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Heigho! for the Glorious Days of Old.” Dedicated by permission to the
Countess of Blessington. The words by Miss Way. The music by W. W.
MONTGOMERY. Jefferys and Co., Frith-street. This is a very pretty melody, judiciously adapted to very pleasing words ; it deserves, and we trust will obtain, great popularity. “ Fir Altar and King.” Words by Lewis Way, Esq. The music by W. H.
Cobham. Williams, Duke-street, Little Britain. It is a fact which we think cannot be denied, that almost all of our cele. brated composers are but in different judges of poetry, otherwise we should not be treated to such miserable rhymes as we are sometimes compelled to wade through. This being generally the case, we cannot fail to derive the greater gratification when we do casually meet with poetry so truly excellent as the words of this song. The music is likewise well adapted to them, being extremely bold and spirited. In the short notice to which, by the limits of our publication we are necessarily confined, it it utterly impossible for us to do justice to this superior compofition, and we therefore take our leave of it, trusting that our readers will not fail to procure it and judge for themselves.
DRURY-LANE.-At this theatre we have no novelty to récord during the past month. Mrs. Wood still continues to delight her audience in many of the characters in which the lamented Malibran was wont to appear.
Covent-GARDEN.--Sheridan Knowles has produced a new piece at this theatre, and has been again successful. It is entitled " Brian Borheim," and is founded on the early history of Ireland. We cannot say that we think it comparable to either of his former productions, nor do we imagine that it will meet with so great a degree of popularity. Its success, in our opinion, was entirely owing to the exertions of the actors, more particularly of Miss Faucit. Her conception of the character entrusted to her was exceedingly beautiful, and we never remember to have seen her to such perfection. Messrs. Vandenhoff and Pritchard both deserved the applause they received.
The Adelph.-During the past month there have been no novelties here. The “ King of the Danube," and the Peregrinations of Pickwick,” have continued to attract. Mr. Yates, as Mr. Pickwick, both looks and plays the character excellently: this is more than we can say for J. Reeve; he most certainly does not look the Sam Weller, and, in our opinion, does not appear to understend the character. Buckstone enacts Jingle with all his accus. tomed drollery, and we are sure that all our readers will agree with us when we state that he perfectly succeeded in pourtraying the character which Boz has rendered so thoroughly amusing. Dunn as Fat Joe, and Sanders as Dr. Slammer, are both entitled to our warmest praise. We need hardly add, that Mrs. Yates, Mrs. Fitzwilliam, and Mr. O'Smith, did ample justice to the parts allotted to them. On the whole the piece is likely to have a considerable run, and we sincerely advise all our readers who enjoy a hearty laugh to hetake themselves forthwith to the Adelphi Theatre.
New STRAND THEATRE.—We are happy to see that the public are beginning to appreciate the exertions of the managers of this pretty little bouse, in catering for their amusement. The amusing pieces, by Douglas Jerrold,
“Perils of Pippins," " Gallantee Showman,” and that most laughable burlesque, “Othello Travestie," have been the chiet attractions ; and when we state that the chief characters have been entrusted to the hands of Messrs. Hammond, H. Hall, Richardson, Mrs. Stirling, and Miss Daly, who have so long, and so deservedly, been public favourites, we need hardly say that these productions of the clever author have received ample justice. We cannot, however, at all approve of the plan which has been pursued with regard to “ Poacher's and Petticoats," which has likewise been produced as a novelty ; this, however, is most certainly not the case, for the same piece was prodnced, under another name at the Surrey Theatre, during the management of Elliston. To prove the accuracy of this assertion, we need only refer our readers to the piece itself, which will be found under the title of the “ Roebuck,” in Duncombe's edition of the acting plays. This is certainly not as it should be.
New City of London THEATRE, Nortonfalgate.- We have visited this very pretty little place of amusement, and were highly entertained with the performances we there witnessed. Among the company are some of our oldest favourites, viz., Williams, Wilkinson, Romer, &c. Our limits prevent us giving a more elaborate notice, but we shall do full justice to it in our next, contenting ourselves for the present with recommending all our readers to visit it, and they will not fail to derive the highest gratification.
MEETING OF SOCIETIES DURING THE MONTH.
LITERARY AND SCIENTIFIC.
