Part 24 out of 33
In force alone for Laws of Nations look.
Let shipless Danes and whining Yankees dwell
On naval rights, with Grotius and Vattel.
While Cobbet's pirate code alone appears
Sound moral sense to England and Algiers.
Woe to the Sceptic in these party days
Who wafts to neither shrine his puffs of praise!
For him no pension pours its annual fruits,
No fertile sinecure spontaneous shoots;
Not _his_ the meed that crowned Don Hookham's rhyme,
Nor sees he e'er in dreams of future time
Those shadowy forms of sleek reversions rise,
So dear to Scotchmen's second-sighted eyes.
Yet who that looks to History's damning leaf,
Where Whig and Tory, thief opposed to thief,
On either side in lofty shame are seen,
While Freedom's form lies crucified between--
Who, Burdett, who such rival rogues can see,
But flies from _both_ to Honesty and thee?
If weary of the world's bewildering maze,
Hopeless of finding thro' its weedy ways
One flower of truth, the busy crowd we shun,
And to the shades of tranquil learning run,
How many a doubt pursues! how oft we sigh
When histories charm to think that histories lie!
That all are grave romances, at the best,
And Musgrave's but more clumsy than the rest.
By Tory Hume's seductive page beguiled,
We fancy Charles was just and Strafford mild;
And Fox himself with party pencil draws
Monmouth a hero, "for the good old cause!"
Then rights are wrongs and victories are defeats,
As French or English pride the tale repeats;
And when they tell Corunna's story o'er,
They'll disagree in all but honoring Moore:
Nay, future pens to flatter future courts
May cite perhaps the Park-guns' gay reports,
To prove that England triumphs on the morn
Which found her Junot's jest and Europe's scorn.
In science too--how many a system, raised
Like Neva's icy domes, awhile hath blazed
With lights of fancy and with forms of pride,
Then, melting, mingled with the oblivious tide!
_Now_ Earth usurps the centre of the sky,
_Now_ Newton puts the paltry planet by;
_Now_ whims revive beneath Descartes's pen,
Which _now_, assailed by Locke's, expire again.
And when perhaps in pride of chemic powers,
We think the keys of Nature's kingdom ours,
Some Davy's magic touch the dream unsettles,
And turns at once our alkalis to metals.
Or should we roam in metaphysic maze
Thro' fair-built theories of former days,
Some Drummond from the north, more ably skilled,
Like other Goths, to ruin than to build,
Tramples triumphant thro' our fanes o'erthrown,
Nor leaves one grace, one glory of its own.
Oh! Learning, whatsoe'er thy pomp and boast,
_Un_lettered minds have taught and charmed men most.
The rude, unread Columbus was our guide
To worlds, which learned Lactantius had denied;
And one wild Shakespeare following Nature's lights
Is worth whole planets filled with Stagyrites.
See grave Theology, when once she strays
From Revelation's path, what tricks she plays;
What various heavens,--all fit for bards to sing,--
Have churchmen dreamed, from Papias, down to King!
While hell itself, in India naught but smoke
In Spain's a furnace and in France--a joke.
Hail! modest Ignorance, thou goal and prize,
Thou last, best knowledge of the simply wise!
Hail! humble Doubt, when error's waves are past,
How sweet to reach thy sheltered port at last,
And there by changing skies nor lured nor awed.
Smile at the battling winds that roar abroad.
_There_ gentle Charity who knows how frail
The bark of Virtue, even in summer's gale,
Sits by the nightly fire whose beacon glows
For all who wander, whether friends or foes.
_There_ Faith retires and keeps her white sail furled,
Till called to spread it for a better world;
While Patience watching on the weedy shore,
And mutely waiting till the storm be o'er,
Oft turns to Hope who still directs her eye
To some blue spot just breaking in the sky!
Such are the mild, the blest associates given
To him who doubts,--and trusts in naught but Heaven!
 "The particular bulk, number, figure, and motion of the parts of fire
or snow are really in them, whether any one perceives them or not, and
therefore they may be called real qualities because they really exist in
those bodies; but light, heat, whiteness or coldness are no more really in
them than sickness or pain is in manna. Take away the sensation of them;
let not the eye see light or colors, nor the ears hear sounds; let the
palate not taste nor the nose smell, and all colors, tastes, odors and
sounds, as they are such particular ideas, vanish and
cease."--_Locke_, book ii. chap 8.
 This was the creed also of those modern Epicureans, whom Ninon de
l'Enclos collected around her in the Rue des Tournelles, and whose object
seems to have been to decry the faculty of reason, as tending only to
embarrass our wholesome use of pleasures, without enabling us, in any
degree, to avoid their abuse. Madame des Houlieres, the fair pupil of Des
Barreaux in the arts of poetry and gallantry, has devoted most of her
verses to this laudable purpose, and is even such a determined foe to
reason, that, in one of her pastorals, she congratulates her sheep on the
want of it.
 Socrates and Plato were the grand sources of ancient scepticism.
According to Cicero ("_de Orator_," lib. iii.), they supplied Arcesilas
with the doctrines of the Middle Academy; and how closely these resembled
the tenets of the Sceptics, may be seen even in Sextus Empiricus (lib. i.
cap. 33), who with all his distinctions can scarcely prove any difference.
It appears strange that Epicurus should have been a dogmatist; and his
natural temper would most probably have led him to the repose of
scepticism had not the Stoics by their violent opposition to his doctrines
compelled him to be as obstinate as themselves.
 _Acts_, chap. xix. "For a certain man named Demetrius, a silversmith,
which made silver shrines for Diana, brought no small gain unto the
 "Those two thieves," says Ralph," between whom the nation is
crucified."--"_Use and Abuse of Parliaments_."
 The agitation of the ship is one of the chief difficulties which
impede the discovery of the longitude at sea; and the tumult and hurry of
life are equally unfavorable to that calm level of mind which is necessary
to an inquirer after truth.
 He defends Stafford's conduct as "innocent and even laudable." In the
same spirit, speaking of the arbitary sentences of the Star Chamber, he
says,--"The severity of the Star Chamber, which was generally ascribed to
Laud's passionate disposition, was perhaps in itself somewhat blamable."
 Descartes, who is considered as the parent of modern scepticism, says,
that there is nothing in the whole range of philosophy which does not
admit of two opposite opinions, and which is not involved in doubt and
uncertainty. Gassendi is likewise to be added to the list of modern
Sceptics, and Wedderkopff, has denounced Erasmus also as a follower of
Pyrrho, for his opinions upon the Trinity, and some other subjects. To
these if we add the names of Bayle, Malebranche, Dryden, Locke, etc., I
think there is no one who need be ashamed of insulting in such company.
 Papias lived about the time of the apostles, and is supposed to have
given birth to the heresy of the Chiliastae, whose heaven was by no means
of a spiritual nature, but rather an anticipation of the Prophet of Hera's
 King, in his "Morsels of Criticisms," vol. i., supposes the sun to be
the receptacle of blessed spirits.
 The Indians call hell "the House of Smoke."
THOMAS BROWN, THE YOUNGER.
_elapsae manibus secidere tabellae_.--OVID.
STEPHEN WOOLRICHE, ESQ.
MY DEAR WOOLRICHE,--
It is now about seven years since I promised (and I grieve to think it is
almost as long since we met) to dedicate to you the very first Book, of
whatever size or kind I should publish. Who could have thought that so
many years would elapse, without my giving the least signs of life upon
the subject of this important promise? Who could have imagined that a
volume of doggerel, after all, would be the first offering that Gratitude
would lay upon the shrine of Friendship?
If you continue, however, to be as much interested about me and my
pursuits as formerly, you will be happy to hear that doggerel is not my
_only_ occupation; but that I am preparing to throw my name to the Swans
of the Temple of Immortality, leaving it of course to the said Swans to
determine whether they ever will take the trouble of picking it from the
In the meantime, my dear Woolriche, like an orthodox Lutheran, you must
judge of me rather by my _faith_ than my _works_; and however trifling the
tribute which I here offer, never doubt the fidelity with which I am and
always shall be
Your sincere and attached friend,
_March 4, 1813_.
The Bag, from which the following Letters are selected, was dropped by a
Twopenny Postman about two months since, and picked up by an emissary of
the Society for the Suppression of Vice, who supposing it might materially
assist the private researches of that Institution, immediately took it to
his employers and was rewarded handsomely for his trouble. Such a treasury
of secrets was worth a whole host of informers; and, accordingly, like the
Cupids of the poet (if I may use so profane a simile) who "fell at odds
about the sweet-bag of a bee," those venerable Suppressors almost
fought with each other for the honor and delight of first ransacking the
Post-Bag. Unluckily, however, it turned out upon examination that the
discoveries of profligacy which it enabled them to make, lay chiefly in
those upper regions of society which their well-bred regulations forbid
them to molest or meddle with.--In consequence they gained but very few
victims by their prize, and after lying for a week or two under Mr.
