페이지 이미지
PDF
ePub

the gate. I recognize my friends, my | Magazine " is taken in in that house I enemies, in countless cages. I enter- know. In fact I have seen it there. tained the eagle, the vulture, the old In fact I have read it there. In fact billy-goat, and the black-pated, crim- I have written it there. In a word, son-necked, blear-eyed, baggy, hook- the house to which I allude is mine beaked old marabou stork yesterday the editor's private residence,” to at dinner; and when Bob's aunt came which, in spite of prayers, entreaties, to tea in the evening, and asked him commands, and threats, authors, and what he had seen, he stepped up to ladies especially, will send their comher gravely, and said

munications, although they won't First I saw the white bear, understand that they injure their

then I saw the black, own interests by so doing; for how Then I saw the camel with is a man who has his own work to a hump upon his back.

do, his own exquisite inventions to Chorus of Then I saw the camel with form and perfect - Maria to rescue Children. a HUMP upon his back!

from the unprincipled Earl - the Then I saw the gray wolf, atrocious General to confound in his

with mutton in his maw; own machinations — the angelic Dean Then I saw the wambat waddle in the straw;

to promote to a bishopric, and so Then I saw the elephant with forth - how is a man to do all this,

his waving trunk, under a hundred interruptions, and Then I saw the monkeys

mercy, how unpleasantly keep his nerves and temper in that they-smelt!"

just and equable state in which they There. No one can beat that piece the critical office? As you will send

ought to be when he comes to assume of wit, can he, Bob? And so it is all here, ladies, I must tell you you have over; but we had a jolly time, whilst

a much worse chance than if you foryou were with us, hadn't we? Pre- ward your valuable articles to Cornsent my respects to the doctor; and I hill. Here your papers arrive, at hope, my boy, we may 'spend another dinner-time, we will say. Do you merry Christmas next year.

suppose that is a pleasant period, and that we are to criticise you between

the ovum and malum,' between the ON À CHALK-MARK ON THE soup and the dessert? I have touched, DOOR.

I think, on this subject before. Í

say again, if you want real justice On the doorpost of the house of a shown you, don't send your papers to friend of mine, a few inches above the the private residence. At home, for lock, is a little chalk-mark, which instance, yesterday, having given some sportive boy in passing has prob- strict orders that I was to receive noably. scratched on the pillar. The body, “except on business,” do you door-steps, the lock, handle, and so suppose a smiling young Scottish forth, are kept decently cnough; but gentleman, who forced himself into this chalk-mark, I suppose some three my study, and there announced himinches out of the housemaid's beat, self as agent of a Cattle-food Comhas already been on the door for pany, was received with pleasure ? more than a fortnight, and I wonder There, as I sat in my arm-chair, supwhether it will be there whilst this pose he had proposed to draw a paper is being written, whilst it is at couple of my teeth, would I have the printer's, and, in fine, until the been pleased ? I could have throttled month passes

over ? I wonder that agent. I dare say the whole of whether the servants in that house that day's work will be found tinged will read these remarks about the with a ferocious misanthropy, occachalk-mark? That “The Cornhillsioned by my clever young friend's

servants

as

intrusion. Cattle-food, indeed! As the maid of the still-room to beg the if beans, oats, warm mashes, and a housekeeper to give out a few more ball, are to be pushed down a man's lumps of sugar, as his Majesty has throat just as he is meditating on the none for his coffee, which probably is great social problem, or (for I think getting cold during the negotiation. it was my epic I was going to touch In our little Brentfords we are all up) just as he was about to soar to kings, more or less. There are the height of the empyrean ! orders, gradations, hierarchies, every

