call un bon homme,' affecting more- over the man of taste and judgment, gave me a book of his, containing a thoroughly materialist system of philosophy : there are, however, some good things in it, and it has altogether more merit than I should have expected from the author. I was busied in reading it half the night. From the unconnected and daring character of the whole, I however con- cluded either that Lady M— had written a considerable portion of it herself, or at least that these views of things had thrown her mind into such a state of doubt and confusion, that she had actually imagined the question whether God might not possibly be malevolent. Your celebrated people are but men like others, Heaven knows I—scholars and states- men, philosophers and poets. At every acquaintance of this sort that I make, I think of Oxenstierna, who, when his young son expressed some hesitation and diffidence as to the part he should play at the Congress of Minster in the presence of so many great and wise men, replied with a smile, Ah, my son, depart in peace, and see by what manner of men the world is governed !"'—Vol. II. p. 102-105.
" My last and longest visit this morning was to the sweet girls I met at Lady M—'s. I took them some Italian music, which they sang like nightingales, and with a total absence of all pretension and all affec- tation. Their father is a distinguished physician ; and like most of the `doctors' of eminence here, a ' Baronet' or Knight,' a title which is not esteemed a mark of nobility in England, although some families of great antiquity and consideration bear it. There are, however, Creti and Men, as among our lower nobility. A Baronet is generally called not by his family, but by his Christian, name ; as Sir Charles, Sir Anthony; as in Vienna they say, Graf Tinterle, Kiirst Muckerle, and so on. The medical Knight of whom I now speak, re- ceived his title in consequence of the establishment of excellent baths, and is a very interesting man. His wife seemed to me still more remark- able for talent. She is very superior to her celebrated relative in accurate tact and judgment, and possesses an extraordinary power of mimicry, whose comic bent does not always spare her own family. The daughters, though perfectly different, are both very original ; the one in the gentle, the other in the wild genre.' I always call her Lady M—'s wild Trish girl' All three have a characteristic nationality,* and indeed have never quitted Ireland. " In the evening Lady M— told me that the translations of her works, which were often so bad as to destroy the sense, were a source of great vexation to her. In her Letters on Italy, for instance, where she says of the Genoese, They bought the scorn of all Europe,' the translator read for scorn, corn, and wrote, ' Genes dans ce temps achetait tout le bid de l'Europe.' "—Vol. II. p. 108, 109.
" I spend a great deal of my time with the little nightingales, see Lady M— frequently, and avoid general society as much as I can. The young ladies keep a burlesque journal, in which they write a chronicle of their daily ' fata,' illustrated with the most extravagant drawings, which is in- finitely diverting. After that, we sing, talk, or act pictures, in which the mother, with her talent for the drama, contrives admirable dresses out of the most heterogeneous materials. You would have laughed if you had seen the wild Irish girl,' with moustaches and whiskers marked with char- coal, pocket-handkerchief and stick in her hand, come in as my carica- ture. These girls have an inexhaustible fund of grace and vivacity, ex- tremely un-English, but truly Irish.
" The eldest, who is eighteen, has brown eyes, and hair of a most sin- gular kind and expression : the latter has a sort of deep golden hue without being red, and in the former is a tranquil humid glow, over which comes at times a perfectly red light like that of fire; but yet it always remains only an intense glow, not a lightning-flash like that which often glances from the eyes of the little wild girl. With her, all is flame ; and under her maidenly blushes there often breaks out the deter- mination and high spirit of a boy. Indiscreet, and carried away by the impulse of the moment, she sometimes gives way to too great vivacity, which however, from her sweet simplicity and inimitable grace, does but enhance the charm which distinguishes her. To-day, when my carriage was announced, I exclaimed with a sigh, Ah, que cette voiture vient mal a propos!" Eh Bien,' cried she, with the perfect air of a little hussar (she was still in male costume), envoyez la an diable A very severe and reproving look from her mamma, and one of terror from her gentle sister, covered all of her little face, that was not concealed by her dis- guise, over and over with scarlet ; she cast down her eyes ashamed, and looked indescribably pretty. " Lady M— received me to-day in her authoress-boudoir, where I found her writing, not without some view to effect, elegantly dressed, and with a mother-of-pearl and gold pen in her hand. She was employed on a new book, for which she had invented a very good title,' Memoirs of Myself and for Myself.' She asked me whether she should put of my- self' or' for myself' first. I decided for the former as the more natural order; for I observed she must write, before she can have written. Upon this we fell into a sportive contest, in which she reproached me with my German pedantry, and maintained that hitherto bonnet blanc' and
blanc bonnet' had been the same ; the justice of which I was obliged to admit. The motto she had chosen was from Montaigne, Je n'enseigne pas, je raconte.' She read me some passages, which I thought very good. This woman, who appears so superficial, is quite another being when she takes the pen in her hand.
