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his wife, but actually offered for sale the coffin in which it had for a few hours been in closed, had the hardihood to appear in the streets with a printed account of the ignoble speculation; and, as he was out of all sight, when compared with the rest of his speech-crying' compeers, best acquainted with the outs and ins of the case, and, therefore, more able to give a full and particular' detail of the circumstance, it is said he sold two for their one, and, at all hazards, put money in his purse.' Altogether the transaction, he says, turned out beyond his most sanguine expectations; and so soon as his receipts are exhausted he intends to sell himself for the interests of science' to the identical dissector who had the goodness to purchase the mortal remains of his dearlybeloved spouse."-Glasgow Courier.
Assuredly this is a person quite free from prejudice: there are philosophers who tell us that a regard for the mere vehicle of life is a weakness: what a triumph over all such foible is here! How economical the consideration that by the sale of his chère moitié he not only pocketed money but avoided an expense! Then what a masterly idea to turn the prejudices of others to his own advantage: if the public is weak enough to consider this judicious transaction a horror, who has a better right to turn the horror into money than he has who is the originator of it? Then be it observed, he is as free of his own person as another; only he will doubtless stipulate to be paid in advance. It would be a weakness unworthy of so unprejudiced a character to leave anything behind him.
THE TRUE GUARDIAN OF THE LAWS.-The office of an informer, when strictly considered, is purely honourable. The law is evaded by dishonest persons: the informer is one who stands out from society, and denounces to the magistrate such and such persons as having cheated the legislature and defied its statutes. Does not such a man deserve a civic crown? His fate is different: he is scorned, scoffed at; and would be ducked and pumped upon, if such acts were not a breach of the King's peace. So that the informer goes sneaking about to do "good by stealth, and blushes to find it fame." True, he shares the penalty inflicted upon the offender, who had ventured to hope that justice was not only blind but asleep-and who so fairly entitled? What vigilance is his ! on the road by day and night, in the public-houses at all hours, prowling from shop to shop, in various disguises, risking even life and limb in case of discovery; he is the self-constituted guardian of the laws, who watches while magistrates sleep-Is he to go Unpaid? without honour, credit, or name? What consolation has he but that noble one of doing his duty? But he must live. Members of Parliament make laws, but who sees them executed? the Informer; and yet the silly public, in whose defence he is fighting, run him down, calumniate, and would gladly stone him. The Informer is a martyr, as the Reformer used to be. For the first time a public prosecutor (heroic sacrifice!) has openly confessed his profession and gloried in the name. To be sure he is in a sad position, and can do no great honour to any cause, for he is an insolvent debtor : but let him still have the praise he is entitled to: he has not only braved obloquy in being an informer, but he has boldly faced opinion in declaring himself one. Such is the heroism of George Martin!
"INSOLVENT DEBTORS' COURT (WARWICK.)-George Martin, the well-known common informer, came up on Wednesday, on his petition, to seek relief under the Act. He described himself as "an informant to enforce the stage-coach laws." The Commissioner observed, that it was the first time he had ever seen the profession of an informer designated in an insolvent's schedule. The debts of Martin were of a trifling amount, and, with the exception of about 151. incurred at Birmingham, were chiefly contracted while in business as a tobacconist, in Barbican, London. The Court held that he was entitled to relief, and he was accordingly discharged forthwith. All coach proprietors and coachmen should now be on their guard. It is hardly necessary to say, that just liberated from a gaol, money will be acceptable, and that he will spare no trouble in his vocation to obtain it.”—Birmingham Journal.
What does this warning mean? nothing more nor less than that it is such men as Martin who save the law from being a dead letter. It seems, after all, a poor trade-it is an ungrateful world we live in!
THE BENEFIT OF CLERGY.-A French writer calculates that the English pay sixteen shillings per annum each individual for the benefit of clergy! In France the same service is done for eight-pence per man: the latter is decid
edly the cheapest, if the duty is as well performed. The influence of the clergy in France is undoubtedly very small it is, however, quite equal to the spiritual influence of the English church at home. In respect of assiduity there is no comparison. When it is taken into the calculation that the dissenters also pay a large share for that which they do not require, it is probable that the amount would be raised from 16s. to 20s. per individual in this country.
