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ter. I never say what isn't true, I bought these cards two years ago—best cards you ever played with. I never buy inferior articles -got them in a lump-two hundred and fifty packs-told you soyou may count 'em, Dubs—I see you laughing, Tim-you may laugh -count 'em as you would benefit tickets- eh-Tim-pooh, poohdon't tell me,
. Whether we did or did not play cards I really do not now recol. lect ; I remember laughing until I almost cried at some delightful imitations of the action. We had anchovy toasts and broiled bones, and all the incentives to dissipation, in which we speedily engaged ; punch, and all other destructive and delightful drinks, were introduc. ed ; the actor became more and more agreeable, for he was not only the most agreeable of actors, but the most intellectual of all comedians I ever met with ; the editor seemed pacified ; Dubs was delighted ; and the poet concluded the sports of the evening by pulling off his wig, and throwing it at the inimitable favourite of the theatre. Then all became noise and confusion, mirth and mystification ; and when I opened my eyes in the morning, I found myself as thirsty as a crocodile, with a tremendous headache, and pains in all my joints, the sure result of excess committed in my early life.
Mr. Hill had the entrée to both Houses of Parliament, the theatres, and almost all places of public resort. He was to be met with at the private view of the Royal Academy, and every kind of exhibition. So especially was he favoured, that it has been recorded by a wag that, when asked whether he had seen the new comet, he replied · Pooh, pooh! I was present at the private view !'
About the year 1810, having sustained a severe loss by a speculation in indigo, he retired from business upon the remains of his property to his chambers in the Adelphi. In his earlier days he joined in some of the jokes and hoaxes practised by Mathews and others. We subjoin the following account, written by himself, of a frolic in which Mathews represented at an inn at Dartford a Spanish Ambassador. He called it his . Recollections of His Excellency the Spanish Ambassador's visit to Captain Selby, on board the Prince Regent, one of his Majesty's frigates stationed at the Nore, by the Interpreter.'
* The party hired a private coach, of large capacity, and extremely showy, to convey them to Gravesend as the suite of Mathews who personated an ambassador from Madrid to the English Government. Four horses, richly caparisoned, were attached to the carriage, driven by two smart lads, who were intrusted with the secret by the payment of a liberal fee. The drivers proved faithful to their promise. When they arrived at the posting-house at Dartford, one of the drivers dismounted, and communicated to the innkeeper the character of the nobleman (Mathews) inside the coach, and that his mission to London had been attended with the happiest result. The report spread through Dartford like wildfire, and in about ten minutes the carriage (having by previous arrangement been detained) was surrounded by at least two hundred people, all with cheers and gratulations anxious to gain a view of the important personage, who, decked out with nearly twenty different stage-jewels, representing sham orders, bowed with obsequious dignity to the assembled multitude. It was settled that the party should dine and sleep at the Falcon Tavern, Gravesend, where a sumptuous dinner was provided for his excellency and suite. Previously, however, to dinner-time, and to heighten the joke, they promenaded the town and its environs, followed by a large congregation of men, women, and child.
ren at a respectful distance, all of whom preserved the greatest deco
The interpreter (Mr. Hill) seemed to communicate and explain to the ambassador whatever was of interest in their perambulation. On their return to the inn the crowd gradually dispersed. The dinDer was served in a sumptuous style, and two or three additional waiters, dressed in their holiday clothes, were hired for the occasion.
