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English, they are still very far behind us, though backwardness in these cases argues a very low state of civilization. With regard to bodily health, it is pretty certain that there is a difference between a Parisian and a Londoner; that the antiphlogistic treatment which would save the Englishman from any acute disorder, would assuredly kill the Frenchman. Thus, though we are liable to be carried off by acute complaints, they are more afflicted with chronical ones; the which implies a greater tenacity of fibre on our part, a more vigorous flow of blood, and a more copious supply of the nervous fluid. It is possible that the striking difference that has occurred in the two capitals may be accounted for by these circumstances. The following traits of Paris under the Cholera might have been taken from Defoe's History of the Plague: they are, however, from a letter in the Times.
"I have traversed a good portion of the city: it is difficult to describe it now. The Boulevards-formerly the promenade of the idlers and of the fashionablesof the wealthy and of the swindlers-are now thinly sprinkled with a few melancholy persons, walking as it were in fear of the malady of which every one is talking. No carriages—no splendid liveries, even the diplomatic corps conceal themselves. The druggists' shops are in some places thronged by persons, each to ask for a remedy for a father, a mother, a wife, a husband, or a child, or a relation who is dying. In some houses there are several dead at the same moment; and one sees a coffin lying in the passage and covered with a white sheet, with a candle lighted at the head, waiting until the black cart approaches to carry the deceased to a place of burial. It is indeed a dreadful visitation which desolates a city and causes the ruin of families, and leaves many a forlorn orphan to weep in misery or to beg a pittance in the streets."
BADNESS OF THE OPERA.-The least enviable person in the country, out of the tread-mill and the hulks, is probably Mr. Monck Mason, the bad-manager of the Opera. What a position! Nobody satisfied-every body complaining-all his friends worrying him-he himself conscious of neither keeping his money nor his promises. It was thought, that when a musician, a gentleman, and a capitalist were combined, that phoenix of rare creatures, a successful caterer for the Opera was discovered; but, alas! the world has been beGrisi'd and be- Tosi'd till they have lost all faith and patience. The numerous failures, and unhappy experiments that have been tried on both the young and the old, the ugly and the pretty, those with some voice, and others with none in tune-the Lasizes, the Puzzis, and the Grandolfis, have thrown a heavy cloud over the house, that will probably cast a shadow even upon the things to come. The hand of Fate seems upon the house, and all who raise a note in it or on it.
The importation of singers is a most delicate affair: it most resembles the carriage of white bait: the fish that at Blackwall appears all transparent fibre, before it reaches the heart of London is a lump of dead-looking mummy. So it is with singers: the ear of the Impresario is charmed in Italy, the bird is caught by putting a little salt upon its tail, and caged in a prison of gilt bars, and is made to cross the seas; but, lo! in being let out to sing, its notes are changed, the spirit of the song is gone, and the Opera-house frowns a frown of damnation: Mr. Monck Mason is encumbered with his captive, tries to whistle her away, and does not always succeed, without a duet in the newspapers. It looks ill when a musical manager has to clear off old scores in "The Times."
STATE OE MANCHESTER.-The Cholera has not yet attacked those parts of England where its horrible exploits may be expected fully to equal its achievements in France. Manchester for instance, where every circumstance of squalor, debauchery, starvation, filth and impurity combine to prepare a monstrous feast for the devouring plague. An account of the state of this town has lately been published by Dr. Phillips Kay. They who remember Erasmus's description of London at the time of the sweating sickness or plague in Henry VIII.'s reign, will be struck by some of the points of similarity between it and Dr. Kay's account of Manchester. The details are not of a nature to be quoted here. The striking picture, however, of a day of these manufacturing unfortunates ought to be pointed out to the attention of all persons who have the power and the will to operate changes in our domestic economy. Had a tithe of the attention that has been wasted on the West Indies and the South Seas been directed to Manchester, better fruits might have been expected.
There are said to be one thousand gin-shops in Manchester. A gentleman curious in these matters, watched the number of persons entering a gin-shop in that town in five minutes, during eight successive Saturday evenings, and at various periods from seven o'clock until ten. The average result was 112 men and 163 women, or 275 in forty minutes, which is equal to 412 per hour. The population of Manchester and its environs amounts to about 230,000, and more than one-half of its inhabitants are so destitute or so degraded, as to require the assistance of public charity in bringing their offspring into the world.
