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bribery. So much for the argumentum ad ignorantiam—so much for a latitude to ignorance.
But in a weekly sporting paper, of very great circulation amongst all those classes to which the attention of a police ought to be directed, this house, and all similar houses kept by ex-pugilists, are the constant subjects of puffs, paragraphs, and advertisements.
In this paper, speaking of this house in particular, we find under date of 12th January last, an announcement that“ the fourth deposit for this MILL, between the veterans (Tom Oliver and Ben Burn), was made good on Tuesday evening, at the Tavern, in the presence of a more numerous assemblage of the fancy than we have witnessed for some months.' Even bets were made on first blood, first knock-down, and winning the battle,” &c. &c. Under date of Jan. 19, the same paper says, “ The THIRD deposit for this match (Swift and Atkinson) was made at the Tavern, on Wednesday evening, in the presence of a numerous circle ;” and in another paragraph, “ The
Tavern was filled on Friday evening with the sons of song,” a sporting character being in the chair. The next week, the fight between Tom Oliver and Ben Burn is described with atrocious ribaldry in this sporting paper, and the name of this keeper of the Tavern, at which the fourth deposit was received, appears in the description. But in this paper of Feb. 9, we find," according to agreement, a meeting is to take place tomorrow evening, at the Tavern, to enter into regular articles for this match," (between young Dutch Sam and Tom Gaynor.) We must here observe that this case is strongly aggravated by the fact, that during all the many public meetings advertised at this house on succeeding weeks, to get up this fight, this said Dutch Sam was under articles to keep the peace. What an impudent mockery of the law, what a scandalous defiance of the magistracy, is here sublicly announced !
According to this paper of 2nd March, all the final arrangements of the fight between Swift and Atkinson were made at this
Tavern, on Wednesday night, the 26th February last. On Tuesday 4th, the fight took place, actually on the very site of a previous murder by fighting ; and the sporting paper of Sunday, March 9, announces that the keeper of this said tavern figured in the ring, together with three fighters, one a felon just released from the hulks, and two other fighters who had been tried for the murder of the pugilist that had been killed on the same spot. Finally, the sporting paper of 16th March announces, that at this very tavern, on Tuesday, 11th March, at ten at night," THE BATTLE-MONEY, the reward of valour, was handed to the fortunate winner, and all bets were immediately paid ; the house was crowded to an overflow, every room being a bumper. To come to a climax, this was immediately on the eve of the period for licensing such houses, and yet, from that day to this, not a week has elapsed without the sporting paper containing advertisements of the nights on which similar crowds of thieves, black-legs, and lawless ruffians are to assemble, in order to get up these illegal and most scandalous breaches of the peace, and contrivances of crimes.
This is only one, and perhaps the least guilty one, of these flashhouses. The sporting paper has many similar advertisements relating to each of the houses kept by ex-pugilists, and they amount to half a score in London alone.
We will now give a further brief illustration of the extremely barba
rous and immoral notions which exist in this country upon the subject of police :
At the height of the fashionable season of London, in the last year, it happened that a rivalry in trade took place between two of the fighting gang. A Jew fighter is a keeper of a brothel, and one of the fancy arrived from Manchester with a larger capital, and set up many houses of the same description. In order to suppress this competition, the Jew procured mobs of pickpockets and trulls, who assembled round his rival's houses all day, broke his windows, assailed him with shouts of the most disgusting language, paraded before the doors with infamous placards, and thus for weeks, even in the most fashionable promenade of our metropolis (Regent-street), the ears and eyes of modest females, the aged, and respectable parts of society, were insulted and disgusted with these scenes of infamy, the police not interfering, though the whole secret of these outrages upon decency was so well known to them.
One other case will suffice to establish our position. There is a Jew prize-fighter, who is notorious in police-reports for deeds of outrage committed by him in a brothel, which he keeps in one of the most dangerous cut-throat alleys leading out of the Strand. This man likewise keeps a gambling-house near Leicester-square, for the accommodation of trulls
. and juvenile pickpockets, at which the stakes played for may be as low as three-pence. In addition to this, he is the keeper of another gambling house, in Pickering-court, St. James's*. On one recent occasion, the neighbourhood is alarmed by cries of murder issuing from the house. They rush in, with the assistance of the police, and find an old man weltering in his blood. Among those apprehended is a man, we believe a stage-fighter, who confesses that he is hired as the bulley of the house, by its owner, a prize-fighter, and brother Jew. But the whole scene, as described in the police report of a morning paper, is admirably illustrative of our wretched state of police, and of our most barbarous notions of justice, as well as of the means of protecting the public.
