vol II date / index
St. Irenæus, Bp. of Lyons, A.D. 202. St. Leo II., Pope A.D. 683. Sts. Plutarch and others, Martyrs, about A.D. 202. Sts. Potamiana and Basilides, Martyrs.
1797. George Keate, F. R. S., died, aged sixty-seven. He was born at Trowbridge in Wilts, educated at Kingston school, called to the bar, abandoned the profession of the law, amused himself with his pen, and wrote several works. His chief production is the account of "Capt. Wilson's voyage to the Pelew Islands;" his "Sketches from Nature," written in the manner of Sterne, are pleasing and popular.
Blue Cornflower. Centaurea Cyanus.
Dedicated to St. Irenæus.
A hot day.
Now the rosy- (and lazy-) fingered Aurora, issuing from her saffron house, calls up the moist vapours to surround her, and goes veiled with them as long as she can; till Phœbus, coming forth in his power, looks every thing out of the sky, and holds sharp uninterrupted empire from his throne of beams. Now the mower begins to make his sweeping cuts more slowly, and resorts oftener to the beer. Now the carter sleeps a-top of his load of hay, or plods with double slouch of shoulder, looking out with eyes winking under his shading hat, and with a hitch upward of one side of his mouth. Now the little girl at her grandmother's cottage-door watches the coaches that go by, with her hand held up over her sunny forehead. Now labourers look well, resting in their white shirts at the doors of rural alehouses. Now an elm is fine there, with a seat under it; and horses drink out of the trough, stretching their yearning necks with loosened collars; and the traveller calls for his glass of ale, having been without one for more than ten minutes; and his horse stands wincing at the flies, giving sharp shivers of his skin, and moving to and fro his ineffectual docked tail; and now Miss Betty Wilson, the host's daughter, comes streaming forth in a flowered gown and earrings, carrying with four of her beautiful fingers the foaming glass, for which, after the traveller has drank it, she receives with an indifferent eye, looking another, the lawful two-pence: that is to say, unless the traveller, nodding his ruddy face, pays some gallant compliment to her before he drinks, such as "I'd rather kiss you, my dear, than the tumbler,"—or "I'll wait for you, my love, if you'll marry me;" upon which, if the man is good-looking and the lady in good-humour, she smiles and bites her lips, and says "Ah—men can talk fast enough;" upon which the old stage-coachman, who is buckling something near her, before he sets off, says in a hoarse voice, "So can women too for that matter," and John Boots grins through his ragged red locks, and doats on the repartee all the day after. Now grasshoppers "fry," as Dryden says. Now cattle stand in water, and ducks are envied. Now boots and shoes, and trees by the road side, are thick with dust; and dogs rolling in it, after issuing out of the water, into which they have been thrown to fetch sticks, come scattering horror among the legs of the spectators. Now a fellow who finds he has three miles further to go in a pair of tight shoes, is in a pretty situation. Now rooms with the sun upon them become intolerable; and the apothecary's apprentice, with a bitterness beyond aloes, thinks of the pond he used to bathe in at school. Now men with powdered heads (especially if thick) envy those that are unpowdered, and stop to wipe them up hill, with countenances that seem to expostulate with destiny. Now boys assemble round the village pump with a ladle to it, and delight to make a forbidden splash and get wet through the shoes. Now also they make suckers of leather, and bathe all day long in rivers and ponds, and follow the fish into their cool corners, and say millions of "my eyes!" at "tittlebats." Now the bee, as he hums along, seems to be talking heavily of the heat. Now doors and brick-walls are burning to the hand; and a walled lane, with dust and broken bottles in it, near a brick-field, is a thing not to be thought of. Now a green lane, on the contrary, thick-set with hedge-row elms, and having the noise of a brook "rumbling in pebble-stone," is one of the pleasantest things in the world. Now youths and damsels walk through hay-fields by chance; and the latter say, "ha' done then, William;" and the overseer in the next field calls out to "let thic thear hay thear bide;" and the girls persist, merely to plague "such a frumpish old fellow."
