« PreviousContinue »
lowest pitch of contented poverty, and a hen-recked husband.
Vernon's progress in the new lady's affections were rapid, and her relations began to look forward to settlements, informing him it was high time to turn off the woman he kept.
« Woman I kept!" repeated he sternly, but he added, that she should be written to.-" That is not sufficient for us,” said the careful friends; we must see her fairly disinissed, and as it will be a troublesome affair to you, we will take it upon ourselves, if you will only write her a note to signify that what we do is according to your will.
Your uncle John has settled 201. per annuin on her.”_“I thank him," said Vernon, and in a hand scarce legible wrote, that he added twenty to it. But when Miss Clan's relations euquired who was to go with them on the part of Vernon, no executioner was ever found with more difficulty.--Herod declined it because he was unacquainted with her, John absolutely refused, and young Hamilton, an Officer attached to Vernon, begged to be excused.--Herod, seeing the reluctance, proposed their both going, promising to attend them himself, thus succeeded in forming a troop:-Verñon wrote a formal note, assuring her she might rely on her annuity being punctually paid. The account of her reception will best be seen in the younger uncle John's letter to Vernon.
66 Dear James, “ Why was I prevailed on to act in this affair, which leaves me sick at heart ? - Thirty years in the army never produced me so cruel a task.-How painful was my approach to your little charming dwelling!--From the parlour window we saw Fanny at breakfast in the garden, with Polly and little James, and her maid Patty :--she received our poignant news with the calm fortitude of a truly virtuous woman; her eyes indeed lost their lustre, and her colour sunk, but out of civility she smiled on us, and you might have thought she said as she smiled, It is only. I that am wounded. [To be continued.]
INVENTIONS AND DISCOVERIES.
(Continued from page 152.) slightest sensation ; she shall wash her arms with inflammable phosphorus, and then with a red-hot fire-shovel, from which the spectators shall see come out sparkles with the greatest astonishment ; she shall wash her hands and feet into eighteen or twenty pounds of melted-lead, and put a part into her mouth with her hands :' and a great many more wonderful experiences,' with a sight of which we were ourselves gratified at the last annual festival held in Smithfied, and long celebrated under the name of Bartholomew fair.
This wonderful creature,' exhibited by Mr. J. Wery, did certainly wash her hands in boiling oil, and then suffered a quafortis to be poured over them ; but below the oil, we presume, there was a quantity of water, the air from which, when heated, pouring itself through the supernatant oil, gave it the appearance of boiling, when in fact its temperature did not exceed a hundred degrees of Fahrenheit; and when the hands were well coated with oil, there was no danger from the aquafortis. She had also a ladle of melted lead, out of which she appeared to take a little with a spoon and pour into her mouth, which was returned in the shape of a solid piece of lead. In pretending to dip the spoon into the lead, which being on an elevated stage could not be seen by the spectators, a small quantity of quicksilver was. dexterously conveyed into it, and this she swallowed, the solid piece of lead being previously placed in the mouth. Whether the heel of this wonderful creature was horny' or not, we did not examine ; but the rapidity with which she placed it on and removed it from a bar of hot iron, allowed very little time, we should suppose, to singe the skin of the most delicate foot. She admitted, however, that it was coated with a certain composition.
The exhibition of cups and balls is of great antiquity, and depends on manual dexterity: Tumbling, balancing, rope-dancing, catching balls, rolling jars along the body, horsemanship, are arts acquired by long and severe practice. Swallowing stones and inserting a sword-blade into the stomach could only be accoma plished by long and painful iteration, and are disgusting to behold. People have exhibited themselves who would suffer large stones to be broken on their breast with a hammer, or iron to be forged on an anvil placed upon it-but these are mere tricks-it is not even necessary, to put the body into a position so as to form an arch-let the anvil be large enough and the hammer small, and the stroke willscarcely be felt; thusananvil of 200 pounds will reşist the stroke of a hammer of 2 pounds weilded with the force of
100pounds, or of 4 pounds with the impetus of 50 pounds, (action and reaction being equal and reciprocal,) without the body sustaining any injury.
Feats of rope-dancing and horsemanship, were brought from the east, that is to say, from Egypt to Constantinople ; from Turkey they travelled to Rome, from Rome to Paris, and thence spread over all Europe. To train horses, dogs, pigs, and other animals to exhibit a degree of intelligence approaching to that with which human beings are endowed, must require the exercise of extraordinary cruelty, mixed perhaps with extraordinary kindness. We remember a fellow who taught turkies to dance by making them walk across plates of hot iron. The Romans are said to have taught an elephant to dance on the slack-rope stretched across the theatre ; and such was the confidence placed in its dexterity, that a person mounted him when he performed the feat.
