Page images
PDF
EPUB

years old.

experience and knowledge were requisite. Iter of foreign affairs, thought of Count de Mr. de Vergennes was brought up under the Vergennes to succeed to his department, and tuition of that celebrated negotiator, who died pointed him out to his sovereign as the propera few years ago at the age of 96. His ne- eft man to fill that high employment. The phew, Count de Vergennes, is now about 6; French Monarch baving an unbounded coofi

dence in Cirunt de Maurepas, though he had Count de Maurepas, who has lately been, the firmness to reject the Duke d’Aiguillon, above ten years, the first minister of France, the Count's nephew, for whom he had a perafter having been (wenty-five years in exile, fonal Jinike, caused a letter to be written to and before that twenty years a minister, was the Count de Vergennes, then at Stockholm, the bolom friend of Mr, de Chavigny. H: that he was appointed a Minister, and Secre, appointed Count de Vergennes to the residence tary of State for foreign affairs. oć Treves (Triers), which was his first ap- All the world has witnessed, fince the propointment ; then to the diet of Ratifbon ; motion of Count Vergennes to the Ministry, from whence he was recalled after his patron's the several negotiations which he has under dismission, but soon after appointed to the taken, and in which he has but too well lucu, embaffy of Constantinople. Sunk in a kind ceeded for this country. The unfortunate of oblivion in the Turkish empire, Mr. le revolution of America, and the dismembering Comple de Vergenoes employed the time he of our empire; the detaching Holland from passed there in ftudy, and has been often our alliance, and effecting an union of the heard to declare, that he is indebted to that States. General with France; Thew Count de kind of confinement for all his political Vergennes's qualifications and talents for the knowledge.

higli employment be fills in his country. The war between the Ruflians and the We need not remind our readers that, by Turks beiog of great consequence to France, his being instrumental in the peace concluded whenever there is any dispute on the Conti- between the Eniperor and the King of Prus. nent, Mr. le Compte de Vergennes, at the fia, Coone Je Vergennes rendered those love. breaking out of the late German war, em- reigns neutral fpeétators of our unfortunate broiled so well the Divan and the Cabinet of conielt with America ; that, by his exertions, Petersburg, and has left fo good instructions the Turkish Empire and Ruilia have been iwice to his fucceffors, that, ever since that time, prevented from going to war within these ferv the Divan has been entirely subservient to the years; that the Armed Neu'rality was planned views of France, whenever she has had occa- by that minister, and their commerce greatly hon to prevent the joint efforts of the Nor- protected by it during the war. The extent thern Confederacy against her allies. Three of the commercial concerns of France fince successful attempts of Mr. de Vergennes have Count de Vergennes's accession to the Ministry, Itamped his plans with the admiration, if not is a farther proof of his great abilities : bis pathe approbation of all the World.

cifick diípofitions, and luis talents for inspiring Duritig his residence at Censtantinople, with the same difpofitions there be negotiates Mr. de Vergennes was united to a Grecia with, are peculiarly remarkable. lady of great beauty and talents, by whom Retired in a small but neat house near Verhe has had two fons, who are both in the sailles, Mr. de Vergennes is constantly occu. military line.

pied in the duties of his oflice, and every day At the end of fourteen years, whilft Mr. is in conference with each of the first clerks de Choiseul was the first minister of France, in the several departments entrusted to his care, the Count de Vergennes was recalled from Unawed hy intrigne, he looks no farther than Conftantinople at his own desire, and soon the line of his duty to remain in place ; and after chosen by that minister, who knew the with all its strengtlı, a renowned party at the extent of confidence that could be reposed in French court has not been able to lessen him hi.al, to go to Stockholm, to decach certain in the opinion of bis sovereign. men, by his political influence, from the It has been observed, that Mr. de Vergennes intere of Ruffia; This negotiation succeed. is rather flow in business; but when it is ed so well, that the most extraordinary revo- considered that that Nowuess is perhaps the lucion in the government of that country cause of his conítantly keeping to business, which we have witnessed, was effected by that and that his perspicacity to judge is the result able negotiator's directions.