Having got my cattle-agent out of where. In your house and mine the door, I resume my consideration there are mysteries unknown to us. of that little mark on the doorpost, I am not going into the horrid old which is scored up as the text of the question of " followers." I don't present little sermon; and which I mean cousins from the country, lovehope will relate, not to chalk, nor to stricken policemen, or gentlemen in any of its special uses or abuses (such mufti from Knightsbridge Barracks; as milk, neck-powder, and the like), but people who have an occult right but to servants. Surely ours might on the premises; the uncovenanted remove that unseemly little mark. servants of the house; gray women Suppose it were on my coat, might I who are seen at evening with baskets not request its removal? I remem- flitting about area-railings; dingy ber, when I was at school, a little shawls which drop you furtive courtecareless boy, upon whose forehead an sies in your neighborhood; demure ink-mark remained, and was perfectly little Jacks, who start up from behind recognizable for three weeks after its boxes in the pantry. Those outsiders first appearance. May I take any wear Thomas's crest and livery, and notice of this chalk-stain on the fore-call him “ Sir;” those silent women head of my house? Whose business address the female is it to wash that forehead ? and ought “Mum," and courtesy before them, I to fetch a brush and a little hot squaring their arms over their wretchwater, and wash it off myself? ed lean aprons. Then, again, those

Yes. But that spot removed, why servi servorum have dependants in the not come down at six, and wash the vast, silent, poverty-stricken world doorsteps? I dare say the early ris- outside your comfortable kitchen fire, ing and exercise would do me a great in the world of darkness, and hunger, deal of good. The housemaid, in and miserable cold, and dank, flagged that case, might lie in bed a little cellars, and huddled straw, and rags, in later, and have her tea and the morn- which pale children are swarming. It ing paper brought to her in bed : then, may be your beer (which runs with of course, Thomas would expect to great volubility) has a pipe or two be helped about the boots and knives; which communicates with those dark cook about the saucepans, dishes, and caverns where hopeless anguish pours what not;, the lady's maid would the groan, and would scarce scalight want somebody to take the curl- but for a scrap or two of candle which papers out of her hair, and get her has been whipped away from your bath ready. You should have a set worship's kitchen. Not many years of servants for the servants, and these ago - I don't know whether before under-servants should have slaves to or since that white mark was drawn wait on them. The king commands on the door — a lady occupied the the first lord in waiting to desire the confidential place of housemaid in this second lord to intimate to the gentle-“ private residence,” who brought a man usher to request the page of the good character, who seemed to have antechamber to entreat the groom of a cheerful temper, whom I used to hear the stairs to implore John to ask the clattering and bumping overhead or captain of the buttons to desire l on the stairs long before daylight

tress.

there, I say, was poor Camilla, scour entirely frank and cordial ; that the ing the plain, trundling and brush- lad is familiar with the man who can ing, and clattering with her pans and have him flogged; never shirks his exbrooms, and humming at her work. ercises; never gets other boys to do his Well, she had established a smuggling verses ; never does other boys' verses ; communication of beer over the area never breaks bounds; never tells fibs frontier.. This neat-handed Phyllis - I mean the fibs permitted by schoused to pack up the nicest baskets of lastic honor? Did I know of a boy my provender, and convey them to who pretended to such a character, I somebody outside - I believe, on my would forbid my scapegraces to keep conscience, to some poor friend in dis- company with him.' Did I know a

