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of Joseph the Second, I should say: Rooms," and going to the Wed* Mon métier à moi est d'être aris. Desday balls at Almack's:" To ob tocrat." I cannot, therefore, be sup- tain this far-sought prize, there is posed to entertain any prejudice no trouble they will not give themagainst a class of persons correspond selves, and to baseness to which ing with that to which I belong in my they will not submit. own country; but while I acknow. Éven mothers of unblemished faledge that there is not a public or a milies, who have gone through life private virtue of which most honour with untainted reputation, if unable able living examples may not be found to gain the envied distinction theinamong the Members of your House selves, will condescend to court the of Lords, what I have already seen patronage of women of very different of English society coinpels de to characters, and to entrust their add, that, in these particulars, they daughters, possess no exclusive privilege. The

“In fower of youth and Beauty's prime." most amiable-the most enlightened, and the most distinguished of to the care of peeresses, whose inyour peers have no pretensions to discretion would have banislied them superiority over innumerable com- long since from all association with moners who might be named; when their own sex, had not their resther we try their respective merits pective lords been conveniently blind by the standard of talent, know- to all their faults. ledge, moral rectitade, polished man- No costs or paitts are spared to mers, landed property, public ser- propitiate these deities of fashion. vices, or even ancient descent. Such Hot-houses are stripped of their being the perfect equality existing pines, and manors of their game'; between the parties in every thing art, manæuvre, intrigue, and solibut rank, is it not the very acme of citation, are all tried in turns; and absurdity that, in the nineteenth when, after various attempts and century, and in the metropolis of frequent disappointments, the fair the freest country of Europe, such candidate obtains at length a lian institution as that of the Argyle cense, signed by one of the noble street Rooms should spring into directresses, authorising her, on the existence, for the sole purpose of payment of seven shillings, to enter separating the nobility from the this sanctum sanctorum, what is the gentry of England ? The pretext pleasure beyond that of having conof excluding improper company is quered opposing difficulties, which, too shallow to impose on any one. in return for all her trouble, she It is true that such is the alleged enjoys ?-She sees quadrilles and motive for which a few high-titled waltzes not at all better danced thian ladies are arrayed with arbitrary they are at five hundred other aspower in choosing the members of seniblies, while these exhibitions are the society; but it is evident from rendered here still more insipid than the lists of the company, so fre- elsewhere by the apathy and sany quently published in The Morning froid of the noble performers. Post, that vice, bowever notorious, She finds little to admire, and if clothed in exalted rank, is never much to disgust :-youth conceited excluded; and modest anassuming and forward ; and age painted, bemerit, however estimable, rarely, it dizened, and frivolous ;-liigh rank ever, admitted. Nobody, who has without high principles, lofty titles not visited this town, can believe contaminated by degrading conduct

, the importance which the difficalty boorish shyness mixed up in the of becoming a member of it has 'same character with excessive pride, given to this institution.

and a scorn for every body else exThe wires and daughters of your pressed by those who have merited most respectable country gentlemen the contempt of all mankind. no sooner arrive in London, than, Satisfied with the honour of baskforgetting all the high feelingsing in the sunshine of fashion, she of conscious virtue and hereditary must not hope to be entertained, pride, they seem anxious, at any and may think herself fortunate if price, to purchase the honour of she retires unquizzed ; for your nobelonging to "The Argyle-streetbility have, I find, the detestable


