페이지 이미지


dinner and put on his poor old

white neckcloth, though he has MEMOIRS OF A MOST RESPECTABLE FAMILY.

been toiling at chambers all day, BY W. M. THACKERAY.

and must be there early in the morning—he will go out with her, we say, and stay for the cotillon. If the family are taking their tour in the summer, it is she who ordains whither they shall go, and when they shall stop. If he comes home late, the dinner is kept for him, and not one dares to say a word though ever so hungry. If he is in a good humor, how every one frisks about and is happy! How the servants jump up at his bell and run to wait upon him! How they sit up patiently, and how eagerly they rush out to fetch cabs in the rain! Whereas for you and me, who have the tempers of angels, and never were known

to be angry or to complain, nobody CHAPTER XXXIII.

cares whether we are pleased or not. Our wives LADY KEW AT THE CONGRESS,

go to the milliners and send us the bill, and we W HEN Lady Kew heard that Madame d'Ivry pay it; our John finishes reading the newspaper

W was at Baden, and was informed at once before he answers our bell, and brings it to us; of the French lady's graciousness toward the our sons loll in the arm-chair which we should Newcome family, and of her fury against Lord like ; fill the house with their young men, and Kew, the old Countess gave a loose to that ener- smoke in the dining-room; our tailors fit us badly; getic temper with which nature had gifted her; our butchers give us the youngest mutton; our a temper which she tied up sometimes and kept tradesmen dun us much more quickly than other from barking and biting ; but which when un people's, because they know we are good-namuzzled was an animal of whom all her lady-tured; and our servants go out whenever they ship's family had a just apprehension. Not one like, and openly have their friends to supper in of them but in his or her time had been wounded, the kitchen. When Lady Kew said Sic volo, sic lacerated, tumbled over, otherwise frightened or jubeo, I promise you few persons of her ladyinjured by this unruly brute. The cowards ship's belongings stopped, before they did her brought it sops and patted it; the prudent gave biddings, to ask her reasons. it a clear berth, and walked round so as not to If, which very seldom happens, there are two meet it; but woe be to those of the family who such imperious and domineering spirits in a had to bring the meal, and prepare the litter, and family, unpleasantries of course will arise from (to speak respectfully) share the kennel with their contentions ; or, if out of doors, the family Lady Kew's “Black Dog !” Surely a fine furi- Bajazet meets with some other violent Turk, ous temper, if accompanied with a certain mag- dreadful battles ensue, all the allies on either side nanimity and bravery which often go together are brought in, and the surrounding neighbors with it, is one of the most precious and fortunate perforce engaged in the quarrel. This was ungifts with which a gentleman or lady can be luckily the case in the present instance. Lady endowed. A person always ready to fight is Kew, unaccustomed to have her will questioned certain of the greatest consideration among his at home, liked to impose it abroad. She judged or her family circle. The lazy grow tired of con- the persons around her with great freedom of tending with him : the timid coax and flatter speech. Her opinions were quoted, as people's him; and as almost every one is timid or lazy, a sayings will be ; and if she made bitter speeches, bad-tempered man is sure to have his own way. depend on it they lost nothing in the carrying. It is he who commands, and all the others obey. She was furious against Madame la Duchesse If he is a gourmand, he has what he likes for d'Ivry, and exploded in various companies whendinner; and the tastes of all the rest are subserv- ever that lady's name was mentioned. “Why ient to him. She (we playfully transfer the was she not with her husband? Why was the gender, as a bad temper is of both sexes) has the poor old Duke left to his gout, and this woman place which she likes best in the drawing-room ; trailing through the country with her vagabond nor do her parents, nor her brothers and sis-court of billiard-markers at her heels? She to ters, venture to take her favorite chair. If she call herself Mary Queen of Scots, forsooth!-wants to go to a party, mamma will dress herself well, she merited the title in some respects, in spite of her headache ; and papa, who hates though she had not murdered her husband as those dreadful soirées, will go up-stairs after yet. Ah! I should like to be Queen Elizabeth

