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mother at all? why don't you cut her into small pieces at once, and make portable soup of her?"
THE HOUSE OF COMMONS.
YES, it requires a long apprenticeship to speak well in the House of Commons. It is the most formidable ordeal in the world. Few men have succeeded who entered it late in life; Jeffrey is perhaps the best exception. Bobus used to say that there was more sense and good taste in the whole House, than in any one individual of which it was composed.
TWENTY-FOUR HOURS AFTER.
WE are told," Let not the sun go down on your wrath." This, of course, is best; but, as it generally does, I would add, Never act or write till it has done so. This rule has saved me from many an act of folly. It is wonderful what a different view we take of the same event four-and-twenty hours after it has happened.
LIGHT AND SHADE.
I LIKE pictures, without knowing anything about them; but I hate coxcombry in the fine arts, as well as in anything else. I got into dreadful disgrace with Sir George Beaumont once, who, standing before a picture at Bowood, exclaimed, turning to me, "immense breadth of light and shade!" I innocently said, "Yes; about an inch and a half." He gave me a look that ought to have killed me.*
A ONE-BOOK MAN.
YES, it was a mistake to write any more.
He was a one-book
Some men have only one book in them; others, a library.
* Smith furnished his house once with a set of daubs, and invented names of great masters for them :-"a beautiful landscape by Nicholas de Falda, a pupil of Valdeggio, the only painting by that eminent artist." He consulted two Royal Academicians as to his purchases, and when he had set them considering what opportunities were likely to occur, added, by way of afterthought; "Oh, I ought to have told you that my outside price for a picture is thirty-five shillings."
IN composing, as a general rule, run your pen through every other word you have written; you have no idea what vigour it will give your style.
THE most promising sign in a boy is, I should say, mathematics.
FACTS AND FIGURES.
OH, don't tell me of facts-I never believe facts: you know Canning said nothing was so fallacious as facts, except figures.
Ox meeting a young lady who had just entered the garden, and shaking hands with her: 'I must,' he said, 'give you a lesson in shaking hands, I see. There is nothing more characteristic than shakes of the hand. I have classified them. Lister, when he was here, illustrated some of them. Ask Mrs. Sydney to show you his sketches of them when you go in. There is the high official-the body erect, and a rapid, short shake, near the chin. There is the mortmain—the flat hand introduced into your palm, and hardly conscious of its contiguity. The digital- one finger held out, much used by the high clergy. There is the shakus rusticus, where your hand is seized in an iron grasp, betokening rude health, warm heart, and distance from the Metropolis; but producing a strong sense of relief on your part when you find your hand released and your fingers unbroken. The next to this is the retentive shake—one which, beginning with vigour, pauses as it were to take breath, but without relinquishing its prey, and before you are aware begins again, till you feel anxious as to the result, and have no shake left in you. There are other varieties, but this is enough for one lesson.
A JOKE IN THE COUNTRY.
A JOKE goes a great way in the country. I have known one last pretty well for seven years. I remember making a joke after
a meeting of the clergy, in Yorkshire, where there was a Rev. Mr. Buckle, who never spoke when I gave his health; saying, that he was a buckle without a tongue. Most persons within hearing laughed, but my next neighbour sat unmoved and sunk in thought. At last, a quarter of an hour after we had all done, he suddenly nudged me, exclaiming, "I see now what you meant, Mr. Smith; you meant a joke.' "Yes," I said, "sir; I believe I did." Upon which he began laughing so heartily, that I thought he would choke, and was obliged to pat him on the back.
THAT pudding! yes, that was the pudding Lady Holland asked the recipe for when she came to see us. I shook my head and said it could not be done, even for her ladyship. She became more urgent; Mrs. Sydney was soft-hearted, and gave it. The glory of it almost turned my cook's head; she has never been the same since. But our forte in the culinary line is our salads; I pique myself on our salads. Saba always dresses them after my recipe. I have put it into verse. Taste it, and if you like it, I will give it you. I was not aware how much it had contributed to my reputation, till I met Lady at Bowood, who begged to be introduced to me, saying, she had so long wished to know me. I was of course highly flattered, till she added, For, Mr. Smith, I have heard so much of your recipe for salads, that I was most anxious to obtain it from you.' Such and so various are the sources of fame!
"To make this condiment, your poet begs
The pounded yellow of two hard-boiled eggs;
Two boiled potatoes, passed through kitchen sieve,
Four times the spoon with oil from Lucca brown,
Oh, green and glorious! Oh, herbaceous treat!
[The above if the famous recipe as given by Lady Holland in her Memoir. We have before us printed on the first page of a letter-sheet (on the back of which is the second note to Captain Morgan on the American Debts previously given, p. 72), the following with some variations, and as the date of the letter is 1844 it has good pretensions to the latest edition. The affectionate friend solicitously adds with his own hand: "Let me beg you not to alter the proportions in the salad." Such are the well-known anxieties of salad-makers.]
A Recipe for Salad.
Two large potatoes, passed through kitchen sieve,
Of mordant mustard, add a single spoon,
Then though green turtle fail, though venison's tough,
And ham and turkey are not boiled enough,
Serenely full, the epicure may say
"Fate cannot harm me, To this is added in print:
I have dined to-day."
A Winter Salad.
Two well boiled potatoes, passed through a sieve: a teaspoonful of Mustard; two teaspoonfuls of salt; one of essence of anchovy; about a quarter of a teaspoonful of very finely-chopped onions well bruised into the mixture, three tablespoonfuls of oil;
one of vinegar; the yolk of two eggs, hard boiled. Stir up the salad immediately before dinner, and stir it up thoroughly.
N. B. As this salad is the result of great experience and reflection, it is hoped young salad-makers will not attempt to make any improvements upon it.
PARODY ON POPE.
HAVE you heard my parody on Pope?
Why has not man a collar and a log?
TRANSIT OF A SOVEREIGN.
BY-THE-BY, it happened to be a charity sermon, and I considered it a wonderful proof of my eloquence, that it actually moved old Lady Cork to borrow a sovereign from Dudley, and that he actually gave it her, though knowing he must take a long farewell of it. I was told afterward by Lady S that she rejoiced to see it had brought "iron tears down Pluto's cheek" (meaning by that her husband), certainly little given to the melting mood in any sense.*
I ONCE saw a dressed statue of Venus in a serious house-the Venus Millinaria.
*This story is told somewhat differently in Dyce's Recollections of the Table-Talk of Rogers: "Lady Cork was once so moved by a charity sermon, that she begged me [Smith] to lend her a guinea for her contribution. I did so she never repaid me and spent it on herself." Jekyll, the great wit of the lawyers, said at one of Lady Cork's parties where she wore an enormous plume," she was exactly a shuttlecock — all cork and feathers.”
Lady Cork was the veteran of London society. Her parties to literary celebrities were famous from the days of Dr. Johnson who visited her gatherings. She was the Miss Monkton of Boswell's Johnson; daughter of Viscount Galway; married in 1786 to the Earl of Cork. She held on among the London literati bravely to the last, dying in 1840, at the age of ninetyfour.