페이지 이미지

Warrington vowed that the company of Florac's men in France who actually have authentic titles friends would be infinitely more amusing than and do not choose to bear them. the noblest society ever chronicled in the Morn- | Mr. George Warrington was hugely amused ing Post; but we were neither sufficiently fa- with this notion of Florac's ranks and dignities. miliar with the French language to make conver- The idea of the Prince purchasing penny segars; sation in that tongue as pleasant to us as talking of the Prince mildly expostulating with his landin our own; and so were content with Florac's lady regarding the rent; of his punting for halfdescription of his compatriots, which the Vicomte crowns at a neighboring hall in Air Street, whither delivered in that charming French-English of the poor gentleman desperately ran when he had which he was a master.

money in his pocket, tickled George's sense of However threadbare in bis garments, poor in humor. It was Warrington who gravely saluted purse, and eccentric in morals our friend was, his the Vicomte, and compared him to King Alfred, manners were always perfectly gentlemanlike, on that afternoon when we happened to call upon and he draped himself in his poverty with the him and found him engaged in cooking his modgrace of a Spanish grandee. It must be con- est dinner. fessed that the grandee loved the estaminet, where We were bent upon an excursion to Greenhe could play billiards with the first comer; that wich, and on having our friend's company on that he had a passion for the gambling-house; that voyage, and we induced the Vicomte to forego his he was a loose and disorderly nobleman: but, in bacon, and be our guest for once. George Warwhatever company he found himself, a certain rington chose to indulge in a great deal of ironkindness, simplicity, and politeness distinguished ical pleasantry in the course of the afternoon's him always. He bowed to the damsel who sold excursion. As we went down the river, he pointhim a penny segar, as graciously as to a duchess; ed out to Florac the very window in the Tower he crushed a manant's impertinence or familiar- where the captive Duke of Orleans used to sit ity as haughtily as his noble ancestors ever did when he was an inhabitant of that fortress. At at the Louvre, at Marli, or Versailles. He de- Greenwich, which palace Florac informed us was clined to obtempérer to his landlady's request to built by Queen Elizabeth, George showed the very pay his rent; but he refused with a dignity which spot where Raleigh laid his cloak down to enable struck the woman with awe: and King Alfred, her Majesty to step over a puddle. In a word he over the celebrated muffin (on which Gandish and mystified M. de Florac: such was Mr. Warringother painters have exercised their genius), could ton's reprehensible spirit. not have looked more noble than Florac in a robe- It happened that Mr. Barnes Newcome came de-chambre, once gorgeous, but shady now as to dine at Greenwich on the same day when our became its owner's clouded fortunes; toasting little party took place. He had come down to his bit of bacon at his lodgings, when the fare meet Rooster and one or two other noble friends even of his table d'hôte had grown too dear for whose names he took care to give us, cursing him.

