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THE CONSCIENTIOUS HAIR-DRESSER,
Man is at present dwelling in a taber- and, as if unconscious of all existence, sát nacle, but he would take up his residence mute, but not melancholy. in it for ever, were he not unceasingly re.
The seat which he occupied was an easy, minded, that he should seek a continual and had once been an elegant, arm-chair. çity, a city abiding for ever. Man is an The splendid bronze and gold which origi. idolater; he fixes his affections on the nally adorned it, frequent use had worn off, various objects of creation, when his bosom while the rich purple-covered cushion which should glow with love to his Creator. Sepa- afforded once so comfortable a loungingration then becomes an indispensable duty place, that the application of Cowper's even for his own happiness. To the infidel, elegant description might have been made who believes all his hopes and fears to to it, perish with him by death, it must be doubly
- first necessity invented stools, painful to leave behind him every thing
Convenience next suggested elbow-chairs,"that is dear; to bury affection, honour, pride, furnished evidence amounting to ocular fame, and pleasure, in the dust, knowing demonstration, that the tooth of time had that he shall enjoy them ‘no more.' But played foully with it. Here, however, he the Christian bidding farewell to the world, sat, great, even amidst desolation. The will see in these words only the promise of time-worn shreds which covered his attenuuninterrupted happiness. Restored to those ated frame, were more honourable than the who once were kindred spirits, to purer ermined purple which enveloped the bodies bliss than that which is found on earth, he of Caligula, Domitian, or Nero. His right shall never again taste of misery's bitter leg was thrown across his left knee, while phial, the anguish of time shall be forgotten, his elbow, being supported by one arm of and he shall know sin and sorrow no his chair, enabled him to rest his head on more.
the palm of his right hand with tolerable Beaconsfield.
Day-light was fast declining ; already a thick haze might be observed rising from
the calm bosom of the sea, and contracting (By the Rev. J. Young.)
the circle of light, when a distant sound of
a bugle announced to the inhabitants of "Thy will be done, be done by me!' he said, righton, that one of their daily coaches And to the gath’ring storm bow'd low his head. was entering. Presently the rattling din, And still unchang'd, e'en while the tempest pour'd Its deluge on him.-Humbly he ador'd
as it rolled furiously over the paved road, 'The band which smote him, for his uprais'd eye fell upon the ears of the hero of my tale, Look'd there for succour, while his ceaseless cry Thy will be done,' his heart and tongue employ rousing him from his somewhat lengthened It was ;-and plenty fill'd his heart with joy.” reverie. His premises were situated at only
a few yards' distance from the coach-office,
and, as a pole, of ample length and dimen“Though he slay me, yet will I trust in sions, pointed from the side of his door, like him," broke from the lips of a solitary being, a painted horn, or the os frontis of an as he threw his eyes round his cheerless and unicorn, towards the aerial regions, explanaalmost naked apartment. “All must be tory of his profession, such individuals as well in the hand of Him who knows the end required the adjustment of their hair, or the from the beginning, although I cannot form smoothing of the lower parts of their beau an opinion even what may yet befall me, de visage, after some hours travel, were, by or where my affliction will end." A low this means, informed of handy accommoand uneasy moan from a remote part of his dation. room, broke up the soliloquy: he turned Calculating upon the possibility that he instantly towards it, with the utmost anxiety might soon be called upon to exercise his All was again still. "My poor, poor perfuming or decorating art over the craIsabel, she suffers ; this is, indeed, the cli- nium of some newly-arrived visitant, he rose max of woe.” All the feelings of a father from his reclined position, and, as he did so, rose at the instant, and prevented further a gentleman, of prepossessing appearance, utterance. A long, deep sigh escaped him, entered his humble abode, and intimated as if the wretched existence he possessed his wish to engage his immediate attendance. was breaking up; a silent tear stole down Who may hope to do justice to the task his pale cheek, and, folding round him the of portraying the feelings of a well-informed tattered remains of a once fashionable sur- and delicate mind, while struggling with, or tout, in a subdued tone, he softly ejaculated, held by, the iron grasp of poverty? The “Thy will be done.” Gradually he became cruel scorn, or cold and unfeeling disdain, completely absorbed in his own reflections, with which such are too frequently met by
