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AN ADDRESS TO FATHER MATHEW,
Single, simple, serious man!
To spoil all the beer you can ?
Brewers,- vintners,-all that be?
So far below the Pharisee?
Prithee explain thy heresy.
Because upon the Indian plain
Or racks the European brain ?
That rears the tithe,-that warms the grain.
4. Learned Mathew! It is right
To keep men sober, night and day; But to scorn the heavenly grape
Is sinful, argue how you may. Using, Mat, is not abusing : Why persist, then, in refusing
Good wine to refresh our clay?
5. Just reflect :-If I should prove
That misery followeth water drink; Cholic-tympanum-hydro-thorax;
Tell me what you then would think! You'd reply,—“All things in season : What you do, sir, do in reason :
If you drink too much-you sink!”
6. So it is : and therefore I Will mix some water with
my wine : And you'll taste this Catholic claret.
Well,-is not the flavour fine ? “I confess, sir, God befriends us." “ Right, Mat, -All that Heaven sends us
Hath a touch divine."
YOUNG ENGLAND; OR, THE PERIL OF THE CRISIS.
There is no more formidable symptom in the aspect of these times than the increasing influence and sway of the babies of England. Here is our real danger at the present juncture. In comparison with this, the Corn Exchange and the Anti-Corn-Law League are, in our humble opinion, mere Hammersmith spectres and Cock-lane ghosts. It is observable that the phrase “old England" is almost obsolete. Nothing but “ young England” will go down now; and indeed the
young England” is put down the better, for we have no hesitation to pronounce it the nuisance of the age.
A few appalling facts will show the necessity of attending to this matter before it is too late. Amongst the late announcements in the newspapers appropriate to the Christmas season, we read the following programme with dismay:
" CHRISTMAS HOLIDAYS.-At the ROYAL POLYTECHNIC INSTITUTION an increase of Powerful and Brilliant Effects in ELECTRICITY are exhibited by ARMSTRONG'S HYDRO-ELECTRIC MACHINE. A new field is opened for investigating, on a magnificent scale, a variety of objects in Art, Science, and Natural History, by means of Longbottom's Opaque Microscope, showing also an extraordinary Optical Illusion. New Dissolving Views. A List of the Popular Lectures, which will be delivered during the week, is suspended in the Hall of Manufactures. Holloway's Original Crayon Drawings from Raphael's Cartoons. Numerous Models in motion, Diver, and Diving Bell."
An advertiser of Christmas Presents and New Year's Gifts for "young people,” spreads the ensuing bill of fare before them :
“ Air Pumps !
Selections of Chemical Apparatus ! !!!" Let “old England" read these evidences of the progress of “ young England,” and tremble. The “ Electrical Machine" is shocking enough, but hydra-electricity must be worse a hundred times, for the hydra was one of the most hideous monsters ever exhibited.* As to the Air-Pump, it actually takes away ones breath. We feel quite exhausted.
Another deviser of etrennes for “ little folk" allures them with the Voltaic Battery, a Gregorian Telescope, and a Printing Press! Think of this “old England !"
* Since this was written, we have been assured by a little Mistress of Arts in her fifth year, that the word is hydro, not hydra, and that hydro is Greek for water, not the name of a crocodile or dragon. We knew it was Greek for something, ig. norant as Miss M.A. thinks us.
Old England recollects perfectly well the days of its own boyhood and girlhood, the Christmas days of the time gone by, the New Years' days that are now “ beyond the flood.” A Christmas-box then was not a case of mathematical instruments, and opticians did not keep toy-shops. The father was satisfied with a pop-gun, and the child must have a “voltaic battery!” The son of him who knew nothing beyond the letters on gilt gingerbread, disports himself in the holidays with a printing-press !
As we find toy-shops still open and flourishing, it is plain they must find their customers amongst grown people, for the growing people will have nothing to do with them ; the children of this generation have“ put away childish things.” Indeed we have lately observed a vast number of papas and mammas upon hobbies, which shows amongst what class toys are in demand at present. Then we see every day old fellows "fying kites ;” and what is more common than to find the mothers and wives of England at ball? On this very 1st of February, 1844, a public racket-court is throw open for those
Potent, grave, and reverend seniors, the legislators of the United Kingdom. Then in Ireland there is Earl de Grey playing at soldiers, and Father Mathew and his fatherly followers, diverting themselves with their tea-totum. In short, all the grown people in the realm are at play, while the small folk are studying Natural Philosophy, and gazing through Opaque Microscopes. Young female England knows nothing of the needle in practice, but can explain its dip and variation as learnedly as Sir John Herschel. Mr. Miller advertises a catalogue of cheap books, and adds, that it contains “ the best selection for Christmas Presents and New Years' Gifts." What do we find in Mr. Miller's list?