them at the same time for having thrown him over. As we know from Gandish's work that better Having missed his own company, Mr. Bares times were in store for the wandering monarch, condescended to join ours, Warrington gravely and that the officers came acquainting him that thanking him for the great honor which he conhis people demanded his presence, à grands cris, ferred upon us by volunteering to take a place at when of course King Alfred laid down the toast our table. Barnes drank freely, and was good and resumed the sceptre; so, in the case of Flo- enough to resume his acquaintance with Monsieur rac, two humble gentlemen, inhabitants of Lamb de Florac, whom he perfectly well recollected at Court, and members of the Upper Temple, had Baden, but had thought proper to forget on the the good luck to be the heralds, as it were, nay, one or two occasions when they had met in pubindeed, the occasion of the rising fortunes of the lic since the Vicomte's arrival in this country. Prince de Moncontour. Florac had informed us There are few men who can drop and resume an of the death of his cousin the Duc d'Ivry, by acquaintance with such admirable self-possession whose demise the Vicomte's father, the old Count as Barnes Newcome. When, over our dessert, de Florac, became the representative of the house by which time all tongues were unloosed and each of Ivry, and possessor, through his relative's be- man talked gayly, George Warrington feelingly quest, of an old chateau still more gloomy and thanked Barnes, in a little mock speech, for his spacious than the count's own house in the Fau- great kindness in noticing us, presenting him bourg St. Germain-a chateau, of which the at the same time to Florac as the ornament of the woods, domains, and appurtenances, had been city, the greatest banker of his age, the beloved lopped off by the Revolution. “Monsieur le kinsman of their friend Clive, who was always Comte," Florac says, “has not wished to change writing about him ; Bames said, with one of his his name at his age; he has shrugged his old accustomed curses, he did not know whether Mr. shoulder, and said it was not the trouble to make Warrington was "chaffing” him or not, and into engrave a new card; and for me," the philo- deed could never make him out. Warrington resophical Vicomte added, “ of what good shall be plied that he never could make himself out: and a title of prince in the position where I find my- if ever Mr. Barnes could, George would thank self?" It is wonderful for us who inhabit a coun- him for information on that subject try where rank is worshiped with so admirable al Florac, like most Frenchmen, very sober in his reverence, to think that there are many gentle-potations, left us for a while over ours, which were conducted after the more liberal English manner,, in Lombard Street.” George Warrington never and retired to smoke his segar on the terrace. bragged about his pedigree except under certain Barnes then freely uttered his sentiments regard- influences. I am inclined to think that on this ing him, which were not more favorable than occasion he really did find the claret very good. those which the young gentleman generally emit- “You don't mean to say," says Barnes, adted respecting gentlemen whose backs were turn- dressing Florac in French, on which he piqued ed. He had known a little of Florac the year himself, “que vous avez un tel manche à votre before, at Baden: he had been mixed up with | nom, et que vous ne l' usez pas ?” Kew in that confounded row in which Kew was Florac shrugged his shoulders; he at first did hit: he was an adventurer, a pauper, a blackleg, not understand that familiar figure of English a regular Greek; he had heard Florac was of old speech, or what was meant by “having a handle family, that was true : but what of that? He to your name.” “Moncontour can not dine betwas only one of those d— French counts; every ter than Florac," he said. “Florac has two Louis body was a count in France, confound 'em! The in his pocket, and Moncontour exactly forty shilclaret was beastly-not fit for a gentleman to lings. Florac's proprietor will ask Moncontour todrink! He swigged off a great bumper as he was morrow for five weeks' rent; and as for Florac's making the remark ; for Barnes Newcome abuses friends, my dear, they will burst out laughing to the men and things which he uses, and perhaps Moncontour's nose !” “How droll you English is better served than more grateful persons. I are !” this acute French observer afterward said,

"Count!” cries Warrington, “what do you laughing, and recalling the incident. “Did you mean by talking about beggarly counts. Florac's not see how that little Barnes, as soon as he knew family is one of the noblest and most ancient in my title of Prince, changed his manner and beEurope. It is more ancient than your illustrious came all respect toward me?" This, indeed, Monfriend, the barber-surgeon ; it was illustrious be- sieur de Florac's two friends remarked with no fore the house, ay, or the pagoda of Kew was in little amusement. Barnes began quite well to reexistence.” And he went on to describe how member their pleasant days at Baden, and talked of Florac, by the demise of his kinsman, was now their acquaintance there: Barnes offered the Prince actually Prince de Moncontour, though he did not the vacant seat in his brougham, and was ready to choose to assume that title. Very likely the no- set him down any where that he wished in town. ble Gascon drink in which George had been in- “Bah!" says Florac; “we came by the steamdulging, imparted a certain warmth and eloquence er, and I prefer the péniboat.” But the hospitato his descriptions of Florac's good qualities, high ble Barnes, nevertheless, called upon Florac the birth, and considerable patrimony ; Barnes look- next day. And now having partially explained ed quite amazed and scared at these announce | how the Prince de Moncontour was present at ments, then laughed, and declared once more that Mr. Barnes Newcome's wedding, let us show how Warrington was chaffing him.

it was that Barnes's first cousin, the Earl of Kew, “As sure as the Black Prince was lord of Ac- did not attend that ceremony. quitaine---as sure as the English were masters of Bourdeaux-and why did we ever lose the country?" cries George, filling himself a bumper, “every word I have said about Florac is true;" and Florac coming in at this juncture, having just finished his segar, George turned round and made him a fine speech in the French language, in which he lauded his constancy and good hu- 52 mor under evil fortune, paid him two or three more cordial compliments, and finished by drinking another great bumper to his good health.


