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of a length compared with which those of world of letters, Dr. Johnson. Young Isaac the princes of the blood of any of our Eu- Disraeli left it himself in the hands of the ropean reigning families become insignifi- Doctor's negro, at the door of the house in
Bolt-court, Fleet-street; but the Doctor was His grandfather, Benjamin Disraeli, settled then too ill to read anything, and it was rein England in 1748. He was an Italian de- turned to the author a week after. scendant from one of those Hebrew families From this time, Isaac Disraeli began to whom the Inquisition forced to emigrate from lead the life of a student. He was fortunate the Spanish Peninsula at the end of the fif- in making the acquaintance of amiable.and teenth century. His ancestors, who were of cultivated men, who introduced him to conthe Sephardim, "had dropped their Gothic genial society. surname" on their settlement in Italy; "and, His marriage did not alter his recluse grateful to the God of Jacob, who had sus- habits of life: he continued to live: almost tained them through unprecedented trials entirely in his own library. This gentleman, and guarded them through unheard-of perils, having had some difference with his synathey assumed the name of DISRAELI-a name gogue, failed to teach Judaism to the future never borne before or since by any other fa- Prime Minister; and Samuel Rogers, the mily—in order that their race might for ever banker poet, finding the boy, at six years
, be recognized.” For two centuries they were old, without any religious instruction, took merchants at Venice; but England offering him to Hackney Church. From that time. many advantages, in the middle of the Mr. Disraeli has been a member of the eighteenth century the present Mr. Dis-Church of England. Though born of Jewish raeli's great-grandfather determined on send parents, he has never held the Jewish faith, ing his younger son, Benjamin, to settle in but has been all his life a member of the this country of political quiet, and civil and Christian Church. Indeed, his father, Isaac religious freedom. This first of the English Disraeli, was buried in the chancel of the Disraelis is described by his distinguished village church, near his own seat in Buckgrandson as a man "of ardent character; inghamshire; so it would appear that, if he sanguine, courageous, speculative, and for had made no formal profession of any change tunate; with a temper which no disappoint- of religion, he died a Christian. ment could disturb, and a brain amid re- Mr. Disraeli, in his youth, was articled to verses full of resource." No wonder, then, a firm of attorneys, who carried on business that at middle age he had made a fortune, in Old Jewry, in the city of London; but he and settled in a country house at Enfield, did not remain to complete the term for where he entertained Sir Horace Mann and which he was articled. His genius pointed many celebrities of the day. He died in to greater things; and until he himself con1817, at the ripe age of ninety, and left one tradicted the report, when Mr. Grant's "Hisson, who had "disappointed all his plans, tory of the Newspaper Press” appeared, and who, to the last hour of his life, was an it had always been supposed that he had enigma to him." This was Isaac Disraeli
, devoted some considerable time at this the father of the future Prime Minister, and period of his life to writing for the newsthe famous author of "The Curiosities of papers. This, however, was, it appears, a Literature” and kindred works—books that mistake. Mr. Disraeli must be allowed to will live long after his son's works of fiction know best; and it appears that his first have lost their ephemeral glory.
literary effort was “Vivian Grey." Though Isaac was of course designed by his father the style is turgid, there are strong outbursts for a merchant; but having written a poem, of imagination in the novel. “Books," says he was consigned to his father's correspond the author, "written by boys, which pretend ent at Amsterdam, like a bale of goods, to to give a picture of manners, and to deal in be placed at a college there. On his return knowledge of human nature, can be at the to England, at the age of eighteen, his genius best but the results of imagination, acting broke the bonds of parental control. He upon knowledge not acquired by experiwrote a long poem against Commerce, which ence.” This sentence precisely describes ---strange sentiment in the mouth of his race the character of his first novel. Yet, read as we know them-he called the corrupter by the light of events which have come to
He packed his effusion in an en- pass since he wrote it, “Vivian Grey” is velope, and took it to the Emperor of the very full of interest. The hero is so like the
author, that it is not easy to separate them. sion that he is, I now forgive the heir-at-law “Mankind, then," says Vivian Grey, "is my of the blasphemous thief that died upon the game. At this moment, how many a power- Cross.” ful noble only wants wit to be a Minister; O'Connell's coarse wit stopped at noand what wants Vivian Grey to attain the thing; but he had a foeman worthy of his same end? That noble's influence.” And, steel in the younger Disraeli, as he was in due time, the creator of “Vivian” be called then. O'Connell was bound by a came a Minister; for in February, 1852, vow not to fight a duel; and Disraeli called Lord Derby made Mr. Disraeli his Chan- upon his son to assume “his vicarious duties cellor of the Exchequer, an office he held a of yielding satisfaction for the insults which second time when Lord Derby was made his father lavished with impunity on his poliPremier in 1858-9; and a third time he tical opponents." served the office under his veteran friend Morgan O'Connell did not accept the and leader in 1866. As everybody knows, challenge; and Disraeli wrote Daniel O'Conin 1868, in the month of February, Lord nell a letter, in which he said:Derby's health compelled him to resign, and "Although you have long placed yourself her Majesty was pleased to send for Mr. out of the pale of civilization, still I am one Disraeli, who thus had conferred upon him that will not be insulted even by a Yahoo the crowning distinction of his life, the without chastising it. : ... I called upon greatest post the Sovereign has it in her your son to assume his vicarious office of power to bestow.
