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I cannot lay claim to the merit of being a devout of the neighboring poor had joined the train, and man; but there are feelings that visit me in a coun. some children of the village were running hand in try church, amid the beautiful serenity of nature, hand, now shouting with unthinking mirth, and which I experience nowhere else; and if not a more now pausing to gaze, with childish curios ity, on the religious, think I am a better man on Sunday, than grief of the mourner. on any other day of the seven.
As the funeral train approached the grave, the But in this church I felt myself continually thrown parson issued from the church porch, arrayed in the back upon the world, by the frigidity and pomp of surplice, with prayer-book in hand, and attended by the poor worms around me. The only being that the clerk. The service, however, was a mere act of seemed thoroughly to feel the humble and prostrate charity. The deceased had been destitute, and the piety of a true Christian, was a poor, decrepit old survivor was penniless. It was shuffled through, woman, bending under the weight of years and therefore, in form, but coldly and unfeelingly. The infirmities. She bore the traces of something better well-fed priest moved but a few steps from the than abject poverty. The lingerings of decent pride church door; his voice could scarcely be heard at were visible in her appearance. Her dress, though the grave; and never did I hear the funeral service, humble in the extreme, was scrupulously clean. Some that sublime and touching ceremony, turned into trivial respect, too, had been awarded her, for she such a frigid mummery of words. did not take her seat among the village poor, but sat I approached the grave. The coffin was placed alone on the steps of the altar. She seemed to have on the ground. On it were inscribed the name and survived all love, all friendship, all society; and to age of the deceased—“George Somers, aged 26 have nothing left her but the hopes of heaven. When years.” The poor mother had been assisted to kneel I saw her feebly rising and bending her aged form down at the head of it. Her withered hands were in prayer; habitually conning her prayer-book, which clasped, as if in prayer; but I could perceive by the her palsied hand and failing eyes could not permit feeble rocking of the body, and a convulsive motion her to read, but which she evidently knew by heart; of the lips, that she was gazing on the last relics of I felt persuaded that the faltering voice of that poor her son with the yearnings of a mother's heart. woman arose to heaven far before the responses of Preparations were made to deposit the coffin in the the clerk, the swell of the organ, or the chanting of earth. There was a bustling stir, which breaks so the choir.
harshly on the feelings of grief and affection; direcI am fond of loitering about country churches; tions given in the cold tones of business; the strik. and this was so delightfully situated, that it fre. ing of spades into sand and gravel; which, at the quently attracted me. It stood on a knoll, around grave of those we love, is of all sounds the most which a small stream made a beautiful bend, and withering. The bustle around seemed to waken then wound its way through a long reach of soft the mother from a wretched reverie. She raised her meadow scenery. The church was surrounded by glazed eyes, and looked about with a faint wildness. yew trees, which seemed almost coeval with itself. As the men approached with cords to lower the Its tall Gothic spire shot up lightly from among coffin into the grave, she wrung her hands, and them, with rooks and crows generally wheeling broke into an agony of grief. The poor woman who about it. I was seated there one still, sunny morn- attended her, took her by the arm, endeavor ing to ing, watching two laborers who were digging a raise her from the earth, and to whisper something grave. They had chosen one of the most remote like consolation—" Nay, now—nay, now-don't and neglected corners of the church-yard, where, by take it so sorely to heart." She could only shake the number of nameless graves around, it would her head, and wring her hands, as one not to be appear that the indigent and friendless were huddled comforted. into the earth. I was told that the new-made grave As they lowered the body into the earth, the was for the only son of a poor widow. While I was creaking of the cords seemed to agonize her; but meditating on the distinctions of worldly rank, which when, on some accidental obstruction, there was a extend thus down into the very dust, the toll of the jostling of the coffin, all the tenderness of the mother bell announced the approach of the funeral. They burst forth; as if any harm could come to him who were the obsequies of poverty, with which pride had was far beyond the reach of worldly sufferiny. nothing to do. A coffin of the plainest materials, I could see no more—my heart swelled into my without pall or other covering, was borne by some throat-my eyes filled with tears—I felt as if I were of the villagers. The sexton walked before with an acting a barbarous part in standing by and gazing air of coid indifference. There were
