« AnteriorContinuar »
TOO HANDSOME FOR ANY THING.
MR. FERDINAND FITZROY was one said his mother. “ My first cousin of those models of perfection of which is the lord chancellor,” said his faa human father and mother can pro- ther; “ let him go to the bar.” The duce but a single example-Mr. Fer- lord chancellor dined there that day; dinand Fitzroy was therefore an only Mr. Ferdinand Fitzroy was introduced son. He was such an amazing favor- to him. His lordship was a little, ite with both his parents that they rough-faced, beetle-browed, hard-fearesolved to ruin him ; accordingly, he tured man, who thought beauty and was exceedingly spoiled, never an- idleness the same thing—and a parchnoyed by the sight of a book, and had ment skin the legitimate complexion as much plum-cake as he could eat. for a lawyer. " Send him to the Happy would it have been for Mr. bar !" said he, “no, no, that will Ferdinand Fitzroy could he always never do !-send him into the army; have eaten plum-cake, and remained he is much too handsome to become a a child.
Never,” says the Greek lawyer.” " And that's true enough, tragedian, ci reckon a mortal happy my lord !” said the mother. till you have witnessed his end.” A bought Mr. Ferdinand Fitzroy a cormost beautiful creature was Mr. Fer- netcy in the regiment of dradinand Fitzroy! Such eyes—such goons. Things are not learned by hair-such teeth—such a figure—such inspiration. Mr. Ferdinand Fitzroy manners, too—and such an irresistible had never ridden at school, except way of tying his neckcloth ! When when he was hoisted; he was, therehe was about sixteen, a crabbed old fore, a very indifferent horseman; uncle represented to his parents the they sent him to the riding-school, propriety of teaching Mr. Ferdinand and everybody laughed at him. Fitzroy to read and write. Though horrid puppy !” said Lieutenant St. not without some difficulty, he con- Squintem, who was very ugly; (if vinced them,- for he was exceedingly he does not ride better, he will disrich, and riches in an uncle are won grace the regiment !” said Capt. Riderful arguments respecting the nur- valhate, who was very good-looking; ture of a nephew whose parents have “if he does not ride better, we will nothing to leave him. So our hero cut him!” said Colonel Everdrill, was sent to school. He was naturally who was a wonderful martinet. “Pooh, (I am not joking now) a very sharp, sir, he will never ride better.” “ And clever boy; and he came on surpris- why will he not ?” ingly in his learning. The school- colonel, he is a great deal too handmaster's wife liked handsome child- some for a cavalry officer !” “ True !" ren. “ What a genius will Master said Cornet Horsephiz. “Very true!” Ferdinand Fitzroy be, if you take said Lieutenant St. Squintem. “We pains with him!” said she, to her must cut him !” said the colonel. husband. “ Pooh, my dear, it is of And Mr. Ferdinand Fitzroy was acno use to take pains with him.” “And cordingly cut. Our hero was a youth why, love ?” “Because he is a great of susceptibility-he quitted the deal too handsome ever to be a scho- regiment, and challenged the colonel. lar."
“ And that's true enough, my The colonel was killed ! dear!” said the schoolmaster's wife. terrible blackguard is Mr. Ferdinand So, because he was too handsome to Fitzroy !” said the colonel's relations. be a scholar, Mr. Ferdinand Fitzroy “ Very true!” said the world. The remained the lag of the fourth form! parents were in despair! They were They took our hero from school.- not rich; but our hero was an only " What profession shall he follow ?" son, and they sponged hard upon the 29 ATHENEUM, VOL. 1, 3d series.
“ Bless you!
