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and its doctors, by establishing gaming | emonies was first inaugurated. We do tables. Gaming at that time was the idle not read that the mayor was knighted for man's profession, and was found most his “ happy thought.” At least he delucrative; so much' so, that for once men served it, and his act is recorded as one did not object to wonen competing with worthy the notice of posterity. them for its prizes. London was then the The creation of such a post was neces.. only centre in England where profes- sary, as Bath was growing full. Fashionsional gamesters could follow their calling. able doctors then as now began to write As soon as the London season was over up the waters; and fashionable people they were compelled to migrate in flocks, who had suffered from the arduous camlike the birds, across the water, to either paign of a London season either in their Aix, Spa, or the Hague. This programme, digestions or their pockets, flocked thither year after year, became irksome at a time for healing. Country squires who could when – while imitating the birds — the not afford their wives and daughters a flight was not as rapid as theirs, nor as it trip to London brought them to Bath to is at present. It was determined, there- see the fine world. Thus all sorts and fore, to establish gaming centres pearer conditions of fashionables — of whom we home; and Tunbridge Wells, Bath, and write as of a distinct species, having their Scarborough were selected as offering the fine gradations well marked out and recbest attractions. They possessed healing ognized among themselves, met together waters, under the cover of which the gam- around the “cisteros” of Bladud. But ing-tables could be sheltered, and game- unless acquainted with each other through sters renew their hos tilities around the the authorized form of an “introduction,' “ board of green cloth,” which, as Gold- they might just as well have been ensmith wittily put it, was the only “font" camped in a wilderness for all social purthey desired to bathe in.
poses; so essential was it to their dignity It was thus that Bath, at the beginning that its lustre should not be tarnished by of the last century, began to spring into contact with a promiscuous and unknown notice. The impress of fashion was crowd. Here were met together, it is given, when, in 1703, Queen Anne paid it true, all the materials for a social paradise. a visit, not-it need hardly be said - to Wealth, beauty, distinction, fashion; all win her subjects' money, but to bathe in gazing at each other in this happy valley, the waters. After this, people of distinc- and yet all intercourse at a deadlock for tion found it "a place to go to," and we lack of the harmonizing wand to blend read that “the company was numerous them discreetly, and organize their pleasenough to form a country dance upon the ures. bowling-green; they were amused with A master of the ceremonies was the the fiddle and the hautboy, and diverted man needed as much by fashion as by with the romantic walks round the city. folly to supply the axle on which the wheel They usually sauntered in fine weather in of pleasure and order could revolve. The the grove, between two rows of sycamore- mayor had called in the aid of one ; a certrees.” To recall this picture we have tain Captain Webster, a fashionable roué only to study the Watteau landscapes frequenting Bat at the time; a gaming, with which we are all familiar, many of blustering man about town, who appeared them adorning the hand-painted fans of a to know everybody. He was invoked in bygone day. Although fashion may be the first instance, as we have seen, to another name for folly, folly could be the keep his fellow-brawlers in order - but reverse of fashionable, in the sense of his powers grew with promotion ; a sort being well-mannered and refined. Folly of devil's advocate turned fashionable in the form of rakes and drunkards, very saint or would-be saint, as he made a very soon disturbed the harmony of these pas- poor affair of establishing anything like toral amusements, in which the fashion social order. But he was not without his able indulged. The streets of the town uses to the fashionable crowd who had were the scene of such practical jokes as followed in the wake of Queen Anne to screwing up the watchmen in their boxes, this modern Jericho-beyond-Jordan so far amusing enough to the jokers, but creating removed from the metropolis. nothing but confusion. “Set a thief to People who would not look at each catch a thief,” that was the only rem. other in the great city are not averse to edy. On this principle, the mayor of mix and mingle in foreign lands. Thus Bath called to his aid one of the rakes, to the “ quality" from London were not unproduce order among his comrades, and willing to meet, and occasionally permit in this way the office of master of the cer. an introduction to the little people when
