« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »
laid their noses together and settled one of the waiters at Lincoln's Inn, the matter to their mutual satisfaction, who was a friend of the family, that Mrs Two-to-one confirming by her the dinners were more plentiful, and approval the resolution of her spouse, the wine twice as strong there as at for several reasons replete with mater. the Temple, the destination of the nal wisdom and affection, but especi- youthful aspirant was immediately ally because it would vex old Balls, the changed, with the full approbation other rich pawnbroker of Holborn and consent of the pawnbroker and bars, who had purchased a commission his wife, who wisely observed that in a marching regiment for his son, their son “could tuck in a pretty good Mr Fitzstephen-Augustus Balls, and lot, and they saw no reason in life whose hodious daughters, as Miss Se- why they should not have full value raphina Two-to-one called them, were for their money." perpetually handing round Holborn As the usual preliminary to being bars bundles of perfumed letters re admitted a regular customer of the ceived by them from their brother great eating-house of Lincoln's Inn, Haugustus the hofficer! “ It would all aspirants for that high honour are cut their livers out," Mrs Two-to-one required to produce to the Steward of classically remarked, “ to think that the Inn a medical certificate of their my son Freddy is for to come for to digestive powers, the form whereof, go to be a barrystir at the lawr, and for the use and benefit of all future for to sit on the Lord Chancellor's applicants, I hereafter insert:woolpack without never payin' a six- i We, the undersigned, having duly pence, as his mother had for to pay- and solemnly examined Mr Fredericka bless him! Vell, Timmy dear, who'd William Two-to-one on two several a ever a thort it that our Fred would occasions, the examination of the first a cum to sichin a 'igh sitivation; and as day being confined to roast pork and for them hodious Ballşes over the way, pickled salmon, that of the second to what takes in stolen goods or any baked mackerel and fried liver with think, for my part, I must have my bacon, do certify, under our several say out-I can't a bear 'em !" How hands and wafers, that Mr Frederick much more Mrs Two-to-one might William Two-to-one is in full posseshave said upon the subject of her son sion of his digestive powers, and a Freddy, the odious Ballses, or the proper person to be admitted of this honourable profession of the law, it is Inn, for the purpose of guttling his utterly impossible for me to say ; her way to the bar. oration being suspended for that (Signed) evening by the involuntary perform
66 A. B., M.D., L.S. ance of a solo on his natural trombone
" C. D., M.R.C.S., L.S. by her lord and master, which indi.
" E. F., M.A.C., L.S." cated that gentlemen's utter unconsciousness of all that his better-half had If the candidate for admission hapbeen talking about for the last three pens to be in possession of a testimoquarters of an hour.
nial from Cartwright the dentist as to The peripatetic reader will have the the condition of his teeth, more espepoliteness to walk with Mr Frederick- cially the incisors and molars, he will William Two-to-one and myself down not be a whit the worse for it. Holborn into Chancery Lane, and The next little matter to be attended thence turning to the right under a to in the Steward's office is to give Gothic gateway to the Steward's office security for the victuals and drink that in Lincoln's Inn, where Mr Two-to- you are expected to devour, or what one has finally decided to enter his Doctor O'Toole very emphatically name, on purpose to commencing the calls the “ ating and the drinking ;" gastronomic course of study, for which, and this was done in the case of young as we bave seen, by his performances Two-to-one, as in every other case, upon the “ toad in the hole," that by the deposit of a hundred pounds young gentleman was so admirably I should rather say by the sacrifice qualified. The Temple was at first of one hundred pounds, because,' alselected as the Inn which was to have though at the time of payment it is the honour of employing its cooks iņ called a deposit, it becomes, in the the service of young Two-to-one; course of the “ ating and drinking," a but it being happily ascertained from lien in the hands of the Benchers, and is generally taken out by the young pounds being for stamp duties and fees) lawyer in grub. The Benchers very poorer than he left it. Master Frenaturally look for this security, know- derick-William, in the mean time, took ing that if they were to find roast legs an airing in Lincoln's Inn gardens, of impregnable mutton and bottles of among the little nursery boys and girls, red-hot port on their own responsibi- to whose almost exclusive use that spality, the whole town would hasten to cious enclosure is appropriated, throwthe Inn to do them honour, and all ing, at intervals, longing lingering London become but one gigantic law. glances at the dining-hall clock, and yer. Accordingly, for fear of acci- sharpening the edge of his appetite by dents, and lest the young student a succession of turns on the noble tershould drop off in an apoplexy, or choke race that overlooks Lincoln's Inn himself with the back-bone of a baked Fields, as if equally impressed with his mackerel, as often happens, care is venerable father of the propriety of taken that the parents, friends, or having value for his money! guardians of the youth shall be made As the hour of half.past four draws responsible for the damage—so that nigh, the gardens gradually fill with at the present time Lincoln's Inn is enthusiastic students eager for the fray, the only eating-house in London where · and all eyes are directed towards the the customers pay in advance. tardy clock, that, having no appetite of