no mock idly on this scene of maternal anguish. I wandered mourners in the trappings of affected woe, but there to another part of the church-yard, where I remained was one real mourner, who feebly tottered after the until the funeral train had dispersed. corpse. It was the aged mother of the deceased- When I saw the mother slowly and painfully the poor old woman whom I had seen seated on the quitting the grave, leaving behind her the remains steps of the altar. She was supported by a humble of all that was dear to her on earth, and returning to friend, who was endeavoring to comfort her. A few silence and destitution, my heart ached for her. What, thought I, are the distresses of the rich? faced the garden suddenly opened. A stranger came They have friends to soothe-pleasures to beguile-- out, and seemed to be looking eagerly and wildly a world to divert and dissipate their griefs. What around. He was dressed in seaman's clothes, was are the sorrows of the young? Their growing minds emaciated and ghastly pale, and bore the air of one soon close above the wound-their elastic spirits soon broken by sickness and hardships. He saw her, and rise beneath the pressure—their green and ductile hastened towards her, but his steps were faint and affections soon twine around new objects. But the faltering; he sank on his knees before her, and sobbed sorrows of the poor, who have no outward appliances like a child. The poor woman gazed upon him to soothe—the sorrows of the aged, with whom life with a vacant and wandering eye—“Oh my dear, at best is but a wintry day, and who can look for no dear mother! don't you know your son? your poor aftergrowth of joy—the sorrows of a widow, aged, boy George?” It was, indeed, the wreck of her solitary, destitute, mourning over an only son, the once noble lad; who, shattered by wounds, by sicklast solace of her years;—these are indeed sorrows ness, and foreign imprisonment, had, at length, which make us feel the impotency of consolation. dragged his wasted limbs homeward, to repose
It was some time before I left the church-yard. On among the scenes of his childhood. my way homeward, I met with the woman who had I will not attempt to detail the particulars of such acted as comforter: she was just returning from a meeting, where sorrow and joy were so completely accompanying the mother to her lonely habitation, blended: still he was alive!_he was come home! and I drew from her some particulars connected with he might yet live to comfort and cherish her old age! the affecting scene I had witnessed.
Nature, however, was exhausted in him; and if anyThe parents of the deceased had resided in the thing had been wanting to finish the work of fate, village from childhood. They had inhabited one of the desolation of his native cottage would have been the neatest cottages, and by various rural occupations, sufficient. He stretched himself on the pallet on and the assistance of a small garden, had supported which his widowed mother had passed many a sleepthemselves creditably and comfortably, and led a less night, and he never arose from it again. happy and blameless life. They had one son, who The villagers, when they heard that George had grown up to be the staff and pride of their age. Somers had returned, crowded to see him, offering “Oh, sir! ” said the good woman, “he was such a every comfort and assistance that their humble means comely lad, so sweet-tempered, so kind to everyone afforded. He was too weak, however, to talk-he around him, so dutiful to his parents! It did one's could only look his thanks. His mother was his heart good to see him of a Sunday, dressed out in his constant attendant; and he seemed unwilling to be best, so tall, so straight, so cheery, supporting his old helped by any other hand. mother to church-for she was always fonder of There is something in sickness that breaks down leaning on George's arm than on her good man's; the pride of manhood; that softens the heart, and and, poor soul, she might well be proud of him, for a brings it back to the feelings of infancy. Who that finer lad there was not in the country round.”