The Lion's Mouth.
"ALIENA NEGOTIA CENTUM."--Horat.
VINDICATION OF BOULOGNE SUR MER.
"MONSIEUR L'EDITEUR :—
"March 31, 1832.
"You perceive I commence by availing myself of the accomplishment of foreign travel, by addressing you in a foreign language; but having never been able to proceed further -for reasons best known to myself I must lucubrate a little with you on this spot, and make up for other deficiencies. The subject, I fear, is stale, perhaps worse; but as you have been devilish hard in making game of it with Asmodeus, and as game is only highflavoured when run down, I wish to remove some of the foul spots he has left behind, at least qualify it by a more gentle application.
Why Boulogne has been selected as the target for such travellers to fire at is obvious. If our other Colonies on the coast invite his Royal Highness to look in on them, it is merely from that common etiquette of hospitality which our common infirmity demands, and which, where Idleness is the mother of Mischief, is sure to be father of so large a family;-but Boulogne seems one of those pleasant, wicked little Ultras that shows her banner all at once; and I am sure that when he saw so busy-a-looking bundle of sin basking in so smiling a valley, he longed not only to drop his card, but to seek close acquaintance with us.
I admit it is a misfortune, that when bankrupts come abroad, or even plain, simple retrenchers, they are not satisfied with plain simples, and must be seeking sensuality at a discount: those who are suffering for their sins, have no right to be interrupting the operation of that repentance which sinners require, nor need the authority of St. Jerome or the Fathers be called into question; these old Doctors were in the habit of recommending cathartics, as well as hair-shirts, in those old times; every rumble was equal
to a rumination, and therefore all was absorbed in the future or past; but alas! Sir, in the dance of life and death, now-a-days, pleasure and pain 30 chase each other, that now-a-days is every thing, and Folly and Wisdom, in crossing hands, show that Folly and Vice often take different routes. Thus it is with us here; Boulogne is one of those light-tripping nymphs that merely loosens her zone for fashion sake, and like Aspasia when courting the philosophers, tells us that human nature was born before Philosophy was ever thought of: in short, the two countries are now mixed so pleasantly together bere -there is so little quarrelling about old prejudices or rivalries, that the old machinery which used to be creaking and grunting at every turn, is now like that of our steam-boats
every one seems handing the oil-bottle round-all shows that the thing works well. "But, Sir, these are but half the advantages here-these are but for the Moralists and high-flown speculators in the cause of Philanthropy versus Patriotism-Boulogne shines in the Physical as well as the Moral. In most places, Climate and Comfort are Antipodes, or (to come more home for a simile), like two billiard-balls meeting, the closer they hit, the farther they fly off: here, like other things, they agree we have the curtains, carpets, and comforts of England, with the blue skies and cheap wines of France; and if France had no other colours in her composition, they must upset a whole calendar or catalogue of either patriots or prejudices.
"Before I admit, therefore, that Boulogne is a refugium peccatorum," rather than a "refugium economorum," or, in fact, a con amore affair altogether, I must ask Asmodeus whether he has visited our own watering-places, and looked at the exports of their impurities? He has taken a positive (indeed a very positive) view of us; lays us down at once as the "cloaca maxima," and warns all visitors of the pestilence that here emanates. But, Sir, I have taken a comparative view; I have unroofed the houses like Asmodeus of old, peeped into all the holes and corners of sin and iniquity that I could hear of, and having hung out my Moral Eudiometer in as high and dry a spot as I could find, and noted all its indications, must pronounce that the effluvia on both sides is nearly alike. This may arise from the nature of the French atmosphere and soil, and this may avert some of the charges laid against us: the chief of these are, that lying between the two countries and capitals, we have all their old, hoary vices tumbling in on us midway; secondly, that Boulogne is so convenient a colony for new ones, and so convenient altogether. But, Sir, change of country produces change of circumstances, you must perceive; and thus the vices of both meeting become neutralized in combination, as neutral salts do in medicine or chemistry.
