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Sweet playfellow of Reason,
A song of thy own season.
Though she's the younger sister;
We never should have miss'd her.
Sweet Hope! thou lov'st us well, and yet
Thou wilt not serve us blindly;
Who loves, must use thee kindly.
Too delicate for the rough play
Of boisterous expectations ;
And leav'st us to impatience.
We chide thee, Hope, and wish thee oft
By Pleasure superseded ;
And com’st again when needed.
Thou fall’st upon us like a gleam
Of sunshine unexpected ;
Yet are they heaven-directed.
We call thee false—'tis but thy ape,
The thing that so deceives us;
And without reason leaves us.
For thou art of immortal birth ;
No thing of here or now;
But not of earth art thou !
The Rashleigh Letter-Bag.
Mr. Samuel Rashleigh to Lady Caroline Rashleigh.
Eton Coll. May 7, 1821. MY DEAR MAMMA, According to your particular The shops, which, as I think I told desire I have sent you a pretty you, are pretty numerous in the quick account of our arrival, which immediate neighbourhood of the was as safe as you could ever have Dames' houses, were almost all possibly desired; and as to time, closely shut up, as I understand the only fault was that we were they always are during our Holirather too soon. Perhaps you and days,--a pretty good proof how Papa will think this impossible; these pastry cooks, and such sort but I assure you they tell me that of people here, live npon the boys. it would have been much better for Towards evening they all began to us to have staid in London a few brush up their windows, and to hours longer, and not to have set out their dainties in the nicest come here so unfashionably early. possible display, in order to entice Henry is very much of their opi. some newly-arrived customers nion, as in that case he would have determined, I dare say, to make been able to have visited a few up for three weeks' lost time by an more sights, particularly the wild additional squeeze of the well-lined beasts, which he declares he will pockets. Indeed there seems to take especial care never to miss be a sharp contest among the haragain. You cannot imagine any pies of Eton, to see which shall thing more dismal than Eton looked get the most of the boys' money as we drove into the College bound before it is all gone. Between daries, or any thing, in fact, more them all this last purpose is pretty totally different from the gay and soon accomplished. crowded appearance which the The Fifth and Sixth Form boys Long Walk exhibited to the asto- will be here in a very few days, nished eyes of a new comer. There and then every thing will go on as was scarcely a single creature in regularly as ever again. I should the street, excepting a few Col. think that they composed half of legers moping about in their long the School." By the by, it is high black gowns, the very picture that time for you to know that I am one would fancy of every thing called Rashleigh Major, and Henry that is sorrowful. The Chapel, Rashleigh Minor ; and this is the the School Room, and all the only means of distinction which it buildings in the place, looked ten is proper for me or anybody else times blacker than usual, and many to use. To be sure it seems very of them, from their barred and ridiculous to be obliged to learn a grated windows, bore a very near new way of addressing one's broresemblance to so many prisons. ther; but if I was, by any mischance, to call him by his Chris- order to be sent up for good before tian name, I should most infallibly my trials for the Fifth Form, which be laughed at. I must allow that take place at the beginning of next I think Mr. Plodwell's method is month. But I suppose this will superior to the Eton one in this want explanation. The Assistant point; for he always used to mark Master, who always inspects our us plainly enough by the old plan compositions, takes any one copy of Senior and Junior. Some of the that he thinks deserving, and after boys have already pitched upon a we have altered the faults, and spot of ground in the Playing. written it over very neatly, sends Fields, intending to ask leave of it up to the Head Master, who the Captain of the School to appro- takes some opportunity to read it priate it entirely to the use of our out to the boys assembled in School. Cricket. The knowing ones tell This is reckoned a very great thing, me that it is excellently adapted and much greater than I have any for the purpose; and with a little hopes of succeeding in; but of mowing and rolling, and such sort course I will do my best. I find of care, which they intend to give there are two parties, a Boat it, will become really beautiful. party and a Cricket one; and they The principal mover in all these consider it quite impossible to affairs is a young Baronet, by name belong to both. The latter are at Sir W. Roby, who is also, as I un- a stand at present, because the derstand, to be head bowler. He principal leaders are not yet arhas astonished me wonderfully by rived; but the boats are all ready, various accounts of the amazing and look very gay, with their fine distance to which he can drive a gilding and painting, even to the ball; Heaven defend me from blades of the oars. I will tell ever going half so far to fetch it! more about their proceedings byBut it is some consolation to con- and-by. There are a good many sider that he is rather given to the new boys already, and I am happy marvellous. Henry, I find, took to say that they look quite as foola very early opportunity of going ish, appear quite as confused, and up to the shop, according to his get rather more teased, than I did. agreement with Papa, and choosing You know it is a great satisfaction a bat. He is quite in ecstasies at never to be singular. It is to be having got one so much streaked hoped something will happen to as to resemble mahogany, and de- make my next Letter a little more -clares that it was quite his own interesting. In the meantime, unassisted selection. It certainly you must accept our united loves, is a very pretty one, and I hope it and believe me to be, my dear will turn out well. My Tutor Mamma, tells me that I must take very
