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A STORM OFF THE COAST OF GALWAY. “ It blew a whole gale from the south’ard and westward, and the sea ran mountains high, not the short jobble of a land-locked channel, but the heavy roll of the great Atlantic,—dark and frowning, swelling to an enormous height, and thundering away on the iron-bound coast to leeward, with a crash that made our hearts quiver. The 'Dart' was a good sea-boat, but the waves swept her from stem to stern, and though nothing but a close-reefed topsail was bent, we went, spinning through the water at twelve knots. The hatchways were battened down, and every preparation made for a rough night, for as the darkness increased, so did the gale.
“The smuggler's fate is a dark and gloomy one. Let the breeze fall, let the blue sky and fleecy clouds lie mirrored on the glassy deep, and straight a boat is seen, sweeping along with sixteen oars, springing with every jerk of the strong arms to his capture. And when the white waves rise like mountains, and the lowering storm descends, sending tons of water across his decks, and wetting his highest rigging with the fleecy drift, he dares not cry for help ; the signal that would speak of his distress, would be the knell to toll his ruin. We knew this well. We felt that come what would, from others there was nothing to be hoped. It was then, with agonizing suspense we watched the little craft, as she worked in the stormy sea ; we saw that with every tack, we were Josing. The strong land current that set in shore, told upon us at every reach : and when we went about, the dark and beetling cliffs, seemed actually toppling over us, and the wild cries of the sea-fowl, rang like a dirge in our ears. The small storm-jib we were obliged to set, sank us by the head, and at every pitch the little vessel seemed threatening to go down, bow foremost. Take by way of contrast
A TABLE D'HÔTE AT DRESDEN. The few guests already arrived have the air of habitués; they are chatting together when you enter, but they conceive it necessary to do the honours of the place to a stranger, and at once include you in the conversation ; a word or two suffices, and you see that they are not chance folk, whom hunger has overtaken at the door, but daily visitors, who know the house and appreciate it. The table itself is far from large-at most sixteen persons could sit down at it; the usual number is about twelve or fourteen. 'There is, if it be summer, a delicious bouquet in the midst ; and the snowy whiteness of the cloth, and the clear lustre of the water, strike you instantly. The covers are as bright as when they left the hands of the silversmith, and the temperature of the room at once shows that nothing has been neglected that can contribute to the comfort of the guests. The very plash of the fountain is a grateful sound, and the long necks of the hock-bottles, reposing in the little basin, have an air of luxury far from unpleasing; while the champagne indulges its more southern character in the ice-pails in the shade, a sweet, faint odour of pine-apples and nectarines is diffused about; nor am I disposed to quarrel with the chance view I catch between the orange-trees, of a window, where asparagus, game, oranges, and melons, are grouped confusedly together, yet with a harmony of colour
and effect Schneider would have gloried in. There is a noiseless activity about-a certain air of preparation-not such as by bustle can interfere with the placid enjoyment you feel, but something which denotes care and skill ; you feel, in fact, that impatience on your part would only militate against your own interest, and that, when the moment arrives for serving, the “potage” has then received the last finishing touch of the artist. By this time the company are assembled; the majority are men, but there are four or five ladies. They are en chapeau too ; but it is a toilet that shows taste and elegance, and the freshness-that delightful characteristic of foreign dress—the freshness, of their light muslin dresses—is in keeping with all about. Then follows that little, pleasant, bustle of meeting; the interchange of a number of small courtesies, which cost little, but are very delightful.
The “ Souvenir of the France" at Brussels is excellent throughout.here are one or two sketches taken almost at random :
You may dine in the long salon, en cabinet, in the garden, or in the summerhouse over the lake, where the carp is flapping his tail in the clear-water, the twin-brother of him at table : the garden beneath sends up its delicious odours from beds of every brilliant hue; the sheep are moving homeward along the distant hills, to the tinkle of the faint bell; the plash of an oar disturbs the calm water, as the fisherman skims along the lake ; and the subdued murmurs of the little village all come floating in the air-pleasant sounds, and full of home thoughts. Well
, well; 10 be sure I am a bachelor, and know nothing of such matters; but it strikes me I should like to be married now and then, and go eat my wedding-dinner at Boitsfort !
“ How charming! Bon soir," said she, and I closed the door.
What dreams were mine that night! What delightful visions of lake scenery and Polish countesses, -and mountain gorges and blue eyes,-of deep ravines, and lovely forms! I thought we were sailing up Lough Corrib; the moon was up, spangling and flecking the rippling lake ; the night was still and calm, not a sound save the cuckoo was heard breaking the silence; as I listened and started, for I thought, instead of her wonted note, her cry was ever, “ Je marque le Roi.”
The “Fragment of Chateau Life” is in Harry Lorrequer's best style. The unintentional elopement to the Belgian Gretna Green, is so perfect as a whole, that we cannot dissect it; and, after all, these headless, tailless quotations give us little idea of the book whence they are subtracted, as the Athenian's brick conveyed of the dwelling-house it was meant to afford a sample of. The ** Duel at Bonn” is very good, as also the siege which an Englishman underwent from
his lionizing countrymen in a house he inhabited that once belonged to Vandyk.
