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NORTH.

NORTU. All the virtuous Catholics regard him as their friend; but O'Connell hates and fears him, and sought to sacrifice the character of the stainless sage on the altar of his unfeeling ambition.

SHEPHERD. Ambition's no the word.

It is not. Honest Lord Althorp good-naturedly joined the conspiracy against the venerable patriarch, and candidly instigated a reformed House of Commons to drive him with disgrace from the Bench. Mainly by his influence-for he is all in all in that bigh-minded assembly-a vote was passed for that useful, honourable, and upright purpose ; and candid, con. ciliating, conscientious, high-minded, and warm-hearted, true English nobleman, Lord Althorp, looked at the House with a blandness of physiogDomy which she must have been either more or less than human to resist, and received from her in return one of her most subduing and subservient smiles. But in this instance, his Lordship bad prevailed over the virtue of the House at what is called a weak moment-for a few nights after she rejected his addresses, and left him in the lurch, for one who was not troubling his head about her the self-same aged gentleman whom she had meditated to unwig-verging on three-score and ten-even Baron Smith-but though he treated her courteously, he declined having any thing to do with her-so she again returned to the embraces of the grazier.

That was far waur than his equivocation about stamps. The ither was a trifle.

SHEPHERD.

NORTH.

SHEPHERD.

NORTH.

His behaviour, and that of all his colleagues, to Mr Sheil-a man of genius and virtue—all the world knows, was such as in private life would have shut against them the doors of all gentlemen's houses, even in Coventry. Still bonest Lord Althorp not only held up his head and shewed his face, but became, on that pitiable exposure, more candid than ever, and while he apologized, gloried in his gossip. He was in reality, though not aware of it, about as dignified a personage, and in as dignified a predicament, as a dowager in a small tea-drinking town, convicted, on her own reluctant confession, of having circulated a fama clamosa against a virgin spinstress, of being nearly nine months gone with child.

What'n a similie! It was rash in the dowager to say nine months, for had she said sax, the calumniated lassie would hae had to wait three afore she cu'd in ony way get a safe delivery–either o' the charge or the child. Wba was she ? and what ca’ they the sma' tea-drinking toun ?

You know, Mr Hogg, that the sin charged against Mr Sheil was that of having thought one way and spoken another, on a question deeply affecting Ireland—the Coercion Bill. In Parliament he had been, as was to be expected, one of the most eloquent and indignant denouncers of the tyrannica), and unconstitutional, and insulting, and injurious, and unnecessary injustice of that measure.

Injurious injustice! Is that correck ?

Quite correct in grammar. Out of the House he was accused of having declared it to be all right, and that the state of Ireland demanded it. So shocked and horrified was the moral sense of honest Lord Althorp by the idea of such ultra. Irish violation of all honour and all truth, that he lost bis head, and avowed bis inability to conceive a punishment adequate to such an unheard-of crime. In the event of the conviction of the accused, he hinted, that if the House was not found too hot for him, he would probably be found too hot for the House. Mr Sheil seemed standing on the

SHEPHERD.

NORTH

brink of expulsion--and it was supposed that he meditated going out with his evil conscience as an unsettled settler to Van Diemen's Land.

SHEPHERD,

Was Mr Sheil married ?

NORTH.

SHEPHERD.

NORTH.

Yes—not long before, to a very beautiful and accomplished woman, and that aggravated the hardship of his case—for to a bachelor a trip even to Botany Bay is a mere amusement.

I forget the result o' the enquiry-for I never recolleck ony thing noo I read o', unless it has bad the gude luck to happen centuries ago.

Lord Althorp prayed Mr Sheil might have a safe deliverance

O the hypocrite! Pretendin' that he didna credit a calumny o' his ain creatin', and invokin' heaven to shew that he was a leear, in an eye-upturning prayer!

You misunderstand me-he did not create the calumny, my dear James.

SHEPHERD.

NORTH

SHEPHERD,

Then wha did?

NORTH.