One would imagine that this man's gambling-house, his other gambling-house, and his brothels, would be suppressed after such scenes; but, so far from it, he is in triumph in all, and in the sporting paper before alluded to, dated 6th April, less than one month after, he is announced as having acted, in conjunction with the celebrated leader of a swell mob, as a second in a fight between Tom Smith and Barney Aaron,-all the contrivance and sequel of the fight having been got up by PUBLIC AND PERIODICAL ADVERTISEMENTs in the aforesaid tavern, licensed by the magistrates, and kept by the pugilist, as we have before stated.
Let us further illustrate an ex-pugilist's flash-house. In a newspaper of January 19th, is a police-report, in which two men are remanded on a charge of robbery on the river Thames. The report says
“Soon after the prisoners were locked up, a tall stout Jew, whose face was almost.covered with a large pair of bushy whiskers, and who is well known as a procurer of bail at several police offices, accompanied by Joshua Hudson, the well-known pugilist, applied to the magistrates, and asked if
* And of a brothel near Long Acre, in which his son and wife were recently fined 151. for a ferocious assault upon a woman, who attempted to rescue her niece, of twelve years old, from this haunt of infamy. May.--VOL. XLI. NO. CXLI,
bail could not be taken for the prisoners, who were described by the Jew as very honest, respectable men. Mr. Broderip asked who the applicant was?
• The Jew. · I am a merchant, Sir, well known on 'Change.'
“ Mr. B. ‘A merchant.- That is a very general term. What merchant are you?'
“The Jew. Why, Sir, a merchant. I am a wealthy merchant." “ Mr. B. “What merchandise do you export or import?'
“ The Jew. « Oh, Sir, I am a merchant; I live in the city; a general dealer ; a regular merchant, Sir; I trade in everything.'
“ Mr. B. • Oh, you do. What do you know of the prisoners ?'
“ The Jew. 'I know them to be very industrious, respectable men. I can put in good bail for them. Will you liberate them ?'
“ Mr. B. “No, indeed, I shall not, and you may take your bail elsewhere. I have done with you, Mr. Merchant.'
“ The Jew. · Will a good character next Saturday do them any service ? I can bring plenty of witnesses.
“ Mr. B. · I know you can. You may go, Sir.'
“ Josh. Hudson now stepped forward, and making a bow, said he knew one of the prisoners, who was an industrious young man, and he would give bail for him; said he was a publican.
“ Mr. B. · Commonly called Josh. Hudson, the John Bull fighter ? Go your way,
Sir.' “ Josh. Hudson stared at this recognition, and taking up his hat made another bow, exclaiming, ‘I wish you a yery good morning, Sir.' He then left the office with the merchant.'
“ Mr. B. “They are two of the “ fancy," and there is a strong muster of them in the street. Their impudence is really astonishing.'
Yesterday, the prisoners were again brought up, and sentenced to two months' imprisonment and hard labour, for being on the Thames at añ unseasonable hour for the purpose of committing felony."
But this Hudson's house is still licensed, and he is weekly advertised as holding meetings in his house, for the purpose of getting up fights.
We now dismiss the subject. Would it not seem, even from the few statements we have made, that our magistrates might almost be called a band of gentlemen employed in licensing flash-houses and patronizing prize-fighters, with a view to facilitate and multiply crimes, and to diffuse immorality and wretcheduess amongst the lower orders ? That such a system of police—that such an administration of the laws, cannot last much longer is obvious; but it must astonish every reflecting mind that it could have continued after any gleam of civilization had been infused amongst us. Either legalize prize-lighting, with all its attendant offences and crimes, or put the laws against it in force ; for to hold up to exam
defiance of the law in one instance is the way to bring the laws in general—and all that administer them-into contempt. A foreigner, upon reading such things, would infallibly ask two questionsHow can any man of honour and probity – how can any man of religious principles, act as a sworn, and even as a stipendiary, magistrate, and thus encourage the open violation of the law, which his oath and all his duties bind him to enforce? Secondly, if magistrates will act thus, is there no minister of the interior, no minister of justice, no secretary of state for the home department, no one public functionary whatever, to call the magistrates to account, to compel them to a performance of their duties, or even to punish them for a persevering dereliction ?