WESTERN LITERARY INSTITUTION.-The lectures at this Institution continue to maintain a character deserving of the praise with which we have hitherto spoken of them. Previous to the lectures on Palestine, on which Mr. Buckingham has lately been engaged, and which, from the talent and good sense displayed in them, drew crowded audiences, Mr. Everitt (who, we believe, superintends the philosophical class at this Society) delivered an interesting lecture on the modern Discoveries and Improvements on Voltaic Electricity. Briefly narrating the early history of this science, he proceeded to detail the theory on which the many beautiful effects of voltaic action depend. He then passed on to the modern discoveries of Davy, Faraday, Ritchie, &c., and illustrated his remarks by many diagrams and experiments. By means of a powerful battery, he exhibited the combustion of various metals and other substances, producing different coloured lights, some of an intense brilliancy, and although we were rather shocked at the conclusion of the lecture, we came away, on the whole, remarkably well pleased with the substance of the lecture, the talent of the lecturer, and the resolution of
LONDON MECHANICS' Institution. Dr. Ritchie has been delighting the . members of this most excellent Institution with a series of scientific lectures during the past month. We were much gratified with one
which he delivered on the 14th, on Optical Instruments. After explaining the use and showing the manner in which those generally used were constructed, he said that in one instance science had advanced before art: he stated the advantages which would be derived from an instrument constructed so as to throw three distinct waves of light in a particular direction; they knew, he said, exactly the sort of reflection required so to do, but as yet no person had been successful in
bis endeavour to form one : he plainly showed the mistaken theory of Newton when he stated that it was impossible even to form a telescope with glass, and he mentioned that that great man had endeavoured to form one of metal, in which endeavour he had completely failed: he then entered at some length into a description of the telescope made by Dolland, of glass, and which is generally used, the discovery of which, he said, he had no doubt had been retarded by the opinion given on the subject by Newton, whose authority in the days in which he lived would be sufficient to debar any one from making the attempt.
The lectures which Mr. Cull has delivered at this Theatre on that muchdoubted science (if it may be allowed the expression), Phrenology, have been remarkably well attended, more especially by the ladies, throughout the lecture, which he delivered on Wednesday, the He evinced a perfect knowledge of the anatomy of the scull and the brain, and he showed, at least, that no application had been wanting on his part to obtain all the information requisite to convince his hearers-he said, that in those who had the misfortune to be born without the use of speech, or blind, the powers of the mind were the same as in ordinary individuals; and he instanced the case of a man, named Mitchell, who was afflicted with blindness, and who was at the same time, deaf and dumb. This he said, had been examined by the most eminent
Dr. Spurzheim among the number; all of whom gave it as their firm conviction, that he still possessed the same mind as other men, although he lacked the power of using it in the same way; and that whatever impedi. ments that then might be to the organs of sound speech, &c. it was impossible for the mind ever to be diseased.
MARYLEBONE INSTITUTION. Mr. Taylor delivered a Lecture on VOCAL Music on March 20th. He commenced by remarking on the excellence of Lindley's compositions, one of which, a glee for five voices, (the words by Cowley) was sung by Mr. T. ably assisted by some of his pupils. After Lindley, the first composer of any note was Jackson, of Exeter, who principally studied elegiac vocal music. His glee “ Go feeble Tyrant” is a fine specimen of his powers. It was given by Mr. T. and his pupils with good effect. Next came John Stafford Šmith, whose celebrated effort “ Bless fair of Zion” (words by Milton) obtained great applause.
Dr. Cooke, many years organist of Westminster Abbey, was also a cele. brated composer ; the lecturer instanced his glee " Hark the lark at Heaven's gate sings. Dr. Callcott was next to be mentioned. This great man applied himself with the most intense ardour to the study of music, allowing not more than six or seven hours for his meals and sleep. He obtained the three grand prizes given by the Catch Club in 1785.
One of his most beautiful madrigals “ Oh ! 'snatch me swift from these tempestuous scenes" was delightfully sung by Mr. Taylor and the gentlemen who assisted him.
After concluding this notice of Dr. Calcott, Mr. T. proceeded to comment on the productions of various other vocal composers, and to afford the audience an opportunity of judging of their merits, many of their compositions were sung by Mr. T. and his friends. Amongst them were “Ye spotted Snakes,” Stevens. “ Come, bounteous Maid,” Reginald Spofforth.“ By Celia's harbour,' Horsley, &c. In conclusion, the lecturer animadverted strongly on the exclusion of English glees and madrigals, which he characterised as a perversion of taste unparalleled in any art or country.
