Oldalképek
PDF
ePub

ON CRUELTY TO ANIMALS.

27

What renders it particularly remarkable is a custom, among the boys of the lower classes, who make mannikins, calling them Guy Fawkes, carrying them about in chairs during the whole day, and begging money of every body for the purpose of buying wood and fireworks (1) to burn their Guy Fawkes at night. The children consider it quite a féte.

ON CRUELTY TO ANIMALS.

There is in England a very excellent law which does honour to the nation, though the necessity of such a law may be said to reflect disgrace upon it.

Any person convicted (2) of cruelly ill-trealing horses or other animals, fined five shillings for the first offence, and the fine is increased upon a repetition of the crime. It is a pity that such a law does not exist in France, for one cannot walk the streets without seeing that noble animal the HORSE treated with the most wanton cruelty by his brutal driver, who first overloads him, and then, because he is unable to drag or carry his burden, beats and kicks him as though the poor animal were insensible to pain. Be sure that whenever you see a man (or rather a being in the form of a man) exercising wanton cruelty upon a defenceless animal, be sure, I repeat it, that he is a vile coward and capable of the greatest crimes.

SADLER.

(1) Fireworks , feu d'artifice. (2) Convicted, convaincu.

KNOWLEDGE IS WEALTH.

How much happier would be the state of mankind if half the pains and time they employ in endeavouring to acquire wealth were occupied in the acquisition of useful knowledge!

Nations are illustrious, not by the number of rich, but by the number of learned and useful men they have produced. Every man who wishes to render his country celebrated ought therefore to consider himself bound to acquire such knowledge as may be serviceable to her, and to contribute his stock (1) to the general fund; he ought, in fact, to consider himself as a conspicuous object whose dullness, or lustre, will obscure, or increase the glory of his country. Knowledge is permanent; wealth is transitory; a rich man may become poor, mi. serable and without resource; a learned man cannot fall so low as a rich man who wants instruction, and he may rise much higher : which of the two is then really superior ?

SADLER.

THE NAME OF ENGLAND.

Egbert, king of the West Saxons, in order to perpeluate the memory of his own nation, published an edict wherein it was ordered that the entire heptarchy of which the Saxons had possessed themselves should be. called Englelond, i. e. land of the Angles. This, says Camden (2), was about the year 800; and thence the name of England.

(1) His stock, sa portion , son écot. (2) Camilen, historien célèbre,

[blocks in formation]

It is said that the inhabitants of the frozen regions of Norway were so alarmed at the first sight of a rosetree (1) in blossom, that they could not be persuaded to louch it, saying they would not approach the diabolic plant whose buds were flames of fire.

We are told (2) also that the natives of Virginia having seized a quantity of gunpowder belonging to the English colony, sowed it as grain in the hopes of reaping a sufficient crop (3) to destroy the whole colony; they had discovered the force of that destructive article, but having no idea of its being the work of art, naturally imagined it to be a vegetable production.

(Ilistorical.)

AN IRISH BULL (4).

The Irish are in general lively and animated ; they possess indeed so great a degree of vivacity that it frequently causes them to act upon a momentary impulse, and consequently leads them into blunders (5) which a little reflexion would prevent. Those mistakes are called bulls, and so celebrated are the natives of Ireland for the

(1) Rose-tree, rose arbre (rosier); les Anglais désignent les arbres d'après les fruits ou les fleurs qu'ils produisent, eny ajoutant le mot tree, arbre, qui répond à la terminaison ier.

(2) We are told , on nous dit.
(3) Crop, récolte.
(4) Bull, bévue, brioche.
(5) Blunder, idem.

occurrence of them in conversation, etc., that large collections ( some true and many invented ) have been published. A very curious one happened a few years ago, which, as it relates in some manner to the bravest and most unfortunate hero of modern times , NAPOLEON, cannot fail to be interesting.

Doctor O'Meara, an Irishman, was fo some time the medical adviser of Bonaparte at St. Helena, and by his amiable and manly conduct had acquired the esteem and confidence of his patient (1). Sir Hudson Lowe, the governor of the island, was displeased, it is said, at the mutual esteem existing between the Doctor and the great captain, and caused the former to be removed from his functions. He went to England to remonstrate with the government and during his residence at London read an article in THE TIMES ( a paper devoted to the administration ), reflecting on his conduct. The lively Hibernian immediately provides himself with a horse-whip, goes to a coffee-house frequented by the editor of the Times, and desires the waiter to inform him when Mr. Waters (the editor) should arrive. A few minutes after, the waiter approached and said : There is Mr. W., Sir.” The Doctor, without further information or inquiry, drew his horse-whip from under his coat, inflicted a severe flogging on Mr. W., and then said he hoped that would cure him of making his paper a vehicle of calumny against an honourable and injured man.

It was then discovered that the unfortunate Mr. W.

(1) Patient , malade.

THE VAULTS OF 8.-MICHAN's.

31

who had received the flagellation was not the editor of the paper, but his brother; the consequences were an action (1) against O'Meara, who was condemned to pay a fine of I believe 50 pounds (1200 franks), and a hearty laugh at the expense of both parties.

SADLER.

A CHALLENGE (2) REFUSED. A gentleman, having been grossly insulted by an ill behaved fellow, received a challenge the next morning, to which he sent the following severe reply:

Sir, " Your behaviour last night has convinced me that you are a scoundrel, and your letter this morning that you are a fool. If I should accept your challenge, I schould myself be both. I owe a duty to God and to my country, which I deem it infamous to violate: and I am intrusted with a life, which I think cannot without folly be staked (3) against yours. I believe you have ruined, but you cannot degrade me. You may possibly, while you sneer (4) over this letter, secretly exult in your own safely; but remember, that to prevent assassination I have a sword, and to chastise insolence a cane.

THE VAULTS OF St.-MICHAN'S. The metropolis of Ireland contains a very singular

(1) An action , un procès.
(2) A challenge , un cartel, un défi.
(3) Staked, risqué.
(4) To sneer, se moquer, railler.

« ElőzőTovább »