The number of deaths that have recently been occasioned by prizefights is really extraordinary. The sense of the country is roused upon
the subject, and it is but justice due to the great body of dissenters, to acknowledge that they have taken the lead in their efforts to suppress such detestable practices. Their great interests at stake in the manufacturing districts have made them well acquainted with the condition, habits, and feelings of the working-classes, and they feel deeply the demoralization and mischiefs produced, not only by prize-fighting, but by the crimes and criminals inseparably connected with it. The great prize-ring, or fancy of London, as long as it is allowed to exist, will Have its awkward and humble imitators throughout the country, and a general depravity is thus diffused in all directions, but principally amongst the lowest classes, and amongst the worst disposed of those classes.
Most cruelly fell to abusing the Nose.
That the Nose was a bane both to beauty and love;
For that horrid protuberance jutting above!
With a sparkle began, as I've oftentimes seen 'em,
it was perfectly shocking to see
By the Nose o'er their bloom and their beauty was thrown;
Whenever that troublesome member was blown!
To thrust the intruder at once from the face;
By the breath of his nostrils, he'd stick to his place!
His defence, and inquired, when their vigour was gone,
If the Face had no Nose to hang spectacles on ?
Or who'd care a farthing for myrtles and roses ?
For if Lips fancied kissing, pray why mightn't Noses ?
Their murmurs were equally trifling and teazing;
Should keep him unblown, or prevent him from sneezing.
And guarded them oft from the wind and the weather;
The Face had been nothing but cheek altogether!
With logical clearness defining the case;
Damon. See here, another day as bright as yesterday; a little walk will not fatigue you, Sylvia.
Sylvia. No, my Damon. I have refreshed myself with three lambcutlets and a glass of Guiness's brown-stout as Dr. Granville ordered, and am equal now to any gentle exercise.
Damon. Again we'll range the town and view the streets St. James's yields, and let the carriage be at Hyde Park Corner. Cross here, my Sylvia--this is Cleveland-row—there, on your right, lives Mrs. Bell, the milliner, whose lovely daughter is a belle indeed ; and next dwells Nussey, partner late with Walker, who is privileged to physic royalty and make up medicine for their Majesties ; beyond lives Viscount Lowther, who was chosen for two counties in the present Parliament, although he stood for neither.
Sylvia. And those tall windows on the left ?
Damon. The apartments of the Duke of Cumberland; that mansion on the right is now Lord Francis Egerton's; that is Tom Grenville's, and the next is Ellice's.
Sylvia. What, Henry Ellis of the Pells ?
Damon. Oh, no, my gentle Sylvia, quite another man ; he spells his name El-lis—this one El-lice. He is of War the Secretary.
Sylvia. Of war—a soldier?
Damon. Not he-he was a merchant-but times are altered; his tubs and firkins are exchanged for tape and boxes, and when the men of Westminster drove John Cam Hobhouse from his seat, and he resigned his office, the gentle Edward stepped into his shoes,
Sylvia. Tubs and firkins, Damon.—Why did he succeed to such high place?
Damon. He married Lord Grey's sister. That yellow house beyond, up in the corner, is Lord Durham's, late Lord Privy Seal.
Sylvia. Why was he Privy Seal ?
Damon. He married Lord Grey's daughter. In other days, Lord Grenville (lately dead) dwelt there; after his Lordship, Andrews, once a Powder Merchant, to whom the ghost of Littleton appeared; the wags of former years thus wrote him— Andrews, M.P., P.M., P.M., M.P.
Sylvia. Explain me that conundrum, Damon.
Damon. Miles Peter were his names—so far M.P.; he was a Powder Merchant—so P.M.; he sat in Parliament for Bewdley—thus was M.P.; and was besides a Prologue Maker for the Players—thus P.M.
Sylvia. Pleasing conceit!
Damon. That large square building is the Duke of Sutherland's, built for the late lamented Duke of York, but never lived in by him. This at the corner is Lord Fitzroy Somerset's, one of our bravest heroes, who well deserves the charming fair he won. So-through this passage, and we are in the Park,