Camilla was consigned to her schoolmaster who pretended to believe doom. She was sent back to her in the existence of many hundred friends in the country; and when she such boys in one school at one time, was gone we heard of many of her I would set that man down as a baby faults. She expressed herself, when in knowledge of the world. “Who displeased, in language that I shall was making that noise ?” “I don't not repeat. As for the beer and know, sir." And he knows it was meat, there was no mistake about the boy next him in school. them. But après ? Can I have the “ Who was climbing over that wall ?” heart to be very angry with that poor " I don't know, sir.” And it is in jade for helping another poorer jade the speaker's own trousers, very out of my larder ? on your honor likely, the glass bottle-tops have left and conscience, when you were boy, their cruel scars. And so with serand the apples looked temptingly vants. “ Who ate up the three over Farmer Quarringdon's hedge, pigeons which went down in the did you never ? When there pigeon-pie at breakfast this mornwas a grand dinner at home, and you | ing?”“O dear me ! sir, it was were sliding, with Master Bacon, up John, who went away last month!” and down the stairs, and the dishes -or, “I think it was Miss Mary's came out, did you ever do such a canary-bird, which got out of the thing as just to ? - Well, in cage, and is so fond of pigeons, it many and many a respect servants are never can have enough of them.” like children. They are under dom- Yes, it was the canary-bird; and ination. They are subject to re- Eliza saw it; and Eliza is ready to proof, to ill temper, to petty exactions vow she did. These statements are and stupid tyrannies not seldom. not true; but please don't call them They scheme, conspire, fawn, and are lies. This not lying; this is voting hypocrites. "Little boys should not with your party. You must back loll on chairs." “Little girls should your own side. The servants’-hall be seen, and not heard ;” and so stands by the servants’-hall against forth. Have we not almost all learnt the dining-room. The schoolboys these expressions of old foozles : and don't tell tales of each other. They uttered them ourselves when in the agree not to choose to know who has square-toed state? The Eton mas made the noise, who has broken the ter, who was breaking a lance with window, who has eaten up the piour Paterfamilias of late, turned on geons, who has picked all the plovers'. Paterfamilias, saying, He knows not eggs out of the aspic, how it is that the nature and exquisite candor of liqueur brandy of Gledstane's is in well-bred English boys. Exquisite such porous glass bottles — and so fiddlestick's end, Mr. Master! Do forth. Suppose Brutus had a footyou mean for to go for to tell us that man, who came and told him that the the relations between young gentle-butler drank the Curaçoa, which of men and their schoolmasters are these servants would you dismiss ?

the butler, perhaps, but the footman kles of Pincot the lady's-maid, and certainly.

little Miss scolding Martha, who waits No. If your plate and glass are up five-pair of stairs in the nursery. beautifully bright, your bell quickly Little Miss, Tommy, papa, mamma, answered, and Thomas ready, neat, you all expect from Martha, from Pinand good-humored, you are not to cot, from Jenkins, from Jeames, obexpect absolute truth from him. The sequious civility and willing service. very obsequiousness and perfection of My dear, good people, you can't have his service prevents truth. He may truth too. Suppose you ask for your be ever so unwell in mind or body, newspaper, and Jeames says, "I'm and he must go through his service reading it, and jest beg not to be dishand the shining plate, replenish the turbed ;” or suppose you ask for a spotless glass, lay the glittering fork - can of water, and he remarks, “ You never laugh when you yourself or your great, big, 'ulking fellar, ain't you big guests joke — be profoundly atten- enough to bring it hup yoursulf? tive, and yet look utterly impassive what would your feelings be? Now, exchange a few hurried curses at the if you made similar proposals or redoor with that unseen slavey who quests to Mr. Jones next door, this is ministers without, and with you be the kind of answer Jones would give perfectly calm and polite. If you are you. You get truth habitually from ill, he will come twenty times in an equals only; so my good Mr. Holyhour to your bell; or leave the girl shade, don't talk to me about the ha of his heart — his mother, who is bitual candor of the young Etonian going to America - his dearest friend, of high birth, or I have my own opinwho has come to say farewell - his ion of your candor or discernment lunch, and his glass of beer just fresh- when you do. No. Tom Bowling is ly poured out - any or all of these, the soul of honor and has been true if the door-bell rings, or the master to Black-eyed Syousan since the last calls out “ THOMAS ” from the hall. time they parted at Wapping Old Do you suppose you can expect ab- Stairs ; but do you suppose Tom is solute candor from a man whom you perfectly frank, familiar, and abovemay order to powder his hair ? As board in his conversation with Adbetween the Rev. Henry Holyshade miral Nelson, K.C.B.? There are and his pupil, the idea of entire un secrets, prevarications, fibs, if you reserve is utter bosh ; so the truth as will, between Tom and the Admiral between you and Jeames or Thomas, - between your crew and their capor Mary the housemaid, or Betty the tain. I know I hire a worthy, clean, cook, is relative, and not to be demand agreeable, and conscientious male or ed on one side or the other. Why, female hypocrite, at so many guineas respectful civility is itself a lie, which a year, to do so and so for me. Were poor Jeames often has to utter or per- he other than hypocrite I would send form to many a swaggering vulgarian, him about his business. Don't let who should black Jeames's boots, did my displeasure be too fierce with him Jeames wear them, and not shoes. for a fib or two on his own account. There is your little Tom, just ten, Some dozen years ago, my family ordering the great, large, quiet, or- being absent in a distant part of the derly young man about - shrieking country, and my business detaining calls for hot water — bullying Jeames me in London, I remained in my because the boots are not varnished own house with three servants on enough, or ordering him to go to the board wages. I used only to breakstables, and ask Jenkins why the fast at home ; and future ages will be deuce Tomkins hasn't brought his interested to know that this meal used pony round - or what you will. to consist, at that period, of tea, a There is mamma rapping the knuc- penny roll, a pat of butter, and, per

1 0 1 3

" and

haps, an egg. My weekly bill used | ly he lied, poor John! One evening, invariably to be about fifty shillings; being at Brighton, in the convalesso that, as I never dined in the house, cence, I remember John's step was you see, my breakfast, consisting of unsteady, his voice thick, his laugh the delicacies before mentioned, cost queer- and having some quinine to about seven shillings and threepence give me, John brought the glass to per diem. I must, therefore, have con me - not to my mouth, but struck me sumed daily

with it pretty smartly in the eye,

s. d. which was not the way in which Dr. A quarter of a pound of tea (say)... | 3 Elliotson had intended his prescripA penny roll (say)..

tion should be taken. Turning that One pound of butter (say). One pound of lump sugar..

i o eye upon him, I ventured to hint that A new-laid egg

2 9 my attendant had been drinking.

Drinking! I never was more huWhich is the only possible way I have miliated at the thought of my own for making out the sum.

injustice than at John's reply: Well, I fell ill while under this re- “Drinking! Sulp me! I have had -gimen, and had an illness which, but ony one pint of beer with my dinner for a certain doctor, who was brought at one o'clock !” - and he retreats, to me by a certain kind_friend I had holding on by a chair. These are in those days, would, I think, have fibs, you see, appertaining to the situprevented the possibility of my tell- ation. John is drunk. "Sulp him, ing this interesting anecdote now a he has only had an 'alf-pint of beer dozen years after. Don't be fright- with his dinner six hours ago; encd, my dear madam; it is not a none of his fellow-servants, will say horrid, sentimental account of a mal- otherwise. Polly is smuggled on ady you are coming to --- only a board ship. Who tells the lieutenant question of grocery. This illness, I when he comes his rounds ? Boys say, lasted some seventeen days, dur- are playing cards in the bedroom. ing which the servants were admirably The outlying fag announces master attentive and kind; and poor John, coming-out go candles — cards especially, was up at all hours, watch- popped into bed boys sound asleep. ing night after night - amiable, cheer- Who had that light in the dormitory? ful, untiring, respectful, the very best Law bless you! the poor dear innoof Johns and nurses.

cents are every one snoring. Every Twice or thrice in the seventeen one snoring, and every snore is a lie days I may have had a glass of eau told through the nose! Suppose one sucrée - say a dozen glasses of eau of your boys or mine is engaged in sucrée -- certainly not more. Well, that awful crime, are we going to this admirable, watchful, cheerful, break our hearts about it? Come, tender, affectionate John brought me come. We pull a long face, waggle in a little bill for seventeen pounds of a grave head, and chuckle within our sugar consumed during the illness - waistcoats. “Often 'ad sugar and water ; always Between me and those fellow-creawas a callin' for it,” says John, wag-tures of mine who are sitting in the ging his head quite gravely. You are room below, how strange and wonderdead, years and years ago, poor John ful is the partition ! We meet at - 50 patient, so friendly, so kind, so every hour of the daylight, and are incheerful to the invalid in the fever. debted to each other for a hundred But confess now, wherever you are, offices of duty and comfort of life; that seventeen pounds of sugar to and we live together for years, and make six glasses of eau sucrée was a don't know each other. John's little too strong, wasn't it, John ? Ah, voice to me is quite different from how frankly, how trustily, how brave- John's voice when it addresses his

« 이전계속 »