Now, in town, gossips talk more than ever to one another, in rooms, in doorways, and out of windows, always beginning the conversation with saying that the heat is overpowering. Now blinds are let down, and doors thrown open, and flannel waitcoats [sic] left off, and cold meat preferred to hot, and wonder expressed why tea continues so refreshing, and people delight to sliver lettuces into bowls, and apprentices water doorways with tin-canisters that lay several atoms of dust. Now the water-cart, jumbling along the middle of the streets, and jolting the showers out of its box of water, really does something. Now boys delight to have a waterpipe let out, and set it bubbling away in a tall and frothy volume. Now fruiterers' shops and dairies look pleasant, and ices are the only things to those who can get them. Now ladies loiter in baths; and people make presents of flowers; and wine is put into ice; and the after-dinner lounger recreates his head with applications of perfumed water out of long-necked bottles. Now the lounger, who cannot resist riding his new horse, feels his boots burn him. Now buckskins are not the lawn of Cos. Now jockies, walking in great coats to lose flesh, curse inwardly. Now five fat people in a stage coach, hate the sixth fat one who is coming in, and think he has no right to be so large. Now clerks in offices do nothing, but drink soda-water and spruce-beer, and read the newspaper. Now the old clothes-man drops his solitary cry more deeply into the areas on the hot a forsaken side of the street; and bakers look vicious; and cooks are aggravated: and the steam of a tavern kitchen catches hold of one like the breath of Tartarus. Now delicate skins are beset with gnats; and boys make their sleeping companion start up, with playing a burning-glass on his hand; and blacksmiths are super-carbonated; and coblers in their stalls almost feel a wish to be transplanted; and butter is too easy to spread; and the dragoons wonder whether the Romans liked their helmets; and old ladies, with their lappets unpinned, walk along in a state of dilapidation; and the servant-maids are afraid they look vulgarly hot; and the author, who has a plate of strawberries brought him, finds that he has come to the end of his writing.— Indicator.
In the "Miscellanies," published by the Spalding Society of Antiquaries there is a poem of high feeling and strong expression against "man's cruelty to man:"—
Why should mans high aspiring mind
Burn in him, with so proud a breath;
When all his haughty views can find
In this world, yields to death;
The fair, the brave, the vain, the wise,
The rich, the poor, and great, and small,
Are each, but worms anatomys,
To strew, his quiet hall.
Power, may make many earthly gods,
Where gold, and bribery's guilt, prevails
But death's, unwelcome honest odds,
Kicks oer, the unequal scales.
The flatter'd great, may clamours raise
Of Power,—and, their own weakness hide,
But death, shall find unlooked for ways
To end the Farce of pride.—
An arrow, hurtel'd ere so high
From e'en a giant's sinewy strength,
In time's untraced eternity,
Goes, but a pigmy length—
Nay, whirring from the tortured string,
With all its pomp, of hurried flight,
'Tis, by the Skylarks little wing,
Outmeasured, in its height.
Just so, mans boasted strength, and power,
Shall fade, before deaths lightest stroke;
Laid lower, than the meanest flower—
Whose pride, oertopt the oak.
And he, who like a blighting blast,
Dispeopled worlds, with wars alarms,
Shall, be himself destroyed at last,
By poor, despised worms.
Tyrants in vain, their powers secure,
And awe slaves' murmurs, with a frown;
But unawed death, at last is sure,
To sap the Babels down —
A stone thrown upward, to the skye,
Will quickly meet, the ground agen:
So men-gods, of earths vanity,
Shall drop at last, to men;
And power, and pomp, their all resign
Blood purchased thrones, and banquet Halls.
Fate, waits to sack ambitions shrine
As bare, as prison walls,
Where, the poor suffering wretch bows down,
To laws, a lawless power hath past;—
And pride, and power, and King, and Clown,
Shall be death's slaves at last.
Time, the prime minister of death,
There's nought, can bribe his honest will
He, stops the richest Tyrants breath,
And lays, his mischief still:
Each wicked scheme for power, all stops,
With grandeurs false, and mock display,
As Eve's shades, from high mountain tops,
Fade with the rest, away.
Death levels all things, in his march,
Nought, can resist his mighty strength;
The Pallace proud,—triumphal arch,
Shall mete, their shadows length:
The rich, the poor, one common bed,
Shall find, in the unhonoured grave,
Where weeds shall crown alike, the head,
Of Tyrant, and of Slave.