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no less than £58,754,033, or $284,957,059, reckoning $4.85 to the pound sterling. The actual expenditure is sometimes less than the amount authorized to be raised, but in many instances it exceeds it. The English railways are superior to those in the United States in every respect, as rcgards safety, speed, beauty, and durability. There is, indeed, an appearance of solidity and strength in nearly all their structures which is very rarely seen in ours. Their houses, public buildings, and works seem formed to last for ages; and they are, for this reason, more easily kept in repair. But we are told, and with some truth, that what is economy here would be unbounded extravagance with us. The immense investments in the numerous railways, nearly all of which have been made during the last ten years, have produced little or no embarrassment or fluctuation in the finances of the country. But this would not be so in the United States. For myself, I have no fears that we shall not spend money enough in everything we undertake. We are already following the example of England quite too fast.
Every traveller who has written about this country has spoken with admiration of the beauty of its scenery, the perfection of its roads, and the high state of cultivation which everywhere prevails. But I have found all these things even more perfect than I had anticipated. There is a freshness and a richness in English landscape which exceed description.
CHURCH OF ST. OSWALD.
In coming from Liverpool up to London (a distance of 215 miles), almost every variety of scenery is brought to view. There is some legend of romance or fact in history to be told about every hill, and lake, and stream, and hamlet on our way. We passed old battle-fields, which had been strown with the bodies of past generations; the ruins of ancient castles, which had been stormed to the ground, overgrown with ivy; and through clumps of green trees, rising from the vale, might be seen the gray towers of some old church, built many hundred years ago. When I gazed upon the venerable church of St. Oswald (seven miles from Liverpool)—which is said to be coeval with the establishment of Christianitystanding amid the ruins of the old British city of Cair Guiretguic, where Oswald, king of Northumberland, had his palace, and was slain by Penda, king of Mercia; and a little to the north of it, the Field of Gallows Croft, where Cromwell and his Republicans left the followers of the Duke of Hamilton, who had fled from Preston, dead upon the field, or hanged their prisoners upon the battle-groundit all seemed like some dream of boyhood-only a dream. “ There,” said Lord
as we entered on the Vale Royal Viaduct at the 323 mile post, “ there you can see the spire of Moilton village church, and to the west of it Vale Royal Abbey, the seat of Lord Delamere; and I can tell you a story about the family of Cholmondeley. They were the
patrons of the old Prophet Nixon, whose visions have great credit among the peasantry of the neighbourhood even at the present day. They look upon the viaduct with a sort of ominous dread, regarding it as a fulfilment of one of the old seer's prophecies. He used to say, “That when the rocks near Warrington should visit Vale Royal, the sun of the ancient family of Cholmondeley would go down. The stone from which this viaduct was built did come from Hill Quarry, in Warrington; and the good peasantry have been not a little disturbed by it, though Lord Delamere himself follows his hounds and shoots his grouse with as much unconcern as ever. The peasantry say, too, that Nixon foretold that in the year 1837 England should be without a king; and that year you know we were, in fact, kingless.”
Ten miles more brought us near Nantwich, which is the first place where the Romans manufactured salt in Britain, and where the widow of the great Milton died 114 years ago. We had here a fine view of the woods of Lord Crewe's domains. This old English seat is not at present occupied by its noble owner, and for a very good reason. The late Lord Crewe was addicted to the noble vice of betting, and staked so enormous a sum on a race, that, on losing it, he was obliged to mortgage his estate for the payment. On his death, the present Lord Crewe, with filial chivalry, allowed the remaining portion of the debt to be paid from the rental of the estate, which has made him quite a stranger in
DESCRIPTION OF CROCKFORD'S.
these parts. How much longer this interesting exile will be kept aloof from his paternal acres, probably the mortgagee understands best. I remarked to Lord — that the old sportsman should have enjoyed the race pretty well to compensate for the consequences. “Ah!” he replied, “if he had felt a moment before it as he did a moment after it, he would probably have made a better speculation.”
I then inquired how general the practice of betting was, and what were its effects among the nobility.
Why, sir," said he,“ games and sports of hazard are the disgrace and curse of our nobility. The passion for this kind of excitement takes precedence of all others; and the amount of wealth that is lost, and the embarrassment and ignominy it brings upon their families, are incalculable. They are very punctilious in discharging these debts of honour,' and I have known splendid fortunes entirely ruined in a single night. There is a vast number of gaming-houses in London, but the chief of all is Crockford's; it is in the fashionable part of the town, and is probably the most extensive and splendid gaming establishment in the world : it is supposed that the house and furniture cost at least £100,000 ($500,000). There are but few saloons in London that can compare with Crockford's. The most sumptuous dinners are given at his expense, and the choicest wines that the city can afford are brought on freely, and without charge. Young noblemen who have
just succeeded to their estates, and others who have large expectancies, are sought out and taken by the arm by some “friend' (in the pay of Crockford, and whose business it is to find out such persons), and are invited to dine at this establishment; but not a word is said about cards or dice. They are flattered by the invitation, and accept it. A superb dinner and a liberal supply of choice wines will often inspire a disposition for gambling where it did not exist before. It is a prize worth striving for, to fleece one of these 'flats, as they are called, and a regular plan is concerted to effect it. All the finesse and diplomacy of experienced gamblers is brought into requisition. The intended victim of their snares is treated with the utmost courtesy and attention, and for the first few nights is allowed almost invariably to win. During the interval, Crockford and his agents have informed themselves for how much he is good,' and he has been inspired with confidence in his skill and a deeper passion for play. The road to ruin is made smooth; every obstacle to his progress is removed. All his desires are gratified; he seems to have everything in his own way; his purse is filled with unexpected gold, and he dashes into the fashionable world with exultation and display.
“ This business of gaming is never prosecuted to any great extent, except under the maddening influence of the bottle; and Crockford's wine-cellar, which is the great agent that ensures the success of