their fellow-men, is crushing to the spirit, be attended at his inn. After taking a hearty and, as if some dark crime stood connected supper, Mr. Adolphus retired to his room, with their poverty, which would be disco- but not to sleep; the poverty of the hairvered by making their wants known, they dresser, combined with his respectable ad choose rather to drag on an existence of dress, which he had not failed to notice, wretchedness and want, than hazard the ad- had produced an impression that he could ditional torture of their minds, by meeting not shake off, and yet, for which he could the “proud man's contumely.” Poor Gil- not account: the more he thought, and he bert Waltingham felt, at the period in ques- could not avoid thinking, the more he was tion, all that imagination can conceive on perplexed ; something remarkable, he conthe subject of poverty. The gentleman had ceived, must have occasioned such circum. already taken his seat, and preparations had stances, and, in order to satisfy his mind, been some way proceeded in, when, in he resolved to visit him on the following consequence of a heavy cloud which threw morning. its shading influence over the town, the Full of his purpose, Mr. Adolphus rose evening had suddenly closed in, and there earlier than his usual hour, and, after walkwas not light sufficient to enable Gilbert to ing round the Steyne, and inhaling a fresh perform the required operation, without en- sea-breeze, he returned to his inn, took dangering the chin, or the jugular vein, of breakfast, and then proceeded to the sorry the stranger.
room of Gilbert Waltingham.
His shopFor a moment or two, the rising purpose door stood open, affording Mr. Adolphus to which it appeared unfeeling necessity had an opportunity of making some hasty obdriven him, stuck, like Macbeth's “ amen, servations before he entered. Every thing in his throat. He took up his razor, and indicated extreme poverty; and yet, dirt, the then laid it on the table again, resumed it, almost sure attendant of vice, no where apstruck it several times briskly on the palm peared. The fine open and intelligent of his hand, advanced towards the gentle- countenance of Gilbert struck him forcibly; man, as if meditating the performance of for, even amidst the ruin which want had some foul purpose, and then retreated. The wrought, there were indications afforded, singularity and embarrassment of his man that he was but ner, attracted the stranger's attention. With “A shade of what he might have been; out, however, expressing any thing like A lonely joyless one.” alarm, he requested Monsieur Barbier to Mr. Adolphus felt a degree of interest for proceed. Thus called upon, he was com
the unfortunate one, for so he deemed him, pelled to the distressing alternative of re of the strongest kind. Having passed the questing the loan of a halfpenny, to purchase meridian of his days, and being naturally of a taper, before he could despoil him. The a disposition of the most amiable cast, he request was no sooner made than complied carried not about with him that stiffness and with; and while the destitute Gilbert went hauteur, which too generally characterize to procure the required accommodation, the the members of the learned professions. mind of the stranger was busily engaged in “Good morning, my friend,” fell from his thinking on his necessitous state. He soon lips, in the most courteous accents, as he returned, and, having attended to his duty, entered the house. Gilbert had not before the gentleman retired ; and, as he did so, perceived him, but, instantly rising from his placed a piece of silver in his hand, and, engagement, he returned the salutation, in a wishing “good night,” hastened to his inn. way which convinced Mr. Adolphus, that A small fire shortly after blazed in the grate he either was not what he seemed to be, or of Gilbert Waltingham, and a slender supper had not always been what he now was; and was prepared for himself and his little was proceeding to express his acknowledgdaughter, Isabel ; a luxury, which, for ments, for the kindness he had experienced some time before, had not been enjoyed by from him on the preceding evening, when them.