they were assembled in the Bath Casino The city itself was mean and contemptiof the period, under the direction of this ble. Macaulay, judging from pictures novel functionary, the master of the cere given of the exterior of the houses, commonies. To pass the time they were pares them to the lowest rag-shops in ready to unbend, but Captain Webster was Ratcliffe Highway. Travellers not the man for such a delicate and diplo- plained loudly of the narrowness of the matic post. It needea tact akin to genius streets ; while some one writing from a to discern the right people to introduce to personal recollection of that period, aceach other's notice. No brawling gam- cording to the same authority, declares bler, intent only on his gains, could do it that “gentlemen who visited the springs discreetly. Naturally, the great ladies re. slept in rooms hardly as good as the gartired in disgust from amusements devoid rets occupied at a later day by footmen." of all elegance. Men were permitted to Chairmen, the lineal ancestors of our smoke unrebuked in the public rooms, latter-day “cabby," had it all their own and so called - ladies and gentlemen way, and refused to allow gentlemen or presented themselves at the entertain. ladies to walk home without insulting ments in their rough boots and morning them. To crown all, a "big" doctor, a aprons.
supposed authority, in order to retaliate Rough, coarse creatures !” cried in some private affront, boasted that he would disgust the fine ladies, accustomed as they “poison the waters by casting a toad into were to devote whole mornings to the cuit the spring.” of the toilet at the altar of their mirrors, Some historians of Bath regard this while poets read them sentimental verses, story as apocryphal. It is unnecessary and beaux whispered delicate nothings in- here to enter into its authenticity. Let it terspersed with scandals. How was it serve to “adorn our tale,” as it was at possible such superior beings could toler- this desperate juncture in the fortunes of ate boorish squires and their blowsy the city that Richard Nash stepped into dames, especially in an age when the the breach and by his worldly wisdom aroma of the précieuse of France was saved the city. Captain Webster, as we penetrating English boudoirs. To find have seen, was a poor sort of fellow. themselves suddenly cheek-by-jowl with His onerous position did not diminish his such vulgarians was insupportable. Bar- love of brawling, and he was killed in a barians who had so few entertainments duel on Claverton Down about this time. that when they did meet they were like The post of master of the ceremonies, or children out for a treat; unable to stop, arbiter elegantiarum, as the classical but dancing on into the night, or card- students designate it, became vacant; and playing far on into the day, until luck who so fitted to fill the post as popular as well as money changed hands. Such a Richard Nash, whose tact, manner, and display of manners and customs among gay clothing made him the centre of atits frequenters, very nearly imperilled the traction among fashionable people then rising popularity of Bath, its tables, and frequenting Bath for bathing or gaming. its cisterns, among those in whose He was a gamester by profession power it was to make it the fashion. disgrace this in an age when gaming was
Another source of complaint, too, was an accepted science, and the card-room a the bad accommodation for visitors. It gold-mine for the used-up aristocrat; a was worse than scanty. The limits of the recognized money market where by means town were determined by a wall and four of gambling he could earn an "honorable" gates; exceedingly interesting as relics if not an honest penny! The only one, in of the Roman period to an ardent archæ fact, left open to him, and one in which ologist, but highly inconvenient to a fash- ladies of distinction were not slow to join. ionable throng who wanted comfortable It often brought them, it is true, in contact lodgings. These, again, were expensive. with that parasite of the profession the Goldsmith, writing from evidence, says: “sharper," but then what profession is · "The chambers were floored with boards free from its parasite ? colored brown with soot and small beer Nash was an instance of the oft.quoted to hide the dirt; the walls were covered lines :with unpainted wainscot, the furniture
There is a tide in the affairs of men corresponded with the meanness of the That, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune. architecture ; a few oak chairs, a small looking-glass, with fender and tongs, com- The opportunity offered, and all his preposed the magnificence of these temporary vious training enabled him to turn it to habitations.
