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out a sigh, with the ease with which an infant goes to sleep on the breast of its mother, worn out with "the rattles and the toys" of a long day.

We cannot better conclude this notice of Mr. Elwes than with the following extract from Mr. Topham's summary of his character. "In one word," he says, "his public conduct lives after him, pure and without a stain. In private life he was chiefly an enemy to himself. To others he lent much; to himself he denied everything. But in the pursuit of his property, or in the recovery of it, I have not in my remembrance one unkind thing that ever was done by him."

145.-MARTINUS SCRIBLERUS.

ARBUTHNOT.

[JOHN ARBUTHNOT was born near Montrose in 1675, was educated at the University of Aberdeen, and there took his degree as Doctor in Medicine. He came to London, where he gradually established his reputation as a man of science, and eventually became Physician in Ordinary to Queen Anne. Like many inen of mere professional eminence, his reputation would have passed away had he not been the intimate friend of Pope and Swift, and won for himself the reputation of being their equal in wit. Of this triumvirate Warburton says, "Wit they had all in equal measure; and this so large, that no age, perhaps ever produced three men to whom nature had more bountifully bestowed it, or art had brought it to higher perfection." The three engaged in a project which was never completed-to write a satire upon all the abuses of human learning. To this project we owe the 'Gulliver's Travels' of Swift, and the first book of the Memoirs of Martinus Scriblerus' by Arbuthnot. Nothing can be more perfect than this fragment. Its very extravagance is the result of profound skill, contrasting and heightening the pungency of the more subtle wit with which the merely ludicrous is clothed. The passage which we select describes the christening of the great Martinus, and the wonderful doings of his father Cornelius. Arbuthnot continued to practise as a physician almost till the time of his death in 1735. His integrity and benevolence were as conspicuous as his great talents.]

The day of the christening being come, and the house filled with gossips, the levity of whose conversation suited but ill with the gravity of Dr. Cornelius, he cast about how to pass this day more agreeable to his character; that is to say, not without some profitable conference, nor wholly without observance of some ancient custom.

He remembered to have read in Theocritus, that the cradle of Hercules was a shield and being possessed of an antique buckler, which he held as a most inestimable relic, he determined to have the infant laid therein, and in that manner brought into the study, to be shown to certain learned men of his acquaintance.

The regard he had for this shield had caused him formerly to compile a dissertation concerning it, proving from the several properties, and particularly the colour of the rust, the exact chronology thereof.

With this treatise, and a moderate supper, he proposed to entertain his guests, though he had also another design, to have their assistance in the calculation of his son's nativity.

He therefore took the buckler out of a case (in which he always kept it, lest it might contract any modern rust), and entrusted it to his housemaid, with orders that when the company was come she should lay the child carefully in it, covered with a mantle of blue satin.

The guests were no sooner seated but they entered into a warm debate about the Triclinium, and the manner of Decubitus, of the ancients, which Cornelius broke off in this manner :

"This day, my friends, I purpose to exhibit my son before you; a child not wholly unworthy of inspection, as he is descended from a race of virtuosi. Let the physiognomist examine his features; let the chirographists behold his palm; but, above all, let us consult for the calculation of his nativity. To this end, as the

He shall

child is not vulgar, I will not present him unto you in a vulgar manner. be cradled in my ancient shield, so famous through the universities of Europe. You all know how I purchased that invaluable piece of antiquity, at the great (though indeed inadequate) expense of all the plate of our family, how happily I carried it off, and how triumphantly I transported it hither, to the inexpressible grief of all Germany. Happy in every circumstance, but that it broke the heart of the great Melchior Insipidus!

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Here he stopped his speech, upon sight of the maid, who entered the room with the child he took it in his arms and proceeded :—

"Behold then my child, but first behold the shield, behold this rust,—or rather let me call it this precious ærugo; behold this beautiful varnish of time, this venerable verdure of so many ages!" In speaking these words he slowly lifted up the mantle which covered it, inch by inch; but at every inch he uncovered his cheeks grew paler, his hand trembled, his nerves failed, till on sight of the whole the tremor became universal, the shield and the infant both dropped to the ground, and he had only strength enough to cry out, "O God! my shield, my shield !