" She told me that she intended to go next winter to Paris, and wished to go on into Germany, but that she had a great dread of the Austrian police. I advised her to go to Berlin. Shall not I be persecuted there ?' said she. God forbid!' rejoined I : in Berlin talent is worshipped only I advise you to take at least one of your pretty young friends, who is fond of dancing and dances well, so that you may be invited to the balls at court, and may thus have an opportunity of becoming acquainted with our amiable and accomplished young military men : they are well worth knowing, and you may not find any other way of being introduced to them.' At this moment her husband entered, and begged me to get his philosophical work translated into German, that he might not figure there only as aid-de-camp to his wife, but fly with his own wings. I promised all he wished ; but observed that a new prayer-book would have a better chance of success at the present day than a new system of phi- losophy, of which we had enough already."—Vol. H. p. 111-114.
• This is seldom to be met with in fashionable society, from the tyrannical de- mands of English education, which have a very wide influence in the three king- doms. YOU observe, therefore, that I often confound English and Irish under one common name; I ought more properly to call them British.
a e • • • • " I dined at Lady M—'s. She had invited me by a note, such as I have receive* dozen of duringhy stay here :—I must mention them as charac- teristic, for I never in my life saw worse calligraphy or a more negli- gent style from a lady's pen. The aim of the great authoress was mani- fest ;—to announce the most perfect insouciance,' the most entire abandon,' in the affairs of ordinary life; just as the great solo dancers in Paris affect to walk with their toes turned in, that they may not betray the dancer by profession. At table Lady M—, with her aid-de-camp K. Cl—, faisoient les frais d'esprit oblige.' Mr. Shiel, too, appeared in the character of an agreeable man of the world. The most amusing part of the entertainment, however, was the acting of proverbs by Lady M— and her sister, who both extemporized admirably in French. Among others, they performed Love me, love my dog,' as follows : " Dramatis persona :—Lady M—, an old coquette ; Lady C—, an Irish fortune-hunter ;' her eldest daughter, the French femme-de- chambre ; the youngest, a captain of the Guards, a lover of the lady. Scene the first :—Lady M— with her maid at her toilet. Confiden- tial advice of Josephine, in the course of which she betrays various laugh. able secrets of the toilet. Distress of the coquette at the first appear. ance of wrinkles. Assurances of the Abigail that, by candle-light, no- body can be handsomer. As a proof of this, the various lovers are adduced, and love-affairs of former times recapitulated. La Comtesse convient de ses conquetes,' and with much humour draws a picture of her triumphs. Chut cries the waiting-maid, j'entends le capitaine? This personage, an exclusive, enters with great fracas,' carrying a little dog under his arm, and after some tender compliments tells her that he is obliged to rejoin his regiment, and wishes to leave her his little Fidele, that the fair Countess may never forget to remain fidele' to him. Bur- lesque protestations, sobs, embraces, farewells. Scarcely is the Captain gone, when the Irishman appears with a marriage-contract in his hand, by which the Countess is to assign over her whole fortune to him. Like a man well versed in womankind, he treats her somewhat cavalierly, though with a display of passion, so that after a feeble defence and a little scene, she consents. Meanwhile the Irishman observes the little dog, and asks with some surprise whose it is. She stammers out a sort of apologetic answer. O'Connor MacFarlane now plays the part of the in- furiate jealous lover. The women vainly attempt to appease him ; he storms, and insists on the instant dismissal of the intruder. The Countess makes an attempt to faint,—but all is in vain ; even Josephine, who during the discussion of the marriage-contract has just received a purse behind her mistress's back, takes the part of the incensed Irishman, who with one hand holds back his lady, and with the other at length throws the unfortunate little dog out at the door. But, alas I at this very mo- ment the Captain returns to bring the collar which he had forgotten, and Fidele jumps into his arms. The terrified women take to flight ; the men measure each other with their eyes. O'Connor MacFarlane utters dreadful menaces ; but the Captain draws his sword, and his antagonist jumps out at the window. The skeleton is meagre; but the spirit, hu- mour, and wit, by which it was filled out, rendered it extremely enter- taining. The imperfections of the costume made it only more piquant. The ladies, for instance, had put on a coat and waistcoat over their own dresses, and stuck a hat on their heads ; their swords were riding-whip, and Fidele a muff."—Vol. II. p. 131-134.
