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The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction, Vol. 13, by Various

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VOL. 13, No. 372.] SATURDAY, MAY 30, 1829. [PRICE 2d.

* * * * *

Epsom New Race Stand.

[Illustration: Epsom New Race Stand.]

We do not wish to compete with the "List of all the running horse-es,
with the names, weights, and colours of the riders," although the
proximity of our publication day to the commencement of Epsom Races
(June 2), has induced us to select the above subject for an

The erection of the New Race Stand is the work of a company, entitled
the "Epsom Grand Stand Association"--the capital L20,000, in 1,000
shares of L20 each. The speculation is patronized by the Stewards of
the Jockey Club, and among the trustees is one of the county members,
C.N. Pallmer, Esq. The building is now roofed in, and temporary
accommodation will be provided for visitors at the ensuing Spring
Races. It is after the model of the Stand at Doncaster, but is much
larger, and will accommodate from 4 to 5,000 persons. The style of the
architecture is Grecian.

The building is 156 feet in width, including the Terrace, and 60 feet
in depth, having a portico the width, returning on each side, which is
connected with a spacious terrace, raised ten feet above the level of
the ground, and a magnificent flight of steps in the centre. The
columns of the portico are of the Doric order, supporting a balcony,
or gallery, which is to be covered by a verandah, erected on small
ornamental iron pillars, placed over those below. The upper part of
the Stand is to have a balustrade the whole width of the front. With
reference to the interior arrangements, there are four large and
well-proportioned rooms for refreshments, &c.; a spacious hall,
leading through a screen of Doric columns to a large and elegant
staircase of stone, and on each side of the staircase are retiring
rooms of convenience for gentlemen. The entrance to this floor is from
the abovementioned terrace and portico in front; and also, at the
back, by an entrance which forms a direct communication through the
building. The first floor consists of a splendid room, 108 feet in
length, and 34 in width, divided into three compartments by ornamental
columns and pilasters, supporting a richly paneled ceiling, and having
a direct communication with the balcony, or gallery; and on each side
of the staircase there are retiring rooms for the ladies, with the
same arrangements as those below for the gentlemen. The roof will
contain about 2,000 persons standing; affording, at the same time, an
opportunity for every one to see the whole of the race (Derby Course)
which at one time was considered doubtful.

The architect is Mr. W. Trendall; and the builder Mr. Chadwick.

By a neat plan from a survey by Mr. Mogg, the "Stand" is about ten
poles from the Winning Post. It must have a most commanding view of
the surrounding country--but, anon, "may we be there to see."

* * * * *


(_For the Mirror_.)

Coals are found in several parts of the continent of Europe, but the
principal mines are in this country. They have been discovered and
wrought in Newfoundland, Cape Breton, Canada, and in some of the
provinces of New England. China abounds in them, and they are well
known in Tartary, and in the Island of Madagascar.

We find (says Brand) express mention of coals, used as a fuel by
artificers about 2,000 years ago, in the writings of Theophrastus, the
scholar of Aristotle, who, in his book on Stones, gives the substance;
though some writers have not scrupled to affirm, that coal was unknown
to the Ancient Britons, yet others have adduced proofs to the
contrary, which seem, to carry along with them little less than
conviction. The first charter for the license of digging coals, was
granted by King Henry III. in the year 1239; it was there denominated
sea coal; and, in 1281, Newcastle was famous for its great trade in
this article; but in 1306, the use of sea coal was prohibited at
London, by proclamation. Brewers, dyers, and other artificers, who had
occasion for great fires, had found their account in substituting our
fossil for dry wood and charcoal; but so general was the prejudice
against it at that time, that the nobles and commons assembled in
parliament, complained against the use thereof as a public nuisance,
which was thought to corrupt the air with its smoke and stink. Shortly
after this, it was the common fuel at the King's palace in London;
and, in 1325, a trade was opened between France and England, in which
corn was imported, and coal exported. Stowe in his "Annals" says,
"within thirty years last the nice dames of London would not come into
any house or roome where sea coales were burned; nor willingly eat of
the meat that was either sod or roasted with sea coal fire."

Tinmouth Priory had a colliery at Elwick, which in 1330 was let at the
yearly rent of five pounds; in 1530 it was let for twenty pounds a
year, on condition that not more than twenty chaldron should be drawn
in a day; and eight years after, at fifty pounds a year, without
restriction on the quantity to be wrought. In Richard the Second's
time, Newcastle coals were sold at Whitby, at three shillings and
four-pence per chaldron; and in the time of Henry VIII. their price
was twelvepence a chaldron in Newcastle; in London about four
shillings, and in France they sold for thirteen nobles per chaldron.
Queen Elizabeth obtained a lease of the manors and coal mines of
Gateshead and Whickham, which she soon transferred to the Earl of
Leicester. He assigned it to his secretary, Sutton, the founder of the
Charter-house, who also made assignment of it to Sir W. Riddell and
others, for the use of the Mayor and Burgesses of Newcastle. Duties
were laid upon this article to assist in building St. Paul's Church,
and fifty parish churches in London after the great fire; and in 1677,
Charles II. granted to his natural son, Charles Lenox, Duke of
Richmond, and his heirs, a duty of one shilling a chaldron on coals,
which continued in his family till it was purchased by government in
1800. The collieries in the vicinity of Newcastle are perhaps the most
valuable and extensive in Europe, and afford nearly the whole supply
of the metropolis, and of those counties on the eastern coast
deficient in coal strata; thus--

"The grim ore
Here useless, like the miser's brighter hoard,
Is from its prison brought and sent abroad,
The frozen horns to cheer, to minister
To needful sustenance and polished arts--
Hence are the hungry fed, the naked clothed,
The wintry damps dispell'd, and social mirth
Exults and glows before the blazing hearth."

_Iago's Edge Hill_, p. 106.


* * * * *


(_To the Editor of the Mirror_.)

Two of your correspondents have puzzled themselves in seeking the
origin of the old Cat and Fiddle sign. The one has been led away by a
love of etymology--the other would string the fiddle at the expense of
poor puss's viscera. Now laying aside conjecture and the subtleties of
language, suppose we consult plain matter of fact? It is then
generally allowed that the tones of a flute resemble the _human
voice_: those of a clarionet, the notes of a _goose_: and, all the
world knows that a well-played violin (especially in the practice of
gliding) yields sounds so inseparable from the _strains of a cat_, as
not to be distinguished by the mere amateur of musical science.

In conformity, therefore, with this last truth, the small fiddles
which Dancing-masters carry in their pockets, are at this day called
_kits_. But our etymologist will readily perceive this to be a mere
abbreviation, and that they must originally have been known as

E.D. Jun.

* * * * *


(_To the Editor of the Mirror_.)

"I am corrected, sir; but hear me speak--
When admiration glows with such a fire
As to o'ertop the memory, error then
May merit mercy." _Old Play_.