The truth was, the maid (extremely concerned for the reputation of her own cleanliness, and her young master's honour) had scoured it as her hand-irons.

Cornelius sunk back on a chair, the guests stood astonished, the infant squalled, the maid ran in, snatched it up again in her arms, flew into her mistress's room, and told what had happened. Down stairs in an instant hurried all the gossips, where they found the doctor in a trance; Hungary-water, hartshorn, and the confused noise of shrill voices, at length awakened him, when, opening his eyes, he saw the shield in the hands of the housemaid. "O woman! woman!" he cried (and snatched it violently from her), "was it to thy ignorance, that this relic owes its ruin? Where, where is the beautiful crust that covered thee so long? where those traces of time, and fingers as it were of antiquity? Where all those beautiful obscurities, the cause of much delightful disputation, where doubt and uncertainty went hand in hand, and eternally exercised the speculations of the learned? And this the rude touch of an ignorant woman hath done away! The curious prominence at the belly of that figure, which some, taking for the cuspis of a sword, denominated a Roman soldier; others, accounting the insignia virilia, pronounced to be one of the Dii Termini; behold she hath cleaned it in like shameful sort, and shown to be the head of a nail. O my shield my shield! well may I say with Horace, "Non bene relicta parmula."

The gossips, not at all inquiring into the cause of his sorrow, only asked if the child had no hurt; and cried, "Come, come, all is well; what has the woman done but her duty, a tight cleanly wench, I warrant her; what a stir a man makes about a bason, that an hour ago, before her labour was bestowed upon it, a country barber would not have hung at his shop-door!"-"A bason! (cried another) no such matter; 'tis nothing but a paltry old sconce, with the nozzle broken off." The learned gentlemen, who till now had stood speechless, hereupon, looking on the shield, declared their assent to this latter opinion, and desired Cornelius to be conforted, assuring him it was a sconce, and no other. But this, instead of comforting threw the doctor into such a violent fit of passion, that he was carried off groaning and speechless to bed, where, being quite spent, he fell into a kind of slumber. The bare mention of music threw Cornelius into a passion. "How can you dignify (quoth he) this modern fiddling with the name of music? Will any of your best hautboys encounter a wolf nowadays with no other arms but their instruments, as did that ancient piper Pithocaris? Have ever wild boars, elephants, deer, dolphins, whales, or turbots, showed the least emotion at the most elaborate strains of your modern scrapers; all which have been, as it were, tamed and humanized by

