Page images
PDF
EPUB

her dress, and talks execrable French; knock; they break open the door. They and the young man who manages the find him bathed in blood and stone purse-was there ever such a hat seen dead! on the head of a Frenchman, and coat “ Pauvre Vatel!” said the Prince. And with a waist that pinches him under now they sell dinners for a franc and the arms? “ Sacre !" whispers the thick fifty centimes at the sign of Le Grand moustached man at the next table; “ quel Vatel. We ate of marais at the little Anglais ? quel chapeau! quel habit! tables, but it was not fresh. Mon Dieu ! With what an air of calm Browne, the philosopher, says, whatdignity the manager paces up and down, ever may be a man's character, or comwith his napkin, white as snow, laid over plexion, or habits, he will find a match his left arm, and with what infinite grace for them in London. Whatever may be he meets the salutations of every new a man's taste or his means, he

may

find comer!

the gratification of them, at some rate, at There is, not far away-perhaps on Paris. If the Palais Royal, from the the opposite side—" Le Grand Vatel.” little tobacco women to the fournisseur It is, we fancy, a shade lower in price, du roi, be too extravagant for one's but there is veritable romance in eating means, if he can neither pay two sous under the name of such a patron of the for his chair under the windows, nor cuisine.

take a six sous demi-tasse at the Rotunda, Vatel* lived in the time of Louis XIV., nor a dinner at such as the Grand Vatel, when flourished everything that could he finds another neighborhood that ranges quicken appetite and excite desire. Poor lower; but be sure, he will indulge, on a man! he did not see the end of it! He Sunday afternoon, on the stone benches had gone lo Chantilly to prepare a fête; along ihe borders of the court, and, ten the King arrived; the supper was served; to one, luxuriate in a sou cigar. Other by a mistake, two tables were without days, he may be seen stealing his way coasts. It cut Vatel to the quick. cautiously down the Rue St. Honore, and honor is ruined,” said he. Fortunately, turning into some of those streets that the table of the King was served. This branch off toward the Quay, or the other restored courage to poor Vatel. Still, for side of the river. He knows every alley twelve nights he did not sleep. He told that ramifies from the Rue de l'Ecole de his friend Gourville, and Gourville told Medicin, and may even venture, on fast the Prince. The Prince came to console days, into the neighborhood of the long Vatel. “ Nothing could be finer,” said he. shadowing Pantheon.

And there may “ Monseigneur,” replied Vatel, “ your be picked up dinners, such as they are, goodness overpowers me; but I know for twelve sous and eight sous, not a very well that two of the tables had no stone's throw from the towers of St. • roasis.'"

Sulpice. And what shall be said of the The morning came. Le Grand Vatel chop houses of St. Denisand Montmartre? was op at four. All were asleep, except Curious looking chops, sure enough, one fish-dealer who brought two par with queer shaped bones, that would cels of marais.

puzzle a Cuvier to work into the skeleton “ Is this all?" said the great Vatel. of a beast that bleats or grunts, but cheap

“Oui, monsieur,” said the man, who for all that; a potatoe and bread, for did not know orders had been sent to tive sous. There may be seen luscious all the ports of the coast.

dinners at five, not far from the Pont Vatel sought his friend. “Gourville," St. Michel, and in the neighbor said he, “ mon ami, I shall never survive hood of the Halle au Blé. And in the this."

Faubourg St. Martin--the number es“ Pooh!” said Gourville.

capes our memory, but the police will Vatel went to his chamber, and placing direct the curious, and the savory smells his sword against the door, he pushed it will guide the hungry—there is a huge through his body; il tombe mort. pot boiling from 12 to 6, filled with such

La marnis arrive. They search for choice tit-bits as draw, every day, scores Vatel; they go to his chamber; they of adventurers. A huge iron fork lays

[ocr errors]

و

* Madame de Sevigne tells pleasantly the story of this mishap of Le Grand Vatel, dont la bonne lete etait copable de contenir tout le soin d'un etat.. The cooks of the present, guard as scrupulously their honor, as in that luxurious age; and there are many unquiet souls, beside those who cat of the fruits of French culinary skill.