In justice to myself and the readers of the MIRROR, I must be allowed
to offer a few apologetic remarks on the almost unpardonable
anachronisms which I so inadvertently suffered to occur in my
communication on the subject of Dr. Johnson's Residence in Bolt Court.
But when I state that the chronological metathesis occurred entirely
in consequence of my referring to that most treacherous portion of
human intellect, the memory; and that it is upwards of seven years
since I read "Boswell's Life of Johnson," or "Johnson's Poets," it may
be some mitigation of the censure I so justly deserve. Yet I may be
suffered to suggest to your correspondent, who has so kindly corrected
me, that my paper was more in the suppository style than he seems to
have imagined; and that I did not assert that Boswell, Savage, and
Johnson, met at the latter's "house in Bolt Court, and discussed
subjects of polite literature." The expression used is, "We can
_imagine_," &c. constituting a creation of the fancy rather than a
positive portraiture. Certain it is that Johnson's dwelling was in the
neighbourhood of Temple Bar at the time of the nocturnal perambulation
alluded to; and that it was Savage (to whom he was so unaccountably
attached, in spite of the "bastard's" frailties) who enticed the
doctor from his bed to a midnight ramble. My primary mistake consists
in transposing the date of the doctor's residence in Bolt Court, and
introducing Savage at the era of Boswell's acquaintance with Johnson;
whereas the wayward poet finished his miserable existence in a prison,
at Bristol, 21 years prior to that event. Here I may be allowed a
remark or two on the animadversion which has been heaped on Johnson
for that beautiful piece of biography, "The Life of Richard Savage."
It has hitherto been somewhat of a mystery that the stern critic whose
strictures so severely exposed the minutest derelictions of genius in
all other instances, should have adopted "the melting mood" in
detailing the life of such a man as Savage; for, much as we may admire
the concentrated smiles and tears of his two poems, "The Bastard," and
"The Wanderer," pitying the fortunes and miseries of the author, yet
his ungovernable temper and depraved propensities, which led to his
embruing his hands in blood, his ingratitude to his patrons and
benefactors, (but chiefly to Pope,) and his degraded misemployment of
talents which might have raised him to the capital of the proud column
of intellect of that day,--all conduce to petrify the tear of mingled
mercy and compassion, which the misfortunes of such a being might
otherwise demand. Nevertheless, as was lately observed by a
respectable journal, "there must have been _something_ good about him,
or Samuel Johnson would not have loved him."


* * * * *


(_For the Mirror_.)

We see our joyous home,
Where the sapphire waters fall;
The porch, with its lone gloom,
The bright vines on its wall.

The flow'rs, the brooks, and trees,
Again are made our own,
The woodlands rife with bees,
And the curfew's pensive tone.

Peace to the marble brow,
And the ringlets tinged dark,
The heart is sleeping now
In a still and holy ark!

Sleep hath clos'd the soft blue eye,
And unbound the silken tress
Their dreams are of the sky,
And pass'd is watchfulness.

But a sleep they yet shall have,
Sunn'd with no vision's glow;
A sleep within the grave--
When their eyes are quench'd and low!

A glorious rest it is,
To earth's lorn children given,
Pure as the bridal kiss,
To sleep--and wake in heaven!

_Deal_. Reginald Augustine

* * * * *


(_For the Mirror_.)

Gin Lubin shows the ring to me
While reavin' Teviot side,
And asks me wi' an earnest e'e,
To be his bonny bride.
At sic a time I canna tell
What I to him might say,
But as I lo'e the laddie well,
I cudna tell him nae.

I'd say we twa as yet are young,
Wi' monie a day to spare,
An' then the suit should drap my tongue
That he might press it mair.
I'd gae beside the point awhile,
Wi' proper laithfu' pride,
By lang to partin', wi' a smile,
Consent to be his bride.

C. Cole.

* * * * *

The Sketch-Book.

* * * * *


_A Leaf from the Reminiscences of a Collegian_.

(_For the Mirror_.)

----He was but a poor undergraduate; not, indeed, one of lowest grade,
but still too much lacking pecuniary supplies to render him an
"eligible match." Julia, too, though pretty, was portionless; and the
world, which always kindly interests itself in such affairs, said,
they had no business whatever to become attached to each other; but
then, such attachments and the world, never did, and never will agree;
and _I_, from fatal experience, assert that what people impertinently
call "falling in love," is a thing that _cannot_ be helped; _I_, at
least, never could help it. The regard of Millington and Julia was of
a very peculiar nature; it was a morsel of platonism, which is rather
too curious to pass unrecorded; for as far as I have been able, upon
the most minute investigation to ascertain, they never spoke to each
other during the period of their tender acquaintance. No; they were
not dumb, but lacking a mutual friend to give them an introduction;
their regard for decorum and etiquette was too great to permit them to
speak otherwise than with their eyes. Millington had kept three terms,
when I arrived at ---- College, a shy and gawky freshman; we had been
previously acquainted, and he, pitying perhaps my youth and
inexperience, patronized his playmate, and I became his chum. For some
time I was at a loss to account for sundry fluctuations in Henry's
disposition and manners. He shunned society and would neither accept
invitations to wine and supper parties in other men's rooms, nor give
such in his own; nevertheless his person seemed to have become an
object of the tenderest regard; never was he so contented as when
rambling through the streets and walks, without his gown, in a new and
well cut suit; whilst in order eternally to display his figure to the
best advantage, he was content to endure as heavy an infliction of
fines and impositions, as the heads of his college could lay upon his
shoulders. He was ruined for a reading-man. About this period he also
had a perfect mania for flowers; observing which, and fancying I might
gratify my friend by such a mark of attention, I one day went to his
rooms with a large bouquet in either hand. He was not at home; but
having carelessly enough forgotten to lock his door, I commenced, _con
amore_, (anticipating the agreeable surprise which I should afford
him) to fill his vases with fresh, bright, and delicious summer
flowers, in lieu of the very mummies of their race by which they were
occupied. My work was in progress when Millington returned, but, oh!
good heavens! the rage, the profane, diabolical, incomprehensible rage
into which he burst! I shall never forget. Away went my beautiful, my
fragrant flowers, into the court, and seizing upon the remnant of the
mummies, as yet untouched by my sacrilegious fingers, he tossed them
into a drawer, double locked it, and ordered me out of the room.
Dreading a kick, I was off at his word; but had not proceeded half way
down stairs, when a hand from the rear, roughly grasped mine, and a
voice, in a wild and hurried manner, asked pardon for "intemperance."
I should have called it madness. We were again firm allies; but I
resolved to fathom, if possible, the mystery of the flowers. I now
observed, with surprise, that Millington never quitted his rooms
without a flower in his hand, or _boutonniere_; which flower, upon his
return, appeared to have been either lost, or metamorphosed into,
sometimes, one of another description; sometimes into a nosegay. Very
strange indeed, thought I; and began to have my suspicions that in all
this might be traced "fair woman's visitings." Yes, Millington must
decidedly have fallen in love. He was never in chapel, never in hall,
never in college, never at lectures, and never at parties; he was in
love, that was certain; but with whom? He knew none of the resident
gentry of ----, and he was far too proud to involve himself in "an
affair" with a girl of inferior rank. Many men did so; but Millington
despised them for it. Accidentally I discovered that he adored Julia,
the young, sweet daughter of an undoubted gentleman, who was not yet
"come out." She was a lively, pretty brunette, with brownest curling
hair, only fifteen; and to this day, I believe, knows not the name of
her lover. From an attic window of a five storied house, this fond and
beautiful girl contrived, sometimes, to shower upon the head of her
devoted admirer sweet flowers, and sometimes this paragon of pairs
meeting each other in the walks, silently effected an interchange of
the buds and blossoms, with which they always took care to be
provided. Several weeks passed thus, Henry and Julia seeing each other
every day; but long vacation would arrive; and on the evening
preceding his departure from ----, the lovelorn student, twisting
round the stem of a spicy carnation, a leaf which he had torn from his
pocket book, thus conveyed, with his farewell to Julia, an intimation
that he designed upon his return to college next term, to effect an
introduction to her family. Julia's delight may easily be conceived. I
remained in college for the vacation to read, and had shortly the
pleasure of informing Millington that I should be able, upon his
return, to afford him the introduction which he had so much at heart,
having made the acquaintance of Julia and her family. Two months
elapsed ere Millington deigned to notice my letter. His answer to it
was expressed in these terms:--

"Freddy--I'm married to a proper vixen, I fancy; but to twenty
thousand pounds. Ay, my boy, there it is--no doing in this world
without the needful, and I'm not the ass to fight shy of such a
windfall. As for Julia, hang her. By Jove, what an escape--wasn't it?
Name her never again, and should she cry for me, give her a sugar
plum--a kiss--a gingerbread husband, or yourself, as you please. I am
not so fond of milk and water, and bread and butter, I can assure her.