*

187 ancient musicians? Does not Ælian tell us how the Lybian mares were excited to horsing by music? (which ought in truth to be a caution to modest women against frequenting operas,) and consider, brother, you are brought to this dilemma, cither to give up the virtue of the ladies, or the power of your music. Whence proceeds the degeneracy of our morals? Is it not from the loss of an ancient music, by which (says Aristotle) they taught all the virtues? else might we turn Newgate into a college of Dorian musicians, who should teach moral virtue to those people. Whence comes it that our present diseases are so subborn? whence is it that I daily deplore my sciatical pains? Alas! because we have lost their true cure by the melody of the pipe. All this was well known to the ancients, as Theophrastus assures us (whence Cœlius calls it loca dolentia decantare), only indeed some small remains of this skill are preserved in the cure of the tarantula. Did not Pythagoras stop a company of drunken bullies from storming a civil house, by changing the strain of the pipe to the sober spondæus and yet your modern musicians want art to defend their windows from common nickers. It is well known that when the Lacedæmonian mob were up, they commonly sent for a Lesbian musician to appease them, and they immediately grew calm as soon as they heard Terpander sing: yet I don't believe that the pope's whole band of music, though the best of this age, could keep his holiness's image from being burnt on the fifth of November."—" Nor would Terpander himself (replied Albertus) at Billingsgate, nor Timotheus at Hockley in the Hole, have any manner of effect; nor both of them together bring Horneck to common civility." "That's a gross mistake" (said Cornelius very warmly); "and, to prove it so, I have here a small lyra of my own, framed, strung, and tuned after the ancient manner. I can play some fragments of Lesbian tunes, and I wish I were to try upon the most passionate creatures alive."-" You never had a better opportunity (says Albertus), for yonder are two apple-women scolding, and just ready to uncoif one another." With that Cornelius, undressed as he was, jumps out into his balcony, his lyra in hand, in his slippers, with his breeches hanging down to his ankles, a stocking upon his head, and waistcoat of murrey-coloured satin upon his body. He touched his lyra with a very unusual sort of harpegiatura, nor were his hopes frustrated. The odd equipage, the uncouth instrument, the strangeness of the man, and of the music, drew the ears and eyes of the whole mob that were got about the two female champions, and at last of the combatants themselves. They all approached the balcony, in as close attention as Orpheus's first audience of cattle, or that of an Italian opera, when some favourite air is just awakened. This sudden effect of his music encouraged him mightily; and it was observed he never touched his lyre in such a truly chromatic and enharmonic manner as upon that occasion. The mob laughed, sung, jumped, danced, and used many odd gestures; all which he judged to be caused by the various strains and modulations. "Mark" (quoth he) "in this the power of the Ionian, in that you see the effect of the Eolian.” But in a little time they began to grow riotous, and threw stones; Cornelius then withdrew, but with the greatest air of triumph in the world. "Brother," said he, "do you observe I have mixed unawares too much of the Phrygian; I might change it to the Lydian, and soften their riotous tempers. But it is enough; learn from this sample to speak with veneration of ancient music. If this lyre in my unskilful hands can perform such wonders, what must it not have done in those of a Timotheus or Terpander?" Having said this, he retired with the utmost exultation in himself, and contempt of his brother; and it is said behaved that night with such unusual haughtiness to his family, that they all had reason to wish for some ancient tibicen to calm his temper.

146.-AN EARTHQUAKE IN LONDON, 1750.

HORACE WALPOLE.

[ALTHOUGH Horace Walpole wrote the Castle of Otranto,' which Byron has called the first romance in our language, and published incessantly various antiquarian and critical works, we doubt if he would take rank amongst "the best authors" but for his Letters, which have been given to the world from time to time during the last fifty years. These now form six considerable octavo volumes. These letters were as much authorship as if they had been written for the press. They have not the greatest of all charms in letterwriting, a free outpouring of the thoughts in friendly confidence. They are the carefully wrought observations of a clever, sarcastic, vain, and fastidious man of rank, upon the artificial tastes and habits of the society amongst which he lived. There is no heart in them, and therefore we care nothing for the writer. Upon the whole, they induce a feeling of dislike towards him. We see how much of insincerity there must have been in this clever embalmer of perishable scandals. His object was to amuse his correspondents for the price of their admiration. He now amuses a larger circle, who have very little esteem to give him in return. Horace Walpole was the youngest son of the famous minister, Sir Robert Walpole, and was born in 1717. Throughout his life he took a small part in public affairs, although his interest in the movements of party was always considerable. the title of Earl of Orford in 1791, and died in 1797.]

"Portents and prodigies are grown so frequent,
That they have lost their name."

He succeeded to

My text is not literally true; but, as far as earthquakes go towards lowering the price of wonderful commodities, to be sure we are overstocked. We have had a second, much more violent than the first; and you must not be surprised if, by next post, you hear of a burning mountain sprung up in Smithfield. In the night between Wednesday and Thursday last, (exactly a month since the first shock,) the earth had a shivering fit between one and two; but so slight that, if no more had followed, I don't believe it would have been noticed. I had been awoke, and had scarce dozed again-on a sudden I felt my bolster lift up my head; I thought somebody was getting from under my bed, but soon found it was a strong earthquake, that lasted near half a minute, with a violent vibration and great roaring. I rang my bell; my servant came in, frightened out of his senses; in an instant we heard all the windows in the neighbourhood flung up. I got up and found people running into the streets, but saw no mischief done: there has been some; two old houses flung down, several chimneys, and much chinaware. The bells rung in several houses. Admiral Knowles, who had lived long in Jamaica, and felt seven there, says this was more violent than any of them; Francesco prefers it to the dreadful one at Leghorn. The wise say, that if we have not rain soon, we shall certainly have more. Several people are going out of town, for it has nowhere reached above ten miles from London; they say, they are not frightened, but that it is such fine weather, "Lord! one can't help going into the country!" The only visible effect it has had, was on the Ridotto, at which, being the following night, there were but four hundred people. A parson, who came into White's the morning of earthquake the first, and heard bets laid whether it was an earthquake or blowing up of powder mills, went away exceedingly scandalized, and said, "I protest, they are such an impious set of people, I believe if the last trumpet was to sound, they would bet puppet-show against judgment." If we get any nearer still to the torrid zone, I shall pique myself on sending you a present of cedrati and orange-flower water: I am already planning a terreno for Strawberry Hill.

You will not wonder so much at our earthquakes, as at the effects they have had.

ancient musicians? Does not Ælian tell us how the Lybian mares were excited to horsing by music? (which ought in truth to be a caution to modest women against frequenting operas,) and consider, brother, you are brought to this dilemma, cither to give up the virtue of the ladies, or the power of your music. Whence proceeds the degeneracy of our morals? Is it not from the loss of an ancient music, by which (says Aristotle) they taught all the virtues? else might we turn Newgate into a college of Dorian musicians, who should teach moral virtue to those people. Whence comes it that our present diseases are so subborn? whence is it that I daily deplore my sciatical pains? Alas! because we have lost their true cure by the melody of the pipe. All this was well known to the ancients, as Theophrastus assures us (whence Cœlius calls it loca dolentia decantare), only indeed some small remains of this skill are preserved in the cure of the tarantula. Did not Pythagoras stop a company of drunken bullies from storming a civil house, by changing the strain of the pipe to the sober spondæus and yet your modern musicians want art to defend their windows from common nickers. It is well known that when the Lacedæmonian mob were up, they commonly sent for a Lesbian musician to appease them, and they immediately grew calm as soon as they heard Terpander sing: yet I don't believe that the pope's whole band of music, though the best of this age, could keep his holiness's image from being burnt on the fifth of November."-" Nor would Terpander himself (replied Albertus) at Billingsgate, nor Timotheus at Hockley in the Hole, have any manner of effect; nor both of them together bring Horneck to common civility.""That's a gross mistake" (said Cornelius very warmly); "and, to prove it so, I have here a small lyra of my own, framed, strung, and tuned after the ancient manner. I can play some fragments of Lesbian tunes, and I wish I were to try upon the most passionate creatures alive."-"You never had a better opportunity (says Albertus), for yonder are two apple-women scolding, and just ready to uncoif one another." With that Cornelius, undressed as he was, jumps out into his balcony, his lyra in hand, in his slippers, with his breeches hanging down to his ankles, a stocking upon his head, and waistcoat of murrey-coloured satin upon his body. He touched his lyra with a very unusual sort of harpegiatura, nor were his hopes frustrated. The odd equipage, the uncouth instrument, the strangeness of the man, and of the music, drew the ears and eyes of the whole mob that were got about the two female champions, and at last of the combatants themselves. They all approached the balcony, in as close attention as Orpheus's first audience of cattle, or that of an Italian opera, when some favourite air is just awakened. This sudden effect of his music encouraged him mightily; and it was observed he never touched his lyre in such a truly chromatic and enharmonic manner as upon that occasion. The mob laughed, sung, jumped, danced, and used many odd gestures; all which he judged to be caused by the various strains and modulations. "Mark" (quoth

he) "in this the power of the Ionian, in that you see the effect of the Æolian." But in a little time they began to grow riotous, and threw stones; Cornelius then withdrew, but with the greatest air of triumph in the world. "Brother," said he, "do you observe I have mixed unawares too much of the Phrygian; I might change it to the Lydian, and soften their riotous tempers. But it is enough; learn from this sample to speak with veneration of ancient music. If this lyre in my unskilful hands can perform such wonders, what must it not have done in those of a Timotheus or Terpander?" Having said this, he retired with the utmost exultation in himself, and contempt of his brother; and it is said behaved that night with such unusual haughtiness to his family, that they all had reason to wish for some ancient tibicen to calm his temper.

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