Графични страници
PDF файл
ePub

one more :" such a practice is offence;—is it not a tacit insinuation, . enough to starve a whole party! Who that you think it is absolutely necessacould enjoy a hearty meal which must ry to bribe the depravity of their palbe cut within a pound of the flesh, two ates, when you desire the pleasure of ounces of the bread, and the other pro- their company ?---that you think so portions of a fair allowance, (accord- lightly of them, that you suppose that ing to the Doctor's tables,) which such savoury sauces on your table, are more a table would present ? The very inviting attraction ihan sensible society thought would take away our appetite around it !--and that an honest man is more effectually than a full feed. Nor to be caught by a slice of mutton, as do we like his tirade against “ the com- easily as a hungry mouse is with a bit pany of bonsvivants,* with whom din- of cheese. ner is the chief business of the day~ This appears to us to be hard treatwho merely · Live to eatwho see ment of those who may fall into the the Sun rise with no other hope than kind-hearted mistake of trying to enthat they shall fill their bellies before tertain their friends as well as they it sets, who are not satisfied till they can, instead of asking them to discomare surfeited—or of those Sons of fort, and to just one person's portion Anacreon who are not entertained till more than it is calculated ought to be they are intoxicated, and who ridicu- eaten! Why might they not fancy lously maintain that the restorative that the pleasures of company would process cannot be perfectly complete not be diminished by the gratifications in old people till they feel as frisky as of the palate ; that sensible society was a four-years old.”

not likely to be made either less sensiThat the author of the Cook's Ora- ble or agreeable by the concomitant c!e, a book of inestimable instructions presence of savoury sauces; and that how to tickle the taste and provoke an honest man might really love a slice the palate, should join in the senseless of rich, tender, and juicy South Down. outcry against good living and refined To cut at the last is the unkindest cut cookery, is utterly out of place and in- of all, and we wonder that such a cruel excusable; and as for getting tipsy idea could ever have entered into the now and then, there are high authorities benevolent mind of the much-esteemed in its favour not to mention exan- author. In truth, bis sentiments on this ples.

point are precisely fit for the excuses of The Doctor says farther, that

such worldlings as treat without warmth, Nothing can be more ruinous to feast without plenty, and make show real comfort than the vulgar custom without hospitality or cordiality. of setting out a table with a parade and And there is also another financial a profusion, unsuited not only to the error in his estimates : he argues, as if circumstances of the host, but to the all that remained after guests were ennumber of the guests.

tertained, was lost, and speaks of " “ Nothing can be more fatal to TRUE whole family's suffering famine for sevHOSPITALITY, by which I mean the eral days after a dinner-party,” as a frequency with which we give our consequence of its extravagance. But friends a hearty welcome-than the this is the reverse of fact; such a family multiplicity of dishes which luxury has might have been more cheaply and made fashionable at the tables of the plainly fed; but we all know that there great, the wealthy—and the ostenta

are very pretty pickings on the days tious,—who are not seldom either after the feast, when soups are warmed great or wealthy.

up, version hashed, turkeys limbs grill“Such prodigious preparation (as ed, stews re-heated, cold joints broiled, Dominie Sampson would say) instead delicacies sought out for which there of being a compliment to our guests, is was not sufficient time in the first grand really nothing better than an indirect enterprise, puddings meliorated in the * We doubt this French ; Bons is not good.

Dutch oven, jellies and custards equal Bonvivants are good livers ; goods livers are not

to their virgin sweetness, sups of the wanted.

best vintages, and the d-l a drop of

a

new

beer preserved by crusts of bread! are confoundedly angry with him (as Nay, so well convinced are we of this, we are upon this point,) we should abthat we would not hesitate to take our hor to be like him. affidavit, as far as mere gastronomy His observations on the silly desire was concerned, in favour of the plenary of outshining one's neighbours are and calm indulgence of post-festial en very judicious; as are also those on joyments,—especially as Time being the fashionable folly of coming to dinthe eater of all things (Edax Rerum), ner long after the hours specified in we can then have our revenge and invitations. If ever this grievous catake Time to eat. But this sort of lamity is redressed, which is not propleasure, the author of the Cook's bable, it must be done by His most Oracle (of all men !) dares to call gracious Majesty, and, after him, some making a god of our bellies. Ventre of his greatest subjects, setting the exblen, as we say at Dunkirk, it is ample of sitting down within five mienough to make a critic swear. Will nutes of the appointed time with such not he allow the distinction between a guests as have arrived. We are sure glutton and an epicure-between the that the monarch who introduced such beast and the man of taste-between a reform would receive, as indeed he the foul and ravenous brute and the would merit, iufinitely more gratitude commensalist (this may be a from his people than if he originated a word) who refines upon the almost reform in Parliament.

