Imágenes de páginas

so that it creeps circumspectly along the path of thought, I and runs no risk of flickering, ignis fatuus like, in all directions but the right. Then many a day will be spent in teaching you that one, two, three, is necessary for that which formerly you hit off at a blow as easily as eating and drinking. It is with the fabric of thought as with a weaver's masterpiece, where one treadle moves a thousand threads, the shuttles shoot backwards and forwards, the threads flow unseen; ties by thousands are struck off at a blow. Your philosopher-he steps in and proves to you it must have been so; the first would be so, the second so, and therefore the third and fourth so; and if the first and second were not, the third and fourth would never be. The students of all countries put a high value on this, but none have turned weavers. He who wishes to know and describe anything living seeks first to drive the spirit out of it; he has then the parts in his hand, only unluckily the spiritual bond is wanting. Chemistry terms it encheiresis nature, and mocks herself without knowing it.--Student, I cannot quite comprehend you.-Mephist., You will soon improve in that respect, if you learn to reduce and classify all things properly.-Student, I am so confounded by all this, I feel as if á mill-wheel was turning round in my head.- Mephist., In the next place, before anything else, you must set to at metaphysics. There, see that you conceive profoundly what is not made for human brains. A fine word will stand you in stead for what enters and what does not enter there. Generally speaking, stick to words; you will then pass by the safe gate into the temple of certainty.Student, But there must be some meaning connected with the word.-- Mephist., Right; only we must not be too anxious about that ; for it is precisely where meaning fails that a word comes in most opportunely.--Göethe's Faust.

A Good WIFE.-May you meet with a wife who is not always stupidly silent, not always prattling nonsense! May she be learned, if possible, or at least capable of being made so! A woman thus accomplished will be always drawing sentences and maxims of virtue out of the best authors of antiquity. She will be herself in all changes of fortune; neither blown up in prosperity, nor broken with adversity. You will find in her an even, cheerful, good-humoured friend, and an agreeable companion for life. She will infuse knowledge into your children with their milk, and from their infancy train them up to wisdom. Whatever company you are engaged in you will long to be at home, and retire with delight from the society of men into the bosom of one who is so dear, so knowing, and so amiable. If she touches ier lute, or sings to it any of her own compositions, her voice will soothe you in your solitudes, and sound more sweetly in your ear than that of the nightingale. You will waste with pleasure whole days and nights in her conversation, and be ever finding out new beauties in her discourse. She will keep your mind in perpetual serenity, restrain its mirth from being dissolute, and prevent its melancholy from being painful. Such was doubtless the wife of Orpheus ; for who would have undergone what he did to have recovered a foolish bride? Such was the daughter of Ovid, who was his rival in poetry. Such was Tullia, us she is celebrated by the most learned and most fond of fathers. And such was the mother of the two Gracchi, who is no less famous for having been their instructor than their parent.- Sir Thomas More.

Oh! oft my mind recalls the hour

When to my father's home Death came, an uninvited guest,

From his dwelling in the tomb!
I had not seen his face before,

I shudder'd at the sight,
And I shudder still to think upon

The anguish of that night!
A youthful brow and ruddy cheek

Became all cold and wan:
An eye grew dim in which the light

Of radiant fancy shone :
Cold was the cheek, and cold the brow,

The eye was fixed and dim ;
And one there mour'd a brother dead

Who would have died for him.
I know not if 'twas summer then,

I know not if 'twas spring;
But, if the birds sang on the trees,

I did not hear them sing:
If flowers came forth to deck the earth,

Their bloom I did not see;
I looked upon one wither'd flower,

And none else bloom'd for me.
A sad and silent time it was

Within that house of wo,
All eyes were dull and overcast,

And every voice was low;
And from each cheek, at intervals,

The blood appear'd to start,
As if recallid, in sudden haste,

To aid the sinking heart !
Softly we trode, as if afraid

To mar the sleeper's sleep,
And stole last looks of his pale face

For memory to keep.
With him the agony was o'er,

And now the pain was ours,
As thoughts of his sweet childhood rose,

Like odours from dead flowers !
And when, at last, he was borne afar

From the world's weary strife,
How oft, in thought, did we again

Live o'er his little life?
His every look, his every word,

His very voice's tone,
Came back to ns, like things whose worth

Is only prized when gone!
The grief has passed with years away,

And joy has been my lot,
But the one is oft remember'd,

And the other soon forgot:
The gayest hours trip lightest by,

And leave the faintest trace;
But the deep, deep track that sorrow wears,
No time can e'er efface.


[ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors]


They tell me, first and early love

Outlives all after dreams;
But the memory of a first great grief

To me more lasting seems :
The grief that marks our dawning youth

To memory ever clings,
And o'er the path of future years

A lengthened shadow flings.

Printed by THOMAS MORKAY, of No. 2 Arniston Place, and WILLIA GIBB, of No. 26 Royal Crescent, at the Printing Oftice of MURRAY and GIBB, North-East Thistle Street Lane; and Published at No. 58 Princes Street, by WILLIAM AITCHISON SUTHERLAND, of No. 1 Windsor Street, and JAMES Knox, of No. 7 Henderson Row; all

in the City and County of Edinburgh, Edinburgh : SUTHERLAND & KNOX, 59 Princes Street, and

sold by HOULSTON & STONEMAN, Paternoster Row, London ; W. BLACKWOOD and J. M'LEOD, Glasgow; L. SMITH, Aberdeen; RoBERT WALKER, Dundee; Joux ROBERTSON, Dublin; and may be had by order of every Bookseller in the United Kingdom.

Edinburgh, Saturday, May 23, 1846.

[graphic][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][subsumed][ocr errors][subsumed]

and clime, from Gilead to Buekia, have flourished like a scrap from a biography, mentions one or two and passed away, only to give place to a fresh suc-of his lordship's peculiarities, names a few of the cession, destined to run a similar course.

good works which he did accomplish, and hints at We thought puffing had been brought to perfec- some which he would have done but for the incessant tion during those good old times, when slaters were attacks of some disease to which he was subject, and blown from the tops of houses, for the sole purpose from which he only gained relief by the use of a of alighting at the door of “ Bish's lucky Lottery certain pill, which is named at full length, and, as Office, where 10 prizes of L.5000 each were sold," in the former instance, without further note or com&c. &c., but we have lived to see our error, and ment. If we mistake not, we have seen a variety of confess it. Since the days of the Lottery, Blacking this paragraph, attributing his lordship's premature has employed the mighty power of puff to no trifling decease to ignorance of this infallible remedy. Very extent, but it was reserved for quacks to develope many read these as ordinary paragraphs, which a what, for the present, we must call its full energies. careful editor has gleaned for their edification; and Not that we would now for a moment think of say- the information which they are meant to convey, ing, that puffery is at its zenith; for we believe that, although it may produce no immediate effect, settles like steam, it is yet destined to accomplish much at down in the memory, to be brought up when occapresent undreamed of,--puffing may be said to be sion calls for it. Another variety of puffing, more the literary steam, and he would be a bold inan who decided than that which we have just mentioned, would attempt to assign limits for the achievements but nevertheless a tolerably successful style, is the of either. It is the fashion, at present, for almost offering rewards of many hundreds, or even thouevery tailor to qualify himself for saying, “ We sands, of pounds for the discovery of parties who, keeps a poet,”—but there is a sad want of variety in it is made to appear, have daringly swindled the this branch of puffing. All that these artists strive public with a spurious “ elixir"-a species of refined to persuade the public is, that they can put a man villany which all right-minded men are called upon into “a good fit”but the quacks will undertake to assist in suppressing. If these advertisements are to bring him out of any sort of fit-good, bad, or to be believed, forgery and imposition must have indifferent. Utterly unscrupulous as regards truth, come to a fearful pass amongst us, and that they untrammelled either by possibilities or probabilities, are believed their frequent appearance is a sufficient the quack has a wide field for his operations, and evidence. Forgers would seem, to a man, to have the more he finds people willing to believe his inven- | abandoned their practice on bank notes, and taken tions, the more liberally he brings them forward. to the manufacture of spurious labels for patent For the great majority, whose faith is unbounded, medicines and hair oils, for which kindred impostors he attempts no concealment_but reiterates his state- afford them a ready market. Although we have ments boldly and roundly. For example, in an paid considerable attention to this matter, we regret Edinburgh newspaper of the present month, we to say, that history does not record a single instance notice an advertisement of a “ Life Pill," which has where any of these magnificent rewards have been been extensively puffed of late, as “the popular re- claimed, proving that-it is almost treason to whisper medy,” “the wonder of the age," and a list is given it-no such forgeries exist, or that there is in reality of a few of the diseases which have been cured by a wonderful amount of “honour among thieves." it, as, of course, “can be attested by thousands of We have said, that the quack neglects no opposwitnesses." The list is arranged alphabetically, and tunity, or rather he creates opportunities for bringit appears as if the writer had selected it at random ing his medicines favourably under the notice of the from a medical dictionary. These pills, we are public, but he finds his most valuable ally in the informed, are equally efficacious for the cure of newspaper press, which, with some honourable ex“barrenness and burns—cholera morbus and hoarse- ceptions, will give circulation to any statement, no ness-low spirits and mortifications-measles and matter how extravagant, for the sake of a few adparalysis." An enumeration, we should think, vertisements. In very many cases, in England and which would try the faith of the inost veteran pill- | Ireland, the proprietors of newspapers are also dealers devourer.