Mr. Adolphus stopped bim, by observing Mr. Adolphus, who, as we have seen,
had “ I ever feel a pleasure in assisting those entered the miserable abode of our hero at who are not indisposed to assist themselves, the close of the day, was a gentleman of the but who may have been, by uncontrollable law; he was now on a tour of business; bis circumstances, brought to require such aid : stay at Brighton was not intended to exceed if,” he continued, “I am not greatly misa day or two, and then an affair of impor. taken, you are among that number.” Giltance would call him to town. Without bert sighed, but replied not, and Mr. being able to assign any reason for his con Adolphus continued—_“You will, I hope, duct, he had entered Gilbert Waltingham's excuse a stranger, and impute not to inquihumble dwelling, rather than give orders to sitive curiosity, that whịch arises from sincere
sympathy. Your destitute condition has of a life made up of strange vicissitude.” convinced me, that something of no common Mr. Adolphus took the presented arm-chair, order must bave been the cause.” Just the only one which the room possessed, and then, the little Isabel awoke, and, in a tre Gilbert, seating himself on a stool on the mulous voice, called to her father for a opposite side of the table, thus commenced : little water. Mr. Adolphus started at the “I am the only surviving member of a sound, for he had not, until then, perceived once numerous and respectable family. My a small bed in one corner of the room, and father had long filled a place of considerable a child laid on it. Waltingham instantly trust under government, in the naval deattended to the request of his child, and Mr. partment. He was naturally of a high Adolphus advanced towards the bed-side, and unbending spirit. The authority which where he perceived a sweet girl, of about he had been long in the habit of exercising seven or eight years old, whose features were over those who were placed under him, was strongly marked by the rude hand of want carried into all his engagements, and beand sickness. “The child appears extremely came, not only a powerful habit, but a fixed ill,” he observed. “Yes, Sir,” replied poor principle. His will was ever the law by Gilbert, stifling the feeling which unmanned which those around him were to be gohim, and wiping away some tears which he verned. My mother was the youngest child could not prevent,"she is very, very ill." of titled parents, and did not, in any degree, “I am better, father,” said the child, faintly, yield to her husband, in point of elevated " since I had the good supper last night.” notions concerning rank and dignity. I “Were you then hungry before, my dear?" was their only son, and, in a few years after inquired Mr. Adolphus. “Yes, Sir,” she my birth, became their only child ; for my answered, with much sweetness and simpli- sister, who was my senior, died before she city,“ very hungry, and so was my poor had reached her eleventh year. On me was father too, but some good gentleman gave lavished all that excess of kindness which father a shilling, and that—" Mr. Adol the affections of parents could bestow, and phus could hear no more ; he drew his which my heirship seemed to claim. No handkerchief from his pocket, and dried up indulgence was prohibited-no wish was the exhalations from his eyes, which had ob allowed to pass ungratified. So wore away scured his vision, while he
the first fourteen years of my life, chequered “ Felt the luxury of doing good."
with a variety of juvenile improprieties, all Turning instantly to Waltingham, he said, which, however, were considered as infallible as he put into his hand a few shillings, evidences of a spirit which was one day to “Here, young man, make haste, and pro- burst forth in plendid achievements, such vide what yourself and child require, and, as would add laurels to our already distinby the time I return again, you will be guished family. better able to inform me of your circum “Ah ! how infatuating is vice! with what stances, and in what way I can best serve address can we devise apologies for acts you.” Without giving time for a reply, be which feed our vanity, or enrich our perleft the astonished and grateful man, who, sons, or gratify our tastes, even while conwith all the activity which a parent's heart viction must inform us of the sophistry we could exercise, made preparations to meet palm upon ourselves. Such conduct was the wants of his beloved Isabel.
too fully pursued by my parents, in reference The clock had newly struck eleven, when to myself. Their fondness for their only Mr. Adolphus returned to Gilbert's abode child might have induced part, but the and, finding the opportunity favourable for dignity of connections, which I was expected the occasion, he observed—“If it will not to maintain, was not less powerful. be deemed an impertinent intrusion into I had not been suffered to leave the your affairs, I shall feel obliged by your in- family mansion, even for school. A tutor forming' me, if you have not moved in a was provided for me, whose lessons I atcondition superior to that in which I now tended to, or disregarded, as inclination find you.”