across the mouth of the pot, and whoever to serve you. You may find beans, or wishes to make the venture, pays two potatoes, or meat, and you may bave a sous for a strike. If he succeeds in bowl of either of the two first for a sou, transfixing a piece of beef, (or what passes but bread and salt are extras; meat ranges for beef, in the dialect of the quartier,) he a trifle higher; and few but the arisiohas achieved his dinner, and at a low crats of the place, or strangers, presume rate-albeit he has it in his fingers with upon the meat. No better place, for the out sauce or corrective. Unfortunately, price, can be found in Paris; we have however, many poor fellows ruin their pursued investigations so far, with the hopes by striking too strongly and dashing good Abbe G., as to feel assured of this all before them, and they are mortified at fact. If it rains, of course an umbrella seeing the fragments of some huge bit of must be carried, or the broth, which is meat, which their energy has shattered, not the least part of the dinner, will befloating in savory morsels to the top. On come cool. One may end with a handdit, that once upon a time, there came up ful of the richest plums, and as cheap as upon the tines of the fork, after a vigor- the broth. ous thrust, a heavy, black looking sub Outside the Barriers of the Octroi, up stance, which proved to be the front of a and down the Seine, and at the Barrier du soldier's cap. It came to the ears of the Trône, are restaurants for such as choose authorities. A posse of police came down to walk further and pay less, or who upon the luckless restaurateur, and made prefer a poor rabbit to a fat cat. Little seizure of all the bones about his estab. stands of fruit, and wine and cake lishment. Thorough inquiry was insti. abound, where they escape the uithe tuted at the various caserns, to ascertain of the douanier; and how cheap a if any soldier was missing. Fortunately good dinner may be got at such subno human bones were found in the res. urban towns as Corbeil, or St. Denis, taurateur's collection, and with suitable will belong to other notes than these of admonition, his effects were restored; Paris. and to this day the pot boils. It is not Nor have we yet done with dinners strictly reputable to be seen venturing within the limits of the capital. Many one's chance for dinner at such places, a poor fellow is, at this very hour, 5 of and we are creditably assured that some the afternoon, perspiring over a chafing medical students and barbers have lost pan of coals, whose fumes escape at a caste with their profession, for culti- broken pane of glass, and over wbich is vating too great familiarity in such neigh. sissing and steaming a little miserable borhoods. Better dinners, and safer, as apology for a rump steak. These are the a whole, may be had in the great square single men who wish to keep up appear. of the Marché des Innocens.

What more

ances, and you might see one of them glorious salon? The bright blue sky of upon the Boulevard, and never guess but à Paris summer overhead-tall old build. he was a diner at a reputable restaurant; ings lifting their quaint gables, mingled except you might observe that his wristwith elegant modern fronts on every side bands were turned carefully up out of ---the great fountain pouring over in Hoods sight, and his shirt-collar covered with a its bubbling and sparkling torrents, mak- black cravat. Poor fellow, he has no ing the air cool, even in the heats of July; shirt !—though the coat is a good one in and around, rich stores of richest vegeta- its way, and so with the hat. On fête bles, and fruits of every hue and shape, days he shows linen, and calls for a bottle from the fine gardens of Normandy; and of ordinary beer at one of the cafés up among the stores, the picturesque cos the Champs Elysées. On other days, as tumes of Brittany, and queer caps and we say, his means oblige him to cut the petticoats, and honest, ruddy faces that restaurants, and take a small cut of the have ripened on the sunny banks of the butcher off the fore-quarter and near the Loire. A dinner place for a poet, and as knuckle. Sometimes he takes the knuckle a poet's dinner ought to be"dog-cheap." itself for a bit of soup, and with a little Just around the edge of the basin, that potatoe and parsley and salt, followed catches within its lips of stone the waters by a piece of bread, it really makes a of the fountain, are arranged some half palatable dinner. dozen deal tables, and at one side, here There are poor artists, and American and there, pots are boiling, and bowls ones among them, who, for worthier and spoons in readiness, and an old lady, motives than occasional dress, eat their with a huge bankerchief upon her head, dinners thus, rather than risk the doubt

ful meats in the lower class of restaurants. opposite us was an Englishman. Our No dinner of ordinary bulk, ranging evidence was—he ate mustard with his much under two francs, can be eaten in roast beef, and called for a hot plate. Paris without suspicion ; unless, indeed, Could there be better? it be of those vegetable potages which G said no, and thereupon we are served up under the rich old fountain staked the wine, and appealed across the of the Marché des Innocens. None un- table. We lost our bet, but the man had derstand the economy of eating better lived fifteen years in England' than the French: a knuckle will serve We must not linger longer at dinner, them further than a haunch an ordinary but close with one look at the Paris man. All the arts of securing nutrition world an hour after. The cases are full from that which chemists might, by the lounging, talking, sipping, reading, weak tests of their laboratory, declare to are the after-dinner employments. Perhave no nutritious matter at all, belong haps, one more energetic than the rest peculiarly to the alchemy of French smokes a cigar, and saunters up the court cookery. There is no part of the brute of the Palais Royal; and what throngs are structure but yields something in the form strolling under the glass roof of the of digestible dishes to their rigorous in- Galerie d'Orleans! The shop girls, who, vestigations. Whatever will season a we should have said, take their dishes soup, or flavor a pudding, in the vegeta- behind the counter, are idling, gazing, ble world, is known. It has been sub. chatting; hurry is written on no one's mitted to their kitchen analysis; and the countenance ; the omnibuses are at the , Synthesis--to use the language of the fullest, but only because the after-dinner schools—is even more wonderful than world is too lazy to walk. The chairs the strange results of their analysis. in the court of the Palais, and up the Compounds without number--amalga- garden of the Tuilleries, and all along mations of qualities as opposite as nature the Champs Elysées are filling. The could form them-combination heaped stone seats along the Boulevard are full; upon combination, and a name for each the Place de la Bourse is empty-save that successive product, chosen with the same a knot of men, sprinkled with two or three skill that directs the formation of the serjeants de ville, who are crowding at the quality to be named : so that poor as the door of the Vaudeville. The Entracte, French language is in general terms, none and programme sellers are noisy in the is richer in table vocabulary, and their corner of the Palais Royal, and seasonomelette and fricandeau pass muster in ticket sellers are on the look out at the nearly all the languages of Europe. opera and at the Ambigu Comique.