"Ever truly yours,
Henry Owen Millington.

"P.S. Capital shooting hereabout--can't you slip over for a few days?"

Poor Julia! I certainly am not clear that I shall not marry her
myself; but as for that scoundrel Millington, he had better take care
how he comes in my way--that's all.


* * * * *

Manners & Customs of all Nations.

* * * * *


(_For the Mirror_.)

On the Coteswold, Gloucester, is a customary meeting at Whitsuntide,
vulgarly called an _Ale_, or _Whitsun Ale_, resorted to by numbers of
young people. Two persons are chosen previous to the meeting, to be
Lord and Lady of the Ale or Yule, who dress as suitably as they can to
those characters; a large barn, or other building is fitted up with
seats, &c. for the lord's hall. Here they assemble to dance and regale
in the best manner their circumstances and the place will afford; each
man treats his sweetheart with a ribbon or favour. The lord and lady
attended by the steward, sword, purse, and mace-bearer, with their
several badges of office, honour the hall with their presence; they
have likewise, in their suit, a page, or train-bearer, and a jester,
dressed in a parti-coloured jacket. The lord's music, consisting of a
tabor and pipe, is employed to conduct the dance. Companies of
morrice-dancers, attended by the jester and tabor and pipe, go about
the country on Monday and Tuesday in Whitsun week, and collect sums
towards defraying the expenses of the Yule. All the figures of the
lord, &c. of the Yule, handsomely represented in basso-relievo, stand
in the north wall of the nave of Cirencester Church, which vouches for
the antiquity of the custom; and, on many of these occasions, they
erect a may-pole, which denotes its rise in Druidism. The mace is made
of silk, finely plaited with ribbons on the top, and filled with
spices and perfumes for such of the company to smell to as desire it.

Halbert H.

* * * * *


(_For the Mirror_.)

The dead were ever held sacred and inviolable even amongst the most
barbarous nations; to defraud them of any due respect was a greater
and more unpardonable sacrilege than to spoil the temples of the gods;
their memories were preserved with a religious care and reverence, and
all their remains honoured with worship and adoration; hatred and envy
themselves were put to silence, for it was thought a sign of a cruel
and inhuman disposition to speak evil of the dead, and prosecute
revenge beyond the grave. The ancient Greeks were strongly persuaded
that their souls could not be admitted into the Elysian fields till
their bodies were committed to the earth; therefore the honours (says
Potter) paid to the dead were the greatest and most necessary; for
these were looked upon as a debt so sacred, that such as neglected to
discharge it were thought accursed. Those who died in foreign
countries had usually their ashes brought home and interred in the
sepulchres of their ancestors, or at least in some part of their
native country; it being thought that the same mother which gave them
life and birth, was only fit to receive their remains, and afford them
a peaceful habitation after death. Whence ancient authors afford as
innumerable instances of bodies conveyed, sometimes by the command of
oracles, sometimes by the good-will of their friends, from foreign
countries to the sepulchres of their fathers, and with great solemnity
deposited there. Thus, Theseus was removed from Scyros to Athens,
Orestes from Tegea, &c. Nor was this pious care limited to persons of
free condition, but slaves also had some share therein; for we find
(says Potter) the Athenian lawgiver commanding the magistrates, called
_Demarchi_, under a severe penalty, to solemnize the funerals, not so
much of citizens, whose friends seldom failed of paying the last
honours, as of slaves, who frequently were destitute of decent burial.

Those who wasted their patrimony, forfeited their right of being
buried in the sepulchres of their fathers. As soon as any person had
expired, they closed his eyes. Augustus Caesar, upon the approach of
his death, called for a looking-glass, and caused his hair to be
combed, and his fallen cheeks decently composed. All the offices about
the dead were performed by their nearest relations; nor could a
greater misfortune befal any person than to want these respects. When
dying, their friends and relations came close to the bed where they
lay, to bid them farewell, and catch their dying words, which they
never repeated without reverence. The want of opportunity to pay this
compliment to Hector, furnishes Andromache with matter of lamentation,
which is related in the Iliad. They kissed and embraced the dying
person, so taking their last farewell; and endeavoured likewise to
receive in their mouth his last breath, as fancying his soul to expire
with it, and enter into their bodies. When any person died in debt at
Athens, the laws of that city gave leave to creditors to seize the
dead body, and deprive it of burial till payment was made; whence the
corpse of Miltiades, who died in prison, being like to want the honour
of burial, his son Cimon had no other means to release it, but by
taking upon himself his father's debts and fetters. Sometime before
interment, a piece of money was put into the corpse's mouth, which was
thought to be Charon's fare for wafting the departed soul over the
infernal river.


* * * * *


(_For the Mirror_.)

The Manor of Broughton Lindsay, in Lincolnshire, is held under that of
Caistor, by this strange service: viz. that annually, upon Palm
Sunday, the deputy of the Lord of the Manor of Broughton, attends the
church at Caistor, with a new cart whip in his hand, which he cracks
thrice in the church porch; and passes with it on his shoulder up the
nave into the chancel, and seats himself in the pew of the lord of the
manor, where he remains until the officiating minister is about to
read the second lesson; he then proceeds with his whip, to the lash of
which he has in the meantime affixed a purse, which ought to contain
thirty silver pennies (instead of which a single half crown is
substituted,) and kneeling down before the reading desk, he holds the
purse, suspended over the minister's head, all the time he is reading
the lesson. After this he returns to his seat. When divine service is
over, he leaves the whip and purse at the manor house.


* * * * *

The Contemporary Traveller.

* * * * *


The name of New Spain was at first given only to Yucatan by Grijalva
and his followers; but Cortez extended it to the whole empire of
Montezuma, which is described by the earliest writers to have reached
from Panama to New California. This, however, appears, from more
recent researches, on the accuracy of which Humboldt relies with
reason, to have been larger than the reality justified; and the whole
of Tenochtitlan may be said to have been contained in the present
states of Vera Cruz, Oaxaca, Puebla, Mexico, and Valadolid. In
addition to the name given by Cortez, that of the capital was extended
to the whole kingdom of New Spain; and since the revolution and the
establishment of independence, the several provinces form separate and
independent states, confederating together and constituting the
nineteen United States of Mexico; viz. Chiapa, Chihuahua, Cohahuila
and Texas, Durango, Guanaxuato, Mexico, Michoachan, New Leon, Oaxaca,
Puebla, Queretaro, San Luis Potosi, Sonora and Cinaloa, Tabasco,
Tamaulipas, Vera Cruz, Xalisco, Yucatan and Zacatecas. Old and New
California, Colima, New Mexico, and Tlascala, though forming members
of the federation, declined having state governments, on account of
the expense, and are designated territories. The whole republic,
according to Humboldt, occupies a space of 75,830 square leagues, of
twenty to an equinoxial degree; on which there are to be found every
inequality of surface, and every variety of soil and climate, the two
last of which are dependent in most cases on the former.

The republic of Mexico, taken on the grand scale, may be considered as
a succession of small mountain-plains at different heights, separated
by mountains, and increasing in magnitude as the coast recedes on both
the eastern and western sides, until the great centre plain be
reached, which, though much broken by mountain ridges, tends to the
north, maintaining nearly an equal elevation. The snow-capped
mountains of Orizava, and the volcanos of Puebla and Toluca, are among
the most splendid objects in the world. The Mexicans divide the
regions of their country into _Tierras calientes, Tierras templadas_,
and _Tierras frias_, according to the climate. Throughout the whole
country there is a lamentable want of water, and of navigable rivers.
The lakes, too, appear to be yearly decreasing in extent, the
immediate consequence of which is, that the elevated portions of the
interior are nearly stripped of vegetation, and the soil covered with
an efflorescence of carbonate of soda, there called _Tequisquita_,
resembling very closely the plains of the two Castiles, and recalling
to the Eastern traveller the desolate wastes of some parts of Persia.