Hatchard's counter the Bag with its violated contents was sold for a
trifle to a friend of mine.
It happened that I had been just then seized with an ambition (having
never tried the strength of my wing but in a Newspaper) to publish
something or other in the shape of a Book; and it occurred to me that, the
present being such a letter-writing era, a few of these Twopenny-Post
Epistles turned into easy verse would be as light and popular a task as I
could possibly select for a commencement. I did not, however, think it
prudent to give too many Letters at first and accordingly have been
obliged (in order to eke out a sufficient number of pages) to reprint some
of those trifles, which had already appeared in the public journals. As in
the battles of ancient times, the shades of the departed were sometimes
seen among the combatants, so I thought I might manage to remedy the
thinness of my ranks, by conjuring up a few dead and forgotten ephemerons
to fill them.
Such are the motives and accidents that led to the present publication;
and as this is the first time my Muse has ever ventured out of the go-cart
of a Newspaper, though I feel all a parent's delight at seeing little Miss
go alone, I am also not without a parent's anxiety lest an unlucky fall
should be the consequence of the experiment; and I need not point out how
many living instances might be found of Muses that have suffered very
severely in their heads from taking rather too early and rashly to their
feet. Besides, a Book is so very different a thing from a Newspaper!--in
the former, your doggerel without either company or shelter must stand
shivering in the middle of a bleak page by itself; whereas in the latter
it is comfortably backed by advertisements and has sometimes even a Speech
of Mr. Stephen's, or something equally warm, for a _chauffe-pieds_--so
that, in general, the very reverse of "_laudatur et alget_" is its
Ambition, however, must run some risks and I shall be very well satisfied
if the reception of these few Letters should have the effect of sending me
to the Post-Bag for more.
INTERCEPTED LETTERS, ETC.
FROM THE PRINCESS CHARLOTTE OF WALES
TO THE LADY BARBARA ASHLER.
My dear Lady Bab, you'll be shockt I'm afraid,
When you hear the sad rumpus your Ponies have made;
Since the time of horse-consuls (now long out of date),
No nags ever made such a stir in the state.
Lord Eldon first heard--and as instantly prayed he
To "God and his King"--that a Popish young Lady
(For tho' you've bright eyes and twelve thousand a year,
It is still but too true you're a Papist, my dear,)
Had insidiously sent, by a tall Irish groom,
Two priest-ridden ponies just landed from Rome,
And so full, little rogues, of pontifical tricks
That the dome of St. Paul was scarce safe from their kicks.
Off at once to Papa in a flurry he flies--
For Papa always does what these statesmen advise
On condition that they'll be in turn so polite
As in no case whate'er to advise him _too right_--
"Pretty doings are here, Sir (he angrily cries,
While by dint of dark eyebrows he strives to look wise)--
"'Tis a scheme of the Romanists, so help me God!
"To ride over your _most_ Royal Highness roughshod--
"Excuse, Sir, my tears--they're from loyalty's source-
"Bad enough 'twas for Troy to be sackt by a _Horse_,
"But for us to be ruined by _Ponies_ still worse!"
Quick a Council is called--the whole Cabinet sits--
The Archbishops declare, frightened out of their wits,
That if once Popish Ponies should eat at my manger,
From that awful moment the Church is in danger!
As, give them but stabling and shortly no stalls
Will suit their proud stomachs but those at St. Paul's.
The Doctor, and he, the devout man of Leather,
Vansittart, now laying their Saint-heads together,
Declare that these skittish young abominations
Are clearly foretold in Chap. vi. Revelations--
Nay, they verily think they could point out the one
Which the Doctor's friend Death was to canter upon.
Lord Harrowby hoping that no one imputes
To the Court any fancy to persecute brutes,
Protests on the word of himself and his cronies
That had these said creatures been Asses, not Ponies,
The Court would have started no sort of objection,
As Asses were, _there_, always sure of protection.
"If the Princess _will_ keep them (says Lord Castlereagh),
"To make them quite harmless, the only true way
"Is (as certain Chief Justices do with their wives)
"To flog them within half an inch of their lives.
"If they've any bad Irish blood lurking about,
"This (he knew by experience) would soon draw it out."
Should this be thought cruel his Lordship proposes
"The new _Veto_ snaffle to bind down their noses--
"A pretty contrivance made out of old chains,
"Which appears to indulge while it doubly restrains;
"Which, however high-mettled, their gamesomeness checks
"(Adds his Lordship humanely), or else breaks their necks!"
This proposal received pretty general applause
From the Statesmen around-and the neck-breaking clause
Had a vigor about it, which soon reconciled
Even Eldon himself to a measure so mild.
So the snaffles, my dear, were agreed to _nem. con_.,
And my Lord Castlereagh, having so often shone
In the _fettering line_, is to buckle them on.
I shall drive to your door in these _Vetoes_ some day,
But, at present, adieu!-I must hurry away
To go see my Mamma, as I'm suffered to meet her
For just half an hour by the Queen's best repeater.
 This young Lady, who is a Roman Catholic, had lately made a present of
some beautiful Ponies to the Princess.
 Mr. Addington, so nicknamed.
 Alluding to a tax lately laid upon leather.
 The question whether a Veto was to be allowed to the Crown in the
appointment of Irish Catholic Bishops was, at this time, very generally
and actively agitated.
FROM COLONEL M'MAHON TO GOULD FRANCIS LECKIE, ESQ.
I've just had time to look
Into your very learned Book,
Wherein--as plain as man can speak.
Whose English is half modern Greek--
You prove that we can ne'er intrench
Our happy isles against the French,
Till Royalty in England's made
A much more independent trade;--
In short until the House of Guelph
Lays Lords and Commons on the shelf,
And boldly sets up for itself.
All that can well be understood
In this said Book is vastly good;
And as to what's incomprehensible,
I dare be sworn 'tis full as sensible.
But to your work's immortal credit
The Prince, good Sir, the Prince has read it
(The only Book, himself remarks,
Which he has read since Mrs. Clarke's).
Last levee-morn he lookt it thro',
During that awful hour or two
Of grave tonsorial preparation,
Which to a fond, admiring nation
Sends forth, announced by trump and drum,
The best-wigged Prince in Christendom.
He thinks with you, the imagination
Of _partnership_ in legislation
Could only enter in the noddles
Of dull and ledger-keeping twaddles,
Whose heads on _firms_ are running so,
They even must have a King and Co.,
And hence most eloquently show forth
On _checks_ and _balances_ and so forth.
But now, he trusts, we're coming near a
Far more royal, loyal era;
When England's monarch need but say,
"Whip me those scoundrels, Castlereagh!"
Or, "Hang me up those Papists, Eldon,"
And 'twill be done--ay, faith, and well done.
With view to which I've his command
To beg, Sir, from your travelled hand,
(Round which the foreign graces swarm)
A Plan of radical Reform;
Compiled and chosen as best you can,
In Turkey or at Ispahan,
And quite upturning, branch and root,
Lords, Commons, and Burdett to boot.
But, pray, whate'er you may impart, write
Somewhat more brief than Major Cartwright:
Else, tho' the Prince be long in rigging,
'Twould take at least a fortnight's wigging,--
Two wigs to every paragraph--
Before he well could get thro' half.
You'll send it also speedily--
As truth to say 'twixt you and me,
His Highness, heated by your work,
Already thinks himself Grand Turk!
And you'd have laught, had you seen how
He scared the Chancellor just now,
When (on his Lordship's entering puft) he
Slapt his back and called him "Mufti!"
The tailors too have got commands
To put directly into hands
All sorts of Dulimans and Pouches,
With Sashes, Turbans and Paboutches,
(While Yarmouth's sketching out a plan
Of new _Moustaches a l'Ottomane_)
And all things fitting and expedient
To _turkify_ our gracious Regent!
You therefore have no time to waste--
So, send your System.--
Yours in haste.
Before I send this scrawl away,
I seize a moment just to say
There's some parts of the Turkish system
So vulgar 'twere as well you missed 'em.
For instance--in _Seraglio_ matters--
Your Turk whom girlish fondness flatters,
Would fill his Haram (tasteless fool!)
