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the drama. He knew every play of Schiller by
heart, and quoted the Wallenstein, the Robbers,
Don Carlos, and Maria Stuart at will ; so, too,
was he familiar with Goethe and Lessing. He
had all the swinging intonation of the boards,
and declaimed so very professionally that, as he
concluded a passage, I cried out, without knowing
it,

"Take that for your benefitit's the best you
have given yet."

Oh, Lord, how they laughed! She covered
up her face and smothered it; but he lay back,
and holding the table with both hands, he
positively shouted and screamed aloud. I would
have given ten years of life for the courage to
have thrown my glass of wine in his face; but it
was no use, Nature had been a niggard to me
in that quarter, and I had to sit and hear it
exactly so, sit and hear itwhile they made
twenty attempts to recover their gravity and
behave like ladies and gentlemen, and when, no
sooner would they look towards me, than off
they were again as bad as before.

I resolved a dozen cutting sarcasms, all
beginning with, "Whenever I feel assured that you
have sufficiently regained the customary calm
of good society," but the dessert was served
ere I could complete the sentence; and now
they were deep in the lyric poets, Uhland,
and Korner, and Freiligrath, and the rest of
them. As I listened to their enthusiasm, I
wondered why people never went into raptures
over a cold in the head. But it was not to end
here: there was an old harpsichord in the room,
and this he opened and set to work on in that
fearful two-handed fashion your German alone
understands. The poor old crippled instrument
shook on its three legs, while the fourth fell
clean off, and the loose wires jangled and jarred
like, knives in a tray; but he only sang the
louder, and her ecstasies grew all the greater
too.

Heaven reward you, dear old Mrs. Keats,
when you sent word down that you couldn't
sleep a wink, and begging them to " send that
noisy band something and let them go away;"
and then Miss Herbert wished him a sweet
good night, and he accompanied her to the door,
and then there was more good night, and I
believe I had a short fit, but when I came to
myself he was sitting smoking his cigar opposite
me.

"You are no relative, no connexion of the
young lady who has just left the room?" said
he to me, with a grave manner, so significant
of something under it, that I replied hastily,
"Nonenone whatever."

"Was that servant who spoke to me in the
porch, as I came in this evening, yours?"

"Yes." This I said more boldly, as I
suspected he was coming to the question Fran├žois
had opened.

"He mentioned to me," said he, slowly, and
puffing his cigar at easy intervals, " that you
desire your servant should sleep in the same
room with you. I am always happy to meet
the wishes of courteous fellow-travellers, and so
I have ordered my servant to give you his bed ;
he will sleep up-stairs in what was intended for
you. Good night." And with an insolent nod
he lounged out of the room and left me.

FIVE HUNDRED YEARS AGO.

DRESS AND FOOD.

THE victorious though unprofitable termination
of the war with France stimulated the
English nation to a pitch of exultation and joy
which our impoverished condition was little able
to support. The reckless extravagance into
which all classes rushed, especially the humbler,
resulted in general dissatisfaction. The
Commons took a decided step to remedy the error.
They petitioned for a statute to restrict each
class to a certain limit in dress, and, those who
were most likely to exceed in respect of food,
to an allowance: namely, the servant-class, which
does not trouble itself about the price of food or
clothing, for which it does not pay. A statute
was accordingly passed, the provisions of which
is an astonishing example of the wisdom of our
ancestors.

The lowest classes of all, which included
agricultural labourers and villeins, having goods
under the value of forty shillings, were not
to dress in any but the coarsest cloth, called
blanket and russet, sold at one shilling the ell;
their girdles and linen to correspond in quality.
Servants, whether of lords, traders, or artificers,
were confined to meat or fish once a day; the
rest of their food was to consist of milk, cheese,
butter, and other victuals suitable to their
estate. Their dress was to be of cloth not
exceeding two marks the whole piece, and destitute
of gold, silver, embroidery, or silk. Their
wives and daughters were to be clad in a similar
manner, and were especially forbidden to wear
veils or kerchiefs exceeding one shilling each.
The dress of traders, artificers, and yeomen was
restricted to cloth under forty shillings the
whole piece, without any ornament. Their
women were forbidden silken veils, and all furs
save the skins of lamb, rabbit, cat, and fox.
Esquires and all gentlemen below the estate of
knighthood having lands to the value of one
hundred pounds a year, and merchants,
artificers, and traders, having goods worth five
hundred pounds, were permitted to wear cloth at
four marks and a half the whole piece, without
any ornament. Their ladies were forbidden any
kind of embroidery or lining, together with
certain other curiously named decorations, the
properties whereof are a mystery known only
to the female mind. Esquires having lands to
the value of two hundred pounds yearly, and
merchants with goods worth one thousand
pounds, might wear cloth sold at five marks the
piece, and reasonably garnished with silk and
silver. Their ladies were allowed linings of
miniver fur, but not of ermine, or the rich grey
fur we call lettice, and no jewels except upon
the head. Knights having lands worth two
hundred marks might wear cloth of six marks
the piece, but no furred, embroidered, or jewelled