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habit of attempting to ridicule what- But enough, and perhaps too much,
ever is new to them; and the most on the subjeet of the Argyle-street
elegant female, unless her costume Rooms; yet I cannot drop the topic
is servilely copied from that of one without entreating you, my dear
of the infallible leaders of the so- Darnley, whenever you return to
ciety, rarely passes unhurt through England to exert all your influence
the ordeal of a first appearance at against the growing popularity of this
a Wednesday's Almack's. It hap- establishment.
pens, sometimes, when refused ad- What say you; would it not be
mittance to these balls, the candi- both very wise and very feasible to
date is allowed to purchase a ticket turn the tables on these aristocratic
for the French play (for the latter usurpers, and to form Subscrip-
is considered a minor honour); and tion Coterie," to which no persons
in this case, supposing that she is should be admissible of higher rank
acquainted with our language and than that of baronets and their fa.
has never seen a performance of the milies? If a society of this kind
kind before, she may derive some were established, and so regulated
amusement from the entertainment. that no dishonoured man, and no
But here, again, if she listens too woman of even doubtful character
attentively to the actors, she will should be found on its lists, I think
scarcely escape the lash of her cen- it would prove a dangerous rival to
sorising neighbours ; for though that of the Argyle-street Rooms; and
your leaders of the ton insist on there can be no doubt that, among
having French plays exhibited be- the numerous well born, well edu-
fore them, very few are qualified to cated, and wealthy commoners who
enjoy them; and all are so worn frequent London, so ample a supply
down by the labours of a life of of taste, beauty, elegance, and re-
pleasure, that to appear interested finement might be obtained, that no-
in what is going forward on the body would miss the Peers, Right
stage proves the person, in whom Honourables, and Honourables, who
these feelings are yet visible, to be would be excluded by the rules of
a novice in their circles.

the institution.
A propos, I suppose you have I speak with warmth on this sub-
heard of the trick lately played on ject, perhaps with greater than it
this noble society by one of our intrinsically deserves, but you know
provincial actors. Tempted by the I am an enthusiastic admirer of your
offer of a salary at least twenty times Constitution, in the preservation of
greater than that which he received · which all mankind are interested ;
at home, he consented to come over and manners are so intimately con-
to England, and to appear on the nected with laws and institutions,
boards of the Argyle-street Rooms. that, if the nobility are to be al-
In performing a new proverb, the lowed to dictate in private society,
words of which he had carelessly they may by degrees arrogate to
learned, he forgot his part ; and, themselves the right also of assuming
trusting partly to his own impudence a superiority in the discussion of
and partly to the ignorance and in your public affairs—little suited to
attention of his noble auditors, he a mixed form of government. I know
said to the female comedian with this would not be submitted to by
whom he was carrying on the dia- the nation at Jarge ; but if such a
logue (while he spoke with increased spirit is not checked at first, it may
rapidity): Je me suis oublié—-n'im- cost you no little trouble to subdue
porte :-continuons toujours de jaser. it afterwards.
Ces Messieurs GoD DAMNS ne com-

Adieu. prennent pas un mot de ce que nous disons :-il suffit que nous parlons,"




O cheerful, darling London! hail once more to the industry and bustle of thy active inhabitants: welcome once again the sight of thy dirty streets, windows, and brick houses! Here may I rest from all my cares on this side the grave; and, amid thy busy baants, find once more social converse and food for the mind.

The Hermit-ess in London sends greeting to the Hermit of London :

begin in their own families to counThey say great wits jump; teract prejudice, pouts, tears, quarpow, long before I saw your work, relling, and all those agreeables upon I had adopted my present desig- contradiction to favourite points not nation : you have jumped first easily to be given up. into print; and I, you see, step by

Where families have good sense step, in the European Magazine, am enough to set out right at first, and jumping after you. What effect our bring their children up properly, it appearance may have upon the pub- is easy and pleasant work, as in lic time must shew.

Conversation II : but where things If I had not admired your work, have got to a head in the wrong line, I should not have followed your and nothing but ruin, they cannot example; and though I had some shut their eyes to, with the Gazette notion that the following conversa- full in sight, the work of reformations migbt be useful in the sphere tion

is hard enough. of life I thought many were jump- Therefore, in the following dising out of, who had better remain courses I have endeavoured pleawhere they were, I know not that I. santly to slew people how much they should have had courage to have have it in their power to alter things, sent them to the press, if I had not if they knew but how to set about met with your example to have it; for unfortunately most people leaned upon.