Diva Florac took a little wine, replied “with effu

RETURNS TO LORD KEW. sion" to the toast which his excellent, his noble We do not propose to describe at length or friend had just carried. We rapped our glasses with precision the circumstances of the duel at the end of the speech. The landlord himself which ended so unfortunately for young Lord seemed deeply touched by it as he stood by with Kew. The meeting was inevitable: after the puba fresh bottle. “ It is good wine--it is honest lic acts and insult of the morning, the maddened wine—it is capital wine,” says George, “and Frenchman went to it convinced that his antaghonni soit qui mal y pense! What business have onist had willfully outraged him, eager to show his you, you little beggar, to abuse it? my ancestor bravery upon the body of an Englishman, and as drank the wine and wore the motto round his leg proud as if he had been going into actual war. long before a Newcome ever showed his pale face That commandment, the sixth in our decalogue, which forbids the doing of murder, and the injunc- been the best fellow, the best brother, the kindest tion which directly follows on the same table, have heart, the warmest friend in the world. Love been repealed by a very great number of French- prayer-repentance, thus met over the young men for many years past; and to take the neigh- man's bed. Anxious and humble bearts, his bor's wife, and his life subsequently, has not been own the least anxious and the most humble, an uncommon practice with the politest people in awaited the dread award of life or death; and the world. Castillonnes had no idea but that he the world, and its ambition and vanities, were was going to the field of honor ; stood with an shut out from the darkened chamber where the undaunted scowl before his enemy's pistol; and awful issue was being tried. discharged his own, and brought down his oppo- Our history has had little to do with characters nent with a grim satisfaction, and a comfortable resembling this lady. It is of the world, and conviction afterward that he had acted en galant things pertaining to it. Things beyond it, as the homme. “It was well for this Milor that he fell writer imagines, scarcely belong to the novelist's at the first shot, my dear," the exemplary young province. Who is he, that he should assume the Frenchman remarked, “ a second might have been divine's office; or turn his desk into a preacher's yet more fatal to him ; ordinarily I am sure of pulpit? In that career of pleasure, of idleness, my coup, and you conceive that in an affair so of crime we might call it (but that the chronicler grave it was absolutely necessary that one or oth- of worldly matters had best be chary of applying er should remain on the ground.” Nay, should hard names to acts which young men are doing M. de Kew recover from his wound, it was M. de in the world every day), the gentle widowed lady, Castillonnes' intention to propose a second en- mother of Lord Kew, could but keep aloof, decounter between himself and that nobleman. It ploring the course upon which her dear young had been Lord Kew's determination never to fire prodigal had entered ; and praying with that upon his opponent, a confession which he made saintly love, those pure supplications, with which not to his second, poor scared Lord Rooster, who good mothers follow their children, for her boy's bore the young Earl to Kehl; but to some of his repentance and return. Very likely her mind nearest relatives, who happened fortunately to be was narrow ; very likely the precautions which not far from him when he received his wound, she had used in the lad's early days, the tutors and who came with all the eagerness of love to and directors she had set about him, the religious watch by his bedside.

studies and practices to which she would hare We have said that Lord Kew's mother, Lady subjected him, had served only to vex and weary Walham, and her second son were staying at the young pupil, and to drive his high spirit into Hombourg, when the Earl's disaster occurred. revolt. It is hard to convince a woman perfectly They had proposed to come to Baden to see Kew's pure in her life and intentions, ready to die if new bride, and to welcome her; but the presence need were for her own faith, having absolute conof her mother-in-law deterred Lady Walham, who fidence in the instruction of her teachers, that sbe gave up her heart's wish in bitterness of spirit, and they (with all their sermons) may be doing knowing very well that a meeting between the harm. When the young catechist yawns over old Countess and herself could only produce the his reverence's discourse, who knows but it is the wrath, pain, and humiliation which their coming doctor's vanity which is enraged, and not Heaven together always occasioned. It was Lord Kow which is offended ? It may have heen, in the who bade Rooster send for his mother, and not differences which took place between her son and for Lady Kew; and as soon as she received those her, the good Lady Walham never could compresad tidings, you may be sure the poor lady hasten- hend the lad's side of the argument; or how his ed to the bed where her wounded boy lay. Protestantism against her doctrines should exhibit