The effect of elevation on the temperature is most marked, and it is
no uncommon thing to be shivering on one side of the street in the
city of Mexico, and to be literally scorched by the rays of the sun on
the other. Changes are upon record of 55 deg. of Fahrenheit within three
hours, on one of the mountain-plains at the same height with the
valley of Mexico.

Notwithstanding the volcanic character of Mexico, earthquakes are by
no means so frequent there as in some of the neighbouring countries.
One of the most memorable on record occurred on the 14th of September,
1759, when the volcano of Jorullo, with several smaller cones, forced
the surface of the soil, destroying all before it.

The infinite variety of climate and soil fits this country for the
production of the fruits of all regions, from those of the hottest
within the tropics to those of the severest cold, where cultivation
can be carried on. But the want of ports, and of navigable rivers on
the Atlantic, opposes the advantages that might result from this
variety of production, though on the Pacific there are a few admirable
ports, such as Acapulco. The prevalence of the "Nortes," or northerly
winds, at certain seasons, seriously affects the navigation on one
side, while that of the "papagallos" is as inconvenient on the other.

The Mexican population is commonly divided into seven classes:--1.
European Spaniards, commonly called "_gachupines_." 2. White Creoles.
3. Mestizos, descendants of Whites and Indians. 4. Mulattoes,
descendants of Whites and Blacks. 5. Zambos, from Indians and Negroes.
6. Pure Indians. 7. African Blacks. But this classification may be
reduced to four:--1. Whites. 2. Indians. 3. Blacks. 4. Mixed Races,
the various gradations of which may be considered almost infinite.

The Indians consist of a considerable number of distinct tribes,
differing in many points of appearance, and speaking--not dialects
but--languages entirely different. No less than twenty of these have
been traced, and of fourteen of them there are already grammars and
dictionaries. The Indian population is chiefly centered in the great
plains, and towards the south; and Humboldt thinks that it has flowed
from the north to the south. The history of four great migrations is
preserved in the annals of Mexico, which are worthy of more detailed
examination than we can bestow upon them. The great body of these
people live apart from the other races of their countrymen, in small
villages, full of ignorance, suspicion, and bigotry, and displaying an
apparent phlegm, from which it would seem impossible to arouse them.
This phlegmatic temperament lessens the credit of the men with the
females, who uniformly prefer the European, or the still more
vivacious negro. "The indigenous Mexican is grave, melancholic,
silent, so long as he is not under the influence of intoxicating
liquors. This gravity is peculiarly remarkable in Indian children, who
at the age of four or five years display more intelligence and
precocity than the children of whites. The Mexican loves to attach
mystery even to his most trifling actions; the strongest passions do
not display themselves in his countenance; the transition is frightful
when it passes suddenly from a state of absolute repose to that of
violent and unrestrained agitation." Slavery with them has engendered
guile. They are obstinate in all their habits and opinions; their
religion is one of mere ceremonial, justifying the observation of
a priest to Mr. Ward, "son mui buenos Catolicos, pero mui malos
Cristianos" (very good Catholics, but very bad Christians.) Deception
in this, as well as in every thing else, is the order of the day; and
the Indian Alcalde now oppresses the villagers as much as he himself
has ever been.

Humboldt considers the Mexican Indian as destitute of all imagination,
though when to a certain degree educated, he attributes to him
facility in learning, a clearness of understanding, a natural turn for
reasoning, and a particular aptitude to subtilize and seize trifling

The music and dancing are as dull as might be expected among beings so
full of phlegm. The Mexican has a turn for painting and sculpture; and
retains the same fondness for flowers that struck Cortez so forcibly
upwards of three centuries ago. The "Indios Bravos," or Wild Indians,
are said to display more energy; but our information respecting them
is remarkably scanty.

Among the active vices of the Mexican Indian, that of drunkenness
prevails to a most lamentable extent. In the upper districts,
_pulque_, or the fermented juice of the aloe, is the principal
tempter; sometimes a spirit, distilled from the same plant, called
_Vino de Mescal_; while, in the hotter districts, the same effects are
ensured by the _chinguirito_, a very coarse kind of rum. Combined with
this disposition to intoxication, the Indian is constitutionally
indolent; and, now that he is a free man, he will rarely work, except
to obtain just as much as will afford him the means of enjoying his
greatest luxury--that of steeping his senses in oblivion. This last
tendency is much to be deplored, as, in the larger towns, we know that
every Sunday (which is the day of greatest indulgence) assassinations,
to the extent of six or eight each day, are the melancholy consequence
of its indulgence. Humboldt states that the police were in the
practice of sending tumbrels round, to collect the unhappy victims of
intoxication. The punishment was, and we believe still is, three days'
labour in the streets; but it does not seem to be very efficacious,
for generally within the week the delinquents are again in custody.

There is something characteristic in the indolence of these sombre
beings. They will travel immense distances; but to steady labour they
are, generally speaking, not prone. It is told of them, that in one of
the most fertile districts (the _Baxio_) it is not unusual for an
Indian, on receiving his wages, to get thoroughly drunk, go to sleep,
and on awakening renew his potations and repose, until the exhaustion
of his finances compels him to return to labour. In some parts,
however, there are exceptions to this observation.

Education has been more attended to, by some of the leading
personages, than could have been expected in a society that had been
so much kept in the shade. We apprehend the advantages are chiefly
prospective, and may be well defined in another generation; at present
they are but small. The whites have been, and still are, the most
educated portion of the Mexicans, owing, no doubt, to their greater
opulence, and having access to official rank. The mass of ignorance,
however, among all classes, is inconceivable to any one who has only
moved in the principal countries of Europe. Nor is it confined to the
lower classes, but finds protection among the highest in the
community. We heard a reverend canon of the metropolitan church
gravely inquire, whether it was possible to reach London except by
sailing up the Thames. And we knew a very pretty, agreeable young
lady, moving in the first circles, who could not write a single letter
at the age of seventeen. She has been since married, and has, we are
informed, been taught to write by her husband, who is not a Mexican.
The religion of all classes resembles too much that of the Indians;
and the practical morality and general tone of society are by no means
refined. If one half of the scandalous tales in circulation be true,
the former ranks with that of Paris in its worst periods, and the
latter is assuredly gross to a degree that would surprise even an
inhabitant of Madrid. The familiarity with which _every subject_ is
treated at first excites emotions in an Englishman of the most
unpleasant kind, which gradually subside, from the frequency with
which they are discussed by young and old; by high and low, of both
sexes.--_Foreign Quarterly Review_.

* * * * *

Notes of a Reader.

* * * * *


We detach this little descriptive gem from Sir Walter Scott's "Anne of
Geierstein," just published. An outline of this very delightful novel
will be found in a SUPPLEMENT with the present number of the MIRROR.

