Графични страници
PDF файл

its hospitality, like our own Arabia, and its curiously striped cloths and exquisitely fine and embroidered cotton stuffs, and am arrived in the chief city, which they name " THE VENICE OF THE NORTH," where the latter is chiefly woven, that I might in it-and a fine suburb which it boasts of, although seven miles off, named Pace-ali-complete my assortment of muslins, and gauzes, and silken tissues, and cloth of gold, which were wont to be purchased in the bazaars of Hin. dustan, and the cities of Iran, and on the shores of the Levan. tine Sea. The troubles in these latter, and the high cost of the stuffs woven in the neighbourhood of Delhi, forces even Ibraham to give his money to the dogs-or find himself with. out customers in the bazaar of Aleppo. Thou, son of my sister, knowest that I came hither for such ends, and at much cost of zechins, and risk from the cold, and the fear of the naked robbers who inhabit the neighbouring mountains; but, lo! on my arrival, I find that the territory is at war within itself, and all men's voices are angrily lifted up, while they forget to sell their stuffs, in loud argument as to where they shall place the Centre of their city, or as they otherwise term it by the word they use for the difference in the monies of countriestheir Exchange-which we would call in Aleppo their Bazaar of Words and Information, for no other stuffs are there exposed, and not a cap of Mocha can be bad by even a thirsty son of the desert wbo believed the lying tablet above the portal of the door which called it a Coffee-room. Of a truth I would not have cared for this controversy, did it not interfere with my despatch of business, and yet, nephew, it is enough to make a Mussulman merchant laugh to think that these proud heretics should quarrel about such a matter, seeing that there cannot be but one rational opinion as to where the meeting place of merchants and traders should be placed as it is in all the cities of the East-even midway between those who sell and those who buy, like the caravansary where thou meetest Sheik Asem and his hordes, to get their ostrich feathers for my stuffs. In verity, what meaneth an Exchange but a centre of assemblage-a bazaar, but a half-way house between the willing and the wanting? And if this be the case where bulky stuffs have to be carried, how much more easy is it to them who come to ask questions, and tell prices, and offer goods, to go to where they may easily meet with those who can answer the one and buy the other! And yet, soul of Hamet the jester, of the tulip suburb of Aleppo! Ibraham, some cadies here wish to carry the bazaar of bills and merchants' information to the outskirts of the city, and near to their own gardens and quiet houses, where their women abide ! Verily, I wonder not that there is a cry against it--for have not I, son of my sister, seen the exchanges of Smyrna, Venice,

Cairo, Amsterdam, and London, and are they not in the streets that are crowded, and the great thoroughfares that cut into equal parts the cities? I write these by a vessel from the Clyde, from whence, when Ali restores men to their senses, and the Exchange is left where it now is, I will ship thee the goods I cannot at this time buy, for every merchant lifts but his pen to write advice which none will listen to, concerning this matter, as every one has a plan of his own. The blessing of Ali upon thee. From thy uncle, IBRAHAM.


. It is well, however, that Mary is not the worse for her brief residence in Glasgow. It was a terrible time that fortnight, Will; concerts-suppers-dances-balls;

every night for fourteen was I in requisition. You see what it is to have a handsome cousin visiting you, and to tie your neckcloth in _ 's style, and pay the largest share of attention to the married ladies, who have most to say, believe me, in awarding invitations. I had little more than fifty hours' sleep for a whole fortnight, and the thing continues. Dinner-givers are certainly in better spirits than they were a twelvemonth ago; and, with the exception of one fine little young fellow, who is “ backward in coming forward,” most of my bachelor cronies are gay, and liberal, and jaunty, and ball-giving as I could wish. Five nights of next week are already pounced upon. One of them, however, is that on which I have to read for a wicked promise-breaker, whose wit gets him out of every scrape where another can be left in the lurch, in the society. That is decidedly a bore, you must admit. The mournings are already disappearing from the ball-rooms they made sombre for a while. I sport blue, with gray stockings already. Quadrilles are liked, but Spanish country-dances are fast eclipsing them-and no wonder, where one meets with a waltzer like . The concerts I need say no more about, as Mary and the Free Press will have told you all I could about the third and fourth of them. The theatre remained closed for a few nights after, till Mr. Knowles, with his fine band of “ ingenuous youths," came forward and delivered a Series of Readings for the benefit of one of the noblest charities of Glasgow-the Catholic Schools. It was altogether a delightful evening's entertainment, and most fashionably attended; the benevolent and exalted President of the Society honouring it with the presence of himself and family. I have not yet seen the additions made to the company since the house re-opened. They are well spoken of, and Kean, and other stars, are soon to be above our horizon.- Three concerts are spoken of to be given by Miss Thomson this month. She is a delightful singer, whether in the orchestra or a drawingroom ; and in skill and taste, as well as natural power, much better tban many from the south, whom we have, during the last year, had among us. On Saturday, I dropped into Alexander's house, and saw a well-inade woman look pretty in red breeches; but, more, heard one of those speeches which, to do him justice, the manager can deliver, but is somewbat too fond of. One of the gods had disapproved of a fling in the dramatic sovereign's leg, or some otber pice matter of taste,and hissed -as gods will do—but much more gently tban Eolas. The indignant actor stopped, turned back, came forward, and began, a-la-Ryder of Edinburgh. Hiss him! Oh, monstrous! In the end, the malcontent critic of Olympus was hurried off to the Police Office, and on Monday the sapient judge fined him in a guinea for exercising one of the privileges of every sweep who pays a sixpence to see players make faces—that of audibly approving or condemning the entertainment offered to him for his money. Fine doings these! If we of the pit dare not hiss, what is the value of our cheers. This is as bad as Denmark-see Rae Wilson. - Ton Reynolds is still teaching the “ manly art” here. He is a good fellow Tom, and “ The Collegian” patronises him. By the bye, it is a clever little work that, although, I see, so indiscriminate in its admissions of correspondence, as to have become a court of ease to “ The Ant,”-a refuge for its rejected addresses. It had a capital article on the first concert. — You ask me about two strange beings you saw in Glasgow, Dorsey and Harriston. Of the former I bave lost sight: his tavern and his countenancethe one illuminating and the other darkening the Trongateare no longer visible. The bard has sent me an imploring epistle to subscribe to “ his very last poem.” The postscript is in verse, and three times the length of the letter, and as it concludes, so even will I.-C. H.