in patent medicines ; hence, besides the profit of the As, however, the quack is desirous of acquiring advertisements, these “best possible instructors" an influence as universal as the pretended power of have a direct interest in forwarding the sale of those his medicines, he condescends occasionally to cloak commodities for which they are appointed agents, his puffs, for the purpose of hooking, if possible, and on which there is generally a very liberal per those wary fish who look on his professions with centage. That they are not without a touch of suspicion. It is here that his delicate tact is seen. shanie, on account of thus acting the part of traitors He does his spiriting so very gently, in many in- to their trusting friends, the public, is apparent from stances, that it is only a practised eye that can the care with which they insert "see advertisement," discover the hook. Thus, we meet with an attrac- in all instances where they dare, or refer to a pretive paragraph in a newspaper, quoted apparently tended authority, under the guise of “London paper" from a book of travels, where an interesting savage -a wonderful precision which, after all, deceives is represented as having greatly endangered his life very few. The modern quack casts the ancient in an heroic attempt to rescue an unfortunate tra- necromancers entirely into the shade. With a dash veller from destruction. The interest is wrought of his pen he converts his own private residence into up to the highest pitch, and death is apparently a “ College of Health," and by the same potent inabout to close the scene when, in the very nick of strumentality transmutes into“ professors” all the time, a box of ointment, hitherto overlooked, is old women throughout the country who act as his brought on the stage, and a cure is effected with a agents; at this very moment we have a "professor" rapidity which seems akin to magic. There is no who comprises an entire college in his single person. wire-drawing after this point is arrived at—no dwell- | The quack seldom tries oral puffing, and fails siging on the value of such a medicine—no “ see nally when he does; he is no match for the mounteadvertisement”- the simple and chance-like an- banks of former times, in this particular. We had nouncement is left to do its work. Again, we meet with the privilege, on one occasion, of listening to a lecture a paragraph entitled, “Thelate Lord Spencer," which, in favour of certain vegetable pills, delivered by their

compounder, in a Hibernian brogue, of great volume liance upon it alone. The unfortunate dupes learn, and richness. He began by giving his auditors some when it is too late to be of service to them, that these information in mythology, and after attacking every medicines possess an “universality” modestly omitted system of inedicine and its practitioners, he reached by the proprietors in their advertisements, namely, his own unequalled and never-to-be-paralleled spe- that of reducing both purse and person to a state of cific, on which he dilated at considerable length, perfect emaciation. giving the particulars of many striking cures which When speaking of the jackal part which certain he had effected, with minute references to the names newspapers play to the lion-quack, we omitted to and addresses of his patients. We have often re- express our hearty reprobation of those who, in adgretted that we did not attempt to take notes of this dition, make themselves the inedium of circulating characteristic oration, but unfortunately the idea did advertisements redolent of the stews. We marvel not occur to us until too late. A few stray frag- that any class of newspapers, for a trifling gain, can ments, however, clung firmly to memory, and these lend themselves to aid in the dissemination of such we shall give, and the more especially that they filthy notices, but more so that publications calling furnish specimens rather superior to the average of themselves “family newspapers" should be guilty of quack intellect:

a like fault. Verily these people must have strange "Some of yees will be wondering at the word notions respecting what forms a “family” recomHygeian, and guessing what it manes; now I'll tell mendation. The remedy, however, lies with families; you. You see this Hygeia was the sister of Escula and were the heads thereof to decline taking in such pius, and she thravelled all the way from Mixico to prints, quack gentry would require to create newsthe Black Say, gatherin' harbs, which she made into papers for themselves. Actors do not pretend to pills, very like them that I'm now tellin' yees about. such purity of conduct as newspaper editors, and yet And what did the government do then, d'ye think? | we know that Mathews frequently refused large Why, they pursecuted her for doin' good, in the bribes offered him by quacks to introduce their same way as they are doin' to me, as I'll show yees nostrums into his public entertainments. by and by. Now Hygeia understood what was right better nor them carcase butchers they call docthors, who know no more of disease nor a cat does of

LORD BACON. jography. I solemnly tell yees, and mind what I

Tuers are few names in philosophy that rank higher say, the sate of all disease is in the blood.

the blood. The than that of Bacon. In intellect he will bear a

The blood's the life of a man, and if ye take away the

comparison with the greatest sages of antiquity, and blood you take away the sowl.