About this time the ' author tells us he was obliged to re- sort to what he calls his grand expedient; which is, " to give his word of honour to himself" either to do or not to do some- thing: we do not know whether this had any reference to society he seems to have found so agreeable, and from which he very shortly after makes his escape. Of England we can only spare room for one sketch : it repre- sents a scene which every one has witnessed, but not seeing it with the eye of a foreigner, probably no one has laughed at be- fore—an English coffeeroom at an inn.
"It is very diverting to observe the perfect uniformity with which all behave, as if machines out of one workshop. This is particularly obser- vable in their eating: though placed at separate tables, and no individual taking the slightest notice of any other, they all seemed to have exactly the same usages, exactly the same gastronomic tastes. Nobody eats soup, which, unless bespoken beforehand, is not to be had. (This is the reason, by- the-by, for which my old Saxon servant left me. He declared that he could not exist any longer in such a state of barbarism—without soup !) A large joint of roast meat is commonly carried from one to another, and each cuts off what he likes. This is accompanied by potatoes or other vegetables, boiled in water; and a plat de menage' filled with sauces is placed on every table ; beer is poured out, and there, in a common way, ends the dinner. Only the luxurious eat fish before the meat.
" But now follows the second stage. The table-cloth is removed ; clean plate, and knife and fork, laid ; wine and a wine-glass, and a few miserable apples or pears, with stony ship-biscuits, are brought : and now the diner seems to begin to enjoy tranquillity and comfort. His countenance assumes an expression of satisfaction ; apparently sunk in profound meditation, leaning back in his chair and looking fixedly straight before him, he suffers a sip of wine to glide down his throat from time to time, only breaking the death-like silence by now and then laboriously craunching his rocky biscuits. " When the wine is finished, follows stage the third,—that of digestion-. All motion now ceases: his appetite being satiated, he falls into a sort of magnetic sleep, only distinguishable from the natural by the open eyes. After this has lasted for half an hour or an hour, all at once it ceases; he cries out, as if under the influence of some sudden possession, Waiter, my slippers ;' and seizing a candle, walks off gravely to his chamber to meet his slippers and repose. "This farce acted by five or six men at once has often amused me more than a puppet-show ; and I must add, that with the exception of the incident of the slippers, pretty nearly the same scene is represented in the first clubs of the metropolis. I scarcely ever saw an Englishman read at dinner ; I am not sure that they don't think it an act of indecorum— perhaps of impiety—like singing or dancing on a Sunday forinstance. Perhaps however, it is only a rule of dietetics converted by time into a law which no vivacity of temper can break through. " Englishmen who do not belong to the aristocracy, and are not very rich, usually travel without a servant by the mail or stage-coach, which deposits them at the inn. The man who waits on strangers to the coach, cleans their boots, &c. has the universal appellation Boots.' It is, ac- cordingly, Boots' who brings your slippers, helps you to pull off your boots, and then departs ; first asking at what time you will have, not as in Germany, your coffee, but your hot water to shave. He appears with it punctually at the appointed hour, and brings your clothes cleanly brushed. The traveller then hastens to dress himself and to return to his beloved coffee-room, where the ingredients of breakfast are richly spread
upon his table. To this meal he seems to bring more animation than to any other, and indeed I think more appetite ; for the number of cups of tea, the masses of bread and butter, eggs and cold meat, which he de. Yours, awal ea silent envy in the breast, or rather in the stomach, of the less capable foreigner. He is now not only permitted, but enjoined (by custom, his gospel) to read. At every cup of tea he unfolds a newspaper of the size of a table-cloth. Not a single speech, crien con, murder or other catastrophe invented by the accident-maker' in London, escapes him.
"Like one who would rather die of a surfeit tlian leave any thing uneaten which he had paid for, the systematic Englishman thinks that, having called for a newspaper, he ought not to leave a letter of it unread. By this means his breakfast lasts several hours, and the sixth or seventh cup is drunk cold. I have seen this glorious meal protracted so long that it blended with dinner; and you will hardly believe me when I assure you, that a light supper followed at midnight without the company quitting the table."
We ought to express our gratitude to the translator, not only for introducing this work to our notice, but also for having per- formed his task in so admirahle a manner. It is the first really readable translation from the German that we have met with.