have an exceeding aptitude for doing You have most ingeniously shown right in a wrong manner. I have the manners of high life, and very opened a way for good sense to act deservedly, ridiculed many of the upon. As example is more effectual follies of it. I humbly take up a than dull, dry declamation, or posidifferent class of society ; but one of tive authority exerted with passion the most useful and necessary, and a and rigour, I have wished to conIruly respectable class whilst they vince people how much happier they continue in it, and do not attempt would be in the straight-forward to jumble those things together that path of duty and propriety ; that the real good of society never meant keeping within their proper line of should be combined.

life will ensure them comfort, pleaThe honest, respectable trades- sure, and the true esteem and resman has his pleasures and his com. pect their neighbours would award forts; but they do not, and ought them; by which they would escape 'not to be those of a class greatly the many envyings, bickerings, and superior to himself :-- like your all those concatenations of scandal, * Fancy Balls,” they are ridiculous slander, and ill-will that so plenti. but where they ought to be, and are fully abound in every sphere of life. suited to.

For though others are doing the very Now there are many hundreds, ( selfsame things, living a life their may say, of people who find fault circumstances do not allow, yet with, and see the inevitable conse- they can censure most severely all quences attending thus heteroge- their neighbours and acquaintances neously mixing things which should who are doing only what they are ever be kept separate ; such as Miss, doing themselves. But when people coming from her piano behind a go on in a right path, give no heed little dirty shop to serve treacle, to foolish reinarks, or faslıionable soap and candles, &c. &c., yet know counsels to ruin themselves with the Dot how to stem' the torrent, how to utmost expedition, like the good Eur. Mag. March, 1823.


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man in the Scriptures, in time they communicate to others, by which will find “ Even their enemies shall those things which would have be at peace with them.”

broken the hearts of many, drove Did those things only ruin their others to despair, or have soured circumstances, and briog them to de- their tempers for the rest of their served distress, why let them smart lives, have rendered me a reasonable, for it, and Jament for the rest of rational mortal; I do not add reli. their lives that, instead of rising in gious, for fear it should be called the world by such genteel conduct, cant—but content with what Prothey have toppled themselves down vidence has still graciously accorded to a more inferior station than that me; so that you cannot live more which Providence had assigned them. comfortably on the shady side of PallBut the mischief they have done Mall, than your Sister Hermit-ess their souls, and the souls of their does on the sunny side of a street children, and all belonging to them, very little further from St. James's is the most irreparable, and the Palace. most shocking to good hearts to see I was born and bred amongst the and to lament-such errors, too higher circles, and have never felt often, never to be repaired; for “at home” in society since I have when once the mind and heart are left them; but that did not depend vitiated by false allurements, it is upon myself. And I have fully easier to repair even a broken fortuné proved what Dr. Johnson said to than to repair a mind thus ruined Dr. Maxwell, when he lived near by fatal indulgencies, false views of Twickenham, about his neighbourthis world, and, alas! no views at hood: “ Sir, they have lost the all of another!

civility of tradesmen, and not acThese are the sentiments which have quired the manners of gentlemen.” actuated my heart and mind to pur- -So amongst those I have persue this purpose in these discourses. force mixed with, and many who The good that may be done, as the have thought themselves highly acworthy Quakers say, “ We must complished and most singularly fine leave:” the wish to be of service to--they have been as rude as bears my fellow-creatures is the ground. impertinent as monkies—as ridicuwork I have laid ; if I have failed lous as — ; in short, there is in the superstructure, it is from a nothing in nature to compare them want of ability, not from want of with; for every creature but man is good intention.

what they were created to be, and As you have chosen to give a kind keep to their station. of account of yourself to the pub- I do not ask you to come and see lic, perhaps I ought to do the same : me, Brother Hermit, lest, as Dr. I may therefore, Brother Hermit, Johnson says, I might find you a for what I know, be your elder sis- very different being from your book : ter. The experience of a tolerable and Horace Walpole, you know, adlong life, and some very intolerable vises never to be acquainted with an vicissitudes in that life, have been the author till he be dead. So no more source from which my reflections at present, dear Brother Hermit, have arisen. The receipt by which from your loving sister, I have overcome all my difficulties, Tue HerMIT-ESS IN LONDON. misfortunes, &c., I here wish to



Hermit-ess and Friend.