yielding satisfaction for his shrinking sire. But Mr. Disraeli did not find his way into I admire your scurrilous allusions to my the House he was afterwards to lead without origin. : . You say that I was once a a fight for his seat. In 1829, after the very Radical and am now a Tory. My conrapid production of his earlier novels, the science acquits me of ever having deserted brilliant young litterateur left England, spent a political friend, or of ever having changed the winter in Constantinople, and visited a political opinion. I have nothing to apSyria, Egypt, and Nubia, before his return peal to but the good sense of the people. in 1831. He came back with new views of A death's head and cross bones were not life and politics. He had penetrated the blazoned on my banners." Asian Mystery, and was something between He called the great demagogue a "big a Tory and a Whig. Recommended by beggarman,” who gathered "rint" from the Hume and O'Connell, he tried Wycombe wretched Irish peasantry by promising to three times for a seat in Parliament, and was procure a "repale” for them, which he knew unsuccessful. Then he turned up at Taun- he should never get. ton, and discovered himself, what he is now, Altogether, Mr. Disraeli had much the a Conservative, and in the ardour of his elec- best of the correspondence. Few men could tioneering eloquence attacked the Irish de- write a better letter of accusation or of vinmagogue.
dication; and he has been charged with the Politics ran higher then than now, and authorship of the “Runnymede” letters, O'Connell replied:-"Mr. Disraeli calls me which appeared in the Times
. They are intraitor:
: my answer to that is that he is a liar. ferior to the letters of “Junius," but they He is a liar in action and in words. His life display great powers of invective; and, on is a living lie.” This was not quite strong internal evidence only, most people would enough. He went on:
:-"When I speak of say they were written by Disraeli. Mr. Disraeli as a Jew, I mean not to taunt him Mr. Disraeli first sat in Parliament, for on that account. Better ladies and gentle- Maidstone, in 1832; and his speeches are, men than amongst the Jews I have never perhaps, the best efforts of his genius. He met with. They were once the chosen is a splendid Parliamentary debater, and a people of God. There were miscreants perfect master of epigrammatic phrases that among them, however; and it must certainly stick wherever they are applied. When he have been from one of those that Disraeli wrote “Tancred,” it was his opinion that descended. He possesses just the qualities “we sadly lack a new stock of public images. of the impenitent thief who died upon the The current similes, if not absolutely counCross, whose name must have been Disraeli
. terfeit, are quite worn out. They have no inFor aught I know, the present Disraeli is trinsic value, and serve only as counters to descended from him; and, with the impres- represent the absence of ideas. The critics
should really call them in." No man has band which clasped her ringlets (but so covered with done more to replace the old images with pearls, that the original hue of the charming papoosh
She new ones than the author of “Tancred.” disappeared entirely), completed her costume.
had three necklaces on, each of which would have Perhaps "Tancred” is the best book of ima- dowered a princess; her fingers glittered with rings gination, and “Coningsby" of political life, to their rosy tips; and priceless bracelets, bangles, that their author has produced. The style and armlets wound round an arm that was whiter of all is sparkling and clever sometimes, at
than the ivory grand-piano on which it leaned,” others turgid and over-daubed with colour. Compare Thackeray's admirable caricature
It is curious that the best specimen of with Disraeli's own serious production :Disraeli's style that can be given in a few lines is not Disraeli's at all, but Thackeray's. which was surrounded by arcades.
