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finished their dinner, and proceeded in their pamphlet, which they concluded in the afternoon. “Mr. Savage then imagined that his task was over, and expected that Sir Richard would call for the reckoning, and return home; but his expectations deceived him, for Sir Richard told him that he was without money, and that the pamphlet must be sold before the dinner could be paid for, and Savage was therefore obliged to go and offer their new production for sale for two guineas, which with some difficulty he obtained. Sir Richard then returned home, having retired that day only to avoid his creditors, and composed the pamphlet only to discharge his reckoning.” Steele's acquaintance with Pope, who wrote some papers for his Guardian, appears in the letters and other works of the wits of that time. Johnson supposes that it was his friendly interference, which attempted to bring Pope and Addison together after a jealous separation. Pope's friendship with Congreve appears also in his letters. He also dedicated the Iliad to Congreve, over the heads of peers and patrons. The dramatist, whose conversation most likely partook of the elegance and wit of his writings, and whose manners appear to have rendered him a universal favourite, had the honour, in his youth, of attracting the respect and regard of Dryden. He was publicly hailed by him as his successor, and affectionately bequeathed the care of his laurels. Dryden did not know who had been looking at him in the coffee-house. Already I am worn with cares and age, And just abandoning th' ungrateful stage; Unprofitably kept at Heaven's expense, I live a rent-charge on his providence. But you, whom every Muse and Grace adorn, Whorn I foresee to better fortune born, Be kind to my remains; and 0 defend, Against your judgment, your departed friend! Let not th' insulting foe my fame pursue, But shade those laurels which descend to you.
Congreve did so, with great tenderness. Dryden is reported to have asked Milton's permission to turn his Paradise Lost into a
Innocence, or the Fall of Man; a work, such as might be expected from such a mode of alteration. The venerable poet is said to have answered, “Ay, young man, you may tag my verses, if you will.” “Be the connexion, however, of Dryden with Milton, or of Milton with Davenant, as it may, Dryden wrote the alteration of Shakspeare's Tempest, as it is now perpetrated, in conjunction with Davenant. They were great hands, but they should not have touched the pure grandeur of Shakspeare. The intimacy of Davenant with Hobbes is to be seen by their correspondence prefixed to Gondibert. Hobbes was at one time secretary to Lord Bacon, a singularly illustrious instance of servant and Inaster. Bacon also had Ben
rhyming tragedy, which he called the State of
Jonson for a retainer in a similar capacity; and Jonson's link with the preceding writers could be easily supplied through the medium of Greville and Sidney, and indeed of many others of his contemporaries. Here then we arrive at Shakspeare, and feel the electric virtue of his hand. Their intimacy, dashed a little, perhaps, with jealousy on the part of Jonson, but maintained to the last by dint of the nobler part of him, and of Shakspeare's irresistible fineness of nature, is a thing as notorious as their fame. Fuller says: “Many were the wit-combates betwixt (Shakspeare) and Ben Jonson, which two I behold like a Spanish great galleon and an English man-ofwar: master Jonson (like the former) was built far higher in learning: solid, but slow in his performances. Shakspeare, with the English man-of-war, lesser in bulk, but lighter in sailing, could turn with all tides, tack about, and take advantage of all winds, by the quickness of his wit and invention.” This is a happy simile, with the exception of what is insinuated about Jonson's greater solidity. Butlet Jonson show for himself the affection with which he regarded one, who did not irritate or trample down rivalry, but rose above it like the sun, and turned emulation to worship. Soul of the age : Th' applause! delight! the wonder of our stage My Shakspeare, rise! I will not lodge thee by Chaucer or Spenser, or bid Beaumont lie A little further, to make thee a room ; Thou art a monument without a tomb ; And art alive still, while thy book doth live, Ano we havoie to rod, and While to *
He was not of an age, but for all time.
THE anglers are a race of men who puzzle us. We do not mean for their patience, which is laudable, nor for the infinite non-success of some of them, which is desirable. Neither do we agree with the good old joke attributed to Swift, that angling is always to be considered as “a stick and a string, with a fly at one end and a fool at the other.” Nay, if he had books with him, and a pleasant day, we can account for the joyousness of that prince of punters, who, having been seen in the same spot one morning and evening, and asked whether he had had any success, said No, but in the course of the day he had had “a glorious nibble.”
