« PreviousContinue »
The parish of South-Green is sand-walk between a double row about seventeen miles from this of flowery shurbs, hardly ever place, and is, in my opinion, the out of blossom. The produce of most pleasing spot of ground in these fields supplies them abunall Yorkshire.--I should have dantly with the means of bread first told you, that our friend, by and beer, and with a surplus yearthe death of a relation, was ly for the poor, to whom they enabled to carry his wife from are the best benefactors of any London with a neat two hundred in the neighbourhood. The husand fifty guineas in his pocket; band brews, and the wife hakeswith which sum he has converted he manages the farm, and she the the old parsonage-house into a dairy; and both, with such skill farm and garden, that even a and industry, that you
would Pelham or a Southcote might think them educated to nothing look upon with pleasure.
else. The house stands upon an emi- Their house consists of two nence within the bending of a parlours and a kitchen below, and river, with about half an acre of two bedchambers and a servant's kitchen garden, fenced in with a room above. Their maid is a good old wall, well planted with poor woman's daughter in the fruit trees. The river that almost parish, whom they took at eleven surrounds this little spot, affords years old, and have made the them fish at all seasons. They handiest girl imaginable. She is catch trout there, and plenty of extremely pretty, and might teem, from two to five pounds marry to her advantage, but she weight. Before the house is a loves her mistress so sincerely, little lawn with trees planted in that no temptation is strong clumps ; and behind it a yard enough to prevail upon her to well stocked with poultry, with a leave her. barn, cow-house, and dairy. At In this sweet retirement they the end of the garden a draw- have a boy and girl ; the boy six bridge leads you to a small piece years old, the girl four; both of of ground, where three or four them the prettiest little things pigs are kept. Here they are that ever were born. The girl is fattened for pork or bacon ; the the very picture of her mother, latter they themselves; with the same softness of heart and, in all my life, I never ate and temper. The boy is a jolly better.
dog, and loves mischief ; but if In the seventh year of this retire- you tell him an interesting story, ment, they have so planted their he will cry for an hour together. little spot, that you can hardly The husband and wife constantly conceive anything more beautiful. go to bed at ten; and rise at six. The fields lie all together, with The business of the day is compasture-ground enough for two monly finished by dinner-time; horses and as many cows, and the and all after is amusement and arable. Every thing thrives in pleasure, without any set forms. their hands. The hedges, all of They are almost worshipped by their own planting, are the the parishioners, to whom the thickest of any in the country, doctor is not only the spiritual and within every one of them is a director, but the physician, the
surgeon, the apothecary, the a little; but his performance lawyer, the steward, the friend, reaches no farther than a short and the cheerful companion. sermon, or paper of verses in The best people in the world are praise of his wife. Every birthfond of visiting them; they call day of the lady is constantly it going to see the wonders of celebrated in this manner; and Yorkshire, and say they never though you do not read a Swift eat so heartily as of the parson's to his Stella, yet there is somebacon and greens.
thing so sincere and tender in I told you, at the beginning of these little pieces, that I could this letter, that they were the never read any of them without the happiest couple of our ac- tears. In the fine afternoons and quaintance; and now I will tell evenings, they are walking armyou why they are so. In the first in-arm, with their boy and girl, place, they love and are delight- about their grounds ; but how ed with each other. Seven years' cheerful, how happy! is not to marriage, instead of lessening be told you. Their children are their affections, has increased hardly so much children as themthem. They wish for nothing selves. But though they love more than what their little in- each other even to dotage, their come affords them; and even of fondness never appears before that little they lay up. Our friend company. I never saw either of shewed me his account of ex- them so much as playing with pences, or rather his wife's ac- the other's hand-I mean only count; by which it appears that when they have known I was they have saved yearly from fif- within sight of them; I have teen shillings to a guinea, exclu- stolen upon them unawares insive of about the same deed, and have been witness to which they distribute among the such words and looks as have poor, besides barley, wheat, and quite melted me. twenty other things. The only With this couple, and in this article of luxury is tea; but the retirement, I have passed my doctor says he would forbid that time since
heard from me if his wife could forget her Lon- how happily I need not say: don education. However, they sel- come and be judge yourselfdom offer it but to their best com- they invite you most heartily. pany, and less than a pound will One thing I nearly forgot to last them a twelvemonth. Wine tell you of them. It makes no they have none, nor will they part of their happiness that they receive it as a present.
can compare themselves with the constant drink is small beer or rest of the world, who want ale, both of which they brew minds to enjoy themselves as in the highest perfection. Exer- they do. It rather lessons than cise and temperance keep them increases it. Their own happiin perpetual health and good- ness is from their own hearts. humour. All the strife between They have every thing they wish them is who shall please and for in this fifty pounds a year and oblige most. Their favourite one another. They make no amusement is reading : now-and- boast of themselves, nor find then, indeed, our friend scribbles fault with any body. They are
sorry I am not as happy as they ; over a full dress hoop of astonishbut are far from advising me to ing circumference, ornamented retire as they have done. I left with three distinct rows of silver a bank note of twenty pounds crosses, the middle row abunbehind me in the room, inclosed dantly the largest ; the crown in a letter of thanks for their upon her head was formed of civilities to me; but it was re- broken beads and pieces of lookturned me this morning at York, ing-glass ; and the child Jesus in a manner that pleased me more held an apple in his hand partly than all the rest of their be- eaten. haviour. Our friend thanked me I might have yielded up my for the favour I intended him; gravity at the burlesque manner but told me I could bestow it in which this part of sacred story better among the poor ; that was caricatured, had not the his wife and he had been looking ridicule, it was so well calculaover the family accounts for last ted to excite, been checked, by month, and that they found me my observing an old man and only a few shillings in their debt; woman, two young men, and that if I did not think they were two female children, kneeling, a thousand times over-paid by the with every mark of devotion, pleasure I had given them, they round the figures. “They are of would be obliged to me for a one house,” said a person who pound of tea, and a little of stood near me ; and in the seHardham's snuff when I got to quel, I found that that house had London.