account. Never was it more true of any
one than of Nash that “manners make the the university, and graduated in gallantry man." He had studied his world, knew where he failed in classics. He was very the relative importance of every one, the susceptible, and his first adventure was social weight of every action, and how to worthy of the daring of his subsequent establish the ascendency of his influence career. He fell in love with some girl living on a capital of birth and fortune that were in the neighborhood of the university. It conspicuous by their absence. And yet, mattered little that he was penniless. None like Napoleon, he lived to conquer and to but the brave deserve the fair, and who so reign. How he did this will be told in due brave as the daring pauper who offers course after we have brought our hero on himself in marriage without a farthing to the stage to explain himself. He was support the responsibility? Fortunately a royal personage in every way, and in for Nash's father, some of the tutors disnothing was he more remarkable than the covered the son's folly, and put an end to manner in which he governed even the the young man's passionate escapade by fickle goddess of fortune herself with sending him home to his family, who rea skill so autocratic that she gave him ceived the young prodigal more kindly all he asked until But this is antici- than he deserved. pating
Love had given young Nash a distaste In the year 1674, Richard Nash was for the law and its dry details. His pas. born. His father was a gentleman of the sion for the fair sex and his power over middle classes engaged in some commer- them, as lately evidenced, made him thirst cial pursuit in Swansea, a quiet, worthy for the glories of a uniform, if not for war. man from all accounts, about whose pedi- His mother, no doubt, quoted her uncle gree we hear nothing; hence we may be the colonel” to support his request that sure he had none to boast of, as humanity his father would buy him a pair of colors, is born with this pardonable weakness and had visions of her son as a field-marit loves and never fails to chronicle a good shal, no doubt, since the hopes of a fond descent. His mother had some preten- mother over an only son are illimitable. sions to family connection, being the niece The father yielded, the colors were purof a Colonel Poyer, who was killed by chased, and now, as Goldsmith expresses Oliver Cromwell for some breach of mili- it, Nash started on his new career « a protary discipline. Very possibly the colonel fessed admirer of the sex, and dressed to was the only man the family had to boast the edge of his finances.” of, and they made the most of him. In no But Nash soon began to weary of his other way can Nash's passion for the splendid uniform. The life of an officer grand and great which he subsequently then, as now, could only be enjoyed to the displayed, be accounted for. His mother full by men of certain means. In order to had evidently talked much to him of the present a fine exterior of scarlet cloth and gallant deeds and martial glory of her gold lace, Nash had to deprive himself of uncle “the colonel," and the good com many solid comforts. His real object in pany he kept, and the great men who were rendering his plumage so gay, was, not his friends, until the child, listening that he might aptly tipify the hero ready eagerly, longed to be a man, that he might to conquer his country's foes, but the fasfollow in his footsteps.
cinating beau who could thus more readily But how? For Nash's father was a poor capture the hearts of the fair sex.
He was man, and he had to pinch considerably to not a good-looking man, and had to trust enable him to give his boy a suitable edu- to his tailor to supplement the deficiencies cation befitting an only son, the hope of a of nature; but "wit, flattery, and fine family, from whom a brilliant career is ex clothes,” he used to declare were weapons pected. Nash, the youth, had been sent to sufficient to overcome the scruples of the Oxford to qualify him to become a member inmates of a nunnery, and with these he of the legal profession. His father hoped certainly conquered the fair sex in society: great things of him, as he was a bright, in- It is often the boast of men of genius of telligent fellow; but unfortunately he was unprepossessing appearance
Wilkes to one of a vast number whose very abilities wit- that, given the start, they could drive undo them. Knowing that he could learn the handsomest man out of the field of a easily, he was an idler. He took his pleas. woman's affections by the superior power ure and forgot his books. With attractive of mind over matter. Nash's gallantry manners that made his homely features a was of this order. secondary consideration, arrayed always in But of what use was his uniform to the the latest and most sumptuous of fashions, beau, if its lustre and beauty, together be became the favorite of the idle set at with his precious time, were to be wastod
on the fatiguing and monotonous routine | ure in the Temple, and when some revels of military duty instead of the attractive were held by the students in honor of end for which he had adopted it? Find- King William the Third, he was the moving, therefore, that his sacrifice to military ing spirit of the entertainmeot. Indeed, enterprise did not serve his real purpose, he carried things through with so much and that his money was insufficient for his good taste, that the king offered him a pleasures, he sold his colors, and entered knighthood. his name as a student - save the mark “Please your Majesty,” he replied, “ if in the Temple!