"The ancient tower of Geierstein, though neither extensive, nor
distinguished by architectural ornament, possessed an air of terrible
dignity by its position on the very verge of the opposite bank of the
torrent, which, just at the angle of the rock on which the ruins are
situated, falls sheer over a cascade of nearly a hundred feet in
height, and then rushes down the defile, through a trough of living
rock, which perhaps its waves have been deepening since time itself
had a commencement. Facing, and at the same time looking down upon
this eternal roar of waters, stood the old tower, built so close to
the verge of the precipice, that the buttresses with which the
architect had strengthened the foundation, seemed a part of the solid
rock itself, and a continuation of its perpendicular ascent. As usual,
throughout Europe in the feudal times, the principal part of the
building was a massive square pile, the decayed summit of which was
rendered picturesque, by flanking turrets of different sizes and
heights, some round, some angular, some ruinous, some tolerably
entire, varying the outline of the building as seen against the stormy

* * * * *


Since the death of his illustrious contemporary, Canova, Thorwaldsen,
born at Copenhagen in 1771-2, has occupied the public eye as head of
the modern school. The character and powers of this master are
doubtless of a very elevated rank: but neither in the extent nor
excellence of his works, do we apprehend his station to be so high as
sometimes placed. The genius of the Danish sculptor is forcible, yet
is its energy derived more from peculiarity than from real excellence.
His ideal springs less from imitation of the antique, or of nature,
than from the workings of his own individual mind--it is the creation
of a fancy seeking forcible effect in singular combinations, rather
than in general principles; therefore hardly fitted to excite lasting
or beneficial influence upon the age. Simplicity and imposing
expression seem to have hitherto formed the principal objects of
his pursuit; but the distinction between the simple and rude, the
powerful and the exaggerated, is not always observed in the labours
of the Dane. His simplicity is sometimes without grace; the
impressive--austere, and without due refinement. The air and contours
of his heads, except, as in the Mercury--an excellent example both of
the beauties and defects of the artist's style--when immediately
derived from antiquity, though grand and vigorous, seldom harmonize in
the principles of these efforts with the majestic regularity of
general nature. The forms, again, are not unfrequently poor, without a
vigorous rendering of the parts, and destitute at times of their just
roundness. These defects may in some measure have arisen from the
early and more frequent practice of the artist in relievos. In this
department, Thorwaldsen is unexceptionably to be admired. The Triumph
of Alexander, originally intended for the frieze of the government
palace at Milan, notwithstanding an occasional poverty, in the
materials of thought, is, as a whole, one of the grandest compositions
in the world; while the delicacy of execution, and poetic feeling, in
the two exquisite pieces of Night and Aurora, leave scarcely a wish
here ungratified. But in statues, Thorwaldsen excels only where the
forms and sentiment admit of uncontrolled imagination, or in which no
immediate recourse can be had to fixed standards of taste, and to the
simple effects of nature. Hence, of all his works, as admitting of
unconfined expression, and grand peculiarity of composition, the
statues of the Apostles, considered in themselves, are the most
excellent. Thorwaldsen, in fine, possesses singular, but in some
respects erratic genius. His ideas of composition are irregular; his
powers of fancy surpass those of execution; his conceptions seem to
lose a portion of their value and freshness in the act of realizement.
As an individual artist, he will command deservedly a high rank among
the names that shall go down to posterity. As a sculptor, who will
influence, or has extended the principles of the art, his pretensions
are not great; or, should this influence and these claims not be thus
limited, the standard of genuine and universal excellence must be
depreciated in a like degree.--_Meme's History of Sculpture, &c._

* * * * *


One of the singularities of the time is an unwillingness to tell the
truth, even when there is no ground for suppressing or perverting it.
It is so frequently under or overstated by most persons in this
country who speak and write, according to the side they have espoused,
or the inclinations and political principles of those by whom they are
likely to be read or heard, that they at last persuade themselves
there is a sort of impropriety in presenting facts in their proper
colours.--_Quarterly Review_.

* * * * *


A ballad of _Roosje_ is perhaps the most touchingly told story
which the Dutch possess. It is of a maid--a beloved maid--born
at her mother's death--bred up 'midst the tears and kisses of her
father--prattling thoughtlessly about her mother--every one's
admiration for beauty, cleverness, and virtue--gentle as the moon
shining on the downs. Her name was to be seen written again and again
on the sands by the Zeeland youths--and scarcely a beautiful flower
bloomed but was gathered for her. Now in Zeeland, when the south-winds
of summer come, there comes too a delicate fish, which hides itself in
the sand, and which is dug out as a luxury by the young people. It is
the time of sport and gaiety--and they venture far--far over the flat
coast into the sea. The boys drag the girls among the waves--and
Roosje was so dragged, notwithstanding many appeals. "A kiss, a kiss,
or you go further," cried her conductor--she fled--he followed, both
laughing:--"Into the sea--into the sea," said all her companions--he
pushes her on--it is deeper, and deeper--she shrieks--she sinks--they
sink together--the sands were faithless--there was no succour--the
waves rolled over them--there was stillness and death:--The terrified
playmates looked--

"All silently,--they look'd again--
And silently sped home--
And every heart was bursting then,
But every tongue was dumb.

"And still and stately o'er the wave,
The mournful moon arose,
Flinging pale beams upon the grave,
Where they in peace repose.

"The wind glanc'd o'er the voiceless sea,
The billows kissed the strand--
And one sad dirge of misery
Fill'd all the mourning land."

_Foreign Quarterly Review_.

* * * * *


The discouragement of colonization is certainly not the feeling of the
great majority of the people of England, and it is equally certain
that it is not the policy of this empire. Whatever may be the fate of
the several British colonies at some future and distant period, it is
something at least to have spread our laws and language, and moral
character, over the most distant parts of the globe. The colonies that
speak the language of Old England--that preserve her manners and her
habits--will always be her best customers; and their surplus capital
will always centre in the mother country. It was not the opinion of
our ancestors, that colonies were an incumbrance; they--good, stupid
souls--imagined that colonies enlarged the sphere of commerce---that
commerce required ships--that ships created seamen for manning the
royal navy, and that the whole contributed to individual wealth, to
the national revenue, and the national strength; and such we believe
still to be the opinion of men of sound practical knowledge, whose
minds are unwarped by abstract systems and preconceived theories, to
which every thing must be made to bend. Such, too, was the feeling of
that extraordinary man, who, with the solitary exception of England,
exacted homage from every crowned head of Europe. This man, in the
plenitude of his power, felt that something was still wanting to
enable him to grapple with one little island, invulnerable by its
maritime strength, the sinews of which he knew to be derived from its
colonies: he felt that, deprived as he was of "ships, colonies, and
commerce," England was able to stand alone among nations, and to bid
defiance to his overwhelming power. That cunning fox, too, by whose
councils he was occasionally guided, knew too well the degree of
strength that England derived from her colonies, which he described to
be her very vitals, and which could only be reached by a powerful
navy. He designated them as the sheet anchor of Great Britain--the
prop that supported her maritime superiority--the strongholds of her
power. "Deprive her of her colonies," said Talleyrand. "and you break
down her last wall; you fill up her last ditch."--_Fas est et ab hoste
doceri.--Quarterly Review_.

* * * * *


As a certificate of your intention to be punctual, you may send your
friends, a similar billet to the following:--

My dear Sir,

The honour of your company is requested to dine with ---- on _Fry_day,

The favour of a positive answer is requested, or the proffered plate
will be appropriated as it was when--

_Sir Ill-bred Ignorance_ returned the following answer:--"I shall be
quite happy to come if I possibly can." Such words the committee voted
were equivalent to these--I'll come, if in the mean time I am not
invited to a party that I like better.--_Dr. Kitchiner_.