of mature deliberatioa, that defect itself will At the death of Lewis XV. the Count de appear as a qualification in a place of that Maurepas, who was called by the present consequence. king to assist him in the government of his Healthy, strong in constitution, exceed. kingdom, seeing he could not support long ingly temperate, Mr. le Comte de Vergennes his nephew, the Duke d’Aiguillon, as mini- rides and walks every day for above two

hours, Inurs, and devotes all the rest of his time said, that, in respect to the last, their dispo. to bufiness, or to the private enjoyments of sitions are, in some degree, hoftile ; the Bao domestick life. His circle of acquaintance, ron, on account of the neutral part Mr. de which might be the most extensive in the Vergeones took in Cardinal de Roban's affair, kingdom, is exceedingly circumscribed by having been exceedingly offended. But Mr. his own choice ; and that indefatigable man is de Vergennes fears no enemy, and his Royal feldom to be feen any-where but at his own Mafter listens to ao reports either against him house, or office. The minister with whom or against Mareschal de Castries, looking up: he is on the most intimate footing is the on them both as the most honest men he Minister of Finance (Mr. de Calonne) being could put at the head of his councils. This bimself the Superintendant of the Council of discrimination of the French Monarch is that department. With the other Ministers, equally honourable to his Majesty and the two Melirs. de Castries and de Breteui?, he is Ministers who have the confidence of their upon a very cool footing. It may even be Sovereign.

LEAVES collected from the PIOZZIAN WREATH lately woven to adorn the

Shrine of Dr. JOHNSON.
His FIRST DECLAMATION.

Trick'd in antique ruff and bannet,
E told me too, that when he made Ode, and elegy, and sonnet.
bis first declamation, he wrote over

[N. B. Mrs. Piozzi does not name the aubu one copy, and that coarsely ; and having thor here alluded to in the foregoing lines, given it into the hand of the tutor who stood

but Mr. Warton, the present Laureat, is íupto receive it, was obliged to begin by chance posed to be the object of the ridicule.) and continue on bow he could, for he had gex but little of by heart ; so fairly trust

Some of the old legendary stories put in ing to his present powers for immediate

verse by modern writers provoked him to fupply, he finished by adding astonishment to

caricature them thus one day at Streatham; the applause of all who knew how little was

but they are already well known, I am sure. owing to study. “ A prodigious risque, * bowever,” said some one.

16 Not at all,

The tender infant, meek and mild, (exclaims Joboson); no man, I suppose,

Fell down upon the store ; leaps at once into deep water who does not

The nurse took up the fquealing child, a know how to swim !”

But still the child squeald on. I doubt not but this story will be told by

A famous ballad also, beginning Rio verde, many, and said so to him when he related it to

Rio verde, when I commended the tranfation me on the 18th July, 1773.

* And who

of it, he said he could do it better himself “ will be my biographer (said he) do you

as thus : « think?"-Goldímith, no doubt, replied I, and he will do it the best among us.

Glassy water, glasfy water, The dog, to be sure, would write it best,

Down whose current clear and stron,

Chiefs confus'd in mutual flaughter, ex replied he; but his particular malice to. 4s wards me, and general disregard for truth,

Moor and Christian roll along. * would make the book useless to all, and But, Sir, said I, this is not ridiculous at all. * injurious to my character."

" Why no (replied he), why should I always

or write ridiculously? perhaps because I BURLESQUE PARODIES, and other Jeux « made these verses to imitate such a one, D'ESPRIT.

" naming him : WHEN a well-known author published

Hermie hoar in solemn cell, his poems in the year 1777: Such a one's

Wearing out life's evening gray, veries are come out, fad 1. ". Yes, replied

Strike thy bosom, sage! and tell, « Johnson, and this fioft has firuck them in

What is bliss, and which the way?
$5 again. Here are some lines I have written
is to ridicule them: but remember that I love Thus I spoke, and speaking righ'u,
the fellow---for all I laugh at him.

