OXFORD LENT TERM begins.
St. Hilary. Sts. Felix. Sts. Isaias and Sabbas. St. Barbasceminus, &c.
St. Felix of Nola, an excorcist, and afterwards a priest, was, according to Butler and Ribadeneira, a great miraculist. He lived under Decius, in 250; being fettered and dungeoned in a cell, covered with potsherds and broken glass, a resplendent angel, seen by the saint alone, because to him only was he sent, freed him of his chains and guided him to a mountain, where bishop Maximus, aged and frozen, lay for dead, whom Felix recovered by praying; for, straightway, he saw a bramble bear a bunch of grapes, with the juice whereof he recovered the bishop, and taking him on his back carried him home to his diocese. Being pursued by pagans, he fled to some ruins and crept through a hole in the wall, which spiders closed with their webs before the pagans got up to it, and there lay for six months miraculously supported. According to the Legend, his body, for ages after his death, distilled a liquor that cured diseases.
In January, 1784, died suddenly in Macclesfield-street, Soho, aged 79, Sam. Crisp, esq., a relation of the celebrated sir Nicholas Crisp. There was a remarkable singularity in the character of this gentleman. He was a bachelor, had been formerly a broker in 'Change-alley, and many years since had retired from business, with an easy competency. His daily amusement, for fourteen years before, was going from London to Greenwich, and immediately returning from thence, in the stage; for which he paid regularly £27 a year. He was a good-humoured, obliging, and facetious companion, always paying a particular attention, and a profusion of compliments, to the ladies, especially to those who were agreeable. He was perpetually projecting some little schemes for the benefit of the public, or, to use his own favourite maxim, pro bono publico; he was the institutor of the Lactarium in St. George's Fields, and selected the Latin mottoes for the facetious Mrs. Henniver, who got a little fortune there. He projected the mile and half stones round London; and teased the printers of newspapers into the plan of letter-boxes. He was remarkably humane and benevolent, and, without the least ostentation, performed many generous and charitable actions, which would have dignified a more ample fortune.
THE WINTER ROBIN.
A suppliant to your window comes,
Who trusts your faith, and fears no guile:
He claims admittance for your crumbs,
And reads his passport in your smile.
For cold and cheerless is the day,
And he has sought the hedges round;
No berry hangs upon the spray,
Nor worm, nor ant-egg, can be found.
Secure his suit will be preferred,
No fears his slender feet deter;
For sacred is the household bird
That wears the scarlet stomacher.