* * * * *


Has very little, as a city, to recommend it. It is characterized by
much active industry within doors, the _savans_ and _mechaniciens_
being pent up in their closets and ateliers, and very little gaiety
pervades the promenades. Some parts of the town are sufficiently
picturesque; the overhanging roofs, for which it is remarkable, are,
however, too lofty to screen the pedestrian from the rain, especially
if accompanied by a high wind, and form no shade from the sun. The
pavement of the streets is bad, and their irregularity is a
considerable drawback from the internal appearance. The pavement of
the inclined plane in the Hotel de Ville, by which we gain the arduous
ascent that conducts to the Passport office, is a curiosity of its
kind, and perhaps unique. The city is tolerably well fenced in with
walls within walls, draw and suspension bridges, and gates; while
stakes and chains secure from surprise on the part of the lake. The
small canton of Geneva, though in the vicinity of the Great Alpine
chain and the mountains of the Jura, includes no mountains. The name
of the city and canton has been traced by the etymologists to a Celtic
origin; _Gen_, a sally-port or exit, and _av_, a river, probably
because the Rhone here leaves the Leman lake. The eagle on the
escutcheon of the city arms indicates its having been an _imperial_
city; and it is believed the key was an adjunct of Pope Martin V., in
the year 1418. The motto on the scroll, "Ex tenebris lux," appears to
have existed anterior to the _light_ of the Reformation. The number of
inhabitants may now be estimated at about 22,000; but it appears, by a
census in 1789, to have been 26,148. In this moral city, it is
computed that every twelfth birth is illegitimate. The number of
people engaged in clock and watch-making and jewellery, may be safely
rated at 3,000. In years favourable to these staple manufactures
75,000 ounces of gold are employed, which is almost equally divided
between watches and jewellery. The daily supply of silver is about 134
ounces. Pearls form an article of considerable value in the jewellery,
and have been rated at no less a sum that 1,200 francs daily. 70,000
watches are annually made, only one-twelfth of which are in silver.
More than fifty distinct branches are comprised in the various
departments, and each workman, on the average, earns about three
shillings a-day.--_Mr. John Murray's Tour_.

* * * * *


Some folks eat two or three times as much as others--for instance, our
incomparable and inspired composer, Handel, required uncommonly large
and frequent supplies of food. Among other stories told of this great
musician, it is said that whenever he dined _alone_ at a tavern, he
always ordered "dinner for _three_;" and on receiving an answer to his
question--"Is de tinner retty?"--"As soon as the company come."--He
said, _con strepito_, "Den pring up te Tinner _prestissimo_, I am de

* * * * *


_From one of Dr. Parr's Letters_.

His letters put me in mind of tumult and anarchy; there is sedition in
every sentence; syllable has no longer any confidence in syllable, but
dissolves its connexion as preferring an alliance with the succeeding
word. A page of his epistle looks like the floor of a garden-house,
covered with old, crooked nails, which have just been released from a
century's durance in a brick wall. I cannot cast my eyes on his
character without being religious. This is the only good effect I have
derived from his writings; he brings into my mind the resurrection,
and paints the tumultuous resuscitation of awakened men with a pencil
of masterly confusion. I am fully convinced of one thing, either that
he or his pen is intoxicated when he writes to me, for his letters
seem to have borrowed the reel of wine, and stagger from one corner of
the sheet to the other. They remind me of Lord Chatham's
administration, lying together heads and points in one truckle-bed.

* * * * *


The same quantity of wine diluted intoxicates sooner than the same
quantity drank in the same time _without_ dilution; the wine being
applied to a larger surface of the stomach, acts with proportionably
greater quickness--though wine _diluted_ sooner _intoxicates_, its
effects are sooner over.--_Dr. Kitchiner_.

* * * * *


Of the total population of New South Wales, which, in round numbers,
may be taken at 40,000, the Free Emigrants

amount only to about ............ 7,000
Native Children ................. 5,000
Emancipated Convicts............. 8,000
Convicts in Servitude .......... 20,000

* * * * *


As Cooke, the solicitor-general, was beginning to open the pleadings
at the trial of Charles I, the king gently tapped him on the shoulder
with his cane, crying "Hold, hold!" At the same moment the silver head
of the cane fell off, and rolled on the floor.

* * * * *


The comforts and benefits to be derived from a well cultivated garden,
by a poor man's family, are almost beyond calculation. What a resource
for hours after work, or when trade is dull, and regular work scarce!
What a contrast and counteraction is the healthy, manly, employment
which a cottage garden affords, to the close, impure, unwholesome air,
the beastliness and obscenity, the waste of time, the destruction of
morals, the loss of character, money, and health, which are the
inmates of too many common ale-houses!--_Gardener's Mag_.

* * * * *


Painting, were the use of it universal, would be a powerful means of
instruction to children and the lower orders; and were all the fine
surfaces, which are now plain, and absolutely wasted, enriched with
the labours of the art, if they once began to appear, they would
accumulate rapidly; and were the ornamented edifices open to all, as
freely as they ought to be, a wide field of new and agreeable study
would offer itself. A person, who thoroughly understood the
well-chosen subjects, and was qualified to explain them to a stranger,
could not be devoid of knowledge, nor could his mind want food for
constant contemplation. The sense of beauty has hitherto been little
cultivated in Great Britain; but it certainly exists, and shows itself
principally in laying out gardens and pleasure-grounds with unrivalled
skill.--_Edin. Review_.

* * * * *

Spirit of Discovery.

* * * * *


In the _New Monthly Magazine_ for October, 1826, is the following
statement of the efficacy of the guaco for the cure of the bite of a
mad dog, published by the gentleman who first made use of the plant in
South America, as an antidote to that scourge of human nature,
hydrophobia; his words are, "I shall simply state, that during my
residence in South America, I had frequent opportunities of witnessing
the direful effects of hydrophobia, without having in any one case
that came under my care been successful in its cure by the usual modes
prescribed in Europe. It fortunately occurred to me, that the guaco,
so celebrated for curing the bite or sting of all venomous snakes,
might prove equally efficacious in hydrophobic cases. How far my idea
was correct that an analogy existed between the virus of a serpent and
that of a rabid dog, I leave to others to determine; but such was my
opinion, and I acted upon it in all subsequent cases with complete

We understand the same gentleman has received from South America two
plants which he was in the habit of prescribing for insanity and
pulmonary consumption, with the happiest effects; and as it is his
intention to give them an immediate trial, should they be found to
answer in Europe, as in South America, of which he has not the least
doubt, the discovery may be considered as of the first consequence in

_Mutton Hams_.

The _Journal Des Reconnaissances Useless_ gives the following method of
curing legs of mutton like ham:--It is necessary that the mutton
should be very fat. Two ounces of raw sugar must be mixed with an
ounce of common salt and half a spoonful of saltpetre. The meat is to
be rubbed well with this, and then placed in a tureen. It must be
beaten and turned twice a day during three consecutive days; and the
scum which comes from the meat having been taken off, it is to be
wiped, and again rubbed with the mixture. The next day it should be
again beaten, and the two operations ought to be repeated alternately
during ten days, care being taken to turn the meat each time. It must
be then exposed to the smoke for ten days. These hams are generally
eaten cold.

_Potato Chestnuts_.

A mode has been adopted to prepare potatoes as food, which has at
least one advantage--that of economy. The potatoes are roasted in a
kiln or oven, and are thus prevented from sprouting, (which injures
their quality so much at this season of the year,) and are thus
preserved for some time in a fit state for consumption. They are
better for being again heated before they are used, and though it is
to be regretted that persons should be reduced to such food, yet they
are cheaper and more wholesome than the bread usually given in times
of scarcity to the poorer classes.

_New Pyrometer_.

A new air-thermometer has been invented by M. Pouillet, for the
purpose of measuring degrees of heat in very high temperatures; an
object hitherto of very difficult attainment. By means of this
instrument it has been ascertained, that the heat of melted silver is
1677 deg.; of a melted mixture of one part gold and three parts silver,
1803 deg.; and of melted pure gold 2096 deg..

_To Destroy Slugs_.

A correspondent of the _Gardener's Magazine_ states, that after in
vain trying salt, lime, and dibbling holes for preserving young
cauliflowers and cabbages from slugs, he succeeded by spreading some
well cut chaff round the plants under hand glasses, and some round the
outsides of the glasses. The slugs in their attempt to reach the
plant, find themselves immediately enveloped in the chaff, which
prevents their moving, so that when he raised the glasses to give the
plants air, he found hundreds of disabled slugs round the outside of
the glasses, which he took away and destroyed.

_To make Kitchen Vegetables tender_.