In any part of our kingdom, English, Irish, Scotch, or Welsh, there is not a heart but beats responsive to its national music ; and it does appear strange that fashion should exert such influence over our minds as to make the head belie the heart,
PAGE AND SONS, PRINTERS, BLACKFRIARS ROAD,
New London Magazine.
ON NATURAL MAGIC.
Continued from page 160.
Since the invention of Printing, knowledge of all kinds has become so diffused, that an attempt to palm an imposition of a miraculous character upon any class of society, would now be immediately detected and defeated; but before that glorious discovery, books (wichh were then in MS.) and other sources whence information may be derived, were open only to the few who could afford to part with fortunes to possess them; and as the axiom “ Knowledge is Power” has ever been recognised as a true one, we are not surprised to find that the “ learned few” should have endeavoured by its aid to assume a dominion over the minds of the ignorant multitude which they could not obtain by other means.
For the purpose of working upon the fears, ignorance, and superstition of the early ages, figures were made to descend apparently from Heaven, as messengers from the Gods ; inanimate objects were heard uttering articulate sounds; meteors, and fiery exhalations were often produced in the atmosphere; and the most horrid forms were presented to feed the gaze of the terrified multitude. Very few of these ancient illusions have been handed down to us, and those few which have escaped the oblivion to which the secrecy of their production would seem to have consigned them, are so tinged with the superstition of the ages in which they were contrived, and by consequence so imperfectly described, that our attempted solutions can at the best but be considered mere hypotheses. Yet we may shew by actual experiment some of the most wonderful of these deceptions, and if we admit strong analogical reasoning, no doubt can be entertained that the ancients used similar means to produce them that we employ:
It be urged au contraire that the moderns adopt principles to produce such appearances with which the ancient philosophers were unacquainted, but it is well known that many discoveries of modern times are merely the re-production of those known to the earlier ages, but lost amid the wreck of empires, and con
NO. VI.-VOL. I.
sequent prostration of learning and philosophy. When we find Archimedes and the early philosophers intimately acquainted with the powers of lenses and mirrors, it requires no unwarrantable stretch of the imagination to suppose them to have been capable of producing by means of these instruments some of the many curious phenomena (closely connected with the effects we know they produced), in which the practice of modern science is so prolific.
In the following pages we shall not attempt to explain any particular illusions which have been produced for the purpose of intimidation in the dark ages ; but, by the explanation of many curious appearances,
may be exhibited by the aid of Chemistry, Optics, &c., we shall endeavour to prove how easily natural phenomena might be mistaken by an ignorant and superstitious mind, for appearances supernatural, and thence argue generally that many apparently miraculous occurrences which have been related,
1, may be refered to natural causes. Chemistry and Electricity, which are closely connected, present
“ A world of wonders, where creation seems
No more the works of nature, but her dreams." They have been in active operation in the great laboratory of nature from the earliest times; and few phenomena are more surprizing than those referable to these sciences. A very remarkable account of some effects produced by the prevalence of electricity in the atmosphere, in cold and dry weather, now occurs to us. It is related by Æpinus, in a letter to Dr. Guthrie, and it appears that during a very severe frost in Russia, this philosopher paid a visit to Prince Orloff, whom he found at his toilet, and he observed that every time his valet drew the comb through his hair, a strong cracking noise followed ; he requested permission to darken the room, and when this was accomplished, sparks were to be seen plentifully following the hand of the valet, while the Prince was so electrified, that the least friction produced strong sparks from his hands and face. A few days after, he witnessed a still more striking effect of the electric state of the Russian atmosphere. The Grand Duke of Russia sent for him one evening in the twilight, and told him, that having briskly drawn a flannel cover from off a green damask chair in his bed chamber, he was astonished at the appearance
of a strong bright flame that followed, but considering it as an electrical appearance, he had tried to produce a similar illumination on different pieces of furniture, and he could then she w M. Æpinus a very beautiful and surprising experiment. His Highness accordingly threw himself on the bed, which was covered with a damask quilt laced with gold, and rubbing this with his hands in all directions, the young Prince, who had then just attained his twelfth year, appeared swimming in fire, as at every stroke, flames arose around him, darted to the gold laced border, ran along it, thence to the other ornaments of the bed, and even spread to the top. To the Prince and others who were aware of