Abbildungen der Seite

neighbouring town of Dumfries. Of wrath hazel hoop, for he was my old favourites, few I understand cooper---exclaimed,

" Reviler-resurvive, and year after year lessens the tiremelse I'll make your head saft number of those devout men who re with this rung.” On another time, gularly passed my Father's window he became exasperated at the irreveon the Sabbath morn. Mr Farley has rent termination of an epigram on a long since been numbered with the tippling blacksmith, which was attriblessed—and Jean Robson, a very sin- buted to Burns, who then resided gular and devout character, has also within sight-at Elisland. rested from her labour of instructing

On the last day, the youth of the Cameronians. She When sober man to judgment rise, taught the writer of this imperfect Go druken dog, lie still incog, account to read—the Bible, and the And dinna stir if ye be wise. famed Prophecies of Alexander Peden.

The honest Covenanter, after three She tore the leaf from the Bible which

days and three nights meditation, James, by the Grace of God, said, Defender of the Faith," and denoun: brought forth his expostulation with ced the name of Sunday as Popish, or

the mighty bard of Caledonia. It

commences thuswhat was worse, Prelatical, and caused us all to call it the Sabbath. She Robert Burns ye were nae wise died 83 years old. She used to flog her To gie to Rodds sic an advice. scholars, and exclaim,-" Thou art an It has lost all its attraction since evil one--a worker of iniquity' --while the voice of its author is mute, for who the tawse and tongue kept time and can repeat it as he did—the pithy told sharply.

preliininary remarks on the great poet's The Cameronians make few con morals--the short Cameronian cough-verts—few people are fond of inflic- the melodious trail of the tongueting on themselves willingly the pen- and the frequent intrusion of explanaance of controversial prayers, and in- . tory notes, which the uninspired could terminable sermons. There is a fal- not always distinguish from the poem ling off in the amount of the Flock. itself, all these things are departed My friend, the weaver, became a con and passed away, and the verses sleep vert from conviction. Another of the

as quietly as the dust of the poet. Two converts joined the cause in the de- other occasional converts scarcely decline of life, not without suspicion of serve notice-one of them was saved discontent, because his gifts had been from thorough conviction by the welloverlooked by the minister of the pa- timed exaltation to a neighbouring rish kirk, in a recent nomination of prencentership, and the other has reelders. He was fond of argument, turned to his seat in the kirk, since and seemed not unwilling to admit the the dark-eyed daughter of an adjacent potent auxiliaries of sword and gun Cameronian gave her hand, and it was on behalf of the cause. On one occa

a white one, to one of the chosen who sion, he grew wroth with the ready was laird of an acre of peatmoss and wit of a neighbouring peasant, on the I have not heard of any other damsel great litigated point of patronage of the covenant having caused him to and seizing the readiest weapon of his relapse.

[merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors]




CIRCUMSTANCES have lately occurred near at hand.

In fact large theatres which tempt us to say a few words for the performance of the regular more on the present brightening pros- drama have had their day in this counpects of the Acted Drama in this coun- try, and are on the point of being entry. At the time of writing our last tirely exploded. We have not space, Article, we could merely discern the nor is it necessary, to particularise the distant opening of those prospects; circumstances which have brought this but at present we have little hesitation about; with the results alone is the in saying, that what we then antici- public concerned: but so confident pated only as a bare probability, is now are we as to the nature of those re