has languished, even in advanced life, in sickness Unfortunately the son was tempted, during a year and despondency, who that has pined on a weary of scarcity and agricultural hardship, to enter into bed in the neglect and loneliness of a foreign the service of one of the small craft that plied on a land, but has thought on the mother “ that looked neighboring river. He had not been long in this on his childhood,” that smoothed his pillow, and employ, when he was entrapped by a press-gang, administered to his helplessness? Oh! there is and carried off to sea. His parents received tidings an enduring tenderness in the love of a mother of his seizure, but beyond that they could learn to a son, that transcends all other affections of nothing. It was the loss of their main prop. The the heart. It is neither to be chilled by selfishness, father, who was already infirm, grew heartless and nor daunted by danger, nor weakened by worthlessmelancholy, and sunk into his grave. The widow, ness, nor stifled by ingratitude. She will sacrifice left lonely in her age and feebleness, could no longer every comfort to his convenience; she will surrender support herself, and came upon the parish. Still every pleasure to his enjoyment; she will glory in there was a kind feeling towards her throughout his fame, and exult in his prosperity ;-and, if misthe village, and a certain respect as being one of the fortune overtake him, he will be the dearer to her from oldest inhabitants. As no one applied for the cottage misfortune; and if disgrace settle upon his name, she in which she had passed so many happy days, she will still love and cherish him in spite of his disgrace; was permitted to remain in it, where she lived and if all the world beside cast him oft, she will be solitary and almost helpless. The few wants of all the world to him. nature were chiefly supplied by the scanty productions Poor George Somers had known what it was to be of her little garden, which the neighbors would now in sickness, and none to soothe-lonely and in prison, and then cultivate for her. It was but a few days and none to visit him. He could not endure his before the time at which these circumstances were mother from his sight; if she moved away, his eye told me, that she was gathering some vegetables for would follow her. She would sit for hours by his her repast, when she heard the cottage door which I bed, watching him as he slept. Sometimes he would
start from a fe.erish dream, and looking anxiously head of the fire department, and one of the physicians up until he saw her bending over him, when he to the board of health. As a keeper of the peace, all would take her hand, lay it on his bosom, and fall asleep with the tranquility of a child. In this way he I perform some of the duties of the town clerk, by died,
promulgating public notices, when they are posted My first impulse on hearing this humble tale of on my front. To speak within bounds, I am the chief affliction was to visit the cottage of the mourner, and person of the municipality, and exhibit, moreover, an administer pecuniary assistance, and, if possible, admirable pattern to my brother officers, by the cool, comfort. I found, however, on inquiry, that the steady, upright, downright, and impartial discharge good feelings of the villagers had prompted them to of my business, and the constancy with which I do everything that the case admitted; and as the poor stand to my post. Summer or winter, nobody seeks know best how to console each other's sorrows, I did
me in vain; for, all day long, I am seen at the busi. not venture to intrude.
est corner, just above the market, stretching out my The next Sunday I was at the village church; arms, to rich and poor alike; and at night I hold a when, to my surprise, I saw the poor old woman totter. lantern over my head, both to show where I am, and ing down the aisle to her accustomed seat on the steps keep people out of the gutters. of the altar.
At this sultry noontide, I am cupbearer to the She had made an effort to put on something like parched populace, for whose benefit an iron goblet is mourning for her son; and nothing could be more chained to my waist. Like a dram seller on the touching than this struggle between pious affection
mall, at muster day, I cry aloud to all and sundry, in and utter poverty; a black ribbon or so—a faded black
my plainest accents, and at the very tiptop of my handkerchief-and one or two more such humble
voice. Here, it is gentlemen! Here is the good attempts to express by outward signs that grief which
liquor! Walk up, walk up, gentlemen, walk up, passes show. When I looked round upon the storied
walk up! Here is the superior stuff! Here is the monuments, the stately hatchments, the cold marbie unadulterated ale of father Adam-better than
pomp, with which grandeur mourned magnificently Cognac, Hollands, Jamaica, strong beer, or wine of
over departed pride, and turned to this poor widow, bowed down by age and sorrow at the altar of her God, and offering up the prayers and praises of a pious, though a broken heart, I felt that this living monument of real grief was worth them all.
I related her story to some of the wealthy members of the congregation, and they were moved by it. They exerted themselves to render her situation more comfortable, and to lighten her afflictions. It was, however, but smoothing a few steps to the grave. In the course of a Sunday or two after, she was missed from her usual seat at church, and before I left the neighborhood, I heard, with a feeling of satisfaction, that she had quietly breathed her last, and had gone to rejoin those she loved, in that world where sorrow is never known, and friends are never parted.
any price; here it is, by the hogshead or the single glass, and not a cent to pay! Walk up, gentlemen, walk up, and help yourselves!