* Continued from the September Number. | if the Duchess is Queen of Scots!" said the old


lady, shaking her old fist. And these sentiments de Kew thought by a brisk attack to rout and disbeing uttered in public, upon the Promenade, to lodge her. She began on almost the very first mutual friends, of course the Duchess had the occasion when the ladies met. “I was so sorry benefit of Lady Kew's remarks a few minutes to hear that Monsieur le Duc was ill at Bagnères, after they were uttered ; and her Grace, and the Madame la Duchesse," the old lady began on distinguished princes, counts, and noblemen in their very first meeting, after the usual salutations her court, designated as billiard-markers by the had taken place. old Countess, returned the latter's compliments “Madame la Comtesse is very kind to interest with pretty speeches of their own. Scandals herself in Monsieur d'Ivry's health. Monsieur were dug up respecting her ladyship, so old that le Duc at his age is not disposed to travel. You, one would have thought them forgotten these dear miladi, are more happy in being always able forty years—so old that they happened before to retain the gout des voyages !most of the Newcomes now extant were born, “I come to my family! my dear Duchess." and surely therefore out of the province of this “How charmed they must be to possess you! contemporary biography. Lady Kew was indig- Miladi Ann, you must be inexpressibly consoled nant with her daughter (there were some mo- by the presence of a mother so tender! Permit ments when any conduct of her friends did not me to present Madame la Comtesse de la Crûchemeet her ladyship’s approbation) even for the Cassée to Madame la Comtesse de Kew. Miladi scant civility with which Lady Ann had received is sister to that amiable Marquis of Steyne, the Duchess's advances. “Leave a card upon whom you have known, Ambrosine! Madame her!-yes, send a card by one of your footmen; la Baronne de Schlangenbad, Miladi Kew. Do but go in to see her, because she was at the you not see the resemblance to milor? These window and saw you drive up. Are you mad, ladies have enjoyed the hospitalitics--the splenAnn? That was the very reason you should dors of Gaunt House. They were of those not have come out of your carriage. But you famous routs of which the charming Mistress are so weak and good-natured, that if a high-Crawly, la sémillante Becki, made part! How wayman stopped you, you would say, Thank sad the Hôtel de Gaunt must be under the presyou, Sir,' as you gave him your purse: yes, and ent circumstances! Have you heard, miladi, of if Mrs. Macheath called on you afterward you the charming Mistress Becki? Monsieur le Duc would return the visit !"

describes her as the most spirituelle EnglishEven had these speeches been made about the woman he ever met.” The Queen of Scots Duchess, and some of them not addressed to her, turns and whispers her lady of honor, and shrugs things might have gone on pretty well. If we and taps her forehead. Lady Kew knows that quarreled with all the people who abuse us be- Madame d'Ivry speaks of her nephew, the present hind our backs, and began to tear their eyes out Lord Steyne, who is not in his right mind. The as soon as we set ours on them, what a life it Duchess looks round, and sees a friend in the would be, and when should we have any quiet? | distance whom she beckons. “Comtesse, you Backbiting is all fair in society. Abuse me, and know already Monsieur the Captain Blackball ? I will abuse you ; but let us be friends when we He makes the delight of our society !” A dreadmeet. Have not we all entered a dozen rooms, ful man with a large cigar, a florid waistcoat, and and been sure, from the countenances of the billiards written on his countenance, swaggers foramiable persons present, that they had been dis- ward at the Duchess's summons. The Countess cussing our little peculiarities, perhaps as we of Kew has not gained much by her attack. She were on the stairs? Was our visit, therefore, has been presented to Crûche-Cassée and Schlanthe less agreeable? Did we quarrel and say genbad. She sees herself ou the eve of becomhard words to one another's faces? Nowe ing the acquaintance of Captain Blackball. wait until some of our dear friends take their “ Permit me, Duchess, to choose my English leave, and then comes our turn. My back is at friends at least for myself,” says Lady Kew, my neighbor's service; as soon as that is turned drumming her foot. let him make what faces he thinks proper : but “But, madam, assuredly! You do not love when we meet we grin and shake hands like this good Monsieur de Blackball? Eh! the En well-bred folk, to whom clean linen is not more glish manners are droll-pardon me for saying necessary than a clean sweet-looking counte-so. It is wonderful how proud you are as a nance, and a nicely got-up smile, for company. nation, and how ashamed you are of your com