" What a
crabbed old uncle. “He is very must marry an heiress.” “I will," clever,” said they both, “ and may do said Mr. Ferdinand Fitzroy. Miss
So they borrowed some thou- Helen Convolvulus was a charming sands of the uncle, and bought his young lady, with a hare-lip and six beautiful nephew a seat in parliament. thousand a-year. To Miss Helen Mr. Ferdinand Fitzroy was ambitious, Convolvulus then our hero paid his and desirous of retrieving his charac- addresses. But what an uproar her ter. He fagged like a dragon-con- relations made about the matter! ned pamphlets and reviews—got Ri Easy to see his intentions,” said cardo by heart-and made notes on “ a handsome fortune-hunter, the English Constitution. He rose to who wants to make the best of his speak. “ What a handsome fellow !” person !”_" handsome is that handwhispered one member. Ah, a some does,” says another;" he was coxcomb!” said another. “ Never turned out of the army and murdered do for a speaker !” said a third, very his colonel ;”—“ never marry a beauaudibly. And the gentlemen on the ty,” said a third ; "he can admire opposite benches sneered and heared! none but himself;"_" will have so Impudence is only indigenous in Mi- many mistresses,” said a fourth ;lesia, and an orator is not made in a “make you perpetually jealous,” said day. Discouraged by his reception, a fifth ;-" spend your fortune,” said Mr. Ferdinand Fitzroy grew a little a sixth ;-" and break your heart," embarrassed. “ Told you so !” said said a seventh. Miss Helen Convolone of his neighbors. Fairly broke vulus was prudent and wary. She down !” said another. “ Too fond of saw a great deal of justice in what his hair to have anything in his head,” was said ; and was sufficiently consaid a third, who was considered a tented with liberty and six thousand wit. “ Hear, hear !” cried the gen- a-year, not to be highly impatient for tlemen on the opposite benches. Mr. a husband ; but our heroine had no Ferdinand Fitzroy sat down-he had aversion to a lover, especially to so not shone ; but, in justice, he had not handsome a lover as Mr. Ferdinand failed. Many a first-rate speaker had Fitzroy. Accordingly, she neither begun worse ; and many a county accepted nor discarded him ; but kept member had been declared a phenix him on hope, and suffered him to get of promise upon half his merit. Not into debt with his tailor and his coach80, thought the heroes of corn laws. maker, on the strength of becoming “Your Adonises never make orators!” Mr. Fitzroy Convolvulus. Time went said a crack speaker with a wry nose. on, and excuses and delays were easily “ Nor men of business, either,” add- found; however, our hero was saned the chairman of a committee, with guine, and so were his parents. A a face like a kangaroo's. “ Poor de- breakfast at Chiswick and a putrid vil !” said the civilest of the set. fever carried off the latter, within one “ He's a deuced deal too handsome week of each other; but not till they for a speaker! By Jove, he is going had blessed Mr. Ferdinand Fitzroy, to speak again! this will never do; and rejoiced that they had left him so we must cough him down.” And Mr. well provided for. Now, then, our Ferdinand Fitzroy was accordingly hero depended solely upon the crabcoughed down.
Our hero was now bed old uncle and Miss Helen Conseven or eight and twenty, handsomer volvulus ;-the former, though a barothan ever, and the adoration of all the net and a satirist, was a banker and a young ladies at Almack's. “ We man of business :-he looked very have nothing to leave you,” said the distastefully at the Hyperian curls and parents, who had long spent their for- white teeth of Mr. Ferdinand Fitzroy. tune, and now lived on the credit of “ If I make you my heir," said he, having once enjoyed it. “ You are “I expect you will continue the bank." the handsomest man in London ; you Certainly, sir !” said the nephew.
