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"Several witnesses to character were called. "Messrs Creevey, Cochrane, and Cobbett, General Ferguson, Mr Grant, Mr Wishart, and Mr Paul Methuen, severally spoke to the Prisoner's character.
Case for the prosecution closed. "The Prisoner attempted to set up an alibi, by the waiter of the Exchequer Coffee house, but failed, it being clearly proved that he had spoken thirty-two times, on the night on which he alleged he was absent from the House.
"The Prisoner being called upon for his defence, said, he threw himself upon the mercy of the Court. He was willing to retract any thing he had ever said-solemnly denied that he had meant any thing disrespectful to Mr Ponsonby by calling him an old woman, and saw nothing in the character of old women that should make it a matter of reproach to be likened to one of that respectable and valuable class of society.
"The Jury, after a very long deliberation, found the Prisoner Guilty, but recommended him to mercy, on the ground of his having vilified the Prince Regent. But his Jury, that he should not transmit this reLordship, from the Bench, acquainted the commendation. He would, however, postpone passing sentence till the end of the Sessions."
The knowledge of naval affairs, displayed in the following account of a sea-fight, would do credit even to a secretary of the admiralty.
FAILURE OF THE BUCCANEERS, AND LOSS OF THE BROOM FIRE-SHIP. March 1816. "IT is with the liveliest satisfaction that we announce to the public the failure of the above enterprize, and the total destruction of the Broom fire-ship, in an action in St Stephen's Bay, during the night of Wednesday, the 20th instant. This Buccanner expedition was destined for a coup de main against the royal arsenals in Treasury Harbour, which they intended to plunder and burn, if they could not keep permanent possession of them.
Up to the above-mentioned day the fleet had proceeded with apparent success, under the command of the Ponsonby flag-ship, an old hulk fitted up for the occasion: it consisted principally of the Tierney hired trader, the Wynne, armed en flute, the Monck, a North country collier, the Milton, a heavy lugger, the Curwen tender, the Broom fireship, the Gordon bum-boat, accompanied by some other Callcraft.
"On Monday the 18th, they had gained a considerable advantage over a squadron of revenue cutters, led by the Vansittart, which they defeated in Property Roads, by the assistance of a fleet of country ships, whom they decoyed to their aid by hoisting false colours. The Vansittart, however, we are happy to say, was not much damaged by the action, and though driven to the Straights for the moment, will soon be refitted in the London Docks. This partial success seems to have emboldened the Buccanners, and in some degree to have hastened their defeat, by relaxing the discipline of the squadron,
They began to disregard the signals of the the Ponsonby, and many quarrels arose about the future distribution of their captured booty. On the evening of the 20th, as they were standing on under easy sail, the Methuen, an empty vessel, leading the way, the Broom fire-ship insisted upon running in to blow up Fort Regent: the Ponsonby flagship remonstrated against the at tempt, alleging that they should only lose time by it; that the defences of Fort Regent were strong, and they were sure of being repulsed; that it would create an alarm, and raise the country people against them; and that it would be better to wait till they had got possession of Treasury Harbour, and then they might demolish Fort Regent at their leisure. The Broom, however, relying upon her store of combustibles, and particularly the quantity of brimstone she had taken on board, disobeyed orders, and setting all sail, stood right in upon Fort Regent, blazing away on all sides. It was soon observed, however, that her fire was ill directed, and that more of her shot hit her friends than the Fort, and the rest of the fleet therefore hauled off, and stood aloof from her, contenting themselves with cheering her as she bore down in her attack.
66 The mistake made by the Broom now became manifest: a tremendous cannonade was opened upon her; she tried to manœuvre to get out again, but failed; she missed stays, and mismanaged her royals, and she was soon so dreadfully cut up that she lay like a log upon the water. At this time a fresh fire was opened upon her flank by the Martello tower on the Banks, supported by a detachment from the Saintes, and this completely silenced her.
