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Is much beholden. He hath made the sport
For your whole court these eight years, on my knowledge. “ Duke. His name? “ Count. Lazarillo. “ Duke. I heard of him this morning. Which is he?
“Count. A side to LAZ.] Lazarillo, pluck up thy spirits. Thy fortunes are now rising. The Duke calls for thee, and thou shalt be acquainted with him.
“ Laz. He's going away, and I must of necessity stay here upon business.
“ Count. 'Tis all one ; thou shalt know him first.
" Laz. Stay a little. If he should offer to take me with him, and by that means I should lose that I seek for ! But if he should, I will not go with him.
“ Count. Lazarillo, the Duke stays. Wilt thou lose this opportunity?
“ Laz. How must I speak to him ?
“ Count. 'Twas well thought of. You must not talk to him as you do to an ordinary man, honest plain sense ; but you must wind about him. For example, if he should ask you what o'clock it is, you must not say, “If it please your Grace, 'tis nine;' but thus—' Thrice three o'clock, so please my Sovereign ;' or thus
'Look how many Muses there doth dwell
And just so many strokes the clock hath struck ; '-) and so forth. And you must now and then enter into a description.
“ Laz. I hope I shall do it.
“Count. Come !-May it please your Grace to take note of a gentleman, well scen, deeply read, and thoroughly grounded, in the hidden knowledge of all sallets and pot-herbs whatsoever ?
“ Duke. I shall desire to know him more inwardly. “ Laz. I kiss the ox-hide of your Grace's foot.
“ Count. [Aside to LAZ.] Very well. Will your Grace question him a little ? “ Duke. How old are you? Laz. Full eight-and-twenty several almanacs
Have been compiléd, all for several years,
Run out his yearly course, since
Duke. You are eight-and-twenty years old ? What time of the day do you hold it to be? Laz. About the time that mortals whet their knives
On thresholds, on their shoe-soles, and on stairs.
Hath much to do now, now the tables all-
[NOTE.—Keats was much pleased with this paper, and, being with Leigh Hunt at the time he was writing it, contributed one or two of the passages. (See the “Autobiography," chap. XVI.) One would like to know which were Keats's “bits.” But the whole article is full of the finest and most vivid word-painting, the most picturesque and concentrated description, and the finest humour. We feel the heat upon our faces as we read, and see the golden glow of the sunlight.-E. O.)
COACHES AND THEIR HORSES.
CCORDING to the opinion commonly entertained re
specting an author's want of ready money, it may be
allowed us to say that we retain from childhood a considerable notion of " a ride in a coach." Nor do we hesitate to confess, that by coach we especially mean a hired one, from the equivocal rank of the post-chaise down to that despised old castaway, the hackney.
It is true that the carriage, as it is indifferently called (as if nothing less genteel could carry any one), is a more decided thing than the chaise; it may be swifter even than the mail, leaves the stage at a still greater distance in every respect, and (forgetting what it may come to itself) darts by the poor old lumbering hackney with immcasurable contempt. It rolls with a prouder ease than any other vehicle. It is full of cushions and comfort: elegantly coloured inside and out; rich, yet neat ; light and rapid, yet substantial. The horses seem proud to draw it. The fat and fair-wigged coachman “lends his sounding lash,” his arm only in action, and that little, his body well-set with its own weight. The footman, in the pride of his nonchalance, holding by the straps behind, and glancing down sideways betwixt his cocked-hat and neckcloth, stands swinging from east to west upon his springy toes. The horses rush along amidst their glancing harness. Spotted dogs leap about them, barking with a princely superfluity of noise. The hammercloth trembles
through all its fringe. The paint flashes in the sun. We, con. temptuous of everything less convenient, bow backwards and forwards with a certain indifferent air of gentility infinitely predominant. Suddenly, with a happy mixture of turbulence and truth, the carriage dashes up by the curb-stone to the very point desired, and stops with a lordly wilfulness of decision. The coachman looks as if nothing had happened. The footman is down in an instant; the knocker reverberates into the farthest corner of the house ; doors, both carriage and house, are open. We descend, casting a matter-of-course eye at the by-standers ; and the moment we touch the pavement, the vehicle, as if conscious of what it has carried, and relieved from the weight of our importance, recovers from its sidelong inclination with a jerk, tossing and panting, as it were, for very breath, like the proud heads of the horses.
All this, it must be owned, is very pretty; but it is also gouty and superfluous. It is too convenient, too exacting, too exclusive. We must get too much for it, and lose too much by it. Its plenty, as Ovid says, makes us poor. We neither have it in the republic of letters, nor would desire it in any less Jacobinical state. Horses, as many as you please, provided men have enough to eat; hired coaches, a reasonable number ; but health and good-humour at all events.
Gigs and curricles are things less objectionable, because they cannot be so relied upon as substitutes for exercise. Our taste in them, we must confess, is not genuine. How shall we own it? We like to be driven, instead of drive ; to read or look about us, instead of keeping watch on a horse's head. We have no relish even for vehicles of this description, that are not sase. Danger is a good thing for giving a fillip to a man's ideas; but even danger, to us, must come recommended by something useful. We have no ambition to have TANDEM written on our tombstone.
The prettiest of these vehicles is undoubtedly the curricle, which is also the safest. There is something worth looking at in the pair of horses, with that sparkling pole of steel laid across them. It is like a bar of music, comprising their harmonious course. But, to us, even gigs are but a sort of unsuccessful run at gentility. The driver, to all intents and purposes, had better be on the horse. Horseback is the noblest way of being carried in the world. It is cheaper than any other constant mode of riding, it is common to all ranks, and it is manly, graceful, and healthy. The handsomest mixture of danger with dignity, in the shape of a carriage, was the tall phaeton, with its yellow wings. We remember looking up to it with respect in our childhood-partly for its own loftiness, partly for its name, and partly, perhaps, for the figure it makes in the prints to novels of that period. The most gallant figure which mere modern driving ever cut was in the person of a late Duke of Hamilton, of whom
а we have read or heard somewhere, that he used to dash round the streets of Rome, with his horses panting and his hounds barking about his phaeton, to the equal fright and admiration of the Masters of the World, who were accustomed to witness nothing higher than a lumbering old coach or a cardinal on a mule.
A post-chaise involves the idea of travelling, which, in the company of those we love, is home in motion. The smooth running along the road, the fresh air, the variety of scene, the leafy roads, the bursting prospects, the clatter through a town, the gaping gaze of a village, the hearty appetite, the leisure (your chaise waiting only upon your own movements), even the little contradictions to home-comfort, and the expedients upon which they set us, all put the animal spirits at work, and throw a novelty over the road of life. If anything could grind us young again, it would be the wheels of a post-chaise. The only monotonous sight is the perpetual up-and-down movement of the postilion, who, we wish exceedingly, could take a chair. His occasional retreat to the bar, which occupies the place of a box, and his affecting to sit upon it, only reminds us of its exquisite want of accommodation. But some have given the bar, lately, a surreptitious squeeze in the middle, and flattened it a little into something obliquely resembling an inconvenient seat.