The fever had declared itself, and the young itself on the turf, the gaming-table, or the stage man had been delirious more than once. His of the opera-house ; and thus but for the misforwan face lighted up with joy when he saw his tune under which poor Kew now lay bleeding, mother; he put his little feverish hand out of the these two loving hearts might have remained bed to her; “I knew you would come, dear,” he through life asunder. But by the boy's bedside ; said, “and you know I never would have fired in the paroxysms of his fever ; in the wild talk upon the poor Frenchman." The fond mother of his delirium ; in the sweet patierce and kindallowed no sign of terror or grief to appear upon ness with which he received his dear nurse's ather face, so as to disturb her first-born and dar- tentions; the gratefulness with which he thanked ling; but no doubt she prayed by his side as such the servants who waited on him; the fortitude loving hearts know how to pray, for the forgive with which he suffered the surgeon's dealings ness of his trespass, who had forgiven those who with his wound ;-the widowed woman had an sinned against him. “I knew I should be hit, opportunity to admire with an exquisite thankfulGeorge,” said Kew to his brother when they ness the generous goodness of her son; and in were alone; “I always expected some such end those hours, those sacred hours passed in her own as this. My life has been very wild and reckless; 1 chamber, of prayers, fears, hopes, recollections, and you, George, have always been faithful to and passionate maternal love, wrestling with fate our mother. You will make a better Lord Kew | | for her darling's life ;-no doubt the humbled than I have been, George. God bless you!" creature came to acknowledge that her own course George flung himself down with sobs by his regarding him had been wrong; and, even more brother's bedside, and swore Frank had always for herself than for him, implored forgiveness,

For some time George Barnes had to send but | Loder, Cruchecassée and Schlangenbad, assumed doubtful and melancholy bulletins to Lady Kew sympathetic countenances. and the Newcome family at Baden, who were all Trembling on her cane, the old Countess glared greatly moved and affected by the accident which out upon Madame d'Ivry, “ I pray you, Madame,” had befallen poor Kew. Lady Kew broke out in she said in French, " never again to address me wrath and indignation. We may be sure the the word. If I had, like you, assassins in my Duchesse d'Ivry offered to condole with her upon pay, I would have you killed ; do you hear me?" Kew's mishap the day after the news arrived at and she hobbled on her way. The household to Baden ; and, indeed, came to visit her. The old which she went was in terrible agitation; the lady had just received other disquieting intelli- kind Lady Ann frightened beyond measure, poor gence. She was just going out, but she bade her Ethel full of dread, and feeling guilty almost as servant to inform the Duchesse that she was never if she had been the cause, as indeed she was the more at home to the Duchesse d'Ivry. The mes occasion, of Kew's misfortune. And the family sage was not delivered properly, or the person i had further cause of alarm from the shock which for whom it was intended did not choose to un- the news had given to Sir Brian. It has been derstand it, for presently as the Countess was said that he had had illnesses of late which caused hobbling across the walk on her way to her daugh- his friends much anxiety. He had passed two ter's residence, she met the Duchesse d'Ivry, who months at Aix-la-Chapelle, his physicians dreadsaluted her with a demure courtesy and a com- | ing a paralytic attack; and Madame d'Ivry's party monplace expression of condolence. The Queen still sauntering on the walk, the men smoking of Scots was surrounded by the chief part of her their segars, the women breathing their scandal, court, saving of course M.M. Castillonnes and now beheld Doctor Finck issuing from Lady Punter absent on service. “We were speaking of Ann's apartments, and wearing such a face of this deplorable affair,” said Madame d'Ivry (which anxiety that the Duchesse asked, with some indeed was the truth, although she said it). emotion, “Had there been a fresh bulletin from “How we pity you, Madame !" Blackball and Kehl ?"

[graphic][subsumed][ocr errors][ocr errors]

"No, there had been no fresh bulletin from fate gentleman, that the sum of regard which she Kehl; but two hours since Sir Brian Newcome could bestow upon him might surely be said to had had a paralytic seizure."

amount to love. For soch a union as that con* Is he very bad?”

templated between them, perhaps for any mar*** No," says Dr. Finck, "he is not very bad." riage, no greater degree of attachment was neces