But the anglers boast of the innocence of their pastime; yet it puts fellow-creatures to the torture. They pique themselves on their meditative faculties; and yet their only excuse is a want of thought. It is this that puzzles us. Old Isaac Walton, their patriarch, speaking of his inquisitorial abstractions on the banks of a river, says,
Here we may
Before death poet and a man of wit, is more good-natured jored. and uneasy.” Cotton's pleasures had not been Are too, confined to fishing. His sympathies indeed
And to be lamented.
So saying, he “stops the breath” of a trout, by plucking him up into an element too thin to respire, with a hook and a tortured worm in his jaws—
Are but toys.
If you ride, walk, or skate, or play at cricket,
or at rackets, or enjoy a ball or a concert, it is “to be lamented.” To put pleasure into the faces of half a dozen agreeable women, is a toy unworthy of the manliness of a wormsticker. But to put a hook into the gills of a carp—there you attain the end of a reasonable being ; there you show yourself truly a lord of the creation. To plant your feet occasionally in the mud, is also a pleasing step. So is cutting your ancles with weeds and stones—
Other joys Are but toys.
The book of Isaac Walton upon angling is a delightful performance in some respects. It smells of the country air, and of the flowers in cottage windows. Its pictures of rural scenery, its simplicity, its snatches of old songs, are all good and refreshing; and his prodigious relish of a dressed fish would not be grudged him, if he had killed it a little more decently. He really seems to have a respect for a piece of salmon; to approach it, like the grace, with his hat off. But what are we to think of a man, who in the midst of his tortures of other animals, is always valuing himself on his harmlessness; and who actually follows up one of his most complacent passages of this kind, with an injunction to impale a certain worm twice upon the hook, because it is lively, and might get off All that can be said of such an extraordinary inconsistency is, that having been bred up in an opinion of the innocence of his amusement, and possessing a healthy power of exercising voluntary thoughts (as far as he had any), he must have dozed over the opposite side of the question, so as to become almost, perhaps quite, insensible to it. And angling does indeed seem the next thing to dreaming. It dispenses with locomotion, reconciles contradictions, and renders the very countenance null and void. A friend of ours, who is an admirer of Walton, was struck, just as we were, with the likeness of the old angler's face to a fish. It is hard, angular, and of no expression. It seems to have been “subdued to what it worked in ;” to have become native to the watery element. One might have said to Walton, “Oh flesh, how art thou fishified 1” He looks like a pike, dressed in broadcloth instead of butter.
The face of his pupil and follower, or, as he fondly called himself, son, Charles Cotton, a
had been a little superabundant, and left him, perhaps, not so great a power of thinking as he pleased. Accordingly, we find in his writings more symptoms of scrupulousness upon the subject, than in those of his father. Walton says, that an angler does no hurt but to fish ; and this he counts as nothing. Cotton argues, that the slaughter of them is not to be “repented ;” and he says to his father (which looks as if the old gentleman sometimes thought upon the subject too) There whilst behind some bush we wait The scaly people to betray, We'll prove it just, with treacherous bait, To make the preying trout our prey.
This argument, and another about fish's being made for “man’s pleasure and diet,” are all that anglers have to say for the innocence of their sport. But they are both as rank sophistications as can be ; sheer beggings of the question. To kill fish outright is a different matter. Death is common to all; and a trout, speedily killed by a man, may suffer no worse fate than from the jaws of a pike. It is the mode, the lingering cat-like cruelty of the angler's sport, that renders it unworthy. If fish were made to be so treated, then men were also made to be racked and throttled by inquisitors. Indeed among other advantages of angling, Cotton reckons up a tame, fishlike acquiescence to whatever the powerful choose to inflict. We scratch not our pates, Nor repine at the rates Our superiors impose on our living: But do frankly submit, Knowing they have more wit In demanding, than we have in giving. Whilst quiet we sit, We conclude all things fit, Acquiescing with hearty submission, &c. And this was no pastoral fiction. The anglers of those times, whose skill became famous from the celebrity of their names, chiefly in divinity, were great fallers-in with passive obedience. They seemed to think (whatever they found it necessary to say now and then upon that point) that the great had as much right to prey upon men, as the small had upon fishes; only the men luckily had not hooks put into their jaws, and the sides of their cheeks torn to pieces. The two most famous anglers in history are Antony and Cleopatra. These extremes of the angling character are very edifying. We should like to know what these grave divines would have said to the heavenly maxim of “Do as you would be done by.” Let us imagine ourselves, for instance, a sort of human fish. Air is but a rarer fluid ; and at present, in this November weather, a supernatural being who should look down upon us from a higher atmosphere, would have some reason to regard us as a kind of pedestrian carp. Now fancy a Genius fishing for us. Fancy him baiting a great hook with pickled salmon, and twitching up old Isaac Walton from the banks of the river Lee, with the hook through his ear. How he would go up, roaring and screaming, and thinking the devil had got him
* The reader may see both the portraits in the late editions of Walton,
Are but toys.