“A fountain rose in the centre of the quadrangle In his “Novels by Eminent Hands," he has
this fountain, in a circle, were twenty saddled steeds 'Codlingsby: by the Right Hon. B. Shrews of the highest race, each held by a groom, and each berry" - a wonderfully good imitation in attended by a man-at-arms. All pressed their hands caricature of Disraeli's style.
to their hearts as the Emir entered, but with a
gravity of countenance which was never for a mo“They entered a moderate-sized apartment-in
ment disturbed. Whether their presence were habideed, Holywell-street is not above a hundred yards tual, or only for the occasion, it was unquestionably long, and this chamber was not more than half that impressive. Here the travellers dismounted, and length-and fitted up with the simple taste of its
Fakredeen ushered Tancred through a variety of
saloons, of which the furniture, though simple, as “The carpet was of white velvet-(laid over several
becomes the East, was luxurious, and, of its kind, webs of Aubusson, Ispahan, and Axminster, so that superb; floors of mosaic marbles, bright carpets, your foot gave no more sound as it trod upon the arabesque, ceilings, walls of carved cedar, and broad
divans of the richest stuffs of Damascus. yielding plain than the shadow which followed you) -of white velvet painted with flowers, arabesques, showing Tancred into a chamber, which opened
"And this divan is for you,' said Fakredeen, and classic figures by Sir William Ross, J. M. W. Turner, R.A., Mrs. Mee, and Paul Delaroche. The
upon a flower-garden, shaded by lemon trees. I edges were wrought with seed pearl, Valenciennes
am proud of my mirror,' he added, with some exultalace and bullion. The walls were hung with cloth
tion, as he called Tancred's attention to a large of silver, embroidered with gold figures, over which
French looking-glass, the only one in Lebanon. were worked pomegranates, polyanthuses, and pas
‘And this,' added Fakredeen, leading Tancred sion-flowers, in ruby, amethyst, and smaragd. The through a suite of marble chambers, 'this is your drops of dew which the artificers had sprinkled on the flowers, were of diamonds. The hangings were
“In the centre of one chamber, fed by a perpetual overhung with pictures yet more costly. “Giorgione fountain, was a large alabaster basin, the edges of the gorgeous, Titian the golden, Rubens the ruddy
which were strewn with flowers just culled. The and pulpy (the Pan of Painting), some of Murillo's
chamber was entirely of porcelain; a golden flower beatified shepherdesses, who smile on you out of
on a ground of delicate green. darkness like a star; a few score of first-class Leo
"'I will send your people to you,' said Fakrenardos, and fifty of the masterpieces of the patron deen, but, in the meantime, there are attendants of Julius and Leo, the imperial genius of Urbino,
here who are, perhaps, more used to the duty;' covered the walls of the little chamber. Divans of and so saying, he clapped his hands, and several carved amber, covered with ermine, went round the
servants appeared bearing baskets of curious linen, room, and in the midst was a fountain pattering and
whiter than the snow of Lebanon, and a variety of babbling into jets of double-distilled otto of roses.
robes." “Pipes, Goliath!” Rafael said gaily, to a little And this passage is equalled by hundreds
༦ negro with a silver collar (he spoke to him in his native tongue of Dongola); and welcome to our
of others profusely strewn through all his snuggery, my Codlingsby.'
You feel, all the while you are reading his
books, that the author is laughing at you. “Her hair had that deep glowing tinge in it which There is an air of insincerity about them has been the delight of all painters, and which, all; there is not a passage in one of the therefore, the vulgar sneer at. It was of burning auburn, meandering over her fairest shoulders in
romances that ever moved the passions of a twenty thousand minute ringlets; it hung to her boarding-school miss. They are very unwaist, and below it. A light blue velvet fillet, clasped real, and very clever; but with all the splenwith a diamond aigrette (valued at two hundred dour and wealth of his Eastern imagination, thousand tomauns, and bought from Lieutenant Vico. vich, who had received it from Dost Mahomed),
Mr. Disraeli has a fine sense of genuine with a simple bird of Paradise, formed her head English humour. gear. A sea green cymar, with short sleeves, dis- What is finer in this way than the talk of played her exquisitely-moulded arms to perfection, the two servants, Mr. Freeman and Mr. and was fastened by a girdle of emeralds over a yellow satin frock. Pink gauze trousers, spangled Trueman, that Tancred takes with him to with silver, and slippers of the same colour as the Palestine? They are so inimitably true as
portraits of the English upper servant.
