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truth is that genuine, out-and-out herself with smelling-salts. “But I realism is the invention the can assure you it is no discovery of discovery of our own age, like the your age.
We could do it quite as short story." I spoke with force. effectively when we chose, only our
"Surely you do not present low taste forbade too great intimacy with life as it really is the lady asked the lives and habits of low persons. with a slight shudder. “I presume But, as you say, you have changed all you drape it in some sort of glamour that. To show you, however, that or sentiment of romance."
your vaunted realism is in no degree “Not a bit;
we gave up the better than ours, and nothing new, drapery business decades ago," I I will read you an extract from my answered smartly.
“ Our canons now moral friend and acquaintance, Miss prescribe actuality; we are photo- Edgeworth." graphic or nothing; we hold up the She had secured the volume and mirror to life as it is, and never regained her seat before I could move. soften the picture. Only thus can Then, after another sarcastic reference the true form and pressure of the to my defective gallantry, she read time be shown."
the well-known apology of the Dublin If I was a little rhetorical, my shoeblack for murdering his mate : nerves were still far from steady. My listener put on an offended air.
· Why, my lard, as I was going pas I to understand, Sir, that we did not the Royal Exchange I meets Billy. 'Billy, hold up the mirror with equal fidelity," says I, ' will you sky a copper ?' 'Done, she said ; "and that our depiction of
says he. Done,' says I, and done and life and character was false because
done's enough between two jantlemen.
with that I ranged them fair and even, we acted on the old maxim that Art With my hook-em-snivy-up they goimproves Nature ?"
Music !' says he-Scull!' says I, and “Oh," I proclaimed recklessly, "it
down they come three brown mazzards. is notorious that the late Georgian
• By the holy you fleshed 'em,' says he.
You lie,' says I. With that he ups with novelists, especially the fashionable
a lump of a two-year-old and lets drive ones, were stilted and artificial. Com- at me. I out's with my bread-earner, pare them with those of our time,
and gives it him up to Lamphrey in the
bread-basket." A-, B- and C-, for instance [here I named several of my most popular contemporaries and
“There is your low life done to a
T.! And now I will select another rivals), particularly in the matter of their dialogues."
specimen of a less murderous and more "Sir!” the lady cried with flashing amusing kind," she continued, possess
” “ do
ing herself of a second book. “ It is eyes, you mean that I-" “ Present company always
from my once popular Scottish concepted,” I reminded her in haste, temporary, Miss Ferrier ; she is disfeeling myself grow pale.
coursing in a language now I am told She laughed merrily at my alarm,
very much in the vogue, and in the à rippling human cachination. “It
character of an old gentlewoman of is evident that you are all wonderfully
her day. proud of your skill in dishing up the talk and manners of the alley, —
Hae, bairn-tak a cookie-tak it up
—what are you feared for ? it'll no bite gutter-broth it was called in my day
ye. Here's t'ye, Glenfern, an' your wife and that of uncouth peasants and
an' your wean ; puir tead, it's no had a artizans," she said, again restoring very chancy ootset, weel a wat. Canna
ye sit still a wee, man, an' let me speer silly question, Dr. Pepusch ?” answers after my auld freens at Glenfern? Hoo's Handel, in his German-English.
6. What Grizzy, an' Jacky, an' Nicky? aye warkin' can it concern you whether I have one awa at the peels an' the drogs—he, he ! waterman or two watermans, whether I I ne'er swallowed a peel nor gied a doit pay one shilling or two? Diavolo! I for drogs a' my days, an' see an ony o' cannot go here, I cannot go there, but them'll rin a race wi' me when they're someone shall send it to some newspaper, naur five score."
as how Mr. George Frederick Handel did
go sometimes last week to break his fast “Here,” she said, “is the beginning
with Mr. Zac. Hardcastle ; but it shall
be my fault if it shall be put in print of your famous Kailyard School, and
whether I was rowed by one waterinan considerably more vigorous in its
or by two watermans.” infancy than in its old age." I was astonished at the skill of her
“In conclusion," said my instrucattack, which had something almost
tress, “I can only give you his lively Japanese in its agility ; but my pro- outburst on his former professional tests of unfairness were only half
associates and enemies, for the account framed when she darted to a shelf of though vivid is of some length.” ancient newspapers, and withdrew an old Gazette of the First Gentleman's reign, her own most prolific period.
