« ZurückWeiter »
which we have lately heard so much, have taken much deeper root in Dublin than in any other place that could be named. The Art-Union in that city has been only established four years, and yet the sum that has been expended by it in the encouragement of the fine arts, is upwards of £12,000. To show the rate at which it is progressing, it will be only necessary to mention, that in 1840, the first year of its existence, its income was only £1235, while last year it was no less than £5063. How poor and miserable has been the success of the London Art-Union, compared with the success of the sister institution in Dublin. Last year, the entire revenue of the London Art-Union was only £2244; which, considering the relative population of the two places, is not a tenth part of that of the institution in Dublin. The members of the latter were upwards of 4000 at the close
of last year ; now they must be little, if at all, short of 5000. Do not these facts strikingly show how general among the citizens of Dublin must be a taste for the fine arts?
Within the last few years we have heard a great deal about schools of design, and several have been established in our large towns. Those unacquainted with the facts of the case would have inferred, from the way in which these institutions have been spoken of by their friends and advocates, that they were a new idea. Will it be believed, that not only are they derived from Ireland, but that the Dublin Society established a school of design full fifty years before a whisper was heard about them in this country?
To the shops of Dublin I have only as yet made an incidental reference. In the better class of streets they are, with few exceptions, equal to the shops of London. They are not always so large, but there is a style about the way in which they are fitted up, which is not often surpassed in the British metropolis.
So much for the town of Dublin and its inhabitants. A word or two, before concluding, with reference to the surrounding country. I observed, in speaking of the leading streets, that there is scarcely anything of that crowding and bustle which so much excite the attention of the stranger on his first visit to London. The same observation applies to the principal roads. in the neighbourhood which lead to and from the city. You are surprised you see so few pedestrians or vehicles. You wonder where you are. You can hardly persuade yourself that you are within a mile or two of a celebrated capital. All the principal roads communicating with London are crowded with people, horses, and vehicles. The stranger, on his first visit, is, consequently, prepared for the mighty metropolis into the heart of which he is about to plunge. In the neighbourhood of Dublin it is quite the reverse. You may walk half-a-mile in one of the leading roads within two miles of the city, without meeting
more than one or two vehicles of any kind, and possibly three or four individuals.
The situation of Dublin is singularly fine. It lies in an open, airy, champaign tract of country. In the background is a range of high hills, which give a very picturesque aspect to that part of the neighbourhood. North-eastward is the sea; northwestward, is a rich and beautiful landscape, beautified, by several arms of the sea, and by several gently-rising hills in in the distance. To the westward, the scenery is delightfully varied with wood and water, gentle acclivities and extensive plains. In a south-eastern direction—the neighbourhood of Bray, for example—there is some of the most beautiful scenery on which the eye of man could wish to gaze. But by far the finest view of the tract of level land in which Dublin lies, is to be had eight miles westward of the city, as you emerge from the range of mountains on your way from Kilkenny to Dublin. The panorama which lies below your feet, is one remarkable alike for its richness and extent. The eye not only takes in the whole of Dublin and the more beautiful scenery in its vicinity, but it embraces portions of six counties. The prospect is a charming one; there are few finer views to be had in any country in the world.
I wish, mamma, you'd tell that man
To keep his money—and his distance;
He'll never conquer my resistance.
(The wretch !) and tried to look quite charming;
And thought his fondness quite alarming. “Come now,” said I, “ I'll test your love :"
(The rich old hunks looked pleased and tender) “Ah! dearest !” cried he, “darling! dove !
“ What service could I fail to render ? "
Said I, “for these could charm me never ;
And let us say farewell for ever.”
You would have thought he'd kill your daughter ;
Except of English words a slaughter.
At last I heard the dolt exclaim
“I know your heart's in secret chiming The praise of one whose wealth is fame,
A pale-faced poet, proud of rhyming." “Take that!” I cried, and boxed his ear;
He paused, and scowled in sullen frenzy ; “Your mother, miss," said he, “ shall hear
Of this, and of your dear Mackenzie !” And then he bolted from the room,
And banged the door as if he'd break it; But what care I for all his fume ?
Let one who loves his money take it. You know, mamma, my heart's my own,
And that sweet bard the old brute mentioned Is but a friend. His worth is known;
No other man, though bribed or pensioned Though decked with ribbons, gems, or gold,
Could ever wake in me the feeling With which I silently behold
His kindled eye, his soul revealing. I do not love him, but 'tis sweet
To hear divine words breathed divinely ; And, ah! it is a heavenly sight
To see his face light up so finely. What thought is in that forehead high !
What genius in his glances glowing ! And really, when I hear him sigh,
I feel as if my life were going. I do not love him, but I own
I like his tender verses dearly ; And, somehow, when I'm all alone,
I feel his absence most severely. Perhaps, indeed, one day, who knows
But in some silent walk and shady, He may
breathe forth a lover's vows, And I become a poet's lady. I wish, mamma, you would not quiz ;
You vex me with your wicked smiling; You think I'm smitten with his phiz,
And that his muse is too beguiling. Well, have it all your own way, then,
And if it will afford you pleasure, I'll own he is the best of men,
And that his heart would be a treasure. “ Behold! the gentle minstrel comes !
You love each other, and you show it," (Exclaims mamma) “so no more hums.