"The night was now so far advanced as to put an end to the engagement. The Broom was now seen lying in a pitiable condition. Her friends, however, determined to make an attempt to get her off, and about five in the afternoon, the Ponsonby sheerhulk, and the Tierney hired trader, accompanied by the Bennet convict-ship, and the Gordon bum-boat, came down into St. Ste. phen's Bay, in order to try to tow her out. The Broom, however, would not answer the helm, was found quite unmanageable, and although she seemed to float for a moment, yet a well-directed fire, which was instantly poured into her from Castle-Ray, laid her upon her beam ends again.
"What is now to become of her we have no means of guessing; whether they will attempt to get her under way with a jury rigging, or appropriate her to the press we know not. It seems certain that all the captains of the other ships would object to her ever being again brought forward in the line
Fearing the Broughamites to weep over these personal attacks on their gentle idol, we direct their attention to a mild and simple letter from an American quaker:
"TO MR TOBIAS BRANDE, OF BIGMUDDY, MARYLAND, UNITED STATES.
"No 5, Bearbinder-lane, the 3d day of the 4th month.
"FRIEND TOBIAS,-Thou hast oftentimes enjoined me to send thee some particulars concerning the persons who are called the Opposition in this country, and whem thou rightly considerest as better friends to the States than any federalist between Blowing-Fly-Creek and Passamaquoddy Bay. That I may be the better enabled to comply with thy injunction, I have posted myself from day to day in the gallery of the Parliament House, and have collected by inquiries from others, and my own observation, much curious information, of which I will now, God willing, impart to thee a portion.
"Thou first inquirest what are the numbers of the Opposition: of this matter I cannot tell thee more, than that I have seen their numbers vary from three to twentythree or thereabouts. On the very last night I was there, their muster-roll was the strongest, amounting to twenty-one in a lump or compact body, and some two or three stragglers at the bar.
"As for their persons and appearance, which thou requirest me to describe, it may suffice that I tell thee, that they very much resemble an equal number of Members of Congress. Thou wouldst say that I spoke from prejudice and partial affection, if I were to affirm what doth nevertheless appear to me that on the whole they were not quite so well favoured.
They call a short and squattish gentleman of the name of Ponsonby, their Leader-but my mind misgives me if there be not more than one half who are loth to follow him. The leader is, as verily he ought to be, a very cautious guide, and rarely propoundeth he any thing which can be contradicted or objected to. There is so much sameness and discretion in his style, that I can enable thee to judge of any quantity of it by a small sample. Discoursing of a treaty of peace, quoth the Leader-i cannot pronounce any opinion upon this treaty, Mr Speaker, until I have read it. No one has a right, Mr Speaker, to call on have read it. This treaty cannot be printme for an opinion upon this treaty until I ed and in the hands of Members before Tuesday next at noon-and then, and not until then, Mr Speaker, will I, for one, form my opinion-upon this treaty. I am not such a fool as I am generally supposed to be.' Here he pauseth, and raising his spectacles with his hand, and poising them dexterously on his forehead, he looketh steadily at the Speaker for some moments.
callest him) hath more weight, I think, "Whitbread (not Whitebread, as thou than the Leader. He is a very boisterous and lengthy speaker, and strongly remind eth me of Bully Pycroft of Kentucky, whom
thou knowest, though he is inferior to Pyeroft in taste aud elegance.
"There is a man of the name of Tierney, one not of many words, but who appeareth to me mighty shrewd and sensible. I will wager a dollar that that is an honest man,' said I, one evening, to my neighbours in the gallery; upon which they all cried ⚫ done,' and laughed very heartily: I know not why.
"These three, together with a small Baronet from Ireland, of a most cantanckerous turn, and a Member from Scotland, chiefly remarkable for his silken small-clothes and hose, call they the great guns.'
"I will now speak to thee of some of the smaller fry, who, nevertheless, consider themselves just as big as their betters, and walk up to their seats in the Parliament House with huge bundles of papers under their arms, with great solemnity.
"There is also a Mr I. Grant, a swaggering man, but in my mind a vapid speaker. He seemeth well contented with himself, but on this and other matters holding strange doctrines, wherein he standeth alone.
