THE HATFIELD ABSURDITIES.
THE grand event of the week, judging from the space it occupies in the Daily Papers, is undoubtedly the " Festivities," as they are called, at Hatfield. The Morning Herald and the Morning Post have been profuse on the subject; and on Friday the Post pub- lished a despatch containing " Further Particulars of the "splen- did fete." People have a perfect right to make themselves as ridiculous as they please; but then, we trust, the right of others to laugh at them is equally well understood.
The festivities of Hatfield appear to have been absurdity en r?gle,—that is to say, something that would be famous fun for the observer, if it were not so abominably dull. The richest piece of absurdity becomes a bore, on being embroidered and elaborated into an unwieldy piece of tedious folly. As for the festivities, thank Heaven, our sins are not so manifold as to have imposed our pre- sence by way of penance ; and to read of them over the breakfast- table, is far from unpleasant. In fact, it has constituted at too many tables a dangerous piece of fun : folks have laughed beyond the limits of decorum, and to the imminent danger of tea and tea- services. We trust our old friend GEORGE CRUIRSHANK will take the hint and get up a series of " tabbyloos," as the footmen call them : he will make a far better Master of the Arts on the oc- casion than either WILKIE or HAYTER.
WILKIE, indeed, does not, seem to have done his business well. HAYTER drew up the curtain at the right moment; but Lady LYNDHURST, as the virgin Jewess, was looking the wrong way upon her sturdy wooer Bois Guilbert. We think Lady LYND- HAMM should have been left to the management of her own posi- ton on the occasion; and we will I*Je bou.nd to say, that a lady of her intelligent experience would lave committed no such solecism as is here Morning Posted.
"Amongst the tableaux, one of the most remarkable was that taken from the description in Ivanhoe, where Itebecca, to avoid the pursuit of the Knight, threatens to &row herself from the battlements of the Castle. Lady Lyndhurst, covered with jewels, and braking remarkably well, personated Rebecca, and Lord Grimston the Knight their attitudes, however, were more for effect than according to nature ; and Rebecca, instead of looking at the Knight, when she is supposed to exclaim, that if he advanced a step further she would throw herself headlong from the embrasure,' seemed to look quite another way. Whether Wilkie, who placed the parties, is to blame for this, is more than we can say."
And then there is Lady SALISBURY, in her old scarlet gown, which the newspapers politely term her "favourite carnation robe;" and Lord Hi LLSBOROUGH, famous for his expert butchery, in a complete suit of mail, as Cwur de Lion—he should have played Front-de-Boeuf to the father of Lady LYNDHURST'S Virgin. Count WALEW SKI, in armour of gold, and Lords GRIMSTON and WILTON and OSSULSTON, &C., in all the bravery they could pick up among the property-merchants, alicts,the frippery-shops, of London. It is lucky Sir WALTER is dead : what must he have felt at the idea of 'such incarnations of his admirable personages ! Formal misses, stiff lordlings, dissipated countesses, and stupid single gentlemen, by the aid of frippery-dealers and milliners, transmogrified into a -series of the most brilliant inventions of the human intellect And this not dramatized, but only dressed : the lordlings did not ven- ture to speak—that would indeed have destroyed the illusion; they could only look—and, good Heavens! how they must have looked !
There is scarcely any length of absurdity that personal vanity will not go • when joined with a little aristocratic countenance, there is hardly any ridicule that even the hangers-on—the juste milieu of society—will not brave. Here is a parcel of people assuming cha- racters (having excellent reasons, no doubt, for being dissatisfied with their own) which must necessarily expose them to the univer- sal laugh of their acquaintance from John o'Groat's to Land's End : and at this moment, no doubt, they are congratulating themselves on having bored an "uncommon large" audience for a great length of time. But not only do they thus get up a tenantry and a neigh- bourhood to admire and wonder at their costly follies—they must also print it! Whorkenerous martyrs of folly ! Here is stolidity in robes, volunteering itself to become the fun of the kingdom for the whole of an ensuing week. This is patriotism ; and we are happy to say, wholly of a Conservative character.
However, we will not be ill-natured : we like our fool—his cap and bells set off the hearse and the mourning-coach, the prison and the poor-house. The splendid absurdities of Hatfield read -well with the Factory Reports, and the account of industrious poor creatures sent to gaol for selling apples and stinking fish in the sweet purlieus of Shoreditch Church. It is life ; and, together, makes up our morning meal of intelligence—the aigre-doux of the Daily Press.