How many most exquisite organ with which na- painful minutes are spent in waiting, ture has endowed him ? Why, what every one has felt; the “horrid half is it but the cultivation of a valuable hour” of a Briton's daily existence. sense ? A person is praised for being protracted into hours, is a visitation in one of the cognoscenti in literature, in which we have often had our unhappy painting, in sculpture, in music : and share: the sufferings of the cook in the shall be be twitted contumeliously who kitchen, and of the company (for so has raised himself above all such, by the wretched creatures are still callperfecting a sense at once conmon, de ed !) in the waiting room, are known to licate, and complicated ; and thus ren us ; the uneasiness of the entertaindering himself an amateur and profi- ers, the shifts of a conversation inadecient in the grand art scavoir vivre ! quate to dispel any gloom, the violation Away with these insults-let any one of fobs, the yawns, the impatient looks, look into his mouth and see how ad- the all which luncheonless sinners bemirably disposed it is for the impor- tray, render this a fearful epoch. And tance of its functions. Without it, life at last some blundering booby, or illmust become extinct, and it is there- dressed flirt, or empty coxcomb, walks fore a daily slave. But are we, on that in ; and a dozen of punctual, rational, account, on account of its vital utility, edacious and bibacious mortals disto debar it from every gratification ? cover, that it has been owing to this On the contrary, every good, honest, animal or thing that they shall not eat benevolent being will do more for its their victuals properly cooked, or exsatisfaction, the more he is sensible of perience the comforts which have been its services. The ruby, velvet, and prepared for them. Sincerely do we wonderful tongue; the inflexible, white, hope that His Majesty, who is a perand ivory teeth; the jaws, hung by the fect gentleman, and his ministers, who purest and most perfect mechanism; have the good luck to rule at a period and above all, the glorious palate of peace and plenty, will turn their se(furrowed by the plough of provi- rious attention to this crying abuse; dence in order to prolong its enjoy. the extent of which, and its everlasting ments) claim the consideration of the prevalence, need no comment to imwise and virtuous, and he is (we beg press the expediency of an improved pardon for declaring plainly) an ass system on legislators of feeling and who refuses to do them homage. But bowels. One instance may be enough. if we digress thus, we shall become as We dined last week where the treat desultory as our author; and when we consisted of one half tureen of bad

courses.

cold soup, cod ditto, roast beef ditto, 66. BEWARE OF 'Tis BUTS.' and some pastry which we never could 6. There are very few of my reapuff: yet were we kept from sis till ders, who if they please to reflect on near eight before the cold soup was their past lives, will not find that had ready, and the cold cod served, and the

they saved all those Little Sums, the cold beef cut, and the nasty pastry which they have spent unnecessarily, made visible. By Amphitryon, we their circumstances would be very would not have stopped so long to dine different from what they are.with Vitellius (or his brother, we believe), who had only nine thousand There are some rules for marketing, dishes of fish and fowl in the first two which we dare say are very useful, but

By-the-by, Vitellius was a which we confess we do not underclever fellow, in spite of all that has stand: for we never went to parket been recorded of his gluttony : for any thing but for Mr. Dickinson's dead enemy always smells sweet, beautiful paper, and that was not to though an unfeeling speech, was not rap Maintenon cutlets in. Into the spoken by a fool. But we really do rest of the minutiæ we need not enter; sometimes catch the tone of the au- but we will tell our readers that, with thors we are reviewing, and—so no all its quaintness and oddity, this little more episodes.

work contains (as far as we can judge) Our worthy Doctor gives us many a great deal of information, which is pithy proverbs, and quotations from calculated to promote the kind design excellent authors—all to teach pru- of its author, and render a service to dence, economy, and order. All these, society at large. however, we will sum up in his own characteristic peroration:

66

a

THE IMPROVISATRICE. By L. E. I.

Concluded from p. 427.

One evening I had roamed beside
The winding of the Arno's tide ;
The sky was flooded with moonlight ;
Below were waters azure bright,
Pallazzos with their marble halls,
Green gardens, silver waterfalls,
And orange groves and citron shades,
And cavaliers and dark-eyed maids;
Sweet voices singing, echoes sent
From many a rich-toned instrument.
I could not bear this loveliness !