"I have heard many questions put very genteelly by a Mr Bennet, an honourable who is in my mind mighty well bred, though he disfigureth himself by wearing a green wig. He is attentive to business, and hath lately discovered a mistake of three farthings in an account of thirty millions: but he somewhat surprised me by calling the Sceretary at War (the Munro of this country) his honourabls friend and a very infamous man, in the same breath.
"He hath a brother elder in years, but less in stature than herself, who rarely speaketh, the which I attribute to his hav ing held an important office of the state, which hath taught him to be wise and keep silence. I know not more of his office, than that the insignia thereof consisted of a staff or stick many feet longer than him who bore it.
"I must first tell thee of my friend, Mr Will Martin, with whom I have formed an acquaintance, and in whose company I take great delight. I dined with him at the chophouse last Wednesday, and, to say the truth, found him a man after my own kidney. As a public speaker, he is chiefly noticed for a strange habit, that whenever he openeth his mouth, he taketh that opportunity of closing his eyes.
"There is one Mr Gordon, a middleaged gentleman with a grave visage, who hath an appropriate but unseemly cognomen, which, as thou wilt probably shew my letter to thy wife, I will impart to thee in a postscript.
"I must not forget a dainty young gentleman of the name of Lambton, who declaimeth in a very peculiar style. I know not whether there be more of oil in his deportment, or of vinegar in his tongue. must indulge thee from my memorandum book with a specimen of this youth. Speak ing one day of the Congress and the Kings at Vienna, saith he- What, Sir! shall a club of congregated cannibals feed on the carcasses of unoffending Europe? What, Sir! shall his Majesty's Ministers, a set of profligate and perjured swindlers, retain their seats in the Cabinet when they ought to be drawn and quartered without a trial! As for Lord Castlereagh, Sir, I thank my God three times a-day that the noble and unsullied blood of the Lambtons is not polluted by any admixture with that of the plebeian Stewarts.' Thou must admit that these are hard words, and yet delivered he them with so much composure and goodhumour, and to all outward appearance so little moved was he by the spirit, that I conjecture he was by no means in earnest, but perchance a secret partisan of the Ministry: the more so as Mr Chancellor Vansittart thrice said Hear, hear during his
declamation; and Friend Martin whispered that the jackanapes,' as merrily he called him, did his own party more harm than good.'
"I must not forget the mention of Sir Charles Monck, whom I reckon a merry and facetious jester. He hath kept the whole House in a state of merriment upwards of three quarters of an hour, by reading an ancient missal respecting something which he called the Order of the Bath. He was, however, despite of his jests, grievously disposed to blame an addition of forty marks to the salary of a deputy messenger, which he said was a violation of the constitution, and a discharge of the subjects of the realm from their allegiance; and such is the wretched state of the finances of this country, that this worthy country Member protested he did not know where the forty marks were to come from.
Lastly, let me name to thee a youngster, who hath been mistaken for a wit in foreign parts, by the name of North Douglas. He seemeth to belong to no party, and yet willing to belong to all. He is a forward and frequent speaker-remarkable for a graceful inclination of the upper part of his body, in advance of the lower, and speaketh, I suspect, (after the manner of an ancient) with pebbles in his mouth. He hath a strange custom, when speaking, of holding his hat in one hand, and smoothing the felt of it with the other, the which made me at the first entertain a ludicrous notion that he was recommending the hat to the Speaker, and exhorting him to purchase it.
"I must now bid thee farewell, but I have much more to communicate thee. Thy friend, EZEKIAL GRUBB."
our extracts from this
amusing volume, with some geogra phical intelligence, which, in the present age of discovery, cannot fail to be highly interesting to all:
"The Friendless Islands.
"The island of Francisco, called by the natives Boor-dee-too. This island is nothing but a mountain, and is very barren and unproductive. It derived its first name from Jacobine Monk, who was the first missionary in those parts: he came round Cape Horn, and as long as a communication on that side remained, the island was pretty well supplied; since that has been cut off, the people have been obliged to betake themselves to hunting; but, from want of early habit, are but awkward in that pursuit. They are an extremely disorderly and turbulent race, though mild in their An old and manners and appearance. strange account of this island is to be found in the Harleian Miscellany.