sults, that, if it were not that the me- ments on the footing of the Porte st tier of a prophet has fallen a good Martin, and the Gaieté and Ambigu. deal into disrepute of late years, in And lastly, Astley's, with some modi. consequence of certain lamentable fications, will probably remain the failures that it has experienced in the English Franconi's ; and it cannot do great world of politics,—we should better. Supposing all these arrangeventure to stake the value of our pre ments to be completed, and we have tensions to this faculty in the little little doubt that they shortly will be world of theatricals, on the following so, we shall then have no more theatres prediction ; viz. that, in less than two than Paris has, with a metropolis years from this time, the whole thea- more than twice as large. trical arrangements of the English me But there is one other grand point tropolis will have assumed nearly the in which the English theatres must be same aspect as to number, character, assimilated to the French, before they &c. as those of Paris. But, in order can hope or deserve to enjoy the attracthat our prediction may not be subject tion and prosperity of their foreign rito the usual charge of vagueness, we vals, viz. the moderate prices of admiswill descend to particulars. We anti sion to them. Upon what pretence cipate, then, that at the time of which can the English managers demand we speak, the King's Theatre will re- higher admission than the French ? main, as heretofore, appropriated to The French theatres are in every rethe Italian opera, perhaps without bal spect as commodious as our's ; the lets, on the plan of the Salle Luvois. first-rate actors are in every departDrury-Lane Theatre will be contract- ment equal to the English; and the ed to a moderate size, and the little second and third-rate infinitely sutheatre in the Haymarket re-built as perior--their costumes and decorations a second to it, for the performance of are faultless; they are inferior to us in what is (vaguely enough) called the no one particular, but that of scenery; legitimate drama exclusively, viz. tra and they fall short of the English in gedy, comedy, and farce. These two that, only because here it has been theatres will then exactly correspond carried to an extravagant and useless with the Theatre Francois, and the pitch of expense and refinement-a second Theatre Francois (late the circumstance, too, which has arisen Odeon). Covent Garden Theatre, if it merely from a secret consciousness should not be remodelled to form a that such enormous theatres were fit third with the above two, will retain for nothing but the exhibition of paits present form, and be converted in- noramic pictures. On the French to an establishment on a similar plan stage the scenery is quite perfect to that of the Académie Royale

de Mu- enough for all the purposes of the drasique, for the encouragement of a grand ma. Indeed, for our own parts, we national opera and ballet. But of the have no doubt whatever that the abfulfilment of this part of our predic- sence of that pictury-looking glare and tion we are less confident, and less freshness which distinguishes . the anxious than of the rest ; for the Eng- scenery at our theatres is a certain and lish are neither a singing nor a danc- positive advantage. And what are the ing people ; nor do we wish them to prices of admission at the French become so.

To match the delightful theatres ? They must surely be forFeydeau we already have Mr Arnold's gotten, or not generally known here pleasant little theatre in the Strand ;- otherwise our own extravagant ones Mr Dibdin at the Surrey has been would never be tolerated. We will making near approaches to the fun, state, as near as we can remember, the frolic, burlesque, and parody of the prices of admission to the pit of the Variétés and Vaudeville ; and the little principal theatres in Paris. About Sans. Pareil Theatre in the Strand has two years ago, when Catalani had the fallen into new hands, and from the management of the Italian Opera, she list of its performers, &c. we judge rai

the price

the pit to about that it means to tread in the same half-a-crown-and there was a kind of path. The theatre in Well-close O. P. row in consequence! At the Square is also being remodelled under Académie Royale de Musique, which the direction of Mr Rae ; and this, is conducted on a much more splendid with the Cobourg Theatre on the other and expensive scale, and where the side the water, will form establish- accommodations for the audience are

much superior to those of our Italian paltry trick; and we care very little Opera, the admission is about three whose authority we are impeaching and sixpence. At the Francois, where when we state our belief, that little, Talma, Georges, Duchénois, Mars, if any of it, was written by him. He Fleury, &c. perform, it is about two may have left the sketch of an opera, shillings. At the Variétés, and the and amused himself by writing the Vaudeville, where they have Potier, songs for it; but the dialogue of the i Brunet, Joly, and Gavandan-four of Fisherman's Hut could not have come the most exquisite comic actors in Eu- from the terse and tasty pen of the aurope, and where they usually perform thor of the Honey Moon. The very three or four little pieces, breathing circumstances (for it was circumstanthe very spirit of gayety, wit, and ces, not nature, that made Mr Tobin light-heartedness—the admission is a poet) which enabled him to write about fourteen pence. But in Italy the one, made it impossible for him to the prices of adinission are still more write the other. moderate, while everything else is We are spared the trouble of entere : nearly on a par with England. At the ing into a detailed criticism on the Scala at Milan-the very first theatre Fisherman's Hut, as the bills announce in Europe, with the exception, per- that it has been withdrawn “ in comhaps, of the new one at Naples—you pliance with the wishes of the public." sit or lye at the most luxurious ease, The impudent charlutanerie of this on couches with stuffed cushions and statement can only be surpassed by reclining backs, and hear the first-rate that of the one which followed the first Italian singers, and see the very finest representation of the piece. Nearly ballet in the world (much finer than the whole of the last act was inaudible, the boasted one of the rue Richelieu), from the tumult of disapprobation by for less than eighteen pence; and at which the public expressed their the King's Theatre in the same city“ wishes” then ; and, in answer to you see the best actors perform a co- them, Mr Elliston, the next morning. medy of Goldoni's, and a farce, for announced that the piece had been half that sum! What do the English completely successful, and should be managers, -or-which is more to the repeated "every evening till further purpose--what do the English public, notice !" In fact, the managers of say to this? On this point, too, we theatres now-a-days attend to no opinconfidently anticipate, that, if the spi- ion, and understand no criticism, but rit of the one party does not bring a that which is written on empty benches : bout a change, the policy of the other That there is no gainsaying, and n.) very soon will.