With tittering, red-cheekt things from school.
But _here_ (as in that fairy land,
Where Love and Age went hand in hand;
Where lips, till sixty, shed no honey,
And Grandams were worth any money,)
_Our_ Sultan has much riper notions--
So, let your list of _she_-promotions
Include those only plump and sage,
Who've reached the _regulation_-age;
That is, (as near as one can fix
From Peerage dates) full fifty-six.
This rule's for _favorites_--nothing more--
For, as to _wives_, a Grand Signor,
Tho' not decidedly _without_ them,
Need never care one curse about them.
 "The truth indeed seems to be, that having lived so long abroad as
evidently to have lost, in a great degree, the use of his native language,
Mr. Leckie has gradually come not only to speak, but to feel, like a
 The learned Colonel must allude here to a description of the
Mysterious Isle, in the History of Abdalla, Son of Hanif, where such
inversions of the order of nature are said to have taken place.--"A score
of old women and the same number of old men played here and there in the
court, some at chuck-farthing, others at tip-cat or at cockles."--And
again, "There is nothing, believe me, more engaging than those lovely
wrinkles."--See "_Tales of the East_," vol. iii. pp. 607, 608.
FROM GEORGE PRINCE REGENT TO
THE EARL OF YARMOUTH.
We missed you last night at the "hoary old sinner's,"
Who gave us as usual the cream of good dinners;
His soups scientific, his fishes quite _prime_--
His _pates_ superb, and his cutlets sublime!
In short, 'twas the snug sort of dinner to stir a
Stomachic orgasm in my Lord Ellenborough,
Who _set to_, to be sure, with miraculous force,
And exclaimed between mouthfuls, "a _He-Cook_, of course!--
"While you live--(what's there under that cover? pray, look)--
"While you live--(I'll just taste it)--ne'er keep a She-Cook.
"'Tis a sound Salic Law--(a small bit of that toast)--
"Which ordains that a female shall ne'er rule the roast;
"For Cookery's a secret--(this turtle's uncommon)--
"Like Masonry, never found out by a woman!"
The dinner you know was in gay celebration
Of _my_ brilliant triumph and Hunt's condemnation;
A compliment too to his Lordship the Judge
For his Speech to the Jury--and zounds! who would grudge
Turtle soup tho' it came to five guineas a bowl,
To reward such a loyal and complaisant soul?
We were all in high gig--Roman Punch and Tokay
Travelled round till our heads travelled just the same way;
And we cared not for Juries or Libels--no--damme! nor
Even for the threats of last Sunday's Examiner!
More good things were eaten than said--but Tom Tyrrhitt
In quoting Joe Miller you know has some merit;
And hearing the sturdy Judiciary Chief
Say--sated with turtle--"I'll now try the beef"--
Tommy whispered him (giving his Lordship a sly hit)
"I fear 'twill be _hung_-beef, my Lord, if you _try_ it!"
And Camden was there, who that morning had gone
To fit his new Marquis's coronet on;
And the dish set before him--oh! dish well-devised!--
Was what old Mother Glasse calls, "a calf's head surprised!"
The _brains_ were near Sherry and _once_ had been fine,
But of late they had lain so long soaking in wine,
That tho' we from courtesy still chose to call
These brains very fine they were no brains at all.
When the dinner was over, we drank, every one
In a bumper, "the venial delights of Crim. Con.;"
At which Headfort with warm reminiscences gloated,
And Ellenb'rough chuckled to hear himself quoted.
Our next round of toasts was a fancy quite new,
For we drank--and you'll own 'twas benevolent too--
To those well-meaning husbands, cits, parsons or peers,
Whom we've any time honored by courting their dears:
This museum of wittols was comical rather;
Old Headfort gave Massey, and _I_ gave your father.
In short, not a soul till this morning would budge--
We were all fun and frolic, and even the Judge
Laid aside for the time his juridical fashion,
And thro' the whole night wasn't _once_ in a passion!
I write this in bed while my whiskers are airing,
And Mac has a sly dose of jalap preparing
For poor Tommy Tyrrhitt at breakfast to quaff--
As I feel I want something to give me a laugh,
And there's nothing so good as old Tommy kept close
To his Cornwall accounts after taking a dose.
 This letter, as the reader will perceive, was written the day after a
dinner given by the Marquis of Headfort.
 Colonel M'Mahon.
FROM THE RIGHT HON. PATRICK DUIGENAN
TO THE RIGHT HON. SIR JOHN NICHOL.
Last week, dear Nichol, making merry
At dinner with our Secretary,
When all were drunk or pretty near
(The time for doing business here),
Says he to me, "Sweet Bully Bottom!
"These Papist dogs--hiccup--'od rot 'em!--
"Deserve to be bespattered--hiccup--
"With all the dirt even _you_ can pick up.
"But, as the Prince (here's to him--fill--
"Hip, hip, hurra!)--is trying still
"To humbug them with kind professions,
"And as _you_ deal in _strong_ expressions--
"_Rogue"--"traitor_"--hiccup--and all that--
"You must be muzzled, Doctor Pat!--
"You must indeed--hiccup--that's flat."--
Yes--"muzzled" was the word Sir John--
These fools have clapt a muzzle on
The boldest mouth that e'er run o'er
With slaver of the times of yore!--
Was it for this that back I went
As far as Lateran and Trent,
To prove that they who damned us then
Ought now in turn be damned again?
The silent victim still to sit
Of Grattan's fire and Canning's wit,
To hear even noisy Mathew gabble on,
Nor mention once the Whore of Babylon!
Oh! 'tis too much--who now will be
The Nightman of No-Popery?
What Courtier, Saint or even Bishop
Such learned filth will ever fish up?
If there among our ranks be one
To take my place, 'tis _thou_, Sir John;
Thou who like me art dubbed Right Hon.
Like me too art a Lawyer Civil
That wishes Papists at the devil.
To whom then but to thee, my friend,
Should Patrick his Port-folio send?
Take it--'tis thine--his learned Port-folio,
With all its theologic olio
Of Bulls, half Irish and half Roman--
Of Doctrines now believed by no man--
Of Councils held for men's salvation,
Yet always ending in damnation--
(Which shows that since the world's creation
Your Priests, whate'er their gentle shamming,
Have always had a taste for damning,)
And many more such pious scraps,
To prove (what _we've_ long proved, perhaps,)
That mad as Christians used to be
About the Thirteenth Century,
There still are Christians to be had
In this, the Nineteenth, just as mad!
Farewell--I send with this, dear Nichol,
A rod or two I've had in pickle
Wherewith to trim old Grattan's jacket.--
The rest shall go by Monday's packet.
_Among the Enclosures in the foregoing Letter was the following
"Unanswerable Argument against the Papists_."
We're told the ancient Roman nation
Made use of spittle in lustration;
(_Vide "Lactantium ap. Gallaeum"_--
_i. e_. you need not _read_ but _see_ 'em;)
Now Irish Papists--fact surprising--
Make use of spittle in baptizing;
Which proves them all, O'Finns, O'Fagans,
Connors and Tooles all downright Pagans.
This fact's enough; let no one tell us
To free such sad, _salivous_ fellows.--
No, no--the man, baptized with spittle,
Hath no truth in him--not a tittle!
 In sending this sheet to the Press, however, I learn that the "muzzle"
has been taken off, and the Right Hon. Doctor again let loose!
 A bad name for poetry; but Duigenan is still worse.
 I have taken the trouble of examining the Doctor's reference here, and
find him for once correct.
FROM THE COUNTESS DOWAGER OF CORK TO LADY---.
My dear Lady---! I've been just sending out
About five hundred cards for a snug little Rout--
(By the by, you've seen "Rokeby"?--this moment got mine--
The "Mail-Coach Edition"--prodigiously fine!)
But I can't conceive how in this very cold weather
I'm ever to bring my five hundred together;
As, unless the thermometer's near boiling heat,
One can never get half of one's hundreds to meet.
(Apropos--you'd have thought to see Townsend last night,
Escort to their chairs, with his staff, so polite,
The "three maiden Miseries," all in a fright;
Poor Townsend, like Mercury, filling two posts,
Supervisor of _thieves_ and chief-usher of _ghosts_!)
But, my dear Lady----, can't you hit on some notion,
At least for one night to set London in motion?--
As to having the Regent, _that_ show is gone by--
Besides, I've remarkt that (between you and I)
The Marchesa and he, inconvenient in more ways,
Have taken much lately to whispering in doorways;
Which--considering, you know, dear, the _size_ of the two--
Makes a block that one's company _cannot_ get thro';
And a house such as mine is, with door-ways so small,
Has no room for such cumbersome love-work at all.--
(Apropos, tho', of love-work--you've heard it, I hope,
That Napoleon's old mother's to marry the Pope,--
"What a comical pair!)--but, to stick to my Rout,
'Twill be hard if some novelty can't be struck out.