Scarce repress’d the starting tear,
Whercfoe'er I turn my view,

When the houry fage reply'd,
All is strange, yet nothing new :

Come, my lad, and drink lome beer."
Endlefs labour all alors,

I could give another comical instance of
Endless labour to be wrong ;

caricature imitation ; recollecting some day,
Phrase that time has fung away, when praising theie verses of Lopez de
Vicouth words in disarray,
Viga,

Sc

Se acquien los leones vence

" Which (laid he) would do just as well ia Vence una muger hermosa

our language thus : O el de flaco averguence

If at your coming princes disappear, O ella di ser mas furiofa,

Comets ! come every day—and stay a year.“ more than he thought they deserved, Mr. Johnson instantly observed, “ that they were When some one in company commended « founded on a trivial conceit; and that con- the verses of M. de Benserade à son lit ; “ceit ill explained, and ill expressed beside.- Theatre des ris et des pleurs, " The lady, we all know, does not conquer in Lit! ou je nais, et ou je meurs, the same manner as the lion does : 'tis a

Tu nous fais voir comment voisins, “ mere play of words (added lie) and you Son nous plaisirs, et nos chagrins, * might as well say, that

To which he replied without hesitating, If the man who turnips cries,

- In bed we laugh, in bed we cry, Cry not when his father dies,

66 And born in bed, iu bed we die; 'Tis a proof that he had rather

“ The near approach a bed may show Have a turnip than his father."

66 Of human bliss to human wue." And this humour is of the same fort with which he answered the following line :

A young fellow, fufficiently confident of Who rules o'er freemen should himself be free. his own abilities, lamenting one day that he

had lost all his Greek_“I believe it hap“ To be sure (said Dr. Johnson)

pened at the same time, Sir, (taid Johason) Who drives fat oxen should himself be fat.”

that I lost all my large estate in Yorkshire, This readiness of finding a parallel, or making

When Goldsmith was one day seeming to one, was shewn by him perpetually in the repine at the success of Beattie's Essay on course of converfation. — When the French Truth—" Here's such a stir, said he, about a verses of a certain pantomime were quoted fellow that has written one book, and I have thus,

written many."-Ah, Doctor, (says JohnJe suis Caffandre descendue des cieux, [fieurs fon) there go two-and-forty sixpences to oue

guinea." Pour vous faire entendre, mesdames et mer

When on his return from the Hebrides, a Que je suis Caffandre descendue des cieux :

Scotchman, with a firm cone of voice, asked be cried out gayly and suddenly, almost in a him what he thought of his country--" That moment,

it is a very vile country to be sure, Sir.". I am Cassandra come down from the sky,'

“Well, Sir (replies the other, somewhat mortified), God made it."

'" Certainly he To tell each by-stander what none can deny, That I am Caísandra come down from the sky. did, answers Mr. Johnson ; but we must al

ways remember that he made it for Scotcha The pretty Italian verses too at the end of

men--and comparisons are odious, Mr. S, but Baretti's book, called, " Easy Phraseology,” God made Hell. he did all improviso, in the same manner : When Johnson one day had been enumeViva! viva! la padrona!

rating all the qualities necessary for the fora Tutta bella, e tutta buona,

mation of a poem and a poet-Mr. Grierson La padrona e un angiolella

began a comical parody on the ornamental Tutta buona e tutta bella;

harangue, giving praise to a cook, and pre. Tutta bella e tutta buona ;

ference to a dinner" And in this apinion, Viva! viva! la padrona!

said Johnson, all the dogs in the town will

join you Long may live my lovely Hetty ;

When Dickerstaffe's Aight confirmed the Always young and always pretty !

fufpicions of his character, somebody observed Always pretty, always young,

he always suspected him, and I'm amazed, Live my lovely Hetty long !