When peas, French beans, &c. do not boil easily, it has usually been
imputed to the coolness of the season, or to the rains. This popular
notion is erroneous. The difficulty of boiling them soft arises from
an excess of gypsum imbibed during their growth. To correct this,
throw a small quantity of subcarbonate of soda into the pot along with
the vegetables.--_From the French_.

_Beet Root Sugar_

Has now become an article of some practical magnitude in French
commerce; since the annual consumption is between seven and eight
million pounds.

_Silk Trade_.

It was lately mentioned by Mr. Huskisson, in the House of Commons, as
a proof of the flourishing state of our trade, that British Bandanna
handkerchiefs were in the course of shipment to India. In addition to
this fact, we can state of our own knowledge that they are now
exporting to France, in no inconsiderable quantities, not merely as
samples, but in the regular course of trade.--_For. Quart. Rev._


It is curious to take a retrospective view of the mode in which the
effects of the Leyden phial were announced to the world, on their
first discovery. The philosophers who first experienced, in their own
person, the shock attendant on the transmission of an electric
discharge, were so impressed with wonder and with terror by this novel
sensation, that they wrote the most ridiculous and exaggerated account
of their feelings on the occasion. Muschenbrok states, that he
received so dreadful a concussion in his arms, shoulder, and heart,
that he lost his breath, and it was two days before he could recover
from its effects; he declared also, that he should not be induced to
take another shock for the whole kingdom of France. Mr. Allemand
reports, that the shock deprived him of breath for some minutes, and
afterwards produced so acute a pain along his right arm, that he was
apprehensive it might be attended with serious consequences. Mr.
Winkler informs us, that it threw his whole body into convulsions, and
excited such a ferment in his blood, as would have thrown him into a
fever, but for the timely employment of febrifuge remedies. He states,
that at another time it produced copious bleeding at the nose; the
same effect was produced also upon his lady, who was almost rendered
incapable of walking. The strange accounts naturally excite the
attention and wonder of all classes of people; the learned and the
vulgar were equally desirous of experiencing so singular a sensation,
and great numbers of half-taught electricians wandered through every
part of Europe to gratify this universal curiosity.

It is on the nervous system that the most considerable action of
electricity is exerted. A strong charge passed through the head, gave
to Mr. Singer the sensation of a violent but universal blow, and was
followed by a transient loss of memory and indistinctness of vision.
If a charge be sent through the head of a bird, its optic nerve is
usually injured or destroyed, and permanent blindness induced; and a
similar shock given to larger animals, produces a tremulous state of
the muscles, with general prostration of strength. If a person who is
standing receive a charge through the spine, he loses his power over
the muscles to such a degree, that he either drops on his knees, or
falls prostrate on the ground; if the charge be sufficiently powerful,
it will produce immediate death, in consequence, probably, of the
sudden exhaustion of the whole energy of the nervous system. Small
animals, such as mice and sparrows, are instantly killed by a shock
from thirty square inches of glass. Van Marum found that eels are
irrecoverably deprived of life when a shock is sent through their
whole body; but when only a part of the body is included in the
circuit, the destruction of irritability is confined to that
individual part, while the rest retains the power of motion. Different
persons are affected in very different degrees by electricity,
according to their peculiar constitutional susceptibility. Dr. Young
remarks, that a very minute tremor, communicated to the most elastic
parts of the body, in particular the chest, produces an agitation of
the nerves, which is not wholly unlike the effect of a weak

The bodies of animals killed by electricity, rapidly undergo
putrefaction, and the action of electricity upon the flesh of animals
is also found to accelerate this process in a remarkable degree.
The same effect has been observed in the bodies of persons destroyed
by lightning. It is also a well-established fact, that the blood does
not coagulate after death from this cause.

_Transplanting Shrubs in full Growth_.

Dig a narrow trench round the plant, leaving its roots in the middle
in an isolated ball of earth; fill the trench with plaster of Paris,
which will become hard in a few minutes, and form a case to the ball
and plant, which may be lifted and removed any where at
pleasure.--_French Paper_.

_Freezing Mixture_.

A cheap and powerful freezing mixture may be made by pulverizing
Glauber's salts finely, and placing it level at the bottom of a glass
vessel. Equal parts of sal ammoniac and nitre are then to be finely
powdered, and mixed together, and subsequently added to the Glauber's
salts, stirring the powders well together; after which adding water
sufficient to dissolve the salts, a degree of cold will be produced,
frequently below Zero of Fahrenheit. But Mr. Walker states, that
nitrate of ammonia, phosphate of soda, and diluted nitric acid, will
on the instant produce a reduction of temperature amounting to 80
degrees. It is desirable to reduce the temperature of the substances
previously, if convenient, by placing the vessels in water, with nitre
powder thrown in occasionally.

_Microscopic Examination of the Blood_.

By the aid of Tulley's achromatic microscope, and under highly
magnifying powers, it has recently been discovered that the globules
of the blood congeal into flat circular bodies, and arrange themselves
in rows, one body being placed partly underneath another, and in like
manner as a pile of similar coins, when thrown gently down, would be
found to arrange themselves. This curious effect has been attributed
to the vitality yet remaining in the blood, during the act of
congealing. At any rate it is a most singular fact, for although we
might naturally conceive that the flattened circular plates would
place themselves in juxtaposition, yet we never could have supposed
that they would have partly slipped underneath each other. In order to
make this very curious experiment, it is necessary that the blood, as
freshly drawn, be slightly and thinly smeared over the surface of a
slip of crown, or window glass, and be covered with a very thin slip
of Bohemian plate glass; and thus some slight inequalities in the
thickness of the layer of blood between them will be produced, and
which are necessary to succeed in producing the very curious
appearances abovementioned.--_Gilt's Repository_.

_To make the Liqueur Curacoa_.

Put into a large bottle, nearly filled with alcohol, at thirty-four
degrees of Baume (or thirty-six) the peels of six fine Portugal
oranges, which are smooth skinned, and let them infuse for fifteen
days. At the end of this time, put into a large stone or glass vessel,
11 ounces of brandy at eighteen degrees, 4-1/2 ounces of white sugar,
and 4-1/2 ounces of river water. When the sugar is dissolved, add a
sufficient quantity of the above infusion of orange peels, to give it
a predominant flavour; and aromatise with 3 grammes of fine cinnamon,
and as much mace, both well bruised. Lastly, throw into the liqueur 31
grammes (1 ounce) of Brazil wood, in powder. Leave the whole in
infusion ten days, being stirred three or four times a day. At the end
of this time taste the liqueur; and if it be too strong and sweet, add
more water to it; if too weak, add alcohol, at 30 degrees; and if it
be not sweet enough, put syrup to it. Give it colour with caramel when
you would tinge it.--_From the French_.

_Subterraneous Growth of Potatoes_.

A mixture of two parts Danube sand, and one part common earth, was
laid in a layer an inch thick, in one corner of my cellar; and, in
April, thirty-two yellow potatoes with their skins placed upon its
surface. They threw out stalks on all sides; and, at the end of the
following November, more than a quarter of a bushel of the best
potatoes were gathered, about a tenth part of which were about the
size of apples--the rest as large as nuts. The skin was very thin; the
pulp farinaceous, white, and of a good taste. No attention was given
to the potatoes during the time they remained on the sand, and they
grew without the influence of the sun or light. This trial may be
advantageously applied in fortified places, hospitals, houses of
correction, and, in general, in all places where cellars or
subterraneous places occur, being neither too cold nor too moist; and
where it is important to procure a cheap, but abundant nourishment for
many individuals.--_From the French_.

* * * * *

Retrospective Gleanings.