tampering with ; and it works wonBut these pleasant anticipations are ders upon them accordingly. It is making us forget Mr Elliston, and the even more disgusting to us to point out furtherance that he is giving to them these things than to observe them ; but by the manner in which he has begun as it is evident that Mr Elliston has to conduct Drury-Lane Theatre. We contrived to find favour in the eyes of thought what all the daily critics' those who ought to notice them, ve cant about “public enthusiasm," and must be content to take the odium of his own about the “classical drama," doing so—but we must, at the same would coine to. The combined result time, claim the credit of it. The drama of them is as follows :-On the 20th of will never prosper while they are toleOctober we walked leisurely, into the rated, because it can never deserve to house at seven o'clock, and had an op- prosper while they are necessary. portunity of choosing our seat in any Covent-garden has presented us part of it, to see the first representa- with another fairy tale, called Arthur tion of a new piece which had been and Emmeline ; but we shall spare the studiously announced as the produc- reader any very particular account of tion of Mr Tobin; and it turned out it;- not only because it is written by to be a stupid and stupifying mixture Dryden, and therefore well known,of cant and common-place, that could but because it is very dull, though it not have been brouglit forward with were written by twenty Drydens. any chance of success at the lowest The only part of this revival which is Theatre in the metropolis. The an- worth notice, is Miss Foote's performnouncement of the piece as Mr Tobins' ance, or rather appearance, in Emme. must have been nothing less than a line. Her face, person, voice, anıl


[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

carriage might, for any thing we can refined vulgarities--those decent in-
fancy to the contrary, have been those decencies, of which Dryden was so
of the true Emmeline herself-the fond—but which nobody likes now-d-
mistress of the chivalrous and princely days, but the managers themselves,
Arthur :--but we can hardly forgive except some few of the persons who
her for loving the Arthur of Covent- frequent the upper galleries ; and they
garden Theatre, after she gained her don't understand them, and could not
sight. Indeed this character was give hear them if they did. We cannot
en to Mr C. Kemble ; but he has with- help thinking, too, Purcell's mu-
in these few days withdrawn himself sic to this piece, as well as the gor-
from the theatre, in consequence of geous scenery, partakes of the general
some misunderstanding with the pro- character of dullness. Indeed, the
prietors.-- To us the only pleasing pas- whole theatre, on the night we saw the
sage in this masque is the prattle of piece, wore a rather gloomy aspect
Emmeline to her own image in the which perhaps arose from the
glass. This is very pretty and natu- lights not being in a very good hu-
ral; but, to make up for it, the mana-
gers have retained one or two of those

of enz


[ocr errors]


[ocr errors][ocr errors]

REMARKS ON DR CHALMERS' New WORK. In our last Number we gave a short some time ago in a celebrated literary account, accompanied with extracts, of journal. * Dr Chalmers' new work on the Chris It appears then to be the opinion of tianand Civic Economy of Large Towns. this eminent person, that by an imThe celebrity of the author, and the provement in what he has denominatimportance of his subject, may perhaps ed the Christian and civic economy of justify a more extended analysis than large towns; by the assimilation of we have yet had an opportunity of at- their various districts to the moral and tempting; and we shall therefore de- religious condition of country parishes; vote a few pages of our miscellany to by the relief of the parochial clergy that purpose.

from the enormous pressure of secular This number of the reverend au duties with which they have of late thor's new work, forms but the first years been overwhelmed; by the estachapter of a larger publication, which blishment of a parochial agency, creahe meditates, and which is in the ted and controlled by the minister first instance to appear periodically. alone; by extinguishing the mischieThe present number is only introduc vous influence of the general sessions tory, and perhaps we ought to have in large cities, which has paralyzed the waited for the complete developement benevolent energy of all local opera, of the author's plans in his successive tions; by a return, in one word, in all publications, before giving any opinion populous and crowded districts, to the of their merits. But if we mistake original simplicity of the presbyterian not, the opinion of Dr Chalmers on model, which still survives in some reone of the most interesting topics mote parishes, and sustains the worth, which will be embraced by his larger the dignity, and the independence of work-we mean the moral and reli- the population, such a mighty reform gious melioration of the lower orders, might be accomplished in the habits and the practicability, under an im- and feelings of the labouring classes, as proved system, of dispensing with would animate them to unremitting parochial assessments for the support and unconquerable industry-inspire of the poor, are not new to the world ; them with horror for a state of depende and the pamphlet now before us, so far ence on public charity-restrict the as it unfolds the means, or points to evils of pauperism within the narrowthe accomplishment of this great re est possible limits of inevitable calamiformation, may fairly be considered in ty; and, by bringing every application connexion with the anonymous, but which might be made for relief within not unavowed speculations of the the scope of voluntary charity, rescue same reverend author, which appeared the people of Scotland from the core

