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need not wonder, that all the experiments of all the alchyinists of the last four centuries, founded on so ridiculous a poetical invention, should have lamentably failed in discovering that which is a non-entity-their aurum palpabile !
This incredible opinion, that there really was such a metal as gold, was further strengthened by the cunning of the Poet, who compares the succeeding age to silver, a metal which we know, by some feiv proofs still remaining, is to be found in the bowels of the earth. And, again, by likening the third age he treats upon to lead, a metal which all the plumbers in England can verify upon oath is to be had some way or otherwhether the truth lies in a well or not, is immaterial to our argument.
The elixir of life, the longitude, the perpetual mo. tion, and the way to square a circle, have all equally had their followers, advocates, and adnirers; but the wiser part of mankind bave invariably laughed at all such pursuits---whether of those who hunted after immortality, in a morial world; certainty, where nothing is certain ; perpetuity, where every thing decays; an exception to a physical certainty ;, or, what was of the same description, the philosopher's stone, or gold,” as a substance which we have reason to believe is no. thing more than an immaterial phantasy. The wisdom and purity of the British Parliainent has of late been arraigned and brought into question more than in former times, and we must confess, in our opinion, with greater justice than ever ; for it evinced no ora dinary share of folly, in the Senate of a great nation, to fall into a vulgar opinion, and appoint a Committee, as they did last Session, to inquire into its truth or falsehood, and report to the House whether there was any foundation for the belief in the philosopher's stone, or not. In no other light can the Bullion Committee be considered; and any man of sense might
have anticipated their Report, viz. That there was no such thing in creation as the metal they were deputed to discover! And yet this Report madě a noise in the country, and set all the yelping fellows of the nation at work, to prove that the Committee were wrong. We shall not enter into a controversy so evidently ridiculous, but, satisfied in our own mind by the evidence of our own senses, remain convinced that there is no such thing as gold to be seen.
Would to Heaven the precious ore did exist, and that the age of peace, pleasure, and plenty, resembling it, were restored! But, alas ! even the silvery' age is past, and we do not enjoy the secondary degree of happiness with which rankind were blessed during the period so designated : nay, the very age of lead, when rapine, injustice, and discord, began to infest the world when bellum, horridum bellum, cried havoc, and let slip its bloodhounds--even that dull heavy time is over, and worse has succeeded ; in which, unfortunately for our generatiou, we are the actors. But what name shall we give this “ Age we live in " Were we to follow the example of Ovid, and add another metal to the list, nothing would be found applicable but that compound-brass! Impudence and assurance prevail over modesty and talent, and brazen presumption leads to honours, wealth, and fame! Another phenomenon of our times might be happily compared with that semi-metallic combination which is employed in Galvanic experiments, and the prevatence of universal Corruption find an apt counterpart in the fluid wonders wrought in these curious philosophical treats by Professor Davy. We might observe how, by this medium, the dead were made to move about, as by the influence of Corruption they are made to vote at Elections; and many other singular and similar appearances might be produced and explained.
But, perhaps, after all, it would be more applicable to dismiss Metals altogether from our simile, and at once to bestow on this age the name it so obviously merits—that of the PAPER Age! How well by this appellation will its nature he demonstrated to posterity! Exquisitely true, our children's children's children shall read the record; and, when they mention the Paper Age, it will be understood to mean that period when Bank Notes
The Art of Ruling,
Religion, Waste Paper! Lord forefend any one should carry the comparison any further than we have now done; and after saying we had Paper Men for Ruters, go “ up and up, and find all a-cold !”
PARODY, 'ON READING Ä MOST PATHETIC APPEAL IN THE DEBATE
With less of earth in'ther than heaven.
BY THE AUTHOR OF THE BERNE BEAR
[From the same, Dec. 27.]
MINISTERS do not like my Bear at all;
Pleas'd with its fun, the Opposition laugh: Perhaps they 'll laugh still louder, when I call
Those Ministers - the Bear and Ragged Staff!"
(From the saine, Dec. 29.)
EPIGRAM THE SECOND CRIES Perceval, when Eldon wish'd to learn If they should prosecute the Bear of Berne, ." That it a libel is, bid Gibbs declare, And let the common bangman-vurn the Bear !"
EPIGRAM THE THIRD. This Bear perhaps has point, but what defence Can justify the Author's impudence ? To palliate it the Author says" Alas ! He the great grandchild is-of Hudi-brass !
EPIGRAM THR FOURTH,
* See p. 82.
+ The Noble Earl, to whom this couplet alludes, must pardon the Author for not having been able to hitch the Irish title which his Lordship bears into the Epigram.
EPIGRAM ON OUR BUNCH OF NEW KINGS.
[From the British Press, Dec. 29.)
ON THE MARRIAGE OF A GENTLEMAN WITH THE WIDOW " GHOST :" AN EPIGRAM.
(From the same.) WHAT a desperate fellow !" the neighbours all say,
« To marry a Ghost, that will haunt you each day.". "No ghost do I fear," cries the spouse," while 't is light,
s And the Parson pernits me to lay it by night."
(From the same, Dec. 26.) TRANSLATION OF MUTANABI'S ODE ON HIS
BY MIRZA-COZIM-ALI-JAWN, Who has successfully infused into the Urdh Dialect all the
Boldness and Spirit of the Original. Addressed to a certain fighting General of Challenge
Notoriety + ODDS bullets and brains, General, what a Pistol of
a fellow is this bloody-minded Arabian Poet Mu. tanabi Wide-Nostrils, the Swallower of Windmills,
* See Lord Moira's speech in the British Press of Dec. 28.