Is there no Algerine, no Kamchatkan arrived?
No Plenipo Pacha, three-tailed and ten-wived?
No Russian whose dissonant consonant name
Almost rattles to fragments the trumpet of fame?
I remember the time three or four winters back,
When--provided their wigs were but decently black--
A few Patriot monsters from Spain were a sight
That would people one's house for one, night after night.
But--whether the Ministers _pawed_ them too much--
(And you--know how they spoil whatsoever they touch)
Or, whether Lord George (the young man about town)
Has by dint of bad poetry written them down.
One has certainly lost one's _peninsular_ rage;
And the only stray Patriot seen for an age
Has been at such places (think, how the fit cools!)
As old Mrs. Vaughan's or Lord Liverpool's.
But, in short, my dear, names like Wintztschitstopschinzoudhoff
Are the only things now make an evening go smooth off:
So, get me a Russian--till death I'm your debtor--
If he brings the whole Alphabet, so much the better.
And--Lord! if he would but, _in character_, sup
Off his fish-oil and candles, he'd quite set me up!
_Au revoir_, my sweet girl--I must leave you in haste--
Little Gunter has brought me the Liqueurs to taste.
By the by, have you found any friend that can conster
That Latin account, t'other day, of a Monster?
If we can't get a Russian, and _that think_ in Latin
Be not _too_ improper, I think I'll bring that in.
 Alluding, I suppose, to the Latin Advertisement of a _lusus
Naturae_ in the Newspapers lately.
FROM ABDALLAH, IN LONDON, TO MOHASSAN, IN ISPAHAN.
Whilst thou, Mohassan, (happy thou!)
Dost daily bend thy loyal brow
Before our King--our Asia's treasure!
Nutmeg of Comfort: Rose of Pleasure!--
And bearest as many kicks and bruises
As the said Rose and Nutmeg chooses;
Thy head still near the bowstring's borders.
And but left on till further orders--
Thro' London streets with turban fair,
And caftan floating to the air,
I saunter on, the admiration
Of this short-coated population--
This sewed-up race--this buttoned nation--
Who while they boast their laws so free
Leave not one limb at liberty,
But live with all their lordly speeches
The slaves of buttons and tight breeches.
Yet tho' they thus their knee-pans fetter
(They're Christians and they know no better)
In _some_ things they're a thinking nation;
And on Religious Toleration.
I own I like their notions _quite_,
They are so Persian and so right!
You know our Sunnites, hateful dogs!
Whom every pious Shiite flogs
Or longs to flog--'tis true, they pray
To God, but in an ill-bred way;
With neither arms nor legs nor faces
Stuck in their right, canonic places.
'Tis true, they worship Ali's name--
_Their_ heaven and _ours_ are just the same--
(A Persian's Heaven is easily made,
'Tis but black eyes and lemonade.)
Yet tho' we've tried for centuries back--
We can't persuade this stubborn pack,
By bastinadoes, screws or nippers,
To wear the establisht pea-green slippers.
Then, only think, the libertines!
They wash their toes--they comb their chins,
With many more such deadly sins;
And what's the worst, (tho' last I rank it)
Believe the Chapter of the Blanket!
Yet spite of tenets so flagitious,
(Which _must_ at bottom be seditious;
Since no man living would refuse
Green slippers but from treasonous views;
Nor wash his toes but with intent
To overturn the government,)--
Such is our mild and tolerant way,
We only curse them twice a day
(According to a Form that's set),
And, far from torturing, only let
All orthodox believers beat 'em,
And twitch their beards where'er they meet 'em.
As to the rest, they're free to do
Whate'er their fancy prompts them to,
Provided they make nothing of it
Towards rank or honor, power or profit;
Which things we naturally expect,
Belong to US, the Establisht sect,
Who disbelieve (the Lord be thanked!)
The aforesaid Chapter of the Blanket.
The same mild views of Toleration
Inspire, I find, this buttoned nation,
Whose Papists (full as given to rogue,
And only Sunnites with a brogue)
Fare just as well, with all their fuss,
As rascal Sunnites do with us.
The tender Gazel I enclose
Is for my love, my Syrian Rose--
Take it when night begins to fall,
And throw it o'er her mother's wall.
Rememberest thou the hour we past,--
That hour the happiest and the last?
Oh! not so sweet the Siha thorn
To summer bees at break of morn,
Not half so sweet, thro' dale and dell,
To Camels' ears the tinkling bell,
As is the soothing memory
Of that one precious hour to me.
How can we live, so far apart?
Oh! why not rather, heart to heart,
United live and die--
Like those sweet birds, that fly together,
With feather always touching feather,
Linkt by a hook and eye!
 I have made many inquiries about this Persian gentleman, but cannot
satisfactorily ascertain who he is. From his notions of Religious Liberty,
however, I conclude that he is an importation of Ministers; and he has
arrived just in time to assist the Prince and Mr. Leckie in their new
Oriental Plan of Reform.--See the second of these letters.--How Abdallah's
epistle to Ispahan found its way into the Twopenny Post-Bag is more than I
can pretend to account for.
 Sunnites and Shiites are the two leading sects into which the
Mahometan world is divided; and they have gone on cursing and persecuting
each other, without any intermission, for about eleven hundred years. The
_Sunni_ is the established sect in Turkey, and the _Shia_ in
Persia; and the differences between them turn chiefly upon those important
points, which our pious friend Abdallah, is the true spirit of Shiite
Ascendency, reprobates in this Letter.
 "In contradistinction to the Sounis, who in their prayers cross their
hands on the lower part of the breasts, the Schiahs drop their arms in
straight lines; and as the Sounis, at certain periods of the prayer, press
their foreheads on the ground or carpet, the Schiahs," etc.--_Forster's
 "The Shiites wear green slippers, which the Sunnites consider as a
 This will appear strange to an English reader, but it is literally
translated from Abdallah's Persian, and the curious bird to which he
alludes is the _Juftak_, of which I find the following account in
Richardson:--"A sort of bird, that is said to have but one wing; on the
opposite side to which the male has a hook and the female a ring, so that,
when they fly, they are fastened together."
FROM MESSRS. LACKINGTON AND CO. TO THOMAS MOORE, ESQ.
Per Post, Sir, we send your MS.--look it thro'--
Very sorry--but can't undertake--'twouldn't do.
Clever work, Sir!--would _get up_ prodigiously well--
Its only defect is--it never would sell.
And tho' _Statesmen_ may glory in being _unbought_,
In an _Author_ 'tis not so desirable thought.
Hard times, Sir, most books are too dear to be read--
Tho' the _gold_ of Good-sense and Wit's _small-change_ are fled,
Yet the paper we Publishers pass, in their stead,
Rises higher each day, and ('tis frightful to think it)
Not even such names as Fitzgerald's can sink it!
However, Sir--if you're for trying again,
And at somewhat that's vendible--we are your men.
Since the Chevalier Carr took to marrying lately,
The Trade is in want of a _Traveller_ greatly--
No job, Sir, more easy--your _Country_ once planned,
A month aboard ship and a fortnight on land
Puts your Quarto of Travels, Sir, clean out of hand.
An East-India pamphlet's a thing that would tell--
And a lick at the Papists is _sure_ to sell well.
Or--supposing you've nothing _original_ in you--
Write Parodies, Sir, and such fame it will win you,
You'll get to the Blue-stocking Routs of Albinia!
(Mind--_not_ to her _dinners_--a _second-hand_ Muse
Mustn't think of aspiring to _mess_ with the _Blues_.)
Or--in case nothing else in this world you can do--
The deuce is in't, Sir, if you can not _review_!
Should you feel any touch of _poetical_ glow,
We've a Scheme to suggest--Mr. Scott, you must know,
(Who, we're sorry to say it, now works for _the Row_.)
Having quitted the Borders to seek new renown,
Is coming by long Quarto stages to Town;
And beginning with "Rokeby" (the job's sure to pay)
Means to _do_ all the Gentlemen's Seats on the way.
Now, the Scheme is (tho' none of our hackneys can beat him)
To start a fresh Poet thro' Highgate to _meet_ him;
Who by means of quick proofs--no revises--long coaches--
May do a few Villas before Scott approaches.
