« ZurückWeiter »
lord, who in his communication with Mr. De Vere, on the subject of his valet, had decided at once that he was a man of rank and fashion, now attended, and did the honours of his house in the usual style of Irish hyperbole.
“ Upon my credit, gentlemen, I'm heartily sorry we're losing the honour of
your company so soon; and think I could make the place plazing to you,
would do me the honour, on your return from the Lakes (for supposes it is to them you're going), and am sorry you make such a short stay, without seeing the Rotunda, and the College, and the Dublin-Society house, and the statues.”
“ Statues! what statues," demanded the younger stranger, catehing at the sound, and stopping short,
“ The statues, Sir, at our society house, that's kept in the greatest style, and gets a touch up, whenever the place is painted. That's by order, as we say, in the society house."-"Bywhat order?” was demanded, with a smile. — “By
order of the committee of fine arts; and myself was one, until business came on me so thick, and took up my atten. tion; and has a brother that shews at the exhibition every year, a great artist. Indeed, I think you'd be plazed, gentlemen,
you were to stop and see the exhibition this saison, and portrait No: 2, full length of Mr. Roger O'Rafferty, of the Back-lane division auxiliary yeomanry corps, in full regimentals, standing quite quiet, and a cannon going off in the Phanix;* that's by my brother, Sir." This detailed statement of the cognos . cente landlord to prove the flourishing state of the arts in Ireland, the country which has given to the English school of painting a Barry, a Shee, and a Tres ham, seemed quite sufficient to satisfy
* The Phenix Park near Dublin, the seat of reviews, and military evolutions. This beautiful tract, to which Lord Chesterfield gave its epithet of Phenix, is also the scite of the Vice Regal Villa, and the residence of the chief official persons
the curiosity of the strangers, who passed on, through files of beggars, to their carriage: they threw some silver among them, and hastily drew up the windows, to exclude the infected air, as they drove away.
" Pa!” said the finer gentleman of the two, “ this is breathing pestilence.”
“ And witnessing its causes in all their most shocking details: look, what a splendid scene for such a grouping ! what a noble street, and what a mendecant population!”.
As they passed through the southern suburb, the Commodore demanded of the postillion the name and purposes of an immense building, on the opposite side the water.
“Is it that forenent us, plaze your honor, acrass the Liffy? Oh! that's the Royal Barracks; and them there's the Richmond Barracks; and if your honour could see behind you, Sir, you'd see the Porto Bello barracks, and there afore you is Island bridge barracks, and the barracks in the town; and Musha,
myself does not know the half o'them. You might travel in the county Dublin mountains, rising there on your lift, from barrack to barrack, and never get sight of inn, or house, man or baste, only sogers, Sir.”
“ From this sample,” said the Commodore, addressing his companion,"we might suppose the whole country to be one great fortress; as it was in Elizabeth's day, when the population was divided into the English rebel and the
What an expense this army of occupation must prove to an impoverished country !"
“ I have, myself,” returned Mr. De Vere, “ no objection to a military government: 'tis at least a picturesque legislation: it affords something to look at, and to describe. I like military architecture, battlements and ramparts, watch-towers and bastions. The militare costume, too! the helm and hauberk, and warlike sounds
56 Of trumpets loud, and clarions. “ England is hastening fast to this,
but she will always want appropriate scenery."
“ And I trust an appropriate spirit too! Look at Turkey."
Why, yes, there is something to look at. But next to a military, I should prefer an ecclesiastical government, the despotism of some dark bigotry, some religion
66 Full of pomp and gold,
With devils to adore for deities ; Familiars and inquisitors for ministers of state, and auto-da-fes for national festivals.”
“ Spain, for example; for though your fertile imagination invent, as it may, sources of oppression and degradation to man, there are still governments in Europe to leave mere fable far behind.”
Well, after all, call governments by what name you will, they all equally leave man as they find him, feeble and selfish.”