Formerly there was no further check its own to satisfy, seems determined not upon the students than their own ho- to hurry Phæbus' cattle to satisfy the nour, and the consequence was the Inn appetites of others, but slowly and sebecame impoverished, and the Bench- dately " walks its lonely round” of the 'ers began to talk of surrendering en dial-plate with a most provoking gramasse for the purpose of taking the vity of motion. A loud noise now atbenefit of the insolvent act, the im- tracts the attention of Master Fredemortal oyster-eater (Dando) and se- rick- William Two-to-one, and, directveral other gentlemen of his descrip- ing his steps to the great door of the tion, having become members of the dining hall, whence the noise is heard to Inn, and carrying all before them. proceed, he observes a mob of students The present system, however, saved gathered round, jostling, hustling, and the Inn from total ruin, and by en- kicking one another's shins, with all hancing the price of admission, swells the pertinacity of professional ambithe number of candidates panting to tion—but all in vain ; for the two or be admitted; for you will not fail to three interior strata of the mob, being observe, that in this country, if you composed of hungry broad-shouldered make admission any where difficult, Irish students, foil the more remote and give out that the entertainment is aspirants in every effort to approach considered vastly genteel, you will the door, the Hibernians holding on by have all the men canvassing, and all the doorposts, manfully kicking the the women pulling caps for tickets, door, and determined, apparently by though the spectacle be a pas de deux their energetic agitation, to insist on of dancing-dogs, the erudition of the “ Justice to Ireland." The mob galearned pig, or the vagaries of the thers imperceptibly, and blocks the comical donkey! This is the reason public thoroughfare — the hustling, why all the unappropriated young jostling, and swaying to and fro of gentlemen and sons of pawnbrokers contending portions of the crowd, beflock to Lincoln's Inn, and this it was comes more and more energetic—the that brought thither Master Frederick- Milesians at the door are evidently William Two-to-one.
kicking the panels in-a magistrate, The preliminaries being now who happens to be passing, runs home ranged satisfactorily, and security for the Riot Act, and a posse of the new given in the usual form that all the police arrives to act as an army of obgrub to be eaten would be paid for, servation. Suddenly, within the gate the pawnbroker returned to Holborn a grateful sound, as of the withdrawal bars with such elation of countenance of bolts, is heard—the swaying to and and agility of step, that it would have fro, the hustling and the jostling, are cut the liver out of old Balls, the rival all exchanged for an uniform forward pawnbroker, to have seen bim, ale pressure—the Milesians are on the qui though he did go home just one hun- vive—the doors open—the rush, fully dred and fifty odd pounds (the fifty odd equal to that of the pit-door at Drury
Lane on a command night, tumbles in, the table of the Benchers, remains upsetting the unfortunate porter who there, while three solemn knocks with opens the gate, the old woman who a hammer, after the fashion of the serves the students with gowns, and Cock-Lane ghost, announce his pretwo or three rash under-waiters who
Grace is said with becoming happen to be lingering near the spot solemnity; and it is proper to remark, -the hall is filled in the twinkling of that grace is pronounced by the prea bed-post! And now an internal sent reader in a tone and manner that scene of confusion is being enacted in give to this usually unimportant ceretaking places; that operation bei mony an air, if not devotional, at least performed, by seizing upon as many reverend and impressive. Loud is the plates as you can lay hold of with noise of the company, one and all reyour fingers, toes, or teeth, and turn- suming their places-tremendous the ing them bottom upwards, by which clangour of knives, forks, and spoons you acquire the right of next presen- - the serious professional business of tation to all such places so secured, the day may be truly said to have for as many of the mob of your ac- commenced here at least there are quaintance as may happen to come none briefless-all are engaged in the late, and also have the pleasure of ob- -and every learned gentleman serving gentlemen of decency and feel- confronts his equally learned friend on ing, who do not appertain to the mob, the opposite side. retire from the hall, unable to procure While the profession is thus worthplaces in consequence of your success. ily employed, let the disinterested ful monopoly. "It wants now but a reader walk with me through the venerquarter to five; and the barristers of able dome, and regard the several obtwenty years' standing, who have ar. jects of attraction therein contained, rived at the dignity of the cucumber, which the noise and racket prevent me come dropping in, one after another, pointing out. At the top of the hall, and proceed with becoming gravity to exactly over the centre of the Benchers' the upper end of the hall, where they table, which extends crosswise from begin to open oysters, throwing away east to west, is the Chancellor's chair the shells to the right and left, after that chair to whieh the ambition of eating the fish with judicial impartial. every eater and drinker within the ity. It is five o'clock-the mob of body of the hall is laudably directed. students are all decorated with gowns Over this post of honour is placed, -the barristers all radiant in their curiously enough, the escutcheon of a patent wigs the talking is fearful, man who occupied it once, and is by no and the opening of oysters proceeds means likely to occupy it once again, with alarming velocity—there cannot the egotistical, physico-theological, at this moment be fewer than fifteen melo-dramatical, Tomkinso-political, hundredembryoLord High Chancellors bombasto-logical schoolmasterin the hall. Suddenlyagentleman-usher
“ As peevish, tart, and splenetic, appears at the upper extremity of the
As dog distract or monkey sick." hall, and proclaims with a loud voice"Benchers, GENTLEMEN— BENCHERS, To the right of the schoolmaster GENTLEMEN—IF YOU
