Billeder på siden
PDF
ePub

of wrestling through rings than Will was, of Liddle, and in the match between him although the latter was always considered and Richardson, the latter certainly had a more pains-taking Wrestler. Many of no chance with him. Respecting his beRichardson's friends assert, and among haviour towards the spectators on that them are some well qualified to judge, occasion, we will remark that there is a that he was the fairest stander, and best very material difference between wrestWrestler, of his time; while those rather ling a private match, and contending for a hostile to him, contend, that he was a public prize. The latler is expressly for sulky (which is tantamount to an unfair) the amusement of the spectators, and they stander, and was as much indebted to have a right, as in a theatre, to express, that, and his tremendous strength of arm, in a certain degree, their opinion of the as to his science. For our part, we have conduct of the performers; but with the no reason to applaud or condemn;-we former they have no right whatever, exdo not think any of our readers will deem cepting to preserve fair play between the us incapable of forming an opinion, and men; and when it is well known that we assure then it is a free and unpreju- this was neither the second nor third in. diced one. We have not the least doubt stance in which matches with Richard. but that he was for a number, or even for son never were decided, we have room to one fall, a competent match for any man infer that the fault in taking hold might in the kingdom for very many years. For not be all Weightman's. The grand ques us to endeavour to particularize his con- tion now isa Is there one man in the quests would be absurd ; and we have present list who can throw him amain ? noticed his occasional defeats for the Our opinion is, if there be one, there are purpose of reflecting lustre on those who not two. John Liddle, the victor at Kesthrew such a hero, and not by any means wick, and from whom much was anticito detract from the great and well-me- pated at Carlisle, is upwards of fourteen rited renown he universally possessed.” stones, and about five feet ten inches

We now bring this long, but, thanks high. It is scarcely fair to make lengthy to Mr Litt, this interesting article, to remarks upon those who may again apa close, with his account of the Car- pear in the ring, therefore we shall only lisle wrestling in 1822.

observe, that, with one exception, there is “ The first prize was won by W. Cass, no wrestler of, or under his own weight and the second by John Weightman. As at present, that can throw him. James those who wrestled may yet be consider- Graham had for some time been laboured in possession of the ring, that circum- ing under a bad state of health, and in stance must of course circumscribe our appearance, as well as powers, had eviaccount of them. Cass is not far from dently declined. We likewise think that six feet high, and weighis sixteen stones.

T. Richardson cannot be what he has been. The action he displays is an outside As a hipper, he is certainly the quickest stroke with his left foot, but its fatality and best on the list. He is taller, but consists in the swing, or twist, with not so heavy as Liddle; and though we which it is accompanied, and his method do not think him a T. Nicholson, yet of parting with his men. He was not very few at present are an equal match for much noticed previous to his throwing

him. John Fearon, who threw WeightWeightman; but in our opinion he will, man at Carlisle, is about the same height, and is the only man who ought to throw but heavier than that hero. The fame of him again. Cass is equally as strong, full Weightman was his principal inducement as heavy, and Weightman will find it dif- for entering that ring, and by throwing ficult to improve his bold, and command bim he accomplished his object. Rehim as he does all his other opponents. specting the contest between them, it Cass certainly won very cleverly, and was a bad one, and Weightman lost the though we must admit he wrestled for fall at a time when he ought to have been tunately through the ring, we think him certain of winning it. John Laughlen, the likeliest person to win again. The the fourth stander on that occasion, ig redoubted Weightman is above six feet near six feet șix inches high, and at pre. three inches high, and weighs upwards of sent weighs about seventeen stones. Had fifteen stones. Weightman has certainly he been in practice, and taken more pains a very good-natured, and indeed we might in procuring an equal hold, Weightman with truth say, a prepossessing appear. ought not to have thrown him ; as, though ance. The whole science he appears mas

not excelling in action, he is by no means ter of is the address he displays in the deficient in science. Having been some application of his tremendous strength in years married previous to his present setbreaking his adversary's, and improving tlement in Whitehaven as a publican, his his own hold. He appears to be master practice must have been latterly very confined, otherwise he ought, and we think, The wrestling at the meeting 1823 , would have been the present champion.. is just over ; and the prize was won