Nobody cares. The candid Chancellor of the Exchequer persisted in believing it to the last-clung to it after it stank like a dug-up cat-sulkily retracted his belief-said something for which Mr Sheil would have shot him but for the Sergeant-at-Arms-looked big and small-bullied-explain. ed-explained again-apologized—begged pardon-and expressed what a relief it was to him to see Mr Sheil honourably exculpated and acquitted of a charge, of which, had he been guilty, his Lordship, laying his hand on his heart, and looking as impressively as nature would allow, was free to confess that he must have been lost for ever to that society-to that country of which he was now one of the brightest ornaments-brighter than ever, because of the passing away of the black cloud that had threatened to obscure or strangle its lustre.

I'll be hanged if Lord Althropp ever said ony sic word.

SHEPHERD.

NORTH

James ?

SHEPHERD.

Sic words never flowed frae a mouth like yon. But you've, nae doot, gien the sense, and made him speak as if he was wordy—which he never will be-o'sittin', and noo and then venturin' on a bit easy remark, at the Noctes.

NORTH.

SHEPHERD.

Now, my dear James, mark-for I know you are no quid nunc-and read little about what is passing in London-else had I not spoken a single syllable of politics in the still air of this beautiful arbour-Honest Lord Althorp has been convicted—and has confessed it-of the same crime charged against Mr Sheil-with circumstances of aggravation, that were I to tell you of them, would, to your simple mind, be incredible.

My mind, sir, 's at ance simple and credulous- I can believe ony thinga’ the gude that tongue o' man cou'd tell o' a Tory, and a' the ill that the tongue o' deevil cou'd tell o' Whig—sae there's nae occasion to dwell on the incredible circumstances o' aggravation—they are a' true as gospel.

Mr Sheil, I said, James, is a man of genius-a fine-eyed, fine-souled son of Erin. Had he been a hypocrite-a traitor-I would have bitterly lamented it, and blushed for the form I wore.

You would hae had nae need to do that, even though Mr Sheil had been a black sheep. Considerin' your time o’life, the form ye wear's verra im

NORTH.

SHEPHERD.

NORTH.

posin’; as for your countenance it is comely—and I'm no surprised Mrs Gentle considers you a captivatin' cretur.

We must not too coldly scan even the principles of patriotism. They may be such, carried to excess, or flying off oblique, as we cannot approve, even though we can comprehend them within our sympathies; but to fall away from them in faintness of heart is pitiable-to desert them is shameful—to fight openly against them execrable—but insidiously to betray them

SHEPHERD.

Is damnable-O' that honest Lord Althropp thocht guilty Mr Sheil-but you dinna

say

that he himsell has committed that verra sin ?

NORTH.

He could not commit that very sin–for he is not Mr Sheil. But he committed it as far as nature would suffer Lord Althorp. That Coercion-Bill, which he thought ought not to be passed, he consented to make pass through Parliament !

SHEPHERD.

That seems the converse o' the charge against Mr Sheil- and if I ken the meanin' o'the word conscience, confoun’ me gin' it's no a thoosan' times

waur.

NORTH.

A million times worse.

SHEPHERD.

I'm sorry for him—in what far-away hole, puir fallow, can he be noo hidin' his head ? I howp in baith senses that he's resigned.

He has ousted Earl Grey

NORTH.

SHEPHERD.

What ?

NORTH.

SHEPHERD.

And honest Lord Althorp is the most popular man in England.

Then England may sink intil the bottom o' the Red Sea. Na--she maunna do that, for she wud drag Scotland alang wi' her--and then fareweell to the Forest!

NORTH.

SHEPHERD.

NORTH.

You can have no notion, James, of the despicable intrigue by which honest Lord Althorp ousted the Premier.

SHEPHERD.
He maun be desperate angry.

NORTH.
He does not appear so, but his son and son-in-law have resigned.

Which was right, for even a Whig, setting selfish considerations aside, doesna like to hae advantage ta’en o his ain father. Hoo O'Connell, frae what ye hae hinted, maun be crawin'!