Friend. So, Mrs. Hermit, good charming out of the way places, morrow to you; how I have laughed where no one can get to them, unless at your note! And so you are come by a chance they have lost their way, to Hermitize in London?

and then a Hermit is popped upon Mrs. Hermit. Even so.

to set them right. Friend. And yet most Hermits Mrs. H. Ah! those sorts of Herlive in caves and rocks, and such mits are misanthropists, and wish to

avoid their species: now I only wish and lived upon chaff.–So I was perto avoid the ridiculous and trouble- suaded, secondly, to this fine boardsome ; and you can do that no where ing scheme ! so completely as in London.

Friend. As I have all my life Friend. Truly so; for if one has profited more by your experience, a dear friend in London who do not my dear friend, than my own; and, visit in our circle, we shall never find hearing that you had adopted boardhim if we do not purposely go look ing, I was tempted to follow your for him. But instead of hermitizing, example, and was going to write to I heard that, for the sake of society, you in consequence;—was it at Bath, you were going to board in a large or near it? family.

Mrs. H. Oh, no; it was a great Mrs. H. Yes; and it is that very way from thence-recommended to circumstance which has driven me me very strongly, with all the reinto Hermitizing, as you call it. quisites I wanted. I was to be ac· Friend. How so?

commodated with every particular Mrs. H. I was persuaded to try to my mind, and of course to pay a the boarding scheme, and I never very handsome salary. However, gave way to the persuasions of other having lived long enough not to people that I had not cause to re- believe implicitly from other peopent it.

ple's feelings, I 'luckily agreed for Friend. But well-how was it? one month's trial-and off I set ;-I

Mrs. H. Having; as you know, arrived ;-and, like one of the prolost all my dearest connections by phets of old, I sat in astonishment various means, those that still tar- and silence for the first seven days. ried on earth dispersed wide as the Friend. Mercy on us! could that poles asunder. I was first persuaded be you! (Laughing.) to settle at Bath, having folks I Mrs. H. Yes, it was identical I, knew there : to Bath I went, where and me myself I. (Laughs.) But, I found every body living in what instead of laughing, I was ready to they called pleasure and society; cry my heart out for vexation, for but what with their magnificent having taken such a long journey, burries of dressings-the rooms—the useless and expensive, and to get balls—the private great parties, &c. amongst such a crew! How I conI saw none I knew but by snatches soled myself it was not at sea—or of minutes and half hours: On all going perhaps a delightful Jong these things I put an absolute veto voyage to India; it is but for å for engaging in myself; I had had month, and, if I can contrive it, for enough of that sort of life to be less, and then good bye to ye gentlelong sick of it, and it was only for folks! the sake of others I ever gave into Friend. Prithee let's know what it. Now being independent of your land-crew,however, consisted of. such trammels, I was determined to Mrs. H. Imprimis. The master of emerge, and, at my time of life, to the house, an absolute gourmande, go no where but where I liked; so that he could eat and drink of the and where it was I thought proper bestin the cheapest way, by boarding for an old woman only to appear. others at high prices; his wife of Old men have or take a licence to be the same opinion and propensities; ridiculous to the last stile or gate of his custom was to be out all day dilife they arrive at; but the dignityverting himself with all the country of my own sex, and their propriety sports, genteel and vulgar, and of conduct, especially in elder life, also their votaries—to come home, I have preached up in vain for many to eat, and to guzzle—to holla and years, and to many congregations, laugh-get half tipsey, and finish therefore I wished to show them in his evening with cards and a hot my own practice. Thus there was

şupper: nothing open to me as rational in Madame was enjoying herself all public but the theatre or a cuncert, day, up to her elbows in grease and yet I could not live there every in cooking in the kitchen with her night in the week you know. If I maids, the only company she was called cards society, I might have fit for. The boarders were left to

1 thrashed away like my neighbours, entertain themselves till dinner

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