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contemplated with increased horror, on my return, the grim bars, the narrow courts, and the closing gates, of School. The very servants partook of the character of the place, and were the most unaccommodating, surly old beings, that can possibly be imagined. In fact, I led a sort of mechanical existence, being com, pelled to take exercise, as it were by a physician's prescription, to enable me to perform what was required from my mental faculties, Any brought up as I have described myself, agreeably to the most rigid maxims of scholastic discipline, will have many scruples to overcome, many old prejudices to vanquish, before they can bring themselves to allow, that the superior liberty, which Eton grants to her children, can be compatible with the necessary studies of such an institution. What indignation would have ruffled the angry wrinkled visage of my ancient pedagogue, had any of the wretched victims committed to his care ventured to inform him, that there is a place where boys comparatively do as they will, where they are tacitly allowed to commit the unheard-of sin of passing their bounds,--and where, in fact, the measure of their labours is in a great degree under the control of their own discretion! When, however, we see in good earnest the first characters in the Bar, the Senate, and the Church, boasting Eton as their common parent, when we review the illustrious names in former times, whose glory she considers as her own, it really becomes time to account for the effects of this magical education. I myself cannot pretend to any accurate investigation; but, merely as a speculative and casual observer, I should ascribe its influence to that hatred of immoderate restriction which generous talents naturally entertain, and the elevation and expansion which they feel on being principally left to their spontaneous exertions, and experiencing gentle direction rather than positive and harsh control. The spirit of encouragement and emulation cherished by this system is more likely, than any fear of punishment, to stimulate a young and ardent mind to extraordinary efforts. Where much is required, to do that well is, of course, considered sufficient; but where comparatively little is required, and much, on the contrary, expected, true abilities will perceive their own strength, and will labour to obtain praise, which is the more valuable as it is given to labours and acquirements in a great measure voluntary. I have heard from very good authority, that few leave Eton without feeling real sorrow at their departure. It is the fashion, too, at that versifying establishment to compose a poetical farewell, to testify at once their grief and their gratitude. Some of these I have seen; and nature, seems really to have a considerable share in their composition. It is lucky for me that this custom did not exist at the school of which I was an unwilling member; or I am afraid that my Vale,' as they call it, would have been
highly indecorous, since the overflowing joy of my heart would have effectually negatived all expressions of woe. By the bye, this brings me to myself again, and reminds me that my reverie on paper has been much too long and too reasoning already. I shall therefore leave every one to form his own conjecture and opinion, and only wish for myself, that I could glory in the name of—" an Etonian.”
In many a strain of grief and joy,
My youthful spirit sung to thee;
And there's a gulph 'twist thee and me.
I start to find myself a man,
As only boyhood's spirit can.
To thoughts that held my heart in thrall,
And thee-the brightest dream of all.
My home is chang’d; and, one by one,
Are faded from my path and gone.
And 'tis with tears—but not of sorrow,
I bid thee, as a Bride, good-morrow.
The heart it is thy choice to share ;
With which no earthly wishes are.
The gentle star that smiles at Even,
That melts into my heart from far,
And leads my wandering thoughts to Heaven. 'Twould break my soul's divinest dream
With meaner love to mingle thee; 'Twould dim the most unearthly beam
Thy form sheds o'er my memory. It is my joy, it is my pride
To picture thee in bliss divine, A happy and an honour'd bride,
Blest by a fonder love than mine.
A bliss by day—a dream by night,-
A cheering and a guiding light.
Disturbs his image at its core,
I'd not be lov'd, nor love thee more.
So holy, so serene shall be,
'Twill be no crime to think of me. I shall not wander forth at night,
To breathe thy name-as lovers would ; Thy form, in visions of delight,
Not oft shall break my solitude. But when my bosom-friends are near,
And happy faces round me press,
And drain it to thy happiness.
I commune with my God, alone,
I'll blend thy welfare with my own. And if, with pure and fervent sighs,
I bend before some lov'd one's shrine,
When gazing on her gentle eyes,
I shall not blush to think of thine.
And when thy children climb thy knee,
Then sometimes—sometimes think of me.
Oh! may it to my prayer be given
- And meet, to part no more, in Heaven.
Sept. 18, 1820.
ON YOUTHFUL FRIENDSHIP.
“ Hæc olim meminisse juvabit.”-VIRG.
FROM the little world, for whose amusement we collect the productions of our leisure moments, and for whose advantage we offer the results of our more contemplative hours, the consideration of subjects which most affect its habits, and are nearest allied to its interests, is, we conceive, best calculated to attract attention and engage respect. And since, in this designs. we embrace the good of our whole community, we indulge a hope that no individual will consider his own peculiar circumstances overlooked in the general nature of our remarks ; or allege the insignificancy and unimportance of singular and isolated error as an apology for his disregard, or an extenuation of his neglect. To remove, however, the alarm which, as self-constituted censors, we might possibly create among our fellow-citizens, we pledge ourselves to the strict observance of a rule already proposed the unreserved rejection of personal invective, and the total absence of satirical malignity. Still we openly profess little delicacy or mercy, towards vices and follies, as they successively gain the ascendant in our day; and we hope that those who shall acknowledge the correspondence of our admonitions with their imperfections, will, in justice to their own candour, and in obedience to their own conscience, encourage the application, and receive the impression of advice. With such austere subjects we propose to blend topics of a more agreeable nature; and occasionally to show the brighter and the fairer side of things, to point out the advantages which assist us in the perform
ance of the offices of life,--to direct to proper objects the noblest passions and most beneficial propensities of our nature,to awaken the legitimate affections of the human heart, and to soften the cares, the discontents, and animosities, which the envy of the world has engendered, and the emulation of society has increased.
In our first introduction, to appear in the most fascinating character, and display to the best of our means and abilities our inclination and power to please, is a natural and laudable desire. We therefore propose to consider the advantages of youthful friendship, and the manner by which the intimacies of our early days may be cultivated for more lasting profit than the colder con nexions of riper years.
Youth, the season of unsuspecting openness and disinterested zeal, of buoyant hope and cheerful confidence, presents to us the happiest division in the life of man. Ambition has, as yet, exercised but little influence, and pride sustained but few disappointments. Temper is not yet embittered by unexpected frustration, nor is exertion checked by insuperable competition. Animated by the gay perspective of future prospects, youth ever casts off the consciousness of care; and, in the contemplation of happiness, present or to come, delights to dwell upon the glittering scene of promise and expectation. Associated in the enjoyment of these exhilarating ideas with others, sharing equally the gladness and the glory of its hopes, it pursues with avidity the same path, which leads to the stations of distinction, and opens to future views of elevation and of honour. The struggle is that of sport, and like it concludes with satisfaction; the witnesses of the contest, the partners in the success, and the least prosperous in the fortune of the fray, unite to revivify dejected hope, and rekindle the spirit of emulation. The influence which this reciprocal communication of sentiment, this continual contact of mental power and acquirement, possesses over our society, is unlimited : it binds the most distant in the closest union to one another, and first discovers to them the necessity and the usefulness of mutual dependence. For within this varied scene of exertion and inactivity, there always will be those who press forward with impatience to the different degrees of merit and reputation; while there will be others, who as eagerly decline the restraint of application and the sacrifice of abstraction; who depend for present assistance and freedom from labour on the efforts of the studious, for whom, in after-days, they rationally hope to reserve due tributes of gratitude and esteem, anxiously considering the success and fame of their friends as involved in the event of every action over which their interest and inclination enjoy even a partial control ; since, in the perfect exercise of genuine friendship, no advantage can attend either party in which both do not equally participate; for surely they