to boast an holy family. The I hope soon to see you, and to very moment that I looked upon entertain you by the week with them, the spirit of mockery died the particulars of the parson and within me, and a much better spihis wife. Till then,
rit came upon me in its stead. I &c. had no longer eyes to criticise
the figures, nor a heart to break
a jest on their absurdity. As reSUPERSTITION AND PIETY.
presentatives of the blessed virAmidst all my protestant zeal, gin and Redeemer of the world, I have been much struck with they filled me with awe, and I the greater devoutness to be ob- caught so much of unaffected served in places of worship holiness from these humble supamong the papists, than in some pliants, as to hold sacred the of our own churches; and I re- coarsest imitations and symbols of member an instance, where even things divine. a ridiculous and disgustful exhibition of papal absurdity, was veiled by the piety of those who
THE SNUFF-BOX. officiated in the worship. Being There is a remarkable contraat a chapel near Cleves, in Ger- diction in the national character many, among the usual decora- of the English. No people are, in tions of pictures, paintings, flow- some respects, so patriotic, and ers, and crucifixes, I could not none less so in others. We are but take notice of the virgin, in proud of our country, our goa chintz-pattern linen gown, vernment, and laws; we are
vain of the atchievements of our have no occasion to do, for I ancestors ; and often carry our made it.” partiality so far, as to believe “ You made it !"-returned that one Englishman, even of the the owner, with a look of indigpresent day, can beat three nation mingled with contempt. Frenchmen; yet by an extraordi- “ Yes,” said the tradesman, nary kind of fatality (how perni- with a firm countenance, "I cious to the welfare of this made it : and I can tell you kingdom !) -we are led to sup- where you bought it.” pose, that foreigners in general, “ I bought it at Paris,” replied but more especially the French, the gentleman, somewhat conexcel us in every species of in- fused—“ but of whom?" genuity, at a time when England The name of the seller was surpasses all European nations in instantly given.
" But even elegant arts and curious manu- that,” said the owner, “is no factures, as much as she ever proof that you made it.” went before them in feats of “What proof do you require !"
replied the tradesman. I was led to these reflections * Your name,” said the genby an incident that occurred tleman," or some mark by which lately in a public company, of your wares are known.” which I happened to make one. “ Cut it up then," said the A gentleman, just returned from tradesman, “and I will engage Paris, took out a very handsome to pay a dozen of claret, besides machee,
snuff-box, the value of this precious toy, if which was greatly admired, and my mark is not found in the boton which he seemed to set an tom of it.” uncommon value.
- How much The gentleman's pride was too superior is it,” said he, “ to any great to withstand such a chalthing that this country can pro- lenge. The favourite box was duce ! The French take the immediately cut up, and the lead of all Europe, in whatever tradesman's mark found, to the depends on taste and ingenuity. astonishment of the whole comWhat fancy! what fashion! what pany, and to the confusion of the polish ! even in this trifle !" admirer of French taste and in
“ I should be glad to see that genuity. wonderful box, said a plain The tradesman continued thus : dressed man, at some distance. _" I supply the shopkeeper who It was immediately handed to sold this box, with toys to the him. The attention with which amount of some thousands annuhe viewed it, made the gentle- ally ; but I was ignorant till now, man to whom it belonged say, that they were employed to drain “ And pray, sir, what do you the pockets of my credulous think of it ?-you examine it as countrymen, by being retailed to curiously as if you meant to take my lord Anglois, for three times the model of it in your mind.” their original value."
“ That,” replied the trades- “ That,” said I, “is not your man, (for such he happened to fault. You serve your country, be, and from Birmingham) “I by fabricating a commodity vend
CLUDED IN CONVERSATION.
able in foreign markets; and intelligence is really, sir, a most
complain of it. The remedy I
that the term I be for ever exTHE PRONOUN “ I,” TO
cluded all conversations. There
is not, perhaps, one single im(From the world.)
pertinence for foppery in dis
course, that is not imputable to Mr. Editor,
that same little letter I. The I have a complaint to lay be- old man, going to repeat the lie fore you, which, to the best of he has talked himself into a bemy memory, you have not hither- lief of, cries, " I remember to touched upon. The ground of when I was young.” The maiden my complaint, sir, is this. News, of fifty blesses her stars, and you know, never was more fluc
says, I was not such a Airt." tuating than at this moment. The bold colonel tells you,, "I What we are told at breakfast is led on the men, I entered the contradicted by noon, and that breach.” The rake, “ I debauchagain is old by dinner ; the din- ed such a girl, I drank down ner-tale scarcely lasts till coffee, such a fellow.” Now, sir, fond and all is found to be false before
as people are of being foolish, night. And yet, sir, there are they would even consent to be a set of wise men, who are al- wise, if it was not confining their ways satisfied with the last tale, follies to their own dear persons. and constantly assure you they The old man's dull story is only to were all along of that opinion. let you see what he was himself.
Lord, sir, I knew it must be so : The maiden gentlewoman only how could it be otherwise ? I al- means to exemplify her own moways said so :” and though ac- desty, and does not care a pin counts vary to-morrow, it does for all the frailties of her neighnot at all affect them: for bours, but that she has thereby to-morrow they will have been an opportunity of telling you how all along perfectly well acquaint- virtuous she herself is. The soled with just the contrary to what dier never tells
you of a campaign, they knew so well to-day. This but the one he was himself in. everlasting knowledge and secret The rake never tells you of any