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more. Such were the tales buzzed in account of the fight, as I have heard it the ears of the Count by the villagers related in a variety of ways. Suffice as he endeavoured to rouse them to it to say, the robbers were defeated ; the rescue of the princess and her several of them killed, and several train from their perilous situation. taken prisoners; which last, together The daughter seconded the exertions with the people of the inn, were of her father with all the eloquence either executed or sent to the galleys. of prayers, and tears and beauty. I picked up these particulars in the Every moment that elapsed increased course of a journey which I made her anxiety until it became agonizing. some time after the event had taken Fortunately, there was a body of place. I passed by the very inn. It gens-d'armes resting at the village. was then dismantled, excepting one A number of the young villagers vo- wing, in wbich a body of gens-d'armes lunteered to accompany them, and were stationed. They pointed out to the little army was put in motion. me the shot-holes in the window. TheCount having deposited his daugh- frames, the walls, and the pannels of ter in a place of safety, was too much the door. There were a number of of the old soldier not to hasten to the withered limbs dangling from the scene of danger. It would be diffi- branches of a neighbouring tree, and cult to paint the anxious agitation of the blackening in the air, which I was young lady while awaiting the result. told were the limbs of the robbers
The party arrived at the inn just in who had been slain, and the culprits time. The robbers, finding their who had been executed. The whole plans discovered, and the travellers place had a dismal, wild, forlorn look. prepared for their reception, had be “ Were any of the Princess's party come open and furious in their attack. killed ?" inquired the Englishman. The Princess's party had barricadoed “ As far as I can recollect, there themselves in one suite of apartments, were two or three.” and repulsed the robbers from the “Not the nephew, I trust," said the doors and windows. Caspar had fair Venetian. shown the generalship of a veteran, " Oh no; he hastened with the and the nephew of the Princess the Count to relieve the anxiety of the dashing valour of a young soldier. daughter by the assurances of victoTheir ammunition, however, was ry. The young lady had been susnearly exhausted, and they would tained throughout the interval of sushave found it difficult to hold out pense by the very intensity of her much longer, when a discharge from feelings. The moment she saw her the musquetry of the gens-d'armes father returning in safety, accompanigave them the joyful tidings of suc- ed by the nephew of the Princess, she
uttered a cry of rapture and fainted. A fierce fight ensued, for part of Happily, however, she soon recoverthe robbers were surprised in the inn, ed, and what is more, was married and had to stand siege in their turn; shortly after to the young cavalier, and while their comrades made desperate the whole party accompanied the old attempts to relieve them from under Princess in her pilgrimage to Loretto, cover of the neighbouring rocks and where her votive offerings may still thickets.
be seen in the treasury of the Santa I cannot pretend to give a minute Case.”
To a beautiful Girl.
THE WISHING-CAP. No. I.
A PROPOSAL TO THE INHABITANTS OF THE METROPOLIS.
" It is a call to keep the spirits alive.".
Ben Jonson. WHAT I have to propose to the the fathers nor the sons of boxers. If
consideration of the inhabitants we could all of us attain to the honest of the Metropolis is the institution of fists of Parson Adams and Tom Jones, certain grounds and enclosures for the it would be much better. But how purpose of restoring the manly games are we to set about it? Not by unof their ancestors. By manly games, natural modes of life. We must rouse I mean those that are properly called up other elements of health than these. so, such as golf,* tennis, cricket, pris- When we have recovered something on-base, &c.; not cock-fighting, nor of the Parson's true love of manliness even boxing ; which latter is an in- and simplicity, we shall be able to vention of the idle to show their val- fight our own battles without the help our by proxy.
The best thing to be of boxers and brandy-bottles. It is said for boxing is, that it cultivates a what the boxers at present do not sense of justice in the streets, and re- do themselves ; nor what their spectaminds the little boys of the necessity tors, for the most part, would venture of keeping themselves active and vig- to do at all.