you intend to make me a knight, I wish it To whatever use he turned the study of may be of your poor knights of Windsor, the law, it is very certain he studied thor- and then I shall have a fortune at least to oughly the art of enjoying himself, “ to support the title." the summit of second-rate luxury." Gold- The voice of the wag lurks in the husmith thus summarizes Nash at that mility of the reply; but the king would period : “ Though very poor, he was very not take the hint; and Nash, whose vanity fine. He spread the little gold he had in was so inordinate he could hardly have the most ostentatious manner, and though been purchased, even at his own price, the gilding was but thin, he laid it on as declined the honor. What could knigbtfar as it would go. They who know town hood do for him? Was he not already, cannot be unacquainted with such char- as plain Mr. Nash, received into the best acters; one who, though he may have society, and what is more considered an dined in private upon a banquet served acquisition, since he urged no pretensions cold from a cook-shop, shall dress at six beyond elegance of person, and those for the side box, one of those whose wants graces of speech and manner which made are known only to their laundress and bim at all times a guest to be welcomed tradesmen, and their fine clothes to half by people of distinction. His refusal of the nobility; who spend more in chair- the knighthood provoked the curiosity of hire than in housekeeping, and prefer a Queen Anne, who asked him why he had bow from a lord to a dinner from a com- declined the honor. moner.”
« Lest Sir William Read, the mounte. There was one scriptural maxim Nash bank, who has been knighted, should call adopted to some purpose; he knew how me brother,” replied Nash. to inake friends of the mammon of un. His answer ihrows a side-light on his righteousness in the adroitest manner. ambition. What could knighthood do for He was always ready to confer a favor a man on joking terms with a duchess, that he saw would purchase him an advan- and on speaking terms with a queen ? tage, as we shall see presently.
Nash possessed in a remarkable degree the gift of reticence about himself. Vain he was to an inordinate degree, but not an egotist. He never obtruded his family or
From The Cornhill Magazine. his affairs on the notice of his patrons.
ILLUSTRATIONS OF ANIMAL LIFE IN
TENNYSON'S POEMS. To such an extent did he carry this, that it became a joke among his friends that In a country where “ White's Selborne” he never had a father. Sarah, duchess of is almost a classic, where Frank BuckMarlborough, who was one of his intimate land's wonderful stories are rapidly sold friends, with her usual audacity and dis in cheap editions at the bookstalls, and regard of the feelings of others, once where the stronger meat of Darwin and rallied him on the subject. “You are like of Wallace is digested by thousands of Gil Blas,” she said, “ who was ashamed of readers, we may rest assured that natural his father.” Nash, who before all things history is a popular science, and an interdesired the reputation of a wit, replied to est in animal life is very widely spread. her with the utmost good temper (was he in spite of the constantly increasing not talking to a duchess ? a fact he never masses of our population aggregated in forgot).
the towns, and the decrease in opportu* Nay, madam, it is not that I am nities for sport - of which we hear comashamed of my father that induces me to plaints from all parts of the kingdom be silent about him, but because my father love of animals appears to be inherent in had so much reason to be ashamed of the people, for whom any new facts conme.”