Questions of national morality, therefore, like those of national manners, are dangerous for either import or export; few of them are stout, healthy abstractions, that can stand up and decree the right and wrong. Many of these delicate applications, that prejudice alone can take care of, are often disturbed in the carriage, and always deranged in the landing; the moment we open our stock, either here or at Calais pier, every little virtue or vice undergoes search; what we most prize is often subject to prohibition, and therefore, as we cannot throw them overboard, we must smuggle them closely about us: not that virtues in one country are called vices in another, or any such vice versa system, but that they change in their colour and consistency from the new elements they get into. In France, both are light, because every thing about them is light-in England, the reverse. Thus the term Dissipation varies in both; in England the atoms flying off all together, when once rid of their home-in France, popping and skipping about, but never losing their way.
"As to Scandal and Gambling, they are both epidemic and endemic; like Cholera, they are diseases of the age, or rather receipts for their cure; 'tis true they increase one half by feeding passion, but then they cure the other half by killing time. The modes of killing time depend on tastes and temperaments-the Frenchman, light, loose, and sanguine, is easily satisfied-makes a plaything of his passions, and tosses time like a shuttlecock the Englishman, cased with buckram and bile, must have strong stimuli; he is a man of business, holds himself tight and braced for it, and therefore, when suddenly thrown on ennui, is like a bow-string suddenly cut, the fibres fly off in all directions, but the bow is as stiff as ever. When he comes abroad, therefore, he alters the bow and the buckram soften by the atmosphere-the bile gets diluted by the winds, and thus he commences a new business-that of a light, softer folly, and becomes elastic from removed pressure. What is this pressure?-is it our fogs or our Debt? What is this folly? Definitions are half the battle, as D'Alembert tells us, but even they alter by coming abroad. We must not be too hard upon them--we must not quarrel with so respectable a word as that of respectability.
"But, Sir, Boulogne has peculiar modes of purification: she is notorious for her high winds-they sweep along her valley in all directions, and will sweep away the
Cholera, when it comes: in the second place, she has adopted a new mode, now universally approved of the process and patent for this may be seen at the "Hotel d'Angleterre," and is open to all strangers. This Hotel d'Angleterre, you are not perhaps aware, is the King's Bench here; it has been newly built; lies very airy in the upper town, and is thus named and embellished in honour of our country: and though I neither assert nor deny that so expensive an undertaking was necessary, yet being regularly instituted, and with rules like those of Quarantine, I leave you to judge whether prevention is not better than remedy, where moral miasma has been so prevalent.
"I must therefore contend, Sir, that Boulogne is now simply an asylum for those afflicted with the "res angusta," &c. and I have too much "esprit de corps "about me not to attempt their defence: this, perhaps, is a forlorn hope; where Prejudice and Morality are plaintiffs, it is equal to an ex-officio, and none but Asmodeus ought to be counsel for the defendant; but as he and I are at issue on the main point, I simply take it up for chivalry or charity sake. It is true we have our routs, balls, and ecarté it is true we have our "blasées," quidnuncs whose feelings are so fried and frizzled in the "casserole" of the times, that nothing but the catering of "John Bull," or "The Age," will do for them: it is true we have our cheap sensualists-but how can it be otherwise? In France, sensuality is everywhere like sociality-it is an affair of the Sun: we have no window-tax, and the only Aristocracy of the Sun is, that he is the centre of his own circle. What is the consequence? We find we can, not only exist but live-not only vegetate but animalize; and instead of holding that Polypus or Zoophyte-link that kept us dangling midway in the chain, can blaze out a little, and even plume our wings in the new beam in short, luxuries are cheap-economy is more in the aggregate than the items; and as expenditure is not the sine qua non of estimation, we can all be free, easy, and economical, without danger.
To be serious then, Sir, Absenteeism is a serious disease, and one that true patriots must deplore. I admit the influence of fashion, in the conflict now going on between old and new ideas-I admit that all countries should seek each other's good points, and break up their old barriers by mutual interchange and visits; but between visits and visitations there is a distinction; and if we prefer settlement altogether abroad, we may fairly conclude there is something wrong altogether at home. There are some diseases of the body politic which show themselves by eruptions, but these are outlets for the morbid matter. Absenteeism and Emigration are the results of our plethora and poverty, working double tides with us in cross channels; but though the carbuncles of our new civilization, they are not outlets for our new diseases. If society in England has been that struggle where all medium aspirants or moderate nobodies are excluded—if its doors are only open to those tickets which our modern Aristocracies have inflicted on us, whom are we to blame-those staying at home or abroad? Making virtues of our necessities is always a convenient fashion, and so it may be done here-those who stay at home assume that of Patriotism, because they cannot come abroad or be looked up to those who come abroad assume that of Philanthropy, because they cannot stay at home or te looked down on; thus it is an affair of optics, pride is the prism-but in the one case it is a positive, in the other a negative obliquity of vision: let not, then, the moral virtues be hauled into the account between us-let not Boulogne be stigmatized for her emigrants: if we take the colour and staff of a colony like this from the prominent and notorious characters we hear of in it, we forget that the same prominences and love of notoriety that attached to them at home, drove them abroad; and if we do not perceive that the most respectable here are the most private, we must be as oblique in our modes of perception as those we are so ready to blame.