Indeed if our Pegasus be not curst shabby,
He'll reach, without foundering, at least Woburn Abbey.
Such, Sir, is our plan--if you're up to the freak,
'Tis a match! and we'll put you _in training_ next week.
At present, no more--in reply to this Letter,
A line will oblige very much
Yours, _et cetera_.
_Temple of the Muses_.
 Sir John Carr, the author of "Tours in Ireland, Holland. Sweden," etc.
 This alludes, I believe, to a curious correspondence, which is said to
have passed lately between Albina, Countess of Buckinghamshire, and a
certain ingenious Parodist.
 Paternoster Row.
FROM COLONEL THOMAS TO ---- SKEFFINGTON, ESQ.
Come to our Fete and bring with thee
Thy newest, best embroidery.
Come to our Fete and show again
That pea-green coat, thou pink of men,
Which charmed all eyes that last surveyed it;
When Brummel's self inquired "who made it?"--
When Cits came wondering from the East
And thought thee Poet Pye _at least_!
Oh! come, (if haply 'tis thy week
For looking pale,) with paly cheek;
Tho' more we love thy roseate days,
When the rich rouge-pot pours its blaze
Full o'er thy face and amply spread,
Tips even thy whisker-tops with red--
Like the last tints of dying Day
That o'er some darkling grove delay.
Bring thy best lace, thou gay Philander,
(That lace, like Harry Alexander,
Too precious to be washt,) thy _rings_,
Thy seals--in short, thy prettiest things!
Put all thy wardrobe's glories on,
And yield in frogs and fringe to none
But the great Regent's self alone;
Who--by particular desire--
_For that night only_, means to hire
A dress from, Romeo Coates, Esquire.
Hail, first of Actors! best of Regents!
Born for each other's fond allegiance!
_Both_ gay Lotharios--both good dressers--
Of serious Farce _both_ learned Professors--
_Both_ circled round, for use or show,
With cock's combs, wheresoe'er they go!
Thou knowest the time, thou man of lore!
It takes to chalk a ball-room floor--
Thou knowest the time, too, well-a-day!
It takes to dance that chalk away.
The Ball-room opens--far and nigh
Comets and suns beneath us lie;
O'er snow-white moons and stars we walk,
And the floor seems one sky of chalk!
But soon shall fade that bright deceit,
When many a maid, with busy feet
That sparkle in the lustre's ray,
O'er the white path shall bound and play
Like Nymphs along the Milky Way:--
With every step a star hath fled,
And suns grow dim beneath their tread,
So passeth life--(thus Scott would write,
And spinsters read him with delight,)--
Hours are not feet, yet hours trip on,
Time is not chalk, yet time's soon gone!
But, hang this long digressive flight!--
I meant to say, thou'lt see that night
What falsehood rankles in their hearts,
Who say the Prince neglects the arts--
Neglects the arts?--no, Strahlweg, no;
_Thy_ Cupids answer "'tis not so;"
And every floor that night shall tell
How quick thou daubest and how well.
Shine as thou mayst in French vermilion,
Thou'rt _best_ beneath a French cotillion;
And still comest off, whate'er thy faults,
With _flying colors_ in a Waltz.
Nor needest thou mourn the transient date
To thy best works assigned by fate.
While _some chef-d'oeuvres_ live to weary one,
_Thine_ boast a short life and a merry one;
Their hour of glory past and gone
With "Molly put the kettle on!"
But, bless my soul! I've scarce a leaf
Of paper left--so must be brief.
This festive Fete, in fact, will be
The former Fete's _facsimile_;
The same long Masquerade of Rooms,
All trickt up in such odd costumes,
(These, Porter, are thy glorious works!)
You'd swear Egyptians, Moors and Turks,
Bearing Good-Taste some deadly malice,
Had clubbed to raise a Pic-Nic Palace;
And each to make the olio pleasant
Had sent a State-Room as a present.
The same _fauteuils_ and girondoles--
The same gold Asses,pretty souls!
That in this rich and classic dome
Appear so perfectly at home.
The same bright river 'mong the dishes,
But _not_--ah! not the same dear fishes--
Late hours and claret killed the old ones--
So 'stead of silver and of gold ones,
(It being rather hard to raise
Fish of that _specie_ now-a-days)
Some sprats have been by Yarmouth's wish,
Promoted into _Silver_ Fish,
And Gudgeons (so Vansittart told
The Regent) are as good as _Gold_!
So, prithee, come--our Fete will be
But half a Fete if wanting thee.
 An amateur actor of much risible renown.
 The crest of Mr. Coates, the very amusing amateur tragedian here
alluded to, was a cock; and most profusely were his liveries, harness,
etc. covered wit this ornament.
 To those who neither go to balls nor read _The Morning Post_, it may
be necessary to mention, that the floors of Ballrooms, in general, are
chalked for safety and for ornament with various fanciful devices.
 A foreign artist much patronized by the Prince Regent.
 The name of a popular country-dance.
 "Carleton House will exhibit a complete _facsimile_ in respect to
interior ornament, to what it did at the last Fete. The same splendid
draperies," etc.--_Morning Post_.
 Mr. Walsh Porter, to whose taste was left the furnishing of the rooms
of Carletone House.
 The salt-cellars on the Prince's _own_ table were in the form of an
Ass with panniers.
* * * * *
LETTER IV. PAGE 584.
Among the papers, enclosed in Dr. Duigenan's Letter, was found an Heroic
Epistle in Latin verse, from Pope Joan to her Lover, of which, as it is
rather a curious document, I shall venture to give some account. This
female Pontiff was a native of England, (or, according to others of
Germany,) who at an early age disguised herself in male attire and
followed her lover, a young ecclesiastic, to Athens where she studied with
such effect that upon her arrival at Rome she was thought worthy of being
raised to the Pontificate. This Epistle is addressed to her Lover (whom
she had elevated to the dignity of Cardinal), soon after the fatal
_accouchement_, by which her Fallibility was betrayed.
She begins by reminding him tenderly of the time, when they were together
at Athens--when, as she says,
--"by Ilissus' stream
"We whispering walkt along, and learned to speak
"The tenderest feelings in the purest Greek;
"Ah! then how little did we think or hope,
"Dearest of men, that I should e'er be Pope!
"That I, the humble Joan, whose housewife art
"Seemed just enough to keep thy house and heart,
"(And those, alas! at sixes and at sevens,)
"Should soon keep all the keys of all the heavens!"
Still less (she continues to say) could they have foreseen, that such
a catastrophe as had happened in Council would befall them--that she
"Should thus surprise the Conclave's grave decorum,
"And let a _little Pope_ pop out before 'em--
"Pope _Innocent_! alas, the only one
"That name could e'er be justly fixt upon."
She then very pathetically laments the downfall of her greatness, and
enumerates the various treasures to which she is doomed to bid farewell
"But oh, more dear, more precious ten times over--
"Farewell my Lord, my Cardinal, my Lover!
"I made _thee_ Cardinal--thou madest _me_--ah!
"Thou madest the Papa of the world Mamma!"
I have not time at present to translate any more of this Epistle; but I
presume the argument which the Right Hon. Doctor and his friends mean to
deduce from it, is (in their usual convincing strain) that Romanists must
be unworthy of Emancipation _now_, because they had a Petticoat Pope in
the Ninth Century. Nothing can be more logically clear, and I find that
Horace had exactly the same views upon the subject.
Romanus (_eheu posteri negabitis_!)
 Spanheim attributes the unanimity with which Joan was elected to that
innate and irresistible charm by which her sex, though latent, operated
upon the instinct of the Cardinals.
LETTER VII. PAGE 588.
The Manuscript, found enclosed in the Bookseller's Letter, turns out to be
a Melo-Drama, in two Acts, entitled "The Book," of which the Theatres,
of course, had had the refusal, before it was presented to Messrs.
Lackington and Co. This rejected Drama however possesses considerable
merit and I shall take the liberty of laying a sketch of it before my
The first Act opens in a very awful manner--_Time_, three o'clock in
the morning--_Scene_, the Bourbon Chamber in Carleton House--
Enter the Prince Regent _solus_--After a few broken sentences, he
Thou haunt'st my fancy so, thou devilish Book,
I meet thee--trace thee, whereso'er I look.
I see thy damned _ink_ in Eldon's brows--
I see thy _foolscap_ on my Hertford's Spouse--
Vansittart's head recalls thy _leathern_ case,
And all thy _blank-leaves_ stare from R--d--r's face!
While, turning here (_laying his hand on his heart_,)
I find, ah wretched elf,
Thy _List_ of dire _Errata_ in myself.