“Alas!" thought I, “ if, as some learned persons suppose, individuals be recognizable in the next world, what a melancholy time of it will be yours, poor Vandyk! If they make all this hubbub about the house you lived in, what will they do aboui your fleshy tabernacle "
As the season advanced, the crowds increased, and, as autumn began, the conflicting currenis to and from the Rhine all met in my bedroom. There took place all, the rendezvous of Europe. Runaway daughters there first repented in papa's arms, and profligate sons promised amendment for the future. Myself and my wife were passed by unnoticed and disregarded an id this tumult of recognition and salutation. We were emaciated like skeletons : our meals we eat when we could, like soldiers on a retreat ; and we slept in our clothes, not knowing at what moment the enemy might be upon us. Locks, bolts, and bars were ineffectual : our resistance only increased curiosity, and our garrison was ever open to bribery.
But we have “loitered" already too long with our author, and must take leave of the pleasantest of travelling companions, with a few random touches from his journal.
Laugh, then, if you will, at the strange figures, whose uncouth costumes of cap and jack-boot bespeak them a hybrid, between a civilian and a soldier. The exterior is, after all, no bad type of what lies within-its contradictions
are indeed scarcely as great. The spectacles and moustaches—the note-book beneath the arm, and the sabre at the side-the ink-bottle at the button-hole, and the spurs jingling at the heels, are all the outward signs of that extraordinary mixture of patient industry and hot-headed rashness of matter-of-fact shrewdness and poetic fervour-and, lastly, of the most forgiving temper, allied to an unconquerable propensity for duelling. Laugh if you will at himbut he is a fine fellow for all that; and, despite aïl the contrarieties of his nalure, has the seed of those virtues which, in the peaceful life of his native country, grow up into the ripe fruits of manly truth and honesty.
German, except spoken by a Saxon Mädchen, invariably suggests the idea of a row to an upin terested bystander; and, if Goethe bimself were to recite his ballads before an English audience, i'd venture long odds they'd accuse him of blasphemy. Welsh and Irish are soft zephyrs compared to ii.
The chapters on the “Watering Places” are full of useful knowledge and graphic picture. Take a gaming-table at Baden Baden :
THE CURSAAL, AND ITS COMPANY. Englishmen keep their solemnity and respectful deportment for a church ; foreigners reserve theirs for a gambling-table. Never was I more struck than by the decorous stillness, and well-bred quietness of the room in which the highest play went forward. All the animation of French character-all the bluntness of German—all the impetuosity of the Italian, or the violent rashness of the Russian-were calmed down and subdued beneath the influence of the great passion ; and it seemed as though the devil would not accept the homage of his votaries if not rendered with the well-bred manners of true gentlemen. It was not enough that men should be ruined; they should be ruined ; they should be ruined with easy propriety and good breeding. Whatever their hearts might feel, their faces should express no discomfiture ; though their head should ache, and their hand should tremble, the lip must be taught to say rouge” or “noir," without
any emotion. I do not scruple to own that all this decorum was more dreadful than any scene of wild violence or excitement. The forced calmness—the pent-up passion might be kept from any outbreak of words, but no training could completely subdue the emotions which speak by the bloodshot eye, the quivering cheek, the livid lip.
No man's heart is consecrated so entirely to one passion as a gambler's. Hope, with him, usurps the place of every other feeling. Hope, however rude the shocks it meets from disappointment, however beaten and baffled, is still there ; the flame may waste down to a few embers ; but a single spark may live amid the ashes ; but it is enough to kindle up into a blaze before the breath of fortune.
The character of one of England's fashion-leaders—the outlaw of his own country, the récherché of Baden :
Their connexion by family with persons of rank and condition, is a kind of life-buoy of which no shipwreck of fortune deprives them, and long after less well known people have sunk to the bottom, they are to be found floating on the surface of society. In this way, they form á kind of “ Pont de Diable" between persons of character, and persons of none-they are the narrow isthmus, connecting the main land with the low reef of rocks beyond it.
These men are the tame elephants of the swindling world, who provide the game, though they never seem to care for the sport. Too cautious of reputation to become active agents in these transactions, they introduce the unsuspecting traveller into those haunts, and among those where ruin is rife; and as the sheriff consigns the criminal to the attentions of the hangman, so these wor•
thies halt at the “drop," and would scorn, with indignation, the idea of exercising the last office of the law.
Far from this ; they are eloquent in their denunciations of play. Such sound morality as theirs cannot be purchased at any price; the dangers that beset young men coming abroad—the risk of chance acquaintance-the folly of associating with persons not known, form the staple of their converse—which, lest it should seem too cynical in its attack on pleasure, is relieved by that admirable statement so popular in certain circles, “ You know a man of the world must see every thing for himself, so that though I say don't gamble, I never said, don't frequent the Cursaal—though I bade you avoid play, I did not say shun blacklegs.” It is pretty much like desiring a man not take the 'yellow fever, but to be sure to pass an autumn on the coast of Africa!