It were a pity if ali this outcry should draw no customers. Here they come. A hot day, gentlemen! Quaff, and away again, so as to keep yourselves in a nice cool sweat. You, my friend, will need another cupful, to wash the dust out of your throat, if it be as thick there as it is on your cowhide shoes. I see that you have trudged half a score of miles to. day; and, like a wise man, have passed by the taverns, and stopped at the running brooks and well curbs. Otherwise, betwixt heat without and fire within, you would have been burned to a cinder, or melted down to nothing at all, in the fashion of a jelly fish. Drink, and make room for that other fellow, who seeks my aid to quench the fiery fever of last night's potations, which he drained from no cup of mine. Welcome, most rubicund sir! You and I have been great strangers, hitherto; nor, to confess the truth, will my nose be anxious for a closer intimacy, till the fumes of your breath be a little less potent. Mercy on you, man! the water absolutely hisses down your red-hot gullet, and is converted quite to steam, in the miniature tophet, which you mistake for a stomach. Fill again, and tell me, on the word of an honest toper, did you ever, in cellar, tavern, or any kind of a dram shop, spend the price of your children's food for a swig half so delicious? Now, for the first time these ten years, you know the flavor of cold water. Good by; and whenever you are thirsty, remember that I keep a constant supply, at the old stand. Who next? O, my little friend, you are let loose from school, and come hither to scrub your blooming face, and
A RILL FROM THE TOWN PUMP.
Noon, by the north clock! Noon, by the east! High noon, too, by these hot sunbeams, which fall, scarcely aslope, upon my head, and almost make the water bubble and smoke in the trough under my nose. Truly, we public characters have a tough time of it! And, among all the town officers, chosen at March meeting, where is he that sustains, - a single year, the burden of such manifold duties as are im. posed, in perpetuity, upon the town pump? The title of “town treasurer” is rightfully mine, as guardian of the best treasure that the town has. The overseers of the poor ought to make me their chairman, since I provide bountifully for the pauper, without expense to him that pays taxes. I am at the
drown the memory of certain taps of the ferule, and pump was sunk into the source of the ancient spring; other schoolboy troubles, in a draught from the and when the first decayed, another took its placetown pump. Take it, pure as the current of your and then another, and still another-till here stand I, young life. Take it, and may your heart and tongue gentlemen and ladies, to serve you with my iron never be scorched with a fiercer thirst than now! goblet. Drink, and be refreshed! The water is as There, my dear child, put down the cup, and yield pure and cold as that which slaked the thirst of the your place to this elderly gentleman, who treads so red sagamore, beneath the aged boughs, though now tenderly over the paving stones, that I suspect he is the gem of the wilderness is treasured under these afraid of breaking them. What! he limps by, with- hot stones, where no shadow falls, but from the out so much as thanking me, as if my hospitable brick buildings. And be it the moral of my story, offers were meant only for people who have no wine that, as this wasted and long-lost fountain is now cellars. Well, well, sir-no harm done, I hope! Go known and prized again, so shall the virtues of cold draw the cork, tip the decanter; but when your water, too little valued since your fathers' days, be great toe shall send you a-roaring, it will be no affair recognized by all. of mine. If gentlemen love the pleasant titillation of Your pardon, good people, I must interrupt my the gout, it is all one to the town pump. This stream of eloquence, and spout forth a stream of water, thirsty dog with his red tongue lolling out, does not to replenish the trough for this teamster and his two scorn my hospitality, but stands on his hind legs, and yoke of oxen, who have come from Topsfield, or laps eagerly out of the trough. See how lightly he somewhere along that way. No part of my business capers away again! Jowler, did your worship ever is pleasanter than the watering of cattle. Look! have the gout?