(_Walks the stage in considerable agitation_.)
Oh Roman Punch! oh potent Curacoa!
Oh Mareschino! Mareschino oh!
Delicious drams! why have you not the art
To kill this gnawing _Book-worm_ in my heart?
He is here interrupted in his Soliloquy by perceiving on the ground some
scribbled fragments of paper, which he instantly collects, and "by the
light of two magnificent candelabras" discovers the following unconnected
words, "_Wife neglected"--"the Book"--"Wrong Measures"--"the Queen"--"Mr.
Ha! treason in my house!--Curst words, that wither
My princely soul, (_shaking the papers violently_) what Demon
brought you hither?
"My Wife;"--"the Book" too!--stay--a nearer look--
(_holding the fragments closer to the Candelabras_)
Alas! too plain, B, double O, K, Book--
Death and destruction!
He here rings all the bells, and a whole legion of valets enter. A scene
of cursing and swearing (very much in the German style) ensues, in the
course of which messengers are despatched, in different directions, for
the Lord Chancellor, the Duke of Cumberland, etc. The intermediate time is
filled up by another Soliloquy, at the conclusion of which the aforesaid
Personages rush on alarmed; the Duke with his stays only half-laced, and
the Chancellor with his wig thrown hastily over an old red night-cap, "to
maintain the becoming splendor of his office." The Regent produces the
appalling fragments, upon which the Chancellor breaks out into
exclamations of loyalty and tenderness, and relates the following
'Tis scarcely two hours since
I had a fearful dream of thee, my Prince!--
Methought I heard thee midst a courtly crowd
Say from thy throne of gold, in mandate loud,
"Worship my whiskers!"--(_weeps_) not a knee was there
But bent and worshipt the Illustrious Pair,
Which curled in conscious majesty! (_pulls out his handkerchief_)--
Of "Whiskers; whiskers!" shook the echoing skies.--
Just in that glorious hour, me-thought, there came,
With looks of injured pride, a Princely Dame
And a young maiden, clinging by her side,
As if she feared some tyrant would divide
Two hearts that nature and affection tied!
The Matron came--within her _right_ hand glowed
A radiant torch; while from her _left_ a load
Of Papers hung--(_wipes his eyes_) collected in her veil--
The venal evidence, the slanderous tale,
The wounding hint, the current lies that pass
From _Post_ to _Courier_, formed the motley mass;
Which with disdain before the Throne she throws,
And lights the Pile beneath thy princely nose.
Heavens, how it blazed!--I'd ask no livelier fire,
(With animation) To roast a Papist by, my gracious Sire!--
But ah! the Evidence--_(weeps again)_ I mourned to see--
Cast as it burned, a deadly light on thee:
And Tales and Hints their random sparkles flung,
And hissed and crackled, like an old maid's tongue;
While _Post_ and _Courier_, faithful to their fame,
Made up in stink for what they lackt in flame.
When, lo, ye Gods! the fire ascending brisker,
Now singes _one_ now lights the _other_ whisker.
Ah! where was then the Sylphid that unfurls
Her fairy standard in defence of curls?
Throne, Whiskers, Wig soon vanisht into smoke,
The watchman cried "Past One," and--I awoke.
Here his Lordship weeps more profusely than ever, and the Regents (who has
been very much agitated during the recital of the Dream) by a movement as
characteristic as that of Charles XII. when he was shot, claps his hands
to his whiskers to feel if all be really safe. A Privy Council is held--
all the Servants, etc. are examined, and it appears that a Tailor, who had
come to measure the Regent for a Dress (which takes three whole pages of
the best superfine _clinquant_ in describing) was the only person who
had been in the Bourbon Chamber during the day. It is, accordingly,
determined to seize the Tailor, and the Council breaks up with a unanimous
resolution to be vigorous.
The commencement of the Second Act turns chiefly upon the Trial and
Imprisonment of two Brothers--but as this forms the _under_ plot
of the Drama, I shall content myself with extracting from it the following
speech, which is addressed to the two Brothers, as they "_exeunt_
severally" to Prison:--
Go to your prisons--tho' the air of Spring
No mountain coolness to your cheeks shall bring;
Tho' Summer flowers shall pass unseen away,
And all your portion of the glorious day
May be some solitary beam that falls
At morn or eve upon your dreary walls--
Some beam that enters, trembling as if awed,
To tell how gay the young world laughs abroad!
Yet go--for thoughts as blessed as the air
Of Spring or Summer flowers await you there;
Thoughts such as He who feasts his courtly crew
In rich conservatories _never_ knew;
Pure self-esteem--the smiles that light within--
The Zeal, whose circling charities begin
With the few loved-ones Heaven has placed it near,
And spread till all Mankind are in its sphere;
The Pride that suffers without vaunt or plea.
And the fresh Spirit that can warble free
Thro' prison-bars its hymn to Liberty!
The Scene next changes to a Tailor's Workshop, and a fancifully-arranged
group of these Artists is discovered upon the Shop-board--Their task
evidently of a _royal_ nature, from the profusion of gold-lace, frogs,
etc., that lie about--They all rise and come forward, while one of them
sings the following Stanzas to the tune of "Derry Down."
My brave brother Tailors, come, straighten your knees,
For a moment, like gentlemen, stand up at ease,
While I sing of our Prince (and a fig for his railers),
The Shop-board's delight! the Maecenas of Tailors!
Derry down, down, down
Some monarchs take roundabout ways into note,
While _His_ short cut to fame is--the cut of his coat;
Philip's Son thought the World was too small for his Soul,
But our Regent's finds room in a laced button-hole.
Derry down, etc.
Look thro' all Europe's Kings--those, at least, who go loose--
Not a King of them all's such a friend to the Goose.
So, God keep him increasing in size and renown,
Still the fattest and best fitted Prince about town!
Derry down, etc.
During the "Derry down" of this last verse, a messenger from the Secretary
of State's Office rushes on, and the singer (who, luckily for the effect
of the scene, is the very Tailor suspected of the mysterious fragments) is
interrupted in the midst of his laudatory exertions and hurried away, to
the no small surprise and consternation of his comrades. The Plot now
hastens rapidly in its development--the management of the Tailor's
examination is highly skilful, and the alarm which he is made to betray is
natural without being ludicrous. The explanation too which he finally
gives is not more simple than satisfactory. It appears that the said
fragments formed part of a self-exculpatory note, which he had intended to
send to Colonel M'Mahon upon subjects purely professional, and the
corresponding bits (which still lie luckily in his pocket) being produced
and skilfully laid beside the others, the following _billet-doux_ is the
satisfactory result of their juxtaposition,
Honored Colonel--my Wife, who's the Queen of all slatterns,
Neglected to put up the Book of new Patterns.
She sent the wrong Measures too--shamefully wrong--
They're the same used for poor Mr. Lambert, when young;
But, bless you! they wouldn't go half round the Regent--
So, hope you'll excuse yours till death, most obedient.
This fully explains the whole mystery--the Regent resumes his wonted
smiles, and the Drama terminates as usual to the satisfaction of all
 There was, in like manner, a mysterious Book, in the 16th Century,
which employed all the anxious curiosity of the Learned of that time.
Every one spoke of it; many wrote against it; though it does not appear
that anybody had ever seen it; and Grotius is of opinion that no such Book
ever existed. It was entitled, "_Liber de tribus impostoribus_." (See
Morhof. Cap. "_de Libris damnatis_.")
 The same Chamber, doubtless, that was prepared for the reception of
the Bourbons at the first Grand Fete, and which was ornamented (all "for
the Deliverance of Europe") with _fleurs de-lys_.
 "To enable the individual who holds the office of Chancellor to
maintain it in becoming splendor." (_A loud laugh_.)--Lord
CASTLEREAGH'S _Speech upon the Vice Chancellor's Bill_.
 Mr. Leigh Hunt and his brother.
SATIRICAL AND HUMOROUS POEMS.
THE INSURRECTION OF THE PAPERS.
"It would be impossible for his Royal Highness to disengage his person
from the accumulating pile of papers that encompassed it."
--Lord CASTLEREAGH'S _Speech upon Colonel M Mahon's Appointment,
April 14, 1812_.
Last night I tost and turned in bed,
But could not sleep--at length I said,
"I'll think of Viscount Castlereagh,
"And of his speeches--that's the way."
And so it was, for instantly
I slept as sound as sound could be.
And then I dreamt--so dread a dream!
Fuseli has no such theme;
Lewis never wrote or borrowed
Any horror half so horrid!