***That would be a bad business,' said Trueman;
It would be Their master, sitting in his room in an inn, my lady could never abide that.
better that he should turn Turk.' near one of the most sacred spots of the
"'I am not sure it wouldn't,' said Mr. Freeman. cradle of our faith, is lost in poetic reverie. 'It would be in a manner more constitutional. The There is a knock' at the door. Enter the Sultan of Turkey may send an Ambassador to our servants. He thinks they have come to ask Queen, but the Pope of Rome may not.?
“I should not like to turn Turk,' said Trueman, him to “improve the oecasion,” as ministers
very thoughtfully. would say. No—they have come to say "I know what you are thinking of, John,' said they can't drink their coffee without sugar! Mr. Freeman, in a serious tone. “You are thinking
Again, when Tancred's life is in danger if anything were to happen to either of us in this in an Arab encampment where he is wounded heathen land, where we should get Christian burial.
"Lord love you, Mr. Freeman, no. I wasn't. I and a prisoner, they come in a great state was thinking of a glass of ale.' to explain that they don't know how his “Ah!' sighed Freeman, “it softens the heart to boots are to be blacked, for in the night think of such things away from home, as we are.
Do these savages have drunk up all the black
you know, John, there are times when I feel ing! On another occasion they go to stay singing 'Sweet Home' one night, among those sa
very, queer-there are indeed. I catched myself a at a “superb Saracenic castle.”
vages in the wilderness. One wants consolation, It strikes Freeman and Trueman thus:
John, sometimes-one does, indeed; and, for my
part, I do miss the family prayers and the home. ""This is the first gentleman's seat I've seen since
brewed.'” we left England,' said Freeman. “There must have been a fine coming of age here,'
No author has ever done better in porrejoined Trueman.
traying the characteristic feeling of the ser“As for that,' replied Freeman, 'comings of age vants' hall; and at the other social extreme, depend in a manner upon meat and drink. They Mr. Disraeli has had more practice than any aint in noways to be carried out with coffee and pipes. other novelist. He has put more dukes, Without oxen roasted whole, and broached hogsheads, they aint in a manner legal.""
duchesses, lords, and ladies, more gold and
jewels, more splendour and wealth into his The servants' Paradise is meat and drink books than anybody else has attempted to in England or in Palestine, and Tancred's do. They are full of them. They are full, gentlemen were sorely tried with the coffee too, of his peculiar opinions about the race and pipes.
from which he has sprung. “Race," he tells They are at a great feast at the castle, us, “is the only truth.” “The Jews are the when the following conversation occurs :- aristocracy of nature--the purest race, the " And the most curious thing,' said Freeman to
chosen people.” Trueman, as they established themselves under a Whatever fate his fame as a statesman and pine tree, with an ample portion of roast meat, and a novelist may meet with at the hands of the armed with their travelling knives and forks, and the most curious thing is, that they say these people
future, there is, then, one thing at least he are Christians! Who ever heard of Christians wear- can never lose his connection with the ing turbans ?'
aristocracy of nature. “'Or eating without knives and forks?' added Trueman. "It would astonish their weak minds in the
GUMMER'S FORTUNE. steward's room at Bellamont, if they could see all
BY JOHN BAKER HOPKINS. this, John,' said Mr. Freeman, pensively. 'A man who travels has very great advantages.'
CHAPTER XIII. “ • And very great hardships too,' said Trueman. 'I don't care for work, but I do like to have my meals regular.' *** This is not bad picking, though," said Mr. FOR less than a hundred pounds, I could ,
have had a score of alphabets after my Freeman; “they call it gazelle, which. I suppose is the foreign for venison.'