There's Sir Astley his writings brought about a complete reform in

There's Sir Astley his writinos hrough Kuper—by my faith it's Sir Astley Carver they modern philosophy. Yet there are few whose lives should call him-he's a perfect know-nothin'; he'll

have exhibited such human frailties, or whose actions blood and he'll blister, he'll cut and he'll carve as if have been less in accordance with his wise and noble he were diggin' out the disease ; sure if he got ped

precepts. In this respect, he forms to the biographer only for them he cures, the bottom of his purse à subiect of painful investigation an intellectual would soon be as blue moulded as a rotten cheese.

and moral paradox, passing into such extremes as Now them pills of mine will cure a man in half the

aptly to be designatedtime that a docthor will take in makin' up his mind what way he will kill him. There's a man over

“ The wisest, brightest, meanest of mankind.” there in Tradeston, they call him John M‘Fadden, Like other great geniuses that have filled and occuhe's a waver, and very likely some of yees will pied the public mind, Bacon has had his eulogists know him, he lives in Dobbie's Land anyway; well and detractors ;-the former regarding him as an that man come to me, after he had been give up by intellectual character, in which he is calculated to the docthors; he was all constipated, in a terrible excite the highest admiration; the latter looking to state to be sure. Well, what d'ye think I done ? his moral and political actions, which harmonise so Why, I tould him to take two boxes of“ pill No. 1," ill with his other great qualities. Perhaps the fullest and come to me the next day. Well he come to me not and most impartial view of this extraordinary man a bit better—the disease was still in his blood, you is that recently given in a most elaborate inemoir by see-what d'ye think I done then? Did I bleed Lord Campbell in his Lives of the Chancellors. him, think ye? No! I just tould him to take two | Francis Bacon was the youngest son of Sir Nicholas boxes of “ pill No. 2," and the man is now a com- Bacon, Lord Keeper to Queen Elizabeth, by Ann fort to his family, that but for me would have been Cooke, one of the daughters of Sir Anthony Cooke, in the gravedigger's granary, with a docthor's sarti- tutor to King Edward VI. He was born at York ficate, months ago." After occupying the attention House, in the Strand, on the 22d January 1561. of his audience for upwards of an hour, he concluded Like many other men of talent, he appears to have by saying—"I'm not ped for givin' my advice, and inherited his genius from his mother; at all events, I don't want nothin'--there's a plate at the door, he was greatly indebted to her for the early culture but whatever you choose to put into it will be given of his mind, and for that love of reading which to the poor-in pills !”

accompanied him through life. In early youth he It has been sometimes said, by way of lessening was of a delicate constitution, and little able to join the moral guilt of quackery, that the pills, &c., the in the rough sports of boyhood. His father was too “universal" virtues of which are so much lauded, are, much engrossed in business to attend to him farther in general, perfectly innocuous-things that can do than to kiss him, and hear him recite occasionally neither good nor harm. But this is by no means any little piece which he had learned in his retentive always the case ; but, granting that it were so, and memory. But his tender mother, who was a woman apart from the swindling of the system, even on this of a highly cultivated mind, devoted her assiduous very point quackery has much to answer for. How- attention to this, her youngest and most promising ever harmless a composition may be under ordinary child. Lady Bacon had received a classical educacircumstances, it ceases to be so when people are tion, and in after life kept up her familiarity with induced to neglect all other remedial measures for the poets, historians, and philosophers of antiquity. the recovery of their health, and place implicit re- ! She corresponded in Greek with Bishop Jewit, trans

[blocks in formation]