The marionettes, or puppet-shows, the various kinds of automata, the androides, the ombres chinoises, are ingenious mechan- : ical contrivances which can hardly be ranked among the appendages of jugglers. We have the testimony of both Plato and Aristotle that Dædalus was said to have made statues which had not only a locomotive power, but which it was necessary to tie down to prevent them from running away! and Aristotle describes a wooden Venus made by him to which motion was communicated by quicksilver,--like a Chinese or a Dutch toy. When the astonished Greeks beheld them, he says, they might cry out
they will soon walk,'—the next generation affirmed that they really did walk; and posterity, adding a little more, asserted they would have run away had they not been bound. The better way would have been to deny them altogether,
Speaking figures are supposed to be as ancient as the oracles of Egypt and Greece. At what later period they were renewed and fell into the hands of lay jugglers is not exactly known. Professor Beckmann observes that Reitz, in his annotations to Lucian, mentions one Thomas Irson, an Englishman, who astonished King Charles 11. and his whole court with a speaking figure, till one of the pages discovered a Popish priest in the adjoining chamber answering the questions that were whispered into the ear of the wooden head, through a pipe directly opposite to it.
As early as the year 1500, Aetius pretended to cure the gout and convulsions by the magnet, and Paracelsus the tooth-ache. In the fifteenth century, Marcellus cured the tooth-ache with it, and Carmillus in the sixteenth century. Baptista Porta recommended it for the head-ache and Kircher says it was worn about the neck as a preventive against convulsions and affections of the nerves : about the end of the seventeenth century, magnetic tooth-picks and ear-picks were fashionable preventives against pains in the teeth, eyes, and ears. Lastly cuine the iinpudent quacks, Mesmer and Maignaduc, who, haviug filled their coffers by animal magnetism, retired, laughing at the credulity of their besotted followers.
(To be continued.)
A REMARKABLE STORY OF ONE OF THE
It happened that this Prince was riding on one of his elephants in the province of Cashemire, when suddenly the beast grew raving mad: it seems that it is the nature of these animals, when they are stung with lust at certain times of the year, to fall into a kind of phrenzy ; which if not timely obviated, will last forty days. He whose office it was to manage the elephant, perceiving that the King's life was in danger through the furious humour of the beast, had not time to say any more to the king, but only these words: “There is but this one way to save your life, that I sacrifice mine to the elephant, which I freely do, as an unfeigned testimony of my loyalty." With that he cast himself at the elephant's feet, which immediately took him up with his trunk and killed him, and so became pacified. The King, astonished at so surprising an action, and to testify his gratitude for so unparalelled a fidelity, sent for this man's sons, and having asked them whether they could have resolution enough to follow their father's example in such a case,-to which they all answering that his Majesty might see immediately, if he pleased but to give the word ; the king caused rich vests to be bestowed on every one of them, with other presents, and made them the chief masters of his elephants throughout the empire ; and in token of thankfulness to Heaven for so signal a preservation, the Emperor gave royal and magnificent alms to all the poor in the province, vowing never to ride again on an elephant, since it had cost him the life o? one of his most faithful servants.
67 Many Complaints having been made that the A MUSING
CHRONICLE was irregularly delivered :-we can only say, that it is uniformly published every Thursday Morning ; and that though the profit to the Seller be small, every reasonable accommodation is afforded at the Office, No. 6, GILBERT's PASSAGE, PORTUGAL STREET.
Macpherson, Prinler, Russell Court, Covent Garden.
TO THE RIGHT HON. THE LORD MAYOR. My LORD.--Your Lordship, in a late address on the miseries of the times, recommended the use of Fire Balls, as they were formerly made in Wales ; but as not one person in a thousand know how to prepare them, from the same motives which induced me to give a copy of Mr. Buxton's Speech in my last Nuinber, I now insert a copy, verbatim, from a treatise published in 1715, being a century back; and for the loan of which I am indebted to the Gentleman whose writings, under the title of “ THE NARRATOR," have appeared in this Work. I remain, &c.
M. C, S.
A Wood Cut and also an Engraving will appear in our next Number.
There is not among the many complaints in this city, any one that is juster, or more common, than that of the great price of Coals in the winter; by which means it sometimes has happened, that many poor people have been nigh starved to death, and persons
of moderate substance considerably inconvenienced. We believe we shall do an universal good work, if we point. out some means for an ease to this burthen. And the rather, since there is not a family in London, but may, with no further trouble than the labour of a servant, continually furnish themselves with large coal for firing, as useful as Scotch-coal, at a third part of the charge they are now at for common sea-coal.
The expence which is necessary for beginning this work, iş very inconsiderable in comparison with the benefit, and is but for
After which the materials are serviceable for ever, and require no additional charges. But people who cannot well afford to lay out the money, however so litile, they may without it perform all the labour by hand, and that with much ease, in regard they consume a less quantity of fuel.
But they who are able and willing to be at the above-meant expence, must give orders to some iron-millmaker, to furnish
Macpherson, Printer, Russell Court, Covent Garden.