But simplicity is no part of a French · Le marchand d'habits' is silent. « Les cook's study, and a plain done sirloin of haricots verts' are sold ; le decrotteur beef would give a shock to a Parisian has slunk from the thoroughfares into Vatel that a month's diet upon fricasees the neighborhood of the theatres; the and patés could hardly repair. Just as lemonade seller, and gingerbread woman inane speculations become the result of have taken their stand at the gates of the close pursued metaphysical inquiry and garden, and the carriages are thronging “mist-the common gloss of Theolo in and out of the Barrier de l'Etoile. gians,” these Messieurs fancy that, with The wine shops are doing a fair trade; out employing every refinement of their ices are in demand and glisten along the art, noihing can result from it to their Boulevards, but the best are at the Glacier honor. There was an old lady, English, de Nâple, in the Rue de Rivoli; the who cooked roast beef and made plum- little widow lady, with her English ale pudding under the west side of the Mada- and beer, is pushing brisk bargains with Teine, and her tables were always full; red-nosed men, who find with her the the only real English beef in Paris, we only place where one can revive the found there; they pretend to it at the times of the tankard and the pipes. The Royal, and the British Tavern, but the trees that skirt the canal under the Angel beef has no smell of the shambles. We Column of the Bastille are shading little give the palm to the old lady. We have, troops of women nd children ; and serhowever, no great cause to remember her vant girls have stolen a moment to sit at little rooms with favor, since we lost the Café opposite for a bottle of five sous there a fair made bet for a couple of bot- beer; the Place Royale has its coteries of tles of Chablis. We declared to our broken-down old men and fidgetty old friend G-, that the red-faced man women, and as evening sets in, they stroll VOL. IV.NO. IV.

26

off under the dim arcades. The gardens worshipers dropping silently on their of the Luxembourg are full, and the foun- knees, and praying “as the night comtains are pouring into the air; and under eth!” And we might follow, not withthe walls of the great caserne upon the out instruction, this volatile world into Champs de Mars, you may hear the its places of amusement.

What array laugh of the cavalry men, as they give of theatres, from the little Comté and their horses the night's grooming; the Montmartre, to the Academie Royale ! crippled invalids are stumping it with And the booths and puppet shows, and short pipes and wooden legs, in front of dioramas, and the swinging boats, and their grand caravanserie. Even in the Bals Mabib, and Ranelagh, -what faces, narrow streets of the cité, there is com

what dress, what wonders ! parative quiet; the Rue des Mauvais Garçons is still; and at the sixth story win “Qui vit sans folie n'est pas si sage dows of the Hotel Dieu and La Charité, qu'il le croit.” you may see the convalescents sunning themselves in the last beams of day --a true Gallic saying, but not without puffing away in their queer long caps. its applicability the wide world over. Our paper is full, or

how Take away from the continental capital would love dearly to follow this strange its amusements, and what would be left? Paris lise still farther—to stroll through Not so much as of old Rome, between the rich old doorways of Notre Dame, the Piazza del Popolo and the capitol. when the sun is saying his evening We, then, dear reader, as wishing to prayers in glorious colors upon the know, not what Paris ought to be, but pavement, (we are sure we are not irre- what it is, will some other month reverent in ascribing the splendor of hea. sume our march together, making our ven's light to the glory of its Creator,) starting point the ticket box of the Theaand what pleasure to watch the evening tre de la Porte S. Martin. Caius.

