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liament that gave them their authority. Indeed, it is astonishing that the ingenuity of the “ select” should have learned so quickly to wield the powers which were given by their "charte.”

The “ gens taillables et corvéables” of some parishes in the metropolis have lately begun to cry out. Meetings have been called, accounts have been overhauled, inflammatory speeches uttered, and resolutions of a most revolutionary tendency adopted by the virtually-represented“ canaille." Chartered rights have been impugnedthe vested interests of vestrymen openly attacked. The aristocratical quarter of St. James's echoes the seditious radicalism of St. Giles's; there are Humes in St. Marylebone—and St. George's, Hanover-square, calculates and calls for reports, and grumbles (proh pudor!) about pence.

The constituted authorities have behaved with a very laudable firmness in most instances. The Jacobin anarchy of St. Paul's Covent Garden produced last year a regular 18th Brumaire. The chivalrous Birnie proceeded to the assembly of the parish, surrounded by the army of Bow-street. Nor was he for a moment guilty of the cowardice of Napoleon; but turned the mal-contents out of the room with the decision of a Cromwell, and a suavitypeculiar to himself. We are sorry to see that Mr. Minshull is unworthy of his colleague; and that, on a late occasion, when the accounts of the parish were laid on the Table of Bow-street, he acted with such violence as to drive Mr. Halls (a rising Sir Richard) off the seat of judicature, and then actually taxed many of the items of the bill, an offence aggravated by his advancing the alarming doctrines that overseers may dine too well, even when the parish pays.

But in the parish of Mary-le-bone, we are sorry to see that the “ Select” have been slightly intimidated by the threats of the “ Tiers Etat," that they would apply to Parliament for redress of grievances, in fact for Reform. And on what plea ? The Examiner of yesterday gives us the items of the Parochial Budget, which it thinks sufficient to insure success for the application to the House. Fear not, oh! Vestry-Let the fellows apply; and they will find that the Bill will plead in your favour with a Legislature whom you have imitated so well, and that their complaints will be treated with as much contempt as--a report of the Finance Committee. It will be urged, of course, that the rule of the “ Select Vestry” has doubled the rates, and involved the parish in a debt of 227,0001, Alas! there is now no Pitt, no Castlereagh, and no Vansittart in that house—but there will not be wanting many on whom their mantle hath fallen, and who will show, to the satisfaction of an immense majority, that a parochial debt is as absolutely necessary to the existence of a parish, as a national debt to that of a nation; and that rates, like taxes, are a proof of the wealth of a parish as of a nation, and, indeed, tend to promote the accumulation of capital.

27th.-We remembered to have been so much touched by Mathews's narrative, in one of his At Home's, of M. Mallet's misfortunes as to his letter, that as soon as we saw a drama announced, founded on that story, we determined we would see it as soon as it appeared. We

accordingly went last night, and, undoubtedly, Mathews's representation of the old Frenchman was as beautiful a piece of acting as we ever beheld. We use the word “beautiful” quite advisedly-for the pathetic part of the performance completely bears away the palm from the ludicrous. There were, in many circumstances, traitsnay, whole passages-as powerfully and deeply touching, as we have ever seen given by any tragedian. It inay seem fantastic to use the term " tragedian," in speaking of Mr. Mathews--but in that division of tragedy which belongs to pathos, we have, from various occasional indications, long been conscious of his excellence, although we never had an opportunity of seeing it so continuously as last night. There is far more scope for this in the new piece than there was in the anecdote, admirably as he recited it. In that he gave only the prominent points; he has now opportunity to auld all the details of feeling, which he does with a skill and delicacy nothing short of admirable. We had seen mentioned by one (we forget which) of the papers, that the strange English in which these passages were expressed, caused laughter to subdue the rising of the softer, feelings. We confess it had no such effect upon us--nor had it upon the audience generally; as was quite apparent, from there being, once or twice, a very visible indication of impatience, at one man in the gallery laughing mal-apropos. There is, indeed, a reciprocal intelligence between the most general and deeply-seated affections of human nature, which, provided their emotion is conveyed, makes it signify but very little what the means of communication may be.

The interest of the part of M. Mallet by no means depends solely on the letter. The uncertainty, which its non-receipt produces, of the fate of his daughter—the gnawing anxiety which arises from that certainty_his retrospect of his own course through life, and of the misfortunes occasioned by public events, wholly beyond his control

- his feelings at his loss of rank and fortune, and at his exile-his pride at having, amid the wreck of all else, “ retained his honour” his alternate rage at what he esteems ill-treatment, and the self-humiliation of an unhappy heart succeeding it—and, at last, his ecstacy at his daughter's restoration to him, and his gratitude to him who has afforded her protection and kindness in her distress, coupled with his prideful joy at being restored to his country, his possessions, and his rank-all these are embodied by Mr. Mathews in a manner which renders the whole as perfect a moral picture of the order of character which the combination of such feelings would produce, as it is possible for our imagination, at least, to conceive.

The piece, in the portion not relating to M. Mallet, is probably too much spun out. There is, however, a very extravagant, though very entertaining sketch (for it is not too much prolonged) of a Nigger Roscius, which is most irresistibly acted by Mr. Yates; and Wilkinson displays his usual dry and forcible humour in the Post-Master. Perhaps what may be called the intermediate parts of the piece might be shortened—that is, provided Mr. Mathews does not really require them for rest. His performance is, we repeat, excellent; and we recommend every one who admires the purely and perfect representation of the more amiable feelings, to go and see it.


“Not a man--nor a boy,
But a Hobbledehoy." --Old Song.

Oh there is a time, a happy time,

When a boy is just half a man;
When ladies may kiss him without a crime,

And flirt with him like a fan:-
When mammas with their daughters will have him alone,

If he only will seem to fear them;
While were he a man or a little more grown,

They never would let him near them.
These, Lilly!—these were the days when you

Were my boyhood's earliest flame,
When I thought it an honour to tie your shoe,

And trembled to hear your name:
When I scarcely ventured to take a kiss,

Tho' your lips seemed half to invite me; But, Lilly! I soon got over this,

When I kissed—and they did not bite me. Oh! these were gladsome, and fairy times,

And our hearts were then in their spring,
When I passed my nights in writing you rhymes,

And my days in hearing you sing :-
And don't you remember your mother's dismay,

When she found in your drawer my sonnet ;
And the beautiful verses I wrote, one day,

On the ribbon that hung from your bonnet ! And the seat we made by the fountain's gush,

Where your task you were wont to say, — And how I lay under the holly-bush,

'Till your governess went away:-
And how, when too long at your task you sat,

Or whenever a kiss I wanted,
I brayed like an ass-or mewed like a cat,

'Till she deemed that the place was haunted ! And do you not, love, remember the days,

When I dressed you for the play-
When I pinnd your 'kerchief, and laced your stays,

In the neatest and tidiest way!-
And do you forget the kiss you gave,

When I tore my hand with the pin ;-
And how you wondered men would not shave

The beards from their horrible chin.
And do you remember the garden wall
I climb'd up every night,

And the racket we made in the servants' hall,

When the wind had put out the light ;When Sally got up in her petticoat,

And John came out in his shirt, And I silenced her with a guinea-note,

And blinded him with a squirt !

And don't you remember the horrible bite

I got from the gard'ner's bitch,
When John let her out of the kennel, for spite,

And she seized me, crossing the ditch :-
And how you wept when you saw my blood,

And numbered me with Love's martyrs, -
And how you helped me out of the mud,

By tying together your garters.
But, Lilly! now I am grown a man,

And those days have all gone by, -
And Fortune may give me the best she can,

And the brightest destiny;
But I would give every hope and joy

That my spirit may taste again,
That I once more were that gladsome boy,

And that you were as young as then,
January 21, 1829.



No. XI.

We are delighted when the authors, or compilers, or editors, or publishers of what are called Juvenile Works, favour us with early copies. We have an especial predilection for this sort of reading. The 'Child's Book' is to us much more amusing than the never-ending fashionable novel; and, moreover, we feel our critical step much more firm upon this ground, than upon the shifting sands of our every-day works of imagination. You of course know, reader, that we are a familyman; for with you we have no secrets: and we entreat you to give no credence to any one of our contributors, to whom we allow great license in the way of friendship, when he pretends to what he, unhappy man, would call the freedom of a bachelor. In this said capacity of the father of a very happy race of little people, we have, of course, great assistance in our critical vocation, when we discourse of the lore that pertains to childhood; and, in truth, before we offer an opinion upon any production of this class, we invariably test it by a jury of matrons. It is that circumstance which makes us feel safe in our seat when the labours of Mr. Harris, or Messrs. Darton, or Messrs. Oliver and Boyd (the Newberys of their age) come before us; and be assured that upon these weighty points we express no opinion which is not the result of most deliberate cogitation.

And do not think that in this particular we throw away our thoughts upon light matters.

When we, good-humoured as we are, say a very civil thing of a new poem, or a romance; and when, there being some matters which we think worthy of blame, we in general leave the busyones of the circulating libraries to find them out, we do little harm: and, moreover, we encourage a very extensive employment of paper.

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makers and compositors, to say nothing of the due encouragement of those who belong to the writing craft. Not that we ever prostitute our opinions to a publisher, or, what requires much greater self-denial, even to our friends. If our readers knew what struggles we sometimes have not to appear too highly to praise those we love-if they knew that we have sometimes even omitted to notice a book


which the public eye is fixed, because the writer is one of us--they would give us credit for more than ordinary integrity in our vocation. But no more of this. We were about to say that we consider it a very serious duty to offer an opinion upon a child's book; for by that opinion some mothers, or others intrusted with education, might be guidedand the expression of a false or careless estimate of the value of a production might thus lead to serious mischief. Upon this point we have no right to trifle. We owe to the public sound opinions, if we can form them—at any rate we shall give them matured ones.

In all matters connected with education, the public taste, or rather feeling, has been gradually setting with a strong current towards the cultivation of the reason, in preference to the imagination. In many respects we cannot doubt the wisdom of this ; for, in looking back upon the children's books of the last age, it would be difficult to find many in which matters of real utility are either systematically taught or incidentally alluded to. And yet, we confess, the reaction has appeared to us in some degree too strong; and we are not quite sure that in rejecting ‘Fairy Tales,' and Tales of the Genii,' and even the pure parts of the · Arabian Nights,' we act quite wisely. In the majority of children the imagination requires to be excited and cultivated quite as much as the reason; for through this excitement and cultivation, under due restraint, all the higher and better aspirations of our intellect must necessarily spring. The old nursery books were, we take it, always distinctly understood by children capable of understanding anything, to be fictions; and thus, in all ages, fables and parables, which are fictions upon the face of them, were held to be a proper medium of juvenile or of popular instruction. We think there is a great deal of philosophy in the playful lines of Cowper, on confabulation; and believe with him that the child who interprets to the letter,

A story of a cock and bull,

Must have a most uncommon skull. The nursery stories are, however, abolished. The child who knows thoroughly well that a wolf does not talk, and, moreover, cannot by possibility dress itself in an old woman's garments, must not hear a word of Little Red Riding Hood;' and 'Cinderella,' with its very charming lessons of meekness and patience, and the punishment of pride, must not be breathed into infant ears, lest it should be believed that fairies ride in chariots drawn by white mice, and that young ladies dance in glass slippers. And what have we got in exchange for the Ogre's' seven-league boots, and the wishing cap of Fortunatus?' Fearful tales of our northern superstitions, which tread so close upon the regions of reality, that the unhappy child with

undoubting mind, Believes the magic wonders,

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