6. Your kindness, Sir," returned might lead me. My tutor was a worthy, Waltingham, “has a claim upon me, which, but a timid, man, and therefore quite une, even if I were disposed to seal up my past qual to the task of directing the studies of circumstances in silence, would lay me one so untractable as myself. On one ocunder obligation to change such intention, casion, he had hurt my pride by some in reference to yourself. Yet, I know not proper rebuke. I burned for revenge, and, in what part of my history to commence, in having heard it was beneath a gentleman to order to inform you of as much as you allow any insult to pass unnoticed, I deterdesire to know. You will therefore bear with mined to act the gentleman, but, for a while, me, while I present you with a hasty sketch was at a loss to devise means by which to
punish him as I judged the affair merited. However, it curedi my improper feelings Once I thought of placing a quantity of towards iny tutor, and I have since learned gunpowder under his bed, and, by a train, the folly and sin of seeking revenge for every fire it; but this plan was laid aside, from imaginary insult, or even real offence. the fear that the house might be endangered: “ The year following, I lost my mother then I thought that by inserting a quantity of by death. She had been at a crowded ball, an offensive drug in a bottle of wine, before and, returning late, took cold, and in less it came to table, I might satisfy my revenge than three weeks after, was summoned to on bim ; but then, I considered that my stand before the tribunal of her Maker. If parents and myself might partake of it, and my grief was not so deep as a mother's so pain would be inflicted where it was not death should have occasioned, the cause intended.
was to be traced to the defects of my edu“My thoughts were continually busy, cation, and the scenes by which I was sure and, at length, I hit upon a plan which I rounded, rather than to insensibility of naconceived would fully answer my wishes, ture. I had just completed my sixteenth and, therefore, resolved at once to attend to year, when I was entered a scholar in one of it. At the extremity of the lawn, there ran the colleges at Cambridge, where, during a canal of water, over à narrow part of two sessions, I prosecuted my studies with which, a light bridge was thrown, which led, something like diligence, when, unexpect. by a rather unfrequented pathway, to a small edly, the news reached me, of my father's wood, in which I was aware my tutor was second marriage, and to a lady who would, in the habit of walking, most fine evenings. in point of years, have been much more fit As the distance was between two and three to have become the wife of the son, rather miles, I was certain there would be sufficient than the father. Forgetful of the duty which time for me to carry my project into execu- owed to a parent, I wrote a hasty note, tion. I therefore prepared what I needed, expressive of my surprise at what I had and, watching him, shortly after, across the heard, and, while stating my hopes that the bridge, I stole towards it, where I remained report was incorrect, did so in a manner until I was certain he had gone too great which carried with it all the caustic of a distance to hear my operations.
strong reproof. The authority of my father “I now drew from under my coat, a saw, had, by such a step, been invaded, and he and commenced dividing the supporters of felt it. His natural temperament rose to its the bridge. Two I hacked quite asunder, highest pitch, and blazed out furiously : he in a slanting position, and the other two, so replied, “ that such an interference on the far crippled, as to render it impossible that part of a child, rendered such a child una dog scarcely could move upon it, without worthy the name, and henceforth I might being precipitated into the water. Exulting renounce it." I might, perhaps, by a mode in my suecess, I waited with extreme anxi- which I ought to have adopted, have sofety his return, not once calculating on the con- tened down, in some degree, the spirit which sequences that might ensue, or thinking on I had roused, but I seemed not even to wish the destruction of the useful and neat bridge. it, and I instantly replied in a strain equally
“I had scarcely taken my place behind bitter. The consequences were, the erasure a grassy mound, from which I was to enjoy of my name from the will of my father, and the sight of my tutor's being ducked, when the withdrawment of those supplies with I perceived my father and mother advance which, until then, I had been furnished, towards the bridge. I would have called even to prodigality. to them, but my voice seemed to have been “My college exercises immediately closed. suddenly taken from me, a cold sweat fell Still I determined not to return home, or to from my forehead, I trembled at every joint. make submissions. I had before learned The sensation became too intense to bear. at my father's table, that such conduct comI sprang upon my feet, but too late. I saw ported not with the proper conduct of a my father and mother walk about one-third man of spirit. My mother had left me a across the mutilated path, when, suddenly, property in my own right-of that I soon the parts I had left unsevered, snapped, and disposed, and, finding myself in possession they were plunged into the stream. My of a few hundreds in ready money, I determother's shrieks reached my tutor's ears, mined to follow the unbridled propensities who was returning; he ran, and, with diffi- of my nature. For months I did so. I was culty, rescued both my parents from their surrounded by friends, who applauded my painful and dangerous condition. The spirit, and cheerfully shared with me the destruction of the bridge was imputed to the produce of my purse: My funds, however, malice of an incendiary who had lately dis- were not inexhaustible. I remembered appeared, and thus i escaped detection. poor Richard's aphorism, and proved it to 2D. SERIES, NO. 14.- VOL. II.