how rapidly they lower the watermark on the sides Are you all satisfied? Then wipe your mouths, of the trough, till their capacious stomachs are my good friends; and, while my spout has a moment's moistened with a gallon or two apiece, and they can leisure, I will delight the town with a few historical afford time to breathe it in, with sighs of calm enjoy. reminiscences. In far antiquity, beneath a darksome ment. Now they roll their quiet eyes around the shadow of venerable boughs, a spring bubbled out of brim of their monstrous drinking vessel. An ox is the leaf-strewn earth, in the very spot where you your true toper. now behold me, on the sunny pavement. The water But I perceive, my dear auditors, that you are imwas as bright and clear, and deemed as precious, as patient for the remainder of my discourse. Impute liquid diamonds. The Indian sagamores drank of it, it, I beseech you, to no defect of modesty, if I insist a from time immemorial, till the fatal deluge of the little longer on so fruitful a topic as my own multifire water burst upon the red men, and swept their farious merits. It is altogether for your good. The whole race away from the cold fountains. Endicott, better you think of me, the better men and women and his followers, came next, and often knelt down will you find yourselves. I shall say nothing of my to drink, dipping their long beards in the spring. | all-important aid on washing days; though, on that The richest goblet, then, was of birch bark. Governor account alone, I might call myself the household Winthrop, after a journey afoot from Boston, drank god of a hundred families. Far be it from me also here, out of the hollow of his hand. The elder Hig- to hint, my respectable friends, at the show of dirty ginson here wet his palm, and laid it on the brow of faces, which you would present, without my pains to the first town-born child. For many years it was the keep you clean. Nor will I remind you how often watering-place, and, as it were, the wash bowl of the when the midnight bells make you tremble for your vicinity-whither all decent folks resorted, to purify combustible town, you have fled to the town pump their visages, and gaze at them afterwards—at least, and found me always at my post, firm, amid the conthe pretty maidens did—in the mirror which it made. fusion, and ready to drain my vital current in your On Sabbath days, whenever a babe was to be bap- behalf. Neither is it worth while to lay much stress tized, the sexton filled his basin here, and placed it on on my claims to a medical diploma, as the physician the communion table of the humble meeting house, whose simple rule of practice is preferable to all the which partly covered the site of yonder stately nauseous lore, which has found men sick or left brick one. Thus, one generation after another was them so, since the days of Hippocrates. Let us take consecrated to heaven by its waters, and cast their a broader view of my beneficial influence on man. waxing and waning shadows into its glassy bosom, kind. and vanished from the earth, as if mortal life were No; these are trifles, compared with the merits but a flitting image in a fountain. Finally, the which wise men concede to me-if not in my single fountain vanished also. Cellars were dug on all self, yet as the representative of a class—of being the sides, and cartloads of gravel flung upon its source, grand reformer of the age. From my spout, and whence oozed a turbid stream, forming a mud puddle, such spouts as mine, must flow the stream that shall at the corner of two streets. In the hot months, cleanse our earth of the vast portion of its crime and when its refreshment was most needed, the dust flew anguish, which has gushed from the fiery fountains in clouds over the forgotten birthplace of the waters, of the still. In this mighty enterprise, the cow shall now their grave. But, in the course of time, a town be my great confederate. Milk and water! The
mitted the dust and sultry atmosphere, the turbulence and manifold disquietudes of the world around me, to reach that deep, calm well of purity, which may be called my soul. And whenever I pour out that soul, it is to cool earth's fever or cleanse its stains.
One o'clock! Nay, then, if the dinner bell begins to speak, I may as well hold my peace. Here comes
I a pretty young girl of my acquaintance, with a large stone pitcher for me to fill. May she draw a husband, while drawing her water, as Rachel did of old. Hold out your vessel, my dear! There it is full to the brim; so now run home, peeping at your sweet image in the pitcher, as you go; and forget not in a glass of my own liquor, to drink-"SuccesS TO THE Town PUMP!'
