페이지 이미지

giving his lessons early the next morning, which was Monday; the other answered, "Oh, it does not happen often, never mind;" and they went to bed. Their two beds were so close that they were only separated by a little division at the head. The man said that the agony in which he passed the night was indescribable, as, in addition to the original horror of finding the dead body, he dreaded that the Frenchman would suspect his being aware of it, and murder him also; and there was no escape from the house, nor means to call for help. In this dreadful state he remained till morning, when the Frenchman going out to give his lessons, the other rushed straight to my house, to apprise me of what had happened. I was much puzzled what to do, as the police, I knew, would give very little assistance. However, after taking down his statement shortly in writing, I applied there. They said they could have nothing to do with it; and as the supposed criminal was French, I must go to the French consul. All they would do was to give me a little humped-backed man, to assist in catching the murderer. I went to the French consul; and after conferring with him we proceeded together, with our humped-backed companion, to the house where the Englishman lived. We went up stairs, and found the Frenchman at his door. We told him there was a little matter to be settled with the police, on which he answered-"Ah oui! pour la contrebande, n'est-ce pas ?" (he had a good deal to do with the contrabandista concerns), and rushed to a table, pulled open a drawer, from whence we saw him extract a pair of pistols, which proved to be loaded; he, however, seemed to lose his head and be quite bewildered, saying, "Il s'agit de ces pistolets, n'est-ce pas ? ils sont Français, et de la contrebande." He then put his hand farther into the drawer, and was dragging out a sword, when my colleague and I sprang upon and seized him. The hump-backed man then said it was not that we wanted, but that we must have him open the door of the closet; he turned deadly pale, and drawing himself up with a peculiar emphasis and theatrical air, exclaimed, "Très volontiers, monsieur." He then instantly rushed to the open window, and from the balcony dashed himself to the ground; it was a fourth story, and he died in twelve hours after. He would make no confession; but frequently repeated, in a sort of delirium, "Il est coupé en petits morceaux. The investigation of the mutilated corpse, which proved to be that of the jeweller, was dreadful. Under the coat of the Frenchman was found, close to his side, a small hatchet and an enormous knife, with which he must have hacked and hewed the dead body, to carry portions of it from the house when he went out, as the only way in which he could dispose of it. It was supposed he had killed the man with the sledge-hammer which was found in the closet. None of the jeweller's property was ever found or

[ocr errors]

heard of.


Barcelona has recently been the subject of considerable notoriety, may therefore be selected by us for a theme in our citations from the present volumes; the sketch affording a very different account from that which the newspapers have for several weeks been lately supplying.

In the evening we retired to the General's garden, and by a long alameda to the walls. There was great excitement in this part of the town, created by immense flocks of turkeys, which were promenading about on some waste ground, each flock directed and occasionally thrashed by six or seven peasants, (the number being proportioned to the size of the flock), who, surrounded by crowds of people, were admonishing their charge with long canes. The streets and walks were quite full, the population of Barcelona being immense. To-morrow all would be let loose, as it is the "fair of turkeys," every individual considering it a positive duty to have one of these birds for Christmas-day, an occasion on which it is said all Barcelona goes wild. The poor people, who have no means of roasting them at home, send them to the bakers; so that sometimes these latter have six or seven thousand turkeys to dress. We made the circuit of the walls, and found their strength very great. The fortifications which surround the town are admirably constructed: they are flanked on the eastern side by the low but formidable works of the citadel, and on the western by the towering ramparts of the fortress of Monjuich. We returned by the Rambla and the rampart over the sea, under one end of which is a prison; and on the esplanade above, the troops were assembled, and the band playing; crowds of people extended all the way down the mole. The great walk on the walls, reaching the whole length of the harbour, was, as well as the mole, constructed by the Marquis de la Mina, who died in 1768.

Seville furnishes another sort of notices.