That singular establishment at Frankfort, “ the Recovery House,” affords opportunity
for an anecdote that reminds us of the “ Diary of a late Physician.” The story of Baron Von Elgenheim is full of fearful interest, but we cannot trespass further on the space allowed us. We take leave of our travelling companion with our best wishes and hearty goodwill
, and hope, ere long, he may again join company with the original of Cruikshank's admirable portrait.
GENERAL POLLOCK'S CAMPAIGN IN AFFGHANISTAN.*
Here is a volume which must at once take its place beside those of Lady Sale and Lieut. Eyre, to which it forms the natural and necessary sequel—they being no more complete without Lieut. Greenwood's dénouement to the drama, than it will be in their absence. It narrates, in the words and with the appliances of an eye-witness, the details, both personal and professional, of that glorious but terrible “measure of revenge,” which it was the lot of General Pollock and his gallant band to inflict on the assassins of Cabool. The tale is infinitely better for being a
plain, unvarnished” one; its critical defects of construction are, in fact, the best guarantee of its truth. It seems to have been written down in the very phrases in which the author would be likely to relate it over his own fireside ; and though some of them may have an uncouth air to the critical and fastidious eye when encountered in print, they will be welcomed on that very account, as the surest evidence of that verity which is the one thing needful” in cases of this nature.
It is quite unnecessary for us to enter into any detailed discussion of the contents of this volume, because the general features of its subject must be familiar to the recollection of most of our readers, so far as regards the military movements of the campaign. But the chief points of interest will be found in those personal anecdotes and descriptions which only find their way to the public curiosity through the medium of works of this nature. As the book can scarcely be in the hands of our readers, we shall do them an acceptable service by offering a few examples of the kind of “ Narrative" they may expect.
The following three remarkable personal traits occur in the space of as many pages.
Narrative of the Late Victorious Campaign in Affghanistan, under General Pollock, &c. By Lieut. Greenwood, H.M. 31st Regiment. 1 vol.
The little Goorkhas, who filled the ranks of Broadfoot's sappers, behaved most splendidly. Far in the distance were to be seen small parties of these diminutive warriors, driving strong bodies of the bulky Affghans before them. I saw one little Goorkha, who was certainly not five feet high, perform a most gallant act. A number of them had attacked an outpost of the enemy, which was commanded by a height in their possession behind it. The sappers, by their well-directed fire, soon drove the detached Affghans from their post to that of their friends above. A chief, who was on horseback, did not retire for some time, but continued bravely at his post. Two or three of the Goorkbas, however, having approached him unpleasantly near, he turned his horse's head and galloped up the eminence on which his men had retreated. The little Nepaulese, whom I have mentioned, ran forward, and taking a long aim at the chief, who was galloping full speed, at least a hundred yards' distance from him, fired, and tumbled horse and man over and over each other, until they reached the bottom of the hill. The Affghans immediately commenced a furious fire from above, to prevent the body of their chief from being despoiled : but the little Goorkha, caring no more for their bullets than if they had been so many snowballs, ran to the spot, and coollytaking out his knife, very deliberately hacked the fellow's head off, bringing that, his sword, and his horse, away in triumph. The horse was a very fine animal, but unfortunately was struck in the shoulder by the Goorkha's ball, which had passed through the man's thigh, and thus brought them down together.
The Affghans had a large body of cavalry in the field, which were charged and utterly overthrown by H.M. 3d Dragoons and the Ist Light Cavalry. A dragoon, while riding at a chief whose trappings were of the most costly description, had his horse shot under him by a pistol from the Affghan. The soldier fell with his charger, but quickly disengaging himself from the disabled animal, he passed his sword through the chief's body. Then vaulting on his horse, he continued the charge with his comrades, and brought the gallant Affghan steed, with his magnificent comparisons safely into camp..
The Resaldar, or native commandant of Tait's irregular horse, also performed a most splendid action. He had gone with a number of his men round a narrow track, in order to take a large body of Affghan horse in flank. But, on arriving close to them, a broad and deep ravine, which had not before been perceived, was found to intervene between the belligerents. The horses of the sowars* could not get over such a place ; but the gallant Resaldar, being mounted on a splendid Arab, made a dash over the yawning gulf, and cut his way right and left through the enemy and back again, before they had recovered from their astonishment. The heroic Mussulman took the leap back and rejoined his men in safety, having killed five Affghans in his desperate charge in less time than I have taken to tell the story. For this achievement he was afterwards very properly rewarded with the decoration of British India,
A considerable amount of amusement, as well as utility is added to this volume, by the writer having made it the medium of his recollection of seven years' service in India, previously to the stirring events which give the chief attraction to the work. These recollections touch upon all the usual features of Anglo-Indian life, and are written in the same natural and easy vein which marks the more important portion of the narrative. There are also some useful hints to young aspirants for Indian wealth and honours; many interesting illustrations of scenes referred to in the chief narrative ; and a good map of the exact route of the British army during the campaign.