-Weight and age considered, no Wrest- by Weightman, who is now believed ler more distinguished himself at Carlisle to be the most powerful wrestler in than Robert Waters, the third stander. the world, and could be backed for He appeared a little one, is a very young five, eight, or eleven falls, against the one, and gave most convincing proofs of human race. his science and quickness—the two great In conclusion, we thank Mr Litt for essentials which constitute a finished his well-written, candid, manly, and Wrestler.-T. Todd, the last loser, is full scientific “ Wrestliana. Should he five feet ten inches high, and weighs twelve stones and four pounds. Putting shall we be to meet him at Ambrose's.

ever come to Edinburgh, most happy hearsay out of the question, and giving Neither of us are so young as we were our opinion of what we have personally ten or fifteen years ago ; yet we should wil nessed, Todd is the best and most finish- like to see the man who would shove ed Wrestler we ever saw. He has not the power of Nicholson, but excepting the causeway;" and surely nostrong

the one or the other of us off the “crown him, we never saw a thirteen, nor is there at present any fourteen stone man, in our

er argument in favour of athletic exopinion, able to throw him the best of ercises in general is required, than the three, or five falls. The prize given for sound, stout, hale, ruddy appearance Lads afforded much amusement, and many

which we both exhibit, being most of them displayed infinite science, and beautiful and perfect specimens of that seemed quite at home, in the ring. The perfection of human nature so concisetwo last, though not the tallest, or hea- ly expressed by the poet, viest, among the competitors, were both, we were told, above the age specified in “ MENS SANA IN CORPORE SANO." the advertisement."

NOTICES OF THE MODERN BRITISH DRAMATISTS.

No. II.-Beddoes.* This is precisely one of those com- without fear of the fowler. Young positions that a cold, clear, shrewd, men, now-a-days, are not only perand sarcastic critic would delight in mitted to write like young men, but clutching into his merciless grasp, to praised and encouraged while doing tear it into pieces and strew the floor so; and the whole world regards them of his study with its shivering frag- with smiles of complacency and kindments. Had it appeared during the ness, when they are seen to enjoy the blood-thirsty youth of the Edinburgh favour of one benevolent Greybeard, Review, a much more cruel murder who will not suffer his rising progeny, would have been perpetrated upon its to be maltreated by the vain or the vebody than that which

causes its own ca- nal critic-crew. tastrophe,and all hands would have been The Brides' Tragedy is the work of held up in wonder and scorn of young a Minor-and, although no doubt there Mr Thomas Lovel Beddoes. He would have been many instances of Minors have gone moping about for years in writing better than they ever did after disconsolate solitude, silent and sullen they became Majors, nevertheless we as a ghost, or would have rent the air admit the plea of nonageman old head with unavailing shrieks and lamenta- has no business on old shoulders; and tions. But he has been born during an extremely wise, rational, sober, a happier era--the mild and benigo pretty-behaved and judicious springnant spirit of Christopher North has ald, is not, to our taste, a commendable overcome the truculent spirit of Fran- specimen of human nature. Now, Mr cis Jeffrey—that “old man eloquent”. Beddoes is very far indeed from being gathers all the youths of genius under a boy-wiseacre. He is often as silly as his wing, protects them from every may be,-trifling to a degree that is cutting blast, and bids them all go a- “quite refreshing,"

?-as childish as his basking in the sunshine of public fa- best friends could desir to see him in vour, like so many partridges on a a summer's day,--fantastic and capribank adjusting their fair plumage cious as any Miss-in-her-teens--and

* The Brides' Tragedy. By Thomas Lovell Beddoes. London, F. C. and J. Ri. vington, 1822. VOL. XIV.