be correct—"Always taking out of the “It was the evening of a lovely summer's meal-tub, and never putting in, soon comes day, when I drew near that beautiful city. to the bottom." I became convinced of the All was tranquil, as Eden before sin entered propriety of turning my attention to some our world. The sun threw its broad but means of support. My determination was chaste beams over the whole, and made unshaken, to live independent of a father loveliness look more lovely. A gentle air who had renounced me. Growing necessity played around, giving a slight motion to urged me to any course which might be some lofty poplars, and causing a ripple to presented, and at length I adopted one, agitate the surface of the Avon, as it meanabove all others, disgraceful and mean; it dered away towards the town of Bristol. comported, however, with a roving disposi- Elegance and fashion met the eye at every tion and romantic taste, and, for a while, turn; stately mansions, whose fronts were pleased, but soon disgusted, me.
richly adorned with rows of sculptured co“My frequent visits at one of the inns of lumns of the Doric, Ionic, and Corinthian the town, had brought me acquainted with orders, gave a grandeur to the scene, surthe manager of a strolling company of play- passing every thing I had before witnessed ;
My voice and address being then while, in other directions, houses rising tolerably good, and my elocutional powers above houses, in progressive order, gave a being known as respectable, he requested picturesque appearance to the place, which me to make an attempt to serve him, on his was again relieved from monotony by an benefit night, by taking a part in the per- apparent proud superiority maintained by formance of the evening. I was fond of some elevated buildings, which seemed as if declamation, felt flattered by the request, looking down on others, not less beautiful and consented. The part assigned me was or extensive, in the vale below. To me, all that of Frederick,' in Lover's Vows.' My was new; I had never, until then, visited debut was most successful, and, as my this fairy city, although its fame had long circumstances were becoming pressing, I been familiar to me. judged nothing would be more easy than to “I entered the city on the eastern side, make a fortune, by cominencing player. and crossed the river Avon, over Pulteney As no opportunity, however, presented, by bridge, passing through the centre of Bath, which I could be introduced on the boards and entered Bathwick; and again astonishof a regular theatre, I even became content ment rose high, as fresh prospects of into accept a place among a travelling com creasing attraction opened to my vision, in pany, and, in barns, sheds, and other tem groves, vistas, lawns, water-falls, tea-gardens, porary buildings, raved as a tyrant, foamed &c. &c., which, with all the magic that art as a madman, or languished as a lover. I could give, spread along the side, even to made myself generally useful, and soon be- the summit of Claverton hills. I took a came expert in adjusting the perukes of the wide circuit, and returned into the city on male, and the curls of the female, perform- the north-eastern side of the town, and, ers. My skill in this way became consider- while strolling up one of its many streets, able, and, as we were, from the poverty of my attention was attracted by a notice exeur establishment, compelled to perform hibited in the window of a hair-dresser's any part which might fall to our lot, as well shop, that a journeyman was wanted. Withbehind the scenes as before the audience, I out much consideration, I entered it, and, felt a degree of gratification, rather than after a few preliminary matters, engaged regret, that I could be in reality, as well as myself to its worthy owner. I cannot withplay it, hair-dresser to the
company. hold a tear to his memory : in him I found “Such a vagabond life, however, dis a second father. gusted me, as soon as its novelty had worn “ The family in which I was engaged was off. The poverty behind the scenes was small. I was therefore required to lodge in only known to those who were there. The the house; and to this I felt no disposition spangled dresses of heroes and heroines to object. My employer was a widower, were, almost, the only clothes they wore, who had nearly reached his sixtieth year. and generally covered bodies wretched with Of four children, only one survived, a disease and want. I therefore determined daughter, and she was still from home, at a to leave them, and, with a few pounds in respectable boarding-school. The superin. my pocket, which I had prudently hoarded tendence of the household affairs was comfrom my fortune's wreck, on the anniversary mitted to a skilful matron, while an under of my nineteenth birth-day, I made my final servant was employed in the menial duties : exit from such a life, perfectly cured of these, with a youth, an apprentice, made up theatricals, and journeyed, scarcely knowing the establishment. Here my months passed why or where, towards Bath.
away most happily. Mr. Hartwell was