In coming back we passed through a small open square, where the Murillo is buried; but nothing now remains to mark his grave. Formerly there was a small chapel, which was destroyed by the French. The house in which he died stands close by. The best shop in all Spain for the majo dresses (worn by the picadors and metadors at the bull-fights) is in a little street near the cathedral. There was one making for a matador at Madrid-the jacket of dark-brown cloth, richly embroidered with silver, and very handsome; the entire dress costs about forty or fifty pounds. Though this shop is so famous as to supply the matadors of Madrid, it is of so small a size as hardly to accommodate above two customers at once, and of the same calibre as all the other shops in Seville, which are little mean places, entirely open to the street, in the Moorish fashion; and the artificers of all kinds sit crosslegged on a board or slab of marble at their occupations,—another trace, by the way, of Moorish origin. Here also is made the formidable peasant's knife, the "navaja," with a catch to prevent its closing: a deadly weapon, used both in cutting their food and as a prompt resource in quarrels. Spanish ladies are, by all accounts, wholly uneducated, and pass their time principally in eating and dressing, to both of which occupations they are deeply attached. They consider corpulency to be no disparagement to their beauty; and they sometimes take so much exercise as to walk the length of one of the very dirty streets, in evening-dress, with very tight black satin shoes, and armed with their constant accompaniment, the fan, which they handle with peculiar grace and skill. If they would eat less, and adhere to their national costume, nothing could be prettier or more graceful than their general appearance shrouded under the black mantilla.


The really English pastime of yachting, and the tasteful recreation it affords to our aristocracy, is necessarily not devoid of that variety and excitement which await those who "go down into the sea in ships." Our concluding extract details particulars of the class alluded to, exhibiting the narrator's heart and head to advantage.

We were awakened about two in the morning by a violent storm, the sea rolling furiously, every thing tumbling about, and heavy rain pattering on deck this continued all night, much to the detriment of any repose. At four o'clock it was blowing a furious gale, with a tremendous cross sea, which frequently swept over our stern, and one sea struck the hapless dingy-our smallest boat, which was suspended on the stern davits—and carried it away in a moment, together with a large supply of fresh meat, placed in it as the larder for the voyage. At half-past seven, A.M., it was still dark, but I got up to see what was going on, and found the little passage to the cabins inundated with water; and Rap, the spaniel, who never was down the stairs before, crouching there, shivering and shaking with fright, dripping wet, and thoroughly miserable. Nothing could be more deplorable than the prospect of the interior. The glass was now falling fast, all our sails had been taken in, and none left set but the storm main-try-sail, and we had now no resource but to lie head to wind, which was increasing frightfully, with a tremendous sea occasionally breaking over the deck. The loss of our boat was but a trifle compared with all the horror and anxiety of the storm, which continued unmitigated: the weather so dark nothing could be seen a mile distant from the ship; and as there was not a gleam of sun for any observation to be taken, there was no certainty as to the direction in which we were carried, but it was calculated we were making stern-way at the rate of about a mile per hour, which proved afterwards to be right. Very few of us were able to get up to-day; the movements of the ship, which was all on one side, were so violent, it was almost impossible to stand; and so we remained all day in a state of anxiety, amounting, I may add, on my own part at least, to great fear. Uncertain as to the direction in which we were drifting, and aware that the low Columbretes islands, and indeed the whole coast of Spain, were on our lee, the increasing violence of the storm rendered the early approach of darkness, which came on soon after five o'clock, still more fearful. The nights, which are now pitch dark, seemed interminable. This afternoon a sea struck the fore-part of the ship, carried away the head-boards, and unshipped the lower lee-boom, which stove in the bottom of the gig. Thus one boat was gone, and another disabled; the barge only remained. About four P. M., the gale from the north-east appeared to cease suddenly, and in a moment there came a hurricane from the north-west, appearing like a black cloud, and sweeping like a whirlwind over the ship, with torrents of rain, the sea raging furiously, and running mountains high; and for twenty minutes that this continued, the masts and every thing else were expected to give way every instant. As it came from a different direction to the previous course of the wind and sea, the effect was, that the ship remained motionless, though quivering to its centre. Our captain, who had circumnavigated the globe, stated this hurricane to have been as violent as any that he had experienced in any part of it. In about