Dr. J. you could have thought otherwise Always young and always pretty,

“ The eye, Sir, that is conttantly upon the Long may live my lovely Hercy!

ground cannot fail of seeing dirt--for my part, The famous diftich too of 211 Italian impro. I hope to look at things from a better height." vifstore, who, when the Duke of Modena ran away from the comet in the year 1742, ANACREON's DOVE,

Dr. Johnson, knowing 1 kept a commonSe al venir vestro i principi (en' vanno place book, one day said to me, good-humourDeb venga ogni di-durate un anno; edly, that he would give me something to

write

o 1743,

write in my repofitory. " I warrant, faid « Smiling at my master's gates,

he, there is a great deal about me in it :--- “ Freedom my return awaits. * You thall have at least one thing worth “ But the liberal grant in vain

your pains. I will repeat you Anacreon's • Tempis me to be wild again ;
« Dove directly ; but tell at the same time, “ Can a prudent Dove decline
« that I was never struck with any thing in “ Blissful bondage such as mine?
& the Greek language till I read that, so I « Over hills and fields to roam,
« never read any thing in the same language " Fortune's guest without a home ;
* since, that pleased me so much. I hope « Under leaves to hide one's head,

my translation continued he; is not worse “ Slightly shelter'd, coarsely fed ;
" than that of Frank Fawkes."-Seeing me “Now my better lot bestows
disposed to langh, “ Nay, nay (said he), “ Sweet repast and soft repose :
« Frank Fawkes has donc them very finely." « Now the geu’rous bowl I sip,
O DE.

« As it leaves Anacreon's lip; LOVELY Courier of the sky,

"" Void of care and free from dread, Whence and whither dost thou fly ?

“ From his fingers snatch his bread;

" Then with luscious plenty gay, Scattering, as thy pinions play,

“ Round his chamber dance and play ; Liquid fragrance all the way : Is it busmess? - Is it Love?

« Or from wine as courage springs,

“ O'er his face extend my wings; Tell me, tell me, gentle Dove! « Soft Anacreon's vows I bear,

“ And when feast and frolic tire, ** Vows to Myrtale the fair,

“ Drop aileep upon his lyre: « Grac'd with all that charms the heart,

" This is all.-be quick and go, “ Blushing nature, smiling art ;

“ More than all thou canst not know; " Venus, courted by an Ode

“ Let me now my pinions ply, “ On the Bard her Dove betow'd.

- I have chatter'd like a pye.” " Vested with a master's right,

When I had finished copying the Oje, « Now Anacreon rules my fiigtit :

“ But you must remember to add (says Mr. “ His the letters that you lee,

" Johnson), that though these verses were “ Weighty charge contigo'd to me. « planned and begun when I was fixteen “ Think not yet my service hard,

years old, I never could make an end of “ Joyless talk without reward;

"them before I was sixty-eight." [ To be coniinued. ]

To the PHILOLOGICAL SCCIETY of LONDON. CENTLEMEN, THE inclosed is an original Letter to VILLARS Duke of BUCKINGHAM, from KATHA

RINE his wife. It was written about the year 1623, during his stay with Prince CHARLES in the Court of Spain. - With what unbounded tenderness this diffolute nobleman was doated on by his Lady will be helt underitood from the Epiftle itself, which is by no means published for the entertainment of the scribbling milles of the present age, who prefer the polished nothingneis of a modern norel to the most fincere effufions of a feeling heart. It is offered to those only who are convinced that the ardent affection of a good and beau. tiful woman like the Dutchess ghowever wadorned with refinements borrowed from a Richardson) is a more exalted blefling tiian the utmost prodigality of princes can bestow. Let me not, however, seem to detract from the merits of a writer to whom the cause of religion and morality bas infinite obligations ; but proceed to explain myself by adding, that delicate and natural as the sentiments of Mr. Richardson are, while they flow from his own pen, I have rarely met with any of his numerous female disciples, who were either kt to describe the pallion of love with justness, or to ex.cice it with success. So difficult is it to move firmly or gracefully under the pressure of an understanding more unwieldy than our own. - It may be neceltiry tv adı, for the sake of female criticks, educated in the school of Messieurs Lowndes, Noble, and Lane, that the spelling of the English language was quite unsettled, or little attended to, in the reign of James 1. Many original letters of thar royal pedant are ftill prefervell, and have almost as little correctness to boaft of, as the following artless composition of her Grace of Buckingham. I am, &c.

HISTORICUS. « My dere Lord

which was so great a comfort to me as you “I

Humbly thanke you that you were cariot imagen, for I protest to God I have had pleased to right so many letters to me, a greeves tim of this our greevous absenes,

« PreviousContinue »