* * * * *


The three Hundreds of Desborough, Stoke, and Burnham, in Bucks, are
called the "Chiltern Hundreds," and take their name from the Chalk
Hills which run through Bucks and the neighbouring counties. The
property of these Hundreds remaining in the Crown, a Steward is
appointed at a salary of 20_s_. and all fees, which nominal office is
accepted by any Member of Parliament who wishes to vacate his seat.

* * * * *


At Braintree and Booking, in Essex, when topers partake of a pot of
ale, it is divided into three parts or draughts, the first of which is
called _neckum_, the second _sinkum_, and the third _swankum_. In
Bailey's Dictionary, _swank_ is said to be "that remainder of liquor
at the bottom of a tankard, pot, or cup, which is just sufficient for
one draught, which it is not accounted good manners to divide with the
left-hand man, and according to the quantity is called either a large
or little swank."

* * * * *


Has the precise period been ascertained when chimneys upon the present
mode were first constructed in England? It was apparently not sooner
than Henry the Eighth's time; for Leland, when he visited Bolton
Castle, in Yorkshire, seems to have been greatly surprised by the
novelty and ingenuity of the contrivance. "One thing (says he) I much
notyd in the haull of Bolton, how chimneys was conveyed by tunnills
made in the sydds of the waulls, betwixt the lights; and by this
meanes is the smoke of the harthe wonder strangely convayed."

The front of St. John's Hospital at Lichfield, presents one of the
most curious ancient specimens extant of this part of our early
domestic architecture. This building was erected 1495, but it is
possible that the remarkable chimneys may have been subsequently

* * * * *


(_For the Mirror_.)

In a collection of Epigrams written by Thomas Freeman, of
Gloucestershire, and published in 1014, is the following, entitled
"London's Progresse:"--

"Why, how nowe, Babell, whither wilt thou build?
I see old Holbourne, Charing Crosse, the Strand,
Are going to St. Giles's in-the-field,
Saint Katerne, she takes Wapping by the hand,

"And Hogsdon will to Hygate ere't be long,
London has got a great way from the streame,
I thinke she means to go to Islington,
To eate a dish of strawberries and creame.
The City's sure in progresse I surmise,
Or going to revell it in some disorder,
Without the Walls, without the Liberties,
Where she neede feare nor Mayor nor Recorder.
Well! say she do, 'twere pretty, yet 'tis pitty
A Middlesex Bailiff should arrest the Citty."


* * * * *


(_For the Mirror_.)

The word "Avver" has doubtless the same origin as the German word
_"Hafer" "Haber"_ which signifies in English, _oat_.

In some parts of Germany a pap of oatmeal "Haferbrei" is very common
as breakfast of the lower classes. Of "Haferbrod" oatbread, I only
heard in 1816, when the other sorts of grain were so very scarce in

_A German and Constant Reader of the Mirror_.

* * * * *


(_For the Mirror_.)

So often alluded to by the poets, is the bird called the King Fisher.
It was believed by the ancients that while the female brooded over the
eggs, the sea and weather remained calm and unruffled; hence arose the
expression of Halcyon days.


* * * * *


(_For the Mirror_.)

Woolsthorp, Lincolnshire, a little village on the great north road
between Stamford and Grantham, is memorable as the birthplace of that
illustrious philosopher, Sir Isaac Newton. The house in which he was
born, is a kind of farmhouse, built of stone, and is, or was lately
standing. The learned Dr. Stukely visited it in 1721, and was showed
the inside of it by the country people; in a letter to Dr. Mead on
this occasion, he says, "They led me up stairs, and showed me Sir
Isaac's study, where I suppose he studied when in the country, in his
younger days, as perhaps, when he visited his mother from the
university. I observed the shelves were of his own making, being
pieces of deal boxes, which probably he sent his books and clothes
down in upon these occasions."

Halbert H.

* * * * *

The Gatherer.

"A snapper-up of unconsidered trifles."


* * * * *

When Dr. Johnson courted Mrs. Porter, whom he afterwards married, he
told her "that he was of mean extraction, that he had no money; and
that he had an uncle hanged!" The lady by way of reducing herself, to
an equality with the doctor, replied, "that she had no more money than
himself; and that, though she had not a relation hanged, she had
_fifty who deserved hanging_." And thus was accomplished this very
curious amour.


* * * * *

On the Dorchester road from Sturminster, is a public-house called the
"King's Stag," its sign displays a stag with a gold collar around its
neck, and underneath are the following lines:--

When Julius Caesar landed here,
I was then a little deer;
When Julius Caesar reigned king,
Round my neck he put this ring;
Whoever shall me overtake,
Spare my life for Caesar's sake.


* * * * *

When Lord Norbury was applied to by a collector of one of the local
taxes for the amount of tax, his lordship said, he had already paid
it, and on looking to his file, discovered a receipt, signed by the
same collector who then applied for it. The tax-man, confounded,
apologized in the best manner he could, stating his regret that he did
not recollect it. "I dare say," said my lord, "you are very sorry you
did not _re_-collect it."

* * * * *


"Here are deposited the remains of Mrs. Ann Floyer, the beloved wife
of Mr. Richard Floyer, of Thistle Grove, in this parish, died on
Thursday the 8th of May, 1823.

"_God hath chosen her as a pattern for the other Angels_."

* * * * *


"Here lies the body of John Watson,
Read not this with your hats on,
For why? He was the Provost of Dundee,
Hallelujah, hallelugee."

* * * * *


Shortly after the introduction of the New Weights and Measures, an
innkeeper in a market-town, not far from Sudbury, in Suffolk, sent his
ostler to a customer with a quantity of liquor, which he delivered
with the following words:--"Marstur bid me tell ye _Sar_, as how 'tis
the New _Infarnal_ Measure."

* * * * *

A farmer calling upon his landlord to pay his rent, apologized for
being late, by saying that his illness prevented his attending
earlier, and he did not know what his disorder was. The gentleman told
him it was "Influenza." Returning home he was met by the schoolmaster
of the village, who inquired after his health, "I am very poorly,"
replied the farmer, "my landlord tells me my complaint is _Humphry

* * * * *

A witness on a trial being interrogated by Judge Willis, in a manner
not pleasing to him, turned to an acquaintance, and told him in a half
whisper, "he did not come there to be queered by the old one." Willis
heard him, and instantly replied, in his own cant, "I am old 'tis
true--and I'm rum sometimes--and for once I'll be queer--and I send
you to quod."


* * * * *

An exciseman whose remarks and answers were frequently rather odd,
riding at a quick pace upon a _blind_ pony, was met by a person who
praised the animal much, "Yes," replied the officer, "he is a very
good one, only he _shies_ at every thing he _sees_."

* * * * *


A supplement published with the present Number, contains an outline of
of the Novel of Anne of Geierstein, OR THE MAID OF THE MIST; With
Unique Extracts, &c.

* * * * *


_Following Novels is already Published:_

_s_. _d_.

Mackenzie's Man of Feeling 0 6
Paul and Virginia 0 6
The Castle of Otranto 0 6
Almoran and Hamet 0 6
Elizabeth, or the Exiles of Siberia 0 6
The Castles of Athlin and Dunbayne 0 6
Rasselas 0 8
The Old English Baron 0 8
Nature and Art 0 8
Goldsmith's Vicar of Wakefield 0 10
Sicilian Romance 1 0
The Man of the World 1 0
A Simple Story 1 4
Joseph Andrews 1 6
Humphry Clinker 1 8
The Romance of the Forest 1 8
The Italian 2 0
Zeluco, by Dr. Moore 2 6
Edward, by Dr. Moore 2 6
Roderick Random 2 6
The Mysteries of Udolpho 3 6
Peregrine Pickle 4 6

* * * * *

_Printed and Published by J. LIMBIRD, 143. Strand, (near Somerset
House,) London; sold by ERNEST FLEISCHER, 626, New Market, Leipsic;
and by all Newsmen and Booksellers_.

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