It was on such a night as this
That love had lighted up my dream

Of long despair and short-lived bliss.
I sought the city; wandering on,

Unconscious where my steps might be ;
My heart was deep in other thoughts ;

All places were alike to me :-
At length I stopped beneath the walls
Of San Mark's old cathedral halls.
I entered :-and, beneath the roof,
Ten thousand wax-lights burnt on high ;
And incense on the censers fumed
As for some great solemnity.

[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

The whise-robed choristers were singing ;
Their cheerful peel the bells were ringing :
Then deep-voiced music floated round
As the far arches sent forth sound-
The stately organ :-and fair bands
Of young girls strewed, with lavish hands,
Violets o’er the mosaic floor ;
And

sang while scattering the sweet store. I turned me to a distant aisle,

Where but a feeble glimmering came (Itself in darkness of the smile

Sent from the tapers' perfumed flame;
And coloured as each pictured pane
Shed o’er the blaze its crimson stain:
While, from the window o'er my head,
A dim and sickly gleam was shed
From the young moon,- enough to show
That tomb and tablet lay below.
I leant upon one monument,

'Twas sacred to unhappy love : On it were carved a blighted pine

A broken ring—a wounded dove; And two or three brief words told all

Her history who lay beneath : "The flowers—at morn her bridal flowers,

Formed, ere the eve, her funeral wreath.'
I could but envy her. I thought

How sweet it must be thus to die!
Your last looks watched your last sigh caught,

As life or heaven were in that sigh!
Passing in loveliness and light ;
Your heart as pure,—your cheek as bright
As the spring-rose, whose petals shut,
By sun unscorched, by shower unwet ;
Leaving behind a memory
Shrined in love's fond eternity.
But I was wakened from this dream

By a burst of light-a gush of song-
A welcome, as the stately doors

Poured in a gay and gorgeous throng. I could see all from where I stood.

And first I looked upon the bride ;
She was a pale and lovely girl :-

But, oh God! who was by her side ?
LORENZO! No, I did not speak;
My heart beat high, but could not break.
I shrieked not, wept not; but stood there
Motionless in my still despair ;
As I were forced by some strange thrall,
To bear with and to look on all,—
I heard the hymn, I heard the vow :
(Mine ear throbs with them even now!)
I saw the young bride's timid cheek

Blushing beneath her silver veil.

I saw LORENZO kneel! Methought

('Twas but a thought !) he too was pale.
But when it ended, and his lip

Was prest to her's--I saw no more!
My heart grew cold,-my brain swam round,

I sank upon the cloister floor:
I lived,- if that may be called life,

From which each charm of life has fled-
Happiness gone, with hope and love,-

In all but breath already dead.
Rust gathered on the silent chords

of my neglected lyre,- the breeze Was now its mistress: music brought

For me too bitter memories !
The ivy darkened o'er my bower ;
Around, the weeds choked every flower.
I pleased me in this desolateness,
As each thing bore my fate's impress.
At length I made myself a task-

To paint that Cretan maiden's fate,
Whom Love taught such deep happiness,

And whom Love left so desolate.
I drew her on a rocky shore :-
Her black hair loose, and sprinkled o'er
With white sea-foam ;-her arms were bare,
Flung upwards in their last despair.
Her naked feet the pebbles prest;
The tempest-wind sang

in her vest :
A wild stare in her glassy eyes;
White lips, as parched by their hot sighs ;
And cheek more pallid than the spray,
Which, cold and colourless, on it lay :
Just such a statue as should be

Placed ever, Love! beside thy shrine;
Warning thy victims of what ills

What burning tears, false god ! are thine. Before her was the darkling sea ;

Behind the barren mountains rose-A fit home for the broken heart

To weep away life, wrongs, and woes! I had now but one hope :—that when

The hand that traced these tints was cold
Its pulse but in their passion seen,

LORENZO might these tints behold,
And find my grief ;-think-see-feel all
I felt, in this memorial !
It was one evening,—the rose-light

Was o’er each green veranda shining ;
Spring was just breaking, and white buds

Were 'mid the darker ivy twining.
My hall was filled with the perfume
Sent from the early orange bloom :
The fountain, in the midst, was fraught
With rich hues from the sunset caught ;-

« ПредишнаНапред »