Boxing, however, is rather Cock-fighting is so despicable an the result than the cause of a turn for amusement, and so plainly open to all fair play, which has long manifested the objections against boxing, without itself in the British community. Its having anything to say for itself, that advocates have yet to show that its I need not add a word on the subject. tendency to assist a spirit of this sort Cruelty and cowardice notoriously go is not over-balanced by the excite- together. In cock-fighting they are ment it furnishes to safe and cowardly both at their height. If anybody respectators. A regular boxing holiday mains to be convinced, let him look at which draws after it, like a dusty com- Hogarth's picture of it, and the faces et, all the blackguards and bullies in concerned. Would the gambler in the neighbourhood, is a meteor of that picture, the most absorbed in the very doubtful import ; a very ques. hope of winning, ever forget his own tionable encouragement to public spir- bones, as he does those of the brave it. The drinking and other bad hab. animals before him ? I allow that its, which generally illustrate the lives cock-fighting has been in use among of boxers and their abettors, are no nations of great valour, our own for testimonies to the goodness of this one ; but it was the barbarous and not mode of education. The spectators the brave part of the national spirit do not advance their health : and the that maintained it, and one that had boxers themselves are trained into an not yet been led to think on the subannatural pitch of vigour, which does ject. Better knowledge puts an end not last, and which only tempts them to all, excuses of that sort. When to shorten their lives by alternate ex- Roger Ascham (who saw nothing in cesses of regimen and debauchery. romances but open manslaughter Even the race is not carried on like and bold baudry”) grew old and feethat of our horses. Boxers are not ble, he changed his love for archery
into a passion for this sneaking amuseThere is a golf-club, which meets at Black ment. I never heard but of one imheath, and is composed, I believe, of Scotchmen. It is a very masculine gaine, not lightly to be entered aginative person who was a cock-fightupon by those whose muscles have been sedentary, er; and such an odd imagination is lest, as the poet says
his, and so strange are the ends which -Vinegar proclaim their loud disgrace.
these cock-fighters come to, that he Exercises of this nature are the only, advantage is now a professor in a Scotch uniwbich Scotland bas over us, and the disgrace ought
versity. This, it must be confes
to be done away.
sed, is a saving grace beyond old Ro- court was then given to tilts and tourger Ascham.
naments, the gentry to the sports of There is still a cock-pit somewhere the field, the citizens to archery, the in Westminster. There is also, what peasantry to the games which are now many of our readers will be surprised confined to children : and all classes to hear of, a bear-garden, eminently to bowls, tennis, and dancing. At the blackguard.
same time, as good things have a proBut to return to our subject,-l say pensity to go together, music was cullittle about the ancients, though they livated by both sexes, to a degree abounded in gymnastic example. Ex- which this musical age would be suramples drawn from the Greeks and prised at; and ladies gradually acRomans, unless impressed upon us in quired the art of being at once housea very early and particular manner, wifely and booklearned ; points in have little effect. They are consider- which they afterwards fell off on the ed rather as things done in books, than arrival of French coquetry. Elizaby men. I will only make two or beth, besides her books and her “ heathree observations : Ist. That neither venly virginals,” kept herself in heart the Greeks nor Romans were fond of and good countenance with “ dancing." exercise by proxy, the former being a The Reformation set men a thinking, nation of wrestlers and dancers, and and the Revolution followed ; very the second the gladiators of the world: useful to complete us as minds as well 2d. That the Greeks were much the as bodies, and to put an end to all handsomer and more intellectual peo- star-chambers and bloody bigotries ; ple, and, with the exception of Sparta, but mind itself still remains to be comwere as content with the exercises that pleted, and to finish its duty by a rekept them healthy and lively in a state turn to the proper cultivation of body; of peace, as they were ready to fight and then we should unite the advantabravely when patriotism required it : ges of the two periods. The Puri3d. That the wits and philosophers of tans, in their saturnine reflection, Greece, some of whom were its great- thought it necessary to oppose est captains (as Epaminondas and sports and pastimes of the age, as Xenophon) were remarkable for a worldly vanities, which was a great tranquil health and longevity, confes. blow to the corporeal part of us. Luc. sedly owing to that study of body as ury had already prepared the way for well as mind, which they made a part it by the introduction of coaches, as of the business of their lives. Plato well as by her other usual tendencies. speaks with astonishment of the new- Charles the Second followed with his ly-invented terms of rapours and oth- peruke and French fashions; and er mysteries, which some physicians though he was fond of exercise and had brought up in his time. In the age began by, resuming some of the old of Homer, our niceties of tempera- sports, debauchery soon counteracted ment appear to have been so unknown, their good effects.