4 Y

pathetic to an excess that absolutely found interest, when, by and by, it unmerits the strappado. Why not? all expectedly and strongly arrives. so much the better. He is a fine,

« The following scenes were written, as open-hearted, ingenuous, accomplish- you well know, exclusively for the closet, ed and gentlemanly youth; and we,

founded upon facts which occurred at Ox. whose prophecies have been fulfilled

ford, and are well detailed and illustrated somewhat more frequently than those

by an interesting ballad in a little volume of the Editor of the Blue-and-Yellow,

of Poems, lately published at Oxford, en

titled the Midland Minstrel, by Mr Gillet: pronounce him a promising poet,-we

and may thus be succinctly narrated. tie a wreath of laurel round his fore

“ The Manciple of one of the Colleges head,—and may it remain there till

early in the last century had a very beau. displaced to make room for a bolder tiful daughter, who was privately married branch of the sacred Tree.

to a student without the knowledge of the The subject of the Drama is a good parents on either side. one, deeply, terribly tragic_"a tale “ During the long vacation subsequent of tears, a rueful story,"-a murder

to this union the husband was introduced strange and overwhelming to the ima

to a young lady, who was at the same time gination, yet such a murder as the

proposed as his bride ; absence, the fear of

his father's displeasure, the presence of a mind can image and believe in its wild

lovely object, and, most likely, a natural and haunted moods. Mr Beddoes de

fickleness of disposition, overcame any reserves praise for choosing such a subject

gard he might have cherished for his ill. --for all true Tragedy must possess its fated wife, and finally he became deeply strength in a spirit of terror. His enamoured of her unconscious rival. In reading seems to have lain among the the contest of duties and desires, which elder Dramatists, and his mind is was the consequence of this passion, the much imbued with their tragic charac- worse part of man prevailed, and he forin. ter. We sup full of horrors, but

ed and executed a design almost unparallelthere are some gay and fantastic gar

ed in the annals of crime. nishings and adornments of the repast,

“ His second nuptials were at hand when he

returned to Oxford, and to her who was now disposed quite in the manner and spi

an obstacle to his happiness. Late at night rit of those great old masters. Joy and

he prevailed upon his victim to accompany sorrow, peace and despair, innocence

him to a lone spot in the Divinity Walk, and guilt, saintliness and sin, sit all to- and there murdered and buried her. The gether at one banquet; and we scarce- wretch escaped detection, and the horrid ly distinguish the guests from each deed remained unknown till he confessed other, till

something interrupts the flow it on his death-bed. The remains of the of the feast, and they start up in their

unfortunate girl were dug up in the place proper character. Yes, there is a dark described, and the Divinity Walk was de. and troubled, guilt-like and death-like

serted and demolished, as haunted ground. gloom flung over this first work of a

Such are the the outlines of a Minor's truly poetical mind, sometimes alter

Tragedy." nating with an air of ethereal tender

There is nothing very imposing in ness and beauty, sometimes slowly and ingly Mr Beddoes has left the peculiar

the office of a manciple'; and accordin a ghastly guise encroaching upon character of his heroine's status in and stilling it, and sometimes breaking up and departing from it, in black society undefined. She and her parents masses, like clouds from a lovely val

are poor and humble, and live in a cotley on a tempestuous and uncertain tage-that is all we know, and it is day. Dip into the Poem, here and enough. The fair Floribel is the bride there, and you cannot tell what it is

of Hesperus, a youth of high birth, about-you see dim imagery, and in

and their marriage remains, for obvidistinct figures, and fear that the au

ous reasons, concealed. The first scene thor has written a very so so perform in which they appear at evening in the ance. But give it a reading from the garden of the lowly cottage, and feast beginning, and you will give it a read

on love's delicious converse, is very ing to the end, for our young poet pretty, although not very rational, and writes in the power of nature, and

serves to interest us for the simple, when at any time you get wearied or

beautiful, and affectionate Floribel. disappointed with his failure in passion “ Come, come, my love, or shall I call or in plot, you are pleased--nay, de

you bride ? lighted, with the luxuriance of his

Flor ibcl. E'en what you will, so that fancy, and with a strain of imaginative

hold me dear.

you feeling that supplies th:

Hosperus. Well, both my love and founder interest,

bride ; see, here's a bower

Of Eglantine with honeysuckles woven, the mind to gis

Where not a spark of prying light creeps in,

[ocr errors]

My son,

serve.

was

[ocr errors]

So closely do the sweets enfold each other. The dread diseases of the place will come
"Tis Twilight's home; come in, my gentle And kill me wretchedly. No, I'll be free.
love,

Hesp. Aye, that thou shalt.