"Yan-kee, supposed by some to be Behring's island, is evidently peopled by a separate race, who have, as the name imports, the strongest affinity to the Americaris These are the ugliest race of the whole, and the sounds they utter, as lan guage, are hardly articulate.
"Hoo-too-shoo-poo-coc-a-too-hub-bub-boo, or the island of Coarse Broom, which, it seems, is the meaning of this long and A most singular instance of strange name. mirage was observed on first approaching this island; its great promontory, or, in the sailors' language, its ness or nose, appeared to vibrate from one side to the other in a manner which the captain of the vessel could only compare to the waving of an eleThis island is extremely phant's snout. mountainous in its interior: it is subject to the most violent tornadoes; but it is remarkable, that frequent as these storms of wind and thunder are, they are never accompanied by a single flash of lightning. The people are the most rude and rough of any of these tribes, and are indeed little better than intelligent baboons, whom they much resemble in face and shape: they are exceedingly mischievous; and they are little liked by the other islanders. With many of their neighbours they are în a state of perpetual war, and they have an old and deadly feud with the new Hollanders. They do not venture indeed openly to attack such formidable opponents, but lose no opportunity of making an incursion upon the Hollanders when they think they can do so unperceived and with impunity.
April 11, 1816. "A vessel just arrived round about from New Holland has brought an account of this interesting cluster of islands, which had hitherto been little noticed by former circumnavigators. By some they have been mistaken for the Ladrones, but these are now ascertained to be exactly the antipodes of England, and to lie precisely opposite to the Cape of Good Hope. The following are the most remarkable of the group :Twaddle Poon-son-boo. the principal of the cluster, is very flat and uninteresting, but it is one of the richest of the whole, having an annual revenue of £4000 of our money, which it derives from its dexterity in catching a species of Great Seal,
"Teer-nee, or Juggler's Island.-The character of this varies so much according to the side on which it is seen, that those who have viewed it only on one side would hardly know it again when they approach it on the other. The people are a shrewd, cunning race, famous for their expertness in legerdemain. They are, however, much distrusted by their neighbours, and it is a proverb in these islands, when they wish to express strongly the hopelessness of a search, to say, You might as well look for truth in Teernce,' just as we talk of looking for a needle in Hyde-Park.
"Taf-fee Wyn-nee.-This is a most dismal island, being much infested with screechowls, and the discordant noise perpetually produced it by these birds, combined with the hoarse croaking of a number of ravens, who also infest it, remind one of fabulous stories of the stymphalides and harpies. Mariners are recommended, when coming near it, to adopt (though for a contrary reason) the precaution of Ulysses, and to stuff their ears with cotton while they remain in its neighbourhood. There is such a surf breaks on its harbour-mouth, that one can seldom approach it without being covered with spray.
"Pawlo, or Booby's Island. The inhabitants of this are a singular race. They are very low in the scale of intellectual beings, but yet have all the vanity of an intelligent people. They are so little to be depended upon, that they will address you one day as a friend, and attack you the next as an enemy. Strangers are advised to have as little to do with these people as possible; and from their extreme dulness, the scantiness of their resources, and captious temper, there is little inducement to hold any intercourse with them-and indeed their sole support is derived from petty war :-their hair is short and curly-their features with out the least expression—their countenances very grave and unmeaning, and they dress themselves very gaudily with a profusion of parrots' feathers. This contrast of solemnity and foppery is very ridiculous.
"Bum-mee may easily be distinguished by its spherical, lumpish form, and the absence of any prominent features. The natives are supposed to be descended from some Hottentot emigration, as the distinguishing mark of that race is plainly to be recognised in the countenance of these islanders: they also resemble the Hottentots in this, that they seldom make their appearance in public without smearing themselves all over with butter.