** How inconsolable M. Barnes will be!" said sary as the common cement. Warın friendship the Duchesse, shrugging her haggard shoulders. I and thorough esteem and confidence (I do not Whereas the fact was that Mr. Barnes retained say that our young lady calculated in this matter. perfect presence of mind under both of the mis-of-fact way) are safe properties invested in the fortunes which had befallen his family. Two prudent marriage stock, multiplying and bearing days afterward the Duchesse's husband arrived an increasing value with every year. Many a himself, when we may presume that exemplary wo- young couple of spendthrifts get through their man was too much engaged with her own affairs capital of passion in the first twelvemonihs, and to be able to be interested about the doings of have no love left for the daily demands of afterother people. With the Duke's arrival the court life. O me! for the day when the bank account of Mary Queen of Scots was broken up. Her is closed, and the cupboard is empty, and the firm majesty was conducted to Loch Leven, where of Damon and Phyllis insolvent ! her tyrant soon dismissed her very last lady-in-1 Miss Newcome, we say, without doubt, did not waiting, the confidential Irish secretary, whose make her calculations in this debtor and creditor performance had produced such a fine effect fashion ; it was only the gentlemen of that family among the Newcomes.

who went to Lombard Street. But suppose she Had poor Sir Brian Newcome's seizure occur- thought that regard, and esteem, and affection, red at an earlier period of the autumn, his illness being sufficient, she could joyfully and with alno doubt would have kept him for some months most all her heart bring such a portion to Lord confined at Baden; but as he was pretty nearly Kew; that her harshness toward him as conthe last of Dr. Von Finck's bath patients, and trasted with his own generosity, and above all that eminent physician longed to be off to the with his present pain, infinitely touched her; and Residenz, he was pronounced in a fit condition suppose she fancied that there was another perfor easy traveling in rather a brief period after son in the world to whom, did fates permit, she his attack, and it was determined to transport could offer not esteem, affection, pity only, but him to Manheim, and thence by water to London something ten thousand times more precious ? and Newcome.

We are not in the young lady's secrets, but if During all this period of their father's misfor- she has some as she sits by her father's chair and tune no Sister of Charity could have been more bed, who day or night will have no other attendtender, active, cheerful, and watchful, than Miss ant; and, as she busies herself to interpret his Ethel. She had to wear a kind face and exhibit wants, silently moves on his errands, administers no anxiety when occasionally the feeble invalid his potions, and watches his sleep, thinks of made inquiries regarding poor Kew at Baden; to Clive absent and unhappy, of Kew wounded and catch the phrases as they came from him ; to ac- in danger, she must have subject enough of thought quiesce, or not to deny, when Sir Brian talked and pain. Little wonder that her cheeks are pale of the marriages—both marriages-taking place and her eyes look red; she has her cares to enat Christmas. Sir Brian was especially eager dure now in the world, and her burden to bear in for his daughter's, and repeatedly, with his broken it, and somehow she feels she is alone, since that words, and smiles, and caresses, which were now day when poor Clive's carriage drove away. quite senile, declared that his Ethel would make In a mood of more than ordinary depression the prettiest countess in England. There came and weakness Lady Kew must have found her a letter or two from Clive, no doubt, to the young granddaughter upon one of the few occasions nurse in her sick room. Manly and generous, after the double mishap when Ethel and her elder full of tenderness and affection, as those letters were together. Sir Brian's illness, as it may be surely were, they could give but little pleasure to imagined, affected a lady very slightly, who was the young lady, indeed, only add to her doubts of an age when these calamities occasion but and pain.

small disquiet, and who having survived her own She had told none of her friends as yet of those father, her husband, her son, and witnessed their last words of Kew's, which she interpreted as a lordship’s respective demises with perfect comfarewell on the young nobleman's part. Had she posure, could not reasonably be called upon to told them they very likely would not have under- feel any particular dismay at the probable departstood Kew's meaning as she did, and persisted in ure from this life of a Lombard Street banker, thinking that the two were reconciled. At any who happened to be her daughter's husband. In rate, while he and her father were still lying fact not Barnes Newcome himself could await stricken by the blows which had prostrated them that event more philosophically. So finding Ethel both, all questions of love and marriage had been in this melancholy mood, Lady Kew thought a put aside. Did she love him? She felt such a drive in the fresh air would be of service to her, kind pity for his misfortune, such an admiration and Sir Brian happening to be asleep, carried the for his generous gallantry, such a remorse for young girl away in her barouche. her own wayward conduct and cruel behavior to- They talked about Lord Kew, of whom the acward this most honest, and kindly, and affection counts were encouraging, and who is mending in

« 이전계속 »