twenty minutes it ceased suddenly, and became perfectly calm, which seemed something horrid and unnatural. However, for a time, we hoped the storm was going to mitigate, as it only howled now and then; but in about an hour the original gale from the north-east re-commenced with fresh vigour, and blew frightfully all night. At two, A.M., on the morning of the twentyfourth, I felt my cabin, and all that side of the ship, sink down in an instant so low under the water, which was rushing over the decks, that having waited for a moment to see if it rose again, and finding that it did not, I felt quite persuaded we were going down, and waded through the passage to my neighbour's cabin, who, hearing no more water rush in, assured me that we were not foundering, and I returned to my berth. I found afterwards that the ship had been struck by a tremendous sea, which had laid her for a time on her beam-ends, but that she righted again. The noises both in and out of the ship were dreadful; the creaking of the boards and planks, and bulk-heads jarring in all directions; the awful noise of the wind; and, above all, the dreadful rushing of the sea, which was going at the rate of thirty miles an hour,—striking the ship like a sledge-hammer, and like a continued fire of artillery close to one's head,-rendered these hours of horror far beyond any description. It is on such occassions as these that the weakness of all human power is most forcibly felt! Beautiful as are the contrivances of human ingenuity, firm and compact as is the frame-work of that solid fabric, the ship,-skilful and enterprising as is the dauntless spirit of the crew, -still vain is that ingenuity, helpless that power, and unavailing that spirit as the only refuge in such times of need; on these no certain reliance can be placed, no perfect security depend; it can only be looked for from Him"At whose divine command

Famine and plague afflict the guilty land;

Whose awful will the unconscious winds perform,

Who wings the lightning and appoints the storm."

Lady Grosvenor, as now is to be expected from every accomplished tourist, has enriched her volumes with engravings from sketches by her own pencil, the embellishments having a character akin to those by her pen, and suitably wedded.

ART. VII.—The History and Antiquities of Charnwood Forest. By T. R. POTTER. Hamilton, Adams, and Co.

As a general rule, a work local in subject, must be expected to be local in circulation. Some exception, however, there may be to this rule when, as in the present case, the place treated of is an olden forest. From its immemorial antiquity, its numerous associations, and many other causes, a large forest, without, of course, being equally interesting to all, has so many separate points of view, from each of which it forms an attractive object, that its description may not unreasonably hope to find, at any rate, partial readers among a

tolerable proportion of the entire public. The historian, the antiquarian, the naturalist, the geologist, the lover of ballad-legends and of the poetry of the "good greenwood," may all look to find something bearing on their favourite studies; and hence we have given the present work a notice we should probably have refused to one adapted only to the inhabitants of a small and unimportant district. One other reason also is, that we have here an account of a spot hitherto almost unknown, though as well deserving the attention of the tourist as many of much greater celebrity.

There is no district of England, (laments Mr. Potter,) equally deserving of notice, of which so little has been written, and probably of which so little is known, as Charnwood Forest. Sherwood, Needwood, Silwood, Inglewood, and almost all other forests, have had their historian or their poet; while Charnwood, even in historical and topographical works confined to Leicestershire, has been passed over with as little mention as if it was a blemish instead of a beauty on the face of the country.

Charnwood Forest, in Leicestershire, formerly a royal forest, but disafforested by Henry the Third, at the instance of his barons, is now a forest only in name. Full of beautiful scenery, lovely hills and valleys, and in many parts immense rocks; there are now scarcely any trees to be seen, and the name of a forest must be taken in reference to its appearance in the olden time, when—so runs an old tradition-" a squirrel might be hunted six miles without once touching the ground, and when a traveller might journey from Beaumanor to Bardon, on a clear summer's day, without seeing the


A district of ten miles in length, and about six in breadth, almost wholly covered with trees and rocks, and containing, perhaps, in early times, many temples of the Druids: the abode certainly of those awful and, honoured priests of a mystic and imposing form of religion, must doubtless have been of considerable importance to the ancient inhabitants of the country. Charnwood formed part of the ancient Celtic forest of Arden, which extended from the Avon to the Trent; and the Leicestershire portion was bounded on the east by a line running through High Cross to Barton in Nottinghamshire. Many of the forest scenes in Shakspeare are laid in the forest of Arden; and as Leicester is supposed to have been founded by Lear, and the seat of his government, I have sometimes pleased myself with the fancy, (especially when I have been in the midst of a pelting storm on the forest, that Charnwood might have been the "heath" on which Shakspeare imagined Lear's exposure to the storm. That the Romans were well acquainted with it is placed beyond conjecture by the circumstance of a Roman road intersecting the forest; by the recent discovery of Roman coins and earthenware, and by the station or stations which, it is presumed, will be acknowledged to have been fixed on one or more of the hills in the forest-range.

I have somewhere read, but regret that I cannot now recollect my authority, that when William the Conqueror first broached his design of making the

« 이전계속 »