For a ten pound note I could have "* If you called this venison at Bellamont,' said been B.A., or M.A., or LL.D. So far as Trueman, they would look very queer in the stew- the average public is concerned, what is the ard's room.' “Bellamont is Bellamont, and this place is this
odds whether you get a degree from Oxford place, John,' said Mr. Freeman. · The Hameer is
or Cambridge, or from "an ancient and a noble gentleman, every inch of him, and I am very famous seat of learning” across the water? I glad my lord has got a companion of his own kidney. met with a fellow who lives and thrives upon ît is much better than monks and hermits, and low his M.D., though he is as ignorant of medipeople of that sort, who are not by no means fit company for somebody I could mention, and might cine as a petrified toad; and, manslaughter turn him into a Papist into the bargain.'
being punishable by law, he is not such a
LEARNED AND FINANCIAL.
fool as to practise medicine. He is a literary to him, he expressed surprise and indignaand philanthropic M.D. He has, so says tion that a gentleman should be troubled the Colonel, put together two or three about such a trifle. My F.A.S.G.B. cost books by cribbing out of old books at the me ten pounds five shillings. British Museum library, and therefore he is My financial adventure was rather more an author. He is the projector and hono- expensive. Mr. Floater is one of the most rary secretary of The National Institution stylish individuals in town. He is a halffor the Diffusion of Fine Art and the Ame- century bachelor, with chambers in St. lioration of the Industrial Classes, and he James's-street, and a beautiful house, which is, therefore, a philanthropist. Úpon the he calls “my box," at Edgware. He drives strength of his authorship, his philanthropy, splendid horses, has the best cook that and his M.D., he gets into debt—and to money can hire, gives charming dinners, and scamps who do not mean paying, debts are always has an opera box at the disposal of income—and borrows money. After I had the wives and daughters of his friends. Mr. subscribed five guineas to his institution, Floater was admitted as a solicitor, but he my name was advertised as a vice-president. never practised. He did a little on the turf, The Colonelthen informed me that the fellow had a run of luck, made a few thousands, is an impudent impostor, and that his M.D. and gave up betting. He then went into the was a degree conferred upon him by a mes- benevolent line. If a young gentleman got meric college in New York.
into difficulties, Mr. Floater was ever ready How many learned societies there are in to help him with excellent advice and ready England, I know not; but there are enough money. The advice was gratis, but the and to spare. Some, I dare say, are what money had to be paid for by interest a little they seem to be; but others are shams, of over the Bank of England minimum. But which any one may become a fellow if he this business does not pay so well as the can beg, borrow, or steal a guinea or two public supposes. The swell money-lender for entrance fee and subscription. These sometimes catches a Tartar; for there are sham societies are supported by cads, who borrowing sharks as well as lending sharks. think it grand to have some letters after their Of late years, Mr. Floater has devoted his names; by sharpers, who know that letters talents to promoting. He gets up limited liaafter their names will help them to blind and bility companies, though his native modesty plunder small tradesmen; and by the dupes prevents his name appearing in any of the of the energetic secretaries, who have a com- transactions. For his share of the work he mission on the income.
takes money when he can get it, and when I was persuaded to become a Fellow of there is no cash he accepts paid-up shares. the Antediluvian Society of Great Britain. Prudent man is Mr. Floater. All his shares The professed object of the society is to are entered in the name of an old servant, discover the condition of the human race who, owing to delicate health, is obliged to before the Flood. I attended one of the reside on the Continent. Mr. Floater became meetings, at which Dr. Festus Codem, a thin a favourite with Mrs. Gummer. He was so young man, with a cracked tin trumpet kind and attentive. He sent bouquets to voice, read a paper “On some Human the girls, and presented Mrs. Gummer with Bones discovered in a Cave on the Coast of an elegant cameo brooch. I was startled New Guinea."
when Matilda asked me to take a thousand Dr. Codem told us that the bones were shares in The Manitoulin Diamond Fields not like any other bones, and that they were and Gold Quartz Crushing Company (Lipart of a skeleton of an infant giant. That mited). is all I could make out of the paper, for every “Only ten shillings a share to pay down, other word was a word of at least ten sylla- and no calls beyond another ten shillings; bles.
and in a year's time the five pound shares Dr. Codem offered to write a paper for will be worth fifty pound.” me, and to have it printed in the “Transac- I had seen too much of limited liability tions,” for three guineas; so that I might to be nobbled in that style. Matilda was have become a scientific author on easy very angry at my point-blank refusal. terms. I declined the tempting bargain; “Where is your spirit, Gummer, and where but I lent Dr. Codem five pounds, which is your duty to your poor dear family? he forgot to return. When I mentioned it | Here is Mr. Floater, who has nothing to