we

TALFOURD AND STEPHEN.*

The English press has furnished with This last occupation, however, has in the last few years some of the most softened its features a good deal within brilliant examples of essay-writing that the last few years. can be found in any language, whether Criticism, from being the heartless cenancient or modern. Indeed, since that sor, and sometimes the mortal enemy of bright constellation of Poets, which, genius, has come at length to be its within the memory of the present gene. guide and traveling.companion. Rome ration, conspicuous in the heavens, has will never shelter the ashes of another passed from the view of mortal men, un Keats, leaving his native country disaptil now, Wordsworth is the only remain- pointed and wasted, to die of his wounds ing star-literature is almost entirely among strangers. It is not likely that merged in this species of prose. Some- another race of Broughams and Geotreys times it assumes a didactic form, some will ever have unbridled range of the times attempts to collect and tie up the realms of criticism, bovering like bucbroken threads of history: now it draws caneers upon the high seas about the out with greater minuteness the nice de- shrouds of many a luckless author, to tails of biography, and now again it send his little craft to the bottom from grasps the pruning-hook of the critic, and the mere love of enterprise. This change, cuts away the superfluous branches of so obvious to every reader, in the tone of inany an author.

review-essays, was owing, in a good de

The modern British Essayists. Published by Carey and Hart, Philadelphia.

gree, among other causes, to the unex- ruin, that were about to assume proporpected and terrible resistance of Lord tions entirely different from the old, unByron, one of the early victims of the der his plastic hand? And yet chiseled, Edinburgh Review. That a young no. artistic as it is, it is a work of genius. It bleman who had scarcely yet attained to stops short at no “ tame, trite medium." years of majority, should turn upon his Ornate and classical as it presents itself pursuers with such a determined energy; to the eye, its massive pillars are so that he should follow them so up closely, deeply imbedded in the earth, its arches and involve them so remorselessly, as if rise with such well-adjusted curves, that in the folds of a serpent, whose power to the beholder cannot fail to be impressed crush their puny frames was only equals with the idea that it must endure for ed by the malignant venom of his bite, ages. was so unexpected and appalling that In this business-like age, when men they shrunk away in terror and utter are hurried from place to place, and obdiscomfiture. The young poet had been ject to object, with the baste and preso much more severe upon his cotempo- cipitancy almost of waters taking their ries than any mere prose critic could be, plunge from a headlong precipice, it that they gave over the chase in de- is almost like the discovery of a new spair.

planet in the heavens, to find in this Tuomas Noon TALFOURD—The au- floating waste one little island sequesthor now principally under consideration tered to poetic feeling and calm contem. is one of the most remarkable men of his plation. Still more remarkable is it, and time. Rising as he has done from a sta- worthy by way of pre-eminence, to pass tion comparatively humble, with no rank almost for a miracle, that there should be or prerogative save that deep impres. found a man, in the very midst of all this sion, where nature and genius have set hubbub and restlessness, who could carry their seal, he has come gradually by pa for years, wrapped up in the dusty files tient application and elaborate art, to fill and scant briefs that fill the brim of a a niche among the highest of earthly practising lawyer, the germ of the most fame. Self-knowledge seems to be a perfect drama. A poetic lawyer-a characteristic of truly great minds; and dramatic practitioner in the Queen's no man understands himself better than courts. Truly this is a marvel reserved Talfourd. In that beautiful dedicatory peculiarly for the nineteenth century ! preface to his tragedies, he has given to the Why, did not that very profession comworld a more perfect analysis and accurate pel Sir William Blackstone to bid a final delineation of his own mind than the hand farewell to his Muse ?-did not its forof any stranger could ever have noted bidding features repress the literary taste down. He there gives the readers, hy a of Lord Eldon?

-did it not fold in its few happy strokes of the pen, a com- stiffening embrace, the elastic imaginaplete history of himself. Who could tion of the more accomplished Stowell? have thought, had not the writer himself Did not even Sir Walter Scott, sometime told us so, that the beautful Ion, with its sheriff of Selkirk, and clerk of the Seshappy disposition of parts, its delicate sions court, find it necessary to choose, at pencilings, its chaste images, its nice length, which he would serve-whether finish of thought, and above all, the ac the wild genius of border-chivalry, or complished characters that figure in it the grave Themis of the Scottish bar? who could have thought, that with all Surely, had Talsourd only united these its freshness and bold freedom, it could two most incongruous elements, it would have remained concealed in the author's have been enough to keep bis memory mind from boyhood to ripe manhood, bright, and his name distinct from all gradually shaping itself by constant accre other men of the present generation. tions, into symmetry and beauty, like the But the little volume before us, bearcrystallizations of some mountain cave? ing the title of Critical and MiscellaneWho could have imagined, but for the ous Writings of T. N. Taifourd,” shows information thus communicated, that this unequivocally that his attention has been graceful structure, so fairy-like that it long and patiently directed to the higher might seem to be frost-work, was at- orders of prose composition. In this detempted, and thrown aside again and partment ihe same unpretending, modest again, until the author seemed to stand demeanor distinguishes the man. He like an anxious architect amidst the does not try to say grand or startling scattered marble-blocks of some ancient things, he never strains after paradoxes,

« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »