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used to lay aside wig and hat, and cover his head with an old red night-cap. Concerning his great-coat, the original blackness of which had been tempered by long usage into a fuscous green, capital tales were fabricated. The wits could not spare even his shoes. “Once,” Dr. Didbin gravely narrated, “in the case of an action brought for the non-fulfillment of a contract on a large scale for shoes, the question mainly was, whether or not they were well and soundly made, and with the best materials. A number of witnesses were called, one of them, a first-rate character in the gentle craft, being closely questioned, returned contradictory answers, when the Chief Justice observed, pointing to his own shoes, which
egularly bestridden by the broad silver buckle of the day, 'Were the shoes anything like these?' 'No, my lord,' replied the evidence, they were a good deal better and more genteeler. » Dr. Didbin is at needless pains to assure his readers that the shoemaker's answer was followed by uproarious laughter.
THE PIANO IN CHAMBERS.
N the Inns of Court, even more often than in the
colleges of Oxford and Cambridge, musical instruments and performances are regarded by severe students with aversion and abhorrence. Mr. Babbage will live in peace and charity with the organ-grinders who are continually doing him an unfriendly turn before the industrious conveyancer on the first floor will pray for the welfare of 'that fellow upstairs' who daily practises the flute or cornopean from 11 A. M. to 3 P. M. The · Wandering Minstrels' and their achievements are often mentioned with respect in the western drawing-rooms of London; but if the gentlemen who form that distinguished troupe of amateur performers wish to sacrifice their present popularity and take a leading position amongst the social nuisances of the period, they should migrate from the district which delights to honor them to chambers in Old Square, Lincoln's Inn, and give morning concerts every day of term time.
Working lawyers feel warmly on this subject, main
taining that no man shoud be permitted to be an amateurbarrister and an amateur-musician at the same time, and holding that law-students with a turn for wind-instruments should, like vermin, be hunted down and knocked on the head—without law. Strange stories might be told of the discords and violent deeds to which music has given rise in the four Inns. In the last century many a foolish fellow was ‘put up' at ten paces,
because he refused to lay down an ophicleide; 'even as .late as George IV.'s time death has followed from an inordinate addiction to the violin; and it was but the other day that the introduction of a piano into a house in Carey Street led to the destruction of three close and warm friendships.
So alive are lawyers to the frightful consequences of a wholesale exhibition of melodious irritants, that a natural love of order and desire for self-preservation has prompted them to raise numerous obstructions to the free development of musical science in their peculiar localities of town. In the Inns of Court and Chancery Lane professional etiquette forbids barristers and solicitors to play upon organs, harmoniums, pianos, violins, or other stringed instruments, drums, trumpets, cymbals, shawms, bassoons, triangles, castanets or any other bony devices for the production of noise, flageolets, hautboys, or any other sort of boys—between the hours of 9 A. M. and 6 P. M.
And this rule of etiquette is supported by various special conditions introduced into the leases by which the tenants hold much of the local house property. Under some landlords, a tenant forfeits his lease if he indulges in any pursuit that causes annoyance to his immediate neighbors; under others, every occupant of a set of chambers binds himself not to play any musical instrument therein, save between the hours of 9 A. M. and 12 P. M.; and in more than one clump of chambers,
situated within a stone's throw from Chancery Lane, glee-singing is not permitted at any period of the fourand-twenty hours.
That the pursuit of harmony is a dangerous pastime for young lawyers cannot be questioned, although a long list might be given of cases where musical barristers have gained the confidence of many clients, and eventually raised themselves to the bench. A piano is a treacherous companion for the student who can touch it deftlydangerous as an idle friend, whose wit is ever brilliant; fascinating as a beautiful woman, whose smile is always fresh; deceptive as the drug which seems to invigorate, whilst in reality it is stealing away the intellectual powers. Every persevering worker knows how large a portion of his hard work has been done against the grain,' and in spite of strong inclinations to indolence—in hours when pleasant voices could have seduced him from duty, and any plausible excuse for indulgence would have been promptly accepted. In the piano these pleasant voices are constantly present, and it can always show good reason-why reluctant industry should relax its exertions.
THE BATTLE OF THE ORGANS.
IR THOMAS MORE and Lord Bacon-the two most
England-were notable musicians; and many subsequent Keepers and Chancellors are scarcely less famous for love of harmonious sounds than for judicial efficiency. Lord Keeper Guildford was a musical amateur, and notwithstanding his low esteem of literature condescended to write about melody. Lord Jeffreys was a good afterdinner vocalist, and was esteemed a high authority on questions concerning instrumental performance. Lord Camden was an operatic composer; and Lord Thurlow studied thorough-bass, in order that he might direct the musical exercises of his children.
In moments of depression More's favorite solace was the viol; and so greatly did he value musical accomplishments in women, that he not only instructed his first and girlish wife to play on various instruments, but even prevailed on the sour Mistress Alice Middleton “ to take lessons on the lute, the cithara, the viol, the monochord, and the flute, which she daily practised to him." But More's love of music was expressed still more forcibly in the zeal with which he encouraged and took part in the choral services of Chelsea Church. Throughout his residence at Chelsea, Sir Thomas was a regular attendant at the church, and during his tenure of the seals -he not only delighted to chant the appointed psalms, but used to don a white surplice, and take his place among the choristers. Having invited the Duke of Norfolk to dine with him, the Chancellor prepared himself for the enjoyment of that great peer's society by attending divine service, and he was still occupied with his religious exercises when his Grace of Norfolk entered the church, and to his inexpressible astonishment saw the keeper of the king's conscience in the flowing raiment of a chorister, and heard him give “Glory to God in the highest !” as though he were a hired singer. “God's body! God's ·body! My Lord Chancellor a parish clerk ?-a parish clerk ?" was the duke's testy expostulation with the Chancellor. Whereupon More, with gentle gravity, answered, “Nay; your grace may not think that the king—your master and mine—will with me, for serving his Master, be offended, and thereby account his office