A placed the armorial ensign of that upcrimson curtain is now withdrawn, and right judge and excellent man, Lord in single file a long array of elderly Denman; to the right of this the esapoplectic gentlemen, with faces as cutcheon of the Lord Lyndhurst; and crimson as the curtain itself, enter the, to the left of the Chancellor's chair are apartment, and bowing profoundly emblazoned the family arms of the Viceas they pass to the barristers and Chancellor Sir Lancelot Shadwell, of students, who bow profoundly to the the present Lord High Chancellor Benchers in return, pass on to their (Cottenham), and of that able and places at the table allotted to them, learned Parliamentary lawyer, the where they seat themselves, not in the Right Honourable Charles Watkin order of professional rank, but by se
Williams Wynn. piority, as Bencbers of the Inn. The Immediately over these arises a ca. chaplain, or reader of the Inn, now nopy of fretted oak, curiously carved, leaves the table of the barristers, where and worthily sustaining an admirable his place is, and, going to the top of picture of Paul before Festus, from
the pencil of the inimitable Hogarth, The reader will by this time, no who, to the honour of the Benchers be doubt, have observed that the hall of it spoken, was invited by them to din. Lincoln's Inn is, to use the phrase of ner on the occasion of this picture the proprietor of the Spread Eagle in being raised to its present elevation - the City Road, an eating-room of “the the only instance on record, I believe, natpiest magnificence and genteelest of a gentleman of another profession splendour,” every way worthy of the than the law being the guest of the astonishing amount of “ating and of Benchers, if we except Canning the drinking' that is enacted within its statesman, King Charles the Second, hallowed walls. It is not the walls James Duke of York, and Killigrew it is not the roof-though the roof, let the joker, who were jointly and seve- me observe, in spite of its dirty little rally entertained at the expense of lantern that lets in any thing but light, this Inn. This great but little-known is a fine thing in its way-it is not its work of a very great man, is perhaps emblazoned windows, with their din the noblest ornament of the hall, unless religious light, nor its oaken panels the admirers of the sister art of sculp- inscribed with the names of learned ture are disposed to prefer to it the lawyers and lucky dogs, who got on statue of Erskine, which embellishes because their fathers got on before the further extremity of the room, and them-nor its splendid statue of Lord which gives a lively idea not only of Erskine, nor the still more splendid the features, but of the fire, of that picture of Paul before Festus-it is splendid speaker. Round the ball, in not these that raise my mind to a sort various panels of the wainscoting of reverential, awe-struck, elevatedwherewith it is encircled, are embla- subdued, how came-you. so, zoned the bearings, and inscribed the tumble-me feeling, with which I am names, of distinguished members of ever oppressed, particularly after din. the Inn, from the earliest periods to ner, in the venerable hall-it is the the present time, among which will be association of ideas—the identifications found the talented founders of many of the place with the important purof our now most aristocratic families pose to which the place is appliedin the land, many of our greatest the mingling of the pleasures of mejudges, and, though last not least, the mory with the pleasures of hope-of names of Perceval and Pitt. A lofty the remembrances of the eating and oaken screen, grotesquely carved, en- drinking past, with the prospects of the closes the hall at the lower end, and eating and drinking to come--this it is contains, within recessed panels, the that makes the hall of Lincoln's Inn royal arms, subscribed with the ini. classic ground, that confers upon it all tials C. R., together with the escutch- its real dignity and all its indisputable eons of the distinguished, witty, and glory. When left alone with a heel. jocular persons who formed the royal tap of the red-hot port in the deserted party on the occasion above referred hall (for I generally sit the profession to, a minute account of all the ceremo- out, having, to tell the honest truth, nies attendant upon which I would nothing better to do), imagination here feel it my duty to bestow upon usurps the throne of reason, and fills the patient reader, if I did not consider with her gay but ephemeral creations that the spectacle of the then Benchers the over-heated brain; roast legs and of the Honourable Society of Lincoln's shoulders of mutton dance fantastically Inn, crawling upon their knees before through the hall; fried soles, with their royal and jocular guests, and the shrimp-sauce, swim in mid-air; and honourable treasurer presenting, upon the ornaments of the concave ceiling his marrow-bones, a basin and towel, represent so many pigeon-pies. with other base and disgusting pros
6. Is this a mackerel that I see before me?” trations then and there enacted, would rather redound to the dishonour of the It must be soma live baked mackerel, Inn than to its credit, and so defeat the and on its fins and gills are gouts ofonly end I have in view in this enquiry; parsley and butter.--" Beg pardon, to wit, the honour and glory of the sir, but 'tis time to shut up the hall !' law, and of all and singular the hon- observes an odious waiter, rousing me ourable members of that most honour- from a delicious reverie ; so, starting able, not to say useful, profession. up, I stare the waiter in the face,
throw myself into a theatrical attitude, alas, how transient is the excitement! rub both eyes with both thumbs (as The eating soon is over; for, as men they do at Drury Lane), and, exclaim- eat in Lincoln's Inn Hall, unless they ing with a wave of my dexter mawley, were created on the principle of cer
tain molluscous animals, in whom «« 'Tis no such thing !"