FREE-AND-EASY MONARCHS.-The French, a short time ago, were exceedingly proud of their King because he used to walk about Paris with an umbrella under his arm: this same king is now said to be barricading the very Tuileries. It happens, however, that the most despotic monarchs are often most at ease among their subjects, and oftenest assume the manners of equality. Most certainly if William IV. were to attempt walking up and down Regent-street, he would be mobbed. Yet the late King of Bavaria used to promenade alone every evening, in every quarter of Munich: he would, moreover, enter into conversation with strangers, and it made little difference whether he was known or not. He was a sort of Haroun al Raschid, except that he only learned by aid of his incognito to reward, and not to punish. Ferdinand of Spain walks about his capital, and lives in perfect security, while we imagine him a prey to superstition and afraid of every wind that blows. A late traveller compares him to Liston in the street. Don Pedro, the late Emperor of the Brazils, was still more open in his habits-he used to bathe in public. Another traveller describes him as he saw him buffetting the waves of the sea. Denmark, it seems, is happy in a monarch of popular habits :
"The present King of Denmark, by letters lately received from Copenhagen, has such perfect confidence in the love of his subjects, that he is never attended by a guard, and even sleeps with his chamber-door unfastened. A short time ago, his Majesty was suddenly roused, about two o'clock in the morning, by a youth employed in the gardens, who, having got by stealth into the palace, entered the King's room, and tapping him on the shoulder, presented a petition, saying, in the most familiar terms, "Father, I was determined to find an opportunity of speaking to you in private, and therefore chose this time to ask you a favour." The King, though thus taken by surprise, was neither alarmed nor angry, but, with his usual good-nature, recommended the lad to have patience, and he would do all in his power to comply with his request, at the same time begged, that when he again wished to speak to him, he would choose a more seasonable hour. His Majesty was much amused by this nocturnal adventure."
MEASURE OF COLONIAL RELIEF.-Our present Government is, no doubt, the most considerate we have ever possessed; there are few wants which the public have expressed that they do not immediately set about providing for. The gentlemen of Sydney have long been crying out for women in return for their wool; they have, in various ways, made it known that no bill at sight would be accepted more cordially than a wife by consignment. The direst consequences have followed upon the demand so far exceeding the supply in this rising colony. These evils are not, however, to be long-enduring under a Whig Administration. A shipment of females is to proceed immediately to the Antipodes, who are at this moment at the other side of the globe stretching out their arms in expectation of the proffered boon. As yet, it is true, the ladies are nearer their legs than their hearts, for they have not yet started; but the following paragraph will show that the families of Sydney are prepared to receive them into their bosoms:
"The accounts received on Friday from New South Wales mention that, in consequence of the great disproportion of the sexes in the colony, his Majesty's Government had intimated an intention of sending out from a public institution in Ireland several girls, averaging fifteen years of age. The circular is dated Sydney, July 1831, and after noticing the fact that his Majesty's Government was about to send out from the public institutions in Ireland some young girls who had been brought up with attention to their moral and religious duties, states that, with a view of disposing of those girls in a proper manner, they were to be bound apprentices to families for three years, and at the end of that period they were to be allowed to marry, but not without the special consent of the Governor, as well as the master; that during the three years the master must pay into the hands of the Collector of the Internal Revenue two pounds annually, which is to be lodged in the Savings' Bank, to be paid to her with interest at the end of
her apprenticeship. The master is also to engage to attend to the comfort and moral character of his apprentice, &c. The notification had given much satisfaction in the colony, as females for domestic purposes were very much required."
WHAT'S IN A NAME?-The swindlers seem perfectly to understand the force of names. Every fellow who proposes to cheat through the influence of deception, immediately assumes an appellation of undoubted quality; and he is not content generally with the noble blood flowing in one noble line, he clubs two or three branches of antiquity together. There has been a scoundrel swindling every tradesman he came near on the sole strength of the good odour in which he found the following name-the HON. AUGUSTUS FREDERICK MONTMORENCY PONSONBY: Of course he was laden with rings and broaches, and dangled a wilderness of seals at his watch-chain. Thrice is the swindler armed who gives three names, and wears triple rings on his fingers. The tradesmen, who see that this is just their own notion of gentility, chuckle at the thoughts of so illustrious a customer. Were a swindler of genteel appearance, and attired in that plain and unassuming dress which gentlemen wear, to commence practice, he would quickly find, that though a great deal nearer the truth in his representation, the truth was not the tradesman's apprehension of it; he would be looked upon with suspicion, while his ring-fingered, broached, and sealed and diamond-pinned vagabond of a brother speculator was received with the utmost obsequiousness, and had the richest articles of the place absolutely forced upon him. Here is a fellow who has extended his depredations from the shop-counter to the fireside. The whole is a lesson in taste :
"A person styling himself the Hon. Augustus Frederick Montmorency Ponsonby is now in the Calton gaol on various charges of swindling. He claims connexion with the noble family of Montmorency; boasts of being the author of all the late anonymous novels which have proved successful; lays claim to several crack articles' in The Edinburgh; and, by his own account, there is not any part of Europe or Asia which he has not personally visited. He is of gentlemanly demeanour, and speaks various modern languages, from which it is inferred, he has travelled on the Continent. He gives out, that he was imprisoned in France some years ago, for a political offence; and in regard to the late French Revolution, preserves a most mysterious silence, occasionally hinting, that he knew too much of the causes in which that event originated. There is one family in Edinburgh whom he has ruined. By his arts he imposed himself on them as a man of good birth and property, paid his addresses to one of the daughters, who married him and in a few days was subjected to the disgrace and degradation which result from an alliance with such a character. It is said he has frequently played off his tricks."
The Lion's Mouth.
"ALIENA CENTUM NEGOTIA."-Horat.
[UNDER this title we propose, in future, to arrange the answers to our corresponding friends, hitherto given on the wrapper. Short letters, or remarks on any existing custom, abuse, law, or fashion, which may deserve a notice, though scarcely an article, will also in this place receive comment, insertion, or reply. This portion of the Magazine will, therefore, be made longer or shorter, as circumstances may require. Our readers may recognize the title as the one adopted for a somewhat similar purpose by the Loudon Magazine-a work some time since incorporated with the New Monthly.]
TO THE EDITOR OF THE NEW MONTHLY MAGAZINE.
Temple, Dec. 8, 1831. "Sir-I SEE in The Times' of to-day, that you are censured, though very civilly, in your editorial capacity, for suffering to pass unnoticed in the article upon Windham' the assertion that a Cambridge Senior Optime knows more than Newton, &c. As the Times' is too important a critic to leave unanswered, I hope I am not intrusive in calling your attention to the following passage: - Dans le siècle dernier, il suffisoit de quelques années d'étude pour savoir tout ce qu'Archimède et Hipparque avoient peu connoître, et aujourd'hui deux années de l'enseiguement d'un professeur vaut au delà de ce que savoient Leibnitz ou Newton.'-(Sur l'Instruction Publique,' by Condorcet,
quoted with approbation by Stewart in the first Dissertation prefixed to The Encyclopædia: vol. i. first edition, p. 117, note.) Possibly the passage has already suggested itself; but what is obvious is not always known, and what is known is not always with us:' so pray excuse me for troubling you. "I am, Sir, &c."
We thank our Correspondent.-The observation is certainly startling; but we remember it as an old boast of a Silver Spoon at Cambridge-" Well, thank Heaven, I know almost as much as Newton, though I am Spoon."-The reader will recollect Hume's pathetic remarks on the progress of philosophy diminishing the fame of philosophers.
A contributor to the "Tatler" (who writes under the somewhat formidable title of JUNIUS REDIVIVUS, the author,we suppose, of the clever " Tale of Tucuman") has blamed us in so complimentary a manner that we hope he will blame us again, for the insertion of the tale called "The Victim" in our last Number. He thinks the object of the tale is to foster prejudice against the surgeons. No, he must pardon us; that system which condemns the surgeon to renounce the scalpel, or expose himself to the chance of becoming the accessary to murder-that system alone it is the object and moral of the tale to condemn. We have much pleasure, by the way, in recommending "The Tatler" itself to the notice of our readers: it is published daily, at the price of one penny-is edited by a very accomplished man of letters, and a cordial friend to free principles-and, besides being the best playbill extant, frequently contains as fine, graceful, and truly English specimens of composition as modern literature can produce. We will allow the Editor to be a judge of every thing but poetry, though we allow him to be (if that will content him) a very charming poet himself.
S. K. who politely remarks, that he has put no stops to his lines, in order that we may have the honourable privilege of "stopping them as we please," is regretfully informed that we came to a full stop at the end of the first line.
"The Unmentionables" are very good, but don't fit us.
"Rhyining Reminiscences for 1831,"-The poem of "The Victim,”—“Aristides," a fragment of a story about "Sir Godfredo,"-"The Incendiary," and "The Exile," a sonnet,-the verses of Halbert H.-" Lines written under Moore's tree in Bermuda,"-we are sorry to be obliged to decline. We are equally sorry to refuse "The Sisters."-" The Maiden's Death," we fear, must occur in another place; but Caterina to Camoens, by the same author, we accept with many thanks.
"Corobberie,"-"Spain and her Factions,"-"The Lust Garten,"-" Saddick Ben Saad,"-" Schiller on the Stage," and "Dislike to America," are reserved for further consideration.
Communications are left in Burlington-street for the Author of the "Death of Botzarias;" for Wallace Hampden; for E. B.; for the Authors of "Reminiscences of a Volunteer,"-" Recollections of a Student,"-" Salome Corri," and "France in 1830."
Mr. Joseph Green of St. Paul's Church-yard, informs us that Mr. James Green, who our readers may remember was examined before the police on a charge of having robbed Miss Rebecca Hodgson of a watch, and who was stated to be the son or nephew of a wealthy merchant in St. Paul's Churchyard, has no father or uncle living. Another Correspondent on the same subject has a little mistaken our remarks: we did not, it is true, blame the magistrates, who acted rightly, but we blamed the law, which was conceived wrongly. We are glad to hear that the Grand Jury of the county have thrown out the bill of indictment against Mr. Green.
We have to thank a Correspondent for three sonnets, one of which "adopts the Polish pronunciation," and ends thus-(rhymes the reader will remember!) "Rise! to thy glories add another speech,
Thou living, dead, immortal Niemcewicz!"
A Correspondent from Truro sends us a new version of God save the King, sung among the Cornish Reformers. We insert one verse, and say amen to it. "No swords around his throne,
Fond hearts his guard alone,
Scorning the tyrant's wiles,
God save the King!"
The author of "Display," a poem, seems to have studied Cowley to some purpose. Ex. gr.
"I met young Zoe, &c.
The wily meshes of her hair were set,
And all were fish that came into her net!
Was given the Exhibition of her Eye.
In another poem, the author's turns are much more natural, and possess considerable grace.
We quote a stanza to
(a lady of course.)
Nor proudly turn away from one
Who turns from all the world to thee."
TO THE EDITOR OF THE NEW MONTHLY MAGAZINE.
P. Q. R.
"Sir, I must call your attention to the long bonnets the ladies wear; they are nuisances, Sir, great nuisances; I've no notion of abuses growing to such a pitch; a public inconvenience springing out from a lady's head! I can't go to the play without being bonneted into the dark; and when I speak to my wife, I fancy I am looking down the Thames tunnel. One word, Sir, from you-so zealous a guardian of the rights of the people, will, I make no doubt, reform these feminine encroachments. And I shall hope to see, next month, the bonnetocracy shorn half of their beams, and semiextant in schedule B.
"I am, Sir, your obedient servant,
"AN OPPRESSED PLAYGOER."
We have read several works on "Burking;" but are not thoroughly pleased with any. Most of them re-echo the old plan of granting all unclaimed bodies to the surgeons, but encumber it also with the yet older prejudices, and by giving also the bodies of felons, would make what Bentham considers a duty, (and he as a duty has done,) continue a disgrace. Mr. Wakefield has annexed to a new edition of his valuable work on the Punishment of Death, a few remarks on the present fearful system. He thinks very properly that "a law should supply a motive to persons for bequeathing their remains to the use of the living; and would excuse from the payment of legacy duty the representatives of those persons who bequeathed their bodies for dissection, and whose bodies were actually dissected." There are various other plans for removing prejudice by making such examples honourable. But the prejudices of a nation are very slowly removed. And this system, which now falls so mercilessly on the poor, requires an immediate remedy. The example of Bishop, the knowledge that twelve guineas are to be gained easily, and that a man may commit twenty murders before detection, so far from deterring, has by this time armed the hands of, fifty other miscreants for similar atrocities. Where human life is concerned, law ought not to creep on in that miserable pace which it does in all other matters.
We find it impossible to undertake the return, if rejected, of short papers, either in prose or poetry, that may be submitted for publication in the New Monthly Magazine. It is therefore expected that writers of such articles will preserve copies.
Answers will be returned upon all subjects connected with "The New Monthly Magazine,” apon the first day of each month, but not till then; it is, therefore, hoped that no correspondent will look for an earlier reply. The great increase of the correspondence of the N. M. M. and the maintenance of the requisite regularity, render this indispensable. All communications received on or before the 25th of the month, will be answered on the first of the month succeeding. All articles sent for the N. M. M. must be forwarded to the Publishers', 8, New Burlington Street, and there alone, directed "To the Editors of the New Monthly Magazine.” It is requested that the postage of letters and the carriage of MSS. may be paid.