Lord Althorp secretly commissioned Mr Secretary Littleton to sound, consult, conciliate, and truckle to the Agitator. O'Connell and Littleton had a blow-up, and abused each other like pickpockets. The cat was let out of the bag, and began not only to mew, but to hiss and fuff and prepare her paws

for serious scratching—there was a regular row in the Lower House, and a very irregular one in the Upper. Earl Grey declared his entire ignorance of the shameful and slavish submission of honest Lord Althorp to the Big Beggarman—and, would you believe it, James, a question has arisen, and has been debated with much acrimony, whether or not, by such proceedings, the Premier was betrayed ?

He shou'd just hae gaen to his Majesty, and said, “ Sire ! Lord Althropp is a fule, or warse, and has been playing jookery.paukery wi' that chiel O'Connell, through ane o' your Majesty's understrappers, and the twa thegither hae brocht the Ministry intil a mess. I maist respectfully ask your

SHEPHERD

Majesty what your Majesty wou'd wush me to do? Here are the Seals.” His Majesty wou'd immediately hae said, “Yearl! kick Lord Althropp to the back-o'-beyond-carry ye on the Coercion-Bill—for it's necessary to the pacification o' Ireland-put the Seals in your pocket, alloo me to ring the bell for your cotch-and write me in the mornin' hoo things are lookin' in the Upper House." I ken that's what I wad hae dune mysell had I been King—and frae a' I hae heard o' his Majesty sin' he sat on the throne, and when he walked the quarter-deck, I'm as fairly convinced that he would hae supported Yearl Grey, as that, supposing me a proprietor o' laun', I wad hae discharged on the spat ony servant o' mine, whether lad or lass, that had been detected plottin' again' my head greave, which would, in fack, hae been plottin' again' his master, and therefore deserved to be punished by dismissal-whether wi' wages and board-wages up to the Term or no, wad hae been a question to be reserved for future consideration-but assuredly, without a character. (Starting up). Mercy on us, whare's Tickler ?

NORTH.

Who?

SHEPHERD.

Didna Mr Tickler come oot wi' ye frae Embro ?

NORTH.

Mr Tickler ? I have not seen him for some months. There is a cool. ness between us, but it will wear off-and

SHEPHERD. Only look at him, sir, only look at him-yonner he's helpin' Mysie to let out the kye !—That's a bat.

NORTH.

The gloaming-what a beautiful word-gives a magical character to the stillness of the Forest—and the few trees seem as if they were standing there in enchantment-human beings reconciled to the thrall of vegetable life--and breathing the dewy air through leaves, whose delicate fibres thrill to the core of their quiet hearts. One star! I ought to know where to find the Crescent. Not so bad a practical astronomer-for there is the Huntress of the silver bow, just where I expected her-and in all that region of heaven there is not a cloud.

SHEPHERD.

Let's in to sooper. This is Saturday night-and you'll read the family a chapter. Lean on ma arm, or rather let me lean on yours, for you're the younger man o' the twa-no in years—but in constitution—and you'll be famous in history as the modern Methusalem,

[They enter the house.

Printed by Ballantyne and Company, Paul's Work, Edinburgh,

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FRAGMENTS FROM THE HISTORY OF John BULL. CHAPs. VIII. IX. X., 289 The CRUISE OF THE MIDGE. CHAP. VII.,

300 EDMUND BURKE. Conclusion,)

322 My Cousin NICHOLAS. CHAPs. XI. AND XII.,

341 Life of Mrs SIDDONS. By Thomas CAMPBELL. PART II., THE INFLUENCE OF THE PRESS,

373 NARRATIVE OF A Visit, in 1823, TO THE SEAT OF WAR IN GREECE. BY JAMES HAMILTON BROWNF, Esq.,

392 EDMUND SPENSER. Part II.,

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EDINBURGH:

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AND T. CADELL, STRAND, LONDON.

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SOLD ALSO BY ALL THE BOOKSELLERS OF THE UNITED KINGDOM.

PRINTED BY BALLANTYNB AND CO. EDINBURGH.

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