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“ If vessels were built stronger and safer, there would be fewer losses, and consequently fewer insurance-brokers, agents, and underwriters; and it then might happen that my employer might have no employment for himself, and consequently would have none for me. In fact, with all this immense establishment of Lloyd's, which is supported by the losses of vessels and merchandize, and which are paid for by a tax levied from the public, the business would almost entirely be taken away from it.”
“ But could you not give the information to the public, without its being known where it came from?"
“ Would the loss of my situation not be punishment sufficient, with. out losing my money, and getting the ill will of all parties in addition ?”
“ You would not get the ill will of the public.”
“ No. But did you ever know the public to reward its benefactor yet? Look to James Watt ; look to Henry Bell ; look even to the great Sir Isaac Newton. No, no. A grateful and discerning public takes special care that its benefactors shall be first duly starved to death, and then it raises monuments to perpetuate their memories. The public gratitude is very much like Falstaff's description of honour; therefore, I'm for none on't.'.
“I never thought our business had any connection with Burking by wholesale before."
“ It is rather a harsh expression, but it all tends to the same end, that of getting money from others.”
“ Do you consider that any vessels are lost accidentally on purpose ?" “ Yes. Many." “ From what reason do you suppose so ?” “ From the cupidity of human nature.” “ Please to explain yourself.”
“Where you see trials in the newspapers every year, and almost every month, of people insuring their properties, and then setting fire to the premises, to defraud insurance companies, depend upon it the same thing is done, to a much greater extent, with shipping, with a different element, being water instead of fire ; and where a vessel is lost, accidentally on purpose, in 99 cases out of 100, detection becomes impracticable, and is never attempted, and the loss is effected therefore without risk. But it all comes off the shoulders of the public, who are well able to bear it."
“ But should not means be taken to inform the public of this ?"
“ I question much whether the public would thank any person to inform them ; since, when they are robbed, and a portion of them drowned, without the survivors suspecting that they might both be prevented, 'where ignorance is bliss, 'twou'd be folly to be wise.""
“ But why do not shipowners and underwriters look to prevent these losses?"
“ For the reasons I gave you before—that it is frequently the interest of a shipowner that his vessel should be lost; and in no case where his vessel is fully insured does he need to care about it being lost ; and that, if there were no losses at sea, there would be no sea insurances. And hark !a word in your ear; but we must keep this to ourselvesinstead of a vessel and a half being lost every day, some underwriters, shipowners, and ship-builders, do not care a fig if there were a vessel and a half lost every hour, and the crew and passengers drowned, so long as it fills their pockets.”
“ Then, how is this crying evil to be remedied ?"
“ Only by the public voice being loudly and clamourously raised against it; or more effectually still, by prohibiting all sea insurances, when, take my word for it, there will not be one wreck for four that take place at present; and this would be more effectual than any interference of the Legislature, which the ingenuity of man might contrive means to evade.”
“ But if sea insurances were prohibited, would not that check commerce ?"
“ On the contrary, it would very much increase it. There is no difference of opinion, that if sea insurances were prohibited, vessels would be made very much stronger and safer, and at least a half of the shipwrecks which will otherwise take place would be prevented.”
“ But would not that be too great a risk for the merchant and shipowner ?"
“ No. They would then have their property preserved in fact and in reality, instead of paying a tax upon it in an insurance office, which does not preserve it, and which is borne by the public. Indeed, if we look upon merchant shipping in its true light, as a bridge connecting distant countries together, it is evident the stronger and safer we can make that bridge, the less tax there will be required to be levied from passengers and goods; and on the other hand, the weaker and more insecure the bridge is, and the more repairs it requires, the greater tax must be levied from passengers and goods, to keep it up, and to pay for the repairs ; and which expenses must just be paid for again by the consumers of the commodities, so that a stronger bridge would very much facilitate and increase, instead of checking commerce.”
“ By your reasoning, then, it seems to be a pity that ever sea insurance was invented ?"
“ It is chargeable with the loss of hundreds of thousands of human lives, and hundreds of millions of property.”
“ I always thought it was a good thing before.”
“ And so many who have not considered the subject think yet. But so much are the best institutions of men liable to be abused and perverted, that there is no doubt that the cause of three-fourths of the wrecks and damages to goods which take place in the world is owing to Insurance ! Insurance! Insurance !"
The conversation being here ended, the clerks rose and walked away.
THE TORY HEARTS OF ENGLAND. The Tory hearts of England
Monopolists of EnglandHow wofully they quail !
You soon shall have your due ! Each brazen brow is clouded now,
We fear you not-for we have got Each cheek is deadly pale
A vengeful rod for you. The eyes that for the people's wo
That rod you brandished in the west, Would never shed a tear,
Till blood in torrents ranAre quenched and dim. Right well they You reared your Mammon's dragon crest know
O'er outraged Hindostan.
The Tory Peers of England-
How wrathfully they frown! Now let them sing their sorrowing Their hateful yoke we burst-we broke With candle, book, and bell,
Their rotten boroughs down. For we will lay their idols low,
And all who thwart our patriot band, And give their pride a fall
From England's shores may fly, We'll turn their scarlet and their show And seek some more congenial land To sackcloth and to gall.
Beneath a foreign sky.
PERCY BYSSHE SHELLEY.
( Continued from No. VII.)
Our attention is next claimed by Shelley's lyrical poetry. Under this head we include a numerous and rather miscellaneous class of poems. Strictly speaking, lyrical poetry means such as, from its brevity, or from the structure of its versification, is susceptible of being set to music. It may be narrative, descriptive, even didactic; or it may be the involuntary utterance, in one or two melodious lines, of a random thought. The exquisite delicacy of sentiment, and varied melody of versification which characterize Shelley's poetry, rendered him better adapted to excel in this kind of composition than any poet of the day. Poor Keates, in his ode to the nightingale, evinced a kindred power, but he has left us little in this way. Wordsworth wants varied melody, and Byron wrote with too manifest an exertion. Moore has got a high character as a lyrist, simply because his songs have been set to music, without reference to the merits of his versification, and without reference to his eternal conceits. In the examples we are about to subjoin, the reader must not be startled by the introduction of some pieces which would scarcely harmonize with some of his drawing-room and harpsichord associations. We speak not of what is, but of what is susceptible of being enhanced in value by musical intonation. The Germans, more musical, give a wider range to the subject of their songs, and would understand us better. This is our only apology for introducing here
I bring fresh showers for the thirsting flowers,
From the seas and the streams;
In their noonday dreams.
The sweet birds every one,
As she dances about the sun.
And whiten the green plains under,
And laugh as I pass in thunder.
And their great pines groan aghast ;
While I sleep in the arms of the blast.
Lightning my pilot sits
It struggles and howls at fits;
This pilot is guiding me,
In the depths of the purple sea;
Over the lakes and the plains,
The Spirit he loves remains;
Whilst he is dissolving in rains.
And his burning plumes outspread,
Leaps on the back of my sailing rack,
When the morning star shines dead;
Which an earthquake rocks and swings,
In the light of its golden wings.
Its ardours of rest and of love,
From the depth of heaven above,
As still as a brooding dove.
Whom mortals call the moon,
By the midnight breezes strewn;
Which only the angels hear,
The stars peep behind her and peer;
Like a swarm of golden bees,
Till the calm rivers, lakes, and seas,
Are each paved with the moon and these.
And the moon's with a girdle of pearl ;
When the whirlwinds my banner unfurl.
Over a torrent sea,
The mountains its columns be.
With hurricane, fire, and snow,
Is the million-coloured bow;
While the moist earth was laughing below.
And the nursling of the sky;
I change, but I cannot die.
The pavilion of heaven is bare,
Build up the blue dome of air,
And out of the caverns of rain,
I arise and unbuild it again. The following exquisite lines will be acknowledged by all to belong to the class under which we have ranked them. There is something drowsy in the versification, like the hum of a distant waterfall, heard between sleeping and waking; and the images borne in succession across the languid fancy, the low breathing winds and twinkling stars, the odours of flowers and the dying song of the nightingale, the fainting beneath kisses, half-stifle us in an atmosphere over-impregnated with bliss. “ The spirit in the feet,” which leads the lover to his mistress's window, is in harmony with all the rest—it is the yearning advance of the sleep-walker. But let the song speak for itself.
LINES TO AN INDIAN AIR. I arise from dreams of thee
The nightingale's complaint, In the first sweet sleep of night,
It dies upon her heart, When the winds are breathing low, As I must upon thine, And the stars are shining bright:
Beloved as thou art ! I arise from dreams of thee,
O lift me from the grass ! And a spirit in my feet
I die, I faint, I fail! Has led me_who knows how ?
Let thy love in kisses rain To thy chamber window, sweet!
On my lips and eyelids pale. The wandering airs they faint
My cheek is cold and white, alas! On the dark, the silent stream
My heart beats loud and fast, The champak odours fail
Oh ! press it close to thine again, Like sweet thoughts in a dream;
Where it will break at last. Change the measure. Here is tempest and rage conjured up by impassioned words.
" And fears't thou, and fear'st thou ? The white hail is dashing,
And see'st thou, and hear'st thou? The lightnings are glancing,
And drive we not free
O'er the terrible sea,
I and thou?"
One boat-cloak did cover The thunder is tolling,
The loved and the loverThe forest is swinging,
Their blood beats one measure,
They murmur proud pleasure
Soft and low ;-
While around the lashed ocean, Wreck-strewn and in motion :
Like mountains in motion, Bird, beast, man, and worm,
Is withdrawn and uplifted,
Sunk, shattered and shifted
To and fro.
IV. « Our boat has one sail,
In the court of the fortress And the helmsman is pale ;
Beside the pale portress, A bold pilot I trow,
Like a blood-hound well beaten,
The bridegroom stands, eaten
On the topmost watch-turret, Put off gaily from shore !”
As a death-boding spirit, As she spoke, bolts of death
Stands the grey tyrant father, Mixed with hail, specked their path To his voice the mad weather, O'er the sea.
Seems tame; And from isle, tower and rock,
And with curses as wild The blue beacon cloud broke,
As ere clung to child, And though dumb in the blast,
He devotes to the blast
The best, loveliest and last
Of his name!
Like mosaic, paven ;
Each a gem engraven.
A lake's blue chasm.