" The ambassador, by the medium of his interpreter, asked for two soups, and a portion of four different dishes of fish, with oil, vinegar, mustard, pepper, salt, and sugar, in the same plate, which apparently to the eyes of the waiters, and their utter astonishment and surprise, he eagerly devoured. The waiters had been cautioned by one of the suite not to notice the manner in which His Excellency ate his din. ner, lest it should offend him, and their occasional absence from the room gave Mathews or his companions an opportunity of depositing the incongruous medley in the ashes under the grate-a large fire having been purposely provided. The ambassador continued to mingle the remaining viands during dinner in a similar heterogeneous way. The chamber in which His Excellency slept was brilliantly illuminated with wax.candles, and in one corner of the room a table was fitted up, under the direction of one of the party, to represent an oratory, with such appropriate apparatus as could be best procured. A private sailing-barge was moored at the stairs by the fountain early the next morning, to convey the ambassador and his attendants to the Prince Regent at the Nore. The people again assembled in vast numbers to witness the embarkation. Carpets were placed on the stairs to the water's edge, for the state and comfort of His Excellen cy; who, the instant he entered the barge, turned round, and bade a grateful farewell to the multitude, at the same time placing his hand upon his bosom, and taking off his huge cocked hat. The captain of the barge, a supremely illiterate, good humoured cockney, was introduced most ceremoniously to the ambassador, and purposely placed on his right hand. It is impossible to describe the variety of absurd and extravagant stratagems practised upon the credulity of the captain by Mathews, and with consummate success, until the barge arrived in sight of the King's frigate, which, by a previous understanding, recognised the ambassador by signals. The officers were all dressed in full uniform, and prepared to receive him. When on board, the whole party threw off their disguises, and were entertained by Captain Selby with a splendid dinner, to which the lieutenants of the ship were invited. After the banquet, Mathews in his own character kept the company in a high state of merriment by his incomparable mimic powers for more than then ten hours, incorporating with admirable effect the entire narrative of the Journey to Gravesend, and his' Acts and Deeds,' at the Falcon. Towards the close of the feast, and about half an hour before the party took their departure, in order to give the commander and his officers a 'touch of his quality,' Mathews resumed his ambassadorial attire, and the captain of the barge, still in ignorance of the joke, was introduced into the cabin, between whom and His Excellency an indescribable scene of rich burlesque was enacted. The party left the ship for Gravesend at four o'clock in the morning, Mathews, in his habit as he lived,' with the addition only of a pair of spectacles, which he had a peculiar manner of wearing to conceal his identity, even from the most acute observer. Mathews again resumed his station by the side of the captain, as a person who had left the frigate for a tempo. rary purpose. The simple captain recounted to Mathews all that the Spanish ambassador had enacted, both in his transit from Gravesend to the Nore, and whilst he (the captain) was permitted to join the festive board in the cabin, with singular fidelity, and to the great amusement of the original party, who during the whole of this ambassadorial excursion never lost their gravity, except when they were left to themselves. They landed at Gravesend, and from thence departed for London, luxuriating upon the hoax until they reached home, and for many a year after.
“ Whatever Mathews did in this way must always in description appear comparatively tame. All who recollect his performances on his own stage must freely admit this. To be fully appreciated, it was necessary to hear and see him ; but the outline given of this adventure will be easily filled up by the imagination of those who knew him. The pen can but mark the field of action, and place him in the front of the battle."
Mr. Hill* was the youngest looking man of his age we ever remember. So remarkable was this, that by one of his facetious friends it was declared that the registry of his birth was destroyed during the great fire of London; and the late Mr. James Smith would hu. morously relate his adventures as Goldstick in the reign of Elizabeth. These good-natured jokes Mr. Hill would enjoy ; indeed, he afected to keep his age a secret. He was a remarkably early riser, and perhaps to this cause may be attributed the cheerful and
age that he enjoyed.
The proximate cause of his death was a severe cold taken in a damp bed at Rouen during the autumn, from which he never quite rallied. About a fortnight ago he had a fall in his room, and broke his arm ; supposed by some to have been in consequence of a fit. This we are assured was not the fact. He died without a struggle, breathing his last as if falling into a tranquil slumber. His death was but the quiet repose of exhausted nature, her works were worn out, and ceased to act. His physician's remark to him was do nothing more for you—I have done all I can. I cannot cure age.”
Thus has passed away from us one of the most cheerful and kindest-hearted of men. Of him it may be truly said that in proportion as he was known so he was beloved. Our good old friend, farewell!
BY HAL WILLIS.
o bel amour, o bel amour.-LA GRISETTE. In former times bells were deemed a protection against the approach or influence of evil spirits; and no wonder, for there is a soothing charm in tintinnabulary music which seldom fails in at least dissipating low spirits.
What an electric effect has the dinner-bell on the gastronomic sym. pathies of the hungry guest !—what pleasing visions arise and Hoat before his fancy! Like race-horses on the turf, every one starts for the -plate ; and, although no one runs the risk of endangering his own neck, the joints of his host suffer materially. It is really a substantial
* He is said to have been the original whence Mr. Poole drew his humorous cha. racter, Paul Pry; if so, the harmless foible of Mr. Hill has been very highly coloured by the dramatist.
sound. Verily the whole company looks like a sailing-match, in which every guest is a-cutter !
Who has not listened to the sweet tinkling of the horse-bells on a calm summer's evening, as the heavy waggon crawls like a moving mountain along some pleasant green lane? Cynics will allow that, in this instance, there is beauty even in bells—upon the wain !
Reader hast thou never heard the tinkling of the sheep-bells on the South Downs? If thou hast not, go thither, and thou wilt confess the music is as sweet-as the mutton. The hills are old, madam, and past your age ;* but the lambs have your innocence and sportireness. But here the comparison ends, and you behold the differ. ence between lamb and—ewe !