Eton, May 23, 1821. MY DEAR UNCLE, · I imagine that you have already vain. However, it was not in my discovered that I have acquired, power to disobey the summons; so among other qualifications pecu- I followed along quietly enough, liar to an Etonian, an extreme un- but in a terrible fright, and lookwillingness to letter-writing. This ing, as I should judge, very much fault is a very fashionable one like a criminal. What then must here now, and I have no doubt it have been my surprise, or rather prevailed a little even in your delight, when upon my arriving in time." Like other people in simi- the presence of this formidable lar circumstances, I comforted man of authority, he first of all myself most ingeniously by the mentioned your name, and asked expectation that you would hear" if I was not your nephew ? how all about us from home, where we long I had been here? what part both sent very ample despatches, of the School I was in ? and how and confirmed them in the holi- I liked it ?" This was not the exadays. Now I have positively sat mination I expected, so I plucked down to beg pardon for past of- up my spirits, and answered with fences, or, to speak in Eton lan- a little confidence. After this he guage, to ask for my first fault - took me to several of his friends in to profess better manners in fu the same part of the School as ture-and punctually to give you himself, and desired me to thank my very best thanks for a most them each for their Liberties, effectual piece of service, which which he had obtaiņed from them you rendered both of us, and in my behalf. Of course I did as which I shall proceed faithfully to I was ordered; but it was very relate. You may fancy my asto- absurd to thank a person before nishment, and alarm too, when I you knew that he had done any was "ordered, quite unexpectedly, thing for you. If I had been in a by a sudden messenger, to come laughing humour, I am afraid I to. Swinburne, one of the Sixth should have offended them. HowForm. I made a thousand con- ever, Swinburne gave me an expla. jectures about the reason of his nation of the business; and as sending for me, and began to con- I think it is an old custom, I shall sider and try to recollect if I could take it for granted that you know have offended him by not shirking all about it. The advantage of him out of bounds, or any other these Liberties, as they call them, transgression. I asked the boy I assure you I have already expe. who was despatched for me “ if he . rienced; for I can go about with was sure that I was the right per- twice the satisfaction, now that I son ? if he knew my name, or can be seen by these great people what I was wanted for?” with in- at a distance, out of bounds, with numerable other questions, all in impunity. It appears that you
friend Swinburne was determined and introduced me as a new subject not to do things by halves ; for, of his Majesty the King of Clubs, after doing me this service, he vue in whose honour the breakfast was lunteered to be my protector, and given. It was, indeed, fit for any particularly enjoined me to apply King, of any country, unless he to him in case any one should bully chooses to dislike (which he cerme. Nothing as yet has obliged tainly has no right to do) eggs, me to have recourse to his media- chocolate, ham, chicken, beef. tion ; and it is to be hoped that steaks, meat-pies, patès, and vanothing will: however, a power- rious other good things with which ful friend is not a bad thing anyo the table was covered. The party where, and his name may do a then present seemed to be quite good deal for me. This interview of my opinion, for everything dehad the very contrary effect from creased most rapidly under their what I expected. I went away as knives and forks. I had no idea happy as a prince, and ten times of such a various display ; it. was better pleased with Eton than a complete dejeuné a la fourchette, ever. Some short time afterwards, and, after our little tea-table, on a whole holiday morning, I looked quite magnificent. They received a note, containing an in- say, however, that nothing, which vitation from my new patron to another person would eat at dinner, breakfast at ten o'clock. I sup- comes amiss to an Etonian by way pose we are rather later now than of breakfast. Perhaps they had you used to be. This seemed to not carried their luxury so far in me rather a strange occurrence, your time. The fags, were at a but it was not for me to reason side-table, busily employed in eatupon it, so away I posted exactly ing too, unless when they were at the hour, with my rolls in my sent away to fill up a chocolate. hand, and found my way to Swin- pot, or get some more eggs, or burne's room. There were no other errands of the same kind. powdered footmen to announce Now that I have given you so me, so I opened the door and good a description of the enterwalked into an apartment, -to be tainment, I must tell you a little sure it was not a very large one, about the guests. Courtenay I
quite full of company, who re- have mentioned ; then there was a ceived me as I made my bow with good-natured-looking man of the a general laugh. This is not at all name of Harvey, a very great fa. to be wondered at, considering vourite with all the lower boys; how laughable a figure I must have another, called Rowley, who ate been with the rolls that I carried, prodigiously, and gave his opinion staring around like one thunder- upon everything, whether it was struck, without the least motion good or bad, in a most authoritative either one way or the other. manner. Sir Thomas Nesbit, Lór Luckily enough, Swinburne was zell, Oakley, and a host of other roused by this noise from a deep worthies, not forgetting Golightly, conversation he had entered into who came in about the middle of with Courtenay; and perceiving breakfast, a thorough Dandy, and me in the situation just mentioned, made a thousand excuses. The came very opportunely to my relief, fact is, he was longer than ordi