"If Asmodeus had taken more or less than a bird's-eye view of us, he would have passed us by altogether; and if you, Sir, come and visit us, you will see Absenteeism construed-text, chapter, and commentary. Boulogne does not claim the merit of being the asylum for the desperate, like Calais. She is not the first rock or the last refuge to cling to she lies at ease in her valley, combines the advantages of the two countries, and has all the features of mixed national physiognomy; if to this I added the beauties and salubrites of her walks, gardens, and baths, it might be termed eulogy: but I speak in her defence, or rather in attack of the opinions of some newspapers. Such opinions militate against all parties: the French seldom discriminate between attacks of our society and theirs, and thus recriminations arise and irritations produced. The cultivation of good feeling between us should be a matter of principle, not interest; France and England must stand or fall together; and France is friendly, whatever our Tories may think. But even were this otherwise, why should Boulogne be stained by the black sheep that run through her? Look at our fixed, quiet families, who have lived here since the Peace-look at our Admirals, Generals, Divines, &c. who have avail
ed themselves of her advantages, and are not ashamed of retrenchment. Economy can only prick that pride which is bloated and heated by rivalry, but always shows a healthy pride in seeking what is just and honourable. such advantages, if she had been merely a temporary refuge for the worthless, where Boulogne had not been selected for should we see those institutions which now adorn her, and for which she is so much indebted to our country?-where should we see our respectable Church of England establishment, with its excellent pastor, Mr. Symons, so many years at his post?— where its Humane and other Societies ?-and that combined system of charity which has produced, and is at this moment producing, such effects?-where those excellent seminaries of education (whether under Messrs. Bury, Dickinson, Gretton, or others), that no less tend to unite the nations, and have flourished for so many years? What has been the result of this affluence of strangers?—an action and reaction on both sides: a new town has started up-all its energies quickened, all its resources increased. Look at our Museum, Libraries, and Cabinets-look at the attractions of such to our men of talents and literature: if the names of a Haynes Bayly, Banim, Speer, Sankey, &c. have been found together in our list, shall we say that Mind has no resources at Boulogne, and that dissipation is her only industry?
"But yet, Sir, Absenteeism is an evil, and should be removed. Boulogne mitigates it, and meets us half way; but Boulogne will diminish her attractions when England diminishes her repulsions. England will even, perhaps, be dearer than France-her climate creates more wants, her condition creates more wishes-Reform cannot alter the one-let us hope it will improve the other!"
"Monsieur, J'ai l'honneur de vous saluer,
We comply with the request of Mr. Russelton, and give admission to his << precious effusion," although we can scarcely think he has made a hit of his miss. A pun or two now and then, however, helps digestion.
Προς τον Δια.
Oh Jove! when to the charming Mrs. Tyndar
You thought you'd made a wondrous hit, I wis,
For hanging; inn-sign Swan, who swings amain,
We have had much pleasure in reading a pamphlet " on Theatrical Emancipation and the Rights of Dramatic Authors." full of interesting matter. By T. J. Thackeray, Esq. It is
Mr. Mackinnon, the able author of " Public Opinion," has brought in a Bill, which has been read a first time, to prevent cruelty to animals. We regret, that while we highly applaud the intention, we cannot altogether subscribe to the wisdom-of the measure; it seems to us that it is a part of that eternal system of over-legislating which is the great curse of our codes-" in republicâ corruptissimâ plurimæ leges," these laws beat about the bush without catching the bird. The only way to prevent cruelty, is to render the disposition humane— the only way to render the disposition more humane, is not by legal penalties, but by early education. Let Mr. Mackinnon bring in a Bill for the establish