Apropos of sheep, we remember a young Frenchman once ask. ing, with great simplicity, if bell-wether were the English of beau tems!
Blue-bells are pretty ; but somehow they invariably remind us of blue-stockings, whom we frequently wish were dumb-belles, that our arms might be exercised in lieu of our patience!
The dustman's bell is, perhaps, the only one among the bell.fry that is discordant to our ears. There is an abrupt coarseness—a harsh clamorousness—in the expression of its large, lolling tongue, that affrights us from our morning dreams. There is as much dif. ference in its 'ring' from the pleasant dinner-bell, as there is be. tween the ' wedding.ring' and the ‘ring pugilistic.
• What a comparison! Can any two things be more dissimilar ?' Excuse us, gentle reader, they are not so widely different as you imagine. Are not both rings formed for the same purpose ?-an engagement between two parties !
0! what a pleasing change is rung upon the muffin-bell and the
The first is as merry as the chirping cricket on the hearth, singing a duet with the tea-kettle.
Our memory instantly recalls Cowper's beautiful lines, and we wheel the sofa round with a feeling of cosy comfort.
The 'man of letters' has exchanged his ' rap.rap!' for a bell; and belles and beaux are laid under the contribution of two “raps't for the conveyance of their billets.
The lover places his scented billet-doux, and the man of belleslettres his epistle to his correspondent in his hands, with the assurance of safety and despatch.
Multiform and welcome is the sound to all but the tardy procras. tinator ; to whom it is really an alarm-bell !
Maids run up the area-steps, like “spirits summoned from the vasty deep,' with their thimble.sealed letters to their cousins,' at the signal, and with a tremulous hand present the tributary penny through the railing, fearful of their mistress's 'railing' should they be observed.
From all bell ringers the postman certainly bears the bell.'
* Pasturage.-Printer's Devil.
+ Rap, a halfpenny. "He has not a rap !' is a received phrase, and is as well understood in St. James's as in the less elegant St. Giles's.
CEMETERIES AND CHURCHYARDS. A VISIT TO
BY WILLJAM MUDFORD, ESQ.
I was invited by a friend to accompany him to the cemetery at Kensal Green, in order that I might be converted, and made to give up
certain notions I entertained touching the rather cockneyish sentimentalities which we now hear about pretty, ornamental, nay even beautiful, places for the dead. Death and prettiness! Mouldering bones, shrouds, and coffins, associated with the ornamental! Beauty and the grave! What ill-assorted images! What a mockery of all that is, and pretends to be real, in broken hearts! What a violation of all those tender recollections of the departed, whose well-springs are gloom, and silence, and solitude! However, as I had never seen a cemetery, never visited Père la Chaise, but had only read of its fripperies and frivolities; and as my friend's character, I knew, partook of many of the most delicate and refined sensibilities of our nature, I imagined there must be something in these fashionable collections of graves and gravestones, which gave them
a decided preference over the CHURCHYARD—that word of magic power to summon thonghts that make the heart ache, fill the startled fancy with fears that carry us back to our nursery and school-days, or bring thronging into the memory a thousand thrilling scenes upon which the poet, the painter, the novelist, has conferred the immortality of genius.
The CEMETERY—the CHURCHYARD! Pronounce the two words write them-look at them. How cold, how unmeaning the one; how rich in varied recollections the other! What a spell lies in it! what deep, enduring feelings belong to it. Fancy Gray writing his Elegy 'in a cemetery' instead of 'a Country Churchyard ! Fancy Shakspeare saying, it is now the very witching time of night, when cemeteries yawn,' &c. Fancy even a ghost taking its nocturnal airing among the trim walks and gay parterres of Kensal Green! The very fact that parties of pleasure are made to visit cemeteries, stamps their nature. Who ever heard of a party of pleasure going to promenade a churchyard? But I am anticipating myself, and letting the reader anticipate me.
Well, —having put ourselves into 'Hieron's Cemetery Omnibus,' which starts from the Crown Inn, Edgeware Road, at ten, three, five, and nine o'clock, (ours was the five o'clock start,) we rattled along a road once pretty and picturesque, but now deformed with brick and mortar, and were set down in due course at the cemetery gates. I passed through them as I would have entered the Zoological Gardens, with my mind prepared for amusement. The exte. rior has a very imposing architectural appearance, and impresses the spectator with the agreeable expectation of a charming saunter, especially on a fine summer evening like that which we had selected. You enter the grounds, and the eye is delighted with sunny slopes, flower-beds, here and there structures that look as if they were raised for ornament, and long lines of upright stones bordering the