We repeat, that if fish were made to be so treated, then we were just as much made to be racked and suffocated ; and a footpad might have argued that old Isaac was made to have his pocket picked, and be tumbled into the river. There is no end of these idle and selfish beggings of the question, which at last argue quite as much against us as for us. And granting them, for the sake of argument, it is still obvious, on the very same ground, that men were also made to be taught better. We do not say, that all anglers are of a cruel nature; many of them, doubtless, are amiable men in other matters. They have only never thought perhaps on that side of the question, or been accustomed from childhood to blink it. But once thinking, their amiableness and their practice become incompatible; and if they should wish, on that account, never to have thought upon the subject, they would only show, that they cared for their own exemption from suffering, and not for its diminution in general.”
triumph, an everlasting bonfire light;" and says it has saved him “a thousand marks in links and torches,” walking with it “in the night, betwixt tavern and tavern.” See how he goes heightening the account of his recruits at every step :—“You would think I had a hundred and fifty tattered prodigals, lately come from swine-keeping, from eating draff and husks.-A mad fellow met me on the way, and told me, I had unloaded all the gibbets, and pressed the dead bodies—No eye hath seen such scarecrows.--I'll not march through Coventry with them, that's flat.—Nay, and the villains march wide betwixt the legs, as if they had gyves on ; for indeed I had most of them out of prison.—There's but a shirt and a-half in all my company;-and the half shirt is two napkins, tacked together, and thrown over the shoulders like a herald's coat without sleeves.” An old schoolfellow of ours (who, by the way, was more fond of quoting Falstaff than any other of Shakspeare's characters) used to be called upon for a story, with a view to a joke of this sort; it being an understood thing, that he had a privilege of exaggeration, without committing his abstract love of truth. The reader knows the old blunder attributed to Goldsmith about a dish of green peas. Somebody had been applauded in company for advising his cook to take some ill-dressed peas to Hammersmith, “because that was the way to Turn'em Green ;” upon which Goldsmith is said to have gone and repeated the pun at another table in this fashion:—“John should take those peas, I think, to Hammersmith.” “Why so, Doctor " “Because that is the way to make 'em green.” Now our friend would give the blunder with this sort of additional dressing: “At sight of the dishes of vegetables, Goldsmith, who was at his own house, took off the covers, one after another, with great anxiety, till he found that peas were among them ; upon which he rubbed his hands with an air of infinite and prospective satisfaction. “You are fond of peas, Sir t” said one of the company. “Yes, Sir, said Goldsmith, “particularly so :—I eat them all the year round;—I mean, Sir, every day in the season. I do not think there is anybody so fond of peas as I am.” “Is there any particular reason, Doctor, asked a gentleman present, “why you like peas so much, beyond the usual one of their agreeable taste '-' No, Sir, none whatsoever: —none, I assure you’ (here Goldsmith showed a great wish to impress this fact on his guests): ‘I never heard any particular encomium or speech about them from any one else : but they carry their own eloquence with them : they are things, Sir, of infinite taste.” (Here a laugh, which put Goldsmith in additional spirits.) But, bless me!’ he exclaimed, looking narrowly into the peas:—‘I fear they are very ill-done :
they are absolutely yellow instead of green'
And so much earth as was contributed (here he put a strong emphasis on green);
By English pilots, when they heaved the load ;
Or what by the ocean's slow alluvion fell, and you know, peas should be emphatically
Of shipwrecked cockle and the muscle shell. green :- greenness in a pea is a quality as essential, as whiteness in a lily The cook Glad then, as miners who have found the ore, has quite spoilt them :-but I'll give the rogue They, with mad labour, fished the land to shore: a lecture, gentlemen, with your permission.'