“Gustus," he cries to an old friend at
the table, “Here," she said, on once more regain
“ do you not remember as it
was almost only of yesterday, that sheing her seat," is an example of the devil, Cuzzoni, and that other precious light table-talk of a man of genius daughter of iniquity, Beelzebub's spoiled and world-wide fame, hit off to the
child, the pretty-faced Faustina ? 01
the mad rage that I have to answer for, life. I trust you will find it neither
what with one and the other of these stilted nor artificial. But although fine ladies' airs and graces. Again, do published in my own time it refers to you not remember that upstart puppy, an incident seventy years earlier, a
Senesino, and the coxcomb, Farinelli ? breakfast-meeting with the great com
Next, again, my sometime notable rival,
Master Bononcini, and old Porpora ? poser, Handel. That glorious musician
Ha, ha, hal all at war with me, and all (to whom you owe the Messiah, the at war with themselves. Such a con. DEAD MARCH, and other immortal fusion of rivalships, and double-faced. pieces) having slept supperless by his
ness, and hypocrisy, and malice, that
would make a comical subject for a poem physician's command,
in rhymes, or a piece for the stage, as I Thames to his friend Mr. Zachary hope to be saved I” Hardcastle in the Temple, and is moved to admiration by the sight of
She laughed again as she ended. food :
It is impossible for me to describe
her admirable rendering of these “Upon my word, that is a picture of a ham!” he exclaims to the assembled
extracts; despite a somewhat obsolete company, which includes the poet, Colley pronunciation, it was the revelation of Cibber, and certain famous fellow. an art long perished, like the proper musicians. “It is very bold of me to reading of poetry. come and break my fast with you un.
“I could find you thirty more on invited, and I have brought along with me a notable appetite; for the water of
the same shelf,” she said ; "and yet old Father Thames, is it not a fine bracer you suppose realism to be the invention of the appetite ? ”
of your own age ! ” “Pray, did you come with oars or
I swelled angrily with objections. scullers, Mr. Handel ?” asks one of the famous musicians.
These were mere exotic instances, “How can you demand of me that
oases in a desert, exceptions that
I will tell you:
proved the rule. But she waived This was more than I could bear, me aside.
-the story was my own! It had “You wondered," she said, "in cost me a week on Limehouse Reach, your facetious censure of my poor getting up the necessary local colour amateur tale, what we Georgians and profanity. thought of your modern realism, and “Madam, your presumption,"
I have read many began, but was stopped by a singular of the pieces in your new picture- change in her appearance. The aftermagazines, and know what it is,-it noon sun shot a ray into the hitherto is like the old Dutch paintings, all shadowed corner in which she sat, detail and no real life. This will and to my horror I perceived the surprise you, for you think it is all frame of her chair and the covers of life; but my censure is just, for the books behind her show plainly life is feeling, and your realism is through her person,
person, high waist, without real feeling. The old pon- puffed sleeves, frilled cap and all ! derous moral critics of our time used In an instant, however, her form had to complain that we were blasé, sophis- dissolved into the dusty, mote-filled ticated, artificial, worn-out; but even air through which the sunbeam the most hardened and affected of ploughed its path. I stepped to us, -even the graceless wits and the low window, and looked out; dandies of the Regency-had feel- there was nothing to be seen but ings, emotions, passions, loves, and the old-fashioned garden, with its hopes and fears, that could not formal flower-beds, antique dial, and always be hidden. We had senti- a resplendent peacock strutting on ment and sensibility; words that you the sunny lawn. I grasped the Edwardians have no occasion for, for window-ledge for support: then the the real things are dead. You are clever, minute, painful; you have “My dear Reginald," said my the corruscation that you love; but grandmother, as I joined her in the you, -and your young ladies that drawing-room at the recuperative play hockey and golf—have about as feast, ' you are as white as a ghost much feeling as an iron kettle, or one and I declare as cold! You shouldn't of your big locomotives, or—"
stay so long in the library; it isn't Madam," I interrupted sharply, good for your health.” "you generalise without the facts, “My dear grandmother," I replied and with prejudice. Give me as she filled my cup, "you are right. crete examples, modern instances." I The place is haunted by all kinds was irritated and careless of her ire. of ghosts, some of them,—the female
“ Here is one,” she said, taking a ones especially—the most infernally recent magazine from the table beside impudent and conceited that I ever
“It is a short story of an in- met in my life. I should have it trigue among people whom I infer turned out and scrubbed with carfrom their conversation to be bargees bolic, and a brand-new installation or ship-chandlers, by one Reginald of electric lights put in.
. That might Franey, an author who exhibits all teach them to mind their manners the defects of taste nd sentiment and their own business." that I have named. I presume--"
The eve that trembles like a voice in tears
A new joy flashes ; and suspected pain,
I falter not: my voice is clear and bold,
It stabbed me; and I felt within me die,
Let it grow!
W. H. C.