Here was Lady Kew's mistake. She wanted, patriots !” for some reason, to drive Madame d'Ivry out “There are some persons whw are ashamed of of Baden; and thought there were no better nothing, Madame la Duchesse," cries Lady Kew, means of effecting this object than by using the losing her temper. high hand, and practicing those frowns upon the “Is that gracieuseté for me? How much goodDuchess which had scared away so many other ness! This good Monsieur de Blackball is not persons. But the Queen of Scots was resolute, very well-bred ; but, for an Englishman, he is too, and her band of courtiers fought stoutly not too bad. I have met with people who are round about her. Some of them could not pay more ill-bred than Englishmen in my travels." their bills, and could not retreat: others had “And they are-?" said Lady Ann, who had courage, and did not choose to fly. Instead of been in vain endeavoring to put an end to this coaxing and soothing Madame d'Ivry, Madame colloquy.

“ English women, madam! I speak not for After poor Jack Belsize's mishap and departyou. You are kind; you-you are too soft, dear ure, Barnes's own bride showed no spirit at all, Lady Ann, for a persecutor."

save one of placid contentment. She came at The counsels of the worldly woman who gov- call and instantly, and went through whatever erned and directed that branch of the Newcome paces her owner demanded of her. She laughed family of whom it is our business to speak now whenever need was, simpered and smiled when for a little while, bore other results than those spoken to, danced whenever she was asked ; which the elder lady desired and foresaw. Who drove out at Barnes's side in Kew's phaeton, can foresee every thing and always ? Not the and received him certainly not with warmth, but wisest among us. When his Majesty, Louis with politeness and welcome. It is difficult to XIV., jockeyed his grandson on to the throne describe the scorn with which her sister-in-law of Spain (founding thereby the present revered regarded her. The sight of the patient timid dynasty of that country), did he expect to peril little thing chafed Ethel, who was always more his own, and bring all Europe about his royal haughty, and flighty, and bold when in Clara's ears? Could a late king of France, eager for presence than at any other time. Her ladyship's the advantageous establishment of one of his brother, Captain Lord Viscount Rooster, before darling sons, and anxious to procure a beautiful mentioned, joined the family party at this interSpanish princess, with a crown and kingdom in esting juncture. My Lord Rooster found himreversion, for the simple and obedient youth, self surprised, delighted, subjugated by Miss ever suppose that the welfare of his whole august | Newcome, her wit and spirit. " By Jove, she is race and reign would be upset by that smart a plucky one,” his lordship exclaimed. “To speculation? We take only the most noble ex- dance with her is the best fun in life. How she amples to illustrate the conduct of such a noble pulls all the other girls to pieces, by Jove, and old personage as her ladyship of Kew, who how splendidly she chaffs every body! But," he brought a prodigious deal of trouble upon some added, with the shrewdness and sense of humor of the innocent members of her family, whom no | which distinguished the young officer, “ I'd rather doabt she thought to better in life by her experi | dance with her than marry her-by a doosed enced guidance, and undoubted worldly wisdom. long score-I don't envy you that part of the We may be as deep as Jesuits, know the world business Kew, my boy." Lord Kew did not set ever so well, lay the best ordered plans, and the himself up as a person to be envied. He thought profoundest combinations, and by a certain not his cousin beautiful: and with his grandmother, unnatural turn of fate, we, and our plans and that she would make a very handsome countess, combinations, are sent Aying before the wind and he thought the money which Lady Kew We may be as wise as Louis Philippe, that would give or leave to the young couple a very many-counseled Ulysses whom the respectable welcome addition to his means. world admired so; and after years of patient On the next night, when there was a ball at scheming, and prodigies of skill, after coaxing, the room, Miss Ethel chose to appear in a toilet wheelling, doubling, bullying wisdom, behold the very grandest and finest which she had ever yet stronger powers interpose, and schemes, and assumed, who was ordinarily exceedingly simple skill, and violence, are naught.

in her attire, and dressed below the mark of the Frank and Ethel, Lady Kew's grandchildren, rest of the world. Her clustering ringlets, her were both the obedient subjects of this ancient shining white shoulders, her splendid raiment (I despot-his imperious old Louis XIV. in a black believe indeed it was her court-dress which the front and a cap and ribbon-this scheming old young lady assumed) astonished all beholders. Louis Philippe in tabinet; but their blood was She écraséd all other beauties by her appearance ; good and their tempers high; and for all her bitting so much so that Madame d'Ivry's court could not and driving, and the training of her manège, the but look, the men in admiration, the women in generous young colts were hard to break. Ethel, dislike, at this dazzling young creature. None at this time, was especially stubborn in training, of the countesses, duchesses, princesses, Russ, rebellious to the whip, and wild under harness ; Spanish, Italian, were so fine or so handsome. and the way in which Lady Kew managed her won | There were some New York ladies at Baden as the admiration of her family: for it was a maxim there are every where else in Europe now. Not among these folks that no one could manage even these were more magnificent than Miss Ethel but Lady Kew. Barnes said no one could | Ethel. General Jeremiah J. Bung's lady owned manage his sister but his grandmother. He that Miss Newcome was fit to appear in any couldn't, that was certain. Mamma never tried, | party in Fifth Avenue. She was the only and indeed was so good-natured, that rather than well-dressed English girl Mrs. Bung had seen in ride the filly, she would put the saddle on her Europe. A young German Durchlaucht deigned own back and let the filly ride her; no, there to explain to his aid-de-camp how very handwas no one but her ladyship capable of managing some he thought Miss Newcome. All our acthat girl, Barnes owned, who held Lady Kew in quaintances were of one mind. Mr. Jones of much respect and awe. “If the tightest hand | England pronounced her stunning; the admirable were not kept on her, there's no knowing what Captain Blackball examined her points with the she mightn't do," said her brother. “ Ethel skill of an amateur, and described them with Newcome, by Jove, is capable of running away agreeable frankness. Lord Rooster was charmed with the writing-master.'

| as he surveyed her, and complimented his late


companion in arms on the possession of such a poor Lord Kew's honest heart with cruel pangs paragon. Only Lord Kew was not delighted— of mortification. The easy young nobleman had nor did Miss Ethel mean that he should be. She passed many a year of his life in all sorts of wild looked as splendid as Cinderella in the prince's company. The chaumière knew him, and the palace. But what need for all this splendor? | balls of Parisian actresses, the coulisses of the this wonderful toilet? this dazzling neck and opera at home and abroad. Those pretty heads shoulders, whereof the brightness and beauty of ladies whom nobody knows, used to nod their blinded the eyes of lookers on? She was dressed shining ringlets at Kew, from private boxes at as gaudily as an actress of the Variétés going to theatres, or dubious Park broughams. He had a supper at the Trois Frères. “It was Madem run the career of young men of pleasure, and oiselle Mabille en habit de cour," Madame d'Ivry laughed and feasted with jolly prodigals and their remarked to Madame Schlangenbad. Barnes, company. He was tired of it: perhaps he rewho with his bride-elect for a partner made a membered an earlier and purer life, and was sighvis-à-vis, for his sister, and the admiring Lord ing to return to it. Living as he had done Rooster, was puzzled likewise by Ethel's counte- among the outcasts, his ideal of domestic virtue nance and appearance. Little Lady Clara looked was high and pure. He chose to believe that like a little school-girl dancing before her.. good women were entirely good. Duplicity ho

One, two, three, of the attendants of her Ma- could not understand ; ill temper shocked bim : jesty the Queen of Scots were carried off in the willfulness he seemed to fancy belonged only to course of the evening by the victorious young the profane and wicked, not to good girls, with beauty, whose triumph had the effect, which the good mothers, in honest homes. Their nature headstrong girl perhaps herself anticipated, of was to love their families; to obey their parents; mortifying the Duchesse d'Ivry, of exasperating to tend their poor; to honor their husbands; to old Lady Kew, and of annoying the young noble-cherish their children. Ethel's laugh woke him man to whom Miss Ethel was engaged. The up from one of these simple reveries very likely, girl seemed to take a pleasure in defying all three, and then she swept round the ball-room rapidly, a something embittered her, alike against her to the brazen notes of the orchestra. He never friends and her enemies. The old dowager offered to dance with her more than once in the chafed and vented her wrath upon Lady Ann evening; went away to play, and returned to and Barnes. Ethel kept the ball alive by her- find her still whirling to the music. Madame self almost. She refused to go home, declining d'Ivry remarked his tribulation and gloomy face, hints and commands alike. She was engaged though she took no pleasure at his discomfiture, for ever so many dances more. Not dance with knowing that Ethel's behavior caused it. Count Punter ? it would be rude to leave him In plays and novels, and I daresay in real life after promising him. Not waltz with Captain too sometimes, when the wanton heroine chooses Blackball? He was not a proper partner for her. to exert her powers of fascination, and to flirt Why then did Kew know him? Lord Kew walk with Sir Harry, or the Captain, the hero, in a ed and talked with Captain Blackball every day. pique, goes off and makes love to somebody else: Was she to be so proud as not to know Lord both acknowledge their folly after a while, shake Kew's friends? She greeted the Captain with hands and are reconciled, and the curtain drops, a most fascinating smile as he came up while the or the volume ends. But there are some people controversy was pending, and ended it by whirl- too noble and simple for these amorous scenes ing round the room in his arms.

and smirking artifices. When Kew was pleased Madame d'Ivry viewed with such pleasure as he laughed, when he was grieved he was silent. might be expected the defection of her adherents, He did not deign to hide his grief or pleasure and the triumph of her youthful rival, who seem- under disguises. His error, perhaps, was in fored to grow more beautiful with each waltz, so getting that Ethel was very young; that her conthat the other dancers paused to look at her, the duct was not design so much as girlish mischief men breaking out in enthusiasm, the reluctant and high spirits; and that if young men have women being forced to join in the applause. their frolics, sow their wild oats, and enjoy their Angry as she was, and knowing how Ethel's con- pleasure, young women may be permitted someduct angered her grandson, old Lady Kew could times their more harmless vagaries of gayety, not help admiring the rebellious beauty,whose girl and sportive outbreaks of willful humor. .. ish spirit was more than a match for the imperi- ! When she consented to go home at length, ous dowager's tough old resolution. As for Mr. Lord Kew brought Miss Newcome's little white Barnes's displeasure, the girl tossed her saucy cloak for her (under the hood of which her glossy head, shrugged her fair shoulders, and passed on curls, her blushing cheeks, and bright eyes looked with a scornful laugh. In a word, Miss Ethel | provokingly handsome), and encased her in this conducted herself as a most reckless and intrepid pretty garment without uttering one single word. , young flirt, using her eyes with the most con- She made him a saucy courtesy in return for this summate effect, chattering with astounding gay- act of politeness, which salutation he received ety, prodigal of smiles, gracious thanks, and kill- with a grave bow ; and then he proceeded to ing glances. What wicked spirit moved her ? cover up old Lady Kew, and to conduct her ladyPerhaps had she known the mischief she was ship to her chariot. Miss Ethel chose to be disdoing, she would have continued it still. pleased at her cousin's displeasure. What were

The sight of this willfulness and levity smote balls made for but that people should dance ?