And dived as desperately for each piece
Of earth, as if it had been of ambergreece ; Goldsmith then rose and rang the bell violently
Collecting anxiously smal loads of cluy. for the cook, who came in ready booted and Less than what building swallows bear away ; spurred. “Ha !' exclaimed Goldsmith, 'those Or than those pills which sordid beetles rowl, boots and spurs are your salvation, you knave. Transfusing into them their dunghill soul, Do you know, Sir, what you have done ?'_'No, He goes on in a strain of exquisite hyperSir.'_ Why, you have made the peas yellow, bole : Sir. Go instantly, and take 'em to Hammer
How did they rivet with gigantic piles smith.' "To Hammersmith, Sir?' cried the man, Thorough the centre their new-catched miles ; all in astonishment, the guests being no less so : And to the stake a struggling country bound. - please Sir, why am I to take 'em to Ham
Where barking waves still bait the forced ground;
Building their wat'ry Babel far more high mersmith ?'-'Because, Sir,' (and here Gold
To catch the waves, than those to scale the sky, smith looked round with triumphant antici Yet still his claim the injured occan layod, pation) that is the way to render those peas And oft at leap-frog o'er their steeples played ; green.'
As if on purpose it on land had come There is a very humorous piece of exaggera
To shew them what's their Mare Liberumti
A dayly deluge over them does boil; tion in Butler's Remains,-a collection, by the
The earth and water play at level-coyl ; bye, well worthy of Hudibras, and indeed of The fish oft-times the burgher dispossessed, more interest to the general reader. Butler And sat, not as at meat, but as a guest : is defrauded of his fame with readers of taste And oft the Tritons, and the Sea-nymphs, saw
Whole shoals of Dutch served up for cabillau. who happen to be no politicians, when Hudibras
Or, as they over the new level ranged, is printed without this appendage. The piece
For pickled herrings, pickled Heeren changed. we allude to is a short description of Hol Nature, it seemed, ashamed of her mistake, land :
Would throw their land away at duck and drake:
Therefore necessity, that first made kings, A country that draws fifty foot of water,
Something like government among them brings : In which men live as in the hold of nature;
For as with Pigmys, who best kills the crane, And when the sea does in upon them break,
Among the hungry he that treasures grain, And drowns a province, does but spring a leak,
Among the blind the one-eyed blinkard reigns,
Bo rules among the drowned he that drains. That feed, like cannibals, on other fishes,
Not who first sees the rising sun, commands ; And serve their cousin-germans up in dishes.
But who could first discern the rising lands; A land that rides at anchor, and is moored,
Who best could know to pump an earth so leak, In which they do not live, but go aboard.
Him they their lord and country's father speak ; We do not know, and perhaps it would be To make a bank was a great plot of state; impossible to discover, whether Butler wrote
Invent a shovel, and be a magistrate. his minor pieces before those of the great patriot We can never read these and some other Andrew Marvell, who rivalled him in wit and ludicrous verses of Marvell, even when by excelled him in poetry. Marvell, though born ourselves, without laughter. later, seems to have been known earlier as an author. He was certainly known publicly before him. But in the political poems of Marvell there is a ludicrous character of Hol
XIII.-GILBERT ! GILBERT ! land, which might be pronounced to be either The sole idea generally conveyed to us by the copy or the original of Butler's, if in those historians of Thomas à Becket is that of a anti-Batavian times the Hollander had not haughty priest, who tried to elevate the relibeen baited by all the wits; and were it not gious power above the civil. But in looking probable, that the unwieldy monotony of his more narrowly into the accounts of him, it character gave rise to inuch the same ludicrous appears that for a considerable part of his life imagery in many of their fancies. Marvell's he was a merry layman, was a great falconer, wit has the advantage of Butler's, not in learn- feaster, and patron, as well as man of business; ing or multiplicity of contrasts (for nobody and he wore all characters with such unaffected ever beat him there), but in a greater variety of pleasantness, that he was called the Delight of them, and in being able, from the more poetical the Western World. turn of his mind, to bring graver and more
On a sudden, to every body's surprise, his imaginative things to wait upon his levity. friend the king (Henry II.), from chancellor He thus opens the battery upon our amphi.