the stomach and the whole body are whip off my gown, throw my wig at only one and the same thing, how the the astounded waiter, and cut like fury wise ? The eating is soon, too soon,
devil do you think it could be otherout of the deserted ball.
Deserted, did I say? Worshipful over-the things to be eaten are all reader, I plead guilty, and request you that is come and gone like a flash of
eaten up-and as for the drinking, will do me the favour to fine me five shillings for being drunk. The hall
, lightning. The fifth butler has put
the decanter on the table the decanso far from being deserted, is as full as a tick- tremendous the clangour of ter was full a second ago, and it is now knife, fork, and spoon—the tingling of as empty and as fragrant as Norglasses is musical. The loud and con
manby's head; and as for the wine
did I tinual buzz, every body talking and
say wine-"fuit vinum". nobody listening, is as the noise of “ 'Tis like the snow-flakes on the river, rushing waters afar off. Now and A moment wine, then gone for ever, then a loud uproarious laugh—not the loud laugh that speaks the vacant
with hardly the ceremony of “wine mind-butthat sort of delighted chuckle
with you,”-a cereinony that is perthat issues from the gills of a crammed formed in Lincoln's Inn Hall with an turkey, rises high above the intermin.
air of vulgar hauteur, and a sulky able clatter, like the break of the tenth
affectation of gentility, that changes wave on an Atlantic shore. As the
the red-but port from blazes to vivedinner approaches to completion, and
gar! I say nothing of the quality of the guests to repletion, the clatter be
the wine, if wine that can properly be
called which is an adruixture of bad comes more clattering, the laughter becomes louder and more robustious, the
brandy, log wood water, and tincture gathering of the clans-plates, dishes,
of kino, fifty per cent over proof, and knives, forks, and spoons—the rush of certainly liable to the brandy duty; waiters hurrying with velocipede ve
I say nothing of this, because 'I like locity in opposite directions, gulping my wine to be stiff if it be scanty ; the heel-taps at full speed--the jing and for the benefit of Johnny-Raws, ling of beer-glasses upon trays-the whose throats are unseasoned to swalrattle of knife-boxes, crammed, like lowing of liquid fire, there is a pump those that used their contents, to suffo. (gratis) with an iron ladle attached, cation, make altogether a veritable in the Inn-yard ; but, good Lord, sirs ! confusion of noises, articulate and in
the quantity-that's the thing makes articulate-a confusion that Babel
me cry murder-nor' am I`at all surcould not hold a candle to ; for, if it prised that, on the evening of the day did, the confusion would put it out!
made memorable by the coronation How exciting is the noble emulation
of our gracious Queen, when the
Benchers of generous youth, contending thus, not for fame, fortune, a mistress, a
out of their great bounty, place, a pension, or any of those low
Built a bridge at the expense of the and vulgar incentives to ordinary am
county;" bition-no--but for that one great, one indispensable, one all-absorbing Students a feed out of the funds of the
or, what is the same thing, gave the and paramount necessity-the necessity that keeps the peasant to his spade, shall be nameless, when giving out a
Inn,- a certain profane wag, who the tar to his tiller, the waggoner to his team, the miner to his pit, the dog
verse of the National Anthem, which to his truck, the donkey to his cart, the he was solicited to lead in a solo, took
that opportunity of stating our grievsweep to his chimney-top, and me to my pen—the necessity of having, at
ances as to the modicum of port, in least once in the four-and-twenty hours;
manner and form following that is a bellyful!
to sayHow exciting, I say, is all this pro.
“ Happy and gloriousfessional eating and drinking ; but,
Three half-pints among four of