I'll do ;
And talk to me. So ! 'I've a rival here;

what will I not ?
What's this that sleeps so sweetly on your I'll get together all the world's true hearts,
neck ?

And if they're few, there's spirit in my
Flor. Jealous so soon, my Hesperus ?

breast
Look then,

Enough to animate a thousand dead.
It is a bunch of flowers I pulled for you ; Lord Ern.
Here's the blue violet, like Pandora's eye, We need not this ; a word of thine will
When first it darkened with immortal life.
Hes. Sweet as thy lips. Fie on those Hesp. Were it my soul's last sigh, I'd
taper fingers,

give it thee.
llave they been brushing the long grass Lord Ern. Marry.
aside

Hesp.

I-cannot.
To drag the daisy from it's hiding-place, Lord Ern. But thou dost not know
Where it shuns light, the Daräe of flowers, Thy best-loved woos thee. Oft I've stood
With gold up-hoarded on its virgin lap ?

unseen,
Flor. And here's a treasure that I found In some of those sweet evenings you re-
by chance,

member,
A lily of the valley ; low it lay

Watching your innocent and beauteous
Over a mossy mound, withered and weep-

play,
ing

(More innocent because you thought it se-
As on a fairy's grave.”

cret,
After some soft talk and fond en- More beautiful because so innocent ;)
dearments, not unmixed with some

Oh! then I knew how blessed a thing I
natural tears, Floribel gives utterance
to those thoughts “ that in the happi-

To have a son so worthy of Olivia.
Hesp.

Olivia !
ness of love make the heart sink”-they

Lord Ern. Blush not, though I name part, and the short scene passes by like

your mistress,
a dream.

You soon shall wed her.
Hesperus has a rival in the affec-

Hesp. I will wed the plague !
tions of Floribel, “ the Diana of our I would not grudge my life, for that's a
Forests," named Orlando, who throws thing,
old Lord Ernest, the father of Hes- A misery, thou gavest me: but to wed
perus, into prison, on account of a debt, Olivia ; there's damnation in the thought.
is of which his whole estate is scarce

Lord Ern. Come, speak to him, my
a fourth.” This debt, however, is not chains, for ye've a voice
to be claimed, provided Hesperus con-

To conquer every heart that's not your

kin?
sent to wed Olivia, in which case

Oh! that ye were my son, for then at least
Orlando hopes to espouse Floribel.

He would be with me. How I loved him
This is a clumsy contrivance, but it

once !
cannot be helped. Accordingly Hes- Aye, when I thought him good ; but now
perus is admitted to his father, in chains

–Nay, still
and in a dungeon, when the following He must be good, and I, I have been
dialogue ensues.

harsh,
6 Lord Ernest. Oh set me free, I cannot I feel, I have not prized him at his worth ;
bear this air.

And yet I think if Hesperus had erred,
If thou dost recollect those fearful hours, I could have pardoped him, indeed I could.
When I kept watch beside my precious Hesp.

We'll live together.
boy,

Lord Ern. No, for I shall die;
And saw the day but on his pale dear But that's no matter.