[ocr errors]

* Edinburgh Review, No. 55.



[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]

ruption and degradation inseparable field for the exercise of voluntary cha-
from an established system of poor rity extended rather than abridged,
laws. Such was the author's confi- and darkened by the shadow of their
dence in his plan, that he suggested contiguous corruption. Mr Malthus
an immediate enactment, by which has not in substance said more of those
the parochial assessments establish- melancholy monuments of abortive
ed in large towns, should be ap- legislation; and it will be seen imme-
propriated exclusively to the relief diately, that as he and the reverend
of the mass of pauperism already ex author before us concur in their view
isting, leaving every new case to be of the causes, as well as in their gene-
provided for by voluntary contribution ral description of the character of the
alone; the assessments, as the demands disease, so they do not essentially
upon them should be reduced or ex differ in their opinion of the only prac-
tinguished by the death of the claim- ticable remedy.
ants, not to be discontinued, but to be The remedy proposed by Malthus,
applied to the erection of new parishes, and suggested, indeed, by common
and the foundation of schools—to the sense, is moral restraint, including
multiplication of the sources of moral under this general description every
and religious instruction now scan- arrangement or institution calculated
dalously deficient in the great to exalt the character and feelings of
cities; to the diffusion, in short, the lower orders, and to impart to
throughout the most obscure recesses them a provident, industrious, and in-
of society, of that benign moral influ- dependent spirit. There is no strike
ence, upon the power of which the ingor profound discovery here indeed-
reverend author mainly relies, for the nothing to dazzle the imagination, or
success of his great experiment. interest the pride of literary ambition;

Dr Chalmers, without professing there is nothing more than the impare himself a convert to the doctrines of tial developement of the ordinary Malthus, upon which ignorance has maxims of morality, by enforcing the endeavoured to cast so much odium, stern alternative which nature holds has substantially adopted his prin- out in the shape of moral restraint, or ciples, and arrived in effect at his con of suffering and shame, and the clear clusions. The utter inadequacy of exposition of the important principle, charitable institutions, however muni- that the same contempt of prudence ficent, to support the mass of pauper. which involves individuals in misery, ism, which they either find or create; will, in the issue, cover society with the indefinite expansion, and ultimate wretchedness, and sap the foundations triumph of the evil over their purest of empire. But the true dignity of and most assiduous exertions; the im- moral science consists in the universal possibility of protecting the appropri- truth of its principles, and the genuated fund from the inroads of impos- ine triumphs of the great masters of ture, without the instrumentality of wisdom have been realised, not in das the most prying and intolerable des- ring eccentricities of speculation, which potism ; and the consequent tempta- only betray an undisciplined fancy and tion presented to the increase of the crazed intellect, but by carrying acmalady, without limit, and without knowledged principles to their remote hope of relief, have been fully admit- and sublime conclusions, and by subted by him, and have led him to con- ordinating the common reason and clude, that legal establishments for the universal feelings of the species to the maintainance of the poor, besides their great ends of social happiness. It is malignant metamorphosis of the spirit easy indeed to say in general, that of charity itself into the machinery of moral restraint is the only cure for compulsion; their tendency to harden pauperism and its attendant miseries ; the hearts of the donors, and extin- but it required a mind of more than guish the gratitude of the receivers ; ordinary powers to bring home this to mar that moral refinement which is doctrine to the understandings and the insensibly diffused over all classes of hearts of enlightened men, and to rensociety by the free and cordial inter- der it something more than an insipid change of the offices of benevolence, truism, repeated without emotion, have in truth no power to realise even and admitted without any purpose of their primary object, but, after ex- political reform. This could be done hausting all their resources, leave the only by tracing to the neglect of it the

« ZurückWeiter »