TOWN PUMP and the cow! Such is the glorious copartnership, that shall tear down the distilleries and brewhouses, uproot the vineyards, shatter the cider presses, ruin the tea and coffee trade, and finally monopolize the whole business of quenching thirst. Blessed consummation! Then, Poverty shall pass away from the land, finding no hovei so wretched, where her squalid form may shelter itself. Then Disease, for lack of other victims, shall gnaw its own heart, and die. Then Sin, if she do not die, shall lose half her strength. Until now, the frenzy of hereditary fever has raged in the human blood, transmitted from sire to son, and rekindled, in every generation, by fresh draughts of liquid flame. When that inward fire shall be extinguished, the heat of passion cannot but grow cool, and war—the drunken. ness of nations--perhaps will cease. At least, there will be no war of households. The husband and wife drinking deep of peaceful joy-a calm bliss of temperate affections—shall pass hand in hand through life, and lie down, not reluctantly, at its protracted close. To them, the past will be no turmoil of mad dreams, nor the future an eternity of such moments as follow the delirium of the drunkard. Their dead faces shall express what their spirits were, and are to be, by a lingering smile of memory and hope.
Ahem! Dry work, this speechifying; especially to an unpracticed orator. I never conceived, till now, what toil the temperance lecturers undergo for my sake. Hereafter, they shall have the business to themselves. Do, some kind Christian, pump a stroke or two, just to wet my whistle. Thank you, sir! My dear hearers, when the world shall have been regenerated, by my instrumentality, you will collect your useless vats and liquor casks into one great pile, and make a bonfire, in honor of the town pump. And, when I shall have decayed, like my predecessors, then, if you revere my memory, let a marble fountain, richly sculptured, take my place upon this spot. Such monuments should be erected everywhere, and inscribed with the names of the distinguished champions of my cause. Now listen; for something very important is to come next.
There are two or three honest friends of mineand true friends, I know they are-who, nevertheless, by their fiery pugnacity in my behalf, do put me in fearful hazard of a broken nose, or even a total overthrow upon the pavement, and the loss of the treasure which I guard. I pray you, gentlemen, let this fault be amended. Is it decent, think you, to get tipsy with zeal for temperance, and take up the honorable cause of the town pump, in the style of a toper, fighting for his brandy bottle? Or, can the excellent qualities of cold water be not otherwise exemplified, than by plunging, slapdash, into hot water, and wofully scalding yourselves and other people? Trust me, they may. In the moral warfare, which you are to wage-and, indeed, in the whole conduct of your lives-you cannot choose a better example than myself, who have never per
A CITY BY NIGHT. THOMAS CARLYLE="SARTOE RESARTUS." To the editor of these sheets, as to a young, enthusiastic Englishman, however unworthy, Teufelsdrockh opened himself perhaps more than to the most. Pity only that we could not then half guess his importance, and scrutinize him with due power of vision! We enjoyed, what not three men in Weissnichtwo could boast of, a certain degree of access to the professor's private domicile. It was the attic floor of the highest house in the Wahngasse; and might truly be called the pinnacle of Weissnichtwo, for it rose sheer up above the contiguous roofs, themselves rising from elevated ground. Moreover, with its windows, it looked towards all the four Orte, or as the Scotch say, and we ought to say, virts: The sitting room itself commanded three; another came to view in the schlafgemach (bed-room) at the opposite end; to say nothing of the kitchen, which offered two, as it were duplicates, and showing nothing
So that it was in fact the speculum or watchtower of Teufelsdrockh; wherefrom, sitting at ease, he might see the whole life-circulation of that considerable city; the streets and lanes of which, with all their doing and driving (Thun und Treiben), were for the most part visible there.
“I look down into all that wasp-nest or bee-hive, and witness their wax-laying and honey-making, and poison-brewing, and choking by sulphur. From the palace esplanade, where music plays while serene highness is pleased to eat his victuals, down the low lane, where in her door-sill the aged widow, knitting for a thin livelihood, sits to feel the afternoon sun, I see it all; for, except the Schlosskirche weathercock, no biped stands so high. Couriers arrive bestrapped and bebooted, bearing joy and sorrow bagged up in pouches of leather; there, topladen, and with four swift horses, rolls in the country baron and his household; here, on timber leg, the lamed soldier hops painfully along, begging alms: a thousand carriages, and wains, and cars, come tumbling in with food, with young rusticity and other raw produce, inanimate or animate, and go tumbling out again with produce, manufactured.