And still, when manufacturing's dull,

The poet has bis portion full
Of all the woes which man can here endure;
While he who sells bread, barley, meal,

And butter, may a little feel,
Yet of a partial sale he's ever sure,


Second Editions of those Numbers out of print are now ready, so that

complete sets of all those published may again be had.

Printed by James Curli, 55, Bell-Street, and sold by all the Booksellers in

Glasgow, Paisley, Greenock, Ayr, Kilmarnock, &c.; and in Edinburgh, by R. Chambers, India Place, and J. Sutherland, Calton-Street.




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


No. I. abo bedi THE Journal of a Soldier of the 42d bears about it every mark of authenticity. It has avowedly been composed and published on account of the success of the Narrative of the Private in the 71st Light Infantry; but it is not half so well written nor so interesting, though, perhaps, a more faithful and “unvarnished tale.” There is far less studied effect in it, and it is more simple; yet its simplicity is more that of awkwardness than nature.

-The Memoirs of La Roche Jacqueline are written with the most enchanting simplicity, but they possess and excite as great an interest as the most artificially arranged and eloquently elaborate story. They afford an admirable example of genuine, because natural, simplicity. This poor soldier in his youth received just as much education as prevented him, in composing bis Journal, from throwing himself totally upon his own resources; and he appears in it just like the girl whose artless and interesting gait has been altered by the aid of a village dancing-master, who, however, was unable to impart in its place the elegance and grace of fashion and well-bred assurance.

The Journal, embracing the years between 1805 and 1815, is not, however, destitute of both instruction and amusement;-instruction, in giving us civilians an interior view of the camp and the barrack, and of the habits and occupations of a large, and, both morally and politically speaking, constitutionally important constituent part, some would say-branch, I would call it-of the body-politic;

-amusement, because a soldier's life, even in peace, is one of incident, and in war of peril and adventure; the narration of which, the greatest clumsiness and bad taste cannot wholly depude of its inherent interest, si


The picture this and other similar narrations of a private soldier's life present, is any thing but pleasing or enticing to those who estimate mind and soul as at all of superior importance to mere physical qualities. In war, starvation and hardship are alternated with superabundance, riot, and prodigious excitement in the guise of animal pleasure, and the display of animal courage. In peace, the comforts of thousands are seen depending on the caprice of a martinet, and the leisure which indulgent discipline sometimes allows, often spent in the merest debauchery. In short, even British soldiers, and what, if they are so, must foreign and uneducated musket-bearers be!) in this Journal, appear as what philosophers have long asserted that all professional fighters are-mere disciplined bands who are paid for murdering men that are paid for murdering them in return. No chivalrous sentiment mixes in the warfare of uneducated privates—they fight in a quarrel of which they know nothing, for a cause they often care little about, and at a price they increase whenever they can plunder.

* * * * * How delightful are the Idyls of Gesner! Before reading them, I had seen little of pastoral poetry; and from what I first perused, had no desire to meet with more. Poetry, in its common acceptation, either as rhyme or blank verse, doubtless gives an atmosphere of beauty to whatever it invests; but it is an artificial grace when applied to the incidents and feelings of the very earliest ages—the era of the invention of the rudest of musical instruments, the reeds of Syrinx and Pan, and before language could be supposed to be modelled into a concatenated train, when wants were few, and consequently the expressions denoting them paucid. The unrhythmical style of Gesner, then, is such as shepherds of Arcadia may have used; this we can believe without any great stretch of imagination, as they are only slightly purified from what we deem vulgarity-if, indeed, vulgarity can exist in a state of innocence, or any mode of expression be looked upon with scorn, when innocence attaches to it no improper meaning, and when language affords few synonymes.

The characters in them talk on events and circumstances which must have been of every-day occurrence in a shepherd's life. Thyrsus does not commence without preface and without motive to discourse with Philander on the

« ПредишнаНапред »