Methought the Prince in whiskered state
Before me at his breakfast sate;
On one side lay unread Petitions,
On t'other, Hints from five Physicians!
_Here_ tradesmen's bills,--official papers,
Notes from my Lady, drams for vapors
_There_ plans of Saddles, tea and toast.
Death-warrants and _The Morning Post_.
When lo! the Papers, one and all.
As if at some magician's call.
Began to flutter of themselves
From desk and table, floor and shelves,
And, cutting each some different capers,
Advanced, oh jacobinic papers!
As tho' they said, "Our sole design is
"To suffocate his Royal Highness!"
The Leader of this vile sedition
Was a huge Catholic Petition,
With grievances so full and heavy,
It threatened worst of all the bevy;
Then Common-Hall Addresses came
In swaggering sheets and took their aim
Right at the Regent's well-drest head,
As if _determined_ to be read.
Next Tradesmen's bills began to fly,
And Tradesmen's bills, we know, mount high;
Nay even Death-warrants thought they'd best
Be lively too and join the rest.
But, oh the basest of defections!
His letter about "predilections"!--
His own dear letter, void of grace,
Now flew up in its parent's face!
Shocked with this breach of filial duty,
He just could murmur "_et_ Tu _Brute_?"
Then sunk, subdued upon the floor
At Fox's bust, to rise no more!
I waked--and prayed, with lifted hand,
"Oh! never may this Dream prove true;
"Tho' paper overwhelms the land,
"Let it not crush the Sovereign, too!"
PARODY OF A CELEBRATED LETTER.
At length, dearest Freddy, the moment is night
When, with Perceval's leave, I may throw my chains by;
And, as time now is precious, the first thing I do
Is to sit down and write a wise letter to you.
* * * *
* * * *
* * * *
* * * *
* * * *
* * * *
I meant before now to have sent you this Letter,
But Yarmouth and I thought perhaps 'twould be better
To wait till the Irish affairs are decided--
(That is, till both Houses had prosed and divided,
With all due appearance of thought and digestion)--
For, tho' Hertford House had long settled the question,
I thought it but decent, between me and you,
That the two _other_ Houses should settle it too.
I need not remind you how cursedly bad
Our affairs were all looking, when Father went mad;
A strait waistcoat on him and restrictions on me,
A more _limited_ Monarchy could not well be.
I was called upon then, in that moment of puzzle.
To choose my own Minister--just as they muzzle
A playful young bear, and then mock his disaster
By bidding him choose out his own dancing-master.
I thought the best way, as a dutiful son,
Was to do as Old Royalty's self would have done.
So I sent word to say, I would keep the whole batch in,
The same chest of tools, without cleansing or patching:
For tools of this kind, like Martinus's sconce.
Would loose all their beauty if purified once;
And think--only think--if our Father should find.
Upon graciously coming again to his mind,
That improvement had spoiled any favorite adviser--
That Rose was grown honest, or Westmoreland wiser--
That R--d--r was, even by one twinkle, the brighter--
Or Liverpool speeches but half a pound lighter--
What a shock to his old royal heart it would be!
No!--far were such dreams of improvement from me:
And it pleased me to find, at the House, where, you know,
There's such good mutton cutlets, and strong curacoa,
That the Marchioness called me a duteous old boy,
And my Yarmouth's red whiskers grew redder for joy.
You know, my dear Freddy, how oft, if I _would_,
By the law of last sessions I _might_ have done good.
I _might_ have withheld these political noodles
From knocking their heads against hot Yankee Doodles;
I _might_ have told Ireland I pitied her lot,
Might have soothed her with hope--but you know I did not.
And my wish is, in truth, that the best of old fellows
Should not, on recovering, have cause to be jealous,
But find that while he has been laid on the shelf
We've been all of us nearly as mad as himself.
You smile at my hopes--but the Doctors and I
Are the last that can think the King _ever_ will die.
A new era's arrived--tho' you'd hardly believe it--
And all things of course must be new to receive it.
New villas, new fetes (which even Waithman attends)--
New saddles, new helmets, and--why not _new friends_?
* * * * *
I repeat it, "New Friends"--for I cannot describe
The delight I am in with this Perceval tribe.
Such capering!--Such vaporing!--Such rigor!--Such vigor!
North, South, East, and West, they have cut such a figure,
That soon they will bring the whole world round our ears,
And leave us no friends--but Old Nick and Algiers.
When I think of the glory they've beamed on my chains,
'Tis enough quite to turn my illustrious brains.
It is true we are bankrupts in commerce and riches,
But think how we find our Allies in new breeches!
We've lost the warm hearts of the Irish, 'tis granted,
But then we've got Java, an island much wanted,
To put the last lingering few who remain,
Of the Walcheren warriors, out of their pain.
Then how Wellington fights! and how squabbles his brother!
_For_ Papists the one and _with_ Papists the other;
_One_ crushing Napoleon by taking a City,
While t'other lays waste a whole Catholic Committee.
Oh deeds of renown!--shall I boggle or flinch,
With such prospects before me? by Jove, not an inch.
No--let _England's_ affairs go to rack, if they will,
We'll look after the affairs of the _Continent_ still;
And with nothing at home but starvation and riot,
Find Lisbon in bread and keep Sicily quiet.
I am proud to declare I have no predilections,
My heart is a sieve where some scattered affections
Are just danced about for a moment or two,
And the _finer_ they are, the more sure to run thro';
Neither feel I resentments, nor wish there should come ill
To mortal--except (now I think on't) Beau Brummel,
Who threatened last year, in a superfine passion,
To cut _me_ and bring the old King into fashion.
This is all I can lay to my conscience at present;
When such is my temper, so neutral, so pleasant,
So royally free from all troublesome feelings,
So little encumbered by faith in my dealings
(And that I'm consistent the world will allow,
What I was at Newmarket the same I am now).
When such are my merits (you know I hate cracking),
I hope, like the Vender of Best Patent Blacking,
"To meet with the generous and kind approbation
"Of a candid, enlightened, and liberal nation."
By the by, ere I close this magnificent Letter,
(No man, except Pole, could have writ you a better,)
'Twould please me if those, whom I've humbugged so long
With the notion (good men!) that I knew right from wrong,
Would a few of them join me--mind, only a few--
To let _too_ much light in on me never would do;
But even Grey's brightness shan't make me afraid,
While I've Camden and Eldon to fly to for shade;
Nor will Holland's clear intellect do us much harm,
While there's Westmoreland near him to weaken the charm.
As for Moira's high spirit, if aught can subdue it.
Sure joining with Hertford and Yarmouth will do it!
Between R-d-r and Wharton let Sheridan sit,
And the fogs will soon quench even Sheridan's wit:
And against all the pure public feeling that glows
Even in Whitbread himself we've a Host in George Rose!
So in short if they wish to have Places, they may,
And I'll thank you to tell all these matters to Grey.
Who, I doubt not, will write (as there's no time to lose)
By the twopenny post to tell Grenville the news;
And now, dearest Fred (tho' I've no predilection),
Believe me yours always with truest affection.
P.S. A copy of this is to Perceval going
Good Lord, how St. Stephen's will ring with his crowing!
 Letter from his Royal Highness the Prince Regent to the Duke of York,
Feb. 13, 1812.
 "I think it hardly necessary to call your recollection to the recent
circumstances under which I assumed the authority delegated to me by
 "My sense of duty to our Royal father solely decided that choice."--
 The antique shield of Martinus Scriblerus, which, upon scouring,
turned out to be only an old sconce.
 "I waived any personal gratification, in order that his Majesty might
resume, on his restoration to health, every power and prerogative," etc.--
 "And I have the satisfaction of knowing that such was the opinion of
persons for whose judgment," etc--_Ibid_.
 The letter-writer's favorite luncheon.
 I certainly am the last person in the kingdom to whom it can be
permitted to despair of our royal father's recovery."--_Prince's
 "A new era is now arrived, and I cannot but reflect with
 "I have no predilections to indulge,--no resentments to gratify."--
 "I cannot conclude without expressing the gratification I should feel
if some of those persons with whom the early habits of my public life were
formed would strengthen my hands, and constitute a part of my
 "You are authorized to communicate these sentiments to Lord Grey,
who, I have no doubt, will make them known to Lord Grenville."--
 "I shall send a copy of this letter immediately to Mr. Perceval."-
TO A PLUMASSIER.
Fine and feathery artisan,
Best of Plumists (if you can
With your art so far presume)
Make for me a Prince's Plume--
Feathers soft and feathers rare,
Such as suits a Prince to wear.
