A Hundred Years Ago
THE SPECTATOR, JUNE 13TH, 1829.
STATE Or THE COUNTRY.
- The House of Commons met yesterday afternoon. Mr. Peel had hopes that the distress would pass away more speedily than was anticipated. The assertion of one gentleman, that the capital of the country was diminiahing, Mr. Peel answered by a simple and striking fact—namely, that the taxable rental of Lancashire had increased in thirteen years from three to four ;millions, or 33 per cent. He could not allow that our commerce was carried on by the applieation of capital from which the capitalist received no return ; such might be the case for a single year ; but when he heard the same thing stated for eight or ten years, his answer was, that under such circumstances the capital would be withdrawn.
Mr. Atwood thought it a reproach to the House that they had done nothing ; and the people would be led to conclude that they were incompetent to the purposes of legislation. Mr. Maxwell would have property taxed higher, and the labouring classes less. Mr. Robinson and General Gascoyne alluded to the depressed state of the shipping interest, as an evidence of the decayed state of our commerce. Mr. D. W. Harvey and Mr. Maberly were of opinion that a substantial diminution of the taxes was a certain measure of relief. It was folly, said Mr. Harvey, to suppose that the business of the country could not be carried on at a less expense than eighteen millions. We must either reduce our taxation or augment our currency. LAND -SHIPS.
Scarcely a day passes in England without the introduction of some new project of improvement ; and in this respect France is rapidly following our example. Among the late introductions in Paris, is a sort of stage-coach, called an " omnibus," containing eighteen persons in the interior, perpetually in motion on the Boulevards, and in almost all the large streets. Not content with these unwieldly conveyances, the Parisians have announced a projet of an omnibus which is not only to exceed all others in velocity, but will be large enough to contain one hundred persons. In form it resembles the hull of a ship, with two decks ; it is supported by seven wheels, so constructed as not to be visible and it will be drawn by horses, and move on an inclined plane made for the
. It is destined to run from Vincennes to Neuilly, by the Priiirosie irg Saint Antoine, the Boulevards and the Champs-Elysees.
A pilot, i with helm in hand, will be able to turnthe carriage or ship at his will, stop or back it, slacken or accelerate its motion according to circumstances. Thus has France discovered at last an element in which her navy may be used with safety and 'profit ; and should this scheme succeed, she will have to boast of possessing at once the finest army and land navy in the world.—From a Correspondent.
BOOKS OF COOKERY.
The book called Apican Morsels is a disgusting affair. We believe the French first conceived the idea of treating dinner as a joke ; the fashion has taken root here, and there has been no end to the nonsense that would-be-wits have scribbled upon the subject. The writer of this thing will, it is to be hoped, disgust them with the silly practice. The man has neither wit nor knowledge : he is some vulgar fellow, who never gives more than eighteenpence for his dinner, or who, if he dines at home, blesses himself that the shoulder of mutton keeps till the fourth day. There is no disgrace in this— quite the contrary, except when a person so living pretends to feed on all the luxuries of the earth, and writes a world of rubbish about dinners, cookery, and manners.