She a flirt? She displease Lord Kew? If she | him of a transaction which had nearly affected chose to dance, she would dance; she had no his happiness, and in which she took a not very idea of his giving himself airs, besides it was creditable share. “Had I known your lordship's such fun taking away the gentlemen of Mary real character,” Miss O'G. was pleased to say, Queen of Scots' court from her: such capital “no tortures would have induced me to do an fun! So she went to bed singing and perform- | act for which I have undergone penance. It was ing wonderful roulades as she lighted her candle, that black-hearted woman, my lord, who malignand retired to her room. She had had such a ed your lordship to me—that woman whom I jolly evening ! such famous fun, and, I daresay called friend once, but who is the most false, de(but how shall a novelist penetrate these mys- praved, and dangerous of her sex.” In this way teries?), when her chamber door was closed, she do ladies' companions sometimes speak of ladies scolded her maid and was as cross as two sticks. when quarrels separate them, when confidential You see there come moments of sorrow after the attendants are dismissed, bearing away familymost brilliant victories; and you conquer and secrets in their minds, and revenge in their hearts. rout the enemy utterly, and then you regret that the day after Miss Ethel's feats at the assemyou fought.

bly, old Lady Kew went over to advise her granddaughter, and to give her a little timely warning

about the impropriety of flirtations; above all, with such men as are to be found at watering-places, persons who are never seen elsewhere

in society. “Remark the peculiVA

arities of Kew's temper, who never flies into a passion like you and me, my dear,” said the old lady (being determined to be particularly gracious and cautious); “when once angry he remains so, and is so obstinate that it is almost impossible to coax him into good humor. It is much better, my love, to be like us," continued the old lady, "to fly out in a rage and have it over;

but que voulez vous ? such is CHAPTER XXXIV.

Frank's temper, and we must manage him.” THE END OF THE CONGRESS OF BADEN. So she went on, backing her advice by a crowd Mention has been made of an elderly young of examples drawn from the family history; person from Ireland, engaged by Madame la showing how Kew was like his grandfather, Duchesse d'Ivry as companion and teacher of her own poor husband; still more like his English for her little daughter. When Miss late father, Lord Walham, between whom and O'Grady, as she did some time afterward, quit- his mother there had been differences, chiefly tod Madame d'Ivry's family, she spoke with great brought on by my Lady Walham of course, which freedom regarding the behavior of that duchess, had ended in the almost total estrangement of and recounted horrors which she, the latter, had mother and son. Lady Kew then administered committed. A number of the most terrific anec- her advice, and told her stories with Ethel alone dotes issued from the lips of the indignant Miss, for a listener; and in a most edifying manner whose volubility Lord Kew was obliged to check, she besought Miss Newcome to ménager Lord not choosing that his countess, with whom he was Kew's susceptibilities, as she valued her own paying a bridal visit to Paris, should hear such future comfort in life, as well as the happiness dreadful legends. It was there that Miss O'Gra- of a most amiable man, of whom, if properly mandy, finding herself in misfortune, and reading of aged, Ethel might make what she pleased. We Lord Kew's arrival at the Hôtel Bristol, waited | have said Lady Kew managed every body, and upon his lordship and the Countess of Kew, beg- that most of the members of her family allowed ging them to take tickets in a raffle for an in themselves to be managed by her ladyship.pl valuable ivory writing-desk, sole relic of her for- Ethel, who had permitted her grandmother to mer prosperity, which she proposed to give her continue her sententious advice, while she herfriends the chance of acquiring: in fact, Miss self sat tapping her feet on the floor, and perO'Grady lived for some years on the produce of forming the most rapid variations of that air repeated raffles for this beautiful desk : many re- which is called the Devil's Tattoo, burst out, at ligious ladies of the Faubourg St. Germain, tak- length, to the elder lady's surprise, with an outing an interest in her misfortunes, and allevi- break of indignation, a flushing face, and a voice ating them by the simple lottery system. Prot- quivering with anger. estants as well as Catholics were permitted to “This most amiable man,” she cried out, “that take shares in Miss O'Grady's raffles; and Lord you design for me, I know every thing about this Kew, good-natured then as always, purchased so most amiable man, and thank you and my family many tickets, that the contrite O'Grady informed for the present you make me! For the past

« 이전계속 »