"Jon-nee, called by the Portuguese Por to Novo, or Wasp's Islet, is full of the irritable and mischievous insects from which it derives its name. This little island is
very arid and unproductive, and the people are a diminutive and dwindled race, very mischievous and passionate, as all dwarfs
"Ben-nee-too is the Botany-Bay of the Friendless Islands: the shores are covered with a light foam, which is the only subsistence of the natives. Naturalists have not yet determined what this curious substance (if substance it can be called) is: in look it resembles the froth of small beer.
"Kur-wee-nee, or the Hermit's Island. The inhabitants call themselves Christian ; but if good morals are requisite for that designation, they are said to have but little pretensions to the name. They are a tall, swarthy, ill-favoured race; tolerably skil. ful in agriculture, and particularly in grow ing rapeseed.
"Craf-cal-lee. The inhabitants of this island have a general resemblance to those of Parelo; they are indeed somewhat more intelligent, and their disposition to chance arises not from imbecillity of intellect, as with the latter, but from a very careful calculation of their own interests: they are great observers of the weather, and shift their places according to the appearances of the sky. Those of Parolo, on the contrary, fickle as they are in other respects, never change their old seats. It is related that these two islands were formerly very close to one another; but that Craf-cal-lee, which is a kind of Australasiatic Delos, has lately shifted to a position, whence, as tradition goes, it had before moved.
"There is a remarkable island, to which the natives have given the name of Rat-tee, or New-comer, but which our sailors, in compliment to the Purser, called Douglas's Island. It is said to have but recently made its appearance in this group, and is supposed to be a volcanic creation: this hy. pothesis is confirmed by the general striated appearance of the surface, and by the continuance, even at present, of a constant eruption. It has hitherto been entirely unsettled; several parties have tried it, but none have quite ventured to trust themselves to it, for fear it should suddenly disappear from under them, like the island which appeared some years ago in the neighbourhood of the Azores. It produces no vegetable but scurvy-grass.
proportion to their ignorance; they have many pretended prophets among them, to whose predictions they listen with the utmost avidity, and they never seem to place less implicit confidence in the last new prophecy, because they have seen all former ones falsified by events :-Religion, properly speaking, they have none; and as to their morals and manners, the less that is said about them the better. They have, however, some singular notions of a former and future state. They believe that their race formerly occupied some pleasant seats on the other side of a large table or mountain, which is in sight of their present abodes: that they were driven out of them for some misdeeds by the Great Breath, at the secret instigation of their evil genius Mumbo-Jumbo, whom they represent as an elderly figure, with flowing white curls and dark bushy eyebrows, clothed all in black, and seated upon a fiery red throne, in shape somewhat resembling a great woolpack; and they fondly cherish a hope, encouraged by the predictions of their prophets, that some day or other, when they shall have undergone sufficient penance in their present habitations, they are to be restored to those happy seats. But the most intelligent among them secretly ridicule this expectation; and are well aware, that however such a notion may keep alive the hope and promise of amendments, little real improvement is to be expected from tribes, which rate so very low in the scale of intellect and manners."
"There are various others of smaller note, making in all the number of about forty or fifty.
The government of these islands is a Federal Republic, of which Twaddlo Poonson-boo is the nominal head; but in point of fact, they all set up pretty much for themselves, and they seem to have no great relish for any regular government at all: like all savages, the people are credulous in
So much for the prose of this amusing little volume-we shall give some specimens of the poetry in an early Number. Some of the verses are exceedingly lively-even biting. We venture to assert, that the Whigs in general will pretend never to have heard of this volume at all,-while, perhaps some of the more sagacious will maintain, that we have given fabricated extracts from an imaginary book. It is only a few weeks back since they ventured to doubt the existence of Dr Morris of Aberystwith, and attributed to one of our reviewing brethren the composition of "Peter's Letters to his Kinsfolk." It is very well to speak thus-but let any one of the Somnambulists who haunt Constable's Magazine, try to play off a trick of that kind, and he will find how much easier it is to review a book than to write one. But now for the King of the Cockneys!