lated one of his theological works from the Latin, as profound knowledge of all its intricacies. In due also a volume of sermons on free will by an Italian time he was called to the bar, and so great a favourite author. Under his mother's care, assisted by a was he in his society, that two years afterwards he domestic tutor, young Bacon continued till his thir- | was made Lent reader, an office of much dignity, teenth year, and made great proficiency in his various which gave him an opportunity of publicly exhibitstudies, and even at this early age his active and 'ing his learning, acuteness, and eloquence. His original mind began to develope itself. While still a , reputation was now such that the queen appointed child, he stole away from his playmates to a vault him her counsel extraordinary," and frequently in St James's Fields, to investigate the cause of a admitted him to her presence, and conversed with singular echo which he had discovered there ; and him not only about matters of law, but on points of when a little older, he amused himself with some general learning. Yet he made little progress in his ingenious speculations on the art of legerdemain. advancement, though he sued earnestly for preferFrom his father's high station, he had ample oppor- ment. This arose chiefly from the jealousy of his tunities of mingling with the best society, and here kinsmen, the Cecils, his cousin, Sir Robert, imhe displayed both an early precocity, and an extra-, pressing the queen with the idea that he was “ a ordinary gravity of deportment. He was frequently speculative man, indulging himself in philosophical caressed by Queen Elizabeth, who used to call him reveries, and calculated more to perplex than to her young Lord Keeper; and on one occasion he promote public business." greatly pleased her by his answer to the common. On the meeting of the Parliament of 1593, Francis question-how old he was to which he replied, 'Bacon tcok his seat as representative for the county "Exactly two years younger than your majesty's of Middlesex, and in a few days after made his first happy reign." In his thirteenth year, he entered speech, which was on law reform. From the testiTrinity College, Cambridge, where he resided three mony of his cotemporaries, his eloquence was of a years. There are rather vague accounts of his superior order. According to Ben Jonson, no man studies during that period. It is said that he ran ever spoke more neatly, more pressly, more weightily, through the of the liberal arts, as they or suffered less emptiness, less idleness, in what he were then taught, and planned that great intellectual uttered.” Elated hy the success of his first speech, revolution which he accomplished in after life. It he took an early opportunity of again addressing the is certain that he carried away with him a great house. It was against the vote of subsidy to the contempt of the mode of study at that time pursued crown, and so strong was his opposition that he ran in those halls of learning, and characterised the great risk of being brought before the Star Chamber Cambridge residents of his day “as men of sharp for his presumption. The courtiers were thrown and strong wits, and small variety of reading, their into a state of horror. The queen in the present wits being shut up in the cells of a few authors, temper of the house, and with news of the approach chiefly Aristotle their dictator, as their persons were of the Spanish armada, deemed it prudent to take shut up in the cells of monasteries and colleges, and no public notice of this ontrage ; but she was deeply who, knowing little history, either of nature or incensed, and desired it to be intimated to the delintime, did spin cobwebs of learning, admirable for quent that he must never more look to her for the fineness of thread and work, but of no substance favour or promotion. Bacon soon had reason to or profit.” He left the university without taking a repent this fit of patriotic independence; he endeadegree. He spent the subsequent three years in voured to make the humblest apologies, and plainly France, under the protection of Sir Amyas Paulet, intimated that he should never repeat the offence. the English ambassador, where he had ample oppor In this he kept his word; for in all his course he tunities of observation and instruction, and where he was most obsequious to power, and never took any wrote his first literary production, his “ Notes on part which was apparently adverse to his personal the State of Europe."

advancement. On the sudden death of his father he returned to The following year, on a vacancy occurring, we England, and had the mortification to find that, in find him a candidate for the office of solicitor-genestead of a competency, which he had calculated on, ral; but notwithstanding all his efforts, 'he failed in 1 he was left with a patrimony so slender as to be obtaining it. On this occasion, he sought the interest wholly inadequate for his support without a profes- of the reigning favourite, the Earl of Essex, who did sion, or some appointment. He had now “to think all he could for his client; and perceiving his exhow to live instead of living only to think.” His treme chagrin at his disappointment, generously father had amply provided for his other children, presented him with a piece of land at Twickenham, and had appropriated a sum of money to buy an which he afterwards sold for L.1800. To show that estate for Francis, but had been suddenly carried off he was not the shallow lawyer which his enemies without accomplishing his purpose. This was a wished to represent him, he wrote at this time a grievous disappointment to the young philosopher, treatise on the “ Elements and Use of the Common and perhaps had a considerable influence on his fu Law.” In 1597, he also gave to the world his ture life. After in vain attempting to procure, “ Essays," one of his most popular works. In this through the interest of his influential relations, some year, too, he was again returned to parliament, and public appointment, he was at last compelled, con- on the Chancellor of the Exchequer moving for a trary to his inclinations, to commence the study of supply, he took care, by a speech in warm support : law. In his twentieth year, he entered a student of of the measure, to efface the impression which his Gray's Inn, of which society his father had been unlucky patriotic speech on a former occasion had long a member. His chambers, which still remain produced. in the saine state as when he occupied them, are Bacon was now in favour at court, a popular No. 1, Gray's Inn, and are frequently visited by speaker in the House of Commons, and had obtained those who cherish his fame and genius. Here he set considerable reputation by his writings; but his resolutely to the study of his profession, which practice at the bar was small, and he was very poor. neither his other tastes, nor the charms of society, He, at this period, attempted to better his fortunes for which he was admirably fitted, could divert him by marriage with a rich widow, the daughter of Sir from, till he had acquired not only a general, but | Thomas Cecil, and relict of Sir William Hatton, who,

« AnteriorContinuar »