* Dryden afterwards, of fighting for gain, in his song of bious neighbour :
Come, if you dari Holland, that scarce deserves the name of land,
" The Gods from above the mad Labour behold." As but the off-scouring of the Britisha sand;
+ A Free Occan.
made him archbishop; and with equal suddenness, though retaining his affability, the new head of the English church put off all his worldly graces and pleasures (save and except a rich gown over his sackcloth), and in the midst of a gay court, became the most mortified of ascetics. Instead of hunting and hawking, he paced a solitary cloister; instead of his wine, he drank fennel-water ; and in lieu of soft clothing, he indulged his back in stripes. This phenomenon has divided the opinions of the moral critics. Some insist, that Becket was religiously in earnest, and think the change
natural to a man of the world, whose heart
had been struck with reflection. Others see in his conduct nothing but ambition. We suspect that three parts of the truth are with the latter; and that Becket, suddenly enabled to dispute a kind of sovereignty with his prince and friend, gave way to the new temptation, just as he had done to his falconry and fine living. But the complete alteration of his way of life, the enthusiasm which enabled him to set up so different a greatness against his former one — shows, that his character partook at least of as much sincerity, as would enable him to delude himself in good taste. In proportion as his very egotism was concerned, it was likely that such a man would exalt the gravity and importance of his new calling. He had flourished at an earthly court: he now wished to be as great a man in the eyes of another; and worldly power, which was at once to be enjoyed and despised by virtue of his office, had a zest given to its possession, of which the incredulousness of mere
insincerity could know nothing.
Thomas à Becket may have inherited a romantic turn of mind from his mother, whose story is a singular one. His father, Gilbert Becket, a flourishing citizen, had been in his youth a soldier in the crusades; and being taken prisoner, became slave to an Emir, or Saracen prince. By degrees he obtained the confidence of his master, and was admitted to his company, where he met a personage who became more attached to him. This was the Emir's daughter. Whether by her means or not does not appear, but after some time he contrived to escape. The lady with her loving heart followed him. She knew, they say, but two words of his language, – London and Gilbert ; and by repeating the former she obtained a passage in a vessel, arrived in England, and found her trusting way to the metropolis. She then took to her other talisman, and went from street to street pronouncing “Gilbert " A crowd collected about her wherever she went, asking of course a thou
her heart in slavery, was living in good condition. The crowd drew the family to the window ; his servant recognised her; and Gilbert Becket took to his arms and his bridal bed, his far-come princess, with her solitary fond word.
XIV. FATAL MISTAKE OF NERVOUS DISORDERS FOR MADNESS.
SoME affecting catastrophes in the public papers induce us to say a few words on the mistaken notions which are so often, in our opinion, the cause of their appearance. It is much to be wished that some physician, truly so called, and philosophically competent to the task, would write a work on this subject. We have plenty of books on symptoms and other alarming matters, very useful for increasing the harm already existing. We believe also there are some works of a different kind, if not written in direct counteraction ; but the learned authors are apt to be so grand and etymological in their title-pages, that they must frighten the general under. standing with their very advertisements.
There is this great difference between what is generally understood by the word madness, and the nervous or melancholy disorders, the excess of which is so often confounded with it. Madness is a consequence of malformation of the brain, and is by no means of necessity attended with melancholy or even ill-health. The patient, in the very midst of it, is often strong, healthy, and even cheerful. On the other hand, nervous disorders, or even melancholy in its most aggravated state, is nothing but the excess of a state of stomach and blood, extremely common. The mind no doubt will act upon that state and exasperate it ; but there is great re-action between mind and body: and as it is a common thing for a man in an ordinary fever, or fit of the bile, to be melancholy, and even to do or feel inclined to do an extravagant thing, so it is as common for him to get well and be quite cheerful again. Thus it is among witless people that the true madness will be found. It is the more intelligent that are subject to the other disorders; and a proper use of their intelligence will show them what the disorders are.
But weak treatment may frighten the intelligent. A kind person, for instance, in a fit of melancholy, may confess that he feels an inclination to do some desperate or even cruel thing. This is often treated at once as madness, instead of an excess of the kind just mentioned ; and the person seeing he is thought out of his wits, begins to think himself so, and at last acts as if he were. This is a lamentable evil; but it does not stop here. The children or other relatives of the person may become victims to the mistake. They think