First thou downiest of men,
Seek me out a fine Pea-hen;
Such a Hen, so tall and grand,
As by Juno's side might stand,
If there were no cocks at hand.
Seek her feathers, soft as down,
Fit to shine on Prince's crown;
If thou canst not find them, stupid!
Ask the way of Prior's Cupid.
Ranging these in order due,
Pluck me next an old Cuckoo;
Emblem of the happy fates
Of easy, kind, cornuted mates.
Pluck him well--be sure you do--
_Who_ wouldn't be an old Cuckoo,
Thus to have his plumage blest,
Beaming on a Royal crest?
Bravo, Plumist!--now what bird
Shall we find for Plume the third?
You must get a learned Owl,
Bleakest of black-letter fowl--
Bigot bird that hates the light,
Foe to all that's fair and bright.
Seize his quills, (so formed to pen
Books that shun the search of men;
Books that, far from every eye,
In "sweltered venom sleeping" lie,)
Stick them in between the two,
Proud Pea-hen and Old Cuckoo.
Now you have the triple feather,
Bind the kindred stems together
With a silken tie whose hue
Once was brilliant Buff and Blue;
Sullied now--alas, how much!
Only fit for Yarmouth's touch.
There--enough--thy task is done;
Present, worthy George's Son;
Now, beneath, in letters neat,
Write "I SERVE," and all's complete.
 In allusion to "the Book" which created such a sensation at that
FROM THE DIARY OF A POLITICIAN.
Thro' Manchester Square took a canter just now--
Met the _old yellow chariot_ and made a low bow.
This I did, of course, thinking 'twas loyal and civil,
But got such a look--oh! 'twas black as the devil!
How unlucky!--_incog_. he was travelling about,
And I like a noodle, must go find him out.
_Mem_.--when next by the old yellow chariot I ride,
To remember there _is_ nothing princely inside.
At Levee to-day made another sad blunder--
What _can_ be come over me lately, I wonder?
The Prince was as cheerful as if all his life
He had never been troubled with Friends or a Wife--
"Fine weather," says he--to which I, who _must_ prate,
Answered, "Yes, Sir, but _changeable_ rather, of late."
He took it, I fear, for he lookt somewhat gruff,
And handled his new pair of whiskers so rough,
That before all the courtiers I feared they'd come off,
And then, Lord, how Geramb would triumphantly scoff!
_Mem_.--to buy for son Dicky some unguent or lotion
To nourish his whiskers--sure road to promotion!
Last night a Concert--vastly gay--
Given by Lady Castlereagh.
My Lord loves music, and we know
Has "two strings always to his bow."
In choosing songs, the Regent named
"_Had I a heart for falsehood framed_."
While gentle Hertford begged and prayed
For "_Young I am and sore afraid_."
 The _incog_. vehicle of the Prince.
 Baron Geramb, the rival of his R. H. in whiskers.
 England is not the only country where merit of this kind is noticed
and rewarded. "I remember," says Tavernier, "to have seen one of the King
of Persia's porters, whose mustaches were so long that he could tie them
behind his neck, for which reason he had a double pension."
 A rhetorical figure used by Lord Castlereagh, in one of his speeches.
What news to-day?--"Oh! worse and worse--
"Mac is the Prince's Privy Purse!"--
The Prince's _Purse_! no, no, you fool,
You mean the Prince's _Ridicule_.
 Colonel M'Mahon.
KING CRACK AND HIS IDOLS.
WRITTEN AFTER THE LATE NEGOTIATION FOR A NEW MINISTRY.
King Crack was the best of all possible Kings,
(At least, so his Courtiers would swear to you gladly,)
But Crack now and then would do heterodox things,
And at last took to worshipping _Images_ sadly.
Some broken-down Idols, that long had been placed
In his father's old _Cabinet_, pleased him so much,
That he knelt down and worshipt, tho'--such was his taste!--
They were monstrous to look at and rotten to touch.
And these were the beautiful Gods of King Crack!--
But his People disdaining to worship such things
Cried aloud, one and all, "Come, your Godships must pack--
"You'll not do for _us_, tho' you _may_ do for _Kings_."
Then trampling these images under their feet,
They sent Crack a petition, beginning "Great Caesar!
"We're willing to worship; but only entreat
"That you'll find us some _decenter_ godheads than these are."
"I'll try," says King Crack--so they furnisht him models
Of better shaped Gods but he sent them all back;
Some were chiselled too fine, some had heads stead of noddles,
In short they were all _much_ too godlike for Crack.
So he took to his darling old Idols again,
And just mending their legs and new bronzing their faces,
In open defiance of Gods and of man,
Set the monsters up grinning once more in their places.
 One of these antediluvian Princes, with whom Manetho and Whiston seem
so intimately acquainted. If we had the Memoirs of Thoth, from which
Manetho compiled his History, we should find, I dare say, that Crack was
only a Regent, and that he, perhaps, succeeded Typhon, who (as Whiston
says) was the last King of the Antediluvian Dynasty.
WHAT'S MY THOUGHT LIKE?
_Quest_. Why is a Pump like Viscount Castlereagh?
_Answ_. Because it is a slender thing of wood,
That up and down its awkward arm doth sway,
And coolly spout and spout and spout away,
In one weak, washy, everlasting flood!
DIALOGUE BETWEEN A CATHOLIC DELEGATE AND
HIS ROYAL HIGHNESS THE DUKE OF CUMBERLAND.
Said his Highness to Ned, with that grim face of his,
"Why refuse us the _Veto_, dear Catholic Neddy?"
"Because, Sir," said Ned, looking full in his phiz,
"You're forbidding enough, in all conscience, already!"
 Edward Byrne the head of the Delegates of the Irish Catholics.
WREATHS FOR THE MINISTERS.
Hither, Flora, Queen of Flowers!
Haste thee from old Brompton's bowers--
Or, (if sweeter that abode)
From the King's well-odored Road,
Where each little nursery bud
Breathes the dust and quaffs the mud.
Hither come and gayly twine
Brightest herbs and flowers of thine
Into wreaths for those who rule us,
Those who rule and (some say) fool us--
Flora, sure, will love to please
England's Household Deities!
First you must then, willy-nilly,
Fetch me many an orange lily--
Orange of the darkest dye
Irish Gifford can supply;--
Choose me out the longest sprig,
And stick it in old Eldon's wig.
Find me next a Poppy posy,
Type of his harangues so dozy,
Garland gaudy, dull and cool,
To crown the head of Liverpool.
'Twill console his brilliant brows
For that loss of laurel boughs,
Which they suffered (what a pity!)
On the road to Paris City.
Next, our Castlereagh to crown,
Bring me from the County Down,
Withered Shamrocks which have been
Gilded o'er to hide the green--
(Such as Headfort brought away
From Pall-Mall last Patrick's Day)--
Stitch the garland thro' and thro'
With shabby threads _of every hue_--
And as, Goddess!--_entre nous_--
His Lordship loves (tho' best of men)
A little _torture_ now and then,
Crimp the leaves, thou first of Syrens,
Crimp them with thy curling-irons.
That's enough--away, away--
Had I leisure, I could say
How the _oldest rose_ that grows
Must be pluckt to deck Old Rose--
How the Doctor's brow should smile
Crowned with wreaths of camomile.
But time presses--to thy taste
I leave the rest, so, prithee, haste!
 The ancients, in like manner, crowned their Lares, or
 Certain tinsel imitations of the Shamrock which are
distributed by the Servants of Carleton House every Patrick's Day.
 The _sobriquet_ given to Lord Sidmouth.
DIALOGUE BETWEEN A DOWAGER AND HER MAID ON THE NIGHT OF LORD YARMOUTH'S
"I want the Court Guide," said my lady, "to look
"If the House, Seymour Place, be at 30. or 20."--
"We've lost the _Court Guide_, Ma'am, but here's _the Red Book_.
"Where you'll find, I dare say, Seymour _Places_ in plenty!"
HORACE, ODE XI. LIB. II.
FREELY TRANSLATED BY THE PRINCE REGENT.
Come, Yarmouth, my boy, never trouble your brains,
About what your old crony,
The Emperor Boney,
Is doing or brewing on Muscovy's plains;
Nor tremble, my lad, at the state of our granaries:
Should there come famine,
Still plenty to cram in
You always shall have, my dear Lord of the Stannaries.
Brisk let us revel, while revel we may;
For the gay bloom of fifty soon passes away,
And then people get fat,
And infirm, and--all that,
And a wig (I confess it) so clumsily sits,