The show of a that he represents Diomed and Ulysses, severer court under James, the second after the heat of action, as standing in revolution which followed his attempts a draught of wind to cool themselves. to introduce popery, and the AntiThese were soldiers ; but Plato was a Gallican spirit which arose in opposiman of letters and á metaphysician ; tion both to the former tastes and to professions, which are held to be par- the power of Louis the 14th, all tendticularly injurious to the stomach ; ed to introduce a better system of and are so, in our present sedentary manners; but trade had now began to modes of life.
occupy our day-light, and lead us into The history of England will suffice sad hours ; the logical and critical facfor Englishmen. It is remarkable, that ulties were exercised almost exclusivethe period the most eminent among us ly, and peace with France ensuing, both for manly exercises and a long and every body being bent on the imstate of peace, was during the reign of provement of his “ seuse,” the effect the Tudors and James the First. The was cousummated by an universal ab
sorption in the lesser morals,—in the Revolution had put a spirit into their acquirement of estates and gentilities, arms, which the “ beaux chevaliers" -in the study of being agreeable in of the Grand Monarque, with all their rooms, and witty in coffee-houses. gallantry, would have envied. NapoWe were to be English in our virtues, leon gave that title to one of our regibut French in our tastes : and a com ments as they were forming for battle, promise between these two strangers and lamented that he should be obligtook place, which existed up to the ed to cut it to pieces. The consciousperiod of the French revolution, and ness that suggested the lamentation, still colours the manners and criticism might have taught him to spare it. in vogue. The characters of the suc- te argued too royally. He took us cessive princes contributed to the uni- for the servants of a monarchy like versal defection from exercise. Wil that of old France; and forgot that liam the Third, a hero in the field, the same liberty which was new in was a queazy consumptive invalid in that country, and none the better for his own chamber: Anne was fat and his deserting it, was, notwithstanding burly, like her grandfather Clarendon. its corruptions, a long habit with us. Lord Lanesborough, the old gentle. But the French people have upon the man mentioned by Pope as “ dancing whole made a great advance in physin the gout,” waited upon her on the ical energy. The race is improved. death of her husband, to advise her A manlier system of education has Majesty to rouse up her spirits by his been introduced ; feudality is at an Lordship’s favourite exercise. The end ; the French peasant now values announcement of his business must himself, not as the slave of a great have been very ludicrous, unless he nation ; and we may remark, that the was a man of address ; but he had a most inconsiderate extoller among us reason in his boasting of legs. If pre- of " the good old times” in France cedent was required, he might have (which we used to laugh at so much quoted, besides Elizabeth, the example formerly) has long ceased to say anyof Charles the Second's wife, Catha- thing about ragged elbows' and rine of Braganza, who by means of an
« wooden shoes." Now the French unconquerable spirit of dancing bore are not disposed to relax any of their up against an evi! which would have endeavours to render themselves a been thought greater by most women
match for Englishmen. Let us smile than that of a husband's death; to if we will at their endeavours ; but wit, his neglect and infidelity. The let us smile with reason ; and do, in House of Brunswick succeeded, all the mean time, all we can to keep a stayers at home and card-players, with head of them. the exception of the late King, whose There is a cricket-ground at Padtemperance and exercise deserved a dington, and a squalid five's court in better end than his parents had provi- St. Martin's-lane. This is the present ded for him.