“ The Foreign Quarterly Review!
“Thomson's Annals of Philosophy; a Magazine of Chemistry, Mineralogy, Mechanics, Agriculture, and the Fine Arts !!"
Another bookseller announces as a Present for the Nursery, “ The New Chapter of Kings." Now as Solomon has said that "the hearts of kings are inscrutable," the subject of this nursery present is obviously the very deepest the writer could have chosen. It can no longer be said of the child,
Sequitur patrem haud passibus æquis.* The father is unable to keep up with the son, although the former may have the cock-horse to ride if he pleases, for the son is done with it. In short, we have lived to behold 'the wonderful sights described by Biron in the play,
Grown people will need to be informed that this is a quotation from a poet named Virgil, who wrote in a language called Latin, and that it is thus he describes the little Ascanius, a young gentleman of Troy, trotting after his father, Æneas, and scarce able to keep up with him. The fathers of Troy were step-fathers. Now there are no step-fathers or step-mothers ; there is nothing stepping
but sons and daughters, and they are outstepping their parents with a vengeance.
To see great Hercules whipping a gigg,
And Nestor play at push-pin with the boys—* only that the Nestors of these days have no boys to play with, unless such old boys as themselves, or those American Indian “boys," seventy years old and upwards, who lately visited the Queen in her “ great wigwam" at Windsor.
An Infant School now means a school kept by infants, and where the scholars are papas, mammas, aunts, and uncles. The Hercules of the nineteenth century runs imminent risk of being disciplined by every little blue-stocking Omphale who may set up a “ Preparatory School for Grown Gentlemen," although much too proud to whip a handkerchief. “Knowledge is power !". While the risen generation has been hunting and shooting, racing and gaming, toying and trifling, the rising one has been acquiring knowledge and dominion. What mother, ignorant of the difference between a cross and a crucible, would presume to rebuke her little son, even were he to blow down the house with his voltaic battery? Talk of the rod, forsooth, to Miss Mysie, or Master Dicky, whose offence, perhaps, is setting fire to mamma's apron by the explosion of a model steam-engine!
However, battery against battery, is only fair play!
The “ children in the wood" of 1844, are there for the purpose of botanizing, not to pick blackberries, or pull filberts. Proffer them the run of the finest orchard of the autumn, they value not the privilege a fig; but give them a “hortus siccus," and you make kings and queens of them. If there is a wrangle in the nursery about a flower,
quarrel is sure to be whether it is a syngenesia or a cryptogamia. Miss Bessie is rebuked for strewing the carpet with rose-leaves.
“ Mamma never will say petals,” exclaims Linnæus in petticoats.
It would seem that the pretty Europa was the little botanist of her age from the description the poet gives of her
In pratis studiosa florum.t studying flowers, not idly plucking them to make a garland or a topknot. Probably the story of Europa coming riding across the waters on the bull, shadows out the fact of that adventurous damsel having
* Shakspeare adds,
“And critic Timon laugh at idle toys." Our critic Timons are the petticoated philosophers who study pneumatology, and read the Foreign Quarterly. They are quite as misanthropic as the Athenian, only that instead of retiring from town as he did, they threaten to drive their parents out of it. : As to criticism, we have no doubt there will soon be an “ Infant Review," or at least a “ Young Gentleman's Magazine.” How mammas will be cut up, and papas be Smithed and Jeffreyed! How the governesses will smart for it! What articles we shall have upon domestic tyranny and NURSERY TORTURE !
† Again we must translate for the benefit of “ Old England." This quotation is from Horace=not Horace Walpole, or Horace Smith, or Horace Twiss, or Horatio Nelson, but Horace, or Horatius, a Roman (not Roman Catholic) poet, who lived at Rome, a city in Italy, “ bounded on the north,” &c. &c. &c.— Vide Goldsmith's Geography. “In pratis studiosa florum,” means studying flowers in the fields; we should say botanizing, only that mammas have not got to words of four syllables.