Charles, take her. Mary, here's your poet. Exchange your vows, and laugh at sorrow,
Indulge in love's delicious frenzy; And Mary shall be styled to-morrow
The pretty Mrs. Charles Mackenzie.”
THE CO-HEIRESSES. 1
* BY MRS. EDWARD THOMAS.
Emily accompanied her sister Grace, and by the simplicity of her dress, and mournful pensiveness of countenance, afforded a complete foil to her sister's “recherchée parure” and brilliant charms. On their return home, Emily entered the Duchess's boudoir, with her to enjoy a few moments of that agreeable “ causerie” which generally takes place between two women who are not rivals, after an evening of gaiety. Flinging herself into a “fauteuil," and placing her feet on an ottoman, she observed to her sister, who was standing before a Psyche (lookingglass), intently gazing upon herself
"I never saw you look so handsome, Grace, as you did to-night. Your matchless dark hair and flushed cheek, set off your diamonds, I assure you, instead of their adorning you. Oh! you were 'tout-a-fait adorable, ma sæur chérie.
"Did I really look so handsome, Emily ?” said Grace, almost abstractedly. “Oh! if I did, how much did my countenance belie the deformity of my heart ! Off! off! detested bauble !" she continued, energetically snatching the glittering tiara from her brow, and flinging it contemptuously from her; and then, going up to the spot where it lay, she set her foot on it with the firm malignity of a fury crushing a snake.
“For Heaven's sake, dear Grace, compose yourself,” exclaimed Emily, starting up, alarmed at the dreadful excitement of her sister ; "what can be the cause of this violent perturbation—this strange disorder?" “You
may well be astonished, Emily, to behold my detestationmy abhorrence, for what I used to consider the only-yes, the onlythings worth living for. But I have been forced-forced, Emily, to learn to despise them ; yes, forced to learn that rank and gems cannot confer happiness.
I used to laugh at what the poets said,
Of diamonds glittering on an aching breast;
The dove-eyed halcyon from its love-built nest.
And bitter is it to acquire such sooth.'”
could read my soul, you would find it was a prey to a fever which is destroying it; a fever which my tears have vainly tried to extinguish; for, Emily, I have shed torrents. But nothing can quench it; it rages like the awful fierceness experienced in the desert plains of Dadur, which is so terrible, that even
I Concluded from page 95, vol. CLXI.
the fainting and oppressed Persians exclaim, “O Allah! wherefore make hell, when thou hast made Dadur?'* Such, my sister, is my heart-a very hell indeed, suffocating, flaming, consuming."
Why, dear Grace, have you kept your sufferings from me? I might have ameliorated them ; I might have enabled you to conquer this terrible passion.”
“Conquer it! I would not for worlds; it is the joy, the felicity, the intoxication of my life. Conquer a first love! Emily, it is beyond a woman's power.'
“No, it is not ; indeed it is not. Weak, frail, feeble as is our nature, we are yet capable of wondrous things. Like the delicate and fragile ectosperma elevata, which can sustain, totally unharmed, the whole torrent of the waterfall, or mountain cataract, so can woman endure, uninjured, the terrible sweep of the rushing and foaming waters of passion, if she bows, like the willow-sapling, to them, humbly yet resolutely determined that their demoniac force shall not uproot her better principles. O my sister ! I adjure you to try your strength on this occasion; you will find it extraordinary in the cause of virtue; for God will be with you, he will support you ; for he is a shelter in the storm, a shadow in the heat."
“Emily, it is in vain ; I cannot make an effort to overcome my infatuation; I am completely mastered by it ; my whole soul is inebriated with its delicious, overpowering, ecstatic influence.”
“Who is it that can have obtained such a sudden and fatal ascendancy over you ?”
“Not sudden, Emily, not sudden ; the germ was laid in my infant heart ; but pride, ambition, vanity, prevented its growth, till too, too late ; when lo! it burst into the full vigour of an inexpressible, tyrannical, exquisite passion. It is Sinclair that I love."
“Sinclair!” almost screamed Emily, “ Sinclair ! it cannot be possible. You must be under the power of some 'sortilege.' Think, think, for mercy's sake, of the ruin, the degradation of such an attachment ! O Grace! my own, my only sister, behold me at your feet, imploring you to save yourself. You must not fall so utterly. You, in your glorious beauty, your regal pride--now, stately as a vessel bounding in the gladness of her full-flowing sails, soon, soon to be a bare and riven hulk, stranded on the barren shores of ignominy and shame. You, Grace, the envied wife of the Duke of Glenferne, to be enslaved by a passion for a being your father, from charity, snatched from a workhouse!”
“Le sang de mon père, ne paile-t-il pas en moi ?" said Grace, bitterly. “Nature has vindicated her imperious rights. Love is her grand prerogative. I thought to defy it; but I am punished for my horrible blasphemy. Sinclair ought to have been my husband ; as he cannot be, he must be my lover. I cannot exist without loving himwithout his love. Night and day I feel his large, lustrous eyes, like two burning lens, fixed on mine, drawing from my heart the vital principle of life. I hear his deep, almost sepulchral, voice (made so by the agony my scorn occasioned him), threatening me with the very
* Vide Letters of the late Colonel Dennie on the Affghan War, in the Dublin University Magazine, for September 1842.