amount of our establishments in beWe still have the advantage of our half of health and vigour. The neighbours in point of bodily vigour; cricket-ground is good, but a mere partly from our mode of subsistence, nothing to our wants. The five’s-court partly because we retain enough mor- is like an out-house in a dream, or al vigour from our ancestors, and val- Daniels den without the lions. We ue ourselves on maintaining our supe- ought at least to have a score of crickriority. Bnt no gallant person who et-grounds about the suburbs. There was at Waterloo will deny, that how- should also be grounds for tennis ; ever we astonished Napoleon by hold- five's-courts, a decent number; and ing out as we did, and forcing him to running, wrestling, and all other honlose the fruits of his conduct, we our- est exercises ought to be encouraged, selves could have spared a few of the wherever they can. Instead of these, charges which the French persisted in we have muddle-lieaded card-rooms, making, and did not altogether find and places aptly called Hells, where them as inferior as we expected. The people learn to be callous or misera
ble, and pick one another's pockets : place to any great extent. The conto which they have lately added the stitution's ruined for life, and the feeaccomplishment of cutting one anoth: ble progenies that result, are innumeers throats. Think of the difference rable in these sedentary times. And of frequenting these places, or even recollect, that plant what principles the most virtuous tavern extant, with- we may, and take care as we think fit out a proper security against gout and of our own wordly success and that indigestion, and of coming home fresh of our offspring, nature insists that the and breathing from the racket-ground, bodies in which she puts us shall be with a hand as firm as iron, clear tem- the medium of every perception we ples and body, and an appetite which have ; so that we colour it with darkcan afford to enjoy itself.*
ness or cheerfulness accordingly. Some patriotic persons, Mr. Pen I have omitted hunting : I confess I nant among them (who was of civic do not willingly speak of it, unless it origin, and a good specimen of the be hunting the fox, and then only in British gentleman) have attempted to case of necessity. It prevails to do restore the practice of archery. It is such extent as to affect my argument: a good attempt ; and all exercises, of nor can I think that any mode of dowhatever kind, are better than none; ing ourselves good is to be recomand if archery is not made a toy of by mended, if it be unjust to others, and its revivers (as one is apt to imagine can be supplied by a choice of so in these times) it is stout work. What many amusements, at once manly and I have just said, was only upon that innocent. presumption. Pardon me, soul of
One thing I must mention ; namely Robin Hood ; and ye tall and sturdy that this is no party matter. Our bows, not to be looked down upon, muscles are not whigs and Tories, which of old
Our stomachs (God knows) are no The strong-arın'd English spirits conquer'd France. Radical Reformers. All parties are
We have still riding and dancing interested in it; nor do I despair beamong our amusements ; but both are fore long of hearing that some steps
: pursued in a very modern way, the have been taken in consequence latter often perniciously. The rich
this suggestion ; not because it has have the advantage of riding for an
been well argued, but because the sug. appetite. It is a pity they do not do gestion has been made. Should any it oftener, instead of taking to their one be induced by what is here said to carriages. Dancing is kept up too take steps in the matter, I exhort him late at night, and in suffocating rooms.
to consider himself as under one of Dancing on a green is to some pur
the most honourable impulses of bis
life. pose. At evening it might oftener be If it lay in my power to begin, resorted to with great advantage, by
I would not hesitate a moment
, nor sit almost all persons in doors, without down to dinner, from week's end to preparation, and the moment they
week's end, without conquering a good rise from their work. But no exer
digestion for it, racket in hand, every cise can dispense with the necessity of day I was in town. The gentlemen of exercise in the open air. We, and
the city can raise excellent troops ours, for many generations must suffer horse, and do anything else they have for the want of it, wherever it takes a mind to, which money can effect: why
do they not make a transition from the
field of Waterloo to exercises worthy * Laws must be made against gambling ; but it is of gallant men ? A pair of stays is much easier to prevent it in such games, than at any another thing, when it pinches the other. The player soon gets an interest in the game sides of a Sir Philip Sydney. Let itself, and the cheerfulness of his blood stands bim instead of the paltry excitements of the dice-box.
shapes be secured, and stays be warTo play for a trifle might be allowed. It gives the ranted by this handsonest of all mind's eye anotber mark to aim at ; but this is easily modes; and let at the same time half regulated. A good player will chiefly play før hon the indigestions of the city retire at
one blow of the racket.