cerning them and their modes of life, or, If no luminary of the law, Nash soon indeed, the old stories freshly told, would became one of the leading lights of pleas- seem to have a perpetual attraction. It
would therefore be surprising if the poet closes the magical effect of the poet's who so thoroughly represents the spirit of song -- a song which the people and of the age for which he Made the wild swan pause in her cloud, writes, and who grasps so strongly the
And the lark drop down at his feet; facts of mouern science, should neglect The swallow stopt as he hunted the bee, that source of imagery which is supplied The snake slipt under a spray; by the animal side of nature, whose mir- The wild hawk stood with the down on his ror, as Shakespeare says, he holds up to beak, our gaze.
And stared, with his foot on the prey; Tennyson has given us no elaborated And the nightingale thought, I have sung descriptions of animal life – nothing to
many songs, be placed alongside of Shelley's “Sky
But never a one so gay; etc. lark," or his fight between the eagle and That is a description of Orphic fascioathe snake; neither is there anything weird tion, which arrests each creature in the and uncanny in his poems, like Coleridge's ardor of a favorite pursuit. Here, again, mastiff in * Christabel,” which even in in “ Aylmer's Field,” we are presented in sleep recognizes the powers of evil; or graphic touches with the desolation which the avenging spirit of the albatross, and has come upon the stately heritage which the elfish light of the water snakes around the coarse scheming of its owners has the ship of the Ancient Mariner. On the failed to retain, now left a broken ruin, other hand, his touch, though apparently where slight and quite unlabored, always throws Lies the hawk's cast, the mole has made his some characteristic trait into strong relief; be presents us with picture after The hedgehog underneath the plaintain bores, picture which remains stored in our mem- The rabbit fondles his own harmless face, ory; and he entirely transcends the farm- The slow-worm creeps, and the thin weasel house view of animals, which we find
there without any disrespect be it spoken - in Follows the mouse, and all is open field. the poems of Wordsworth. It is interest
Tennyson seems, by the way, to have ing to note the permanence of his impres adopted the mouse as the symbol of ruin sions of the salient points in the nature of or sorrow; it appears again in “ Marieach bird or beast — impressions which manifest themselves again and again in
The mouse various parts of his verses. We will draw attention, first, to the
Behind the mouldering wainscot shriek'd,
Or from the crevice peer'd about; musical sweetness of some little idylls of animal life, as often as not contained in a and in “Maud " the hapless lover hears couplet. We can never forget
The shrieking rush of the wainscot-mouse. The moan of doves in immemorial elms,
One more instance of pictorial effect will, And murmuring of innumerable bees;
perhaps, suffice, and this time we shall or, to turn to a picture of a stranger scene, find ourselves, in the absolute stillness of the lair of the Kraken - “ the abysmal noon, on the mountain-side of Ida; before sea,” where in the sickly light
us lies Enone, weary of her life :Unnumbered and enormous polypi
The grasshopper is silent in the grass, Winnow with giant arms the slumbering The lizard with his shadow on the stone green ;
Rests like a shadow, and the cicala sleeps. or, again, at the mournful parting of King Is lily-cradled.
The golden bee, Arthur and Sir Bedivere, the last of all his knights, the sad barge moves away
This description of Mediterranean scen
ery reminds us of Theocritus, whose Like some full-breasted swan
poems were, no doubt, in the mind of the That, fluting a wild carol ere her death, Ruffiles her pure cold plume, and takes the Englishman when he penned those lines; flood
the description of the lizard is, in fact, an With swarthy webs.
amplification of a line of the Greek; and
its motionless pose is evidently a lasting Such word-painting is not uncommon impression on our poet's mind, for in throughout the poems, and it is remarka- " Enoch Arden” he describes his nero as ble bow frequently Tennyson produces sitting the effect which he desires, either wholly or in part, by means of a description of So still the golden lizard on him paused; animal life. For example, he thus dis. I and, indeed, any one who has watched a