“ Humph !" grunted the uncle ; "a exquisitely brodé)—“ my natural son, pretty fellow for a banker !” Debt- John Spriggs, an industrious, painsors grew pressing to Mr. Ferdinand taking youth, who will do credit to Fitzroy, and Mr. Ferdinand Fitzroy the bank. I did once intend to have grew pressing to Miss Helen Convol- made my nephew, Ferdinand, my vulus. “ It is a dangerous thing," heir; but so curling a head can have said she, timidly, “to marry a man
no talent for accounts. I want my so admired,—will you always be faith- successor to be a man of business, not ful ?” “ By heaven !” cried the beauty; and Mr. Ferdinand Fitzroy lover. · Heigho!" sighed Miss He- is a great deal too handsome for a len Convolvulus, and Lord Rufus banker : his good looks will, no doubt, Pumilion entering, the conversation win him any heiress in town. Meanwas changed. But the day of the while, I leave him, to buy a dressingmarriage was fixed; and Mr. Ferdi- case, a thousand pounds." “ A thounand Fitzroy bought a new curricle. sand devils !" said Mr. Ferdinand By Apollo, how handsome he looked Fitzroy, banging out of the room. in it! A month before the wedding- He flew to his mistress. She was not day the uncle died. Miss Helen at home. “Lies,” says the Italian Convolvulus was quite tender in her proverb, “have short legs ;” but condolences—“ Cheer up, my Ferdi- truths, if they are unpleasant, have nand,” said she ; “for your sake I terribly long ones ! The next day have discarded Lord Rufus Pumilion!” Mr. Ferdinand Fitzroy received a “ Adorable condescension !” cried our most obliging note of dismissal. hero; “but Lord Rufus Pumilion is wish you every happiness,” said Miss only four feet two, and has hair like Helen Convolvulus, in conclusion,a peony." " All men
are not so “ but my friends are right; you are handsome as Mr. Ferdinand Fitzroy!” much too handsome for a husband !” was the reply. Away goes our hero And the week after, Miss Helen Conto be present at the opening of his volvulus became Lady Rufus Pumiuncle's will. “ I leave,” said the lion. “ Alas! sir !” said the bailiff, testator (who I have before said was as a day or two after the dissolution a bit of a satirist), “my share of the of parliament he was jogging along with bank, and the whole of my fortune, Mr. Ferdinand Fitzroy, in a hacklegacies excepted, to”—(here Mr. ney-coach bound to the King's Bench, Ferdinand Fitzroy wiped his beautiful Alas! sir, what a pity it is to take eyes with a cambric handkerchief, so handsome a gentleman to prison !”
THE SISTER'S DREAM.
The early lost, the beautiful, the dead,
Whence, with their voices, all sweet laughter fled
MRS. HEMANS. They come, they come, from the bowers And she sees them now in her shadowy above-
dream, The land of spirits, the climes of love And she softly murmurs each well known A radiant band !-they are hovering now
name, O'er the lovely sleeper reclin'd below: And she calls them to her with love a
and truth, They are looking upon her with dewy By the dear familiar names of youth ; eyes,
And they know her voice, and they hear her Bidding sweet thonghts in her heart arise ; sigh, And, like guardian angels, their watch are As she dreams of the happy days gone by; keeping
And holy and pure are the words they shed, Around the couch where their sister is sleep- As they shower down blessings upon her ing
And they gaze on the face of the lovely Oh, if it be that the lov'd departed sleeper,
Are permitted to visit the broken-hearted; And call on the God of Heaven to keep her To descend at times from their bright, bright Free from all danger, and pain, and sin,
sphere, Till a virtuous course of life shall win Heralding hope to those lingering here; That home, where the lov'd ones are gone To hover about our path and bed, before,
A balm o'er our wounded hearts to shed ;Where sin and sorrow can vex no more, Surely such visits as these are given And where they sball ever united be, To prepare our souls tor the joys of HeaBlessing and bless'd eternally !
THERE are some few grave men who this, which I will not attempt to palthink that the temple of learning is liate. Though Periodicals are the daily profaned by a rabble rout, let very support and sustenance of a in at the back-door by crafty editors. bachelor, yet, on the other hand, they They complain that the secrets disco- have to answer for the destruction of vered by them, with so much labor, the peace and sociability of many a are degraded into the amusements of family circle. How often has a roomthe idle and the vulgar. They seem full of chatterers been put to silence to regret the days when no book less and confusion by the entrance of a than a folio was ever published, and journal! The greatest talker of the when none, therefore, but themselves whole betakes himself to the more would have ever read—days when the selfish pleasure of reading; and be works of authors were truly imperish- who before amused others while be able; for, if once the mighty tomes was amusing himself, is now were printed, they defied the damp of straint upon the little community, and cellars, or the teeth of mice, to de- the object, perhaps, of its secret envy. stroy them.
They are indignant at For this injury to the social system, the small compass into which many a which I do not for a moment deny, but weighty argument has been compress- which I can only hope is overbalanced ed, and they consider that the art of by still greater benefits, I would proprinting has been degraded, by being pose as a remedy, that every lady made the organ of so much that is should make it a stipulation in her familiar and transitory. Now, this marriage settlement, “ that the said last is exactly what I should glory in. A. B. shall not, nor will, during the The solitary man finds, in much that hours of breakfast, tea, or supper, or is printed, all the levity and relief of for the space of sixty minutes after conversation, and can enjoy the plea- each and every of the said meals, (the sures of company and still retain his said sixty minutes to be calculated by slippers and his easy chair. I look the minute-hand of the outside clock upon the Periodicals around me as a of the nearest parish church, provided kind of society, as gentlemen who that the said clock be going, and be talk in print; and I rarely take up a in thorough repair, certificate of which, newspaper or a magazine, without first &c.) read or peruse, or appear to be greeting it with the usual salutation of reading or perusing, any gazette, jourthe day. What is still more agreea- nal, magazine,” &c. Some such meable, I can impose silence on these sure is undoubtedly necessary. How whenever I please, without imputation often has Mrs. to exclaim, in a of rudeness; and, if I am myself in a tone of tender petulance, “My dear dogmatising mood, I can rail at them Henry, do pray put down that stupid as long and as loud as I choose, with- paper !” venting her impatience by out danger of a challenge or an answer. laying a cruel emphasis on the word
There is one evil, however, in all stupid. “Well, my dear, what have
you to say ?" answers the said Henry, self, indeed, I do not join in the usual dropping his journal for a moment, contempt of an antiquated Periodical. but with the most provoking determi- I look upon it with something of that nation not to find any topic of con- melancholy feeling with which I should versation himself. - Mrs. V regard the picture of an ancestress, called on me this morning.' “ So decked out in the transitory fashions, you told me." “ And did I tell you and expressing the artificial spirit, of that her son”" All about it, my a past century. I smile at the fervor dear.” Then follows a pause, which with which it speaks of the favorite Henry takes advantage of, and begins actor or singer of their day, now toagain to read, while Mrs. con- tally forgotten,--at the eagerness with soles herself with the determination which it relates the news, or the ruto be in her turn as sulky and as silent mors of news, which now appear of as she can. I have sometimes hinted the tamest insignificance, and the imto the fair complainant, that this read- portance it attaches to facts which the ing will, at least, supply them with dusty chronicler can now with diffinew subjects for future conversation ; culty collect. Other authors have but I have been told in answer, that spent their passion on subjects which no such thing is necessary, that the will at all times command the sympaold ones do well enough, and that, thy of men ; but the Magazine writer generally speaking, those people who has exhausted his on a topic of mothink on many things, speak the least mentary interest. There he stands, on any one.
in the same attitude of defiance, or There are some who speak in a astonishment, into which he was surslighting tone of ephemeral literature, prised by the popular excitement of as though it were a disgrace to be the time : he is still gazing, with awe short-lived. I might repeat the old and wonder, upon the ghost which the maxim of “a short life and a merry rest of the world has long since disone;" but I rather think that this covered to have been a white sheet kind of literature has a species of im- upon an ivy bush. I feel a certain mortality peculiar to itself; for, if it pleasure, too, in perusing those calmis every moment sinking into oblivion, er speculations which were never exit is every moment rising again into pected to be read after the first month life. It should be considered as one of their publication : I seem to be continuous whole; not as existing in drawing the authors again into existits separate parts. It is the perpetual ence; or, rather, I seem to be visitfountain, whose life and whose beauty ing them alone, as they wander among are not to be found in any one drop of the dead. And, for my own ambition, the ever-changing liquid,-a fountain, it will be well satisfied, if, on a future whose boast it is to be continually ex- day, some idler like myself should hibiting, under a graceful form, some alight upon my papers, and sympaportion of the collected, and otherwise thise, for a brief moment, with their stagnant, waters of learning. For my- nameless writer.
THE FESTIVAL OF THE FIRST DAY OF THE ROOKS.
HAPPIEST of all human homes, beau- almost majestical, though even then tiful Craig-Hall ! For so even now thou hadst long been tenanted but by dost thou appear to be--in the rich, a humble farmer's family-people of deep, mellow, green light of imagina- low degree? The evening-festival tion trembling on tower and tree.. of the First Day of the Rooks—nay, Art thou yet undilapidated and unde- scoff not at such an anniversary-was cayed, in thy old manorial solemnity still held in thy ample kitchen-of