Hesp. Bring the priest, the bride.
If thou didst think me in my gentlest Quick, quick. These fetters have infected
moods,

him
Patient and mild, and even somewhat With slavery's sickness. Yet there is a
kind ;

secret,
Oh give me back the pity that I lent, 'Twixt heaven and me, forbids it. · Tell
Pretend at least to love and comfort me.

me, father ;
Hesp. Speak not so harshly ; I'm not Were it not best for both to die at once ?
rich enough

Lord Ern. Die! thou hast spoke a word,
To pay one quarter of the dues of love,

that makes my heart
Yet something I would do. Shew me the Grow sick and wither; thou hast palsied

way,
I will revenge thee well.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

face;

me

To death. Live thou to wed some worthier Lord Ern. But whilst thou'rt gone,

maid;

career.

by every part of the nation besides. own condition ; but that condition Thirdly, they abandoned this consti- has, nevertheless, been uniformly tution at the time of Ferdinand's re- and unbrokenly sinking. The crafty storation, in a manner altogether un- Charles, by alternate acts of swindling worthy of the high principles on which and robbery, deprived the nation of they had professed to be acting. In all that was really valuable in her pothe fourth place, they re-established litical institutions. The glare of his it in 1820, in a manner equally at va- conquests—the splendour of his name riance with those principles. And, in -the imperial influence in Europe, the fifth place, they have utterly and and the American floods of wealthirremediably disgraced themselves by all these were considered by the Spathe pusillanimous exhibition with niards as things of their own, and which they have just concluded their they shut their eyes to the domestic

misdeeds of their magnificent tyrant, · The sin of the French govern- just as the French of our own time ment, on the other hand, is one, and did theirs, to those of a tyrant not indivisible. It lies in the unjustified, his inferior in meanness, and cerand unjustifiable aggression, which tainly his superior in almost everyhas been made upon the Spanish thing besides. The spirit of military soil. For the present, this interfe- adventure, and the lights of a beautirence has been crowned with appa- ful literature, gilded over, in like manrent success-probably much more so ner, the superficies of the two ages than King Louis's ministers themselves that followed that of Charles V.; but had anticipated ; but the whole busi- all this while the elements of univerness is rotten, and will come to no- sal degradation had been working surething, or to worse than nothing, in the ly below, and it was not long ere all upshot.

settled into the uniform and melanOn both of these, therefore, we are of choly gloom of that intellectual night, opinion, that a great burden of blame the first lurid, uncertain, and stormy lies and must lie. Still, however, we dawning from which, has just been must admit, that neither the conduct of fixing the hopes and the fears of the one party, nor that of the other, is to Europe. our minds irreconcilable with some- The history of Superstition and the think like fairness of intention in the Inquisition in Spain, has been sketched main. They may both have chosen false by Mr Southey, in on of the late principles of action, but it is not quite Numbers of the Quarterly Review, apparent that either has done so know- with the hand of a master-to that ingly—and the haughty rashness of sketch we need add nothing herethe one side, need not, any more than it is complete so far as it goes; it will the vacillating imbecility of the other, live as a chapter in the history of our be taken as the clear and indubitable species, long after the mass of contemsymbol of deliberate dishonour. We

porary writings shall have passed incan pardon much from any Spaniards to oblivion. But Mr Southey has not striving against the cause of despotism, brought the matter sufficiently down and we can also pardon much from any to our own time, nor, by consequence, French government striving against sufficiently home to our feelings. On the cause of Jacobinism ; but the con- the contrary, the picture he presents, duct of Ferdinand VII. has been con- deriving evidently, and indeed consistent with no intelligible principle of fessedly, all its darkest touches from any kind, that is worthy of being re- the congeries of a most laborious erugarded with any species of tolerance. dition, is a thing which ordinary obHe has been guilty of the basest servers are more apt to stare at, than treachery to all-and has stamped to study—the impression it leaves is THE WHOLE of his own character with rather that of what has been, than of one dye of unrelieved blackness. what is.—The appearance of Mr BlanThe history of Spain has been, in- co White's book, (Doblado's Letters,)

was therefore a matter of greater insince the accession of Charles V. A mediate importance, and we regret exfew brilliant campaigns, and many ceedingly that Mr Southey has done no magnificent foreign acquisitions, have more than refer to that work, instead of for their respective seasons blinded drawing from its comparatively ephethe eyes of this proud race to their meral pages the materials for a fuller

8 ever

deed, one serit.

« ForrigeFortsæt »